CH64: [side 1st squad] The Night Before
Tomorrow at last.
I mutter to myself as I look up at the full moon from my room.
“Tomorrow, your sisters are going to the 92nd layer, right?”
Sophia, in her cute loungewear, asks me a question.
My sister is really pretty.
Just looking at it is soothing.
“Are you nervous?”
Sophia points out to me that my hands are shaking for the first time.
“No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. This is a warrior’s tremor. I’m finally getting my revenge after a year of waiting.”
I push down my insecurities and act tough.
I can’t look weak in front of Sofia.
I have to be the strong sister.
Otherwise, Sophia’s gonna get worried.
I took her from the house without asking, and I have a duty to protect her.
“… If you’re scared, you can say you’re scared, okay?”
Sophia hugs me as she says this.
“I don’t want you to go. Because you could die tomorrow. I want you to stay with me. But you’re still going, right? This is the least I can do… but I’ll share my courage with you… You know what? I feel like I’m getting to know Carol and Log. And now that I’m leading the party, I feel like I’m getting a little bit braver. So I’ll share my courage with you! You can beat the Black Dragon! You can do it!”
Sophia’s getting stronger.
Just a few days ago you were a shy little girl who was always trying to get on people’s good side.
Did Orn give you the chance to change?
Sophia, who used to be a crybaby, has become so strong.
I can’t be the one scared out of my wits here.
“Thank you, Sofia. Sophia has given me courage. We can’t…”
I’m looking at the tattered jacket of <Yoten no Ginrabbit> in my room.
“Mr. Albert, tomorrow we’ll go to the 92nd level… I’m going to challenge the Black Dragon.
With Albert gone, I became the oldest person in the party.
That’s when I realized how great Mr. Albert was.
Am I being a good big sister?
I’m not as old as Albert, so I’ve decided to be their big sister and I’ve been trying my best in my own way, but I’m not sure.
“… Tomorrow we’ll catch up with Mr. Albert. Albert, who was part of the last party of heroes. And then we’ll catch up with and overtake the bravest of the brave, and then I’ll… We’ll be the next heroes! Tomorrow is the first step. I hope you’re watching from heaven. We will…”
“It’s a beautiful moon.”
<You look up at the full moon from the rooftop of the headquarters.
“Hmph~, it’s a fitting night before the big battle of the <Yoru Heavenly Silver Rabbit>!”
Whenever I get anxious, I come to a place where I can see the moon.
I’m proud to say that we’ve worked harder than anyone else this past year.
But I don’t know if I can get to it.
Alba would laugh at me if she saw me being so timid…
Maybe they’re laughing their asses off in heaven.
What? I’m starting to get a little pissed off thinking about it.
“… This time we won’t lose anyone. I can’t go through that again. That’s why I’ve spent the past year studying recovery magic… and I’ve even created my own magic. I’m the one who decides if we live or die. No one else will die. We will…”
Hey, maintenance’s done.
“Oh, thank you, sir.”
In the empty space, I lightly wield the double-edged sword that Alan-san and his father have been tending to for me.
“Perfect work as always. It’s so comfortable in my hand, it’s almost scary.”
“It was good… Will, you’re stronger now.
“… What the hell, out of the blue?
“You’ve grown stronger. Not only as an explorer, but more than that… in your heart. You’re still a flirt… but the man I knew would have run away by now. But you’re not running away. You’re fighting. You’re getting stronger.”
“… Ha-ha-ha. What the fuck is that… I killed a man who respected me, Mr. Albert, in cold blood. I should’ve been the one who died. And I survived. So you’re gonna do what you have to do…! I have to carry on that man’s dream and conquer the Grand Maze…! That’s why…”
“”””Tomorrow, I’ll slay the Black Dragon and step on the ninety-third layer of the land. !!!!”” “””