I had filled my stomach to the brim and it seemed like Ralf and Esta were almost done as well.
We hadn’t talked much until now but, Ralf suddenly started the conversation.
“Chris, let’s start our little talk shall we!? Right now, I feel like I’ll be able to say out all my thoughts right now!”
“You’re acting like you are normally hesitant in speaking your mind. So, what exactly do you want to talk about? You’re the one who brought this up Ralf, so it’s your responsibility to lead this conversation.”
“yeah yeah I know! First of all……..I need to talk about you and me Chris! You’re not gonna tell me that you’ve forgotten the incident in the abandoned house right!?”
He’s probably talking about how I didn’t let him kill Pablo.
Even though I didn’t mean to, I did end up shouting at him, so that really must have stuck with Ralf.
“I haven’t forgotten. You want to know why I shouted at you right?”
“Well, yes, that was part of it but……more than that, I want to know why you didn’t let me do it! In the end, just like always, you ended up solving every problem yourself Chris! Even in Edestor, you were mostly acting solo and doing your own thing! If I’m really that unreliable to you, I want you to say it to my face!”
I think it’s partly because he’s drunk but, Ralf’s voice was louder than usual as he said that.
……….well, it’s not like I don’t trust him or anything like that. I simply don’t want either of them to cross this line.
As for the thing in Edestor, The Cave of Bahamut was a special case and normally, I only act alone when the situation requires killing a human being.
Other than that, he always has my full trust but, honestly I don’t know how to properly put it in words and explain this all to him.
“It’s not that I don’t trust you Ralf. The fact that we sleep under the same roof is proof of how much I trust you.”
“Then why won’t you ever let me handle anything of importance? If you don’t tell me properly, I’ll keep getting frustrated over it inside my mind forever!”
“But I do give you important responsibilities though. I mean, didn’t I literally just ask you to go to the capital and contact Charlotte for me, that was important and something I couldn’t have done easily.”
“………I was worried over whether I should interject or not but, Chris-san, that was most certainly not an important responsibility per se.”
I was trying to convince Ralf but, I didn’t expect Esta to refute me here as well.
“……..Esta, are you of the same opinion as Ralf as well then?”
“It’s slightly different for me but, I do think that you have a habit of never letting either of us handle important or rather, dangerous tasks. Of course, I understand that part of is that either of us are not as strong as you and are still lacking in many ways but, I do wish you’d trust us a bit more.”
“I have said this before but I do trust you two.”
“Then, you should let us——“
“I trust you but, I don’t want either of you to cross the line of no return………I’ll be brutally honest, but this is at best, my own selfishness talking here. I still think that I have dragged both of you into something that doesn’t really involve either of you, so this is my way of drawing that line myself.”
Yes. I did make them promise me that they’d help me get revenge on Klaus but, me back then and me as of now think quite differently at an emotional level.
I had only brought these two under my wing because I felt they’d be useful to my goals, and I was ready to make them do whatever I needed of them but, Ralf and Esta have already done a lot more than I had expected of them.
That’s why, I needed to draw this line, to make sure that I don’t put their lives in danger for my own personal sake and don’t make them commit the sins I have.
“But we chose to help you knowing full well what all it would entail from the start! In the first place, wasn’t the reason you made this party was to defeat Klaus? Both me and Esta have made our resolves already so don’t try and push us away now after all this time with this ‘line’ bullshit!”
“Like I said, that’s just my way of—–“
“And we’re saying we don’t need that damn consideration of yours! I have already entrusted my everything to you Chris! And I hope you’d do the same with us! That is if you really trust us!”
Bending forward over the table, and coming as close to me as possile, Ralf shouted at me.
……….this is difficult and I don’t know how to reply to that.
“I am of the same opinion as Ralf. We are far from you in terms of skill Chris-san, we know that, but we’re still desperately working hard to reach you. We’re tired of constantly getting protected by you………when we had to wait outside the cave of Bahamut, I really, strongly came to that conclusion.”
A heated Ralf, and a calm and frank statement from Esta.
I always thought that I had selfishly dragged these two into my personal affairs but, it seems they never saw it like that.
——then, I suppose I should stop acting so reserved as well perhaps.
I won’t lie, I did actively try to keep them away from truly dangerous tasks but, I should let them fight on the front lines properly from here onwards.
“Very well. If you two are really okay with this, then I’ll stop with my unnecessary consideration and drag you two straight into the face of danger alongside me……….And, I don’t want to hear any complains even if you die because of it.”
“Damn right, leave it to us! We’ll succeed at no matter what you throw at us, and beside, Death never scared me!”
“Agreed. We are not the type to die so easily in the first place so you don’t need to worry and can depend on us whenever you so wish.”
“Fuh, how dependable indeed……….well but, I have a feeling things won’t change so suddenly either. I feel like you two were with me whenever I was in great danger to be honest.”
“We were just there, yes. But it’s only you who actually fights, just like today, or during the cave of Bahamut, or with Carlo, or Greath, or the Venom Pythons……….in the end, you just take it all upon yourself to finish things!”
“Exactly! But, now that you’ve promised to trust us, we want to be put in the thick of the battles in the future as well, okay!?”
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Now that they say it like that, I did always fight by myself in the end huh.
It was out of instinct, and perhaps I was unconsciously trying my best to keep them safe as my first priority I think.
Thanks to the alcohol, I did get to see a rare sight of Esta being open and frank with her words as well, and the awkwardness between me and Ralf seems to have softened again as well.
I guess, just for today, I’ll have to give my thanks to the alcohol.
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