The Best Assassin, Incarnated into a Different World’s Aristocrat - Chapter 127
- Chapter 127 : The assassin embraces
We left the mansion of the snake demon Mina.
She and Naoise saw us off.
They asked us if we wanted to ride home on the snake that brought us here, but I politely declined.
If anyone saw us riding that snake on our way home, it would be a disaster.
[I wish I could’ve chatted with you in private before leaving, Naoise, but I guess the opportunity didn’t present itself.] (Lugh)
No actually, I don’t think there would’ve been any point in talking to him in private.
Even if I did, the way he was now, he would’ve relayed everything to Mina, his master.
So I gathered my resolve.
And decided to tell Naoise what I meant to tell him in front of Mina.
[Tell me, Naoise. Why are you here?] (Lugh)
I wanted to know if Naoise was still Naoise.
If his reply were that he was here to serve Mina, then he wouldn’t be the Naoise I knew anymore.
He would be Mina’s puppet through and through.
Naoise opened his mouth with the face of an inorganic doll.
…So it’s too late for him, huh.
No wait, that’s not it.
Naoise’s face was distorted. It wasn’t the face of a puppet, but the face of a human struggling to protect something important.
Naoise spoke as if to squeeze out the words.
[I’m here to become stronger. And now that I have,…] (Naoise)
The rest of his reply was drowned out by the sound of the wind.
Still, it was enough for me.
I was now certain that Naoise was okay.
[I see. See you next time, then.] (Lugh)
I thought I would take the risk of snatching him away from Mina if he turned out to be mindbroken.
If I tried to separate him from Mina while he was in that state, he would’ve recognized me as an enemy and attacked me, and even if I used force and brought him back, he would try to return to Mina anyhow. I was afraid that this alone would further damage his psyche.
Even so, if Naoise wasn’t Naoise anymore, I would’ve bet on the slightest chance of curing him and brought him back by force.
…However, he’s still the same even now. So there’s no need for me to take that gamble.
Time to get out of here.
[Yeah. Next time we meet, it’ll be at the academy.] (Naoise)
I looked at Mina’s face. She smiled and didn’t deny Naoise’s words.
The restoration of the Academy was proceeding smoothly. All students would be called back there before long.
But is she going to let Naoise go there now that he’s like this?
[Got it. See you there.] (Lugh)
Fine then. I don’t know what’s her aim in letting him go, but if she’s gonna give him some time away with me, then I’ll try every way I can think of to cure him.
Even if this turns out to be a trap.
After that, we flew to the nearest town I could remember from the first part of our trip, and checked in at an inn.
It was the best establishment in town.
The public order here was terrible, hence the high prices. In a city with poor security, it wasn’t just comfort, but also hygiene and safety that were factored into the prices.
We could easily handle robbers, but we didn’t want to be bothered.
I entered our room and collapsed onto the bed.
Dia did just the same after seeing me, and fell next to me.
[What a day…! I’m beat.] (Lugh)
[Yeah, I’m exhausted too…] (Dia)
[It’s rare to see you act so slovenly, Lugh-sama.] (Tarte)
[And what about me?] (Dia)
[Well… I would say that you’re like this all the time…] (Tarte)
Tarte averted her face a bit as she stated that fact.
[I may not look like it, but back in Viekone, I was living the life of a sheltered noble daughter and couldn’t show any opening in my behavior. But since I started living with Lugh, I’ve come to think that putting up a front was just stupid.] (Dia)
Even nowadays, whenever Dia put on the mask of an aristocrat, she was flawless and cautious in her behavior.
However, when in front of the people she trusted, such as me and Tarte, she showed her true character.
[I feel tired as well. The fatigue in my body is already gone, but as for my mind…] (Tarte)
[Yeah,【Rapid Recovery】is ultra convenient. How matter how much we push ourselves, we can move again in no time. …But mentally, it doesn’t work at all.] (Dia)
That was the weakness of【Rapid Recovery】.
It only provided physical recovery.
My own nerves were in tatters after that deathmatch with the demon, followed by the negotiation with Mina.
That was why I decided that we should take a rest in a nearby area instead of forcing myself to return to Tuatha Dé.
[Speaking of which, are you sure you’re okay now, Tarte? I mean, usually, when you use【Beastification】for an extended period, you suffer its side effects, don’t you?] (Dia)
Tarte’s face turned red.
She herself was concerned about being aroused as a side effect of【Beastification】.
[As per Lugh-sama’s orders, I got used to this skill by transforming just for a bit every day, allowing me to tolerate the side effects.] (Tarte)
All she could do was endure them, but that didn’t mean that she no longer had those sexual urges anymore.
Even now, I could see the fire in her gaze.
[Oh, I see. So you can resist them now.] (Dia)
[Um, what about it?] (Tarte)
[Oh, nothing. Anyway, let’s eat something. I’m starving.] (Dia)
[Yes, I’m feeling hungry as well. It could be that the recovery power of【Rapid Recovery】makes you hungry faster. And I have also been carrying this heavy luggage on the way.] (Tarte)
Tarte glanced at her magic spear leaning against the wall.
Normally, I would store it in my Leather Crane Bag, but there was no telling what would happen to it if it were affected by the Fruit of Life inside the bag.
She had a hard time carrying it while on her hang-glider, and the townsfolk looked at her strangely for having a huge mechanical spear on her back.
I never realized before how inconvenienced we would be without the Leather Crane Bag.
Once we get back to Tuatha Dé, I’ll have to thoroughly study the Fruit, and find a way to exploit it somehow.
The food was, let’s say… nothing great.
[Ugh… The bread and alcohol aren’t particularly tasty.] (Dia)
[Well, the taste is very average.] (Tarte)
This place wasn’t a city that used first-class goods like the royal capital did, or a city that gathered products from all over the world like Milteu did, or a place where the land was fertile and the crops were of good quality like the Tuatha Dé domain.
That’s why the taste left a lot to be desired for those of us who had a discerning palate.
[Instead, it’s cheap and copious. I’d say it’s more like tavern food for the working classes. And for casual meals.] (Lugh)
This town didn’t have any tourist attractions, and couldn’t depend on tourists.
Even this place serves as a bar for the daily use of the workers, who probably valued quantity more than quality and rarity.
Today’s main dish, stir-fried pork, was also served to us in large quantities.
Ribs, loin, liver, heart, small intestines, etc. They threw all kinds of cuts into one dish, cooked them all the way through, and coated them with a sweet and spicy sauce.
It was decently good. Regardless of what anyone said, I could enjoy various flavors from it, and the strong seasoning went well with the drinks.
[Well, it’s not bad.] (Dia)
[For me, this is more than enough of a feast.] (Tarte)
[That kind of food is good to have once in a while.] (Lugh)
Tuatha Dé’s menu was more like home cooking, but my mother and I just loved to cook refined dishes.
If it weren’t for opportunities like this one, I would’ve probably never tasted such rough meals.
I went back to my room and was finishing some tedious work when Dia peeled out from behind me.
I had rented two rooms, with Dia and Tarte having their own, but the former had come to visit me in her pajamas.
It was a light and sexy outfit.
Lately, I had noticed that Dia was in the middle of a growth spurt. She was becoming more feminine.
She might grow even more than my mother.
[Whatcha doin’?] (Dia)
[Writing today’s report. I’m obligated to send one. …I’d like to keep quiet about defeating the demon because it’d be a pain if they knew, but I can’t do that either.] (Lugh)
If they knew that we had defeated another demon, it would cause another uproar.
We had now killed half of the demons. Once we killed all of them, the whole country would be overjoyed, and they might even worship me.
I wanted to avoid that, but the demon statue in the Sanctuary had probably already crumbled anyway, so it was impossible for me to hide it.
[Why don’t you wanna? Maybe they’ll give you another medal or reward you with gold. In fact, you might even earn a new territory or a higher rank.] (Dia)
[I don’t want a higher rank. If our territory grew any larger, I wouldn’t be able to watch over all of it, and I’m tired of the central government bothering me. Being a baron suits me better.] (Lugh)
Aristocrats were granted as much authority and wealth as their social ranks could allow, but they were also given more responsibilities as a result.
Being a baron basically meant that I only needed to take care of my own domain.
If I climbed any higher than that, I would have to take part in politics whether I wanted to or not, and I would have to look after lower-ranked nobles.
Frankly speaking, it all sounded like a pain in the ass.
[You’re not very greedy.] (Dia)
[I am. And I already have everything I want. Everything I need to ensure my happiness and that of the people who are precious to me, that is. It’s just that after being promoted, there’d be nothing for us to be happy about.] (Lugh)
Even as I spoke, there was virtually nothing I wanted that I couldn’t obtain.
I had no desire for any of the things that would come with a promotion, and I had a feeling that neither me nor the girls would be happy with it.
[Fufu…! I guess you’re right. Rather than you becoming a big shot, it’s much better if we stay together as we always do. Like, my father was always so busy we rarely even got to eat dinner together.] (Dia)
[With the title of Count, I guess so. …Maybe I should declare my intentions once and for all. That way, no one will try to sabotage me out of jealousy like back then.] (Lugh)
[By “declare”, you mean that you will tell everybody that you don’t want to get promoted?] (Dia)
[That would be the fastest way to go about it, although I’d then have to deal with all the guys who’ll be irritated by my announcement.] (Lugh)
The human mind was irrational and complicated. Dealing with one or two of them was one thing, but if they were a whole crowd, you’d be at your wits’ end.
[Okay, my letter is finished. I’ll send it first thing in the morning, and that’ll be the end of my report. I’m going to bed now. Tomorrow, I’ll have to find out more about the Fruit of Life, so I’ll need to be back to full health.] (Lugh)
[I see… That’s kind of a shame.] (Dia)
Dia hugged me from behind.
I felt that her body temperature was higher than usual.
And along with it, she conveyed her intentions to me.
[Aren’t you tired?] (Lugh)
[I am, very much so. But still, I’m just in the mood. You see… When I think that I might lose you, it flips my switch. Today, we fought a demon, you did some really dangerous stunts by yourself, and when you were talking to Mina, you seemed like a different person, and so distant… You remained like this for a long, long time. I asked Tarte if she wasn’t feeling naughty because I had decided that if she couldn’t bear it, I would let her take her turn. I know, I’m weird.] (Dia)
[Not at all. I think I can somewhat understand how you feel.] (Lugh)
She wanted us to connect with each other to remove her insecurities.
She wanted to believe that everything would be fine by feeling each other. I wanted to feel her too. But more than that, I couldn’t help but find Dia bashfully laying her feelings bare to be so adorable, it made me lose control of myself.
Like an illusionist, I instantly broke free from Dia’s embrace, and princess-carried her to the bed.
Dia looked up at me with moist eyes and opened her arms to welcome me.
[I’m not going anywhere.] (Lugh)
[I hear you… Now convince me.] (Dia)
I smiled, then we kissed each other.
I was here, and I would never leave Dia’s side.
I would make that fact crystal clear for her.
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