(Thank you Austin, Brototype, Xinzhong, Tamer, HX, White Rice, Roanz for helping me proofread 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/253/
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[???: Hell, y’look like shit]
The first things Subaru sensed as he woke were the skin-piercing cold and the sound of the voice addressing him.
His eyelids shuddered in the frigid sunlight as he grimaced while opening his eyes. Unwittingly looking directly into the sun that was peeking through the trees, his eyes teared up as he tried to right himself,
[Subaru: Gh, aw, hurt……s]
Hearing the sound of his stiff joints creaking, Subaru groaned in pain.
The coldness of the soil and air as he laid on the solid ground had stiffened his body, and every movement of his joints was protested by dull pain.
[???: Not sure what you’re tryin’ to pull here, but sleepin’ in a place without a roof ain’t what I’d recommend. “When there’s a roof n’ a floor, a Gauran gets by” they say]
[Subaru: What’s a Gauran…… ugh, nevermind]
Shaking his head, Subaru looked up at the source of the rowdy voice―― Garfiel, clicking his fangs and looking down at Subaru on the ground.
Just then, Subaru’s sobering consciousness remembered what put him in this situation in the first place.
[Subaru: Ri.. ght…… I fell asleep like this last night……]
[Garfiel: I smelled ya in th’forest on my mornin’ routine and came t’see what’s goin’ on. Layin’ there sprawled out like that, thought someone beat me to it and killed ya overnight]
[Subaru: As the primary suspect, if you didn’t do it, I doubt anyone else would’ve. ……What time is it, anyway?]
Holding his hand to his forehead, Subaru shook his heavy head and asked. At this, Garfiel snorted with a [Hah], and,
[Garfiel: No need t’hurry, it’s still before breakfast time. Aside from th’early-risin’ gramps and grannies, you’n me are th’only ones up]
[Subaru: So no one’s missed me yet, then. ……It’ll be trouble if I don’t get back to the Cathedral befor…… or, right away, actually……]
If Subaru never returned overnight, Otto, who got back before him, might suspect that something was amiss. Even if that wasn’t a problem in itself, Subaru would still prefer to avoid any anxiety spreading among the Arlam refugees. With the mountains of problems as it is, to cause any further discord because of his own indiscretion would be unforgivable.
[Garfiel: ……Yer expression’s different from last night]
Using a nearby tree as support to stand himself up, Subaru gave his neck a turn when he heard Garfiel address him. Looking back, he saw Garfiel violently scratching at his short, golden hair.
[Garfiel: Yesterday I couldn’t tell if yer self-possessed or not, but now it’s like…… yer face looks fuckin’ refreshed or somethin’]
[Garfiel: Tch, that ain’t it either. Can’t fuckin’ say it right…… oy, th’fuck you laughin’ at?]
[Subaru: Kh, haha……]
Hearing Garfiel point this out, Subaru touched his hands to his cheeks. Feeling that the corner of his lips had somewhat slackened, a trembling laugh spilled out of the back of his throat.
At first a low, stifled noise, it grew gradually louder.
[Subaru: Hah, hahaha! I look refreshed!? Really, is that what I look like?]
[Garfiel: Yeah, what? Th’hell’s so funny……]
[Subaru: You got it backwards, Garfiel. Just, totally, backwards]
Pressing back the urge to laugh, Subaru jabbed out his finger toward Garfiel.
[Subaru: I’m not refreshed at all. My insides are creaking and pounding, and honestly, right now, I feel like I could burst apart at any second. Everything I’ve tried to do has been invalidated, everything I’ve struggled for has backfired…… and I seriously don’t know what to do now]
[Subaru: Then, when I realized I was truly stuck, I actually feel like laughing. If everything I tried to do was pointless…… then I’m right back where I started, aren’t I]
Muttering powerlessly, Subaru’s shoulders drooped.
If he had been mistaken from the very start, then every single thought he had since then would be faulty.
With the deadline steadily approaching, only now did he belatedly realize that he had been using the wrong equations. And what’s worse, was that those were the kind of problems that no one could give him the solutions to.
Garfiel scrunched up his nose, not sure what to say to the dejected Subaru. And knowing that Garfiel wouldn’t give him any straight answers even if he asked, all Subaru felt in return was resentment.
And so, an awkward silence fell between them―― until,
[????: ――How about I tell you what you should do?]
Subaru quickly turned to the voice coming from above, but Garfiel didn’t seem the least surprised as he looked towards the same direction, probably because he had already sensed its presence.
On the other end of their gazes, weaving through the gaps between the trees, it was,
[Otto: Mhm, good morning. Yep, it’s me]
Accompanied by the sound of twigs snapping under his feet, Otto wore a somewhat counterfeit smile as he approached. While his sudden appearance startled Subaru, Garfiel only clicked his tongue.
[Garfiel: Just sayin’, I only just found him too. Not like I forgot all ‘bout ya t’come chattin’ with him instead]
[Otto: I wasn’t worrying about anything like that. Just glad we found Natsuki-san safe. ――Anyway, mind if I make a request?]
[Garfiel: ……Spit it out]
[Otto: Might I have a minute with Natsuki-san alone? There’s something I’d like to discuss with him]
In front of the still-disoriented Subaru, Otto and Garfiel carried on their exchange with a knowing air between them. Gritting his teeth at Otto’s request, Garfiel glanced over at Subaru,
[Garfiel: Just don’t try anythin’ funny]
And with that, he left them.
Treading over the grass, and out of the forest, Garfiel headed back towards the Sanctuary. Watching him as he left, Subaru wetted his lips with his tongue,
[Subaru: Sounds like you got on Garfiel’s good side somewhere when I wasn’t looking]
[Otto: That’s because I wasn’t just doing nothing while you’re off on your little adventures, Natsuki-san. There’s been a deepening of understanding between the refugees and the people living here, and…… well, none of that really matters right now]
Halfway through candidly answering Subaru’s question, Otto suddenly dismissed the topic with a wave of his hand and then proceeded to lock his gaze onto Subaru. Or rather, it was far too intense to be a gaze. Its intensity was clearly closer to a glare.
[Subaru: Well, what……]
Thoroughly unsettled by that stare, Subaru only managed a weak mumble. Hearing it, Otto let out a small sigh,
[Otto: While it was only bits and pieces, I still heard what you said. Natsuki-san, it sounds like you’re being cornered… by all sorts of things]
[Otto: Naturally, I wouldn’t know the details, being kept out of the loop and all. But you must be at your limits, aren’t you? Otherwise we wouldn’t hear you blabbering about “What do I do now”]
[Subaru: So then, what do I do? ……You said you could tell me]
Listening to Otto’s sardonic remarks, Subaru brought up what Otto had said when he first cut into the conversation.
Surely, that was what he said when he broke into the silence between Subaru and Garfiel. Just what could he have meant when he said that?
[Subaru: You said… you could tell me what I should do……]
[Otto: Yeah, I know. It’s very simple really]
[Otto: You want to know what it is?]
That manner of speaking was really getting on his nerves.
After all he has agonized, winding up in this wretched state, here, what this person was saying was just plain pissing him off.
[Subaru: O-of course I want to know! Quit joking around! If there’s something you know, then……]
[Otto: Alright, then prepare yourself]
[Otto: Yes. First take a long, deep breath……]
Holding out his hands, Otto motioned for Subaru to take a breath. Though he was unsure what Otto was getting at, Subaru nonetheless followed the instruction and adjusted his breathing, closing his eyes and letting his lungs expand――
The next instant, a sharp impact whacked him across the face, sending him flopping to the ground.
Failing to catch himself as he fell, Subaru dropped face-first into the dirt. Quickly shaking his head, looking around to see what happened, he caught sight of Otto brandishing his fist, and, only then, realized that he had been punched.
There, in front of the breathless Subaru, Otto clenched his reddening fist, and,
[Otto: You should stop putting on airs when you’re in front of your friends, Natsuki Subaru]
-=Chapter 85 End=-
For the first time in weeks I’m not waking up feeling dopey anymore >_< ❤
I’ll try my best to catch up before the month ends!
Please let me know if you see any typos ❤
Chapter 86 Live Draft: