Monday, October 31, 2022 @

Chapter 189 Hero's Little Sister

 "I see, you are Brave's sister... this is a surprise."
 "I was surprised too! It's a coincidence that you two are classmates who go to the same school as Onii-chan!"
 Right next to me, Nagisa and Arte... Leon's sister are chatting with each other.
 I didn't expect that the girl I saved from the vicious aristocrat was Leon's sister. Coincidence is truly a terrible thing.
 It is said that Arte was kidnapped when she came to the town to sell some medicinal herbs, and she was put in the prison dungeon.
 In the game scenario, she was captured by Zenon and being played with by him, but is it possible that she has a habit of being captured?
 "Are you Princess Peach (From Super Mario)...? Seriously"
 "Umm... you two are Onii-chan's friends, aren't you?"
 Arte asks me with a cute little tilt of her head, and I frown.
 The relationship between Leon and me is hard to describe.
 We are not so close as to be friends, but not so bitter as to be enemies.
 We are not friends, and we have a connection that is too strong to be dismissed as mere classmates.
 "We are not friends... but we are comrades in arms, competing with each other to achieve a common goal...?"
 "I see... in other words, rivals...!"
 When she puts it like that, I think such a relationship is the closest.
 At least... that's how Leon probably sees me.
 "Uh... you said Arte. What brings you to this town? You were visiting the lord... where's your family?"
 The village where Leon lived is near the capital, a long way from here. It was not a place for a girl to travel alone.
 "Of course, to look for my missing brother! I asked my uncle to bring me here!"
 Arte replies without a pause.
 "When I heard that Onii-chan was missing, I couldn't stand still... so I asked my uncle who was a peddler to help me, and here I am!"
 "That's... quite a reckless thing you've done."
 This city was a battlefield just a few days ago. There's no guarantee of safety.
 To come to such a place on the spur of the moment is the kind of recklessness that only a child can pull off. I wonder what her uncle was thinking when he brought her here.
 "My uncle said yes when I asked him politely! I told him that I had seen him walking with a woman other than my aunt, and he immediately nodded his head."
 "That was a threat... seriously, you little brat..."
 She saw her uncle cheating on her aunt and used it as a pretext to get him to bring her here...? It's a frightening behavior. I'm being reminded once again that the girl in front of me is the protagonist's sister.
 "...Well, Leon is often reckless. He almost lost his balls because of her.
 "No, you kid doesn't need to know... well, I guess I'm here for the same reason you are."
 I think about it for a minute and make a suggestion to Arte.
 "Then... would you like to come with me to the meeting with the lord? You're here to ask about Leon's safety, aren't you?"
 "Is that alright!?"
 Arte was leaning forward and came at me.
 I feel as if I had been barked at by an overly energetic little dog, and I lean back slightly.
 "Well, you'll do the same thing. I don't mind."
 "Please let me join you! I'm glad, now I can make sure Onii-chan is all right...!"
 I don't know if he's safe... but I'm not so ruthless as to say so.
 In the meantime, a guard comes back to the gate. The soldier comes running towards us, breathing heavily, and opens his mouth to us.
 "Sir, the lord is coming to see you...! Please, come in...!"
 "Yeah, thank you."
 I led Nagisa and Arte through the gate of the duke's house.
 The soldier frowned slightly at Arte, a commoner's daughter who followed us as a matter of course, but he did not interfere in any particular way.
 We were ushered into the mansion, and a man in a butler's uniform showed us to the parlor.
 "Ah, thank you for coming. Marquis Baskerville."
 A young woman in her twenties or so greeted me in the parlor.
 She had flaxen hair tied at the back of her head and was wearing a man's suit for some reason.
 I thought for a moment that she was a man with a neutral face, but the bulge pushing up the chest of the suit left no doubt that she was a woman.
 "It must have been a long journey from the royal capital to this remote place. If it were possible, the Duke's family would like to entertain you... But I'm sorry. We've been too busy dealing with the aftermath of the war to throw you even a single banquet."
 "Thank you for your hospitality but who are you?"
 I asked, knowing the rudeness of the question.
 The Duke of Alterio in the game was a middle-aged man with romance gray hair and a beard. He was not, by any means, the beautiful young woman standing in front of me.
 "I'm sorry, I'm late."
 The woman puts one hand on her breast and lifts the corners of her rouged lips in a bewitching gesture.
 "My name is Chrisrossa Alterio. I am the new head of the Dukes of Alterio, replacing my father who was killed in battle!"

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