Chapter 5 – My stepbrother has arrived
A few days after I accepted Prince Jared’s formal engagement proposal, I was called by my father as I finished my sword practice. Lately people even stopped telling me to go to the doctor, so I wonder what it could be.
By the way, my sword practice is proceeding smoothly, I was told today as well “the sword’s movement is great!” After this I just have to get more used somehow to the movements of a sword, so I was praised by my swordsmanship teacher. It seems that we have finally found a magic tutor as well, so everything is going well.
And at this rate, I can even surpass Prince Jared’s swordsmanship brilliantly, or if I get exiled abroad, I could support myself and build a fortune with my magic prowess. Go me, I will defeat yet another destruction flag! I went to see my father while humming and skipping, in an excellent mood.
And so, I entered the room cheerfully, and……
There was the assassin of another destruction flag waiting there.
“It has been decided that Katarina is Prince Jared’s fiancee, right? In that case, since there is nobody left to inherit for the Claes family, I have decided to adopt a child from another branch family.”
There was a boy standing by himself behind my smiling father. He was probably about the same age as me.
It was like he was overwhelming this magnificent mansion, just his location alone pressured me awfully. Father encouraged the boy to step forward.
“My name is Keith. I have become your adopted stepbrother as of today. Katarina, please take care of me as my onee-san!”
He said so as he was walking towards me.
“I’m Keith. I’ll be in your care.”
I bowed hesitantly in this uncomfortable situation.
………… The second destruction flag has come ~~~~~!!!
My happy mood disappeared instantly.
This might happen, well I knew it would happen someday, but it happened faster than I thought it would. No, this is too fast. I didn’t make any plans for you in the strategy meeting!!
Keith Claes. The adopted stepbrother of Katarina Claes, and as I know, one of the capture targets. He’s a man with a lot of sex appeal.
While I was dazed by the sudden situation, I saw my father indicating to me as if “you have to greet him too,” so I rushed to give a greeting back.
“I, I’m Ka, Katarina. I’ll be in your care.”
Keith bowed his head suddenly at my greeting.
The eight year old Keith, does not yet have the overflowing sex appeal from the game. I mean, it’s hard for an eight year old to have that much sultry sex appeal anyways. But, he really is a very pretty boy, truly worthy of being a capture target. With fluffy flaxen hair that is a little curly, I almost want to pet him on reflex. His perfectly round blue eyes are so cute, just like a squirrel.
In the first place, as the youngest in my previous life, I kinda wanted a younger brother or sister. When I was small, I asked my mom many times over for one, but she replied coldly, like pouring cold water over me, “it’s impossible.” So this time, I am delighted to have a little brother. If possible, as cute as possibly could be.
However, he is unfortunately a capture target for the heroine, and my second destruction flag.
I’m glad to have such a cute little brother. However, this child is my destruction flag…
Oo~~, I’m glad he’s so cute, but the destruction… but I’m still glad to have a little brother.
“So he’ll be living here as an adopted child. Katarina, Katarina, are you listening at all?”
“Uh, yes! Father! Of course I have been listening properly.”
Without realizing it, it seems like my father has been saying something. Yikes, I didn’t hear anything he said.
“And as such, since Keith is surely tired from having just moved today, he will be resting. Starting from tomorrow, take really good care of him.”
Certainly, when looking more closely at his complexion, he seemed to be rather exhausted. The boy was then guided to the bedroom provided to him by father.
After sending off that tiny little back, I rushed to my room.
When I returned to my room, I immediately pulled out a sheet of paper titled – “Previous life’s game memories” that I had written. While trying to recall my previous life, I had written down all the information that I could remember.
I looked for the section on the capture target Keith Claes.
He had quite the lonely upbringing.
His father was a distant relative of the Claes family, while his mother was a prostitute. In total, he has been raised by three different fathers. However, his mother was looked down upon by the Claes family for having been a prostitute, and he himself was also harassed greatly by the family members. One time, while he was being bullied, he invoked magic for the first time. His powerful magic injured his tormentors, and he ran off.
Meanwhile, Duke Claes had heard about his powerful magic, and decided to adopt him as his son.
However, Keith wasn’t ever truly accepted in the Claes house, either. His onee-san, Katarina, who had been a spoiled only child up until then, hated suddenly getting an adopted stepbrother. In addition, Duchess Claes misunderstood Keith to be an illegitimate child of Duke Claes, and her relationship with Duke Claes became icy.
Since he was disliked by both Katarina and the Duchess, even the servants were not able to do anything for him. Therefore, he mostly confined himself to his room and spent his time alone. And as if to fill the loneliness within him, he grew up to be quite the playboy.
Such a Keith met the heroine. At first he made a pass at the commoner heroine only because commoners were so rare for him to meet, but she was able to envelop him in such kindness that it gradually healed his loneliness, and he became attracted to her. And for the first time since he was born, he found someone he loved.
Meanwhile, in Keith’s route, the hard-working villainess Katarina Claes was featured extensively. Getting close to the duke’s family, the easy manner of exchanges with the heroine, the commoner enraged Katarina’s noble consciousness, and she tormented the heroine endlessly.
If the heroine captures Keith successfully, and gets the happy end –
Just like the time with Prince Jared, since Katarina had been criminally harassing the couple, she was deprived of her status and exiled. After that, Keith left the Claes house, and married the heroine.
If the heroine fails to capture Keith, and gets the bad end –
Keith would be unable to protect the heroine from Katarina’s harassment, and Katarina would inflict a deep wound on the heroine that would not disappear. In his despair, Keith would use his strong magic power to murder his onee-san Katarina, and then disappear.
Thus, when looking over the information about Keith, I sighed deeply.
There’s no happy end here for Katarina Claes! Bad ones only! The only thing that changed was whether I died by a sword, or by magic……
Even though she is so hard-working, there’s only destruction ends, Katarina is pitiful too…
So, another destruction flag that I must defeat has risen up. I decided to enact a strategy meeting yet again.
Well then, the second session of the Katarina Claes destruction end avoidance strategy meeting shall commence.
“Alright, just like the first meeting, does anyone have any good ideas?”
“Ok. Well then, please go ahead, Katarina Claes-san.”
“Since this destruction end is basically the same one as Prince Jared’s destruction ends, wouldn’t it be fine if we just kept training in swordsmanship and magic as we are now?”
“But, in this destruction end, the sword has nothing to do with it. We got done in by magic. Since that’s the case, we should practice magic even harder.”
“However, the enemy this time has powerful magic. It was powerful enough to get him noticed and adopted from a branch family. For Katarina that only has “Earth Thud,” no matter how hard we work at magic, it feels like an impossible hurdle to overcome……”
“Moreover, because the enemy this time is a relative, he could attack me at any time, and I always have to be on guard…”
“No way…… then whatever can we do!? Even though I thought I just managed to avoid Jared’s destruction route!”
“……Man…… Since it has come to this, there’s no choice but to…”
“……EH!? It couldn’t be!?”
“It can’t be helped, since it’s so important to us, it’s unavoidable……”
“……Such a thing……”
“……I have no other choice than to do it for my sake! Even though I really wanted a little brother, there’s no choice! I’ll pack up my feelings in a cardboard box and leave it under a bridge!”
“Ahh, no way! That seems so mean……”
“……But, like, there’s no other way……”
“Uhh, sorry to interrupt during such an emotional time, but may I speak up?”
“Yes, what is it, Katarina Claes-san? Do you happen to have a better idea?”
“Yes. …… I mean, Keith fell in love with the heroine as a way to heal his loneliness, right? Then in that case, if Keith was never lonely to begin with, wouldn’t he not fall in love with the heroine!?”
“If Keith never falls in love with the heroine, wouldn’t that avoid the Katarina destruction end?”
“Su, such a wise suggestion! Katarina Claes! You’re a genius!”
“Truly! Really! How wonderful!”
“So, let’s make Keith not lonely. Will this be alright?”
“Yes, of course. ……However, whatever can we do to make him not lonely?”
“For the time being, so that he’s not by himself, let’s stay with him as much as possible?”
“And, now I can dote on my lovely little brother to my heart’s content. This is something I also have to do for myself. I’m so happy.”
“Well then, the destruction avoidance strategy for this time shall be to make Keith feel loved, yes?”
And as such, the second Katarina Claes destruction end avoidance strategy meeting was concluded.
“This little brother is simply too unbelievably cute. How wonderful. I want to immediately invite him to play with me,” said Katarina to herself as she went to sleep in an elated mood.
However, Katarina has forgotten something. Not only was it the game’s Katarina, but also Katarina’s mother that was lonely and treated Keith extremely badly.