After getting back to the inn, she quietly shut herself in her room, without leaving from there for one day.
She would write letters she was going to send to Leivein, check the conditions of her weapons, and just like now, sometimes she would sit close to the window to enjoy the view outside. Leaving the big window open-wide, she would look at the city at night. Right now, Riku was lost in her thoughts.
Looking at the Derufoi city from that height, it was possible to notice that it wasn´t a very big city. It was many times smaller than the capital and didn´t have the same splendor as Perikka did. The old buildings made of stone would all stand lined next to each other as if all were cuddling together towards the center of the main street. But even with that said, it was by no means disordered, but would actually would give off an harmonizing feeling of antiquity, bringing forth a good feeling. For some reason, as if it was at the eve of the festival, while the other streets were all in dark, the main street was full of lights.
At the ends of the lively main street, there was a deep forest. If one was to strain one´s eyes and look, it would be possible to notice there was a small building dimly shining white at the center of the forest.
“Would there be where the shrine where the Shibira are at…?”
Riku gave a small sigh.
The forest where the shrine was coincided with the place an “X” was drawn at the map. But to Riku, this didn´t matter at all. The information that Riku needed right now was only the location of Charlotte and Rook Barusak. Other than that, she didn´t have any interest.
Grasping the halberd that was next to her, she took off the cloth that enveloped its axe-like blade. Being bathed by the moonlight, the tip of the blade dimly shone. She even thought about practicing with the halberd outside, but there was too much turmoil over the demon invasion. There was no need for her to take the trouble of going outside just to catch unwanted attention.
“There is not even a scratch on the blade; it can be used anytime.”
Muttering that to herself, she once again enveloped the blade with the cloth.
As it would be expected, Charlotte and her escorts that went after her weren´t coming back to the inn. Keity was the only one that did, but with lifeless eyes, she was motionless, depressed at the corner of the room. Before, she was searching around the city, but it seems that in the end, tripped and fell down, fracturing her leg. Since the time Charlotte was kidnapped, one day had passed, and during all this time, she was like that.
“Ah, it´s because I wasn´t beside her… Because of me that… that Charlotte-sama…”
Repeating the same thing, she looked like she became a doll that would only speak the same set of words.
“Really, you are too naive.”
Finishing enveloping the blade with the cloth, this time she drew the silver sword that was at her waist. The slender blade that would give off a silverly light was a war spoil she got at the time when she killed Selestinna. She didn´t really want to use something a spiritualist used to use, but the sensation it gave off when she used it was very nice. As if she had been using it for a very long time, it felt very familiar to her hands, and gave the sensation that just by lightly swinging it, it would slice off the enemy just the way she would desire. Of course, it was inferior to the halberd she had been often using for these many years, but it didn´t change the fact that it was a very easy to handle weapon. At places that are too narrow and would make it difficult to use the halberd, this would come in handy.
At spaces such as this room, using the sword instead could be better.
“…Such a noisy night.”
Even though the demons had appeared yesterday, the main street was s. The music from the lively festival was resounding.
Then, it was possible to hear footsteps that gave off a feeling of danger from the corridor, although the sound of the festival was more or less concealing the sound of the footsteps. Riku held her sword tight.The moment Riku walked away from the window, the door was violently opened.
Several men wearing armor entered the room. In an instant, the men surrounded Riku and Keity, holding their sword with a stance which the sword was positioned vertically.
As if to protect Keity, who was completely trembling, Riku stepped forward. And then, the men glared at her with a lot of killing intent.
“We are spiritualists from Buryuccer.”
“We know that you guys are demons!”
“Demons? I´m a human though?”
Even though she told them the truth, they were still glaring at her. Spitting out saliva, one of the spiritualist yelled.
“Don´t play dumb! From our investigations, we confirmed that there are demons staying here!”
“Who told you that?”
“It´s something you would know right away if you look around all the inns of the city!”
Riku gave out a sigh of relief. It seems that Charlotte didn´t blurt out about this place. Since that is the case, she still might be able to fool them. Putting her sword at her scabbard, she intentionally let out a long sigh.
“I´m a human. I´m not a demon. If you think that is a lie, then try cutting me.”
“You think that just by saying that we won´t cut you!? You stupid demon!”
The spiritualists were showing despicable smiles. Then, swinging it upward, the sword grazed at her cheek. If Riku was a demon, her brains would have been scattered around by now. However, Riku was only left with a small cut at her cheek. Wiping off the blood on her cheek, she spoke in a low voice.
“…What am I supposed to do if it leaves a scar?”
With how Riku was really a human, and how they had just damaged a girl´s face, the spiritualists were embarrassed. As if to stab at their uneasiness, Riku pressed on.
“With this red hair I already have a very low chance of being able to marry, but now with this scar… With that, will I remain unmarried for the rest of my life?”
“Sorry? You… You think you can settle everything with only that? Suddenly entering in somebody else´s room and saying that I´m a demon, and you even attacked me. And now with this scar!! This is a catastrophe… Even though this hair is already a disaster by itself.”
With her voice little by little becoming full of sorrow, she started trembling. As if to hide her wound, she covered her face with both hands and went down to the floor.
The spiritualists were looking at one another without knowing what to do. As expected, for how they one-sidedly decided she was a demon and even hurt her, they thoughts were that they did something unforgivable. One of the spiritualists then put a small bottle that had medical cream inside on her hands.
“I- I´m very sorry. It seems that our investigations were lacking. Here, use this medicine. It should heal right away.”
“…Is it true?”
“Of course! We use it for light wounds very often. It should heal in three days.”
“If any marks remain even then, then I want compensation. It is really unforgivable…”
The spiritualists left the room all with pale faces. Riku was still sitting at the floor, but when she was sure the footsteps were completely gone, she raised her face. Her face was one that was as if nothing had happened; a face without a single drop of tear.
Keity timidly spoke to Riku.
“Err… Are you alright?”
“It´s good that you are fine too, lieutenant coronel Fostar.”
When it became clear to the spiritualists that Riku was a human, they also assumed Keity was a human too. It didn´t go through the heads the possibility of a human and a demon staying at the same room.
“Leaving that aside, he is too late.”
While clicking her tongue, Riku threw the medicine at her pouch. And right at that moment, a demon with a wolf face nimbly jumped inside the room from the window. Then Riku glared at the demon who was smiling.
“You are late, warrant officer Vrusto.”
“Ah, sorry, sorry. I got a bit busy on the way. That aside, I´ve been promoted to second lieutenant thought?”
As he gave his complaints, Vrusto scratched his head.
“Is that so? Congratulations for the promotion. Now then, the concern right now is that I need you to follow Charlotte-sama´s smell, but…”
“…You called me only to use me as a sniffer dog?”*2
Riku threw one of Charlotte´s luggage to Vrusto. Catching it, Vrusto sniffed it as if it was a pain to do.
“Now, I only need to find where Charlotte-sama is, right? More than that, you… weren´t you her bodyguard? How did they kidnap her?”
“…Actually, she ordered me to leave her alone with somebody else.”
“Seriously? But don´t you know how the upper brass decides on things?”
Vrusto showed an disgusted face.
It was as he had said. No matter how Charlotte herself was the one that ordered that, she might get the responsibility for not being able to stop her. If something like that ends up happening, at this time, she would present Keity to them as her scapegoat without any hesitation. Riku herself tried to stop Charlotte, but Keity got in Riku´s way. The one to blame for all that wasn´t Riku. Keity also agreed to do that, but even with that already planned, there was still the possibility of her getting a punishment for collective responsibility due to how she had been entrusted to deal with the unexpected occurrences. She needed to avoid that at all costs.
“That´s why I called you.”
Riku didn´t care one bit about Charlotte. But if she only cared about killing Rook, even after being able to do that… If there was any chance of her being unable to be together with Leivein because of her actions, then she could only choose one of the choices right now.*3
“…Is that so, ojou-chan?”
Vrusto was showing a face of someone that wanted to say something.
But Riku ignored it. Picking up the halberd that was leaning against the wall and carrying it at her back, she put her foot at the frame of the window.*4 Looking at the street bellow her, she saw Roppu waving his hand. As if saying that it was fine for her to go down now, he did a signal with his hand. Looking at the completely desolate street, Riku sighed.
“Lieutenant coronal Fostar, I have to bother you with taking care of the room while we are out.”
“I understand… I will leave Charlotte-sama to you.”
Keity said in a pained tone. If she was able to move her feet, she would have also joined in the searching party. Feeling the sorrow of the voice that came from her back, she jumped from the window frame.*5 Landing without any sounds like a cat, she waited for Vrusto to jump down as well. Landing next to Riku, Vrusto stretched out his shoulders.
“So, let´s go, ojou-chan?”
Moving his nose, Vrusto sniffed the smell on the air. And then, he started to walk at a fast pace and Riku followed after him. The three people were walking around the dark city. It was possible for them to hear all the noise of the festival at the main street from there.
“Once you locate where Charlotte-sama is… What should we do?”
Looking at Riku, Roppu asked.
“That´s you role, right? All me and ojou-chan can do pretty much is to go burst forward through the front door. We will rely on you for lock picking the back.”
Before Riku could answer, Vrusto declared in a low voice. Due to that answer, Roppu started trembling.
“Eh, lock picking? Bu- but I don´t know how to do that… Besides, doesn´t it make us the same as robbers!?”
“Stupid, infiltrating isn´t a respectable act either wa… Hm?”
Vrusto´s nose moved, and then he stopped his feet. Right after that, he extended his arm sideways as if he was trying to tell them not to proceed further. Neither Riku nor Roppu knew what was going on, but they assumed he felt there was something strange. Riku moved her hand near to the halberd at her back.
“Captain Riku Barusak, second lieutenant Vrusto Asuteroid, sergeant major Roppu Nezaarand. I´m not a suspicious person.”
From the sudden appearance, Riku unconsciously got. After putting the axe blade at the neck of that person, Riku raised her eyebrows. The one standing there wasn´t a human. It was a small demon. With her cute squirrel ears moving, she was looking at them with her adorable big eyes. Even though Riku had her halberd next to her neck, that demon had a gentle smile showing on her face.
“I´m called Kurumi Shouru, from the intelligence division. Please, let me help you with searching Charlotte-sama.”
1.Nothing here 😀
2.I needed to add more words, otherwise it would be misleading and feel like Vrusto didn´t care about Charlotte.
3.リクは、シャルロッテがどうなっても構わない。だけれども、ルークを始末した後……レーヴェンの隣に居られる可能性が遠くなってしまうなら、選択肢は1つしかなかった。I don´t know what this part is supposed to mean ^^ I basically had to add a bunch of stuff for it to make sense. I think it is good enough that it wouldn´t be weird if the message it wanted to pass was the same as the one I wrote, but if it was different, then it can´t be helped
4.It doesn´t say what the halberd was leaning against. It could have been a chair, for instance ¬¬¬¬¬¬¬ Lack of descriptions only when it is needed ¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬
5悲痛な声を背中で感じながらFeeling with your back? wut? Disciple doesn´t know. Master google, why won´t you tell me, sir?
(I shall not let Vrusto be called asteroid!! NEVERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!)