The moon was blocked by clouds. The night was shrouded in darkness, just like the hearts of the beastkin slaves.
At the front of the large group were more than 100 horse thieves. Many of them carried torches, which illuminated their path. Those who had horses rode the horses, while those that didn’t sat in the carriages.
To the 400+ enslaved beastkins, the horse thieves seemed to be the demons that guided them through this path of hell. The enslaved beastkins moved slowly as they carried heavy objects that were originally supposed to be put on the carriages.
The horse thieves said that this was to preserve their strength. They said that they can’t walk the whole night and be left without the strength to rob things. As such, they left the tasks to the enslaved beastkins, and they justified it by saying that beastkins were born strong, so a few pieces of heavy luggage should be nothing for them.¹
“Faster! Go faster!”
“Move! Don’t try to slack off! Whoever doesn’t move now can continue to not move in the future!”
“Hurry up! You will be freed when you reach North Wind City!”
The horse thieves laughed as they looked at each other. They planned to use the enslaved beastkins as scapegoats. After they robbed North Wind City, they would leave by themselves and leave the enslaved beastkins behind, so the anger felt by the people of North Wind City could only be directed toward the enslaved beastkins.
Most of the enslaved beastkins didn’t feel anything. The only thing that they know how to do was to move forward one step at a time. For them, everything was fine as long as they had food to eat and wouldn’t starve. They didn’t care about anything else.
In the group of enslaved beastkins was a female beastkin with a cloth wrapped around her head. She wore a thick animal hide clothing that wrapped her whole body. Her face was also dirty, and it was hard to see what she really looked like. It was hard to tell whether she was a male or female, and her eyes were filled with sadness.
She was currently carrying three bags on her shoulders- more than anyone else was carrying- and from the ease with how she walked, it was obvious that the bags of wheat weren’t heavy for her at all.
“Today is the third day since I’ve been captured, and I still haven’t found a chance to escape. Damn it!” Tess clenched her fists. She heard what the horse thieves had said and knew that they were more likely to die than to live. Why am I always so unlucky?
Tess thought about how unlucky she was and clenched her teeth. After getting out of the Forbidden Mountain Range, she had either been captured or on the way to be captured.
If it weren’t because I had cross-dressed as a boy and had this smelly animal hide clothing, then this old lady would probably be in the hidden rooms of those nobles right now!
“Ptui!” Tess spat on the ground.
No, I can’t call myself old lady. Big sis will be me up for it… Big sis… I probably won’t be able to see you anymore in this life, right? Could I be a beastkin favored by the God of Misfortune?
Because she had been
starving curious about the world of humans, Tess had ignored her sister’s warning and had stolen an animal hide clothing to dress up as a man.
Who did she steal from? Well, she probably stole it from her big sister.
Actually, it doesn’t matter. After cross-dressing, Tess had slipped out of the tribe and out of the Forbidden Mountain Range. Soon after, she met a traveling merchant that just happened to pass by and naively believed him when he said that there was a place where she could have food to eat just by working.
Why did Tess believe the traveling merchant so easily? Well, it was because he was kind enough to give her a piece of wheat bread to eat.
Anyways, after hearing about the place, Tess decided that after she filled her stomach, she would go and bring her sister along with her to work for food. Afterward, she got fooled into being enslaved and had a slave mark imprinted onto her arm as she walked the traveling merchant happily walk away with a few copper coins.
At the time, Tess had naively thanked the traveling merchant as she had indeed gotten wheat porridge to eat that night. Sure, it wasn’t much, but it was still enough to satisfy her. Remembering it now, Tess wanted to beat the past her up for how stupid she was. She didn’t know whether she was naive or stupid or both.
Well, the traveling merchant had been killed just a few minutes after he got the copper coins as he “disrespected”² a noble.
Anyways, because of how smelly the animal hide clothing was, Tess’s sex had not been revealed, treated as a man, and made to work to exhaustion every day. On top of all that, she was only about 30% full every day after eating.
Tess couldn’t stand it anymore as she knew that she would die if everything went on the way it did. So that night, when it rained heavily, she knocked out the guards with her strength. She was extremely courageous and didn’t escape immediately. She first snuck into the house of the buyer, took all the food, hung the unconscious buyer on a tree branch, and then ran away.
Tess had wanted to find a knife to cut off part of her skin where the slave mark had been imprinted, but before she could, she got fooled by a beastkin.
This beastkin had tempted her with the same thing. Tess had remembered how she had been fooled by the merchant, but she thought that it was fine as she didn’t believe that fellow beastkins would lie to her.
And then Tess got fooled into being enslaved again. Because she already had a slave mark, they were saved from doing the work and forced her to work in the mines along with the beastkins that had lied to her. They gave her hoes made of wood and stone and didn’t give any metal items as they were afraid that the enslaved beastkins would rebel.
After working for three days, the mine collapsed, and Tess found an opportunity to escape and became free again.
Before Tess could fully bask in joy and enjoy her freedom, she got captured again. But how?
Well, the night that Tess had escaped, she was too hungry and snuck into a house and into the kitchen and stole some food to eat. And then she fell asleep in the kitchen.
The next day, Tess woke up and found herself tied up, and then she became part of this group of 400+ enslaved beastkins.
Well, the family that had tied her up was also part of the enslaved people. This was because the horse thieves had originally planned to capture the family to enslave them, and Tess was just a pleasant surprise- a free gift. The family had caused trouble the previous day and got killed by the horse thieves.
Actually, the group of 400+ enslaved beastkins had a few dozen enslaved humans. Tess was being treated as an enslaved human as none of her beastkin characteristics had shown.
Tess had been wondering about how the people that had sold her had never realized that she was a female beastkin and kept making her do hard labor. This time, if I can escape, I won’t trust anyone anymore, Tess vowed in her heart. I won’t believe anything even if there are lots and lots of delicious food. Damn it, when will this unlucky me get good luck?
(￣▽￣). What type of beastkin do you think this beastkin favored by misfortune and luck is? Come and take a guess!
¹ I’m not really sure how to word these four description paragraphs well. This is what I decided on.
² “Disrespecting” here can mean going against the noble, arguing with the noble, refuting the noble, etc.
My finals are done! I can start normal translation again and keep to the schedule (probably). I will try to translate extras but don’t expect too much because I got a lot of chores assigned to me because I have a long ass break. Oh, and I’m being forced to go out and find an actual job to work at for a week or 2 because exposure. Yay.