Back in Tephalia’s bedchambers, as an apology for breaking in, Erizora and Ren cleaned up the debris from the wreckage they made. After Tephalia sent a small squad of Centaur scouts to look for Jinma, she took the liberty of having her other handmaidens bring up their breakfast as she found out they rushed up to her room without eating anything. Actually, everyone got a bit hungry again after the excitement, so Tephalia had sent some more for herself as well as Ashe and Salelia. The slaves ended up eating while sitting on the floor as the Lamias ate from the furniture that remained intact.
For all of the girls in that room, it was a very awkward few hours. They all were kept silent when they ate.
“… I never anticipated things to turn out this way.” Tephalia ended up being the first to speak sometime after they all finished their breakfast—a second helping for the Lamias, of course. The other girls turn and give her all their attention as she sighs. “I really owe that man an apology. Cursed or not, he’s still the one who saved Dondegarm and deserves every proper respect, and yet I displayed a sort of deception that put him on edge. I must apologize to you, Ashe and Salelia, for having you play a part in this.”
“Lady Tephalia, please don’t bring it all to yourself!” Ashe exclaims.
“I admit that we might’ve played with him a bit more aggressively than we planned on our way here,” Salelia adds. “Even if it wasn’t with ill intentions, we should’ve seen firsthand that something was going on with him, especially with the experience in our other line of work. We really did want to show our appreciation to him for helping us, it just didn’t turn out as smoothly as we hoped it would. We’re as much at fault here.”
Tephalia nods in understanding before turning to the slaves. “Ren, Erizora, I must apologize to you as well. I assume you must’ve taken drastic measures because you heard something unsettling?”
“Is it true … that you and your previous generations have killed those who have been possessed with your specialized poisons?” Ren asks.
Tephalia nods solemnly. “We have tried to come up with poisons that would counteract the curse’s side-effects for generations. That numbing poison I had Jinma drink was the result after years of experimentation, trial, and error with the local monsters before even trying it on the previously possessed. If it didn’t work out and the situation escalated, that was when we had to put them down and not let them suffer any further. Painlessly taking one’s life through our poisons have only served as our last resort in these cases, and though I’d say the same for Jinma’s … not only is his unique, but I didn’t want him to die so soon.”
“Because you wanted to mate with Master and bear his child before he could, right?” Erizora asks.
Tephalia blushes a little before nodding again. “Though some in the past have returned to their former selves after violent intercourse, I honestly didn’t know what was going to happen with Jinma. He was very different this morning compared to last night from what my familiar reported on his surveillance.”
“Right?! Even after knowing he could do whatever with us, he said he wouldn’t do anything extreme! He also adjusted our ‘slave’ settings to more comfortable levels, helped clean us more thoroughly, and entertained us! I haven’t been a slave for as long as Eri has, but that isn’t something owners do for their slaves very often, right?! Doesn’t that make Master really special?!” Ren exclaims so excitedly that even shocks Erizora next to her, let alone the Lamias.
Tephalia giggles. “Yes, it certainly does. So special, that I never expected someone of his caliber to actually still be a virgin at his age.”
““He is?!”” the two of them exclaim, but Tephalia continues without mentioning his virginity any further.
“And I certainly didn’t expect his temporary slaves would rush here the way they did when they sensed something was wrong, even going so far as to attack one of a higher standing for him.”
“R-Right … sorry again about that,” Erizora says while scratching her head.
“You two really took a liking to Jinma in such a short time, did you?”
Ren and Erizora blush a little while looking down. “We … really want to spend all the time we could to get to know each other,” the former says while her tail wags ecstatically.
“Well, I hope some good news will reach us soon. For our Centaurs to take this long even with their speeds, Jinma must’ve moved to quite a distant location. If that isn’t bad enough, he even took the tanto with him. If his condition somehow worsens—”
“He has to be all right!” Ren exclaims, shocking the other girls. “Master did so much to keep his urges at bay, right up to then, even when he thought you three were deceiving him! I admire his consideration for us, but honestly, he should’ve said something to me sooner so all of this would be avoided! If I knew he was such an amazing male, then I would’ve happily …” Ren trails off as images of what would happen between them run through her mind. She turns red in the face. “E-Even with my inexperience, I would’ve h-happily~”
Suddenly, a hole appears in the middle of the room that makes everyone jump. Stepping out of that hole and into the room …
Just as I step into Ms. Tephalia’s room, I’m suddenly tackled to the floor. Though I’m not hurt thanks to my ridiculously high DEF, I’m still registering the shock before realizing Ren’s currently on top of me, wrapping her arms around my neck and nuzzling into my chest.
“You’re okay! You’re really okay!”
“R-Ren! Calm down!”
Despite Ren’s efforts, Erizora manages to pull her off of me.
“What are you doing?! Put me down!”
“Easy! I’m happy as you are, but Master might still be under the curse’s influence!”
Ren was flailing in Erizora’s hold until she heard that.
“Yeesh, calm down. I got over my violent, near uncontrollable sexual urges a while ago.”
<“Mine might be jumping up again! Sweet Titty Almighty, look at the size of those things!”> Nyra exclaims in my head, but since no one else can hear her, I ignore it.
“Y-You got over it? How did you do it?” Ms. Tephalia asks.
“I used Nyra’s magic that summons monsters to my advantage and basically took out as much as I could until I wore myself out.”
“Using the violent energy for sex into killing monsters that were summoned! Of course! It was simple enough that even I could do it! As expected of Master!” Erizora exclaims proudly while Ren’s still under her arm.
“… Wait, ‘Nyra?’” Ms. Tephalia asks.
“Right, I should explain that, but first, did I hurt any of you while I had you bound earlier?”
“O-Oh, no, I wasn’t hurt at all,” Ms. Tephalia answers while waving her hand. I catch it and take a closer inspection to see rub burns around her wrist like one would have after they were tied with rope.
“You also got tackled by Erizora earlier, too. Let me just get everyone recovered for a moment.”
“What?” she asks.
At my command, the room is then filled with a warming light from the floor. I make sure that every mark of injury on the girls as well as any sign of soreness and muscle fatigue were gone, with more focus to Ms. Tephalia as she took the most damage out of everyone. I kept track of everyone’s HP bars above their heads with my ‘Size Up.’
Once I know everyone’s fully recovered, I release the spell and look at Ms. Tephalia’s wrist again.
“… All right, I did it. How’s everyone feeling?” I ask.
“M-Much better, actually,” she says. The other girls also give their voices of approval as notice screens appear in front of me.
[You have now reached ‘Holy Magic’ LV 4!
[You have achieved the ‘Blessmancer’ title!
[You have now reached ‘Heal’ LV 4!]
I had to hold myself back from letting out a dry chuckle. Not bad for my first try.
<“As if you weren’t stupidly powerful already,”> Nyra quips.
“I didn’t know you could use Holy Magic,” Ms. Tephalia says.
I didn’t either until an hour ago. I couldn’t say that much to her or everyone would freak out. Ms. Umeiyon actually helped me learn how to do it while healing my fatigued body from all the physical activity before we parted ways. I started with something small and unnoticeable, a cut on my palm I made with Nyra before closing it up with ‘Heal.’ I only got a small scar from that experiment until I got notices of learning both ‘Holy Magic’ and ‘Heal’ at LV 1.
From this, I know now that if I have the capacity and know how it works, I could make those leaps of level ups instantly. How and why this is possible, I’ve yet to know, maybe my ‘Natural-Born Brawler’ title that old drunkard was worried about last night has something to do with it. I’m honestly too emotionally exhausted to be surprised or worry about it anymore after making that theory.
Ms. Umeiyon left a lot for me to think about after our encounter. I’m just glad she’s giving me time to think things over; hence, why she isn't here with me at this moment.
Once I confirmed everyone was healed, I reach into my pocket and put something in Ms. Tephalia’s palm before closing her hand. I then take a few steps back and lower myself into dogeza before her. “Ms. Tephalia, please forgive me for the pain and trouble I caused you and your attendants. The slaves’ actions are also part of my responsibility, so please do not fault them.”
“W-What?! No! It’s me who should be—”
“Please let me finish,” I say with a hand up while my head is still deeply bowed to her. “While I know I’m not in a good position right now, I have an important request I must ask of you. Along with the damages I brought to this room and some of your city, the remainder of what I gave you goes to this request.”
“W-What in the world?! Th-This is …?!”
““Three white gold coins?!”” Ashe and Salelia exclaim at once. I assume they’re peering into Ms. Tephalia’s hand right now.
“W-What could it be that you want to request for this much?” Ms. Tephalia asks.
“Please allow me to keep this weapon, ‘The Cursed Misfortune Tanto of Nyra.’”
“After getting a better handle of wielding the tanto that I named ‘Nyra,’ I was able to withstand the curse’s side-effects, and call me crazy, but I’m also able to communicate with the being who goes by the same name in the weapon.”
“We had records of the previously possessed saying they heard a voice in their head. I see, so her name was Nyra,” I heard Ms. Tephalia mutter.
“We talked, and she said she wanted to come with me. I understand the curse has brought unwanted grief around these parts for quite a while, and honestly, I don’t think sealing it away again while upping the traps will really solve the issue. I’m able to wield Nyra with little problems, and I don’t think the side-effects will burden me as much as they did the first time. I also made a Weapon’s Bond with Nyra, so even if I lose her or someone picks her up, I can always call her right back to me before things quickly get out of hand.”
“… What are you planning to do with such a fearsome weapon?”
“Nothing much, really. I just want to up my chances of living in this world.”
“I know I might seem … unstable, but if I could, I want to avoid battles. I understand you and your predecessors have been guarding her for quite some time, but if I could ask you to trust me—”
“Okay, you can keep her.”
“That easily?!” I exclaim while jolting my head up.
“I didn’t understand why this task was forced on us to begin with. Frankly, I thought that even if we sealed her away and she doesn’t get wielded, this city is still influenced by her misfortune somehow, and I just wanted to get rid of her. She’s more troublesome just being looked after than its worth.”
<“Well, fuck you too, lady!”> Nyra refutes, despite knowing no one could hear her.
“I’d hesitate if it were anyone else, but not only have you displayed heroism last night, you’ve also shown great willpower and self-control to not submit yourself to the curse’s side-effects so easily. Along with this generous donation you gave me that wasn’t really needed, I think I can entrust Nyra to you.”
“Thank you very much, Ms. Tephalia—”
“There is one thing I want to ask, though, about my ‘offer’ earlier …”
“R-Right, uh, I’m not ready to settle down yet, as well as becoming a father that follows after marriage—”
“That’s fine! Frankly, even with the circumstances, I realized later that it might’ve been extreme. I want to properly acknowledge you as a hero to Dondegarm and throw a festivity as an honor for last night’s victory. If you’re willing to stay a few nights for us to gather ourselves and prepare … we could get to know each other properly along the way.”
“While I admit that sounds great, I have a prior engagement with someone else that’s needed to be taken into account. May I confirm that with them first?”
“Of course. Will you be heading out now?”
“Yes,” I say as I stand up. I gestured Ren and Erizora behind me to do the same. “There are many things I must get done today while I’m here.”
“I understand. If you end up staying the night in Dondegarm, you’re welcome to spend it in my manor.”
“No, no, I’ve imposed on you enough with my abrupt arrival already. I’ll find an inn or someplace to crash.”
“Very well, then. Do let me know what decision you’ll come to when you figure out your situation.”
“And Jinma?” Ms. Tephalia asks as she slithers over to me.
Suddenly, a pair of lips is pressed on my cheek.
<“Oooh yeaaaaaah!”> Nyra cheers in my head.
“Thanks again for your valiant efforts~.”
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Hello and welcome. You may call me Orange Rain, and I looooove orange soda.
I not only like to read novels of many kinds, but I also like to write them. The stories published here will be in webnovel.com as well, so if you can, I'd appreciate it if you could support me on both platforms. I also like to read any professional critiques people may have on my works in order for me to become a better writer.
Thank you for your time, and I hope you'll enjoy what I have in store.