Chapter 58. Tea time

 

***

 

On the night of Count Garland’s assassination, Shizuru was visiting the 4th Corps along with Mary and Elisabeth. The reason for his visit to the fourth Corps with the girls was simple. Half of it was to pay tribute to Ludmila, who would have fulfilled part of her long-cherished wish by the time she left. Half was to find out what she was going to do. 

 

***

 

“Come on, don’t let it get cold.” 

 

“Thank you!”

 

In the tea room at the 4th Corps base, Eliza smiled as she took a sip of the tea that Cheshire has served. Immediately afterwards, her face broke into a smile.

 

 “Wow… it’s so delicious!” 

 

“I’m glad you like it. Have some scones, too, if you want.”

 

“Thank you!”

 

Cheshire handed over a plate of scones with a wry smile. Strawberry jam poured into the plate soon after Eliza received it. Maybe it was more than the scones themselves. 

 

“Mmmm! It’s so sweet!”

 

“You really have a sweet tooth, don’t you Eliza? Be careful or you’ll spill it.”

 

“Oh, my God! I’ve just bought this skirt!”

 

Eliza hurriedly picked up the jam that dropped down her skirt with her palm and licked it with the tip of her tongue. When she had finished, she spoke in a harsh tone.

 

(*T/L: multiple personalities conversation below*)

 

“How many times do I have to tell you not to do this because you’ll get fat, you silly Eliza? It’s not just your body, is it?”

 

“Hmm. I’m sorry, I don’t gain weight! That’s how I am!”

 

“You eat three times as much as a normal person. If you give me any more trouble, I’ll kill you.”

 

 

“Hmm. I don’t care what anyone says, I’m not going to give up on eating sweets! If you get in my way, you’re the one I’ll kill!”

 

Two people, or rather one person, were arguing with a hand mirror held in her hand, which she pulled out of her pocket

 

While patting Cheshire’s head and biting on the scones, Shizuru looked at her with a wry smile.

 

“Oh dear. Eliza and Beth are such good friends, always so lively.”

 

“Haha …… I don’t think lively and friendly necessarily go hand in hand.”

 

Cheshire tilted her head at Shizuru’s words. “Why do you think they are so friendly when they fight with themselves like that?”

 

It’s probably true that the more you fight, the more you love.

 

“Eliza and Beth are, after all, two personalities in the same body. I think they notice each other’s shortcomings and things they don’t like more than ordinary sisters or family members. I guess it’s inevitable to quarrel.”

 

“Yes, …… but it’s still nice to be sisters ……”

 

Cheshire muttered, smiled softly, and stroked Alice in her arms. Her fingertips patting the worn-out doll were as gentle as ever. 

 

“Hey, Shizuru? I wish Alice had a younger brother or sister.” 

 

“…Oh, that sounds good. That would make things more lively.” 

 

He smiled softly and patted Alice on the head just like he had done with Cheshire. It might look like a casual gesture and conversation, but it was a dangerous act that could cause her to go insane if he made a mistake in dealing with it. 

 

Deep in her heart, Cheshire knew that her daughter was probably long dead. But she wouldn’t admit it. She couldn’t admit it. She didn’t want to admit it. She couldn’t bear to lose the memory of her daughter, who once lived on as her flesh and blood.

 

Therefore, she distorted her memory and treated the doll that Richelieu gave her as her daughter, barely keeping her mind and emotions at peace. But in her heart she knew the truth, and the wound in her heart could be easily opened with the slightest provocation.

 

And in order to close the wound again, someone had to be killed. She had to eat the flesh of the person she killed. 

 

A chain reaction from madness to murder and cannibalism. The fact that Cheshire, who had no combat skills whatsoever, had become one of Black Maria’s assassins was a result of her nature.

 

When the shackles holding her mental state together are off, she’s an untouchable cannibal. This is the woman who made Casca never want to take a chance on her again.

 

Shizuru calmly stroked Alice (the doll) without a care in the world. It was possible because he was able to control the feelings of others perfectly.

 

“Hmmm. Alice really has a crush on Shizuru.” 

 

Cheshire happily spoke as she looked at the doll’s face being stroked by Shizuru. Assuming the doll as her daughter, Alice’s good mood was only Cheshire’s imagination.

 

 “…Hey, Shizuru? If you are willing to be Alice’s father….”

 

She gently placed her hand on Shizuru’s thigh and whispered a suggestion. But she couldn’t finish her sentence.

 

It was abruptly interrupted by a rumbling metallic sound that echoed nearby.

 

“Well. You’re still doing nothing but being a jerk, Carmilla.”

 

“Oh, …… again, …… again, …… once again, I’ve been interrupted.”

 

The scythe blade was approaching from behind, to strike right at Shizuru’s neck. But a single-handed curved sword stopped the blade just short of the edge.

 

In the middle of the argument, Eliza bent her navel and retreated to the back of the room, where Beth, her second personality, took hold of the body.

 

Carmilla, whose blade was stopped, turned her cavernous eyes towards Beth.

 

Beth…why are you here…this time I’ll chop your head off… and we can meet in the underworld!”

 

 

“……. Worst, you’re the worst. You’re so creepy it’s almost funny. If you want to talk about love in a muddled manner , go to a theatre and act out a romance. I’m not going to see it.”

 

After having spat out a mocking remark, Beth raised her sickle and leaped towards Carmilla .

 

Carmilla took a few steps back, sending her whole body out of balance. 

 

“Hmm…You…?”

 

And just as she was trying to pull herself up, Mary’s leg kicked the back of Camilla’s head. 

 

“…because my mother told me not to kill her.” 

 

Mary looked down at Carmilla, who had fallen unconscious and was about to pull out a knife. It was right after that, Oboro suddenly emerged from nowhere.

 

 “…………” 

 

Oboro bowed slightly to Beth and Cheshire as soon as she appeared, perhaps saying thank you for stopping Carmilla from doing what she did.

 

 “Oh, my God… I’m sorry, Shizuru. Are you hurt…?” 

 

“…I was surprised. It was  so sudden … But it’s all right, Cheshire. By the way, didn’t you say something to me earlier?”

 

 “Oh… no, it’s okay. We’ll have to talk another time.”

 

Cheshire looked at Shizuru, who stood close by, with a mixture of embarrassment and regret, and shook her head slowly.

 

It was no longer a good time to talk about anything complicated.

 

It was not the kind of thing she wanted to do in public, especially if she was asking someone to be the father of her daughter.

 

Shizuru didn’t pursue the matter any further, but just said , “I see,” and withdrew.

 

…… She was the one who said another time, but she thought he should stick around a bit. For a moment, that’s what Cheshire thought.

 

“People can’t get along anymore …… Oboro-chan, I’m sorry to bother you so soon after you got back, but can you take care of Carmilla?”

 

“…………”

 

Oboro nodded her head. She then turned on her heels quickly and carried the unconscious Carmilla out.

 

At her back, Shizuru called out to her.

 

“Oh, Oboro, I’m sorry. What happened to Ludmila? She already went home, didn’t she?”

 

“…..”

 

Oboro stopped, and for some reason she seemed to hesitate.

 

Did something happen?

 

She walked up to Shizuru and whispered in his ear. Shizuru’s eyes widened slightly when he heard her words.

 

“In her room….is she depressed?”

 

***

 

Notes

N/A

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