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/195/
[Subaru: If I gave up that easily, who knows how many times I would’ve had to sit in the Whale’s stomach by now. It’s a bit funny for me to say this too, but never giving up and the DEPTH OF MY LOVE are pretty much the only weapons I have, you know]
Subaru came out and announced his uselessness, and once again, Lewes only stood there stumped just as she had been many times already in the past hour. Subaru had to clap his hands with [Snap out’of it],
[Subaru: Even though I have all sorts of problems with this, I still realize that having Emilia reveal her true powers and smash right through the Trials would be the most epic-heroic way to do it. So, does the VETERAN-TRIALS-CHALLENGER-Lewes-san have some insider advice?]
[Lewes: Why do I get the feeling I’ve just been called something I’d rather not be called… And even if you ask me, I could only tell you that I don’t know. I’ve never taken the Trials, after all, so I couldn’t possibly know the answer to that]
Tilting his head, Subaru let out a stupid groan in front of Lewes’ reply. But surely, just now, he had heard something he couldn’t let slide. After all,
[Subaru: Just now, might you perhaps have just enlightened me with the revelation that you have never taken the Trials?]
[Lewes: What’s with that polite-speak all of a sudden. It’s obvious, isn’t it? I am not allowed to challenge the Trials meant for those from outside the Sanctuary. It’s the same for the others too. At least, in the seventy years I have spent here, I have no knowledge of anyone attempting the Trials. Su-bo was the first]
[Subaru: Nonononoweirdweirdweird. Hold on, pause, wait, something’s weird all the information’s messed up. Please just gimme some time to balance the books in my head for a moment]
[Lewes: You got five minutes]
Gratefully nodding to Lewes’ unexpected patience, Subaru held his fingers to his temples and began desperately calling back his memories.
From the day before yesterday in the previous loop, up to the point when he first came back after passing the Trials, chewing over every minutest detail within his memory over that time,
In those memories, the “Inconsistencies” that shouldn’t have been there, he hadn’t noticed them until now.
His face contorting as he realized this fact, Subaru tried hard to contain the doubtful mutterings under his breath. [What’s going on?] But once the emerging suspicion had sprouted, there was nothing to stop it from taking root and flowering atop its stems.
In Subaru’s memories, Lewes said on the night before the Trials,
――No one had ever taken the Trials up to now. In the span of her entire life up to this point, there had never been a challenger.
In Subaru’s memories, immediately before the Trials, and immediately after, Lewes said,
――She had taken the Trials, failed to pass, but was still kicking around safe and sound, offering it as proof that there was no harm in challenging the Trials.
In the span of a single day, her statements had completely turned on its head.
It’d be a different matter if this was purely in emotional terms, but the contradicting contents pertained to life experiences and reality itself. Such a drastic directional change in information could only be pointing to perjury, or otherwise, a precalculated lie.
Still maintaining his thinking posture, Subaru turned his gaze up toward Lewes, who was playing with her pink hair, waiting. Watching her sitting on the bed, swinging her legs that weren’t long enough to touch the floor, looking as though she was searching for something to distract herself from boredom, one could almost forget that she was a granny at heart and mistake her for a genuine little girl.
Looking back on their interactions up to now, he really didn’t want to believe that she had been maliciously toying with him, but,
[Subaru: Even if some part of it was true, which ones can I believe?]
Usually, when faced with conflicting information, Subaru would just trust the words of those he wanted to trust, but he couldn’t make this judgment so lightly when it was Emilia’s fate resting on his decision. And much less so, considering this was a matter of life and death in the literal sense of the words. He must be cautious.
This was now the third time he and Lewes had discussed the topic of the Trials.
Once, she claimed to have challenged it, and twice, she denied any knowledge of anyone ever having taken it. Though this wasn’t something that could be decided by majority, her statements claiming that she knew nothing of the Trials seemed to be more believable.
Following from that assumption, she may have lied about the Trials to the worried Subaru out of consideration, just to put his mind at ease. But if that was the case, then she should have simply explained that it was a lie――
[Subaru: Unless there was some reason she didn’t do this…… maybe she’s starting to go senile……]
[Lewes: Just now, you seem to have arrived at some rather rude conclusions about me?]
[Subaru: If you could keep in mind my consistent past efforts to demonstrate my good intentions, and let that counterbalance my recent transgression, Subaru will be most grateful. Said Subaru with a stern expression on his face]
Watching Subaru mix his apologizing and clowning together, Lewes sighed, and, muttering [Ayeayeaye…], she tiredly shook her head,
[Lewes: So, did you get any answers out of that conversation with your heart?]
[Subaru: Answers or not, it’s more like I’ve arrived at a conclusion. Um, Lewes-san, did you happen to be worried about me? Like back outside the Tomb?]
Seeing Lewes merely repeating his word like a parrot, Subaru nodded [yeah] and effeminately touched his fingertips together like a girl, and,
[Subaru(girly voice): Y-you once said that you never took the Trials, but outside the Tomb you told me how you took the Trials and failed but it was no big deal, right? B-but you probably just said that because you were worried about me or unless it’s not like that and it’s just me but I just noticed it just now that’s all……]
[Lewes: ――Ahh, so it’s about that]
With a voice carrying an emotion as if having understood, Lewes interjected into Subaru’s cringe-worthy rapid-fire delivery. And, seeing Subaru furrow his brows in astonishment upon hearing the sound of her voice, she smiled, and,
[Lewes: Su-bo, I’ll let you in on something good. Consider it special]
[Subaru: Something good?]
[Lewes: Owing to my contract, I am forbidden to “Lie”. And so, whenever I am asked an inappropriate question, I could only choose to answer with silence. Without exceptions, this could not be changed for anyone’s sake. Lying is forbidden. And this is true for myself, as well as every single one of the residents of the Sanctuary]
[Subaru: You cannot… lie……?]
In front of her sudden confession, Subaru’s only impulse was confusion.
Because, if what Lewes said was true, then the premise of everything Subaru had considered so far would be turned on its head. Or rather, even before that, if what she said was true, then the whole situation that brought about his suspicions in the first place would have been completely self-contradictory.
――If she was incapable of lying, then how was it that she had created a situation that couldn’t have come about unless she lied?
[Lewes: Just now, I have already told the utmost limit of what I could tell you. I cannot answer any questions beyond that. Misery would befall us both if we violate the contract. If you wish to know more, instead of asking this ancient self who had stopped in her tracks, you should ask one of those who had ventured ahead]
Having been preemptively denied, Subaru could only close his opened mouth and fall back into silence.
Subaru had only been able to carry on this conversation by relying on Lewes’ goodwill, so once she had rejected him like this, there was nothing he could do. But she had also given him a hint as well.
By picking up that fact alone, Subaru keenly sensed that she had not been lying about her desire to be liberated from this place.
[Subaru: Understood, I won’t ask any more than that. Let’s change the topic… to something else]
[Lewes: You sure’re an odd one. You already know you can’t get anything else important out of me, and you still wish to drink tea and chat with an old-timer like me?]
[Subaru: I’ve already missed breakfast time, and there’s not much for me to do until Emilia-tan wakes up. I get pissed off just looking at Roswaal, Garfiel bares his fangs at me, and bantering with Otto’s way too exhausting, so I’ll just deepen my precious friendship with my Loli-Granny]
Standing up, Subaru collected the two cups of now thoroughly-cold tea and headed to the kitchen, followed by Lewes’ gaze,
[Subaru: Don’t worry. For a time, even though it was kinda short-term, I made a living as a servant in Roswaal’s Mansion, you know. They’ve taught me a thing or two about brewing tea, at least]
[Lewes: Hm. Then allow me to wait with expectations]
[Subaru: Uwa, PURESSHAー]
Saying this as he poured the tea into the teacups, he handed one to Lewes and returned to his seat. Facing each other, they sipped down the new tea, and,
[Lewes: Not too bad at all]
[Subaru: Even when I brew it myself I still just taste leaves. Now, for the new topic]
[Lewes: I won’t be listening if you want to continue the topic from before. But otherwise…… well, I would still respond to any other topics as earnestly as I could]
[Subaru: Alright, I’ll hold you to your words then]
Seeing a tinge of guilt forming on Lewes’ little face, Subaru’s lips twisted into a mischievous smile.
[Subaru: Do you know anything that bastard Garfiel’s scared of, or any stuff he hates? Like something that’ll make him faint soon as he sees them?]
[Lewes: Su-bo… have you ever noticed the way you try so hard is a little crooked?]
And, with that, he managed to put onto Lewes’ face the single most peculiar expression of the entire past hour.
※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※
After their conversation over tea came to an end, having cleaned up the cups, Subaru left the lonely Loli-Granny who claimed she wanted to be alone and came out of the house.
About an hour had passed, or perhaps a little longer, he thought. But, seeing that the sun that was supposed to have only just risen now hanging high up in the sky, and feeling that the temperature had grown warmer as well, it could easily have been longer than that.
Judging from bodily sensations alone, it was probably a little after 10am.
[Subaru: It’s a perfect sunny day for drying out a futon too, what a waste…… why do I get the feeling I’ve completely shed being a hikikomori with that thought just now!]
To think, that bathed under the light of the Sun, the first thing that came to his mind was doing laundry. As an archetype of the unhealthy slackers, this was utterly inconceivable. But, setting aside such sentiments for now,
[Subaru: It’s about time, Emilia should be waking up soon. She’s probably still scared from last night… I better take the chance to imprint some of my sense of presence while she’s weak]
Even while muttering this rather devious declaration, deep down, he genuinely worried about Emilia as he sped up his steps.
As soon as he could, and for as long as he could, he will stay at her side and comfort her.
Because, one way or another――
[Subaru: Tomorrow, I’ll have no choice but to leave her side]
This afternoon, Roswaal will formally put forth the proposal to free the refugees of Arlam. Then, if they begin preparations right away, they would be able to depart from the Sanctuary tomorrow.
Subaru will accompany them once again, for there was something he’d have to take care of at the Mansion.
[Subaru: If I want to know more, instead of asking someone who had halted their steps, I should be asking someone who had ventured ahead…… geez, that sure was a roundabout way to say it]
Of course, without saying it in this roundabout way, she wouldn’t have been able to convey what she wanted to convey.
Somewhat pitying her for having to go through all this trouble, Subaru let out a sigh, and sped up his steps once more,
[Subaru: I’ll be eagerly waiting to hear your stories about your good-for-nothing little brother and your troublesome hometown, Frederica!]
-=Chapter 29 End=-
Let me know if you find any missing words T_T!
After starting off Chapter 30 I’ll take some time to work on Arc 6 Ch 34 today!
Chapter 30 Live Draft: