No, really. I haven’t dropped this yet. After all, I love this series and you, the readers have chipped in to help me buy the 2nd and 3rd book.
10 Years Old: Chapter 45 – The Result of Grandfather’s Disgust
Editors: Nahct & Wafflez
First published on Ainushi
There’s a saying that goes ‘the older one gets, the harder it becomes to change one’s habits’. After all, one’s actions, pride and ego are all built up by the action one takes over the years.
A nice way of putting it is that the elderly are strong-willed, but that just means they’re pigheaded.
I kept my lips sealed and forced a smile as Grandfather kept talking with a haughty attitude next to Father. Although it would be great if Father won by snapping back at him, Grandfather seemed much more accomplished in that sense.
Moreover, as they’ve been on bad terms from the start, Father lost all trust the instant Grandfather said he just wanted to meet his grandson. Well, Grandfather didn’t say it explicitly, but his attitude said it all.
「Why are you going so far as to refuse my request?」
「Look at your own actions. What kind of education did you give me, old man? As you could likely teach Ruby such matters, it would only be natural for me to prevent it」
Hmm, he was right, but I don’t feel like butting into the conversation for now. The servants gossiped that Grandfather was pitiable in a way for being rejected like this — getting told that he wouldn’t be allowed to even meet his grandson. However, they had no sympathy for a man who would ignore his granddaughter and treat her crudely.
A calm, harmonious voice called out from behind me as I let out a sigh at the never-ending bickering.
… Damn! As I thought that, Grandfather turned around to look towards me, no, to the person behind me. His red eyes, just like Father’s, faintly gleamed with hope. It was the first time that he was seeing his grandson and the sharp look he previously held in his eyes softened slightly as he looked in my direction.
Well, I knew it was going to happen sooner or later. Ruby was at the age where it was impossible for him to sit still.
「Father, I think it’ll be best if you stand aside and let him meet Ruby. It’ll be good for your mental health, both of you」
Ah well, nothing could be done, so I might as well lend Grandfather a helping hand.
It’s true that he came all the way from a distant territory, hoping to see his grandson’s face. Now, now, I don’t care even if he makes light of me as much as he does, Gilles will look after me.
It’s better, in my opinion, if they met under our watchful gaze rather than if he sneakily attempted something. After all, Father could just tear him apart or drive him away.
In response to my words, Grandfather looked at me wide-eyed. I hope he does not misunderstand, I am not, nor do I intend to be, on his side. It’s just that after contemplating Ruby’s well being, I decided it was still better if they conversed whilst under our supervision.
「Wouldn’t it be fine, Father, since you can stop him if he tries to do anything strange?」
「….. Hmm, I guess」
「Besides, you fully intend to toss him out as soon as his stay is over, right? If so, shouldn’t we at least leave him with one good memory?」
“Well, whether it will be a good memory is entirely up to Ruby though”, I muttered under my breath and caught Ruby in my arms as he rushed over.
I hugged Ruby and spun him around. He looked at me, confused, and then relaxed as I patted his head. Ruby was just like me; he loved it when his hair was touched, so he had a soft and tender smile on his face.
「Ruby, beside Father is Grandfather. Come say hello」
Surprised, Ruby turned towards Grandfather, who was beside Father, and stared at him with his red eyes. Meeting the grandson that he had always wanted to meet, Grandfather had a slightly stiff expression as he gave an awkward smile.
With a squeeze, the small hands that clutched my clothes tightened their grip.
By the time I realized, “Oh! This is his refusal pattern!”, Ruby had shaken his head disapprovingly and hid himself behind me.
….. Grandfather was shocked. Which reminds me, Ruby mentioned that he hated him when he saw the expression I had previously. Sorry, Grandfather. I apologize for that. I was the one who planted this seed of prejudice towards you.
「Ruby, perhaps Grandfather will be more amiable with you」
「YAA~! I don’t like people who are spiteful towards one-cha」
Why, onee-chan is delighted that you grew up to be such a good boy!
「… Look. He’s already outed you since you were cold to Liz. This is what happens when you are hostile without realizing the implications it will bring」
「Father, please stop putting salt on the wound」
「Yo— You know it’s inevitable, that girl is—」
「That’s enough! Ruby and Liz are both Selen’s children」
Eventually, Father could not hold it in any longer. His eyebrows raised as he glared at Grandfather. His red eyes were filled with anger.
Father is scary when he’s angry. After these past years, I got to know that part of Father very well.
「In the first place, what’s with barging in on us all of a sudden? Liz and Selen are of low birth? Fuck you! Don’t you find faults in the woman I chose and my daughter. Stop spouting complaints about my lovable daughter and my capable wife. After all, my Liz is cute, smart, and loves her brother to the point that I don’t even want to show her off to you, old man. Despite that, because she’s a woman, you scorned her and made abusive remarks which shows you are unaware of Liz’s adorableness. Old man, you wouldn’t understand how cute Liz was when she used to follow me when she was younger」
「Fa-Father, please stop! It’s embarrassing」
Even as he was angry, he quickly began doting over me to which I shook my head disapprovingly, feeling extremely itchy.
Hold on! Why are you suddenly boasting about your daughter? You even managed to somewhat draw out a dumbfounded look from Grandfather. I bet in Grandfather’s mind, he can’t draw parallels at all between your description of me and the person that I actually am, of which I too disagree with Father’s portrayal of me.
My face turned red as I was unable to endure the feelings of embarrassment, and Ruby looked at me worriedly. His small, warm hands touched all over my cheeks to console me as I hugged Ruby tightly whilst groaning.
「Tousama* is also bullying One-cha」
「R-Rather than bullying, this … It’s just a new method of harassment」
Why do I have to go through such an embarrassing ordeal …..
Ruby is my only ally, and when I hugged him tighter, Ruby grinned delightedly. This was worlds apart from the attitude he had with Grandfather; Ruby was very intimate with me. I’m sure that this must be quite a shock for Grandfather.
「Tousama, you canth bully One-cha!」
「I-I didn’t intend to bully her…」
「It’s harassment when you’re fanning my shame, though…..」
「It’s a fact that you’re cute」
That is obviously due to your belief that your children are the most adorable beings in existence. Because of that, no matter how you try to explain it to Grandfather, who hates me, it would be pointless as he wouldn’t understand.
Somehow, it was as though Father had depleted all of Grandfather’s spirit; he looked slightly dispirited, and his face was clouded with grave solemnity. He had received a devastating blow from Ruby’s refusal and conversely, by how different Ruby treated me.
It wasn’t the meeting he had been eagerly longing for. If he didn’t change his attitude towards me, Ruby wouldn’t even allow Grandfather to come near him. And so, he is currently considering things. However…..
「….. Ruby, do you dislike being friends with me?」
Oh well, Grandfather sank that ship.
「If you want to get closer to Ruby, you’ll have to get pass Liz, old man」
「No, I think he has already firmly shut that door with his own hands ……」
Naturally, Grandfather wanted to forge a connection to Ruby and cut ties with me. I became increasingly sympathetic towards him because Grandfather had been so full of himself, assuming that Ruby would also hold the same feelings. Since Ruby dislikes him, nothing could be done as long as Grandfather doesn’t compromise.
「Ruby ….. Won’t you at least speak with your Grandfather for a bit?」
「Don’t wanna~! I hate bullies, One-cha!」
「Ruby, you’re breaking his heart ….. Grandfather, it’s regrettable, but Ruby greatly dislikes it」
「Why are you taking the old man’s side, Liz?」
「I hoped that if he was able to speak to Ruby right now, he would be satisfied and leave without delay, so—」
「Liz, your motives are horrible」
Dispirited from Ruby’s sharp words, “So it’s because of me?”, Grandfather asked and inclined his head.
Well, that’s because I wanted you to quickly go home. Ruby dislikes you, and although I no longer find it necessary to keep guard against you, he regards you as a person who berates me and hates you for it….. I’m happy that Ruby truly adores me.
「Grandfather, why don’t you give up for now and return home? Ruby might readily approach you if your attitude has changed by the time you come over next time」
「HUH!? I will not—」
「Unless your hatred for me disappears, please accept the fact that Ruby hates you too」
It seems that mentioning Ruby dealt the finishing blow as Grandfather kept his mouth shut when I indicated to him while showing him a sweet smile that I hadn’t before. The words that contained the meaning, “Please withdraw from this place for the time being”.
I smiled at grandfather as I tried to pacify Ruby who was on high alert. Completely depressed, grandfather’s shoulder drooped down. He turned his back on us, the energy he had earlier had vanished into thin air. To a larger extent, he was probably enduring Ruby’s rejection. Seeing him acting that way, I couldn’t help but see him as a pitiable, timid man.
The next day, Grandfather returned to his territory. Rather, it was Father who drove him out.
As he left, he kept looking at Ruby regretfully, but Ruby turned his face away, hurting him considerably. Though he was firm with me, it was strange that he was weak when it came to Ruby.
Well, if he comes over again next time, I wish his attitude towards me would soften just a little.
Thus, Grandfather, who was an annoyance to our family, was quickly sent packing. If possible, please come back again when you’re a little bit more mature.
- The yaa here means no.
- Tousama = Father