Arc 5 – Chapter 13, “Peaceful Diner”

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All rights belong to Tappei Nagatsuki, the original author of the Re:Zero series. This is an English translation of the free web novel which is available at:

http://ncode.syosetu.com/N2267BE/216

This is not a professional translation. Some mistakes, both grammatical and logical, are inevitable. Also, be advised that translators have a predisposition for personal preference and the names and terminology may differ at times from what was used in the anime or is used in the fandom at large. Think of these documents as an extremely
detailed “summary” (even though they basically include everything).

  • Credit to Discount Anon or u/Nanashi-tan.

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The Water Plumage Pavilion’s rustic courtyard, paved in gravel, was full of Japanese hospitality. Although expecting an extravagant pond would be too much, the bamboo-like plants on the sides of the stone road were a nice touch.

Subaru: “Even so, Wilhelm-san didn’t join us.”

Subaru sat in a corridor facing the courtyard, picking at the gravel with his toes.

He thought of the white-haired old man had who had indifferently declined Subaru’s invitation with an apologetic expression. What was Wilhelm up to?

Alone in his room, he would certainly feel bored until dinnertime.

Subaru: “That said, he doesn’t seem like the kind of person who’d be concerned with how others spend their time.”

Julius: “Saying it like that makes it sound like we’re spying, even though we were invited here.”

Subaru: “It’s not like I’m here because I wanted to be… even though I am here…”

Subaru replied to Julius with sarcasm, who sat next to him in the hallway with his legs crossed gracefully. Julius nodded with a smile, as if to say “Truly”. However, the man sitting on the other side of Subaru didn’t want to admit it as frankly.

Ferris: “Oh, please. Hah, do you think Ferri-chan’s is here because he wanted to see it? Subaru-kyun just dragged me here and he was just so annyoying that I didn’t want to protest.”

Subaru: “Well, I’m sorry I guess. You should be here in case anything bad happens. Although, it seems that isn’t going to be necessary.”

Subaru squinted at Ferris, who was shaking his cat ears in agitation, then looked past him to the fast-paced battle that was taking place in the courtyard.

Frankly, the battle moved so quickly that Subaru’s eyes could barely keep up. Even so, he could plainly assert,

Subaru: “Really, Reinhardt is a damn monster.”

Julius: “Although it’s hard to deny, I don’t like using such a word to describe a friend.”

Ferris: “It would be hard enough to deny it under nyormal circumstances.”

—The sight that was unfolding before them affirmed their conclusions.

In the courtyard paved with gravel, a fierce match was being staged between a roaring blond teenager and the red-haired hero defending against him.

The challenger, Garfiel, burned through an endless flow of motivation as he struck at Reinhardt from every possible angle. However, whether using claws, fangs, legs, elbows, or knees, each of his attacks were seen through and evaded with ease.

Not to mention,

Subaru: “That guy, is he really just standing there without moving?”

Julius: “It was the original condition, after all. Reinhardt would never violate it. Nevertheless, failing to force him to do so is probably humiliating for Garfiel.”

Garfiel kept launching attacks at Reinhardt from different directions, trying to take those opportunities to expose an Achilles heel. But no matter how much he tried, Garfiel wasn’t going to find a weakness that didn’t exist. Not only that, Reinhardt was dodging without much effort.

Reinhardt had been standing in the same place since the start of this rash challenge, having never conceded an inch.

As Garfiel rushed at him repeatedly, Reinhardt’s two feet remained fixed in place.

—At first, when Garfiel visited Reinhardt’s room to challenge him, Subaru had summed it up as a reckless move.

Thinking back, that Reinhardt even agreed to Garfiel’s challenge was unexpected.

Frankly, the match was solely a product of Garfiel’s desire. Accepting the challenge wouldn’t have provided Reinhardt with any benefit. If you consider the difference of strength between the two then Reinhardt presumably wouldn’t have a childish sense of masculinity to flaunt.

If you consider the complicated relationship between Reinhardt, the royal knights, and his political opponents, then fighting Garfiel is in some respects an unnecessary danger. Even if he’d believed that no one had set up any tricks or traps, accepting the challenge was still unnecessary.

Considering this, the match was unlikely to ever happen and Subaru had certainly considered dismissing the idea entirely.

However, from the bottom of his heart, Subaru wanted to witness its fulfillment.

The one who took the responsibility of serving as the fighting power of Emilia’s faction was, without any doubt, Garfiel Tinzel. However, outside conditions could often influence the outcome of a conflict, so achieving victory solely through battle was plainly impossible. Furthermore, Garfiel’s flaws weren’t few in number, either.

Emilia’s faction had gained much fame throughout the past year and much attention was directed toward Garfiel.

Because everyone within Emilia’s faction recognized and praised his strength, Garfiel himself was quite arrogant. He had always been able to live up to those expectations with results and achievements.

However, this one-sided consideration of Garfiel also posed a troubling fact. Garfiel had yet to face enough opponents as strong as him since leaving Sanctuary.

The only person who had fought him on equal footing was the homicidal demon Elsa, during the battle in Roswaal’s old mansion, and it had ended in Garfiel’s victory. Since then, he hadn’t experienced any hard-fought battles that would have compelled him to show off his full strength.

Although Garfiel had indeed once lost to Subaru, Otto, and Ram, the conditions of that victory could be entirely attributed to their dirty tricks.

In terms of a proper, clean battle, Garfiel Tinzel was a man who had never experienced defeat since birth.

—Therefore, even knowing that it was cruel, Subaru longed for a battle between Reinhardt and Garfiel to happen.

To continue without losses, and to remain unaware of his limits. That wasn’t an impossible path.

However, if he remained ignorant of his own limits and merely relied on the luck of continuously facing weaker opponents, then Garfiel would never be certain of exactly where his own strength lay.

Reinhardt van Astrea, the hero whom Subaru had only seen in action once. Subaru chose to trust in his power.

Subaru: “I trusted his power… but I didn’t think the difference would be this great.”

The situation had proceeded in the exact direction that Subaru had hoped it would. However, he wasn’t as surprised as he was astonished, to the point where overreactions would have been superfluous.

Having brought an excited Garfiel to Reinhardt’s room, Subaru made the blunt request and Reinhardt readily consented to it. Subaru had been so surprised he’d almost fallen over.

Afterward, in response to Garfiel’s suggestion of going out of the city to avoid casualties, Reinhardt had responded with a smile, “The yard is spacious enough, although we should mention to the manager that we won’t be damaging his land.”

Reinhardt probably hadn’t intended for his words to carry any malice but they served as more than enough provocation for Garfiel.

Garfiel had accepted Reinhardt’s proposal, exuding an aura of anger so intense that Subaru, who was standing beside Garfiel at the time, barely retained his composure when he felt his rage all but stab into Reinhardt.

They had then proceeded down towards the hotel courtyard where a few rules were set. Weapons were not allowed, nor were dangerous blessings. Wounding the other party was also prohibited.

During that time, Subaru had called Ferris in case of any injuries. Subaru also invited Julius and Wilhelm as commentators on the battle itself. Unfortunately, Wilhelm had declined, so it ended up being just Julius and Ferris who watched the battle with him. On that note, Otto still had yet to return.

Subaru: “By the way, I didn’t mention this to the women or Mimi’s brothers.”

Julius: “I think that’s wise. If Anastasia-sama learned of this then she would no doubt turn it into a performance. If it reaches Hetaro or Tivey, then Mimi would surely be upset.”

Julius agreed with Subaru as they surveyed the courtyard. Of course, when there was such an exciting battle happening, people would inevitably become excited.

A handful of spectators gathering was something that Garfiel surely had considered from the very beginning of the match. Rather than regret a poor performance for being unable to go all out, he wanted the fight to be taken somewhere where real skill was all that mattered.

The hotel courtyard was spacious, and the scenery could be appreciated, but if it were to serve as the setting for a fierce battle then it wasn’t spacious enough. And Reinhardt had also raised the condition of “no damage to the environment”.

The setting was meant to push Garfiel to either be considerate or to regret being overtaken by anger, as a boy naturally would.

What would come of this?

Subaru: “Hey, Julius, can I ask you one question?”

Julius: “You can ask me more than one if you like but whether or not I’ll answer is another story.”

Subaru: “Don’t say such ambiguous things. This is why I hate you.”

Subaru dropped his face onto one hand, and began speaking in a serious tone.

Subaru: “In your opinion, how is Garfiel?”

Julius: “—He’s strong. According to the rumors, he is the shield guarding Emilia-sama. It is a well deserved reputation. Although, knowing of his association with you, my expectations were psychologically lowered.”

Subaru: “I’m going to beat you up.”

Julius: “He is strong. His talent is certainly real. In terms of combat alone, I don’t know whether or not I could beat him. And he has plenty of room for growth.”

Julius’s powerful assertion revealed that he was excited to see that possibility and that the potential sleeping within Garfiel was quite genuine.

He also seemed to embrace his envious admiration of Garfiel’s talent. This was no surprise. Julius was also a man of battle.

Ferris: “Buutt, even if there is a bright future awaiting him, it’s sad that right nyow he’s just being toyed with.”

Ferris spoke a cruel truth.

However, no one could say nothing to deny it. Everyone could see that. Garfiel himself could see it more clearly than anyone else.

Perhaps Garfiel would one day walk amongst the strongest. Perhaps he’d be the strongest.

But, right now, facing off against the strongest man in the world, what he was going through would surely best be described as being toyed with.

Garfiel: “——tch.”

Reinhardt: “That’s a shame. Too hasty.”

The Sword Saint reaches out forward, catching Garfiel’s arm. With a giant swing, he throws him mercilessly down to the hard gravel.

A cloud of dust surrounds him, knocking the wind out of Garfiel. He quickly attempts to get back on his feet only to find Reinhardt’s hand on his forehead, leaving Garfiel motionless before drawing a sigh,

Garfiel: “I lost.”

Even being scrutinized by others, he admitted defeat.

The ability to make that admission most likely indicated that Garfiel was still maintaining his sense of self-esteem, even if barely.

Subaru hoped that would serve as some small comfort to him, at the very least.

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— Garfiel didn’t appear for dinner that night.

Anastasia: “Why’d you go off by yourselves and hide such an interesting thing from us?” Anastasia glared at the men as she voiced her bitter complaints.

Rather than being dressed in her usual white fur, she was wearing a bathrobe, her purple hair dripping with water. Her white skin was silhouetted against the yukata, her childlike charm still evident.

Julius: “I think things are different from the way you’re phrasing it, but I specifically didn’t invite Anastasia-sama since you seemed to be having intimate conversations with the other candidates.”

Julius met her straightforward words with a wry smile and a bow. The men had finished cleaning the courtyard after the contest and had only just returned.

Hearing that remark, a mischievous smile appeared on Anastasia’s lovely face.

Anastasia: “Ahh. My knight seems to be speaking some rather sophisticated sophistry. We can’t connect everything to money, can we? But, my Kararagi spirit, who likes fun and turmoil, is still a little upset.”

Subaru: “The spirit of our strongest shield hurts more, so let’s not bring it up again. Ah, he’ll be fine after a night of hanging his head in sorrow, but until then, please let him recover in peace.”

Following what Anastasia had said, Subaru made this request out of concern for his emotionally troubled honorary little brother. Everyone present nodded in assent. However,

Felt: “Anyway, is that what happened? This merciless knight here doesn’t know how to be nice to opponents and the like. Sorry about that, brother.”

After hearing about the incident, Felt gave Subaru a crooked-toothed laugh as she fiercely pounded Reinhardt’s shoulders, the red-haired knight sitting next to her with a wry smile.

Reinhardt: “Felt-sama, speaking like that will lead to misunderstandings. I didn’t exert any undue pressure in the battle just now, and I myself was at risk several times. Both my body and mind were enriched from that experience.”

Felt: “That’s not at all convincing considering how scared Larkins and the others are of you. Did you really have to freak them out so much when you first met?”

Reinhardt: “No matter who I face, I can not afford to be arrogant. If I become too trusting in my ability, it will result in my failure.”

Faced with Reinhardt’s resolute determination, Felt gave a disinterested sigh.

Although their dialogue reflected the nature of their transition to proper master and subordinate status, Reinhardt’s words were of greater concern to Subaru.

Having witnessed the battles in the courtyard, he saw clearly the root of Garfiel’s concern. In a brief epiphany, he realized that Reinhardt’s words contained no irony or hypocrisy.

Reinhardt was merely saying what he believed to be truth. Although this speech may sound unpleasant, the authenticity of his words seemed to prevent anyone from thinking so.

Perhaps that was his most dangerous ability.

Reinhardt: “Speaking of which, Felt-sama. About that outfit.”

Felt: “What is it, are you complaining? I was taking a bath with others, and everyone changed into this, so I did too. ‘It’s embarrassing, it’s disappointing’, is that what you want to tell me?”

Reinhardt: “Not at all, I just wanted to tell you that it suits you well.”

Felt: “Annoying!”

Those sweet words from the respected, revered, and most powerful knight.

Countless women would be incredibly envious of the beautiful bouquet of words that Felt had swatted away with the expression of frustration. The way she wore her bathrobe also suggested that she was someone who was a little rough around the edges.

—As Anastasia had said earlier, the women were in the bath house while the match outside between Garfiel and Reinhardt had been going on.

For that reason, all of the women attending dinner were in yukatas.

Not only Anastasia and Felt, but also Mimi, Crusch, Emilia, and even Beatrice were all dressed in bathrobes.

Subaru: “Beako, you unexpectedly took a bath…”

Beatrice: “After Subaru left Betty alone in the hotel I was captured by Emilia, in fact. She forced Betty to go, I suppose.”

Unexpectedly wearing a pale blue bathrobe, the cute Beatrice seemed to be having difficulty figuring out how to correctly don the yukata. Strangely, Beatrice’s wet hair retained its usual drill-tailed form. If he yanked on her curly hair then they would probably bounce more crisply than usual.

Subaru: “So, that’s Beako’s testimony, but what’s the truth?”

Emilia: “Hm? Beatrice looked so lonely when she told me that Subaru left her, and since I’d just been invited to go bathing, I took her with me. I thought she looked happy about it, though…”

Beatrice: “T-That’s a lie, in fact! Don’t fabricate the truth, I suppose! Betty or Emilia, who does Subaru believe more, I suppose!”

Subaru: “I’ll take that as your confession.”

Combine Beatrice’s unflattering claim with Emilia’s assertive judgment, Subaru arrived at the natural conclusion.

Seeing Beatrice unwilling to yield, Emilia gave a happy smile. She also wore a bathrobe, her freshly washed silver hair gathered in the back. Subaru quietly delighted in seeing the whiteness of her neck.

Emilia: “Subaru, you’re breathing heavily. Do you have a fever?”

Subaru: “It’s merely the heat of love. Emilia-tan, can I braid your hair?”

Emilia: “Sure, but food will be served soon. Afterwards?”

Emilia pointed toward the table, and Subaru reluctantly retracted the hand that had been stroking her hair. The people around them seemed to be looking at them strangely.

Subaru tilted his head at the person opposite of him, who happened to be Felt.

Subaru: “What’s so weird?”

Felt: “I don’t know too much about you brother, or you, sister, but I still get a sense of distance between you two. This kind of interaction doesn’t have the slightest bit of an erotic atmosphere. Seems your relationship hasn’t changed at all since our last meeting.”

Subaru: “It’s not like erotic flirting happens these days! And there’s no need to bring up what happened in the capital, and my chest hurts so please stop!”

Subaru reacted to Felt in such a manner. Throughout the past year, serving as Emilia’s knight, Subaru’s self-awareness had increased to a sufficient point, and he was aware of the state of the relationship between them as man and woman.

In all honestly, their romantic relationship was probably at a lower point than it had been before Subaru had become her knight.

This was largely in part due to Emilia’s mental age. Emilia’s emotional maturity had yet to grow to a degree where she could accept Subaru’s romantic advances on her. So her getting along with him was nothing too significant.

His love had not faded, but the intent behind his interactions with her had changed. As long as there was no change in Emilia’s emotional awareness of him, their relationship would persist like this, intact.

At the least, Subaru understood that even if he took the first step, nothing would come of it.

Subaru: “Put it this way, this feeling might be something close to what Crusch-san’s relationship is going through.”

Crusch: “My relationship, what?”

Subaru sighed absentmindedly and his hand rubbed against his jaw. Crusch looked over at him, wearing an incredulous expression.

Of course, she’d been bathing with the women, so she was also dressed in a bathrobe. The chest that her former men’s clothing had hidden was emphasized by the thinness of the bathrobe.

Without her inspiring aura, Crusch’s face had been both beautiful and innocent as she’d obeyed Ferris’s guidance while putting on her yukata.

Crusch glanced to the side, as Subaru rubbed his nose with his fingers.

Subaru: “Yeah. Although Ferris is always clinging to Crusch-san, it could be said that they don’t see each other as man and woman, right? And the starting point between you two is only a little bit before us, so maybe we go about treating the people we like the same way.”

Crusch: “Well, it’s a bit embarrassing when you say it like that. Haha. Right, Ferris?”

Ferris: “Ferri-chan is devoted, even if Crusch-sama rejects my heart.”

Crusch: “——”

For a moment, the room was frozen by what Ferris said.

Crusch’s smile became stiff, and Ferris welcomed her response with a smile.

Incidentally, Ferris was dressed in a bathrobe as well, as if he was competing with the girls. Anyway, now wasn’t the time to dwell on that.

Subaru: “I’m so sorry for revealing the secret that I dug up. Alright, I guess it’s time to eat.”

Crusch: “Don’t run away after digging up a bomb like that!”

Subaru tried to redirect the topic toward food, an idea which was immediately rejected by Crusch’s cry.

This was really a problem, and Subaru wasn’t expecting to have to encountered it. Hmm, what do to. He cast an uncertain gaze around.

Wilhelm: “Ferris. Take care to not scare Crusch-sama. Your lively and dangerous side feels more prominent than before.”

Before the silence could become awkward, Wilhelm interjected, and the mood shifted again.

The elderly man was the only man present in a bathrobe. It seemed that he’d been to the baths right after the women had left. Both his posture and yukata played their part in restoring the harmonious atmosphere from the its previous tenseness.

(Ferris is also a man though… uh?)

If he had a sword by his side, his image would have been perfect.

Ferris: “What, why would Wil-jii say that?”

Wilhelm: “A respectful love, a treasured love, a romantic love. Love is often taken for granted. Incurring confusion for the purpose of hiding your feelings is unpleasant for innocent hearts. Should I not speak harshly about this?”

Ferris: “Ha nyah. Don’t say it like that, that’s a bit much.”

Listening to Wilhelm’s heavy sermons, Ferris muttered in a low voice and snuggled up against Crusch’s shoulder.

Ferris: “It’s okay. It was a obviously joke, so don’t be so nyon edge. If Ferri-chan were to really upset Crusch-sama, it’d be a huge problem.”

Crusch: “T-That’s right, isn’t it? Phew, I was a little scared since I was unused to it, but I appear to have misunderstood Ferris’s thoughts.”

Ferris: “—Not at all.”

Crusch sighed in relief, and a fleeting emotion flashed through Ferris’s eyes as he watched her, leaving Subaru feeling unsure.

That complex emotion was something that he could not easily reveal.

During this year, Ferris was the one who had to deal with his master’s amnesia.

During that time, he must have tried his best but still felt anxious and guilty, just like Subaru. Even so, his master, lacking the foundation of her memory, had needed to rely on him, and so he could not show any confusion.

Joshua: “The preparations for dinner have been completed. It will be served, does anyone mind?”

As the conversation came to an end, the timing on behalf of the hotel’s staff was perfect. Joshua, who had been sitting without presence in a corner until then, had a steady flow of food brought up by the manager.

Everyone watched as their meal was arranged on the long table, their gazes colored with wonder. However, Subaru had a different reason to be surprised than everyone else.

Emilia and others were surprised by the variety of dishes, many of which they’d never seen before, while Subaru was surprised by the sight of familiar dishes.

Since there was no sea in this world, it had been nearly impossible to find such a dish, but Subaru immediately fixed his attention on the sashimi dish before him.

Subaru: “This, may I eat it as is?”

Anastasia: “I guess you’re not accustomed to it, since you’d never experience this kind of dish without living close to water. The Water Plumage Pavilion is actually famed for this.”

Sashimi wasn’t the only thing Subaru recognized. There was a variety of Japanese dishes placed together on the table. In the midst of all the confusion, Anastasia began to bring food to her mouth, and Subaru took that as a cue to start.

He immediately went for the fancy sashimi and soy sauce. Emilia and Beatrice, seated beside him, both issued an “ah!”. Concerns about a species of parasite arose as he swallowed, but, taking into account the class of hotel and the host, it was hardly a plausible worry.

Instead, Subaru simply focused on enjoying the tastes.

Subaru: “Delicious! Ah, it’s been so long since I’ve had sashimi!”

Emilia: “I-It’s delicious?”

Subaru: “It’s not even a matter of delicious or not, since this is simply a proper delicacy. It’s probably due to its freshness, but this probably makes the top of my list. If there’s any sushi vinegar and rice here, I could show you guys how proper sushi is made.”

Emilia: “Sorry. I don’t understand what you’re saying. But, I’m glad it’s good.”

Partially listening to Subaru’s train-like speech, Emilia imitated him and dipped the sashimi into the soy sauce. As she tasted it, her amethyst eyes widened as she gripped her hands excitedly, exclaiming, “Mmmm!”.

Looking at the reaction of the master and servant, the others also began to taste the food.

Anastasia, who disappointedly drew away, relaxed her gaze as she watched Subaru and Emilia, muttering to herself “Ahh, it’s hopeless”.

Despite some people having missed the dinner, the participants were able to enjoy themselves amidst their restlessness.

—On this night, with its bright moon, the compassionate and forgiving world allowed for this peace.

 

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