Chapter 99 – Bernardo Arch
A word of warning first.
This chapter is long.
And to correct some misunderstandings, what you saw in the previous chapter was not a castle wall.
As I lightly mentioned in chapter 97, it is an outer wall that protects the city.
It is something like that thing in the anime with the Titans and so on.
Please note that it is quite far from the castle.
It was ten years ago.
When Oswald was still just a child.
Sitting on the cold floor of the dojo where his parents lived, he watched with bated breath as two people faced each other.
“Come on! Let’s see how good you’ve become, Gerald!“
A thin man facing off against… a hulking young man who was standing with his hands in his pockets.
His green hair was carefully tied back, and he was dressed in a kimono.
“It is…. conceited of you to remain as unprepared as ever in the face of me!“
He thrust his fist mercilessly at the young man.
The young man didn’t move a muscle.
“……What do you want, Dad?”
“What the hell?
Gerald’s father, Bernardo, gave up after a single punch.
He inherited a small dojo near the entertainment district and also run a small gambling den.
Little Oswald ran up to him.
“Oh…. Oswald-kun….. I wanted to be looked after by the best woman…”
“Let him be.”
Most of his students were delinquents who have been following Gerald, who had built up a greater legend than his mentor, Bernardo, since he was a young boy.
Sometimes Bernardo tries to regain his dignity by challenging Gerald, but there was no way he can win…..
“Hey Gerald, it’s about time… to go… Oh, Master is down again….”
One of the students walked up to Bernardo with a wry smile.
A childhood friend of Gerald’s, he has always admired the gentle Bernardo.
“Come on, come on, don’t embarrass Oswald. Get up. Didn’t you say you had an appointment with the landlady today?”
“Yes, that’s right. I can’t keep the lady waiting.“
He staggered up and was carried… by a student to the back of the dojo to change his clothes.
“Hey, keep an eye with Lana so dad doesn’t stay too late,” he said.
Oswald followed Bernardo, receiving his father’s usual instructions.
Since Gerald was away at the gambling hall until late at night, Bernardo was supposed to watch Oswald and the children during the day and late at night.
At the usual Japanese-style tavern (1).
A small store in the corner of the entertainment district.
“Lana, please don’t eat my share!”
“Shut up! If it’s on the plate, it’s all Lana’s!“
The owner and the regulars, all of them were used to the childish squabble they heard at dinner.
“Hey, hey, I’ll make more if you need more. Don’t fight, okay?”
The owner of the tavern interceded with a warm smile.
This was another usual scene.
“It’s good that you’re close, but you’re not a first-class gentleman if you don’t smile and be polite in the presence of a lady, are you?”
“…Then what about Lana, who robs bits of my dinner? Isn’t she roughly classified as a goblin?”
“You son of a b*tch!”
Lana jumped up and down onto Oswald, her little body full of energy.
It was a familiar fight.
“Gotcha! How about that! Apologize and I’ll let you off the hook a little!“
“It’s not like you’ll forgive me if I apologize!”
Oswald, who was very tall for his age, is mounted by Lana, who looked like a small animal.
It was a playful but well needed game, since they don’t seem to be getting enough exercise.
“Hey, hey, you’re going to hurt yourself, aren’t you?“
“Ha ha, here we go again.”
The people in the tavern looked on warmly while trying to stop them.
When it was time for Oswald and the others to go to sleep, they headed home to the dojo.
This was their daily routine.
“Oswald, what do you want tomorrow?”
“I think I’ll have…. spaghetti.”
“Oh, we’re like-minded. Lana’s having meat.“
“Do you know what ‘like-minded’ means? We want to eat totally different things…“
“You really are an idiot….”
Oswald, who had expected to be lightly punched again for his righteous argument, for some reason raised his voice in a faux pomposity at Lana’s words of dismay.
“I was in the mood for both spaghetti and meat tomorrow. It’s not every day you get such a perfect fit.“
“You’re going to rob my food again! Why don’t you just ask Grandfather to order them separately!”
“Grandpa Beru’s money will run out!”
The children’s argument brought laughter from the vendors and hawkers on the main street.
It was a rare moment in this part of town, where many couldn’t afford to live in.
“Come on, Beru. Let the kids eat as much as they want to!“
“Come on, I’ll give you a discount! I’ll give you kids a good meal!“
One by one, people who knew Bernardo called out to him.
“Ha-ha-ha. As you can see, both of them are in such good spirits because they have just eaten their fill. So I’ll visit you guys another time. You’ll have to serve us then, won’t you?”
The laughter got louder.
“Hello, Beru-sama….. I need to talk to you about something…”
“Oh, you and your wife are fighting again? Well, then…”
“I’m sorry….. Bernardo-sama…. I’d like to talk to you about our problems too…“
A battered man covered in scratches and a woman who looked like a prostitute spoke to Bernardo timidly.
Bernardo had often taken care of the people in the entertainment district, so he had become a consultant of sorts.
“Of course I don’t mind. But I have to put the children to bed, so one of you will have to wait until tomorrow…”
But a little shadowy figure in the alleyway overheard the conversation and crept up to the cheerful Bernardo.
“Ah! Hey, wait!“
(1) The exact term used here was ‘Izakaya’. Here’s the wiki page- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Izakaya
Also, Lana is referring to herself in third person, which young children do a lot in webnovels because it’s… cute, I guess? I’m not too sure.
Well well well. This is another 5k word chapter. Author-sama… are you on steroids, by any chance?