LTBE: Chapter 110: Crisis!

 Chapter 110: Crisis!
 In the Labyrinth Villa, Roel leaned against his chair as he exhaled deeply. From the period after lunch until now, he had a feeling like his life force was swiftly flowing through the cracks of his fingers, no matter how hard he tried to grasp at it. Through the conversation with Nora, Roel found out about the chain of events regarding the March Turmoil, as they went in this world, along with the final fates of the various characters involved…
 … but he hadn’t forgotten about the one who had yet to pass away and had even appeared right before his eyes not too long ago.
 “Felder is Bryan? This… How could this be possible?”
 Even Nora, despite her deep trust in Roel, found it hard to believe him right away. She had seen Felder with her own eyes, and that golden-haired knight had left a deep impression on her. His righteous and loyal disposition was at odds with Bryan, who was like a cold-blooded, venomous snake.
 “Roel, is it possible that you have made a mistake on this matter? Both Felder and Bryan share the same bloodline after all, so could there be a discrepancy in the results?”
 “No, I don’t think that there’s a discrepancy in the results.”
 Recalling the advice and Sorofyas’ investigation report he had heard from Mister Arwen, Roel was still rather confident about this matter.
 “The spell I used has almost no chance of going wrong. It’s stated in history that Felder killed himself and died, but as we know now, the historical records can’t be trusted anymore. Furthermore, even if we take a step back and concede that Felder did indeed kill himself, given the power and influence the Elric House wielded back then, it’s not entirely impossible for them to find some sort of abstruse ritual to resurrect him.”
 “I have heard of evil cults who possess the means to resurrect the dead, but most of them have drastic side effects, and the resurrected individual is likely to face a huge change in his personality too. Could that be the reason why the two of them are so different from one another?”
 Nora tried to build on Roel’s deduction to analyze its feasibility. They concluded that the deduction was not entirely implausible, but there was also no irrefutable evidence to prove the matter. In the end, she decided to inform her elders in the Xeclyde House regarding the matter.
 “However, as we don’t have any evidence regarding this, we can’t use this matter as a pretext to investigate the Elric House.”
 “Yes, I understand that. I wasn’t expecting to deal a blow to the Elric House through this matter either. I just thought that I should warn you that the Elrics could be more sinister than what we see on the surface.”
 Roel’s serious words brought a surge of warmth to Nora’s heart, and green light began sprouting from her head. While the two of them chatted with one another, the conversation inevitably arrived at the kiss which brought about a huge stir amongst nobles and commoners alike in the Holy Capital.
 Roel looked at the mirror in front of him, and the sight of his lips made him feel a little fidgety.
 He recalled his previous life, how he had chosen to focus on his study in his high school years and didn’t bother looking for a girlfriend right away after advancing to university either. In the end, he ended up transmigrating over to this world without having dated anyone.
 The kiss he had with Nora was his first kiss in his two lives. It couldn’t be helped that his face would flush a little when he recalled the matter.
 However, what really set his already heated cheeks ablaze was Nora’s reaction. At the start, she was still speaking calmly about the matter, saying that it was solely for his treatment. However, when she noticed the embarrassed look on his face, her breathing started growing a little heavier. She bit her lips before licking them with a look of nostalgia on her face. Then, her eyes curled into mischievous crescents as she leaned forward and whispered into his ears.
 “Speaking of which, that was my first kiss.”
 Those words made Roel’s heart shudder. He couldn’t understand why Nora was suddenly acting in such a manner, but her light breaths on his ears made him feel a little ticklish. He suddenly felt an urge to embrace her, but he eventually chose to curb himself.
 “Hm? I thought that you would pounce on me.”
 “Why would I pounce on you?”
 Roel stared speechlessly at the golden-haired girl, who was looking at him with a face that said ‘ there’s something wrong with you ’. It was almost as if she thought that all men in the world were fools who would bow down before her skirt. Such narcissism…
 Alright, I guess she does have the assets to back up her narcissism.
 Roel looked at the nearly perfect woman before him as he suddenly felt impressed with the level of self-control he had shown thus far. No matter how Nora tried to seduce him, he still managed to pull himself together in the end. Perhaps he got too used to looking at Alicia, that he was starting to build up some immunity against perfect lifeforms.
 “Does it really matter whether I pounce on you or not? Will you give yourself to me if I were to do so?”
 “Of course not. It would just provide me with the perfect excuse to step on you.”
 Nora unhesitatingly confessed her true thoughts, which made Roel widen his eyes in shock.
 “You… Can you stop setting traps for me every step of the way?”
 “But you keep rejecting me. I would really appreciate it if you would just go along with it for once, even if only to fulfill my personal interests.”
 Nora’s sigh of deep disappointment made Roel’s eyelids twitch a little. He hesitated for a long while before finally relenting a little.
 “When you say step, how do you intend it to be like?”
 “Oh? You’re really willing to play along with me? Well, I don’t really demand too much out of this either. You just have to lie down on the floor like a dog and…”
 “I refuse.”
 All it took was Nora voicing her request halfway through for Roel to utterly destroy every last bit of consideration he had for her. On the other hand, Nora, whose hopes had just barely risen due to Roel’s positive response, began sulking in dissatisfaction. However, she didn’t harp on the issue.
 The two of them continued chatting idly for a while longer before leaving the room to meet up with Alicia for a tea party. However, what Roel never expected—though he should have—was that the ‘tea party’ would be yet another brutal battlefield.
 On a table right beside a window that gave a beautiful view of the garden outside, Roel found himself pincered between Nora and Alicia. These two girls had their forks placed right in front of him, awaiting his response.
 It was no wonder why people said ‘what goes around comes around’. The tables had been turned on feeder Roel, as he found himself put in a position where he was the one being fed instead.
 As it turned out, the revelation that Roel had been feeding Alicia during mealtimes was not taken very well by Nora. The lunch earlier was still a relatively formal occasion, and Marquess Carter was present too, so it was not appropriate for her to act too casually. However, the ‘relaxing’ afternoon teatime happened to provide a perfect opportunity for her to strike.
 Of course, for someone as dominant as Nora, she would prefer to be the one feeding than to be the one being fed. With a hand placed demurely on her flushed cheek, Nora moved her fork toward Roel’s mouth with an excited twinkle in her crescent eyes.
 Unfortunately, it turned out that there was another competitor in the race too.
 Alicia couldn’t possibly overlook Nora’s behavior, so she picked up her fork and did the same thing. This left Nora feeling a little dumbfounded.
 “Miss Alicia, if my memory fails me not, don’t you have a fear of cutlery? You seem awfully comfortable with them now.”
 “Your Highness Nora, I’ve been working hard to overcome my fear. It’s still a little too early for me to use knives, but forks are still barely within my means. If it’s for Lord Brother, I’m willing to bear with the discomfort.”
 Nora and Alicia looked particularly amicable with one another. Their words were incredibly polite too, and there were warm smiles on their faces too. A pity it was that their smiles didn’t extend to their eyes.
 “Roel, this is delicious. Come, open your mouth wide and have a bite.”
 “Lord Brother, this is the first time I’m feeding you. You wouldn’t turn me down, right?”
 Faced with the two, arguably, most adorable girls in the Saint Mesit Theocracy, Roel saw his health bar depleting at an unbelievable speed. No matter how dense he could possibly be, there was no way he was naive enough to really believe that these two girls were only interested in feeding him.
 The main point here isn’t eating at all! No, it is about who I choose!
 Regardless of what Roel’s true thoughts were, the person he ate from first would be viewed as the one whom he treasured more. If he were to take either one and set her among a crowd of her female peers, he could make a decision without any hesitation at all. But this…
 It was almost as if he had a wolf behind his back and a tiger in front of him—he was completely trapped! In this dire moment, the sharp-witted Roel slapped his thigh and faced the crisis right in the face.
 “Hahaha, I didn’t have much of an appetite this afternoon, so I’m indeed a little starving at the moment.”
 Forcing a smile onto his face, Roel swiped off the food from the forks of the duo and stuffed them into his mouth together.
 “Mm, it’s not bad. Nora, can you bring me more of that yellow dessert over there? Alicia, do bring me that plate of macarons too.”
 “Ah? Oh, of course.”
 “I understand, Lord Brother.”
 The two girls blinked their eyes blankly for a moment before quickly getting to action. Just like that, the two girls began feeding him food one by one, which made Roel heave a huge sigh of relief. Everything had gone according to his plan.
 Indeed! When being placed in a situation where he was being forced to make a choice, Roel had decided to take a more dominant position so as to become the one to call the shots instead!
 Had he remained passive and allowed the two girls to act as they pleased, those two would only do it again and again until they got the answer they wanted to the question. No matter how he tried to handle the situation, it was unlikely that things would have been resolved well. However, by taking charge here, the focus had turned from a competition between the two girls into a mission to satisfy his appetite.
 Fortunately, it would appear that the two girls themselves were satisfied to see Roel swallowing down the food they were feeding to him too. The downside, however, was that such a happy ending came at a price.
 “Young master? Young master, are you alright?”
 “I’m fine, I’m fine… It’s just that I had a little too much to eat. The desserts are quite sweet, so having too many of them is a little…”
 After the tea party ended, Roel sent Nora away before he squatted by the walls of the villa and began retching.
 As these desserts were intended to go with tea, they were made slightly sweeter than normal. They were a sinful indulgence in small niblets but a sickly repugnance in large gobbles, and Roel ate enough for three in a single seating!
 “Don’t bring me anything sweet for dinner. I won’t be needing any desserts.”
 “I understand, young master. Shall I call a doctor for you?”
 “There’s no need for that. Help me keep a lookout so that Alicia doesn’t see this.”
 “Yes, I’ll do that.”
 Anna heaved a deep sigh as she thought for the first time that the young master was rather pitiful. Alicia and Nora did have a good time earlier, but Roel was left to suffer all alone, fearing that others would find out about it.
 Is this the price of philandering?
 (Affection Points +300!)
 Anna shook her head as she swore to herself to treat Roel better than before. Meanwhile, looking at the green light rising from Anna’s head, Roel found himself utterly bewildered.
 What’s going on here? Why would I gain Affection Points over this? Does she actually like to see me puke?
 The earlier tea party was truly like a battlefield to him, but he did manage to gain quite a bit out of it. Nora and Alicia’s heads were constantly green while feeding him, and all in all, they provided him with nearly 10,000 Affection Points.
 “I have saved up quite a bit of Affection Points now, so it’s about time for me to start spending them,” muttered Roel to himself.
 Currently, he had more than 200,000 Affection Points in his account. Of them, the main Affection Points supplier, Alicia, had once provided him with a wave of 50,000 Affection Points. On the other hand, Nora was also starting to contribute a greater amount too, with one instance where she gave away 3000 Affection Points shortly after they returned from the past.
 Knowing the significance behind these Affection Points, Roel heaved a deep sigh of relief as he felt that the suffering he had been through was all worth it.
 “I don’t think that either of them will hurt me anymore, so I guess I’m halfway out of danger now. As expected of me!” muttered Roel to himself in satisfaction.
Comments
Translated by StarveCleric. Edited by Welmar.