Chapter 134: Spreading Ripples and the Saint’s Smile
Vestaline’s hard footsteps echoed in the Lord’s house.
This sound was not the sound of heavy iron. Vestaline’s footsteps seemed to be more rigid than usual.
It was probably the first time that Vestaline went to see her father Mordeaux Gon with such apprehension. She always walked with a dignified profile even when her father reprimanded her.
Then, why now?
Vestaline understood the reason she felt this way was due to the guilt implanted in her chest. Her legs were heavy because she understood the reason why.
The real identity of that guilt was doubt.
“…I will tell you the name of my father. He was not just Bruder. He was Bruder Geluah.”
The mercenary who foolishly insulted her father. However, his words remained in her ears.
The more Vestaline thought about it, the more she felt it was a joke. Those words were unfeasible words. Vestaline believed that it was just a resentment and nothing more. Yes, no big deal. After all, it was normal for a weak person to have an unreasonable grudge against a strong person.
However, Vestaline did not have the vulgarity to crush the wolf on the spot. She herself thought that she was making a detour from her role.
Vestaline’s spirit was strong but somewhat distorted. Even if that statement belonged to a lowly person, she had a hard time swallowing those words because it was directed towards her father. Doubts came to her mind. That alone prevented her from moving forward. Vestaline decided to leave her judgment to her father.
Vestaline felt that she and her father were on the right track. That was why she felt extremely angry, because those words cast a shadow on her heart. This unpleasantness hurt her chest, even though she should be on the right path.
Vestaline believed in her father. She wanted to clear her doubts. She wanted to undone the twist behind those unreasonable words. After clearing this misunderstanding, Vestaline knew that she could walk forward without any doubts.
Vestaline’s swirling emotions were put into her fingertips as she knocked on the door. The voice of her beloved father echoed from within. How strange. Why was her heart throbbing today? She did not expect something. Actually, it was as if she were afraid of something.
「Excuse me, father. 」
However, the emotions that were disturbing her heart disappeared after stepping into the room. As always, her father welcomed her with a big smile and praised her good deeds.
She knew that her father was kind. He was a wonderful Lord who loved the people. Even the people loved him too. It felt unlikely that her father had made any mistakes.
In the usual conversation, Vestaline’s heart gradually crushed the seeds of doubt. One by one, in a politely form.
「Father. There is one last thing that I would like to ask you… 」
Vestaline’s spirit was finally regaining balance. She felt guilty for having felt doubts about of her father. Even if some doubts were engraved in her chest, she was determined to reduce these useless thoughts about her father in the future.
Then, Vestaline’s lips opened in a confident and light manner.
「…Do you know a human named Bruder Geluah? 」
It was just a normal question. Vestaline’s lips tried to move one more time, but were halted upon seeing an unusual sight. Her eyes trembled.
Her father was now pretending to be calm.
The action her father took upon hearing her words was suspicious. He moved his shoulders and stiffened his face. He did not show any upsetting expressions. Seen from her side, it looked like her father was thinking deeply about her question. Yes, it only looked like that and nothing more. In fact, her father’s reaction should not be a problem at all. Yet, for Vestaline, it did not feel right.
Vestaline was expecting a different reaction. If her father did not know about that man, he would respond cheerfully without any hesitation.
“…You don’t know what your Lord Mordeaux did in the past, do you?”
The words the green-clothed man told her at that time echoed in the back of her ears.
Something resounded painfully. Certainly, Vestaline heard the sound of a needle, or even a large nail, piercing her heart.
I opened my lips while wiping my shoes from the blood drops in the cheap brothel.
「I think being reckless was a good call this time around, Bruder…Ah, no. Is this not your real name?」
I muttered while taking deep breaths from my lungs.
I instinctively called him Bruder, but he told Vestaline that Bruder was his father’s name. I wondered if he had a different name. With that in mind, it felt strange to keep calling him Bruder.
「Lugis, stop being sarcastic. You are more reckless than I am, you know. Besides, I don’t care about my real name. I’m used to my current name.」
While saying that, Bruder laid down on the bed as he distorted his face with a grin.
Bruder’s body, which fought a reckless and gaudy battle with Vestaline, had scratches, large and small. His body was full of bruises. In return for the unreasonable effort, the pain must be running throughout his body. Fortunately, I could not see any fatal wounds, but he still needed some rest.
Suddenly, I squinted my eyes.
I didn’t even know that the name Bruder was not his real name, even in the past. Rather, I had never felt any suspicions or irregularities. He did his best to hide this fact. Was it for some reason that he could not tell me?
Maybe he did not want to tell me because he cared for me. Or maybe he simply did not trust me, not now nor even in the past.
Somehow, while I was shaking the emotions that I couldn’t organize in my heart, a voice echoed from my back.
「Yes, Mr. Bruder is right, Lugis. Your actions are more reckless than his actions are. Please reflect on them from the bottom of your heart.」
The words of Saint Matia made me feel as if my spine was being crushed without knowing it.
Why? Apart from that horrible feeling, her voice was not that icy. Rather, her voice sounded mild. A kind-hearted voice that seemed to be worried about me. Why was the Saint so worried about my well-being? Her voice was certainly kind right now; however, I felt a strange chill.
「Oh, is that so? Then, should I close my eyes when a person decides to die by kissing the god of death? I may look reckless to you, but for me, I was not.」
Bruder’s reckless courage to confront Vestaline was indeed great, but his recklessness led to receiving Vestaline’s deadly spear-axe. If I did not intervene, he would be dead by now. His severe pain was the price he had to pay for my intervention. Without my help, his price would be his death. A sigh leaked from my mouth.
Anyway. Thanks to Bruder’s last words, the Steel Princess disappeared from our sight silently. I may know her destination. She probably went to see Mordeaux in order to confirm the facts. I was worried that she would attack us without asking any questions, but it worked quite well.
After that, I eagerly hoped that the seeds of doubt would increase in her heart. All I had to do was wait to see if that father and daughter would trust each other now. I bet that some questions and answers consumed Vestaline’s heart at this precise moment. If this strategy does not work, then I would have to rethink the plan.
Still. At least, it was working for now. There should be no mistake. This should do.
As I was pondering while taking out a chewing tobacco, the voice of the Saint woman echoed again in the room. She spoke with a normal voice. Then, she opened her lips as she gently tilted her head to profess the rest of her phrase.
「Get rid of chewing cigarettes. You have something to say to me.」
I could not help but blink my eyes.
I couldn’t think of anything to say. I didn’t even know her real intention. I did not remember making any promises to Matia, and I never decided to make plans for the future with her in mind. What did Matia mean by that?
My throat groaned while looking for words. This Saint woman always leaked poison out of nowhere. Even her eyes looked terrifying most of the times.
However, contrary to my expectations, Matia’s eyes showed no impatience despite her fearless demeanor. She slowly opened her lips again without showing any hesitation. She spoke in a gentle manner, as if she taught the truth to a child who was oblivious of the world.
「…Lugis, you have put yourself in danger again without my permission. So apologize to me. But do it in a wholeheartedly way.」
After those words echoed in the room, I put a question mark in my head and stroked my chin.
I felt something scary running through my back. No, Matia herself did not show such thing as danger. After all, she even had a smile on her face. What the hell was going on?
「You have sworn to me. I told you to be proud of yourself, but I also told you to stop doing dangerous acts. Do you not recall?」
No. I did not sworn to anything no matter how much I thought about it.
I certainly acknowledged Matia’s words. That was true. Nevertheless, that did not mean that I would accept everything she said. Where did the interpretation twist?
Still, without having time to ask her that question, Matia’s lips moved once again.
「So, Lugis. Are you not going to apologize? Ask for forgiveness. To me, right now.」
My spine froze. It seemed that Matia’s words were undoubtedly a Saint-like charity words. However, her tone had a particular sound that cornered me on the spot.
I did not know why, but my leg took one-step back.
Matia sure is rough when compared to the other girls…Also, it seems that the seeds of doubt corrupted Vestaline’s heart. Lugis’ plan has succeeded.
Thank you to the Patrons for the continued support!