This is in ??? POV! (Try figuring out who it is before the first half of the chapter ends~)
*start building a ship* Don’t mind me, see you in the footnote! Enjoy!
ED: eristol (will be edited by xtostos)
After school, in the library.
I was visiting the sixth floor for a meeting with Eduard.
However, five minutes before the promised time, the one who appeared was a small golem, not Eduard.
The note sent using the golem had a scribble saying, “It looks like I will be a little late.”
(He must have gotten himself involved in something troublesome again, that guy……)
While waiting for Eduard, I decided to walk around looking at the bookshelves.
Then I found the figure of the president of my school year on the long ladder hanging on a bookshelf.
He is the president, but he does not seem haughty; he is always calm and collected, and many students idolize him.
But on the other hand, he always maintains a certain distance while socializing; he is a student who does not get along well with anyone.
The term ‘solitary genius’ comes to mind.
He seemed to be immersed in the book he had acquired, and didn’t seem to care even though I came up to this floor.
Taking advantage of that, I decided to observe him.
It appears that he has been thoroughly reading the books in that bookshelf since last week.
The books there are primarily about phantom beasts, magic, ethnicity, and religion of the southern continent.
Large rivers that flood repeatedly, dense forests, subterranean lakes spread out under the desert and the many magical beasts and phantom beasts lurking in them.
A miracle brought about by a Hero or a Saint found by an angel.
A land ruled by kings who misgovern, such as boiling their subjects and sipping their bone marrows.
A holy land that continues to produce curses.
People who have their family rooted in the south are more or less attracted to the south.
I understand because I am like that as well.
Although it might be more serious for him.
His fingertips that are on the bookshelf seem slightly lost.
I guess he can’t find the book he is looking for.
“If you’re searching for the legend and appearance record of the phantom beast abaddon1, I borrowed it.”
Because of the tendency of the book he was reading, I got an idea of the book he was looking for, so I called out to him.
Then he slowly glanced at me.
“How did you know what I was looking for?”
“I also read something similar last month, so you’re probably looking for this.”
I showed him the cover of the book I was holding in my hand.
His face showed a trace of surprise.
Apparently, my guess was correct.
“I was also concerned about the starvation incidents caused by abaddon. I will return it in three days at the latest, but would you like to have a quick glance at it now?”
I cast Levitation on the book and carried it to his hand.
“I see……the rumors that say you’re sharp seem to be true.”
He grabbed the book that was floating gently, flipped the page and said that.
What does he mean by that?
“They say that you hide your true ability due to some circumstances, but you’re a fairly sharp and able person in contrast to your appearance.”
“This is the first time I heard such a rumor.”
I have no idea why that kind of rumor spread.
That matter seems to have been transmitted in a warped way.
What I have to hide about myself is the blood that runs through my veins and the curse-like thing that dwells inside my body.
“There is another one. It says that you are like Aurelia’s shadow, but in fact you are the mastermind.”
“No way, does it really look like that?”
“No, you always look like you’re annoyed at being dragged around.”
“Aah, sorry to disappoint you but that’s the correct answer.”
The expression that I thought was cold and ice-like collapsed.
He showed a gentle smile.
This might be my first time seeing this kind of expression on him.
At that time, a rumbling noise could be heard.
When I glanced at the direction of the sound, brilliant colors appeared in my dark-colored world.
“Oya, I didn’t know that you guys are close enough to crack jokes.”
The one who appeared was a blond boy who emits a sparkling presence even in the dimly-lit library.
It was Eduard Aurelia.
He was about to go up the stairs with two small golems made of clay holding a large luggage for him.
“Ed, you said you’re going to be late, but that was fast.”
“I was about to be forced to do a boring job, but I ran away.”
“Good grief. You must have skipped your student council work again.”
“Come on, I got the answer for you-know-what. That’s why I want to find you as soon as possible!”
Although I intended to criticize him harshly, Eduard responded with a seemingly innocent look.
“……Don’t tell me, have you finally understood the answer left by that person?”
Eduard smiled instead of answering.
‘That person’ is his mother.
Duchess of Aurelia and one of the war heroes, Frederica Bort.
Busy as she was, she left some mysteries for her son before leaving for a long voyage.
Surely there are amazing things, please try to search for them, she said.
“Well, there’s that hint on the sixth floor. Now then, let’s get going—”
The guy on the ladder blocked his words.
Eduard raised his eyes.
“Oya, sorry. Did we bother you?”
“No. But, is that a conversation that others can listen to? For example, what if I listen to it?”
“You don’t look like someone who would poke your nose into other people’s secret, so I thought you wouldn’t be interested in such a thing.”
“……Then, what about him?”
Looking at the direction he pointed at, a boy appeared from the shadow of the bookshelves.
The successor of the former royal family of the North who likes to fight.
Certainly, last week an upperclassman from Hafan was completely thrashed by him in a duel trial.
“Oh, Claude-kun, what a coincidence!! Have you found a good book!?”
Eduard spoke to Claude with a cheerful-sounding tone of voice.
But, Claude only glanced at us with his light blue eyes and left silently.
Eduard opened his mouth after confirming that Claude had descended to the lower floor.
“I wonder what was that all about……”
“He doesn’t seem to be the library type.”
I also come to the library frequently but I have never seen Claude.
“Maybe he ambushed you because you guys are conspicuous?”
“That’s a scary thought. Ambushing me, blaming me for something and then wanting another duel, I’m sick of it.”
“I thought you would gladly take up on the challenge.”
On the ladder, that guy—Elric Actorius looked at Eduard with a surprised expression.
Actually, Eduard is more sensitive to what other people think of him than he looks, and he’s surprisingly timid.
It is only when he tries to protect his important people and things that he desperately encourages himself and becomes aggressive.
“Well then, maybe he wanted to be friends with you guys, what do you think?”
“No way! That Claude, wanting to be friends with us?”
Eduard raised a voice that sounds like he was truly surprised.
I also don’t think that Claude Lucanrant wants to foster friendship with us.
“You guys always seem to be having fun, so maybe he’s envious.”
“I wonder if we really seem that frivolous……I intended to become a serious student though!”
“It is true that you tend to deviate, Ed, so it is inevitable for you to be thought of as an outrageous student.”
I recalled the incidents that Eduard caused since we first entered the academy until now.
It started from the great destruction of the alchemy workshop that he caused, to the three consecutive duel trials two weeks ago.
I know the reasons for those, but this guy always does everything in a grand scale no matter what.
“No, no, I didn’t mean that as an insult. Even from my perspective, you guys seem to be having so much fun……simply enviable.”
After Elric said that, he turned his eyes back to his book.
“I apologize for getting in your way. Good day.”
And then, after saying such words, Elric went back to reading quietly once more.
When making a conjecture about another person’s mind, he unexpectedly projected his own feelings.
In other words, this guy is—
Under the ladder, Eduard and I exchanged looks.
“I know, Brad.”
Apparently, we were thinking the same thing.
I nudged Eduard with my elbow and urged him to invite Elric.
“Elric Actorius. Would you like to go on an adventure with us tonight?”
Inside a basement with heavy and depressing air, I walked while being led by jailers.
A gate with multiple locks.
And, several times more guards than the others.
There is no human figure in the cells lined up on both sides of the passage.
It is an old-fashioned prison that is rarely used now.
Even so, it is strictly guarded to a shocking extent.
When we reached the innermost special cell, the jailers left me there.
With a heavy clinking noise of the chain, the guy inside the cell turned around towards my direction.
Inside a room with only one simple chair.
My old friend—Eduard Aurelia was imprisoned there.
“It seems you were not careful enough this time, Ed.”
“Hey, it’s been a long time since we talked face-to-face like this, Brad.”
Eduard, who was like a bright light even in a dark place like this, smiled as he said so.
“I didn’t think you would be suspected as a vampire and imprisoned.”
“No, no, I was really surprised too.”
Even after a week of imprisonment and interrogation, I cannot see any fatigue or haggardness in him.
“Let me guess how this happened.”
“Heeh, you know about it?”
“What started it off was a request from the church of Ignitia, probably about the kidnapping cases caused by a vampire.”
“Oya, that’s correct.”
When he was trying to save the abducted women, he was falsely accused.
Perhaps it was something like that.
When I pressed him about it, Eduard began talking about the details of the case.
“—then, I hurriedly sent the box containing the ten women who were in a state of apparent death to the room I was renting.”
“Couldn’t you think of another destination……”
“No, no, you see, I thought it was more important to save their lives first and foremost.”
“You, seriously, just how foolish are you?”
The ending is just as I thought.
As always, he doesn’t disappoint expectations, but he’s already this old, I wonder how much longer it will take before he gets a clue.
“To think that he still wouldn’t listen to my explanation.”
“There is no way he would listen. He is the Margrave of Urs, Deputy Governor-General of the North, Harlan Slayson.”
“On top of meeting me in-person, he even questioned me personally! Even someone like me never expected it.”
The vampire this time was different from the young vampires that sometimes appeared.
An ancient vampire who was called the Bloody Saint or the One who covets death.
If it is an incident involving such a powerful monstro, that Harlan will also take action.
However, it has been confirmed that the vampire who was the main culprit has been eliminated.
It has become a development where the younger sister killed the vampire her older brother has been pursuing.
This pair of brother and sister seems to be similar to that person in unreasonable parts.
“—and they also wanted a bit more information from me, but well. There is no evidence that the vampire in this case has sneaked into the academy, right?”
“Aa, that’s correct.”
As I replied, I made the sign for 「false」 that we had arranged beforehand.
The principal has given me his approval to tell Eduard the truth.
Eduard will not confess anything no matter how much he is tortured, I know that well.
“The underground altar has already been purified, right?”
“Aa, without a doubt. A student who happened to be lost purified the altar by chance. The great collapse caused by spatial magic has also been successfully avoided.”
I looked into his eyes as I gave him my reply.
With this alone, Eduard would understand who the student who happened to be lost is.
This overprotective guy is using the mage and the dragon knight to be his sister’s watchdogs in school.
It’s just that a watchdog doesn’t get lost.
How that case ended should have also been correctly transmitted to Eduard.
“Is my Erica doing well? And that girl too.”
“Aa, they seemed to be having fun. Surprisingly, Erica Aurelia and Chloe Cloacina seem to get along well.”
“Please look after those children when I can’t, Brad.”
When our eyes locked again, I nodded.
Then, perhaps Eduard felt a little relieved, a trace of exhaustion finally showed on his face.
“For the time being the North will be watching. So you and Elric should also take care of yourselves.”
“I can return to the surface in three days. Until then, stay safe.”
“You should protect only what you ought to protect.”
At the very least, so that there won’t be a repeat of that time.
I cannot forget how much violence he suffered at Claude’s hand who tried to kill me.
It would be pointless if one gets oneself almost killed in order to protect someone else.
“……perhaps, ever since that incident, he was avoiding us.”
“I sincerely wish that no more mistakes beyond that will occur.”
Having said that, I left the special cell.
In the passage on the way to the surface, I met over a dozen men dressed in dark brown robes.
They were all carrying a sword and hiding their faces with their hood.
Those swordsmen had a cold presence like winter.
They are Harlan Slayson’s Inquisitors—the vampire-slaying swordsmen.
Before this autumn’s All Souls Day, visitors from the winter were visiting the academy.
1 Abaddon: appear in the Bible as both a place of destruction and an angel of the abyss. In the Hebrew Bible, abaddon is used with reference to a bottomless pit, often appearing alongside the place שְׁאוֹל (Sheol), meaning the realm of the dead. In the New Testament Book of Revelation, an angel called Abaddon is described as the king of an army of locusts. In Revelation 9:11, Abaddon is described as “Destroyer”, the angel of the abyss, and as the king of a plague of locusts resembling horses with crowned human faces, women’s hair, lions’ teeth, wings, iron breast-plates, and a tail with a scorpion’s stinger that torments for five months anyone who does not have the seal of God on their foreheads. (source)
*finished building a ship* I declare myself as the Captain for EdxBrad ship! Who’s on board~? (eristol: Aye aye captain! I am on board~)
Just. Look. At. This. Line:
When I glanced at the direction of the sound, brilliant colors appeared in my dark-colored world.
The fact that Brad repeatedly referred Eduard as a bright light had me soft.
EdxBrad is practically canon! Or at least one-sided love from Brad *Ehem* Does this chapter change your opinion about Brad? Next chapter is the last one for this arc!
eristol: Hey everyone, a little announcement to make. I am sure you have noticed that a lot of our recent chapters have not been edited by our translation checker xtostos. He has been ridiculously busy for a long time now and probably won’t be free anytime soon. So we are temporarily, or maybe long term depending on the situation, looking for an editor who has proficiency in Japanese and can revise Cloveeer’s translations to lookout for mistakes in translation. If anyone is interested, please notify us. Thanks you!
clover: also, thank you for readers who went to the stolen translation page in wattpad and hounded the user until she took the stolen translation down! We really, really appreciate it!
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