There is More to my Childhood Friend - Chapter 66: The Interrogation of the Consul
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In the Kingdom of Iwan’s head office there are two girls, and a man whose complexion is at this moment, very pale indeed.
Arina, dressed in sailor uniform  and looking rather bored, stands with her back against the wall and lets out a yawn.
Sitting in a chair at the table is Princess Rose, who is reading a report written on parchment- in silence.
The man anxiously waiting with his head down is the consul .
Written in the report is the result of the investigation into the Princess’s fake seal.
Nothing much disturbs the strained silence for several minutes, but at last Princess Rose breaks into a smile and, seeming pleased, speaks.
“I see. In brief, the whole incident of the fake seal forged in my name was the work of the Dougles Brothers. This settles the case then ♪”.
“Ye- yes, your Highness!”.
The consul, seeing the Princess’s good mood, at once relaxes and feels his muscles loosen up. He speaks again.
“It won’t be long now before we’re able to bring about the complete demise of that criminal gang. Thereafter, there will no longer be a single soul who dares stain the name and reputation of your Highness”.
“Really!? That brings me great peace of mind. I suppose all I have left to do then, is to dispose of your incompetent self, arrange someone to replace you, and that’ll be case closed ♪”.
“That’s right! Case clo-”.
The consul stops mid-sentence as his mind catches up with his tongue.
Looking irritated, Princess Rose crumples the report into a ball and throws it away.
“If you’re truly my puppet- if you truly serve me- then perhaps try to do your job properly. You’ve just placed the blame on some roguish thugs, haven’t you?”.
“N- No! By no means would I ever do such a thing!”.
The consul breaks out in a cold sweat, and desperately tries to explain himself.
“We have worked hard, day and night, to track down the ones responsible for the fake seal. That report details the findings of our investigation. Those thugs were using the fake seal to make themselves a small fortune…”.
Arina, who had until now shown no interest in the matter, interjects.
“Hmm. You’re lying”.
While fiddling with a bell  that is ornately decorated with jewels, she continues.
“There’s no way that gang could have forged the seal in that safe house. For one, they didn’t have the equipment or technology necessary. Hey Rose, can I have this bell?”.
“But I’m going to give it to Yuu-kun”.
“No~. He wouldn’t appreciate it anyway”.
“Well in that case, you can’t have it. That item is priceless, hand it over immediately”.
“Dammit. To be honest, I don’t need it anyway”. She puts the bell back, with a loud thwack. “Anyway, what that consul is saying is nothing but lies”.
The consul pipes up in defence. “What? Stop saying things that are completely untrue! We haven’t even taken over their safe house yet, so how can you know such things!”.
“A wheat warehouse in the western ward. Red brick building. In the basement”.
After a pause, the Consul manages a meagre “huh?”.
“That’s right. A word of advice, if you go check things out, it’s all a bit messy in there, and there are corpses, so taking along someone who’s not so squeamish about such things might be a good idea, ok?”.
Inspecting closely the bust of a hefty, bronze warrior statue, Arina adds nonchalantly, “as for those idiotic Dougles Brothers, I’ve already killed them”.
Taken aback at Arina’s apparent confession to murder, the Consul stutters in his speech. “Ki-killed them?”.
“Yeah, I killed them. To think some people would plot to kill Yuu-kun… Have you heard of something more sinful? I think not, right? ♪”.
Grabbing the small statue by the head, Arina crushes its head between her fingers.
Having seen what Arina did to the bronze statue, the consul trembles with fear. Princess Rose however simply lets out a sigh, and says “My goodness, not again…
“Just what do you think you’re able to get away with in my kingdom? Please, don’t go around killing people willy-nilly”.
Indignant, Arina protests. “Eeee~ You mean to defend those pieces of trash?”.
“I’m telling you to leave my prey alone. If anyone intends to bring harm to Yuuki, I’ll personally sentence them to the gallows”.
“Ahh ok, I got you. But I was intending to leave one of them to you, but there was a bit of an accident… Anyway, for those guys to forge your seal would have been impossible”.
Arina rips up more of the statue, deforming it even further.
The Consul cries out in surprise, before pleading to the Princess. “Your highness, just who do you think you should trust, me or this lunatic here?”.
“I don’t trust either of you. In fact if ever have the chance I would like nothing more than to kill this girl, that’s how much I distrust the both of you”.
As if she heard a joke, Arina lets out a crackling laugh. “‘If you ever have the chance’, right”.
The Consul, confused, asks “T- then who…”.
Arina cuts back in. “Regardless, even Rose can see through your pathetic lies. Who the hell are you protecting?”.
“I- I’m not protecting anyone!”.
At his wits end, the consul hangs his head in fear. With his tail between his legs, his guilt would be obvious to just about anyone.
Under Princess Rose’s cool gaze, the consul’s mind races for a way to worm his way out of the situation, but his mind is blank from fear. Cold sweat coats his skin. Long moments drag by.
“Rosy, this is taking too much time”, Arina says, and walks towards the consul. “You have to proceed quickly and efficiently with this kind of thing”.
Arina takes out a pair of earphones, connects them to her E:ID phone, and walks up closer to the consul. Having never seen earphones before, the consul first reacts with fear and retreats a few steps.
“It’s okay, they won’t hurt you. They’re just devices that’ll let you hear sound in your ears”. She kept her explanation brief.
“C’mon, try having a listen. It’s pretty cool”.
Tentatively, the consul does as instructed and leans in.
From the earphones, a young girl’s voice reverberates. The consul edges even closer, putting his ear right next to the strange device.
From the earphone he hears the piercing screams of a young girl. His heart drops as he realises whose voice the screams belong to.
Facing the earphones, the consul tries calling out to his daughter. “Apero! Hang in there, Apero!”.
The consul desperately tries to reach out to his daughter through the strange device, but no response comes. Only screams and the sounds of anguish”.
Watching his failed attempts at communication, Arina explains “Actually you can’t talk through this…”.
“Y- You! What did you do to my daughter!”.
Arina giggles playfully. “Well… I guess I’ll leave that to your imagination~ ♪”.
“My daughter has nothing to do with this!”. Clinging to Arina now, he begs. “To meet with this kind of treatment… She hasn’t done anything to deserve this! Torture me instead! Take me in her place, please…”.
Regarding the consul with an icy stare, Arina says “No touching of Yuu-kun’s property”, then…
The consul is sent flying across the room by some invisible power, flipping and rolling, and smashes into the wall.
Arina grins, and while turning up the volume on her E:ID phone, says “This is the sound of your daughter dying. It would be rude of me not to let you hear her agony, don’t you think?”.
The blood curdling screams of Apero now fill the room, reverberating off the walls and disturbing the minds of any sane person present.
Apero’s voice gradually changes, and with each passing minute her voice loses its more of its identity, before it’s nothing more than the cry of an animal in its death throes.
Any normal person would surely cover their ears in order to try to escape any of Apero’s hellish reality that may bleed its way into their minds, but Arina- and even Princess Rose- drink their tea with cool, fresh faces.
The consul makes a movement as if to stand up but, in despair and as if having had the last ounce of will drawn out of him, collapses back down into a heap on the floor. Sprawled across the floor, he quietly calls out her name, over and over.
“Apero is in good health”.
“…Huh?”. The consul loops up, afraid to believe the Princess’s words.
Princess Rose puts her lips to her cup of tea, but just before taking a sip divulges to the consul, “Don’t worry, what you just heard was nothing more than an auditory hallucination.
“An a- auditory hallucination?”.
“Correct, a hallucination. That girl, Arina, her ways really can be of bad taste”.
Arina sticks out her tongue, and as if to celebrate her prank being successful, makes the peace sign.
Rose explains further. “If she really laid a hand on your daughter, it wouldn’t have ended so fast. No harm has come to Opera, today she’s continuing her life as a student, just like any other day”.
The consul, dumbfounded, stares at the princess, as if his mind has stopped working.
“Are you familiar with the concept of a demonstration?”. Arina skips around the room, comes to a stop, and raises her finger to make her point. “If you don’t play along nicely, something like what you just heard could happen. Do you understand?”.
“Umm, ok. So-”.
Arina suddenly laughs. “You still don’t understand? I’m saying that next time, it won’t just be an auditory hallucination.
The consul gasps. Eyes wide, he cradles his head in his hands.
Seeing the look of someone close to death on the Consul’s face, Arina presses him further, showing no mercy. “By the way, what you just heard? That was Opera’s cries as I used a special contraption to stretch her arms, both the left and the right. While doing that I was slowly threading wire through her blood vessels”.
“I suppose the climax is when her shoulders dislocate. Of course, don’t forget that while I do this, I’ll be whispering in her ear what a bad father you are to her”.
“Okay, okay, stop it! Just stop already!”. Arina’s vivid description of torture was more than enough to chill the consul to the bone. Covering his ears, he sobbed softly.
“Well then, I think it’s about time to confess, don’t you?” Besides, I too have some business with Rose, so let’s get on with it”.
After deliberating for several seconds the consul finally, in a weak voice, manages to let out a feeble voice. “I can’t say it…”. He shook his head several times in dismay. “There’s no way I can…”.
The two girls react incredulously.
“What!? You still intend to resist?”
“You’re quite the stubborn one, aren’t you”.
They both stare at the consul in amazement.
Translator and Editor Notes:
 A sailor uniform is a type of school uniform in Japan.
 A bell used to summon servants.
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