A False Confession - Chapter 11

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Chapter 11

My only intention had been to tell a simple story . Did Kant’s wisdom strike a chord somewhere deep in Elviniraz’s heart? I couldn’t quite fully comprehend his response . While trying to figure out what he was thinking, I couldn’t stop myself from looking up at his face and admiring it anew .

If this image were to be crafted into a sculpture, it would have been called, ‘The God of Anguish . ’ The combination of moonlight and shadow on such a clear face would have made a bewitching work of art .

Then, suddenly our eyes met . While completely hypnotized by Elviniraz’s face, I wasn’t aware of him raising his gaze . He looked back at me inquiringly, wondering why I was staring at him .

He didn’t ask it out loud, but my face is an open book anyways, so I decided to answer honestly . Realistically, hadn’t I already told him once before that I wanted to see him more closely?

“You’re handsome . ”

“…So, when looking at me, does it make the priestess feel happier?”

“…Huh? Uh, well, technically, yes?”

Such an embarrassing question . In fact, I tried not to answer at all, but Elviniraz’s face was working so hard, staring at me as if hoping for an affirmation . I had to say yes .

Elviniraz swiftly raised his lips and smiled at my answer . It wasn’t the cursory smile I’ve seen so far, but a smile of genuine ease .

“In that case, have I become the priestess’s ‘tool’ now?”

“…um . . hmm…”

I wasn’t expecting Kant’s words to backfire on me like this . Since my embarrassment had stunned me into silence, Elviniraz’s face was working hard again, as if pressuring me to concede . At this point, I have to give him credit for his face .

I was defeated again . Elviniraz watched my inner struggle . When I finally nodded, he strode over to me .

While discussing Kant, I had moved about five or six steps away from him, but he arrived in front of me in only two . In an instant, a shadow fell over me . While I froze in surprise, Elviniraz said abruptly .

“Elvin . ”

“Yes?”

“You can call me Elvin . ”

“…Pardon?”

Am I the only one who can’t keep up with the flow of this conversation? I was completely lost, and now he’s bringing his name up out of nowhere .

“So, will the priestess use me a little more now?”

…I did tell him that it was okay if he used me as his tool . But was he so inspired that he was determined to become a tool, too? Is he trying to establish his identity as a tool now?

It was all too philosophical for me . I was stuck staring at him in bewilderment, but he only looked at me expectantly, as if asking for me to call him .

In the end I opened my mouth very hesitantly .

“…Sir Elvin?”

And at that moment, a radiant smile appeared on Elviniraz’s face . It was such a disconcertingly beautiful smile, different from any other smile I had seen so far .

“Yes, Priestess Renesha . ”

…I’m not sure what just happened, but I think I just acquired a pretty great tool .

* * * * * * *

It rained briefly at dawn . It made the rest of the day become cloudy, somehow making everything feel hazy .

As I was staring blankly out the window, I could hear Lily moving around behind me . For some reason she woke up later than usual .

Thankfully I had gotten up early and was already finished getting ready, so I laughed at Lily and told her to hurry up, enjoying our switch of roles .

I usually have a hard time waking up in the morning, but today I woke up strangely early . Even though it was dark outside because the sky was full of gray clouds, I somehow found myself sitting upright, blinking my eyes . And in that state, there was only one thing I could think of .

Had it all been a dream?

It was extremely likely . I had been eating dinner, but I was feeling down and went on a walk alone behind the villa . Elviniraz somehow joined me, and we looked at the moon, took a walk, and laughed… We had a really strange conversation, offering to become each other’s tools as if it were completely normal…

And after that, we even went back to the dinner table and enjoyed our food together… It has to be a dream . I must’ve gotten drunk from the very beginning .

It made more sense as a dream than as reality, so I agonized intensely over the details . The problem was that I didn’t finish even a single glass of wine, and the memory itself was too clear .

I was dwelling over it the whole time I was getting ready, but in the end I asked Lily if I had gotten drunk yesterday and retired to the room early .

Lily looked at me strangely .

“You were walking around all depressed yesterday, making me really worried . But when you came back from your walk, you were all smiles with the leader of the paladin knights . ”

Well, there was my answer, so clear and concise . It wasn’t a dream .

But now that I had to accept it as reality, I was overwhelmed with shame . Because of the time, I couldn’t even hide myself under a blanket to calm down . I started punching my pillow, letting out my frustration . It follows naturally that Lily watched me as if I’d gone insane .

After Lily finished preparing, we left our room together . Several of the mercenaries and soldiers were nursing hangovers from their drinking the night before .

Will they be able to climb the mountain in such a state?… . . It’d be better to focus on reconnaissance and do just a little bit of hiking today . With my hopes rising in self-interest, I was looking around to take in the state of the soldiers when my eyes suddenly encountered shining gold .

It was Elviniraz . He was already standing upright at his usual place at the front of the paladin knights, but he accidentally made eye contact with me… . No, was it an accident?

While I was lost pondering for a moment, a smile rose over his face . Really, my heart can’t take that smile, which burst brightly like a blooming flower .

He greeted me across the distance, and I followed lightly .

“Renée . Seems like you’ve gotten closer with the paladin leader?”

“Uh, that’s… . we’ve agreed to stick to our respective roles . ”

Lily looked at me with a slight frown as if to ascertain whether or not my answer was odd, but I didn’t elaborate any further .

It’s technically true . We came to the conclusion that we’d both carry out our roles as tools, did we not? I’m in a good mental condition so that my divine power will perform at its best, and Elvin faithfully did his part with his face to make me feel better . He has a very, very dependable face .

No matter how trustworthy Lily is, I couldn’t bring myself to share the details of the conversation I had with him yesterday, so I just smiled vaguely and changed the topic of our conversation . It became a serious talk about how rough the next mountain was going to be to walk, but a familiar voice suddenly interrupted .

“Priestess! Is your leg better now?”

He was the most overwhelmingly large member of the group, and I had to tilt my head back completely just to look up at his face .

It was the Vice General of the Nickel Knights . I recognized him as the one who’d comforted me a few days ago saying, ‘It’s nice to have a leisurely view!’ His name is Tirak, and despite his intimidating image of bursting muscles underneath his neat indigo uniform, he seemed completely different from Cabel .

His size was pretty daunting, but I actually didn’t feel any fear towards him . My image of him completely changed when I heard him commenting on rabbits passing by us as we climbed the mountain, saying, ‘Aren’t they too white, too small, and too cute??’

But then, one of the knights in the back cut in, saying, ‘Shouldn’t they be taken as emergency food supply?’ Tirak responded darkly that the knight himself could be the emergency food supply if he was so worried about it . Hearing that was a bit… well, maybe he’s not so different from Cabel after all .

Anyway, I nodded at his question and even demonstrated a fake march for him .

“Yes . I’ve rested well the past two days . I also received treatment, so I’m okay . ”

At that time, I replied positively thinking that I didn’t want him to worry about me having a hard time, but Tirak’s complexion rapidly darkened .

I wondered why he was suddenly asking, but he carefully leaned his large body over and started whispering . I was doing my best not to react to Lily’s facial expression, which was saying, ‘I can still hear you!’

“Starting today, the Paladins will lead at the front, and the Nickel Knights will be following the priests at the end . So, what I’m saying is… . ”

“… . . ?”

“Today, you must walk quickly even if you have to secretly heal your legs as you go . If we fall behind again like last time, me and the other knights are fine, but…”

Tirak smiled in embarrassment . He spoke carefully, as if worried that I would misunderstand his intention .

“The Captain will be very openly annoyed . He’s usually even worse the day after it rains… . Of course he doesn’t mean anything by it… no, well, is that really true . . ?”

Suddenly Tirak was unsure, turning his head to the side and questioning himself seriously . But I wanted to answer him that he was correct . Yes, of course . How could I forget?

Rain . It had rained .

And Cabel suffered from very serious insomnia every time it rained .

It had started just briefly at dawn, but since Cabel doesn’t sleep well to begin with, there was a high possibility that he didn’t sleep at all last night .

Most solidifying of all, the Vice General came personally to warn me to be careful, so Cabel must have exuded a dangerous atmosphere this morning .

I glanced around carefully to locate where Cabel was, and barely even trying, I found him immediately .

He was coming in this direction, heading towards Tirak . And at the sight of him, I had to rub my eyes . Well, that’s… . It’s a person, right?

His black hair appeared even darker under the hazy sky . It feels like only that place is set to RGB 0* . Beyond that, his purple eyes were sunken even deeper than usual, and the degree of devastation around them was so serious that I thought he seriously was a zombie .

[tl/n: *RGB is the color model that most computers use, which quantifies colors . So 0 is like the blackest of black lol]

He must not have slept properly for at least 10 days . I was under the illusion that I could even see a black aura surrounding him .

…But thinking about it, hasn’t it been over ten days now? It must have been a few days more than that . About two weeks? No way, then… He hasn’t been able to sleep this whole time?

Belatedly realizing this fact, I was making a blank expression, and Tirak burst into a hearty laugh, not seeming aware that Cabel was standing behind him . He seemed to have interpreted my vacant expression as shock from what he’d said .

“Don’t worry too much! He won’t kill you, haha! Maybe just dispose of you—,”

“… . what are you talking about?”

Tirak’s shoulders visibly flinched . His large figure was overcome with tremors, making his cloak shake convulsively . Tirak turned towards Cabel, laughing awkwardly .

“Ha, haha, hahaha . It’s nothing really . Just, to the priestess…”

“Don’t speak if you have nothing to say . ”

Cabel responded sharply . He made no effort to keep his irritation from showing on his face, but I couldn’t help watching anyway .

His purple eyes turned toward me for a moment . It was brief, but it allowed me to measure the fatigue around his eyes more accurately .

The devastation was so severe that with one wrong move, someone really might die today . And the person dying wouldn’t be Cabel himself, but me, who walks too slowly in his way .

…Well .

Chapter 11

My only intention had been to tell a simple story . Did Kant’s wisdom strike a chord somewhere deep in Elviniraz’s heart? I couldn’t quite fully comprehend his response . While trying to figure out what he was thinking, I couldn’t stop myself from looking up at his face and admiring it anew .

If this image were to be crafted into a sculpture, it would have been called, ‘The God of Anguish . ’ The combination of moonlight and shadow on such a clear face would have made a bewitching work of art .

Then, suddenly our eyes met . While completely hypnotized by Elviniraz’s face, I wasn’t aware of him raising his gaze . He looked back at me inquiringly, wondering why I was staring at him .

He didn’t ask it out loud, but my face is an open book anyways, so I decided to answer honestly . Realistically, hadn’t I already told him once before that I wanted to see him more closely?

“You’re handsome . ”

“…So, when looking at me, does it make the priestess feel happier?”

“…Huh? Uh, well, technically, yes?”

Such an embarrassing question . In fact, I tried not to answer at all, but Elviniraz’s face was working so hard, staring at me as if hoping for an affirmation . I had to say yes .

Elviniraz swiftly raised his lips and smiled at my answer . It wasn’t the cursory smile I’ve seen so far, but a smile of genuine ease .

“In that case, have I become the priestess’s ‘tool’ now?”

“…um . . hmm…”

I wasn’t expecting Kant’s words to backfire on me like this . Since my embarrassment had stunned me into silence, Elviniraz’s face was working hard again, as if pressuring me to concede . At this point, I have to give him credit for his face .

I was defeated again . Elviniraz watched my inner struggle . When I finally nodded, he strode over to me .

While discussing Kant, I had moved about five or six steps away from him, but he arrived in front of me in only two . In an instant, a shadow fell over me . While I froze in surprise, Elviniraz said abruptly .

“Elvin . ”

“Yes?”

“You can call me Elvin . ”

“…Pardon?”

Am I the only one who can’t keep up with the flow of this conversation? I was completely lost, and now he’s bringing his name up out of nowhere .

“So, will the priestess use me a little more now?”

…I did tell him that it was okay if he used me as his tool . But was he so inspired that he was determined to become a tool, too? Is he trying to establish his identity as a tool now?

It was all too philosophical for me . I was stuck staring at him in bewilderment, but he only looked at me expectantly, as if asking for me to call him .

In the end I opened my mouth very hesitantly .

“…Sir Elvin?”

And at that moment, a radiant smile appeared on Elviniraz’s face . It was such a disconcertingly beautiful smile, different from any other smile I had seen so far .

“Yes, Priestess Renesha . ”

…I’m not sure what just happened, but I think I just acquired a pretty great tool .

* * * * * * *

It rained briefly at dawn . It made the rest of the day become cloudy, somehow making everything feel hazy .

As I was staring blankly out the window, I could hear Lily moving around behind me . For some reason she woke up later than usual .

Thankfully I had gotten up early and was already finished getting ready, so I laughed at Lily and told her to hurry up, enjoying our switch of roles .

I usually have a hard time waking up in the morning, but today I woke up strangely early . Even though it was dark outside because the sky was full of gray clouds, I somehow found myself sitting upright, blinking my eyes . And in that state, there was only one thing I could think of .

Had it all been a dream?

It was extremely likely . I had been eating dinner, but I was feeling down and went on a walk alone behind the villa . Elviniraz somehow joined me, and we looked at the moon, took a walk, and laughed… We had a really strange conversation, offering to become each other’s tools as if it were completely normal…

And after that, we even went back to the dinner table and enjoyed our food together… It has to be a dream . I must’ve gotten drunk from the very beginning .

It made more sense as a dream than as reality, so I agonized intensely over the details . The problem was that I didn’t finish even a single glass of wine, and the memory itself was too clear .

I was dwelling over it the whole time I was getting ready, but in the end I asked Lily if I had gotten drunk yesterday and retired to the room early .

Lily looked at me strangely .

“You were walking around all depressed yesterday, making me really worried . But when you came back from your walk, you were all smiles with the leader of the paladin knights . ”

Well, there was my answer, so clear and concise . It wasn’t a dream .

But now that I had to accept it as reality, I was overwhelmed with shame . Because of the time, I couldn’t even hide myself under a blanket to calm down . I started punching my pillow, letting out my frustration . It follows naturally that Lily watched me as if I’d gone insane .

After Lily finished preparing, we left our room together . Several of the mercenaries and soldiers were nursing hangovers from their drinking the night before .

Will they be able to climb the mountain in such a state?… . . It’d be better to focus on reconnaissance and do just a little bit of hiking today . With my hopes rising in self-interest, I was looking around to take in the state of the soldiers when my eyes suddenly encountered shining gold .

It was Elviniraz . He was already standing upright at his usual place at the front of the paladin knights, but he accidentally made eye contact with me… . No, was it an accident?

While I was lost pondering for a moment, a smile rose over his face . Really, my heart can’t take that smile, which burst brightly like a blooming flower .

He greeted me across the distance, and I followed lightly .

“Renée . Seems like you’ve gotten closer with the paladin leader?”

“Uh, that’s… . we’ve agreed to stick to our respective roles . ”

Lily looked at me with a slight frown as if to ascertain whether or not my answer was odd, but I didn’t elaborate any further .

It’s technically true . We came to the conclusion that we’d both carry out our roles as tools, did we not? I’m in a good mental condition so that my divine power will perform at its best, and Elvin faithfully did his part with his face to make me feel better . He has a very, very dependable face .

No matter how trustworthy Lily is, I couldn’t bring myself to share the details of the conversation I had with him yesterday, so I just smiled vaguely and changed the topic of our conversation . It became a serious talk about how rough the next mountain was going to be to walk, but a familiar voice suddenly interrupted .

“Priestess! Is your leg better now?”

He was the most overwhelmingly large member of the group, and I had to tilt my head back completely just to look up at his face .

It was the Vice General of the Nickel Knights . I recognized him as the one who’d comforted me a few days ago saying, ‘It’s nice to have a leisurely view!’ His name is Tirak, and despite his intimidating image of bursting muscles underneath his neat indigo uniform, he seemed completely different from Cabel .

His size was pretty daunting, but I actually didn’t feel any fear towards him . My image of him completely changed when I heard him commenting on rabbits passing by us as we climbed the mountain, saying, ‘Aren’t they too white, too small, and too cute??’

But then, one of the knights in the back cut in, saying, ‘Shouldn’t they be taken as emergency food supply?’ Tirak responded darkly that the knight himself could be the emergency food supply if he was so worried about it . Hearing that was a bit… well, maybe he’s not so different from Cabel after all .

Anyway, I nodded at his question and even demonstrated a fake march for him .

“Yes . I’ve rested well the past two days . I also received treatment, so I’m okay . ”

At that time, I replied positively thinking that I didn’t want him to worry about me having a hard time, but Tirak’s complexion rapidly darkened .

I wondered why he was suddenly asking, but he carefully leaned his large body over and started whispering . I was doing my best not to react to Lily’s facial expression, which was saying, ‘I can still hear you!’

“Starting today, the Paladins will lead at the front, and the Nickel Knights will be following the priests at the end . So, what I’m saying is… . ”

“… . . ?”

“Today, you must walk quickly even if you have to secretly heal your legs as you go . If we fall behind again like last time, me and the other knights are fine, but…”

Tirak smiled in embarrassment . He spoke carefully, as if worried that I would misunderstand his intention .

“The Captain will be very openly annoyed . He’s usually even worse the day after it rains… . Of course he doesn’t mean anything by it… no, well, is that really true . . ?”

Suddenly Tirak was unsure, turning his head to the side and questioning himself seriously . But I wanted to answer him that he was correct . Yes, of course . How could I forget?

Rain . It had rained .

And Cabel suffered from very serious insomnia every time it rained .

It had started just briefly at dawn, but since Cabel doesn’t sleep well to begin with, there was a high possibility that he didn’t sleep at all last night .

Most solidifying of all, the Vice General came personally to warn me to be careful, so Cabel must have exuded a dangerous atmosphere this morning .

I glanced around carefully to locate where Cabel was, and barely even trying, I found him immediately .

He was coming in this direction, heading towards Tirak . And at the sight of him, I had to rub my eyes . Well, that’s… . It’s a person, right?

His black hair appeared even darker under the hazy sky . It feels like only that place is set to RGB 0* . Beyond that, his purple eyes were sunken even deeper than usual, and the degree of devastation around them was so serious that I thought he seriously was a zombie .

[tl/n: *RGB is the color model that most computers use, which quantifies colors . So 0 is like the blackest of black lol]

He must not have slept properly for at least 10 days . I was under the illusion that I could even see a black aura surrounding him .

…But thinking about it, hasn’t it been over ten days now? It must have been a few days more than that . About two weeks? No way, then… He hasn’t been able to sleep this whole time?

Belatedly realizing this fact, I was making a blank expression, and Tirak burst into a hearty laugh, not seeming aware that Cabel was standing behind him . He seemed to have interpreted my vacant expression as shock from what he’d said .

“Don’t worry too much! He won’t kill you, haha! Maybe just dispose of you—,”

“… . what are you talking about?”

Tirak’s shoulders visibly flinched . His large figure was overcome with tremors, making his cloak shake convulsively . Tirak turned towards Cabel, laughing awkwardly .

“Ha, haha, hahaha . It’s nothing really . Just, to the priestess…”

“Don’t speak if you have nothing to say . ”

Cabel responded sharply . He made no effort to keep his irritation from showing on his face, but I couldn’t help watching anyway .

His purple eyes turned toward me for a moment . It was brief, but it allowed me to measure the fatigue around his eyes more accurately .

The devastation was so severe that with one wrong move, someone really might die today . And the person dying wouldn’t be Cabel himself, but me, who walks too slowly in his way .

…Well .

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