Ratoka quietly looked down at the girl sleeping in front of him.
Her black hair was scattered on top of the white bedsheets. Her icy gaze and those red eyes resembling the setting sun, he couldn’t see right now. Her smooth white skin, was losing its luster.
Even though it’s already been a month since she’s returned from Fort Jugfena, Eliza has been doing nothing other than sleeping this whole time.
The next night, right after Ratoka learned about Eliza’s condition from the soldier that returned from Fort Jugfena, he snuck out again, to Eliza’s room. According to what the soldier had said, Eliza was always stuck in this state. Although she wasn’t injured, it seems that a guy named Kamil had died at Fort Jugfena, which may have caused an injury to her heart instead.
The fact that Eliza spends most of her time sleeping, Bellway had told him frankly that day. Since he hadn’t heard the full story from the soldier, he figured that Bellway probably found out that he met up with the soldiers and probably didn’t mind too much.
Eliza also wakes up from time to time. She would open her eyes, and get up, but wouldn’t move. What’s more, she wouldn’t react to anyone voice, and she wouldn’t even walk. She won’t even make idle chat with anyone. Nor does she seem to react to pain.
Even though she’s still alive, Ratoka felt like Eliza might as well have been a living corpse. She doesn’t show any emotions, she doesn’t talk, nor does she respond to anything.
Maybe, it was her mind that had died, not her body.
And right now, Ratoka just kept looking at Eliza for quite a long while.
Ratoka was holding a silver knife in his right hand. Right now, there’s no one by Eliza’s side. And, Eliza can’t possibly resist in her current state.
His brain still felt numb. He also felt a strange sense of something resembling elation.
Spending time in the barracks, and spending more time in the mansion again, he’s learned many things in this time.
That nobles are not all evil. That the young girl named Eliza, was properly carrying the burden of her father’s crimes, as well as her own sins.
That Eliza was trying to allow him to live.
Her way of life, resolution, beliefs, even knowing all these, there was still a reason that Ratoka had a knife in his hand.
The fact that Igor and the others from the army had died, he blamed Eliza.
The reason that they had to deploy to Fort Jugfena, was because Eliza had decided to accept the refugees. Calvin had said that Eliza was the one to aggressively push for Kaldia accepting the refugees.
Even if she’s not as arrogant as the nobles he’s heard about, she still didn’t care enough for the lives under her, and as a result her soldiers died.
He can’t forgive her due to his loneliness caused by the soldiers’ deaths, and he has nobody else to blame other than Eliza.
Ratoka encouraged the hatred building up within him, and slowly raised his hand holding the knife as well.
If he kills her, this time for sure he’ll probably die as well.
There’s nobody here that would protect him.
He’s scared of dying. But, the words he had spat at Eliza before weren’t mere bravado.
He was shaking. His heartbeat was getting faster.
Right now, inside Ratoka, a variety of emotions and memories were furiously flying about and changing places with each other.
His hand holding the knife in the air was trembling. Even though he had come here without hesitation, he couldn’t figure out why he couldn’t bring down his weapon.
His mother’s face, the rock incident at Cyril village, the dark feelings he had from Igor and the other soldiers’ deaths, the things he learned at the mansion, everything was jumbled together in his mind.
His trembling right hand with the knife, he gripped with his also trembling left hand.
Even if he’s confused, it’s fine. All he has to do is make his hand obey, and swing down like he wants to.
As long as he does that, she’ll probably die very quickly.
– But, even after a long time, he still didn’t bring down the knife. His hands were only trembling.
He forgot to even breathe, nor could he do anything with his knife, as he watched Eliza continue to sleep, his vision began to get blurry from tears.
He can’t keep this state forever, Ratoka thought.
Then, he finally started gasping for breath, and remembered to breathe. He couldn’t say anything, all he could do was take deep breaths of fresh air.
Then, at that moment, he suddenly recalled Elise’s gentle smile. It was such a sudden bright flash, that it felt like he could really see her before him, as an illusion.
Suddenly, Ratoka collapsed on the floor, like a puppet whose strings had suddenly been cut.
Clang, the knife fell on the floor with a light sound.
His heart is pounding so hard…… it even feels like it’s hurting his ears. Even though he’s not feeling painful or sad, for some reason he couldn’t stop the tears from coming out of him.
Having enough hatred to lead to a murderous intent, Ratoka no longer possessed that.
In his frustration Ratoka tried to punch the floor, then he reached his hand out to Eliza. He grasped the cloth of her high quality nightgown, and shook her.
“Wake up, you…… bastard! You, even though you haven’t done anything for the villagers…………!!”
Pitter patter, Ratoka’s tears were falling onto Eliza’s cheeks. There was no expression on her face, it looked almost like a doll’s, a fake toy of some sort.
“Wake up, wake up!!! If you keep sleeping, I, can’t even bring myself to hit you……!!”
Even shouting at her with all his emotions, and shaking her as hard as he could, Ratoka got no response. Ratoka didn’t get anything he wanted, all he could do was continue crying and whining.
At his powerlessness and emptiness, he lost even the energy to keep shaking Eliza. He collapsed on her bed, and simply kept crying for as long as his voice held out.
All his invisible anxiety, all his emotions that he wasn’t able to organize, his stress, his loneliness, his resentment, everything had reached its limit, he vented all his anger and frustration towards Eliza all at once.
Ratoka, after all, was still a child that wasn’t even ten years old yet.
What’s more, since his mother had gone insane, he didn’t have a proper upbringing, and his emotional development had gotten distorted.
Even though he’s older than Eliza, he’s much more of a child than she is.
He just kept venting all his mixed feelings by crying, although for how long it lasted, Ratoka didn’t know.
But, after he finished crying, he fell asleep on Eliza’s bed, just like a baby.
Eliza, in her foggy state of consciousness, after the crying stopped, reached her hand out to him.