Running Away From The Hero! (Remake)
Chapter 13: RATH 13 TL: Eevee

RATH 13

TL: Eevee

TN: The NU bot is working properly for releases now! Hurrah!

2. What is this. Scary. (6)

#9 Their story: the future hero’s story.

“There is no such thing as evil in this world. Only people living with their own ideals.”

The reason this stuck in my head was because the beating was lighter at the time.

Ahh, just how foolish was I.

Even when I’d been hit that much by that senior before, and even when she warned me! To think I let my guard down just because it was a wooden stick!

Moreover just what in the world is that weapon? Even if I block it with my sword the pain just crawls up my wrist and into the rest of my body.

Evasion is the only way out, but the instructor’s swordsmanship is incredible. Dodging was impossible when blocking was hard enough.

In the end all I could do was get hit.

“There is no one in this world without a story. People are merely doing what they think is right, to those on the other end they have had to suffer an injustice.”

I think the unjust thing here is that I’m still being beaten but if I open my mouth I feel I’ll get the crap beaten out of me even more so I’ll keep shut.

“Imagine someone killed a woman right in front of your eyes. What would you do then?”

“Kuk!”

How would I know. I need to survive first.

“What do you think, No.17.”

Since I wasn’t saying anything, he asked No.17 instead. Now that I think about it she’s here as well.

Mmm. Then stop him!

“I believe I need to listen to their story.”

“No.1000?”

“Hmmm… I’m not the hero or anything, ignore it and done?”

…And look at No.1000’s personality. As I thought I can’t rely on her.

“The most logical thing is to listen to them like No.17 said. However humans naturally remember things to their own convenience. They could frame the woman as an enemy spy, or an evil demon in disguise. What is certain, is that it will be very difficult for you lot to identify the truth.”

No, what’s certain is that I’m still whimpering getting beaten.

That weapon is still hitting me even now!

Now I’m almost crawling on the ground and no one’s looking my way. Ahh, damn it!

“Unless you are gods, you cannot always choose the correct path. In that case, it’s best to not get involved to begin with. If someone tries to start a great revolution, just watch. A revolution is also someone else’s rebellion. Even this empire that’s the greatest in the continent, began with a revolution caused by an ordinary civilian, who went on to become the first emperor. But when he founded the empire there were a series of three different plots.”

Well, so what?

Stop hitting me!

“All three of those plots were planned by the empire’s founding families. Although they were recorded as rebels later, at the beginning they were heroes fighting for the same cause as the emperor. But in the power struggles that followed they lost to the emperor and became rebels. Power is always the victor’s version of history. In that case, the method to live long and prosper is to be neither a winner or a loser.”

“The method to live long and prosper?”

“Indeed. Most of the reasons people come to this organization are all pretty similar. Especially since the great war.”

Uh nope? My brothers sent me because I was in the way of their squabbles?

And because of my damn father who sees this as perfectly normal so I can’t even go home?!

So stop hitting me!

Ah, wait, why am I not fainting? Is my body this sturdy?

No, is it just my imagination that just the pain is intensifying?

“You can’t live doing only what you want. But, that’s no reason to live only doing things you don’t. just pray to the gods. For the resilience to be able to accept the things you can’t change. The courage to change the things you can. The patience to wait to see the results of that change. And the strength to wake up in the morning to live the day.”

Ahh. Great goddess of light Sermir. Please so that I don’t get beaten up. Please that damn instructor doesn’t hit me. Please that I can go home and beat the crap out of my asshat brothers. And if possible, please let me eat breakfast tomorrow!

“Iii, Inst….ructor. S,stop….”

But She did not listen to my pleas. Indeed, the old philosopher’s words that said you determine your own fate is truly correct!

At this moment I wanted to cry ~God is dead~ at the top of my voice, but more importantly I needed to stop that hand moving on autopilot.

“Save me…”

Uh… I’m sleepy. Mm. I think I can see my departed mother waving her hands over there?

Maybe it’s because because she died giving birth to me but I don’t think voice chat is supported.

But it’s probably her. It’s almost identical to the portrait at home.

But I can’t hear her that well. Mother what are you saying?

I shouldn’t cross over?

***

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“Oh, he’s dead.”

At No.1000’s words, the hand that had been clutching my ankle quivered and dropped.

Since I was talking with the others I forgot about No.1. Sorry.

But look at these automatic hand movements. Practically macro level.

Is this what they call the stance of an experienced instructor?

“Take No.1 with you. Today’s lesson is over.”

“Isn’t he dead?”

His eyes have completely turned so you can only see his whites, and his mouth is foaming with his tongue hanging limp, but he’s not dead. Because this weapon is special.

“This is not slack enough to kill him with just that.”

Out of the weapons that Black Anvil, one of the greatest dwarven clans, had ever produced, one of the weapons they would all universally rate in their top ten would be this bat.

When the Black Anvil clan were wallowing in their guilt that their weapons were being used to take lives, how happy they were when they heard of this bizarre proposition!

After it was completed and tested, for some reason or other I had to cancel the mass production plans, but considering how they gave it a seat on their list of ten greatest weapons, its completion level is no less than perfection.

Let’s deduce the reason why this couldn’t go into mass production being due to the necessity of the cooperation of the elves, whom they were normally at odds with.

“He’ll probably be better after a night’s sleep.”

No.1000 nodded and dragged off No.1’s body.

She’s grabbing his legs and dragging them at waist height, and his head keeps bumping into things.

Well, he should be alright. It’s accepted fact that the dumb kids are the one with sturdy skulls.

To be honest I really don’t agree with giving instructors paperwork as well. Especially on days like this when I personally moved my own body for my disciples!

Maybe if the organization had a shortage of people that could handle paperwork, but it’s not even like they’re lacking manpower.

Doing the typical things an evil organization does, naturally there are a lot of people that get injured, and the organization uses the ones that don’t have much hope of returning to the field in the office, and those numbers are considerable.

Could you say that the social security is unexpectedly good unlike what you’d expect from an evil organization?

Normally if people become useless they’re disposed of in other evil organizations, but perhaps it’s because this one has independence fighters as its backbone, or is it to raise the loyalty of the workers?

Either way it’s irrelevant, but there are plenty of people that can handle paperwork, and I, an instructor responsible for the future of the organization has to do paperwork!

Damn office workers. You do my job then!

I was diligently stamping letters of command to do with training which didn’t really have much to do with me personally and making a tower of papers, when I felt a presence in front of my door.

“Enter.”

“Yes.”

The one who entered the room was surprisingly enough, No.1000.

What was this? Had she come charging in because of her superior survival instincts telling her of the danger of the bat already?!

If it’s this girl that might actually be possible?

Khk, I’d been wearing a metal plate on my stomach just in case but if it’s this girl’s sword ki then it’ll just make a hole.

In the past I’d made it out of expensive metal, nowadays due to a lack of funds I had to melt that down and make other things with it, and now I’m using a plain ordinary steel plate! Is my life in crisis?!

“What’s the matter?”

Pretending to casually look over my documents, I slipped my left hand under my desk.

Hmph. If the plate over my stomach is thin, then what I need to do is alpha strike before my stomach gets knifed!

This is already my space, a few buttons under my desk can activate all kinds of hidden weapons and traps!

“The one who survives the longest is the winner.”

“Do you have questions about our discussion before?”

Or, to kill me to survive the longest?

“I want to be a winner.”

Pit pat.

Small footsteps that fit that small body gradually get closer to me.

What was in No.1000’s face that faced me was an unexpected fervor.

To think this kid could make this kind of face for something other than eating.

I had been looking over her often enough, and it truly was out of the ordinary for her to make this sort of expression.

“Do you know what you need to survive the longest.”

“Food.”

“Correct.”

If you can’t eat you die.

“Strength.”

“Correct.”

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Whether it’s in fighting, knowledge, factions, if you’re not strong then you can be dominated and stolen from by the strong whenever they feel like it.

“Luck.”

“An essential part.”

And life is a giant shitty RNG game!

If you’re lucky then everything falls into your lap even if you do nothing.

“And…”

“Can you not think of anything else?”

“Yes.”

As No.1000 nodded I slowly brought my left hand back to the top of the desk.

Hm. To think she’d request extra training.

If it was No.1 then the compensation wouldn’t match the price, but No.1000 is different.

I’ve said this before, but this No.1000 is the number given during primary training.

When the time comes for this kid to graduate, even if she fits into just the top ten of all the cohorts I’ve trained so far, the fact that the bonus payout will be several times my salary was proven with the previous cohort.

“And teaching you that should be my role as an instructor.”

As an instructor, teaching my disciples is my job. But no one ever said that that job should ever be done myself?

#10 Their story: Mirua’s story.

-The path to live long and prosper-

When was it. That surviving was my objective in life.

From my earliest memories, leaving with mom’s hand in hand was daily life, and even fragments of bread were hard to come by and I had to loiter around here and there.

The middle of the battlefield. And as a citizen of an enemy country of the Empire every day was busy running away, and that was daily life.

Food was my life’s objective.

But now that I think about it, that was just because I was struggling to survive.

Why do I want to live? Why do we struggle in order to survive? I don’t understand even when I think about it.

But still. I want to know. I will survive. And to do that…

“Hm? Aren’t you heading back?”

After I threw No.1 on his bed, as I hesitated to open the door to my room with my hand on the handle, No.17 saw me and tilted her head quizzically.

Even if we’re all trainees there’s only three of us so we’re all pretty much neighbours.

“A bit later.”

No.17 made an expression that something was wrong, but she didn’t seem to care much further and went into her room.

I let go of the door handle.

Yes. In order to survive. That method would be the best.

I turned my footsteps back around, past the training grounds to where the instructor lived and knocked on the door to his quarters, but there was no one there.

Maybe, he’s still working…

“Come in.”

Outside the instructor’s office.

I put down the hand that had been about to knock on the door. I hadn’t even knocked yet but had he already realised I was here.

“Yes.”

Is he working? He’s writing something on paper and not even looking my way.

“What’s the matter?”

“The one who survives the longest is the winner.”

“Do you have questions about our discussion before?”

The instructor said coolly.

But, after listening to this today, there was something I realised.

“I want to be a winner.”

I want to be a winner. I want to live long and prosper. I don’t want to die. The majority of life in my memories were in death’s shadow.

I was always so hungry I felt like I’d die.

I was always so scared I felt like I’d die.

It always hurt so much I felt like I’d die.

Many, many times I thought that it’d be easier for me to give up and die, but I don’t know why but death was even scarier.

And so I always ran away from the thing called death.

Yes, I had always been running.

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I ran away from the adults that looked at me dangerously.

I ran away when I that heard the Empire’s battlemages, the death gods of the battlefield were approaching.

Even when I fought among the orphans for something to eat I would run away if I realised I was outmatched.

Like that, always, I would run away.

Grit.

I bit down on my lips. The iron taste of blood filled my lips.

I don’t want to have to run away any more.

One step, another, I walk closer to the instructor.

“Do you know what you need to survive the longest.”

Finally, the instructor looked at me and said with a slight smile.

What you need to survive? Of course I know that.

“Food.”

If you are hungry then you have no strength. Every step feels like agony. Sometimes the world will turn white in front of your eyes. Especially when you can’t drink any water as well, then it’s truly hell.

“Correct.”

See. Even the instructor acknowledges it.

“Strength.”

If you are not strong then things are taken from you. The feelings of having food you fought so hard for being stolen from you is something only those who have experienced it would know. And in order to reclaim it you need to be strong. If you are not strong, you get taken from and die.

“Correct.”

See. Even the instructor acknowledges it.

“Luck.”

If you’re unlucky then you can be hit by a stray spell. If you are lucky then you can survive even in under magic artillery fire. Life and death is always separated by the thickness of a single sheet of paper. And that single sheet of paper is luck.

“An essential part.”

See. Even the instructor acknowledges it.

“And…”

I can’t think of any more. There’s definitely more. I know what it is. But I just don’t have a way to explain it.

“Can you not think of anything else?”

“Yes.”

In that case that is not something that I know. Just something that I feel. To be precise, something that I don’t know.

And that’s why I came to the instructor. And as if he was pleased, he said.

“And teaching you that should be my job.”

After he said that, the instructor took me somewhere.

In these last few months I thought that I’d seen everything this facility had to offer, but we opened an old door I thought was a storage shed and went down a flight of stairs, a small cave appeared.

“I thought you would need this after a bit more time, but seeing your desires I’ll open it up early.”

“Is what I want inside here?”

“Yes. There is. But, only if you can survive.”

If I can survive?

That means…

“I could die in here…”

“Yes, you could die. But like I’ve said earlier, the one that survives is the winner. Meaning that death awaits the defeated. Life and death is always together. Survive. And prove it.”

With that, the instructor left without any more words.

There was no command for me to turn back either. He didn’t even ask me for my opinion. He believed in me, and led me here.

“Life and death is always together.”

Muttering those words I opened the door.

Fik!

“Uht?!”

I barely dodged something that grazed my cheek.

The instructor was always right.

If I listened to the instructor, everything went well. Although he said some difficult things from time to time, when we didn’t understand, he made us understand with actions.

And maybe this time as well, if I can get through this dangerous place like the instructor said, I could attain my goals.

So I understand you, instructor. I understand you, instructor…

But an arrow flying towards my head the moment I open the door is too much… Sob.

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AN: Hands up who remembers Sermir

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