Chapter 25: Thank you for everything
The atmosphere froze in an instant.
I crossed a line I shouldn’t have.
It felt like I was stepping into a room with a sign that said “Do not enter” with my shoes on.
But I understood.
What did this question mean to him?
How will I be perceived?
“Slayer Raeburn. What is your intention behind that question?”
“I have no intention. I’m just… curious.”
“You… are you teasing me?”
“I’m not. I just want to know.”
My words provoked Duke Inga.
I was becoming more and more disliked by him.
But that’s okay.
I’ll squeeze it out.
His true feelings… I won’t hesitate to be disliked if it means finding them.
“Duke Inga, it’s well-known that you despise commoners. It goes beyond mere dislike, doesn’t it? Perhaps there’s something in the past that fuels your hatred.”
“. . .What are you trying to say? What do you know?”
“I don’t know anything. That’s why I want to know… but I’m sure he wants to know more than I do.”
As I spoke, my gaze fell on…
“Is that not right, Leone?”
I know what’s in his heart.
It’s like cheating, but I’ll use the information I have to my advantage.
“Hmph, how foolish. It’s obvious. We are proud nobles. From the moment we are born, everything is different between commoners and nobles! Our Status, power, and even the future… It is unpleasant to be treated as equals, and what’s wrong with that?”
“It’s not strange. However, your hostility is not normal. Even now…you can’t hide it, can you?”
It wasn’t directed towards me.
Since he noticed, he has been openly hostile towards Flare.
Hostility is not something that can be taken lightly.
That was murderous intent.
I brought her here knowing that this would happen, but I still feel guilty.
Flare was trembling in fear.
I say so and force a smile.
Let’s get to the conclusion.
“Is it really your pride as a noble? It shouldn’t be. You’re hiding something. Something you haven’t even told your son, Leone.”
“Who are you…? Do you know…?”
With that one word, it was confirmed that he was hiding something.
From here on, it’s simple.
“Well, if it’s okay to just speculate, shall I tell you?”
Duke Inga glared at me.
I didn’t look away.
I smirked confidently and continued to stare at him as if threatening him.
He gave in.
From here on, it’s just a matter of confirming the answer.
I had to become a listener.
“Leone, your mother…was killed by a commoner.”
“――Hey, Father. . .is that true?”
“It is. I told you it was an accident, but. . .the truth is different.”
Inga’s wife and Leone’s mother.
Mystia Grates was a skilled user of healing magic.
Her power was recognized, and she went to various battlefields, saving the lives of many people.
She was too kind.
That’s why she was betrayed.
A group of commoners who had rebelled against the kingdom were annihilated, and the survivors surrendered.
She healed them.
Correcting their mistakes, she wanted them to live rightly from then on.
However, as soon as their wounds healed, they went on a rampage and massacred those who were there.
Including her… she was violated and killed.
It seems Leone also understood.
Why his father hated commoners so much.
“I’ve always… wondered. father… never talked about my mother. I thought it was something I shouldn’t ask about… so I kept quiet.”
“. . .At that time, you were still a child. So I didn’t tell you.”
“Father. . .”
“You should understand now. Commoners are nothing but trash in society. Just by existing, they are guilty and no one should be involved with them.”
His hatred for commoners was deep and dark.
No matter what words were said, he would never forgive them.
But that’s why she spoke up.
“――You loved your wife so much, didn’t you?”
In a gentle voice, as if to heal his wounded heart.
The protagonist, Flare, spoke.
“What do you know? You, a commoner.”
“Commoners also have parents. I also have a beloved father and mother… If something were to happen to them… I would be sad. But because they are alive, I can’t say I understand. I just… understand the feeling of love.”
While saying that, she spoke to Leone.
“Leone-san, you feel the same way, right?”
“. . .Ah, I see.”
The tension in his body slowly dissipated.
It was as if ice was slowly melting under the warm sunlight.
“Now, I understand. Why Father is so strong. . .”
For a moment, he looked at me.
He seemed like he wanted to say something, but I averted my gaze.
It wasn’t me he should be telling, but his father.
I give him the space to do so.
“Father was trying to protect me.”
“Leone. . .”
“I. . .didn’t realize that. I wanted to be strong like my father. . .but I didn’t have a reason to seek strength.”
The problems he was carrying.
To learn the truth about his deceased mother and to understand the meaning of strength.
He didn’t know anything important.
without being informed, He was seeking power vaguely.
That created a gap.
Therefore, it was simple.
He just needed to learn the truth.
The truth and the overwhelming emotions of his father.
If he does that… he should feel fulfilled.
Belfist muttered softly.
He saw something I couldn’t see.
Perhaps, a part of his power was released.
“Thank you, Father. You’ve protected me even in place of Mother
“. . .”
“But, I’m okay now. I’m not a child anymore. I won’t forget Father’s teachings. With that in mind, I’ll think for myself. What’s right and what’s wrong.”
The gaps in one’s heart can be born from trivial things.
On the other hand, they can also be filled with a small trigger.
It’s a simple but difficult problem.
“. . .There’s no need to thank me. It’s natural for a parent to worry about their child.”
The hatred within him will never disappear.
However, even so. . .he is not a bad person.
He was just a father who lost his wife and desperately tried to protect his remaining son.