On the way back to her quarters, Bridget felt uncomfortable walking next to Ray.
Ray was by far too conspicuous. People on the street, men and women, young and old, all stared at him. Bridget wasn’t certain whether Ray was used to it or not, but it didn’t seem to bother him.
Bridget thought he was beautiful when she first greeted him at the Magic Division, but she didn’t pay much attention to him since he was wearing a black robe.
However, when she saw him today, he was dazzling in his crisp white aristocratic outfit, with the sun’s rays seemingly reflecting off his well-groomed blond hair.
It’s hard to understand why he was never married. The sorcerer is a craftsman who is always working, but with his appearance, surely women wouldn’t leave him alone
When Bridget left her quarters this morning, she couldn’t help but feel a bit bothered, but unexpectedly, she had a nice chat with him.
“It’ll be right here. Thank you very much for your time today. I’m sorry, but the divisional leader will have to decline in regard to the future.”
When Bridget arrived at the front of the quarters, she bowed facing Ray. However, Ray looked down and seemed to be thinking about something.
“Division Leader, what is it? Don’t mind me if it’s about me.”
“I’d like to make a suggestion.”
Ray looked up and looked at Bridget.
“I think that myself and Ms. Taylor is both in agreement that we don’t want to get married, but the pressures from home are quite troublesome.”
“So, it would be reasonable to marry each other formally.”
Bridget looked up at Ray in surprise. It is true that she was the one who said it would be easier to marry and then divorce, but is it permissible for the leader of the magic division to do such a thing, coming from the first magic duke’s family?
“Do you mean it’s a temporary marriage?”
“Yes. I think there are some things we can’t compromise on, so we’ll set the terms. It’s my way of not letting people tell me what to do about my marriage.”
Brigdet tried to picture what would happen if she married this beautiful man. Wouldn’t one or two women think of him, too? In that case, wouldn’t he be envied by the ladies?
“Well, if I get married, won’t I be stabbed by women who adore the divisional commander?”
Ray waved his hand hurriedly.
“There is no such woman. We’ll take steps to make sure it’s not dangerous.”
As Bridget pondered, Ray pulled a piece of paper out of his pocket and wrote something down.
“If you would like to consider it, please contact me. I apologize if I’m being rude. Have a good day.”
Ray pushed the paper to Bridget and quickly left.
Eventually, two days later, Bridget sent a letter to the address on the paper. In the letter, she wrote that she wanted to discuss the details of the proposed contract marriage.
They were discussing in the parlor of Ray’s home. On her way home from work, Bridget was wearing her usual black uniform with pants, and Ray was in a black robe.
They had set two rules for their contractual marriage.
The first was to put work first. Bridget would not quit her job and therefore her work as a noblewoman would be kept to a minimum. Ray would not force her to do so either.
Secondly, if either of them found someone they liked, they would divorce. However, during the marriage, they were to avoid dishonorable rumors and not be unfaithful.
“Well, I don’t know if it will work, but let’s give it a try, and if it doesn’t, we can divorce.”
Bridget nodded at Ray’s words.
Then Ray handed Bridget a large ring with the family crest on it.
“It’s not necessary to wear it on your finger. It’s like a talisman.”
“That’s what you were saying the other day about avoiding danger. I’ll have to be careful on the roads at night for a while. The best magician’s amulet in the country, however, seems to be quite effective.”
“Maybe I’m being self-conscious, but it’s possible that some women may say bad things about our marriage. I don’t think we’ll be attacked, but in the meantime, that ring will protect us from physical attacks.”
“You’re not being self-conscious. I was in front of my quarters the other day when a colleague saw us together and asked me a lot of questions.”
Bridget looked at her hand with the ring on. It looked too large and difficult to wear on a daily basis, so she decided to wear it around her neck.
Later, Ray introduced Bridget to everyone in the house.
Ray told Connie only that it was a contract marriage beforehand. He surprisingly showed no resistance.
“The family’s political marriage is, in a sense, a contractual marriage as well. It’s a pity that you won’t be able to have children.”
He seemed to be glad that the Lord, who had no intention of marrying her at all, had decided to marry her, even if only formally.
Miranda was moved to tears.
“I can’t believe it went so smoothly. Thank you, Bridget.”
“No, thank you, too. Thank you.”
Upon marriage, they decided not to have a ceremony, but to submit only the marriage documents for the time being. However, even if they avoided the wedding, they would still have to report to their parents.
Both Ray and Bridget thought it would be a hassle, but both families were in the royal capital for the social season. In order to get it over with, they contacted both families and adjusted their schedules accordingly.
The next holiday, they first visited Marquis Taylor’s house to report their marriage.
Bridget thought it would take a long time to explain because of the sudden development for the marriage, but it was unexpectedly easy. This was not only because of her mother, but also her father and her brother fizzled out when they saw Ray and didn’t want to talk about it.
Nevertheless, Bridget’s father, the head of the family, wiped the sweat off his face and opened his mouth.
“I’m sure you are aware of the fact that my daughter has broken off twice in the past, Division Leader Miller.”
“Yes, sir. None of that was Miss Bridget’s fault. I’m sorry for your loss.”
Bridget’s father, smiling at Ray, blushed and scowled, and with a sense of relief at having his concerns confirmed, he didn’t say another word.
After resigning from Marquis Taylor’s house, they went straight to the Duke of Miller’s house in the carriage.
“I’m sorry my family couldn’t talk properly.”
“No, they seemed to be quite close.”
“Thank you. …And everyone you meet is really fawning over you.”
Ray looked into Bridget’s face.
“That’s not true. After all, Miss Taylor hasn’t been interested in me at all since we first met.”
Bridget smiled and looked at Ray.
“In my line of work, I’m hard on good looking men.”
“Is that so?”
“Yes. You see, good looking men are very good at getting slush funds. They make women pay for their wrongdoings. So when I met the divisional leader, I wondered whether you were fraudulent, committed tax evasion or committed embezzlement.
“I didn’t know you were looking at me like that!”
“But the other day’s audit showed that the Magic Division seemed to not practice any of these.”
In the carriage they looked at each other and laughed.
When they arrived at the Duke of Miller’s house, Bridget was overwhelmed by the sight.
It was a house of the first magic duke. The furnishings were beautiful and luxurious and dated. There were also a lot of items on the floor that she didn’t know what they were used for. This disparity in the contractual marriage suddenly made Bridget feel uneasy.
“I’m not worthy of the division leader’s house, will it be okay…”
Taking a seat in the reception room where she was let through, Bridget muttered anxiously. She was afraid to even touch the tea because she was afraid she was going to break the cup.
“It’s okay. It’s just old. Oh, you just shouldn’t drink that tea. There might be some kind of spell that was cast.”
Bridget gazed at the tea.
Then the door of the room opened and a man and woman who looked like Ray’s parents came in. They looked a lot like Ray, especially his mother, who was a very beautiful woman, and Bridget thought that he must be just like his mother.
“Thank you so much, Bridget, for accepting this short notice,”
“No, thank you, too. It’s nice to meet you.”
Bridget hurriedly bowed her head.
“Ray, thank your grandmother. She did help you after all.”
“Where is she?”
“She’s on her way. She said to make every effort not to let Bridget leave.”
When Bridget looked at Ray, he looked like a bitter bug that was squashed. She can see that he, like herself, was under a lot of pressure from his family.
Bridget’s father told her that he was approached by the Dukes of Miller to discuss this marriage proposal. She was relieved to see that at least she wasn’t being evaded as a marriage partner.
Afterwards, Ray’s mother continued to vexingly talk about how he had never had a woman in his life and how clumsy he had been since he was a child.
“Anyway, he has always been approached because of his good looks, but my son is very dim and can’t say a single witty word. He’s been reading books and growing medicinal herbs since he was very young, and he tends to stay indoors.”
How can she say “dim” in front of such a beautiful son. Bridget struggled to contain her laughter.
“He’s a very clumsy son, but Bridget, please take care of him. He may not be a great male, but he’s a great magician.”
“That’s a horrible way to put it, I can at least say something clever when I need to.”
Ray countered, but Bridget knew he wouldn’t be able to and she couldn’t resist and burst out. After all, if he could do that, he would have been married long ago.
Ray’s father listened quietly, and finally said
“Both Ray and Miss Bridget have important jobs. Do your job well and support the country. Don’t worry about the house.”
Bridget was thunderstruck and worried that Ray’s father, a sorcerer, was reading her mind.
Both of their parents really care about them. Bridget felt a little distressed that this was a contract marriage.