I answered Elika’s question without much hesitation.
“It’s a good opportunity, so you can take it.”
You said you originally intended to decline, but is this an offer that has reasons to decline?
To be the disciple of the knight of brilliance, isn’t it an opportunity like heavenly luck that will never come again in her life?
“Do you think so too?”
Even so, Elika still had a sad expression.
The opportunity to instantly rise to a higher position did not seem to be very attractive to her.
Of course, it’s her life and the choices are hers, but if I were in her position, I would of course readily accept it.
“You don’t want to become a paladin that much?”
“It’s not that I don’t like it, it’s that I can’t find the meaning.”
“You said you would become a priest. If that’s the case, I wonder if there’s much difference between being a priest.”
Elika slightly wrinkled her brow, then readily agreed.
“Well, yes. But that’s true, too. If you become his disciple, you won’t be leaving this monastery.”
“Ah, did you mean you didn’t want to leave your friends and go somewhere else?”
“······No. I don’t really like guys like that. I just don’t want to leave the monastery.”
That’s what I said, but that seemed to be the biggest reason.
I don’t know why you’re telling me this right now because you want to hear an answer.
All I did was say hello whenever I ran into her while I was living in the monastery. When was she close enough to give her counseling about her troubles?
“Think carefully, and do as you please.”
Still, I decided to answer honestly.
“It would be nice to follow that knight of brilliance and experience a wider world, or it would be nice to stay here in the monastery and enjoy small happiness. is something no one can know, so you don’t know which one is the one you won’t regret.”
At my words, Elika grumbled.
“That’s a very vague answer.”
“Because it’s your life. And I don’t think you’re going to listen to which I tell you to choose anyway.”
She was silent for a moment, as if she couldn’t deny it, but then burst into laughter.
“That’s right. Thank you anyway.”
As she turned around and was about to leave the room, she turned her head again.
“Oh, and tell me when you leave. I’ll see you off by showing your face.”
“There’s no need for that.”
“If you don’t talk, you can just ask Priest Tane. And are you going to hide that until the end? Why did you collapse in the forest?”
I waved my hands in annoyance.
“Stop going out.”
Elika replied softly, then turned around and went outside.
I continued my thoughts while looking at the closed door.
“If I become a disciple of Myaak Zerel, will I be able to leave the monastery?”
Tom, who was absent-mindedly fiddling with the water cup, asked as if muttering.
Heron, who was sitting next to him, closed the book he was reading and answered.
“Perhaps he is? He will not stay in our monastery forever, and perhaps he will not go to the Papal States.”
“Hey, it’s the Papal States… isn’t that really a huge success? But what is Elika’s dissatisfaction with? If it were me, I would have knelt down and bowed first as soon as the Lord said that.”
“What’s new? Is he the kind of person who would want something like that?”
“I didn’t expect it to be like this, though. Sometimes I don’t know what the hell he thinks about.”
Tom leaned back in his chair and let out a sigh of frustration and dissatisfaction.
Heron stared at Tom like that and asked.
“By the way, do you really care?”
“Is it okay if Elika becomes the true disciple of Lord Zerel and leaves the monastery?”
“What are you talking about? There’s nothing more I could ask for. Do you really think I’m jealous of her?”
“No, that’s not what I meant…”
Tom snorted and brought the glass of water he was holding to his lips.
“You like Elika.”
And at Heron’s words, he squirted out the water he was drinking.
Tom, who had been coughing and coughing from a sore throat, looked at Heron in complete bewilderment.
“What, what, what are you talking about? Who likes whom? I like him? Who likes a guy like that?”
Heron made a pitiful expression.
“Everyone else knows except for Elika. Did you hide it all this time?”
“So, put it all aside and just be honest. Do you really want Elika to become Lord Zerel’s apprentice?”
Tom scratched his head, avoiding Heron’s gaze.
It’s already been 3 years.
Tom, Heron and Elika. It was around the same time that the three entered the Monastery of Lobelgio.
Tom and Heron were orphans who lost their parents and siblings to the war, and Elika to the rampage of demons.
Even when they first entered the monastery, they were desperate for their situation and were busy sharpening themselves against each other.
And as Heron said, Tom liked Elika.
She thought she had hidden it perfectly, but in reality, everyone knew except for Elika, who didn’t notice.
Tom, who had been silent for a long time, spoke reluctantly as if he couldn’t help it.
“I told you, I hope so.”
“Of course, I don’t want Elika to leave the monastery. But I really want you to accept Lord Zerel’s offer. He won’t be locked up in a remote monastery like this for the rest of his life, but he’ll be able to become a much bigger person than he is now.” .”
Tom’s words were sincere.
It was unthinkable for him to block the path of his precious friend just because of such selfishness.
Heron shook his head.
“So he wouldn’t want that in the first place.”
“It may be so now. But again later, you won’t know. It’s not that he doesn’t want to be a paladin, it’s that he thinks there’s no particular reason to become a paladin. Do you really want Elika to decline the offer?”
“It can’t be. I’m just as frustrated.”
The two sighed at the same time.
“······Should I ask the other nuns to convince them? Will it backfire?”
“Are you talking about it? Quit it.”
Since the two knew Elika’s rebellious temperament, they hadn’t told the other monasteries about Zerel’s proposal yet.
If others knew about this, the monastery would be completely overturned, and of course, as a group, they would urge Elika to accept the offer.
And if I made it big like that, it seemed that I would reject the offer with a single knife without thinking about it any more.
“There are still a few more days left, so let’s try to convince the two of us diligently during the remaining time.
Tom, who nodded, suddenly said as if he had made up his mind.
“And if I ever leave the monastery, then I’ll just have to scream.”
“I’m going to confess to him.”
Heron opened his mouth as if he hadn’t expected this.
“Suddenly? Are you serious?”
“······I’m not kidding, I might really get beaten up.”
“It would be much better if he did. If he turns down seriously and refuses, he’ll really want to die.”
said Tom, stretching himself.
“It’s about time. Let’s go get dinner.”
The day was almost over and the sky was glowing.
The two of them finished talking and left the room.
As we head out of the building to find Elika and head to the restaurant together, I see a few friends of my age gathered on one side of the yard.
Seeing that one of the boys was having a nosebleed, Tom and Heron moved closer to them.
“Hey, what’s going on? Matt, what’s your face like? Who did you fight with?”
The injured boy was being calmed down by the children around him.
Instead of the boy, another girl explained what had happened.
“I had a fight with Rex. He got into a fight again and had a seizure.”
At that, Tom and Heron were able to get a rough idea of the situation without further explanation.
Rex was the boy Elika had previously broken her nose.
He was still out of touch with the monastery children and was prone to quarreling with the other children.
Heron asked while examining the boy’s wounds.
“He ran away after getting beaten up by me. It’s nothing like that bastard.”
The boy said with a sigh, as if his anger was still not resolved.
Then another boy joined in.
“Rex ran into the woods behind his monastery.”
“······What? Why go there?”
“I don’t know. So we were talking about what to do now…”
The forest behind the monastery, where some priests and paladins went missing in the past.
A place that few people in the monastery go to because there are rumors that a mysterious monster lives in the depths.
“Leave it alone, you bastard. After a while, he’ll get scared and come out on his own.”
said Tom, frowning, looking back at the woods behind the monastery.
“First, wash your face. I’ll look for it.”
“What? Let’s just leave it alone.”
“But what if he doesn’t come back?
It would have been better to quickly find Rex and bring him back and quietly hand it over before it became more of a hassle.
“I’ll go too.”
“Okay. You find Elika and go to the restaurant first with them. It won’t take long.”
Before Heron and the other children could say anything more, Tom turned and ran into the woods behind the monastery.
“Ah, anyway, that bastard Rex…”
Rex, who had just entered the monastery, was still unable to adapt to life in the monastery.
When Tom first entered the monastery, he was similar to him, so he was understanding and getting over it, but somehow the trouble seemed to be getting more and more frequent.
Thinking that this time, he should have a proper negotiation, Tom went into the woods without hesitation.
‘Where did you go?’
Anyway, the story about the monster was just a rumor, and the disappearance was just an incident that happened before, so there was no fear.
In fact, Tom, Heron, and Elika went into the forest a few times without the priests’ knowledge. Of course, that was when the sun was shining.
Rex probably couldn’t have gone too deep, so Tom turned around, scanning the outskirts of the forest. He had to find him before the day got darker.
After wandering around for quite some time, something soon came into his field of vision.
A bridge sticking out of the lush greenery.
Recognizing right away that it was Rex’s leg, Tom hurried closer, both relieved and questioning.
“Rex, you crazy bastard! What are you doing out here…”
Tom made his way through the bushes and went inside.
However, I couldn’t help but freeze at the incomprehensible sight unfolding in front of my eyes.
Tom turned his head at the sudden groan that came from nearby. Slowly, his complexion turned pale.
Neither Tom nor Rex came back from the woods until daybreak.