Together with House-Husband, Part 2, Chapter 28 (Interlude 3-3) – Back.
Father stood up, took our hands, and started to walk.
Our father was a refined, faultless gentleman. He was awkward with children, but his normal behavior was already incredibly impressive. His profile as he pulled us along didn’t have a single trace of the weakness from earlier- It was an amazing face.
Yes, we had always been protected. He had protected us. He was by no means a tender father, but the feelings he felt for us were the real thing. Those feelings were gentle and kind, so, even when he had left on his trip, we were able to keep going.
The Holy Grail War. Victory in the war, that which the Tohsaka family desired over all else, was what I thought Father’s dream was. Living for nothing else than that purpose was natural for a magician. Throwing away everything for your dream… that was the way a magus lived.
Despite that, he was truly a good father, and he had honestly tried to live for our sakes. That’s why he went on his journey. To make sure he was prepared for a battle he might die in.
Finally, he was here. If we had to fight, he would try and shoulder this responsibility instead.
Things were hopeless like this. That was how I felt.
“What is it, Rin?”
…Is Archer… Outside? Archer is…”
“…Archer. The Servant of the Bow you two summoned. So the leftover presence when I reached that house was that…”
Ah… He was here! He was here just a little bit ago!
“Hmm. Rin, how many commands seals do you have left?”
“Huh? …Umm… Two.”
“No extras, huh. You can’t waste them. Rin, use those carefully. Losing all of them means losing your qualification as a Master… It may even mean the Servant turning their fangs on the Master.”
Archer, turn on us?
“Servants are beings drawn into reality to make a wish on the Holy Grail. It’s tyranny when that strength becomes power. Because their wish can come true, they have a purpose in choosing a master in order to win the war. So in order to abandon a powerless master, they’ll try and force them to use their command spells. That’s their lifeline. You two don’t have enough experience to survive this war. When you use up your command spells, the Servant Archer may kill you.”
My father spoke to us without turning around. I was stood shocked at the words that struck my ears.
Archer would kill us?
A deep red back, covered in blood. Something that would and could kill someone. That presence, that being, was so, so frightening… The Archer we had found that night was like a different person from the one we had been together with.
But, even so…
“No. Archer wouldn’t do something like that.”
“He would never do that.”
Suspicious of my obstinacy, Father stopped walking.
That was one thing I could not surrender.
“He wouldn’t. He wouldn’t do that. He just wouldn’t.”
“He… Always protected us!”
“…Are you sure that wasn’t just a trick?”
At that one word, I flew into a rage.
At my father, who had said it. And at myself.
Those feelings of believing in Archer. As I long as I was me, I had to protect them.
“He would never do that!!!”
I shook off the hand that held me and shouted in a loud voice. Taking advantage of my dumbfounded Father, I took Sakura’s hand from the other side.
For a moment, Sakura looked between Father and I. But then she closed her eyes and bit her lip, and came with me. We ran up the stairs.
Leaving my Father, his eyes wide, we dived into our room, Sakura, a frown on her face, jumping straight into the bed.
I stared at the command seal on the back of my right hand. Archer was alive. He was still doing the best he could.
He definitely… Couldn’t feel that. He thought… Just being here scared us.
He was sarcastic, and rude. He was always scolding us, and he was a bully, but… Archer was kind. He was so, so kind. I knew that. I knew all of that. And still.
It was my fault. I had been a child. I had been a coward.
I had lost sight of my own strength, of the feelings of saying I would walk down this path of the mage.
I… had hurt the person who saved us from loneliness so much.
I had lived my own way, as who I was. I had no doubts about doing that. I had faced things with all the strength I had, and enjoyed myself. That was fun, it was clean, it was happiness. It was a beautiful treasure.
But still… With my own hands… I had hurt the most important treasure of all…
Together With House Husband Part 2, Chapter 28, Interlude 3-3.
Happiness and joy; a life true to one’s self that she could be proud was what Tohsaka Rin had chosen. That was why at her first taste of frustration, she did not know what to do.
She lost sight of the dreams of a mage and that resolution. She felt frightened of that path… and she had hurt the person she cherished so.