Abandoned by my Childhood Friend, I Became a War Hero Chapter 9

Chapter 9 - Wounds that can be forgotten won't leave scars

༺ Wounds that can be forgotten won’t leave scars ༻



  After parting ways with Gwyn, I entered the Red Bear Inn.


  I had expected the door to be locked or the place to be empty, but as before, the door opened with the creaking sound of the old hinge. At the counter of the otherwise empty inn, a blonde employee sat alone.


  As soon as she saw me entering, she stood up from the counter and flashed me her characteristic warm smile.


  “Welcome back!”


  I nodded wordlessly, heading toward the corner table where I had sat in the morning. I hesitated for a moment as that particular spot was the only one with an empty chair.


  The employee tapped the counter in front of her with her hand.


  “Someone broke the chair this morning, so it’s out of order. There are plenty of seats here.”


  I shrugged my shoulders. Although her intention was clear, there was no reason to refuse. So, I sat down on the chair opposite the employee. I then looked around and said, “There’s nobody in the inn.”


  “Well, after what happened this morning, everyone must have been scared so they ran away.”


  “I thought you would run away too. Or close the inn.”


  “It’s Daisy.”




  The blonde employee rested her arm on the table, supporting her chin with her palm, and tilted her head slightly as she looked at me.


  “I mean, my name is Daisy. You didn’t forget my name, did you? I told you yesterday.”


  That’s right. I had asked her name after mistaking her for Ella from behind. I quickly realized my mistake.


  “…Yes, Daisy. My name is Eon Graham. So, why didn’t you close the inn?”


  “I hoped that the guest who saved me would come back and protect me. Well, it turned out that it was actually some passing boy who protected the inn.”


  She seemed to be talking about Gwyn. I thought she wouldn’t know about it since I was fighting in the back alley, but it appeared that she had been watching the commotion in front of the inn.


  In any case, I wondered if she had contacted the city guard. However, in areas like this, there are often unwritten rules among the residents that aren’t regulated by law. I’ve heard that some people deliberately avoid reporting incidents to the guard since they can’t protect the area 24/7, and doing so might make them look bad to local gangs.


  “Don’t you resent the fact that the inn was almost attacked because of me?”


  “A guest? Of course not. If you hadn’t stepped in, I would’ve been groped by that pig-like man or, in the worst-case scenario, humiliated right there. You saved me from a terrible situation, so why would I feel that way?”


  “If not, then it’s fine.”


  I was relieved that the inn wasn’t closed. If it had been, I would’ve had to quickly gather my things and find a new place to stay for another night. Although she was a woman running the inn alone in such a remote area, she must have her own resilience.


  “Anyway, there would have been trouble even without you as a guest. The atmosphere in the 21st district hasn’t been good lately. Supposedly, racial supremacists calling themselves ‘the Future of the Empire’ have been spotted more frequently around here. The imperial intelligence agency has put up a huge bounty, so maybe the thugs were looking for members of that organization during the day?”




  The mention of racial supremacists reminded me of yesterday’s incident with the coachman of the carriage, who appeared to harbor significant animosity towards mixed-race individuals. Did this mean that such people were increasing in number within the system? I thought it was strange that all sorts of odd things happened after the war ended.


  Daisy smiled wryly.


  “I’ve only talked about boring things. Are you hungry? I’ll make something for you.”


  Without waiting for my answer, she went into the kitchen. After a while, I heard the sounds of frying and boiling, and then Daisy placed a large number of dishes on the table that could have been called a feast.


  It was too much food for one person. When I looked at her, wondering why she made so much, she smiled brightly and said.


  “I’ll be eating too, you know?”




  I had nothing to say to that. The thought crossed my mind whether it was appropriate for an inn to have a guest and an employee share a meal from the same plates, but considering the appetizing smell and the number of dishes, it was clear she had put a lot of effort into the meal, so I didn’t feel like complaining.


  The dishes Daisy made were very exotic, unlike traditional imperial cuisine which used ingredients like sausages, beer, and potatoes. The flavor of the fish dish, which used oil, salt, and herbs to emphasize the natural characteristics of the ingredients, and the pasta loaded with cheese, tasted quite delicious to my palate, even though I would eat just about anything if it was available.


  I tried to recall where this cooking style originated. It reminded me of when soldiers from the Ionia Kingdom, who were cooks, primarily prepared food like this. Of course, the taste was much better than theirs.


  Based on this experience, I could roughly guess Daisy’s origin. The Ionia Kingdom is now a nation where only the undead remain due to the past war. It intrigued me a little how a former citizen of the kingdom had ended up in the Empire, but it was undoubtedly not a pleasant past.


  As I silently cleared my plate, I felt a gaze fixed on me. Daisy was barely eating, mostly just watching my face.


  I put down my utensils and asked,


  “…Why are you looking at me like that?”


  “Because you’re handsome.”




  I felt a mix of complicated emotions that were hard to describe.


  For the past 20 years, I had never cared about my appearance while rolling around on battlefields filled with men. I had heard many comments about being unlucky, looking like a parasite, or wanting to peel my face off, but it was very unusual to hear pure praise for being handsome. It wasn’t the first time I had heard it, but it was always very difficult to accept as a compliment.


  I could only think that if I were really handsome, Ella and Charlotte would not have left me. In the end, I became obsessed with strength because I thought I couldn’t hold onto someone I loved based on my appearance alone.


  However, no matter how strong I became, nothing returned, and I only lost more and more.


  Lost in thought for a moment, Daisy suddenly got up from her seat.


  “Wait a moment. I’ll bring you something to drink.”


  “No, it’s okay-“


  “It’ll be quick, just wait for a little while.”


  Expecting her to bring a typical beer when she mentioned a drink, I was surprised when she mixed distilled liquor with lime juice and orange liqueur, adding ice. Her long blonde hair, reaching down to her waist, swayed like waves as she shook the bottle, commonly known as a shaker, up and down.


  Soon, she handed me a glass rimmed with salt, filled with the transparent orange drink.


  “I didn’t order a drink.”


  “It’s on the house.”


  I chuckled lightly. This conversation felt somehow familiar.


  “Is this a cocktail?”


  “You recognize it? That’s interesting. It’s a drink typically consumed by nobles… Could it be that you’re much higher ranking than I thought?”


  I shook my head. I had only heard about it in passing. The famous liquor magnate Philion had first come up with the idea, and since it was made by mixing expensive distilled liquor with other ingredients, it was difficult for commoners to afford. I never expected to see such a drink in a modest inn like this.


  I took a sip of the cocktail. It tasted sweet and sour, with a refreshing hint of citrus and no trace of alcohol. I knew she made good coffee, but her drink-making skills were impressive as well.


  “How is it?”


  “It’s delicious.”


  “I’m glad. There’s an interesting story behind this drink. Do you want to hear it?”


  Since she had treated me to a free drink, I readily nodded.


  Daisy spoke softly, with a gentle smile.


  “There once was a man who had a lover he adored. One day, while hunting together, an arrow misfired by someone struck his lover, taking her life. The man, who lost his lover in an accident, created a cocktail based on the drink and lime his lover enjoyed while she was alive. He named it ‘Margarita’, borrowing his beloved’s name.”




  It wasn’t hard to guess that the name of the drink I just had was “Margarita”. I broke the silence after a moment.


  “Why did you give me this drink?”


  “Because it’s a drink a man once had, longing for his departed lover.”


  “What did I say?”


  “You didn’t say anything, but I saw it in your eyes. Weren’t you thinking of someone else? I’ve been bothered by it since we first met. Your eyes looked like that just a moment ago… I’m sorry if I’m mistaken.”


  She wasn’t mistaken. I had certainly thought of Ella when I first saw Daisy. I couldn’t deny that fact.


  Daisy cautiously asked.


  “Do I resemble her a lot?”


  I hesitated before answering.




  Or maybe quite a bit. Their hair and facial features were similar, although their eye colors were different. The Ella I remembered was from my childhood, so the real Ella would likely be different, but Daisy’s face was strikingly similar to how I imagined Ella would look if she had grown up.


  I even considered the possibility that Daisy might be her daughter, but Daisy appeared to be only slightly younger than me, definitely not of the age to be Ella’s daughter. Most importantly, Daisy was not Ella. It was a great discourtesy to her to keep searching for Ella in her.


  “Did her departure leave a lasting wound?”


  “It’s something I’ve already forgotten.”


  “Wounds that can be forgotten won’t leave scars.”


  Daisy placed her hand over mine on the table.


  “Can I heal your wounds?”


  I silently closed my mouth. Soft conversations were replaced with silence. It wasn’t difficult to discern what she wanted from me amidst the intense tension and the gaze that met mine. Daisy’s upper body gradually leaned towards me.


  I put the glass back on the table.




  Ignoring her stunned gaze, I stood up from my seat.


  I could have pretended not to know and kissed her. However, if I stayed beside her, who resembled Ella, I felt that I might involuntarily recall Ella.


  Not only would that be a disservice to myself, who was just now trying to break free from Ella’s shadow, but it would also be impolite to Daisy.


  “I enjoyed the drink.”


  After leaving that brief farewell, I left Daisy alone and left the first floor.







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Abandoned by my Childhood Friend, I Became a War Hero

Abandoned by my Childhood Friend, I Became a War Hero

Score 9.00
Status: Ongoing Released: 2023 Native Language: Korean
After experiencing heartbreak from being abandoned he enlisted in the military. And then, he became a war hero.


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