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Chapter 23: A mountain named loneliness
300 years. .......
My words fall on the grass and flowers along the peaceful roadside.
Of course, everyone is surprised. No, maybe they are stunned now.
But instead of regretting it, I feel unexpectedly relieved.
While everyone is speechless, Karim is the first one to react to my words.
Perhaps he was certain of something.
He nodded his head.
"He isn't lying. It is not hard to imagine that he has gained the power of [immortality] by eating many monsters. The very existence of those monsters itself is surprising, but we have confirmed their skills."
Then Clavis-san turns to Fletty-san.
"Fletty. Your hunch-- Somehow, your hunch hit the jackpot in the wrong way."
I tilt my head, and Clavis-san looks straight at me.
"Fletty was the first person who suggested inviting you to our house."
"Frankly speaking, most people in our mansion are against it. I was against it too. There are many children like you who have lost both parents. It is better to donate money to the orphanage than increase the mansion's food supply to treat you specially."
Clavis-san was right.
I raise my rises. Once again, I made eye contact with Clavis-san.
"Fletty said this."
The loneliness he suffers is far greater and more distorted than we know. I do not want to protect him. I want him to regain something that has been missing from him in this house...
"When I heard Fletty's words, I was very curious about you. That is why I came to see you in person. And I am now convinced that Fletty's words were true."
Clavis-san gently holds my hand. It is gentle and compassionate as if she is touching the petals of a wildflower.
"I'll repeat it... Luciel-kun, would you come to my mansion?"
"Eh? But... Don't you think I'm disgusting..."
I have a child's face, have been living for 300 years, eat monsters, and have powerful skills.
My identity is also unknown, but Clavis-san still invites me to his mansion. That's really confusing me.
"Given your background, some special skills wouldn't surprise me."
"But aren't you scared? From Clavis-san's perspective, I'm like ----."
Don't I look like a monster?
I slaughtered many bandits and even smashed the bandit's chief with a single blow. From an ordinary person's perspective, I am definitely a freak.
I was obsessed with getting as strong as my father and getting his acknowledgement someday.
But after meeting Fletty and his friends, I finally understood something.
Maybe I am no longer as normal as I thought I was.
Suddenly, Clavis-san started laughing.
He turns to me, smiles, and pats my head roughly.
"A monster?.... Certainly, maybe that's true. I've never seen a human being who has been living for 300 years. If a being different from normal humans is called a monster, then maybe you're right."
Fletty-san was about to say something, but before he could, Karim stopped him.
"But, Luciel-kun. You may have been living for 300 years, but from my point of view, you are still a child."
"I'm.... a child?"
I have been living for 300 years now.
So there is no way that I am still a child.
"You lived alone during your sensitive period. Moreover, your mature personality also seems a bit flawed. Even though you've lived for 300 years, you still talk like a child. Maybe that's because you haven't grown up mentally."
As I grow older, I have tried to change my voice tone and personality.
But I didn't feel like I was growing.
Physically, I had become stronger, but mentally, nothing had changed since I first came to this mountain at the age of five.
Clearly, I am still a child.
"Therefore, I want to invite you to my mansion. This is not pity, protection, or charity. ........ I want to save you."
Clavis-san stands up and extends his hand to me again.
Turns out it is a handshake.
His kindness and the truth of his words will be conveyed through his hand.
And when I shake his hand, my life will change completely.....
It had been burdening me for so long.
Well, perhaps that is not the correct explanation.
It was not the 300 years of history that burdened me, but maybe it was ill feelings that I wanted to say, but I couldn't say them all along.
Loneliness. Selfishness. People's warmth...
When I realized it, I had accumulated a mountain of various feelings.
Maybe I can release them now.
I unconsciously grab Clavis's hand.
It is warm... And gentle...
Feeling people's warmth made my eyes hot.
I couldn't hold back my tears any longer, and I started to cry.
At the same time, the mountain of loneliness that had been burdening me began to rattle and collapse.
Time, which had been frozen for 300 years, finally started to move.
That's what I feel.
This novel translation has reached chapter 35.
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