I’ve done it.
This is the worst way to meet again.
The girl holding my drawstring bag is Shura… That means she was looking for me.
Or else she would’ve left my bag somewhere else, like inside an inn where she stay… but she’s holding it while walking outside…
Shura is tightening her right fist.
Shura and the bag Illustration
“I’ve been looking for you since yesterday without sleeping. Not only me but, Carrs, Ignacio, Frederica too.”
“I, see… me too, I was looki――”
“And yet, here you are, dating with a stranger girl. It looked fun… Humm? Humm? Why’re you not saying anything?”
Shura looks very angry.
Her face is laughing, but I’m sure she’s angry.
Layla comes forward and meets Shura.
When Layla sees Shura’s face, her eyes shines and she go to hug her,
Shura’s face is buried in Layla’s chest.
“Yay～! This girl is so cyuute～l! Who? Seal-kun! Introduce her to me! Now!”
Shura tries to resist by moving her legs left and right.
But, Layla keeps hugging Shura not to let her escape.
“Urgh! This girl … what the――!?? “
Shura can’t go away from Layla.
Even if Shura was reacting late and at disadvantage, but that Shura, who has a lot of Red Mana, can’t get out?!
“Um… Layla, can you let her go? She can’t continue her talk…”
“Ah, I’m sorry. I totally like cute beings, so I can’t help it…”
Layla releases Shura.
Shura coughs and sighs,
“Whatever… It’s getting harder to blame you. This, your bag.”
Shura gives me my drawstring bag back.
“You picked it up. Thanks, you’re really a lifesaver.”
“Say that to Ash. That girl picked it up with her Magic.”
“Oh, by the way, I can’t see anyone other than you…”
“Everyone is looking for you in another place. With all their might!”
“… Yeah, it’s my bad, I was wrong. Okay?”
“Hmmph! I’ll join you soon.”
“Ah, wait. Let me check something before that.”
I pick up the drawstring bag and make sure the talismans are safe.
The bag should’ve been wet since it was not covered with Frederica’s Magic… I guess Ash or Frederica had dried it yesterday.
I pick up the talismans with “獅”, “祓” and “死” written on it, check each one for scratches, and put it back in the bag. [TN: The item inside each talisman, “獅” = his spear, “祓”= his dagger and “死”= his ring]
“It seems the sealed things are safe… “
I feel like something similar to murderous intent is emitted nearby.
I immediately move away from the woman on my right as my instinct tells me to do so. And Shura makes a similar move.
We stand side by side and face the girl who is the source of the murderous intent.
A silver-haired girl, Layla, is staring at me with her eyes not laughing at all.
“Lay, La ――?”
Shura disappears from my side. She spins in the air while in a roundhouse kick motion towards Layla.
Shura’s kick go to Layla like a red flash.
But, it’s stopped by Layla’s right arm.
Layla’s expression is distorted. She doesn’t look like damaged at all.
That Shura’s kick… with one arm――
Shura lands in front of me. It seems like she wants to jump once again, so I hurriedly press her shoulder.
“Calm down, idiot! This girl is not an enemy!”
Shura stops moving.
Layla lowers her right arm and stares straight at me.
“Hey, Seal-kun. You, perhaps… have you heard the word, ‘Sealer’? “
What is it…
Why my body trembles…
This girl, she looks dangerous――
“It’s not only I’ve heard it, I’m a Sealer.”
Yep, she’s dangerous.
“Who taught you?”
Layla says with an intonation of an interrogator.
I don’t know why she asked but I answer honestly.
“An old man called, Balha Zetta.”
In an instant, Layla makes a disgusted face.
She opens my eyes and turns off the light from her eyes.
She shakes her shoulders, clenches her fists, and stares at my face from below.
“Ah, I see.”
With the intention of creating a light topic, I take out the envelope in the bag to change the topic.
I want to change this atmosphere.
“Look, I said yesterday, there’s someone I’m looking for. And now, I can tell you the name… “
I look at the front of the envelope and see the name written on it…
―― [“Layla Freiheit”]
“You ―― “
I naturally relax my cheeks.
“So you’re the granddaughter of that Old Man…!”
Why am I this insensitive…
I smelled something nostalgic from her.
And now after I look closely at her face, I can see the image of that Old Man.
“… Yeah, that’s right. I’m the granddaughter of Barha Zetta.”
Why didn’t I notice it until now?
Her hair color and eyes look just like that Old Man.
“Your grandfather, he wrote a letter to you in prison… He wrote it carefully while worrying about what to write… I’m glad I’m able to deliver it….!”
“Yeah, this letter. Take it!”
I give the envelope to Layla. She picks it up and….
―― She tears it in two.
For a moment, I couldn’t understand what just had happened.
“Oi ―― “
Then Layla picks up the letter, tears it again, divides it into four parts, and repeat it again and――
Even though my opponent is a girl, I grab her arm with all my might.
The air burst.
The passersby stop.
Shura, who doesn’t understand the situation, is looking at me and Layla’s faces alternately.
“You… you! Do you know how long does he need to write――!”
“I said to you that I have someone I hate to death, right?”
――『”Hey, Seal-kun. Do you have ‘Someone you hate till die’ ? “』
” Seal-kun. The person I hated the most――is my Grandpa.”
Layla’s words are cold and yet sorrow.
Layla looks at me with cold eyes.
“And at the same time, I can’t forgive the existence of a Sealer.”
The letter which Layla torn into pieces fells from her hand.
“Because that person did a human experiment… because he killed the wife of the Knight Commander… My dream of becoming a knight was torn apart. And I was kicked out of the Imperial City of Magic Academy… That person… that person broke everything.”
Seeing Layla’s lightless eyes, I sense her dark and closed heart for the first time.
“Do you really think he did crimes…!”
“Yeah. He never made an excuse. No matter what I asked, he didn’t answer it… “
I feel like I understand why that Old Man was worried about what to write in the letter so much.
A letter given to a granddaughter in this state――
“Seal-kun. Today, I treated you a lot right. Will you repay the debt?”
“Duel with me. ――”Seal ZETTA”…”
She sees me as a disciple of that person.
“Five days later, duel with me at the beginning of the month, the ‘Tenzaka’ month. And if I win… never call yourself a Sealer and his disciple ever again. “
Layla says in a light tone,
But I can feel anger from it.
“If I win, don’t say that trash name ever again, for eternity.”
I pick up the pieces of letters scattered on the ground, remove the dirt and put all the pieces in my right hand.
“Okay, I’ll do it. Duel… If I lose, I’ll stop being a Sealer.”
Sure she must have had something happened in the past. There must have been an unreasonable past. There must have been a difficult situation.
But still, this letter, the letter written by that Old Man, I couldn’t forgive her for tearing it like this.
――『”Huh, I’m sorry. I just remember that my granddaughter is about the same age as you …” 』
――『””What kind of sentences that can make young girls happy?” 』
I can’t forgive you.
“Instead, if I win――”
I put out my fist holding the letter.
“I’ll have you read this letter…!”
Layla looks straight at me and shakes her lips.
“I, told you before. That You, look like the one I really loved. ――I take it back. You are… much like someone I really hate. “
~ The moon in this world ~
Old way -> New way
July -> Tenzaka
There are some people who still say the month in the old way, there are also people like Layla who say the month with the new way[TN: 天逆 (Tenzaka), which can be translated as ‘Heaven Inverse’ or ‘Heaven’s Rebellion’. I choose to use the Japanese word, because I can’t find any good alternatives in English.]