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And it’s quite long chapter.
Enjoy and stay safe everyone~
Episode 70: Friends
Right, we had Asna leave the room because what we’re gonna talk about might be unpleasant for her.
And she’s understanding enough to follow through after noticing this.
『If he doesn’t want his crime to get noticed… Roy should’ve had her die no matter the cost. Perhaps, there’s a reason why she’s kept alive…?』
[Perhaps…but there’s a contradiction.]
[Rhode-sama, what do you mean?]
[If he wanted to keep Asna alive… then why leave her in the city square after telling the townsfolk that she’s an incompetent? Doing so would probably drive her to despair and turn her suicidal sooner or later. There’s also the chance to get arrested and executed as we already know…]
『Certainly… Moreover, I also don’t get why it seemed to be necessary for them to do it in the city. If he doesn’t mind his victims dying, why not do it in a less populated area? And we don’t even know whether doing it in Celt was just a coincidence or not.』
Right, the Hero’s behavior is too strange.
There must be an underlying reason… all we know for now is that Roy can steal other’s magic.
[Fuhn… I also don’t see the logic on why he bothers to have companions if he could just steal magic from anyone else. Logically, he himself will be enough for basically anything. But then again, even I cannot deny that having companions can be very convenient…]
[I’m also concerned about how he mentioned “my previous one has been completely used up”. Does that mean the magic he stole has a limited amount of usage?]
[There must be some sort of restriction… Your Majesty, if the news becomes known… Asna’s life might be in danger.]
[What do you mean?]
[It might be unexpected that Asna survived the ordeal, and on top of that, for someone else to believe her story… usually, nobody cares about what an incompetent said after all. So if Roy finds out that Asna is still alive, he might…]
I’m talking about the possibility that he’ll come to claim Asna’s life.
We couldn’t just ignore that.
[…very well. I can do something about the newspaper. But there’s no stopping the rumors that will float among the people…]
『Asna is currently Roy’s only stain… we can’t afford to lose her. However… it’s not yet the time to reveal our cards. There’s no helping it….. the current world won’t allow it.』
In this currently unstable world, Roy’s position is very important.
The Hero is pretty much the world’s hope… if the Hero disappears, dragons and demons would take that chance to invade.
Not to mention, Roy’s backer… Olympus is not to be trifled with.
I wish we could denounce Roy right away, but we don’t have enough material to go against him as of now. And the situation won’t allow us anyway.
For now… we can only endure.
[So Roy gains his power through this method… then there should be more people like Asna out there. But perhaps they’re already…]
『…I think so too. Well, at least we have something to work with. I’ll also inform my friends about this. They should be able to help.』
[Ban-san’s friends… do you mean the “Golden Generation’…?]
Among the golden generation, 3 of them, not including Ban-san, were SSS rankers, and the other 3 SS rankers.
But that was from 7 years ago… I still remember it clearly because of how bombastic the news was.
[Ah, the golden generation… it’s been a while. Are they well?]
『Alive and kicking. Honestly, nothing much has changed over the past 10 years. Now, by the way, Rhode. Forget Roy, a higher being is probably targetting you right now. So please inform me when something comes up. I’ll do my best to help.』
[Count me in. The extra life that Rhode gave me… I’ll definitely put it into good use. Feel free to ask me anything, Rhode.]
[Ban-san… Your Majesty… thank you very much.]
The talk ended there, and we adjourned.
We thanked the King of Celt and were about to take our leave, but he insisted that we should at least stay the night.
Feeling that declining such an offer will be rude, we agreed. And here we are now in one of the guest rooms…
[This room…makes me restless…]
Even the guest room was luxurious.
Well, I guess it’s only natural given that the room is reserved for the country’s important guests…
But a double bed with a canopy…? I’ll just sleep on the sofa tonight.
[Mu, Rhode-sama, take a look at this! A golden bathtub!]
[Let us put it into good use right away!]
[Wait… Why are you trying to take off my clothes…?]
[Mu, i-is there anything wrong with it?]
It’s obvious to me that Levi was trying to rush things.
As if she found a well after going without water for a while.
That much I can tell…
Then suddenly the door was knocked from outside.
Levi responded and opened the door.
[He, hello there…]
At first, I thought it was the palace attendant, but turned out it was Asna.
Why is she here…?
[…please come in, Asna-sama.]
[Ah, no… you don’t have to act like that to me… I…]
[Ah, no need to be concerned. I act like this to everyone…]
[Oh, well… I see…then, sorry for intruding…]
[Um, well, let’s sit down first… Asna, over there.]
The three of us then sat around a table.
Asna refused to look at me directly in the face, opting to keep her face down instead.
And for some reason, Levi was also the same.
…this is awkward.
W, what should I do?
I should say something…
[Yes? What is it…?]
When I was still mulling over what I should do, Asna suddenly called out to me. I was caught off guard that I simply replied reflexively.
[I… um, I haven’t apologized to Rhode directly yet… I’m not asking you to forgive me right away…but I’m sorry…! I’ll do anything… I’m even willing to die if that is what you want… I just…sorry…]
Asna said so while bowing her head.
It would be a lie to say that this didn’t bother me… But then, what would I say if I were in Asna’s shoes?
After giving it some thoughts, I finally told Asna,
[If not for Asna, I wouldn’t even be here. So, as I said earlier… it’s alright now.]
[I know. Again…it’s alright now.]
Tears fell from Asna’s eyes when she heard me saying that.
Her emotions overflowed for the nth time already today.
[Uh… Uh… Agu… I’m sorry… I’m sorry… I’m sorry…!]
[Asna… how about returning to Ist? Things should be fine in Ist… okay?]
I don’t know how many times I was about to cry when my heart was broken in the past.
Asna must’ve experienced the same thing.
However, what makes this different from those tears… was because we shed tears due to the warmth offered to us.
I know, cause I also cried my heart out back when Crown-san comforted me.
Therefore, I want her to let what’s in her heart out as much as she wants.
In the end… I’m sure…
At that moment, Levi…held Asna’s hand softly.
A faint glow could be seen in her eyes.
[Let us all return. To Ist.]
[Le, Levi-san… I…]
[I… I want to be friends with you.]
[Levi… I… I… me too!]
[Then, we are friends from now on… Asna.]
Should I… be worried about this?
[I told you already…]
[Rhode-sama… you must not.]
[Rhode… Just let me sleep on the sofa…]
[No no no…]
After that, I was watching the two girls who just became friends talking happily, but the story gradually went in the wrong direction.
[Rhode-sama… Are you going to let Asna sleep alone tonight?]
[Of course not… I’ll go to Asna’s room. You and her can spend the night together in this room instead.]
[Ah… that won’t do.]
Why couldn’t I…? Just what they’re trying to achieve here?
[Is it not fine, Rhode-sama? All of us here are friends already. Is it not only natural for friends to spend time in the same space together more often?]
That’s how it came to this…
[Even though… Rhode-sama was supposed to be the leader of this party! Are you a man!]
It’s getting hotter like never before…
I felt fed up with Levi for the first time.
Enough… nothing will change my mind.
[Fine…but I’ll sleep on the sofa. There are no buts!]
[Mu, if Asna says so…I will relent now.]
Somehow I was allowed to do that.
Hopefully, I get enough sleep tonight…
[So you three will head back to Ist…? That would be good.]
We were having dinner with His Majesty.
Gorgeous dishes that I had never seen before were brought in one after another and all of them were delicious.
It’s to the point where my tastebuds were torn over which one was better, this food or the ones Levi cooked.
[Yes. The people in Ist have already changed their view regarding the incompetents. Moreover, it’s our hometown after all. I want Asna to relax there.]
[Umu… but Asna can’t use her magic now. The journey there would be dangerous. I wish there’s a way for her to regain her lost power…]
[Your Majesty…Thank you very much for your kind attention. But as I am now… I feel content already.]
[Very well… That’s fine too, I guess. But I still need to thank you for saving my life, Rhode.]
[Your Majesty, it’s more than enough already…]
[Umu…then, Rhode, what are you planning to do after Ist?]
[I haven’t decided for now. Maybe I will go visit a country I haven’t before while continuing to check the newspaper.]
I want to continue finding more incompetents to help them.
Other than that, there are the demons and dragons…also the Titanomachy.
Too many things to do.
[Well, let me know if you have any information. Anyway, you should take a rest today.]
[Thank you, Your Majesty. We shall take up your kind offer.]
The world’s anomaly… we only know little about it for now.
I need to know more about the world… Therefore, I need to do what I can.
[How are you doing today?]
[You know already]
It was the usual exchange between the two.
Then the woman giggled.
[So, what is it today?]
[There is one that might require attention. His name is Rhode Irvine… he seems to be aware of the world’s anomaly…]
The man’s facial expression changed.
To surprise him was no easy feat after all.
[Hoo…praiseworthy. But that won’t change things so easily. 1 or 2 noticing is nothing. So…what can 1 do to affect things? You should know this already…]
[Yes. But perhaps he owns one of the Gods’ powers]
The man’s facial expression changed further after hearing that.
His was the mixture of joy and hatred, which frightened the woman.
[I see… I see I see… Kuku, keep an eye on him. Until… Until I can leave here.]
[As you wish…Milord.]
The darkness of the world.
The cause was crying in the darkness.
Earnestly…waiting for the impending victory.