The end of the 10 Years Old arc means we’re 1/3rd of the way through Volume 2. 😀
Meanwhile, if you’re a translator and looking for a cool gang to hang out with, come join us! We’re always on the lookout for Japanese, Korean & Chinese translators. There’s a couple of projects that we’ll love to have you guys on. Genres range from romance, josei, seinen to yaoi/danmei. So come, come.
10 Years Old: Chapter 48 – As a Master and Servant?
Editors: Nahct & Me3 & Wafflez
First published on Ainushi
…… It’s been about a month since I felt that awkward feeling towards Gilles. Since then, Gilles has interacted with me like how he normally would, and with none of that suspicious behavior either. Gently, calmly, and sincerely serving me.
I must have misunderstood it. If I didn’t think like that, I couldn’t stay calm. I’m sure I got it wrong. Gilles can’t possibly be in love with an underaged child.
Rarely do I hesitate to touch Gilles. I wondered if it was alright for me to cling onto him tightly like I usually do or beg him to stroke my head until he agreed.
When I drew closer to him, he greeted me with a soft, calm smile. His smile was the same as before, but that was enough to dispel the stiffness in my body as I lined up beside him.
It was the same unchanging smile, only his height has changed when I stand beside him. I thought the height difference between us would diminish as I grew older, yet Gilles who had grown taller felt like an illusion.
Even the hand that gently caressed me, the voice that called out my name, has changed.
「How may I be of assistance to you, Liz-sama?」
「It’s nothing in particular, but …..」
Gilles asked with a calm expression without pressing any further.
「….. Gilles, why do you remain by my side?」
Casually, I referred to the matter that had been troubling me.
Why does Gilles remain by my side? Even if he says I’m wilful, he doesn’t dislike me. Rather, he pampers and protects me. If I remember correctly, he had declared that he would serve me back then, but I didn’t think he would go to this extent to serve me faithfully.
Wouldn’t people normally hate having to pledge their loyalty to a girl eight years younger than them? Gilles is formerly a noble so he shouldn’t be accustomed to serving anyone. No wait, Cecil-kun did mention that the Sévéne house serves them ….. But let’s be honest, my house and Cecil-kun’s aren’t on very good terms with each other. All the more reason for me to believe that he’s serving me reluctantly.
「….. Can’t you comprehend that it’s because I wish to?」
「I would like to hear a precise reason」
「I see ….. How about, it’s because you saved my life?」
Gilles reciprocated with the most likely answer.
….. Well, I expected that the most. Without blaming him for the attempted assassination, I had silenced him further by holding him back with my own hands before it happened. In a way, I had saved his life.
….. I had expected it was due to a sense of obligation that he remained by my side, and it was a little, how should I put it ….. depressing, like no way! That was just how egotistical I was.
So if the debt is paid off, would Gilles leave me?
「Liz-sama, what I had said earlier was my initial reason. Now, it’s different」
When he noticed how slightly disheartened I was, he gave a soft, wry smile and gently brushed my hair. As he did, Gilles took the opportunity to comb it, untying my hair and letting it flow freely.
….. I had a hunch that this was one of Gilles’ means of currying favor with me. Certainly, I enjoy this the most.
「Whilst attending to you, I came to regard it as my purpose; I want to remain by your side. Ignoring the debt that I owe you, I wish to serve you, Liz-sama」
「Even if you ask me why ….. If I may speak boldly, it’s because I find you fascinating?」
「Shall I get Mother to cure your eyes?」
「Then, let me rephrase myself. It’s because Liz-sama is extremely dangerous」
Flatly declaring it, I was hit by those irritating words.
Why did rephrasing the word ‘fascinating’ became ‘dangerous’? No, it’s the truth though. Compared to ‘fascinating’, which can be a compliment, ‘dangerous’ was the correct term.
「It’s because you’re not very self-aware which, in many ways, makes you dangerous, Liz-sama. It makes me yearn to protect you」
「….. Am I that dangerous?」
「Of course. You were kidnapped and almost killed, zeroed in by a pervert and dueled with him, and you got into a dispute with the son of that hostile Steinbert family and again came out covered in wounds」
When he said that, it hurt deeply. I couldn’t deny any of it, those were certainly dangerous incidents I was involved in. B–But the kidnapping had nothing to do with me, the duel was a matter of course, and to begin with, I was not aware of Cecil-kun’s parentage and the fact was I caused his sorcery to run wild.
Urgh. I lightly groaned while my shoulders began to sag. When I looked up at Gilles, he chuckled and seemed to be laughing enjoyably. It’s not like it was anything shocking and worth scolding him for, but his expression was mixed.
「Well, even that isn’t the precise reason why I’m by your side. Considering I am a mercenary」
「Yes. I’ve always been a selfish man. Much more than you can imagine, Liz-sama」
….. I felt Gilles thought too lowly of himself. Gilles is kind and values his master….. Though the question is whether I am a good master. However, if Gilles were to say that he’ll resign, I would cry from overwhelming shock, or rather I would certainly cry.
「In any case, it is my personal intention to remain by Liz-sama’s side and my desire to protect you. Am I not allowed to do so?」
「….. You won’t leave me?」
「I don’t understand why you would think I’ll leave, I’ll always remain by your side」
「….. Even if I were to get married?」
Gilles didn’t give me an immediate reply as his eyebrows lowered at that. I brushed his confused head gently and said, “there, there”.
I felt unquestionably dissatisfied being treated like a child, but I’m okay with it now. On the contrary, I felt nervous when Gilles treated me like a woman ….. and perplexed. Therefore, I’m glad that I’m a child right now, I can act like a spoilt kid and touch Gilles without hesitation.
「….. Even if you were to be married, I will remain by your side」
As I did as I liked with my palm, Gilles slowly spoke the words. I had a feeling his eyebrows drooped just a little more.
When I blinked my eyes, he was back to his usual smile, so I thought it was just my imagination….. Though somehow, Gilles’s smile seemed sad.
「As long as you desire, forever」
Gilles smoothly combed my hair, displaying a gentle, soothing smile as I kept silent.