And the brooding silence that followed the chief’s voice was sickening.
The tent was spacious and still every breath that was to be taken here is harder to take.
Oikawa straightened his shoulders, fear would be the wrong word to describe what he feeling. It was something else.
Immediately as Lemsa and him had entered the village, the chief was standing outside her tent, following the pair with her eyes.
“Come”, she said with a commendable presence that let everyone around her shiver in anticipation.
The children scrammed into all kinds of directions, the adults flinched or scurried away and even Lemsa gulped and started walking towards the chief.
The sand crunched under their feet as the two figures made their way to chief’s tent.
“Wait outside Lemsa”, a quick outstretched palm cut off any signs Lemsa wanted to throw at her, “We will talk alone”.
He glanced over to the young woman who was unable and not allowed to talk.
By the way she hardly swallowed and her fists clenched he took the mental note of what it meant to not let Lemsa voice herself.
“Tooru, correct?”, the cold voice of the chief did not match the warm smile on her face.
It felt distorted, grotesque, almost disgusting.
“Yes”, his voice was unrelentless and unwavering and he again glanced to the healer.
I don’t like this.
Her angry face, I don’t like it.
“Come in”, with a swift move she entered her tent and Tooru joined her.
“So”, the chief slowly spoke to the man.
“You’ve injured yourself, you were found by Lemsa and tended to”, she took a step back and started to pace around the premises.
“I am very thankful for everything you have done for me”, Tooru replied with a smile that exuded gratitude.
It was true, who knows what would’ve happened if Lemsa wouldn’t have found him.
He closed his eyes for a moment to remember it again.
And lastly the water that washed all of it away and left it merely as a memory flashed through his head in an instant.
He opened his eyes focused and present, tilting his head forward to look at the chief.
Her smile vanished.
“Are you a good person Tooru? Can I trust you?”
Questions that felt like a stab into the gut infiltrated his brain.
Trust is a mutual understanding and respect between people you cherish.
Was trust even in the picture here?
Could he, if he wanted to, even dare to say that he was trustworthy?
He doesn’t know these people, their culture or their values.
Who is to say he was trustworthy?
In all of the other villages, towns and cities he was everyone always commended him for his hard work and expertise.
There was no one asking for trust.
He arrived and people perceived him only when he made himself known.
He helped the needy and worked for the ones that needed it.
He got rewarded with money and a good reputation.
“Ah go to Tooru he can help”, was the phrase that lingered everywhere.
He was glad to help, with a smile he would carry buckets of water and build houses.
No one asked for anything beneath that.
He doesn’t know.
“I don’t know”.
The chief raised a brow, waiting for an explanation.
“I cold sit here and tell you about how trustworthy I am, but in the end could you believe me even if you wanted to? You don’t know me, and truth be told words are meaningless without action to back them up.”
He took in a breath.
“Let me stay so i can prove that you can trust me”.
They both looked at each other in utter silence for a while until a chuckle left her lips.
Confused, Tooru furrowed his brows and took in the aura that now felt a lot more carefree.
“Ah, that really is a good one! I guess the examination is over then huh?”.