Translator: Kurehashi Aiko
Lucius turned towards that man with expectations in his eyes, but since that man didn’t even look at him or say anything, I decided to do that for him, only after letting out a deep sigh.
「You see, Edi is not really all that fond of sweets to begin with.」
Even though that man did not answer to my words as well, he knew that I was right on the money. I giggled to myself when I realized that.
「In that case, umm, could you please give me the tart one?」
「Coming right up. You can eat it right away or take it back with you to serve it during tea time.」
「Right! Sorry for the trouble.」
「Oh, it’s nothing. Say, Lucius-sama?」
「Yes. Nii-san is just as kind as I remember him to be.」
Then, while Lucius was smiling at him with his eyes sparkling bright, that man took the paper bag from me to carry it. It was certainly an unexpected gesture coming from him, one that made me laugh ever so slightly in reaction. Lucius also looked at the man and laughed shortly. I could feel that deep under the hood, that man’s brows frowned more and more.
I guess only someone like Lucius could actually mistake that man’s selfish behavior for “kind”. Even that man couldn’t believe it, for he looked to be more at a loss for words than usual.
If he indeed went back home with Lucius, would they be able to have exchanges as natural as this one? One thing’s for sure, if they were seen together, they would be so beautiful that all the women would be jealous of them. I don’t think it’s such a bad idea, but having to endure the jealous stares of women is not that easy of a thing to do.
I have no doubt that it was Lucius’s sincere intention to get back to their homeland together with that man. And I do believe that this intention is still burning true inside of him. I want to believe that his intentions are sincere, but ultimately the decision falls onto that man and no one else. Even though I’ve known him for so long, and even though I want to believe that he’ll do what is right, I don’t want to oppose his wishes or hold him back. Whatever happens from now on, I want to believe that it will be the right decision.
「Ahh, Nii-san! What is this!?」
While I was thinking about that, Lucius took hold of that man’s arm and started to pull him somewhere that got his attention. They may be wearing cloaks and hoods, but there was no doubt that they were brothers alright. Seeing scenes like that made it hard to think bad of him. I don’t want his feelings to be hurt.
Now then, where could Lucius have possibly drag that man? It was the stall with lots and lots of small shiny stones, each shining with a unique color and possessing different shapes. All of them nicely displayed on a velvet cloth.
Right now Lucius’s eyes were shining as brightly as the stones on display, and he looked at that man with fascination.
「They are so beautiful! I didn’t know that you could find gems so pretty outside of Negroland!」
「…… Those aren’t mere jewels. They are Magical Orbs.」
The man said and corrected Lucius on his assumption, which in turn caused his eyes to shine even brighter than before. Magical Orbs are the spheres made out of crystal or precious stones which are then implemented with magical talismans or raw magical power, giving them some sort of magic abilities. Although they can differ in purpose, power and rarity, the orbs themselves are not all that rare of a thing. Truth to be told, it is one of the most popular souvenirs from the capital that one could get.
However, for someone like Lucius, who comes from the country where military is of more use than magic, it must have been pretty astonishing of a sight.
「Umm, think we could buy one of those? Mother’s birthday is coming up, so……」
He then looked that man in the eyes with an expression that said: “I’m sure she’s going to like it.” There was nothing more that needed to be said. However, seeing as that man, who was a specialist in magic, did not look so eager about the idea, he hung his head after a while, looking just like a puppy that just got scolded for no apparent reason. Just looking at him right now was enough to make you feel sad.
「Edi, since the opportunity presented itself, why don’t you pick something? Come on, I’ll hold the bag for you.」
I called out to the man just like that and before he could do anything more but to glare at me, I took the paper bag from his hands and urged him to go ahead. I know that he’s stubborn by nature, but I wasn’t going to let that get in the way of his relations with Lucius. It wasn’t for Lucius’s sake now, but rather for that man’s, so that his horizons may broaden, even if only for a little bit.
The man kept on looking at me for a while, before he eventually sighed with resignation and turned towards Lucius.
「…… Which one do you think would be the best?」
Reluctant at first, the man started to browse through the orbs together with Lucius, after he said that it would probably make their mother happy if he was the one to pick something that he think is the best. No surprise there, but this scene must have felt really nostalgic for both of them.
All the while the shopkeeper, who looked like an old mage, was listening in to their exchange with a slight smile on his lips. In his eyes these two must have looked like a typical brothers pair, with the younger one seeking the attention of the older one. As to not ruin that moment for them, I took a step away and leaned against the wall of the nearby building.
Since they were picking out a present for their mother, it took them quite a while to find the picks that would be good, backed up by a whole lot of questions and deliberation. It was necessary for me to back away from this and let the two of them handle that problem, all for the sake of their bonding as family. Even if it was going to be a little bit, I wanted that man to have that for himself, since it would certainly be good for him.
It is probably because of that that I didn’t realize that someone was approaching me from behind.
In just a single moment, the small handbag I had on my shoulder was snatched away from me. The paper bag fell from my hands and the apples rolled on the ground. I managed to support myself against the wall as to prevent myself from losing balance and falling down, and I could catch a glimpse of the thief that tried to dash forward and disappear amongst the crowd of people.
A snatcher. Almost immiediately after realizing that, I could feel something unpleasant starting to form at my heat, and gradually climbing its way all the way towards my brain. Before I realized it, the memory of that “day”, the day of my death back in my onw world started to replay right before my eyes.
Noticing that something was wrong, both that man and Lucius backed away from the magical orbs store and came to my side.
「Filmina, calm down! What happened? Are you alright?」
The man comes to me and looks at my face. By being able to hear his voice and look into his eyes, I was gradually able to calm myself down.
「I, I’m fine. It was…… It was nothing……」
Hearing my still trembling voice, the man looked away from me and glared in the direction where the snatcher went. Even despite the bustling crowd he was able to locate him and once his gaze locked on him, his glare became even sharper than before. Just then, the snatcher lost his balance and fell right onto the cobblestone ground. Next the cobblestone surrounding the snatcher started to shake and move slowly, surrounding his feet and hands and making it impossible for him to get up or try to escape. If it wasn’t for Lucius who shook that man’s arm, who knows what would have happened to the snatcher.
「Nii-san, please take of Filmina-neesan for a moment!」
Lucius took his cloak off and ran towards the snatcher, moving dexterously through the crowd of people. The snatcher managed to break himself free with great effort but before he could run away Lucius got to him and mounted him. The snatcher tried to break free once more, but this time around he was unable to do that.
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