Chapter 1 - The Ghost Duke Family

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Author: lipzoldyck

 

My name is Theresia Oblene.

 

My nickname is Terry, and my age is eight years old.

 

I see ghosts.

 

***

 

I saw dead people’s figures from the moment I was born.

 

Not only I can see them. I can even touch them.

 

Of course, I don’t want to because a ghost’s body is as cold as ice, but just because I don’t want to touch or bump into them doesn’t mean I can.

 

I don’t know why. Just like breathing and blinking, I’ve been living as if it’s natural since I was born.

 

Obviously, the fact that I had seen ghosts from the moment I was born was something I had heard from my mother’s mouth.

 

[Terry.]

 

My mother, Ifia Oblene, was the wisest, sweetest, and most beautiful person in the world.

 

She really was like that, not because she’s a mother who loves me very much. Since it’s to the extent where all the ghosts in Oblene’s mansion could even swear with bloodㅡthey’re already dead?ㅡin their whole bodies.

 

…Well, after all, she died before I was even five years old, but still!

 

As soon as Mother passed away, my biological father left me in the mansion with his mistress and illegitimate son, whom he had hidden, and neglected me, but!

 

That’s not enough, so Lawrence, my half-brother, can’t bully me whenever he has spare time, but…!

 

I’m Theresia Oblene. I survived brilliantly until the year when I turned eight without giving in to those humans.

 

Well, as expected, as I’ve told you, I’m amazing.

 

<You just thought of something weird, right. What an amazing expression…>

 

A boy who looked my age was sitting upside down in the air with a disgusted face.

 

That boy was Tommy, my only friend and a ghost who had been in this mansion since before I was born.

 

I opened my mouth, shedding no hate at him.

 

“You’re noisy, Tommy. All the other ghosts say they have never seen a kid as smart as me, though?”

 

From a young age, I grew up hearing many stories from ghosts that were hundreds of years old.

 

‘Since I’ve even heard stories about how terrible the ancient punishments are, oh well.’

 

Although Tommy freaked out and stopped us, the ghosts have always been at their disposal to pour knowledge into my ears.

 

It’s a well-founded confidence as it’s the work of a seven-year-old who took off all the library books with their help.

 

Should I say ‘fortunately?’, Tommy didn’t refute any further.

 

I ate the apple in my hand in a somewhat proud mood.

 

Currently, I have piles of various snacks and foods in my arms.

 

“Aaargh! Beggar, you stole my snack again!”

 

Of course, I didn’t say it was mine.

 

From a distance, the sound of someone getting angry came closer.

 

This time, I lowered my gaze with a smile that was too wicked to be hung from my lips.

 

Then, the figure of a chubby boy with dark brown hair and light blue eyes, came into my sight.

 

“Where else have you been hiding? Come out right now! I said come out!”

 

It was quite a sight to see his face, which was reddened with anger, mercilessly distorted.

 

I can’t believe he shares half the same blood as me.

 

“It’s the end of the world.”

 

I sat on top of Lawrence’s head, or more precisely, a tall tree branch in the garden, licking my tongue and dangling my legs.

 

Tommy, who was hanging in the air next to me, murmured dumbfoundedly.

 

<Your mouth is really… the snout of disaster…>

 

“Ah, Tommy! He told me to bring out the snacks! Go and throw some of these to him!”

 

I lightly ignored Tommy’s words, handed him a bundle of candy, and grinned.

 

Why, well. Why don’t you keep cursing on my smiling face?

 

When I smiled with such sincerity, Tommy sighed heavily, took the candy, and flew over Lawrence.

 

“You beggar! If you don’t get down on your knees in front of me and apologize right now, I’ll tell Dad everything…!”

 

At the moment Lawrence glared at a random wall and uttered a similar threat with a grim face.

 

<One~!>

 

With a cheerful cry, a pink candy fell on Lawrence’s head.

 

“Ouch! W-What…!”

 

Lawrence leapt out of place, gripped his head, and looked up at the sky with terrified eyes.

 

<Two~!>

 

And the colorful candies that flew straight in one after another.

 

“Aaargh! Mooom! Daaaaaad!”

 

Three, four, five.

 

Lawrence, who had experienced the light and stinging rain of candy, ran into the mansion in a panic.

 

I took a mouthful of apple as I watched Tommy slay Lawrence as if I had become an exorcist who used to ward off evil spirits in some dimension.

 

Ah, it’s sweet, sweet.

 

***

 

After a satisfying meal, avoiding people’s eyes, I headed to the library in the mansion’s annex.

 

Originally, this place could only be used by the Viscount family, but since for these people except me, the library is a place where they have no interest in it at all, currently, it’s about half abandoned.

 

So, sometimes, there are servants who try to avoid the eyes of others and use this place as a secret meeting place, but…

 

<Surpise!>

 

“Kyaaaaaaaaaak!”

 

“Aagh!”

 

Even if Tommy passes through their body once like that, he will disappear and they will get goosebumps, so no problem!

 

<Great. You’re ready, right?>

 

Tommy, who chased away the servants who were flirting here, suddenly looked at me with different eyes. I also nodded my head with a sad face.

 

“Let’s start.”

 

What followed was very, very uncouth and…

 

<Your voice is too small! Louder!>

 

“A bastard who is lacking even if he eats 18-color Jocca pastel crayons wrapped up!”

 

<Great! Continue!>

 

It’s hard, and…

 

<The Viscount is?>

 

“Son of a b*tch!”

 

<Lawrence!>

 

“Bad guy!”

 

<That’s right! Whether he’s a viscount or duke, never give up! Get rid of all the honorifics too!>

 

It was a time of continuous suffering.

 

After completing the training to improve self-esteem with Tommy, I returned to the main building at sunset.

 

I entered the portrait room on the second floor of the main building, at the end of the hallway, as I was used to avoiding the servants’ eyes.

 

Cough.”

 

I swung my hands in the dust floating in the air and ran across the portrait room.

 

Before long, my steps stopped in front of a portrait of a woman with silvery-platinum hair and dark turquoise eyes, just like mine.

 

A portrait of Ifia Oblene, who stood alone and lofty in front of a dark blue curtain.

 

“The dust has piled up…”

 

I muttered softly while carefully brushing away the dust that had sat on the painting with my breath. Then I sat down in front of it.

 

After staring at the portrait silently for a while, Tommy whispered quietly.

 

<She was a really nice person.>

 

“…Yeah, I know.”

 

That’s why I miss her more.

 

I shoved the last words into my throat and just stayed silent.

 

It was because I thought I would shed tears for nothing if I said ‘I miss her’.

 

Yet Tommy stood by me quietly, as if he knew what I had swallowed.

 

I was so grateful for that.

 

We stared at the portrait for a moment as if in silence, then immediately shook off our seats and got out.

 

I adjusted my expression to evoke the strangely depressing atmosphere, and tried to open my mouth, asking where Lawrence would hide his snacks tomorrow.

 

“Hey, beggar.”

 

It was then. On the other side of the hallway, right in front of the stairs, someone with their arms crossed called me.

 

There is only one person in this mansion who calls me by that voice and that name.

 

“Lawrence.”

 

And that chubby belly. It’s not common.

 

“You, you…”

 

Lawrence, who had been standing in front of the stairs, unfolded his arms and approached me.

 

He seemed to be very angry as his shoulders trembled greatly, and his breathing was rough.

 

‘Oh geez.’

 

Was there anything he particularly liked in the snack I stole today?

 

Thinking that he was annoying, I clicked inwardly and looked at him.

 

Lawrence stopped right in front of me and opened his mouth, looking at me with bloodshot eyes.

 

“Apologize.”

 

“What?”

 

“Beggar, you stole my snacks today! Get down on your knees and apologize!”

 

Lawrence opened his eyes and groaned loudly.

 

I glanced down the stairs, fearing that servants might come running after hearing his voice.

 

‘Should I run away?’

 

Ugh, tch. Annoying.

 

I clicked my tongue inside. It was because I thought it would be better to avoid my spot as it is, rather than being noticed by the Viscount or Carlotta for nothing while dealing with Lawrence.

 

But the next moment. Words that could never be ignored pierced my ears.

 

“There’s a limit in tolerating you because you’re pitiful! My dad was helping a nearly ruined viscount family, so your maternal grandfather thanked him and asked him to marry his daughter! With such a position, she didn’t even thank my dad, so she was punished to death…!”

 

“What?”

 

<What?>

 

At the same time, cold voices came out of me and Tommy’s mouths.

 

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