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I’ve changed the style back to the previous one.-Rinkage
Chapter 07: I listened to the mermaid’s story (part 3)
“…They had probably planned to attack after we examined these boxes. If we had cut down the mermaid earlier, the truth would never come to light.” [Raven]
Raven gnashed his teeth in frustration as he realized that he had almost caused the mission to remain unsolved.
“Unforgivable. I’m not sure how well this scheme works, but that perpetrator would’ve been able to get off scot-free while pinning the crime on Shike-chan.” [Youki]
Both Happiness and I were indignant, but Raven’s emotions were all over the place.
“…Youki, it’s been quite some time since we got here, right?” [Raven]
“Yes, that’s right.” [Youki]
We had to get the information out of Shike-chan, inspect those boxes, and it took a fair amount of time to piece together the clues as well.
“…If what Happiness heard from that mermaid is true, the culprit should be making their way here now, right?” [Raven]
I secretly enhanced my sense of smell to detect if there was anyone nearby, and undoubtedly, I picked up the scent of five individuals, who were drawing close to us.
“…They coming?” [Happiness]
Aside from my subordinates and Cecilia, I had kept this ability of mine a secret from everyone else. However, despite knowing so, Happiness still tried to confirm it with me in Raven’s presence.
“Why are you asking me?” [Youki]
I couldn’t give any rash response before Raven, so I dodged the question.
“…No, I’m certain that they will come. Once they notice that we are still all right, they will probably say ‘We’re worried, so we came to see how you’re doing.’ Or something along those lines.” [Raven]
Raven reached for the hilt of his sword, and slowly made his way towards where we came from just now. This was where the bandits would be coming from as well. As I looked at him from behind, I could feel a strong murderous intent. It sent chills down my spine as it exuded from him, even from behind. I had never seen him behaving like this before. Despite having fought against him many times before at the Demon Lord’s Castle, he had never released such a strong bloodlust.
“Yeah, seems like it.” [Youki]
By the looks of it, there wasn’t going to be any opportunity for the two of us to take action. After Raven made his way to the centre of the clearing, he halted his steps, apparently deciding to wait for the bandits there.
“U-umm…are you going to help Misaki and me?” [Shike]
All of a sudden, I could hear Shike-chan’s quivering voice.
Strange. We should have walked quite a distance away from the cove where we had spoken earlier. However, when I turned around, Shike-chan could be seen peeking her head out from behind a nearby rock.
“Eh, how did…” [Youki]
“Ah, mermaids can change their tails into legs… But we can’t walk for too long, and we won’t be able to sing either.” [Shike]
Probably because she noticed my confusion, she explained it to me.
If a mermaid couldn’t sing, does that mean they lose the capability to fight as well?
“Then you can’t run away either?” [Youki]
“Yes, mermaids can’t fight on land.” [Shike]
“I see. By the way, when you transformed, does a… pants or- ugh–!” [Youki]
Happiness gave me a jab in the stomach. It was probably an indirect message from her that I shouldn’t be asking such a vulgar question, and as attestation to that, she threw me a look, as if she was looking at a piece of garbage. Shike-chan, on the other hand, couldn’t grasp what I had said, so she merely tilted her head in wonder.
“W-Well, Raven will also help you, so you don’t have to worry a thing.” [Youki]
I pointed at Raven, who was standing still at the centre of the clearing. Since Shike-chan had almost gotten her head sliced off by Raven when he pointed his sword at her a while ago, I had expected that she would have some sort of trauma. However, my speculation seemed to be off.
“I-Is it true? I-I must give him my thanks…” [Shike]
Raven was emitting an aura that was figuratively screaming, “Do not come near me!” Even so, Shike-chan still tried to approach him, probably because she did not pay it any mind. However, if my ‘vulgar conjecture’ earlier was not off the mark, it was clear that she should remain hidden behind the rock. Happiness, who seemed to have read my thoughts, quickly blocked off my view, but I looked away, as a defence, to make it clear to her that I did not see anything.
While we were having such a nonchalant exchange, Raven was still in the same position, not moving a muscle.
“…I can hear those bandits talking. Sorry, but I hope you two can leave this to me. I want to handle them my own way.” [Raven]
It would seem that he wanted to us to stay out of this fight. Was he feeling guilty because he had first suspected Shike-chan? Or was there another reason for this?