The struggling gluttony skill
Having drank my fill of wine until I felt tipsy, I decided to check up on Roxy before heading back to the ragged place I called home. Due to the incident with Rafal and his siblings, I could not stop worrying about her. No matter how crooked Rafal was, I knew he was not the type to start harassing her immediately, yet, the image of his defiant smirk was embedded in my mind. Even if something truly did happen, I would definitely be too weak to protect her so the very least that I could do was act as a meat shield.
In the moonlight, I saw the castle gate where she stood doing her duty as a gatekeeper properly.
I drew a long breath and felt a sense of relief wash over me. It seemed that I had worried for nothing. Then, to the girl who was working so hard, I cheered on for her from my heart, “Roxy-sama, please continue to do your best.”
However, I was just about to leave when a shadow climbing over the east wall of the castle caught my eye.
That was a blind spot for Roxy and the other guards on patrol, yet perfectly visible from where I stood. They were definitely bandits. For them to climb the wall this late into the night, I could not think of anyone who would do such a thing apart from thieves. Hurriedly, I rushed to where Roxy was standing at guard.
“Roxy-sama, there’s an urgent issue!”
“What’s wrong? You should have returned home by now…”
“I was taking a walk to sober up when I saw people sneaking into the castle. They climbed in over the east wall.”
“There’s no mistaking it, I saw them properly with my own eyes.”
Of course it would be difficult to believe given that I had said this so suddenly, and I began to feel anxious. However, Roxy looked into my eyes and said,
“I believe you. I’ll head over there now, so can you stay here and protect the gate in the meantime?”
“Yes, of course.”
Roxy handed me the spear with the Royal Family emblem.
“May fortune be with you, Roxy-sama.”
“Please leave it to me. For this, I still have confidence in my own strength.”
Pulling out a white sword, she ran in the direction I had told her. So fast… After all, she was a Holy Knight. In a blink of an eye, her figure disappeared into the darkness.
Before long, the screams of men could be heard. It was easy to imagine Roxy defeating the thieves one after another. From the number of cries, I could tell that there were quite a lot of them. It was definitely more than just two or three bandits.
Nevertheless, Roxy was a Holy Knight. She would never be beaten by people like thieves. Sure enough, the commotion gradually stopped and it became quiet. Just as I was feeling relieved that it was over, a man with a strong build came running towards me from out of the dark.
There was no doubt that he was one of the thieves who had escaped Roxy. As he approached, the moonlight clearly illuminated his appearance. This… I took a sharp breath.
His right arm was missing, having been completely chopped off. Desperately clutching it with his left hand in the attempt to stop the bleeding, he ran towards me. His complexion was pale, surely caused by extreme anemia from the severe bleeding.
I readied the spear. I could not let him escape. Even if it meant that the man would die, he was a bandit that needed to be dealt with accordingly. Despite the fact that I was acting as a gatekeeper in Roxy’s place, letting him go would definitely cause her trouble. I had to defeat him without fail.
The enemy was wounded. Even for a powerless person like me, I should be able to defeat him. Feeling brave, I thrust the spear forward and pierced it into the thief with as much force as I could muster. By sheer luck, the spear penetrated straight through his heart. The thief reached forward and grabbed ahold of the spear, his glare furious. With heavy bleeding from his chest, he fell backwards onto the ground.
His limbs continued to convulse for a while, until all his movements finally ceased. The thief was definitely dead.
“I did it, I defeated… Eh?!”
At that moment, I felt something flow through my body and I heard a robotic voice in my mind.
<Gluttony skill has been activated>
<Status update: HP +120, Strength +150, MP +100, Spirit +100, Agility +130>
<Appraisal, Mind-reading, Concealment, and One-handed Sword Technique skills have been added>
Status update? Skills added? What was this voice? What did this mean? And this feeling of satiety that I have never experienced before since birth that until now, no matter how much I had eaten, could never be satisfied. Right now, this feeling of satisfaction was the best.
While I was still immersed in this unfamiliar yet uplifting feeling, Roxy shouted as she rushed up to me.
“Are you okay? Are you hurt?”
As she spoke, she took my hands to make sure there were no injuries.
(I’m worried… His complexion looked pale somehow… Ahh, I was worried.)
What? I heard Roxy’s voice in my head. Even though she was not talking, her voice was somehow clearly there in my mind.
“…No, it’s nothing. I’m not hurt.”
(Really? Thank goodness… I’m really glad.)
I heard it again, a voice that was relieved for my safety. This, could this be Roxy’s inner thoughts? When her hand released mine, I became unable hear her again.
This was mysterious. Perhaps I had hallucinated it due to the strain from the fight. Either way, I could not so casually touch a Holy Knight like Roxy again just to confirm whether it had actually happened or not.
A total of ten thieves had snuck into the castle, and Roxy had opposed all of them by herself. Just as I had thought, Holy Knights were strong indeed. Of that, I had played but a small part in killing one bandit. This was only possible because she had pursued and injured him so severely, almost to death.
Hence, Roxy should take all the credit for this.
“Roxy-sama, please take all the credit for this matter.”
“I cannot do that. You defeated one of them, didn’t you?”
For me, I had another issue; my employer, Rafal. If he heard about this incident, that I had assisted another Holy Knight, he would become unreasonably enraged and I had no idea what he might do. Also, Rafal did not think well of Roxy, and he would reprimand me even more for this.
“If Rafal-sama heard about this, my position would be at stake…”
“Ah… that’s true. I understand. I will handle this case as you have suggested.”
“It is I who should be thanking you. If you had not informed me, I would have had to take responsibility for the blunder.”
Even for a Holy Knight who was winning at life, the battle for success seemed to be severe. For someone like me at the very bottom, I could not perceive that hardship.
“So, please let me thank you.”
“No no, for a Holy Knight to say such a thing…”
As I lowered my head, she seemed to think that I did not like her gesture and puffed up her cheeks, pouting. Since she had never made such an expression before, I was surprised. I felt like I had become just a little closer to Roxy.
“Well let’s see… Oh right.”
Somewhat mischievously, Roxy clapped her hands together. I know I should accept her gratitude, yet what could she be thinking? My heartbeat quickened. And then, from her mouth came an outrageous question,
“Would you like to work for the Heart Family? If I told my father about this incident, he would surely agree to give you a job.”
“Eh?! But my skill is useless… it would be beyond my capabilities.”
“There’s no such thing! Did you not just defeat a thief?”
That was simply a stroke of good luck, for next time something like this happened, it would be impossible for me to do that again.
“Nevertheless, for me…”
Losing her temper at my hesitance, she dealt a finishing blow with a final statement.
“There is no need to worry about the Breric Family. Unless, you want to work for them for the rest of your life?”
She had seen through me, knowing that I lived in fear of the Breric Family’s harassment. Even with that, she said she wanted to hire me. I felt like my tears would fall.
A future of being overworked to death under Rafal who had the worst personality ever, compared to the rosy life I would have working for the beautiful Roxy. There was nothing I needed to consider. Besides, I was Roxy’s fan. Was this not a dream come true?
“Thank you, I really appreciate it, Roxy-sama!”
“Alright. It’s already late today, so please come to the Heart Family’s house tomorrow at noon. I’ll be waiting.”
Feeling joyful enough to fly, I bowed my head to Roxy many times before leaving. When I was far away enough that the castle gate was out of sight, I jumped into the air and raised my fist in triumph. Finally, luck has come to me. Somehow, my body felt lighter than usual, and it was a good thing. I hurried back to my run-down home to prepare for tomorrow.