There are eight members for the journey.
Ariel, Luke, Sylphy, Elmore, Kleene.
Ghyslaine, Eris, and I joined as part of the princess's escort
A huge two wheeled carriage, and five horses.
Unexpectedly the preparations for the voyage of Second Princess Ariel Anemoi Asura, who hailed from a country as great as the Kingdom of Asura, were rather simple.
Ostensibly, it was because we were returning incognito.
Hiding the truth that we are returning via teleportation from the public.
However, in spite of being incognito, many people were lined up at the entrance of the Magic City Sharia.
The principal of the Magic University, along with members of the student council.
General Manager of the Magic Guild.
Head of the magic tool atelier.
Among others, heads of various organizations, members of royalty from the Magic Triumvirate, and representatives of nobles, came to see Ariel off one after another.
I wonder if these guys don't know what incognito means.1
Out of all its possible meanings, none of them included a big number of farewells, escorted in such a grandiose way.
... Well, even if this send-off causes a problem, it's the fruit of Ariel’s labours. 2
Orsted is mighty, but his connection with the human race is almost nonexistent.
There may come a time when he will need these connections.
It was my duty to deal with them in his stead.
Now, it’s time for departure.
We will travel by teleportation, horseback, and carriage.
Take the horse carriage to the Sky Castle via magic teleportation circle, which teleports the entire group just north of the [Upper Jaw of the Red Dragon], at which point we will travel southward by land.
Perugius also set up a magic circle where the horse-drawn carriages can enter.
If Perugius can do that much, I wanted him to send Arumanfi to Asura Kingdom to draw the magic circle.
I tried to voice my suggestion, but Perugius said that out of the thirteen people including himself, only two are able to draw the teleportation magic circle.
They’re Perugius and Sylvaril.
In addition, it looks like the teleportation circles can't be installed anywhere.
The teleportation magic circle in the Sky Castle is fueled by Perugius’s magic, but to activate the teleportation magic circle that acts as the receiver, a certain condition must be met.
As for the condition, it's magic. 3
In the past, taking advantage of places that possesed a high magic density, the genius that created what came to be called teleportation magic produced a magic tool that semi-permanently activated the magic through absorbing magic from its surroundings.
In other words, teleportation circles cannot be made in places that did not possess a high magic density.
The fact that teleportation magic circles I used to travel to the Begaritto Continent were located deep in a forest and the desert, were due to such reasons. 4
Of course, from later research, it became possible to keep the magic circle active by attaching magic crystals periodically.
In the case of using a magic crystal, it's called manual feed type magic.
Because 『The magic density is thin.』 in most of the area around Asura Kingdom, most magic circles are the manual feed type.
The magic crystal is installed during an emergency and is removed when not in use.
Only a select few accurately know where to place the magic crystal.
in our situation, both were destroyed. The type that didn’t require a magic crystal along with type that did require a magic crystal. Everything had been blown apart.
The location, the equipment, and the magic circle.
If the three factors previously mentioned are not known, it is impossible to create a magic teleportation circle.
So how does Perugius intend to come to the Asura Royal Palace?
For now they told me: [You don’t need to worry about that.]
Because of Ariel-sama, it looks like they intend to make a surprise appearance.
"Amazing. It’s amazing! Rudeus! Look! The town is so small!"
The moment when we transferred to the air fortress, Eris raised her voice.
After jumping off the horse to look down on the sky and up at the castle, she raised a voice of admiration.
It was an unexpectedly childish reaction from a twenty-year-old woman. We could not help but cast wry smiles.
Still, it’s really heartwarming.
One person’s mood somehow became better after seeing Eris’s reaction.
It's Sylvaril who has been waiting before the magic circle.
Looking at Eris go crazy, she was feeling proud in her mind.
Enough to even be seen as such with the mask over her face.
"I hope you like the scenery from the Sky Castle, Chaos Breaker."
"It’s the best! First time I’ve seen something like this!"
Seeing the carefree smile of Eris, Sylvaril’s favor for Eris increased.
Honesty is the best policy.
“Is that so, then allow me to introduce myself. I’m the first familiar of Perugius-sama, Sylvaril of the Void. Pleased to make your acquaintance.”
Eris seemed to be itching to go into the castle.
Was it just my imagination or did it look like Sylvaril was showing her around with a happy mood and she even explained this and that?
While watching that charming scene, we followed them.
While explaining this and that to Eris, Sylvaril guided us to the audience room.
We planned to greet Perugius before our departure.
"So you’ve come."
As always, Perugius was proudly sitting on a chair while surrounded by his familiars.
This time only a greeting was done.
And so when Ariel came forward, and started to make a formal statement... Eris swiftly stepped forward.
"Who are you?"
I was horrified.
In my mind floated the image of Eris clenching her fist and hitting Perugius. Even if it’s Perugius, he will not be so forgiving if we tried to pick a fight with him.
When I quickly tried to stop her, Eris knelt down to her knee.
"Nice to meet you. My name is Eris Greyrat, and I’ve become Rudeus’s wife a while back. Pleased to make your acquaintance.”
I was taken aback.
Wait a minute, the person kneeling respectfully there is who again?
"Armored Dragon King Perugius Dola. Eris Greyrat. I know about you. Trained in the sword holy land and challenging Orsted, as befitting of your nickname [Mad Sword King].”
"I am still immature......."
Although Eris is trying to be humble, but she’s speaking in monotone.
Possibly, she only memorized the words without knowing the meaning.
"Eris Greyrat. Your attitude is admirable, I like it."
Perugius looks happy.
"In this case, I too need to apologize for my subordinate’s actions during the incident eight years ago."
Eris looks up and she made a quizzical look.
That face. It was the face of [I don’t remember that].
"Do not worry about it."
"Is that so? ...... I appreciate it."
Perugius laughed and shook his hand carelessly.
Eris stood up, she walked towards me with a fully self-satisfied expression.
It was a face that seemed to say: [I can do this much if I want to, you know.]
She might have been practicing this a lot.
In any case, Perugius seems to like Eris.
His attitude towards her is different from the one towards me.
As I thought, everyone would be fond of a honest person without a hidden side. Getting along with each other is a good thing.
"Everybody, please follow me."
After Ariel gave her greeting, Sylvaril guided us out of the audience room.
The teleportation magic circle was located in a place reached by looping around after going through the entrance.
The teleportation magic circle was emitting a faint light from the inner part of a currently empty large hall.
Sylvaril explained this and that regarding the hall, but I'll omit that.
We step on the magic circle.
The teleportation circle's destination was a ruin.
The ruin used to house the teleportation circle on the other side.
The same type in Begaritto's mainland and near Ranoa kingdom.
According to Orsted, there were many more of these ruins in the past, a variety of races seemed to have been moving freely between the continents.
It became totally prohibited to prevent it being exploited in the event of war.
A certain dragon tribe hated this rule, thus they hid the ruins they were using on their own by putting barriers around the ruins.
All over the world, there will always be guys that stand against the world only for their convenience.
Since we can move comfortably thanks to that, I am not going to blame such desires.
The ruin was within a dense forest.
From the valley called [Red Dragon’s Upper Jaw], it's a little northwest on the map according to the information received that was confirmed in advance.
However, that is where the problem was about to occur.
Although it’s good that we can move the whole carriage using the magic teleportation circle, we can’t move the carriage out of the ruins. We have this many people, yet we didn't think of that......?
While I was still dumbfounded by that, Ariel’s two servants began to disassemble the carriage carefully.
Two people disassembled the carriage in a fluid motion and carried the pieces outside the ruin.
And while I was thinking that they seemed to have assembled the carriage into small packages.
From there, loading the parts of the carriage on horses, we move to the vicinity of the highway.
There the reassembly of the carriage was finished in no time.
Since it was getting dark when we got out on the highway, we decided to camp the night there near the highway.
Surrounding the campfire, we prepared food.
There was no need to worry about kindling or food in this place with woods nearby.
I mean, it's been collected from the demons that attacked us in the forest.
Beast type monsters and firewood (Treants), also some wild grass.
Firewood (Treants), they really do exist everywhere.
There is even one living in my house, so maybe Treants are the next ruler of the world.
Normally I would just sit on the ground, but one of Ariel’s group had brought a carpet.
Should I say as expected of the princess?
Sylphy and two servants were in charge of cooking.
I offered to help, but I was gently turned down.
Well, with Sylphy’s skill even if I help I will just get in the way.
Just in case I told them that I can make tableware and cookware if there’s not enough.
During the cooking I was feeling bored.
I thought about patrolling the surrounding area to alert the party for incoming danger, but Ghyslaine and Eris are already doing that.
It looks like my turn won’t come.
In this journey, there is no work for me.
This is the first time it’s been like this.
I’ve never experienced this, not even during the time when I was traveling alone and intruding on other parties.
In those days I, having a surplus of magic, was treasured as a person useful for various chores.
From the purification of water to the production of tableware.
Since there are several servants here who can use magic, the work that was usually mine seems to have disappeared.
Well, my job is not to look after Ariel.
Since I am fighting against Hitogami, I need to determine who his apostles are and defeat them.
Our current conjecture is Luke, Darius, and one more person.
The possibility of the North Emperor or Water God being an apostle is high.
I have heard ways to deal with them from Orsted.
I simulated in my mind what I was taught many times, but I should try it out in actual combat.
I look at Luke while muttering.
A splendid armored figure, he stood close to Ariel.
He's in a position to immediately protect Ariel at a critical moment.
......if Luke is an Apostle of Hitogami.
And if I decided to not kill him.
I wonder what Orsted would do about Luke.
Luke's important to Ariel.
When Orsted requires Asura’s assistance after Ariel becomes king, it would be bad if there was an apostle of Hitogami advising Ariel.
No, Asura Kingdom will be coming to Orsted’s aid far into the future.
Which means that Luke will probably be dead by that time.
So it probably doesn’t matter.
But, if Ariel died immediately there wouldn’t be a meaning for her to become king.
No, the event 『Ariel becomes the king.』 would surely become a turning point.
Or the event 『The First Prince becomes king.』 might be our Bad End flag.
Yes...... Just in case, I’ll ask Orsted about it at the next opportunity.
I don’t know if he will tell me though.
Orsted does not tell me in detail about the events 100 years in the future.
I asked him about how Hitogami said [The world will be destroyed if I die], but he just replied [That possibility exists.]
It feels like he will be fine with whatever happens afterwards as long as he can kill Hitogami.
Well, even if the world is destroyed in the future, the me in the present can’t afford to worry about it.
My goal for now is to protect my family as best as I can.
It would be irresponsible, but I can’t be so hard headed.
The events of the future must be settled by the people of that generation.
But would my descendant lend their hand to Orsted even knowing the world will be destroyed beforehand?
Or maybe they will lend their hands without knowing about it.
If it is the latter, it's a little pitiful.
To prepare for that possibility, it would be better if I leave some words for them for the time being.
"Rudi, the meal is ready. Ghyslaine and Eris too, let’s eat!”
My thoughts were interrupted after hearing those words.
Well, after I get back from the Asura kingdom, I should write about it in my diary.
I have a tendency to forget things.
Dinner was delicious.
As expected of Sylphy.
And the other two attendants are also amazing.
Even though we don’t have a lot of food supplies in this situation, they could make it this delicious.
I should ask them to teach me the next occasion there is spare time.
Ariel is the only one that is using the tent while the rest of us are on watch duty shifts.
We watch in sets of two.
That said, there’s seven people excluding Ariel.
So there are three shifts.
At that time, one person patrols the surroundings.
Me, Sylphy, Eris, and Ghyslaine.
All of which have the ability to defeat a demon alone.
"I'm going to patrol the surroundings."
The first day is my turn.
As I say that to others, I begin to walk away from the bonfire.
Towards the deep forest ahead.
In total darkness, the only light source is the torch that I am holding.
However, I know that there are no monsters in this area.
But being cautious is never a bad thing.
Then after walking for about five minutes.
And quite a distance away from the campfire.
A guy abruptly appeared in the dark.
A flowing silver-haired man with golden Sanpaku eyes.
A man with a scary face akin to a devil, he appeared out of the darkness.
I screamed involuntarily and was about to let the torch fall from my hand.
"Ha......Excuse me. Thanks for your effort. Orsted-sama."
While I was greeting him, I sat on the nearby tree roots.
Orsted also sat down on the tree root on the opposite side.
Orsted is following us.
It seems that Perugius also knew about this.
Since the magic circle was used to follow us.
Thus we scheduled a period of contact during the journey.
Since it will be suspicious if we meet too often, we only meet once every few days and only during my turn to patrol around.
"What’s the news?"
"Luke isn’t making any suspicious moves. The journey is also going smoothly."
And, I finished my regular report.
Since it's the first day, there is not much to be said.
Orsted also didn’t seem to expect anything and didn’t pursue this matter any further.
"That's good. Maybe there won’t be anything for a few days."
"Just be extra careful after passing through the [Red Dragon’s Upper Jaw]."
The Red Dragon’s Upper Jaw.
It is a connected valley at the Red Dragon Mountains that separates the northern part of the central continent and the Asura kingdom.
An unforked valley, wide enough that big carriages can pass each other in the valley area.
By the way, I was nearly killed by Orsted in the Red Dragon’s Lower Jaw.
After passing the valley, there is a large forest.
It's a famous forest in the Asura kingdom.
That forest is called the [Red Dragon’s Beard.]
But, it is often lumped together with the valley to the north and called the [Red Dragon’s Upper Jaw].
Also, although it was part of the Asura kingdom, to the south from the forest is the border of the Asura kingdom.
As if to surround the south side of the forest, there is a rampart like the Great Wall of China built there, with a few hundred soldiers stationed there.
It was to stop the monsters from entering the south and also to prepare for an invasion from the North.
There are all kinds of reasons.
And the most important point.
This deep forest is often used to deal with important people.
Once you enter the forest, it becomes a place where there will be no witnesses.
In some areas of the forest, there are powerful monsters, and there are bandits prowling along the northern and southern paths.
It's a great place to secretly assassinate someone.
If Darius had received advice from Hitogami, this is where he will send his assassins.
After all, sending soldiers to the northern part of the Upper Jaw of Red Dragon would be considered as invasion of another country.
If they attacked the Princess after passing the southern checkpoint within Asura Kingdom, it will surely become big news.
It will become bad press for Darius under these two circumstances.
Therefore, the first chance to kill the princess is here.
If it is here, they are able to kill Ariel with the least possible risk.
Orsted predicted so.
"So, it will be as planned."
If there is an attack, taking the highway will probably be risky.
Since the highway is dangerous I will suggest an alternative route.
And, at the same time we could go and scout for Tris and her band of thieves.
If there is no attack, Orsted will move at that time.
A self directed play.
For that end, we stashed away a bunch of summoning scrolls along with magic crystals.
We will find out that the magic beasts in the area are being controlled by some individual.
That's the plan.
"If there is an attack, the possibility of the North Emperor Auber Corvette appearing is high. Be careful of that guy."
"Yes. Just as planned."
If Asura Kingdom has hired the North Emperor and the Water God.
Orsted saw that the possibility that the North Emperor is dispatched as an assassin is high.
The swordsman named Auber, it seems he is good at those kinds of jobs.
An unpredictable swordsman that symbolizes the North God Style.
From his hairstyle and clothes to his way of fighting, everything about him is unique.
A man gifted in surprise attack.
『Peacock Sword』 Auber Corvette.
Eris has already been informed beforehand about the possibility of fighting him and the Water God.
If I’m right, Eris had learned swordsmanship from Reida and Auber for some time.
Surely it will be difficult to fight against your former master.
Although I thought that, she only folded her arms and answered, [Yes! I can’t wait.].
Those two people, I wonder if she didn’t build any close relationships with those people like with Ghyslaine.
What I mean is, Eris, you don’t have friends in the Holy Land of the Sword? I’m a little worried.
"I have to say, for this upcoming battle, you’re being too optimistic."
I wonder if he’s right.
But, I am prepared.
I also heard about instructions for what to do.
Although there is a chance that Auber won’t come, I still simulated several ways to deal with him.
Also, I know in my head that he is a terribly strong opponent.
All that’s left is to just deal with it calmly.
While I can’t say that it’s a perfect plan, there’s no reason to feel more nervous than necessary.......probably.
Rather, I should relax at this stage, it is more efficient.......probably.
"Just in case, take this."
Orsted took out several sheaves of papers from his bosom.
They were scrolls with complex magic circles drawn on them.
"It is a magic circle for the king class healing magic. You mentioned that you could only use healing magic up to advanced level. In case of emergency, use it."
The healing magic of the king class. To what extent could it heal?
Even for major injuries like missing limbs, such magic can regrow them perfectly.
My defensive and evasion ability, and the enemy’s offensive ability.
Based on those factors, it would be best to have at least this level of recovery.
"So even king class healing magic has magic circles."
"Almost all magic in this world can be reproduced with magic circles."
"Almost.........then there is magic that cannot be reproduced?"
"As long as it’s not a unique magic with a special invocation."
“The howling magic that the beast tribe uses and the gravity magic used by the dragon king. Those things, without understanding the logic behind them, cannot be reproduced.”
Howling Magic, what I’ve been calling Voice Magic?
Once, I surprised someone with it.
The level I can use it at is more or less able to scare people, but I don’t know if it’s because of the actual magic or not.
"Although I read that your future self has mastered gravity magic, it probably would have required considerable time to master it. Researching, understanding, and training."
"...... Orsted-sama, I've heard that you can use all the techniques in this world. Can you also use gravity magic? "
"That’s right, although it’s not a very user friendly technique."
Oh, so you could.
"But I assume you don't know from the moment you're born... You too have to learn them one at a time, right?"
"It is so."
At the moment, I can’t even imagine the basic principle even if I heard it.
With time, maybe it’ll naturally come to me, how anti-gravity and the like would work.
Well, rather than pursuing what I do not know or if I can learn it, it’s better to do what I can do right now.
Such things could wait for when I had more space to breathe.
Now the next matter to discuss is ...... Luke.
“Come to think of it, Orsted-sama. Assuming that Luke is an apostle of Hitogami, it’s up to me whether or not I need to kill him, right? "
"In the event that I don’t kill Luke and princess Ariel still becomes King, what will happen to him?"
"Nothing will happen. When that time comes, he will also escape from Hitogami’s grasp."
"Is it safe to assume that only three apostles of Hitogami will appear? Can we leave him as it is?"
"It will not be a problem. Humans will remain as apostles of Hitogami only until the result of his future prediction comes."
Until the result of a future prediction?
Something this important should be said earlier!
What the hell, what if I thought the apostles could change in the middle of a fight?
"And a certain turning point acts as a boundary for Hitogami’s future sight. In this case, the turning point is when Ariel does or doesn't remove Grabell and Darius and becomes queen."
"So until then, the apostles will not change?"
Muu, you keep such important things until later .......
Well, that’s alright for now.
Let's say it is good just to know about this now.
Until this is over, the apostles will not change.
On the contrary, once it’s over, the apostles will cease to be automatically.
Well, there is still the possibility of them becoming an Apostle again.
And judging from Orsted’s tone,
If any apostles die before the prediction comes true, Hitogami cannot replace them.
That’s the reason to kill them.
".....Now, return. If you don’t hurry back soon, it will be suspicious."
With that, I finished the scheduled contact with Orsted.
I quickly returned to the campfire and reported that there was nothing of note surrounding the camp.
I finished my shift and covered myself with blankets.
In this way, the first day of the trip to the Asura kingdom passed.