might be attacked by Ryuuji Sakurada.”
“Hm? What are you talking about?”

Lord Souju explained the contents of the phone call Lord Takaoka had with his secretary today.

“What have you done?! What was the point of putting Rei in danger?!”

Lord Takeru Hongou was furious.
Deep voices could be scary.

“I am fine.
I will be in your care this weekend as a precaution.
Besides, I think that Lord Takaoka will properly deal with the matter.”

“No, but—”
“Dear, Rei is here in the Hongou residence now, so relax, okay? Even if you say such, there’s nothing else we can do.
More importantly, I want to quickly hear the piano performance from Lady Mary Shirasagi’s only student and grandchild, Rei! I, I don’t think I can focus on my meal.
It’s been such a long time since I was this excited.”

Lady Sara and Lord Souju’s grandmother, Lady Youko was in high spirits.
To not pay attention to this delicious food before her eyes! This reaffirmed my feelings that the rich were different.

“I’m not sure if it will satisfy you, but please listen if you’re fine with my performance.”
“It’s like Lady Mary Shirasagi has come back to life!”

Please stop that!

After we finished eating dessert, we headed immediately to the salon with the piano.
The room most likely was designed based on acoustic engineering.
The piano was a Bösendorfer Model 290 Imperial.
I was excited.

“Ah, I’ve always wanted to try playing on one! This is the first time I’ve ever seen extra keys!”

Though impolite, I immediately sat in front of the keyboard.

And, to warm up my fingers, I played Hanon’s Scales and Arpeggios and Bach’s The Well-Tempered Clavier.
The keyboard was different from the one I always used.
I also played Chopin’s Etude.
When I finally got a feel of the keys, I looked up to ask for everyone’s requests.

“Oh, my! It’s wonderful.
So wonderful!”

Lady Youko was in tears.
I collected myself a little.

“I apologize.
I was too excited and went ahead with my warm-ups.
Please inform me of which song you would like to listen to.”
“That was your warm-up?”
I couldn’t help but want to play on such a dreamy and rare instrument right away, but as I was unaccustomed to these keys, I was more thorough with my warm-up.”

Lord Takeru Hongou and Lord Takaoka had a very surprised look on their face.

“Rei really can do anything.
What a surprise!”

Lord Takaoka said and smiled.
What a refreshing smile.
Speaking of what I could do, it was really only an amateurish performance and ordinary housework.
I didn’t have a single skill that could make money.

That day’s list was full of Lady Youko’s requests.
To end it off, I played Lord Takeru Hongou’s present to Lady Youko: Poulenc’s Improvisation No.
15 “Hommage à Edith Piaf”.
Lady Youko was so moved that her tears wouldn’t stop.
It appeared that she was a highly sensitive soul.

“You are a magnificent pianist.
I shall be your patron! No one has claimed that position yet, yes?”

“I neither attend a music school nor am I an apprentice under any teacher.
I am just an amateur who has never even competed.
To be able to just play on such a wonderful piano is enough for me.”

When I answered with such, Lady Youko looked like she wanted to say something but was stopped by Lord Takeru Hongou.

“Hm, modest like Lord Juuichirou Kujouin and noble like Lady Mary.
Then, treat today as a job as a performer.
Now, you are no longer an amateur.
You are a professional pianist earning her own money.”

A professional pianist? Is that someone I can become just by announcing it? If I do make money, I guess I could be called professional.
Do I have to file a tax report for this?
Ah, I don’t really know.

In any case, I was contracted to take this job as a pianist.
My first job would be performing at the reception party happening next weekend at the Hongou’s Western-styled residence.
My dress would be provided by the Hongou family.
I was grateful.

Ah, my first job!
Once I receive my pay, I’ll go to Shiseido Parlor in Ginza! Just you wait, parfait!

Author’s note:
If there is anything clearly wrong, I would be most fortunate if you inform me.
Operation Overcast did happen in reality, but it was aimed at ending the Pacific War.
As such, there was no operation planned to have Japanese scientists come to America.
‘Tis fiction!
Please overlook the basic flaw in the setting of the story.

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