Episode 54 – To the Final Goal (3)
In front of the presence chamber, there were knights instead of soldiers waiting for me.
“You guys are going to try to stop me?”
I talked about some parts of my resume as I did before to the knights.
“Why does that matter? We are the proud knights of the capital, and we are the best of the best!”
They were proud of themselves and cocky, unlike the soldiers.
“Fine, then. Nothing will be more entertaining than crushing that loud pride of yours.”
So I ran to the most confident knight who was closest to me and the window.
But from outside the window, I felt like a rabbit-like thing approaching me step by step. I thought that I saw it wrong, but it was a very familiar-colored bunny.
And the bunny who entered by rolling after the window breaking was surprisingly Jarrod.
“Jarrod? Why did you go through all that to climb up the castle walls?”
It was more surprising to me that we climbed up the wall over the fact that he had come. Was he not a bunny but a sloth?
“Because the castle gates are closed.”
“The gates are wide open, man.”
Jarrod got a little dizzy for a bit, but he stood perfectly tall as the original protagonist of the book. I looked over to the knights who were confused.
“Doesn’t matter. Since I am already here. I will take care of them. You go do your thing.”
I tilted my head from his comment.
“Why? I can fight on my own.”
Why is a weaker guy taking my spot?
“Stop being so shy. You have something more important to do.”
Jarrod must have thought that I was pretending to not feel shy for him helping me. But I didn’t feel the need to explain myself since Arje and Banu were a higher priority.
“Okay. Thanks for coming to help me, Jarrod.”
I just wished that he would work hard. How much would he blame me if he got hurt or died while trying to help me?
“Whatever comes to happen, I have to help my kind out of Rabbit Hole. Also, I know that you won’t do a bad thing.”
I was a little touched by Jarrod’s words. He was actually a cool guy unlike my expectations.
“What are these bunnies saying? Get them!”
The knights tried to stop me and Jarrod, but
“Your opponent is me!”
Jarrod fought off the knights with the strength of a nuclear reaction. Of course, it seemed hard enough for him to leave a scratch on the knights’ armor and he couldn’t even beat one of them. Why in the hell did he mention helping me?
I tossed him the ice dagger.
“I will be getting it back from you, so don’t you dare lose it!”
So I headed over to the presence chamber after I left the knights who were surprised by their shattered weapons from the dagger.
“Welcome, bunny. I guess the knights failed to block you in the end.”
In the chamber was Banu, checking out his rapier, and Arje who was tied to the chair.
“Banu! I mean Pucci! No, should I call you Bacci or Punu for short?”
“Just call me Banu. I want to be called Banu at least by you.”
Banu smiled. It was a smile that I really could not get used to.
“I did not imagine that you would be Pucci. You were childhood friends with Arje.”
Then Banu hid his face with his hands.
“You mean this?”
In an instant, Banu turned into a little kid. His face and height changed.
Arje was making a noise from being shocked, but she couldn’t do anything about the ropes.
“What an evil trick.”
From my comment, Banu laughed like a kid then returned to his original state.
“I had fun with young Arje. I also had the pleasure of wondering how she would grow up to appear.”
Banu touched Arje’s throat.
“So, you were planning to kill the emperor and have Arje as your empress? I’m not surprised.”
I pointed the rapier towards his neck.
“It will all be over after I kill you. Am I right?”
Banu then shook his head as if I was nothing to him.
“First, I would like to see if you are able to stand as my opponent.”
“Why don’t you just start? I think I am worthy.”
I was speechless, but Banu shrugged.
“You cannot be so confident after beating those ordinary mortals.”
His choice of words were a bit off. Mortals?”
Banu whistled, then assassins who were behind the regular poles in the chamber stepped outside.
“Please do not let me down, Aris.”
The assassins approached me, while keeping their silence. Still, there was only one way out.
When I got into position to fight with my rapier, the assassins also followed with their own.
So the assassins and I exchanged moves, and of course they could not be of match to me. But then, something surprising happened.
The assassin that was stabbed by me blurted a sound that was not like that of a human, and he turned into ashes.
I almost let my guard down, but I realized from seeing their sharp teeth that they were no ordinary human beings.
“Are they like monsters from those fairytales?”
It was not too late to solve the mystery after defeating them. I recomposed myself and turned all of them into ashes.
“Wow, how impressive. You are worthy of serving as her guard.”
Banu applauded, even though it was now his turn.
“So there’s no more of those weird things, right?”
“You can say vampires.”
Vampires? Those heirs of devils that infect humans by sucking their blood out? I couldn’t believe that they existed even though this was a novel.
“I heard that folks of the darkness like vampires live in the dark, but you are fine in the sun?”
Were the stories false?
“Please do not think of me as being at the same level as those low grades. I am of a higher class and a nobility.”
Banu introduced him in a cheesy manner.
“So, you want to play house here?”
“Play house? Hmm. I guess you could see it that way. But the playing is over. Now, it will be our world.”
As if it was a fairytale. Well, it was actually a reality within a fairytale, so was he correct?
“Yeah, what a dreadful reason.”
I looked down on his goals, but Banu seemed rather satisfied.
“I have always felt this, but I really favor you. It’s more certain now, Aris.”
Banu pulled out his rapier as he descended down from the throne.
“Arberaj will be my wife, and you will be a vampire and pet who will be cherished by me forever.”
A man who appeared to be a man but was not said that he will make me his pet. Still, I was not afraid of him.
“Unfortunately, that won’t be happening. I will defeat you for sure.”
“That confidence of yours is also another trait I like.”
I got into position.
“Aris Wafers, moving in.”
Banu smirked at my combatting intro.
“Alright, well my real name is Banuroa Fon Puccias. I wish you well.”
So I made the first swish.
“A good move, Aris. But will it be enough to stop my attacks?”
Banu blocked my attack, then made a comeback.
“What kind of style is this?”
I was flustered from a move that I had never seen before, but I managed to block.
“It’s that of the vampiric nobility. Something that a lowly kind like you would not be able to even pretend.”
Can’t copy? Me? The best swordsman in the world?
“When will you start attacking? Isn’t it obvious that I will win if you just keep on blocking?”
Banu thought that I would lose since I was only defending. No, I was observing him. That mirky move of his was definitely hard to follow for a regular person.
“Okay, I will start now.”
Of course, that would be the case for ordinary people.
Banu had to step back from my attack. He was probably more shocked at my new moves.
“How could a mortal like you copy the skills of a vampire nobility?”
I had watched with my eyes while blocking his techniques and had gotten the hang of it. And so I was able to copy all of his moves in attacking and stabbing. And most importantly, I found the weakness in the style and was able to use it against him
“It’s not so complicated! This vampire swordcraft that you were showing off.”
And I was able to push Banu all the way to the podium that Arje was tied to, and he had no place to run.
It was over.
Then Banu looked at me and shouted something like a spell.
Right before I was able to finish him, my body froze stiff. I had just one step to go.
“What is this?”
I looked at my legs. They were solidifying into stone.
“You are the first to ever get this close, Aris.”
Banu made a victory smile even though he could barely catch his breath.
“You cheating bastard! What kind of a douche uses magic in a sword battle?”
I screamed, but Banu just shrugged.
“The winner gets the fame. What’s the point after dying?”
All of my lower body had turned into stone, and it was coming up to my upper half. At this rate, my ears would petrify, too.
“Aris, I give you one last chance. Say that you will become my pet. If you say that you become my bunny, I will lift the curse.”
Banu came all the way to the front of me and insulted me. But I had no plans to follow him. My arms were still free, and this battle was not yet over.
“No way that’s happening!”
I threw my rapier towards Banu. Banu dodged, not catching the rapier, of course.
“Hmph. You think that I am an idiot to go through that burn again?”
But I did not stutter.
“Sorry, but I wasn’t aiming for that handsome face of yours.”
Banu turned back sensing that something was off. My rapier was stuck to Arje’s chair and was burning the ropes.
Banu raised his hands to use magic, but he had forgotten about me.
“You will not get away, even when I turn to stone.”
I held Banu tightly, and Arje gathered white lights into her hands after getting up.
“Let go of me! Let go!”
Banu resisted strongly, throwing away the slimy style he had thus far, but he could not get out of my arms that were now petrified.
“Arberaj, you cannot kill a friend from childhood. You are that soft-hearted kind of a girl.”
Banu tried to convince Arberaj, but
Banu turned to ashes after burning from the impact of magic Arje threw at him.
Arje came up to me crying, after getting the gag out of her mouth.
“Oh no, what to do.”
As Arje panicked, I was a stone up to my neck.
“Well, you could call this a happy ending. Farewell, Arje.”
Still, this meant that I could return. I smiled in my last moment thinking about this.
I got up from the bed as I felt breathless. A bed? When I looked around, I felt that the bedroom around me was unfamiliar.
A grandfather clock. A lamp. Were these things invented then?
“You have awakened.”
And on top of the highly crafted wooden desk, a grandfather rose from his seat as he closed a book.
“Who are you?”
I was taken back by my own voice. It was that of a man. No, not just any man’s voice. It was my original voice. When I checked, I was not bunny Aris but the best swordsman in Europe, Arix.
Was this a dream? Everything?
“Was the adventure fun?”
But the grandpa was talking weirdly.
“An adventure? Am I…”
“You had turned to the bunny swords bunny Aris.”
The grandpa showed me a book. On the cover was written: ‘ Supplementary story: The adventures of the bunny swordswoman Aris”
And inside were all the things that I had spoken, my actions, and all the duels.
“Did I act as it was written in the book?”
“No, your story was recorded into the book.”
I finally realized who the grandpa was.
“You are the writer of the Adventures of Jarrod.”
“Yes. I contemplated for a long time after getting your letter. After aging, my creativity had gotten weak. So, I used the enthusiastic fan that you were. I apologize if I offended you.”
I laid back down on my bed.
“No, it was fun. Really.”
Well, it was a little surprising to turn into a woman, but I went through things that would not have happened in real life and met so many colleagues of all races. One of them was trash, but it was worthwhile.
“So, what about the reward? I believe that you will throw me in something since I made this book for you.”
Yes. Since I had went through all of this, I should at least get something out of it.
“That is true. So, I want to give you two options.”
The grandpa pointed out one of his fingers.
“One is giving you a percentage of the sales when the book is published and the writing fee up front.”
So it was like a partnership. I didn’t know how he would pay me regularly as I traveled across Europe.
“The remaining option is….”
The grandpa took a small break.
“If you want, you can continue your life inside the novel.”
I did not understand him.
“That’s possible? How?”
This question was stupid. I mean, I had already experienced it.
“It’s possible. But this novel has already ended. Which means that if you do decide to go into the novel, then you won’t be able to return here and will have to go back to the grave you came from. What would you like to do?”
Was the grandpa god in disguise? It didn’t matter. I had already made my choice.
Support This Site
If you like what I do please support me on Ko-fi