Act 38: Thoughts, Words and Action
A few days after that, Cordelia went to Oulu Village with Ronnie and the Witch.
There were six students today, and Toto.
Toto always fell asleep quickly, but she remembered things that impressed her. The materials that Cordelia had made for the classes were a bit difficult for Toto to read, but she enjoyed circling words that she liked with a pen.
(Lara’s pencil will be of use to Toto as well when she’s finished with it, but she said that it’ll take a bit longer to complete.)
The prototype that Cordelia had used felt good enough, but Lara’s standards were too high, and she wasn’t quite satisfied. However, she had to respect Lara’s decisions since she had left the task to her. At least it was almost finished.
“Then, we’ll continue from the last lesson and continue with the early days of our kingdom. I would also like to touch on the clothing of those days and their meanings. In those days, it was especially popular to engrave scabbards, and the patterns of those times are still being engraved onto the handles of swords as charms. So, I also want to…”
It happened not long after Cordelia had started her class.
A moment after the door slammed open, Mick flew into the room with heavy footsteps.
“Mick-kun, did you also come to listen?”
Cordelia asked, just in case, even though his face told a different story. I chose my words carefully because he would probably quarrel with me if I asked him what he came here for, but either way, these words don’t mean much to him. He’s sneering as proof.
“What benefits will I get from listening to your class?”
Mick said, then he stood by Toto. He reached out his hand and grabbed Toto’s class materials.
“Toto, you can’t read this well, can you?”
“That’s Toto’s! Give it back!”
“You don’t need it!”
Toto raised her fists at Mick, but it didn’t hurt him much because of the difference in their bodies.
“What? Do you want to give me a shoulder massage?”
He agitated Toto more with his arrogant tone.
Cordelia slowly approached them.
“Toto-chan, you can’t. Violence isn’t good.”
Cordelia stopped Toto first, then she turned towards Mick and held out her hand.
“That’s Toto’s. I’ll give you a new copy if you’re going to attend this class. So, give it back to her.”
Cordelia remained as calm as possible as she told that to Mick without any anger in her voice. She couldn’t say that Mick wasn’t in the wrong. He had taken someone else’s belongings. However, she didn’t think that he hadn’t come there with a purpose, since he had gone out of his way to go there from the back room.
However, Mick clicked his tongue in response to Cordelia.
“No way. It’s rubbish, isn’t it? Rubbish. I don’t want it.”
“Then, you don’t need that either, do you? Why do you have it?”
Cordelia said, as she stared at Mick. He looked as if he was holding in his anger. His face gradually got redder, and he screamed.
“Shut up. Go somewhere else if you just want to play around! Get the hell out of here!”
Mick said as he held the class materials in front of him and vigorously tore the papers. He also threw two pieces of paper into the air, and they fluttered to the ground.
Toto started crying at the same time, as if a dam had been broken.
“Mick-kun. Apologise to Toto.”
“Why do I have to…?”
“I know that you don’t like me, and I don’t mind if you say that my actions are only to satisfy myself. But you can’t put them down as well.”
Cordelia said as she looked at Toto, and then she looked around the class. After that, she looked back at Mick again. Mick-kun probably can tell the mood in the room.
“… Tsk. That’s why you’re annoying!”
He opened the door with a loud bang and flew out.
Immediately after the children’s cries in the classroom, the children in the other room also raised short shouts of surprise. However, the children in the next room shouted a question as soon as they saw Mick dashing off.
“Mick, where are you going~?”
“Sensei, I’ll chase after him too!”
Two children chased after Mick and flew out of the room.
Cordelia had been delayed because she had her eyes glued on the scene, but she immediately ran to the entrance of the classroom where she had collided with the director, who had come because she had heard the commotion. Although they were both surprised, the director smiled and put her hands gently on Cordelia’s shoulder.
“You must have been surprised. I’m sorry. It was a bit choppy, but I heard what had happened.”
“It would put my mind at ease if he stays in the village after dashing out of here, but I’m worried that he will enter the forest, so I’ll go after him. Mick goes into the forest sometimes, even if I tell him he can’t, and he doesn’t come back until he’s hungry. It only happens sometimes, so don’t worry.”
She said as she called out to the Witch, who was outside.
“Green, I’ll leave this place to you. I’ll be going after him.”
“Ok. Be careful.”
Is it true that he only enters the forest sometimes?
The Witch responded without being particularly surprised, “Quickly chase after him.”
However, Cordelia watched their exchanged and couldn’t determine whether it was alright to leave it to the director.
(I may have said too much.)
I hadn’t said anything wrong, but is it okay to leave this to others when I was the cause? However, the Witch saw the director off and smiled at Cordelia.
“It’s fine, Dilly-chan. It’s dangerous if he goes too deep into the forest… but, as the director said, Mick often goes into the forest.”
Still, Cordelia couldn’t agree.
The Witch, who saw how Cordelia was acting, approached her and quietly whispered in her ear.
“You may be worried, but some children are anxious because of the commotion. And the director understands that child very well. It’s okay.”
The Witch placed both hands on Cordelia’s shoulders and turned her around.
“It’s okay, Dilly-chan. Mick knows the forest the best out of all these children. Now, good luck with your class.”
Cordelia had a bad feeling for some reason.
She turned her head to look at Ronnie, but he shook his head because he knew what she wanted to say.
Cordelia saw that he was moving his mouth even though he wasn’t speaking, ‘You can’t go because you’ll be chasing him into the mountains’.
Ronnie was here as 『Ojou-sama’s Escort』, so what he said was reasonable. That was the most important matter to him, and if he were to go against it, then it wouldn’t be from Cordelia’s orders.
(I hope I’m just worrying for no reason.)
She thought, as she returned to the classroom again.
The children were like, “Did Mick go into the forest again?” and, “He’s mischievous, so Sensei always tells him that he can’t enter the forest.”
“But Mick’s been in a bad mood lately.”
“He really has. He always does things that he’s told not to.”
“But I kinda understand why he does those things when he gets told not to.”
“Argh, why would you say that…? Don’t copy him, Lana and Tina.”
The shocked child then urged Cordelia to resume class, “Dilly-chan, it’s about time to start.” Cordelia closed the door while feeling extremely reluctant to.
Then, Cordelia let them take a break and finished the rest of the class.
She had looked outside during the break, but there were still no signs of the director or Mick. It was quiet out, but that had made Cordelia uneasy instead. However, even though she couldn’t calm down, she was able to finish the class without any difficulty, since she had prepared well and because the children were focused on her class.
After she had finished teaching, Cordelia had the children clean the blackboard and quickly left the room.
“Sensei, has Mick returned?”
“Not yet. But they should be back soon.”
The Witch answered Cordelia, who had asked that question straight away, while frowning. Cordelia heard the doors open almost at the same time as she listened to the answer. It was the director and two small shadows. However, Mick wasn’t here.
“Green, has Mick come back yet?”
“No, not yet.”
“I see… I thought we had just missed each other…”
Even though she said that, the director pushed the children’s back and reassured them, “Go help with dinner.”
“I’m going to look for him again. I still have some other places I want to look… Green, I’m sorry, but could you look after the children for a little while longer?”
“Of course, I don’t mind… but I wonder if Mick is lost in the forest. Should I ask the villagers to help?”
“Yes. I don’t want to make a big deal out of this, but it gets dark straight away when the sun starts to set. I’ll go ask the chief.”
The director said, before leaving to search for him right away.
(Monsters rarely appear in that forest, so there’s hardly any danger…)
But wild animals such as stray dogs may show up, and he wouldn’t be able to see his own feet once it gets dark. If that does happen, then there’s a high likelihood that I would get blamed.
(I can’t say that the forest is safe even if monsters don’t show up.)
From the uproar, it might be the prolongation of 『quite often』. However, I haven’t been able to settle down since daytime, and I’m becoming more restless as the sun sets.
(This might be too much of a leap, but I might be here because of something from my previous life; even though I don’t remember.)
I don’t know why I was born into this world with my memory intact. Still, I might be here because my previous life ended, for some reason.
I can’t leave Mick alone, given that something unexpected might have happened.
“Ronnie, we’re going too.”
Cordelia said, and Ronnie answered briefly.
“It’s the forest.”
“That’s why we’re going. It’s dangerous for children.”
“Dilly, you’re also a kid, and I’m worried that you’ll get lost in an unfamiliar forest… Well, we have no choice; but only if you don’t pass me.”
Ronnie accepted Cordelia’s proposal while scratching his head. He compromised because he would still be doing his job if he didn’t leave her side.
However, it was the Witch who was surprised.
“You’d better stop. The return coach will be here soon. I’ll be staying the night, but your family will get worried if you don’t go home, right, Dilly-chan?”
“I’ll make arrangements for my return. But we have to find Mick as soon as possible.”
It will probably be a serious matter if I go home late without contacting home. Then, I’ll also be causing trouble for the poorhouse.
Cordelia tried to write a message. How much do I have to pay to get the coachman to deliver this to my house?
“Ah, Dilly. I’ll write that.”
Ronnie said, as he received the pen from Cordelia and quickly wrote the gist of what was happening.
Cordelia questioned the Witch while waiting for him to finish.
“Sensei, I want to confirm this again. Mick-kun often goes to the forest, doesn’t he?”
“Yes. Monsters don’t show up there, so it’s perfect for exploring. But there are a lot of places with bad footing, so Mick gets scolded a lot for going there. But that’s why he knows the forest just as much as the director… no, he knows the forest better than anyone.”
Then, he won’t be lost. It’s hard for me to think that he got lost since it was already time for him to go home and it’s getting darker outside.
“The coach is nearly here.”
“Okay. Let’s go.”
Cordelia left the poorhouse with Ronnie, who had skilfully folded the letter.
The Witch stopped them, “Wait.”
“If you have to go… if you’re going, then I won’t stop you. There’s a gap in the hedge at the entrance of the village, please go to the forest through there. But… don’t overdo it. It will be a disaster if you two get lost.”
“Yes, I promise. Then, I’ll be off.”
Cordelia responded with a grin.
Cordelia and Ronnie headed to the coach when they left the poorhouse.
“We’re departing now~.”
Ronnie slowly replied to that laid-back voice.
“I want to confirm this, but this coach is ending at the royal capital today?”
“Yeah, it’s alcohol time once this trip finishes. Do you want to drink too, bro?”
“No… I want to ask you a favour. Could you deliver this letter to someone named Hans at this address and say it’s from Ronnie? And, it might not be much, but please use this to buy snacks with your drinks.”
“Is that… alright?”
“Alright, looks like I’ll get to drink good alcohol tonight. So, are you guys not boarding?”
“No. Not this time.”
“Then, I’m off. Bye.”
The carriage left after that exchange. Cordelia and Ronnie turned away from the carriage while listening to the sounds of the wheel turning and headed towards the forest.