As the patriarch of the Ascart House, Carter’s goal had always been quite straightforward—I want many, many grandchildren.
The Ascart House was one of the few noble houses whose lineage remained thin despite having sustained its legacy for a thousand years now. It was often lacking in members, such that it wasn’t rare for the house to have only a single successor in line.
Carter’s father, Blanc Ascart, had once explained the unique traits of the Ascart House to him when he was younger.
Child, the members of our house are good at one-on-one, but we won’t survive group battles. Why, you ask? That’s because we don’t even have a group at all!
Carter could still remember the hopeful look in his father’s eyes when he said those words, seemingly pinning great expectations on him. Unfortunately, his father was doomed to be disappointed.
As per family tradition, Carter ended up bearing a sole son for the Ascart House. When he realized that his son was of mediocre talent—or to put it in other words, an ordinary human—he was inevitably disappointed for a period of time, but he soon thought things through. This could be a blessing for the Ascart House in some ways.
One of the key responsibilities of a noble was to bear successors so as to sustain their lineage. If Roel was weak, he wouldn’t be entrusted with heavy responsibilities, thus giving him plenty of spare time in the fiefdom. What else would a perfectly functional grown man do when he had an excess of spare time…
As fact would have it, it was usually in eras where the patriarchs were of mediocre talent that the Ascart House tended to have more offspring. One reason was because they had more time to ‘woohoo~’, and the other was because they had more wives.
Their incompetence as a transcendent meant that they were only able to marry down to the daughters of earls. Needless to say, an earl’s daughter wouldn’t have the power to stop her marquess husband from taking in concubines, so the patriarchs in such generations usually ended up having a huge harem and many children.
It was just that the same problem would crop up a few generations later. When the patriarch became strong once more, his wife would be of significant backing, possibly a talented transcendent too. Naturally, the patriarch wouldn’t be able to take in concubines, and what made things worse was that a couple consisting of two transcendents gave rise to the lowest possible birth rate.
Carter had read and seen all sorts of ridiculous situations in the family history and the circle of nobility over the years, but still, he couldn’t help but feel uneasy when he saw the women gathering around Roel. He could sense it in his bones: It was the calm before the storm.
The princess of the Saint Mesit Theocracy, the successor of the Rosa Merchant Confederacy, and the young miss of the Ascart House; the gathering of these people could easily make the headlines in international news. Perhaps it was due to the history of those who had awakened the Ascart Bloodline being short-lived, all three of them were particularly worried and protective of Roel.
With great motivation fueling them, their powers rocketed at a ridiculous speed. It would already be amazing to find even a single transcendent of their caliber in previous generations, but three of them had appeared at the same time… and what was even frightening was that neither of them were willing to back down here. Just two days ago, they even fought with one another over Roel!
At this rate, no matter who Roel chose in the end, would the other two really be willing to step down? Take Alicia for example, she had worked herself down to the bone in order to raise her strength, bearing with the pain to practice her spells again and again. She was pushing herself this far in hopes that she could one day marry Roel and live in bliss with him. If Roel were to choose another person over her, would she really be able to give her blessings to them?
Under the huge blow of losing her purpose in life and being abandoned by the person she cherished the most, Carter wouldn’t even be surprised if her deep love turned into hatred for Roel overnight.
The threat of Roel dying to a crime of passion was so real that Carter’s heart would palpitate every time he thought about it. He felt that he really needed to warn his son about it.
“Roel, do you remember me telling you to marry as many women as you can in the future?”
“Yes, I remember that.”
“I take those words back. From this moment onward, you just have to remember one thing. By no means should you get involved with another woman, no matter the situation or circumstance!”
Carter’s sudden solemn advice left Roel a little dazed. He blinked his eyes blankly, not understanding why his father, who was still happy about his breakthrough to Origin Level 4 a moment ago, would suddenly raise his matter. That said, it was quite a fair advice that Roel agreed with.
It looks like my father is more supportive of monogamy after all!
Roel couldn’t help but reassess his father once more. His father’s deep sentimentality was really one-of-a-kind in the circle of nobility, and it moved him. Most likely, his father thought that it was more important for him to have a harmonious family than to marry for the sake of continuing the family’s lineage.
“Father, please do not worry. I understand!”
“It’s good that you understand. I fear that you might end up getting reckless once more and…”
“I’ll learn from your example and only take a single wife in the future.”
“Yes, that’s the way to… Huh?”
Carter widened his eyes in disbelief upon hearing Roel’s response. His body trembled out of sheer frustration, and he found himself unable to speak for a very long while. He couldn’t believe how dense his son was!
What do you understand? You don’t know shit at all!
Carter would have burst out cursing if not for his refined noble upbringing. On the other hand, Roel mistook his father’s reaction as one of approval, and he responded with a smiling nod.
Looks like I am right. Ahh, look how delighted my father is. He’s trembling out of joy!
The smile on Roel’s face further infuriated Carter. He knew that Roel would really misunderstand the meaning of his words if he didn’t put it out even more explicitly.
“I’m telling you not to learn from my example! What’s wrong with polygamy? Polygamy is great too!
“What I mean is that you’ll be entering the academy in less than a year’s time. It’s a place where you’ll find yourself faced with all sorts of people, and many will try to tempt you. However, you must make sure to control yourself. Those who approach you don’t necessarily carry the best of intentions. There are many who covet the power and influence our family commands,” said Carter gravely.
In truth, he had encountered such matters when he was younger too, and there were several successful cases around him too. If Roel failed to keep himself in check and ended up falling in love with another woman, the Ascart House might just blow up, literally.
Even if Alicia couldn’t do the job, Rosa was right beside them, and the Holy Capital was just a few days’ journey away. Roel might just get assassinated before he could return back to the Ascart Fiefdom.
While Carter was imagining an utterly chaotic battlefield where the Ascart Fiefdom stood alone against the combined forces of Rosa and the Theocracy, Roel stroked his lower jaw contemplatively.
He realized that while most of the women he had met thus far were unusually sharp and intelligent for their age, they were incredibly innocent too. On top of that, their background was top-notch, such that there was very little they coveted from the Ascart House. However, things were bound to be different once he entered the academy.
There was a slang commonly used in his previous world known as ‘Green Tea Bitch’, which referred to women who feigned pure and innocent in order to get close with powerful men. He wasn’t sure how it was like on the Sia Continent, but he wasn’t confident that he would be able to discern others accurately given his lacking experience in relationships.
So, he decided to ask about his father’s experience.
“Father, you met mother in the academy, right?”
“Yes. What’s wrong?”
“How was your relationship with her then? Did anyone try to get in your way?”
A complicated expression appeared on Carter’s face when he heard that question. Intrigued by the response, Roel decided to probe on before Carter finally revealed the difficulties he faced back then.
Carter was quite a suave young man back in those years too, so it was inevitable that he would become the ‘prey’ of the young misses in the academy. There were some who admired him but politely chose to keep their distance, but there were also some who were far more persistent, trying everything they could to sabotage the relationship between him and Roel’s mother. Due to their interference, their romance eventually met with a major crisis.
During that crisis, Carter found himself anguished over the absence of his lover. Knowing that he couldn’t leave things be, he eventually gathered a few brothers to put their heads together and devise tricks in order to deal with those who persistently latched on despite his constant rejection. Those tricks turned out to be surprisingly effective in practice.
Since Roel was asking about it now, Carter decided to impart some of his wisdom to him.
“Roel, you should know that saboteurs often exploit our sympathy to get in the way of our relationships. Back then, your mother got mad at me for consoling a junior who came to me for advice for her problems.”
Carter raised his head as he recalled the memories of his youth.
“They would often put themselves down, saying things like ‘I feel like I’m nothing before Miss XXX. I am not as pretty, smart, or strong as her’. How would you respond to such a remark?”
“Well… she would probably latch to me if I console her, right? But it would be disrespectful of me to put her down in such a situation too.”
“That’s why, you ought to praise her at a time like this.”
“Yes, praise her for having self-awareness.”
That works too?
Roel widened his eyes in astonishment. It might be his imagination, but Carter’s figure suddenly looked taller than ever to him.
“There are also other tricks that saboteurs tend to use as well, such as ‘There’s something which I can’t tell anyone but you’. It’s an attempt to build up a closer relationship through a common secret.”
“T-this… How should I respond then?”
“Don’t worry about it, I’ll help you relay it to the others.”
Carter’s calm response left Roel utterly flabbergasted. He suddenly remembered a classical hint he often saw in the conversation logs posted online.
“Father, if she says ‘I really envy Miss XXX. If only I had met you earlier’, how should I respond?”
“It’s fortunate that the Goddess of Luck was looking out for me.”
Carter’s skillful maneuvers left Roel feeling utterly impressed. He couldn’t even think of a single comeback line against Carter’s responses on the spot! Once again, it might have been his imagination, but he felt that the smiling middle-aged man had a glowing halo above his head, emanating a blinding radiance.
With age comes wisdom indeed!
Still, to be able to force my father into researching for a countermeasure in order to deal with them, it looks like things are going to be messy in the academy… Those three should have no lack of suitors too. I doubt that anyone would dare to come close to Nora, and Charlotte is extremely guarded as well. The only one who is worrisome is Alicia.
Siscon Roel instinctively began worrying for Alicia, but that was only because he was oblivious to the attitude Alicia took toward outsiders. In truth, her overwhelming strength and icy disposition made it hard for anyone to approach her, especially men.
But speaking of the academy, Roel couldn’t help but think of another matter.
In that trip back into history, Roel learned the way the Twilight Sages Assembly chose their members through Isabella, as well as the token he needed to obtain. If he wanted to get in touch with the Assembly, he would have to first pay a visit to Karon Forest to obtain the token.
Now that his body had recovered and he had managed to make a breakthrough to Origin Level 4, it was about time to settle this matter.
Karon Forest. Token. Academy. Women.
“I feel like there are more and more things I need to watch out for.”
Roel sighed deeply before gathering his focus to listen attentively to Carter’s teachings.
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