“Can you not dispel it?” [Reinhart]
“This might sound like I’m making excuses, but… This test was meant to ascertain the degree to which the curse has penetrated the patient. The darker the color, the harder the curse is to break. With the solution this dark, the difficulty of undoing this curse is at the highest possible, a grade ‘7’. At that, even someone from the main family is sure to struggle.” [Rosenberg]
“I see… Your skills are for certain, so it’s unfortunate, but it can’t be helped.” [Reinhart]
“Thank you for your understanding. Also, while undoing the curse might be impossible, it’s still possible to weaken its effects. So long as he observes a few points, he should be able to live normally. The curse should also weaken in time, so depending on the situation, dispelling it might not be completely off the table just yet. So, there’s no need to be so pessimistic.” [Rosenberg]
After that, he said that he was going to write a medical report and left the room with Lady Eleonora. He went to the room where the other guards were making themselves comfortable. I’d already informed them that they could use the other rooms if they needed to, so I’m sure the guards will take care of him.
“Good job. As expected, that made you tense. Sorry about that, and for dropping by so suddenly as well.” [Elize]
“Your curse was part of it, but I wanted to meet you before you went to the Great Forest. I might just be bothering you, though.” [Reinhart]
“Nothing of the sort. Though it would be a lie to say that I wasn’t nervous, I was definitely worried about the effects of the curse on someone I’m meeting for the first time. I don’t think it’s wrong to take the opportunity to test it out now. Having a real shaman give me a check-up is good too.” [Ryouma]
The gods themselves will be dispelling my curse, but it was too risky to use that as an explanation, so we’re using Remilie-san as a cover. After all, she is a former royal court mage, so it holds some weight when I say that she’s the one dealing with my curse. However, she’s not a specialist when it comes to curses. A more complete excuse would require that a proper shaman examine me and provide a medical report.
The gods might be suppressing the curse, but it’s still a curse woven by a Demon King that influences my relationship with other people. There’s no harm in taking precautions. It was good timing on the duke’s part, and I was glad to be able to meet them anyway.
“Besides, you took the time to come despite your busy schedule. There’s no way I could ask you to apologize after putting so much effort for this meeting.” [Ryouma]
“I’m glad you see it that way.” [Elize]
The madam smiled gently at me, then a few seconds later, Reinhart-san took out a thin box from his chest. The lid of the box, which resembled a business card case, opened and mana spread out to envelop us in a dome-like shape.
They gave a signal to Sebasu-san, who stood outside of the dome, and he gave them a bow before promptly excusing himself from the room. That small box must be a magic tool meant to block sound then. In other words, they’re about to bring up what they really came here for.
“I have quite a few things I’d like to talk about, but first… I heard from dad. Apparently, you’re a Child of God. We did consider the possibility, so we’re not that surprised, but I’d like to hear it from you straight. Is that true?” [Reinhart]
As proof, I showed them my Status Board. When they saw the title, ‘Favored Child of the Gods’, the duke and his wife looked at each and nodded, then they thanked me for telling them.
After that, the conversation proceeded like it did when I’d confided with the adults back in the Town of Departed Spirits. But they’ve already prepared themselves after speaking with Reinbach-sama and the others, so unlike back then, they were not overcome with emotions or relieved. There were no tears. They just calmly thanked me.
“We keep finding ourselves indebted to you, Ryouma-kun.” [Elize]
“I’m always receiving help from everyone too, so it goes both ways. You also accepted me as a Child of God.” [Ryouma]
“You might have been anxious about that, but to us, everything just finally started making sense.” [Reinhart]
“Reinbach-sama said something similar – that he’s more or less expected this for awhile now. I ended up lying quite a bit to keep a lid on this matter. And there are things I haven’t talked about yet.” [Ryouma]
“It’s good that you’re so honest, but honesty isn’t always praiseworthy. Especially, among nobles where people are always tricking each other. Everyone is working for the sake of their own profit, so they won’t hesitate to take advantage of any openings to sabotage someone. Just recently too, there…” [Reinhart]
Reinhart-san’s countenance turned grim while he was talking, but the madam called out to him. He let out a sigh and awkwardly laughed, but the face he wore was something I’d seen many times in my past life. He hasn’t shown it until now, but he must be tired.
“Excuse me. That was shameful of me.” [Reinhart]
“Not at all. I also didn’t notice it until now. You must’ve really been working hard. I don’t mind, so please speak to your heart’s content.” [Ryouma]
“…Is that fine? Well, in any case, our everyday life is full of trickeries. So you might have hid some things from us and even lied to keep those secrets safe, but you didn’t do that in order to hurt us or make a profit, did you? Something like that isn’t worth mentioning, and it isn’t something we would be offended by.” [Reinhart]
“Right. If I might add, does your lie even count as a lie? I’m sure the matter concerning your family was decided by the gods to help you integrate with our society.” [Elize]
“Yes, it’s the setting that they came up with.” [Ryouma]
“Setting, huh. Coming from a Child of God such as yourself, I can understand. What I’m more concerned about is that it was the ‘gods who prepared it’. Because, at the very least, denying something that the gods themselves decided on isn’t something I could do.” [Elize]
“…That might be one way to look at it from a religious perspective.” [Ryouma]
I wasn’t familiar with religion in my previous life, but I can at least understand how absurd it is to deny a god. It appears that the madam has also come to terms with the setting the gods prepared for me.
“From what I’ve heard, you are able to receive oracles from the gods quite frequently. If so, you must be a lot closer to them and see them differently from us. By the way, while I agree with Elize, I don’t think there are many people who would take it the same way. Especially, people related to the church.” [Reinhart]
“Some of them might even see it as you disavowing the gods, so you should probably just stick with the story that the gods prepared for you. That should cause the least problems for you.” [Elize]
“I’ll keep that in mind.” [Ryouma]
I’d expected them to be accepting, but I see that I still tensed up. As a result, my shoulders naturally relaxed when they took everything a lot better than expected.
“I can understand not wanting to lie, so if you ever feel distressed or need someone to talk to, you can always come to us.” [Reinhart]
“We know your secret already, so you should be able to talk without reserve if it’s us, right? We’ll lend you an ear then. After all, we want to help you too, Ryouma-kun. So don’t hesitate and rely on us too.” [Elize]
“…Thank you very much. I’ll be relying on you then.” [Ryouma]
I’d heard a little about that, actually, when I went to the divine realm just recently. The problems they mentioned were apparently something that indeed plagued my predecessors. Some of them chose to reveal the secret to their family and friends, only to meet tragedy, while others kept their secret with them until the very end, only to still meet a tragic fate… So while there’s only a few of them right now, it’s still reassuring to have some people share my secret and be so understanding.