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Sore, Itadakimasu - Chapter 17

Published at 4th of July 2019 02:21:56 PM

Chapter 17

Golden lights gather as Saetta—my staff—returns to its original form, and falls into my hand .


“It’s strange no matter how you look at it . ”

The half-astonished, half-sarcastic voice comes from the man accompanying me; Vice Captain Glen .

I peer from the shadow of my hood towards the dark green cloak .

—Huge . He’s truly huge .

Although he may be so, his body is also proportional . He wears a large leather jacket with a big belt that bears a sword . At first, I thought that was his weapon, but apparently not—

—his true weapon is a blessed, beautiful, silver javelin .

His weapon is perched on the ground, and his face—dirty with stubbles—is directed at me .

…Rugged .

I always think this word represents him best—Vice Captain Glen; Rugged .

Carelessly trimmed short brown locks, highly defined cheekbones, a scar on the corner of his eye, an impressively tall nose, and lastly, a mouth large enough to eat a pheasant’s leg .

He’s also intimidating…

“I heard that witch’s familiar is still alive . ”

His wide mouth grievously contorts . “Yeah, it transformed into something akin to an inorganic substance . ‘Seeing is believing’, they say—but even after seeing it, I still find it hard to do so . Albeit, unlike yours, though . ”

His eyes have tints of dark blue in pale brown hues that do not mix together .

…The Vice Captain has an odd eye color .

While removing my gaze from his stare, I open my mouth slowly .

“…How many times have I said this already—but it’s fine, once again, I’ll explain it to you . My magic is much more stable—hence, the result is better . Don’t even bother comparing them . Ah, my skill in absorbing Inki is also greater . ”

My magic absorbs Inki . Inki originates from people’s lust—even just plain dirty minds can produce it .

Under my hood, I laugh—it’s the laugh I usually don’t do when I’m with my sister, Saliroza .

“Fufufu . And you, Vice Captain, are a particularly fine source for it!”

“I know . ”

Tch .  What’s with that matter-of-fact tone? It’s as if we are discussing the weather…

Most people get uncomfortable whenever sex is randomly introduced into a conversation . Some back away instantly . This guy has an attitude—and to top it off, his body starts to shake—he’s laughing at me!

“Doesn’t that mean you have to splurge every time you want to use your magic—!? It’ll definitely be hard for someone your age to procure it—!!”

“…”

I hate this guy! I hate this guy so much! How old is he—thirty—!? I’m 18 years old, so what!? Uugh, I hate him so much!

“So, tell me about this guy . What about him?”

As his tone changes, so does my gaze . After all, personal feelings and work are two different things .

Even though it’s almost summer, the mountain’s breeze blows coldly, swaying the hem of my cloak .

I’m currently in an open space in front of Fort Gordo . All the trees were cut down so that this area could be used as a training ground . A pale blue mountain is visible beyond the lavish green hills .

In front of us, laying in the vacant land, are strange lumps of black and gray attached together .

“Could it be a demon?”

“Yeah, Saetta’s power also confirms that it’s indeed a demon . Even though its hardening has progressed, the appearance only changed slightly, hasn’t it?”

“That’s true…” Still not fully convinced, Vice Captain Glen grunts .

When the Spiral Castle opens, a negative influx of otherworldly air spills out . Part of that overflow then turns into demons . Those demons will then appear in the surrounding area—aka The Capital . Those with traces of wisdom will try to get rid of obstacles .

Those ‘obstacles’ include me and Vice-Captain Glen .

Troublesome, isn’t it?


Some says it’s better to just leave, to move altogether to a different, better place—

—but why should I?

To leave Saliroza, who lacks the ability to absorb Inki, is the same as leaving her to starve . …Well, I can just bring her with me, but that Captain-I’m-watching-your-every-movement will absolutely object .

…That socially-inept Captain,

You think I don’t know how much of that ‘Golden-Freaky-Fuwa-Fuwa’ Inki you’re aiming at my sister, huh?

Mhm, I totally didn’t notice it at all .

Aah, but wouldn’t it also be nice if Saliroza can taste it?

Well… that Captain keeps his eyes on her, though from afar, so… maybe, hopefully, she’ll be fine?

Still, this is unfair! I feel like he’s keeping me away from her! Me? Away from her? —alright, this is officially abuse of power! Does he confuse private matters with public!? I will sue that Ear-Wings!

The sound of Vice Captain cracking his neck brings me back to reality .

“There’s no doubt it’s a demon …right?”

“Yes . ”

“Alright…”

He’s grunting again! What is he, some kind of bear?

As it bothers me, I hold Saetta tightly .

“Are you going to smash it and destroy what could be a valuable evident?!”

“Exactly as you just said . ”

The Vice Captain sighs, turning his body sharply .

“Gordo’s made it clear about keeping the research material intact—hence, you have no right to do so . ”

“Go on, report me, then . ”

“There’s no need for this . If anything, it’s Gordo’s responsibility—!!”

I sigh heavily, and add;

“Vice Captain, please, lower your voice . Your words are too misleading . ”

The way those far away soldiers look at us—especially me—hurts .

I was assigned to Fort Gordo in order to exchange information .

Fort Gordo consists of two huge walls standing side by side . It also has strange shape where the interval connects to several towers . The Heavenly Ones made it that way, and since it also happened on the same day they make a pact with us, it’s supposed to be a venerable thing . However, I and The-Ones-Who-are-Heavenly just don’t share the same taste .

This building—this thing—this thing that looks like a result of kid playing with blocks marred the beautiful hills!

Obviously, The Heavenly Ones have too much free time—that’s my personal opinion, feel free to ignore it .

Within the walls are barracks and other facilities, making the Fort far more comfortable than it seems . I’m sent to a room in the residential area, next to Vice Captain Glen’s .

“Ahh~ I’m really happy~”

My eyelids grow heavier and then I feel someone grab my hand—it’s Versana, also a Sennette witch .

She’s one of my cousins . She married a Fort Gordo’s staff member and works as a witch here . Wearing a navy dress, she looks more plump and feminine than before . Around her neck hangs a long lace ornament, and is covered by fluffy, curly, back hair .

“Who is the man staying in the room next to yours?”

“Ah, well…”

I single-handedly remove my hood .

“Only half a year or so has passed, no need to think much of this reunion, eh, Ver-nee-san?”

“Noooo!”

Swinging and shaking her body, Versana, who is also the eldest cousin, laughs .


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“You are so cold, Merry-chan! How about Sally-chan? Is she doing alright?”

“She’s fine, don’t worry . The same as usual . ”—that, if she doesn’t get ‘eaten’ by Captain Earwings .  In my heart, I pray for the best .

Then, I look around the room .

It’s a fairly large room, divided by a thick, black pillar . The bed is placed at the back while the front seems to be a living room—it contains cute furniture, such as a soft pink flower-patterned sofa .

“It’s a married couple’s room! Not too bad of a choice to stay a night, right~? I was told I’m ‘clever’ for always keeping rooms tidy, hence, I keep doing so!”

Ver-nee-san’s voice climbs up a few ladders and her gaze become dreamy as she speaks about her husband—

—my dear sister, I don’t think that’s a compliment, but the one who told you that surely deserves it the most .

“Ah! My husband, of course you would like to meet him! But it’s too bad, he’s busy right now… I’m sorry . Even though his hairline is receding from stress, he wants to meet you, too! By the way, Merry-chan, you are going to sleep here, right?”

“I’m about to ask someone to prepare me a room . ”

“Eeeh? It’s okay to just sleep here, y’know~! My husband isn’t coming back tonight~! Oh, yeah! We are about to throw a welcome party for your Vice Captain, will you come~?”

“Not going . ”

“Ugh . Thought so . ”

Men relax when they drink . When they are relaxed, they become nonchalant .  That guy’s nonchalant-ness is already irritating as it is . Am I going to stand there like an idiot and watch him merrymaking? Nope . Not happening .

“Anyway, feel free to stay here~ Luci-kun will arrive soon . ”

“Huh?”

Luci?

My eyes shoot open in shock, while my eldest cousin only laughs .

“Hahaha~ surprised? It’s Luci, you know~ Lucifan!”

“…” But why? Why would he…? Of course that’ll be a great shock for me—after all, he did leave us behind for God-knows-where .

Lucifan Sennette—he’s my brother and he ran away from home three years ago .

After that, it’s unclear what happened to him . Rumors say he changed his name and works as a soldier somewhere, or that he lives in the province surrounded by rich widows, or that he’s elopeing with a mysterious girl—he’s the family’s sour topic .

He such a bastard that any mention of him can only make me react in disgust . And now, to be reunited with him again …anger swirls in my heart .

…That shitty brother of mine!

“Greetings . My name is Lucifan Sennette . ” My brother says, as he greets the Vice Captain .

By the way, this is happening in Versana’s room—aka, my current location—somehow, my shitty brother and the Vice Captain are here .  …But why?

Moreover, Versana is actually here, too . Only, she’s hiding behind the black pillar, spying—how did this happen?

The three of us become silent as we stand there .

Ok . So this is how the whole thing happened—

My long lost brother showed his face at last and the tension within the room sky rocked . In the middle of our staring match, in enters the Vice Captain—with such bad timing, I might say .

We have no choice but to exchange casual, carefree, greetings, now .

Oh, my shimmering anger, where can I hide thou?

Once I regain my composure, I silently stare at both men .

In all actuality, my brother’s appearance isn’t as ‘grand’ as society depicts . A black bodice, akin to a belt, hangs loosely around his waist . Thin leggings and white leather boots . He also wears silver ornaments casually on his arms and neck . His frivolous, long black hair adds to his character . His eyes are thin, as if he narrows them all the time .

Meanwhile, Vice Captain Glen is huge .  Be it vertically, or horizontally, the muscles under his dark padded leather armor is the definition of thickness . I don’t need to say anything about that sword hanging on his back . Also that holy javelin in his hand .

The pattern adorning the spearhead moves as the Vice Captain slides his hand to ruffle his short hair, answering;

“I’m listening . ”

“That’s good . ”

My brother narrows his eyes even more, and looks straight at me—stop that brotherly look of yours, I’m not falling for it .


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“Merry-chan, I’m coming with you on your mission!”

“Wha-“

My brother responds cheerfully . “I am a qualified healer now!”

Ver-nee-san adds, “And I’m the one who taught him~!”

“Ver-nee-san, let me tell Merry-chan of the news myself! See, Merry-chan, I’m a proficient mage too, now, just like you . ”

“Don’t call me that . ”

“I may not be able to help you in term of offense, but healing is also important!”

Heck, I can heal myself just fine, thank you .  Ironically, in terms of offensive spells, I also surpass everyone in the family . By far, I’m the brightest witch there ever was in the Sennette Family history .  What’s the point of your existence, then?

I’m annoyed . I don’t know why, but I’m super ticked off right now .  Besides, I also have a familiar, Saetta! I grip my staff tightly .

“And you choose to come to me and Saliroza, why?”

“I’ll play the support role for you, Merri-chan!”

“Only now did you decide that?” I sneer .

After Lucifan leave us behind, Saliroza and I decided to work at the fortress .

I’m in charge of defending the surrounding area . At the same time, I absorb the soldier’s Inki to feed Saliroza . With my magic as a sustenance, Saliroza proceeds to do menial labor inside the fortress .

I sometimes think that perhaps—perhaps, if this brother of mine hadn’t run away and acted as a responsible adult; providing for us as he should, then Saliroza and I would be leading normal, peaceful, lives in the city .

His black eyes, a characteristic of Sennette Family, pop open . I lower my gaze as my shoulders sink—I can see his lips quiver .

“Merry-chan, I’m so sorry…”

“Don’t . Call . Me . That . ”

“I apologize . I’m sorry, okay? Onii-chan will work hard from now on! Onii-chan will make up for it!”

“…” There are no words . This is unfair . So unfair .

To make that kind of face, does he not know how much courage I needed to stare back at him?

That face I grew up with,

That face he made when he apologized for breaking mother’s precious teacup—when I was the one who broke it,

That face he made when he comforted Saliroza who’s incapable of absorbing Inki,

Those little precious memories fill my mind and clog my throat .

Unfair . This is really unfair .

“Ahem—…” Vice Captain Glen clears his throat . When I’m so close to burst in tears—why are you here, again?

“Lucifan Senette was formally offered a rank by none other than this fort’s Captain . ‘Need more soldiers’, he says . So he’ll be working here . ”

…That’s the first I’ve ever heard of that .

Although irritated, I have no say in this, so I stay silent .

After all, he has nothing to do with me .

My brother inquires, “Will I be living here, too? I would rather do that . ”

“No,” the Vice Captain stares at me with his unique-colored eyes—well, what can I say? I rather like the hues…—although the height difference between us, about a head and a half, is making it hard to maintain eye contact .

“What is it?”

The Vice Captain opens his wide mouth, “I’m going to escort your brother back . ”

“So you won’t be attending the banquet?”

“’Banquet’—more like a drinking party . I will, after I’ve escorted him—already told Captain Judius about it, too . ”


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“You say that, but you reek of alcohol, already, Vice Captain…”

“Yep . Can’t control myself . ”

Gee . What are you being proud for?

My brother laughs at me . “Well, I’ll be counting on you, Merri-chan!”

“As I’ve said, don’t call me that . ” I stare back at him, full of hate . “If you don’t call me ‘Merrilond-sama’, I’ll never, ever, let you meet Saliroza!”

“Got it!” Such a bright expression he has, that brother of mine . “Alright, I’ve decided—Merrilond-sama! I’ll also attend the banquet!!” His eyes sparkle .

“Wha—“

“It’s not a banquet, it’s a welcome party . ” The Vice Captain interrupts .

“Well, whatever, will you be going too, Vice Captain?”

“You can go first . ”

“But my little sister won’t go! How can this be!”

“What—“

“I’m sorry! I wanted to look cool in front of my little sister, but I can’t take it anymore! Let’s go back now, to the party, to the drinking party! Let’s go back! Let’s drink! Drink to our heart content!”

“…”

It’s unbelievable .

With such thin body, my brother is able to push that bear of a Vice Captain out . And then, he shuts the door behind him .

…What, you guys are suddenly so close now?

A voice is heard behind me, “Isn’t that a good, thing, Merry-chan?”

Versana appears and pretends to wipe her tear .

“I’m worried~! After all, there’s only two girls here . Luckily, I get dispatched after my marriage . I’m really worried for you . Thank god that Luci-kun is so close-by now~ no need to worry about me! After all, I have my magic—‘Iron Hammer’!”

“…”

Versana is indeed a healer—but that doesn’t mean she can be taken lightly . That ‘Iron Hammer’ of her’s can send enemies flying to the other side in one hit…

“It seems like he truly regrets his mistakes~ by enlisting, he hopes to redeem himself and stop running from his responsibility as a Sennette— so please, try to forgive him, okay~?”

I shake my shoulders instead of answering .

—the next morning,

My plan to quickly leave Gordo has failed .

It’s all because the Vice Captain got drunk in that ensuing banquet, or welcome party, or whatever .

I can’t complain, though . In this regard, I might be similar to my brother—easily swayed .

“Whelp, what can you do . ”

I’m in the Vice Captain’s room . He’s dead asleep …next to my brother—…why are you guys together? They are dressed, but still, seeing two grown men sleeping side by side…

Whatever, I guess…

I open the window while glancing at them .

Then, staring at the clear skies beyond the blue mountains, I take out Saetta’s tip—which is now inside my palm .

Once I exhale, it takes the form of a white bird .

“Tell Saliroza that I might be late . ”

With a small chirp, the bird flies from my hand and leaves a trail of white light behind . I casually follow it until that enters my vision—

—that morbid mass of black and grey . The remains of the demon from yesterday—

—is moving .



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