The Heavily Armoured Noble Girl Monette: How To Break a Curse You Don’t Remember Casting - Chapter 53
Time for a Decision 4
Who muttered such?
Emilia and Rodel had a startled look on their faces when they opened the doors and saw everyone waiting for them. Above all, it was probably most shocking to see a suit of armor among the crowd, making them realize that the armor they had talked with and that Rodel had stabbed was empty from the very beginning.
Both of them realizing they had been deceived, Rodel’s expression had become clouded while relief washed over Emilia’s face at seeing that her sister was fine and well.
The two walked in showing completely opposite expressions, but when Ordo took a step forward and greeted them, “Yo, you two,” their faces twisted into the same frightened expression. Was he using a light tone in celebration due to his victory, or was he going for intimidation by showing how much leeway he had in the current situation? Realizing that either option would have been typical Ordo behavior, Monette took a deep sigh inside her helmet.
Looking at such an Ordo and then eyeing Alexis standing next to him, Emilia and Rodel’s faces were both pale.
“Isn’t the two of you arriving together like this nice?”
Ordo focused his eyes on the two of them while laughing heartily.
He looked like he was having fun, but he also had a great interest in how the plan had gone on so flawlessly until the end. Although he was smiling, for a single second his eyes became sharp as he lowly muttered, “So this is a curse,” in a deep voice. It was only for that second, so nobody noticed the change before he switched back to his usual smile.
Rodel glared at that obnoxious while being simultaneously confused by the words said with that smile. Alexis too was watching Ordo curiously.
“Brother, do you know what it is that you have done?”
“Ah, I know.”
“This is a betrayal against the people. Mother, Father!”
Alexis looked down on his brother as Rodel riddled him with complaints of betrayal,………and he simply returned them with an, “I know.” There was no tremble in his voice that showed any regret, nor was there any signs of hesitation. His voice was not heated by anger, nor was it chilled with hatred. He spoke as if it were the most ordinary thing in the world.
Hearing him, Rodel’s eyes went wide in disbelief.
Then a scowl spread formed and his eyebrows creased as he turned his gaze away. Most likely, he was remembering every fight and painful memory of Alexis he had made over the past year.
Next to him, Emilia’s face was pointed down as if the weight of what she had caused was so heavy that she was unable to lift her head to look at Alexis.
“So brother, all of it being a witch…….”
“I know it was. It was certainly all due to a witch’s curse. But witches have been around since long ago. A rebellion caused by a witch, it’s nothing new.”
“There was also a struggle for inheritance within the royal family, the denial of the oldest son his right to take the throne–when compared to the larger world, this isn’t an uncommon story. The only detail was that a witch’s curse was involved in this incident. It’s not an unbelievable story………..as evidenced by being what has happened.”
Talking simply, Alexis then looked up towards Ordo.
His eyes showed that he wanted his uncle to confess something, and knowing exactly what that something was, Ordo made a wicked smile before exaggeratedly shrugging his shoulders. “It was only a last resort though,” was the inexplicable reply he gave while his deep brown eyes were locked with Alexis’s.
In other words, Ordo had been thinking about drawing a witch to his side long before this incident had started to take root. That was why he had taken considerations and knew that, “Hospitality for a witch is a troublesome thing,” when there was no real witch family in this country.
But witches are not easy to handle, and if you are not careful you can end up wrapped around their finger. And if a witch did not care enough about him, then there is a chance they will just flat out refuse to meet him. For Ordo asking a witch for help was a last resort, something to only be used when is back was completely against the wall.
“Originally I was keeping an eye on Monette, but her aptitude as a witch was unknown. I was digging for information to see if I could count on her, or if I should seek the help of a different witch.”
“…….and then you picked up a servant who came with a witch attached.”
“Yeah, it was a very lucky find. I got everything I ever wanted.”
Ordo broke out into another fit of jubilant laughter, but all Alexis did was shrug his shoulders, shake his head, and marvel at how large his uncle’s ambition was.
Towards this Monette found herself sighing once again before turning to look at Gina who had a bit of irritation on her face, and even Percival, who had yet to drop his guard since Rodel had entered the room, was looking plenty amazed. He had been keeping an eye on potential witch’s to help him, and then in one turn he obtained two witches and a witch slayer on his team and stole the throne…….
What kind of luck is that? If Ordo had the added benefit of someone like Emilia’s magic…….Monette shuddered to think about it, and having had the same thoughts, Gina placed her hand on the younger witch’s shoulder and shook her head.
“Sometimes you get people with strong luck like Ordo. When you have witches, curses, and even the goddess of victory’s blessing, there is little that can be done.”
Ordo enjoyed Gina’s words with an even larger, boastful smile and completely ignored the tired sigh she had made afterwards.
In an extremely disgusting tone he laughed, “I’m not that amazing!” in a way that would make anyone who had even an ounce of humility immediately die of embarrassment.
Alexis shook his head at such an Ordo before turning his eyes back on Rodel.
“Rodel, we should have been thinking like this as well.”
“We were born to a royal family in a world where witches exist, yet we took no measures against them. We decided they had nothing to do with us and put no thought to those witches in foreign countries out of our sight.”
“But the witches……”
“That way of thinking is useless.”
While witches were just people, there was a line there that made them seem as if they existed in a completely foreign world. They sound like beings straight from a fictional story even though you know they exist, and as long as you do not see any signs of their magic, you are left thinking that they have nothing to do with you.
In fact, witches from other countries were always immersed in their magic inside their territories. That is why there is little recognition or acknowledgment for witches which is why some such as the Idira family abandoned their craft for more noticeable power.
Not only that, it could be said that the two princes had the same mentality when it came to Ordo.
They knew he had not given up on taking the throne for himself, but he had already been expelled from the royal palace. They thought he would surely be rounded up and dealt with someday. That was why they had always thought of him as someone else’s problem and moved their thoughts towards more pleasant thoughts that wouldn’t hurt their heads.
In the meantime Ordo ruled the frontier, gaining strength, and was even considering pulling a witch to his side.
If he had started a rebellion at this time, what could that be called other than a disaster?
So Alexis thought at least. That voice of his had not changed, and his eyes as he looked down on Rodel were seriously lacking in emotion.
“This situation was certainly all due to a witch. But if witches were only to blame, then this country would not fall into chaos. Because of how peaceful this country is, the story would have ended with the royal family kicking out the oldest son and passing it down to the younger brother. It is not an uncommon story. I thought that way……but apart from that,”
Alexis stopped there and took a deep breath.
Then he closed his eyes. Everyone watched as he slowly gathered his thoughts. Receiving those gazes, he opened his eyes once again……,
“Apart from that, I realized that such a country would perish. Not because of affairs of royalty or anything like that, but because of the grudge the people would hold against you when it became clear you relied on the whims of a witch to meet your goals.”
So, he was abandoned.
Alexis removed his line of sight from Rodel and walked back to confirm the arrangement of security with Percival. It was as if he were to say that he no longer held any interest in the present situation.
Rodel watched him go with stifled breath and then turned his attention to Emilia. His already firm grip on Emilia’s hand tightened even more until she started to tremble.
“……Emilia, use magic.”
“You are the only one who can save this country. Now protect the country with your magic!”
Rodel’s voice rose to a hysterical roar, and his iron-tight grip refused to release Emilia’s hand.
‘Protect me,’ this should be what Rodel’s true intentions were. Underestimating a witch’s power, he went along with the situation to toss out his brother, and took the throne all due to a witch’s silent wishes. And still, he would put the role of saving the country to a witch.
It was said that Alexis was a good prince who loved his countrymen, but Rodel had thought of his country just as his older brother did. Therefore he truly thought it was best for a witch to protect the country by using her powers to put an end to the rebellion.
But Emilia was no great spell-weaver, she was an ordinary girl whose face only showed fear towards his sudden outbursts. Seeing that look, Rodel lowered his head slightly and took a step back.
“………….Rodel, but I,”
“Emilia, I’m begging you. Use your magic!”
The loud clamor of Rodel’s voice reached new heights, and all the strength he had went into the grip he had on her. The area around his hand was turning pale, and Emilia’s frightened expression was starting to go blue from pain.
Seeing the growing situation between the two, Monette jumped forward to try and stop Rodel from hurting Emilia any more, but she was stopped when Alexis was one step faster than her.
Alexis wore an extremely cold and dark look in his eyes and a painfully distorted scowl on his lips, yet he still rushed straight forward and unleashed a full-powered swing with a tightly closed fist…..and a dull noise echoed in the room.
Emilia’s high-pitched scream echoed louder than the hit as Rodel collapsed after being beaten by Alexis’s fist. Emilia’s face turned pale after watching such an act of violence in front of her, and she quickly knelt down and started slapping Rodel’s cheeks to see if she could wake him up.
Next, Emilia directed her frightened gaze towards Alexis, but Alexis assured her there would be no more violence while taking a deep breath. After relaxing a bit, Alexis then turned towards one of Ordo’s guards and told him to restrain Rodel.
“I doubt he will try any other troublesome moves, but just in case……”
Alexis spoke in a low voice, as if to control his breathing and help calm himself down even further. However, when he noticed the surrounding gazes still fixed on him, he lightly waved his hand, “I’m not used to stuff like this,” and shrugged his shoulders as if he were trying to show off.
The truth was clear to anyone though. Although he had made the resolve to not forgive anyone, he was still kind to his core. His younger brother, who had the resolve to protect his country even if he had to rely on a witch, there was no way that he wasn’t hurting deep down after being forced to hit him.
That’s why Monette looked after him with narrowed eyes and motioned towards his hand as he desperately tried to force a smile.
“What if you hurt your hand?”
“Well, then the next time I hit someone, I will be sure to borrow Monette’s gauntlet.
Haha……..Alexis scratched his cheek with a simpler smile on his face.
Towards him, Ordo released a fearless laugh and asked, “So you helped him?” in a loud voice. Then, he motioned towards his men and gave them a signal by lightly lowering his hand.
Monette tilted her helmet to the side curiously as she did not know what the gesture meant, but Alexis seemed to understand as he made a strong bitter smile and shrugged.
“Yes it was impossible for me to go that far. Percival, it’s alright, so you can put your sword away.”
Monette hurriedly turned her gaze towards Percival as Alexis said something extremely concerning in a very calm voice. What she saw was his hand at the handle of his sword strapped to his waist, and the blade slightly peeking out from its sheath.
Similarly, all of Ordo’s men returned their swords from their slightly drawn positions and even Ordo was laughing about how, “I didn’t have to use it after all,” concerning the small dagger he was fingering near his chest.
It goes without saying that every blade there had been for the sake of cutting Emilia and Rodel down. At that moment, everyone became wary of a witch’s magic and grabbed their weapons.
But Alexis raised his fist before a blade could be pointed at Rodel. It could most certainly be said that he had ‘helped’ him, and Alexis’s bitter smile showed that he couldn’t deny it.
Even if he wouldn’t forgive his brother, watching him get needlessly killed right in front of you would be something entirely different.
Then Alexis turned his gaze towards Monette as if he were handing the stage over to her. Now that Rodel has been taken care of, next is……..was the meaning held within those eyes.
Knowing that, I walked over to Emilia with my iron covered legs.
“Emilia, please get caught here quietly.”
“I have also decided to side with Ordo, so if Emilia resists I will fight you as a fellow witch……but I would like to avoid that if possible.”
So was my appeal. And as short as it was, it was still enough for tears to gather in Emilia’s eyes when she heard it and turn as pale as if she had just learned that the world was ending.
Still she worked up the courage to take a deep breath, and with a trembling voice responded, “I understand.”
“I hurt my sister and Alexis and got Rodel involved and this country…….I know I can’t be forgiven.”
I had to take a breath in my helmet and hold myself back after seeing my younger sister look so defeated.
But with this, things would be fine. Emilia understood…….
So a modicum of relief entered my heart.
By choosing to become Ordo’s captive, it would give him all the reason he would need to not treat her harshly. Ordo shouldn’t have any resentment built up against Emilia in the first place. –Since it’s him, he might even appreciate all the work she has done which led to him taking the throne.–
Surely he would find that Emilia has some utility value. At the very least, since Emilia’s safety would be his best card against me, he would not do something like letting her go.killing her
Thinking so, I took a deep breath of relief into the air and allowed my shoulders to relax…..
“It would be best if I were to manage such a young witch personally. Come Emilia, come celebrate my victory with me.”
Ordo extended his hand out to Emilia saying those words, and the deep breath I was taking got caught in my throat and echoed inside my helmet.
“Eh……” was all I could squeeze out.
However the next moment a question bubbled up distorting my thinking, and an uncomfortable feeling swept through me as if my body were being crushed. The blood flowing through my veins was pulsating, and my chest was being squeezed until air was unable to escape my lungs.
However, it was only that way for a moment. All the questions that were plaguing my mind were washed away, and a feeling of relief came over me as I realized that this was good. The voice inside my head was telling me there was nothing to worry about, and from now on, everything was going to be okay.
………That’s right, this was good. Ordo was looking over Emilia.
Wouldn’t it be enough for her to just be a concubine? As a concubine, he would surely take excellent care of her versus her being some simple prisoner.
Since it was Ordo, he would surely hire numerous maids to take care of her.
Emilia’s safety was guaranteed.
If Emilia stayed near Ordo, then the two of us would be together from now on. This was good, everything would be just fine from now on.
I could see the realization that everything would be good from now on floating from one person to the next. It’s a perfect storybook ending, even such a thought sprung forward in my heart.
In the corner of my vision, I saw Gina holding her hand to her throat, making as if she were trying to make some form of appeal, but her voice wasn’t making any noise even though her mouth was moving. I hope she hasn’t hurt her throat.
But I could worry about that later I thought as I turned my gaze back towards Emilia.
Emilia looked at the hand Ordo had presented towards her looking puzzled. I wish she would quickly take it, so I tried rushing her in my mind.
“What…….Sir Ordo, why?”
“What reason is there to hesitate? Now take my hand, be mine, Emilia.”
“No…….no more……….Sister Monette……….”
Emilia called out my name in a trembling voice. My chest started grow slightly warm, and as I watched her, Emilia started rifling through her clothes with a pale and frantic look on her face.
I watched as Emilia continued to move in fear and wondered what she was doing.
Instead of so frantically pulling out her prized necklace, she should be hurrying up and taking Ordo’s hand………….
I feel sleepy, but I still open my mouth to try and hurry Emilia……
With my last shred of sanity, I fight off the overwhelming drowsiness coming over me and shout out as loud as I can to the witch slayer at my back.
At that moment, a shadow passed just beside me moving so fast, all I could see was its swaying golden hair.
It passed me by, then Alexis who had been watching everything happen with a nonchalant look on his face, and even passed Ordo whose hand was still outstretched towards Emilia.
Without any hesitation it headed straight for Emilia, moving its hands towards the sword at its waste and swinging with a loud, heartfelt shout.
The shriek of something shattering echoed around us.
At that moment, I saw the iron blocking my view as nothing more than an obstacle. If there was anything I wanted, it would be to burn this sight into my brain without anything obstructing me, and the shame I felt at still hiding my face inside a helmet had become overwhelming.