Ex Strongest, Remembering Forgotten Things
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Soma wasn’t surprised at her appearance simply because he was aware of her.
Given the situation, it was natural to be wary of others. At that time, he said that he just incidentally noticed her presence, but when he turned his gaze, Eleonora looked a little dissatisfied as if she disliked something.
“…By the way, I’d like to ask you one question. When did you notice me?” (Eleonora)
“Since you appeared here? I mean, not long ago?” (Soma)
In terms of timing, it was just right after Soma defeated the Demon God. He left her alone because she somehow seemed to wait and see, but–…
“I wish you called me out.” (Eleonora)
“That’s what I did?” (Soma)
“Not really… Oh well, that’s fine. I have more to say than that.” (Eleonora)
“Yes. On behalf of the Holy City, I would like to express my gratitude. Thank you very much for solving the crisis in the Holy City.” (Eleonora)
When she said that, she bowed gracefully. Her appearance was more aristocratic than an inelegant noble, and she was worthy of the leader of the Holy City.
But as for Soma, he felt that it was an exaggeration, so he just shrugged his shoulders.
“Aren’t you exaggerating a little bit too much? Would it have been possible for you to come sooner than me, yes?” (Soma)
“Sure, that could be right, but I still didn’t come on time. Besides, it’s quite possible that the damage has occurred. It’s the regular duty as the leader of the Holy City.” (Eleonora)
“Is that so? Well, do whatever you want.” (Soma)
His shoulder was tapped when he was talking about that. Looking back, Ingrid was staring at him with an indescribable expression again.
“Could it be that you are Saintess-sama’s acquaintance or something? Aah, no, are you Saintess-sama’s acquaintance or something?” (Ingrid) (TLN: The first set of you/acquaintance is using 君 (kimi) and 友人 (yuujin), while the second set is using あなた (anata) and 御友人(oyuujin). Basically, the second set sounds more formal than the first set.)
“You don’t have to be that stiff, you know? We’re not her acquaintance.” (Soma)
“Oh my, I feel sad. You and I lived under one roof… So, does that mean we’re not acquaintances?” (Eleonora)
“Wh-what the…!? Soma…!?” (Hildegard)
“Why are you surprised? Well, certainly, that’s not a lie, but yes, it was under one roof in a broad sense. Rather than going to separate rooms, I didn’t even get out of that certain place.” (Soma)
Ingrid was there, so it wasn’t necessary to say that the place was the prison. It would only create unnecessary misunderstanding.
“Well, we’re just guests, alright.” (Soma)
“Guests…? Speaking of which, you certainly said that you were guests, but I didn’t think that you were Saintess-sama’s guests…” (Ingrid)
“That’s right… Right now, they are still my guests.” (Eleonora)
“Why did you still emphasize that? Soma and you will not change from that standpoint.” (Hildegard)
“Oh my, that’s not always the case, right? It only takes a moment for the standpoint to change. Well, instead of that, there is a person who hasn’t changed over the years… That reminds me, such a person is here.” (Eleonora)
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“Hoh… in other words, you’re asking for a fight, right? Fine, I accept…!” (Hildegard)
“Don’t accept it. I’m not really surprised that you knew each other, but are you on bad terms?” (Soma)
“Hmmph, it’s not that we’re really on bad terms. I just don’t like her!” (Hildegard)
“That’s my line…!” (Eleonora)
While the two said that, Soma sighed at them who were glaring at each other. Apparently, they were like cats and dogs. Eleonora didn’t speak at all earlier, but perhaps, she didn’t want to talk to Hildegard.
“Well, I don’t care what kind of relationship you have, but can we leave this matter to you since you are already here? We’re basically outsiders.” (Soma)
“That’s right… Ingrid, can you take care of this matter? You know most about what they did, and I’ll leave it to your judgement.” (Eleonora)
“Aah, thank you very much. But… alright. Normally, I would like to ask a lot of things from you, but since you’re Saintess-sama’s guests, it’s fine. You don’t have to remain here.” (Ingrid)
“That’s what I’m going to say.” (Eleonora)
“Hmm, is that so…?” (Soma)
In that case, there was no need to remain here. The man there should have just fainted, and he didn’t seem to be like Steina. Perhaps, that was because he dealt with it immediately. There was no need for treatment.
Soma and Hildegard only asked for a bit, and they acted as soon as possible. Looking at the situation so far, if he considered that Eleonora was here now, the probability of getting involved would increase as time went by.
He came here because there was something, but if he didn’t have to do anything, that would be better. There was still a lot of things to do before he could use magic.
“Well, if that’s the case, then we should… no, before that, we need to ask where the Paladins were.” (Soma)
“Alright… well, even if I don’t go with you, if you give them my name, they will be able to talk to you to a certain extent. It’s not like it can be anything though.” (Ingrid)
“I don’t really expect too much.” (Soma)
For the time being, it was only necessary to know whether this occurrence had something to do with the previous case or not. If that was the case, it would be possible to confirm if he asked about it appropriately..
If it turned out that there was a relationship, it couldn’t be ended here, but then, it would be right to think about it again at that time. Anyhow, it would be the matter after listening and moving toward the aim…
“Dear me, don’t you have to ask us? I know most of it, so you don’t have to worry about it again, you know?” (Eleonora)
“Wouldn’t be a hassle to bother you again?” (Hildegard)
“Oh my, you’re saying terrible things. We won’t think that. But… if you ask us, you might want to help us for some reason.” (Eleonora)
“It’s the same thing.” (Soma)
However, if he said that, he couldn’t understand unless he heard the story. When it came to that, it seemed that he would gain a lot of information, but… he didn’t have to bother them to confirm it.
Although the price was regrettable, it had been concluded that the fate of the person who signed a contract with God could be based upon selfishness. When magic became available, it would be meaningless if he couldn’t actually use it.
Therefore, he didn’t listen to unnecessary things and opened his mouth to ask Ingrid where the Paladins were, but.. he heard a voice before he could ask that.
“Aah, yes. The Devil that Soma-san defeated… My Lord said that Soma-san knew about the Devil without the need to ask anyone. When ‘she’ told me that, the word Devil appeared.” (Eleonora)
Reflexively, Eleonora smiled. The deep smile was there was something along her words… it meant as it was.
When she turned her gaze straight to Hildegard, she was staring at her as if she wanted to bite her.
“Oh my, what’s wrong? I just kindly taught you so that you don’t have to do anything trivial. I should say that, but… why didn’t Hildegard tell you? Don’t tell me you don’t realize that?” (Eleonora)
“T-that is…” (Hildegard)
“…She’s right. The Devil is the same Devil that you know. Well, the one you defeated just now… is probably a lower rank in terms of Devil, and the Devil you know ‘from the old days’ is higher rank one.” (Hildegard)
Soma certainly knew of its existence for a long time. He saw it only once. That person whom he considered as Shishou… had killed that existence.
Since then, Soma had never seen the existence of the Devil. The Devil was a very rare existence, and it would appear once in a hundred years.
However, it was so powerful that even the person who was considered as a master swordsman, had to bet his own life to defeat it.
Soma wasn’t aware of its existence simply because there was no pint of being aware of it. It had already been defeated, and even if another Devil appeared, it would be a hundred years later.
Furthermore, if it was limited to fighting ability only, the Dragon God was more powerful. So, he didn’t have to worry about it.
Aah, but.. if there was a similar kind of existence in this world and it was rampaging…
“Hmm… I see, it seems that I need to listen to the story.” (Soma)
“…Well. That’s why I didn’t want to tell you…” (Hildegard)
Soma didn’t say that he didn’t understand Hildegard’s feelings. It was sentimental to say the least. However, there was no need to do that.
But… he remembered that there was something he had forgotten. Then, there was nothing he could do other than going there to get it back.
“…Let me welcome you. Well then, can you go back first? I have a little bit of work to do here.” (Eleonora)
Consequently, Soma silently nodded to the words.
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