This entry covers part of the tenth volume of the original “Re:Zero” novels.
In the previous entry, the protagonist made his fake mom cry, and then he told a dead witch that he looked forward to drinking her spit.
After you carried the unconscious Emilia out of the witches’ tomb, everyone who had gathered in the clearing makes sure that she returns safe in Otto’s carriage back to Ryuzu’s home at the center of Sanctuary. You put the half-elf in a guest bed. Although she woke up shortly after, she had a hard time understanding where she was, or that she had failed to succeed at the trials. She looked terrified and was incoherent like during a high fever, even though there didn’t seem to be anything wrong with her body. You feared that the trials had genuinely broken her mind, snapped her sanity, but after a while she began to calm down. Both you and Ryuzu carried on a normal conversation with her, explaining how she ended up in one of Ryuzu’s beds. Emilia was beyond exhausted, so you agreed to let her sleep.
Everyone’s mood is down, but the mayor of Sanctuary offers you all some snacks and drinks, even though it’s close to midnight. Shortly after you are all sitting around the table in Ryuzu’s cozy living room, and you in particular are chewing on some cookies.
Otto has convinced the elf grandmother to serve him some alcoholic drinks, and he’s drowning his worry the best way he knows.
“I can’t handle lady Emilia looking so broken, so pained! I wish the trials had a face so I could break it!”
Garfiel is slumped on a chair as he munches on fried potatoes. Ever since he heard Emilia’s screams in the guest room, his gaze has been unfocused, and from time to time he scratches the nasty scar on his forehead.
“As if a lightweight like ya could break any face. Don’t put on airs, ya damn merchant. Ya hit somethin’ and yer arm would shatter.”
“I-It’s the intention that counts!”
You have been observing Garfiel’s expressions. He had attempted the trials, but failed to break the barrier. The punk seems distraught about Emilia’s mental state, at this point possibly only because she’s hot, but he doesn’t seem disappointed.
“You didn’t believe for a second that Emilia would have passed the trials, did you, Garfiel?”
He shoots you a glance as if trying to figure out if you are accusing him of something. His light blonde hairline is glistening with sweat.
“I said so, I reckon. Didn’t I, half-pint? Can’t pass those damn trials. They’re made so everybody will fail. That’s how that old witch wanted it. It hits right were it hurts. Princess’ too shy, no way she’d stand whut them trials want to show her.”
You sigh, and then let out a long yawn. You’re ready to collapse face-first into your bed, but a previous glance to Ram reminded you that you’ll need to deal with Roswaal’s clownish crap in some minutes.
“Now it will depend on what she decides to do when she wakes up. I was with her, I heard what she said to the villagers. She was determined to attempt the trials over and over until she succeeded. She would feel horribly guilty if she just gives up now, despite whatever traumatized her so much.”
Garfiel narrows his eyes and shakes his head.
“Shy princess should give up, I reckon. Would be better for her. People’s minds are like the great bridge of Ehurradan: a tad too much weight and they collapse, sendin’ them carriages to the rocks below. It’s all a big mess.”
“What kind of ruler would she be if she just gave up after one try?”
“She’s damaged, everybody can see that! She needs to give up on this foolishness and move on. She will only get hurt more. Hearin’ a pretty girl screamin’ like that, damn torture.”
“And all we can do is support her from a distance?”, Otto whines, then downs the rest of his drink. “I can’t deal with such impotence!”
“I reckon ya should be used to impotence with how quickly ya empty those bottles, small-timer”, Garfiel says, sounding a bit proud that he could make that point.
“Not that I would ever confirm such a suggestion…”
You feel Ram’s gaze burning the side of your face. She has sat opposite you, and like the spartan, ferocious servant that she is, she hasn’t reached for any of the snacks or drinks. You want to stuff some cookies in her mouth, but she would likely bite your fingers off.
“Barusu, do you intend on addressing it at any point?”
The senior servant is staring at you as if she could read your mind the harder she focused.
“We’ll go see our lord whenever you want”, you say. “I just wanted to figure out everyone’s thoughts about what happened to Emilia.”
“I don’t know if you are avoiding the issue or if you are that dense. No, I suppose that I know. The witches’ tomb didn’t kill you, and you entered the chamber of the trials. So you did go through the trial, didn’t you?”
By how Garfiel and Otto look at you, they must have forgotten it, worried as they were with the half-elf. However, Ryuzu, sitting at the head of the table, only narrows her eyes.
“Yes, I did go through the trial”, you admit, and to your surprise you sound guilty.
Garfiel straightens his back and grimaces at you.
“Haah!? It doesn’t show on yer face at all! Crap, ya passed the first trial, didn’t ya?” He looks down at the table for a moment, as if he can’t believe it, but then he glares at you. “First part shows the past! Yer past must’ve been an easy ride then! No worries at all, justa great time! Must’ve been frolickin’ around with them gheltofens, drinkin’ milk straight from their teats. Damn half-pint…”
“Did you actually clear the trial, Barusu?”, Ram asks.
“Yes, I did. I never got any confirmation, but it ended as if I had succeeded, and for some reason I knew clearly that I had passed it, as if I had been told.”
“What did the trial show you?”, Ram asks as if it is any of her business.
Garfiel groans, and quickly intercedes in the conversation.
“Ya go through the trial, ya don’t wanna talk ’bout it! Ya’d know if ya tried it, Ram! It’s like the unwritten code of the Yeguhal assassins!”
“No unwritten code, then”, Ram says. “Barusu, if you can help lady Emilia succeed-“
“It showed my parents”, you say soberly. “They are… gone. I’ll never see them again. I dealt with some unfinished business, I told those visions of them what I hadn’t got the chance to say.”
You notice that the two of them look at each other for a moment, and then at you. Ram’s gaze softens.
“I suppose we can safely assume you have passed.”
Garfiel gives a nasty snort. He seemed about to speak, but he closes his mouth seemingly having given up on sharing whatever thought he had.
“I can guess what was going to come out of your mouth, Garfiel”, you say. “No, my past wasn’t that terrible, not in comparison with all the shit that goes on in this world, and certainly not with the garbage we had to handle to defend ourselves against the cult. Just unfinished business with my family.”
Ryuzu, who after preparing the snacks and drinks had sat down but had contributed very little to the conversation, because she seemed exhausted like an old person, finally speaks up with her incongruously young voice.
“I’m afraid it’s not enough to pass the trials, Young Su, or at least not in the sense that you understand what passing implies.”
“You can just call me Subaru. You aren’t saving any time by addressing me like that.”
“Oh, please allow an old woman’s habits to go unchallenged, dear.”
“An old woman’s, sure, but you don’t look older than twelve!”
“Never mind that. What I meant to say is that the trials are considered fully passed if the spirit of our lady of Sanctuary, that one guesses is witnessing each attempt, considers the contestant interesting enough. And like the gods, I don’t believe she would lift a hundreds of years old barrier just because she watched an untroubled person breeze through different stages of his or her life. For beings that powerful, one guesses there’s nothing worse than boring.”
“That’s disturbing. Well, for the purposes of opening your dreary village, I’m sorry my parents weren’t torn apart by monsters as my baby self watched. But you heard Emilia’s cries. She should be able to entertain that sadistic witch.”
Shortly after midnight, even though the rest of the group wanted to stay together for a bit longer, Ram orders you to follow her through the dark paths of Sanctuary. The village doesn’t have streetlights, and the sky has gotten too cloudy for the moonlight to illuminate the houses properly, but Ram could probably reach her destination with her eyes closed. It seems that the clown is resting in an isolated, one-story house partially reclaimed by nature. You wouldn’t think of anyone as important as the supposedly most powerful magician of the kingdom to be recovering from his injuries there, and maybe that’s part of the point.
“Wait outside, Barusu. I’ll make sure that the lord is ready.”
She expected you to answer, but from the moment you accepted that you were about to meet with Roswaal, your mood had gone dour. The clown had already proved himself to be unreliable by abandoning his people against the Witch’s Cult, and now he got himself injured to this degree for what seemed like pure theatrics. Constantly making trouble for everybody. In the end, Ram narrows her eyes at you, then pushes the door. You get a glimpse of the foot of a bed bathed in flickering candlelight. The door closes.
A groan escapes your mouth. You don’t want to talk to Roswaal. Not for a second, not in the way that two people have a conversation. You remember clearly the moment many lives ago in which you had travelled to the mansion only to find Ram’s beheaded corpse. You recall looking up at one of the many portraits of Roswaal in a variety of fantasy clown makeups, and feeling a cold disgust lodge itself into your heart. A king who cannot protect his people is no king, but what would you think of a king who sees trouble coming and prances away?
In your mind, Roswaal isn’t even a person anymore. He’s a reflection of most of what’s wrong not only with this world but with your previous one. You find yourself shaking your head as a rage burns in your chest. Wait outside, Roswaal’s dog told you. You have waited for far too long for this clown bastard to show his face.
You take a deep breath, clench your teeth, walk up to the door and push it in as hard as you can.
The door slams against the wall with a loud bang, then it creaks as it trembles slowly towards you. Ram is frozen a couple of steps away from you as if she was about to exit the house, and she’s glaring at you in disbelief, her mouth slightly open. Roswaal is resting his back against the headboard of the bed he’s lying on. Your gaze fixes by itself on the bloody bandages that cover Roswaal’s entire torso, and that begin under his chin. Everything below his abdomen remains under the covers, but you guess that the rest of his body is bandaged as well. His shoulder-length, indigo hair glistens in the candlelight. Despite his conspicuous injuries, the clown is wearing his war paint: over the powder white foundation, he has painted purple triangles upwards from his eyes, and his black lipstick extends out of the corners of his mouth and curves in thin lines to connect with the also black eye shadow. He’s smiling at you.
You truly must have been wandering around in a daze when you first started living in his mansion, back when seeing his dick traumatized you, because that smile creeps the fuck out of you now. It looks as if he isn’t sure if he knows you but still he would be able to predict anything you could throw at him, hours before the intention crossed your mind. Damn it, Emilia, why didn’t you join Crusch’s camp instead? You all would be having such great, pseudo-incestual times back at the capital.
“Hello, Subaru. Long time no see”, Roswaal says with his lilting voice.
As the rage that had overwhelmed you subsides, your breath stabilizes, and you no longer feel your heartbeat in your throat, you feel like an idiot. You avoid glancing Ram’s way, you don’t want to know what face she’s making.
There’s an empty chair facing the side of the bed, intended for guests. You sit down slowly, and you finally lift your gaze to hold Roswaal’s.
“I told you clearly to wait outside, Barusu”, Ram tells you sternly from your left. “You heard me.”
“Uh… I’m sorry I ignored you back there, Ram.”
“Apology not accepted.”
You lower your head because you feel a headache coming, but Roswaal clears his throat theatrically.
“First of all, Subaru, congratulations are in order, are they not? Ram has detailed your heroic actions. Single-handedly, you secured an alliance with two of the other royal candidates so they would lend you their strength, and together you defeated an entire branch of the Witch’s Cult! Unheard of, truly. You defended your lady Emilia saving her life, to the extent that she’s truly grateful to you I’m sure, and prevented the nearby village from getting destroyed. All that from a young man that most of the kingdom would only know before from his juvenile, very public desplay of defiance at the royal summons!”
He waits with his mouth half-open for you to answer, but you can’t figure out anything decent to say. Everything that comes to your mind regarding your lord isn’t appropriate for the circumstances.
“I did all that, I guess…”
Roswaal closes his eyes, and his smile broadens. Clown makeup doesn’t look better in the candlelight.
“Anyway,” Roswaal continues while raising an eyebrow, “since you have proven yourself worthy, I think we need to come up with a new title for yourself.”
“Yes, a title! In front of everyone who mattered in this kingdom, you claimed to be a knight. You have now proven that you deserve such a title, have you not? It’s the lowest rank of nobility, but I have no doubt that such a promising man like yourself will only ascend. What do you think, Subaru? We will perform the rite of passage when we return home.”
You stare at him with confusion. Although you had planned to be at least angry during this meeting, and possibly even grab your lord and punch him repeatedly, which you are pretty sure you promised to someone, you can’t believe this turn of events. Shitty you, a fucking knight? Not even that Priscilla broad would be able to call you a commoner anymore, or at least you would be able to correct her. In your face, Priscilla. And all over those tits…
“It… would be an honor, lord Roswaal. Being a knight sounds pretty fucking cool.”
“I’m glad you approve of the idea, I was a bit worried that you wouldn’t.”
You narrow one eye, trying to figure out what he means.
“I mean, I am a servant of Emilia, of course I would side with her and support her. If anything, being an official knight makes it easier.”
You continue to stare at him. He sighs, and clasps his hands together.
“Very well, now to the regretful part of our story. Ram has explained to me that Emilia hasn’t managed to pass the trial, has she? And it seems that the experience left her in a troubling state.”
“Troubling is a mild way of putting it, lord. She’s, uh…”
“I see that the both of you are holding back on what you truly want to say. Very well, I shall hear it all. I’m sure it can’t get any worse than my expectations.”
You and Ram hesitantly tell him all the details of what transpired in the tomb. Roswaal clicks his tongue and shakes his head slowly, but he doesn’t seem surprised. You can’t tell very much about his expression under all that makeup, though.
You repeat his words in your head.
“Wait, you didn’t expect her to pass the trial?”
“Should I? I would want nothing more than for our dear half-elf, the future ruler of this kingdom, to march into the tomb and vanquish every obstacle, but is that truly our lady Emilia?”
“She is a kind being with a loving personality. That is not the personality of a ruler. While she has grown in certain ways ever since I met her in our fateful day, I knew it wouldn’t be enough for this trial. Much tougher people have tried and failed to pass the Witch of Greed’s unsporting trials.”
You feel a dull ache in your chest. You look down for a moment.
“You suggest that Emilia is too weak to succeed at the task she is determined to persevere at?”
Roswaal smiles as if waiting calmly for you to understand what he knows to be true.
“She is too weak to pass the trials, as well as to be the ruler over this land. I’m saying she isn’t fit for the duty that’s been forced on her. And I’m saying those things not to be cruel, but because it is the truth.”
You want to look away from his face. Even though you barely respect anyone, or at least enough that you would force yourself to measure your words, in front of Roswaal you feel like an insect. Had it always been this way? You can’t look to the right, because you are too close to the uneven paint of the wall, and if you looked to your left you would be staring at your sister-in-law’s slender, stockinged legs.
Roswaal briefly closes his eyes and lets out a silent breath.
“Whether she admits it to herself or not, Emilia wants to give up. Not many are meant to go on. So many are doomed to fall. Even the strongest of people, in the end, meet the same fate as their lowest of servants. It is an inescapable decree.” Roswaal’s voice takes on a whimsical sense of fatalism. “Even I am not above this law. Emilia’s failure will be inevitable. Even now, it is so obvious. She wishes to fail. Perhaps… Perhaps even before she took her vows to become a queen.”
You run your fingers through your hair. Your thoughts are spinning. The way the clown speaks makes it difficult to think properly.
“Roswaal… Why did you attempt to pass the trials even though you must have known that the Witch of Greed’s magical traps at the tomb were stronger than what you can handle?”
Roswaal lowers his head and stares at you intently.
“But you know already, Subaru. You are very familiar with it.”
A bead of sweat drips down your face as you feel the clown’s eyes pierce your head. There was something… fishy about that question.
“I don’t know what you mean, Roswaal.”
The clown’s eyes narrow to a squint.
“Sacrifice. It’s sacrifice, of course. Our villagers, as well as anyone who might be watching without us noticing, should know that where lord Roswaal failed, lady Emilia triumphed.”
“Except she didn’t…”
“No. She did not pass the trials. But she tried, did she not? And isn’t merit earned by the attempt rather than the success?”
You frown at the smiling clown.
“Enough playing around”, you say, hardening your voice. “You suggested that Emilia is too weak for her to ever pass the trials. You never expected her to succeed. I disagree, but letting that aside, what’s your plan here?”
“That’s where you come in, Subaru. You passed the first part of the trial, did you not?”
Your breath thickens, and you find yourself having to widen your nostrils.
“Was that part of your plan? You already believed that Emilia would be traumatized by the trials, but that I would run in to help her, triggering my own trial?”
“Would that be a mistake, a miscalculation? Are you agonizing over what the trial forced you to face, the same way Emilia or Garfiel agonized?”
“No. I’m just wondering what your end game is.”
“You pass the trials, Emilia gets the credit. That’s your job as her servant. As her knight, which you will be in a short while. Am I wrong?”
You grit your teeth. It seems to be the only motion you can do right now.
“What’s the problem, Subaru?”, the clown asks. “A true knight serves their master, not themselves. That’s what a knight does.”
“Emilia isn’t helpless, Roswaal. She’s burdened with trauma from her past, that she never spoke to me in depth about, and she isn’t tough enough yet. But she was determined to grow, to face her troubles. Do you intend to keep holding her hand if she ever gets to sit on the throne?”
“Of course not. A ruler must strive to become a better person, and Emilia has the capacity for that.”
“Then doesn’t that mean she also has the capacity to overcome her own trials? It would be very irresponsible of you to just give up on her like this. You must have been guiding her from some time now, and to some extent as a parental role. She needs our support, now more than ever.”
The clown sighs, looking disappointed.
“My, you’re quite the idealist. I suppose that’s why Emilia is so fond of you… Sadly, not everyone is worthy of such ideals.”
You are getting angrier, and you should. Although there are many things you need to say to this man, you feel Ram very close. You always had to be on guard to a certain extent to deflect all the disrespect she threw against you, but now you have no doubt that if the clown orders her to hit you, or to torture you, she would. You aren’t Ram’s friend, and not even her brother-in-law in her eyes. Still, you need to bring up the truth of Roswaal failings both as a lord and as a man.
“Roswaal… I need to speak to you.”
“I was under the impression that we were having a conversation.”
“I mean I need to speak to you, not to the clown.”
The clown’s eyes widen, but then he sighs and turns his head to face forward.
“As you wish.”
He passes his hand in front of his face, and as if his makeup was an illusion, in a moment you find yourself staring at a man’s face. Roswaal’s chiseled features, no doubt built over generations of wealthy people attracting beautiful women, could belong to either a man of thirty or up to fifty, but you wouldn’t be surprised if he did other weird things to his appearance with magic. When he turns to look at you and he smiles softly, he gives the impression of being some aging playboy that keeps wondering why the pussy isn’t coming around as often.
“Do you prefer this form, Subaru?”, he asks with his usual theatric voice.
“It’s far less nightmare-inducing, for sure.”
“I see… Even with my natural looks, I can’t convince you to trust me. You’ve always been a difficult boy.”
You look up at Ram. She is standing around a meter and a half away from you, staring at you intently as if measuring every one of your movements. There’s nothing resembling sympathy in her red eyes.
You face Roswaal again.
“Let me get to the point, lord Roswaal. When you presented Emilia to the world, you knew that the Witch’s Cult would plan an attack, that they would attempt to kidnap Emilia and murder her in their ritual to resurrect their precious witch.”
“Yes, that was expected. I mean, that is what they do, isn’t it?”
“That’s not the point! The point is, you never prepared us for any of it. When did you think they were going to attack? In months, in years?”
“My friend, I could predict the weather for you, and even then it would be wrong nine times out of ten. The weather, and anything else, is always changing.”
You tighten your hand resting on your thigh into a fist. Roswaal lowers his gaze to it for a moment.
“Are you that angry with me, Subaru?”, he asks calmly. “What is it that you really want to tell me?”
“I want you to fix everything. All the deaths, all the damage, just make everything like it was before the attacks. But I know that’s impossible at this point. So I’ll ask you exactly what I need to know: when you left for Sanctuary, did you know the Witch’s Cult would attack us while you were away?”
“Yes, I did.”
The bluntness of his answer surprises you as your eyes widen slightly. You notice that Ram has turned her head towards her lord, and although you only shoot her a glance, you see her trying to contain her shock.
“Roswaal…”, you begin with a thin voice. “Did you deliberately abandon us to die?”
Your lord sustains his smile as if he intends for you to come to your senses and agree with his position, but you keep glaring at him. His eyes narrow slightly.
“When a king lets his army defend his castle, but he isn’t there physically, has he abandoned his people to die?”
Your face twists in a grimace of disbelief. Your guts hurt as well, as if speaking with this guy has ruined your digestion.
“Do you mean our fierce Ram?”, you say as you point to your left with your thumb. “Do you seriously suggest that she would have been able to stem the tide of cultists, as well as defeating that stalkerish ancient ghost, by her damn pink-haired self? Because I know for a fact that’s false.”
Roswaal now looks at you with open affection.
“Subaru… I meant you, of course.”
Out of the corner of your eye you see Ram shifting her weight. You close your mouth, and you end up having to blink a few times because a bead of sweat has rolled into your right eye. You haven’t heard Roswaal right, have you? This must be his version of a joke, appropriately tasteless for such a shady clown.
“Are you seriously saying that you considered that a young man whose body hasn’t yet reached adulthood, and who Emilia brought home mostly out of pity after we retrieved her medallion almost efortlessly, and who made an ass of himself and of your entire camp at the royal summons in front of the current rulers of this kingdom, and who was exiled from your camp by its lady and told to never return, and whom for all you knew you would never see again, was the one who would defend your domain from the onslaught of the worst terrorist group in this world?”
“You think too little of yourself, Subaru”, Roswaal says with an amused tone.
When he smiles again, you feel nauseous. You fear you will throw up at any moment. You didn’t think it was possible to dislike your lord more than you already did, but your whole chest feels sick.
“But yes, I see you want me to be more straightforward”, Roswaal adds with his lilting voice. “I expected you, Natsuki Subaru, to do everything in your power to regain your lady’s favor, fighting everyone who would stand in your way. And you did! If you feel bad because you couldn’t save all the villagers, you don’t have to worry. Nobody expects a war to be won without casualties, that’s wholly unreasonable.”
You have a lump in your throat and you can’t swallow it away, no matter how hard you try. Your eyes are starting to burn and your vision is turning blurry.
“Things had to happen this way”, Roswaal continues. “If you have any complaints, take them up with me, by all means. Your lady was the only person who showed you compassion, and for that, you will worship her. Isn’t that right?”
A flash of rage runs through your body, making you tremble, and before you know it you have stood up and are launching your fist toward your lord’s face. However, something soft, or at least softer than a wall, catches it and holds it in place. The force of the impact still hurts your hand. You find yourself staring at Ram’s impavid expression, at her red eyes, who glare at you as if you are just making her life harder. Your heart is beating hard.
“Let go, Ram”, you say with a raspy voice, while trying to yank your fist back.
“Not until you calm down.”
You feel her strength. You doubt the demon servant would have any trouble picking you up and throwing you out, as if she were a heavyweight bouncer who boxes professionally on the side.
“It’s alright, my dear Ram”, Roswaal says calmly. “We have all been stressed lately, and our Subaru more than anyone else, I’m sure. I don’t blame him for being angry.”
You shout this at your lord as you try to pull your fist back with all your strength, but it doesn’t move even an inch.
“I really should thank you, though I know that at this moment it won’t mean much coming from me”, Roswaal says. “If it weren’t for you, Emilia would have never made it this far. You did what was necessary, and without you being there for her, it wouldn’t have been possible.”
Furious, you close your eyes and grit your teeth.
“Let… go…”, you say through them while trying to pull your fist back.
“It’s alright, Ram”, Roswaal says quietly. “He’ll calm down soon.”
The demon servant lets go of your hand, and you almost fall on your ass. However, you end up sitting down slowly on the chair, then you rest your arms on your thighs and focus on regaining your breath.
“Do not attack the lord again”, Ram says sternly.
“I won’t”, you reply softly.
Soon your heart rate is back to normal and your head is clear. You wipe your forehead with a sleeve. Roswaal waits until you lift your gaze towards him again, and he receives it with a warm smile.
You manage to speak, although your voice is thin.
“Roswaal, back when I lived somewhere else, I read some arguments about why life existed at all in our planet. Because life seemed to not exist anywhere else as far as we knew, and because the rest of the solar system seemed so unwelcoming to life, many people believed that life in our planet was created, that we were put there by some deity who made us in his image. Are you with me so far?”
“It is an interesting conversation”, he says while watching you curiously. “Please, do continue.”
You take a deep breath.
“And it looked as if it had some merits. I mean, our planet seemed to have been designed for life. It was orbiting in the Goldilocks zone of our sun, which might not mean anything to you, but it refers to an area of our solar system in which the planets located there would have the proper temperature to contain liquid water on the surface. Therefore it would be far more likely for life to develop. If your species comes to life in a place where it doesn’t get too hot or too cold, at least most of the time, it does seem too much of a coincidence that it would all have occurred casually.”
“You have given this some thought before”, Roswaal says with a nod.
“However, we as intelligent species would have only been able to think through these mysteries because we existed in the first place, and life wouldn’t have had a chance to develop in a planet that wasn’t suitable for life, so by default, any planet in which intelligent life could arise would be one that would seem as if it had been designed for life to appear. You know what I mean?”
“That does make perfect sense to me, yes.”
You take a deep breath, and then glare at the fucker.
“What I mean with all this, Roswaal, is that you are the laziest son of a bitch I have ever met. Suggesting that what came out of your mouth was easy for you to say doesn’t even begin to cover it. You literally wouldn’t have been able to say it in any other timeline. From your perspective it must have been a complete miracle that I came out of nowhere to prevent Emilia from getting horribly murdered by those cultist bastards, and if you believe for a second that what ended up happening was a probable course of events, you are either insane or a bloody liar.”
“Now, now, Subaru”, Roswaal says while closing his eyes and laughing softly, “I am sure even if it wasn’t probable, it was destined to happen. This is a world where anything can happen after all.”
“Fuck your vague answers, asshole! Damn big-dicked clown! Tell me the truth!”
“My, my, someone is on edge today”, he says, still smiling warmly. “In any case, I shall be vague once more and tell you that yes, I had no doubt that you would come through for us, and especially for your beloved Emilia.”
“My beloved, huh? The hell do you know…?” You hide your face in your hands. “I can’t believe any of this.”
“It’s okay, Subaru. I took a gamble on you. It’s just nice to hear that the gamble paid off. I also understand if you are feeling a bit of regret for your actions, but you will eventually be proud of everything you have achieved.”
You swallow. You want to leave this house and be alone for a good while. You feel as if you have been hollowed out, but you find some strength to face your lord again.
“You know, due to your stunt of making me do your job while you fucked around in Hicksville, I had to pull off some crazy shit that will have consequences down the line. You know Wilhelm, from Crusch’s camp, right? Wilhelm van Astrea?”
“Yes, I know him. He’s a very famous hero, and somewhat of an idol to many of the young knights. Why?”
“As I negotiated for them to lend me their strength,” you continue with some regret, “I sort of ended up suggesting that you had figured out a way to know when the White Whale is going to appear next. You know, that horrible monster that has roamed this world for centuries destroying shit and erasing people from existence? None other than the Sword Devil himself is pissed because you didn’t share those predictions with him. So you better make up to him. I doubt you have seen how quickly that old man can detach people’s heads as well as all their limbs.”
Roswaal laughs softly, closing his eyes.
“I guess we will need to figure out how to deal with him, don’t we?”, he says amusedly. “I look forward to it. I will do my best to calm him down, but I can’t promise anything.”
You feel like you are losing your mind. You don’t want to be in the same room as this clown any longer. You stand up and bow towards Roswaal.
“I will support my lady Emilia in her determination to pass the trials, no matter how many tries it takes her. She’s a great gal, her beauty is out of this world, she has a rocking body despite her small tits, and her mouth tastes sweet. I will now take my leave.”
As you turn your back to him, you hear a small chuckle.
“You are quite the dedicated man. Your dedication has not gone unnoticed, I assure you.”
When you have finally exited the house and the door has closed behind you, you feel as if you can finally breathe. You are glad that the cloudy night doesn’t allow you to see much. Ram passes you by, and then turns to look at you.
“You have to stop acting so crazy, Barusu”, she says calmly. “It will only cause trouble for everyone.”
“I’m the one acting crazy, huh…?”
“I can’t call it anything else.”
You both walk in the direction of Ryuzu’s house. You are heading there because you want to check on Emilia, but you don’t know where Ram intends to go.
“Ram… I’m despondent all of a sudden. Let’s find a barn and have sex.”
Ram stiffens, and she looks at you with a mixture of surprise, disgust and anger in her face.
“I don’t have the energy to deal with this right now, Barusu, nor do I want you to involve me in your indecent games.”
She walks away from you while you stand in place. You lower your head for a moment, and then call out to Ram.
“You were also shocked by Roswaal’s actions, I could see it in your face. It must seem to you as insane-“
Ram has turned her head enough to speak over her shoulder.
“No, I won’t have a conversation with you after you made sexual advances towards me, regardless of whether that was your idea of a joke. Go to bed.”
You stand there in the dark as Ram gets smaller and smaller. You rub your eyes and sigh deeply.