Wow, it’s been a long time. Sorry for the wait, my usual TTS app died so productivity has been low. Sucks but oh well, back to more dictionaries. At least I’ll have a lot of free time this upcoming year. Maybe the speed will increase? This chapter was quickly edited/formatted so I’ll review it again later.
Anyways, the teaser is a bit harder than I expected so I keep having to do revisions. Expect it soon but since I’ve been taking so long, here’s a Canceller chapter to sate your novel thirst.
Side note: Oh Melissa, how I hate having to translate all your “Sonna”s… but I guess I’ll forgive you just this once.
Also I went back and edited a few older chapters. Nothing really worth re-reading though, just thought I’d note it. Sheeprabbits and a German marching guy keep teaching me new things.
Chapter 16: Well For Now―― Run Away!
The battle was over. No, I guess you could say it’s because my opponent had completely lost consciousness.
There probably isn’t anybody that would continue fighting in this situation.
Well, that’s all fine and dandy but―― the main problem has to do with Melissa. Now then, that maid should obediently…… Hey wait!
「You already let ‘er go!?」(Hitto)
I reflexively cried out a couple words of tsukkomi.
After all, that maid-clothes wearing slave… right now she had put away the knife, and was sitting in a seiza next to the head of the collapsed Zak.
……Well, nonetheless it’s great that she let Melissa go.
「Melissa, are you injured anywhere?」(Hitto)
「Eh? ah, I’m fine」(Melissa)
She seem’s really dazed huh. Well, maybe it’s because she doesn’t get why the maid suddenly put away the knife.
That being said, in any case.
「I don’t really care but, no, I guess I should be grateful, But still you easily backed off huh」(Hitto)
「…… “Look after her until the duel is over.” That was Master’s order」(Seira/Maid)
……Well, I guess he did say that. And she was just following orders huh.
But still she sure is loyal huh. Too loyal. She really is just like a robot.
Yea~ with beautiful black hair that flowed down to her waist, and a face that had good features.
She had large pretty eyes and although her bust was somewhat disappointing, based on appearances alone she was a Bishoujo that wouldn’t lose to Melissa but―― At any rate I can’t sense any emotion in her.
Actually. I can’t sense any life left in her eyes―― at least that’s what I think.
「Heey, you’re name was Seira right? Aren’t you miserable being that Zak guy’s slave?」(Hitto)
I felt a “What bad things have you heard?” feeling coming from her though.
Nonetheless I became interested in hear about it.
「……I am a slave. I am Master’s property. Possessions don’t have feelings such as discontent. We are just things to be used. My duty is to faithfully carry out my orders」(Seira)
……She responded in a monotone voice that really did sound like a computer program huh.
But I wonder why…… For some reason I was concerned but――
Hmm? Ah, oh yea, Melissa. Well, I guess I have no choice but to leave that slave alone. In the first place, I don’t have enough time to be concerning myself with other people’s issues right now.
And, I turned towards Melissa. For some reason she had an anxious expression on her face…… I guess that’s to be expected.
The dinning hall was already a complete wreck. Since the battle has ended, the staff and cooks came out and started pointed their fingers in our direction. This doesn’t look good.
「Melissa, we’re escaping!」(Hitto)
With an “Eh?” I grabbed the panicking girl’s right arm and began running.
As for why we have to run away, the bad thing is that even though I regard this guy named Zak as a completely muscle-headed idiot, simply put I am at a disadvantage when it comes to social standing.
After all, I am still only regarded as a [Beginner] adventurer. Even if he has a bad reputation, as an [Expert] adventurer he can gain support from many places by using absurd and unreasonable methods. I don’t doubt that he has a large and extensive network of influence.
Whatever the case may be, we dashed out of the dining hall, and warding off the gazes of onlookers we ran through the inn’s entrance. We continued running until we reached the shed where the wagons were parked. I had the watchman who still didn’t know what was going on unlock the door that held our wagon, and Melissa and I both hopped on.
And then Melissa grabbed the reins and started driving.
「Umm, where to?」(Melissa)
「Can we go out of the city?」(Hitto)
「Eh? Uhhm the gates close at 8 o’clock at night though……」(Melissa)
If I remember correctly, when I glanced at the clock in the dining hall it was half past 7. Looks like we’ll barely make it.
「Alrighty! Then we’d better hurry and get out of here. It can be helped but looks like we’re spending the night outdoors today. It will be troublesome if that man found us after all」(Hitto)
「Ou-outdoors is it?」(Melissa)
「Yea- Sorry about that, the situation suddenly became like this」(Hitto)
「N-no it’s completely fine. Well then, we better hurry」(Melissa)
We continued traveling until the wagon was out of the city.
The gatekeeper was a bit suspicious, but once I told him we were leaving on a request and after showed him my adventurer’s license he was somehow consented and let us through for the time being.
However, the nail in the coffin was that we can’t get back in past 8, but I already heard of that beforehand.
So, right now the wagon was speeding down the highway. As expected visibility was pretty bad at nighttime, but thanks to the full moon and all the stars littered across the clear night sky… at least it was better than nothing.
In reality it would have been great if I could use at least one type of magic. But that was impossible.
We didn’t have a magic device or anything like a lamp. I should’ve bought one.
But it seems like Melissa’s eyes are quite good. Rather than veering off the dark highway, she continued to skillfully used the reins to manipulate the horses to keep them on track.
Really, Melissa’s specs are way too high huh.
「So then, What shall we do next?」(Melissa)
「Let’s see… I was planning to head to the Aloe Forest early in the morning. Shall we head somewhere close to there?」(Hitto)
「…… Yes, that should be fine」(Melissa)
Hmm? She still seems somewhat depressed huh.
……I guess that’s to be expected. We ended up having to escape from that inn after all, and looks like we won’t be able to use that same inn again.
Well, personally I’ve already have enough of that inn. But in the end it turned out to be a waste of money. Perhaps she ended up thinking that she was worthless again?
I’m not sure what to do…… It would be great if the request to collect Nankou Grass somehow recovered her spirits though――
The wagon arrived at the Aloe Forest after traveling for about an hour.
I felt that it was slower than going on foot, but since it was nighttime it couldn’t be helped.
Looks like the highway doesn’t run through the forest huh.
Well, I guess that’s to be expected. For the time being let’s park the wagon at a place around the forest that doesn’t stand out too much.
Looks like we’ll be sleeping in the wagon today huh.
However, maybe it’s because it hasn’t even become 9 o’clock yet, it was too early to retire for someone like me who used to live on Earth.
Right now Melissa and I are both sitting on top of the coachman’s seat. Even though our bodies weren’t covered by anything, maybe because the time of year was nice, the soothing air felt neither too cold nor too warm.
The full moon in the sky, and the glimmering stars.
But…… Melissa still seemed somehow gloomy.
I wonder what it is? Would it be better if I heard her out?……
Then before I could ask, a voice came from her instead.
Being caught off guard I let out an “Eh?” by mistake.
「I have always been thinking about it but…… The only thing I have ever done is be an annoyance to Goshujin-sama――」(Melissa)
Hmm? What’s with this all of a sudden. An annoyance……
「What on earth are you saying? I have not once thought of you as an annoyance at you know?」(Hitto)
「……It is alright Goshujin-sama. Please do not force yourself any longer. It was because of me that we were forced to escape from that inn. And before that when I went to the bathhouse and when I entered the dining hall, and even during the duel, it was――」(Melissa)
「Melissa. You’re wrong about that. None of that was your fault to begin with. All of it was because I couldn’t stand the way those people did things and I ended up speaking up against them, all because of that. That is to say, umm… I was angry that that didn’t treat you as a human just because you were a slave. I just couldn’t put up with it」(Hitto)
Melissa was thinking way too negatively. Besides, it was something that I selfishly did, there was no reason for Melissa to think that she was a bother because of it.
「…… Goshujin-sama is a very kind person… But if you keep forcing yourself like this then I too will feel guilty about it. Please give me your honest opinion. If perhaps you tell me to disappear right this moment, then I will leave this place as you say so」(Melissa)
「What the hell are you saying!? I don’t get it at all! There’s no way I would ever tell you to just ‘get lost’!」(Hitto)
Melissa’s shoulders began trembling in surprise.
Shit, I accidentally let my tone――
「S-Sorry, I just… But that’s how I really feel. That’s why, even though I ended up raising my voice, I have never had thoughts like ‘I want you to just go away’」(Hitto)
「……I do not understand. Master’s feelings―― Why would you……」(Melissa)
Melissa lowered her head as if trying to conceal the tears building up in her eyes…… H-hey wait! Why is she!? Why is it, is it because――
「I’m sorry, Melissa. I must have caused you to worry a lot because I was so worthless. Certainly, it is to be expected that you don’t have any faith in someone like me who just became an adventurer」(Hitto)
「That’s not true! I have not once thought of something like that! To say that you are worthless is!-」(Melissa)
So, this time it was Melissa raising her voice. What was the reason then? Was I wrong?
「I was, Master was the one who saved me, even now I am grateful for that. You even took me in as a slave…… But in reality Master is forcing himself right? The truth is that you were forced into buying a slave like me even though you didn’t want to, so you just……」(Melissa)
…… I didn’t, want to buy Melissa?
「Wait a second. How did it end up like that? Like me being forced to pay for you, and that I didn’t want to……」(Hitto)
Then, Melissa turned her head slightly away, and answered in a somewhat lonely voice.
「That’s because, Master…… you said that you would buy me as a slave, but you originally didn’t intend to do that――」(Melissa)
She responded while lightly hugging her shoulders.
I understand what she was saying but I don’t remember the specific time when―― Oh I remember, it was that time……
Oh crap, I’m an idiot.
If someone heard those lines then they would definitely interpret it that way. What the hell have I done. Because of that Melissa’s feelings were hurt like this――
「Melissa, I’m so sorry! I am completely at fault!」(Hitto)
At any rate, while on the coachman’s seat, I faced Melissa and lowered my head as much as I possibly could.
Whatever the case may be, for me to say something that would cause this much harm, I am disappointed in myself.
「N-Not true! Please raise your head!」(Melissa)
「No, let me stay like this. Because I didn’t say it properly, I caused you to misunderstand things」(Hitto)
A soft “Eh?” managed to reach my ear.
「Didn’t say, it properly?」(Melissa)
「Yea, that’s right. At that time I didn’t mean to say that I don’t want you as a slave. But if possible I would rather have you not as a slave but as a companion instead. I said those words with that meaning in mind. It has only been a short while, but Melissa has helped me in many ways, and I’ve grown to like your personality. Also, you’re pretty too. No, I don’t mean that in a Lewd way or anything though!」(Hitto)
Having said all that, I raised my head and waved my hands back and forth in a panic.
Then Melissa met my eyes with a surprised look and―― She suddenly burst into tears.
「Wait-! I-I’m really sorry, seriously! It was my bad! If you want you can even smack――」(Hitto)
「That’s not it!」(Melissa)
Melissa managed to let out a strained cry. Tears overflowed as she spoke.
「I…… I am just thinking about how happy I am right now. For Master to think of me like that…… But at the same time I could not forgive myself―― Without noticing Master’s feelings, I selfishly acted in that way…… You’d definitely hate a slave like me. Eh?」(Melissa)
I unintentionally embraced Melissa. At this point you could say it’s a reflex, or just naturally spontaneous…… The Melissa who thought of such admirable things just for my sake, She’s just so―― extremely lovable that I regrettably reached my arms out to her without thinking.
Isn’t this a bit overkill after saying that I thought of her as just a companion? But my body moved against my will.
It’s a little too late for me to ‘Cancel’ this feeling.
「Sorry Melissa. I just suddenly」(Hitto)
「No―― I’m overjoyed……」(Melissa)
I slowly let go of her body, and grasped her shoulders while looking into her eyes.
「Melissa. I’ve decided. I will, without a doubt, one day free you from being a slave. That is my goal」(Hitto)
「No way, but for that you need-」(Melissa)
「I know. That’s why, even though it might be impossible to do right away, but still, even still, I won’t give up. That’s why until that time, I think that we will have continue being together as master and slave but…… I hope you will allow it」(Hitto)
‘Such a thing……’ Melissa shook her head. In the dim night, her illuminated golden hair resonated as it swayed.
「Even though I have received such an amazing blessing as to stay by your side as a slave, to go to such great lengths―― It really is more than what a person like me deserves……」(Melissa)
Melissa’s blue eyes that were like gemstones began to dampen.
As I stared deeply into those eyes――
「For Melissa to be undeserving… I should be the one to say those words…… You’re just too beautiful」(Hitto)
My hand reached out to her hair as I said this. Only it’s silky feel was left on my skin.
I truly believed she was beautiful. Just looking into those pair of blue eyes made me feel like I would draw me closer.
…… And those soft cherry colored lips also looked like they would draw me in――
*Haa*! This is bad! I almost! Regaining my composure I pulled away my face and averted my gaze elsewhere.
I was saved by the fact that the horses were looking this way and making noises.
That was close, I still haven’t confirmed the other party’s feelings…… Crap, oh crap, if this led to another misunderstanding then I won’t be able to look her in the eye.
「Ah, no, that is. The full moon sure is pretty huh, Melissa」(Hitto)
I spoke while trying to mislead her.
And Melissa gave a slightly half-hearted reply of “Eh? yes, I guess so”
…… Looks like it really did cause her to draw the wrong conclusion. She seemed like she was in a slightly bad mood――
I took a quick peek back at Melissa.
And she was grinning with a warm smile.
M-maybe she isn’t mad after all?
「M―― my…… feel, real―― ly, don……know」(Melissa)
Hmm? Was Melissa saying something with her head held down?
「Uhhmm, Melissa? Did you say something?」(Hitto)
「Nope, nothing at all――」(Melissa)
Even though she was smiling I could sense ice cold vibes coming from her……
*Sigh* I guess so huh. She might be angry because she was almost kissed involuntarily……
That must be the reason. Geez, even though I knew this would happen.
Once before I thought “Maybe now’s a good time” when I was with that one girl, I tried to kiss her inside the car but it turned into a dangerous situation that felt like I would be arrested for obscenity…… She seriously burst into tears and went on a rampage―― I’ve had enough of that sort of thing.
Anyways I’ll proceed with slowly from now on…… I can’t afford anymore mistakes after all――
TL Extra note: Slowly gets back into the groove.
TL Note: For those of you who don’t remember, in chapter 12 Hitto said that he didn’t intend to do “that” with Melissa. “That” was referring to being a “nighttime companion” but she misunderstood “that” as “buying a slave”. It’s more ambiguous in Japanese, but I originally translated it for clarity so the misunderstanding might not make much sense. I went back and made it more ambiguous though.
TL note: Not completely sure about this.
I think it’s the sound of head shaking.
Shidō pointed out in the comments that it’s probably the sound of the horses.
TL note: I’m sorry, I have no idea what she said. I’m The raws were 「私――の……が、やっ――り、わ……せん」/ (Watashi-no…ga, yaa-ri, wa…sen) if there’s any better suggestions then I’m open to opinions.
Edit: I’m inclined to believe Kureyn in the comments, who suggested “My feelings… he really doesn’t understand them after all.”