Regressor, Possessor, Reincarnator
[Translator – Aine]
[Proofreader – yukitokata]
The passersby walking near the tavern stopped upon hearing the commotion between the woman and soldiers.
Allen mixed in with the crowd to watch them.
‘If she goes up against the soldiers in this situation, nothing good will come out of it.’
“What are you doing now after you’ve already gotten all my money…?”
“No, shut up!”
“If you don’t have anything to say, then you shut up. I saw it all earlier too. You didn’t pay for what you ate, and you ignored when people were getting stolen from! If you have any conscience left, then…”
“You damned bitch…”
Surely enough, Allen’s thoughts were correct. The soldiers, having no intention to put up with her insults, squared their shoulders.
As the girl watched them, her face paled in fear. Yet she didn’t stop speaking.
“Why won’t you all keep your promise?! I told you my mom’s out there! Let her in! Please!” she screamed in anger.
However, none of the soldiers took her seriously. The one standing next to the group’s leader took a look around and whispered, “Boss, if we let her go and word gets to the higher-ups…”
The leader looked around with a cold look in his eyes. The disturbance that the woman had created had begun to draw the attention of the people walking through the streets.
“We have enough money now, right? I heard there’s a new aristocrat in town now, too, so we should go ahead and leave…”
Carefully considering the suggestion, the leader nodded.
They would be done for if they were caught, even if they had done far less than what they had actually done.
The price to bribe the gate guards was getting steeper and harder to gather.
It was time to wrap this confrontation up.
“Well then, we’ll handle that. And clean up as usual, got it?”
After finishing their conversation, the leader winked at the soldiers around him, and they began to chase away the passersby, as if they were familiar with the situation. And in the process, they stopped the woman from escaping.
“Wh-What are you doing?! If you’re trying to get me to just waste the money I gave you all…”
The soldier blocking her escape from the rear winked.
The soldier who received the other’s signal moved to grab her by the arm.
“What—Let me go!”
Resisting the soldier’s rough touch, she stiffened at the words he uttered next.
“So, you wanna see your mom?”
She began to tremble. Despite her fear, she clenched her teeth and responded in a stinging tone.
“Yeah. Why would you leave her out there after you’ve already taken all my money?!”
“Alright, alright. It’s all good.”
The soldier’s hand moved up towards her shoulder. He smiled darkly and whispered in her ear, “I think what you gave was a little short. But I think it would be enough if you’d be so willing as to cooperate with us for a little bit.”
Allen, who had been silently watching up until that point, began to move.
“Depending on how you go about it…”
His cold voice rang inside the tavern. Everyone’s gaze turned towards him.
He hadn’t meant to intervene directly. He could have resolved the issue by calling in the guards to help, so was there even a good reason to intervene directly?
Nevertheless, his reason for stepping in was simple.
He didn’t recognize her at first. However, under all the rubbage covering her head, he found black hair and purple eyes. And after seeing the rest of her familiar facial features combined, he was sure of it.
‘It really is her, isn’t it?’
The being that had troubled him so.
The girl who’d lost her mother because she made a soldier late to his fight with Julius before his regression.
A soldier who had pledged her allegiance to Allen and died slaughtering monsters while in the pursuit of her revenge against Julius.
A woman who would have a peaceful future—entirely unaware of her talents—if things were to go differently than they did in the past.
Having confirmed her to be that same being, Allen jumped into action right away without thinking.
His footsteps on the wooden floor resounded inside the tavern.
“And who are you? Ah fuck, what a day…”
The soldier, who had been speaking his mind, looked back and forth between Julius’s luxurious dress and the guards standing behind him before laughing.
“No, sir. It appears that you’ve stumbled into something while on your outing. If you don’t want to end up in a prison cell, it’d be best to mind yourself.”
‘Did he not see the family seal? Could it be that he solely supports the baron? Or is it that he doesn't recognize the duke’s emblem?’
He began to laugh at the prospect.
“Do you really not know who I am?”
“No, I don’t know who you are, but you should be going. Can’t you tell that you’re in a dangerous situation right now? So before you lose your pride…”
At that moment, a soldier who’d been watching from behind turned pale and immediately whispered to the leader.
“Boss! I… I think we’re all screwed. Isn’t he the noble who came to town today??”
“What did you say?”
Having heightened his senses in advance just in case, Allen could overhear all of their conversations.
The leader, who’d been wearing an unimpressed expression during the entirety of the interaction, widened his eyes and immediately looked at the emblem on Allen’s body.
His face turned white. When one of his soldiers began to speak rudely again, he covered his mouth.
“Yeah, so get the fu—Mmph.”
“My apologies, sir! I believe this one here is just drunk and talking nonsense. Please show us mercy, just this once.”
“Mercy? After hearing all of those insults?”
Having been forced to speak by the leader, one of the lackeys became as quiet as a mouse after finding out how things were turning out for the worst.
Upon hearing that, Allen was also dumbfounded.
‘So the baron changed, but the people under him haven’t, huh.’
Knowing that the only thing that had changed from what he remembered was the baron, he felt a bit relieved and contempt at the reaction of those who’d tried to diminish the Reinhart family’s power.
‘Even though the city isn’t directly ruled by the duke, do the people living in his territories really not recognize his emblem?’
“Yeah, mercy. Mercy would be good.”
Allen burst into laughter, making the leader think he had gone crazy.
Allen had thought that he could’ve been the child of an honest merchant, so he had been observing his subordinates’ behavior to make sure of that suspicion.
‘If you slip up, then your head will be cut off.’
It would be easier for a rich merchant’s child to bribe their way out of a situation like this. From messing with the wrong people. From blaming their subordinates for their own wrongdoings.
“So, then, what about you?”
Allen asked the woman who had been standing peacefully next to the unfolding situation.
“I stepped in because of you. That’s why I’m asking you now.”
She stammered in response to his question and glared at the soldiers.
“I… I’d like to reveal their true nature if possible, but…”
The soldiers’ expressions grew dark at her response.
“You all gotta stop it. No, please stop. But I feel bad because y’all didn’t do nothing yet. Or because you all haven’t done anything yet.”
Frowning at her inconsistency in speech, the man spoke.
“If speaking formally is difficult, you can speak regularly.”
As she spent her time hesitating, Allen sighed and urged her on.
“Oh… Uhm, well… Then… Nothing has happened yet, so I’m okay.”
Hearing her response, the soldiers let out a relieved sigh. However, Allen had no intention of ending things just yet.
“An eye or a tongue. Choose one.”
Allen’s face turned cold.
‘Don’t they know the consequences of crossing noblemen, the owners of their land?’
“When did I ever say that I’d do as she said? I only asked for her opinion.”
“That… Isn’t that too unreasonable…?”
The ring around Allen’s heart began to shake, and the intangible force within him began to swell up around them.
As he approached them, step by step, unbearable pressure began to weigh on their surroundings.
“It appears you don’t understand the meaning of your insults towards me.”
This was the reality of the dukedom. Its citizens not only failed to recognize the owner of their land, but were rude to him as well.
“If I were a different nobleman, you would’ve been decapitated already. But because I’m so merciful, I’m giving you the chance to choose. So make a decision. Which would you prefer? Eye or tongue?”
The guards standing behind him drew their swords in unison. The meaning behind his words was simple.
Would you rather give up your life or simply lose an eye or a tongue?
The drunken soldiers couldn’t even respond to the unfamiliar level of military discipline and force they were experiencing.
For just a moment in the late evening, terrible screams rang out from the tavern.
* * *
Translator - Aine
Proofreader - yukitokata
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* * *
In front of him stood the woman who was slightly different from how he remembered her—from her manner of speech to her actions and expressions.
Allen was somewhat pleased by this change. It seemed to imply that their fate could still be changed after all.
“Uhm… Can I call you ‘sir’?”
As Allen answered her, she hesitated to assume.
“What is it?” questioned Allen whose back was towards her. She carefully replied, nervous to speak before a member of the aristocracy.
“I… Uhm… Why did you bring me here?”
As she asked him her question, she quietly undid her collar.
Upon looking at her, Allen forced a smile.
‘What a pain.’
Since he stopped by the tavern in the early evening, he figured that it was currently the middle of the night.
It was natural for her to be worried since she was alone with him in a room at such a late hour.
However, he had no intention of doing any of that sort of thing.
“Don’t worry, I don’t plan on doing anything to you.”
“...Hehe, how kind of you.”
She gave an awkward smile but kept her guard up.
Her waist-length black hair, purple eyes, and dirt-covered white skin sparkled in the moonlight.
‘She was right to worry about it, though.’
Rather than being happy about it, Allen questioned the fact that she had been right to assume that she was about to become a victim of a vulgar situation.
‘Had this kind of thing been happening to her before my regression? Or could it just be a result of the butterfly effect?’
While she washed up, he read through the black book, reminiscing through his past memories. However, there was nothing else to infer from it.
It had also bothered him that he had heard about her mother during her conversation with the soldiers.
The reason why she eventually turned into the person in Allen’s memories was because of the incident regarding her mother.
More specifically, her mother’s death.
That was what made her change.
He looked at the girl and took a moment to think. In that moment, he suddenly realized that he didn’t even know her name.
“What’s your name?”
“Hic, hic! I… I’m not feeling very well. So please don’t attack… me… What?”
Her pale skin reddened.
“What are you imagining up there?”
“I’m into older women, so a kid like you…”
The corners of his mouth lifted into a smirk as his eyes traced her body. Every time their eyes met, she would let out a small yelp and shrink away from him.
“You’re not really my type.”
She let out a sigh of relief as she leaned back.
Then, she made a small complaint.
“Linbelle. And I’m not a kid. I’m fifteen.”
“Ah, yes. A young, young lady.”
When Allen answered almost agreeingly, she pouted and sulked. However, he didn’t seem to have noticed.
When it seemed as though she’d eased her anxiety to a certain extent, Allen sprung the question.
“What did you do to cause that commotion with those soldiers?”
She trembled and hesitated, repeatedly opening and closing her mouth without uttering a single word.
“At first glance, it seems as though it had something to do with your mother…”
As Allen calmly smiled at her, she slowly began to speak, fidgeting with her hands while talking.
“It’s because those soldiers didn’t keep their promise.”
He waited silently, as though urging her to keep going.
And so, she slowly began to unravel her story.
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