Volume 1 Chapter 19 (Rest and The Future)
Translator: HASUTSUKI, Editor: Thorrium
After disposing of the slave trader, and leaving the bodies of the guards in the forest, Ryouma immediately returned to the highway and headed toward Aru town in a hurry, but this time he was carrying a box filled with gold coins and jewelry on his back, as well as being followed by two beautiful young women.
Fortunately, there was no monster attack on their way toward Aru town, and by 22 o’clock they had arrived in Aru safely.
The restaurants in the town had already closed, so Ryouma was instead went and checked in, at the only inn in the town, where he was able to ordered some food.
“Well then, shall we talk while eating? How about you guys take a seat?”
A surprised expression spread on the faces of the sisters, when he asked them to sit…
“What’s wrong? It will get cold you know…”
“We cannot eat at the same table as the master. Please feed us later.”
Being taken off guard by to Laura’s words, Ryouma couldn’t help himself bursting out with a sound… and after a regaining his composure, he and asked back. “So a slave is not allowed to eat with its master?”
“No… It’s impossible… unthinkable, please master eat the stew while we stand here, it’s getting cold.”
“Yes there’s no need for a slave to have a warm meal.”
(These girls, just what are they saying… Does being a slave really matter that much? Hmm I’m their master, right… If that the case then…)
“Just to confirm. You guys will obey your master correct?”
“”Yes. To be of use to our master, is the duty of a slave.“”
The sisters immediately responded to Ryouma’s question.
“And I’m the master right?”
“Yes. With the exchange of the blood covenant, you’re our master.”
Sara nodded at Laura’s words.
“Then I order you, as your master, to sit down, and eat this meal together with me.”
The sisters looking at each other, surprised at the unexpected words.
“Food won’t taste good if you eat it alone, and since I also want to talk about the future, please sit!”
The two were lost in thought for a while then responded back.
“… Understood. Excuse us. Come Sara, it is master order you know? Hurry and sits down.”
Laura who made up her mind then urged Sara to also sits down.
“Alright! Then let’s talk while eating.”
For Ryouma, it was natural for him to eat happily together with his family, yet the sisters seem to have found it uncomfortable instead.
Two mouthfuls of stew had already consumed by Ryouma, however they still sat in silence.
(Somehow, this feels awkward… Well from the story I heard, slaves usually get treated quite poorly. So I guess, it will be impossible to change their minds immediately huh?)
Reluctantly Ryouma asked the question regarding the blood covenant.
He was aware that the issue was less suitable to be asked during meal; however was unable to sit in silence and it was nagging him.
“Then, let me confirm the situation alright? I will ask for one more time, right now, I’ve become your master correct?”
“Yes. A master-slave relationship has been established using blood covenant that we performed a while ago.”
“That’s it! That blood covenant thing, what is that about?”
Ryouma asked the question while stuffing his mouth with bread.
“A blood covenant has two meaning. One is where a knight vows their loyalty toward their Lord. In this case, there’s no binding force, it was just a formal ceremony, where oats are exchanged. And the other is to bind a war slave, or as some call it… a <<battle slave>> to their master.”
Hearing that Ryouma stopped his hand holding a piece of bread, that he was about to put in his mouth.
“War slave, battle slave?”
“Yes. In addition to labour slaves and sex slaves, there’s a special slave that are called >> battle slaves <<. Their purpose is just like the name implies, they are to do battles for their masters, however, since it was obvious that they have the powers to fight, there’s also a chance for them to rebel against their own master. Thus, there’s a seal placed on them which make them unable to fight unless their master gives them permissions.”
An expression of disgust showed on Ryouma face.
After all, he’s someone who disliked the thought of having his own liberty violated.
(This time as well, stories about humans being forcefully enslaved. It seems to be rather normal in this world.)
“I see. Then the next question. Why did you guys decide to perform such thing with me?”
If we use Laura’s explanation from just before, then they should not know how to perform blood covenant.
There’s was a good reason for Ryouma to think such things, although the possibility is small, this might be a trap set by the Empire. Ryouma wondered if the empire purposely let him help them, all in orders to make him trust them and slowly get him to lower his guard down.
Sara who found it hard to say, directed her gaze toward Laura, which she returned with a wink.
“It’s fine Sara. It is natural for him to find it suspicious. I understand. I will try to explain everything. However, I want master to keep the story secret.”
Being overpowered by her resolution and determined gaze Ryouma nodded his head.
Besides Ryouma, didn’t find it enjoyable as a gossip and share other people’s secrets.
“Our surname is Marfisto, originally it was the name of a and old lineage from the Kwiford Kingdom located on the west coast of the central continent. Our family used to be knights in that country.”
(old lineage… knights? But that means, they are noble huh? Now that I think about it, they do have the beauty and the elegance to be nobles. But still, why have noble ladies ended up slaves…??)
For Ryouma, Laura’s story was beyond his expectation.
“If that the case then, your real name is actually Laura Marfisto is that it?”
“Yes. Out Marfisto family served the Kwiford Kingdom’s royal family for generations, both military in the army and as loyal subjects. But things started to change five years ago. The problems started with over trade tax between the Kwiford Kingdom and its neighbouring nation, the Queft Kingdom, which in the end escalated into war, and the Kwiford downfall came as the result of it. Although my father’s territory was situated on an island off the coast of the kingdom, the spark of war also ended up reaching my father’s territory as well.”
Having recalled their home, tears began appearing in their eyes.
“My father desperately fought for the people and the kingdom. However, after the betrayal of the prime minister which resulted in the assassination of the king and the fall of the kingdom, my father decided to abandon the territory.”
“Were you guys fleeing together then?”
The sisters nodded toward Ryouma question.
“Yes. We planned to run away to another country with several escort soldiers.”
In the end, Ryouma was unable to eat the stew on the table. Even Ryouma would be unable to continue eating while listening to such a heavy dramatic story.
“Then what happened to cause noble ladies from a Knight family, that had an escort as well, to end up as slaves?”
“This is due to us being over confident.”
A bitter expression appears on Laura’s face.
“We were unable to see through a human heart weakness. On the day when we arrived at neighbouring country by ship, which we had disguised it as a merchant ship from our territory. Our guards and escorts betrayed us and tied us up. Then they sold us to the slave trader. Even though all of them had been servicing us for many years…”
Being betrayed by the escort they have placed their trust with, and being sold as a slave.
There’s nothing that can describe it, other a tragedy.
Well, there’s the saying that misfortune never comes singly, it’s a common thing that when the situation deteriorates everything around will try and fix itself.
“The slave trader, was it the pig we meet this afternoon?”
“Yes. Because we could read and write, and also had been trained in the both military art as well as magical arts, they decided to educate us as a <<battle slaves>>.”
“I see. So, the reason why you guys knew about the blood covenant is?”
“I heard how to perform the ceremony of blood covenant from our father. He said that sooner or later it would be necessary for us to know about it.”
“So that’s how it is…”
“Yes. However, blood covenant cannot be done between slaves…”
Toward Laura’s explanation, Ryouma nodded his head.
That would be natural, or so he thought. After all, if they can perform blood covenant between slaves the purpose of the covenant would cease to exist… there would no longer be any restriction and they would be able to rebel against their masters.
“That’s means all this time, you guys were looking for someone trustworthy huh?… But do that mean that you guys trust me?”
“Of course. Master have fought purely to protect us. I think such a person is suitable for us to serve.”
“I also have the same thought.”
Following Laura, Sara voiced her agreement.
After hearing the situation from the two people, Ryouma heaved a big sigh.
(Ah, I give up…)
That was Ryouma’s honest thought, while the two girls were looking at Ryouma.
“I understand the situation now. And I will set you free, both of you.
Fortunately, there’s the money we looted from the slave trader. With that, the both of you would be able to restart your lives as a sisters…”
“We can’t do that!” Laura’s words contained the iron will one could expect from a noble woman.
“Although we had become a slave, we are from the proud Marfisto family. We had our life and purity saved by master while master risked his life doing so. Please, let us serve master until out life ends.”
Clear resolution could be seen from the eyes of the sisters.
“Well, you know, I helped you guys without expecting any gratitude from it. Thus, you girls don’t have to take it that far, alright?”
Of course, he didn’t mean they were not allowed to feel a little gratitude, after all, he only wants a world of thanks from them, something like this is going too far.
“No! Please let us serve you!”
Toward Laura’s words, Sara nodded her head.
“This won’t do… after all, I also have my own circumstance…”
Sara responded toward Ryouma who leaked something vague.
“Is it related to master for being an otherworlder?”
A smile appeared on Ryouma face as usual. “What are you talking about?”
Although only a momentary, the feeling of unrest within Ryouma’s heart had been transmitted to the sisters.
“Master do not have to worry. We won’t tell the others. It just that, we also want to know about master circumstance.”
For a second, silence ruled the place.
“Why?” Ryouma began to talk.
“To serve Ryouma-sama, we have to understand the situation properly. That’s why we want to know master circumstances by all means.”
Silence once again has flown between them.
(What should I do? I can seal their mouths, but… no, that’s just being stupid. I would rather get myself forsaken than doing that. Since I should have prepared for this by the time I decide to help them back then… If that’s the case then…)
Various thoughts run through Ryouma’s mind.
The sisters immediately leaned their body forward in expectation of Ryouma’s word, however, Ryouma pushed them back by hand.
“I understand your feeling, but, I don’t need any slave. So, after you listened to my situation if you still decides to follow me, then I want both of you to come with me as a human beings with free will, not as a slave bound by blood covenant.”
He doesn’t want to force them to following him, but rather letting them decide as a human with free will.
This was the compromise that Ryouma was able to find right now.
Hearing Ryouma words, the sisters looked at each other, nodded, then Laura makes a loud declaration.
“We understood. If that is the will of the master, we will comply!”
Even after explaining everything, the sister’s determination did not change.
Ryouma told them about the day when he was summoned to this world.
Escaping after killed the soldiers and the one who performed the summoning ceremony, and about the pursuers from the empire.
About how they don’t know about his face which was an advantage, but he was unsure about the future.
He told them about the risk they would face, if they went together with him, and after all that, the sisters’ determination did not change at all.
Or rather they seemed to get more determined, saying;
“If master face is not known by them then, won’t it would make it harder for them to think that a fugitive would be together with us? After all, if master is someone from another world, they won’t expect master to be familiar with this world, nor would they think an otherworlder having <<battle slaves>>”…
With their determination, the advantage of going together, and with the condition that they could be released from being a slave at any time.
“Are you guys really going to go with me? Someday, I might disappear from this world you know?”
Ryouma had no intention, to stay in this world forever.
Even if everyone says that there’s no method for him to return, he would simply have to create a method instead. However, hearing his that words, Laura responded with a smile.
“If that is the case, master can use us until the day master returned to his world.”
Following that, Sara continued,
“Onee-sama. Why not go together to Ryouma-sama world as well?”
“Ara~. That’s true… That’s a good idea! With that, we can serve him forever!”
Ryouma was amazed toward Sara’s words.
(Oi oi… They said they are going to come home with me? That old man would kill me you know… No wait, Asuka would kill me for certain!)
Despite Ryouma feeling complicated, the sisters showed a beautiful smile on their face.
(Well, let us put aside those matters. First, we need to find out how to get through the border…)
The next day, Ryouma and the sisters, arranged their equipment while still in Aru.
It seems like the sisters are more proficient at using dual scimitar, however, unfortunately at Aru, no one sells them. The shops armour also didn’t fit their body, due to their big round chest and yet slim waist. So including Ryouma buying a new sword as replacement for the one he used the day before, also bought two swords one for each of the girls, along with 30 throwing knives.
The only real issue they had, was that they had more look than expected.
The gold coins they bought to the bank exceeded 5 million baht, and although that was expected, it took them by surprise that the jewellery that they sold to the jeweller exceeded 30 million baht in value.
“30 million baht for all of them, how about it?”
That was the three respond at the jeweller’s shop.
“Are you dissatisfied with the price? To be honest, we already done the best we could…”
The three of them were surprised by the high price they were offered by the jeweller. However, the jeweller thought that the price offered was still too low.
“Ah! No no… That is good enough.”
Well, he knew that there was quite a considerable amount of rings and necklaces included in it, but he was not expecting it to be this high of a price.
However, listening to Ryouma answer, a small smile appeared on the merchant’s face.
(Hnn? This guy… did he try to trick us?)
There’s the possibility that Ryouma was considered to be an amateur, and the jeweller therefor set the price very low.
However, Ryouma and the other was not someone who can judge the price either.
And even if they wanted to make a big fuss out of it, they still had the pursuers on their backs, so they wanted rid of the weight that carrying all the treasure brought.
There’s no choice other than to change it into gold here and now.
“Is that alright!? Then we will take all of them. However, since it was a large sum of money, we do not have enough cash with us… excuse me, but is it alright to use an account transfer?”
Unintentionally Ryouma looked at the sisters.
Since only Ryouma alone that have an account, it was natural for them to use his account, however, Ryouma felt guilty if everything was being transferred to his account.
However, looking at the sisters nodded their head, Ryouma handed over his card.
“Then, please use this one.”
“I guess before we go toward the guild, we should go to the bank first huh?”
“Why is that?”
Sara asked such question.
The two girls do not seem to have much knowledge about being an adventurer.
“Yes. Because the reward of the quest would be done by bank transfer, without an account, one cannot register at the guild.”
“Is that how it is?”
An expression of surprise and respect floats on the sister’s faces.
(This person is really amazing. It has only have been a few days since he was summoned to this world, yet he knows stuff about our world, that even didn’t…)
While Laura felt interested in him, Ryouma stopped walking.
“Now~… We’re here.”
Ryouma came through the entrance of the bank facing the main street.
-30 minutes later-
After opening an account, the three of them headed toward the guild to complete the sisters’ registration.
“Now then. This time about our future movement.”
The three of them sat at their room, at the inn, after having gathered information from the guild.
They had been planning to leave, and go towards Adelpho, but at the guild they had learned that the border was blockaded.
“Yes… It would be bad if we stayed with the plan and headed toward
Adelpho as it is now…”
Sara nodded at Laura’s remark.
“I think so as well. If it was your ordinary blockade, then we could have paid the border guard generously, and then we can passed like that.”
“Princess Sardina huh…” The two sisters nodded at Ryouma’s short remark.
“Yes. Since it was a direct order of a princess, we won’t be able to settle it with money.”
Most things can be settled using money; however, no one is idiotic enough to go and get blinded by bribe when the princess is the one who directly overseet them.
“With that being the case then, should we advance… or should we withdraw?”
The three of them looked at the map which Ryouma had bought at the imperial capital.
As its made for civilian use, it is only displayed the measurement of the highway distance between cities or towns, and the placement of the towns itself.
“If we withdraw then, we will have to get back to our previous route and then go south…”
To head toward the southern border, they could choose between going via the forest where monsters would be lurking, or go back to the imperial capital and turn south from there.
Whichever route they choose, it would take them approximately 10 days to reach their destination.
If they took the shortcut by going through the forest, there would be monsters, which would slow them down, so no matter what they choose the time needed, would stay the same.
“No… I do not mean that we should go south. Because the south would be the place where the Empire put their attention the most.”
The border closest to the imperial capital would be the south.
The pursuer would have predicted that Ryouma who is a fugitive, would have went with the shortest distance in order to escape.
“If that is the case then, should we go north or west?”
Laura face clearly said, that she was unable to recommend any of the routes.
When he looked at the map, the reason was obvious, both are too far.
If they made a straight line to any of the borders, that alone still be a 300km journey.
And they was taking the speed at which they was currently able to walk, which is 20 km per day, it would take them more than half a month to arrive.
If it takes too much time, then it would be a lot safer for them to just wait it out within the empire territory, until the situation cools down.
But, if Ryouma decides to stay, the empire may be forced to move its massive armies to find him.
Looking at the future prospect, it was obvious to him that it was better if he escaped to another country as soon as possible.
“I guess, we have no choice but to go through the eastern border as it is…”
Listening to Ryouma’s words, the sisters nodded their head.
“About that, I have a plan.”
The two person eyes turned toward Sara.
“A plan where we avoid the highway?”
Sara nodded at Laura’s words.
“There’s no other way other than us going through the eastern border, but, we cannot pass Adelpho. So, why not we just go through the forest which leads into Zalda kingdom, that way we can avoid the highway”
Sara’s finger traced the map without passing the highway from Aru town, and directly pass through the forest toward Zalda kingdom.
(That’s pretty good. But…)
Although there might be some fault, there’s no obvious disadvantage either, however… Won’t the guys who is blocking the border, be predicting that I would be able to just go through the forest?
In this world, they placed a, they placed a barrier around the highway, so that high-grade monsters won’t be able to cross over. They made it to make it possible for people to be able to move safely on the highway, it was all written in the beginner guide book.
However, it does not necessarily mean that we can only use the highway to come and go either.
If someone has confidence in their ability and have the will that it takes to spend nights inside the forest instead of in the inside a comfortable inn. If someone got that, then going through the forest is also possible.
Looking at the speed at which Princess Sardina had responded to his escape, she didn’t seem to be clueless. Such a person would not be the type to overlook the possibility of someone going through via the forest.
However, after hearing the information earlier, that there seemingly was not many pursuers, he didn’t believe that they would be able to cover the entire forest… So, Sera’s proposal seemed good.
However, if I were being found in the forest, there’s would be no leeway, they would be instantaneously arrested, if not killed.
And though it was an advantage that Ryouma’s face was unknown to them, they had adapted and was beginning to look at everyone who had a build, so even if he went with Sera and Laura he would most likely still be taken into question.
(There’s no chance that I would be overlooked just because I walked alongside Laura and Sara… if that is the case then, there’s no point for us to go together… no, wait a minute…)
Those guys do not know about these two.
As long as they are not walking together with him, they should not be restricted.
Thinking that way, an idea came to Ryouma.
“Sara, Laura… I decide to pass through the forest. However…”
An evil smile surfaced on Ryouma’s face, and a surprised expression spreads over the sisters face.
(Now then, I will teach you who’s the prey and who’s the hunter… Dear princess, this is the moment where the hunter becomes the hunted.)
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