(Thank you Federico, Daisuke, Zenith, 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/268/
Batting away the dust that Garfiel’s departure had kicked up, Subaru decided to check over the room once more before leaving.
Regardless of Garfiel’s hasty conclusions, would Lewes really disappear without leaving any trace behind? Or at least, she might have left some hints about where she was going――
[Subaru: But then again, if there was anything, the guy who’s known her for ages should’ve noticed it. My nose isn’t as sharp as his and my eyes aren’t any better…]
After five minutes of searching and finding nothing, Subaru sighed with that self-deprecating lament. Heading out of the cabin, he gazed in the direction of the village, in thought.
Emilia and Lewes Theta, those two had almost simultaneously disappeared.
Chances were, both of them left their buildings of their own accord, and were trying to hide from Subaru and everyone else. There was even a possibility that they were working together.
[Subaru: I don’t remember Emilia and Lewes-san being close, but……]
Ever since arriving in the Sanctuary, Emilia’s mind had been occupied by the Trials and the Royal Selection. Subaru couldn’t recall a single instance where she casually interacted with anyone here.
At most, she had some conversations with Subaru, Ram, Otto, but she rarely ever spoke with Lewes or Garfiel.
Thinking about it now, her lack of interaction with others might’ve been the reason she was so fixated on her lonely sense of duty, and it was Subaru’s fault for not paying enough attention to her. If Subaru had done more to smooth things out, Emilia would not have had so many emotions pent up inside, and perhaps they would’ve found a clearer solution to their problems.
[Subaru: But it’s a bit late for that, isn’t it……]
This wasn’t the time to be thinking about the underlying causes of Emilia’s disappearance. More importantly, delving into it would only push Subaru further into blaming himself.
There was no time to wallow in self-loathing now.
[Subaru: It’s a good thing Garfiel doesn’t know that Emilia’s also missing…… not that he’d prioritize looking for her before looking for Lewes-san, but there’s no knowing what he’d say if given the pretext]
Even this small relief would be pointless if he doesn’t find Emilia soon. But finding Lewes Theta wasn’t a matter he could put off, either.
If he doesn’t find Theta before Garfiel does, it won’t be easy getting past the overprotective Garfiel after that.
In other words, what Subaru needed to do could be summed up as:
[Subaru: Secure Emilia and Lewes Theta before Garfiel does, figure out Theta’s reasons for opposing the Sanctuary’s liberation, get Emilia back on her feet, have her challenge the Trials, and do all of that within half a day…… huh]
[???: ……Natsuki-san, just how brambled does the path have to be before you’re satisfied?]
As Subaru came to that rather bleak conclusion, Otto showed up by the door just in time to butt in.
Arriving quite a bit later than Subaru, who sprinted here, Otto looked around the shack’s dishevelled interior and furrowed his brows.
[Otto: Even if you’re rummaging through a house, you could’ve been more elegant about it. Though, your conversation with Garfiel seems to have concluded safely]
[Subaru: Concluded safely, but can’t say I got anything out of it. Anyway, I’ve reaffirmed the situation and our next course of action is just as I mumbled]
[Otto: All I got from that mumble was that we have some new problems piled on top of the old ones and now it’s all a jumbled mess, more or less]
Unable to weasel around Otto’s accurate impression, Subaru slumped his shoulders.
Nevertheless, the fact that Subaru was feeling more at ease than before was no doubt because Otto’s presence meant he would no longer have to agonize over it alone.
[Otto: ……I’ll feel troubled if you keep giving me that blatantly-relieved look, you know]
[Subaru: ――? What?]
[Otto: ……forget I said anything. You don’t seem to realize it, huh. No way you do. Aaaaagh but if you do and you’re doing this to me on purpose then I’m totally getting led by the nose here, aren’t I…]
Watching Otto messing up his gray hair, Subaru tilted his head. But, without answering Subaru’s confused expression, [Anyway!], Otto shouted,
[Otto: There’s no doubt that the already hopeless situation just got even worse. So what do we do? Now that the circumstances that already made me want to run for it as it is managed to plummet even further, how’re we getting out of this? I have a feeling that if we hurry now we could still dump everything and make a run for it]
[Subaru: After everything you’ve seen and heard, you still think we can drop everything and run away? Neither of us is the kind of people who can do something that irresponsible, right?]
[Otto: ……But it looks like Emilia-sama has done exactly that]
Looking away, Otto muttered with a sigh.
It wasn’t out of spite. Otto was simply venting the dissatisfaction pent up in his chest. Realizing this, Subaru did not blame him for it.
Subaru only lightly shook his head,
[Subaru: Emilia isn’t the kind of girl who’d turn tail and run in the face of her problems……]
[Otto: But, how can you say that? Natsuki-san. I’ve been meaning to say this for a while now, but, are you sure you’re not too fixated on only Emilia-sama’s attractive side?]
[Subaru: ……What’s that supposed to mean. Well, yeah, Emilia is so beautiful that my eyes could explode]
[Otto: While I definitely agree with that, I’m sure you know that’s not what I meant]
Seeing his lame joke easily swept aside, Subaru twisted his lips under Otto’s gaze.
As if finding it a bit painful to watch, Otto raised a finger with, [You listening?],
[Otto: I understand why you’d only want to see the good side of someone you have a crush on. I’m sure that kind of thing is very common. So I don’t blame you for projecting your ideals on her]
[Otto: But Emilia-sama is not a perfect person. In fact, she has quite a few problems. And that includes the factors that are totally outside of her control. Her origin, her standing, and all the other issues that come with it]
Listening to Otto’s fluent speech, Subaru figured Otto must’ve wanted to lecture him on this for quite some time now and had prepared those words beforehand.
And indeed, his words were sound and left no room for rebuttal.
[Otto: Naturally, those external factors are unrelated to Emilia-sama’s inner purity. And her outward beauty only adds to her charm. But, Natsuki-san. Emilia-sama is only a mortal…… she’s just an ordinary girl. And just like ordinary girls, she has her share of worries, weaknesses, and unattractive aspects to her as well]
[Subaru: No but, only Emilia……]
[Otto: Don’t you find it strange that you’re only blindly seeing Emilia-sama in a different light? Natsuki-san, since coming to the Sanctuary, you must have seen plenty of Emilia-sama’s shortcomings first-hand, right? Those shortcomings won’t be limited to this place but will come up again and again in the future as well. Emilia-sama’s aspirations are too high above the reach of ordinary people, after all]
That was Otto’s opinion of the height of Emilia’s aspirations―― the Throne.
A pinnacle which many others, just like Emilia, were also aspiring to reach.
There was Crusch Karsten, noble and sincere, of high-minded ideals and undeniable ability.
There was Priscilla Barielle, arrogant and insidious, and consequently unshakable in her will.
There was Anastasia Hoshin, greedy and calculating, devoting everything to realizing her dream, having reached her current station by her unmatched competitive spirit.
And there was Felt, poor and weak in her initial position, but driven by an upwards ambition far beyond her young age that would not allow herself to stop still.
Every other Royal Selection candidate was in possession of peerless determination and virtue.
Faced with these worthy opponents, was Emilia really fit to stand among them?
She was kind, kinder than anyone else. But was that really enough?
[Otto: Right now, Emilia-sama is still lacking in all sorts of things. She isn’t ready. And the way she is now, she’ll probably want to flinch and run away in the face of hardships. This would be one of those times she chose to flee. Why can’t you see it, Natsuki-san?]
[Subaru: ……but that’s… I don’t… Emilia would never……]
Never. But as much as Subaru wanted to continue, he couldn’t.
He couldn’t find the words. The feeling was certainly there, his feelings about Emilia. But how could he form it into words here so Otto would understand?
[Otto: ……You’re really stubborn, you know that?]
Subaru bit down on his lip and only stared at Otto with resistance in his eyes. But, seeing that gaze, Otto looked away.
He shrugged with an astounded shake of his head and turned his eyes towards the village,
[Otto: We don’t have to reach a conclusion on this right now. Just talking about it won’t change the situation, anyway. We’ll still have to find Emilia-sama and Lewes-san]
[Subaru: ……Sorry. I know there are lots of things we should properly talk about]
[Otto: I’ll overlook it since we’re friends. ――So, what do we do now?]
Jerking his chin―― indicating the Sanctuary, Otto left the next course of action up to Subaru.
Should they run, or fight? And which one of the two missing people should they search for first? The fact that he’d leave those decisions to Subaru was just proof of how much Otto trusted him.
Though he had no intention of taking that trust lightly, Subaru couldn’t help but smile to himself for the blessing he’d been given.
[Subaru: Garfiel doesn’t know that Emilia’s missing. And even if Garfiel does find Emilia, it’s not too much of an issue. ――The worst case would be that Garfiel finds Lewes-san before we do. If we lose the chance to talk with Lewes-san, we’ll be getting even further away from the perfect ending]
[Otto: ……In other words?]
[Subaru: ――We’ll search for Lewes-san first. We find her before Garfiel, and hear what she has to say]
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Sorry I haven’t been releasing as fast as I would’ve liked. There are some days when I feel down and it’s like I’m only trying to run away and nothing makes much sense…
I’m trying to get my life in order, though, starting with going to sleep at the proper hours.
And you guys cheer me up more than you know ❤
So, thank you >_<
I’ll get the next part done tomorrow!
Chapter 99 Live Draft: