Translator: DarkHeartedAlchemist Editor: Weasalopes
【Episode 2: Heart and Heart, Part 8】
「Hate to break it to you Yugao-chan, but you know why I’m alive even though you ripped my heart from my chest? It’s because my life is connected to Shiinamachi-senpai’s through my Gift. Right now, her life force is sustaining both of us at the same time, and if I die, she dies as well.」
「So what you mean is…」
「Yup, if you take my 『Divine Gift Thanatos』, you will kill not one, but two people.」
「Eh? But that’s… I, I thought Lords can’t die from something like that…」
「Small wonder. Aside from me and senpai, only Shiki knows about it. And I’ll let you in on a little secret too: today is Shiinamachi-senpai’s 「Dangerous Day」. It means that if certain conditions are met, even a Nightkin like her can die like any normal human being. So in order to protect her, I cannot allow you to take my immortality from me, Yugao-chan, so hand my heart over to me.」
Will that be enough to convince her? To be honest, I didn’t want to tell her about senpai’s secret, but if I could resolve this entire matter without resulting to bloodshed, I won’t hesitate to use persuasion, coercion, or even intimidation.
「I heard that you and your sister have… certain circumstances, and I’m guessing they were the reason you want to claim my 「Thanatos」 for yourself, but when you were killing me, you looked like you didn’t want to do it, and that’s why I don’t hold a grudge against you for doing it. I don’t know you very well, but I don’t think someone who looks at people as you did at me back then could be a bad person. So if at all possible, I’d like to close this case without any needless conflict and retain a friendly relationship with you.」
I decide to be honest and upfront with her, without hiding anything. It might be enough, or it might as well be too late for that, but I wanted to try either way.
「Now, when you give me my heart back, let’s go see Shiinamachi-senpai together and explain everything to her. You called her atrocious, but in reality she’s everything but atrocious. She’s very pure and understanding, kinda like the mother figure. When I told her that I know who the killer is this time but I can’t say who exactly, you know what she replied with? 「It’s OK, I trust you.」 so I’m sure she won’t get mad at you for what you did if you just come clean and apologize from the bottom of your heart. So, shall we go, Yugao-chan?」
If that won’t convince her, then I don’t know what will. That was my desperate attempt at both helping senpai and trying to save this girl in front of me, but is it going to work? I still vividly remember how sad senpai was when I died and when I chose to cast my soul aside for her sake, so I wanted to avoid going through all of that again at all cost, but if there’ll be no other way, then so be it. I didn’t know what was Yugao-chan’s reason for doing what she did to me and how prepared to go through with her plan she was, but one thing I knew for certain: there was one more Lord and her Knight in this mansion now, and they were allied with us, so she should be able to understand that killing me for the second time would certainly made her the subject of Fujisato and Kuhoh’s wrath. But something was telling me that even if it meant going two Lords and their Knights, she’s still chose to do it.
「How can I know you’re telling me the truth? There is always a possibility that you’re lying because you’re afraid of dying for real this time.」
「That is indeed one of the possibilities here. But the other is that I’m telling the truth because I don’t want to die and for you to get hurt. If I die here, I know that my friends will be very sad, and you’re probably going to be sad too, Yugao-chan. Heh, it’s funny, you know? The old me would’ve never been able to tell something like that and dismissed it as some irrelevant information not needed for completing the mission that was given to him. Actually, it can be said that I’m functioning like a proper person for around two and a half years. Before that, I was raised and trained to become an assassin, an emotionless killing machine, but thanks to the efforts of various people, Shiinamachi-senpai included, I am here now, in this moment, as myself, and I want to help you from the bottom of my heart. Which is currently in your possession, but… you know what I’m going on about, right? Bottom line is: I don’t want to die, and I don’t want anyone else to die or get hurt here tonight.」
「… So you were telling the truth about this 「Dangerous Day」 ? 」
「Yes. Senpai knew exactly what will happen today, that she might end up dying if things go south, and yet she still chose to come here with all of us in hopes that we will overcome this crisis together and have a fun vacation trip.」
「Is that so…?」
Yugao-chan seemed to be conflicted, her face clouded by doubts and uncertainty.
「Would it be all right for me to ask another question?」
「Go right ahead, I’ll try to answer it to the best of my ability.」
It appears that we’re past the bargaining stage now, so if she still has something she wants to ask, it’s my duty to answer her earnestly. And who knows, if there’s something troubling her and she chooses to share it with me, maybe I’ll be able to legitimately help her with it?
「Back then, at that time, even though I wanted to offer myself to you with everything I had… why did you refuse my advances?」
Yes, you did your best. Even though your voice was shaking with fear and your eyes were wet with tears as you bared your skin before me, you still tried to do what you thought was right. And your determination didn’t waver even when my blood stained your clothes and you had to cut my heart out of my chest. I know that, and I respect that… but my feelings already belong to someone else, and my feelings for her will not falter, even though you were like a beautiful flower blooming in the darkness.
「Everything would’ve been so much easier if you just accepted me.」
Yes, if only I chose to accept your honest feelings.
「At that time, I… well, I don’t know how to put it… maybe it was because of your power, but even without it, I was curious about you, and I wanted to be become friends with both you and your sister. But I felt that if I just accepted your body then and there, I’d end up hurting you, and the person that I care the most about…」
「And that’s why you decided to play around with my feelings, even though my heart and mind were prepared?」
「No, I lack the cunning to do something as skillful as that. I’m the kind of guy who takes things dead serious, so even if you told me that you like me in a joking manner, I’d have thought that you are serious about it.」
After all, even after learning so much from my sister about the world and the common sense of a boy my age, my feelings were still undergoing development.
「Besides, you were so scared and embarrassed. Even though you’d have killed me afterwards, you still looked like you were repulsed by the thought of showing your skin to a guy to some random guy like myself.」
「But I was prepared to do that. You’re right, I was scared, but something was telling me that if it’s you, Monjiro-san, then it’s okay to do it, that even if we went all the way, you still wouldn’t hurt me.」
「I’m flattered that you think so highly of me, but even so, that kind of reasoning is not right. If it was painful for you, then that’s reason enough for me to refuse. You’re cute, and I want to get to know you better, but if we did that in such a way, that would only cause you more pain, and I wouldn’t forgive myself for that.」
I found it more and more difficult to assemble my words into coherent sentences. It is in times like these that I truly regret that I’m not as good with dealing with people as Fujisato.
「So if the circumstances were different, you would’ve accepted my feelings? Accepted all of me?」
She stared at me with the eyes filled with anticipation.
「It’s… It’s not that simple. Don’t take me wrong, Yugao-chan, but we barely know anything about each other, and I’m not a kind of guy who’d just have a one-night stand with a girl. Right now I’m afraid that I wouldn’t be able to accept your feelings properly, but given enough time, if we just could get to know each other better, then I’m sure…」
Yugao-chan was silent the entire time, and I couldn’t see her face in the surrounding darkness, so I had no way of knowing how she reacted to my words, but then…