The Regressed Son of a Duke is an Assassin chapter 207

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The Regressed Son of a Duke is an Assassin

Chapter 207: The Princess and the Assassin (1)

Does one’s true nature ever change with age?

Perhaps it’s someone who should have retired to a life of peace in a place with clean air who still has a position in education.

Although it’s not a massive academy like the Royal Academy, but rather a small classroom with just about ten people, who are we to say anything if that person is teaching there because they want to?

Well, that’s partly why I came here.

“Thinking about it now, it’s actually quite funny. Why did you think I would know the author of this book?”

“I wasn’t certain about it. But surely, as the academy’s chancellor, you have an outstanding memory for observing students who have passed through, haven’t you? I was just wondering if one of those who might have slipped by could be here.”

“Your slippery nature hasn’t changed, I see.”

The chancellor clicked his tongue as if nothing had changed.

“It doesn’t have to be the author of the book. Just tell me anything you know about the name Hapencus.”

“Ah, yes. There was one person. A student of the academy with the name Hapencus…”

It’s said that there’s nothing more frustrating in life than wasting your time,

but at least it seems I won’t be leaving empty-handed.

“It was around the time you submitted your notice of withdrawal. If I remember correctly, he was a commoner who had been granted honorary nobility, right? Not a regular new student but one who had entered through a special transfer process.”

“What was the name?”

“Mia Hapencus.”

It was certainly a name I had never heard before.

“What kind of student was she?”

“How would I know that? You threw in your notice of resignation and not long after, I stepped down from being the chancellor, so I don’t even remember her face.”

The chancellor looked at me with a gaze that seemed to wonder if there was a problem.

Well, it’s not like I gained nothing from this since I learned his name,

“I did she graduate?”

“I don’t know, do I? If you’re that curious, why don’t you go to the academy and ask? Even if Satwell knows, it’s not like he’d just hand over the information. And I’m not eager to exert special effort for a not-so-dear student.”

I’m sure that comment was meant to tease me.

I never expected any help from him to begin with, so I let it slide,

but in the end, it seems I will have to go to the academy if I want to find more clues.

It’s becoming quite the hassle.

Maybe I’ll have to resort to asking Brian…

“However, I wonder if you’ve approached this in the wrong order.”

“What do you mean?”

“You were ultimately interested in this Dio Hapencus, the author of the book, right? Then shouldn’t you have sought out the person who distributed this book first?”

“…”

“Don’t tell me you didn’t know? It’s implausible that the continent’s top assassin organization wouldn’t know something that even an old man teaching kids in a corner knows.”

“I can’t just waltz into the den of the Assassins’ Guild for unconfirmed information, can I?”

I replied nonchalantly.

It was just an act of nonchalance, though,

“But what about this proposal?”

“What are you suggesting now?”

“The girl, Arin, she’s in this city right now.”

“…!”

Involuntarily, the corners of my mouth twitched.

“I saw her passing by the window earlier. Doesn’t look like she’s here on official business. There was no one with her except for her usual accompanying knight.”

The knight accompanying her would inevitably be Resmus.

It’s unbelievable, honestly.

She came to Aquizzel with only one knight for protection?

She doesn’t realize that hundreds of blades surrounding her could target her at any moment—a truly blessed princess, indeed.

“Life sure teaches you things over time. Who would have guessed that the Imperial Family would go to such lengths to improve people’s perceptions of the mist? It seems like an opportunity for you, no? She couldn’t have gone far, so go and ask her straight up. Why on earth she would do such a thing…”

Does that sound more like an order than a suggestion, or is it just me?

But he’s not wrong.

If I wanted to find out about the author Dio Hapencus, I would naturally need to approach the person who distributed the book.

Especially if that person is incredibly close by,

I have no reason not to seek her out.

However,

-Thud, thud,

The sound of footsteps on the ground.

Not far from beyond the door.

The footsteps of a woman, proper yet bold.

Though I don’t yet know the owner of these mysterious footsteps,

“…!”

For some reason, my heart started to race, and sweat trickled down from my forehead.

As if my body was warning me that the owner of these footsteps was absolutely not a good person for me.

-Knock, knock

Shortly after, the footsteps stopped in front of the door, and there was a knock.

“Is anyone here, Headmaster?”

* * *

It was late, a time when you would normally have gone to bed if there wasn’t anything special going on.

Knowing that coming here this late was impolite, Arin still felt compelled to visit.

“Is anyone here, Headmaster?”

She cautiously knocked and called out, but there was no response.

It didn’t seem like there was nobody there.

There was a faint warmth and the presence of people beyond the door, so she was about to knock again when,

“Come in.”

A quiet voice answered from inside.

Arin and Resmus slowly opened the door and entered.

“You don’t seem surprised at all?”

“I saw you and your knight passing by in the street. That’s when I was surprised.”

A pleasant response to ease her tension, Arin smiled faintly.

“How have you been, Headmaster?”

“It has been a long time, Arin.”

Condor warmly welcomed the student he hadn’t seen for a long time.

“I’m sorry for visiting so late. Have I interrupted your work?”

“Don’t worry about it. It wasn’t particularly pleasant work.”

Condor quietly put the book he was reading away under the desk.

“Are you here for work?”

“Yes.”

“Judging from the lack of official correspondence and your unplanned visit, it seems you didn’t come here for any formal duty. Is this visit more of a personal matter than one related to the Imperial Family?”

“I suppose… it is.”

Arin didn’t deny Condor’s probing.

After all, even if she tried to hide it, the truth would not stay hidden.

“I don’t have much time, so I’ll just ask directly.”

Condor simply nodded without a word.

“Has Sian come here, by any chance?”

Before answering, Condor frowned, showing a puzzled reaction.

“Of all people to ask about that guy, why come to me first?”

“I somehow found out that Sian might be in the vicinity. So, just in case, I thought I’d ask…”

“He hasn’t come here.”

Stopped by such a resolute response, Arin found herself unable to continue.

She wanted to switch topics, but her lips refused to open again.

“People say that hearts can change yet often don’t. Has yours not changed, still wanting to save him?”

“What’s the use of that? Without the power to realize such feelings, it’s all pointless…”

A look of futility was evident in Arin’s eyes.

“At first, I thought that if I had enough power to break a rock with a wooden sword, then it would be possible. If I had the power to turn the impossible into the possible, that would be enough. But I was naive. The impossibility I aim to change wasn’t just of that magnitude…”

Learning is the driving force that makes you realize how foolish you once were.

Arin had never stopped striving for her goal of salvation during these past seven years.

It’s true that during that time, she had achieved meaningful growth. Yet time and again, she realized just how big and lofty a dream she had harbored.

Now, it seemed she would need the power of a god…

“I’m ashamed I only came to complain after so long. Next time, I’ll bring plenty of gifts for the students.”

As if she couldn’t stay any longer, Arin bid farewell to Condor.

Just as she was about to leave with Resmus,

“It may sound humorous to ask now but…”

Condor held her back one more time.

“If you were to meet him now, what would you say?”

Without turning back, Arin replied with a small smile,

“Maybe I’d just ask… how he’s been?”

It was the most she could hope to say with her current self.

“But even such words are not something I, as a princess, can say…”

As she lowered her head, her fist clenched tight.

Not yet,

She still couldn’t do anything even if she met him.

After more time has passed,

Though she didn’t know how much longer,

To face him without a shred of shame, for that day,

Arin continued to run down an endless road.

The road covered in an unknown mist.

“If Sian comes by, please give him this message for me.”

“Deliver it yourself.”

“…?”

Arin unconsciously turned her head in surprise.

“After all, you’re not here as a princess right now, are you? So, give it yourself. Not as Princess Arin Severus, but just as Arin Severus…”

“What do you mean?”

As she spoke in confusion, not comprehending his words,

-Click!

Condor flicked the mana he had manifested in his hand.

A transparent magical barrier spread around them with the sound of a small resonance.

Resmus, who had been watching from behind, hurried over in the sudden situation.

“Why are you suddenly putting up a barrier…?”

In that moment, Arin felt it.

In the corner of the space to her left.

In the dark space untouched by candlelight.

The presence of someone, whose presence was unknown but had been there from an unknown time.

Coincidentally, it was not an unfamiliar presence.

It was incredibly familiar,

The aura that she hadn’t forgotten for a single day in the past seven years.

Now, that eagerly longed-for presence was felt vividly before Arin.

-Thud

With distinct footsteps, a tall man emerged from the darkness, his sharp eyes like a sword’s edge, and his dark hair unchanged even after seven years.

“Sian?”

* * *

I could have escaped at the sound of the footsteps, or rather the knock.

Magic, secret techniques, or just breaking through the window, I could have left in any way.

But I didn’t.

I just hid in the shadows and eavesdropped on their conversation.

I didn’t decide to with my head, but my body just moved on its own.

The chancellor pretended not to see me, and when she asked about my presence, he lied that I wasn’t there.

It’s unlikely he did that out of consideration for me.

He probably has his own plans, putting together an even bigger picture.

“…!”

The look in her eyes was tumultuous as she faced me.

It’s not necessarily a bad thing.

In fact, if she had been indifferent, that would have been more shocking.

Yet I had to admit, despite it all, over those seven years, she had grown remarkably compared to before.

A true member of the Imperial Family, helpful to the empire.

Now, those words didn’t seem so hard to say.

So what?

What does that have to do with me?

Did she honestly think she can say that to me?

To Sian Betrand, a traitor to the throne and the light?

It’s so absurd, I’m left speechless.

It’s said that a person’s nature never changes,

And it seems her foolishness will remain the same for decades, perhaps centuries.

The anger that had been dormant inside me for so long flared up.

Then, a thought naturally rose in my mind.

She’ll eventually die at the hands of the head of the household and the clan members anyway,

Why not just kill her here and now?

“…”

In my hand shortly held a despicable demonic sword, gathering a fullness of killing intent on its sharp blade.

(To be continued…)

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