As always, completely raw translation (a la v18 style). Ack, the thought of eventually going through all of these posts is really quite frightening... >.>
A Night by the Sea
Lydia hurriedly moved away from the door. She fled running down the dark corridor. Even though she couldn't help wondering why she had to run away, she could only feel uncomfortable at having seen Edgar and Ermine like that. While she hadn't been able to make out their conversation, they'd been in a firm embrace.
'Are those two a couple?'
He was quite the thoughtless man if he had a girlfriend yet still whispered sweet nothings to pretty much anyone.
"I guess it doesn't really matter," she said dismissively as though trying to chase away the unhappiness that threatened her. Lydia started to run down the stairs when a human figure suddenly appeared before her on the landing.
"Kyaa!" She couldn't help shrieking and falling on her bottom in surprise.
"I beg your pardon, Miss. Are you alright?"
It was Raven. Lydia quickly got back to her feet.
"Ah, umm, I was about to go to the kitchen. I was hoping to have some hot milk before going to bed......"
He hadn't even asked her anything, yet she couldn't help making up an excuse. She couldn't help feeling like Raven saw her as a danger to Edgar. Not only had she thrown tea at him, she was also the reason he became injured, so perhaps it was only natural for him to hate her. Not only did he say frightening things to her with a straight face, but he'd also shown her a fighting skill far beyond regular fist-fighting, so she found him very frightening.
"In that case, I'll bring some for you. Please wait in your room."
"N-no, that's okay. That's sort of poisoned...... or rather, umm..."
He looked at her sharply and Lydia remembered his snapping a man's neck in an instant. The man who'd held a knife on her when they'd been surrounded at the station building by Huskley and the others. She'd ended up hearing the horrible sound of bones being broken right next to her, and the thought of whether she would be able to hear that if it happened to her terrified her making Lydia panic.
"No, stay away. ......Don't kill me!"
She couldn't help looking up at his sudden apology.
"You're afraid of me, aren't you? I'm sorry, I didn't realise it."
As always, he had no expression on his face, but Lydia couldn't help feeling guilty suddenly. Could it be that she hurt his feelings? It wasn't as though Raven had tried to do anything to her, yet she'd been afraid of him treating him like a murderer. At that time, too, he'd only protected Lydia from a thug with a knife.
Reconsidering matters, Lydia called Raven before he could leave. "Um, I'm sorry. ......I said something unkind. I didn't mean to hurt you......"
He turned and seemed to have a strange look on his face.
"It's natural to be afraid of a murderer."
"But it wasn't like you were trying to kill me."
She couldn't help feeling very unsure at his silence.
"Eh, you don't mean that you intend to kill me?"
"I can't see that being beneficial to Lord Edgar at the moment."
"Beneficial...... In other words, depending on the circumstances, you'll kill me."
"I am unable to answer that."
She felt sick. Could it be that if she became unwilling to help in the search for the great sword, that Edgar would no longer be as kind to her as he'd been until then? If that happened, Raven......
Lydia couldn't help feeling a little regret at not having fled when they were at the abandoned house. But at the same time, she'd decided to go to Manaan Island out of responsibility as a fairy doctor, so she became angry at being threatened as though she were being forced to help.
"Wait, it's pointless to try threatening me. I have no intention of doing anything except that which I decide I have to do."
"......It seems fairy doctors are quite free."
"W-well, yes. A fairy doctor isn't something a person can be forced into doing."
"I envy you. From the moment I was born, I was forced into becoming the slave of a spirit. A spirit of battle and carnage is within me, and at times, it controls my will and my body."
"Eh? It's there even now?"
Raven put his hand to his chest as though to saying something was hiding in there even now.
"Yes. The spirit only obeys the king, and those who are born with it were the king's warriors. But my homeland is now a British colony, and there is no more king. And having no master, the spirit seeks blood indiscriminately. The one to save it was Master Edgar. Right now, he is the spirit's master."
"If that's the case, if he were to order it, the spirit would kill people regardless of your own will?"
"Master Edgar would give no such order. So, the spirit will attack anyone that I feel is my master's enemy. But right now, I'm in a position where I cannot simply kill someone even if they're my master's enemy. Not only have I had to learn to take it easy on people, I've had to learn to guess how dangerous a situation might be."
"......That's only natural."
"True. But until then, I didn't even know I had my own will. I didn't even know how to stop the spirit from going out of control and ended up turning the area around me into a bloodbath numerous times."
Though she broke into a cold sweat, Lydia couldn't help feeling like she now understood. The reason why Sir John, who's said to have a tattoo of a cross, was said to be such a bloody murderer was because Raven had been with him.
"Despite that, Master Edgar didn't abandon me, and even though I were as ignorant as a babe, he taught me many important things. And as a result, I finally managed to gain human-like freedom. It's my purpose to work for his sake. Because if I were to lose my master, my soul will be controlled by the brutal spirit."
"So, even if it weren't Edgar, as long as you have a master, that's what matters, right?"
"In that case, take for example yourself, would you be able to accept me? Left on my own, I'll attack every last person that I find annoying like a beast. Would you be able to take on the burden of the crimes I commit, teach me right from wrong, and tame me? And above all, never order the brutal being to kill?"
There was no way she could control a beast. But no only did Edgar do that, but he also took responsibility for another person's life. He has a servant who, if he were to order it, would eliminate everyone he found annoying. Yet he would never give that order. And protecting Raven's will in that way, seemed both kind yet difficult.
The absolute trust they had was based on what he wouldn't ask. And that was why, even though Edgar didn't order it, Raven wouldn't hesitate to dirty his own hands if he determined it would be for Edgar's benefit.
"Miss Lydia, it's only natural for you to find me horrifying. So please, do not do anything to cause trouble for Master Edgar."
'He is threatening me, after all,' Lydia thought as she watched Raven leave.
Starting with Edgar, even more than the difficulty of dealing with the merrow as a fairy doctor, it could be that, for Lydia, her bigger problem was how incomprehensible Edgar and the others were. They'd lived in a dark world Lydia couldn't even begin to imagine, so perhaps simply feeling sympathy for them had been a mistake. When she'd been alone with Edgar, Lydia had felt like she'd come to understand him just a little. She thought that he wasn't a bad person deep down, and he treated her with kindness and concern that no one had shown her before. And even though she realised that he did it to keep her in good spirits, he protected her from words that were painful and hurtful to her. She felt that it wasn't done only out of calculation, but that it was part of his personality. But what she'd just seen with Ermine, and also from what Raven had said moments earlier, made Edgar seem like a person shrouded in mystery again.
"Am I being fooled?"
"Yeah, completely. That's why I keep telling you not to trust them."
At some point, an upset Nico came to be sitting on the stair's handrail.
"Those guys really are a dangerous bunch, after all. Look at this, the tip of my tail's been charred."
"My, what happened?"
"That Edgar tried throwing me in the fireplace. It seems I overheard something he didn't want heard."
"What did you overhear?"
"It's not like I heard them clearly, but they're still hiding something from you. It seems like they're planning something bad and intend to get hold of the sword at all costs."
"In any case, it seems like the merrow are protecting the sword at Manaan Island like you suspected. The problem is what comes next."
"Is it certain that they're protecting the sword?"
"The wee fae originally from the island said that the lord had entrusted something with the merrow. And they're apparently lamenting that their lord hasn't returned."
"The landowner here said that the merrow lived in the castle. That might mean that the sword is hidden in the castle."
"Lydia, there's no need for you to end up fighting against the merrow for their sakes. You know that, don't you?"
"Yes. ......That's true."
At any rate, Lydia wasn't one of them. She was only trying to make it clear that, if Edgar wasn't truly a descendant of the Blue Knight Earl, the merrow wouldn't give him the sword.
But they had no intention of backing down, so if they intended to fight the merrow, Lydia would end up getting caught up in their battle.
"If things get dangerous, the only thing you can do is run. There's no way you can try to fight the merrow."
The merrow were smart and beautiful, and sometimes they were extremely dangerous fairies. They sometimes appeared in the sea before the coming of a storm and were an unlucky sign. They were also said to like spirits of people who died at sea and gathered them. They had a human-like temperament and have been known to be on good terms with people, but there were also groups among them that were said to drink blood.
More than anything, their beautiful singing voices was a problem. People become enraptured by it, and it's said that they end up being dragged to the bottom of the sea because of it. And they were fearsome because there was most likely no means to fight against that magic. If they wished it, there was virtually nothing a person could do to resist, and they were like a small boat in the middle of a storm on the sea.
For a beginner fairy doctor like Lydia, even though she had some knowledge, it was the first time she would be dealing with the merrow, and she didn't think she would be able to try bargaining with them. If possible, she hoped Edgar would realise how terrible the merrow were, and that he would give up on getting the noble sword, but he didn't seem to be so easy a person. Lydia tried considering the worst case scenario and the possibility that she might have to abandon Edgar.
(Caramel colour. Putting it that way suits you more.)
Those simple words had sunk into Lydia's heart, and she couldn't help wondering if she would be able to just watch him die. He was a criminal and a liar, and even now he was hiding something very important from Lydia. But despite that, if she were able to convince the merrow, he would be able to become the Blue Knight Earl. She couldn't help thinking that he would be able to return to the bright world where he originally belonged. Even though there was no way she had that ability.
"Those guys, they should get dragged into the sea by the merrow and drown. They're criminals after all. Things'd be much better that way."
Apparently, the making of a bald spot on his tail had made Nico oversensitive.
Hrmm... what to do next... @_@