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His father's sins  他父亲的罪孽

Chapter 2: Benevolence


Chapter 2 edits: 第二章修订:

-I addeded a fair bit of additional monologue/dialogue into this chapter for better character/relationship building
- 我在本章中增加了相当多的内心独白和对话,以更好地构建角色和关系

-Added a couple of extra important details (Rin actually having flashbacks of Sae)
-补充了几个额外的重要细节(Rin 实际上回忆起了 Sae)

-Didn't remove anything from the original fic

-Added an extra scene on at the end of the chapter

One thing I think the original fic is missing is building a more personal/intimate connection outside of just a king and knight relationship, so I added a more dialogue and monologue to this chapter. Also, I added an extra scene onto the end of this chapter to show more of how Rin sees Yoichi since it wasn't covered enough in the original work imo (also thought it needed more funny moments of Yoichi freaking out wondering if Rin is actually going to kill him 🤣)

Enjoy! 尽情享受!

Chapter Text 章节正文

"You should try listening to me for a change, your grace," Taro clicks his tongue as he places a bandage about the gash on Yoichi's arm.
"您或许该试着听听我的意见,陛下," Taro 咂舌道,同时为Yoichi手臂上的伤口缠上绷带。

"It appears Tanaka has a bit of a temper," the king says with an unbothered smile.

"You're going to end up dead at this rate, your grace."

In fact, Itoshi Rin wasn't the first person who'd attempted to take Isagi Yoichi's life. In the short tenure of his reign, there had been five other such attempts, one of which had resulted in Yoichi's first near-death experience.
事实上,Itoshi Rin并非首个试图夺取Isagi Yoichi性命的人。在他短暂的统治期间,已有五次类似企图,其中一次差点让Yoichi经历首次濒死体验。

"I need to prove I'm not my father," Yoichi explains, "If I can reason with one such as him, if I could change his mind... I could make an example out of him. Am I right, Taro?"

"Well... If you so wish, your grace."

"Thanks for your support," king Isagi replies dryly.

"His grace does require some support, everyone else wants him dead."

Yoichi pauses, feeling slightly irked by Taro's sarcasm. It was quite typical of him to behave as such... Often far too sassy for a king's advisor.
Yoichi顿了顿,对 Taro 的讽刺感到些许不悦。他总是这样……作为国王的顾问,未免太过尖酸刻薄了。

The silence lingers as Yoichi recalls his encounter with Rin in the archives. Flashing steel, a knight wearing his king's guards garb attempting to stab him in the back, and those eyes... Yoichi felt a bit embarassed recalling how damn beautiful Rin had looked, swinging that sword around the way he did, face crinkled up, frustratedly, almost cutely—and those fucking eyes of his.

Yeesh. 哎呀。

"Your grace, the wound has been tended to. Will there be anything else you need of me?"

"Send him to me, Taro. Tomorrow. He'll assist with my weekly outing."

Taro pauses, clearly hesitating at the bizarre request. "... Your grace. I'm not sure it would be wise."

Isagi shifts in place and grins, now toying with the bandage on his arm.
Isagi 挪了挪位置,咧嘴一笑,开始摆弄手臂上的绷带。

"Wise? Oh, no. Certainly not. Wise is not exactly my style, though, is it, Taro?"

"... Well... That's true, your grace."

Day 2 第二日

The following day, Rin arrives at the king's chambers by Yoichi's summon, knocking thrice on the door. He steps inside when he's bid to do so. Yoichi was apparently still being dressed for the day.

"Rin," Yoichi says as his shirt is buttoned, "We're going into town today."

"Fine," Rin grunts back. “好的,”Rin咕哝着回应。

"No resistance? No questions?"

Rin simply stands in his place quietly and watches on as the king is dressed... Dressed in an absurd amount of clothing, really. The knight takes note of a bizarre number of coin purses being tied at his hip as well.
Rin 只是静静地站在原地,注视着国王被穿上... 真的是一层又一层的衣物。骑士还注意到,他的腰间系上了数量异常多的钱袋。

As it would happen, the newest member of the king's guard was about to find out about Yoichi's weekly outing... A ritual of sorts.
正如即将发生的那样,国王卫队的新成员即将发现 Yoichi 每周的外出... 某种仪式。

Not long later, Rin was following Yoichi off the castle grounds and down into the capital city on foot. They made their way through the wealthiest end of town, passing through the merchant's sect and fishing port by the ocean, before they ended up in one of the poorest, if not the poorest, end of town.

"I always bring a king's guard with me when I do this, but not for protection."

"I didn't ask, idiot-king. What is all this about?"

Yoichi, who's in the lead, stops to bash the mud off his boots, then continues onward.

"You'll find out. Just watch."

When they reach a certain point, the king stops in his tracks. He tugs a ring off his finger and hands it over to someone, a poor woman with a young child cradled in her arms who appear to be homeless.

"Take it, please," he says to her, but she doesn't move and simply stares at him in silent shock, eyes bulging. The woman's frail body lingers firm in its place and she begins to tremble, so he gently tosses the jewelry over to her. The king watches on as she reaches for it with a quivering hand, where he then nods, smiles, and continues on his way. Only a few more steps, though, before he stops again.

Another ring is removed from his finger and tossed to another person.

They press onward. Not much further up the road and all of Yoichi's jewelry has already been removed from his body.

The pair proceed deeper down into the slums, an area of town Rin is more than familiar with, having lived there briefly himself after Sae's passing. The next person receives a shirt from Yoichi, another receives a cloak, some recieve gold, and on and on and on it went until the king had given away every article of clothing from his body and every coin he'd brought, save for his linen underclothes.

"This is what you're here for, Rin."

The knight glares on in disbelief as the king removes his shoes and gives them away, too.

"You're on piggy-back duty today."

"I will not be doing that," the knight replies hotly.

"You'd come all the way down here with me and have me walk all the way back up to the castle without shoes? Come now, don't be so inconsiderate."

Rin stands for a moment, eyeing up the king in all his unclothed glory. Inconsiderate? he thinks bitterly, wondering why the hell this idiot-king hadn't properly informed him of why he was being dragged out into this folly in the first place so he couldn't simply say no. Rin then begrudgingly hikes the king of rags up and onto his back.
Rin 站立片刻,目光扫过国王那赤裸裸的荣耀。不顾他人感受?他苦涩地想,纳闷这个白痴国王为何没提前告知他为何被拖入这场荒唐事,好让他能干脆拒绝。Rin 然后不情愿地将衣衫褴褛的国王背起。

"Idiot-king, why the hell would you give your shoes away? At least keep those."

"Most of the poor don't have shoes. I can buy another pair easily, they cannot. And it's not like it's that hard for you to carry me anyway."

Rin plods on through the muddy streets, back toward the castle the way they'd come down.
Rin 踏着泥泞的街道,缓缓返回城堡,沿着他们下山的路。

"Ride a horse, then." “骑马吧。”

"I don't want to look down on them. You know, I do this for two reasons. The first is to help some of the poor, even if it's only a small number of them. The second is to earn their respect. A king is not truly a king if he doesn't have the respect of his people, and I don't want to make myself look like a pompous asshole riding some fancy steed through the streets, y'know?"

"You're an idiot. Parading yourself around like this only makes you look like a fool."

Yoichi laughs softly at this, the sound of his laughter somehow not as unpleasant a thing to Rin as he would have hoped.
Yoichi 轻声笑了起来,他的笑声不知为何并没有像他希望的那样让 Rin 感到不快。

"I'm sorry about your brother," Yoichi says quietly, "He seemed like a good guy. He didn't deserve his fate. My father, he... I don't understand why he did what he did."
"我很遗憾关于你哥哥的事," Yoichi 轻声说道,"他看起来是个好人。他不该有这样的命运。我父亲,他……我不明白他为什么要那样做。"

Though Yoichi didn't mean to provoke him, the statement only seems to bother Rin, the knight's hands clenching in against Yoichi's legs as he masks his fury.

"I don't need your sympathy," Rin snaps. "The tyrant king was just that, and my brother paid the ultimate price for ever choosing to enter into that man's service in the first place."

They're now on their final stretch back up to the castle, the sun dipping below the horizon behind it, casting the building in molten gold.

"Sympathy is not what I'm offering you. I simply want you to know that I do care, that's all. I know Sae tried to leave the king's guard, but did you ever find out why?"

Of course he knew why. What kind of question was that, even? The question pisses Rin off, not only because it assumes Rin wasn't paying attention to his own brother, but also because...

Rin remembers Sae, bowed pathetically before thousands of people in the capital city. The boy had never seen his older brother look like this before—his hair was a mess, skin dirty, and his eyes... Sadness in Sae's eyes that Rin had never seen the likes of before. Rin believes the tyrant king must've detained Sae, but more than all that, Rin remembers Sae's last words more than anything else...
Rin记得Sae,在首都成千上万的人面前卑微地弯腰。这个男孩从未见过他的哥哥这副模样——头发凌乱,皮肤肮脏,而他的眼睛... Sae眼中那种Rin前所未见的悲伤。Rin相信暴君国王一定扣留了Sae,但更重要的是,Rin对Sae的临终遗言记忆犹新...

"Rin, if you're out there, I want... I want you to know I'm sorry. Stay strong for your big brother. Live."

Just remembering Sae's last words was painful beyond belief for him, but Rin had been living in hell every single day of his life since that fateful day. And the most painful thing about all this was that Rin couldn't help but blame himself for Sae's execution.

"Was he your only family?"

Now back on the castle grounds, Rin pauses near the large entry door leading inside the castle, persistently silent following the king's question. Just as Yoichi is about to ask it again, he's promptly dropped down onto the ground behind him with a thud.

"Your grace." “陛下。”

The king makes a point in ignore the rough treatment. He gets to his feet slowly, rubbing at his lower back to dull the ache.

"Thanks for your help, Rin. I'll have you help me next week, too."

"Get someone else to help you next time, idiot. I have no need to assist you in this pointless folly."

Rin's eyes pass over the figure of the king who now stands before him. He's shoeless, mostly unclothed, and dirty. The man did not look very kingly in his present state, not one bit.

"Consider it a team bonding experience, Rin."

"We are not a team. You damn fool."

Rin jerks around, facing away, readying himself to head back into the castle, but Isagi halts him with another question.

"You know black and gold are not my house colors, correct?"

Rin lingers for a moment, then turns back around and stares in disbelief at idiot-king Isagi.
Rin 停顿片刻,然后转过身来,难以置信地盯着蠢国王 Isagi。

"I don't fucking know your house colors, moron. And I don't care. Do you know when to shut up?"

Yoichi seems entirely unbothered by Rin's snarkiness, a fact that only serves to somehow piss him off even more. He ignores Rin's comments and continues on to make his point.

"The king and all those in his service, including his king's guard, all wear black and gold. Not the house colors of house Isagi. In fact, no one in the castle is permitted to wear those colors."

"I didn't ask," Rin insists. He flips around on his heels and makes to move away again, but it would seem the king is not finished.

"We wear black because we mourn them," Rin hears.

"Not my family. No... We don't mourn them. We mourn those who died during my father's reign... Those who still continue to die because of his influence."

Silence ensues as Rin lets what Yoichi had just said wash over him. Mouring those who died during his father's reign. In that moment, Rin couldn't help it when his own brother's face flashed into his mind.

And this king Isagi—this Yoichi—He's an oddity, isn't he? What reason does he have to do such things? Mourning people of the lower class was not a thing most nobles would choose to do, let alone the king himself. It's most likely for appearances, Rin thinks.

Yoichi hears only one other thing from Rin before the knight makes his way back into the castle:

"I didn't fucking ask."

Day 9 第九天

Following a day of patrols assisting the city guards, Rin pulls into the throne room to present a trial before the king. He's found out the king prefers to pass judgment himself, even on trivial matters such as this one. The criminal in question is thrown to the floor before Yoichi's throne. Behind Rin, a girthy nobleman hastily bows, necklaces of gold clattering as he moves.

"What are the crimes this man is charged with?" the king asks of his king's guard, eyes carefully sweeping the one who's been presented before him.

"This man stole from me!" Isagi hears a quivering voice, not from Rin but from the nobleman standing behind him.

"You are not the one I'm addressing," the king says sternly to the plump nobleman. The man's upper lip curls up in a grimace and Yoichi's attention is brought back to Rin.

"The poor man attempted to steal from this one," Rin explains, motioning backward at the nobleman behind him.

"He must be lashed! Killed for his crimes! How dare this swine lay his hands on me?" the nobleman shouts up to the king. He then leans forward and spits on the poor man on the floor before him.

King Isagi watches on quietly as the nobleman throws his tantrum. Calculating. Yoichi is an excellent judge of character and always takes a person's character into account in bringing his justice. And in this case, one didn't need to be an excellent judge of character to see this nobleman is a pompous prick.

"What's your name?" Yoichi asks, though the deep blue eyes of his are trained steadily on the frail criminal on the floor before him, not on the rich man.

"Your grace would address this man instead of me? This... This criminal? This scum?"

The nobleman is now noticeably upset. He continues to ramble on his displeasure, until...

Thud. 砰。

The king's guard's fists is brought up and meets with the man's face.

"Shut your damn mouth," Rin growls at the man.
"闭上你的臭嘴," Rin 对着那人咆哮。

"You... Punched me?" Now visibly outraged, the nobleman's face reddens, contorting into an unsightly sneer before he's punched once again.
"你...打我?" 贵族此刻怒不可遏,面色涨红,扭曲成一副丑陋的讥笑,随即又挨了一拳。

This time he shuts up.

Yoichi smirks at Rin, clear amusement passing over his features before he moves his attention back down to the criminal on the floor.
Yoichi 对 Rin 微微一笑,脸上明显流露出戏谑之情,随后又将注意力转回到地板上的罪犯身上。

"What's your name?" he repeats to the criminal.

"Y-yer grace... My name... Asahi..."

"Did you attempt to steal from this man, Asahi?"

The poor man, clearly starving, thin, and weak, nods his head slowly, frail body trembling at the effort.

"Yer grace, I was only hungry..."

Of course you are... Yoichi thinks bitterly, Everyone in my damned father's kingdom is still starving.
当然你是... Yoichi 苦涩地想,我那该死的父王的王国里,每个人仍在挨饿。

"Asahi, you'll return what you've stolen from this man here," the king says. He pulls a ring off his finger and hands it to Taro beside him, who makes his way down to place it into Asahi's hand.

"Sell that. It will keep you fed for quite a while if you don't squander the money." Yoichi then motions back at the nobleman as he continues. "And you will work for this man in his personal service to repent for your crimes."
卖掉它。如果你不挥霍这笔钱,它足够让你维持一段时间的生计。Yoichi 随后向贵族示意,继续说道:“而你,将为这位先生提供私人服务,以此赎罪。”

King Isagi now finally addresses the nobleman. "You," he says with another gesture, this one more mocking, "Will hire Asahi into your personal service. He will work for you for one full year as repentance for his crimes. You will provide him with basic needs such as food, clothing, and a place to sleep during this time."
国王Isagi 终于转向贵族,用更加嘲讽的手势说道:“你,将雇佣朝日进入你的私人服务。他将在你这里工作整整一年,以赎其罪。在此期间,你需为他提供基本的生活需求,如食物、衣物和住所。”

Of course, the nobleman clearly does not like this one bit.

"Feed him and... clothe him? Your grace has clearly lost his mind. Why would I do such things for a criminal? For a... For a pig such as this one? A lowly scum—"

"You are fat, rich, and entitled. Which one of you is really the pig here? It won't cost you much at all to care for him. You'll do as I say."

"I will not do these things! The crown will pay me—"

"The crown will not do shit. Don't forget my title you scum. It's your grace. If you disobey me, I'll have you punished and thrown in prison. Your greed will be your downfall. Now out with you."

Yoichi meets with Rin's gaze after he says this, but only for a short moment, before he nods his head sharply. At the king's signal, the knight hauls both men off and out of the throne room.
Yoichi 说完这话后与 Rin 对视了一眼,但仅是短暂一瞬,随即他猛地点了点头。在国王的示意下,骑士将两人拖走,离开了王座厅。

"Your grace," Yoichi hears from Taro, "An... Odd judgement call if I may be so bold."
"阁下," Yoichi 听到 Taro 说,"恕我直言,这...是个奇怪的判决。"

"Taro, I honestly don't care what you think of my judgements."

"... I know. Your grace."

"The rich would hoard their wealth and watch everyone beneath them suffer and starve before lending a single hand to help. It's better this way, Taro. Asahi will not starve to death, and the king was... Quite frankly amused by the fat nobleman's displeasure."

"... I... I see, your grace."

"I do what I can to help them but I'm a busy man. The poor will always require the crown's assistance. It's a humanitarian matter, Taro."

"Your grace." "阁下。"

"What do you actually wish to say to me, Taro? Out with it."

"Your grace... With all due respect, you will make enemies with the wrong people making these brazen decisions. Not all your grace's judgements are such... In fact, I do believe your grace is an excellent critical thinker, a profound judge of character, and quite often his grace's judgements are fair and just... When it comes to the poor, though..."

"They need my help. I care not for the rich anyhow, Taro."

"... I am aware. Your grace."
"... 我明白,陛下。"

Day 28 第 28 天

Rin hears word of a rumor around the castle spoken amongst the other king's guard.
Rin 在城堡中听到了一些传闻,这些传闻在其他国王的卫兵之间流传。

In king Isagi's spacious ensuite bathroom, he has a bathtub, vast in size and flush-mounted to the floor. Every night, Yoichi would take his bath in said tub—he'd be in his bathroom for normally about an hour at a time at the same time each night just after sunset, away from his room door and from his door guards.

Most guards have no desire to help king Isagi anyway, so they never offer him much assistance.

Assassins would often break in through the window in his bathroom at this time. It had happened a fair amount of times since the prince had ascended to kinghood, apparently. The rumors did say that Isagi Yoichi is quite skilled with his dagger, though, and that he's capable enough that he'd managed to thwart those assassination attempts himself so far.
刺客们常趁此时从浴室窗户闯入。自王子登基为王以来,这种情况已发生多次。传闻称,Isagi Yoichi的匕首技艺相当了得,且他能力出众,至今已成功挫败了这些暗杀企图。

On the 28th day since striking a deal with king Isagi, Rin does not go back to his quarters to sleep. Instead, he makes his way up to the king's room, still fully garbed in his knight's robes.
与国王Isagi达成协议后的第 28 天,Rin并未返回自己的寝室就寝,而是身着骑士长袍径直走向国王的房间。


Yoichi drops himself into the hot water in his bath and unleashes a drawn-out sigh of relief.

The one thing Yoichi and his father had in common was their love for bubble-baths. Having inherited his father's room, the young man frequently made use of the king's very graciously-sized ensuite, which included a vast bathtub that was mounted flush with the tiled floor.

Well, unfortunately for Yoichi, he wasn't always able to fully enjoy this otherwise wonderfully enjoyable thing. The assassins loved to visit Yoichi during his bath time, you see. He didn't fully enjoy his tub time the way he used to, but, well, he was stubborn, and the assassins couldn't keep him from his tub.

So now there he sat, 28 days following his deal with Itoshi Rin, in his bathtub, enjoying a fragrant bubble bath.
于是此刻,他坐在浴缸里,距离与Itoshi Rin的交易已过去 28 天,正享受着芳香的泡泡浴。

Unfortunately for the young king, bath time was interrupted yet again by another assassin climbing in through his window. The man was quiet and light-footed, but Yoichi is always fast to react.

The king leaps from his bubble-bath and shoots his hand out to grab at his dagger, however, he only finds air where the weapon would normally sit.

Oh shit. 哦,该死。

Apparently he'd forgotten to bring his dagger into the bathroom this time... He swears at his own stupidity under his breath as he dodges an attack.

Even in his slick nakedness, the king is quite agile. He's in good shape, a contrast to most noblemen, and well-practiced in all manners of self-defense. He dodges several fast attacks from the assassin without much effort and loops around his ensuite, away from the assassin, as he makes for the doorway. A blade flies by him, barely grazing his neck skin, and he winces at the sharp pain.

The injury throws him off balance, wet feet slipping on tiles as he topples forward face-first. Panic immediately grips him... He's nowhere near where he needs to be to reach his dagger, and now he's in a very vulnerable position.

Now, if Yoichi was alone... He'd certainly have been killed right then and there.

But he wasn't alone. 但他并非孤身一人。

The assassin raises one arm above his head in an attempt to finalize his deed. However, Yoichi notes an oddity:

The man's hand clutching his dagger drops to the floor.

The next thing that happens: a fountain of blood squirts out and coats the now kneeling king as he's decapitated. His breath barely squeezing from his lungs, Yoichi watches on as the assassin's severed head rolls across the floor toward him. The body before him goes limp and lifeless, hitting the floor with a loud thud.

"You...?" "你...?"

King Isagi's eyes become wide as shock grips around his neck. There's blood dripping from his naked torso now and a pool of crimson is collecting on the floor beneath his knees.

Yoichi knows he should've expected this to happen, however, he still finds himself surprised.
Yoichi 知道他本该预料到这一幕,然而,他仍感到意外。

The tip of Rins blade finds the centre of his neck and he rocks back instinctively, away from the blade's sharpness.
Rin 的刀尖直指他的颈中央,他本能地向后仰,避开刀锋的锐利。

"Rin... You saved me..." “Rin... 你救了我...”

"Saved you, yes..." Rin presses his weapon in a little further, satisfaction curling in his gut as Yoichi's face reflects his terror.
"救了你,没错..." Rin 将武器再推进几分,满意地感受到腹中的快意,因为 Yoichi 的脸上映出了他的恐惧。

"Only because your life is mine. This is the moment you die, Isagi Yoichi."
"只因你的命是我的。此刻便是你命丧之时,Isagi Yoichi。"

King Isagi is indeed surprised to find this man now standing before him. However, he's neither a coward nor a weakling, and he doesn't falter in the man's presence. Showing such weakness in the face of death would mean bringing shame to himself in his final moments.
国王 Isagi 确实惊讶于眼前这人的出现。然而,他既非懦夫也非弱者,面对此人毫不退缩。在死亡面前显露软弱,意味着在生命的最后一刻自取其辱。

"Then do it," Yoichi says, his voice firm and determined. "Fucking kill me, you damned revenger. Take your revenge."

Rin leans forward a little... Only a little. Vengeance is this close, only a hair's breadth away. He can't pass up this opportunity, not at this time of night while they're alone.

Yet... He's clearly hesitating.

"Do it you mother fucker." Yoichi's fingertips hover precariously above the floor beneath them, barely touching into the assassin's blood. His fingers tremble slightly but his conviction does not waver.
"动手吧,混蛋。" Yoichi 的指尖危险地悬停在地板上方,几乎触及那刺客的血迹。他的手指微微颤抖,但决心丝毫未减。

"Do it," he urges, deep blue eyes flashing with pride as they stare intently at Rin's unmoved weapon.
"动手," 他催促道,深蓝色的眼眸中闪烁着自豪,紧盯着 Rin 那纹丝不动的武器。

The opportunity is there for him to take, yet, Rin's blade holds firm in place, blood dripping off steel. Yoichi is noting Rin's clear hesitation. The fact that he's still alive would only mean...
机会就在眼前,然而,Rin 的刀刃依旧稳稳地停在原处,血滴从钢刃上滑落。Yoichi 注意到了 Rin 明显的犹豫。他还活着,这意味着...

The steel moves in slightly, ever so slightly, and the knight's jaw clenches. He stares on as his blade touches the skin and sinks inward, lacertaing the smoothness on Yoichi's neck... Only a little. Not very much. The anticipation is ravishing him now and his heart races, but something feels wrong.

Yoichi's facial expression has become blank, in contrast to the determination it had shown on it only moments before. Then, his body racks with a shudder and he falls forward, completely limp. Rin's arm shoots out to catch him, just barely in time.

Shock, perhaps... Rin thinks as he lowers his blade, examining the king's unconscious body. He notes the man's skin sporting an unusual pallor and sweat beads on his brow and neck. Yoichi should be cold, yet he's sweating quite profusely.

One of Rin's hands moves across Yoichi's pale, sickly skin, and fingertips brush against a single fresh wound on Yoichi's neck. Rin moves the naked body to the side, presenting the neck to him so he can examine what he's found.

The fresh cut on the king's slender neck immediately screams the clarity of the situation. He notes veins of purple tendrils licking out from the wound.

King Isagi's condition is critical, Rin now realizes.

Poison... Rin thinks bitterly, A coward's weapon.
毒药... Rin 苦涩地想,懦夫的武器。

Despite the ideal opportunity to kill Yoichi and exact his revenge presenting itself, the moment feels sour. It feels wrong, but Rin doesn't understand why. After all, in the past, he'd found himself fantasizing about killing Isagi Yoichi in absolutely any way possible, under any circumstance.
尽管杀死 Yoichi 并报仇雪恨的绝佳机会摆在眼前,这一刻却让人感到酸楚。感觉不对劲,但 Rin 不明白为什么。毕竟,过去他曾无数次幻想过在任何情况下,以任何方式杀死 Isagi Yoichi。

He doesn't know why, but the knight doesn't find himself slitting the unconscious king's throat, strangling him to death, nor plunging his weapon straight into the heart of his prey...

Perhaps he had some single shred of honor left in him... One that would tell him not to murder a man in his bathroom, nor to kill an unconscious person with no way to defend themself.

So, instead of killing Yoichi, Rin picks the assassin's dagger up off the floor to examine the poison coating it. He now knows which type of poison the metal was treated with. Itoshi Rin now holds Isagi Yoichi's life in his hands.
因此,Rin没有选择杀死Yoichi,而是从地板上拾起刺客的匕首,检查其上的毒药涂层。他现在知道了这金属被涂上了哪种毒药。Itoshi Rin此刻掌握着Isagi Yoichi的性命。

Yoichi will inevitably die, but Rin decides that this will not be the moment it happens. The king's life is his to take and only his, after all.

So he then resolves to act.

He could draw the poison from the king's wound with his mouth, but doing so would only buy the man minutes... Maybe minutes. Nothing more than that. The castle most likely had a well-stocked apothecary at its disposal, so rather than waste his time with first-aid, Rin lifts the limp body of the king off the bathroom floor and wraps it in his king's guard cloak.

You'll die, Isagi Yoichi... But not today.
你会死的,Isagi Yoichi...但不是今天。

Not like this. 并非如此。

With the dying Yoichi clutched tight in his arms, Rin dashes off into the halls of the sleeping castle.

Day 34 第 34 天

The king finally rouses to consciousness. Initially, he's confused, blinking out of the daze of sleep.

Then, Yoichi remembers... He'd barely brushed with death... How long had it been since that night? He couldn't recall, but there is one thing he immediately takes note of.

There's a lone king's guard who seems to be standing watch. It's then that he recalls Rin saving his life.

"Rin," Yoichi addresses his king's guard, "You... You saved me."
"Rin," Yoichi 对国王的护卫说道,"你...你救了我。"

"Only because your life belongs to me, Isagi Yoichi. Not to any assassins."
"只因你的命属于我,Isagi Yoichi。不属于任何刺客。"

The king finds himself smiling anyways, despite himself and despite Rin's threats. He'd barely escaped death this time... It was his closest brush with death he'd had yet. He'd never been poisoned before and he knows he wouldn't have made it out of that night alive without Rin's interference. It's all thanks to the man who now stands before him that he still draws breath.
国王发现自己不由自主地微笑起来,尽管内心抗拒,也尽管 Rin 的威胁。他这次几乎死里逃生...这是他迄今为止最接近死亡的一次。他从未中过毒,也知道若非 Rin 的干预,那晚他绝无生还可能。全靠眼前这位男子,他才能继续呼吸。

"How can I ever repay you for saving me, Rin?"

"By dying." Rin promptly whips his blade out and presents it between them. He paces in closer, eyes carefully trained on Yoichi like a predator, however, the king is even more unbothered by him this time than he had been on night 28. He carefully watches the steel inch closer to the bandage on his neck, however... He feels no fear whasoever despite Rin's looming weapon.
"去死吧。" Rin 迅速抽出刀刃,横在他们之间。他步步逼近,目光如猎食者般紧盯着 Yoichi,然而,这次国王对他的无动于衷比第 28 夜时更甚。他仔细观察着那钢刃缓缓逼近自己颈部的绷带,尽管如此……面对 Rin 悬在头顶的武器,他丝毫不感到恐惧。

"You won't kill me, Rin."

It's another clear opportunity for Rin to take his life, yet the knight falters again, even faster than he had on night 28.
这是Rin再次夺取生命的绝佳机会,然而骑士又一次犹豫了,甚至比第 28 夜时还要迅速。

"Not today, idiot-king. Not until you can defend yourself. You'll fight me fair-and-square."

"Fight you?" Yoichi finds himself laughing at the proposition. "Oh, no. I won't be doing that."

Rin leers at king Isagi as he sheaths his sword.
Rin 将剑收入鞘中,斜眼瞥向国王 Isagi。

"You'll overwhelm me in an instant and I'll be dead anyway, Rin. If I'm going to die by your hand I'd rather you just did it quickly, without humiliating me first."

Rin's narrow-eyed glare only intensifies when he hears this. "You don't get to choose how you die. Only I do."
听到这话,Rin 的眼神愈发凌厉。"你没有资格选择死法,只有我能决定。"

"Well... Sorry, Rin, but I will not be fighting you."
“嗯... 抱歉,Rin,但我不会与你交手。”

Rin then wordlessly turns his back on the king after this exchange, not another word said.
Rin 在这番对话后默然转身背对国王,再无一句言语。

Peculiar... king Isagi thinks to himself, Why do you hesitate? Why have you suddenly changed your mind? Why won't you kill me unless I fight you? Is this the way of a revenger? You're an odd one, Rin, that's for sure.
奇怪... 国王 Isagi 暗自思忖,为何你犹豫不决?为何你突然改变主意?为何除非我与你战斗,否则你不愿杀我?这就是复仇者的行径吗?你确实是个异类,Rin,这一点毋庸置疑。

Odd, yes... Yet you've saved me from certain death.

And as it would happen, the span of time their deal marked had concluded. It's been 34 days since Rin had taken his post as a king's guard... Since he'd made a deal with the king.
而巧合的是,他们交易约定的时间期限已经结束。自Rin担任国王护卫以来,已经过去了 34 天...自从他与国王达成协议以来。

And Itoshi Rin had still not inflicted his vengeance upon Isagi Yoichi's life.
然而,Itoshi Rin仍未对Isagi Yoichi的生命施加报复。

Day 37 第 37 天

Rin is by himself in the training courtyard, his blade thumping against the practice mannequin as he goes through his drills.

One. Two. Up. Down. Right. Left. Down. Left. Up. Left. Right.

His sword darts rapidly in any direction he sends it with ease. Rin is naturally very strong and weilding a blade has always come as second nature to him. But he also knows the importance of keeping himself in peak physical condition—slacking off was not something Rin would ever allow himself to do.

"Rin." "Rin。"

He whips around, startled by the sudden voice from behind him. It's Yoichi, standing there watching him very intently.

"You? The hell do you want?"

"I was just watching... Sorry if I startled you. I just wanted to thank you again for saving me the other night, seriously... I don't know if I would've made it out of that one alive if not for your assistance."
“我只是在一旁看着... 如果吓到你了,我很抱歉。我只是想再次感谢你那晚救了我,真的... 如果不是你帮忙,我可能没法从那场危机中活下来。”

"Don't bother with the sentiment. As I've said before, I'll save you so I can kill you myself when I wish to do so."

"Yeah, you did mention that. Why not kill me right now, then?" Yoichi asks, crossing his arms and leaning against the pillar beside him.

Rin's eyes narrow into a hard glare that's cold as ice. He doesn't say anything in return but instead he begins to pace toward Yoichi.

The king immediately regrets his suggestion. He finds himself wondering why the hell he's so stupid, why he had to provoke this man as such when he may have gotten off easy today. As Rin approaches him, Yoichi slowly steps back.

"I—I mean... You said you wanted me to fight you, right?"
“我——我是说... 你说过想让我和你打一场,对吧?”

"You turned down the offer like the idiot you are, so perhaps I should just kill you here and now, instead."

His next step behind him, Yoichi's foot strikes with a rock on the ground and he falls backward, landing square on his back. When Rin is hovering over top of him, the menacing edge of his blade is swept above Yoichi, casting an ominous shadow in the glow of the dying daylight.

The king's fingers grip grass as he stares at Rin's sword catching the orange light of the evening sun. He's choking on the words that are dangling in his throat. Was Rin actually going to kill him now?

"Okay, I'm sorry Rin... I... I'm a total idiot, but I was really hoping you wouldn't kill me... If you're actually going to do it, I'll accept my fate as it is. The terms of our deal... If I couldn't change your mind about me after one month, then... Then I'd let you kill me and take your revenge... But... I actually want to break the terms of our original deal."

Rin cocks his head irritably. "What? Break the terms? You're in no position to do such a thing."

"I know... The thing is, though... You have already made up your own terms. Only you get to choose how I die and when I die? That was never part of the original deal we made. So if you want to fight me, I'll fight you... But under one condition of my own."

Rin listens to the rambling Yoichi, though his blade does not move from it's place at the king's neck, a fact Yoichi is painfully aware of.

"I want you to train me. Train me so when we do finally fight I'll stand a chance against you. As I am now I'll be slaughtered like a pig, so if that was the case, you might as well just kill me unarmed instead."

Rin lowers his sword, eyebrow raising as he absorbs Yoichi's offer. Train him.
Rin 放下剑,眉头一挑,接受了 Yoichi 的提议。训练他。

For some reason, the idea absolutely revolts him to no end, though he doesn't fully understand why. Is it the idea of training his mortal enemy that disgusts him—of training someone he hates with his entire existence that seems so vile?

Or is it... The idea of training Yoichi specifically that he hates?
还是说... 他讨厌的是训练 Yoichi 这个特定的想法?

He briefly glances at the king's slender hands with grass tensely pulled in the grip between his fingers. The idea of those delicate, uncalloused hands holding a sword—no, not just holding a sword—the idea of those hands becoming irrevocably stained with the blood of the dead, is vile and disgusting to him in ways he never thought possible. The knight swiftly turns away from Yoichi in an attempt to banish the distaste that's curling in his gut, returning his steel to its sheath as he does so.

"I cannot train you." “我不能训练你。”

Yoichi's breath catches. "What? W-why—"

"You're weak. Perhaps not as weak as most others of your status, but still, weak. You're as light as a feather and those arms of yours are like twigs I could snap in half. You're competent enough with a dagger, yes, but to weild a full-sized sword is another matter entirely."

"I could do it! I really could... If it meant you'd train me..."

"You don't understand, not one bit, you damn fool. Do you even know what the hell you're saying, idiot-king?"

Rin hears Yoichi shifting behind him, most likely getting up off the ground. He finds he can't bear this bizarre exchange they're having any longer.

"If one wishes to take up the sword, he needs to understand what exactly it means to do that. To hold a blade in your hands means you yourself are becoming the god of death. Idiot-king, tell me, do you think yourself capable of taking my life?"

Yoichi is now beside Rin, gazing at the other man with his sorrowful big blue eyes. When Rin looks back at him he immediately averts his eyes... Because finding such a thing beautiful—finding Yoichi's eyes beautiful—it disgusts him entirely, knowing who those eyes belong to. Knowing who he'd inherited them from.

"No, Rin... I really don't think I could do it."

"If you're incapable of taking down your enemy, of destroying them... You have no right to hold a sword in your hands at all."

Rin then makes for the courtyard's exit, entirely ignoring the strong urge possessing him to look back. Because for him, looking back here would mean turning his back on his own principles... On everything he now stood for. Everything he exists for.
Rin 接着朝庭院出口走去,完全无视了内心强烈的回头欲望。因为对他来说,在这里回头就意味着背弃自己的原则……背弃他现在所坚持的一切。他存在的意义。

"Rin..." Yoichi whispers tenderly to himself, watching as the knight leaves him out there alone.
"Rin..." Yoichi 轻声自语,目光追随着骑士离他而去,独留他一人。

He hates to admit to himself how the fallout of their conversation is still making his heart dance so. Why does Rin have such an affect on him? And anyway, he feels like a total idiot... After all, Rin completely loathes him, sees him as his enemy. Wishes death upon him.

So why... Yoichi wonders, Why does he make you feel this way, Yoichi?