The Black Cat Prince Laughs At The Moonlit Sky 1-48 min read
Chapter 1-4: Being Alone Is Already–
“–So, what do you want to do from here on out?”
Immediately after giving thanks for the food, sitting across from me, Louis asked that.
Even so, that was surprisingly delicious. I thought that soldiers only ate portable, tasteless food.
The ready-made food tasted good, and was warm.
That’s what I thought as someone who more or less helped with the cooking when I worked for the lord.
“Even if you ask me what I wanted to do… To be honest, I don’t know. I also don’t have anywhere else to go.”
After drinking the tea in one go, I said. And then Louis said,
“You don’t have relatives?”
“If I did, I wouldn’t be put in an orphanage. My father died before I was born, and my mother also died from illness when I was 12 years old. Even the village I was born and raised in disappeared because of this war… I also don’t have any acquaintances.”
He murmured with an expression that looked like he pitied me. I’d like you to stop doing that.
Since this is normal for me.
“…I guess we’ll do it like that then.”
As if having decided, Louis said.
Then he faced me,
“Come with us.”
I stood up with a clatter, which surprised Louis.
“I-In the end, that’s only if you’re fine with that. Although I absolutely can’t guarantee that you’ll always be protected, but until we leave you to a safe place… Even if I were to say that, since we’re from the enemy nation, we can’t really just set foot into this country’s orphanage. I figured you could look for a job where you can work as a live-in but… That fine with you?”
That attractive proposal was more than enough for me.
Even if I were to live by myself while working, I’ll have no choice but to go with the times. If I were to find a place by myself without the help of an agency, I might starve to death before I find one.
Although it’ll be short-term, because I’ll be looking for one while trying to ensure my own safety,
I decided on my answer.
With my head down, Louis showed a relieved expression,
“If you’re fine with that, it’ll also give me peace of mind. Until then, I’d appreciate it if we could depend on your magic and assist the rescue squad. Can we rely on you?”
“…Well, if it’s only that…”
Along with the brazen voices, the tent’s entrance suddenly opened…
As usual, the soldiers all had on big smiles on their faces as they surged forward.
Because all twenty of them suddenly dashed in, the person in front collapsed, and the one after also fell… This somehow became a disaster.
“…Is this a comedy skit?”
“You bastards, you were eavesdropping?”
Having not heard what I murmured, Louis’ eyebrows twitched and said.
At the commander’s words, the man in front (let’s call him ‘Soldier A’ for now) groveled and answered.
“I apologize, Commander! I was going to come in and report to you about the spy’s information, but I waited in front of the tent instead, thinking that Fior-chan’s meal was of utmost priority. By chance, the conversation caught my ear!”
“And then during that time, I was keeping guard of this guy’s unprotected back!”
“I also guarded this guy…”
“…Stop, I get it. So for the time being, everyone get out except for those who’ll be reporting.”
Louis sighed as they excused themselves one by one, like a chain.
Regardless of whether they were unaware of how mad Louis was, or they just weren’t scared of him, the soldiers dispersed in succession, and left as they foolishly smiled at me ‘We’ll be in your care’ and waved their hands.
…Will the Loganz Army be okay with these guys?
Would I be okay if I follow these carefree people? I became uneasy.
“–So the report?”
Louis began to address the soldier that was left behind by the others with a serious face.
And then Soldier A looked at my face, as if hesitating slightly.
…Eh? What, me?
Ah, is it something unpleasant that I can’t hear about?
I looked at Louis, signaling with my eyes if I should leave the tent. Instead, he quietly shook his head,
“Don’t mind her. Report.”
And only said that.
Although Soldier A still looked like he was hesitating, he answered in a serious voice unlike that of his earlier carefree mood.
“Yes. I will now be reporting. According to the spy’s information… According to the Fortanica Army, 80% of the Istrada Kingdom has been taken over. It’s only a matter of time before the Istradan government announces their surrender…”
…I see, that’s why.
It’s only natural to not want to hear about your own country’s loss. Considering that, he was just taking me into consideration.
“…So that’s how it is, Fior. That’s Istrada’s…Your country’s current situation. I knew this was going to happen sooner or later so… I wanted you to hear the truth.”
Louis turned towards me with a grave expression. But with a nonchalant face,
“Even if you didn’t tell me this, I’m the most aware out of everyone that this country will lose. Besides, while it’s unfortunate, my patriotism isn’t that strong.”
Rather, I’d like the Istradan government to surrender as soon as possible so as to not create more victims.
Louis made a bitter expression at my words.
“Even if you say so… If you stay with us from here on out, even if you don’t want to, this country’s shambles… You’ll be personally witnessing scenes like yesterday’s. It’ll be more heart-breaking than you think. It’ll be different, hearing it with your own ears and seeing with your own eyes. Even so… You’re sure?”
Staring directly into his gaze, I immediately replied.
“That’s the kind of world this is. Painful things are the same no matter where you are. If that’s how it is, I…”
I said in a voice that I almost couldn’t hear myself.
“…I don’t want to experience painful things by myself anymore.”
“…Nothing. Anyways, I’ll be fine. Don’t worry about me.”
Nevertheless, Louis still looked like he wasn’t convinced.
Good grief, I wonder just how kind of a person he is.
As a person who isn’t used to being worried about, if I’m supposed to be pleased, I’m not.
“I see… Well, if it’s painful, tell us immediately, okay?”
“I know, I know… Well.”
As Louis stared at me in worry, I averted my eyes.
Just this once, I’ll tell him.
“…Though it’s kinda too late at this point, I’m grateful. For saving me… Thank you.”
At my words, Louis looked at me with wide eyes, and then laughed out loud.
“To say thank you in this kind of situation, such a considerate fella. You, I mean.”
“S…Shut up. Anyways, you have to take care of me from now on.”
“Yeah, leave it to me. Although it looks like just babysitting a kid, I’m pretty good at this.”
“I. Told. You. I’m not a kid… Jeez.”
It might be easier to act like a kid infront of this person.
I couldn’t help feeling the merit of not hiding my feelings whenever he puts his hand on top of my head.
…We looked to the side, and there was Soldier A who had been crying as he listened to our conversation from beginning to end.
“Ah… You’re still here?”
“…Wait a minute, why are you crying…?”
I accompanied Commander Louis and his carefree soldiers.
Originally, it seemed that they will be returning to the Loganz Empire in anticipation that the war will soon be over.
On the way there, we happened to come upon the rubble of the town I was in, and we stopped by temporarily to look for survivors.
Actually, I wondered what would have happened to me if they didn’t happen to pass by this town…
But surely this is what mom meant to ‘live.’
I think she said that and gave me this meeting.
I’m also sure that the magic given to me is a present from my mom, who gave it to me for this…
With those thoughts, I’ll live with all my might.
Little by little, I cured the injured soldiers everyday, and each time, they give their thanks and praise me.
With the usual ridiculous mood spread throughout this group, everyday was fun, something I haven’t experienced until this moment.
After my mom died, I lived alone while putting up a front.
Thanks to them, for the first time, I can now know the happiness that comes with living for somebody else’s sake.
Then, the more I spent time with them, the feeling inside my bosom that I felt for the person named Louis grew.
I personally witnessed the respect that the soldiers had for him.
Before I knew it, this person became important to me.
…But that emotion was far from love.
If I were to put it into words… That’s right.
I’d probably call it respect.
I don’t know what kind of person my father was.
I’m pretty sure this feeling is what I would have for him.
Respect for such a great existence, and absolute trust.
This group is one big family.
Although we’re right in the midst of war, surprisingly, everyday is fun.
And just like that, three months passed.
If there are any mistakes, please do point it out. I translated this in the middle of the night, and I’m hella tired, so I can’t ascertain to how mistake-free this is.