Real or Illusion (2)
After those words, the memories ended.
A strange silence appeared between us. I watched how Louise’s expression changed from astonishment to rage, sadness, and betrayal. Finally, she put on a bitter smile.
“I can’t believe it…”
“Well, you saw it. The assassins were clearly aiming towards all of you. I’m sure you have your methods to confirm if they were truly sent by Alan or not.”
“… Not need, I believe you.” Louise shook her head sadly. “It’s just that I never thought that cousin Alan could do something like that. To think that our family has given him our unconditional support and he repays us this way.”
“… What do you want to do now?” I asked.
Louise fell silent after hearing my question.
After a few seconds, she finally took a decision.
“I need to tell father. He needs to know what kind of man Alan is.”
“I’m sorry, but I think it’s not a good idea.” I smiled wryly and shook my head. “How are you going to explain the assassins’ deaths?”
Louise was startled. She then looked at me and let out an apologetic sigh. “… I forgot about that.”
Louise was a smart girl, so she instantly understood my words. If she tells her father about the assassins, then she would be forced to reveal many other things.
How the assassins died? How did she learn about their origin? Why Claire and Lena don’t know anything?
Furthermore, in the current situation, we can’t use the excuse that my ‘master’ killed the assassins. After all, the Transcendent (beyond twelfth layer) beside eldest brother did not detect a powerhouse near me. Thus, besides the possibility that my ‘master’ is so strong than a normal Transcendent can’t detect him, the only other possibility is that, in fact, it wasn’t my ‘master’ who killed the assassins.
Thus, even if Louise doesn’t reveal that I killed the assassins, when someone asks Lena or Claire about what happened, the truth will be revealed.
Louise looked at me and grabbed my hand. “Claus, thank you for protecting us before and for showing me the truth. Don’t worry, I’ll not speak about it to anyone.”
My lips curved slightly up. I stared right into Louise’s green eyes and chuckled. “Okay. However, I think a deserve a reward.”
“… What do you want?” Louise asked with a slight blush.
“This.” Without giving Louise time to react, I stole her lips.
Louise opened her eyes wide for an instant, but in the next second, she closed her eyes and accepted my kiss wholeheartedly.
When our lips finally separated, she looked away and blushed.
“… D-Don’t get any strange idea. Just now was an exception… This will not happen again.”
I chuckled. As I thought, Louise has the potential to be a tsundere.
Hearing my laugh, Louise shot me a displeased look and walked away. I followed after her while keeping a smile.
Meanwhile, I used my consciousness to plant a small seed inside her mind.
This seed is completely harmless, and will not affect Louise in any way. However, it has a very useful function.
With this seed in her mind, if Louise thinks about revealing my secrets then the seed will cause her mild confusion, making her forget briefly about the idea.
After all, even if I want to trust her, after living for so long I learned that even the most loyal people can betray you if there is a good enough reason.
… There is simply no need to risk it.
Unbeknownst to the thoughts in my mind, Louise returned with the girls. I followed a bit behind her.
However, to the surprise of the girls, the doors blocking our path had suddenly opened.
Lena tilted her head doubtfully. “Why did the door open suddenly? We did not do anything…”
I forced a smile. Actually, I already knew the reason. “Forget about it. Let’s instead continue advancing.” I said.
“But are you not curious brother?” Lena furrowed her brows. “The door opened without reason… Could it be that we resolved the riddle unintentionally?”
“Let me see…” Louise thought about Lena’s words and looked at the door. “It says that to open the door, two hearts must be connected… Two hearts must be connected… Two hearts must b–”
Suddenly, Louise opened her eyes wide.
She then looked at me as though to confirm her thoughts.
I shrugged helplessly and smiled. Seeing that, Louise’s face turned completely red.
“T-Thinking about it, Claus is right. I-I think it’s better if w-we continue.”
“Hm? Did you discover something, cousin?” Lena looked at Louise curiously.
Louise turned even redder than before. “N-Nothing, Claire. Let’s go.”
“Mumumumu…” Lena’s expression turned suspicious. She looked at Louise as though she wanted to see through her thoughts.
At that moment, someone else spoke.
“So it was what happened!” Claire suddenly exclaimed before looking at Louise and me with a teasing smile. “I see, two hearts connected…”
“Did you discover something!?” Lena asked Claire excitedly.
“I’m sorry Lena, you are too young to know about it…” Claire feigned a mature expression and giggled.
“Hey! Our age is the same! Wait a moment, what are you hiding from me!?”
“Nothing nothing.” Claire giggled condescendingly.
I’m sorry, Lena. Big brother can’t help you this time.
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