Chapter 60 - A Different World
“How can someone like him be a paladin?”
Amelia was still upset. She wondered if she should have just broken his leg. But Ludwig calmed her down, “Not all paladins follow the way of the Lord.”
“Ah,” she said. She stopped messing with her hair.
“Well, there are lots of retainers like him,” she muttered sadly. “This world is crooked.” Then she looked at Ludwig and said, with a surprising change of mood, “Ludwig, let’s be happy.”
“What? Yes,” he replied. Amelia smiled at him. ‘It was such a good idea to save him from this wicked den!’
Kais and Harel lived together in a guarded room. It was nice and big, which was one of the reasons that the other survivors didn’t like them. ‘But even then, how could they just sit back and watch a child be beaten?’ Amelia couldn’t understand it at all. She teared up just watching Kais act as if this was all normal.
“Are you stupid? Why did you get beaten up like that?”
“Why did you just let him beat you? You should’ve fought back! You’re so stupid!”
Two emotionless eyes gazed back at Amelia. Kais wasn’t stupid. He knew that people like the paladins enjoyed eliciting a response from their victims. The fastest way for it to end was to endure the pain.
“Are you okay?” Amelia touched his busted lip, but Kais pushed her hand away. “It looks like it hurts,” she said, concerned.
Tears welled up in her huge eyes, and this made Kais feel uncomfortable. She was acting tough earlier, but now she looked like she was about to cry in front of him.
“I’m not moving,” Amelia said, holding Kais’s face with both her hands and examining his injuries. “Your beautiful face is a mess!”
“I’m looking forward to seeing you in ten years! How could he do this to your face?”
As Amelia said a few silent curses in her head. a ray of white light exploded from her fingers. The soft, warm light made Kais’s pain disappear where it touched him. All his injuries were in the front. He had experienced it a few times, but it still surprised him whenever he saw it.
Amelia was nonchalant, “I’m glad I can use divine powers. I can heal you then.”
“…Are you stupid?”
“Nope, I’m a genius,” Amelia grinned.
Kais couldn’t look away from her smile. He felt that weird feeling again—a ticklish sensation in his body that gradually opened up his closed heart. He denied it and looked away. He touched his own healed skin, which felt unfamiliar and a bit raw.
It was fine for him to get hit. It was fine when his injuries hurt and swelled. He was used to it. That was the unkind world he lived in, and the only world he knew. In his world, everyone ostracized and hurt him. But Amelia had invaded him with her kindness.
And he couldn’t forgive himself… for wanting to lean on that kindness. He knew what kind of world he lived in: one in which kindness and tenderness didn’t exist anywhere. Kais growled like a young animal in pain.
“I don’t believe you,” he said gruffly.
“I said I don’t believe you.”
“Alright,” nodded Amelia. She didn’t seem hurt by his words. In fact, she appeared to be quite calm.
“…Aren’t you mad?”
“Why would I be mad?” Amelia tilted her head, puzzled. “You have the right not to believe me.”
She wasn’t wrong, but he couldn’t understand her. Why was she so kind to him? Because he was useful? ‘That’s not it.’ He hadn’t proved his usefulness.
“Why are you here all of a sudden?” he asked.
She used to visit every day. Once she stopped, he realized how different they were. She could visit him whenever she wanted, but he didn’t have the same privilege. He had no idea if he would ever see her again. He didn’t know if she stopped visiting because she didn’t need him anymore, or she had simply forgotten about him.
Because he was useless. Because he lost.
“Were you upset that I didn’t visit?”
Having her face so close to his gave Kais an unfamiliar feeling, and he frowned without thinking. He hadn’t realized it before, but Amelia was pretty. Her eyes were the first thing people noticed. She looked like she had flowers blooming within her ruby-red eyes.
“Don’t be so mad. I was busy.”
“I’m not mad.”
“Huh, really?” Amelia smiled at him teasingly. Kais felt another emotion, which made him frown again.
Amelia touched his cheek, in the area where he had been injured earlier, “You can choose to believe me or not. But if you believe me,”—her red eyes glowed—“You won’t regret it.”
Kais’s eyes wavered, and his heart did as well.
“Well?” Amelia smiled confidently. She was tempting him.
Kais made a face, “You’re weird.”
Amelia burst out laughing. It was the first time Kais had seen her so happy. And for some reason, he couldn’t take his eyes off of her for a while.
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