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/197/
THE EVERLASTING COVENANT
Chapter 31 [Maid・Maid・Maid]
――For Subaru, this would be the second time returning to Roswaal’s Mansion from the Sanctuary.
[Subaru: Although it was just a painful experience the first time……]
Subaru scratched his cheeks mumbling this, and jumped down from Patrasche’s back outside the gate.
After bidding farewell to Lewes, Subaru and the refugees returned to Arlam village safe and sound. Although, since they had already done so in the last loop, and having his trusted Patrasche to guide the way, there was nothing he had to worry about.
[Subaru: The villagers are rejoicing, and Otto’s staying behind in the village like last time. I was originally hoping to bring Otto along as a meat shield though……]
Actually, Subaru hesitated about dragging Otto along to the mansion. After all, there was a good chance it could get genuinely dangerous, and bringing Otto, who doesn’t last well in intense situations, along probably wasn’t a good idea.
In terms of a straight-up brawl, Subaru couldn’t win against Otto, but Otto wasn’t exactly a god-like martial artist. Subaru wasn’t particularly looking forward to seeing his organs in front of the Bowel Hunter.
[Subaru: I hope nothing happened……]
Last time, Subaru returned to the Mansion six days after the beginning of the Trials. This time, it was three. ――Compared to before, he still had three days of leeway.
Presumably, the Mansion was attacked on the same night Subaru was killed. Taking all the factors into consideration, that much should be certain. The problem was,
[Subaru: Three days left…… in other words, I’d have to get the information out of Frederica and head back to the Sanctuary, fix the problems in the Sanctuary, and then force march back to the Mansion with Garfiel. Just looking at time alone, it’s not impossible, but……]
There were tremendous hurdles to overcome before he could turn these empty theories to reality.
It takes 8 hours just to clear the one-way route from the Sanctuary to the Mansion. Going back and forth once would already take up almost a day in travel time. Counting the loss of time in between as well, the amount of usable time available to Subaru becomes all the more severe.
[Subaru: There are backup plans for solving the problem as well…… If I choose the optimal plan, it will be an arduous route even in the most optimistic cases…… ]
Knowing ahead of time when Elsa will attack, the optimal solution for Subaru would be to repel the assassin. This way, they wouldn’t need to be constantly looking over their shoulders and be frightened by every shadow. In other words, he was hoping for complete victory, if possible.
To accomplish this, they must exceed Elsa in combat strength, which would require having either Roswaal or Garfiel. But at the moment, the likelihood of bringing either of them back to the Mansion was not looking high.
[Subaru: So in the end, there’s no choice but to go for the second-best option…… huh]
While Subaru was muttering this despondently and scratching at his head, Patrasche brought her nose over. Smiling awkwardly at the face of the ground dragon that was nudging against his shoulder, Subaru rubbed his palm over her hard scaly skin, and patted her on the head,
[Subaru: The rewards match the risks, but we aren’t ready to bring nearly enough winning chances to counterbalance the risk. Which pretty much just leaves us with the turn tail and run and scatter like a bunch of baby spiders battle-plan]
At the time of his battle with the Witch Cult, this was a conclusion that had crossed his mind.
But while this was possible due to the number of pieces he had last time, this time, there weren’t as many hands he could play. Even with prior knowledge of the incoming attack, he would be more than satisfied if they could just manage to escape.
But, there were problems with that as well.
[Subaru: Everyone in the Mansion. Rem, Petra, Frederica…… and Beako, I don’t know if they’ll all cooperate with evacuation. Honestly, if I just piggyback Rem and hold Petra’s hand I’ll be able to bring them along, but I’ll probably break a few bones before I could convince the other two]
Of course, if it ever comes down to it, he would drag everyone into the dragon carriage by force and abduct them away if he had to. He didn’t think he’d be able to beat them in a fight, but if he kept yanking on their arms and wouldn’t let go, he might just manage it somehow. No, he definitely will.
Exhaling a small sigh, Subaru felt the weight of the responsibility on his shoulders.
How many people’s fates were resting on his words, his actions, and his resolve. On the night before the battle with the White Whale, he had felt this way as well.
[Subaru: It won’t do any good to procrastinate outside the gates forever. I still don’t know if anything happened inside. Better make sure everyone’s fine first……]
[???: And after that?]
[Subaru: After that, I’ll think about how to persuade them. Oh yeah, I got it, since they won’t know anyway, I’ll just lie and tell them that it’s Roswaal’s instructions or something……]
[???: Woaa. You’re so bad~, Subaru]
[Subaru: Just call me DIRTYWILD, I’m still at an age to aspire towards this kind of bad-boy image, you know…… wh]
In the middle of his sentence, Subaru heard the sound of giggling coming from behind and turned around. And, in the Mansion’s front gardens on the other side of the gate, there was a little maid―― the familiar little girl, Petra, standing there.
In front of the surprised-looking Subaru raising his brows, she shook her chestnut-colored hair and adorably tilted her head,
[Petra: Welcome back, Subaru-sama. Your return has come earlier than I thought]
[Subaru: Yeah, I’m back…… looks like I just caught a glimpse of the results of Frederica’s education for the gifted. Thanks for the reception]
At the sight of Petra picking up the hems of her skirt in a curtsy, Subaru loosened his cheeks in relief, before softly pushing open the gate and stepping inside. As he went on leading Patrasche toward the ground dragon stables, Subaru looked down at Petra walking alongside him.
Seeing Subaru looking at her, she made a strange expression and hurriedly turned her back and began cleaning up her hair and smoothing out her dress. After she seemed satisfied with all that, [O-K], she turned back to Subaru with a nod,
[Petra: What is it, Subaru-sama?]
And, with a smile even more radiant than before, she showed him her adorable smile.
Merging the cuteness of a little girl, and a promise of future beauty, it was a smile that, in spite of its youth, carried a fiendish power to abduct the hearts of the opposite sex.
It was a perfect smile calculated with a complete understanding of how it would be perceived by others. Presented with such a smile, Subaru had to suck in a bit of air,
[Subaru: Aaaahhh, that! Isn’t that just way too adorable, youuu!]
[Petra: Wa, waaah!?]
Completely oblivious to her underlying intentions, Subaru wrapped the little girl in a hug as if that was the reaction she requested and started affectionately rubbing her head with a variety of complex petting techniques without any regard for restraint. Petra squeaked out a confused cry at the sudden action, but,
[Subaru: You don’t even know half of what I’m feeling right now. Youuu, youuu! Aaahhh, damn I’m so happy to see you again!!]
[Petra: Wha what, what’s going on!? Wah, wait, Subaru…… it’s too early for me to……]
[Subaru: Really, I’m so glad……]
Her face all blushing, struggling in his arms, Petra’s expression changed. She settled in his arms, and looked up at Subaru who had lowered his voice, and, gradually, the at-once embarrassed and delighted expression disappeared from her face.
[Petra: Are you, hurting somewhere……?]
Worried, she extended out a finger and touched his trembling cheeks. Then, a palm pressed against her fingers, and with [I’m alright], Subaru shook his head.
He inhaled a deep breath through his nostrils, and paused for a second. And then, opening his eyes once more,
[Subaru: I’m just seriously, from the bottom of my heart, relieved. ――I’m home, Petra]
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(Thumbnail image from @Rezero_official Twitter)
I’ll be working on Arc 6 for the rest of today
Part 2/3 will be out tomorrow!
Chapter 31 Live Draft: