There are unfamiliar men on the place where my uncle's invited me. Ah, even though I've been warned about this, am I stupid for believing my relative.
I was kidnapped and made to swallow an egg-like something. I blocked my throat and tried to vomit it out many times, but they forced me to swallow some kind of medicine, and I lost consciousness then.
The next time I open my eyes, a familiar ceiling, and the face of head miko-sama comes to my view. I'm also right for thinking this place is familiar, since it's the sanctuary of Tenion temple here.
I tried asking the details of the incident, but since the head miko-sama told me, "Everything is already over. There is already no one that will harm you.", I fell asleep as if I was leaving my body to head miko-sama that day. It's like I'm a child, it's a bit embarrassing.
I had a dream that night.
A dream about me talking about something with a man wearing a silver mask. The one who's talking with the tone of voice I've never heard before is certainly me. But, why am I naked. Ah, if you swing your arms that much. If this wasn't a dream, I would have jumped off the top of a tower.
Ah, I'm even sitting with one knee up while being naked...
I'm in agony of embarrassment inside my dream.
There has never been a day where I cannot wait to wake up from sleep like this day.
It's too much even for a dream.
It can't be helped if I get depressed. Let's renew my mood and work hard.
First, it's the morning duty!
"Ah Sera. You've been instructed by head miko-sama to not use magic for 4-5 days. Please help with the food distribution for a while."
"Yes, chief miko-sama."
Taking out the wind out of my sail all of a sudden.
It's really regrettable.
Mou! It's terrible today.
There are always people coming and causing trouble during the food distribution, but just how many times are they going to disturb us until they're satisfied. It seems that they usually act like that during the tournament, but this year, due to the demon lord season coupled with the strange group [Wings of Liberty] spreading preposterous rumor, they're venting their excessive anxiety with violence.
The aunty who were helping with the distribution got hurt when she was washing her face. I can heal her bodily injuries, but I cannot do that to the wounded heart. I can only calm her down at most.
If a lizardkin woman called Liza and a little girl called Arisa didn't help to subdue the quarrel, the food distribution might have been canceled today. Since there are a lot of children who depend their life from this food distribution, I didn't want to cancel it.
"Thank you, we're saved."
"It's nothing, even master would surely tell us to help people in trouble."
I asked that girl called Lulu out of curiosity, turned out the girls are slaves of a honorary noble. Aren't they looking too neat for slaves?
I wasn't only surprised by their neat appearances, but the apparent lack of degenerate impressions that slaves usually have. I can't believe these girls who look so cheerful and free from worry are slaves.
As I was distributing the food, I listened about their master from the girl called Lulu. It's as if he's her lover--no, it's as if she's talking about her unrequited love, that kind of pure love. For someone who cannot fall in love like me, I feel slightly, yes, only very slightly envious.
I wonder that's why?
When I met their master--chevalier Pendragon, it didn't feel like the first time.
"Um, we've met somewhere haven't we?"
I involuntarily said such thing, I add another words in a hurry to varnish over it.
"No, this is the first time we've met. Sera-sama."
"Is it so I wonder..."
But, it feels strange when it's denied. Are we really not acquainted?
I feel like I've seen him somewhere.
I can't remember.
"Sera-sama, the people are tired of waiting for the food."
Err, did I perhaps keep staring at chevalier-sama's face?
It's embarrassing. If head miko-sama finds out about me staring at a man in public, she'll scold me. No, that person will surely teases me happily.
It seem chevalier-sama is the master of Lulu and the others, he's helping with the works of the aunties who are commoners without putting on air.
"You're pretty good despite being a noble. If you don't succeed your house, how about working in our shop? I'll let my daughter becomes your bride."
"N, no, you can't."
Even though the aunty was just playing around like always, I was surprised at my own reflexive reaction. When my eyes meet with Lulu-san who's said the same things, I start laughing.
I mean, for some reason laughter fill my heart.
This is the first time my heart is excited like this.
Even though he helped even until the clean-up, since I was surprised with the sudden arrival of Rin-anesama, I wasn't able to say thank you.
I wonder if he thought of me as a rude girl?
The second time we met was when I went to the ball in the castle to congratulate Tisrad-oniisama's wedding.
However, I wonder what is this irritated feeling.
I wonder why is my heart feels irritated when I see chevalier-sama getting surrounded by younger girls.
"It's been a while, Satou-sama."
I don't know myself why am I calling chevalier-sama with his first name. I feel the gazes of the girls around chevalier-sama vigorously gather at me, is this person perhaps popular?
That can't be it right?
I unintentionally thought of a rude thing, but I understood the reason after I ate the snacks that he had made. A snack this delicious. Even though the castle's head chef is excellent, I feel that this snack is incomparable.
I feel happy with every bite.
It's such feeling.
When I see chevalier-sama dances with the girls, I feel the irritated feeling from earlier gets even stronger. Maybe I should invite him to a dance?
"You're quite popular aren't you, Satou-sama."
Ah, even though I didn't intend to speak with sarcasm.
Yet, he replies with a misdirected criticism of himself. That was funny, and made me involuntarily laughed. It looks like he strangely assesses himself low.
However, even though he's kind, he's unexpectedly mean. Even though I plead him to stop adding [Sama], I couldn't quite get his consent. Even though I rarely ever do such thing.
Oh right, he's not just skillful at cooking, but at dancing too.
"Did something good happen? Satou-san."
"Yes, some difficult works have been going well."
Satou-san keeps the promise he's made during the ball, and he's been helping with the food distribution several times after that. And at last, we've started calling each other with "Satou-san", and "Sera-san", without the "Sama" at the last distribution. Since everyone at the temple calls me with "Sama", I've always yearned for friends that call me without honorifics.
Fufu, it's only a matter of time before we call each other without honorifics.
I, it's not like I want us to become lovers.
I'm a miko after all!
That's right, Satou-san resembles Tisrad-niisama.
The way he always doesn't forget to smile, the way he eludes women, or the way he looks troubled yet never raises his hands when I'm mad at him.
I wonder if I've been lonely since I seldom meet niisama after I've become a miko.
It's like, I'm a child.
I received two tickets for the diva performance from Tisrad-niisama, so I gathered my courage and invited Satou-san, but he accepted it cheerfully. He said, "I've been wanting to see it" at face value, but I'm frustrated. Why didn't he look a bit more embarrassed.
The diva's song seemed to be wonderful.
I'm sorry, even the wonderful song only passes through my ears.
The seats that niisama has given for this performance seem to be for lovers, there's practically no gap between us?! It's the first time I've ever been this close to a male beside niisama, my heart is thumping as if it'll burst out.
Satou-san is like usual, he only smiles back even when our eyes meet, and completely doesn't look like he's nervous. I think it can't be helped that it makes me want to pinch his unruffled cheeks. Of course I only think that inside my mind, I can't possibly actually do it.
As we're sitting this close, I feel like something deep inside my body is being pulled to Satou-san. It's as if cogs that have been put together, something in my heart tells me that this is my place, yes, it's as if my soul is attracted, it's that kind of mysterious feeling.
I wonder if this is what the my colleagues at the temple call love.
But, I think it feels a bit different.
Even though my own feeling is clear, I might be a coward.
I wonder why does he have slaves?
I thought that he was someone who couldn't believe other people, but he doesn't look like that at all. When I see Pochi-chan and the others, they look like they're really cherished, and I don't think he can't afford to employ servants.
"Ah, it was because I protected these girls that had lost their master in the labyrinth, and took them along to the above ground."
"F, from the labyrinth?"
"Yes, if master wasn't there, we, who didn't know how to fight, would only become preys of the monsters in the labyrinth."
"Peerless and wonderful~?"
"Master is the strongest nanodesu!"
Because of that, everyone trusts Satou-san that much don't they.
"I was going to free them after we left the labyrinth, but they didn't like it...."
"I will serve master until I can repay the favor."
"Goetsushudon?" "Chain taxi nanodesu."
I don't quite understand what Tama-chan and the others are saying, but I wonder if they are more like servants than slaves.
<TLN: 'Goetsushudon' is meant to be 'Goetsudoshu'. Chain taxi = 'Ichiren Takushii', she meant to say 'Ichiren Takusho'. Both are Japanese proverbs that mean, effectively, together till the end.>
"As for us, we've been bound with 『Geass』 by an evil magician. Even if we're going to be released, it'll only get canceled."
[Geass] she said?
There's no one who can use it even in the duchy capital. It might be released with the prayer magic toward god, but since the compensation is too big, head miko-sama will probably refuse even if I ask.
"Sera-san, will you let me know if you know any way to release the 『Geass』?"
"There's this holy magic called 『Prayer(Wish)』. That magic might be able to release it, but the compensation is too big."
"The compensation is?"
"T, that is...."
I reflexively fumbled the words.
The degree of compensation for [Wish] can change. Since sometimes it shrinks your life span by 10 years, it's also possible for it to use up all your life.
Maybe Satou-san had realized it after seeing me hesitating, he didn't ask more after that.
"There is you know?"
Head miko-sama easily replied in affirmation when I asked about it.
"Zazaris, the pope of Parion temple should be able to release 『Geass』. I can also do it, but it's impossible for two people. My life would have ran out after I released one of them."
However, I couldn't tell Satou-san about this. I mean, if pope Zazaris, the one they call [Avarice] knows of a great person like Satou-san, he will surely not overlook him. I'm sorry for Arisa and Lulu, but please wait until the time I can use the prayer magic.
They won't have to wait for long.
In 10 years, no within 5 years, I will reach the supreme top without fail.
At the dawn of the time those girls are liberated, I will surely--