Chapter 38 Part 3 – Mother’s willpower is an arrow of lightning and her love is my tears. In the midst of despair, where there is nothing I can do but pray, a flying white horse descends along with the moonlight



「…Thank you! I will not let your intentions go to waste! Demon dog Gallam that does not fear the Melvilles’ arrows, I will let you know of the power of human emotions and the one who bears them!!」

Mother’s eyes glistened with tears and she released the arrow with her drawn bow.
The wind blew roaringly.

「…This arrow flies along the flow of the wind and it’s at a speed that would barely be enough for it to not get swallowed up by the wind… It uses the suction power of the wind to accelerate to three times its initial speed…!!」

It was just like what mother said.
The fired arrow steadily accelerated.
Like the poisonous fang that pierced the demon dog Gallam.
Actually, it’s even faster and more explosive!!
It was as if the arrow had grown wings of a falcon.

「The founder of the Melville family was an assassin. He couldn’t walk on the sunny road and his archery skills were only allowed to be named after a snake that crawled on the ground… However, our founder did not lose his pride. Even if it crawls, if it crawls on the sky instead of on the earth, it wouldn’t be a snake but a flashing lightning!! This technique is the pride of our souls, handed down to us by the founder!」

The arrow feathers rubbed against each other, charged with static electricity, and discharged a pale white electricity.
The trajectory of lightning is drawn and the arrow flashed as it flew.

Feeling the danger of the arrow that turned into lightning, the demon dog Gallam tried to avoid it, but it suddenly stopped and stood still.
The two imperial guards that had fallen from their horses were clinging to it.
It smiled terrifyingly while shedding blood from its mouth.

「I won’t let you go, puppy. As a beast, you don’t know any manners. So, we’ll help teach you.
「When it comes to death, the unwritten rule of the imperial guards of the royal family is for one person to drag another to death…!」

The demon dog Gallam, whose legs are blocked, realized that he couldn’t avoid the arrow and gave off an earth-shaking roar.

「…It’s useless. You can’t use a dog’s bark to knock down an arrow that has become lightning.」

Mother muttered.
The arrow clashed against the roar that it gave off.
The air at the collision point between the arrowhead and the vocal force creaked, and lightning burst from the feathers.

「Pierce through!! This is the Melvilles final archery technique…!!」

The match was concluded in an instant.
The arrow that broke through the resistance of the roar exploded the accumulated momentum all at once and accelerated further.

「The technique’s name is… Thunder Crawl!!」

The arrow pierced deeply into the left eye of the demon dog Gallam.
A blue arc erupted.

The demon dog Gallam was barking.
However, even if it shook its head so much that it looked like it’d gone mad, the arrow had pierced so deep that the arrowhead wouldn’t come off.
This meant that the arrowhead had been shot close to the brain and medulla oblongata.
The poison on Melvilles’ arrowhead was so poisonous that even if it only pierced the end of the body, it would be fatal.
There was no way it could be saved.
Blood bubbled out of the demon dog Gallam’s eyes, nose, and mouth.
Even so, the demon dog Gallam did not collapse.

「The poison must have reached it… Why is it still…」

Mother muttered in a daze.
After Bradd finally pulled the boat to the water’s edge, his face went pale, turned around, and yelled.

「Mrs. Cornelia!! Hurry up and get away!! Don’t worry about it anymore!!」

「…Thank goodness!! The paddle is still on the boat!! I’m used to handling small boats!! Leave the maneuvering to me!! Bradd and Madam, quickly get on board now!!」

While holding me with one hand, Mary nimbly jumped onto the boat and hurriedly grabbed the paddle with her other hand.

「Ahh!! I’ll leave it to you, Miss Mary.」

Bradd quickly jumped aboard and received me so that Mary could concentrate on steering the boat with both hands.
But mother didn’t move as she glared at the demon dog Gallam.

「What are you doing!! Mrs. Cornelia!!」

「…I’m not going. That dog seems to have forgotten to die. So I’ll remain as a guard and hold it back here.」

「Don’t be stupid!! That dog is not normal!! It’s moving even though its heart has stopped!! It’s not possible to defeat it!! It’s not an opponent that you can fight against!!」

Bradd had read the demon dog Gallam’s condition through the blood flow and desperately tried to change her mind.
We also eagerly called out to her, but mother quietly shook her head.

「Even if it falls in the pond, we can’t kill it by stopping its heart. Someone has to stay behind as a guard anyway. I understand that it’s reckless. I can’t even stop my hands from trembling so much that it makes me laugh. But you know what?」

Mother smiled.

「Mothers seem to find a lot of courage in front of their children. If Bradd’s mother were here, I’m sure she would have done the same thing I did. So go, Mary…!!」

Mary felt flustered, looked downward, raised her face in tears, and bit her lip.


The boat pulled away from the shore.
Mary’s paddle swung the boat into the current, and it sailed away from the shore with surprising speed.

「No!! Turn it back!! Miss Mary!!」

「I won’t turn it back!! As a mother myself, I know exactly how Madam feels!!」

Mary rejected Bradd’s pleas without a second thought.
Blood dripped from her hand as she grasped the paddle.
Both of us were taken aback.
As she clenched her hand so tightly that her skin broke, Mary endured the torrent of emotions.
There’s no way Mary could remain calm when she had a relationship similar to close friendship with mother.
She was just more mature than we are.
Mother smiled on the shore.

「Thank you, Mary. My only friend. I wish I could have met you sooner.」

Mary choked back a sob, her cheeks messy with tears.

Mother unleashed「Thunder Crawl」again.
Over and over again, the arrows pierced the demon dog Gallam with flashes of lightning.
The wind roared and rumbled.
As the boat swayed in the red pond, we watched, breathless, as mother struggled in the fight.

The demon dog Gallam hasn’t fallen yet, even though it had arrows’ shafts protruding from all over its body.
The two imperial guards were still clinging to its feet and assisted mother in the battle. However, they weren’t moving at all.
I don’t even know whether they are dead or alive, but their hands were still holding onto the legs of the demon dog Gallam and they didn’t let go of it.
Mother gave a silent bow toward them and shot another arrow.

「…You know, Scarlet. I used to stay indoors every day and just tremble inside. I was afraid of strangers and didn’t have the courage to go out. And I hated myself for that. Now that I’ve met you, I can finally… Scarlet… am I doing a good job as your mother now…?」

Mother spoke to me as she released one arrow after another.
The sound of the bowstrings rang out melancholically.

「Owaaaa!! Aooooo!!」
Yes!! There is no one who is as good a mother as you!!
You’re the best mother!!

I wasn’t sure if mother could understand, but I cried as hard as I could.
I knew that my words had reached mother when her mouth curled up in a smile.
After all, we are parent and child.

「I see, I’m glad to know that… I feel like I can finally like myself.」

Mother reached out to the quiver.
We froze.
The arrows had… been used up…!! 

Mother held the last arrow and talked quietly to the demon dog Gallam that still has not fallen.

「…You’re pathetic. No matter how strong or invulnerable you are, you’re all alone. Just like the previous shut-in me. Having that lonely strength with nothing that you want to protect is just like unusable money. I’ll use my strength to protect Scarlet, to protect my daughter. Don’t you envy me? You’ll never know the value of this for eternity.」

The arrow shone with a particularly strong lightning and shot through the demon dog Gallam.
The huge body of the demon dog Gallam shook immensely, but it did not collapse.

「…Oh, that’s a shame. This is the end of it. You were saved by luck.」

Mother gave a small sigh, dropped her bow, and laughed brilliantly.

「But you also know this right. I won the match. You’re supposed to be dead. So, give me some time to say goodbye.」

After she said that, she exposed her back to the demon dog Gallam, stretched out her arms toward us on the boat in the pond, and smiled.
It was as if she was trying to hug me.
That’s why mother threw away her bow…!

「…Scarlet. Thank you for being born to me. I have tasted a mother’s happiness in these past few days with you. So I hope you will be happy this time. You absolutely have to be happy.」

「Mrs. Cornelia!! Don’t give up!! I’m heading there now!!」

「Madam!! Wait!! You can’t give up!! Run away!! Please!!」

Bradd’s facial expression changed and he tried to jump into the murky water.
Mary cried out as she tried to turn the boat toward the shore.
Mother quietly shook her head sideways and held them back.

「I’m fine. I was prepared for death from the beginning. Mary, Bradd, please take care of my daughter… I entrust you both with my most precious treasure.」

Then mother looked at me and spoke.

「Scarlet… My mysterious and lovely daughter… Mother will always watch over you. I wish I could have done so much more for you. I’m sorry for being such a half-baked mother… Goodbye.」

She had a slightly apologetic smile with all the kindness she could muster put into it.
I cried.
Even though she was approaching the end of her life, mother never showed any fear.
She just wanted to tell me how much she loves me….!
She fought for my sake and worried about me till the end…!

Then mother closed her eyelids with a bright expression while still facing us.

「That’s unexpected. You actually waited for me. With this, I’ve finished saying all that I wanted to say. Now then, kill me.」

Right behind her, the open mouth and rows of fangs of the demon dog Gallam closed in.


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