|Author: Sasaki Ichiro||Original Source: Syosetu|
|Translator: Mab||English Source: Re:Library|
Setting my eyes on a light purple, heart-shaped medicinal herb growing on a slope about two mertes up, I stretched out and plucked just the leafy part.
“What do you use it for?”
With a curious look in his eyes, Luke stared at the herb in my hand.
“This is cureaid. You dry it and then boil it for when you are sick, but you can also rub it raw and apply it to simple cuts and bruises as a poultice. It is also very nutritious and can be eaten raw as a tonic, although I can’t recommend it because it’s an acquired taste. It is effective against most illnesses and injuries, however, so you really want to remember it.”
“Heeh. So it’s a kind of panacea. It does sound like I will be using it later, I’ll remember it.”
Luke brought his face close, sniffed it, then frowned lightly as he joked: “Quite the peculiar smell.” At his waist was suspended a well-worn, non-ceremonial middle-length sword.
Apparently, when he came home and told him the whole story, his father, Mr. Eilmer, said “Well done!” followed by “How come you’re unable to protect a lady?!” As a result, Luke was given this sword that his father used to wield when he was young. …how very martial-minded of them.
This conversation took place when Mr. Eilmer handed the sword over—
“However, you must only use it as your very last resort, only when you have no other choice but to use it. Considering the story you told me, however, there were two things you could have done for Lady Jill before it turned ugly.”
“Eh? But what could I do?”
“First, do not bring a girl to the back streets. Second, the moment you think it’s dangerous, immediately ask for help from your bodyguards instead. I am only stating the obvious, but don’t immediately jump into danger, instead find a way to escape the danger, and think more about your own safety.”
So he was warned. I also nodded, reflecting on my own actions as well.
Speaking of which, Luke had visited several times since then to check on Lana. Even though he shouldn’t have that much time for himself — or maybe he does have too much empty time? — Luke really is dutiful.
“My father said this, in his words; I see, so lady Jill is over there, is it? Well, who am I to stop you then? Do as you like. So I am given permission.”
Revealed Luke, though I do not understand where his trust in me came from. Also, the talks of Luke’s marriage had been shelved due to the entire imperial high society being currently in mourning, and the other party (the Aulanthia household) had agreed to it.
And so, he took it upon himself to escort us to a meadow on the outskirts of the city today. …Well, there were actually other magician guards secretly lurking around (probably Luke’s house guards), and because of that, the waves of vibrations my Search Art detected had been quite noisy since a while ago.
They weren’t exactly a large group of people, probably just a handful of practitioners intermittently using Search Art to extend the distance, so the waves of mana themselves were actually quite weak, just enough for me to barely notice, but…if I have to put it in a way that makes more sense, it is like the high frequency of mosquitoes in the summer. It’s so subtle, bothersome, and teeth-grinding…
(But, they’re using an interesting method. To think they can cover much more distance with just a few more practitioners. I would suppose, it’s like they are triangulating with Search art.)
I doubt I could do it alone, but the idea could be applied to something else.
Meanwhile, Lana, who imitated Luke and smelled the cureaid leaves — which smelled like a mix of chameleon plant and pepper — shriveled away with teary eyes and hands on her nose at the distinctive odor.
“Come on now, you need to blow your nose properly.” Luke and I giggled, and I bent down to wipe Lana’s aghast face with my handkerchief. “There, you’re all cleaned up.”
Then, with a slightly embarrassed look on her face, Lana, who had been subjected to the situation, bowed her head down. “Thank you very much, Lady Julia.”
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“…don’t do that.” My elated mood suddenly dropped. “You’re like a sister to me, Lana. You don’t have to call me Julia or lady. You can call me Jill or big sister when there’s no one watching.”
Even when I said this, Lana just fidgeted and looked down with a more troubled look on her face.
“Now, Jill, don’t trouble her like that. She is warned to keep a clear line between master and servant, and she’s still too little to fully understand what to do. Even if you tell her to let loose in private, we don’t know who’s listening and when…and when that happens, it is Lana who gets the short end of the stick.”
When Luke rebuked me gently like so, a deep sigh escaped me.
“Being an aristocrat sure is constraining. You can’t live without constantly being aware of the eyes around you.”
“We can’t help it. It is the role of those who stand above others to set the standard.”
Unlike Luke who lived by the values he had taken for granted, in my case, perhaps due to the influence of my previous life, or perhaps it was the backlash of the arrogance of ‘Syltianna’ in this life, I felt nothing but uncomfortable with my status and position, and I can’t help but feel trapped.
With that being said, this constraining aristocratic life…or specifically, my livelihood in the Imperial Capital would soon come to an end.
Next week, during the month of Fallen Angel, Ms. Christy, myself, Lana, Royce, and several maids including Monika would leave Conwallis Imperial Capital and move to the mansion in Consul, where Ms. Christy had been assigned.
Incidentally, Roland the cook, along with a few others, would remain in the current mansion to maintain it, and, to be honest, it was quite gratifying news to be able to say goodbye to those tasteless dishes.
Well, if I were to be honest, half the reason I started picking medicinal herbs in the name of earning money for Lana’s living expenses was to go out and buy food for lunch as well.
That was when Vier, my familiar who had been out hunting, came back with a large nosewalk in her mouth. Incidentally, a nosewalk is a mammal that has two to six elephant-like snouts and walks on its head. It’s not a magic beast, it’s some kind of rhinogradentia, a real(?) animal that exists. Their meat is delicious and can be sold for a good price at the commercial guild.
“Good work, Vier. Thank you.”
Vier was practically asking me to praise her with her gestures, so I hugged her neck and rubbed her cheeks. When I did, Lana imitated me and hugged her too. Vier looked slightly annoyed at this, but the fact that she didn’t try to escape from Lana’s arms and was just holding back was proof that this good girl was being considerate.
Lana seemed to have a hard time opening up to other servants in the house, but she was not shy with Vier the Sirius and played around with her tail and such.
“Well then, let us return and head to the Commercial Guild. Since we are moving, we will probably need a few changes of clothes, too.”
I spoke that out loud so that the people (guards) around us could hear me as well. With that, Lana and I started walking back to the city, hand in hand. That was when I caught the sight of Luke smiling at us, then at the sword at his waist. When I did, I asked him about something that had been in my mind.
“By the way, are we not going to have a rematch with the sword? I am not confident I can win against the current you now, however.”
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