|Author: Carrot Sauce||Original Source: SFACG||Word Count: 0 characters|
|Translator: Aoi||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1953 words|
Shimizu saw Kiyoshi’s resolute and dashing face brew in agony within the dark room. He hadn’t felt such pain even when his arm had been cut off just prior.
Shimizu felt it hard to rationalize the feelings she felt in this moment. As two different-gendered people who loved the same woman, Shimizu didn’t really wish to see others liking Lily, but she didn’t feel jealous of him at the same time.
“Why not warn her personally?” Shimizu asked.
“I don’t have the means to protect her and even got wounded like this by the scheming murderers conspiring to kill her. I’m ashamed to see her,” Kiyoshi answered.
Kiyoshi judged that the other side had no reason to scheme like that if they possessed overwhelming strength, or that their objective wasn’t as simple as killing Lily and to administer that concoction down to her. Although he didn’t know whether that was really the case, Kiyoshi felt utterly powerless against these circumstances and was too ashamed to meet Lily, the second-most powerful woman of the East, like this.
“I will inform her about this. Do you want me to tell her about you?” Shimizu asked.
“If possible, please don’t tell Miss Kagami about it… I was enchanted by her at first sight half-a-year ago and she was just a budding samurai woman new to the sword back then. However, she has grown far powerful than I could’ve ever imagined by now. A man like me is unqualified to see her, and I also don’t want her to direct pity at me. I still haven’t given up though and will reappear to protect her boldly when I’ve regained enough of my self-confidence so that I can woo her again!” Kiyoshi declared while shuddering with a lowered head.
“I hope such a day really comes for you1. Do you want me to escort you back to the camp?” Shimizu asked calmly.
“No! I won’t have any chances of catching up with Miss Kagami’s footsteps in this lifetime if I’m unable to even cross these trivial wastelands! I’ll trouble you to inform Miss Kagami about the matter then, Miss Shimizu. Although she’s quite powerful, she’s too naïve, kindhearted and innocent… I’m afraid that she will fall for some vicious trap during this journey to Kansai and am hoping that you can protect her.”
“Heh! This is the second-time someone who’s deeply in love with her has said these words to me,” Shimizu stated wryly.
The tatteredly-dressed Kiyoshi had an empty-sleeve on one side held the hilt of his katana and left the house just like that in the vast and windy dark night with the dimly-lit lanterns of Kiyosu Castle’s streets reflecting in his eyes.
“Return to the camp? No! I’m going to pass the position of the clan’s heir to my little brother and devote my time to training.”
Although Oda Nobutora was an honest and righteous man, he was no fool. He sighed in relief after hearing people yell that Lily had escaped and began running around all over the castle.
His Oda clan was located in a desolate jungle of Kiyosu, and his hidden village also had hundreds of inhabitants who were protected by his loyal follower, Hirate.
Oda had warned Lily during the banquet and wasn’t sure whether anyone had noticed that. He believed that he would fall under the suspicion of informing Lily about the ambush in advance if an investigation were conducted about it later on despite the fact that he had witnessed Lily’s strength later on, which made the chances of it happening quite less.
Oda felt threatened and resolved to leave the city immediately. He made for the west gate along with his samurai and servants of his clan and fled Kiyosu.
Oda planned to go down south and return to his hidden village, but he was stopped by a mesmeric voice after gaining some distance post his escape.
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Oda looked back in fright, and sighed relievedly after seeing that it was Lily who called out to him.
Lily smiled in appreciation, “I really didn’t misjudge you, Lord Oda. You’re more courageous, honest, and wiser than I imagined you to be. You have my gratitude for the warning, Lord Oda!”
Lily bowed deeply, not for how big a role he played in her own safety, but for the respect she felt for his righteous actions even though the chaotic times had weathered him.
“Please… You wouldn’t have gotten injured by them even without my warning with the divine methods you possess, Lady Lyn-hime.”
Lily chuckled softly and fished out a few aged books, “These are the first to sixth books of the Genji Swordstyle, Lord Oda. Although the Genji prohibit their disciples from passing them down to others secretly, I believe that the creator of this swordstyle, Lord Yoshitsune, would want a man like you to obtain higher strength as well. Please accept them, Lord Oda.”
It was possible to obtain a threefold power boost by perfecting all six books of the Genji Swordstyle!
Although such an art wasn’t that uncommon in Kamakura, it was a treasure valuable enough to change the destiny of a whole clan in Owari where there weren’t any esoteric power enhancement arts.
Oda dropped to his knees with a slam immediately. It was simply impossible for him to decline such an item that could change the future destiny of a clan, so he received the books in a bold fashion with a gratuitous heart.
“If a day comes when my Oda clan becomes the ruler of these lands like you said, it would all be thanks to the favor you’ve shown my clan today, Lady Lyn-hime!”
“It wasn’t much, Lord Oda. I didn’t think that far and just thought that a man of unusual caliber like you deserves higher power,” Lily smiled gently as her hair fluttered in the wind.
The back of her curvaceous and sashaying figure was reflected by the moon’s illumination from above as she left.
“A goddess! She must’ve been a goddess who descended to the mortal world to bestow my Oda clan with blessings and guidance!” Oda Nobutora and his clansmen kept kowtowing to Lily’s back until she vanished into the woods at the horizon of the wasteland.
Shimizu rushed through the city sometime after Lily had caused a commotion in Kiyosu Castle, but Lily had long left the city along with the treasures she took from Shiba by now.
She had learned that Lily had been invited by Shiba for a meeting along the way and even though she believed that Shiba didn’t have the strength to harm Lily, she still felt worried.
The gates of Kiyosu Castle were wide open and best described by the word ‘chaos’ with soldiers going in and out of it. Shimizu blocked the path of a soldier after going inside and inquired about the situation, “What happened here?”
“W-We aren’t sure, but it seems like a battle took place in the lord’s tower!” The soldier answered anxiously.
Shimizu rushed up towards the castle tower immediately.
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She found a vast number of soldiers and samurai stationed within the castle tower when she entered inside and realized that the situation had been pacified already.
None of them tried to stop Shimizu even when they saw her, which allowed her to rush into the main hall, where Tanaka and the other samurai were present. The hall was in quite a mess too with the banquet items scattered in all directions.
“Lady Shimizu!” Tanaka yelled.
“Where’s Lily?!” Shimizu questioned back.
Tanaka was taken aback, “You mean that mirror girl? She’s gone! She took Lord Shiba captive and then robbed all his treasures before jumping out to the eaves and fleeing the tower. We’ve already sent pursuers after her.”
Shimizu sighed in relief inwardly. It was hard for others to tell the changes in Shimizu’s emotions unless she was in the presence of Lily.
“You’re finally back, Lady Shimizu! Catch up with that damned mirror girl and help me kill her quickly!” Shiba demanded as two attendants helped him walk out of his room, his body still in a limp state.
Shimizu’s icy gaze targeted Shiba, “Do you know where she went?”
“It’s probably north. She interrogated me about who ordered her assassination, but I didn’t spill Lord Kibu’s name out. Neither did I take on the blame for it, as that would doom me forever. I told her that I was incited by Mino’s Viper and Momiji and that foolish woman actually believed my words. She’s probably looking for that Viper now! Hahaha! It’ll be impossible for her to survive once she gets tormented by Viper after falling in his hands! She’s bound to get duped by that cunning old fellow if she got fooled by someone like me! Hahahahahaha! Although that’s relieving enough, my treasures and gold would be lost forever in that case! Please help me get back the treasures and gold stolen by that b̲i̲t̲c̲h̲, Lady Shimizu!” Shiba pleaded.
Tanaka, who stood to the side, blushed with shame after seeing the actions of his lord, who was the embarrassment of all samurai. If it weren’t for the indecisive Shiba diverging from the plan, they would’ve perhaps subdued Lily just now. At least that’s what Tanaka believed. After all, no man was willing to admit that they were inferior to a woman.
Shimizu revealed a gentle and icy smile as she looked down towards Shiba, “Rest assured. I’ll definitely catch up with that mirror girl and get the treasures back. However, even if she’s an enemy, you needn’t call her a b̲i̲t̲c̲h̲ now, right? Majestic men like you were all played by a woman and you are now begging another woman’s help in getting the stolen treasures back. If she’s a foolish b̲i̲t̲c̲h̲, what are you all then?”
“What?!” Shiba was taken aback.
Shimizu waved her black-gold sleeve and sent Shiba and his two attendants wobbling to the floor before turning around to leave with an eerie smile on her face.
“H-Halt!” Shiba pointed his finger at Shimizu and slammed the floor as he ran his mouth out, “H-How dare you disrespect me and treat me like this! Halt right there for me! Men, go stop her and make her apologize to me! Tanaka, go and bring her back! Go!”
A powerful, black grudge oozed out from Shimizu’s body with golden phantom butterflies fluttering inside the dark mist visible intermittently.
The samurai near to this grudge were subjected to a powerful and gloomy pressure that rendered them immobile. This powerful suppression formed a layer of sweat on Tanaka’s forehead and made him turn a deaf ear to Shiba’s screaming order, his body stiffening up in fear.
“Just forget about it, milord… It’s enough for us to be able to defend ourselves in this unpredictable world. There’s no need to bring about our own destruction now…” the big-bearded Tanaka shuddered as he looked at the grudge-shrouded figure of Shimizu from the back and fell to his knees2.
“How could even you kneel down, Tanaka!” Shiba’s eyes opened wide as he screamed.
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Shimizu was shrouded in grudge all the time, so the soldiers didn’t dare to stop her. Even if there were fools who tried to approach her, they got squashed down to the floor by the grudge immediately while the weak fainted on the spot.
Shimizu exited the city from the west gate after leaving the castle tower.
“Lil’ Lily… Could that Viper really be as powerful and vicious as Shiba said? The western samurai who sliced Kiyoshi’s arm off are more of a concern, too. I feel quite restless, lil’ sis… I must catch up with you as quickly as possible…3”
- Robinxen: Is this the same girl?!
- Robinxen: Intelligence in a man?!
- Robinxen: Good luck best girl candidate!
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