“Incidentally,” Aqua continued. “Lei happened to be from a noble family, one that is different from the noble we are fighting against.
“Whatever happens, make sure that she survives. It will complicate things further if another noble is plunged into this mess.”
It was very brief, but as the manager, Norman, finished his last sentence, his hand holding an object shaped in an L. The crest of the Bell Conglomerate was carved into the metal part of the sides… connected to the ball-shaped hammer of an old flintlock.
And it was only a second too late for Will to send a slash of air to stop the manager from firing the trigger.
The manager howled in agony as he felled to the ground, holding the stump of what once his right hand, red liquid spurting out like a fountain.
But then, a light-blue structure began to take form around the severed hand. However, it had also taken the liberty to extend its reach to the other, encasing the manager’s hands like a makeshift handcuff.
Now that the manager was neutralized, the Court Wizards’ attention came to the secretary, Lei, who had slumped back against the wall.
“She is hyperventilating,” Rose reported as she got on her knees. “The shock must have stripped her ability to speak. Hold on.”
Both of the vampire’s thumbs transformed, its nail growing into claws.
And Rose easily tore through the secretary’s uniform, showing the hole oozing blood right above her brassiere.
“It almost hit her heart.” Rose turned to Owen. “Owen, freeze it.”
And an icy coating covered the secretary’s wound, preventing further blood loss.
Retracting her claws, Rose ran her hand through the secretary’s cheek. “Lei, calm down. Breath slowly… In… Out… In… Out… Good. You will be transferred to the Otherworldly Court to heal you. You will be safe, I promise.”
“Will she be fine?” Alicia asked in concern.
“Yes,” Rose nodded. “She will probably be traumatised, but she will get through.”
“Oh, thank goodness…” Alicia sighed in relief.
She was surprised when the manager suddenly pulled out a gun and fired at the secretary. However, that wasn’t all.
Looking at the flintlock, ignoring the severed hand holding it, Alicia particularly eyed at the Bell Conglomerate symbol.
Then the manager spoke.
“Heh, forgive me, young mistress.” The manager, in his sorry state, apologized, but it seemed like he was scoffing. “It was meant for hunting Beosts, but the first gun, as you called it, was used on a lady.”
“W-What?” Alicia clasped her mouth.
But before Alicia could say further, Owen barged in front of her. “What the hell? She’s Crom’s lover,” he growled, pointing his arm to the secretary the manager just shot.
Alicia flinched, not expecting her childhood friend’s sudden drop of character.
“Heh,” the manager snorted. “As I said before. Lei does not have an inkling of what I’ve been through with them.”
Closing his eyes as if reminiscing everything up to this point, the manager began.
“When I was around your age, I live in a quiet village when a Half-Beosts came to raid my village.
“I watched them kill my parents, then my friends, and the girl I liked. And I believe I have heard the cries of the village nun being violated by them.
“I only survived when a passing elite hunting party routed them. And one of the hunters demanded a Half-Beost as to why they did it, he only said, ‘Because it’s fun.’
“The story is still long, but there isn’t long before one of us here to succumb to our wounds, frozen or not.
“But I believe you all understood my motivation. This wrath and vengeance of mine have festered my heart for far too long to let them off with a ‘sorry’.”
Like the manager had said, there was no need to tell the full story. Alicia understood his motives and well, it feels justi-
“Lei is still right.” And suddenly, Will, who had been silent since entering the room, spoke up. “It doesn’t matter how deep your grudge is, but to have your revenge is to forgive them.”
“What? Haven’t you heard what I just said?” the manager retorted.
“…” Will seemed to take a moment before continuing. “It’s from a book of a religion in my world, but it should count here. Essentially, God told us to forgive those who wronged us.
“While I don’t remember it explaining it further, you do it to get rid of your grudges against them and not waste your life consumed by anger.
“In other words, forgiving the Half-Beosts is not for them, but for yourself – a selfish act.
“And it’s not like Crom was ignorant of your circumstance. He told us himself that he had felt the ‘stain in your heart.’
“And he knew that killing all Half-Beost is impossible – we wouldn’t let it happen either. It motivated him to pursue peace even more.
“So that by doing so, you can finally let go of your stain and move on.”
“…” The manager stood in silence taking the words of a boy decades younger than him. And finally, he rolled his eyes with his head downcast. “I see…”
Then, the rainbow light circled around the secretary as Rose stepped away.
“…Lei…” The manager spoke up, but he went quiet.
“…I… forgive you…” As if she knew what the manager wanted to say
The manager closed his eyes once again as the light shone brightly, taking the injured secretary to another world.
This is Miriel, is the manager still al… capable of speaking? The operators have found visuals of men congregating in the noble’s mansion with… Firearms. (Miriel)
Upon the following message received, the Court Wizards turned to the manager.
And as if knowing what went down, the manager answered, “Yes, I did supply the noble rifles as you called it. About fifty of them, but they were untested so they may not work.”
“I’ll send the [Telepathy],” Will said as he placed his two fingers behind the lower part of his ear.
I see. I will send more Court Wizards to deal with them. All of you will confront the noble as planned. (Miriel)
“Right,” Will continued. “How about you?”
“Leave me be.” The manager replied, but not to Will, but to Alicia. “My revenge has failed the moment you came.” Looking back at Will,” and… I think you’re probably right.”
And whatever say of rejection couldn’t escape her mouth. Alicia couldn’t disrespect the manager’s wishes and simply nodded solemnly.
“I see.” Turning around, Will said to the others. “Let’s go.”
“You know,” Owen whispered as Will was about to pass him. “If we talked to Norman about this years ago, maybe this wouldn’t have happened.”
Listening to the two boys’ quiet exchange, Alicia couldn’t help the nagging feeling about it. So she inquired about it.
“Owen,” she called. “Did you?”
“Yeah, we know him. And that’s why I agreed to freeze Vulgis mountain, to begin with.”