Nobunaga’s Imouto is My Wife - Chapter 15.2[Updated at: 2021-01-13 00:40:43]
Translator: Blue Bamboo
E/N: This part got delayed a little bit due to some unfortunate circumstances . Chapter 15 is divided into 3 parts so expect next part by next week .
After Masamoto took his leave, I proceeded to enter my room with Hisa .
Thereupon, I asked my retainer to summon “Naotsune Endo”; while I was waiting for Endo-dono to arrive, I decided to partake of some rice crackers .
Naturally, I asked Hisa to have some as well .
However, the little girl didn’t respond at all . Her stiff face betrayed the tense emotions that she was feeling at that moment .
Her reaction was quite understandable .
In this period, if one were a humble samurai who had only seen the feudal lord from a distance, if they were to have a private audience with the ‘almighty’ feudal lord then naturally they would be uncomfortable .
After all, many feudal lords in this period were like Hisamasa who would take affront for the slightest of perceived ‘transgressions’ and would end up meting out a terrible punishment for the said ‘crimes’ .
I, however, was different .
I believed that it was my duty as a feudal lord to take care of my subjects especially those who had shown great loyalty .
Hikobei had chosen to lay down his life for me, If I, his liege couldn’t take care of his only surviving relative what sort of a liege was I?
In fact, I would have to ask myself what sort of a person was I?
To me who hailed from a different period, emotions like justice, guilt and humanity have been engraved deep within and thus I could not ignore the plight of this little girl as many of my fellow feudal lords would have done .
My soliloquy, however, was interrupted at this moment by a voice originating from the corridor saying, “Naotsune Endo“ has arrived!”
“Let him in . “
The man who entered prostrated in front of me for a while as I observed him .
I permitted him to get up while I revised the historical facts that I knew about him .
Naotsune Endo was above all, a man who was loyal to the core .
Historically, regardless of what happened, he was a subordinate who continued to follow Nagamasa to the very end .
If his ploy had succeeded in the Battle of Anegawa history may have well have been different . (TL: Naotsune had camouflaged his regiment as being the soldiers of the enemy in order to delude the enemy but his stratagem failed and he was killed by the enemy commander Nobunaga)
He was always trying to support me, both in the interview with Hisamasa and in the battle with the Rokkaku .
Now, whenever I think of whom should I consult first in the Azai Clan?
The answer that invariably comes to my mind is “Naotsune Endo . ”
While I was thinking that, Naotsune who had been observing Hisa carefully said in a low voice, “My lord as per the orders of the previous clan head, for the crime of stealing the family heirloom without permission, all members of the family of the criminal Hikobei have to be executed without fail . ”
Somehow it seemed that Naotsune had figured out Hisa’s identity .
Hisa who heard his words was visibly shaken, her face which turned pale darted from my face to his as she did her best to gauge our intentions .
A natural reaction for a girl of her age who hears that orders have been sent for her execution .
A smile slowly spread across my face .
I turned my face towards Hisa and said smilingly, “If you get upset by such little situations how would you do in the future where you would have to face much worse?”
Seeing the confident gleam in my eyes she seemed to have been reassured of her safety .
I could quite clearly hear the sigh of relief that she let out .
I then proceed to address Naotsune with a dignified expression, “Naotsune Dono, are you aware that this girl is the younger sister of Hikobei?”
“Yes, although this is the first time that we have met face to face, I was convinced that Hikobei would bring his sister to Odani Castle . ”
Saying these words, Naotsune approached closer and whispered in my ears .
“After all, I was aware that Hikobei had secretly taken away the Ishiwari Kanemitsu to the battlefield for you to use, my lord . ”
Naotsune said, “Hikobei was a true follower of yours sire, someone who is as loyal as him is very rarely found . ”
“Therefore, I am very dissatisfied with the punishment meted out to him by Lord Hisamasa . “
His face turned burning red, I could clearly see the seething rage deep within .
“If I had been there at the right time, I would have asked him to stop! But…” he trailed off disconsolately .
It seems that Hisa had finally understood something .
The actual reason for her brother’s death and why she had been brought here by me .
Even as she came to realize the truth, a rain of tears slowly spilled from her eyes and wetted her cheeks .
“Remember, that you are Hikobei’s little sister and no matter what happens and no matter what people say be proud of your older brother and always remember him within your heart . Know that, being his sister his blood flows among your veins as well and for that, you can be proud!“
Naotsune said so as he gently tapped the little girl’s thin shoulder .
Hisa had been crying for a while now, but thanks to Naotsune who consoled her repeatedly in a low voice she managed to gain some control of herself and stopped crying .
Naotsune, it seemed was very good at dealing with children .
“…And then, my lord sending for this humble one is in regards to this little one?”
“You are right . ”
I nodded in response and then looked towards Hisa . She met my gaze with a serious stare of her own .
“I want to welcome this girl into the Azai Clan . “
Naotsune failed to hide his surprise at my announcement .
“Well listen to me first, like her brother Hikobei, Hisa is able to approach Taishakutsukige safely as well . Thus, I want her to inherit Hikobei’s will and take care of the horses as he once did . I have already talked with Masamoto about this and he approves of my decision as long as Hisa is adopted by a person with the appropriate social standing . So, I thought of consulting you about who is right to adopt this girl . “
When I said these words, Hisa looked up slowly and a sharp gleam radiated from her eyes .
“Clan head, but isn’t this problem easy to resolve?”
“It’s simple, I will accept this little girl as my adopted daughter . ”
He let out a smile as he said these words .
It was an attractive smile, dependable and manly .
“In the current Azai clan, I’m probably the one most aware of the series of incidents that have taken place this time . Being aware of Hikobei’s true intentions I have no pressure in taking care of his little sister and thus can take care of her better than anybody else . “
“Ah, I see, I see……”
“And like her, I too am alone here in the Odani Castle, after all, my wife and son are not here with me, thus her presence would help stave off some of my loneliness . ”
“Most importantly for a long time now I wanted to have a daughter, I have got too tired of raising that good for nothing brat of mine!”
When he said words like that, I had no choice but to bow down in defeat to Naotsune .
Meanwhile, Hisa who heard our conversation looks at us both with swollen eyes that are brimming with tears again .
Somehow I was sure that they weren’t tears of grief .
Naotsune would take Hisa to his residence in the Odani Castle and she would start to learn arithmetic and the ways of dealing with the horses starting from the day after tomorrow .
Apart from these two skillsets, he would also be teaching her some other skills that can prove to be highly useful in this time and age .
This is fine for now .
All that is left is to wait, wait until the day that Hisa can stand on her own two feet as a fine adult .
Looking at the steadily receding back of Hisa as she left with Naotsune I muttered to myself, “Hikobei, Don’t you worry I will fulfil the obligation that I owe you . ”