Read at Watashi wa Sugoi Desu!
Chapter 42 (Part 2)
Miranda was drinking at quite a fast pace, and at this rate, she was going to get drunk again even though she had a hangover just this morning.
Since it seemed unwise to let her continue, I waited for the chance to stop her, but she stared into her glass and started talking.
“That time, when your mana depleted and you collapsed… there was a woman who was part of the dark organisation. She restrained Bennett and, um… was showing more skin than me – do you know who I’m talking about?”
“I do. I remember her.”
In my head, I called her the female molester since I didn’t know her name. She wore armour that exposed a lot more of her body than Miranda’s, but the two were somewhat similar.
“Even though my personality is like this, there was someone who promised to marry me. He was a fellow party member, but four years ago, that woman killed him. I rushed to him, but she just flung his body to the ground and laughed. She easily managed to escape, maybe because it was the middle of the night and the only thing I could do was cry as I clung to his dead body… I swore I would get revenge no matter what.”
Perhaps recalling that moment, tears began to well up in Miranda’s eyes. She downed her drink as if to cover up for that fact.
“But at that time, that noble lady tried to kill you, right? Just because you have the dark attribute. The other nobles treated you with hostility as well. In the first place, even I… yeah.”
She spoke in a dejected tone, her shoulders sagging and her head hanging. Seeing her like that, I poured more whiskey into her glass. Getting a hangover two days in a row might be bad, but it was better for her to be drunk than depressed and crying.
Miranda took a sip of her newly poured drink and exhaled loudly. Her cheeks were already flushed.
“And didn’t you say… about that guy? The one who seemed to be the leader of the dark organisation? That if he didn’t kill others, he himself would be killed? Hearing that, it suddenly occurred to me – maybe that woman killed him because he was trying to kill her… He might have tried to kill her just because she had the dark attribute.”
“I… can’t deny that.”
I’d talked to that woman a bit when I exited the dungeon before the battle with the dragons. She got teary-eyed when I told her that we had a responsibility to life. Back then I didn’t know why; I was so focused on buying some more time that I didn’t think too deeply about it.
Perhaps a tender-hearted woman existed under the evil façade. Maybe she’d gotten teary-eyed and felt conflicted when I pointed out the lives that would be lost and the hatred that would follow. Maybe she didn’t take the lives of others because she wanted to kill. It was just that if she didn’t kill, she would die. However, she still knew the weight of a life and the feelings of others.
It was something I was aware of as well – that miserable position in which dark attribute users stood. Which was the reason I didn’t blame her for killing. I did tell her, however, that there was a responsibility she had to bear when taking a life, as there were people like Miranda whose hatred grew and who wished to destroy those with the dark attribute.
In the game, there was an encounter with the female molester at the 11th dungeon. If you complete the Miranda event, the two would have a standoff, though I couldn’t remember the details. I think they were cursing at each other, but there was no telling what would happen in real life.
Miranda looked at her glass and sniffled. She ended up crying anyway. I wasn’t that good at comforting people.
“Those guys… they want to resurrect the Evil God, so we’ll probably meet them again. You can just ask her then – why she killed your fiancé.”
It would be nice if they were able to talk. Adventurers like us tended to settle matters through our swords, but in this world, there were a lot of things that couldn’t be expressed properly without using words.
“And then, even if your fiancé was the one to lay his hands on her… even if that woman cries and curses him, you can face her with confidence and tell her that for you, he was the best. In the end, every person is both a hero to someone and a villain to someone else.”
I moved the plate little by little so that the pasta dish would enter her field of vision. For the meantime, it was better if she filled her stomach with something other than just alcohol. It might make her feel better afterwards.
Miranda looked at me with blurry eyes. I looked into those eyes and told her, “Just remember this. No matter what the two of you choose to do in the end, killing the other would only result in more sadness and loathing.” I then held a fork out to her.
Miranda’s eyes opened wide.
I titled my head, not knowing what exactly had surprised her. I just stared at her until a grin broke on her face.
“Fu, haha, ahahaha! I didn’t see that coming. I didn’t see that coming. You really are a harsh person just like Nina said… but, you’re right. This is why I wanted to talk to you.”
Laughing, she grabbed the fork and started digging in. Large tears kept spilling from her eyes as she smiled.
“My personality may be, you know? But see, I’ve got the looks, right? So I was always popular since way back. But, you know? That guy, he always yelled – I’m worried that some other guy is going to steal Miranda! And every time I hugged him and said that he was the only one for me. Despite that… despite that, he’s really the worst, dying and leaving me behind! Listen, Zagan!”
Miranda banged on the table and glared at me. Her face had been bright red for some time now and her breath smelled of booze. To make matters worse, she had been telling me stories about her fiancé for close to two hours now. She was the type to get annoying when drunk.
It didn’t seem like she could use life magic, and a moment ago she said she had to pee and walked up to a tree, so I took the log-house out in a fluster. I thought that while it was already there, she could lie down on the sofa or the bed, but she just went straight back outside.
There was no doubt that she was going to have a hangover tomorrow as well.
“I’m listening, I’m listening. Drink some water. Noel and the others are going to come pick us up soon.”
While Miranda was in the bathroom, I called Luca and told him where we were and that Miranda was flat-out drunk. I asked him to tell Noel to guide Nina here.
“Ah-ah. You’ve got such a good boyfriend. That guy, Luca, I asked him out several times when we first met, but he waved me off. And then he told me he loved Zagan? I thought there was something wrong with the prince’s head when he said he fell in love with a dark attribute user, you know?”
Speaking of which, on the Miranda route, you were supposed to take her up on that offer and comfort her since she was lonely. Or rather, Luca should have received invitations from everyone other than Noel.
In the game, such an invitation would come up when the player chose one of the heroines during the nighttime, but this was reality. Which meant that not just Miranda, but also Nina might have offered herself to him, and Camilla might have asked to use his semen for alchemy, Bennett might have confessed that she was actually a guy, and Cindy might have told him that kinesthesia was good for his health.
Well, even if they did, he would have turned all of them down, right? It was Luca after all.
“You, you know? You’re a pretty good guy yourself, so don’t be so strict and lend me your shoulder.”
“What? You want to walk back on your own feet?”
“That’s right! This is why you get called an airhead. I’m glad though! Managed to get this over with without having those embarrassing feelings!”
I didn’t get her. She was going to get embarrassed anyhow when she remembers the last two hours that she spent uncharacteristically grumbling and bragging about her former fiancé.
“Haaa… I should pull myself together and stop obsessing about the past… I need to look to the future…”
Miranda fell face first into the table and stopped moving. I checked to see if she was okay, but she was just asleep.
It became quiet and I spent some time sipping on whiskey by myself.
Staring into the rippling amber liquid, I thought about dark attribute users.
Many of them were killed as soon as they were born, and even if they do survive, they had to live a cruel life if the dark organisation didn’t save them.
They had a target on their backs for the sole reason that they possessed the dark attribute. For them, it was either kill or be killed; they had no choice but to take a life.
Although I was also a dark attribute user, I have never killed a human. It was because I was incredibly lucky.
I had the memories of my past life. That alone was different from when I was only “Zagan” and it made it possible for me to live by myself.
Also, my father shaved my hair soon after I was born. He deceived everyone, telling them I was sick. Even if he did keep me hidden in the basement, he still raised me properly until I was nine. My father protected me until I was old enough to survive on my own.
Lastly, after leaving the family home, I lived in the great forest where I didn’t encounter another human for around six years. Then, when I was fifteen and became an adventurer, I was already confident in my own strength.
Little by little, I incorporated myself into society, and by the time people started noticing that I was a dark attribute user, I was already an A-rank adventurer. Furthermore, after my trip to Terre when I was gone for a year and a half, I came back an S-rank adventurer.
There were people that detested me, but no one had tried to kill me.
In the first place, my hair was black and my mana pool was huge, so I could catch someone the moment they attacked me. Even if they were trying to kill me, I could end the interaction without taking their lives.
And despite that, I… I’ve done nothing. All this power and nothing.
The others arrived around 15 minutes after Miranda fell asleep. The group consisted of Noel who led them here, Nina, Cindy, and even Luca. Also, it seemed like they walked here since they were a little out of breath.
Luca hugged me tightly the moment I released the magic barrier.
“Are you okay, Zagan!? Nothing happened, right!?”
“Huh? Didn’t you hear what Miranda said before we left? We had a duel. I won, of course – there’s not a single scratch on me.”
“I see. As expected of Zagan. Why did you take the log-house out though?”
“You can probably already tell, but after the match, we had a drink. Miranda got super drunk and she can’t use life magic, so I took it out so she could use the bathroom.”
“Ahh, I see. It was something like that… I’m glad.”
Luca exhaled in relief and then kissed me on the lips. After several kisses, he squeezed me tight and smiled happily. He wouldn’t let go either.
As that was happening, the girls tidied up the camp.
“Nii-sama, this tableware – can I take all of it and ask Bennett to wash it?”
“That would be a great help. The alcohol is Miranda’s and the table and chairs are mine.”
“Okay. I’ll take the alcohol bottles for now.”
“Miranda-chan, can you stand? Do you want onee-san to give you a piggyback ride?
“Uu… I can stannnnddd…”
Miranda groggily lifted her head when Cindy called out to her. When Cindy crouched down beside her, Miranda got on her back.
I thought that I should also put my stuff away.
“We’re off to the house then. Have fun, Luca-kun, Zagan-kun,” Cindy said as she stood up and I looked at her blankly.
Also, Luca was hugging me and didn’t budge as if to confirm her words.
“Thanks, Cindy. Have a safe trip the three of you 1. We should be back by dinner tomorrow, so please tell Bennett.”
“Roger that. Now then, nii-sama, Luca, see you tomorrow.”
“Bye bye. Good luck onii-san~”
The girls waved their hands and walked away. I looked at their disappearing figures and asked Luca, “How come we’re not going back with them?”
“Ne, Zagan… I’m rather angry – do you know why?”
Eh?? He’s angry? Even though he kissed me so many times and smiled that happily?