Author: Demon Lord D (D魔王)
Editor: None – *sniffle*
Chapter 18: Subtle Victory
‘Nightmare’ was a pure black stallion, temperamental, hard to control, but his strength in comparison to the ‘Dawn Mist’ that the earl’s son was riding, was basically equal. The earl’s son had chosen hurdles, naturally he was planning to take advantage of ‘Dawn Mist’s’ tameness, and win with equestrian skills. Plus hurdles were more dangerous than racing on flat grounds, a single mistake, may cause great injury or death, and being in full armor becomes a safety measure. From this, it seems that this ‘rich kid’ was pretty canny.
The earl’s son was in exceptionally good condition today, in the first lap within 4 miles, ‘Dawn Mist’s’ pace was quick and agile when jumping over the first hurdle, and her master’s focus was in front, not having the time to spare to check his opponent’s performance. But once the ear’s son was certain of his advantage, he planned to look back, that was when he realized ‘Nightmare’ was only half a horse length behind, and in the moment that he lost his concentration, it seemed like his opponent was about to gain speed.
The earl’s son increased his own speed a little nervously, regarding how his opponent was sticking so close to him like a burr, it seemed that he would be passed by if he was even the slightest bit distracted. In the fifth lap, both horses were starting to sweat heavily, their nostrils flaring with heavy breathing.
‘Dawn Mist’s’ endurance was not as great as ‘Nightmares’, plus her rider’s armor was causing her to tire faster, her speed was starting to decrease. A moment later, ‘Nightmare’ took the lead.
Luckily the goal was right in front, the earl’s son lost his patience, fiercely kicking his horse’s flank, ‘Dawn Mist’ reared in shock from the pain, but when she landed she didn’t want to continue, rather she tossed her body, throwing the earl’s son to the ground heavily. At that moment ‘Nightmare’ had already passed the past hurdle.
“ ‘Dawn Mist’ is a very sensitive lady, you have to be more gentle, or she’ll rebel.” The knight jumped off his horse, coming over the calm the enraged white horse. Then looking at the earl’s son covered in mud(1), he offered his hand, “I hope you are not injured. Honestly, if you didn’t have that armor, you would have had a chance to win.”
Although the knight spoke with respect, but to the earl’s son, he still sounded very sarcastic. His face paled even more, the knight thought he might faint on the spot or start crying, but he struggled up by himself, climbed back on the horse without a word, and started towards the audience stands.
The knight grinned, saying as he stroked ‘Nightmare’s’ mane, “Let’s go, to get our prize.”
“As promised, the horse is yours, viscount.” The earl’s son nodded to the elf, “An excellent victory.”
The siren cheered running towards the clearing.
The knight returned ‘Nightmare’s’ reins to its owner, he returned to the elf’s side.
The earl’s son took the reins walked a few paces away, then he turned his horse around suddenly, saying to the elf.
“Viscount, your knight… are you willing to transfer him over? Treatment and such will naturally not be a problem, any other additional clauses can be discussed as well.”
“Sorry, he wasn’t hired,” the elf’s ears stood up clearly, he was silent for a while before replying, “not for sale.”
The knight exaggeratedly bowed taking the elf’s hand, pulling it to his lips where he placed a light kiss.
The earl’s son frown deepened when he saw this.
“A sworn knight, that’s rare these days,” his tone was full of dissatisfaction, “but I still want to give you an advice, don’t be too indulgent on your servants. To allow a peasant to imitate a nobleman’s mannerism. That’s too –”
The elf interrupted his tirade simply, “According to the kiss of oath, he has full rights to do so.”
“Ki…” the earl’s son’s eyes widened again.
“Very sorry, I take back what I said.” For some reason, after that short moment of shock, his hostility was visibly reduced by a large amount.
“Good afternoon, viscount. – For my rudeness, please accept my apologies again.”
“Did he… suddenly turn polite?” The elf watched the retreating back of the earl’s son quizzically.
“Because… you created a very deep misunderstanding.” The knight seemed to be trying very hard to hold back his laughter, “from now on it’s better if you didn’t tell people about the kiss of oath.”
“I want to ask just to make sure, the kiss of oath in the Legendary Era, what does it generally mean?”
“Even though it’s a master and servant relationship, it’s one of equality,” the elf reply was unhesitant, “so the knight has no need to obey the master and servant formality, nor will he be punished for not doing so.”
“I thought that was the case.”
“Actually in this time, it’s enough just to make an equal response to the oath, that would have the same meaning.” The knight chose his words with a little amusement, “As for the kiss of oath, ahem, it is more common with female masters, it means that they will allow for a more… intimate relationship.”
“…Ah,” the elf froze for a moment before reacting, his face clearing flushing a deep red colour, “sorry, I didn’t mean it like that.”(2)
“I know,” looking at the elf’s expression, the knight finally couldn’t resist laughing, “Now you know why he was so respectful. Just he words about transferring, you could request a duel with him.”
“Cain,” the elf raised a hand to press against his forehead, “if something like that ever happens again, please at least… warn me first.”
“Sorry, because I didn’t know how to break it to you, so I didn’t say anything.” The knight shrugged, “But you don’t have to worry too much, there are as many stars in the sky as there are back alley rumors in Elvira, even if it were to be spread around no one will think it’s real.”
“That sure is pleasing to hear.” The elf said helplessly.
“If you really feel troubled,” the knight drew his sword halfway out of the sheath, and then returned it with a smacking sound, “then allow me to protect your honor with my sword, my lord.”
“I think that’s called murder(3), not protecting my honor.”
“It’s almost the same thing,” the knight replied with a straight face, “I feel that I can solve the problem in the market the same way.”
“… Let’s just go take a look at the uninjured grown horses.” The elf sighed.
“About that,” the knight suddenly thought of something, and said with a bit of regret, “When I was still a paladin, I would come here every weekend to do some part time jobs. I actually watched both ‘Dawn Mist’ and ‘Nightmare’ grow up. – If only the bet included them both.”
“Even if it did include them, you can’t really use Shelly to bet.” The elf sighed a second time.
“Have a little faith in your knight,” the knight grinned, reaching his hand out to the elf, “let’s go, if Shelly learns fast enough, maybe we can have a race on flat grounds before sunset.”
“A race? You? And him?”
“I will lose to him without any evidence.”(4) The knight lifted an eyebrow, “nothing can encourage a new rider like victory.”
“Even though not leaving any evidence is a little suspicious in itself, but that seems to be an accurate theory.”
“As for the likes of Neely, he needs to be thoroughly shocked, let him see the difference in skill clearly, before he could improve.” The knight revealed a devilish smile.
“How much do you actually hate those in the royal knights…”
“I’m helping Hazlett Duncan ‘teach’ his subordinates, he should thank me.”
Shelly’s riding skills seemed to improve in leaps and bounds, very soon he was dissatisfied with the slow pace, and started directing his horse to run around the field. The knight tried to stop him several times, but realized that he wasn’t about to fall off, and decided not to interfere anymore.
“Don’t run too fast, if you stay on top for too long, you’ll feel it tomorrow.”
“No way,” the siren smirked, “climbing the mast every day, I’ve gotten used to it early on. Anyways Afternoon Tea’s run is very smooth.”
“ ‘Dawn Mist’, ‘Nightmare’, ‘Afternoon Tea’.” The siren nodded, “It sounds very fitting, right Afternoon Tea?”
The small hazel horse tossed its head and neighed happily.
- Again with the mud! XD This time I would actually sit on the sidelines and point at him while laughing if he actually landed in a pile of ****.
- Poor Ellen, Cain finally told him lol. It’s ok, sooner or later your kiss of oath will have the same meaning as it does in this current age. *smirks lecherously* Ahem… my inner fujoushi is showing…. Excuse me 😛
- 殺人滅囗 – silence someone by killing them. For some strange reason, my mind translated this phrase in every language that I knew (Japanese, a little Greek, a little Latin and one or two phrases in Korean…in which this one happens to be one of them…) ….except for English…. (It took me a full 5 min to decide on ‘murder’).
- He meant without any evidence of him losing on purpose I think? The author just wrote without any evidence, which isn’t very clear lol but I guess we all just assume? Maybe it’s cause I’m translating that I’m thinking twice about it XD. Ignore my rambling.
I’m not sure if I should facepalm or just shake my head at the typical Shelly naming style (food seems to be first, second and last thing on his mind).
Cain, I don’t think mass murder is the solution to your problem. XD