A Farewell Beneath the Tree
It was nearly midday when I woke up. I had fallen asleep while sitting.
“Though, I don’t feel like I got much sleep…”
I stretched my neck and heard it click. My entire body felt haggard as I got to my feet. It had been a while since I last had such a rough night…
I scanned my surroundings while rotating my shoulders. Hardly anything had changed since I was last awake. Even the merchants were still sleeping, they had probably been kept up all night anyway.
Well, there were a few people who moved around now. Some of the Adventurers were cutting the tails off of the blood apes. It was probably the proof of the hunt. I did not feel like joining them. Besides, we had enough money for now.
Ahh, damn it. We humans always tried to run from the hard work once we felt satisfied.
I should think back on when I first came to Fhiraldo. Asagi Kamiyashiro. Remember? You used to carefully pick each herb so you didn’t damage the roots.
“It is good to stay diligent…I suppose…”
My current status was a result of that. My current bonds and financial situation as well. They may just be tails. But in a way, they were more.
I took out Ashikirimaru and began the job of cutting off the tails. Now that I think of it, I had never used Ashikirimaru to cut legs… Maybe I should try it.
I thrust the sword into a blood apes leg. And the blade of the Ashikirimaru turned black.
I could feel the hilt of the sword began to beat like a living heart. It was a little terrifying. Like it was a demon blade that thirsted for blood. But only from a leg? Because of its name? Did it like chopping off legs?
It was so eerie that I decided to pull the sword out. Then the blade returned to its normal silver color. However, to me, it looked brighter and sharper than before. I don’t know.
“Maybe it’ll get stronger with the more legs I cut. Heh.”
Whatever. It was kind of typical. I was surprised that such an overused cliche of a sword was in my possession.
Still, it was a bit creepy, so I would avoid cutting people’s legs with it. It seemed that it was fine with any other body part, so I would be careful there. Now, to cut some tails.
□ □ □ □
I stretched my aching back and looked up at the sky. It was maybe around twelve o’clock. I had cut off fifty tails now. About an hour had passed since I started. It was simple work, as it was just removing one part. Grab the tail and cut it off at the root. Rinse and repeat.
Daniela also started moving after about thirty minutes had passed. She had been sleeping too, and her eyes looked tired as she helped me. Then we put the tails in the hollow bag.
When Daniela and I had carried the tails back to the tent to put away, we discovered that the tent had been crushed and torn to shreds. I was so shocked that I dropped the armful of tails. Daniela and I had used this tent since the beginning of our travels together. It was more damage than a needle and some thread could fix…
There was nothing we could do, and so Daniela gathered up the fallen tails while I searched for the hollow bag inside of the wreckage.
Everyone also finished gathering their proofs of the hunt within that hour. I could see that they were counting them.
“Alright, let’s go.”
I picked up the hollow bag and we walked over to where the other Adventurers had gathered together.
A large table had been set out and the tails were lined up on top of it. It reminded me of some kind of early morning market.
“Excuse me. We brought the blood ape tails.”
“Hmm…ah, you two.”
I approached the man who seemed to be in charge. He was the silent guy who had guarded the merchant’s tent. His expression seemed a lot softer now compared to when we first arrived.
“There really is no need to make a report.”
“Well, we’re comrades who fought the same battle. Besides, I wanted to thank you for protecting our merchant.”
“That’s very honest of you…”
The man of few words chuckled and offered his hand.
“I haven’t introduced myself yet. I am Albrio.”
“I’m Asagi. Thank you for everything.”
He repeated the name as he cocked his head to the side.
“Silvergreen, I presume.”
Said a woman who now approached. She was the one who had guarded the tent with him.
“Aldeberan. You mean, ‘that’ Silvergreen?”
“Of course. The one who wears silver and green clothes, wraps wind around his feet and destroys his enemies with the speed of a god… Am I wrong?”
She made me sound like some ancient legend…