Chapter 34 Reunion (1)
“Renji-san, are you fine now?”(aya)
“Hm, yeah. My body hurts a bit due to sleeping too much though.”
According to Utano-san, I slept for full 5 days. It’s been a long time since I slept for so long continuously. I guess even I’ll get tired after walking continuously till the Forest of Rotting souls and then fighting a Demon God’s descendant. Well, I’m already very lucky to have survived all that to be honest.
“Also, I’m hungry.”(renji)
“fufu. Even though you almost died, you’re already energetic eh?”(aya)
“Cause I didn’t die in the end.”
When I said that, Aya laughed amusingly. Seeing her smile, I also started laughing with her.
“Did I make you worry?”(renji)
“Yes, very much so. Francesca-senpai and the others were very worried as well.”
Aya brought a chair and sat down near my bed. The way she sat was, in a sense, in an even more dignified manner than Utano-san. I won’t say that out loud though. Even walls have ears after all.
Aya’s tone was a bit angry, but her expression was so gentle that I didn’t feel scared at all. I wonder if she herself knows that? I doubt she does.
“To fall asleep in my room, you really must have been worried a lot, I guess.”(renji)
“…….mouu, please forget that.”
Blushing a little, she glared at me. Normally it would be scary but right now, it only feels cute. When I kept on staring at her face, she ended up averting her face.
“It would be such a waste to forget that.”(renji)
“There’s no such thing!”
When she spoke angrily and I shrugged my shoulders at it, my right arm pained again slightly. No, the wound has healed but, a little of the Demon God’s poison is still remaining probably.
“Are you really okay?”(aya)
“As long as Aya doesn’t shout at me, yeah.”
When I gave a stifled laughter, Aya curled up her body. It’s because you act like that, I feel like teasing you more you know? Due to the gap between this and the way she acts normally, well, my teasing nature gets awakened.
Even I myself think that its very childish of me to do so. Like, what the hell am I doing? But, oh well, I guess it would be imprudent to continue any further right now .
If I am to tease someone who was worried for me, I should at least wait till I’m back to full health again. Even I have tended to my injured comrades countless times. At those times, its best to always be energetic, I know.
“You’re always teasing me.”(aya)
“Because I get really amusing reactions when I do so.”
“Haah……you’re treating me as a child.”
“Because you still are a child.”
“I’m already 18 yrs old.”
“And I’m 28.”
When I said that, she pouted like a child to protest against me. That’s exactly why you’re still a child. But if I pointed that out, she’ll fix her expression which would be a waste so I didn’t.
We continued conversing like that when,
“Oh right, where’s Ermenhilde?”
“………..Eru is probably with Yui or that idiot, I think.”(aya)
When I changed the topic, she sighed.
Idiot—-probably means Koutarou. Aya and Koutarou don’t get along much. Well, they don’t hate each other or anything, they simply quarrel with each other too much. That’s because Aya uses magic by using her mind/thinking with her head whereas Koutarou weaves/creates magic with pure sense/intuition. One being a genius and one who depends on pure instinct, they simply are unable to understand each others magic. That’s why they end up quarrelling.
Even after countless times I have mediated their fights, they still haven’t stopped.
“It was Koutarou who came to save me because he saw a future of me dying you know?”
“No such thing.”
“When I tried to defend Koutarou, Aya pouted again.
“If he saw a future of Renji-san dying, he should have quickly told it to us. If he had, we would have taken Souichi and Yayoi with us as well.”(aya)
“That won’t do. Those two have their own things to do as well.”
To be honest, if it were upto me, I’d have Aya live as a student at Magic City as well but it’s useless to say that now.
“He’s always putting up airs, over exaggerating things……..that’s why I don’t like him.”(aya)
“Please try to get along with him more.”
“I’ll try to.”
Well, even I think that he should have told me such a future earlier though. He saw my death after all, my death! I don’t want to die yet, you know? I have lots of things I want to do, things I have to finish. There’s no way I’ll accept dying in that remote forest.
I’m pretty sure he has already disappeared but next time I meet him, I’m definitely going to complain about this. Also, I have to thank him for saving me as well. That chunnibyou wannabe is weak to such things after all. I’m gonna tease him to my heart’s content.
“Oh right, is Yui-chan also in the capital?”(renji)
“Yes. She was the one who carried you here from the forest on her Fafnir. She should be at the training grounds right now.”
Saying that, Aya stood up and opened the curtains. I also came closer to the window and looked outside. The training grounds were perfectly visible from this window. There a giant crimson dragon was currently resting its wings. It was Yui-chan’s third contracted beast, the Ancient Dragon–Fafnir. Just like an year ago, it always looked strong and cool. Every man admires dragons after all, yeah. We had the dragon lend us its back to move quickly to different places and also had the help from its breath attacks during battles countless times.
“Oh, there’s Fafnir…..so that means..”
Saying till that, a 15cm tall humanoid with wings came towards the window we were looking through—-a fairy. When I had asked sometime before if she didn’t feel cold flying around wearing just that white dress, apparently, the wind spirits took care of that for her. Truly convenient.
Since I closed the window, I can’t hear what she’s saying but it seems she hasn’t realized that so is still continuing to talk. When I finally laughed at her, she finally realized and started beating on the window. She’s the same as well it seems.
“Don’t break the glass, will you?”(renji)
“How rude. Even though I came here to greet you, you laughed at me.”(fairy)
“It’s your fault to start talking even though the window was closed. You should have realized that earlier.”
“uu—–well, that’s true as well.—–”
Since she’s mumbling in a small voice I can’t hear her properly. Since her body was small, her volume was low as well.
“What did you say?”(renji)
“Shut up. Idiot! Die with your incompetence!”
“I am not gonna die that easily.”
And what the hell, she’s calling me the same thing as Utano-san. Even I’ll get hurt a bit now. I’m not that incompetent, probably. Even like this, I still try to live as bravely as possible.
“Anastasia, did you see Ermenhilde?”(renji)
“Wha? What, you prefer that medal woman over me?”
“What is wrong with your brain? I can’t calm down without Ermenhilde by my side that’s all.”
But she still looked at me with a suspicious gaze. Really, what goes on inside her head?
Fairy Anastasia. She’s the queen of all fairies that reside in the forest of the World Tree in Elfreim. She’s a user of Spirit magic and in terms of usability of magic, she even surpasses Aya in my opinion. Though I wonder if that’s simply because she’s a fairy or because this nagging chibikko(small kid/brat) is actually skilled on her own…….It’s probably the former.
I wonder what she was thinking right now after I asked about Ermenhilde since the Fairy queen flew away from the window and glided in the air. She’s really skilful. I recalled that I had tried flying using spirit magic many times myself but I couldn’t fly as well as Anastasia. And then I was made a fool of as well. I’ll ask her again and take revenge this time.
“fuun. You have it hard as well, Aya.”(fairy)
“Not really. This fun in its own you know.(aya)
“Yuuko as well, without him knowing………you’re such a sinful man, Renji”(fairy)
“In Utano-san’s case, I’m more of a victim in my opinion.”(renji)
But, for some reason, I ended up getting a cold glare from Aya instead. Even the presence beside me became colder.
“What did you do to Yuuko-san?”(aya)
“Why am I being treated as the wrong-doer!?”
To be looked so suspiciously by Aya……I’m so sad. But in truth, earlier, how should I call it, that was a surprise attack by her. In any case, I am not at fault in anyway I think. Or maybe I am at fault for not being clear even now?
Well, I guess its always the man who’s at fault in such cases. Yeah.
“It comes to him as a habit, doesn’t it?”(fairy)
“Shut up, chibikko.”
“nuu. You’re calling me like that again, you incompetent!.”
Saying that, she climbed on my right shoulder. The weight I felt made me nostalgic and I ended up smiling a little.
“With Faf’. ‘Knight’ is swinging swords with Yuuta.”(fairy)
“With Kuuki eh——-”
I’ll have to go meet him as well. Kuuki Yuuta. The [Knight of the Goddess], one of the heroes affiliated with the Knights Order of the country. And ‘Knight’ was the first contracted monster of Yui-chan, a Phantom Knight. He’s called ‘Knight’ because he’s a knight. Utano-san was the one who named him. Don’t try to think too much about it. It’s useless to make a retort.
But still, I sure hear a lot of my comrades names just by coming to the capital. That made me feel——very weird kinds of unclear emotions, making me scratch my head.
“You’ll catch a cold so I’ll close the window again, okay?”(aya)
“My oh my. What devotion! You’ll definitely become a good wife, Aya.”(fairy)
When Anastasia teased her like that, she silently, but instantly tried to grab the fairy. Aya really has a low boiling point in front of her comrades it seems.
It wasn’t her aim, but since Anastasia was on my shoulder, it ended up with her jumping at me. Normally I’d just hold her back easily but I really didn’t have any strength on me right now. I tried but my legs soon gave up as I fell. I also felt the actual culprit move away from my shoulder as well.
Just like that, I fell down along with Aya. I fell with my back towards the bed and Aya fell right in my arms. Depending on how you look, it would seem as if I was passionately hugging Aya I guess.
“Don’t tease her too much. Even after all the teasing, she still hasn’t gotten used to it after all.”(renji)
Why was she giving me thumbs up, this idiot fairy queen.
I called to the girl in my arms but I got no response. When I bent my neck below to see her, only her glossy black hair came into my view. She must be putting a lot of time in grooming her hair. It even smelled really nice as well. But as you’d expect, I won’t harbour wicked thoughts for a girl who feels more like a daughter.
When I spoke, as gently as I could, she put her hand on my chest. She held my shirt, and gripped it very tightly.
As I wondered about what emotions were running through her——I looked above to see the culprit behind this situation, the fairy queen flying around the room grinning while looking at us. How can one be so carefree? As expected of prank-loving fairies I guess? And she’s their queen to top it off.
Giving a sigh, I released strength from my body. After 5 days of only sleeping, I lack all energy.
“C’mon, don’t cry. I’m still alive right?”(renji)
Her shoulders were slightly trembling.
But I could only caressed her head gently while combing through her hair. I was the one who made her worry and afraid. She said it lightly but she must have been really worried when I was unconscious. I can understand. I was also always anxious and worried whenever I was looking after an injured comrade. I know what she’s feeling all too well.
And I also know that you alone cannot deal with those emotions. So all I could do was caress her head to calm her. Just like back then……….just like ‘her’ who held me tightly and caressed me.
“You’re a crybaby as usual.”(fairy)
“More than 50% is your fault here, you know?”(renji)
Saying that, as if she had read my mind, she looked at me. Well, I know. The one who’s at fault the most is me who almost died. It’s me who made them all worry so much. That’s why I could only try and comfort Aya. Even though I haven’t done anything for this girl. Even though I haven’t even answered back to her feelings. But even so, I end up accepting Aya like this. This, definitely is my fault. I know that.
After caressing her head for a little while, Aya’s shoulders started to tremble lesser and lesser. Utano-san did say that ‘take care of Aya’ but, I guess, she expected even this to happen. While I was thinking of that, one of the culprits(Anastasia) hit my head. Since she’s small it doesn’t hurt but it did surprise me.
“That was a minus.”(fairy)
“You shouldn’t think of other women while embracing a girl!”
Can read minds as well? I ended up retorting like that.
“I wasn’t really, though.”(renji)
“Should I tell about this to Eru and Yuuko later then?”
Maybe she didn’t like my answer, she hit my head again. It was a fist this time. Well, that doesn’t really hurt either though.
“Even though you abandoned us for a whole year; how about showing some gratitude towards me who let you off the hook with just this much?”(fairy)
“……..Seriously. you’re such a tsundere.”
“That usage is definitely, without a doubt, wrong!”
There’s no ‘tsun’ in me. In the first place, a male tsundere just sounds creepy.
(T/N: If you don’t know what a tsundere is, tho it’s pretty much impossible if you’re reading LNs and WNs and still don’t know that, but even so if you don’t, just google it. I’m pretty sure you’ll get wiki pages explaining in detail what a tsundere is :P)
“Ermenhilde also uses such weird words at times but who the hell is teaching you guys all this stuff?”(renji)
That idiot, I’m definitely going to make him cry later. Though I do have to thank him for saving me, that’s a different thing altogether.
Deciding that in my heart, I lifted Aya from her shoulders and sat down on the bed with her. It ended up with her technically sitting on my lap but Aya didn’t seem to have any complaints about that. To be honest, I’d be happier if she’d move already. As usual, she rested her head on my chest. She smells temptingly nice, really.
“What is it?”
It would seem that she had cried out completely already as her voice was back to normal. I gave a sigh of relief at that.
“Please get down off me already.”(renji)
“It’s amazing you could even say that. I’m actually impressed.”(fairy)
I ignored the fairy speaking from above for now. Or rather, at least half of this is your fault, this situation.
But seriously, how did it end up like this? I ended up giving a wry smile. I was the one at fault. No matter how I try to gloss over it, the fact doesn’t change that my weakness made them worry so much.
“I really made you worry, didn’t I?”(renji)
“Very much so.”(aya)
The same conversation we just a while ago. But this time, Aya was crying. But for some reason, I don’t feel that bad inside. There’s no way I would when it was a beauty who was worried for me and crying over me.
I see. I whispered that once again and looked towards Anastasia.
“I made you worried as well?”(renji)
“Yes, very much. I was incredibly, worried for you.”
“As usual you exaggerate everything, don’t you?”
“As usual your treatment of me is different from others as well, isn’t it!?”
“This much is more than enough for you.”
As I talked with Anastasia, Aya, in my embrace, trembled her shoulders. But this time I didn’t hear her sobbing but heard her stiffled laughter.
“Thank you. For crying for me.”(renji)
From within my embrace, Aya smoothly slipped out. Even though she had been crying till now, she was surprisingly nimble with her feet.
In exchange, Anastasia came back to sit on my right shoulder.
“If Renji-san won’t cry, I’ll cry for you as well.”(aya)
“…….That’s why, if you even slightly think that that is not good, please don’t make me cry anymore.”
With reddened eyes, but with a smile, she said that to me.
“Was that a confession?”(fairy)
“Well, I wonder?”(renji)
“Something like that?”(aya)
As we both answered at the same time, all 3 of us started laughing.
Were both the correct answer? Or were they both wrong?
As we talked about things that I wasn’t sure even held any meaning, the door was knocked.
“I brought food, Yamada-kun.”
Utano-san came in. In both of her hands were trays with different food arranged.
How the hell did she even knock the door then?
“Oh? Anastasia, you were here as well?”(yuuko)
“Yes! Yuuko, where’s my portion?”9fairy)
“I’ll share mine with you.”
“This why I love you, Yuuko!”
To get lured in by food, she sure is selfish. As expected of a fairy, I guess.
As my right shoulder became lighter, I gave a sigh. As my gaze connected with Aya’s, we both gave a smile.
“Did you have him spoil you well?”(yuuko)
Instantly, Aya’s face turned red. She hid her face but even she was red to nape of her neck and the tip of her ears.
As usual, she’s weak to unexpected things.
“Now then, let’s eat shall we?”(renji)
At times like these, it’s best to act as if I didn’t notice and wait for the storm to pass. I don’t think that’s a mistake either. Seeing me like that, Utano-san looked at me for a second and gave a sigh.
“Don’t you know? Every time you sigh, you let your happiness run away apparently.”(renji)
“It’s fine. I’ve already found/caught my happiness.”(utano)
So it seems.