398 You Mind You Lose
Now that the biggest annoyance is no more, I fetch the collar. The mage who saw that presented his neck without any resistance.
"Now swear to it. Remember what I told you? You must have seen many people tragically losing their lives to those bandits while you were with them, in exchange for your safety. From now on, live on while cursing at your helplessness to save them. Just think that it was all due to your lack of dignity despite having the power to heal others, isn't that reason enough to thank your luck surviving this?"
"...I will devote my life in a clinic hereafter. I will strive to help people while leading a modest life..."
Once he said that, the collar on his neck let out a dazzling light in this darkness before settling down.
It activated even though he never declared he would become a slave.
(What an unexpectedly lax system. Does it also activate if the person in question has surrendered from the bottom of their heart? Well, guess it's just how it goes with magic, yup.)
There's no point in trying to figure out the mechanic behind it. What's important is that declaration worked.
(I mean you know, magic? My image of magic is something to do with will power or something. It must have activated this time because the guy's mental state was at its lowest.)
I realized my mind got sidetracked again. I shook my head to forget that and started walking away from the square toward the inn.
"Ah, don't even think about running away. I'll have the villagers call officials here. You all are gonna be handed to them. And you, tell them about your collar and beg for forgiveness yourself. Welp, night then."
I warned the mage and hurried back to the inn to forget everything.
There's nothing left for me to do here. Someone somewhere would take care of the rest. I don't wanna be stuck doing the clean up. I kept walking without looking back, implying my responsibility is over now.
The innkeeper was surprised when I got back.
"A, ah? You didn't die?! H-how'd you even survive that? What happened to those bandits? Why you came back?"
He must have never doubted I'd get killed. He kept barraging me with more and more questions. Must be quite a shock.
I'm not gonna keep him company. I'm sleepy. Drowsy.
"I'm going back to my room and bed. I get you've got lots of questions, mister. Go to the square if you wanna find out. Oh, if you decide to go, tell the villagers everything is all right now. So yeah, nighty night... fa~a."
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
As I yawned and entered my room, the underling looked stupefied which I ignored and dived into my bed.
I shut my eyes and lost myself in darkness.
Morning after, I got up just before noon. I paid for our rooms until evening so it's fine.
However, I still gotta apologize for oversleeping. To the coachman and the ladies.
"Aah, I had no time yesterday... Couldn't help myself."
I never explained to the ladies last night.
Hence, I went to the next door and knocked on their room while feeling slightly awkward.
"My bad, I overslept. Our departure's gonna have to wait, sorry about that. I'm gonna go prepare right away, wait a bit. I'll explain what happened last night on the stagecoach."
Linda immediately replied behind the door.
"W-w-w-w-we don't mind. Please take your time. The innkeeper said he will bring your meal to your room. We can depart once you're done, please don't worry!"
She sounded unusually restless. I'm curious but decide against asking why.
"Got it. I'll do just that. Later then."
I only paid tips for yesterday's dinner. So I thought Linda must have paid for it this time, yet she never asked me what happened. That bothered me a tad.
"What? What's going on? ...Well, whatever. I am hungry, I shouldn't worry too much. The faster we arrive at the commercial city, the better."
My top priority is delivering the ladies to someone trustworthy that will shelter them. No point worrying over trivial stuff.
As I got back into my room, underling also returned with food.
He silently put it on the table and bowed before leaving again.
"Hm? What's up with him? Why's he acting like a servant... well whatever, I'm hungry. Let's just eat. Gotta feed my brain. Best not overthink it."
You mind you lose, better off not knowing. As I desperately tried to convince myself that, I worked my appetite on the food.