“…Did you know?”
Ian asked Iris who was on the seat across from him on the carriage that started to move once more.
Perhaps it was because he was tired due to exterminating the goblins, but Riley was exploring dreamland while using his mother’s lap as a pillow, just like before.
Iris tilted her head with a question mark as if saying that she didn’t understand Ian’s query.
“About Young Master.”
As if he still didn’t believe what he saw, Ian’s face was complicated.
Sleeping peacefully after that amazing display of skill.
He was so shocked that he didn’t even feel like waking him up and asking.
“I don’t know…”
As she didn’t know anything about swordsmanship, Iris didn’t understand what Ian was asking about so she continued speaking after blinking a few times.
“How should I reply… I don’t know anything about swordsmanship.”
Although she came into the Iphelleta House which was famous for its swordsmanship as a concubine, she had never held a sword before because of her unceasing attempts to cure her illness.
Therefore, Iris didn’t know how great a skill her son showed just before.
But, she knew that it was awesome.
And she felt relief at the fact that her son was safe and uninjured.
“I also felt my heart sink when Riley charged at the goblins too, you know?”
When looking at how Riley was fighting before, she had clenched her fists so hard that marks of her fingernails were as clear as day on her palms.
Iris looked down after Ian replied blankly.
She was gazing at Riley, who was sleeping in her lap.
“My Lady, about this…”
“Keep it a secret.”
About to open his mouth while clenching the sides of his pants, Ian flinched.
“Keep it a secret, don’t tell anyone in the mansion. Not even the Count.”
Sera who was driving the carriage from the driver’s seat glanced back inside.
It wasn’t an overreaction for Ian to be puzzled.
She too felt the same.
But she didn’t ask ‘Why?’
This was because she was also asked the same thing from Riley.
“Because, Riley wanted it.”
In front of Ian whose voice was raising, Iris raised her index finger to her lips and made a ‘Shh’ sound.
That action didn’t only entail worry about Riley waking up.
How could mother and son be so similar?
Sera snorted while looking back at the road at Iris’s action.
It was because Riley had made the same gesture last time.
The capital, Solia.
The weather here was sunny, and the atmosphere wasn’t that bad either.
Sera smiled at the mother and son pair after leaving the carriage which they rode all the way from the Iphelleta house at the carriage house.
“Now! Welcome to Solia!”
“You look like you’re excited.”
“Of course, it’s been a long time since I’ve come home.”
Currently the ‘three people,’ including Riley, were standing in Left Solia.
It was a place that Sera knew well.
“Anyway, I feel a bit sorry for Ian. I feel bad that we sent him to Castle Solia on his own.”
It had started with four people, but only three people remained.
Only Ian couldn’t be seen in their party.
The reason was because he needed to get the admission tickets for the capital’s swordsmanship tournament.
“No, my Lady. It was for the best to send Ian-nim.”
Sera rolled her eyes to the ground, muttering at Iris’s worry.
Riley nodded as if saying that he agreed.
If the one who went off to get the tickets was not Ian but Sera, it would be terrifying.
He would definitely go ‘Young Master this, Young Master that’ and follow Riley around all day making a fuss as he tried to talk about what had happened the evening before.
“Then where should we go first?”
A bead of sweat rolled down Riley’s cheek.
It’s Riley whose throat was burning to a crisp when the carriage entered Solia.
The first destination had already been decided.
“Cok-… no, black sugar beer! We need to go drink that!”
As if knowing he was going to say that, Sera smiled and started walking.
“There’s a café near here that I used to visit frequently. It should still be selling what Young Master wants so let’s go there first, might as well avoid the sunlight.”
Although the sky held no clouds and it was a cool day, it was too hot to walk around outside. Sera, who was holding a parasol to cover Iris, looked around her surroundings.
It was because she had to be prepared for unknown threats because Ian had left, and she was alone in escorting the two people.
“How is it Sera? Has it changed a lot from before?”
“There don’t seem to be any big differences. If there was something that changed, wouldn’t it be the posters that advertise the soon-to-open swordsmanship tournament?”
Sera replied after seeing the swordsmanship posters stuck around everywhere.
The capital’s swordsmanship tournament.
A festival that not only nobles, but also commoners show great interest in.
It was because the nobles from all the different territories gather in one place.
To the nobles it becomes a market of amity, and to commoners it’s an event which allows them to see the future leaders of their territory.
“Now that I look around, they’re stuck everywhere.”
“Well, it seems that Young Master doesn’t have an interest in it though.”
Riley who was walking with both his hands stuck in his pockets turned to Sera, and started to bother her about when they were going to arrive.
“Just walk a little further. There, do you see that orange roof?”
At the sight of glass cups filled with black liquid in the midst of people who were gathered under the roof that Sera pointed to, Riley’s eyes went wide.
At Riley’s appearance the two women went ‘pfft’, and chortled.
“You have the same thoughts as Riley right? About the swordsmanship tournament.”
Sera asked Iris.
“Yes. I, too, don’t really…”
Iris also didn’t want to force Riley into the tournament if he didn’t want to.
It was because if she forced him to participate, then she would be breaking her promise since they didn’t come to Solia to participate, but rather to spectate.
“Haah, it would be nice if we could watch it and return without any problems… The issue is Ian-nim.”
If he accidentally touched on Young Master’s sensitive part and a hide and seek started in Solia, forget about spectating or whatever; they’d all be absolutely screwed.
[Shock! The third Young Master of the swordsmanship family, the Iphelleta House runs away from home!]
[Searching for a stray child. Black hair, a relaxed face……]
Those kind of posters would be put up in Solia.
“That wouldn’t possibly happen right?”
Riley, who arrived first and was ordering black sugar beer from the clerk turned around and raised a question mark as if asking if they called him.
“Kh, This…actually existed.”
After the black sugar beer which had bubbles floating up came out, Riley who kept on mumbling the word ‘Coke’ before drinking it had teary eyes as soon as he drank a sip.
It couldn’t be said to be the same taste that he was reminiscent of, but it was still able to get rid of the thirst he had for so long.
The customers near Riley looked at him curiously, as if asking if it was that tasty.
“Mother, can I drink one more cup?”
Riley who already emptied one cup and had its ice rattling asked Iris and went to the clerk straight away.
As Riley’s hand went up, the tactful clerk brought out one more cup of black sugar beer.
As if saying that even the dew on the cup was lovely, Riley, who was looking at the newly brought out drink as if he was in a trance, chugged it.
“Young Master, you sound like a grown-up man.”
“What can I do when my throat is stinging?”
Although he claimed that it was stinging, that it was hurting, the edge of Riley’s mouth went up.
Sera, who was smiling at the appearance of her Young Master who looked happier than ever, narrowed her eyes as she spotted some suspicious individuals while keeping an eye on their surroundings..
“…What are you doing? I’m telling you I didn’t do it!”
“Who do you think you’re lying to, bitch?”
There was a posse of grown men, and one girl.
It didn’t look like they were going to show hostility towards them, but what Sera saw was a scene where a group of men who looked quite frightening dragging away a girl who looked to be about sixteen years old by her wrist.
“T-this… Hey! Someone help me!”
The girl who was caught by the men started to cry out for help.
It was an emotion which showed naiveté.
“Don’t bother. This bitch got caught while trying to pickpocket our wallets.”
“I never did such a thing!”
As the girl shouted and the people all looked at them, the men waved their hands dismissively as if telling them to stop paying attention.
In contrast with the girl’s sincere pleas for help, the men’s faces contained bits of malice.
Straight away figuring out the situation...
As Sera who was just about to explode out of her seat because she couldn’t take any more of the brazen lawlessness, Riley gave her a piece of advice.
“…Sera, don’t bother.”
Sera’s shoulders flinched even before she could get off the seat.
Iris tilted her head as she too couldn’t understand why Riley stopped Sera.
“That’s all an act.”
Riley turned around and called to the clerk.
“Auntie!… That’s not right.”
Riley who accidentally called out to the clerk like he did in his previous life quickly changed his words.
“Clerk lady. There are straws here right? Please give me a straw.”
“Yes, I’ll bring it over right away.”
Although he liked putting the Coke to his mouth and chugging it, Riley who also liked to use a straw and suck it away ordered a straw and leaned his back on the back supporter of the chair.
“Young Master, what do you mean…‘an act’?”
Sera, who was looking again closely at the situation that was still escalating, asked quietly.
It simply didn’t look like an act.
“Their eyes were chasing Sera’s sword.”
“Well, I don’t know what they’re planning but… Ah, thank you.”
Riley, who received the straw from the clerk and placed it in between the ice in the black sugar beer, started to suck the drink and looked at the men and the girl in the commotion.
They were still getting further away.
It felt like if they were left alone the men would just end the girl’s life.
“If that girl was going to ask for help, if those men were going to do something to her… Their eyes and their heads should’ve been spinning around. But.”
Riley swallowed a few mouthfuls of Coke and continued.
“Their eyes were only directed on Sera’s sword. What might that mean?
Riley made a face that said that he felt alive after draining the cup of all of its contents via the straw and jangled the ice.
“Puha! Let’s not get entangled in such annoying matters.”