I normally say that I like Past Life Returner but I have not read it at all, not even the manhwa(comic). But this story is different, I love it. I...


Episode 448

The 24th of the Dark Moon Month

 

With me taking Linfelt alive, the Crusader’s offensive was halted again for a little while. At least, by today, the 23rd of the Dark month, they had not made any move.

Although the situation was ostensibly a standoff, they were, no doubt, preparing for their next attack.

I don’t know if it’s because of their desire to take back Linfelt or for some other reason, but I have a feeling that the next battle will be bigger and fiercer than ever.

In the first place, they probably won’t be able to stay in this snowy mountain for too long, so they must be hoping for a short battle and a quick settlement. In any case, the day when they would launch an all-out attack should be near.

Regardless, many people have come to visit me in the days leading up to today.

First of all, Simon and Sophie. Well, these two are my friends, but anyway, they came on the 20th day of the Dark month, not long after the battle against Linfelt.

I asked them why they had emerged from the cockpit of the fallen Taurus.

 

 

“I was a little, or rather, a lot nervous at first, but once I started…, I couldn’t stop.”

Simon smiles in a naturally cute and shy way, saying something like, “Teehee,” like he’s testifying to how he got into drugs.

“If you’d gotten here, I’d have hoped you’d have at least said something.”

“Yeah, I’m sorry about that.”

“I’m sorry Kurono. I forgot to tell you.”

Simon apologized for the lack of communication and Lily apologized for being the only one who knew of this, but forgot to tell me.

“Can you really move the Taurus then?”

The Taurus was stopped with only its pilot killed and unharmed. It was Lily’s idea to reactivate it, and Simon was going to do it.

“The main system is unharmed and well, but I can’t figure out how to operate the console, and I can’t read anything on the screen. I can read a little of the ancient script, but most of it seems to be written in a different language, though it’s very similar, but I can’t decipher it.”

I guess it’s like an old era warrior trying to operate a computer whose language is set to English. I don’t know anything about the operation of the cockpit system, which seems to be an ancient information terminal. Of course, there is no simple manual that even an idiot can understand, nor is there a customer support service that can answer your stupid questions in detail.

“What about Lily? You were able to access the system, so you must have gotten some information about the Taurus.”

“Well, I have only seen what I can see telepathically, so I don’t know much either!”

Yeah, I’m not sure what the logic behind it is either. I don’t know, but I know that I don’t know how to operate it. I’m starting to get confused.

“Even so, the Taurus is outside the city walls, and isn’t it dangerous to be holed up there?”

“Don’t worry, Lily taught me how to open, close and lock the hatch.”

“Even if it was locked, Lily could still get in.”

“That’s because I am awesome! Ehehe!”

“In short, the hatch can’t be opened unless the person is highly proficient in telepathy like Lily, or someone who the mechanism of the hatch.”

As for me, I’d like Simon to stay in a safe place until the time is right. …From the looks of it, he hasn’t played with the Taurus enough yet.

Simon is not my subordinate, so I can’t order him around. If he wants to do something, that’s his freedom to do so. Even at rank 1, Simon is a free adventurer.

“It’s also true that you saved my life by being there. … If Sophie is your escort, you’ll be fine.”

“Well, I don’t her because she always gets in my way.”

Apparently, Sophie’s likeability did not increase at all, even after spending three days living with Simon in the Taurus’ cockpit.

“Don’t say that. Her ability is real.”

If it weren’t for Sophie, this battle would have been much more costly. Thanks to her, I was able to charge at Linfelt without hesitation.

I’ve already expressed my gratitude to Sophie, but she’s not in this room.

She said she had some preparations to make, and went off somewhere. Thinking about it, she might have gone to buy some food so that she could stay in Taurus with Simon again.

By the way, what do they do when they’re in that thing, like use the bathroom? …I dare you to just keep it a mystery here.

“But you know, maybe I can get it to work, so just wait and hope for the best. Oh, and of course, I’ll be in position as soon as the apostles come out.”

“Yeah, okay. Good luck, Simon.”

And so, Simon once again went with Sophie to challenge the reboot of the Taurus.

 

 

The next day, before noon on the 21st day of the darkest month, Vice Captain Eliwood arrived.

“Thanks to you, I made it back alive. Again, thank you—”

Although his body was bandaged in several places, the giant Elven man seemed to have taken the trouble to visit us to thank us, looking so healthy that he didn’t feel injured.

“I couldn’t prepare much for a place like this, but this is just a thought, please, Kurono the Adventurer.”

He offered me the same special Spandan wine that Will deliberately spilled at the celebration party.

After one round of “No, no, don’t mind me,” and “No, no, please, please,” in a typical Japanese roundabout way, I ended up accepting the wine.

“How are you feeling?”

“I’d like to say I can fight right away but the Priest has told me to rest for a few days. His Majesty Leonhart has also directly ordered me to rest.”

I can’t help but feel that if the Crusaders attacked today or tomorrow, this man would still fight. Well, I’m sure his fellow Knights would follow up on that as well.

I’m not conceited enough to worry about someone twice my age.

“I participated in the last Galahad War as a greenhorn. My superiors and senior Knights saved me many times when I was in danger. Since then, I’ve traveled through many battlefields as a Spardan Knight. There were times when I had to fight off hordes of monsters in the forests of Lati and the grasslands of Fahren, and there were times when I fought urban battles in Sparda against disturbing rebels. By then, I was a Knight of sorts, but even so, the help of my comrades was essential – but I’ve never felt that I would die so many times as much as I did yesterday. It felt like a miracle led by the Black Gods that you came to my rescue.”

Sure, it was absolutely hopeless to look at, but … I’m a little embarrassed when people say that much.

But a blush on the cheeks of a strong man like me is no service. I just nodded cautiously.

“Anyway, I want you to know that I am truly, deeply grateful”.

“No, that’s enough. It’s only natural to try to save as many allies as possible.”

“Yes, that is quite true, but few can actually do it. And even fewer can pull it off. It was truly a miraculous rescue. However, there are some people who think that using women as hostages to escape is the means of criminals.”

Basically, my assessment is that it was a great victory that King Leonhart acknowledged as the reason for the Crusaders’ retreat once again, but I’ve also overheard a few comments here and there, like the one by Eliwood.

Well, at that time, I even acted like a villain in order to make things go smoothly. I’m proud to say that my performance was very popular with the enemy crusaders, who were angered and frustrated, but I never thought that my allies would see me in a bad light. … No, you can’t look like a glorious hero when you bind a pretty girl with tentacles and take her hostage.

I guess this bad impression is inevitable.

“It’s nothing to worry about. It’s just jealousy over your great success.”

“Thank you.”

For me, just being thanked by the person I helped is more than enough. I don’t want any more stones thrown at me.

“By the way, are you married yet?”

“Yes?”

At the sudden change of subject, I asked him a simple question.

“What do you think? There seems to be a beautiful witch about your age in your party, but I still think she—”

“No, she’s not. Fiona is just a party member, she’s not married or in a relationship.”

“I see, so you are unmarried. Do you have a fiancée?”

“How could I be?”

I’m still a virgin boy with a history of not having a girlfriend. No… I have been confessed to once but…

“I don’t mean this simply as a thank you, but… as a show of good faith, if you will. …Anyway, I have a suggestion for you.”

“What is it?”

I don’t have a good feeling about this, but I listen to Mr. Elliwood as I see him frowning, as if he’s making a hard decision.

“When you return to Sparda, I will allow you to arrange a marriage with my daughter.”

No, thank you – it was so powerful that I couldn’t answer that immediately.

Forgive me but I can’t do that. Perhaps Ms. Elliwood had offered his most important possession when he proposed the idea of arranging an arranged marriage of his beloved daughter with me.

This one word alone was enough to let me know that this person is a daughter-con.

“Yeah, well, I’m not really thinking about that right now…”

“No, don’t be shy!”

Please let me refrain from doing that. It was a vague response from me, but it wasn’t really a lie.

I can’t go out with ordinary girls because I must keep fighting the Crusades. I’ve rejected Elina’s confession with tears in my eyes based on such logic, but if I simply accept here, what was the point of that tearful goodbye?

“And you don’t have to worry about it. My daughter is beautiful! I’d say she’s the best in Sparda!”

Mr. Eliwood shouted out his appeal for full parental favoritism at the top of his voice.

 

 

“Don’t worry, my daughter looks like my wife. The only thing she has in common with me is her hair color, lustrous chestnut! Of course, it’s not just her looks, she’s also a good, kind and gentle girl. Simple and sturdy, humble but strong. Don’t you want to marry the spoiled daughter of a noble?”

 

 

I can’t do anything but say, “Well, I see.” What else can I eve say?

“ I am not embarrassed to say but she is good at everything. She has good looks, good personality. She has grown up to be an ideal elf woman. But sadly, there is no man who can match my daughter. There are a few men in Braveheart who have a heart for my daughter, but they are still not good enough to meet my eyes!”

Well, then, please keep your daughter at your parents’ house for a while now.

“But! If you are able to save me, an elite Knight of Spada, from the middle of that enemy line, you may be a suitable for my daughter…”

The way he said it made me feel that he was not ready to let her go anywhere. If you love your daughter so much, you don’t have to be so hard on her.

“I think it’s up to your daughter to make her own decision, so I don’t think it’s right for the parents to force her into an arranged marriage though.”

“Oh, that you would even consider my daughter’s feelings! But don’t worry, my daughter prefers strong men. I’m sure she’ll love you. In fact, I’m so sure she’ll fall in love with you that I honestly don’t want her to meet you.”

“Which one is it…?”

“No, wait, you don’t have to tell everyone! I’ve already made up my mind!”

He clenched his fists like a rock, and with tears in his eyes, he spoke of his determination. It seems that Mr. Eliwood is serious.

“Now, if you’ll excuse me, Kurono the Adventurer, I have to leave. When this battle is over, we’ll set a detailed date.”

“No, no, I’m not—”

“Good luck, farewell.”

And so, after unilaterally pushing through with the arrangement, Mr. Eliwood left.

“… Hey Kurono, I need to talk to you.”

“Yes, it’s very important.”

Now, it seems that I must now make a convincing presentation of avoiding an arranged marriage to Lily and Fiona, who have been silently listening to the exchange at the back of the room. …What is it? How did I end up in such a painful situation?

I couldn’t help but resent Mr. Eliwood in no small way for his unnecessary suggestion.

 

 

The next day, the 22nd of the Dark Moon month.

We had come to have lunch at the Galahad Restaurant, the largest restaurant in the fortress.

“I’m sorry, Kurono. In the battle the day before yesterday, I was unable to help you…”

“Whoa! Don’t just show up out of nowhere, Farkius.

A few seconds after we sat down and started staring at the menu, Farkius suddenly joined us.

The ornate design of the silver and white armor and the bright red cloak, though gorgeous, were severely out of place in the old wooden store, which had a raggedy feel to it. The cluttered bar-like atmosphere of the restaurant was not in keeping with Spada’s star Gladiator.

“I’ve been looking for a way to make it up to you.”

“No, it’s okay. I’m back safe and sound.”

Farkius has a picture-perfectly beautiful and languid expression, but from my point of view, his worries are completely misplaced.

I hadn’t counted on Farkius’ help from the beginning. I don’t feel any resentment at the fact that he didn’t come to my aid.

“But—”

I wonder where Farkius is getting the heavy responsibility that torments him from.

No, maybe it’s because he feels no small amount of friendship for me. They say that people who are familiar with each other become friends quickly.

Hmm, now that I think about it, I’m beginning to think that Farkius’ misplaced sense of responsibility isn’t so insignificant.

“Well, just buy me a drink here and I’ll be fine.”

“Oh, really?”

“Yeah, and Fiona’s, too.”

“Thank you.”

I was not alone. Fiona came together with me. Lily had gone to Taurus this morning to help Simon.

“All right, eat as much as you want.”

“Thanks, man. I’ll have a large Galahad set meal.”

“I want the same thing.”

Thus, lunch was served with the sudden addition of Farkius.

:Come to think of it, I still haven’t seen Farkius fight.”

“The only time I ever drew my sword was when I cut off the leg of a Taurus. It’s a shame I don’t get the chance to do that more often.”

“The day before yesterday, you were shooting your bow.”

Fiona said as she waited anxiously for the food she ordered to arrive.

In case you’re wondering, we and Farkius are positioned in the same northern right flank, so it’s not surprising to see each other.

“Oh, you can use a bow too?”

“All kinds of weapons, yes. I’m not very good with them, but I can use a cane, too.”

You really want to brag, don’t you? Farkius replied as if it was nothing.

“But it’s awesome.”

“There are many flavors of Gladiatorial combat. You won’t always fight with at your best conditions.”

I see. His profession requires him to be able to handle multiple weapons.

“I only brought my sword and bow this time, though. I’m the best with a sword, and I’m used to using a bow as a long-distance attack tool. The others are just for fun, so I don’t bother to equip them.”

Listening to him like this, I realized that he is a great Gladiator. However, I feel a sense of discomfort when a beautiful man in a suit of armor is sitting at such a shabby table, drinking water from a cheap glass cup.

“Don’t you have to order?”

“Well, I’m having lunch with you. I think I’ll have the Dortos steak.

“Oh, I’ll have the same, please.”

Oh, didn’t Fiona already order? Well, it’s not like I’m going to pay for it anyway. Just keep bringing it in.

Normally, I’m a Japanese person who feels that discretion is a virtue, but with Farkius, I don’t really feel that way. I wonder if it’s because he’s the most popular Gladiator in the world, a title that would surely make him rich.

“Okay, I’ll have a bacon sandwich and tea. No sugar, but with milk.”

It was so natural that a completely unrelated third party had made such an order.

Before I knew it, an uninvited guest was sitting at our table, shattering my faint hope that the person seated right behind me had just ordered from the waiter.

“You’re Pink from ‘Blade Rangers’?”

“You’ll get a hundred hits to your heart! Make it flutter with peach-colored love! Full charge of excitement, pink arrow!”

A woman in a pink suit and a full-face helmet, sitting down, saying what seemed to be a decisive line, and using only her upper body to perform finger-pointing poses with extremely sharp movements.

Once you’ve seen her, you’ll never forget her. She’s the leader of the Blade Rangers, a party of adventurers who live up to their Sentai Hero Pink Arrow, a.k.a. Pink.

(TN Note: Power Rangers is called Super Sentai in Japan.)

“Why are you sitting here? There are other seats available.”

“Mmm-hmm, that’s—”

“I’ll have the same. Please put both sugar and milk on it.”

I ask the obvious question, Pink smiles wryly, and Fiona orders more.

“Let’s see, two Dortos steaks, two bacon sandwiches, and tea, with one sugar and two milks.”

“Yes, yes, sir! You’re Mr. Farkius from Starlight Spada, right? I’m a fan. Can I have your autograph?”

“Well, thank you. I’m on my off time now, but I’ll give you a special one just for you.”

There is the handsome Farkius, who is as unfazed by the sudden intrusion of people and their arbitrary orders as he is by the fan service he provides, ordering from the waitress and happily offering his autograph.

Now, I don’t know what’s going on at this table, but it’s turning into a ridiculously chaotic situation. How did this happen, someone please explain it to me.

“Kurono! I’m recruiting you to be a Blade Ranger!

“No, thank you.”

“I guess I’ll take that as a yes!”

“I said no. Don’t take that as a sign of convenience.”

It is a ridiculous, villainous interpretation. Against this Pink, you can’t be too careful.

Well, we already knew that she was terribly greedy in recruiting members, seeing as how she had tried recruit Prince Aisenhart to become Red.

But still, I didn’t she’d call out to me.

“Why? I’m hiring you as a Special Black!”

“Black is a regular replacement for Green, not a special one.”

I don’t see many of them these days. But when I was a kid, there were some Sentai shows that had Black as a regular character. It’s a nostalgic memory.

“I see, that’s one way to do it. …Okay, let’s get Green to quit and go with Black.”

“Don’t dismiss your friend so easily.”

“It can’t be helped if there aren’t five of us.”

Oh, so the number of people is fixed at five?

No, no, no, no. But still, I don’t think she should simply cut down our friends.

“Pink, can you please stop trying to recruit Kurono-san into your strange five-person party? It’s rude.”

“What’s the matter with you, witch? The five members of the ‘Blade Rangers’ are justice itself!”

“Justice…? If that’s the case, there’s absolutely no way Kurono-san can be a member.”

“Wait, Fiona, what the hell does that mean?”

“It’s okay, our first priority is to strengthen our forces. Justice without power is meaningless. …In other words, power is justice!”

“No, that logic is ridiculous too.”

“All right, witch, I’ll make you a member as well. Well, how about Blue?”

“I don’t use melee weapon. So, I refuse.”

“Then I’ll rename you the ‘Spirit Squadron Element Rangers’! How about this, Blue Flame and Black Blade?”

“Don’t give me a name.”

“My fire is golden.”

“You’re so selfish.”

The person who is most selfish in this situation is definitely you.

“Regardless, neither I nor Fiona have any intention of joining your party or disbanding the Element Masters. Just give up like an adult.”

It is important to say no to such people.

Though it is indeed tempting to abandon the ‘Nightmare Berserker’ title and be Sentai Black.

“Huh. …Okay, justice is not something that comes across quickly. You just have to let people see how wonderful it is little by little.”

“Wow, you’re not giving up.”

It has tremendous vitality. It’s a horrible pink.

“Oh, so what about Farkius white-?”

“If you want me, a duel, any day.”

“I’ll pass. I’m sorry.”

Whoa, Pink, Weak! Power is justice, so you’re weak against stronger power. I can’t help it.

“Oh, and it’s 630 klan.”

“… What?””

“Bacon sandwich and tea.”

Farkius charges a small lunch fee with such a beautiful smile that even a wan can’t help but admire it.  He was surprisingly strict about money. …Next time, don’t take advantage of the favor and pay for it yourself.

“The cooking is very slow, isn’t it?”

“…Yeah.”

And so, unexpectedly, I experienced a very tiring luncheon.

 

 

The next day, the 23rd of the Dark Moon, was fortunately uneventful and peaceful. There were no unexpected visitors, no persistent solicitations, and no signs of movement in the Crusaders, so I was able to rest for a full day.

Maybe that’s why I felt a little relaxed even though I was still in the war zone.

But the tension of the battle would soon return.

Today is the 24th day of the Dark Moon month. It is early in the morning, just before the sun-rise.

An important figure among the Crusaders, a prisoner of war named Linfelt, has escaped.

Such a report was conveyed to the Galahad fortress.

 

 

AUTHOR’S NOTE

Chapter 23 is now complete.

So, the next chapter, “The Birth of the Elemental Rangers, Spirit Squadron! will begin. That’s a lie.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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