Many thanks to Magister120 for supporting on Patreon!
As it turns out, Ham, the information broker dwarf, would investigate Alan’s whereabouts for me.
「I heard about it. Give me an hour, no… half of that is enough. I’ll find him immediately. 」
I thought thirty minutes would be pushing the limits but surprisingly Ham got the information in twenty. I have no clue where Ham gets his information, but he probably had prioritized my request.
As I lowered my head to thank him, Ham patted on my shoulder, and said, 「Go resolve it. 」.
「Yeah, got it. Thanks. 」
I nodded firmly, and walked out of the shop while leading Ravi by the hand.
Relying on Ham’s note, we made our way to our destination. The inn where Alan is staying is a cheap inn just at the entrance of the slums. The other lodgers are looking at us cautiously.
The walls have numerous cracks running across them, the pillars were cracked in places, and several roof tiles are missing. To make it worse, the smell of rotting fruit seems to stick to everything. The signboard that has dirt all over it let out a creaking sound every time the wind blew.
Even when I was roaming aimlessly, I didn’t stay in an inn like this……. I couldn’t imagine Alan being in a place like this. It felt like my heart was covered in ice. Honestly speaking, I am indeed scared.
Seeing Alan who is in an even worse situation than the past me……. And bringing Ravi to a place like this……. But, before I even spoke, Ravi who has been staring at my eyes, shook her head.
「I will go too. 」
It’s the first time she ever been so decisive.
Ravi……. She said that she didn’t need my protection. She probably wants to be together.
To make such a small daughter worried, I’m a failure of a father. I need to get a grip. Who cares about Alan? The situation that he’s in right now, I will just have to accept it no matter what. Leaving behind the past and seeing him off is good enough.
「Thanks. Ravi. 」
Alright. Time to go.
I tightly held Ravi’s hand, before opening the door of the cheap inn. Stepping on the creaking floor, I headed towards the counter. Sitting down on the collapsing chair, the old lady stopped staring at the roof to look at us.
「I have business with the customer in room 3. Can I go? 」
As if she could be bothered to reply, she just looked towards the stairs uninterestedly.
「It’s good that his acquaintance is here. I’ve gotten the money for tomorrow but he won’t be able to last anyways. 」
It doesn’t matter what I do. It’s not for Alan’s sake. Whatever my answer is, it’s always been for Ravi’s sake. To let her grow up properly, and to let her have a happy life. I don’t want to be a father whose daughter is ashamed of.
Past comrades. The one who cast that curse on me, the man who made me go through hell. There were certainly times I thought of him as my disciple and was happy at his growth.
And now his life is fading away. That moment. I, the road I’ve chosen for Ravi’s sake――.
「Ravi, I was cursed by this Alan. 」
Ravi’s eyes widened.
「Curse……like mine……? 」
「Yeah, that’s right. There were times when I felt angry, and times I felt sad because of his betrayal. 」
If there’s someone dying in front of me, I might be able to save them. Even if that’s someone that I hate, can I abandon them? I’m sure I will carry the guilt for the rest of my life if I do that. If a situation like that happened to Ravi, I don’t want her to carry it throughout her life.
「Ravi. Back up. 」
I put my hand over Alan.
I tried to cast recovery magic to him, but there wasn’t any effect. Alan’s HP remained at 1. If I don’t do something about the rebounded curse, then recovering his HP would be impossible.
This weakening, it’s most likely because of the rebound curse. But the question is how effective Dispel will be…….
Even so, I will do what I can. I took a deep breath, and chanted the skill.
《Gather the particles of hope, by here I command――Curse Dispel!!!! 》
That moment, the sound of a firework, and particles of light started spilling from my hand. The particles soon became a single streak of light, and reached out to Alan. But, when it reached Alan’s body, it was deflected and dissipated in the air, weakening before disappearing completely.
It failed as I thought huh. Rebounded curses are much tougher to dispel than the originals. ……At this pace, he wouldn’t make it.
An incredible soft voice was heard. Alan can no longer move his body properly, but his eyes looked at me.
Tears started dripping from those eyes.
「You don’t have to say anything. 」
「Daddy……! Do your best. Don’t lose……! 」
Yeah, that’s right, Ravi. As your father, there’s no way I will give up. Against the curse, even the pathetic past……!
「If one dispel skill won’t work then――how about this……! 」
I know it’s a stretch. But it has value to try!
《Gather the particles of hope, by here I command――Curse Dispel!!!! 》
Once again, the particles of light appeared. And on top of that, layering another dispel skill. Using two skills at once!
When the two lights became one, they became a dazzling light that blinded everyone in the room.
Ravi who was behind me, buried her face into me as if escaping from the blinding light.
As the light that was released wrapped around Alan, he began letting out an anguished cry as if being crushed. The curse that had even seeped into his soul, the dispel is probably working on it.
Since he was already very weak, there wasn’t much of a sound. But even so, his sufferings were clearly conveyed.
He shook his head violently multiple times, and his eyes opened wide. Endure it Alan.
「AAAAAA!! AAWWUUUUUUAAAAAAAA!! 」
The dazzling light hit Alan and he shook. Suddenly the bad aura covering the room disappeared, and the pressure holding down my shoulders vanished as well.
I immediately activated recovery magic.
Alan, while unconscious, has regained some color in his face.
「Daddy……! The magic succeeded……!? 」
At Ravi’s relieved voice, I nodded. And I checked Alan’s status just in case.
Name : Alan
Occupation : None
Level : 1
HP : 100
MP : 100
Magic : ―
Skill : ―
His level reverted to 1, and all of his status changed corresponding to that. Even though when he had the curse, his level wasn’t like this.
Is that the price of rebounded curse…….
「Hero-san……How is he……? 」
「The status that he raised up as a hero was lost, and he can’t use any skill anymore. ――But, his life is saved. 」
Could it be, that it was like Alan died and was resurrected? Dispelling the curse, only his soul was spared barely. As a result, he lost all his abilities, remaining only his life, it’s as if he was reborn.
「Then……will he get better? 」
「He was near death’s door so it will take time before he wakes up. But I’m sure he’ll be fine. 」
……Even so. Alan has lost all his abilities. To continue living as the hero, it will be a difficult task. When he wakes up, I will tell the truth to Alan. I felt my emotions are sinking slowly…….
「I’m glad. 」
Ravi sighed with relief with her hands on her chest.
「When daddy heard Hero-san was in danger, you always had a pained face. Now that Hero-san won’t die, daddy won’t have to suffer too……really, I’m glad. 」
「……Thank you, Ravi. 」
Ravi’s smile, and her kind words have already saved me countless times.
There’s no helping it even if I think too much. What will happen to Alan in the future? That’s Alan’s own problem.
「Although I won’t worry for the time being……Alan is still unconscious now. Until he wakes up, it’s better that I cast recovery magic on him every day. 」
「Then……are we staying here? 」
「The hygiene here is a little worrying. Hmm……」
I carried Alan that was still unconscious. His body had thinned considerably, and was light to carry. Without even the muscle power buff, I can easily lift him up.
「――Well then. Shall we go, Ravi. 」
While carrying Alan on my back, I smiled towards Ravi.
「Unn! I will open the door……! 」
And so, we left the inn behind us.