The part of me that is Alice screams at the sound of my mother’s voice as she murmured that.
Mother has found out.
Father froze silently at the situation he had feared.
Alphonse-san, too, has a stern look on his face as he puts his arms around me, hugging me close.
“Haha! That’s right! That child there is not even your own child with the master! I saw it that night! The part where the master took out his dead daughter, and the part where he brought that girl back!”
“What do you think?” exclaimed Rouge, sounding like a demon of the underworld. Perhaps in her mind, she no longer wants to save herself, but wants to harm my mother in any way she can.
However, it wasn’t a scream that came out of my mother’s mouth.
I couldn’t help but widen my eyes. Both my father and Alphonse-san were startled too.
My mother took a deep breath and continued in a dignified voice.
“Did you think I didn’t know that?”
Everyone went quiet at those words.
My mother continued, drawing a breath and doing her best to stand tall and proud.
“……I already knew. The magic of the child I gave birth to was in complete disarray as soon as she was born. I knew that she would soon run out of power. And the little mole on my child’s neck at birth was also not there when I saw her the next day after I passed out and woke up. I also knew that my husband, who never said a word, was cautiously asking how I was doing, thinking I could not handle the news…”
I called out to her.
My mother jerked her head towards at me with a gasp.
“Alice…Your voice is…?”
She looked at me intently, her eyes filled with indescribable joy, but then she seemed to shake her head and her face became serious and dignified once again. Seeing the chaos, she probably realized that resolving this situation should be dealt with first before rejoicing over my recovery.
“Even though the baby wasn’t my own child, I felt the overwhelming need to look after and protect Alice as my own. I loved Alice even though I knew she wasn’t my birth child. And I believed that one day, without fail, my husband and my brother, who had probably helped, would show me the grave of my birth child together.”
My father choked on his words, as if he was overcome with emotion.
I, too, was amazed at my mother’s hidden feelings, but at the same time, my heart was filled with sadness.
She knew the whole time.
She knew that I wasn’t her own child, and understand her husband’s feelings, who was desperately trying to hide it, and knew that she had to watch and protect me as a newborn.
She saw the situation between Father and I and decided to protect us both by herself. That is my mother.
Rouge flinched when she saw how strong my mother was. But she cried out, as if she were fighting to the bitter end.
“Lies! Master! She is only saying that because she doesn’t want to get divorced! She’s pretending to accept…it…?!”
My father silences Rouge with more magic.
“That’s not for you to decide.”
When my father said that with a cold face, my mother said more.
“Yes, and that wasn’t something for you to decide either.”
My father lowered his head in pain.
My mother continued.
“If the child died, I wanted you to tell me. I wish you would have asked me before you decided to adopt a child…And if the time came where you needed to take a second wife or a mistress, I could have at least given you a recommendation for someone trustworthy.”
“I would never…! Eleanor…”
The tremendous amount of determination my mother had hidden in her heart made my father hang his head in shame. He began to apologize but was cut off.
“No, please don’t apologize…It’s in the past. Now that I’ve somehow come to my senses, I can say this. Nothing you say can change the fact that you didn’t tell me anything nor did you ever ask for my opinion. And whether you regret your decision or not, at this point, it doesn’t matter to me.”
With that, my mother stepped forward. She approached Rouge and held up her staff.
“I was too weak to realize that I was being controlled by this poisonous woman. It was all because of my weakness of mind that I caused my family to suffer for a long time as a result…So I’ll end it now.”
My mother took a deep breath and spoke the words like an incantation.
“By the light of the ethereal waxing moon, I take this wand elder and wrap it in thy magic power. Permit me the unyielding strength and show me the light of truth.”
The moment my mother chanted that, Rouge screamed.
“Ahh—! I Ahhh—!! Aughhhh!!!”
A high-pitched scream like an animal. A sharp bolt of lightning wrapped around Rouge’s body. The strong magical power surrounded Rouge, torturing her.
Alphonse-san tried to hide it by embracing me to prevent me from seeing the spectacle, but this also had to do with me. I had to see it through.
I pushed my way out of his strong but gentle arms, ignoring the voice that stopped me, my teary eyes burning the image into my memory.
“Now tell me. What was your purpose?”
When my mother said this and lowered her hand, Rouge replied, her body convulsing with the electricity.
Rouge answered in a mangled voice laced with pain, “D-div-v-vorce…W-Wa-wanted M-mast-terrrrr…”
After trembling, Rouge when limp with a gasp.
“Yes. Good job for being so honest.”
My mother said this with a blank look on her face, and then asked her next question.
“What did you do to us?”
Rouge’s body, which had been relaxing, buzzed with the electricity again. She couldn’t even scream.
“Aaa—! Aughhhh—!!!! N–Never! Whooooooo—ould te-ell y-y-y-youuuu!! I’ll k-killl youuuuuu!”
The gruesome scene is so horrific that my body begins to tremble as well.
But my mother’s power seems to grow stronger.
“Do you want to suffer for two years like I did? Would you rather taste more of this electricity? Now come, talk to me.”
Then, as my mother put more force into it, Rouge screamed like a madman.
When mother relaxed her attack just a little bit, Rouge began to speak in tears.
“I’m—I-I threatened…your daughter with…fake documents…placed a curse…black magic…to drive her into a corner…a…Ahhhh….A lie—a lie!…schemed against Master…Mistress…Uhhh”
My mother heard this and her expression twisted painfully. Then she further strengthened the attack of the electric current.
“And the curse. Tell me everything—even how to break it!”
Rouge was screaming and sobbing. Her clothes and hair were badly burnt. Still, she somehow managed to explain everything while trapped in the magic circle.
The exhausted body was suspended in the air like a person grabbed by the chest, hanging in the air.
Even mother, who looked strong as she glared at Rouge, quickly covered her mouth at the horrific scene she had created herself. Still, she tried to continue the interrogation.
Then my father put his hand on mother’s shoulder.
“I’ll take care of the rest…I couldn’t do anything for my family…so please let me finish this.”
Father made mother step back as he held her in his arms. Mother tried to step forward in protest, but father’s strong arms held her down and made her step back.
Father resumed his interrogation in place of Mother, who was trembling and did not leave the room.
Thus, all of Rouge’s misdeeds were brought to light and the curse was broken.
After a public appeal by at least three adult noblemen present at the scene, here own confession, and a report of the circumstances and situation, Rouge’s trial was promptly held.
The result was the crime of death.
The main charge was ‘the prolonged and deliberate use of an offensive black magic against a senior nobleman.’ There were many other charges as well, such as forgery of documents, divulging the secrets of the house she served, and impiety, but it seems that even without listing them all, her time was up.
Incidentally, that magic formation that my father used on Rouge was not exactly legal and was forbidden to be used in daily life. But because ‘a three-year-old child who was the target of the curse’s attack was cursed for about two years and was on the verge of dying when the curse was completed shortly afterwards,’ and ‘the senior nobleman who was the target of the mind control was on the verge of an unwanted divorce,’ it was recognized as a legitimate self-defense.
Rouge had cast the curse using her own eyes as a medium.
The two basic rules of Rouge’s curse are as follows:
1. The main target of the curse and mind control was “Alice.”
In order for this to work, she could not make eye contact with anyone other than the main target for the rest of her life or the spell would break.
2. As a secondary objective, it was decided that the curse would allow Rouge to influence the thoughts of “Siegmund,” “Eleanor,” and “Alphonse” so that none of them would be able to discover her plans.
However, even if the target and effect were narrowed down to this extent, the curse could not have normally been activated with a magic power of Rouge’s level. Not only that, it was also impossible to compete with high ranking nobles, the Archelaus family, who have strong magical powers.
Therefore, Rouge set up one more rule.
3. If her goals were ever achieved, she would forfeit her sight in one eye and the hearing in one ear.
She added this and bound it to her own body as a curse.
It was a high-risk, low-reward method that any sane person would never do, which was why the effect was so great. She was clearly insane.
As for the reason why she targeted me instead of my mother whom she hated, it was because I was still a child with weak magical resistance and that it would reduce the possibility of the plan being discovered as much as possible.
Additionally, she thought that with me out of the picture, she could more easily force a depressed mother to distance herself from a weakened Father.
As a backlash to breaking the curse, Rouge lost most of the vision in both her eyes and the hearing in one ear.
Furthermore, the record of her baronial lineage was completely erased, and the day before here execution, she died in a bout of hysteria in prison upon hearing about it.
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2 thoughts on “Chapter 11: Interrogation Team”
Tsk. She could have died more brutal.
Thanks for the chapter!
Ah c’mon she didn’t deserved… nah! How I’m trying to fool?! More fire!!
(Sorry about that but, that is right? “ and the day before here execution, “ this is in the last sentence from this chapt)