Several days passed after the party, in which they celebrated the victory over the annihilation of the monster hordes that marched toward the fort city Balmel.
Shin and others were still in Balmel to help with matters after the ‘Great Flood’.
Besides the other remains that had been scattered around the plains, Schnee’s magic skill 【Blue Judge】 and Shin and the others’ 【Complete Destruction Palm】 caused many monsters to be turned to charcoal.
Cleaning up the bodies had started before the celebration party, but it has been taking time because of its unusual number.
“Anyway, it’s amazing. The monsters’ bodies around here were killed by a guy whose name is Red, right?”
“Yeah, I could see it very well as I was on the city wall. There are many who saw it as well. He killed the monster hordes that looked like a black wave all by himself. Whoever he was, he was really amazing.”
These conversations reached Shin’s ears.
Some people in the crowd who were heading to the gate after cleaning up bodies were talking about the mysterious person “Red”.
Even in the castle, various rumors were spreading and people were exchanging their opinion about the identity. Some opinions were reasonable but others were far from the truth.
For example, he probably served under a High Human, or he probably was one of the heroes who remained in this world, or he might be the incarnation of the god of fire Iira Suura and so on.
In fact, because Schnee or Shibaid, who were Shin’s support characters, could do it, the “Serving under a High Human” theory was the most dominant.
As for the third theory, it seems like people thought the god of fire Iira Suura who appears in myths joined the battle, as the armor’s color was red. It was one of the gods of war and people somehow believe it.
(So a God joined in huh? In the game world, Iira Suura was a boss monster…)
In the game, they could fight against the incarnation as part of a trial. Perhaps because of it, Iira Suura was known by people in this world as well.
Additionally, the boss monster ’s appearance was a human form holding a long fire sword.
It might be close to the scythe that Shin, or Red in this matter, used.
“But, why is his name Red?”
“Maybe it’s because his body is red, isn’t it?”
“That’s too simple. Don’t you think there should be a better nickname?”
Shin was quietly hurt. It was just made up on the spot, but was it really that weird?
“(Is the name “Red” that strange?)”
Yuzuha asked from overhead.
“(I don’t think that it’s a strange name.)”
It should not be strange, though there was no objection against the people who had said it was simple.
By the way, there was a plan to invite Red to the party but there was no way to make contact with him, of course. Schnee had been inquired regarding Red, but Shin asked her to answer that she didn’t know where Red was.
Shin was chatting with the middle age adventurer Rahl Ratt whom he got along with through working together everyday.
“Nevertheless, it’s harder to clean up than to fight.”
“Well, that’s a first world problem. There were no people killed in that tough battle. If we complain more than that, we would be punished.”
“I understand it, but I feel depressed if the number is that big. Besides, you didn’t fight that much. Some guys said they didn’t know why you were there.”
“Oh no, they found out. Hahaha!!”
Shin was talking with him using polite speech but started talking casually after he heard Rahl didn’t like to use polite speech.
Rahl was a rank B adventurer, so he didn’t know the word “Chosen One”. It seemed like he thought the adventurers who were fighting in the front line were from higher ranks.
As Shin said, there were no opportunities to join the fight for the adventurers of the raid.
Because they didn’t have coordination similar to the knights, they couldn’t charge into the monster hordes just like that.
Besides that, their position at the battlefield was right in front where monsters were rounded up by the magic of Schnee and Guile. If they had assaulted, they would just get mixed in and vanish.
It seemed like they guarded Guile and others to some extent, but it was hardly a battle.
“At any rate, Schnee Raizar is really amazing. No matter how hard we try, we would never be like her.”
“She is a monster to the general people. If she felt like it, she could erase a country. Are you scared of her?”
“Of course Shin! I don’t want to deal with her, though I think it’s okay to be killed by such a beauty!”
“…Well, I can understand your feelings.”
“See? I used to think it was just an exaggeration from those who said Schnee is a goddess or a holy woman, but once I saw her in the flesh, I couldn’t help but agree with them. Young people who saw her looked soulless. Although seeing the massive magic right after the start of battle, we lost our soul in another sense.”
Rahl laughed while talking about how epic it was. Even the knights lost themselves, so it was no wonder that younger adventurers were lost for words as well.
Also, Schnee has gained more fans without Shin’s knowledge.
If it was about a big guy with an aggressive appearance, people would fear him, but as it was about Schnee, strength was just one of her charms.
“Moreover, we can’t measure the value of the person by their strength. I have seen so many people up till now, someone can be a hero or bullshit depending on their ability and character. Understanding what kind of person they are, can’t be judged from their strengths or weaknesses. Besides I know that having power isn’t always a good thing.”
Rahl has probably had many experiences going by his age.
What he said was a cliche, but it carried weight at the same time.
“Do you know somebody like that person since you asked me about it Shin?”
“Yeah, something like that.”
“I see. If so, you should not be scared too much. I failed because of it.”
Rahl said mournfully which was unusual for his cheerful character.
“I will keep that in mind.”
“Yes, you should. Well, we’ll arrive at the gate soon.”
They parked the carriage carrying the monsters’ bodies at the side of the gate, then headed toward the guild to receive the reward.
In order to make the cleaning work smoother, guilds offered the job to the adventurers.
After Shin received the reward, he parted with Rahl who was meeting up with his friends, and looked around lightly.
Schnee and Tiera oversaw another workplace, but as their shifts were about the same, they were planning on meeting up here.
Shin was drinking fruit juice to kill time at the corner of the bar in the guild when Eliza, the guild’s receptionist, talked to him.
“Excuse me, Shin-sama. Do you have a moment?”
“Yes? Well, I’m good till my friends come. Is it okay to bring Yuzuha too?”
“Yes. Because in these past few days, I know Yuzuha wouldn’t cause trouble.”
The ‘Flood’ was over and Balmel returned to its peaceful state. Shin had no idea why he was called.
“I am sorry for asking you too much. Our staff will take care of your friends once they arrive here.”
Shin followed Eliza who led the way.
They gathered attention but he decided not to mind about it now. As he was fighting in the front line as a Chosen One, Shin’s name was widely known among a group of adventurers.
The place where Eliza led him was the room of the head of this guild. When they entered the room, they found the guild master, Baren, and the princess of Bayreuth, Rionne, waiting.
“I am sorry that we asked you to come so suddenly. A request designated for you has come, but we can’t talk about it in public.”
Shin could predict the contents as Rionne was standing next to Baren.
“…Is it perhaps, to be Rionne-sama’s bodyguard?”
“Yes, that’s right. By the way, you are close to Rionne-sama, aren’t you? The content of the request is to guard Rionne-sama until Bayreuth.”
There were no opportunities to see her after the party and since the ‘Flood’ was over at that time, he thought Rionne had left Balmel already. However, his expectations fell short.
“You helped me a lot since I was transferred to Kalkia. You will also receive a reward for that.”
It sounds like she will give a reward to him for the other day as well.
At this point, there were a few things Rionne had to give to Shin, so the reward for guarding was included in it.
“Well… I am sorry but I can’t accept this offer.”
“Does that mean you refuse the request from the royal family?”
“According to the law of the guild, it depends on the adventurer’s decision whether they accept the offer or not, am I wrong?”
There was a designation system that let the chosen adventurer receive the request in guild.
But the adventurers who were called had a right whether to accept or not. Of course, there was no penalty from the guild when the adventurer refuses.
In the past, the designation request was partly compulsory. But there was an incident where somebody took advantage of it and trapped a certain adventurer. It was a malicious trap where somebody requested an adventurer and made an assassin hide at the requested destination to kill the adventurer as if they were attacked by a monster. But the incident came to light after the adventurer turned the tables on the assassin and reported to the guild.
It was found out that there were similar incidents in the past by investigation, and then it became that the adventurers could refuse the requests. However, when the adventurers were having trouble refusing the requests from the nobles and wealthy merchants, the guild was supposed to be a mediator.
“I’ve said so, I have something to do.”
“Even though I am asking you?”
“Who taught you that upturned eyes and pose…”
“It doesn’t match with Rionne’s character,” said Shin in disgust.
Then Baren asked for confirmation.
“You can certainly refuse the offer, but is it really fine with you? Usually only the adventurers who belong to a high rank are called by the royal family.”
“I don’t mind. Actually, if I were to get too close to her carelessly, I would be scared of others’ jealousy. Besides, we are going to Kilmont for now. It’s the opposite direction and I am already prepared for it.”
“I wanted Shin to meet with my father though”
“No, I won’t. I feel he would tell me to serve for his country, so I won’t”
“I won’t change my mind even if you get sulky.”
Shin was regarded as an upper class Chosen One from Bayreuth’s top brass, but it didn’t mean that everybody would welcome him.
Rionne was a royal family member and was surrounded by the nobles. Sometimes people from the privileged classes act to keep their position more than considering the national interests.
…Though it was a selfish idea of Shin, he wanted to go to Kilmont to meet Shibaid as soon as possible and start researching the sacred place Kalkia.
Besides, even if Shin refused guarding her, somebody will pick her up from Bayreuth or she could request for other adventurers. They would never let the princess go home alone. In addition, Shin honestly couldn’t think that Rionne needed a guard.
“Well, how should I say this… it looks like you two are really close.”
“Of course! It’s Shin and me!
“I am afraid of what other people might think…”
Shin repeated it while turning away from Baren’s eyes who was putting a wry smile on his face.
“What a pity, but it can’t be helped. I don’t want to force this on you. But when you come to Bayreuth next time, you should come visit me.”
“…I will try.”
Considering Rionne’s attitude, it seems like she was thinking if Shin accepted the offer, it would be lucky or something.
Shin was relieved that they didn’t persistently press him. He had no intentions to treat her badly, but he has his priority.
“That’s all. Sorry for taking your time.”
“No problem. I was free at this time too. Then, please excuse me.”
He left with Eliza who was waiting for him at the corner of the room, they then left from the guild master’s room.
When Shin arrived at the hall, there was a crowd at the corner of the bar like he had seen before.
The center of the crowd was of course Schnee in disguise…In other words, Yuki and Tiera. He could sense the mood.
It happened often, so Shin kept his cool. He already heard the reason from Eliza about why so many people come around. Naturally, most of the adventurers were men. There were female adventurers, but there were very few who were beautiful, good figured, and capable like Schnee.
Even if there were that kind of women, they just stay with other women mostly, or they were employed by the nobles and there wouldn’t be any opportunity to get to know them.
Because of these reasons the adventurers were trying to invite Schnee and Tiera, whom often stay together, to join their party as well as the servants of the nobles, who were trying to invite them to the noble’s houses, were swarming around them.
“Today there are a lot more people around them.”
“Their name and appearance are well-known in Balmel. It can’t be helped.”
“So as I’m their male companion, the murderous intent and jealousy are focused on me, huh?”
“…It can’t be helped.”
Eliza as she was, had no way of responding.
“By the way, wasn’t there a plan to clear those people?”
“Yes, I informed the staff to be ready for it, but…”
Eliza looked around but there weren’t any staff even at the reception desk.
“It’s strange. There is a rule to have at least one person at the reception desk.”
“…Well, it seems like they tried to do their job though.”
With a sigh, Shin went towards the crowd. Though it was crowded with men, he could find another woman besides Schnee and Tiera.
The men who noticed Shin’s approach all showed negative feelings in their eyes. But because Shin had gotten used to it, he ignored those eyes and called out both of them.
“Hey Yuki! Tiera! It’s almost time to go!”
After a little pause, the crowd split. Tiera was behind Schnee, who has blond hair and red eyes, and a woman who wore the guild’s uniform was behind Tiera.
“I am sorry to keep you waiting.”
“No, I am the one who kept you waiting. I arrived here earlier, but just a little. I will talk about the details while walking. So who is this person?”
Some people were fascinated by Schnee’s smile toward Shin, and others were showing jealousy. Shin ignored those men and asked the woman who was standing behind Schnee and Tiera.
“Um, I-I am Fran, b-b-belong to the branch of the adventurer guild Balmel!!”
She was flustered and stuttered.
She was a petite lady and her height was around 150 cemels. Her brown bobbed hair and big round eyes were charming.
She looked like a junior high school student, or maybe even looked like an elementary school student.
“Fran, where are the other staff? They shouldn’t leave a new staff member alone at the reception.”
“M-My senpai is dealing with the high ranked adventurer who came a while ago. Others are also busy, so I have been trying to do my best, but…”
“The size of the crowd was so big that she could not deal with them by herself.”
“…Yes, that’s right.”
Fran agreed with Schnee’s words with sagging shoulders.
Surely, it was tough for new staff to deal with all those men around Schnee and Tiera.
If Shin were in the same position, he honestly wouldn’t want to get closer to that crowd.
Maybe the staff who have more experience would be able to handle it better, but it was still unavoidable.
“I am sorry. We caused trouble for you. Please accept my apology and if you have any requests, please tell me. I will help as much as I can.”
“I-I am sorry!”
“…Well, I think that’s okay, right, Yuki?”
“Yes, it was just bad timing and nothing happened to us, so please don’t worry about it.”
Schnee answered Shin while nodding.
She gave up halfway as people often come around her. That’s why she couldn’t bring herself to blame Fran.
“We appreciate your understanding.”
Still, Eliza and Fran have an apologetic look on their face.
Since it was their duty, it would affect their confidence if they accepted the responsibility and could not complete it. No matter how many times Schnee said it’s okay, they seemed to be ashamed. Shin and his companions left the guild saying “Don’t worry about it” to Eliza and Fran who bowed down.
“Sorry about that. If I had come to you immediately, we could have avoided that situation.”
“You had some business, didn’t you? It looked like you were called on.”
“Right. What happened?”
Somehow the two sensed something, so Shin explained about the request.
Schnee who listened to the story had a smile on her face and Tiera seemed to understand.
“It’s natural that they want to have Shin for their country. Rionne is a member of the royal family and although she doesn’t know about your background, she knows a little bit about your power, don’t you agree Shin?”
“A little. If I were in her position, I also would have thought to secure me. But what can I say, I understand it but it’s also different from my way of thinking.”
Though he said that, Shin kept a note in his mind that Rionne might be different from other royal family members. “If it weren’t for an unusual situation like this time, she would not favor me as much”, said Shin. Then Schnee said,
“Do you really think so?”
“What do you mean, Schnee?”
“The way you think and your attitude are rare in this world Shin. The royal families are heavenly people to the commoners, but not to players. Considering Rionne-sama’s character, she would be attracted to the person who casually talks to her and has power that she can rely on. Shin meets both of them, so even though there weren’t any incidents like this time, it’s possible that Rionne-sama likes you.”
“Well, if it is not Rionne-sama, others might say you are rude!”
“Well, how should I say it… I think Rionne-sama’s thought-process is closer to that of the commoner’s, not the royal family’s.”
“I agree with that.”
According to Rionne, the education that she had was focused on being a soldier more than being a member of the royal family, so it might be natural that she was different from other royalty.
“However, I don’t intend to be engaged with Rionne, so she has no choice but to give up on me.”
“If you say you are actually a High Human, she would come to you though.”
“From her past statements, I can’t deny that.”
Shin thought that Rionne might forcefully come saying it was for the sake of friendship. If they could have a High Human on their side, the king would happily give the princess.
“At any rate, our current priority is meeting up with Shibaid and others. If I follow Rionne, I would have to meet with the king. I am sorry for Baren-san, but I have to leave the country matter to the guild.”
He was not sure how far the guild would go, but Shin who was a Chosen One was different from a commoner. So he decided to think that the guild would have to do their best to deal with such a matter.
Partly because he had talked to Rionne, he couldn’t help but to wish that others won’t ask him unreasonable demands anymore.
There was the letter of introduction from Tsuki no Hokora…When Shin thought about it, he realized that he didn’t know much about the letter.
He had stored the letter in his Item Box and almost forgot about it until he used it in Balmel.
Because various events happened due to Shin showing the letter in Bayreuth, he hesitated to use it without thinking. Though it was a clue to meet with Schnee, he could meet with her without using it. Shin didn’t know all the items in THE NEW GATE, and he also thought whether there was this kind of item. Anyhow, depending on the player, making the item that worked effectively under a certain condition was possible. Frankly speaking, without a strong name value like “Tsuki no Hokora”, it was just a shiny piece of paper.
“Hey Schnee, it’s a bit late to ask you, but how do you make the letter of introduction?”
As far as Shin knew, the function that makes items that gave the effect like the letter of introduction didn’t exist in Tsuki no Hokora.
So that means that it was an original item from Schnee.
“The letter of introduction? I use the paper that comes out from the manufacturing machine that was used in Tsuki no Hokora. Also alchemy is applied. It was the enchantment of the luminescence.”
“Was there such a strong durability for the paper that comes out from that machine? It shouldn’t be a special paper that can be used for enchantments though.”
“I noticed it a long time after Shin left, so I don’t know the details…Surely it was just paper in the game era, but its quality is the best one as this world changed, so I think that magical power dwelled in it. Of course, I already checked it, and it wasn’t a bad one.”
Manufacturing machine in Tsuki no Hokora. It was like a home that produced various kind of materials, or one of the facility for the guild. There were some machines that could create items such as raw materials and metals, in addition to the paper in Tsuki no Hokora.
But the only one currently working is the machine that makes papers. In the death game period, when Shin left Tsuki no Hokora for the last time, he closed the door to the room for the manufacturing machines.
The reason was that the machine for the paper was placed in a different room from other machines, and he just forgot it was there.
“Let’s check it.”
It was better to quickly leave for Kilmont, and meet with Shibaid, but it was also important to check out his own home and his guild house which he oversaw.
“In that case, that forest is quiet and doesn’t stand out.”
“That’s right. Shall we go?”
At nightfall, Shin secretly left the town with Schnee, Tiera, and Yuzuha and headed for the forest he had cleared up before. Shin deployed and entered Tsuki no Hokora, where he then checked the manufacturing machines first.
Inside of the manufacturing machine room, the machines were organized into categories such as ore, ingredients, and materials that were obtained from monsters.
The manufacturing machines looked like boxes measuring 30 cemels on each side. They were worth almost as much as 《Ancient》 grade weapons in this world.
Materials that couldn’t be obtained or required great troubles to obtain could be produced without limitation, so long as time permitted. The ‘machine’ was especially amazing since this world was now reality and certain materials could no longer be farmed.
Generated items would be changed into cards that were stored in an Item Box within the machine.
“What is this…?”
Shin checked the ore and materials first.
When he opened the list inside of the Item Box, a considerable number of items were listed. It wasn’t like 100 or 200. It varied depending on the type but even the smallest stacks exceeded 1000, and most of them were more than hundreds of thousands.
The Item Box should only be able to store 999 of the same type of item, but the maximum stack number must have changed.
“There’s lots of items…Kuu”
“Indeed. There are lumps of orichalcum, mithril, adamantine and even refined Scarletite. The tusks and claws of Bahamut and even the liver of a Behemoth… Wow, the amount of ‘Drop of Erathem’ is amazing! It’s like you could make as many 《Ancient》 grade weapons as you want.”
Nodding at Yuzuha, he scrolled down the item list.
Even rare items that were likely produced only twice a year in real time, a poor management system which Shin had complained about during the gaming era, were present in incredible numbers.
Though it was understandable that the items had accumulated for the past 500 years, Shin’s pride as a gamer was hurt as he felt his efforts in mining were in vain.
“The ingredients also seem the same. Though, there is an astounding amount of the highest rank ingredients.”
Schnee who checked the list of ingredients in one of the manufacturing machines was also surprised at its contents. It was so shocking that they could easily stay indoors for at least 100 years.
“These items are something I have never seen nor heard of. What are they?”
Due to her lack of knowledge, Tiera was surprised at the number not the item itself.
Since it was a rare opportunity, Shin moved a portion of the items into his own Item Box.
Shin was planning to inspect whether there were any differences between the items in his own Item Box and the items in the manufacturing machines.
“I’m going to forge for a bit. I’ll see whether the materials are usable or not.”
“Understood. I’ll prepare dinner.”
“Maybe I could make some simple recovery potions.”
“Please do so.”
After he passed over the basic alchemy set to Tiera, Shin headed to the smithing area with Yuzuha.
He started a fire in the furnace and took out the orichalcum ore card from the manufacturing machine.
When he was about to materialize the card, Shin noticed an aura coming from it.
He stared at what looked like a heat haze, then it became clear, like an image focusing in a camera.
“That’s magical power, isn’t it?”
There was a light silver color similar to the aura from a magic sword.
For the sake of comparison, Shin took out the orichalcum ore card from his own Item Box and saw that it radiated a light purple. However, the color didn’t stay the same as it changed to a dark grey then a light blue.
He hadn’t noticed this when he upgraded the equipment of Shadow and the others, or when he repaired Girard’s equipment.
“Fumu. I don’t understand it. Should I strike it for now? Yuzuha, please stay back.”
He put aside the trivial things for a moment, and materialized the two cards.
At present, there was no difference except their aura’s colors. Though the amount of ore was somewhat different, there wasn’t a problem since it wasn’t fixed to begin with.
Shin put the orichalcum into the furnace and refined it. The refined orichalcum that had its impurities removed radiated a stronger aura.
Then, he placed it on the anvil and swung the hammer down.
The two swords, made with the same procedure, were both at medium 《Legend》 grade. They looked almost the same except for the aura that enveloped the swords.
When he compared the sharpness of the edges, the difference became clear.
The sword made of orichalcum from Shin’s Item box, covered in an aura of multiple colors, was sharper than the one made of orichalcum from the manufacturing machine, covered in an aura with a single color.
“Kuu? It’s different, though they’re similar?”
“Even if the materials are the same, the power is different, huh? Is it related to the magic color? …Come to think of it, Tiera did say my magical power is strange or something like that.”
He remembered the time when he first met Tiera, she said she could feel multiple races’ magical powers.
“Is Shin’s magic power different from others’?”
“I wonder. Though I still can’t perfectly control my power, so I’m not sure.”
Shin moved to the main building where Tiera was, thinking that there might be some hint.
After Tiera had set up the alchemy equipment and materials on the table, she began making the recovery potions. Shin didn’t disturb her, as she seemed to be concentrating. After several minutes, she finished brewing the potions.
“Did you finish it?”
Shin chose to wait for Tiera to finish her work before speaking up.
But, since Tiera didn’t notice him, she was surprised and gave a small cry of alarm.
“Ah…I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to surprise you.”
“Don’t sneak up on me like that! I was so surprised.”
Tiera glared at him while putting her hand on her chest. Perhaps she felt shy as she was seen the moment that she was surprised. Her cheeks turned red.
Shin didn’t intend to hide his presence, but it seemed like he did so unconsciously.
“I’m really sorry. I wasn’t trying to distract you since you seemed to be focused.”
“*Sigh* Be careful next time. I nearly dropped the potion.”
When Shin bowed, Tiera’s anger seemed to settle down.
“At any rate, I tried to make the recovery potion according to instructions using these materials. I don’t have the appraisal skill, so I’m not sure of the difference. Can you check them?”
After Tiera calmed down, she handed the recovery potions over to Shin.
They looked the same, but when he saw the analysis, Shin found that the potion made of materials from his Item Box were more effective.
However, the one that used the materials from the manufacturing machine was twenty percent more effective than a conventional potion.
It seemed like using materials that possess magical power raised the effectiveness of the items made from them.
“I see. I was expecting an increased effect, but it’s really amazing.”
“Were you expecting it?”
Shin asked about the reason for what Tiera said after she heard the result of the appraisal.
“Well, it seems like Shin doesn’t know this, but when an object stores magical power, it shares its owner’s spirit and characteristics. It was said that was a condition of something like power without definition. I’ve only seen these objects a few times though. Since only Elves and Pixies can see this power, you may not understand it, Shin.”
“Interesting…By the way, I wanted to ask you something.”
“What is it?”
“Well, when we first met, you said various races’ magical power or something after you looked at me, right? I wanted to ask about it.”
“Eh? D-Did I say something like that?”
Tiera answered evasively. Her face that turned her eyes to the wrong direction expressed exactly someone who was trying to hide something.
“? …Well, if you don’t want to tell me, that’s fine. I won’t force you to tell me. I’ll ask Schnee if there is anything that seems strange in her ingredients. You can keep the potions.”
“Eh!? Wa, wait!!”
Everybody has something that they don’t want to share. Even though Shin was concerned about the magical power, somehow he could guess the reason.
Since he thought it was a bad idea to ask forcefully, Shin decided to go to Schnee’s place first, but surprisingly Tiera pulled him back.
“What’s the matter? You look so confused.”
“B-Because… aren’t you going to ask about it? Though I’m here with you, I’m clearly hiding something from you.”
“But you don’t want to tell me, right? Of course I can’t leave it alone if it’s about a life-threatening situation, or something similar. But I can somehow guess that it’s not like that, and I don’t want to forcefully ask you to tell me. When I look at you, I can just tell that there are some things you don’t want to tell me. So I think it’s not right to share everything just because we are together. In fact, I also have something that I haven’t shared with everybody.”
“I understand, but…”
“It’s fine with me to wait until you think you are ready to tell me. When the time comes then――”
Then Shin’s stomach rumbled “Grruuu”. It was so loud that they could hear it clearly.
“…I, I’ll also tell you what I haven’t shared with you?”
Because of the stomach rumbling, the serious mood vanished, but Shin said everything that he wanted to say.
“Shin, are you hungry?”
Right after that, Yuzuha, who was just observing, quietly said explosive words.
“Hey! I was saying something serious!”
“But you said ‘When the time comes then Gruuu.’”
“Nooo! Why did it happened in this timing?”
Maybe that hit the spot. Tiera held her laughter in until her ears turned bright red.
Because she lowered her head, he couldn’t see her face. However, he guessed that it wasn’t as serious as before.
It was a pleasant situation for Shin as he wanted to change the atmosphere, but it couldn’t be helped if he thought there might have been a better way.
“I’m sorry. Even though we’re talking seriously, b-but, pfffahaha”
“Well, I made my point, but, it’s fine I guess. Though you have something you can’t tell me, don’t worry about it. And don’t tell anyone about my stomach rumbling! Never! Yuzuha, you too!”
After the parting remark, Shin went to the kitchen.
Tiera looked at his back with tears in her eyes. Shin didn’t know her tears weren’t only from laughing. “I am sorry.” What Tiera whispered didn’t reach anyone.
When Shin entered the kitchen, there were already several dishes. He could smell them while he was talking to Tiera, so he couldn’t help thinking what would happened if he had not smelled these dishes.
“Kuu~, smells good!”
“Yes, it does… what a great smell.”
“Shin? You look troubled. Did something happen?”
“No, nothing. Yeah, nothing happened. By the way, it smells delicious. How were the ingredients?”
“I didn’t see any problems. The freshness was satisfactory too.”
Schnee answered while wiping a knife.
It seemed like she hadn’t noticed any differences in the process of cooking.
Considering the swords and the recovery potions, the differences would probably be seen in its flavor.
“The results of Tiera and my experiments showed that the ones from my Item Box were more effective. However, the quality of the things made using materials from the manufacturing machines were better than normal.”
“I see. I have just finished cleaning up, so we should test them. How’s Tiera doing?”
“Oh, she finished making the recovery potions, so I’ll bring her here.”
“You don’t need to.”
When Shin turned around to go to call Tiera, Tiera showed up.
Since she had a little time to calm herself down, her complexion returned to normal. Her eyes seemed bloodshot, but Shin just felt awkward wondering if she had been laughing till she cried.
“Nothing. The dishes are ready, so let’s compare the tastes.”
They put all dishes on the table and sat down. Yuzuha was also in human form at this time.
Everyone said “Itadakimasu” together and then started tasting.
What Shin ate first was the dish made using ingredients from the manufacturing machine.
He put the foods he used to eat in reality, such as stuffed cabbage, pot‐au‐feu, pilaf, and so on, in his mouth.
“This is far better than a family restaurant.”
“This is better than what Master usually makes.”
Because these foods were something they often ate, they could tell how much better it was. It didn’t mean that the foods they had been eating were low quality, but still these were delicious enough to tell the difference.
Because there were other dishes to taste, they used all their willpower to stop themselves from finishing the dish.
“Then, the next one.”
The next dishes were the made using the ingredients from Shin’s Item Box. Since it was for comparison, the menu and cooking processes were the same.
They cut the stuffed cabbage in two using chopsticks, then ate it.
In that moment, Shin and Tiera stopped moving.
Their first thought was ‘Is this really a stuffed cabbage?’.
“What is this? To be frank, I can’t think of anything besides how delicious this is. But if I were asked the difference, I can’t explain it.”
“I agree. I don’t know what to say besides delicious.”
“Kuu, delicious, delicious~”
Yuzuha was the only one eating like normal. With dishes made of materials from either source, Yuzuha stuffed her mouth happily while smiling.
In a sense, this might be the correct reaction toward the dishes.
Shin had tried dishes using ingredients his Item Box the night he met Schnee again, but there wasn’t any magical power leaking from the cards then.
Was it because it was used with the regular ingredients? He wasn’t as shocked as with this stuffed cabbage.
“Anyway, we have to be cautious when using the items in my Item Box. I don’t think they were like this before though.”
“Yes. Even the items from the manufacturing machines are more than enough. Did you notice any differences in the items recently added to your Item Box?”
“No, I didn’t see any change among those items. But as times goes on, they might change, so I’ll check those to make sure.”
The number of the items in Shin’s Item Box was huge. It would be impossible to test everything, so he would have to choose a small number of items and check them.
After they finished their meals, Shin and the others came to the teleportation device room that was located next to the manufacturing machines’ room. They intended to check on the guild houses’ conditions.
“As far as I can tell, none of the devices are broken.”
“Yes. Just in case, I asked Raster to check it, but I heard that there were no problems.”
Raster was the support character who served under Cain, a member of Rokuten who was the architect. Because Cain helped build Tsuki no Hokora, Raster, as his follower, did the maintenance.
If Raster said so, it would work without any problems.
“Well, let’s open the option menu…Hmm?”
“Is anything wrong?”
Schnee approached Shin who voiced his doubt. Shin shifted the display sideway to show Schnee the selection screen for teleport destinations.
It displayed the names of the 1st through 6th guild houses. But if he tried to pick a destination, it made a muffled “Beep” sound.
This sound usually came out when one tried to use an item that was not available or choose a place that was impossible to transfer.
It seemed like they couldn’t transfer to any guild houses at their present state.
“What does it mean?”
“The equipment here is working, so something might have happened at the other guild houses?”
“No, what I am concerned about is that I’m unable to choose Rashugum. I don’t know about the others, but I can’t imagine any problems in Rashugum, where Raster is doing maintenance.”
“But, it’s hard to determine the cause of the problem. Please wait a moment. I will send a message to Raster.”
“Yes, please. I’ll fiddle a little too.”
Besides specifying a destination from the option menu, there were times when it was possible by using the terminal. For the time being, he decided to check which ones were working.
“There is no problem in Tsuki no Hokora. No error from the transferring devices. So, there might be some problems at the destinations or…”
While operating the terminal, Shin formed a hypothesis. If one had never been to the destination in this world, one wouldn’t be able to use the items, skills, and equipment related to teleporting.
Since he came to this world, he hadn’t been able to use message cards and lists as these were reset.
If the reason he could transfer to Tsuki no Hokora was because he had visited before, everything would make sense.
“If that’s the case, I have no choice but to go there.”
“If Shin’s hypothesis is correct, there’s no other way but to do that. Though Raster has been here, he can’t use the transferring devices.”
Schnee agreed with Shin. That was the only thing they could do now.
In the game era, the support characters including Schnee, didn’t have the crystal stones that granted teleportation ability. Therefore, Schnee hadn’t registered the teleportation points at Rashugum even though she had been there.
“Our conversation is based on the fact that it is natural to use teleportation. I’m scared as I’m getting used to it.”
“That’s how we are steeped in.”
Tiera had a distant look and Shin responded to her with a big smile and a thumb up.
“Stop it, I almost nodded.”
“Your body is honest.”
“Uu, I can’t deny it…”
Tiera felt that if she was not steeped in this situation, she would not be able to relax.
After that, they checked some more devices and items. As they got into it, they realized it was already late, so they decided to stay the night in Tsuki no Hokora.
While the moon was up high in the sky, Shin was sitting on the verandah at the back of Tsuki no Hokora. He held 『True Moon』, that had been broken from the battle with his support character, Girard.
“Well, what should I do… hmm?”
As he watched the moon, he sensed someone he knew very well coming closer.
“You can’t sleep?”
“Oh! Yeah, I was just thinking of repairing 『True Moon』.”
Shin stopped thinking for a moment as he was fascinated by Schnee in her nightwear, but he still managed to answer her somehow.
Shin lifted up 『True Moon』 to show Schnee as she naturally sat down next to him.
“This is from the battle with Girard, isn’t it? It looks the same as it was though.”
“I’ve thought of repairing it several times.. But, how do I say it, I feel like something is lacking. I could fix it right away, but my intuition as a blacksmith tells me not to… though, I don’t know if my intuition is reliable or not.”
Shin said to Schnee while putting a bitter smile on his face.
It was about time to fix it, so he tried out during his free time today, but it didn’t work out very well.
All materials were prepared and Shin’s skills weren’t lacking, since he was a master blacksmith. Perhaps there was something else missing besides these.
“May I borrow it?”
When Shin handed over 『True Moon』, Schnee held it in front of her chest.
While Shin was wondering what she would do, he saw that 『True Moon』 gradually began glowing while held in Schnee’s hands.
『True Moon』 emitted light as if it were soaking in the moonlight. Shin was wide-eyed with surprise because of the light, but after a while, it stopped emitting a light.
It lasted for only a moment, but Shin felt that it was much more longer than that.
“Here you go.”
“Ah, y-yes. Hey Schnee, what was that?”
“I poured my magical power into 『True Moon』. I felt I should do it. I don’t know why, but I hope it’ll help you, even just a little bit, Shin.”
“No, I have to thank you instead. I am sure that something missing was filled with this.”
Shin said while looking at 『True Moon』.
Shin knew by intuition that what Schnee did wasn’t anything wrong.
At the same time, he understood three more things.
“It’s not complete yet, but I know what I should do. Thank you.”
“I am glad to hear that.”
Schnee looked very beautiful with a gentle smile on her face.
Shin gasped at her beautiful smile. Her beauty attracted people, but it made her untouchable. Her beauty was something that couldn’t be described with words.
“Well, what will you do after this, Schnee?”
“If it is fine with you, I’d like to watch the moon with you.”
“…Well, of course. “
Schnee answered to Shin, and leaned her body against him.
Shin felt a weight on his shoulder as Schnee rested her head while clinging to him.
“…Ah, Schnee-san? This is…”
“Please let me be like this for a moment.”
When Shin accepted it, the weight on his shoulder increased.
Maybe it was because Schnee leaned her whole body on Shin. The reason she didn’t do so from the beginning was perhaps she was afraid of being denied or maybe she felt shy.
They looked up moon in silence for a while.
In the moonlit night, two shadows fell on the verandah.
These two shadows cuddled together and remained together until they returned to their rooms.
The following morning, Shin and the rest headed towards Kilmont. They took some time to say their farewells and give thanks to Hibineko and the others who fought in the battle of Balmel. That made them start later than the other adventurers and merchants. It also meant that their carriage ride was more spacious.
“It feels so slow now.”
Tiera muttered while looking out the window.
“It’d be inappropriate for us to go flying out of the city.”
Kagerou, as a horse, pulled the carriage just as fast as the other carriages on the road. Tiera felt like they were traveling even slower, especially after their rushed ride to Falnido.
“You know this is normal, right?”
“I feel like everything is different now after meeting Shin.”
Schnee’s words sank in, and Tiera didn’t know how to take them.
“Is that a bad thing?”
“It’s not normal.”
Tiera glanced over towards Shin, feeling a little dumbfounded. It was silly to think that a carriage going at such a ridiculous speed was normal. Shin nodded in agreement, holding tightly onto reins which was only decorative.
They were heading towards Kilmont. Shin and company’s journey to meet Shibaid had only just begun.
“I guess there isn’t much traffic. Maybe we can speed up just a little… wait? A message from Wilhelm!”
A message had arrived for Shin, amidst everyone’s convoluted thoughts.
Shin knew that Wilhelm wouldn’t send him a message over nothing. Something dire must have happened.
He immediately opened the message.
“Shin? What is it?”
Ignoring Schnee’s concerned voice, Shin quickly took out an item card and attached it to the message card.
He merely wrote “Use it,” and immediately sent his response to Wilhelm.
With Shin in a daze, Tiera and Yuzuha were also pressing him.
With his brows furrowed, Shin told them what Wilhelm’s message said.
―Rashia had been stabbed.
It happened on a beautiful day.
Sister Rashia had woken up, starting the day as usual; she made her bed, prayed, and went to wake the children. There was much work to be done in the church.
“I’m off now. Please look after yourselves.”
It was not unusual for a ceremonial occasion to be held in the church. Thoria was supposed to be at the church to make funeral arrangements for the recently deceased.
Rashia had nothing to worry about. It was just an ordinary day.
“I’m going to begin the treatment. Please relax.”
“Thank you as always.”
“Please, it’s nothing. It’s part of my duty to serve the community.”
“I can’t believe how much you’ve grown Rashia. I’m happy for the church that you’re here.”
“Yes. I owe much to Thoria, but I can only hope that I can repay my debts.”
Rashia smiled towards an elderly woman from the neighborhood.
She had gained considerable experience at the Wraith Plains and her healing ability also rose greatly. She was also quite skilled in giving medical attention to those in need. Sometimes, she was even able to cure those who had given up.
The issue with who would take over the responsibilities of the church was settled now. Everything was back to quiet. Or so she thought――.
“May I come in?”
The man stood at the entrance of the church. He and Rashia had argued heatedly over who would lead the church.
Father Bulk took a handkerchief to his oily face, wiping off the sweat and revealing a crooked smile.
“Hello my child. I beg your pardon, but we’ve got some matters of the church to discuss. Do you think you could excuse us?”
The words that came out of his mouth were polite, but the elderly woman was clearly left without a choice.
There was too much of a status difference between them; the father of the church and an elderly villager.
The woman left the church and closed the doors behind her. Rashia blurted out.
“What do you want?”
“Let’s start with ‘Hello,’ shall we? Of course, I’m here to continue our little chat from before.”
Father Bulk feigned shock. His entire demeanor was condescending. This made Rashia uneasy and bitter.
“I’m certain that I will be leading the church.”
“No, it’s too soon to call the shots. Besides, there hasn’t been a legitimate decree yet. Did you really think that you were in control? Well, that’s just hasty and careless.”
“…I’ve already received word from the other Fathers, that it’s not an issue. Of course, since there’s quite distance from headquarter, the official documents will be coming in any day now.”
“‘Any day now’? What is that, tomorrow? Or the next day? I don’t find it very reassuring that you don’t have these details all in order.”
His voice lingered in Rashia’s ears, giving her shivers.
What does he want? He’s far too confident.
“Father. Is that why you’re here? To tell me all of this?”
“Oh, heavens no child. This church will be mine eventually. I’ve merely come to see that things are still as they should be.”
“…I’m afraid I don’t understand what you mean. Why would you say such a thing?”
Father Bulk made it seem as if he knew something she did not.
“Your sheer arrogance. This is why we really need to stop letting things slide just because of hereditary reasons. You know absolutely nothing.”
This time, Father Bulk became slightly more aggressive.
“Answer me. I’ve obtained 【Purification】 so I should be the leader of this church according to the rule.”
“Please don’t raise your voice. Why don’t you show a little modesty? The Sisters in the headquarter are gentle you know?”
The conversation was going nowhere.
Rashia was glaring at Father Bulk, when suddenly the door opened.
“Am I late?”
“Yes you are, Eline! Because of your tardiness, I’ve been through quite an ordeal. I encountered a golem during my trip, and…”
“Bulk-san, that’s your fault. You are the one who said that you wanted to visit some ancient sites. I had my own matters to attend to, so please, do not yammer on about that anymore.”
The man who stepped in wore a suit of armor.
It wasn’t unusual to see someone with blonde hair blue eyes from Bayreuth. His hair that came slightly below his shoulders was neatly tied back. He smiled, and looked like a picturesque knight in shining armor.
However, Rashia saw him as anything but that. He was an intruder, for all she knew.
“Anyways. You know what to do, don’t you?”
“Yes, the men outside filled me in. Is she the one we’re taking?”
“No. We’re taking the child of the beast. I understand the child’s name is Mily, or something like that. I’m sure she’s in the orphanage. Bring her to me.”
Father Bulk commanded with no hesitation.
The man named Eline was headed towards the orphanage.
“Wait! What are you going to do with Millie!!”
Rashia stood in his way, but Eline did not budge.
“Bulk-san. What should I do with her?”
“Do as you wish. The area is surrounded.”
It was a matter of seconds. Eline tilted his left hand, unsheathed his weapon and took the short sword.
The speed was clearly not the capability of a commoner. If this had worked, Rashia would have gone down in the blink of an eye.
Except, it didn’t. A clear barrier generated between Rashia and the short sword. A spark could be seen where the forces met, and Rashia was thrown back.
The short sword fell to the ground with a clang.
“How interesting. You seem to have equipped a shield item of some sort. Even my sword couldn’t stand against it. It’ll be even more interesting to find out, if you made this item yourself, or if you received it as a gift.”
Eline looked intrigued, but Rashia could only stare back with fear.
She had no idea what had happened.
Rashia was at level 151. She was quite strong as a common woman. Her kinetic vision was far from average.
Yet, she could not have dodged Eline’s attack on her own.
After fighting alongside Shin and Wilhelm, she had grown accustomed to sensing murderous intent. Everyone -no matter how strong- should be emitting some sort of will. It could be murderous or violent. Either way, it was a guide for Rashia to use when dodging and defending herself.
Yet here was this man, with neither murderous intent or animosity. To kill must be as natural as breathing for him. He showed no hesitation towards the act of killing. Here was true terror, in the form of a man.
“Won’t you answer me?”
“Oh well. I guess I’ll just have to find! Out!”
Before he had finished his thought, he drew his other sword and ran towards Rashia. Yet again, Rashia’s barrier stood against his force.
However, unlike the last time with the short sword, sparks were flying more dramatically and the sword was struck deep in the air.
“It’s much tougher than I had anticipated. What would happen if I hit repeatedly?”
Eline couldn’t hide his excitement. He was thrilled to have found a worthy opponent. He drew his sword again and again.
With every strike, Rashia’s barrier shrunk.
“Eline, stop horsing around.”
“But sir, I think I’m close.”
“Just use that other thing. Hurry up.”
“You leave me no choice. I’ve already tested it on a monster. Let’s see how you fare.”
Eline turned his sword into a card. He reached in his pockets for a different one. It materialized into a 2 meter long giant knife.
A single edge had to be longer than 15 cemels. The blade shone bright red. The brim had the emblem of wings, and a giant fist sized jewel fit neatly.
The onyx jewel was a stark contrast to the blood-red blade.
“Isn’t she a beauty? I’m afraid all I know is that her name is 『Exvaine』.”
Eline looked proudly at his possession.
“It’s more than just a pretty face. Just look at this!”
He seemed satisfied that Rashia couldn’t take her eyes off of his weapon, as he grinned and thrust it upon her.
You could hear the swish of the blade cutting through the air as it left a red afterimage. It was almost a shriek as the sound of shattering glass pierced through the ears of those in the vicinity. The knife cut through the barrier like butter, slashing Rashia’s cheek. The blade stopped at her neck.
Rashia peered over at the deadly tool. Should Eline gesture his hand even the slightest bit, her head would be chopped off. Blood dripped down her face, and Rashia sat there shaking.
“So. Do you feel like answering my question now?”
She put all of her might into not screaming. She had lost all words.
Eline looked smug. It wasn’t a very pleasant expression. It was the face of a violent child. One that enjoyed picking off the legs and wings of a bug.
“No. Please. Leave us alone.”
‘I will probably die.’ Rashia was filled with sorrow at the thought.
She stared into Eline’s eyes. She knew that no matter what she had said, it was all up to his whim. That is why she felt resolute to not share any information.
“That’s a pity. It’s fine though. I’m here on a mission anyways.”
Millie and the other children were indeed in the orphanage. No matter what happens, Rashia must warn them of the dangers. She was about 10 steps away from an item that would heed them.
Rashia was about to run for it, when the worst case scenario had unfolded. Luck was on Father Bulk’s side.
“Shia-nee, I’m done cleaning.”
It was none other than Millie, who had come into the church building. She was alone. She must have finished her chores before the other children.
“Well what do we have here. She seems to be Millie-san. How convenient that the target came to us. Is this because I behave well everyday? ”
“Yes, it must be God smiling down on us. Eline, you know what to do.”
“Of course, my lord.”
Eline and Father Bulk shifted their attention to Millie. At that chance, Rashia attempted to run to the organ, to activate the item hidden between the keys.
However, Eline did not miss a beat.
“Are you going to do something? That’s no good at all.”
Eline stood between Rashia and the organ.
“Hurry up Eline.”
“Please don’t rush me, Father!” Eline blocked Rashia and inched towards Millie. It was then that a strong barrier burst between Millie and Eline.
Eline could sense that this force was much more powerful than that of Rashia. He swung down his precious 『Exvaine』.
Except it was different this time. 『Exvaine』 bounced off of the barrier with a jolt.
Eline’s eyes were slits of rage. He took his weapon and lashed out towards Millie. The barrier held up.
Eline put more might into his vicious attacks.
Millie was crouched to the ground, and only a little crack appeared in her barrier.
“…Well what do you know. My High Human weapon doesn’t seem to be doing its job.”
“Oops. Just a slip of the tongue.”
Rashia could not hide her surprise. A High Human weapon- one forged by the likes of God. It wasn’t just that though. It was the fact that the little Millie even stood a chance. The item from Shin seemed like a simple necklace. It was truly a God-given gift.
“This is a waste of time. Let’s try this.”
Eline took the 『Exvaine』 and destroyed Rashia’s barrier. She was thrown to the ground as the blade was placed right at Rashia’s neck.
“Millie, Millie, Millie. If you don’t want her to die, please discard your barrier item.”
“No! Millie don’t! Gah!”
Eline shut Rashia up. She could no longer produce any words.
Millie didn’t know what to do. She stood helplessly, uttering Rashia’s name.
“You don’t seem to believe me. Then, how about this?”
Eline briefly released Rashia from the holds of 『Exvaine』, and effortlessly slid the red blade into Rashia’s right rib area.
Rashia didn’t know what had happened, until the blood started coming out of her mouth.
Millie ran towards her.
However, her barrier stopped her, because it knew how dangerous Eline was.
“Look what you’ve done Millie. You can stop all of this right now, you know?”
The pain was excruciating, but Rashia didn’t want Millie in the wrong hands. All that came out of her mouth though were shallow breaths and sounds.
“No! Release Shia-nee!!”
“All you have to do is unequip your barrier item. The more you resist, the more pain she will be in….like this.”
His tone was gentle, as Eline chanted spells into the 『Exvaine』 still inside Rashia.
The blade turned red-hot.
The burning sensation made Rashia cry out.
Her scream was too much for Millie.
“Stop! Stop it…”
“Look. All you have to do is take off your item. Put it on the ground.”
Tears dripping down her chin, Millie placed her necklace on the floor. The moment her hand and the necklace weren’t touching, the barrier was released.
“That just took far too long. Off we go. Come.”
Father Bulk shook his head.
“Please. Please help S-Shia-nee…”
“If you come quietly, she won’t die. If you even let out a peep, who knows what will happen to your precious sister.”
“This is why I hate children. Eline.”
Eline hit Millie’s gut. She fell noiselessly. They had knocked her unconscious.
“We’re done here. Let’s go.”
“Shouldn’t we clean up?”
“Leave it. But don’t leave any traces.”
“As you wish.”
Bulk carried off Millie, while Eline activated his clearing skills. He took 『Exvaine』 out of Rashia.
She was in so much pain that all she could do was lay there quivering.
Eline looked up towards the beautiful stained glass.
“…By the way. Another question: an adventurer comes here often, carrying a magic spear. What class is this man’s weapon in?”
Eline was thinking of Wilhelm of course. He looked over at Rashia.
There was no response. This was only natural. Even if she could, she had no will to respond to him. Her wounds were deep and painful.
“Ah. My apologies. I really ought to have asked beforehand. What a pity. Until next time.”
Eline lowered his gaze.
Father Bulk had already left with his men.
――Except, another presence had filled the room.
“What a lucky day indeed.”
“Whose blood is that on your sword?”
Wilhelm’s voice was cold.
His hand squeezed 『Venom』 even tighter.
“I mean. I was having a friendly conversation with the sister. It really didn’t pan out the way I wanted it to though. By the way, how did you get here? I thought I had activated my clearing skill here.”
“What did you do to her?”
“Why do people never answer my questions?”
“You’re the one who’s got questions to answer.”
“My my. So hostile. Fine. I stabbed her. She doesn’t have very long to…!”
Wilhelm charged before Eline was finished.
『Venom』 had released a bright red light into the air.
It was a single shot with all his might. But Eline took his 『Exvaine』 and cut the blaze. The two weapons’ forces caused some large sparks.
“What did I ever do to you?”
“A whole lot!!”
Eline dodged the repeated attacks.
Wilhelm was an upper class Chosen One. It seemed impossible, but it was as if Eline knew what his next moves were. Eline’s face remained calm and composed.
“I believe your spear is 《Legend》 grade, possibly 《Mythology》 grade. I’d love to have it in my collection.”
Wilhelm’s attacks became more heated. He didn’t skip a beat with his repeated strikes. You’d think that one hit would be able to pulverize a king class Skull Face.
Yet it was no match against Eline’s 『Exvaine』, or Eline himself. The fighter and the weapon that Wilhelm faced were the real deal.
“You’re as good as I’d heard. I wish that I had a little more speed on me. That’s the one weakness when it comes to equipping 『Exvaine』.”
“Why, you little…!!”
It was frustrating how Eline wasn’t fully invested in the combat.
Wilhelm had to switch tactics. Rather than waste energy on the repeated blows, he had to take a single shot. He stepped back to squeeze more power into his hands that held 『Venom』. However, this caused him to stop moving momentarily.
Eline did not miss this chance.
He went from defense mode to attack mode, thrusting 『Exvaine』.
Wilhelm brought 『Venom』 in front of him to take the red blade on.
The sheer mass of it took Wilhelm by surprise. He had not anticipated its weight, having seen Eline lift it so easily. Regardless of what Eline had said about his own speed, he was faster and more agile than Wilhelm.
Wilhelm took some damage.
He was blown back and slammed against the wall. He could feel the air being forced out of his lungs, as he let out a yelp.
『Venom』 had saved Wilhelm by intercepting the thrust of his savage opponent. Still, the damage was sufficient to make Wilhelm drop 『Venom』.
『Venom』 lay there, with a crack in the center after clashing with the mighty 『Exvaine』.
“Oh dear. After looking around, I thought I’d finally found something that I liked. Now it’s damaged goods. I should have known it with a strong opponent like you.”
Eline looked down at the item and shook his head after heaving a sigh.
Maybe he was preoccupied with the weapon, but he didn’t seem to have a care in the world for Wilhelm, who was pushing the rubble off of himself.
“Oh. You’re fine the way you were. This spear is no good to me.”
“Why…are you here?”
“My client was looking for someone.”
“Yes. But we found the child. Oh, was this off record? My bad. It’s fine though, my role here is done.”
Eline answered Wilhelm cheerfully.
Wilhelm wondered if there was something wrong with the man standing there.
“I have to go now or I could get into trouble. I’d be happy if you could get your spear fixed, by the way.”
“Why don’t you tell me where you’re going too.”
“Sure. We’re headed to the church headquarter. Please come if you want. My name is Eline Sperizer. You should remember that.”
Then Eline turned and left.
No one could ever forget his grin of pure evil.
Eline disappeared, and Wilhelm groaned as he clutched his left abdomen in pain.
He knew that he had cracked a few ribs. On top of that, the fight had taken a tremendous toll on his body.
Wilhelm had fought quite a few battles until now, and he was in shock. He had only taken one hit, yet, he was in considerable agony.
Perhaps Eline was that skilled of a fighter, or his weapon was truly that potent. Regardless, that weapon was not normal.
He forced himself to step foot in the church.
Thoria should not be here today. Then it had to be Rashia who faced Eline.
He could smell the damp iron of blood. It was an eerie feeling for the scent to be wafting inside a house of God.
Wilhelm looked about frantically, before his eyes rested on Rashia on the floor, her back in a pool of blood.
This was enough to make him forget his own wounds.
“Rashia!! No, Rashia!! Wake up!!”
Rashia was barely conscious, as she feebly called his name.
“Please! Take this!!”
He took out a card from his Item Box.
It was a class 5 Potion – the highest-class antidote that Wilhelm had ever possessed. This should do the trick, even for wound like hers.
He had given the potion to her. Yet, the wound was not healing itself.
Wilhelm had not known. There was a restriction depending on the potion class. A class 5 Potion was only as effective as the healing abilities of the person in need of healing. Only at a class 4 Potion or higher could an item heal a wound and enhance a person’s vitality.
That level of recovery item was not available in any of the nearby markets. It was rare to even see a class 5 Potion; the recovery item Wilhelm had.
Wilhelm could see that it was of no use. He immediately reached for the message card in his Item Box. There wasn’t enough time to spare – not even to write to another for help.
He wrote to Shin that Rashia was stabbed.
She had very little time left in this world.
Wilhelm couldn’t help her. All he could do was pray to God that he’d get a response, and to try to stop the bleeding.
“I asked Shin for help. Just hold out a little longer.”
Rashia didn’t respond. She squeezed his hand and could barely get the words out.
I’m sorry. I couldn’t save Millie.
She was losing consciousness as she repeated this over and over.
Wilhelm bit his lips.
He shouldn’t have lost his composure. He should have focused. He knew what he was up against. It didn’t help at all that he was hot in the head.
And he was even more helpless now.
A message appeared in front of Wilhelm. All that was written was “Use it.” Several item cards were also attached.
Every card had the same image. Wilhelm took one in his hand.
A long, thin glass jar appeared with a clear gold liquid inside.
Wilhelm had no idea what it was, but there was no time. He trusted Shin, and gave it to Rashia.
The results were astonishing.
The bleeding had stopped and the wound was closing in on itself. Her pale skin regained color. Her face had been the picture of agony. Now it was calm and soothed.
No one would have believed that she had been dying only a second ago. The only proof of the event was her torn clothes and the pool of drying blood.
“Are you alright?”
Rashia was fully recovered. She seemed dazed, as she looked around.
“How did I…!? Oh Wil! Where’s Millie!? Where is she!”
She frantically questioned Wilhelm. Even if the stab wound was gone, it didn’t mean that she had recovered her stamina. She couldn’t muster any strength in her arms.
“She was gone by the time I got here.”
Rashia was losing her mind, and Wilhelm could only tell her the truth.
He was familiar with the presence of every orphan in the church. He could not feel that of Millie anywhere nearby.
“Stop crying and tell me what happened.”
Wilhelm was losing his patience, and Rashia looked up towards him.
“She can’t be dead. We have to get her back! Tell me!”
“…I’m sorry. …she’ll be alright, right?”
“Of course, they said they’re headed back to the church headquarter. I doubt they’ll get right to the killing. I also told Shin.”
She nodded, as tears fell down her cheeks.
Millie was taken. But Wilhelm was right. Millie was still alive.
Neither Rashia nor Wilhelm knew Father Bulk’s motives. It didn’t matter anyways.
Millie was a friend. She was family.
If she needed help, they would help her.
A loud shout was heard from the steps of the church.
Wilhelm had managed to help Rashia sit in a chair. He turned to the source of the voice.
It was Shin. He had Yuzuha on his shoulders. Schnee and Tiera followed behind.
Shin also held 『Venom』 in his hand.
“I saw your message and sent you some items. Is Rashia…what is that blood?”
He was bewildered by the large, dark red spot by the alter. It had to be at least a mel in diameter.
He had only read the word ‘stabbed’. He had not anticipated that much blood loss from the message alone.
“You made it sound like she was just a little hurt. What in the world happened?”
Shin looked to see that Rashia was okay. Then he asked Wilhelm.
“You have to ask her for the details. All I know is this.”
“Millie was taken and Rashia was stabbed by an upper class Chosen One. He had an unusual weapon too.”
“Is that why 『Venom』 is like this?”
Shin held up 『Venom』, with a chip in it. The item’s durability was reduced by a third.
“It was just one hit.”
“One strike did this.”
“…I see. That means that this is no simple kidnapping.”
Shin thought about it. The weapon that was used against Wilhelm must be at least 《Mythology》 grade. It could also be 《Ancient》. Otherwise, 『Venom』 wouldn’t have become like this.
“Wil. Did you fight the blonde swordsman with the red sword?”
Rashia had been listening to the conversation.
“Yes. I know you’ve only just gotten up, but tell us what happened.”
Rashia tried her hardest to tell them without getting emotional.
“I see. Then Millie shouldn’t be in immediate danger. Father Bulk didn’t care about this church at all. He was after Millie the whole time.”
“They must be after Millie’s gift.”
Millie was a ‘Hoshiyomi’. She could predict the future. (T/N: Hoshiyomi or Star Reader)
“I know you already talked about this. This ‘Eline’…are you sure he called his weapon 『Exvaine』, and are you sure he said it was a ‘High Human’ weapon?”
Shin was more concerned with this than Millie after hearing Rashia finish telling them what had happened.
“Yes. The bracelet that I had received from you held him off until he used the red sword against me and the bracelet shattered. I believe Millie’s item only had a crack in it towards the end, but…”
Shin repeated her words in his mind. If he was right about his hunch, then Rashia’s item couldn’t have bought them any time at all.
Even Millie’s item would have broken eventually.
“What is it?”
“No, it’s nothing. Don’t worry about Millie. Rashia, you need to rest now.”
Shin brushed off Rashia’s question, but she knew something was wrong.
It wasn’t possible for Rashia to understand, because she didn’t know he was a High Human.
Rashia looked dejected, but Wilhelm tried to reassure her.
“We’ll take over from now on. You have the other children here to protect. Tell Thoria to also be careful.”
“It really wasn’t your fault. You were up against some scary things. How could you have gone up against an opponent that even I couldn’t handle?”
Rashia had leveled up, but she was far from an upper class Chosen One. Even if she had fought normally, she couldn’t even have posed a threat against her foes.
Perhaps there was some saving grace to her leveling up though. Because of that, her blood loss was minimized. It wasn’t all hopeless.
If Rashia had died, Millie would have been devastated.
“You need to get better. For Millie.”
Shin who also joined the persuasion somehow managed to get Rashia to return to the orphanage.
“What is it? Do you know about the weapon that guy used?”
Wilhelm asked after they had cleaned up the bloody mess.
He didn’t bother to hide his anger anymore.
Perhaps something snapped after Rashia had left the room.
“Calm down Wilhelm…I thought I had an idea of what we were up against, but now it’s certain. What do you think Schnee?”
“The odds are stacked. I think we’re both on the same page.”
Schnee seemed to be thinking the same thing. While Shin didn’t spell it out, she agreed with him.
“What is it then?!”
“Yeah, it’s hard for us when you’re both in the know and we’re not.”
Wilhelm was impatient. Tiera also glared at Shin, for leaving her out.
“Sorry. 『Exvaine』 used to belong to a friend of mine. It’s actual name is 『Red Crystal Sword Exvaine』. It’s ancient grade…and it’s a sword that I forged myself.”
Shin sighed. If what Rashia heard was right, that a High Human made the weapon, then that must be the case.
What made Shin even more sure was how he had never sold it to other players.
“Wilhelm, I believe that you struggled due to one of the sword’s abilities.” Shin began to explain.
One. It increases damage against humans. Two. The blade can decrease magic damage against it.
While it doesn’t have very many abilities as far as a high-class weapon goes, originally it was meant to be a last resort weapon. Since 『Exvaine』 itself has tremendous damage potential, Shin had figured that it didn’t require any more abilities.
“Well of course I didn’t stand a chance. It was forged by the ‘Dark Blacksmith’.”
He must have remembered the battle earlier. Wilhelm furrowed his brow.
“I see. Eh? I thought the weapons Shin forged can’t be used by people who aren’t the intended user?”
Tiera blurted out after thinking about what Shin had said about Schnee’s 『Blue Moon』. While the circumstances were slightly different, she had the right idea.
“That’s true. 『Exvaine』 was handed to my friend Filma. Only she should be able to use it. Even if she were to give it away willingly, I doubt that she would be the kind of person that’d attack a church. Schnee, when was the last time you spoke to Filma?”
Filma is one of Shin’s support characters.
“We haven’t spoken since the cataclysm. That should be some 450 years or so.”
“…and you didn’t think to tell me or look for her after all that time?”
Shin was aghast at how calm Schnee was.
“Well, we live such long lives… and when we’re at the top of our respective races, time is just…our sense of time is so different and… Other than looking for Shin, I had assumed that Filma was the type that wanted to live peacefully and live alone. I’m terribly sorry, we never were heavily in touch either, and…”
It’s one thing if it’s an important character like Girard or Shibaid. For other characters though, particularly those that were isolated and not in a party, it was a different matter.
Of course, if Filma had come across a clue about Shin, she would have contacted Schnee.
Filma was an upper-class lord, aka a High Lord. Since Schnee and Filma were similar beings with long lives, not hearing from each other for centuries was not unusual.
“Shin, I know I said this before, but for High Elves like master, 500 years is nothing. There are High Elves who nap for that long.”
Tiera was the one that came to help Schnee who was under scrutiny. Tiera was quite young as an elf, so her sense of the surroundings – or the lack thereof – was not as extreme as Schnee’s.
“I’m terribly sorry…”
“No. I’m at fault too.”
When your lifetime lasts for thousands of years, there’s no point keeping track of events. While there are those who live a very purposeful and meaningful 500 years, most do not.
Either way, Shin has only been around for 20 years. He couldn’t possibly fathom that sort of mentality.
“Well, let’s leave it at that. Do you know where Filma was headed last then?”
“Yes. She was headed to the north. At least I think so. It’s been such a long time though. Again, I’m sorry.”
“No, don’t be. It’s impressive that you even remember that detail.”
Shin thought to himself – ‘I bet I wouldn’t have.’
“North though, huh. We don’t have a decent map, so it’s hard to say where.”
“I have a map.”
Schnee reached into her Item Box and pulled out a map from her inventory. She placed it on the stool.
You could see how vast the ocean was in the middle of the continent. This always gave an illusion that there were two continents. According to Schnee, the north was called Est and the south was called Kern. Shin and his party were in Bayreuth. It was close to the southern end of Kern.
“I’ve never actually seen a map of our continent that’s so precise.”
“I’ve seen maps at the market, but never this good.”
Wilhelm also couldn’t hide his surprise. Shin also recalled the map he had bought in a shop.
“When you sell accurate maps, other countries can use it to their advantage. It’s difficult to make these too. This one was created by looking down from the Sky Castle.”
“I can see how looking down would allow such accuracy.”
Shin nodded. Using a guild house castle in such a way almost seemed like cheating.
“Does this mean that we have to go even further north in Est?”
“We might even end up in the north of Kern. Some truly believe that Est and Kern are two separate entities. Back when Filma had mentioned her journey, there was no such thing as Kern or Est.”
People started calling the areas by those names almost 400 years ago.
The map was made after Filma’s disappearance. It’s hard to tell how Filma understood the continental divide.
“So. Why did that bastard have your friend’s sword?”
“I don’t know. There’s no way to know unless we ask Filma or the sword’s current owner. We can’t let it be this way for long though.”
Shin’s attitude had sharply changed over the course of this discussion. His tone was more aggressive.
He clenched hard at the stool that the map was laid upon. You could hear a faint crushing noise coming from within his hand. Wilhelm was more obvious with his emotions, but Shin was boiling up inside, although he appeared calm.
According to Rashia’s story, it was unlikely that Father Bulk would kill Millie instantly.
That didn’t mean that Millie was safe though. In the worst-case scenario, Millie would be put through unbearable pain and suffering in order to make her cooperate.
What’s more, Eline was clearly abnormal. It pissed off Shin beyond anything, that someone could have the nerve to equip another person’s weapon.
Shin wasn’t sure that he could let a person breathe, if they had taken another’s weapon by virtue of murder.
“Please. Please calm down.”
Tiera gently touched Shin’s left arm. Her voice quivered, and Schnee placed her hand over Shin’s right hand.
Yuzuha could also feel the tension in the air. She said nothing, and rubbed Shin’s cheek slowly.
“I’m not the only one upset then.”
Shin tried to breathe in deeply in order to slow his nerves.
“Sorry…we have to talk about how to get Millie back. Wilhelm, when you fought Eline, did he say anything about where they were headed?”
Shin apologized and thanked the three, then asked Wilhelm.
“They’re going to the Church headquarter. He told me to bring back 『Venom』 after fixing it. That bastard.”
Wilhelm’s bad mood worsened.
“Which means, that even if we can’t catch up with them, an encounter is unavoidable at the Church.”
“It’s not possible to catch up.”
Wilhelm shut Shin down.
“What do you mean? I think it’s entirely possible at our journey speed.”
“Eline disappeared after our battle. He didn’t just disappear out of sight. I think…he ‘teleported’.”
Wilhelm had actually witnessed Eline fade away. He would have recognized a magic skill 【Hiding】. It was nothing of the sort.
“I think so. It didn’t feel like he wanted to hide himself.”
Shin mulled it over, as Schnee interrupted.
“It must be the difference in the magical current.”
Shin glanced over at Schnee over a concept he’d never heard of.
“【Teleportation】 and 【Hiding】 rely on different magical currents. Wilhelm knows what 【Hiding】 feels like in the surrounding area. It must have been an unfamiliar feeling.”
“I had no idea. How does it feel different?”
“It depends on the person. There are those who are sensitive to magical currents and others who can’t sense it too.”
It was a different setting from the game. It must be similar to the concept of the arts – something that only really exists in this universe alone.
“Then we have to head directly to the Church headquarter. Where is it?”
Schnee pointed at the map with her thin finger. It was in the center of Est.
This meant that they’d have to cross through Kern and stop somewhere in the middle of Est.
“This is going to take some time.”
“Perhaps we can reach out to Vizzy. We could borrow a dragon. That would dramatically decrease our travel time.”
“Yes. Please do that.”
Vizzy was a summoner and tamer, as well as a supporting character of Cashmere. (T/N: Changed Busy to Vizzy)
Rumor had it that there were several dragons being trained at the castle. It could be their chance to save time.
The last message sent to Raster had no reply. They could also check in on that front.
“Maybe he’s so busy that he just forgot?”
Shin knew Raster well enough. He could picture that. Raster had that personality of often forgetting his environment when focused too much on a single task.
In the real world, someone like him would be called a ‘mechanic nerd’.
“I knew this already but…he really is crazy isn’t he?”
“Just don’t think about anything too hard.”
Riding a dragon was the kind of thought that a player would have. People who lived in this universe would never consider it as a transportation means.
Aside from a few warriors in the Kilmont Sky Dragoon, it was a rare skill for anyone to possess. Riding a dragon was tremendously difficult.
Wilhelm knew that Shin was an abnormal being.
Still, as someone native, these weren’t instinctive or natural thoughts. Tiera looked over at Wilhelm, dumbfounded, as she once used to be because of her culture shock from Shin.
“Our destination is set. Who knows what’ll happen, but we have to prepare now. We have to get Millie back.”
“No need to say that twice.”
Wilhelm headed towards Rashia to update her on their next moves.
In the meantime, Schnee and Tiera went to go find food. Shin took the broken 『Venom』 and headed outside of the capital.
He was in the middle of a field, not too far from civilization, and made Tsuki no Hokora materialize. He had placed a hiding spell on it, to keep it out of people’s sight.
The furnace was already roaring. The necessary metals to enhance 『Venom』 were prepared.
“Let’s see…which one…”
Shin looked over 『Venom』.
Enhancing 『Venom』 was different from the kinds of actions to take with Schnee’s weapon, for instance. 『Venom』 required a higher status from its user. Certain conditions needed to be met for the spear to grow stronger.
While the conditions weren’t exactly clear, Shin knew that Wilhelm and 『Venom』 together satisfied any combination of terms.
『Venom』 was interesting, in that it had two possible paths – ‘holy’ or ‘demonic’. It was a surprise how it’d turn out.
Shin instructed Yuzuha to step aside and got to work.
Shin took the refined orichalcum and mithril ingot and placed it close by. He threw 『Venom』 into the fire.
Even ancient grade metal stood no chance in this fire. 『Venom』 melted within seconds, becoming a metal ingot.
Shin thrust his hammer down.
With each heavy hammering, 『Venom』’s magic was being swerved left and right by Shin’s overpowering magic. The entire workshop was full of sparks.
When rebuilding a weapon from the ground up, all of the magic in a weapon needed to be exhausted.
It all depended on the blacksmith, how much magic could be drained and how much could be poured back in.
The ingot that was once 『Venom』 would make any normal person fall with a single touch. Weapons that were heavily used were even more difficult to mold.
After being struck for a few dozen times, the ingot began to change shape. Its red hue was fading as a silver gleam started to become more prominent.
Shin smiled at the sight. The silver meant that the spear would be holy.
“Well, that’s good news.”
He chuckled, and began to put more power into his arms.
A high pitched banging of metal to metal echoed throughout the shrine. The ingot was turning brighter and brighter, and Shin’s hammer was thrusting heavier and heavier.
With the last hammer in, a final blow of force rippled from the metal to the surrounding area.
Any normal blacksmith would have had his arm explode from the might.
It was but a breeze to a seasoned Shin, as he looked deeply into the ingot.
All of its original magic was gone, as it started to emit a stronger radiance.
Shin was satisfied with his work, and reached over for the orichalcum and mithril. He placed them over the ingot and continued to hammer down.
A different note could be heard with each bang. At first the metals made more of a grunting noise, but as they meshed into one, the tone became a clear clang and ringing clatter.
Shin was also more patient, more intentional with each thrust. The ingot was resistant at first and you could almost hear it. Eventually, it made no noise. It shook but seemed resigned and accepting its own fate.
Shin let out a sigh with the final blow.
He lifted his hammer and looked down to see a single spear.
The entire spear, up until the tip of the blade, shimmered silver.
A small cross shaved clear crystal was placed between the spearhead, embellished with a red marking here and there. This must be the remains of 『Venom』.
Shin took the spear in hand and began to appraise.
―――― “Holy spear 『Beinot』” Total score SS”
―――― “All bonus conditions met. Warrior equipped will be given the title ‘Smiling Guardian’.”
Looking at the minute details, Shin’s eyes stopped.
The weapon in his hand should have been an upper mythology grade weapon. In fact, it had upgraded to a lower ancient grade weapon.
He expected as much as far as the bonuses would go, but…
“I see. So this method also upgrades the weapon class.”
Schnee’s 『Blue Moon』 and Shibaid’s 『Placid Moon』, Wolfgang’s 『Crushing Moon』 were all at their highest classes. There was no way to upgrade beyond higher ancient.
Plus, 『Swift Fang』 was only welded for an ability upgrade. There was no way that it could also class upgrade.
“Now it’ll be a fair match with 『Exvaine』.”
Comparing weapons alone, 『Beinot』 was superior.
Who knows how the battle will unfold, but Wilhelm and 『Beinot』 should be able to meet eye to eye with Eline and 『Exvaine』.
Shin quickly turned 『Beinot』 into a card and returned to the capital.
Schnee was already done with her errands. Everyone was back at the church orphanage.
“Vizzy got back to me. The capital will draw too much attention. We have to meet somewhere a little more remote.”
“How long will we have to wait?”
“About an hour.”
“Then we can head there and wait.”
Vizzy had things to do too. Even if Shin was the same rank with Vizzy’s master, Cashmere, he couldn’t get upset.
Besides, riding a dragon would reduce their overall travel time by more than an hour.
Wilhelm was the last one to join them. Shin and the party left the capital.
They went out for some 20 minutes to the middle of a field with nothing in the way. They would wait for Vizzy there, and they had already checked that no one would bother them.
Wilhelm had already received the 『Beinot』 card.
Shin looked over. In the clouds, a small shadow appeared.
He counted 5. They waited a bit longer as the shadows became clearer.
“Hey. Shin. The red one in the front… that’s an elder red dragon.”
“Yes. But it doesn’t look full-grown.”
“That’s really not the point.”
Shin thought that he was remarking on how small the dragon is.
The elder red dragons that Wilhelm said were upper class monsters in the dragon family. In comparison to normal red dragons, they had considerably higher battle specs.
They grew to be about 20 mels, but the dragon in the front looked to be half of that.
There were two dragons on each side of the red dragon, all with elder titles: a blue dragon and green dragon to its left and a white dragon and black dragon to its right.
They must also see Shin and his party.
They gradually decreased in altitude, landing some 10 mels away from them.
A woman wearing a robe swooped down from the elder red dragon.
“Hi~ long time no see~. I didn’t think you’d really come back~.”
A woman walked towards Shin, speaking slowly.
She was Vizzy Laurette, a tamer under Cashmere.
Her semi-long golden hair had a slight tint of pink in them, and she looked into Shin’s face with trademark High Pixie clear blue eyes. She couldn’t be taller than 150 cemels.
She appeared to be a beautiful little girl.
“You still talk like that?”
“Nothing’s changed really.”
One of Vizzy’s settings was to talk slowly.
According to Schnee, her personality had not digressed one bit.
“I heard that you needed some dragons~, so I brought you~ there babies~. They’re small but~ very good at flying~.”
Vizzy smiled, unlike her counterpart supporting character Berett, who was shy and reserved. Shin’s memory did not fail him.
They didn’t have time to chit-chat, so each character began to maneuver a dragon.
Vizzy rode on her elder red, as Schnee took the blue, Tiera and Kagerou took the green, Shin and Yuzuha took the black and Wilhelm took the white dragon. Kagerou hid in Tiera’s shadow, while Yuzuha dug deeper into Shin’s jacket, peeking out just the face.
With Vizzy leading, Shin and Schnee took her flanks. Wilhelm and Tiera were behind Shin and Schnee, respectively.
While they were all novices at riding dragons except for Shin and Schnee, each dragon understood words clearly. It was not possible for the dragons to fly in the wrong direction.
Wilhelm and Tiera were reluctant, and placed all of their faith in their dragons.
“It’s high…and it’s cold…”
Tiera, who had never had any experience with even the idea of flying, was shocked by the height and the ambient temperature.
Magic only helped a little in terms of the wind or the cold air. She wasn’t equipping very much either, and shivered.
Kagerou didn’t seem to be bothered by the temperature, and peered anxiously at Tiera’s face.
“Now I understand why Vizzy wears a robe… Hm?”
A message card appeared in front of Tiera.
She opened it to see a fur robe card.
Shin shouted back at her. It was hard to hear with the wind in her ears, but she waved back at him.
She moved slowly in order not to lose her balance, as a warm, thick, green outer garment appeared. She managed to pull it over herself despite the wind getting in her way.
It was no ordinary outer garment. All of the cold discomfort vanished, and the icy wind was transformed into softness.
Shin and Schnee didn’t seem bothered by the cold either.
Tiera glanced over at Wilhelm, who had already taken the initiative to use his own cloak.
Tiera had heard from Shin earlier, that they were meeting Shibaid at the dragon empire Kilmont. She recalled the power and aura of the High Dragnil.
“I don’t belong here.”
Every person that the party had encountered until now has been abnormally strong and powerful. Tiera understood her place in the world, and felt discouraged.
“I know, I know. We have to save Millie. I have to stop thinking about myself.”
Tiera pat Kagerou on the head, and took in a deep breath to encourage herself.
She had tamed Kagerou after all, and they had bonded in a way that they both knew exactly how the other felt. This was not an easy feat, even for extremely advanced trainers. Tiera didn’t know that though.