“You may proceed to your usual private room, my lord! All preparations are done, so let’s have dinner together with my father when he comes back!”
It was about time Azel and I finish our delicious sandwiches while chatting leisurely as usual.
It was around the time Azel and I were about to finish eating the delicious sandwiches while chatting leisurely as usual.
Apparently, Azel had a private room at the top of the residential area right next to the base with a scenic view which he used whenever he came to visit.
They couldn’t let me in there, so I guess they had a separate room for me.
Ulysse was quite organized. I thought it was amazing that he was so adept at his job, even though he looked younger than me.
Well, Azel didn’t seem to mind us being in the same room, but… I felt eyes on me, telling me that I’d get killed if I nodded.
Even though Ulysse looked weak, there was no way I could fight him as I currently lack combat power.
Unless my life was in danger, I would remain a pacifist.
And so, I decided to decline his generous offer and asked Ulysse to guide me to the guest room.
The two of us began to walk towards my room, but Azel looked back at us several times with painful reluctance. Perhaps he didn’t want to leave outside the fortress.
This was the first time I had been alone with Ulysse.
He had been chasing after Azel with complete devotion, so he didn’t see much of me, as I had been trotting right behind them.
A young boy who was single-minded, straightforward, and bright. I guess having great self-confidence was one way to improve yourself.
I wasn’t able to have any conversation with him, since he was walking briskly and looked displeased.
I looked at the view from the hallway window. It was already dark outside, lit by the same bright moon that we see from the demon lord’s castle.
I was looking outside aimlessly, when Ulysse, who had been ahead of me, suddenly stopped in his tracks.
I had no idea why, so I just followed him and stopped. We weren’t in the guest room, but rather the entrance hall we went through when we came in.
“Hmph.” Ulysse turned around and crossed his arms, while fiercely glaring at me.
“You. Are you my lord’s lover?”
“Lov– …No, I’m not. In the first place, I’m a man.”
“Ha? It doesn’t matter if you’re a man or not. I know it’s not common, so it’s just usually heterosexual relationships, but there are those who have that kind of preference. Either way, the demons don’t really care about those things as long as they’re good with each other. Isn’t the reason why you draw the line is because you’re such a narrow-minded human?”
Ulysse told me off.
It was a more hurtful way of putting it than when I was with Azel. No, I didn’t think it’d make that much of a difference.
“Though, I guess the demons discriminate against the weak instead. I may protect those who follow me, but I also eliminate those who go against me. …That goes for you as well.”
I definitely felt hostility when he said those words at the end and stared into Ulysse’s sea-colored eyes.
Those eyes of his were trying to discern whether I was an enemy, someone who also yearns for Azel, or not. It was a domineering gaze that seemed to pressure me down. Would this also be considered as a one-on-one fight for the demons?
“If you aren’t his lover, then what are you to him? To make him act like that, just what are you?”
“What am I to Azel… huh… I…”
Ulysse’s eyes, which had the color of the ocean, were similar yet different from mine, which had the color of the deep sea; a bluish, dark eyes.
It was my eyes that wavered at the question. My heart hesitated, resisting the urge to avert my eyes.
Just what am I? I—
“If I had to say something, then… it’d be livestock, I guess. I’m his food.”
—am just a meal.
I was just a delicious meal, kept by a gentle master with great care, and only allowed me to behave like a human being.
Of course, I didn’t feel bad about that. If you’d think of it in a good way – no, I wasn’t being sarcastic, but anyway, Azel took good care of me.
He called me by my name and placed me by his side. He talked and laughed with me.
But when asked what kind of relationship I had with him, then I’d say livestock. I was in a cage when he took me along.
Not that I was being ironic, but I just hadn’t been given any other names yet.
Besides, I had no complaints about it. He had been really good to me. He needed me. I was truly happy.
But after hearing my explanation, Ulysse stomped his feet hard on the floor.
“Hmmm. Livestock, huh. That’s good. In that case, you’re not going to be his lover, right? You don’t love him, right? You don’t have desires of touching him, or kissing him, or making love with him, right? Well, that’s good to know! You should’ve said that from the start!”
His feet that stomped on the floor each time he said a word felt heavier.
I didn’t have time to worry whether the floor would break or not, and I widened my eyes, stunned and lost in thought.
Be his lover? Fall in love? It never even occurred to me that I’d fall in love with Azel.
I swallowed. Ulysse’s voice faded in the distance, and the image of the man I had just parted with appeared in my mind.
It’s true that I—love Azel.
That was the truth. I cherished him, and I also appreciated him. I wished for his days to be full of happiness and well-being.
That feeling would be unmistakably love. It was a feeling everyone had for those whom they hold dear.
There was no doubt about it. The times I wanted to be helpful, or that I wanted to see him, was because I was feeling an affectionate love for him.
“Ahh, geez. I wasted my time on a human. When people get bored of livestock, they just throw them away. Though it’s quite unusual, I guess he’s only keeping you for now. You’re not my rival, then.”
I couldn’t help but believe Ulysse’s words to me as he poured salt on my wounds and made my heart aggravated.
Am I going to get thrown away when… he gets tired of me?
That’s right. I used to think that way and even thought that if he would throw me away, I’d rather have him kill me.
There’s nothing wrong with me, so why does my heart ache so much?