After we finished shopping, we headed for the Hongou residence.
Even though this was inside the metropolitan area, this silence, this abundance of green! The high-class residential area was amazing.

At the center of the high-class residential area was a remarkably large site—the Hongou residence.
We entered through a different gate from the one we took the other day.
This residence was different from the western-styled buildings marked as cultural property.
It was a modern building with modern aesthetics.
However, it wasn't eccentric.
It was probably designed by a famous architect.

I followed behind Lady Sara and entered.
The atrium in the entrance hall was decorated with tasteful furnishings.
The lighting from the skylight beautifully illuminated the outlines on the sculpture, further increasing its artistry.

“Whose work is this statue?”
“Ah, this is from a new artist.
Grandmother liked it and used it as decoration.”

The rich really acted as patrons to artists! It wasn't something that appeared in stories!
Since it would be rude to look around too much, I obediently continued inside.

I was first led to the guest room.
The Joan Miró painting adored here gave an overall pop feeling.
I began to change out of my uniform.
The viscose jersey dress I just bought was very cute.
It was a new product from a famous brand.
I would normally never come into contact with such a thing.
I wore these clothes that fitted my figure but not my stature and headed to the living room where everyone was waiting.

“It really does fit you!”
“Thank you very much, Sara.”

Lady Sara took into consideration that this dress was a jersey.
She was truly kind-hearted.

“We'll go to the beauty salon after this.”

As Lady Sara drank her coffee, she said with a composed face.

“Rei, you look like this has nothing to do with you, but you're going to get your hair cut.”

“Eh? I'll be going to a barbershop in the near future, so it's fine!”

Right, I would be getting a 1000 yen cut, though, after my research, it was 1080 yen after tax.

“Barbershop? Not a beauty salon?”

Lady Sara made a strange face.
Beauticians and barbers had different national qualifications.
What I had planned for was to have a barber snip my hair at a barbershop.

I plan to go to the shop near the station that advertised 1000 yen for a haircut.
In the first place, I only want to have the tips of my hair cut straight.”

Lady Sara, Lord Souju, and even Lord Takaoka froze.
The first one of them to move was Lord Souju.

“Eh, Rei? By chance, do you wash your hair with soap?”
“I do not use soap but shampoo.”
“Oh, that's a relief.”

I was glad that he was relieved.
No, wait, what was Lord Souju relieved about?

“Washing with soap may seem economical, right? Since you can just wash your whole body with the same soap.
But, when you wash your hair with a bar of soap, it takes too much time.
I have neither the time nor money.
Using shampoo is more practical and time-efficient.
Thus, concluding that this way was more economical.”

I had read beginner books on natural living and having a relaxed life, but that was only for those who had an excessive amount of time on their hands.
It was impossible for a poor person nursing the elderly like myself.

“I will be accompanying Sara, but I will handle my haircut on my own time.”

I lacked the funds to pay for a trip to the beauty salon.
That was why I didn't want Lady Sara and the others to foot the bill.

“Hmph, Rei is stubborn, huh.”
That may be so.
But, I would like to be friends with Sara and Sou on equal terms as much as possible.
You two have already done so much for me, and me saying this might come off as strange.”
“We got to eat your home cooking, and seeing you off was Grandfather's wishes.
Besides, that dress is an apology from Kaname.
So, yeah, we're on equal terms.”

Lord Souju was kind-hearted.
This really may be the world of an otome game.
After all, I couldn't believe such a thing could happen in my life.

“As expected of a capture target, Sou.”

Lord Souju made a disgusted face.
Lady Sara saw his face and laughed.

“He's cool but hot for the heroine.
It's hysterical.
Even though he is thoroughly apathetic to anything he's uninterested in.”
“Being a super hacker is expectedly a cutting trait!”
“Stop calling me that, Rei!”

Super hacker—I thought it sounded dreamy.
I would also like to be called that. Super hacker Reiko.
Such a rush.

“I will go to the beauty salon another time.
More importantly, I shall promptly pass divine punishment to Yuria Sakurada.
Brother Kaname, may I ask for your assistance?”

Lady Sara looked at Lord Takaoka with an evil grin.
He only wryly smiled back.

“Sara, the incomprehensible delusions of Lady Yuria Sakurada started her father's predicament.
As expected, I feel sorry for both her and her father.
That is a sickness.
However, the belittling attitude of President Sakurada's secretary towards me, because I am poor, is truly distasteful.
It irritated me.
But, thanks to Lord Takaoka, I felt gratified.
That's why you don't need to do anything else.”

Lady Sara was once again angry.
I think she was too angry.

“What are you saying? She injured you, spat out such horrible words, and gave an unsatisfying apology.
Yet, you don't want to do anything? I hate it!”
“Sara, calm down.
Rei's feelings are the most important.
I also wasn't thinking of dismissing Mr.
Sakurada for this one.
After all, his charisma is amazing.
However, management these several years was terrible.
He probably became arrogant.”
“He is only an upstart, after all.”

Lady Sara in her irrepressible anger said that Lady Yuria Sakurada didn't have the pedigree to be normally allowed to be a member of the Meisei Academy salon.
Lord Souju had kindly explained to me.

The prestigious private Meisei Academy operated through large donations.
However, immediately after the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers in 2008, they could no longer gather their expected amount of donations due to the recession.
Then, the daughter of the president of the rising Sakurada Online enrolled in their elementary school.
The Sakurada family did not possess the pedigree that would allow them to normally enroll in their elementary school.
Therefore, Lady Yuria Sakurada was an irregular existence among the salon members.
As such, Lady Yuria Sakurada was ridiculed as a part of the nouveau riche.
However, since she was a salon member, she was classified as the upper echelon in the hierarchy.
The sons and daughters of the vieux riche distanced themselves from her, so she ended up sticking to her friends and her childhood friend Lord Katsuragi in the salon.
Those friends were also capture targets: Lord Yuu Madenokouji who was expected to become poor and Lord Mihail Madoka Shiroyama, the pianist.

“It's an unrelated story to me, being that I'm at the lowest level of the hierarchy.
Lady Sara and Lord Souju are at the top of the hierarchy, right?”
“Well, I guess, but that's the same for Mr.
I hate that guy, though.
He goes at his own pace too much.”

I think that Lord Souju also considerably went at his own pace.

“Lord Katsuragi is also a capture target, but so is Dr.
He said that he knew her since they were young since he was a relative of his elder sister's in-law.”
“Ichijou is also a capture target?!”

Lord Takaoka spat out the coffee he was drinking in surprise.
They were classmates in school.
While he seemed mostly aware of the events surrounding Lady Yuria Sakurada's delusions, it appeared that he didn't know that Dr.
Ichijou was a capture target.

“It's a problem for a teacher to fall in love with a student.
It is an infringement of morality.
It'll be a problem if Dr.
Ichijou were to fall in love with the heroine, Ms.
Miu Yuuki.”
“Ichijou with a female student… I can kinda imagine him doing that.
Back in high school, he was quite the gaudy playboy.”

This matched up with his flashy appearance.
Ichijou did not betray our expectations.

“So, Ichijou told Yuria Sakurada's parents that she hurt a student and needed to apologize.
But, that guy used too few words.
If he had at least said that it was the daughter of the prestigious Kujouin family, they would've investigated who the student was.”
“Even if you criticize the doctor, it can't be helped.
He gave me some delicious tea and cookies.
I don't think he's a bad person.”
“Rei, you were really easily bribed with food.
You should be careful.”

Consolidating Lady Sara's and Lord Souju's stories, Lady Yuria Sakurada acted as a docile lady in front of the male students but an arrogant nouveau riche in front of the female ones.
Her followers adhered themselves to her like glue in hopes of getting some of the leftovers.
Since she was still close to Lord Katsuragi and those friends, a group of prestigious ladies also became friends with her since they desired that influence.
So, such a girl hit her head and remembered her past life.
She was a commoner in that past life, but the only detailed memories she had were about the otome game.
If that was true, then how much did she enjoy otome games?

“In that case, how about I too be the villainess who remembered her past life? That way, we can make her realize that I am not her enemy.
If we're lucky, we can get a grasp on the contents of her delusion.”
“Why must Rei have to do such a thing?!”
“That’s right.
You should just crush Yuria Sakurada.”

I wanted to handle the situation amicably and didn't want to cause everyone any more trouble.

“I think that there is value in trying, so I would like to try resolving the issue this way.
I am not a doctor and thus cannot cure her.”

Lady Sara and Lord Souju look discontent.
However, I was stubborn.
I would make them agree.
The plan afterward was to have dinner together with the three of them as well as their grandparents.
They said I can be at ease, but truthfully, I was nervous.

Dinner was held in the expansive solarium.
The garden beyond the glass was illuminated.
This was probably done according to the lighting designer.
It was wonderfully magical.
We sat down first.
Lord Takeru Hongou and his wife Lady Youko Hongou slowly walked in afterward.
I stood up from my seat and greeted them.

“Oh, my! It's like Lady Mary Shirasagi has visited us!”

AAAH! Did my face really look like Lady Mary's?! Ah, I hope my personality isn't a match as well.
With that unease in mind, dinner started.

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