I steeled myself to face a group of goblins and drew the sword I brought from home in case occasions such as this arose.
“I’ll have to fight them…”
It was said that if a child did sword training, that child would have a higher chance of receiving a swordsmanship-type Gift. For that reason, I too studied how to use a sword properly and effectively.
In the end, I didn’t receive such a Gift. However, that didn’t mean all that training was a waste of time. Especially at times like now, it was better to know how to use a sword than not at all.
One goblin made it over the wall and into the village.
Its physique was similar to mine, but unlike me, this one didn’t have a weapon.
Then, I should be able to take it down…!
I yelled like that as I charged toward the goblin.
But before I could reach it, an arrow made of ice flew out of nowhere and hit the goblin’s head.
“It’s been a while, Luke.”
When I turned my head toward the source of that voice, I saw a blue-haired girl standing on top of the wall.
I knew that girl.
I knew her because she was a daughter of the Bazurata family, a family which had close ties to my Albert family since the olden days. To be more specific, she was the daughter of the Bazurata family that I was formerly engaged to.
She had been to our family’s castle a few times, and back then, we would spend the time playing.
She was 3 years older than me, so at least to my younger self, she seemed very mature. She didn’t seem to have grown much since then though.
As for why our marriage was called off, it was because I was no longer the heir of our land. The Gift I received wasn’t deemed enough to hold such a position, so I was disqualified and sent to this wasteland. So instead of me, Raul—who managed to inherit our father’s Gift—was now the heir of the territory as well as Selen’s husband-to-be.
Regardless though, what’s she doing here?
Selen’s ice projectiles hit and killed the next goblins that managed to climb the wall.
In no time at all, those and the rest of the goblins were annihilated.
“Wow, you sure have grown. It has just been two years since we last saw each other, right?”
Casually, as though there was no fight moments before, Selen dropped down from the wall and walked toward us.
“Yeah, I think so too. But more importantly, why are you here?”
“Because I ran away from home.”
After giving a teehee and then cutely sticking her tongue out, Selen said such an outrageous thing. It was so outrageous that I almost fell on my behind.
“I guess it’s more accurate to say I’ve cut ties with my family?”
“Isn’t that worse!? Why are you doing this? Plus, aren’t you engaged to Raul? What about that?”
“That’s been called off.”
Despite my shock, Selen nonchalantly gave me her reason.
“I’d rather die than be married to that man. But I’d rather cut ties with my house than die. Pretty simple, right?”
“You hate it that much…?”
Thinking about it, it might be the norm to dislike arranged marriages.
It might for the sake of our respective territories, but we children of nobles were nevertheless being forced to marry someone we didn’t love.
As for me, I didn’t really feel any opposition toward the arrangement, but then again, it might be because I was being matched with such a charming girl.
“Oh, I think I get it. All this time, I thought you also didn’t mind this kind of marriage… but I should have known it’s much tougher for a woman to be forced into a marriage with someone they didn’t love.”
“Hm? I feel you’ve misunderstood something…? I refuse to be married to Raul… but if it’s with you… I don’t really…”
“What’s that now?”
Selen’s voice became smaller with each word until I couldn’t hear her at all.
“I! I said–”
“Stop right there!”
Millia suddenly shouted and cut in on our conversation.
“I’m here too, you know? Are you going to just leave out of the conversation?”
“A-and you are?”
“I’m Luke-sama’s first villager.”
Selen tilted her head.
“Yes. This is, after all, Luke-sama’s village.”
“Oh! That reminds me. What’s with this place? I was worried for you when I heard you were sent to this wasteland to develop it, but… that watchtower, that wall, that well and that field, can it be that you two alone built them?”
While looking around, Selen wondered out loud.
“Hmm…I think it’s faster if I just show you.”
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