BBYW Vol. 2 Chapter 23 (WN)
Chapter 23 – Knight and Former Knight
【POV: Shana Salazar】
My name is Shana Salazar. I am a warrior.
…..hm? What else should I say?
Well then…I come from the Baal empire. I’m 20 years old. I used to be an adventurer, but due to certain circumstances currently I’m the bodyguard and lover of Dyngir Maxwell, a noble of the Lamperouge kingdom. My main weapon is the spear, but I can also hold my own with the sword and bow.
That day, I was swinging my spear at the private residence of my employer, Dyngir Maxwell.
“Hehe, too easy.”
“Grr…Shana!! How did you get so strong!?”
The woman that called my name with such frustration and irritation was Estia Sabnach. She had come to my employer’s villa as an escort knight of the imperial princess Rossellia: we were recruits from the same generation back when I belonged to the Imperial Knights.
Despite having been fed poison just a couple days ago, when assassins targeted princess Rossellia’s life, she seemed to be doing just fine.
Estia and I were sparring in the residence’s garden. We both mainly used the spear, but the gap in our abilities was clear.
“You’re pretty slow though, maybe the poison’s effects haven’t worn out yet?”
“Kh..! You’re just faster than before, damn it!”
Estia growled in frustration. I lightly parried her spear, then used the blunt end of my spear to sweep her legs.
“Okay, I won this round.”
I thrust my weapon at my downed opponent and claimed victory.
“T-That is not fair! How did you get so strong!? When we were both knights, I was the stronger one…”
“I quit the knights and became an adventurer precisely because I knew I wasn’t going to get stronger if I stayed there. I threw away my career, title, and everything. It’d be pointless if I didn’t at least get stronger.”
I plainly replied, and Estia shot me a look full of resentment.
“So? You discarded the princess, to serve Maxwell instead?”
“…I do feel guilty about it. But the Imperial Knights’ air didn’t feel right to me, that’s all. I have nothing against the princess.”
I used to be a member of the Imperial Knights, until three years ago. Along with Estia, I had been assigned with the honored duty of guarding the princess; I did not agree with the way of life of the Imperial Knights, however, so I left.
My father — who used to be captain of the knights — wielded his sword in the same way Estia wields her spear: to protect someone else.
My spear is different, however. It exists to defeat, to kill my enemies.
The Imperial Knights had little to no chance of actually fighting against enemies or invaders: for me, that kind of life was the epitome of boredom. If I stayed there, I would probably never have surpassed Estia or my father.
“Anyway, don’t you think I did the right thing, in the end? Thanks to serving Dyngir Maxwell, I had the chance to save the princess’ life.”
“That is…that is true, but…”
Estia puffed her cheeks, clearly dissatisfied.
I considered her a friend and a rival. At the same time, I thought she could never truly understand me.
Not Estia nor my former master, Rossellia, would probably ever be able to understand what I felt when I bade farewell to the Imperial Knights. While it might be obvious for them not to be able to understand me, I couldn’t help but find it a bit disappointing.
(You really are a “loyal knight”, unlike me.)
Estia, the knight, and me — who couldn’t stand being one and became an adventurer.
I thought our paths would never cross again, but they unexpectedly did, and we even ended up crossing our weapons too. The ways of fate are mysterious indeed.
“Shall we bet something on the next bout?”
“As you wish!!”
Estia accepted my proposal eagerly, flames burning in her eyes.
“If I win, you will return to the Imperial Knights, as a new recruit! I’ll put you through the wringer!”
“Ooh…then if I win, you’re coming to bed with me and master Dyngir next time.”
“W-What kind of condition is that!?”
“I don’t dislike going to bed with him, but it annoys me that he’s always in charge. If you’re with me, I think we can put up a decent fight.”
“W-Wait!! That kind of condition is—”
“Okay then, let’s do this.”
Ignoring the protests of the violently blushing Estia, I advanced towards her, spear in hand.
Not far from us, my current and former masters — Dyngir Maxwell and princess Rossellia — were talking while having tea.
I couldn’t keep up with complicated topics like politics, but I could feel that the winds of war were blowing.
A war I so eagerly anticipated.
The outbreak of exciting, thrilling battles!
(Aaah, I can’t wait!! Coming to the Maxwell province was really a great choice!!)
As I chased my shrieking old friend, my heart burst with gleeful laughter.