Author: Kaburagi Haruka
Translator: ShiroiKaze/Soyokaze Translations
1st Act, Chapter 15: I Got a Little Brother!
Alec is being carried back to the house on my Master’s back, and I’m following behind him on horseback.
Mr. Zeppel and Mr. Gusta are putting the finishing touches on the bridge; they let us head back first.
With the effect of the healing potion we stopped the bleeding, but I expect he lost a considerable amount of blood before I rushed over.
Moreover, he probably had a taste of some severe pain. He still doesn’t seem to be waking up.
“That’s my seat, newbie…”
Some kind of compulsion caused me to say that without thinking.
For now we lay Alec down on the bed in my room to watch over him for the night.
—Why my bed, you ask?
Ever since that time, I’ve been sleeping together with my Master, so the bed over here doesn’t get used at all, making it the nicest bed in the house!
In preparation for a fever, we’ve got a water basin and fever medicine ready on the side table.
We removed his clothes and wiped him off—well, my Master took care of this part for me.
Then a cooled cloth on his forehead… Oh right, I guess I’ll add some ice to the water basin?
I lightly apply [freeze] to part of the water and drop the water’s temperature.
We can’t have him getting thirsty, so let’s prepare a jug of water for him too.
I soak the leaves of the herbal fever medicine in the water, then hide the bitter taste by mixing some apple juice in.
“I wonder if this is good enough?”
I briskly get the preparations together. When my Master notices, he looks over at me with a pleasant smile on his face.
“What’s that face for, Master?”
“Well—, I was thinking it’s almost like watching a little sister lovingly taking care of her sick older brother”
“From what I heard, Alec is 12 years old, so that makes him younger then me you know?” (Hmhm!)
“With that appearance, even if you stick your chest out…”
With a three-pointed cloth wrapped around my head, and wearing an apron like what would be worn for lunch duties, my Master gives me a bitter smile. How rude.
“Uh… gh… H-huh? Where…?”
I wonder if it’s because we were making a ruckus at the bedside? Alec seems to have awoken.
“Ah, you’re awake?”
“How are you feeling? Does it hurt anywhere?”
Ufufu, he was pretending not to care, but my Master was worried too. Your repeated questions make it completely obvious, see?
“Yuuri, wipe that stupid grin off your face.”
“Hmm~, even saying all that, you were worried too, Master”
“Of course I was. I treated him, so I have a responsibility here.”
With that word, he probably remembered the disastrous scene from before he fainted.
Alec looks at his left hand… the left hand that isn’t there, and gazes dumbfounded at it…
“Ah, Aaah…. AAAhhh… UWAAAAaaaaaaAAAAAAaaaaaaa!!”
Suddenly, he started blindly thrashing about.
“Hey, calm… shit, he’s panicking?”
“Wa, M-Master—Do, some-uwa!?”
“Guess this’ll have to do.”
A thud, and a body blow.
Throwing the pillow, messing up the blankets, flailing his legs; Alec was rampaging like that—so my Master delivered a blow to his gut.
The precise fist hitting Alec’s diaphragm stops his breathing, his face turns blue, and he collapses on the bed.
That was way too direct a way of coping with the situation, and I cast an unusual condemning gaze over to my Master.
“Ah—, there’s nothing else I could have done, right? If he doesn’t calm down, then we can’t do anything.”
You seem to be giving a calm explanation, but aren’t your eyes swimming a bit?
“For now, I guess I’ll burn some incense with a sedative effect…”
“It’ll be a problem if he starts acting violently again after all. I’ll go get it, Master, so please tuck Alec back into bed.”
Since I can’t touch him.
“Are you awake? Don’t go rampaging this time.”
My Master asks in a heavier than usual voice, as Alec opens his eyes thinly.
Without answering that voice, Alec holds his left arm in front of his face—
“So it wasn’t a dream…”
“Yeah, It’s unfortunate, but I couldn’t get your hand back.”
“What about Mom and Dad?”
“That’s also, well, it’s… unfortunate.”
As if looking at something far away, Alec speaks in a quiet voice.
I have some recollection of that kind of tone. It’s the voice of someone becoming desperate and despairing.
I quietly leave the room and head to the storehouse in the basement.
After steeping a strong tea, I dissolve “what I was getting” into it, and return to the room.
“Since you’re probably thirsty, I’ve made some tea. It’s hot, so please be careful drinking it.”
“Ahh, thanks for that. I was just getting thirsty.”
“W-what is it?”
Why are you drinking it, Master—?!
This is bad. I-I’ve gotta get him out of here before the medicine takes effect!
“Th-that’s right, Master! T-t-t-there’s something I want to talk with you about, please come over here!”
“Urk… I get it already, stop pulling me.”
I tighten my grip on the back of my Master’s collar and pull him out of the room.
Just barely getting to my Master’s room in time, the medicine appears to have taken effect.
Upon entering the room and collapsing, my Master is now letting out calm sleeping breaths. On the floor.
“This guy, he’s clearly just acting on his own gluttony, isn’t he. Honestly, geez.”
With him left here like this, indeed, as his apprentice I’ll have to do something; let’s carry him to the bed.
I’ve said this before, but my Master is solidly built. That’s why, if I’m going to carry him, it’ll have to be on my back, so…
While dragging my feet, I somehow make it to the side of the bed—
My feet slipped out from under me, and like that my Master fell and crushed me.
It’s heavy! It’s hot! I can feel his breath on my neck! Ah, but it might be nice to sleep like this… stop that, me!
“Ah- mo- Master, move over… you’re- heavy!”
“What are you people doing…?”
While I’m pinned between the bed and my Master, flailing around and making noise, I hear an amazed voice come from behind me.
A little bit ago when my Master fell, it made a grand noise, so I wonder if he got worried and came to check on us? What a good kid.
“A-Alec, could you help out here plea… ahya”
“But I’ve heard that’s not something done with three people?”
“Ah, eh? W-wait no! That’s not it!”
I guess it was because I let out a strange noise from the breath on my neck? Whatever the cause, he seems to have gotten a strange misunderstanding.
“Well, I’ll quietly go back, so take your time…?”
“This isn’t what it looks like, it’s really not!”
I should have carried him with [body reinforcement].
“Master, I don’t think I need to be upside down”
“That’s enough from you.”
“Are you people actually comedians or something?”
In the end Alec helped me out, and after I detoxified my Master, he hung me upside down from the room’s ceiling beams.
“Well, let’s leave that idiot aside for now.”
“Please don’t leave me aside.”
“What made you do that in the first place?”
“Alec looked like he was at his wit’s end, so I thought for now he could get some time to rest with some sleeping pills.”
“Putting him to sleep isn’t going to do anything for him.”
“Won’t it? Time is a universal cure-all. Some things can turn out just fine by giving it a little time. Of course, the opposite is true for some things too.”
Though that’s my own past experience.
In my situation it was that opposite case; when I gave it a little time it accelerated the deterioration of the situation.
I closed off my heart and suddenly, by the time I noticed, the number of people increased by three times.
The despair of the situation increased, but I feel like my heart has been healed just a little bit. From that time.
“Well, enough of that. So, ah, should we just call you Alec?”
“Ah, yes. I’m Alec Burns.”
“I’m Haster Albine. That is my apprentice, Yuuri.”
“I’m Yuuri, I have no surname. By the way, Master. My glasses are going to fall off. This is bad.”
“Wh-why are you bringing the water bag over here?… Buwha!?”
“Stay like that for a little bit.”
“My eyes—! I can’t see—!?”
My Master covered my head with a bag, and now I can’t see anything.
“Well then, Alec. About what you’ll do from now on.”
“Right. If mom and dad aren’t here…”
“About that, for now I’ve asked Mareba… aah, the nearby village, to find foster parents for you.”
“Oh, is that so? Thank you very much.”
I guess he has already grasped his situation? What an intelligent child.
“We couldn’t very well kick you out after all. And there’s something else.”
“About your gift.”
“According to Yuuri’s perception, you have a “two-handed sword” gift it seems.”
“Two-handed sword… with these hands?”
Alec stares at his hand (or probably his lack thereof).
“Now, of all times…”
“Well, of course you’ll think that. However, destiny always and only gives out ‘now, of all times’ moments. I’ve also been cursed with those countless times.”
“If only I had more power right then.”
“The past can’t be changed. However, you can be prepared for the future… have you ever felt like learning the sword?”
“That’s impossible, and it would probably be pointless. Since I’m missing an arm.”
Alec gave that despair-laden mutter. For someone with a “two-handed sword” gift, that would likely be a fatal problem…
“That has nothing to do with no longer having both your hands. Even without having your gift, it doesn’t mean you can’t swing a sword.”
“You’re telling me to use a sword with one hand?”
“You know, most soldiers don’t have that kind of gift. Of course, neither do I. But they can still handle a sword. If you desire, I can teach you the basics.”
“Can it be done…?”
“It can, at least enough to scare away wild dogs.”
“Will I be able, to protect them?”
“… That will depend on you.”
‘Who?’ Is something my Master didn’t ask. I guess he’s talking about the “them” he couldn’t protect?
“Please, teach me…!”
That’s how I got a little brother.
Also, in the eyes of the two boys conversing, I am air… ah, a nosebleed…