Visitations (10)

“What do you mean by holy sword?”

I asked Natasha.

“The holy sword’s you see, a sword blessed by god or spirits, or saints, or some other divine existence. Unlike other swords, it could have special abilities, or be able to cut special things.”
“Special abilities… for example?”
“Let’s see. A famous legend tells of a sword that makes whoever draws it from its sheath king.”
“Then what do they do if no one can draw it?”
“Who knows? Can’t they just make some old guy wandering around the area king?”

Well that’s just peachy.

“There’s also the ability to heal wounds, and the ability to cut things up regardless of how sturdy or solid they are, ones that don’t need any maintenance, there are various abilities.”

“Then does this holy sword called Blutgang have some sort of ability too?”
“It does. First of all, only people who’ve received the blessing of the spirits can draw it.”
“Hmm, if that’s the case… the divine sod who can pull this sword from its sheath is the culprit?”
“Right. That’s one of basis the police used to arrest the defendant.”
This is somewhat mismatched.

I tried asking further.

“By the way, has it already been confirmed only humans who’ve received the blessing can draw it?”
“The experiments are already gone and done with. The police force’s magic theory lab gathered people of all races, genders and nationalities, and as a result of experimentation on who could pull it from its sheath not a single one could. Besides one.”
“That one would be her?

I pointed my index finger at the picture. A woman was projected on it.

“Right, the defendant Claudia Rheinland. Before the eyes of the magic theory lab’s researchers, the detectives, and the police, she brilliantly pulled the sword out, it seems. When even the most robust of men couldn’t draw it, she pulled it out oh so easily.”

So the only one who could draw the sword was the defendant. But one point made me curious.

“What about after it’s drawn from its sheath? If she pulled the sword out, and someone else used it to dye her hands in crime?”
“That probability is low. There are two reasons. There’s the possibility that a special curse has been placed on this sword.”

Curse. An incorporeal means to afford harm onto others.

“So there’s a curse on the sword?”
“The holy sword’s a sword after all. But this is still just a possibility, and we don’t really know if there’s one on it yet. Under investigation at magic theory lab.”
“The grounds for suspecting a curse?”
“That? Well the basis is in how the defendant didn’t let go of the sword.”

Didn’t let go? What’s that supposed to mean.

“Is that particularly strange? Even more so if it’s a murder weapon. I doubt she’d want to give it to another…”
“That’s not how it is, apparently. When the police tried to retrieve the sword from the defendant, she put up some intense resistance.”
“By resistance, you mean she put up a struggle?”
“Well, I’m sure she did. Because three policemen were injured on her arrest.”

The clouds look menacing. Not only a murderer, she ran amok when they tried to arrest her. I don’t really want to be her defense. But…

“I get the feeling using that as a basis is too weak. On a psychological level, it isn’t so strange for the culprit to resist arrest.”
“That isn’t the only time she acted violent, Daniel.”

Natasha suddenly poked my nose with her index finger.

“Please don’t.”

As I brushed away her finger with one hand, she said some incomprehensible things like, ‘fufu, slow down, slow down.’

“I said it before, but in the magic theory lab’s investigations, they handed the sword to the accused on one occasion. And she drew it easily; remember?”
“Yes, you did tell me that.”

I recalled. And there, the question came up.

“Come to think of it, they did quite a dangerous experiment there. They handed a sword to a suspected murderer?”
“There were policemen accompanying the investigation. Around ten of the riot squad. They were all well-trained elites. They had enough preparations to contain her if she ran wild. But nothing happened. When she was drawing the sword, that is.”

A phrasing full of implication.

“Meaning?
“When the sword was in its sheath, and they tried to take it back, she grew violent again. There was a video recorded if you want to see the particulars, and I’ve seen it. It looked as if a girl who’d been nice and quiet up to that point suddenly underwent a complete change.”

Complete change, eh? I asked Natasha.

“So something must have been the trigger?”
“Right. When I watched the video, it looked to me as if she was extremely afraid of having the sword taken away from her.”
“Afraid? Of what?”
“I don’t know that. But I do have an acquaintance who’s working at magic theory, and when I told him about it, he says there’s a possibility it’s cursed.”

Magic theory was the abbreviation of magic theory research lab. By the way, there was another research institute they had; one that used forensic science.

“Among the curses, there are those with effects and those without. Perhaps the later has been cast on the holy sword.”
“Meaning… what does that mean?”
“Yeah~ let’s see. Then hypothetically, let’s say young Dan wants to peep on my shower scene.”
“Though I don’t.”
“Why’s that? I’ll just throw this out there, but I’m amazing in the nude (`・ω・´).”

For some reason, Boss Natasha was making a refreshing expression.

“Anyways…”

Paying no need to my words, Natasha went on.

“I cast a curse on young Dan. If you peek, I’ll kill you.”
“Hah, is that so.”
“Why is your response so unmotivated?”
“I mean, I won’t peep. So I won’t die. Simple, or rather, does this really matter?”

After her pouting lips tapered like a young chick’s, Natasha continued.

“Hmmph! You’re a wolf in sheep’s clothing, I tell you! Anyways, as a man, little Danny boy loses out to his sexual desire and my charm as an adult woman, peeking in on my shower scene.”

And I’m telling you I ain’t peeping. Or so I wanted to say, but that wold just derail the conversation again, so I restrained myself.

“But through a cruel twist of fate, young Dan is spotted by me as I just finish washing myself. This is bad, what does he do!? The way things are going, he’ll have broken the curse and be fated for death! A shocking and thrilling development!”

What part of it?

“But kind of heart, and with the dignity of an adult woman, I say to him. Oh, you’re such a pervert, that’s no good! Bop!”

Natasha swung her fist at my forehead, but I avoided it.

“Why did you dodge!?”
“I mean, you were trying to hit me. Anyone would avoid that one.”
“Mmm, when you’re the one who peeped on me.”
“I didn’t. Snap back to reality.”
“I said this was hypothetical Hmph. Anyways, that that was my lecture on curses.”

Again, what part of it?

I tried putting that flow in order.
The boss made it taboo for me to peep. I broke the taboo. But even though I broke it, I wasn’t killed. But the fear still persists.

“The sort of thing where it doesn’t display an effect even if you break a set rule? Is that what you’re trying to say?”
“Exactly! With curses you see, you can cast them even if you don’t have a special sort of mana. So it doesn’t matter whether the sword be holy or demonic. Well, in the world, there are curses that really do display a high output if you break a taboo, but this case is different. Could it be the contents of the curse placed on holy sword Blutgang are that she can’t hand the sword to another? That’s why she was so fearful of it being taken away.”

It’s true there was some sense to it.

The reason she turned violent on her arrest was because they tried to take her sword away.
The accused who stayed calm even when drawing the sword suddenly showed resistance when it was taken away, the same reason.

“Who’s the one who cast the curse?”
“Who knows? I don’t have that much information. For curses, if there are ones someone intentionally places, there are some that arbitrarily place themselves.”
“Is that how it is?”
“That’s how it is. I mean Dan, even after you quit the office, you still call me boss, don’t you?”
“And what of it?
“I’m not forcing you. You quit, so I don’t mind if you lightly call me Tasha. But you won’t. Why is that?”
“Why…”

Come to think of it, why do I call her that?

Even if I stopped calling her boss, and even used a pet name, I’m sure this boss wouldn’t be angry. When there wasn’t any sort of penalty to it, I didn’t try to do it at an emotional level.

“Without feeling the slightest question, most of these actions we carry out as if there were normal are because of a curse. The curse to constantly want to be polite has been cast on you. Even if you meet someone you can’t respect, if they be a senior at your workplace, or your superior, or older in years, or higher in status than you, that you keep on speaking politely is a curse, isn’t it?”

“Then if that curse went away, I’d be calling you Tasha in an affectionate voice?”
“Want to try?”

Boss Natasha touched her index finger to her lips, making a gentle smile.

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