Hakushaku to Yousei
(Earl and Fairy)
He's a Refined Villain
That Man, Is He a Rogue or a Gentleman 8
Sir John's Cross 52
Fugue of Truth and Lies 89
Night by the Sea 126
The Blue Knight Earl and Island of the Merrow 161
Two Keys and Sacrificial Blood 203
The Star is Proof of the Earl 247
Hakushaku to Yousei
Fairy in the form of a cat, he's Lydia's childhood friend and partner. He's quite brazen, but very particular about appearance and meals. He likes to act like a gentleman.
Continuing from her late mother, she aims to become a fairy doctor. Able to see fairies, she's also able to communicate with them. Impetuous and spirited, but ultimately very soft-hearted. On her way to see her father in London, she gets caught up in trouble.
Young man who shows up as Lydia heads to London, but something about him seems rather fishy...
Very good-looking young man who says he's an earl. Learning that Lydia's a fairy doctor, he asks for her help. Unable to tell whether he's a gentleman or a rogue, he's very evasive, and from the moment they met, Lydia's constantly being thrown for a loop by him.
Edgar's retainer and rather mysterious-seeming young man. Quite skilled at combat, he's completely devoted to his master.
Edgar's retainer and Raven's older sister. Mature and beautiful, she dresses as a man.
That Man, Is He a Rogue or a Gentleman
"Now then, Mr. Gotham, we've been through a number of things together. I would like to thank you for everything," the slender young man said. He smiled charmingly and continued pointing his pistol at the mustached man before him.
"......Stop it. I-if it's money you want, I'll give you everything......" the portly man who was tied to the chair said hoarsely as he shivered.
"That's very kind of you. One more thing, I would also like the legendary star sapphire 'merrow's star'."
"Ah, that...... really is a legend and can only be found in stories. It doesn't exist......" he muttered.
The slender man lowered his pistol and glanced around the room.
"After I went through all the trouble of preparing this wonderful stage and even setting aside a special seat for you. You disappoint me."
Gotham was tied to a large white seat in his psychological research lab. Several brains preserved in formaldehyde lined the shelves.
Normally, Gotham was the one to look cold-heartedly at the subjects tied to the seat, but the tables were now turned.
The young man, who was supposed to be his subject, had a pistol in hand and toyed idly with the scalpels lined up nearby. While mussed, his hair was a bright golden blond. And even though his clothes were old and worn, his fingertips as he slowly walked around the room caressing a medicine bottle meaningfully, his commanding gaze as he turned, every aspect of the young man's manner was refined. Gotham was unaware of the young man's lineage, but most likely he wasn't a mere ruffian. Right now, before Gotham's eyes, was an incredibly dangerous beast showing his true self.
The young man paced around Gotham as though verifying how weak his prey was before raising his pistol again. The man's perfect smile, which could charm people in an instant, made Gotham fear terrified despair instead.
The young man seemed almost like a God of death as he spoke in unaccented King's English.
"I'm afraid I must take my leave now, mister. It's a shame that 'merrow's star' doesn't exist. I guess it means that you'll never have the chance to see it, either."
His finger moved to the trigger.
"W-wait." Gotham's decision to tell everything didn't come from fear of death, but rather from the fear that the demon inside the young man would chase after him and continue to torment him after his death.
"......Supposedly, the only ones who know whether the jewel is exists or not are people called fairy doctors. After all, well, the fairies hold the mysterious key to it, so maybe fairy specialists can find it."
"Fairy specialists? There are plenty of dubious psychics in London?"
"......Fairy doctors are going obsolete. It's said that there are still some in remote parts of Scotland or Wales, but they're mostly very old with one foot in the coffin already. It's only natural. About the only people these days that believe in fairies are children."
"But you're saying those children's tale-like fairy doctors' wisdom exists?"
"That's right. Naturally about the merrow, but if it's about pixies or selkies, who else would know the truth about what sort of creatures they are. However, it's said that fairy doctors know everything about the fey."
"And, who's suited for this treasure hunt? You said they're all elderly, but we're talking about you here. No doubt, you've found someone usable, right? One of those fairy doctor people."
Gotham gave in; no doubt the young man had already seen through him.
"......Yeah, I found one. In a town near Edinburgh, Scotland......"
The young man listened with a gentle expression, almost as though hearing about some as yet unknown lover. He slowly lowered his pistol and Gotham breathed a sigh of relief. However, an instant later, the cold report of a gun shot echoed through the dim lab.
All jobs regarding fairies accepted.
Fairy doctor—Lydia Carlton
Today, too, the hand-written sign before the house caused passers-by to laugh.
"Mom, do fairies really exist?"
"They're stories. As if such things existed."
"No, they do exist," Lydia said as she leaned across the hedge. "Even though you can't see them, fairies do exist. If you leave a glass of milk by the window before you go to bed, brownies will come."
She smiled at the child who had been about to stop. But the mother grabbed the child's hand, glared at Lydia, and quickly continued on.
Lydia propped her chin in her hand as she watched the mother and child leave. No doubt the mother was telling her child that Lydia was strange.
"Lydia, it doesn't matter how many times you tell them. It's pointless. People who can't see fairies, will never see them. A person who doesn't believe in fairies can be kicked by a fairy, and they'll think that it was just their imagination. Well, just take things easy," the long-haired grey cat lying on a branch of one of the trees in the yard said.
That cat which spoke and walked on two legs was Lydia's friend. He had a necktie around his neck and was very particular about his grooming, but Lydia thought his tendency to say 'oof' as he got up or his habit of scratching at his belly was very much like the habits of an old man.
"Hey, Nico, isn't there any way to get people to understand what a fairy doctor does?"
"So you ask, but the times when fairies were everywhere and people needed a fairy doctor's wisdom are over. It's the middle of the 19th century, you know."
"But it's not like fairies no longer exist. They're still here doing good and bad things. Isn't it strange for people to just ignore that? Why do people think they don't exist just because they can't see them?"
Just as Lydia answered vehemently, a hesitant voice addressed her from the other side of the hedge.
"Umm...... I've brought your mail......"
The mail carrier appeared to be very wary as he passed the mail across the hedge to Lydia. The fairy cat, who was able to disappear at will, had long since vanished. No doubt, it had seemed like Lydia had raised her voice as she talked to herself.
"Ah, I'm not talking to myself. There was a cat here a moment ago," she said as she tried to gloss over things, but the mail carrier just gave her a strained smile.
"Um, not a normal cat but a cat that can talk......"
It didn't matter how she tried to explain things, she probably seemed crazy to the carrier. Lydia spotted some brownies trying to sneak into the letter carrier's bag and unthinking spoke out.
"Hey, what are you doing?! Don't fool around with the mail!"
The brownies panicked as they tried to escape, and several letters fell from the full bag.
"......I'm sorry. Brownies are such pranksters," she said as she gathered the letters and handed them to the carrier.
The shocked carrier took the letters before fleeing from Lydia.
"I did it again."
Lydia heaved a long sigh.
It didn't really matter. She was already well-known as the strange Carlton girl and didn't have any human friends because she didn't try to hide the fact that she could see and speak to fairies.
Instead, she called herself a fairy doctor and wanted to make use of her ability, but so far her efforts were for naught.
"What. No point getting down just because the new carrier ran away from you."
As Lydia entered the house, this time, Nico was sitting on the sofa reading the paper.
"It's your fault," she retorted annoyed.
It wasn't like she was interested in the young man, but she often saw him speaking animatedly with other girls her age. Living in such an small, unchanging rural town, something like a new young man coming attracted the young girls' attention.
Lydia's tiny hope was that he might not have heard the rumours about her and that they'd be able to speak normally, but she quickly ended up giving him the impression that she was strange instead. She never found not being understood to be all that lonely because as a young child she'd always been playing or fighting with fairies. But she was now 17; a young woman of age. So being avoided by men was a bit of a worry for her.
"Huh, apparently they're looking for someone," Nico said, changing the subject.
Lydia wished she could show the townsfolk the cat lying on the sofa with his legs--his hind legs--crossed as he held the newspaper with his forepaws. If she did, perhaps they'd realise that there was much about the world still be learned.
"Apparently, some thief is currently on the run after breaking into the psychiatrist Gotham's residence, seriously injured the doctor, and stole a large sum of money."
"My, an incident in London's making the news in such a remote place as this?"
"Probably because he's on the run. That plus the victim's son is offering a large reward as he searches for the perpetrator. Apparently, he's supposed to resemble a serial robber who's said to have killed a hundred people in America. The man's supposed to be in his early twenties, blond......"
The sketch of a vicious-looking man was also shown, but Lydia was more interested in the postcard she'd just received.
"Hey, Nico, it's a postcard from father. He's asking if I'll come to London so we can spend Easter together."
"That's surprising considering he didn't have a Christmas break."
Lydia's father was her only relative and was a professor of natural history. He was currently teaching at London university. He studied the quality and variety of the many things found in nature separating them into their various typings, but he was so lost in his own research that when given time off, he would rather spend that time observing or gathering samples. It was a rare letter from a father that tended to go off to various places.
"Are you going to go? London's pretty dangerous."
"True, but even if I did run into some big-time thief, it's not like I'm rich."
FWIW, I haven't read through any of this or double-checked for proper name spellings (think of it as a NaNo equiv only for translation), and don't remember if I left myself any notes to check certain words out later. ^^; There's not much, but it pretty much covers what's in the book up to the scene break on pg 16. Enjoy!