ALL RIGHTS BELONG TO TAPPEI NAGATSUKI, THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR OF RE:ZERO, THIS IS A TRANSLATION OF THE FREE JAPANESE WEB NOVEL INTO ENGLISH
JAPANESE WEB NOVEL SOURCE: HTTP://NCODE.SYOSETU.COM/N2267BE/194/
THE EVERLASTING COVENANT
Chapter 29 [An Omnivorous Man]
Closing in on the core of what he wanted to know, Subaru tilted his teacup.
Letting the hot tea pass down his throat, he swallowed it along with his doubts for now and settled them into his stomach. Then, seriously considering what he should say next,
[Subaru: To what extent… are you willing to answer my questions?]
[Lewes: ……you may have already noticed my reluctance, but don’t expect too much from me. Because of my contract, there is not much information I can give Su-bo. As for the Trials, I am under strict orders not to allow any outside interference with the Tomb]
[Subaru: The way you said that already gave me a few clues…… strict orders, huh]
Faced with Subaru’s repeated questions, Lewes grew silent.
Judging by her words and behaviors so far, there weren’t many contenders for someone capable of bending her to their will. More than likely, those were Roswaal’s orders, but,
[Subaru: In that case, that guy’s objectives just becomes less and less comprehensible. Does he want me…… want us to pass the Trials? Or doesn’t he? I can’t even be sure whether he’s planning to help us or not]
[Lewes: I guess he was hoping you would find the answer to that yourselves, or something along those lines. Even back in the day, Ros-bo was a naughty little child who loved to do things in these obscure and roundabout ways. He may have gotten taller, but deep down, he hasn’t changed a bit]
Perhaps it was because they’ve known each other for so long, that Lewes could lightheartedly say this of the young Roswaal.
“Hasn’t changed a bit.” Having only gotten to know Roswaal’s perverted side, Subaru couldn’t help but shudder at the thought of what Roswaal might’ve been like back when his limbs were still stubby.
[Subaru: Well, there must still be some cuteness left in there, mnnyeah, probably maybe]
[Lewes: Ros-bo’s childhood…… hm, since they pertain to the secrets of the Mathers family, I’m afraid I cannot divulge anything further]
[Subaru: Uuuogh, but I’m interested…… no, wait, am I interested? I don’t really mind not knowing too much about that guy’s personality, actually]
Crossing his arms and tilting his head, Subaru started to question why he wanted to know in the first place, and,
[Subaru: Alright, let’s toss that one out. I just need to know what that guy’s planning, there’s no need to understand him]
[Lewes: You sure came to that conclusion easily]
[Subaru: There’s no need to worry about things that’re pointless to worry about. Ultimately, humans can’t understand everything from zero to a hundred anyway. But even so, we still want to understand some things, and I guess that’s what love is. I’ll always love Emilia-tan, but I don’t love Roswaal all that much!]
In front of that clear-cut declaration tossing Roswaal aside, Lewes gave an impressed nod, and continuing [In that case], she touched her hand to her chin,
[Lewes: It seems, there is no other topic I can talk to you about……]
[Subaru: Naah, as long as we don’t touch on anything forbidden by Lewes-san’s contracts, my QUESTION-TIME is still ongoing, isn’t it? Nevermind Roswaal’s personality for now, but I still want to ask a few more things from the Sanctuary’s all-knowledgeable granny Lewes-san]
[Lewes: H…mm. Well, if you just wanna ask, that’s fine, go ahead and ask. But, the dire consequences of violating my contract are not limited to myself alone. By no means forget this, understood?]
Bending forward, the little girl glared up threateningly at Subaru.
Honestly, it looked so adorable that it gave off no sense of pressure at all, but Subaru nonetheless hugged his own shoulders pretending to shudder in reaction, and whimpered out [So scary] with tears puddling up in his eyes,
[Subaru: Alright, now that we have the scary aggressor and the frightened victim properly mapped out, it’s question-time now?]
[Lewes: I’m finding it a bit hard to accept the way you made me the villain just now]
[Subaru: As a man once said, that’s that and this is this. So, question now―― You said that Frederica and Garfiel are siblings, and Frederica had stayed inside the Sanctuary, right?]
While Lewes was still a bit unable to accept her treatment, with a feigned smile, Subaru cut directly into the main topic. Seeing her expression change upon hearing his question, Subaru waved a finger,
[Subaru: Frederica, who was supposed to be in the Sanctuary, is now dressed in a maid’s uniform and serving in Roswaal’s Mansion. But, from what I’ve gathered, this situation sounds a bit odd]
[Lewes: Hmm, odd how?]
[Subaru: If Frederica is Garfiel’s sister, then she must be half-blooded as well. Then, being a half-blood, she shouldn’t have been able to leave the Sanctuary for as long as the Barrier is still intact]
The Barrier of the Sanctuary that reacts to the blood of the half-bloods, barring their escape:
It was the thing that struck Emilia unconscious on the way in, that kept Garfiel and Lewes trapped in this place indefinitely, and it was the wall that was currently one of the greatest obstacles standing in Subaru’s path.
After agonizingly trying to find a way to surmount it, there was now an exception who had passed beyond that wall. In other words,
[Subaru: There must be some kind of secret path to leave the Barrier. Or maybe, even the Barrier’s existence is a lie]
[Lewes: A lie…… that would be a bit upsetting. The truth is, in my life up to now, I have never once set foot into the outside world. All this is owing to the existence of the Barrier]
[Subaru: Or, maybe you are being deceived by the contract you’ve been bound to…… such a malicious possibility isn’t entirely out of the question? It could also be that since there’s too much risk involved in actually testing the reality of the Barrier, it just so happens that no one thought to verify it. But then…]
The possibility that all the residents of the Sanctuary had been deceived about the existence of the Barrier.
The Trials inside the Tomb certainly exist, so this should be highly unlikely. Yet Subaru couldn’t completely rule out the possibility that this was some overly elaborate plan to trap the refugees of Arlam and win Emilia renown.
[Subaru: Considering the kind of uproar there’d be if they found out about the truth, it’s just a bit too unrealistic. So the second possibility should be automatically ruled out…… which only leaves us with the first one]
[Lewes: A secret path…… is it. But, what will you do once you have found out the answer?]
[Subaru: If there is a secret path that anyone could use, then we can just move everyone in the Sanctuary outside the Barrier, and there’ll be no need to take the Trials]
Hearing Subaru’s outrageous proposal, Lewes dropped her jaw. Seeing her like this, Subaru waved his hands from side to side, [Right?]
[Subaru: Sure there are benefits to taking the Trials as well. Honestly, having benefitted quite a bit from it myself, I won’t deny that. But, the Trials―― or in this case, the past… it’d be ok to put it off for now, right? There are times when people shouldn’t be forced to face their pasts, don’t you think?]
[Lewes: You are talking about Emilia-sama? But hardships will not choose the right time to pay their visit. Running away now in the face of calamities would only be……]
[Subaru: I don’t mean running away forever. Just retreating in order to better prepare for the fight. That’s what they call a tactical retreat. There are times when we have to fight on unfavorable ground, but moving to more favorable grounds when possible is a good thing for both the person herself and those around her, isn’t it?]
Cutting off Lewes just as she tried to say something, Subaru continued stacking on justifications for running away, insisting that it isn’t always shameful to turn one’s back.
[Subaru: Even if she doesn’t face it now, one day Emilia will face it, no matter what. It may be ironic, but that Trial made her remember. So she must now choose to either forget or to accept it. And all I can do is to somehow make it less painful for her when she decides]
[Lewes: ……You speak of distancing her from suffering, yet you would not let her run away from the single most painful part]
[Subaru: Whether to run away from that part is her choice as well. But I believe that she…… Emilia will not do such a thing]
[Lewes: And what makes you trust her so? At least, it’s impossible for me. To see the way she came out of the Tomb, and still have such expectations of her]
[Subaru: Well, that’s because I love Emilia-tan to death, you know]
As Lewes continued to deny Emilia, Subaru casually said this as if it were nothing.
And though Lewes had already found herself speechless several times throughout this conversation, these last words left her the most awestruck up to this point.
Watching Lewes’ astonished face, Subaru smiled awkwardly, and scratched at his neck.
[Subaru: I love Emilia, and I think she’s super cute. So, I believe that this super-cute girl I fell for is the kind of girl who will overcome anything, no matter how hard or painful it may be. I expect and expect and expect this of her, and I believe that she will meet my expectations]
[Lewes: Th…… that isn’t an answer at all. No matter how much you like someone, there is nothing you can do about what is inside the other person’s heart. Su-bo, surely you know this……]
[Subaru: I do understand. Emilia is a girl. Not all parts of her are strong, and there are super small parts of her that are weak, and there might even be a chance that there’s a super super impossibly small ugly part in there as well]
[Lewes: Are you admitting there is or not……]
[Subaru: If I believe… that in spite of all her weak parts, it will be her strong parts that will shine through in the end… then that’s what devotion is, isn’t it?]
Inscribed into Subaru’s heart, was the belief that devotion was the strongest expression of love. And he had tasted the happiness of being on the receiving end of someone devoting her entire being to him as well. Therefore,
[Subaru: I will do anything for Emilia. I believe she will overcome her weak parts and find the strength to lift up her head, and I will work hard for that future where I get to rub it in everyone’s faces that I was right to believe in her]
[Lewes: ……But even so, she is the one who will be facing the most painful part of her heart, alone]
[Subaru: But that’s obvious, isn’t it? I can’t be at Emilia’s side when she faces her past. If I existed in her past, I’d take her hand while she’s sitting on the ground crying and pull her back up, and do everything I can to cheer her up. But I’m not there. What happened in her past had nothing to do with me. As much as I want to reach out my hand, it’s like someone watching a drama having no way to interfere with what’s happening on TV]
That was the truth. The past was the past, and no one could touch it.
Even the past that Subaru had faced and overcome, was only a fiction. He hadn’t conveyed a single thing to his real parents, and all he had gained was some sense of self-satisfaction.
[Subaru: Compared to getting no bonus at all, it’s definitely better to get at least a little bonus. I can’t help her face her past while I’m stuck in the real world. But, her present-self can lend her own insufficient past-self a hand, couldn’t it? Lending yourself a hand isn’t against the rules, is it?]
[Subaru: Even if I can’t help her directly, I’ll use my words and actions and affection and…… well I’d be really happy if I could have the highest place in Emilia’s heart, but she’s received all sorts of things from other people as well. At least, she has more now than the Emilia of the past. The more weapons she has at her disposal, the more she will be able to help her imperfect past. That’s how we can beat this Trial. The Trial’s difficulty was set based upon this premise, wasn’t it]
Having experienced this first-hand, Subaru could say this again no matter how many times he was asked.
[Subaru: I will help Emilia. I will do everything in my power to help her present-self overcome her past. And in order to achieve that goal, even if it means taking side paths or throwing caution out the window or cheating or paying real money for in-game credits, I will do it. That’s how I intend to help her]
[Lewes: Really…… that sure is a self-centered way to love someone]
[Subaru: I’m no herbivore or carnivore, you can just call me an omnivorous guy――!]
Snapping his fingers and sparkling his teeth with a wink, Subaru stuck up his thumb and struck out a pose.
Watching Subaru abruptly ending his speech like this, Lewes exhaled a long, long sigh as if giving up altogether.
[Lewes: That sure was a lot of pretty words for making an excuse for doing something sneaky]
[Lewes: Gobbledygook. …..I’m sorry, but I cannot tell you the details of the side path. However, I can tell you that it’s impossible to rely on it alone. The way Frederica left the Sanctuary was an exception. The others cannot do the same]
Lewes shook her head and turned down Subaru’s hopes. Subaru’s heart dropping at her words, his shoulders slumping and his knees falling to the floor―― didn’t really happen. Instead,
[Subaru: Oh. Can’t do it huh. I was thinking it’d be a great deal if that could work, but I guess it’s ok. Then, onto the next question……]
[Lewes: This might be a bit funny coming from me, but, you sure don’t like to give up, Su-bo]
I finished my last day of work yesterday!
My plan for this week is to edit and release in the mornings and translate with the afternoons. This way I’ll have more energy to ensure the quality of the releases and also let my brain process the information over a night of sleep.
I will complete Part 2 today and edit/release it about the same time tomorrow!
Also help me find typos and missing words! ❤
Chapter 29 Live Draft: