Volume 2: Intermission – Thousand Li to the North, Embrace the Dawn I (2/2)
|Name||Gi Go Amatsuki|
|Class||Duke; Wandering Swordsman|
|Possessed Skills||Sword Mastery A-; Purple Flash; Forsake; Sense; A Master Swordsman's Proof; Silent Nature; Veteran|
|Divine Protection||Sword God|
|Abnormal Status||Sworn to Spare; Sword God's Control|
Gi Go carried the yugushiva to the cave he and Yoshu stayed at before, then he had Yoshu begrudgingly treat the yugushiva. When he thought to step out for a walk, he came back with a snow lizard.
Gi Go proposed to take care of supper in hopes of quelling Yoshu’s dissatisfaction.
“I tied her up well, so…” Yoshu said.
When Gi Go followed Yoshu’s gaze to the yugushiva, he noted that the yugushiva had herbs and bandages properly applied on her. Yoshu had even prepared a proper place for her to rest, including a blanket. As far as ‘tied up’ went, Yoshu only tied up her hands with a rope.
“You’re surprisingly kind,” Gi Go remarked.
Yoshu sneered back. “She’s unarmed and there’s two of us, so I figured she wasn’t much of a threat anymore.”
Yoshu filled a pot with water and placed it atop the fire, then he took the snow lizard from Gi Go’s hands and started preparing their supper.
One side of Gi Go’s face lifted up as he faintly smiled.
His gaze was turned to the curved sword the yugushiva woman had used. It was not something suited for the slender hands of a woman.
Gradually, the time of the fire god neared its end, and the hour of the night god came.
Whenever night came Yoshu would teach Gi Go how to sing. He would sing once to show Gi Go, then Gi Go would try to mimic it, and Yoshu would point out whenever he made a mistake, then they would start all over again.
The night went on, but tonight the twin goddess moons showed themselves, weakening the goddess darkness’ influence. The red moons dyed the snow in its hue as silence filled the north. But in that deathly silence was a soft singing sound resounding from one cave.
“Do you still remember our home land? Oh small winds of the sky, take these feelings with you (kyanmaroodo rinbaa. Raabekastoria, vesjiinichukeruu),” Gi Go sang in a low-pitched voice, causing Yoshu to burst out laughing as he pointed out Gi Go’s errors.
“Your pronunciation is a bit off. Listen… Do you still remember our home land? Oh winds of the great sky, take my feelings with you (kyanmaroruudo, riinbaaru. Haabekasutoria, vesjiinichiukeruu),” Yoshu said.
Gi Go nodded and tried again.
Gradually, the tune Gi Go sang became bearable enough to listen to. Yoshu nodded in satisfaction and smiled.
“Not bad. If you keep practicing, you might even become a minstrel one day,” Yoshu said.
“When that time comes, I’ll give your name whenever people asks me for my teacher,” Gi Go said.
“Please don’t. I wouldn’t want to be stoned,” Yoshu teased.
“I wonder what happened?” Gi Go said as he turned his gaze to the sleeping yugushiva and rubbed his chin. “I didn’t think the proud yugushiva would be a female. I wanted to win because I thought I was facing a strong male.”
“I don’t suppose it’s realistic to expect her to lead us to her village either. They don’t seem very friendly, what with attacking us out of the blue like that,” Yoshu said.
Yoshu sighed while Gi Go pondered.
Yoshu never really had much qualms about killing the yugushiva. As a battle slave, gender never really mattered. Whether it was a woman or a man, they would kill them all the same. The thought wouldn’t even cross them, in fact.
Unfortunately, Gi Go had already lost interest. Moreover, from the goblins’ perspective, the females were weak creatures that they had to protect at all costs. Of course, there were exceptions such as Princess Narsa, but they didn’t usually see them as someone to cross swords with.
—Maybe I should torture her after all to make her cough up some useful information.
Yoshu thought to himself as he watched the woman sleep, but then he noticed something unusual.
“Hmm?” Yoshu muttered.
When Yoshu was about to approach the woman, he noticed that her eyes were open wide.
“Rabaiyaru!? Gerunoia!” She cried in the northern language as she tried to sit up. When she realized that her hands were tied, a look of panic washed over her face. Immediately, she pushed aside the blanket and stood up, but a wave of dizziness hit her, forcing her back down onto her knees.
“It doesn’t seem to be a cold… But it has to be some sort of illness,” Yoshu remarked as he coldly watched the woman cough.
Yoshu lifted up his shield and glanced at Gi Go, seemingly asking him if they should fight or not, but in response, Gi Go only frowned for a moment before standing up and carelessly walking to the woman.
“Wait, Mr. Gi Go! It’s dangerous! She could bite!” Yoshu said.
“There’s nothing to worry,” Gi Go said.
The woman forcefully stopped her coughing as she growled at Gi Go, who was looking down at her.
It didn’t seem apparent back when they were fighting, but now that they were here in the cave, Gi Go could clearly be seen to be at least two heads bigger than her, her head reaching only up to Gi Go’s neck at most.
Gi Go reached out for the woman, but she ducked it, passing by him, only to cough again and stop in her tracks, leaving her defenseless as Gi Go caught her and threw her back into bed.
“Don’t move. You’ll shorten your life,” Gi Go curtly said as he went back to his seat next to Yoshu.
“I thought it was odd back then… I guess she really was sick. A pity, but if not for that, my head probably wouldn’t be attached to my body anymore,” Gi GO said.
The woman watched Gi Go and Yoshu cautiously for a little longer, but after awhile, she lost consciousness and went back to sleep.
Gi Go quietly tucked the woman into bed, ensuring that the blanket warmed her, then he went back to sit next to Yoshu.
“Can you treat her?” Gi Go asked.
“Do I look like a doctor to you?” Yoshu asked back.
He didn’t bother asking what Gi Go would do if he did treat her. After all, Gi Go was simply the kind sort who would surely leave her alone afterwards.
As for Yoshu, he found it difficult to sleep knowing that someone who tried to kill them just moments ago was sleeping nearby, so he decided it would be best to get rid of her as soon as possible. In that way, he might be able to get his peaceful nights back.
“What herbs do you have?” Yoshu asked.
Gi Go showed him his stack, and Yoshu started picking out various herbs.
Yoshu sifted through various herbs, ground them into powder, mixing them with the evening primrose Gi Go gave him, then he dissolved the powder in hot water.
“This should do,” Yoshu said.
It was a simple mixture he learned from a traveling doctor once upon a time, though he did add some primrose into the original formula.
“Drink up,” Yoshu said as he poured the medicine into the sleeping yugushiva’s mouth.
After he heaved a breath of relief, Gi Go called out to him.
“Can she be saved?” He asked.
“I don’t know, but the most we can do is to help stabilize her condition and then ensure she is fed well,” Yoshu said.
A safe answer so to speak. After that Yoshu moved away from the yugushiva woman.
“I see…” Gi Go said, falling into silence as he pondered for a moment, then he took his sword and headed out. “I”ll go hunt for a bit.”
“Take care,” Yoshu said.
Gi Go nodded, then his figure vanished into the snow field. When he came back he had a bird in his hands.
“Will this do?” Gi Go asked.
“More than,” Yoshu said.
Yoshu quickly prepared the bird, gutting out its innards, then washing it with water from melted snow, then cooking it quickly over fire.
When the bird had charred a little on the surface, Yoshu chopped it and served it with boiled herbs. He placed the yugushiva’s portion next to her.
“I’m sure she’ll eat when she gets hungry. It would be best to eat while hot though,” Yoshu said as he moved away from the yugushiva.
“Shall we?” Yoshu said to Gi Go.
Gi Go nodded, and the two of them began eating.
When night came they left the cave and practiced singing. When they came back the plate they left beside the yugushiva had been licked clean.
Yoshu wryly smiled as he took back the plate. This continued for six more days when the yugushiva was finally able to stand on her own.
“Feeling better?” Gi Go asked.
“…Food, thank you,” the yugushiva woman said in broken speech.
Gi Go and Yoshu glanced at each other at that.
“You know our tongue?” Yoshu asked.
“South, words, a little,” she said.
The yugushiva, who had her silver hair in a ponytail, bowed before Gi Go and Yoshu.
“I have, request,” she said.
“A request?” Yoshu asked.
The woman nodded. “Medicine, give. Save, tribe.”
Gi Go and Yoshu glanced at each other again.
“What miraculous medicine did you give her?” Gi Go asked with visible admiration.
Yoshu honestly shook his head to indicate she must’ve been mistaken. “It was just a simple medicine. You could find it any—”
Suddenly, realization struck Yoshu. He did add an extra ingredient, didn’t he?
“Could it be because of this?” Yoshu muttered to himself as he looked at the yet fresh evening primrose.
“Please, give, save, tribe!” The woman desperately pleaded as she prostrated herself before them, her head touching the ground.
“What do we do?” Yoshu asked.
“Give it. I can’t get sick anyway,” Gi Go reasoned.
After thinking for a while, Yoshu took the bag of herbs and gave it to the woman.
“Unfortunately, this is all I have. I’m not sure how big your tribe is, but it probably won’t be enough,” Yoshu said slowly to make it easier for the woman to understand.
A look of despair gradually covered the woman’s face.
“So, how about you take me and Mr. Gi Go to your village, then we could make more medicine there. How about it?” Yoshu suggested.
“Thank, you,” the woman said with much difficulty.
Yoshu wryly smiled.
“Did you catch my tendency for meddling with people?” Gi Go asked.
Yoshu scratched his head. “Umm… do you mind if we go?”
“Nah, let’s,” Gi Go smiled.
Yoshu narrowed his eyes.