Thanks a lot Kuroneko_chan for the kofi~ (3/3 done)
Ivan stared at Izek’s indifferent figure, feeling a sense of unfamiliarity, and soon muttered aloud, “Oh my God, do you happen to…”
“Anyway, from what I saw, it is unfair to suspect only the temple, as magic stones are sold in the black market too. The servant may have used a magic stone on purpose to make us doubt them. Go find enemies of Marquis Furiana or Frey…”
Izek stopped walking and looked back, tiredness evident on his face. There were dark shadows beneath his eyes. Ivan gulped, his mouth drying up because there was nothing more dangerous than a sleepless monster.
“Was that why?”
“That’s why you’ve been trying to find the servant for 79 hours. Was that why?”
Silence fell. Ivan, who was arguing out of nowhere, and Izek, who stopped talking, just stared at each other silently for a long time.
“The opposite of what I think.”
“What do you think?”
“I think you’re annoyed because you’re suspicious of your wife. You, what if you found the criminal, and he has something to do with your wife’s family or your wife?”
Izek just walked back without a reply. Finally, the narrow streets ended and an open square with mosaic decorations greeted them. Yes, that was what it was. Ivan only realized the source of the unsettling feeling that he had sensed all this time. That b*stard wasn’t always searching the city to arrest the criminal in the first place.
If he was caught by Izek, and if the person who sent him was a noble of Elendale, he might be lucky to save his life. But if he was related to the temple or to the Romagna’s side… it would be hard to find a trace.
“What if your wife…”
“I don’t care.”
“I don’t care.”
It didn’t matter. He wasn’t saying that he didn’t doubt his wife at all. It just really didn’t matter.
Even if she was involved, she was told to do so at the instruction of her family. It didn’t matter if she had or didn’t have anything to do with it. Even if it was possible to completely remove the only evidence related to this… but how was that possible? Ivan felt an unfamiliar wave swirling through his head. Of course, he didn’t think Rudbeckia was the one to do it, but her family was something different, and he felt that Izek was acting like a completely different person around Rudbeckia these days.
It wasn’t anyone, but Freya, who almost died.
And yet, he was his wife, the woman he hated so much.
“Why are you so……”
“Damn it, I don’t know either. Stop talking.”
I don’t know. I don’t know either.
Izek kept looking out from the corner of his eye. Paladins waiting on one side of the square slowly approached them trying to erase the afterimage on the street.
“What again? Stop talking…”
“Actually, there’s something we were actually hiding from you.”
“What is it?”
“After you took Freya and went in, that b*stard Lorenzo…”
What about Lorenzo?
A strange nerve-wracking feeling made Izek turn to Ivan. And then–
A trainee ran towards them in a hurry. He couldn’t just ignore him because it looked very urgent.
“Lord Izek, earlier, P-Princess Ellenia’s message arrived…”
“Ellen? What happened?”
The two knights waited patiently while Andymion caught his breath. Finally, Ivan, whose fuse burnt out, was about to explode, but Andymion shouted loudly and woefully, “My Lady is missing!”
Chomp, chomp, chomp, chomp.
I opened my eyes again as an unidentified noise tickled my ears. The smell of damp soil and the smell of unknown blood wafted into my nose.
Turning my heavy head to the left, I was stunned by the sight that entered this grim and slowly clear view.
A giant bird glanced back at me, raising its upper body.
No, it wasn’t even a bird, but its half-folded wings, including the face, and the two front feet, looked exactly like those of birds, but the lower half of its body, including the hind legs, were shaped like another animal.
There was even a long line with a clear leopard pattern attached to the part that was supposed to be its tail.
Probably the tail.
It looked strange, half-eagle and half-leopard. Also, what was it eating? The monster, who looked just like a Griffin, stared at me for a moment, its cool green eyes felt somewhat solemn, and then, it calmly focused on eating again.
Apparently, it was eating a dead horse.
I closed my eyes for a moment and put up a silent tribute to the poor horse. I think I lost consciousness after Pop hugged me, but where did Popo go? Why was Griffin, a ferocious monster, watching me?
Don’t tell me this was Popo’s real self.
Popo seemed to prefer human meat to horse meat.
When I looked around, I noticed I was in a cave. The icicles hanging from the roof like jewels felt unnecessarily artistic. As I turned to the right, I saw an entrance not too far away.
“Purung,” Griffin, who saw me trying to get up, stomped one front foot and stared back at me.
There was a moment of silence.
While I was thinking about what to say, the monster, Griffin or whatever, bit into something with its giant beak, appearing very threatening and came close to me.
Then, it dropped something on my lap.
It was none other than the thigh of a torn horse.
A scream almost leaked out, but I suppressed it. Why was it giving this to me…
“Po, po, po, po, po, po, po!”
I looked back hastily at the sound of a welcome ringing at the entrance.
Popo, where have you been?
My Popo leaped this way with something wrapped in giant leaves in its arms. When Popo saw me, it stopped on the spot. Popo turned to Griffin, probably talking to it, while I wondered what was going on.
A strange thought crossed my mind for a moment.
It may have been purely my illusion, but Popo was staring at Griffin with a hint of reproach. And the Griffin made a bizarre sound as if it were snorting.
It was not long before Popo picked up the horse’s leg, which was randomly placed on my lap, and threw it at Griffin.
Gryffin, who was hit for giving me food, complained to Popo, “Puru…”
……I wish I could understand what they’re saying. Don’t tell me you two are fighting here.
“There there…” I whispered carefully, and both of them looked back at me, as if waiting for me to talk. It was a situation where other people would think their lives were in danger, but strangely, I felt no fear.
“Don’t fight…” If anyone saw me, they’d probably say I was out of my mind.
Whether it understood me or not, Griffin, who turned its head first, began to focus on the meal again.
And Popo gently put down what it was holding in front of me, waddling with its short legs.
I hesitated, my eyes falling on the dark blue fruits in the large leaf plate.
Popo had already revealed his fearsome teeth in the shape of a crescent. Close to a smile.
“Are these… blueberries?”
“You want me to eat them?”
I see. You picked blueberries for me. I can’t imagine how tough it must have been to collecting blueberries with that appearance, but…
It’ll be disappointed if I don’t eat it even though it brought those for me.
At that thought, I picked up the round berries and put them in my mouth. They didn’t taste bad, a bit bitter, sweet and sour.
Before I knew it, Griffin stopped slaughtering horse meat and sat still staring at me with its legs folded.
I thought it needed dessert, so I picked out a few blueberries and shook my hand. It was a strange situation. I sat with Popo and Griffin and finished half the blueberries alone, but unlike usual, there was no problem in eating.
The sweet taste just made me feel good.
Come to think of it, my sickness seemed to have subsided a lot. What did Popo do? Or… Wait, didn’t I get a nosebleed before fainting?
“I-Is there something on my face?”
It was useless to think about my face, but I couldn’t help it when I imagined how bad the nosebleed made me look.
Popo and Griffin exchanged glances for a moment, and then shook their heads at the same time.
To be exact, Popo rocked its body from side to side and Griffin shook its head.
“Po, po, po, po.”
Popo flapped its arms quickly. At a closer look, it was a familiar move. Like someone washing their face.
“Did I wash my face?”
“Did you wash my face?”
“I see. Thank you.”
At that moment–
Griffin, who was about to pitch in, suddenly raised its body, and Popo also stood up. Popo’s teeth stopped flashing.
T/N: let’s take a moment to appreciate Popo–
POPO BEST BOI T_T