Cruzer Jio who was currently living at 【Shanjumon Cave】felt signs of someone approaching . And it wasn’t just a single person, but a group of people heading towards his vicinity .
Apparently, he did not feel any malice from them, so he obediently sat inside the space which he calls it his room .
He could hear the sound of the footsteps getting closer, and then stops close at his location . Cruzer slowly opened his eyes to the direction of that sound and greeted them with a smile .
“Yaa, greetings my guests from yesterday . ” (Cruzer)
Hiiro’s group was standing behind Silva who guided them to this place . Cruzer who noticed the several new faces, carefully focused his line of sight on them .
However, before anyone could break the ice, Hiiro took the initiative and,
“Are you Cruzer Jio?” (Hiiro)
His eyes were those that was ascertaining something . What could he be confirming? Cruzer thought so even though he was the one in here who had a lot of questions .
“Yes . I’m certainly the person named Cruzer Jio . ” (Cruzer)
While he answered that, Cruzer immediately noticed the sword sheathed and tied on his waist .
“Are you perhaps…Hiiro-san then?” (Cruzer)
“Yeah . I came here because I heard you wanted to meet me . ” (Hiiro)
“Though I say that, I had also wanted to meet you for once because there’s something I have to tell you . ” (Hiiro)
“……I wonder what that is? I’m pretty sure this is our first time meeting with each other though?” (Cruzer)
At the very least, this was Cruzer’s first time meeting Hiiro . And yet, he had something to discuss with him . What’s the meaning of this?
“Please be relieved . It’s definitely a fact that it’s our first time meeting here . However, I know a little bit about you . ” (Hiiro)
“He’s not lying . ” (Liliyn)
“Liliyn-san… . ” (Cruzer)
Because Liliyn suddenly interjected with their conversation, Cruzer turned his gaze towards her to ascertain what exactly happened .
“After returning back home, we spoke to Hiiro about the appointment . At first, he was hell-bent on declining to come here . However, for some reason, when I mentioned your name, he immediately changed his mind . ” (Liliyn)
When the name Cruzer Jio was revealed to Hiiro, he seemed to have been agitated by it, and then began to ask questions ascertaining if what he knows was exactly the same .
Golden yellow hair, and a master blacksmithy . And finally he heard that person had a world-changing talent as a beast man, Hiiro muttered “Found you . ” and told his sudden approval to Liliyn by saying “Take me tomorrow to that person . ”
Of course, Liliyn naturally asked why, but Hiiro replied that he would be speaking it for tomorrow .
“I understand . Then may I ask a question? Why do you know me?” (Cruzer)
Cruzer stared straightly at Hiiro with serious eyes . And then, Hiiro slowly replied to him,
“You… . Are you perhaps the father of Winkaa Jio?” (Hiiro)
(TL Note: And finally the LN character finally appears . ウィンカァ can be read as Winkaa or Uinkaa . )
As if he couldn’t believe what he just heard, Cruzer gasped for a moment as his body stiffened from the shock of those words .
Just one look at his reaction proves he was right . This person is definitely that fellow’s real father . They both had the same golden yellow hair . And above all, his calm expression was very similar to that person .
And that person was a girl named Winkaa Jio that Hiiro met when he was traveling in the Humas territory with Arnold and Muir .
“Ui…nka? H-how do you know that name!?” (Cruzer)
It was obvious that he was trembling from his revelation . Although he only took a guess about it, but by looking at his reaction, Hiiro had gained more evidence than he had expected .
And similar to Cruzer, having heard of a mysterious name come out from his mouth, made his party knit their eyebrows in puzzlement .
“Hiiro, who is this Winkaa? What do you mean by those words?” (Liliyn)
As Liliyn thought it would be quicker to ask Hiiro about it rather than Cruzer, she instead received a far more shocking information .
“Winkaa Jio…It’s this guy’s daughter . ” (Hiiro)
“His daughter!? W-wait a minute . Are you saying you met Cruzer’s daughter?” (Liliyn)
“Yeah . ” (Hiiro)
His meeting with Winkaa Jio was the time when all three of them, Hiiro, Arnold & Muir took a rest in a hot spring surrounded by mountains, and within that place, there he encountered her .
A girl who wielded a large spear fell from one of the rocky mountains close to their location . Apparently, the cause was starvation, so somehow they were able to hand out some of theirs and save the girl .
The girl at that time was Winkaa Jio . For a while, Winkaa joined them in their travels, but her purpose was not journeying around the world like Hiiro .
Her purpose was to look for her father . Her purpose was to find his father by journeying the whole world and live together with him .
“W-why would that…girl…what happened to Linde?” (Cruzer)
(TL Note: I read リンデ as Linde . Feel free to make your suggestions . Although it can also be read as Rinde . )
Cruzer was very pale when he was listening to Hiiro’s story .
“Linde? If I remember correctly, that’s the name of her mother?” (Hiiro)
“That’s not exactly correct…but, Winkaa might have thought of Linde as her mother . That’s because I requested her to act like one…” (Cruzer)
He spat out those words with a bitter expression but somehow Hiiro understood what Cruzer wanted to say . He heard from Liliyn that a weapon made by Cruzer fell into the hands of a thief, and because of that weapon he lost his family .
At that time, it seems that his parents and his wife were sacrificed . Their daughter…Winkaa seemed to have been fine, but Cruzer realized that Winkaa might fall with the same fate as his family if things continue as it is, so he left the young Winkaa and entrusted it to her wife’s sister .
“Linde was my wife’s…little sister . I asked her to become her mother for Winkaa’s sake . ” (Cruzer)
So that story was true after all .
“I asked Linde not to inform Winkaa that her real mother was dead . So I’m sure that Winkaa thinks of Linde as her real mother . ” (Cruzer)
“So that explains it . However, that Linde seems to have died, though . ” (Hiiro)
“Wha!? She … . . died? Don’t tell me it’s that thief again!?” (Cruzer)
His gloomy face raised up from the momentum and leaned forward as he said those words . Instinctively, he drew a step back from his position, probably realizing his agitation .
“Nope . Winkaa said she died from an illness . ” (Hiiro)
“I-is that so… well, Linde had a weak body since the beginning so that’s quite possible…” (Cruzer)
He made painful expression filled with regret as he hanged his head in shame .
“I haven’t finished my story you know?” (Hiiro)
“When her mother died, that guy was still 7 years old I think . ” (Hiiro)
“And since then, that girl had lived a life of solitude . ” (Hiiro)
“Winkaa was………alone?” (Cruzer)
Although Winkaa told him that he was looking for her Father while traveling, who could have expected that this person was the one she had been looking for?
“That’s right . He traveled around the human continent to become an adventurer and find her father . ” (Hiiro)
“W-what have I done…” (Cruzer)
Hiiro leaked a sigh of amazement as he saw the quivering body of Winkaa’s Father .
“Since you are her father, I’m sure you know what treatment she would be experiencing in the human continent . What kind of life that guy had lived in there… . do you understand what I’m trying to say?” (Hiiro)
Of course, Cruzer’s reasons for parting with Winkaa was understandable . His judgment was the correct way that time . If he stays with her, misfortune would definitely befall her and perhaps hurt her in the process .
Thus, the best option was to release his beloved child from his grasp . It was very painful decision to make . However, he could relate to Winkaa’s intention more than anything .
So he understood what kind of life Winkaa had been living since then, a bitter life full of hardships .
“I don’t have any intentions of condemning you . However, did you consider the possibility of her going out to travel just for the sake of finding you?” (Hiiro)
“……… . I didn’t” (Cruzer)
“What an idiot” (Hiiro)
“That girl, she’s very similar to my wife…… she resembles Pia . A graceful woman who had the nature to go out and travel a lot . ” (Cruzer)
“Even though she’s a human?” (Hiiro)
Everyone except Hiiro and Cruzer was wrapped in an expression of astonishment . Naturally, Nikki and Mikazuki had an expression that they don’t understand what’s going on .
“A human…? Oi Cruzer, I understand well that you have a daughter now, but a human as your partner? Really?” (Liliyn)
Liliyn asked as the representative of the astonished group .
“Yes, Pia is a full-fledged 『Humas』” (Cruzer)
“If that’s the case . . ” (Liliyn)
“It’s as you think . Winkaa is ………a half . ” (Cruzer)
Shamoe was startled as her expression stiffened .
Mikazuki noticed her unusual behavior so she asked her . But it was understandable, Shamoe was also a half .
In other words, everyone was shocked by the fact that Winkaa, a half, a heresy to both humans and beast men, traveled around the world at the age of 7 .
The treatment of halves had hardly changed since the past and present . In several cases, they would be treated with disdain and disgust .
And added to the fact that Winkaa was traveling at the human continent alone . It was an unbelievable story for them .
Silva quietly puts his hands on Shamoe’s and smiles kindly to rest assured of it . It helped her a little, although she still felt a slight shiver, and returned a somewhat awkward smile to the worrying gaze of Mikazuki .
“… . now that you mention it, that young lady over there is also a half . I’m sorry” (Cruzer)
Cruzer seemed to have understood her state and cast his eyes downward .
“That guy is still traveling to look for you . Even now . ” (Hiiro)
“… . I see . For you and that child to have a surprising point of contact…” (Cruzer)
“It’s nothing more of a coincidence really . ” (Hiiro)
“… . that’s not it, having traveled together with you is a proof that that child appreciates you in so many ways…*sigh* I guess my blunders are still continuing even now . ” (Cruzer)
“If you think so, then go out there meet with her quickly . Stop secluding yourself in this damp and humid cellar of yours . ” (Hiiro)
A passage of time passed by for a while, no one tried to speak until Cruzer made his choice about it . And finally, a change is seen in Cruzer’s expression as his lips began to move quietly .
“…… . . could you show me your katana?” (Cruzer)
“… . ha?” (Hiiro)