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Until the next day, Elisha was at a loss. She was appreciative towards the knights and, at the same time, worried that they might get hurt.
Although Elisha felt assured by the Black Lion Knights, she felt frustrated because she could not frankly thank them. Being so preciously protected made her panic. It was frightening to be treated too well.
Because Elisha had had a hard life, she began to imagine the withdrawal of their fondness for her.
As Elisha unhurriedly wandered through the backyard, she ran into Nora. Nora spotted her and then turned her head to avoid her.
“Nora, wait a minute!”
Elisha followed her. She noticed Nora grabbing her arm. At a glance, she could tell her shirt was stained with blood.
“Did you get injured?”
Nora turned her head and greeted her politely as usual. She wanted to avoid her but reluctantly gave her a greeting. Elisha had no idea why she was acting like this.
“… … you’re bleeding.”
“I tend to heal faster than other people, so I had taken my bandages off too early and my wound burst.”
“We have to stop the bleeding. Come here, Nora.”
She took Nora’s hand and led her to take a seat next to her on a bench nearby.
“Can you show me your injury?”
she solicited. Nora held out her arm, and Elisha rolled up her blood-stained shirt and fastened Nora’s wrist with her silk handkerchief.
“It looks like a valuable handkerchief—”
“Not at all. This isn’t important.”
Elisha cut off such sentiments.
“There are other handkerchiefs that are actually very precious.”
“I don’t have it anymore. But it was a very old handkerchief.”
“So you had it in the past?”
Elisha calmly nodded.
“Yes, I wasn’t able to keep it for very long, but… … . It was something I had kept until the very end.”
Elisha recalled the old handkerchief she had received from Nora in her previous life. Obviously, Nora wouldn’t understand her words. Nora tilted her head.
“Nora, are you disappointed in me for not expressing my gratitude?”
“It looked like you wanted to avoid me. Am I wrong, Nora?”
Startled, she looked up at Elisha and urgently mumbled,
“No, it is not. I just… … .”
Nora bit her lip and continued.
“I thought you may be disappointed when you saw me fighting.”
“Why would I be disappointed?”
“You must have thought I was a great knight. You found out it’s a lie.”
The more Nora spoke, the more Elisha could not understand her.
“What do you mean?”
“…… When I go to war, I become a different person. I’m violent. When I go berserk, chasing the enemy to the end and cutting them down, is the only way to satisfy me. It’s like I explode with everything I’ve suppressed during my time in normal society. Sometimes I become more cruel than necessary.”
“… … .”
“That’s why I am stricter on keeping my chivalry more than others, but… … . My true nature is that. I’m that sort of person. So, when the delicate lady saw me fighting, I thought it was inevitable you would be afraid of me.”
Elisha understood Nora’s words. She chuckled bitterly.
“Nora. It’s really hard to be nice, and even harder to be sane in this world. Especially for children like us… … . who were abandoned in a monastery.”
“By your standards, I also… … . I’m the same sort of person. So, I am grateful enough that Nora is a good person to me. And seeing you fight didn’t frighten me. It’s just heartbreaking that you got hurt because of me.”
Nora said nothing. Elisha also thought that she was a naive person.
‘Come to think of it, there was a time when I saw Lapis, and wished I had a brother.’
Elisha thought about Nora’s age. She was nineteen years old.
‘You are truly a genius. Nora.’
Just as talent was essential to a wizard, talent was also crucial to a sworder above a certain level. Being an excellent swordsfighter was not simply attained with strength and skill, but one also had to be talented in magic.
‘Come to think of it, when I was young, I wanted a younger sister.’
When her mother passed away, she had grieved for a long time. It was a very old memory, and she infrequently remembered it.
‘Maybe a younger sister like Nora would have been nice.’
Women were everywhere in the monastery. So, if she had a family, she naturally thought it would be a woman.
“I… … . Strangely, I feel close with you, Nora. I don’t even know why.”
“So, don’t worry about these trivial things, Nora. I’m really sorry I couldn’t tell you before. Thank you for fighting for me.”
Of course, they fought a little for Elisha and primarily for Lucerne. Or as their honor as knights.
Elisha surmised as much. But even if the motive of fighting for her was as much as a speck of dust, she was genuinely pleased and grateful. She could swear by it.
The two of them had a long conversation and then parted ways. She felt strangely at ease.
No matter how turbulent it was yesterday, the mansion grew peaceful again. The knights trained in the gymnasium with the diligent Nora supervising them.
Ian disappeared again, and after Corinne trained, he took a nap. Lazri and Lapis were locked in the lab.
In the afternoon, Elisha had called upon a merchant to the mansion to buy needed furniture.
‘There will be no major wars for a while, so Lucerne will stay in the capital.’
Then, they might welcome guests and hold light gatherings like other aristocratic households. Unfortunately, the mansion lacked tableware to serve guests, so Elisha spent the afternoon picking plates.
When Lucerne appeared in the room, she was looking at plates with the dealer. Elisha was stunned.