TWEM Vol. 4 Chapter 10 Part 1
Chapter 10 – Noir’s Past
“I used to do the dirty work in the Black Ops Division of the Kingdom of Glicente, under the direct control of His Majesty the King. Officially, I was a member of the intelligence agency.”
For her to report directly to the king, then she must be among the elite of the elites. Coupled with the fact that she had quite a number of skills, so she must have been pretty good.
“The Black Ops division was mainly concerned with political maneuvering and the assassination of those who were inconvenient for the monarchy. One day, we, the Black Ops Division, received a royal edict from His Majesty. The order was the abduction of the princess of the Elven village.”
“Abduction of an elf princess?”
Noir nodded quietly.
“At that time, there was an operation to raid the elven village in the Sea of Trees and enslave them. With that as a smokescreen, the agents from the Black Ops division secretly abducted the elf princess and tried to get her to divulge information about other elven villages and use her as a bargaining chip. A team was assembled within the Black Ops division with me as the leader of the operation.”
Hearing her talk about the abduction of the elven princess of the Sea of Trees, I raised my eyebrows. She’s talking about Ephyr.
I remember Ephyr actually telling me that she was caught by the soldiers when she was trying to escape.
“To be honest, it didn’t sit well with me. I tried raising an objection, but I was but a tool of the Black Ops division, a tool of the king, and the king’s orders are absolute. The chain of command was different from that of the knights and soldiers who were the main force of the raid, and since they had not been briefed about the capture of the elf princess, they might end up killing her. So, in order to secure her safe custody, we blended in with the soldiers, keeping our identities hidden.”
Noir took a break at this point.
“In the elven village, which we had so invaded, fierce battles ensued. In the midst of all this, we, the Black Ops divided into two groups, narrowed down the route along which the princess was likely to escape, and kept watch with the other soldiers…ultimately, the princess appeared on the route where I was not, and just as they were about to capture her, they were counterattacked.”
And then Noir frowned.
I see, Ephyr also mentioned this part.
“The signal came just as they found her, and I headed to the spot. But what I saw getting there was a group of fellow Black ops members and soldiers lying on the ground. And the only surviving soldier was about to kill the princess in a fit of rage. I managed to stop the soldier, but the princess was in a very bad shape. The situation wasn’t looking good, so I contacted His Majesty, but he said, ‘If she is that battered and bruised, she’ll probably die soon. Might as well sell her off to a slave trader’…”
“So you sold her to a slave trader.”
Noir nodded at my words.
I see. It fits in perfectly with Ephyr’s account.
“When we returned to the castle after the mission, we were met with criticism. The king must have been annoyed that we could not capture the elf princess as planned. In addition, as the one who headed the operation, I was held responsible for the deaths of several valuable personnel in the Black Ops dividion and was kicked out of the division… and I would have been killed immediately too, but I was tortured for the amusement of the princes. Then, perhaps they thought they could make some money off me before I bit the dust, they sold me off to a slave trader sticking me with some random crime.”
Noir snickered after saying all that.
“I guess they thought I was going to die anyway with no hope of recovery, but…in the end, I survived and here I am. Even though I had been kicked out of Glicente, I insisted on only talking to you because it was something that could very well cause a lot of resentment if a large number of people heard it.”
“Oh, now I see your point.”
I knew the royal family of Glicente was rotten to the core.
Only now, I would like to clarify my doubts after hearing what she just said.
“…Don’t you hold any resentment towards the royal family of Glicente?”
That’s right. I didn’t feel any hatred from her at all.
“What’s the point? It’s true that I screwed up at work, and as for being enslaved and branded a criminal, even if I resented and resisted, my opponent was an entire nation, I never stood a chance…besides, that very royal family is gone now.”
Noir smiled weakly.
Then she looked me in the eye and asked.
“Hearing that, do you still want to buy me?”
“Yeah. I want you. I’m in the process of establishing a trading company, and I’m wondering if your intelligence skills might come in handy. And I also have no problem with your personality.”
“… What if I betray you?”
“Well then. I guess that will just mean that I’m not as good a judge of character as I think.”
Besides, I carried on.
“I can make you much stronger than you have ever been. Right now, you are at the mercy of such injustice, but you will be able to overcome it if you gain strength. What do you think? Wouldn’t you like to have the strength to overcome all difficulties and to carry out your will?”
I held out my right hand to Noir.
Noir hesitated for a moment, but immediately took my hand.
“I desire the strength to carry out my will. For that purpose, I will be at your disposal…but can you really, really make me stronger?”
“That’s up to you, Noir. But you won’t regret it.”
“…All right. I pledge my allegiance to you for the rest of my life.”
Noir changed her language, fell to her knees and bowed her head.
Like a warrior who had chosen a master to serve.
I nodded and acknowledged it.
“Master Haruto, please forgive me for my earlier transgressions.”
“Don’t worry about it. Well then, welcome Noir. You are eventually going to become one of the strong. And from now on, I look forward to you working as my shadow.”
I took Noir’s hand again and pulled her up.
But perhaps because of her wounds, Noir wobbled.
“…Please excuse me.”
“Come on, don’t worry about it.”
Having said that, I dissolved the barrier spell.
“I see you’ve finished your discussion, boss. So, has it been decided then?”
The barrier I erected was only to block out sound, so he would have been able to see everything.
“Do you even have to ask?”
“Well. You had such a merry expression on your face after all.”
…Maybe because of the place being what it is, somehow, the smile seemed like a wicked one.
“Okay, so, how much?”
“Let me see—”
I paid Bohbee and got the slave contract done.
Noir was still unable to move on her own, so I picked her up and carried her to the carriage.
…However, when I got back to the carriage, I was met with stares from Finne and the others who were waiting back.
It was as if they were saying, “You’ve gone and pick up another girl uh…”, so I had to give an explanation in a hurry.
I managed to convince them, and after getting into the carriage, I called out to Bohbee who had come to see me off.
“Well then, I’ll be looking forward to your arrival after you’re done with the handover. If you need anything at all, please come to my mansion, okay.”
Then, with Bohbee bowing his head, we set out.
Actually, we were going to head straight for the royal castle, but…I was not comfortable taking Noir in her battered condition with me.
I thought about putting her inside the subspace, but I’ll need someone to watch over and stay with her, and it would also be troublesome if she got curious and for explanation of the skill, so I decided to head straight back home.
After returning to the mansion without any hiccup, I was greeted by the maids and Sebas.
““““Welcome back. Dear Master.””””
“Welcome back, Master Haruto. You are back earlier than scheduled…and who might that be?”
Sebas turned to Noir, whom I was carrying in my arms, and asked.
“I’m back. I just stopped by Bohbee’s for a minute.”
“Oh I see. That’s how it is.”
Sebas narrowed his eyes and nodded approvingly.
“I’m going to cure her, so please assist her with a bath afterwards.”
I took Noir into an empty room and placed her on the bed.
“Noir. I’m going to cure the missing parts now.”
Noir was surprised, but nodded obediently. By channeling my mana together with recovery magic, Noir’s body was enveloped in light.
When the light subsided, her missing arm returned, and the cuts and bruises all over her body were nowhere to be found.
Noir looked as if she couldn’t believe it, and touched her entire body as if to check.
Then she turned her head toward me and gave me a big smile.
“Dear Master Haruto…Thank you!”
“Don’t sweat it.”
Now all that’s left is to have her take a bath…but before that, there’s something I need to let her know.