(Thank You Roanz, Kizarat, Nero, Vimal, Chris, Soriosh, H-X, Aaron, Baegislash, Rodolfo, Ahbahl, Jean-Loup, Jake for helping me with proofreading on the Live Draft! <3)
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/219/
THE EVERLASTING COVENANT
Chapter 53 [Mounting Questions]
After leaving the Tomb and returning to the Sanctuary, their discussion continued in Lewes’ house.
In terms of content, there was almost no difference from the previous loops: Emilia announced that she had failed her Trial and that she intended to keep trying.
Beyond that, Emilia didn’t give any more details, and, noticing this, Ram dismissed the meeting on account of Emilia’s health.
Going through the night’s events in their minds, they each left for their respective lodgings, until the only ones left in the room were Emilia, Subaru, and Ram.
[Ram: Ram will now help Emilia-sama retire for the night, but it seems a Barusu hasn’t realized that he’s overstayed his welcome]
[Subaru: Thanks for the non-roundabout way of telling me. Considering Emilia’s condition, I guess I should leave you to it…… but, I just want to have a minute. Can I be alone with Emilia for a bit?]
[Subaru: You’re the one who immediately thought of it like that!]
He vehemently objected to Ram’s look of disdain, but the pink-haired maid only pretended not to hear anything. Then, she looked to Emilia, who was sitting on the bed,
[Ram: What do you think, Emilia-sama? If you do not wish to hear Barusu’s rubbish, Ram will dispose of him straight away]
[Subaru: What do you know? How can the gentle, kind-hearted Emilia-tan possibly reject me, right?]
[Emilia: I’m reeeaally tired tonight, if Subaru wants to chat about all sorts of voluminous topics like usual, then we’d better not……]
[Subaru: Haven’t heard anyone say “voluminous” in a while. ……Besides, I’m not in the mood for that either. I’ll leave seducing Emilia-tan for another time. I just wanted to talk about the Tomb for a bit]
Despite this usual exchange between them, Emilia still looked uneasy. But, hearing Subaru bring up the topic of the Trials, Emilia closed her eyes for a moment before turning her violet pupils to Ram with [Sorry], signaling her to leave the room.
Silently obeying her instruction, Ram bowed and headed for the door. And as she passed by Subaru’s side, she quietly whispered――
[Ram: Please refrain from any topics that might overburden Emilia-sama]
――Issuing this severe command lest he should forget.
With the sound of the bedroom door closing, only Subaru and Emilia were left in the room.
On the bed, Emilia looked up at Subaru with an earnest gaze in her eyes, and Subaru lightly shrugged,
[Subaru: I barely had a chance to check while inside the Tomb, but are you really feeling alright? Considering the way I found you, I’m still really worried]
[Emilia: It’s, alright. Mn, thanks. But really, I don’t feel anything strange with my body or mind. Besides, if there’s anything to worry about, I should be more worried about Subaru, you know?]
[Subaru: W-why’s that?]
[Emilia: There’s no “w-why” anything. Subaru.. even though I’m glad you came to find me in the Tomb when I didn’t come back, something also happened to you in there, right? Ram said it had been almost thirty minutes after you went in when you came out with me again]
In front of Emilia’s reproachful gaze, Subaru poked out his tongue in his mind.
Despite trying to throw her off the scent inside the Tomb, it seemed that Emilia still noticed something was off from Ram’s superfluous remarks. ――Imagining what might have happened over the unaccounted timespan from when he entered the Tomb to when they came out again, Emilia’s face stiffened.
Naturally, the events of the Trial resurfaced in her mind.
For the first Trial, she had to face her own past, and in the initial loop, just the thought that Subaru might know what happened within that Trial distressed Emilia to no end.
Even though she had remained calm in this loop so far, it wouldn’t be hard to imagine that she’d lose her current composure when she reaches that same conclusion. So,
[Emilia: Subaru, could it be…… Subaru took the Trial as well……?]
[Subaru: Nono, nothing like that. I mean, it’s not like they’d let anyone take the Trials. Besides, I was only in there for so long because I was trying to wake Emilia up]
[Emilia: Because of me?]
[Subaru: Yeah. It looked like you were having a nightmare so I was frantically trying to wake you up, but you were sound asleep, like you were trapped inside the dream. I thought about carrying you out just like that, but I got a feeling that something crazy bad might happen if I did]
He said, with exaggerated movements to cover his deception.
Emilia didn’t say anything to refute him. Naturally, she had no way to verify whether he was telling the truth. Since Subaru said so, even if she had doubts in her mind, there was no way to prove them.
[Emilia: I…… see. Sorry, for having that weird thought]
[Subaru: No, don’t be. Although, if only I could take the Trials too, maybe I’d be able to be at Emilia’s side and we could beat the Trials together]
[Emilia: ……I don’t know. Subaru and I might not see the same things……]
Emilia’s words grew weak towards the end, but she didn’t probe any further into Subaru’s lies.
She didn’t want anyone to know the truth of the past she failed to overcome, and her mental state probably made her want to believe Subaru when he claimed to know nothing about its contents.
Even now, Subaru was playing Emilia’s heart in the palm of his hand.
[Emilia: So then, what was it that you wanted to talk about? That wasn’t the main subject just now, right?]
[Subaru: Yeah. That wasn’t the main subject. There’s something else I wanted to ask]
[Emilia: Something you wanted to ask?]
Emilia tilted her head.
Watching the cascade of silver hair falling from her shoulders, Subaru went on, [Yeah, something I wanted to ask],
[Subaru: Lately, I haven’t seen Puck around…… is he still not responding?]
[Emilia: Uh, mn…… yeah. Puck still hasn’t responded. I keep calling him, but it’s like he’s asleep inside the crystal]
Suddenly hearing that name brought up, Emilia cast down her eyes and answered.
Her white fingers reached to her chest, and grasped onto the green, beautifully glistening crystal. But the crystal that housed the Great Spirit Puck seemed to have all but lost its radiance.
[Subaru: ……Any idea why?]
[Emilia: Even though there were times like this before when my calls couldn’t reach him, he’d always be back after two or three days. But this time it’s been almost a week…… I’m starting to get worried too]
It was the same little grey cat who once proclaimed that it will protect Emilia.
As that tiny figure emerged in Subaru’s mind, his thoughts turned to the calamities that befell the Sanctuary, and to Emilia, caught up within it.
When the so-called Great Rabbit attacked the Sanctuary, most likely everyone present became its food――that was what Subaru imagined, at least.
Garfiel, Ram, Roswaal and the others would have all been among the victims. And naturally, Emilia would have been one of them.
The sensation of being shredded, devoured, having their own existence become slivers of meat in another organism’s belly――the thought of what Emilia and the others must have experienced filled Subaru’s lungs with boiling rage and grief.
But, setting this fury aside, Subaru’s thoughts landed on the useless spirit who sat idly by while harm was allowed to come to Emilia.
It was the same in the last loop when Emilia’s body was possessed by the Witch.
The flood of shadows was covering over all the world, and Emilia was wrapped in that eerie shroud. Her body was taken over by the Witch’s will while the tall-talking Great Spirit did nothing.
All talk and no action, hollow words in the extreme.
[Subaru: All this time, the only big contributions from that guy were the fight with Elsa and those Sapporo Snow Festivals I got caught up in…… Can’t help but think that he’s totally unreliable at this point]
While holding his chin, showering complaints about Puck, Subaru forced his mind to think.
Calamities were about to befall the Sanctuary, which meant that Emilia would be in danger. Since Garfiel and Roswaal could not repel them, Subaru would have to find something to even the odds, and Puck was precisely what he needed.
[Subaru: You don’t happen to know any other way to reach Puck, do you? If he’s here, all sorts of topics could suddenly move forward]
[Emilia: ――――I don’t… know of any… I think]
Subaru didn’t expect much from this question, and Emilia gave the expected reply. It was just that there was something about the brief moment of hesitation before her answer that tugged at Subaru. But, before he could ask about it,
[Emilia: Was there something you wanted to ask Puck?]
[Subaru: Hm? Ah, yeah, since it’s a Witch’s Tomb, and it’s been there for over 400 years, I figured we should ask a guy who was around back then. Maybe we could make a few breakthroughs that way]
Hearing Subaru’s prepared excuse, Emilia nodded in agreement. Then, as if earnestly considering his proposal,
[Emilia: That’s… right. Puck might, just know something…… mn, I got it. I’ll try even harder than usual to call him]
[Subaru: O-K. I’ll look forward to Emilia-tan’s success, then]
Emilia was determined to beat the Trials. She was unaware that Subaru had taken the Trial as well. And, so far, her motivation hadn’t waned.
Puck was still holed up in his crystal, unwilling to come out, so probably couldn’t be expected to make an appearance in this loop. Considering how he wouldn’t offer any help to make things easier for Subaru, and how they left things at the end of their last conversation, Subaru’s opinion of Puck was only continuously worsening.
[Subaru: Well, I shouldn’t stay too long. Ram will get some weird suspicions and that’ll give her even more reasons to bully me, so I better get going. Although, if Emilia-tan wants someone to sleep with, I wouldn’t mind……]
[Emilia: I don’t want someone to sleep with though?]
[Subaru: Oooog. So straightforward……got nothing to say to that…]
Giving the confused-looking Emilia a wry smile, Subaru headed for the door.
In any case, this was as far as their conversation would go tonight. He had no way to delve any deeper into Emilia’s personal problems right now.
All Subaru could do was create an environment where Emilia could focus on her Trials while he would try to break through the dire circumstances surrounding them.
Emilia will challenge the Tomb, and Subaru will challenge the Sanctuary.
Meanwhile, he mustn’t let Emilia know of his efforts behind the scenes. To her, that would only be another burden.
[Subaru: Well, good night, Emilia-tan. If you get nightmares, you’re always welcome to come fleeing to my side]
[Emilia: If I go all the way to bother Subaru, the villagers will be pretty shocked, right? ……Hey, Subaru]
Just as he was about to leave with that joke, he was stopped by Emilia’s call.
Turning around with his hand on the door, he saw that Emilia’s lips were trembling and there was hesitation in her eyes,
[Emilia: No, it’s nothing. Good night. Stay safe]
[Subaru: No kidding about that last part… G’night]
With a wave of his hand, Subaru burned Emilia’s smile into his mind as he left the room.
Aw… it hurts every time I see Subaru lying to Emilia…
I wonder if Echidona told her about Subaru’s Trial… and deep down she knew that he was lying but decided to trust him anyway…
Please let me know if you see any typos ❤
Chapter 53 Live Draft: