The Curse of Baron Roderick  
 

The Curse of Baron Roderick

Chapter One

Bottou-chan

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 Author's Note: This is an attempt to write a cliche-ridden fanfic! In this chapter, you can spot the long-lost uncle, the family fortune, the old manor in the middle of nowhere, the faithful family servants, and many more!

"Oi, Neon-han," said Joker, shuffling through the day's mail. "You got a letter."

"Is that so strange, someone would want to write to me?" asked Neon, removing it from his grasp. Her eyebrow raised slightly as she read the return address.

"Anything of interest?" asked Raiha, glancing up from his book.

"It's from Ireland," explained Joker.

"It's from my uncle's lawyer," explained Neon, skimming over the contents of the letter. "It seems my Uncle, Roderick O'Sullivan, has died, and I was his only heir. The estate has been left to me, on condition that I come and claim it."

"Roderick O'Sullivan? How Japanese is that?" asked Joker, scratching his head.

"Baka! My father was Japanese, but my Mom was Irish. How many Japanese are natural redheads?"

"I thought you dyed it—"

"Aho!" snarled Neon. "Of course not!"

Raiha refrained from commenting on the issue. He'd thought it had been dyed, too. How else would you explain the front strands? Instead, he asked, "What happens if you don't go and claim it?"

"Then the estate gets divided evenly between his five faithful servants," said Neon. Tossing the letter aside, she added scornfully, "How cliché is that."

"Faithful servants?" Joker's ears perked up. "So… your uncle had actual okane?"

"Wheelbarrows of it," Neon assured him. "Some of it's old money, but he was a pretty sharp investor. He helped renovate the family manor about five years ago. It had been crumbling into nothing, and he even rebuilt parts of it."

"Wow… sounds like fun," said Joker. "You're going to go, right?"

"Why should I?" asked Neon. "It's over there… I'm content to stay here, with my Kurei-sama. What do I need with a manor house, and an estate, and the gardens, and the old art, and the servants, and the bank account—well, maybe I could use the bank account and buy myself a new wardrobe—"

"If you don't want it, give it to me," suggested Joker.

Raiha had picked up the letter and was looking over its contents. "But you can't pick and choose what you want," he reasoned. "It's either all or nothing. Now, there's nothing to stop you from going, accepting everything, keeping the money, and giving everything else away—or selling it—or whatever, but unless you want to give up an easy 15.3 million pounds, I'd suggest you buy yourself a little plane ticket sooner than later."

"What's 15.3 million divided by three?" asked Joker thoughtfully, ruffling through the newspaper for the exchange rate from pounds to yen. Catching sight of Kurei standing in the doorway, watching the proceedings, he hastily amended, "What's $10.4 million divided by four?"

"5.1 million and about 3.8 million, respectively," said Kurei in his cold voice. "Neon, you may have two weeks off to put your business in order."

"Kurei-sama—"

"And I can't let her go off around the world by herself," said Joker, grinning impishly. "Kurei-han, I'll go with her, to look out for her… comfort her if she gets lonely—"

Neon punched him half-heartedly. "Baka!" she snarled. Why did Joker have to continue with this embarrassing fantasy of his in front of Kurei? Joker knew they were together!

"Perhaps I should go along, to act as chaperone," suggested Raiha tactfully. "Or, at least, keep them from killing each other."

Kurei gazed impassively at the three. "As you wish," he said. There was nothing pressing happening at the moment… he could spare them two weeks' vacation. After all, they were his faithful few and deserved some time to themselves.

"Kurei-sama, don't you wish to come with us? Ireland's very pretty," suggested Neon, her eyes shining. "It's very nice and green, and lots of trees and hills—"

"If I wanted trees and hills, I'd go to Hokkaido," remarked Kurei coolly. "I'll stay home and keep an eye on things."

"Arigatou, Kurei-sama," murmured Raiha, knowing that perhaps Kurei might welcome a vacation from their antics just as much as they would welcome a vacation from their Uruha duties.