Ooh boy, we actually hit the last sponsored chapter!
Many thanks to the ones who supported these chapters, I am truly grateful!
Since -sadly- the last chapter up-to-date for the novel is approaching, I will be saving the speech for later.
Anyways, enjoy! 😀
“Now then, there’s a mountain of things I want to hear of you, but first of all, why are you here?” (Makoto)
“Of course, to meet you.” (Root)
The top floor of the Kuzunoha Company’s new head office.
After releasing Root from the restrain at my office, he said this with a straight face.
Ah, of course, I entered through the backdoor.
As expected, it would be bad to have the customers that are in the middle of shopping learn of my return, of course, I can simply explain them that’s not the case, but I decided not to expose it.
“Okay, that might be one of the reasons. Then, the other reason?” (Makoto)
“To inspect the Adventurer Guild of Tsige. Lately, the places around here have been rowdy, so it was to make a confirmation of sorts. And in truth, it seems like the Guild is pretty cooperative to the movements of the town.” (Root)
That part is exactly as he says.
We are having the Adventurer Guild cooperate entirely.
Thinking about the public position that Root talks about, and the Adventurer Guild’s significance, just having it as a meeting place is already helping plenty.
With the matter of the independence and the coup d’etat in Aion, there’s plenty reason for him to come here to inspect.
Then, he simply came flying here after hearing about me from Sofia, but it is not like he has any sort of ulterior motive?
Eeh? That Root?
But what he is saying makes sense…
It also sounds convincing.
“Are those really the only reasons? Aren’t you scheming something?” (Makoto)
“None none. I heard from the report of that girl that she had met you, heard a nostalgic name, and that you would be going to Tsige. Meeting with Makoto-kun was a matter of luck, but I thought that it would be nice to come to Tsige at least once, that’s all.” (Root)
Laughing lightly, he flaps his hand in front of his face and laughs.
“…Then that topic is fine already. Next, Sofia who I met not that long ago, what was that about? What are your intentions?” (Makoto)
“Uh, yeah. It is true that I was thinking about making it a small surprise for Makoto-kun, so I kept it a secret. Uhm…how to say it…Makoto-kun, aren’t you especially angry? Now that I think about it, I feel like it was the same a few moments ago too…” (Root)
“I heard and learned about a variety of things you were involved with, and I saw for myself the matter of Sofia after all. Just means that there’s no short amount of questionable things. Root, after what happened, didn’t you finish off Sofia? Why is she still alive, moreover, younger?” (Makoto)
“Things I was involved in, huh. I don’t think I have done that many things that would warrant hate from Makoto-kun though. Also, about that girl, I am simply having her take responsibility for what she did, you know?” (Root)
Root was supposed to have retrieved the power of the Superior Dragons from Sofia and finished her.
I thought that was the last of the adventurer called Dragon Slayer, and yet, he tampered with her memories and made her younger.
When I asked for the reason, what I got in return from Root was the word ‘responsibility’.
“Sofia and Lancer went and did whatever they wanted for the sake of their own goals. Of course, there was no small amount of sacrifices because of it. Because of their intervention, there have been several countries falling to ruin. The amount of people and material damage is still unknown. The chaos they created utilizing the war was also quite the deal. When Lancer grows to a certain extent, I will have him return to his original place, and will have him work as one of the dragons that provides trials, just like Grount. With none of what he has done till now, that is. Then, about Sofia…” (Root)
“About Sofia, you say. She wouldn’t have done something like atoning. She wouldn’t regret walking the path she chose. That’s how it felt, you know?” (Makoto)
“Yeah, even at the border of death, she still spouted begrudging words towards me.” (Root)
With both of his palms up, he shrugs his shoulders.
That does sound like the last moments of someone like Sofia.
I somewhat could tell that she wouldn’t be doing something like plead for her life.
“Then, even with that, she didn’t die?” (Makoto)
“Ahahaha! Oh you, Makoto-kun, that’s not like you.” (Root)
“What is?” (Makoto)
“Die and that’s the end. ‘Counting death as taking responsibility, don’t joke around’, isn’t that something you said as well? Even if a crime has been committed, there’s a limit to how many things one can take responsibility for when the one responsible is dead. Apparently, that’s not something that can be forgiven. And so, that’s the gist of it.” (Root)
I don’t know when it was, but I do remember having a conversation like that in Rotsgard, with Tomoe and Root.
I think it revolved around *seppuku*. <disembowelment>
Stirring society plenty, and when they realize that their objective can’t be accomplished, they refuse to live in disgrace and choose suicide.
‘All the responsibility is on me, so I want to bring a closure to my own life’, just how selfish that is, is what I said. Well, I slightly remember I said that to the two while I was drunk.
“I am also of the same opinion as you. It is wrong to think that with death your responsibilities will stop their hounding. Luckily, she was an adventurer with power. She was also a vessel that had a bit of my power within her after all. That’s why I decided to breathe life into her for recycling.” (Root)
“By having her work as an adventurer in the direct control of the Adventurer Guild, I will have her work in reducing the amount of problems in the world. In other words, I am having her take responsibility.” (Root)
“…And why did you tamper with her memories?” (Makoto)
Root didn’t seem to show any hesitation as he explains the reason why he revived Sofia, and about her currently working.
“That’s a foolish question, Makoto-kun. With how she is, there’s no way she would have obediently followed my orders. Just as you saw, she was possessed by hate after all.” (Root)
“That’s why you imprinted in her that she would happily act for her loved father?” (Makoto)
“Honestly speaking, I didn’t care about her relation with me though. I simply sounded out her dormant desires after the bleaching, and imprinted memories of an environment she would accept more easily. Seriously, I laughed, you know? She hated me that much, and yet, her dreamed upbringing was that of being loved by me, grow her power straightforwardly, and contribute to society. Really, she walked a path that was completely contrary to that.” (Root)
“It is true that I probably surprised you needlessly. If it wasn’t a fun surprise for Makoto-kun, I apologize. But, is it really something to be so angry about?” (Root)
“Sofia and Lancer really created chaos in the world. If you want to, I can even show you the details of that damage in the future. They have to atone for that. If possible, by their own hands. Isn’t that right?” (Root)
It is true that, if possible, that’s how it should be.
If it is possible, that is.
I felt that these words had pretty distant meanings for the human me, and the dragon Root.
That’s right, because this is how I think, and in truth, I still think this way. Can it even be called atonement when you have to go all the way and do things like reviving and tampering with their memories?
Can it be recognized as the atonement of the Sofia that perpetrated them?
“The current Sofia is putting her all in her work. She is also tackling the reconstruction of Kaleneon with all she has. Not because of reasons like ‘the reward is good’ or ‘there’s a formidable enemy’, it is simply because she is happy that it is for the sake of the world. She also obtained the past she wished for. No one is unhappy about it, and I think it was a somewhat good decision though.” (Root)
“No one is unhappy, huh.” (Makoto)
As I thought, is this what they call a difference in views?
In the explanation of Root, there was no unpleasant scheme I felt there was.
No, giving me a surprise was a bit unpleasant though.
For him who has lived for a long time, it seems something like bringing back to life a hyuman that has died once is not that big of a deal.
Now that I think about it, even when Lancer changed a brave into a sword for his collection, it didn’t seem like he did much to stop him, and even if he acts like a hyuman, it is probably wrong to talk to him with the sense of value of a human being.
He normally acts strangely like a hyuman, so it really confuses me sometimes.
No one is unhappy.
“So that means…Sofia was reborn…” (Makoto)
At that time, Sofia was killed by Root.
That Sofia disappeared, and Root gave her the life she dormantly desired, and she was reborn.
Thus, in order to have her atone for the crimes she has committed even if for a bit, Root is having her work.
Thinking again about it in that way, I could tell the indescribable disgust towards Root I felt when I saw Sofia had clearly been reduced.
I probably am also becoming pretty weird.
The opinions I have towards death that are inside me, there’s times when it just doesn’t hold much meaning when I am talking about it to someone on Root class.
In these kind of conversations, Shiki is the same sometimes.
“…Well, that’s about it. It would have been fine to set her a bit younger, but that age was the most convenient for her to apply the techniques and knowledge she obtained, so it just ended up that way. It is not like I was trying to check for the sexual preferences of Makoto-kun.” (Root)
…He doesn’t have any hidden scheme, right?
Yeah, let’s stop pursuing too deeply for now.
In the first place, this was an unexpected development anyways.
The real matter at hand is Rokuya-san and his group.
Regarding their immortality.
And then…I probably won’t be able to hope for a careless blutter of Root regarding the dragon Futsu.
I was asked by Rokuya-san to keep secret about the latter one, so it is irritating that I can’t tackle that subject.
“…Then, is it okay to count Sofia as a working force?” (Makoto)
These weren’t words I muttered towards Root.
They were words that leaked out from my mouth to confirm with myself.
“It would help me if you do that. It seems like the misunderstanding has been dissolved a little. But it looks like you still have more. Fine then. Let’s do a ‘please teach me, Root-sensei’.” (Root) <Pretty sure it is a Gintama reference. But we are talking about Gintama, so Gintama may be parodying something else.>
For some reason, Root made a triumphant expression as he puffs his chest.
Even so, my brain may understand, but somewhere inside my heart still doesn’t accept it completely.
How to say it, it is as if there’s still some fuzziness in a corner of it.
But he is the one offering to tell me, so rather than pursuing that fuzzy feeling of mine, it would be better to just change the topic to something else.
“About the Adventurer Guild and the Adventurers of Origin.” (Makoto)
“!! It is as expected, or more like, you really go for the toughest spots, Makoto-kun. When I heard the name of Azu-kun at the guild, a corner of my head was wondering if that might be the case though.” (Root)
“I heard a pretty different story from the one you gave me before. And so, I began to think that I would like to hear your side of it.” (Makoto)
“…I thought it might be possible, but…I see. You have met them huh, someone among them. By the way, can you tell me from who you heard it from?” (Root)
“…From a person named Rokuya-san.” (Makoto)
It should be fine to tell him that, aside from talking about Futsu.
Seems like they were friends to begin with anyways.
Or more like, it seems there were people that the woman Root had a physical relationship with after all.
With this pervert.
It is unthinkable for me.
It is already not a matter of being carnivorous or herbivorous.
“Him huh. Was he doing fine?” (Root)
As if asking for the present state of an old friend, Root makes nostalgic eyes as he asks me.
…This is the first time…I have seen Root with a face like this.
“Yeah, I think he was doing fine.” (Makoto)
“I see. As always, he was aloof from the world, loves to draw, and when he kills, he still makes those sad eyes?” (Root)
“No well, I have only talked with him, so I don’t know that much. It seems there’s the atmosphere of an impending battle, but I don’t have the intentions of being killed, so I don’t think I will be able to confirm.” (Makoto)
“Battle? Hmm, if I remember correctly, Makoto-kun’s objective was to bring the mercenary group there. Then…yeah, if it’s them, it might be possible. They are as always huh. I see, they are at that grand labyrinth. That Doma, he never reported anything to me.” (Root)
“You, don’t you have any intentions of taking a side?” (Makoto)
“None. If they are involved, I intend to silently watch over it. I also don’t intend to do much justification to the things you heard from Roku-kun.If he is the one who said it, it is all true. If I had to correct something, it is probably your words.” (Root)
Then he admits that he made them immortal and tied them down?
If even that isn’t a matter to care about like with Sofia, I think I won’t be able to comprehend him for life.
“Regarding the part about what I said being different from what he said. Putting it correctly, isn’t it just that you heard things you didn’t hear from me? For example, the system of the Adventurer Guild. About the core of it.” (Root)
So he has an idea of what I want to ask huh.
“And what happened to them as a result. Probably also about them disappearing from history’s front stage. So, is what you are going to ask something between those lines?” (Root)
“Yeah, if you are willing to tell me, please do. Honestly speaking, I think there’s no worse punishment than giving immortality to people. If you really see the Wise, the Japanese people as rare existences that should be welcomed, why did you do something like that to Rokuya-san and his group? If possible, I would want you to tell me in a way that I can accept.” (Makoto)
“…Of course, I will tell you. However, I don’t know if Makoto-kun will accept it. But there’s one thing I can say for sure, this is all past history that has already concluded, and the concerned party has accepted the result of it. I don’t know how much of a meaning it has inside of you that will make it acceptable or not, but I will properly tell you the truth.” (Root)
Those words pierce sharply.
If it were about Toa’s ancestors and Sofia, it would be another story, but with Rokuya-san and his group, the circumstances are different.
Since we are talking about immortality, can it really be called a matter of the past?
And in reality, Rokuya-san is currently alive.
…Then, has he hated Root? Has he not accepted it?
Root speaks out.
A story of long past where several familiar names appear.
Not even in the library of Rotsgard Academy it remains, but it is a story that without doubt existed.
My resolution wavers, and with my standing still not clear yet, the story involving the Guild of Root continued on.