Dragoon 59: The Protagonist and the Delinquents
While Rudel and Aleist has safely (?) returned to the academy, the jobs they received were not the ones they had planned for. While Rudel aimed to become a dragoon, he was now a White Knight, and it seemed someone had beaten Aleist to his planned Hero title, and he was on the road to become a black knight… on such an unexpected occurrence, the two of them began a search for documents through the academy archives.
The White and Black Knights were fated to fight one another. They had investigated while believing in the goddess’ words, but the results showed a truth adequately betraying them.
“… Oy, flan for brains. These documents say things completely irrelevant to some fated battle.”
Aleist glared at the former goddess from the mountain of books he had piled on his library desk.
“T-that’s strange. But I’ve seen history with these very eyes, so my info is more precise than anything you can find in some book!”
The former goddess asserted she was right, but this time- surrounded by books just like Aleist- Rudel offered a correction.
“There are definitely records of a pair of brothers, White and Black Knights, fighting over various things around the founding of Courtois. But more than that, there are records that they got along fine before that. It says that inheritance rights and the pressure put on them by their surroundings became the cause of their dispute.”
Rudel organized the book’s contents on a piece of paper. He wrote about the knight called the White Knight, and the one called the black Knight.
The White Knight was a knight who carried with him sword and shield gleaming with light. The black knight held a sword in each hand, fighting with a double bladed style. Of course, that was only the fighting style of the White and Black Knights of the time, but as he gathered information, Rudel put down all he could find.
“I-in the end, fate only cares about the results! I know I’m right, so just get to the fighting already and prove it! Ah, but that black knight over there is still in training. How pitiful.”
The goddess grinned as she emphasized the ‘in training’ part of Aleist’s title. Reacting to her words, Aleist slammed one volume against her.
“Shut it, you flan-for-brains former goddess! Now that you’ve been demoted from being a goddess, you’re just a plain incompetent. No, ever since Rudel started supporting you, you’ve done nothing but eat, so you’re even worse than that.”
“W-waaaah. Rudel, he’s making fun of me!”
While the former goddess clung to Rudel in tears, Rudel handed over the cake he had brought along. And patting her on the head, Rudel got back to work.
“You’re in a library, so be quiet both of you. Here, have a cake.”
The former goddess dug into the delicious-looking cake. Seeing her form, Aleist thought.
(This damn granny former goddess is being tamed.)
Aleist also got back to work and looked into this and that, but he had some anxieties working with a class that didn’t exist in the game. Classes came with a general path to follow. If you started out as a magician and learned the sword, you’d become a rune knight, and if a knight took up magic, it would be the same.
If a magician continued down a magician’s path, they would earn the class grand magician. They would carry on the skills of the classes they passed through, but Aleist didn’t even know the traits of this unknown Black Knight class.
According to the documents, he was supposed to hold a sword in each hand and control the powers of darkness, but to Aleist, the hell are the powers of darkness!? Was all he could think. Growing so curious he could no longer hold it, he tried asking the former goddess. But her answer was terrible.
“The one who glows like paaah and goes Pwaaaah! Is the white knight, and the black knights makes the shadows go swuuuuuush, and all these pointy things come up.”
Neither Aleist nor Rudel could understand the former goddess’ words. That’s why they were looking into it on their own.
And what they were coming to understand was the history of Courtois’ founding, but there weren’t ever any White or Black Knights apart from the brothers who fought at the time. Or rather, it felt more like the Kingdom of Courtois wouldn’t recognize them.
The Black Knight who founded the country was one thing, but the Black Knight’s older brother was a White Knight. They had become the classes of royalty, so to speak, and the positions themselves had been deified. There was a bit of a problem in the fact that both Rudel and Aleist were oblivious to that fact, but Rudel’s interest in non-dragoon matters was light, and Aleist couldn’t help but have a tendency to compare the feelings and information he got from playing the game to this world, so you could say there was no helping it.
“The reason it hasn’t spread as a fairy tale is because it’s the sacred founding of the kingdom? No, but in that case, on the contrary, it should be something sell-spread.”
Aleist answered to Rudel’s mutters.
“Did they want to cover up the fact this country was founded as a result of a brotherly feud? In that case, they only had to make the White Knight the bad guy, but if I had to say, the White Knight looks to be more in the right here.”
As the two of then thought, the former goddess who finished her cake explained with a triumphant face.
“Hmm, the black knight was a real brother’s boy, so he purged the hell out of anyone who would write a picture book depicting his big brother as the bad guy! That yandere air, me and my goddess friends seriously did a double take there.”
“H-how terrible.” “You understand what a yandere is, Rudel?”
At their impressions, the former goddess started putting on airs and explaining the era. The two influential noble brothers who had gotten where they were by lifting one another up, and once a warring states period descended upon the continent, their talents did truly bloom.
“The two of them fighting at the vanguard truly was the coolest, I tell you! And after a while, the wars gradually began reaching their ends. Around that point, the brothers’ father was getting well in his years, and he wanted to choose an heir. As a precursor to the event, he came over to my place.”
“And that’s when you made them a White and Black Knight? And it’s after that that they started fighting one another. Doesn’t look like fate’s has anything to do with it.”
Rudel seemed to think there was no such thing as a feuding destiny. In contrast, Aleist held quite a different idea.
(Originally, me and Rudel were supposed to argue quite a bit. I was the protagonist, and Rudel was the stepping stool for such a man. Now you can almost say the opposite is true… could these classes be related to the game’s setting? In that case, you could say me and Rudel were destined to fight, at some point.)
After looking at Rudel’s face, Aleist put his thoughts on a temporary hold. He would surely face Rudel in a tournament to come, but he had no intentions of carrying out a fight to the death. So Aleist thought.
After that, he tried to continue pursuing his leads, but tired from making such a ruckus, the former goddess had fallen asleep on top of the desk. Rudel began putting books back as he spoke to Aleist.
“Let’s call it quits for today, Aleist.”
Aleist was finally beginning to notice the game’s events and this changing situation.
Around the time they had finished research into their own jobs, about a month had passed since they had returned. The conclusion they reached was to cover up the whole White and Black Knight matter.
There was no point in becoming overly conspicuous, and Rudel made a decision that having a job related to the founding of the country may end up twisting his future plans. Rudel wanted to become a dragoon, and Aleist didn’t particularly want to stand out. Before anything to do with winning the war, Aleist had his own survival on his mind.
He wanted to avoid the Black Knight matter getting out, and having him sent off to a dangerous region. He truly wanted to avoid any further irregularities. He thought of nothing more than to fight the last boss and safely achieve victory.
“That aside, Aleist, you said you wanted to learn martial arts, didn’t you?”
As Aleist was lost in thought, Rudel- who had been with him quite often as of late- called out. They were on the road towards the library. They had no more business with it when it came to their jobs, but they planned to use it as normal students.
“I definitely did say it, but I’ll have to refrain from your cowardly fighting techniques. Why do you aim for the eyes so naturally? That’s way too dirty.”
“The one who taught me was a former mercenary. The movements have been drilled firmly into my body, so that alone I can’t do anything about. Anyways, I went and looked for an individual skilled in martial arts that fit your demands. I have them waiting right over there.”
Rudel was well prepared, but Aleist didn’t quite trust him when it came to these sorts of things. It was the Rudel way to cause a problem whenever he tried to do something. His lack of ill intent only made it all the worse.
“… My request was a strong and cool martial art. And not something cowardly, I said I’d prefer something fair and square.”
“Leave it to me! I guarantee they have considerably strong martial arts, and those skilled in them are earnest folk who hate cowardly means. Come out, everyone.”
Saying that, Rudel called out the ones who would be instructing Aleist. They were fellow students, upperclassmen in their final years. Tall in stature, with bodies as if they were wearing an armor of pure muscle. Of fearsome features… the men of the tiger tribe. Their attire were some that brought to mind delinquents of the modern era, and they were a variety Aleist was bad at dealing with.
“We just have to train up this guy, right, Rudel-san? Once we do, I’ll have you fulfill your promise.”
The largest tiger man looked at Aleist before seeking confirmation from Rudel. Unable to swallow down this situation, Aleist could only nervously look around.
“Don’t worry, I’ve obtained Izumi’s acknowledgment. Once you teach Aleist martial arts, I’ll fight you, and if I lose, I promise I’ll become your masters. I swear to honor that promise.”
Hearing Rudel’s words, Aleist latched onto the various strange things that came out.
“I-isn’t that strange!? Why is Rudel becoming your master if he loses!? Isn’t it usually the other way around, and wait, what’s with that promise!?”
The tiger men glared at Aleist and intimidated him.
“You cannot understand Rudel-san’s amazingness!?” “Rudel-san is our messiah, you hear!” “As if… as if someone like you could understand how we feel!”
“Lay off him, this matter is of vital importance to the continued existence of the tiger tribe. Aleist, was it? I won’t tell you to understand. But listen here… if you don’t make our techniques your own, then you’ll die, so prepare yourself you bastard!!!”
And just like that, Aleist was hoisted up and carried off by the tiger tribe men. Rudel saw him off with a smile and a wave of his hand.
“Do your best, Aleist.”
It’s said at that time, Aleist saw the devil in Rudel.