A Conversation Between Mother and Son
After that… we left Sasha’s room, and I tried to guide the two towards the parlour to take a rest, but suddenly my mother grabbed my arm. Mother told father to chat with Laurier for a while, which he looked a little awkward about doing, as she dragged me into a separate room…
After taking me aside, mother looked at me silently as if she was pondering the words she was going to say, then after a deep breath, it looked like she had come to a decision.
“You… are you truly Callis?”
“…What’s brought this on?”
I felt a cold sweat begin to form on my brow at those sudden words, but mother didn’t seem to notice as she kept going.
“If I’ve misunderstood something, then I am sorry. But, when I look at you, it’s as if I’m looking at someone who is completely different to the memories I have of my Callis… it’s as if someone has taken over their body.”
What a terrifyingly potent power of observation. For a brief moment I wondered if my mother had also come from another world, but I kept that too myself as I shrugged.
“When people fall in love, they change. Didn’t you change as well, mother?”
“Well… of course, I am happy that your relationship with Sasha has changed for the better. But, how do I put this… have you suddenly gotten over that incident that has been making you avoid the other sex, ever since you were a boy?”
“That’s… well, I suppose so…”
One of the reasons that Callis had been cold to Sasha in the past was, as mother alluded to, due to his childhood trauma.
Specifically, when Callis was still barely five years old… he was assaulted by a maid that worked in this very mansion.
To be blunt, it was sexual. It seemed like that pedophile maid had taken an interest in Callis for some time and, when she found the opportunity, attacked him in his bed.
Fortunately, Callis managed to get help before she was able to do anything too despicable to him, but… the event undoubtedly left a mark on the young boy.
So, even though he’s an older man now, that trauma stayed with him… whenever he thought of the opposite sex, of seeing eyes filled with lust, all he could remember was the fear when he gazed into the eyes of that predator as a boy, looming in the dark.
It was that moment that triggered Callis’ misogyny.
He was fine with some women, like his mother and his nanny, as well as some of the maids he already knew and trusted, but Callis was unable to deal with other women who had come of age at all.
But, despite his fear of women leaving his potential to create a successor in doubt, Callis still grew into quite a man. However, although mother and father were unable to have another child, Callis’ grandparents had a strong attachment to the lineage of the house, and wouldn’t grant permission for an adoption… in short, they would accept no one else but Callis to inherit the House of Fall.
So, they did their best to pressure Callis into finding a fiancée… Since he felt like he was shaming his House, and his mother and father had allowed him to do whatever he liked until he came of age, Callis decided to join up with the knights.
Although they were happy for him to join the Order until he became an adult, Callis climbed the ranks far more quickly than anyone could have expected, soon gaining the moniker of ‘Sword Demon’.
Well, a lot of other things happened as well, but… for now, I spoke back to my mother, who still stared at me suspiciously.
“Mother, it’s true that, when I couldn’t forget what happened in the past, I couldn’t bring myself to look at either of them at all. But… those two have healed me, both in my heart and in my soul. If I were to say that the trauma was gone completely, that would be a lie, but… those two could love even a coward like me, so I have to return it as much as I can.”
There was still a deep wound on Callis’ heart. As the days roll by, I gain more and more of Callis’ memories, and it feels like my personality is beginning to assert itself over his body, but… my desire to cherish those two people like my family will never change, no matter what.
Even if Callis’ original personality disappears completely because of me, then I’ll love those two in his place.
After mulling over what I said, mother looked at me silently for a moment… then, spoke with a short sigh.
“Is that so… I understand. I’ll believe you.”
“Are you fine with that?”
“I still have my doubts, but… no matter how different a person you may seem, you are still our Callis. Besides… it’s only natural for a parent to want to believe in their son, isn’t it?”
Was it because of my good mood after seeing Sasha? There was something in mother’s smile that was truly refreshing.
A bit heavier than usual