Akugyaku no Black Maria

Chapter 5 – Ferocious Mind, Ferocious Body

“— aww yeah! Casca-sama, Res! Tored!!”

That roar was the first thing that came out of her mouth once she’d revived.

Using the spring bed’s reaction, Casca went from laying down straight up with a jump.
Her moves were lithe and casual, reminiscent of one of the members of the big cat family, the panther.
She deftly avoided the drink bottles scattered about the floor and landed with a light step.

“Thanks Shizu, you saved me there. I thought I’d fetch a shot after work but once I had a drink I just couldn’t stop! Seriously, I thought I was going to die there! Nyahahahahaha!”

With a laugh, Casca picked up the tailored jacket by her foot and put it on without bothering to button it up.
She then wore leather boots over her bare feet, stretching as she tapped the floor with her toes, and lightly combing her hair up.
She stood just about as tall as Shizuru at 178 centimeters.

“Seriously, I’m going to swear off of alcohol. I’m never gonna drink again, I can’t go on drinking if I’m going to have it this hard every time”
“You said the same thing yesterday Casca. The day before that, and the day before that, too”
“Ah? Did I now? I don’t remember at all”

She gazed at the ceiling, scraching her cheek and tilting her head.
This conversation was also an everyday occurence from Shizuru’s point of view.
In fact, it’s mostly part of her hangover package.

She’ll end up not learning anything and coming back drunk again today anyway.
Seeing the almost certain future float in his mind, Shizuru made a quiet sigh.

The Commanding Officer of the Third Squad of Black Maria, Casca.
She had been one of the earliest members of the assassin’s group that was founded ten years ago.
And then seven years back, when Shizuru joined the organization by force, she was the next person he met after Richelieu.
In other words, she was for good or ill his second longest acquaintance in this world.

“I’m famished–”

After heartily gulping down the water Shizuru brought, she flung the wooden mug away and said as much.
It was the height of shamelessness, after drinking the whole night, getting drunk, falling out cold, and getting a hangover.
Since this was an everyday occurence, Shizuru paid it no mind.

“Lady’s going out to the market right now. We’ll have breakfast once she’s back”
“And when is she going to be back? I hate waiting you know”

She questioned him in protest, Casca kicked a random liquor bottle flying and walked up to Shizuru.

“I’m hungry, I’m famished, I want to eat something. right. now!”
“Mmm … I have an apple if you want, it should fill you up until breakfast —”

She snatched it off of him before he finished talking.
After hearing the sound of her chewing the apple in satisfaction, Shizuru finally noticed the red fruit that should’ve been in his hand was gone.
As an assassin who should be more attentive and wary than the normal person, the fact that, it being merely an apple notwithstanding, it was easily taken away from him without him noticing, proves that Casca was also not your average person.
By having lived in the slums amid thievery and violence for as long as she could remember, she was many times better at this than Shizuru was.

“It’s still not enough”

Not even ten seconds afterwards, she threw the core behind her while licking her fingertips and complained.
Looks like it didn’t even work as a fill-in.

“We’ve got nothing else. Even if we did keep spare food you’d have eaten them all anyway”
“It’s the law in the slums that you have to eat when you can. Waiting is for the dumb and the rich”

Casca puffed her chest, sticking out her breasts that were so large that Shizuru wasn’t sure he could grab them even with both hands somewhat proudly.
But then she seemed to remember something and let leak an “ah,”

“Ah, I completely forgot. Shizu, lend me some cash”
“What’s this all of a sudden …”
“Well, I just remembered when the word rich came out”

Just like how she looked and how she carried herself, Casca could not manage her money at all.
Having lived in the slums without decent education, she couldn’t read nor write nor do arithmetic beyond three digits.

And on top of that, she spends money recklessly.
She probably borrowed money from a moneylender without asking about the interest rate or having a plan again, thought Shizuru.
He was completely correct.

“And what about your share of the rewards from the job yesterday?”
“I already spent that on booze last night, like, poof. Come on Shizu, just two gold this time—”
“That’s quite a lot of money you know …”

A typical family of four living in the capital city Rosario would normally need around one gold a year.
Which means that Casca was asking him to lend two years’ worth of the family’s food expenses.

“Come on, pleease. I promised the moneylenders they can do what they like with my body if I didn’t return it by today. I’m pretty well guarded even though I’m like this, you know? I don’t wanna sleep with men for cash”
“A woman who’s guarded won’t make that kind of promise to begin with”
“Come on Shizu, don’t be so cold. See, you lend me some cash and theeen we can do something nice when that doggy isn’t here”

Casca said something unthinkable for someone who had her guard up right after saying she was one as she pressed her breasts against Shizuru.
She was muscular all over but that part alone was soft like it was another creature.

“… Haah. Fine, I’ll lend you”

In the end, Shizuru sighed and agreed.
Because Casca was insistent, she won’t take no for an answer.
She would follow him around until he agreed, this much Shizuru knew.

Also, the fact that the two gold he’s lending won’t come back.
He lent her once before, it was Shizuru’s bad luck.
She had already pegged him as a lender that won’t mind her not paying him back.

“On one condition, I’ll go and pay them myself”
“Eh … y, you don’t need to. I can go by myself, just lend me the money”
“You said that before and you used the money you borrowed to buy booze right away didn’t you? Sorry, but I can’t trust you Casca”
“… tch”

She lightly clicked her tongue. Looks like I hit bull’s eye.
In actuality, whatever Casca promised about her body or whatever to the money lenders don’t matter at all.
If push came to shove, she would silence them with a fist, no matter who they were.

And then the beat up moneylenders would for some reason come crying to Shizuru’s clinic.

“But how am I going to get my booze today? None of my favorite places will let me open a tab!?”
“And what about the swearing off alcohol thing? The reason nobody will let you open a tab is because you keep on jumping them. You’re just paying for your own mistakes”

Incidentally, the owners of the places where she jumped the bill also came crying to Shizuru’s clinic.
It’s already a clinic and a consultancy for anything Casca-related.

“The world is cruel … come on, lend me the payment money plus some extra, Shizu. I’ll let you have fun tonight”

“— Stop fooling around. Hands off my beloved, Casca”

The one who replied the violent Casca’s rare flirtations was not Shizuru.
The two of them turned around to look at the source of the sound just outside the door.
There was Lady who was still making herself look like Richelieu, coming back home from shopping.

“Welcome home Lady”
“I’m home my dear. — hey, trash who can’t do anything but waste money and swing her fist. Stop making passes at my beloved, it’s creepy, go fuck a monkey or something”
“Whatcha say you damn bitch!? You got the nerve to talk like that to people, watch your place, pet!”

Casca let Shizuru go and pressed close to Lady, glaring slightly down at her.
And the fist fight finally began. Though Lady was transforming into a human, she was still a high class magic wolf that took a subjugation group with members in the order of hundreds to take down. Being able to fight that barehanded on even terms, Casca was a superhuman.
Shizuru, at least, would never want to fight Lady even if he had a gun.

“You shitty bitch! Shizu’s already slept with me and the boss long ago anyway you dumbass!”
“Grrrrr! I know that, but I’m his wife now!!”
“I’m telling you already, you’re the pet! You’re making a big mistake if ya think I’m going to hesitate to hit you just because you’re looking like the boss! I’m actually going to enjoy this, imma pound you with all I got!”

Things had gotten so heated up Shizuru was no longer able to stop them.
But well, this kind of scene was almost a daily event already, Shizuru didn’t even get flustered anymore.
Shizuru went to leave the room, creeping along the walls so that he didn’t get caught in it, he picked up the groceries left by the door and checked its contents.
Looks like the eggs and potatoes were cheap today, she mainly stocked up on those two.

“I wonder if I should make galettes …”

While considering the breakfast menu, Shizuru left the chaos behind him and headed for the kitchen.
Today, another typical day had begun.

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