“Lehaty. Would you want to meet this Fenrir?”
“Oh? I can meet it?”
“Yeah. Maybe your wish will come true.”
“Really!? You mean I can go to the island?!”
“Probably. But I wouldn’t get my hopes up too high.”
“That would be amazing! Thank you, Asagi!”
Lehaty hugged me happily. And while her fur felt quite comfortable at first, I immediately started to feel as if I were going to be crushed to death.
□ □ □ □
And so I promised Lehaty that I would meet her in the abandoned village the next day. I would have Daniela open the door to Rachel and we could meet her. Well, that was the plan, but who knew if it would go well.
“I hope it does…”
After making this promise, Lehaty told me why she was there.
Lehaty’s home was deep within a forest near Alessa. She had been living there peacefully with her family until the day of her tenth birthday. And that was when her life changed.
As the beastkin population was small, there was a tradition that the entire village celebrates birthdays together. And so Lehaty was surrounded by everyone and had a very happy day.
However, when the celebration ended… Just as a torch was brought to the town village square and to the shrine, she felt a change in her body.
It was like she was burning like the flames in front of her. She was burning just as the shrine was burning.
And when it was completely enveloped in flames, Lehaty howled and turned into a werewolf.
“It was then. People started to treat me with caution.”
Lehaty said sadly.
It did not take long for her to be driven out of the village. It was hard for someone who was just over ten years of age to survive in the forest. It was a world where death was ever near.
It was ironic then, that after returning to what her ancestors had been, that Lehaty became far stronger than most monsters. When she was a werewolf, she was strong enough to kill orcs with a single hit.
Lehaty lived alone until one day, she was picked up by a passing peddler. She had worn the clothes and hat of a dead Adventurer, which kept her nature hidden. She knew that humans were frightful creatures.
And so Lehaty followed the peddler to a town. As the peddler was well known, she was allowed in without suspicion from the guards. People would talk to her. The workers at the inn were kind.
And then she found the bathhouses. Lehaty usually just wiped herself with a wet rag. But she now knew the joys of soaking in hot water. It was too late now.
And so Lehaty became obsessed with baths. She would gather things in the forest for the peddler to buy and then use that money to go to the inn and just use their baths. This was because she couldn’t afford to stay.
Of course, such a lifestyle would not last for long.
One day, as Lehaty came to the town to sell what she had gathered, a wind blew her hat away. This was right in front of the peddler. She had been exposed.
Lehaty ran away in a panic. However, he did not chase after her, but just stood there.
The next day, Lehaty fearfully returned to the same place. The peddler was standing there as always. When he saw her, he smiled and motioned for her to come.
When she did, he said, ‘this is for yesterday’ and he gave her the money.
Lehaty could not help but cry at his kindness. It had been so long since anyone was so kind to her. It was then that she realized how much a toll living alone after being exiled had taken on her.
“That is when I realized that there were nice humans in the world too.”
Lehaty said with a happy smile.
However, tragedy would strike once again.