|Author: Shizuku||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2155 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 957 words|
Ophelia’s smile was too painful to look at. Somehow I felt like I would’ve accepted it more if she was crying mindlessly.
“Alright, it’s just the two of us here now, so drop the formality. Talk like you normally would.”
I don’t really understand what she means. Seeing me confused like that, she continues pushing me along.
“I want to talk with you, whoever you were in your past life.”
“How do you know that?!”
Those were the words I expected the least, and I accidentally confirmed their veracity at the same time.
“It’s pretty obvious, you know how to cook and take care of the house, and even how to use a gun, even when I had barely created you. That the soul of someone who passed is inside you is the most logical explanation.”
Only now do I realize how careless I’ve been so far.
She’s right. I had basically acted like a newborn baby that could do housework like an adult, not to mention I could use a gun, something very rare in this world. It wasn’t normal.
“So, if my guess is right, you came from the same world as him then, or at least a world where guns exist, right?”
“If it was your husband that designed all the magic devices in the house and not just the gun, then probably yeah.”
I cover my face ashamed as I mutter my response.
“Heh, so that’s who you really are.”
“…Do you hate it?”
“Not at all. I already told you, I’m glad you turned this way.”
Had I been helpful to her then? I feel like she was always teaching me, protecting me, and I never did anything in return.
“You know, I created you because I wanted you to take care of Olivia, but if you want I can set you free. If I die without passing your ownership to someone else, you’ll be completely free and no one can control you.”
“Regardless of your ownership, I think of you and Olivia as important people to me. I wouldn’t want to leave.”
“I see, thanks.”
She lifts her fingertips to conceal a smile. I don’t know what that means, but at least she seems satisfied with my answer.
“Well, you can have this then.”
She gives me a key.
“It’s for the storage room.”
I’ll never forget that place. I found Black Hawk there.
“That’s where I store all my materials and savings, feel free to use them. I’m sure you’ll get to live for many years without issue with them.”
“And I think you mentioned how Black Hawk’s grip feels in your hand, right? I went through the other guns he designed and created those that seemed to match your preferences.”
“I always wondered what you did in your room, so you were just making guns…”
“It’s my last present for my second daughter.”
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Daughter… Then Ophelia would be my… No, I’m probably looking too much into this.
I lean down next to her ear.
“My name is …”
“I see, that’s a nice name.”
Ophelia seemed to like it, but I shook my head.
“I’ll never use that name again, so please take it with you when you go. Now I’m just Natalia the magic automaton.”
The past me is already dead. I’m just Natalia now, the magic automaton created for Olivia.
“Thank you. I’m glad it was your soul that took over the magic automaton.”
Ophelia said that with a smile. All I can now do is accept her gratitude, nothing more.
Two days after that Ophelia passed in her sleep.
There are two tombstones in a corner of the garden now, under the shade of a tree. One of them had the name of my Mistress engraved on it, Ophelia Eto Gardeland. The other was Shuma Eto’s.
I had never noticed the tombstone in the garden before, so this is my first time seeing Ophelia’s husband’s name.
Olivia brought flowers, I have a bottle of wine.
“Seeing you bringing wine is a bit unexpected.”
“It’s not mine, Aria gave it to me.”
“I see, liquor and Aria make more sense.”
After I spoke with Ophelia, I went to tell Aria about her, and she replied saying she didn’t feel like seeing Ophelia.
Aria is Ophelia’s Servant, so I thought they were on friendly terms, but now I was worried that wasn’t true. When I told Ophelia, she just laughed saying she expected as much.
I guess I’ll never understand their relationship.
But she did give me this bottle of wine, so I guess she was mourning in her own way. I feel bad for doubting her, but I’m also relieved.
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“What is it?”
“I’ve been crying so much these two days, but I still feel like crying, what should I do?”
She’s looking down, large tears falling from her eyes. My answer was obvious.
“Just cry as much as you want then.”
Only the living can cry for those who left. And that applies even more when it’s someone’s mother.
“You won’t think I’m a crybaby?”
“Will you hold me?”
“For as long as you need.”
Olivia turns around and throws herself into my chest.
I hug her tightly and gently stroke her hair, long and straight just like her mother’s.
I look up, the blue sky clear without a single cloud, almost unfairly beautiful, not caring about our suffering. And no matter how much pain I felt, my eyes remained dry.
“I didn’t think it was this hard not being able to cry…”
I had to mutter that, low enough for Olivia to not hear it. For the first time since I reincarnated I despised my automaton body.