Chapter 28: In a strange place (Part 2)
Was it a dream?
Ren opens his eyes and thinks half-asleep.
(Could that be Ren and the lady in the …… game ……?)
I felt as if I had been shown an event in a world line I didn’t know, and this expectation unexpectedly flashed through my mind.
But I don’t know.
Assuming that it really was a story that was never told in the game, why did I suddenly see it?
Moreover, by the looks of it, I feel uncomfortable with the flow of Ren killing Saint Licia.
If the events of that world line were true, it wouldn’t be hard to understand if Ren’s murderous act was motivated by his hatred for the Clausel family and his desire for revenge.
But that wasn’t the case.
I can’t rule out the possibility that Ren in another world line would cool down after that and decide to take revenge on the Clausel family, but from the looks of it, I don’t think that line is very likely.
After all, I couldn’t find the answer even if I thought about it. ……
So I worked hard to understand the current situation.
The first thing he perceived was a musty smell mixed with the scent of trees.
Next, he felt an unpleasant shaking throughout his body and soon the sound of creaking wood reached his ears and he also heard the sound of something being stepped on.
It had been too dark to see clearly, but when I squinted and looked around, I realized that I was lying in a space reminiscent of an old hut.
(Where am I?)
I could tell from the light coming through the walls that it was daytime, but I couldn’t make out anything else.
But when I heard the sound of labored breathing coming from next door, I turned my head to look.
This is when I realized that my hands and feet were bound.
And when I saw the person who was at the end of my sight, I finally understood everything.
I don’t remember anything since I was put to sleep by the Demon beast master.
In other words, we must be in the process of being taken somewhere since then.
“Huh …… huh …… huh …….”
“Young lady, it’s me! Ren Ashton!”
Licia doesn’t answer when I speak to her.
She could only let out a pained exhale at one point and let the large beads of sweat on her forehead trickle down her cheeks.
“I’m surprised you’re awake.”
Suddenly, a voice came from outside this space.
It was the voice of the beast master I had heard in the mansion.
“You slept well, didn’t you? Four days of sleep should be enough.”
If he slept that long, they must have come a long way from the village.
“Ren Ashton. If you stay quiet, you’ll be safe. Don’t think about anything else, just bear with it for a few more days.”
“What about the young lady —- what’s going to happen to the girl?”
“Fufu, you’re clever, aren’t you? You think I don’t know who Licia Clausel is, and you’re reiterating it to avoid revealing her true identity.”
Ren’s brow furrowed at the fact that he knew what he was thinking.
“Answer me. Is the young lady safe?”
It’s not that he was reopening the matter.
The only thing is that he couldn’t ignore the fact that the beast master might have done something to Licia, so he asked again, this time in a stronger tone of voice.
“Of course. fuhaha, but can you trust me to answer that she’s safe?”
“……. that is.”
“But don’t worry. I don’t lie.”
The Demon beast master said with a smile.
“It’s just that I didn’t plan for her to be ill in the first place. If I can get medicine along the way, I’ll administer it.”
Licia’s illness is not life-threatening on its own, but complications could lead to death.
Weiss had mentioned this before.
Licia’s condition was worse than when she was at the mansion.
It was probably due to this poor environment.
(We must have been put in a carriage.)
It was only natural for her condition to deteriorate in an environment that smelled of mold and allowed little sunlight to penetrate.
In addition to administering the medication as soon as possible, we need to make it easier for Licia to rest.
“I had taken care of the two of you by giving you potions until today. You should be thankful for that.”
“Now……I’m short of things to say…….”
“…… huh ……a…….”
Next to Ren, who is on the verge of rage, Licia continues to let out a pained breath.
For her sake, I can’t keep this quiet.
(I wouldn’t trust their word if they could get the drugs.)
I had no intention of trusting the man who attacked the mansion and took the lives of the knights.
So, I had to escape.
Licia would be in danger if we didn’t escape from the demon beast master and somehow get the medicine.
But Ren had never left his village before.
And if they had been on a horse-drawn wagon for the past four days, he didn’t know what would happen even if he could escape from their assailant.
Since he didn’t know the area, he might die in the open somewhere.
But even so…
(There is no way I would abandon her.)
It seemed that if I kept quiet, I would be assured of my own safety, but I wasn’t ready to accept that.
Even if Licia lost her life in the future, and it was confirmed that the same future as the legend of the seven heroes wouldn’t come, I was sure that I would regret if I abandoned her here.
(I don’t have my magic sword.)
It was still summoned, so it seems the Demon beast user hid it somewhere.
But it doesn’t matter to Ren. The magic sword just needs to be re-summoned.
“That’s right. Keep quiet.”
“Don’t talk to me. Your voice makes me sick.”
”Ha-ha-ha! I’m sorry about that.”
Ren didn’t want to run away right now.
The best way to do this is to escape when the demon beast user was asleep.
If I don’t increase the probability of success as much as possible, I don’t know what will happen to the lives of not only me but also Licia, who’s not considered to be very important, in the event of failure.
(I feel like an idiot for planning to flee at night in a place I don’t know the lay of the land.)
But it seemed better that way.
I thought about yelling out somewhere crowded, but that wouldn’t necessarily get anyone to help me.
After all, the only person I could trust was myself.
It has been a while since the light stopped shining through the gaps in the timber.
(Is it night already?)
After waking up and realizing that the first night had come, Ren suddenly noticed that the carriage had stopped.
“By the way, what if I yell out and call for help?”
“It would only end in vain. Only I can hear the sound from inside. I’ve got that kind of magic equipment set up.”
That’s convenient. Ren sighed.
From next door, he could hear the sound of Licia’s labored breathing.
The pain seemed to be getting worse than during the day.
This shouldn’t be the worst possible outcome.
“Speed up the carriage.”
“It’s night already. Sleep today and we’ll search the village again tomorrow.”
The carriage shook as the beast master stood up after saying this mercilessly.
He had been sitting in the coachman’s place, but when he stood up, he went to the side of the carriage, unlocked it, and opened the door.
Ren, who was at the end of it, was thrown food by the beast master.
It was dry meat, bread and water in a leather bag.
“Feed them to your precious lady.”
As soon as he finished saying this, the door was quickly closed.
Ren crawled inside the carriage and emptied the leather canteen.
With it in his mouth, he brought it to Licia’s mouth and dripped some water and she began to drink a little.
After a while, Ren dripped the water onto a piece of dry bread and let it soak.
Immediately apologizing, he put the softened bread between his lips and gently placed it on Licia’s lips.
It looked a little hard to eat, but Licia chewed a few bites while being snarled.
(She won’t even stand it for a few more days like this.)
Licia, and even Ren, would lose strength.
If they were going to escape, they had to move before that.
(It has to be tonight. I can’t afford to wait and see what happens.)
Once I’d made up my mind, I felt strangely calm.
Perhaps because I was prepared for this to be the only way, I was surprisingly calm and didn’t let fear take control of my body.
—- Soon, I began to faintly hear the sleeping breaths of the beast master.
In the same way, I can even hear the Maneater’s breathing from outside.
(I have no choice but to do it.)
But I must not think of defeating the beast master.
The goal is to escape, to get away from this place.
There’s no other way but to do so, since there is a D-rank equivalent Maneater.
“My lady, will you entrust your life to me?”
I said to Licia in a whisper, and I felt the edges of her lips part a little.
Seeing this, Ren takes a deep breath—-.
Before he knew it, his heart was beating loudly and repeatedly.
Knowing that he was nervous without realizing it, ‘don’t weaken now!’ He told himself strongly to boost his confidence.
(Let’s go, Ren —-!)
He said the words less loudly than the sound of leaves rubbing against each other, and re-summoned the iron magic sword.
With a thud, it fell onto the wagon and he rubbed the chains that bound his arm against it. It was a metal chain, but the iron sword cut through it without any difficulty.
Ren broke the chains binding his legs, and then the chains binding Licia.