The more affection one’s words contained, the more they were difficult to refute.
Emmett said that it was because he wanted Albert to live, but he sounded much too indifferent about his own death.
Why was he purposefully making Albert think that he died in so much pain?
Besides that, Emmett looked like he cherished his dragon.
Wasn’t his death only going to make Albert hate the dragon?
I couldn’t help but ask.
“But why? That will only make Albert think that you’ve died in terrible agony. That will also make Albert dislike your dragon.”
The smile Emmett had slowly disappeared, and his expression became dark.
Then, a deep sigh left his lips. It was a sigh as heavy as his age.
“Because I want Albert to be an outstanding mage, but not a transcendental being.”
“By transcendent, do you mean like you, Lord Emmett?”
“Albert has excellent qualities. He can become an archmage even if he can’t become a transcendent.”
Emmett replied firmly, though the next moment, he looked bitter as though he remembered something. The way he looked at me was unusual.
It was not long before he spoke again, slowly.
“…But this is under the premise that Albert will not exceed my predictions.”
Apart from being a sage, Emmett was a man who had a strong grasp upon life as he had lived for many years. But of course, this didn’t mean he knew everything.
I listened to Emmett’s explanation, but not all of my questions had been answered.
I didn’t know what kind of relationship the dragon and the transcendent had, or why he didn’t want Albert to become a transcendent as well.
Noticing my confusion, Emmett replied politely.
“Because if Albert becomes a dragon contractor, it’s clear that he’ll become a transcendent who will live on for a long time, just like me.”
Emmett fixed his gaze upon Albert, who was about to return before we knew it. Emmett’s eyes were dark.
“Then, there will be no one left around him.”
“…Because he will live for a long time.”
At what I said, Emmett nodded.
“I want my death to be an opportunity to prevent Albert from becoming a transcendent.”
Emmett’s genuine affection for Albert was obvious in his words.
Albert told me before that Emmett had cared more about the dragon than him.
I wouldn’t have many other chances to talk to Emmett like we were now. There was something I wanted to ask him regarding Albert.
I spoke up.
“You must also know just how much Albert cares for you, Lord Emmett.”
At this, Emmett grinned.
“I’m not so foolish that I’d fail to notice a child’s fond gaze. But I just know that this is all that I can do.”
“I will be ending my life soon enough. Being more present in his life will only make it difficult for him.”
Emmett looked at me.
“It’s the same for you as well.”
He wasn’t rebuking me—he was only telling the truth.
“It would be best to draw the line between you and Albert.”
Perhaps Emmett was saying the right thing here.
But I had already said one thing, so would it be possible for me to suddenly change my actions, my expressions, and my way of speaking just like that?
Even after everything, I wanted to give him everything that I could. I just hoped that his unhappy childhood would be filled with happiness.
“I’m saying this not just for Albert’s sake, but for yours as well. All the more so because you are an outsider here.”
I’m not part of this time period.
“…I’ll erase Albert’s memories of suffering before I leave.”
Murmuring slowly, I chewed my lower lip.
The first spell I learned was Forget. I’ll leave Albert with nothing but the afterimage of our happy days.
His memories of me would be hazy. He wouldn’t remember me, but he would remember that he was happy.
The feeling of happiness and the feeling that he would like to continue living would be of help to him.
“It will be difficult for you to make all of that happen.”
“I’ve decided on doing this after thinking about how it can be better for Albert.”
Even if all these memories must be erased before I’d leave, those memories would still be carried forward by me, for as long as I remembered them.
Besides that, the Albert of the future was already slowly recovering his memories.
I didn’t know how much he could remember by now, but from what he told me about my everyday visits, it seemed like he was close to remembering everything.
I will meet the future Albert again.
I will overcome my ordeal and meet with Blanc again, and we will return to Albert, who’s waiting for me.
So, I can erase the young Albert’s memories by thinking about the day I can meet him once more.
I can do it. For the sake of both the future Albert and the current Albert, this much had to be done.
Hearing my explanation, Emmett made a doubtful expression.
“…It will not be as easy as you think.”
His words stabbed at my heart like thorns.
“I wasn’t distancing myself from the Young Count for no reason.”
Switching over to calling Albert by his formal title, Emmett spoke briefly as Albert approached us. Now that the boy was near, Emmett picked up from Albert’s hands and put it on himself.
The fedora, made from a material seemingly as smooth as silk, was in a navy blue color that matched his hair.
However, it didn’t seem practical to wear it at all. It wouldn’t be able to give him enough warmth in the winter.
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