Female Warrior Prologue Volume 2: The Number is Twelve
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 7: Number, 7, Halfleaf – translated by Raylight
The half-elf slowly opened his eyes. He was slightly at a loss as to where he was at the moment, but he could smell an extremely savory aroma that made him feel a pang of hunger.
When he got up, he realized that he was inside a tent, and the wounds on his body had already been bandaged properly. He first lifted open the tent flap slightly, surveying the situation outside. About five steps away, there was a campfire, and there were three people sitting beside it. Judging from their appearances, they didn’t seem to be the ones that had been trying to capture him.
At this moment, one of the people there seemed to notice that something was odd and turned around to look in his direction.
The half-elf shrunk back for a moment and then put the tent flap back in place. However, he knew that he couldn’t possibly continue to hide and, with gritted teeth, he opened the tent and walked out.
“Oh my!” One of them gave a smile as he shouted, “You’re awake? We can eat now! Hurry and come over!”
The half-elf looked at them silently, refusing to say a word. His eyes were full of caution. He was currently pondering whether he should make a dash into the forest, for once he entered, there were few who could catch up with him…
At this moment, Carol suddenly spoke in the Elven language, saying, “I am Dancingblade. Have you heard of this name?”
The half-elf froze for a moment and stared at Carol with disbelief. At first, he was shocked as to how that person could actually speak in the Elven tongue, and then, when he realized what Carol had said, he was even more shocked to hear this name.
At one side, Cale’s eyes widened while Silvie was instead beside himself with excitement. Ever since he had learned that Carol had some ties with the elves, he had desired to ask about the matter. However, Carol was never willing to speak of anything related to elves.
“Dancingblade? I have heard of your name! But I don’t know much. The elves from the north call you their friend,” the half-elf exclaimed in surprise. His voice was soft and light, and even when he was speaking excitedly it was not shrill in the least.
“It’s good that you know me.” Carol was clear-cut as she said, “Come over and sit down.”
The half-elf hesitated for a moment, but he was unable to refuse the invitation of a friend of the elves. Thus, he went over to sit down by the campfire.
Once he sat down, a bowl of savory, hot, steaming soup was shoved in to his hands. Only at this point did he realize that he was indeed very hungry. Not caring about being cautious, he started to drink the soup sip by sip.
The soup cooked with bread, eggs, and cheese, together with hunger, made the half-elf drink three whole bowls of it in a row, despite him not having a big appetite.
Only after the half-elf put down his bowl did Carol start to ask, “What are you doing here instead of obediently staying in the elves’ territory?”
This time, she was using the human language. Though elves do not make contact with other races, the passing of time over many long years had made them all into masters of language. Their main objective was actually studying the poems and songs of every race.
The reputation of Dancingblade let the half-elf lower most of his guard, and he explained miserably, “I came to attend my mother’s funeral, but I was captured by my other relatives. T-They…”
“Wanted to capture you to sell you,” Carol continued coldly. Just as expected, the half-elf nodded his head. She growled, “Leaving the Elven Forest was an action of extreme foolishness on your part!”
The half-elf was so frightened by this growl that his whole body went rigid.
“Don’t be afraid!” Silvie immediately comforted him, saying, “Carol has a loud voice but wouldn’t hurt you.”
Seeing Silvie’s radiant smile, the half-elf finally managed to calm down a little. He was unused to someone showing intense negative emotions like anger and so on, for the elves rarely showed any negative emotions at all.
“Tomorrow, I’ll bring you back to the elven territory,” Carol straightforwardly said.
The half-elf exclaimed, “No! No way! My little brother, he is still in the hands of the Ardiniz family. If I don’t go back, it’s very likely that they will hurt him!”
“The Ardiniz family?” Cale exclaimed and then asked in doubt, “It can’t be that your mother was Leisha?”
The half-elf seemed dazed for a moment, and then he nodded.
Silvie asked in curiosity, “Cale, are you acquainted with his mother?”
Being somewhat at a loss as to what to do, Cale answered, “Leisha was my paternal grandfather’s little sister. The fact that she had a relationship with an elf before is still rather famous…”
Silvie looked at Cale and then looked back at the half-elf and said happily, “So the two of you are relatives!”
The two relatives that didn’t know each other but landed into trouble at the same time and were moreover picked up by the same person, looked at one another at a loss.
“Then, all things considered, you are Cale’s senior!” Silvie added on without much tact.
Senior… Looking at the half-elf who looked to be around the same age as him, Cale couldn’t treat him as a senior no matter how he tried, even though according to the time stated in the rumors, this half-elf was about thirty-something years old.
The half-elf looked at Cale with curiosity and said, “My relative? Nice to meet you, I am Halfleaf, Halfleaf Ardiniz. May I inquire as to what your name is?”
“Cale. I don’t usually use my family name. I’m an illegitimate child.”
After Cale said it so indifferently, he abruptly remembered something. Isn’t this elf in front of me also an illegitimate child?
“Carol, you must help them!”
Since the previous night, after learning how pitiful their plights were, with Halfleaf having a younger maternal half-brother who was still in the hands of evildoers, and with the slave contract Cale was forced to sign still being in the hands of his wicked mother, Silvie had kept bugging Carol nonstop to exact justice for them.
He was so noisy that Carol had even started to ponder seriously, Perhaps, the student that LL taught was actually Ohmygod, and Silvie was the accompanying pet?
Being LL’s former companion, how did she not know that LL had the kind of patience needed to teach a student like Silvie?
“Let me think it over!” After Carol roared, she frowned as she continued, “First, we’ll go pick the medicinal herbs, then we’ll talk.” If they didn’t complete their mission soon, she really would not have a single penny on her.
“You want to pick herbs?” Halfleaf started to ask, “What kind of herbs are you picking?”
Carol said the name of the herb, and Halfleaf nodded his head, stating, “I know where these herbs are. I’ll bring you guys over to pick them.”
Halfleaf led the way in front. His manner of advancing was extremely unique. He jumped back and forth on the trees, and he even grabbed tree branches and made use of them to swing himself forward. He rarely landed on the ground, but his speed was still way faster than any of the others.
From time to time, he would even vanish for a moment, and then appear again. At these times, his hand would frequently be grabbing a handful of mushrooms or some unknown herbs.
After walking for an entire afternoon, Halfleaf suddenly jumped off from a tree and then turned around to wait for the others to come over. He told them, “This place is the main harvesting ground of that species of medicinal herbs. You should be able to find several of them under the shade of most trees.”
“This place is also rather close to the elves’ territory.” Carol looked at Halfleaf, asking, “Are you sure that you’re really not going back?”
Halfleaf said with absolute resolution, “I would definitely not be so uncaring as to leave my little brother there alone!”
Carol raised an eyebrow.
Silvie wanted to open his mouth to beg Carol to help Halfleaf and Cale, but he was afraid that she would get angry, so he was beside himself with anxiety.
Halfleaf thanked the three of them, “Thank you all for saving me and even helping me bandage my wounds and providing food for me. Compared to your generosity, leading the way is truly a negligible amount of reciprocation. However, I really ought to be going. I hope that in the future, I will have the chance to repay everyone.”
“Where are you going?” Silvie instantly yelled, “You’re injured and being pursued by people. Following us would be safer. Carol is very strong!”
Cale shot a glance at Silvie. These words seem to sound very familiar?
Halfleaf looked at Silvie with astonishment, saying, “How could I do that? By following you, I will also put you all in danger. Moreover, I must save my little brother right now.”
“We’ll go save your little brother too!” yelled Silvie as he immediately made a decision that he wasn’t in any position to make. After that, he then added on, shouting, “And also take back Cale’s slave contract!”
Although he was a little consoled that Silvie still remembered his situation, Cale didn’t think that Silvie could make the decisions around here. His eyes darted towards Carol…
Silvie also knew this, and he hurriedly shouted, “Carol! You must help them!”
Carol’s eyebrows furrowed even deeper. However, seeing how she didn’t refuse immediately, Silvie knew that there was hope. He quickly looked at Carol with eyes full of expectation. Right now, he didn’t dare open his mouth to press her, afraid that he’d shoot himself in the foot by bugging her so much that she’d turn her head and leave.
Carol glanced at Halfleaf before her gaze shifted back to Cale. Then, she frowned lightly.
“You can ignore me.” Cale’s heart sunk, and he said expressionlessly, “You have ties with the elves, but you have nothing to do with me and have no obligation to help me. I can leave right now.”
Silvie immediately grabbed Cale’s sleeve, not letting go. This action made the latter roll his eyes and once again suspect that Silvie was actually a very tall girl.
Carol opened her mouth to inquire, “After leaving, where do you intend to go?”
Hearing this question, Silvie’s eyes turned wide. He had never really thought that Carol would abandon Cale. She wasn’t that kind of person was she?
However, Silvie abruptly realized that, in truth, he himself didn’t quite understand Carol all that much either. He merely looked to the “Warrior Queen,” which made him think that the Warrior Queen would naturally go and take care of evildoers. Of course, she wouldn’t abandon those in need either. However, he had selectively forgotten that other than the characteristics of having great strength and being loyal, there were also rumors about the Warrior Queen being cruel and cold-blooded and ruthless and such… No!
Carol is a good person! Silvie firmly believed.
Cale fell silent for a moment and then viciously replied, “Go back and slaughter the enemies that killed my father!”
Silvie’s and Halfleaf’s eyes turned wide. The former didn’t dare believe that Cale was really going to kill someone, and the latter was afraid of looking at Cale’s face that was full of hatred.
Carol indifferently said, “If that is the case, then there is nothing much which I can help you with. You can go.”
Silvie gaped, his eyes wide. He simply didn’t dare believe his own ears… Is Carol really going to abandon Cale and watch on as he kills someone?
As to this, Cale was not in the least bit surprised. He had already known, since a long time ago, that no one but himself would be able to help him.