Chapter 90 – Things Were Not Going To Be Simple!
We used the boat to return to the pier in the elf fortress.
And then the Minotaur chief, Berdos, jumped from the riverside to where we stood.
There was a loud thud, and the stone materials of the pier shook.
“Joshua is a good builder.
The bridge did not break.”
“W-well, I doubt it would survive many more of those jumps… Uh, let’s go inside then.”
My expression grew tense as we moved through the gate.
As for the elves…it was no surprise.
Once we had moved through the gate, Albert and the other elves had nocked their arrows.
And without exception, they were all pointed in our direction.
In the midst of this, Monica and Fletta stood protectively in front of us, with their arms spread out wide.
“Stop this! Sir Joshua and the others saved us!”
“Your Highness, that has nothing to do with what is happening now.
They have invited into our fortress the villains who robbed us of our homes.”
He continued to aim his arrow at us.
The others were the same.
Their eyes followed our every movement.
The leader of the Minotaurs, who had burned down their homelands and killed their comrades was right in front of them.
So it was a natural reaction.
And so I had to tell them about Kyuby at once.
However, Berdos stepped forward and stood next to me.
“Wait, there is no need for you to fight amongst yourselves.
It is we Minotaurs who did the killing.”
And then Berdos lowered his head.
“You need only cut off my head.
The others were just obeying my orders.
Please let them go.”
Albert seemed shocked by Berdos’s attitude.
And so I told him and the others about Kyuby, and that the Minotaurs had been controlled.
“…That’s what happened.
The reason for it was the war between humans and the Demon King.
And it is the demihumans who are used.
You can understand that, can’t you”
“Such a thing… Now that you mention it, they have been acting oddly.”
Monica was remembering the change that had come over the Minotaurs during the fight earlier.
After a moment, she turned to the other elves.
“…All of you.
We’ve been drawn into a war.
But the fault is not with them… Lower your arrows.”
However, as pained as his expression was, Albert shook his head.
“If that is true…then where are we to direct our anger! Our families were killed! Our homes burned to the ground! Can you not hear the crying of the frightened children behind us!”
As Albert said, the elf children were shaking with terror at the sight of Berdos.
It would be very difficult for them to coexist.
As for Berdos, he only lowered his head and put his fate into our hands.
I had to be the mediator…
“I understand your anger.
But the reality is that these lands are on the border between the human and Demon King territories.
This fight will continue, and both sides will try to use us.”
I paused for a moment and then continued.
“And so we will build our own country.
So that no one will use or attack us.
We will work together.”
“You cannot expect us to work with our enemies.”
But what about us”
“…This Fendel Alliance”
We are a community of demihumans.
Through us, both you and the Minotaurs can rise up and face the humans and the Demon King army.”
However, Albert would not nod in agreement to this.
But then Monica opened her mouth.
“All of you.
We were saved by Sir Joshua.
And we must repay him.
Besides, I fear that…we will need his help again in the future.”
After Monica said this, one of the elves raised their voice.
“Here is a bow! I understand repaying this debt, but to cooperate…!”
“We received much more than bows.
A place to live, and food.
Besides, bows will eventually break.
And what about arrows Can we make them”
The elf then fell silent.
Monica continued to appeal to them.
“We will need the help of Sir Joshua and the others.
And so we must help them in return…in order to prevent another tragedy…”
Monica’s eyes were filled with tears.
And then Albert and the others shed tears as well.
They must all be thinking about the people they lost.
Suddenly, their ordinary, peaceful lives had been destroyed.
Even without tools, they had pleasant and enjoyable lives.
And it was taken away in just one night.
Of course, they would not be able to forgive.
As someone who also had his homeland burned away by the Demon King army, I understood a little of how it felt.
Eventually, Albert wiped away his tears and said to me,
“…Her Highness is the rightful heir of the royal family.
I am only a servant.
And so I will obey…”
Then the others nodded, as if coming to terms with the situation as well.
“All of you…thank you.
But, I am sure it will be difficult for both sides for some time.
You need time and space… Berdos.
Will you and the Minotaurs help us develop the lands to the south”
I asked, and Berdos nodded.
“If you say that you need our help… Our ancestors were also locked away by humans.
If we can stop it from happening again, we will help you.”
“Then it’s decided… Ah.”
Berdos got to his feet and then bowed his head to the elves once again.
The elves looked at him with conflicted expressions.
“I am sorry.
What we did is unforgivable… However, I ask that you allow us to atone, even a little…”
Berdos and the others must have also been living quietly underground.
Even if they were angry towards the humans.
Perhaps they were not originally so aggressive.
After all, they could understand someone else’s pain.
Upon hearing Berdos’s words, Monica slowly extended her hand.
“The meeting between our people was a sad one.
However, perhaps we can take each other’s hands and learn to understand each other…and eventually…”
She then glanced to the side, where Fletta and Moo were holding hands.
Our children may be able to play together one day…”
And so as if making a prayer, Berdos and Monica shook hands.