|Author: Kaburagi Haruka||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2579 characters|
|Translator: Mui||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1203 words|
We took our big haul, in other words, the goat, and merrily returned to the town. It was too difficult for me or Michelle to carry dozens of kilograms of weight alone, so we carried it in turns and that cost us quite a bit of time.
The gate guard’s envious expression when he saw our spoils was quite impressive. Most probably, he would be having roasted goat meat with his drink tonight.
We gathered in Michelle’s house and had the goat dismantled. Her family specialized in hunting so they had various tools and many knives used for dismantling. We brought big game with us, so her mother happily accepted our request.
While we were waiting, we decided to rest our bodies while drinking the tea we were offered. We still had the stamina to spare, but we decided to withdraw earlier than intended due to how large our game was, so we still had time.
We usually hunted small rabbits and birds, so there was still time to hunt a few of them.
“Okay, I’m done.”
“Thank you very much.”
Michelle’s mother put three leather bags on the table while taking off the bloodstained apron she used during the dismantling. We always split whatever we hunted into three equal parts between us.
“But are you sure we can have this much? As always, I bet Lady Nicole was the vanguard while my girl was just shooting at it from behind, right?”
“Mom, you’re so mean!”
“It’s okay. I wouldn’t be able to defeat it alone anyway.”
“But you are so feeble, Lady Nicole. It would be better for Michelle to be the vanguard.”
“Well, that’s just how our roles are divided. Also, please drop that ‘lady’ bit.”
“I can’t do that! We owe so much to Lord Lyell!”
This was how our usual exchange went. Their family was able to move to Raum due to Lyell’s assistance. Thus they were feeling excessively obliged towards me, his daughter.
“Just saying, but I’m also the Marquis’ daughter, you know…”
“But I don’t feel anything noble in you, Letina.”
“What’s that supposed to mean!”
Michelle and Letina pulled each other’s cheeks. These two were getting more or less the same level of treatment. Though it was mainly Letina on the short end of it.
“Then, thank you for dismantling it for us.”
“We should be saying thanks instead. Now we have a nice addition to our evening meal.”
“Me too! This will be a good gift for my mother!”
“Well then, Michelle. See you tomorrow.”
“Oh, and Letina too, I guess.”
“What do you mean, ‘I guess’!?”
We merrily waved our hands and took our respective roads home.
Our bags only had the wild goat’s meat with the blood removed, but they still weighed good five kilograms. I lifted it and headed home while swaying around.
Cortina’s house was next to Michelle’s, so I was in an easy spot. Letina lived a bit far so she had it the toughest.
“Welcome home, Lady Nicole.”
When I entered inside, Finia cheerfully ran to my side from the inside. Her expression seemed to be full of relief.
“Mhm, did something—Oh?”
Cortina’s house was the type where you took your shoes off. In other words, everyone’s shoes were lined up at the entrance. But there were clearly too many pairs right now.
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“Do we have guests?”
“Yes. Lord Lyell and Lady Maria, as well as Lord Gadius and Lord Maxwell.”
“So, basically everyone’s here.”
“Well, yes. To tell the truth, just waiting on the table was mentally exhausting…”
“Ah, so that’s why you look so relieved?”
“Ugh… K-Keep it a secret, okay?”
If it was just Lyell, Maria and Cortina, she could more or less handle it already. But with Gadius who looked eccentric at a glance, and Maxwell, a noble of this country, she was hardly to blame for feeling nervous.
“But why are they here?”
“It seems Lord Maxwell found out some new information, and when she heard it, Lady Cortina asked everyone to gather here.”
“Hmm…? Oh, here, I brought a gift. We hunted a goat.”
“Ohh, amazing! Goat smells a bit so… Let’s boil it in red wine and make a stew.”
Even after getting reborn, the meat remained justice for me. I couldn’t eat too much of it now, but meat and sweets were still my favorite.
“Then, I’ll go wash myself.”
“Please greet them before that.”
Lyell and the rest came uninvited almost every night, but it was rare for Gadius to show his face. I was indebted to Maxwell too, so a little greeting wouldn’t hurt.
After passing the short corridor and arriving at the living room, I was met with my former comrades sitting with tensed expressions.
“H-hellow. What’s wrong?”
“Welcome back, Nicole. We were just discussing something.”
When I greeted them while biting my tongue a bit, Maria returned to her usual state and answered me with a smile. But her smile still had traces of tension.
“Did something happen?”
“Yes. Daddy and Mommy think of going on a little journey.”
Lyell had a village to protect. Maria was the same. It must have been something very important to compel them to do that.
“We might have found our old comrade.”
“Old comrade…? You mean, Lord… Reid?”
Based on my knowledge, only us Six Heroes were common comrades of both Lyell and Maria. And I was the only missing hero here. But that person was here, so why was there a need to go on a journey?
“You found… Him?”
It wasn’t about me. They couldn’t have realized it was me. Even though I understood that, I could feel the cold sweat on my spine. Who, then, were they searching for?
“No, it’s still at the ‘might’ stage.”
“This involves her parents, so we should probably tell her everything.”
With that, Maxwell started explaining the situation to me. The cause turned out to be the house where Matisse who I saved was hidden in.
“Of course, there was no survivor left there. However, we discovered strange scars on the burned traces of the residence.”
“Yes, such as on the edge of the door or the window frames. The barn pillars also had traces of being cut.”
“We have seen those scars many times. In other words—”
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Maria took over Maxwell’s words. After they said that much, I also realized it. They were talking about the traces of the steel threads I used to hang those people up and set up traps.
“They were traces of Reid’s traps. And there’s also Matisse’s testimony: a small silhouette in black.”
“At first we thought it was a Gnome assassin, but if that was a child instead… it perfectly fits the timeframe of Reid’s reincarnation.”
“Reid has been reborn. If we assume that’s the case, it’s strange that he didn’t come to meet us…”
Well, that’s because his circumstances don’t allow him to come forward. Please don’t research any more than this!
“Anyway, as long as that possibility is there, we want to search for him.”
“I-Is that so…”
I could only mutter so in response with a vacant expression.