In response to the shaking expression of Assisi, Caitel was confident that he knew what he was feeling.
“You have it.”
The knight bent his head. His brow frowned as if his patient was running dry with as he continued biting his lips. His hands were shaking.
“I’ve always wanted to die. Although I knew my soul could only rest in hell, I still clung to the hope that I would cease to breathe. Please don’t let me open my eyes tomorrow, please let this be my last day. I begged endlessly, waiting for the eternal rest that you would someday bestow upon me.”
I didn’t know how long I’d reflect on those days. I just wished for this pain and this life to end someday, so I could escape. I simply continued breathing and lived like a broken doll.
“I know you were concerned that I might try to kill myself if I was left alone.”
Assisi took a deep breath. Even that was painful.
“I know the reason why you did these after I became your knight. You sent me to fight in all those battles for that very reason. However, there was no place for me in this world. Hope was merely an illusion. I knew that very well, and yet…”
But… that word was strongly interwoven. Caitel had quietly waited for the next word. Assisi breathed heavily, and his hands clenched tightly. Before he knew it, his hand that was grabbing the grass on the floor trembled.
“For the first time.”
It’s hard to even spit out this word.
“For the first time in my life…”
His eyes close. With a puff of breath, Assisi puffed a few breaths.
“The thought came to me that I want to protect someone. ”
She was brilliant. When I saw her smile and felt her breath, I was speechless, as though it was the first time I had seen the light. I felt like I could finally breathe freely. This was what it felt like to be alive… That’s how it felt to me.
“I wanted to protect someone’s smile, someone’s happiness, someone’s future with my own hands. I dared to wish and hope to protect her with my worthless life. I, this stupid and foolish man, thought that I want to protect her.”
I didn’t really know what to call this feeling.
It was so strange and unfamiliar that I felt as if I had been thrown into another world. I couldn’t even put it on a scale from one to ten. Nonetheless, I still blindly aspired.
I wanted to protect her.