I’m thinking of transferring old chapters from posts into pages. That somehow seems more efficient. (ED: Let me know how you want it done, and I can do it so you can continue translating ;o)
Chapter 253: Yes Man
And like that, I saw Witch off and return to the throne.
The matter concerning rewards ended, so everyone went off to rest inside the castle.
The only people left here are the Queen, the Country’s higher ups, and me.
“Now then, should I begin my report?” (Queen)
“That sounds good. There are plenty things I have to ask.” (Naofumi)
“Let’s see… First, would be just how Witch was able to escape and cross national borders to start up her rebellion.” (Queen)
“How was it done?” (Naofumi)
“It seems that she salvaged a disguise magic tool from the corpse of a Shadow that died in the Spirit Turtle assault.” (Queen)
Oh, right. The Shadows had that ability.
I’m surprised she learned how to use it.
After Witch separated from Motoyasu, she apparently crossed borders.
She didn’t plan on returning. She grasped for ways to live the easy life elsewhere.
“Ah, besides Elena, didn’t Witch have another companion? Where is she?” (Naofumi)
“She’s already been captured. She’s going be sent off much like Witch.” (Queen)
“So she’s also a noble?” (Naofumi)
Hmm… So she’ll face a fate similar to Witch’s.
Even so, I never learned her name in the end.
I’m sorry, but I’ll be forgetting you soon… Um… Woman 2.
“Next is about her slave seal. That matter’s already been settled.” (Queen)
“Why didn’t it work?” (Naofumi)
“It seems that the Spirit Turtle’s presence caused some sort of bug, and after that, she stayed in an area with devices made to jam the signal.” (Queen)
“Oh, right. You investigated the building I reported about. Did you find the device there?” (Naofumi)
“Correct. During this incident, it seems that the aura causing the brainwashing had an interference effect as well. The seal’s now in working order, and we plan on turning her slave rights over to Faubrey’s King.” (Queen)
So there was a jamming effect. What a pain.
Hmm? I can hear some noise from the castle’s yard.
I peek out of the window.
And I see Fohl holding Atlas while stepping away from Trash.
Atlas is frowning.
Trash is… holding his hand into the air as if to cut the sky.
In his hand… is that food?
Is he trying to bait Atlas?
Trash fainted when he heard Witch’s sentence.
Is he searching out Atlas to fill the void in his soul?
I guess it’s fine. I’ll leave them be.
The slave release ceremony that’s become a famous rumor on the streets was apparently done by the Three Hero Church.” (Queen)
“Ah, I see.” (Naofumi)
I heard it from the slaves when Taniko first came to the village.
Something about a charitable organization that granted slaves their freedom.
“The Three Hero Church is charitable? That’s suspicious beyond doubt.” (Naofumi)
“Yes… It seems that in order to procure subjects for their experiments, they would lure slaves in with the pretense of breaking their slave seals.” (Queen)
So that’s it.
They were those sorts of people.
“When we took them in, we heard something along the lines of, 『Sure, we released them… from this world!』 and 『They became sacrifices towards our noble cause』.” (Queen)
Those are quite some lines.
But the time those people will be released from this world as well is swiftly approaching.
If there’s anything I’m unsatisfied with, it’s that there’s no repose for the victims.
“They were being held in a section of the facility Iwatani-sama reported.” (Queen)
“Many died from experimentation. However, there are just as many survivors.” (Queen)
“… Are they alright?” (Naofumi)
The Queen quietly averts her eyes.
Ah, I see. So the situation isn’t that good.
“Many of them will need treatment. However…” (Queen)
“I got it. I’ll look at them at my place. Having a few more doesn’t change much at this point in time. As long as they weren’t directly related to the incident, I won’t do them harm.” (Naofumi)
“I give you my sincerest thanks.” (Queen)
… I’ll put my order to the Slave Dealer on hold.
It seems I’ll be getting an influx of slaves soon.
My place has an alchemist, and if I give them the medicine, they should get better.
“Do you know their home towns?” (Naofumi)
“About one third of the captives have homes. The others have had their villages destroyed by slave hunting long ago.” (Queen)
So the same pattern as Raphtalia.
Why must this country detest Demi-Humans to this extent?
They may have their differences, but if you try to talk to them, it’s not like they won’t understand you.
Rather, it’s the people that do the discrimination that refuse to understand.
Ah, right. I procured the research equipment from the facility and gave it to Rat. She was quite happy.
There were some machines she wanted, and some documents she wanted to use as reference.
However, she discarded all the information about replicating Heroes’ Weapons after a quick glance.
She said it wasn’t worth it.
Currently, the castle soldiers are rushing to perform a full investigation on the building.
“Iwatani-sama, what has become of the Hero of the Bow?” (Queen)
“I’ve entrusted him to Rishia… but he’s not looking so well.” (Naofumi)
It was the noon after we had finished resolving the brainwashing incident.
We heard the report from the slave we put on watch that Itsuki had opened his eyes. Rishia and I rushed to the Camping Plant where he was being held.
Itsuki had gotten himself off of the bed.
I crossed my arms and watched over the worried Rishia. Just in case Itsuki went out of control, I had Firo, Atlas, and Ren on standby outside.
“How do you feel, Itsuki?” (Naofumi)
With an expressionless face and sleepy eyes, Itsuki slowly turned towards me and replied with silence.
The silence continued.
Rishia seemed to be waiting for him to say something, but there were no signs of that happening soon.
“Oy, say something.” (Naofumi)
“… Something.” (Itsuki)
He’s got quite some courage to pickin’ a fight with me so soon!
“I’m sorry Rishia. It seems I’ll be breaking my promise to you.” (Naofumi)
There was no point in keeping someone who wouldn’t repent in the slightest.
“Fueee! Wait a second. Itsuki-sama, just honestly apologize here.” (Rishia)
“… I’m sorry.” (Itsuki)
Expressionlessly and monotonically, Itsuki lowered his head.
What was this? Was Itsuki this sort of person?
“Itsuki, what happened?” (Naofumi)
“… I don’t know.” (Itsuki)
“Are you hiding something again? You sure like doing things like that.” (Naofumi)
“… Am I hiding something?” (Itsuki)
“Umm… Itsuki, have you possibly forgotten just who you are?” (Naofumi)
I hope his curse cost wasn’t something like amnesia.
From what I’ve seen, it wasn’t strange for such a thing to happen.
But if that happened, it would truly be a pain.
“No, I am Kawasumi Itsuki, the Hero of the Bow. I had intentions of Justice, but I lost.” (Itsuki)
“It isn’t amnesia, right?” (Naofumi)
“I don’t know.” (Itsuki)
What didn’t you know?
“Don’t hide anything here. What are you planning?” (Naofumi)
“… What am I planning?” (Itsuki)
“Like I know! I’m asking you! Don’t answer questions with questions!” (Naofumi)
What was this?
Itsuki was still expressionless, and he seemed to be spacing out.
His ambition seemed non-existent.
He was not disabled… I think.
When I asked him to say something, he honestly said, ‘Something.’
“Itsuki, do a handstand while taking off your clothes.” (Naofumi)
Itsuki followed my orders and stood on one hand. He used the other to slowly undo his buttons.
“Itsuki-sama! Please stop.” (Rishia)
Upon Rishia’s words, Itsuki stopped and stood upright.
Wait a second. He was just performing whatever people asked him to do.
“Itsuki, kill yourself.” (Naofumi)
Itsuki pulled a rope out of his bow and began searching for a place to hang it.
He was not acting of his own will. If it was Motoyasu, it would be like that anime.
I mean, the weapon fits.
(TL: I think he’s talking about Lancer always being ordered to suicide)(ED: From Fate/Stay Night. I concur)
“FUEEEEEEE! Please stop, Itsuki-sama!” (Rishia)
“Itsuki, what do you want to do?” (Naofumi)
“What do I want to do?” (Itsuki)
… Oy, could it be?
I had the feeling that he shouted out that he was offering his belief and his heart, or something.
Without his own belief… he was unable to use his will to decide anything.
Inside his head, he’s become unable to tell what was right and what was wrong.
“Why are you expressionless? What do you think of me?” (Naofumi)
“Am I… Expressionless? I don’t really think anything of Naofumi-san…” (Itsuki) (TL: The ship hath sunk)
“Then what do you think about evil?” (Naofumi)
“Nothing really… If it exists, then it exists…” (Itsuki)
“You don’t get angry?” (Naofumi)
“I don’t feel anything…” (Itsuki)
Expressionless and emotionless?
And, it was weird for the secretive Itsuki to be talking this much in the first place.
“For now, you have lost to us. You are our prisoner. Rishia is in charge of you, so stay put and listen to her.” (Naofumi)
Itsuki stared at Rishia… and turned to me again.
“Is there anything I should be doing?” (Itsuki)
“What will you do?” (Naofumi)
“Um, what should I do? Should I just stay put? If I move…” (Itsuki)
His decision making power was null.
The curse took away his will in itself.
And, why are all the Heroes that come to my place cursed?
“Itsuki, what are you going to do from here on out? Think about it.” (Naofumi)
“That is… I don’t know.” (Itsuki)
“That’s because of your curse. You’ll eventually recover. At that point, I’m not sure if you’ll oppose me, but if we do end up fighting, I won’t hold back. Remember that.” (Naofumi)
“… Understood.” (Itsuki)
“Itsuki-sama, I will fight with you so you can make up for your crimes.” (Rishia)
As Rishia faced Itsuki with these words, he nodded.
“I look forward to working with you. Rishia… san.” (Itsuki)
For some reason, Rishia was crying.
Well, this was pretty much someone else in Itsuki’s form.
And he did whatever someone asked him to do.
With him like that, it would have been exceptionally dangerous to bring him to Witch’s trial.
If he were there, he would have immediately forgiven Witch when asked.