Arc 1, New Moon
The flames of the fireplace flickered as they swayed. It was as if they reflected the disarray in Ernst’s heart.
“Lord Ernst… is something the matter?”
The man’s deep voice sounded directly against Ernst’s ears. It’s nothing, Ernst said breezily, rubbing his head against the man’s warm chest.
“Are you not feeling well?”
He didn’t feel well, and his mood wasn’t any better. But, as expected, he couldn’t say those words.
In Ernst’s mind, the scene he had witnessed that afternoon filled his mind. The image of the man as he laughed aloud. That large hand patting the captain’s back.
So he could laugh like that. He had never laughed like that in front of Ernst.
The man’s confused voice fell from above. Disregarding it, Ernst clung to the man’s clothes, rubbing the tip of his nose against them as he tried his best to breathe in the man’s scent.
He no longer remembered how many nights had passed. Remembering how comfortable the man had looked sitting on the rug, Ernst had also stopped sitting in his chair.
They had sat side-by-side in front of the fireplace and chatted. But before long, he felt like he wanted to held and supported as he sat, so he brought himself over to the man. Currently, he was seated atop the man’s firm and toned thighs.
The man’s scent was similar to the forest Ernst had traveled through before. When he breathed it in, an indescribable peace of mind came over him.
“…How did you spend time with the partners you’d had until now?”
Ernst asked about the thing that he had constantly worried over. Though they passed time together neutrally, the man could also overflow with joy like what he showed to the captain, couldn’t he?
“How did I…”
He muttered, bewildered. Before long, his large hands soothed Ernst’s small back.
No matter how close Ernst came to him, the man became rigid, not moving even a single finger. Last night, finally, he timidly touched Ernst’s back.
The man’s fingers really left behind such a pleasant feeling.
“What is appropriate for me to let Lord Ernst hear is…”
“It’s fine, so just tell me.”
He was unable to hide how sullen his voice was, so it became half an order.
“In general, we would be in a bar. We would sit next to each other and talk, and if we both agreed to it, then…”
“Um… well… then, we would go to an inn…”
“So you would go there, and then do what?”
Ernst tried to hurry along the man’s stumbling, reluctant story.
“What we did at the inn, is…. Um, well, you know. We, did that.”
The man rushed his words.
“What? What is that? What were you doing?”
Ernst raised his head, peering up at the man’s face. When he got closer, the gentle scent of grass drifted from the nape of the man’s neck. It was the scent of spring.
“What… that, refers to, it’s… we, copulated.”
The man said this, turning his face the complete other way.
Can I just say that I had to hold back my screams/laughter at how the man was trying so hard to not say anything vulgar to Ernst that he used the frickin scientific term for mating to explain his one night stands