Rona who got outside saw Nere’s figure standing under the illumination of the star light, Nere who stood in the middle of the garden gave off a mysterious aura.
「Follow me. 」
After throwing out a short rude reply, Nere started walking into the forest. Rona didn’t ask for her intentions but followed behind quietly.
「Here should be good. 」
Nere muttered to herself before stopping, and turned around and looked at Rona.
They’re already quite a distance away from the house. Although there aren’t many beasts’ presences around the house, it’s different now. Rona felt there were predators around spying on them, albeit weak presences.
「So? What matter do you have? 」
Rona who didn’t have the intentions of hiding his identity asked straightly. The fact that Rona isn’t an average beast, his opponent had probably seen through that long ago. There’s no point for Rona to be pretending now.
「Fumu. It’ll be quick if you understand human speech. 」
「Heeh. You don’t seem surprised. 」
「Sorry but I’m not that unknowing to be surprised at something of this kind. 」
The strange fact that a beast is speaking human language, Nere wasn’t surprised at the slightest but scoffed at it.
「Hnn――. Whatever. 」
On the other hand, Rona didn’t seem like he cared as he returned to the topic.
「So? I will ask again, what do you have with me? 」
With the intonation closer to interrogation than asking, Rona’s pupils that had the same color as his golden fur stared at the sky colored eyes.
「Isn’t it your side that has business with me? 」
Rona reacted at Nere who said it as a matter of fact.
「What are you saying. You’re the one who told me to follow you to this place? Aren’t you misunderstanding something? 」
「Since you looked like you had some opinions with me. I led you here because I didn’t want it to happen in front of master’s eyes. If you don’t have anything to spill, then I shall return now. 」
「Heee. That’s commendable. Should I be thanking for your consideration? 」
「I don’t need it. If you don’t have anything――」
「Of course I have. 」
Saying so, Rona dropped and lowered his stance. Nere continued to logic at Rona who seemed to be about to leap at her at any time.
「If you’re not an instinctual creature, if you have the intelligence, it’s better to speak your intentions than baring your fangs. Attacking someone else without a reason is not what an upstanding person would do. 」
「Even if you ask that from a mere beast. 」
Rona narrowed his eyes, and retorted without giving a second though.
「I’m not asking for the impossible from you. If you wish to fight me, then go ahead and I’ll respond. But a fight without reason is not what I wish. 」
Nere asked again.
「Do you not trust me? Thinking that I’m someone to be disposed? Someone that’s dangerous? 」
Without hiding irritation on his face, Rona had a difficult expression.
「Not really. I can’t judge if you’re someone to be disposed. But, if you’re talking about trust……, I don’t know you well enough to judge. 」
「My master has quite some trust in me, how about that? There’re sure to be some time spent between you and my master? Would you not trust my master’s trust? 」
「Well, that Al had given charge of the house to you for many months. I’m sure there’s some. 」
Uninteresting――, Rona’s expression seemed to have revealed that.
「Two days――no, it’s half a year for Al huh. 」
Rona corrected himself.
「Al doesn’t seem like who he was. I’m sure that you guys are the one who affected him. I’m quite thankful to you guys. Al is able to return to his old self a little. 」
「Then why. Why are you doing the opposite, and eager to fight now? 」
Of course, Nere wouldn’t get it. That’s because Rona wasn’t being logical. It wasn’t as if he could trust Nere as a person or not.
After all, there’s suddenly a woman servant following behind his partner. It wasn’t a pleasant feeling for Rona. That’s my place. Rona’s reason was only that.
Is it the instincts of a beast, the displeasure of losing his place? Or the feeling of being left out. Rona himself couldn’t quite understand it as well. That’s why Rona had chosen the most effective way to get rid of the irritating feeling in him.
It was none other than Rona who made this situation. Nere just accompanied him because she had felt his intentions. While laying as low as his body could go, the irritated tone reverberated in the quiet forest.
「Nope. That’s that, and this is this. 」
But―, the golden beast continued.
「――Isn’t it better that I teach the hierarchy to a newcomer? 」
With that as the trigger, the golden beast strongly kicked against the ground.
Slashes from Rona’s claw came at Nere at a frightening speed. Howeverm, only a few strands of hair were caught as Nere avoided it gracefully. Rona continued reaching out his fangs onto Nere’s legs who dodged the attack before with minimal movement.
Before the fangs reached the thin legs, Rona felt something resisting against his fangs. But Rona’s prided fangs weren’t something that can be stopped just with that. Immediately shattering the invisible resisting factor, Rona’s jaws closed like an alligator chomping.
It was only a single moment the fangs were stopped. But that time was enough for Nere to draw her weapon, and even dish out a counterattack.
Holding the dagger that she pulled out from her pocket in a reverse grip, Nere stabbed at Rona who stopped for a moment during the chomp. Of course, Rona had expected it, and retreated enough of a distance for Nere’s attack to not reach.
「It’s undesirable for a servant to be pointing a blade towards a guest. But I’m sure there’s no problem if I just strip the guest’s fangs off. 」
Suddenly, Nere’s surrounding lit up. Bunch of light balls that appeared without a chant came at Rona in streaks.
With the streaks of light coming at Rona from all directions, the golden beast weaved through the trees, and rushed towards Nere without ever stopping. Although the streaks seemed like they would’ve burnt Rona’s body when it landed, there wasn’t a single mark on his body even when they hit.
「I don’t need your consideration. 」
Laughing as someone who holds the upper hand, Rona compressed the surrounding air and manifested countless invisible blades.
「Then it’s my turn now. 」
Rona’s ears piqued. Along with that movement, the magic that’s specialized in rupturing everything flew at Nere.
They were blades that sucked in the surrounding leaves and branches and turned them to dust. But Nere didn’t show any signs of defending against it, only rushing at Rona with just a dagger in her hands.
「That’s good senses. 」
Rona commented like a teacher as he prepared to receive Nere’s dagger. Nere who closed the distance in a moment swung her dagger down. Rona who tried to sidestep that was disrupted by Nere, losing his foothold as Nere swiped at his feet.
Along with a yell of surprise, Rona lost balance and ate Nere’s attack that came at him from the front without mercy. However, there was something like a ringing sound that of something hard colliding.
In the heat, Rona who judged that avoiding would be infeasible instead bit on the dagger. Of course, that’s even with Nere’s barrier halting some of its momentum.
However, Nere’s dagger was stopped by the beast’s teeth easily. It was only a single moment.
「Caught you. 」
Just managing to fend against Nere’s fierce dagger attack, there was a finger pointing towards Rona’s head who was still biting the dagger now. A small dot of light can be seen at the end of the fingertip, but the radiance it gave off was strong enough to make one cover their eyes. Rona started to have cold sweat as the light reminded him of the summer sun.
Panickily letting go of the dagger in his mouth, Rona retreated and deployed a barrier of his own.
「I wonder if you can block it? 」
With a emotionless declaration, the light that was compressed to the utmost at Nere’s fingertip shot out.
Quickly giving up trying to defend against it frontally, Rona prioritized getting out of the trajectory. The light pierced through all the layers of barrier that Rona managed to put up, and grazed Rona’s tail.
The originally fluffy golden tail now has a miserable burnt scar to it.
「Fumu. You did well avoiding it. 」
「Ah――! My tail―! 」
Contrary to Nere’s calm tone, Rona who noticed his own miserable tail was angered.
「How dare you―! Don’t blame me for getting serious! 」
Now mana started gathering around Rona quickly.
「Hou. Then I shall prepare the same too? 」
「That calm face, I will make it into a crying one! 」
While saying so, Rona started to twist the surrounding space with his enormous mana. The light that was in the middle of the forest was silent, but the murderous aura it emitted covered the entire area. Preparing for Rona’s attack, Nere had advanced her counterattack whilst deploying barriers.
The expanding atmosphere. Filled with an enormous amount of mana. There wasn’t even a sound from insects in fear of Nere and Rona’s overwhelming presence.
As if drawing back a bow, just when Rona was about to release the arrow from his tail. Suddenly something fell down from the sky, stabbing into the ground and covering Rona’s sight.
「That’s enough, Rona. 」
It was a white short sword that was stabbed into the ground. And the owner of the voice was Rona’s past partner and also Nere’s master.
「Are you planning to blow away the twins and even my house? 」
「Mu――. Don’t interfere, Al. It’s my turn now――. 」
「Isn’t Nere’s strength clear enough now? 」
「But the match isn’t over―」
「What’s the need for deciding the match? 」
Seriously, Ardis had his hand on his forehead with such Rona.
「I mean, I’m the stronger one, and I’ve always been with Al, I know more about Al, I’m the one――」
「Of course I know about that. But there’s no need to fight seriously with Nere right? 」
「No buts. What did I say just now? 」
Hold back a little, Rona who was pouting just now recalled and became silent.
「Good boy. Remember now? Let’s return back peacefully, or――」
Ardis drew his sword from his waist. The blade that reminds one of the autumn sky started to crackle with Rona’s most hated lightning.
「I-I, I-I-I-I-I got it! Let’s return peacefully, quickly! 」
On the receiving end of Ardis’s might, Rona panickily dispersed the mana he collected.
「That would’ve been the right choice from the start, seriously. ――Nere? 」
「I have no objections from the beginning. 」
Putting back the dagger into her pocket, Nere followed behind Ardis as a matter of fact. That was too natural, and too graceful. That’s probably the reason why Rona was irritated. With clear displeasure aura oozing out of him, Rona had left Ardis and Nere behind and headed back to the house in advance.