When I suggested that we drink wine together, Illness-san curiously tilted her head.
[……Errr, this wine was bought with Illness-san's money, and I don't feel comfortable drinking it alone…… so if Illness-san is alright with it……]
Hearing the supplementing words I said, Illness-san didn't say anything for a moment before her peculiar smile appeared on her lips.
[……Kuhihi, Well theeeen, I'd take you up on your offeeeeeer and join with youuuuu.]
Accepting my offer more readily than I expected, Illness-san quickly prepares another wine glass.
And then, with a somewhat elegant movement, she sat down next to me on the sofa.
[Ah, y- yes.]
……I had completely forgotten about it. The sofa in my room isn't really that small that only one person can sit on it, but it's perfectly arranged for one person…… and there isn't any seat in front of me.
So, if I asked her to sit with me, she would inevitably have to sit next to me. Arehh I'm getting strangely nervous.
[Well theeeeen, let's driiiiiink.]
Next to the slightly shaken me, Illness-san poured some wine into her wine glass without seeming to be particularly bothered by my reaction, before she slightly held out her glass towards me.
I could tell that she was asking for a toast, so I held out my wine glass and lightly clinked my wine glass with hers.
After the quiet toast, I enjoyed the wine with Illness-san…… but I still felt uncomfortable.
Illness-san has a petite body of about 120cm…… which would be around as tall as an elementary or junior highschooler, but her gestures are very mature and elegant.
The way she sipped her wine, the way she ate her snacks, the way she chewed with her hand covering her mouth so naturally, the way she made each of her gestures looked so graceful.
Putting aside her height, she looks really mature, and how should I say this…… I'm feeling this mysterious sex appeal drifting from her.
[Kaito-samaaa Is something the matteeeeer]
[Ahh, n- no, how should I say this…… I was just thinking that it's amazing how Illness-san drank so elegantly.]
[Kuhihi, is that sooooo I am stiiiiiill a maid of a noble after aaaaaaaall. I've got the whooooooole etiquette dooooooooown pat. I'm just glaaaad if you don't find me unsiiiiightly.]
Noticing my gaze, Illness-san looks back at me. From her slightly swaying hair, I can smell a pleasant scent wafting through the air.
Her elegant posture and behavior filled with composure, her gentle tone…… Sitting with her like this makes me very conscious of the fact that she's an adult lady.
How should I explain this…… In an attempt to change this somewhat itchy atmosphere, I took a sip of my wine and brought out a topic.
[……Do you usually drink a lot, Illness-san]
[No~~ I don't have thaaaat much opportunity to driiiiiink. I just drink when I'm inviteeeeed.]
Arehh The conversation isn't going well. It's not that the atmosphere makes it difficult to talk, but because of my nervousness, I can't expand the conversation well.
[……Errr…… I- Illness-san, what do you usually spend your salary on]
……Wait, what the heck am I asking about! No, this situation really started because Illness-san bought a bottle of wine with her salary, but it would be tactless and rude to talk about money.
It was a gaffe that came out of my mouth, but Illness-san didn't seem to be particularly offended as she replied.
[Let's seeee, I gueeeeeeess just the things that I need for private liiiiiife. I don't have any hobbies in particulaaaaaaar, so I rarely buy luxury iteeeeeems.]
[Hmmm. How should I say this…… It feels like Illness-san doesn't feel greed at all, don't you think]
[I wonder about that]
To be honest, it was hard to say that we were having a good conversation, but Illness-san seemed to be enjoying her time, as I could see a soft smile on her lips.
The emotions transmitted through my Sympathy Magic were also calmness…… and strangely, a somewhat warm and soothing feeling.
Unnn, how should I say this…… I was rather nervous when we just started drinking…… but there's something nice about this peaceful and soothing atmosphere.
Seeing the smile that often appears on Kaito's lips, as if his nervousness has dissipated, Illness smiled again.
(Doesn't feel greed at all huuuuh…… That's not the case at aaaaaaall. I'm deeeeeefinitely veeeery greedy.)
While tipping her wine glass, Illness thought about the conversation she had with Kaito earlier. Then, she turned her gaze to Kaito, who was deliciously munching on the snacks.
(I want you to aaaaaaaalways have a smiiiiiile. I wish for a future will aaaaaaaalways be a happy oneeeee…… For me to wish for such a futuuuuuure, I must be helplessly greeeeeedy.)
What she seeks is a happy future for Kaito. What she kept within her heart is a strong and gentle wish to keep seeing Kaito have a happy smile.
(Howeveeeeer, I'm sure that even if you knew thaaaaat, you would still tell me that I'm not greeeeeeedy.)
With this thought in mind, Illness looked at the dish of snacks in front of her…… and gently presented it to Kaito.
[I don't thiiiiink I'll be able to eat any moooooore, so if you don't miiiiind, please eat it.]
[Is that so Well then, I'll help myself to it.]
There was no lie in her words. However, there is one thing that she hasn't told Kaito.
Kaito recognizes that Illness was a light eater, so he thinks that she was too full to eat any more, but this wasn't the case at all.
It's not her stomach that's full, but her heart…… In this space taken up by Kaito now, Illness' heart is more than full, and that she can't afford to take in happiness within her heart anymore.
(My beloved youuuu, seeing your smiiiiile…… being able to look at you by your sideee…… I can't think of aaaaaaaanything that would make me happieeeeeeer.)
It's not that she was aiming for this situation. She really just wanted to offer wine to Kaito…… but it returned back to her as an unexpected reward.
Just like this, she can spend time with Kaito and look at his smile nearby. As for Kaito, he feels that isn't able to pay a reward commensurate with Illness' work, but that is not the case.
This moment, which was made possible by Kaito's suggestion, was a gift filled with so much happiness for Illness, that she even felt like she was receiving too much.
(If this inexcuuuuuusable selfishness of mine is allooooooowed, even for just a little while mooooooore…… Please allow me to have your smile all to myseeeeeelf.)
With such thoughts in mind, Illness looked at Kaito with a heartfelt smile.
It was something she couldn't understand in the past…… However, after meeting Kaito, her heart began to fill with the feeling of "happiness" that she had come to naturally understand……
Serious-senpai : [The titleeeeee! What the heck are you doing, giving up on the pattern! You've already forced your way through with the title before, so just keep going!!!]
: [Well~~ Even so, Pan…… Illness' heroine power sure is high, isn't it]
Serious-senpai : [……Can you believe this Even though she got no romantic date-like events, nor sexy erotic events, but she got this high amount of heroine pwoer…… She isn't half bad. I'm kinda getting scared for the future now…… Well, putting her heroine power aside, how much salary does Illness actually get paid]
: [You curious about that Well then, I'll list out the summary here for you.]
~ ~ Illness' Salary (Monthly) ~ ~
From Kaito: Tentatively, 1 White Gold Coin (10 Million Yen)
From Lilia: 1 Gold Coin (1 Million Yen)
※ After much negotiation, she managed to get Illness to agree to this.
From Alice: 28 White Gold Coins (280 Million Yen)
※ She never receives the full amount. Receiving only 1 white gold coin, she leaves the rest to Alice to hold on.
Serious-senpai : [Eh! A monthly income of 280 million yen…… You…… No, Alice is paying Illness that much!]
: [No, I mean, she's one of the executives after all….. She's one of the ten people who stand at the top of billions under Alice-chan's command, and is the Chief Information Manager of Symphonia Kingdom. Being in such a position, she'd obviously have such a high salary…… Well, she leaves most of her salary to m…… Alice-chan, and just withdraws it when she needs it. She's never withdrawn money though!]
Serious-senpai : [……And did y…… Alice gamble that money away]
: [She didn't! If it's the perverts who asked Alice-chan to keep their money, she would have used it as she pleased! ……That's what Alice-chan said. Anyway, she never touched a coin of her salary, and kept it in a safe place. After all, she's the conscience among her followers…… She doesn't complain when she is sent on missions and quickly does it, and unlike the other idiots who are competent but have coocoos in their heads, she never misses the regular reports, giving accurate and easy to understand reports, and she's the only one with a decent personality……]
Serious-senpai : [……You have it hard huh.]
: [Being such a person, I…… Alice-chan would obviously take good care of her! When she said she wanted to change her place of work from the royal castle to the mansion of some Duke, Alice-chan said yes without any other question. After she met Kaito-san, Alice-chan made sure to not send her to any work that required her to go far away, and even told her about Kaito-san's house on the assumption that she would do the housework there, you know]
Serious-senpai : [……Indeed, now that you mentioned it…… It really feels like Alice respects Illness' opinion.]-