Criminal and a curse.
Before me stood a man who was awaiting judgment. He handed me a knife… Jasper did, and told me with a smile.
“I have no regrets. Please, kill me.”
How did it turn out like this!?
Time goes back a little. Lumia-san’s wedding was all over. The visitors from Wolfanea are staying a night before returning.
I asked my mother to take Lumia-san and organize a drinking party for the women, while I took Geraldin-san for a talk. The drinking party members were Mother, Martha, Lumia-san, and Miss Butterfly for some reason… they have apparently become friends during the dress-making, so she’s participating too. I can’t drink but I also wanted to join them. It looked fun.
With me was Dirk, Jess, Jasper, Geraldin-san, Rulan, Kou, and Haku. I brought them to a parlor and obstructed the sound from leaking outside with a barrier.
I was reluctant, but I had to do a stare-off.
“Jasper, do you recognize these friends of mine?”
“They are the ones I cursed…”
Jess apparently wasn’t aware of Jasper’s work. Why did you do something like that? His face was obviously asking that.
“You hate that ability of yours, it seems. Whose orders were that?”
“… I can’t tell.”
He smiled happily.
“I am happy. I… met a little brother that accepted me even though he didn’t know me. I have nothing to regret.”
And then we returned to the start. Why did it turn out like this! I don’t know why, but Geraldin-san was also staying out of this.
“You want me to stab you?”
“Are you telling me to commit a crime?”
“N, no! I am the lawbreaker! You are only punishing me.”
“If you die, the room would get dirtied with your blood, and because of the place people would throw up while cleaning, it would be very troublesome.”
“””No, that’s not the problem here, right!”””
Dirk, Jess and Geraldin-san who had no common sense all retorted. Hahaha, I got so startled my head wasn’t working right.
“I see… then, how about a forest?”
“It would be troublesome if there were witnesses.”
“Killing someone seems difficult, huh…”
“In the first place, what would we achieve with your death?”
“Cleaning up your corpse would be troublesome and I wouldn’t feel even a bit satisfied. Rather than that, wouldn’t your sincerity show more if you continued living and making it up to the affected victims? You are just tired of living and want to escape, right? Don’t behave like a spoiled child.”
“… That’s… true, isn’t it?”
Looking at the downhearted Jasper, I threw the knife away.
“Rulan, Haku, Kou, how do you feel about this?”
“Fumu, rather than his death, I would rather see him atoning for his sins.”
Rulan looked amused. He was completely enjoying this. Well, there’s a difference between the perpetrator and the mastermind, so he’s probably not that mad.
“As for mee… I was not angry in the first placee. I was able to meet Rosarin-chann, and I am happy noww… besides, slaves are normally treated like I wass.”
“Me too, I was able to meet Oneechan as a result, so…”
Oi, there. Wait a moment, victims.
“What do you mean that I am the angriest person in here!?”
“On the other hand, those affected seem to be calm ones.”
You seem to be having fun, Rulan! So seeing me so angry makes you so amused, you son of a gun!
“… By the way, what did Jasper really do?”
“The Elven Village nearly perished because of the cursed seed he buried within Yggdrasil. He stabbed a cursed dagger into Kou’s throat, making him go on a rampage and nearly killing himself and the people of the Knights Order in the process. Furthermore, the nearby town was about to be destroyed because of Kou’s rampaging parents. Haku was affected by cursed mushrooms, the Knights Order was… no, if handled poorly, the entire Capital might have been devastated.”
Jess froze in place as the color drained from his face. From the looks of it, it seems that he knew Jasper was sent on a secret mission, but he wasn’t aware of the details?
“I am sorry!”
Jess prostrated himself on the floor.
“Why are you apologizing, Jess?”
“That’s right! You did nothing wrong, Jutiess-sama! The one at fault is… guha!?”
He was being too noisy so I gave Jasper a backfist. Jasper fainted in agony. Jess turned even paler. Dirk nursed Jasper in a nonchalant manner.
“… I am his guardian. He’s like my son. I have a responsibility to take.”
Geraldin-san is 38, Jasper is 17 if I remember correctly, so by being his guardian, he must be an adult at the very least, right?
“How old are you?”
“Twenty plus eight?”
Seriously! A legal shota like the Sage? Which reminds me, Dirk did say that he smelled the scent of an adult Beastman on me during the Country Foundation Festival, didn’t he!
“I see. But for you to apologize… even if he was ordered by someone, it was Jasper who made the choice to do the deed. I won’t say that you have no responsibility, but Geraldin-san is his real father, so when speaking of responsibilities, we should be talking to him.”
“… What should I do? Prostrate on the ground?”
“We won’t achieve anything with you prostrating yourself, Geraldin-san. I will have Jasper receive a matching punishment for the lives he took so lightly. Darkness-sama~”
“Umu. Leave it to me.”
Jasper fell into a deep sleep.
“… What kind of punishment is that?”
“I will have him relive the same experience the victims and us did.”
“I am a Beneficiary. There are people in this world who wanted to live but couldn’t. He seems to have no physical defects, yet his mind seems intoxicated with sorrow, so I am going to let him physically experience what it means to be at the very bottom.”
“That’s plainly harsh.”
Dirk says with a cramped expression.
“Yep. Rin’s memories are especially harsh. Mentally, that is. N? The hell is this?”
A magic circle was floating around Jasper’s neck. It gives off an unpleasant feeling. Jasper started scratching his neck, and was in anguish.
“Forgive me… sorry… I absolutely won’t betray you.”
“Yeaah~ Whoa, what a horrible curse. Are we removing it?”
“I thought curses didn’t work on the Silver Wolves?”
Jess shook his head to my words. So they are not immune.
“So it’s just difficult to be affected, you are not immune. Jasper truly is cursed. Moreover, this is… a suggestion, huh… what a bad personality the mastermind has. Alissa, let’s wait the dispelling out.”
Alissa sat on my lap, and I collected my thoughts. In other words, Jasper is being manipulated. There are several ways a person can be manipulated.
→A method used on slaves. The affected person cannot defy orders. Defiance will be accompanied by severe pain.
→The practitioner manipulates a person that lost their consciousness. They resemble a zombie, so it’s quite scary.
→The basics don’t change, but it’s activated by a specific word. If used for a long time, the user’s will starts being imprinted and the affected’s mind distorted.
“My head hurts…”
What to do? While at my wits’ end, I heard the voice of a person that shouldn’t be here.
“Rosarin… no, Oneechan, please save Oniichan!”
Jend appeared in the parlor. Why? I had not noticed him at all.
“… Since when you were here?”
“While searching for you to ask a favor for Oniichan, Rabisha told me that you will come if I hide here.”
“… I see.”
First of all, I will talk slowly and carefully with Rabisha-chan later.
“Oneechan, I will apologize too! Should I kneel on the ground?”
“You don’t have to! It’s because you are prostrating yourself on the ground that your son wants to do it the wrong way too, Geraldin-san!”
“I want to live with Oniichan. Oneechan, can’t I?”
I looked towards the victims. They nodded. Dirk, stop looking at me as if looking at something heartwarming! Jess was baffled. Geraldin-san, stop looking at me with that look of expectations!
Aahhhhh, geez! I had a feeling this would happen when I suspected Jasper wasn’t a bad guy!!
Jasper who awakened was shedding tears.
“I was wrong. I want to live… I now understand how truly blessed I am.”
“That so? Unfortunately, I have decided to let you die here.”
I took and raised the knife he handed me and swung downward without flinching. His beautiful silver hair fell on the floor.