-Parting with the People of the Forest-
Georg’s defeat caused the Makai Gate to gradually lose its functionality. Soon, it would cease to operate and return everything back to the other world, including me if I was still within its effective range. Since Georg’s technique was only meant to be a temporary pathway to Makai, the magic automatically undid itself when Georg fell. After experiencing the intoxicating feeling of traveling between dimensions, I open my eyes to find myself returned to a world where the atmosphere was undoubtedly not of Makai, but still was a barren landscape.
Turning my head and seeing the standing structure, the Makai Gate, I let out a sigh then flash my sword at it. The path of the slash was like that of a hair strand. Evidently, I destroyed the gate which was where the dangerous miasma was coming out from. Looking at the gate, its upper portion started to slowly slide down the slanted cut line, which ran from the lower right toward the upper left. The ground tremble as the upper half hits the ground. While brushing away the rising dust cloud, I carefully confirm that all of the gate’s functionalities have stopped. Everything, from the flow of the miasma to the transcendent pathway which enabled one to travel through dimensions, had been severed.
“Even after severing all connections with Makai, the miasma doesn’t show any sign of clearing up anytime soon. Such a pity.”
Physically destroying the doorway, which allowed interdimensional travel, had made it so that no additional miasma and intoxicating magic could pass through from Makai into the forest. It just had to be that dealing with what had already flowed into this world was another matter altogether. This region of the forest had transformed into something unsightly. According to the people who live here, the forest’s self-rejuvenating process should already be in effect and is purifying itself, slowly reclaiming its former beauty. Although, seeing it taking effect and cleansing itself of miasma from every inch of the earth and tree is not as simple as the process was made to sound.
I stop pouring power into my sword, returning it to normal, while also putting away the wings on my back as well as ceased the transformation of my dragon eyes. Once my body had returned to being fully human, I do some stretches to affirm that there is no abnormality. That’s when a single Wood Elf showed up from the tree line in front of me. It’s the director of Galios Magic Academy, which Christina-san attends.
“I came running as fast as I could, but it seems all of my worries were unnecessary.”
As others start showing up one after another after Olivier, I come to a conclusion that Georg’s minions stationed near here must have been completely or is very close to being annihilated. Once the four biggest threats have been defeated, it should not be a problem for the combined forces to kill off the minions. Taking a closer look at Olivier, I can see dirtied marks on her clothes as well as small signs of fatigue shown on her pretty face. The smell of blood drifted through the air, but I could not see any traces of blood on her clothes nor visible wounds.
“Luck was simply on my side. Praise the God who granted me victory. Olivier-san, I’m glad to see that you are unhurt. Perhaps it was because of the forest granting you protection.”
“Lets leave that topic aside for now.”
Olivier speaks, then turns away her gaze, looking away to avoid my sugar coated words. She must have seen through me and is probably trying to uncover the truth. Drifting her sight away from me, she sees the ruins of the Makai Gate which was diagonally sliced apart by me. The gate was built out of the construction materials originating from Makai and, just by being in this world and despite the fact that I’ve already cut its power source as well as destroyed its structure, it gives off an ominous and sinister feeling. Moreover, just seeing the designs on the gate is enough to trigger a sense of disgust.
“You couldn’t have dealt with the product of Makai, the Gate, anymore brilliantly. No ordinary human being could have achieved this feat you have, Dran. Regardless if it might have been a high ranking priest or a highly skilled warrior and even if they were able to bring out the maximum potential of a Holy or Demonic sword, to have reduced the Makai Gate to such a state like you’ve done, is impossible.”
What she said was most definitely the truth. It might have been better if I had waited for reinforcement and to take the Gate down along with them, but it’s too late for me to start regretting my action.
Now that I think about it, could she have observed me when I was in the midst of battle? There’s a chance she might have seen my wings and dragon eyes just now as well.
“I’m truly overjoyed hearing that you’ve rushed to my rescue. After all, last I’ve checked, I’m undoubtedly a man, Olivier-san. I firmly believe that I will continue to be one for as long as I live.” (T.L. Faker-senpai~ Teach me how to juke questions~)
Noticing that I’m not giving her the whole truth, Olivier once again has her sight on me, but she lets out a sigh after some time. Seeing that, I could finally let out some relief. Against me, who would stubbornly dodge the question, she understands that seeking for the whole hearted truth is impossible.
“….Being too curious will most likely put me in a troublesome situation, a serpent might just emerge from the bushes. I’ve heard it, if you insist, you are just a man I suppose. Questioning it further will yield me no result. Needless to say, my interest ran dry.”
Fumu~ It would seem that Diadora might have informed Olivier of my true colour. Well, I’m not planning on getting involved with her in the future. I probably don’t need to ponder about it too much.
“You are wise to have come to that judgement. Now then, why don’t we have a look at the square magic formation under the ruins?”
I walk next to the base of the gate and show Olivier the magic formation that was drawn on the base of the rubble. Analyzing the formation proved to be too much due to its complexity. The formation contained countless circles, rectangles, and squares in all different sizes. It also has mysterious characters looking like a bunch of wiggled lines, and seemingly moving like a living organism. Somehow, after combining all of said things together, a magic formation which enable travel to and from Makai was constructed. No matter how you look at it, the formation could not have been drawn by someone who is not powerful, a high ranking Evil God, or one of their acquaintances, with a vast understanding of summoning magic as well as being an expert on compact magic. Someone drew this super complex formation to allow Georg and his army to march into this world. What’s more, if they were able to draw it once, they could also have drawn it again.
“Unbelievable. Even the most knowledgeable magician in this world won’t be able to do anything against this. It’s unthinkable that a lone being was able to do this. Even with the knowledge to draw it, I can’t think of any Gods or Evil Gods that possess sufficient power to make this work. Whoever did this must be a being of extraordinary strength that completely outclassed the average Gods. One thing is clear, however. Right now in Makai, there is someone who is willing to send armies into this world.”
“Fumu, that is correct. However, you can also take it that this individual will not cross into this world personally for they would put too much strain on themselves. The only way to ensure a stop to this is to apprehend the one who drew this it seems.”
“I agree. Still, the magic power required to activate the formation at this scale is no pushover. Whoever it was, they must have spent a lot of time storing up their power as well as time drawing the formation. I cannot believe that there’s anyone would be able to do this over a single night. Even if this was to happen again, it will be a while before that it comes. This is an urgent matter I must inform the Kingdom as well as the patriarchs so they can think of a contingency plan. The next attack might not even be in Ente.”
The possibilities of me having to fight again is high. For the past sixteen years, I’ve spent my time living peacefully and it flew by in a blink of an eye. From now on, things might never be the same.
If I ever find you, Georg’s accomplice, you can forget about reincarnation and attaining a new life after death. I will rip your soul apart to the point where it couldn’t even be call a soul anymore, I angrily think in the back of my mind.
Olivier then takes out a parchment out of her bosom and start to make a transcription of the magic formation. The warrior start to collect fragment of the collapsed gate. Some time after they started picking, Christina and Selia, along with the rest of the forces, finally make their appearance. They showed up rather late, and now all that was left was for Diadora to appear. “Drannnn-ssaaannnn~~!!”
Selia, who was walking side by side with Gio and Christina-san ahead of the troops, passed through the tree line and spotted me almost immediately. She let out a vigorous greeting while waving her hand cheerfully. On the other hand, Christina-san, still retaining a firm grip on Elspard, lets out some relief after seeing that I was alright.
Already, there’s no longer any sign of demonic minions in the surrounding, but even then, Christina only let her guard down slightly and keeps on surveying the area. To Selia’s happy waving, I wave back to show that I am indeed unharmed. Behind me, after seeing that Christina is unharmed, Olivier continues analyzing the formation as well as the remnant of the magic power that was used. Looking back and forth between them, I can’t help but to feel some tension.
“Even if you’re the Director of the Academy, aren’t you anxiously worrying about your student?”
“You have excellent eyesight I see. Hahh…..It doesn’t seem like I can keep it a secret from you. Christina is a student who stands out within the academy, and I could not help but to pay close attention toward her. It would be a lie if I were to say that I do not care for her. This applies to you and Miss Selia as well. After all, I can’t help but to feel indebted toward you, an outsider, who had to fight for our cause, Dran.”
“Honestly, the Wood Elves of this forest’s sense of responsibility is on another level. Being persistent about where we are from is pointless. All three of us are fine and well in the end, as you can see. Please don’t worry too much.”
Replying to Olivier, I tell her the same thing I told Gio, and strongly express my honest thoughts. The Elves alone should not be the only ones to carry the burdens of defeating the danger which threatened multiple races. Finally, Olivier takes off the mask of a teacher and shows a pleasing expression at her student’s safety. All of a sudden, I could see nothing but the face of a charming elf standing, watching.
It had just occurred to me that the demonic minions’ ranks were broken through in a rather short amount of time. It’s truly remarkable to be able to do that without even sustaining a single injury. It’s to be expected of Olivier, who holds the title of Director of a Magic Academy. Later than ever, the group who was tasked with the destruction of Rafflesia’s Gate, lead by Diadora, finally showed up. We start to congratulate each other along with expressing our delighted thoughts about everyone’s safety.
Out of the four, the one who did the most damage was Geren and his minions, but even so, the casualties was nowhere near the number they had expected. There are many grieving at the destruction the devils had brought to their homes, but most are happy to see that the Gate is destroyed and the battle had ended. Those facts alone allowed the survivors to have a piece of mind and to smile over their victory. The distorted space around this entire region cased by the Makai Gate had been dispersed and returned to normal. Soon, Wood Elves arrived from Sai-West by traveling directly through the spirit pathway to help. After all the injured were transported back to the village and a magic barrier was cast around the gate’s ruins, we return to the village in triumph.
Although the miasma had to be cleansed from the environment, with the destruction of the gate, the atmosphere had cleared up to a certain extent. The sky isn’t so dark and gloomy as before. Dark clouds started to move away and reveal a hint of the blue sky above. At this rate, the beasts which fled from the forests of Ente along with the many fairies and spirits taking refuge in Sai-West will be able to resume their peaceful lives in due time.
Returning to the village, we are greeted by the overwhelming emotions of people waiting for our return. Families of those who fell in combat, tears of sorrows, voices of sadness, encouragement of those around them, comforting each other for their loss, looking at the atmosphere, one could hardly call it a victorious return. In spite of the successful operation, which repelled the imminent threat of the devil invasion and destroying their means of transportation, the feeling of tragedy and despair sweep over the village. After all the damage that was inflicted, they are now tasked with a full scale revival of the forest as well as the reconstruction of their village to it’s former glory. Moreover, the medical personnel of the village also insisted on a re-examination even after the wounded had been healed. They want to make sure there would be no arising abnormalities. The task of conducting a reconnaissance deep into Ente had been fulfilled, but I feel troubled if I was to return to Bern while leaving Sai-West in its current state. I doubt any reasonable person would not find it difficult to leave after seeing its current state.
We proceed to ask the three people with the most authority, which are Deo, Vuraiku, and Aljen’nu, to allow us to help and they gratefully accept our offer, giving us permission to help. We help with treating the injured, surveying the polluted regions of the forest, as well as giving a helping hand in replanting vegetation. The spirit pathway allowed roughly a thousand Elves to travel through it at once and after two days of hard working, we managed to collect all the pieces of the gate and destroyed every last one. During that time, Olivier and Deo had spoken to the one in charge of the reinforcement unit and instructed them to distribute the supplies among the troops as well as directed the healers to help the most wounded fighter first, which helped everything running smoothly.
When the process of exterminating the remaining demonic minions had been completed, the Elves’ combatants were stationed within the village to keep watch, although most were tasked with helping the reconstruction of many trees and houses. At this point, I discuss the topic of leaving the Elves’ village alongside Christina-san and Selia. Since the Elves now have enough manpower as well as more than enough materials for the job, even if we are to stay, we would be of insignificant help, and so the idea I propose is to leave the village immediately. It’s even more dire for Christina, who had taken an extended vacation time, and was given a warning from Olivier.
Even though the battle had been won, the damages Sai-West suffered was significant, thus there isn’t going to be a large victory feast. On the night before we leave, Diadora, Fio, and Marle comes to our room for a visit. Most of the work was taken over by the Elves, so we spent the day packing our belongings, and readying to depart from the village. Diadora brings with her a tray full of dishes stacked up like a mountain, as well as various bottles contained fruit wines, juices inside. She brought enough for a feast to celebrate our victory.
Seeing Diadora giving us a visit, Fio and Marle can’t help but be surprise. I, myself, had hoped that after the battle against Rafflesia and Georudo, we would establish some sort of friendship with each other. We could have settled anywhere we wanted, like sitting on chairs above the carpet, but we choose to sit on the beds instead. Raising our cups filled with wine, juice, or water, we cheer then gulp down a mouthful from our cups. In my hand is a cup with engravings made out of tin featuring a unique design of flowers, and in it is a yellowish liquid which is actually wine, brewed from flowers they have here.
“Everyone came back safely, Marle is very happy-desu! When I was waiting, my heart throbbed a lot.”
Sitting on her special place, Fio’s lap, Marle tells us the same thing she had been saying ever since we returned. She was not allowed to leave the village, and so she was really worried about our well being. Even though she had already said it countless times, since it’s from the bottom of her heart, I don’t really mind.
“Ahaha, thank you for worrying about us, Marle. Recalling what happened, it was more painful than anything I’ve ever experienced before. Honestly, I was constantly having the thought of not being able to come back alive. Having returned in one piece like this, it was all thanks to Christina, Selia, and Dran. Christina-san especially. Without her, I don’t even know if we would succeed at all.”
Since coming back to the safety of her village, Fio had been moving her delicate body vigorously, but she seems much more relaxed now in our room. She often eat a few berries from the many plates after taking a sip of the wine from her cup. Whether or not the wine was too strong, by the time she had finished the second cup, her cheeks were already red. Having a red face, Fio stares at Christina passionately then lets out a smile.
“Besides~ Christina is very popular with the others. Wood Elves, Wolf-men, even Arachne, they all said that they like her. I was so surprised. Well, I think everyone I asked were girls……”
What Marle said is true. Christina had devoted her whole into helping the people of this forest throughout the first time we encountered them. After all the fighting had settled, and we returned to Sai-West, pretty much all the ladies, from all different races, greeted Christina while giving her a passionate gaze, as if they wanted to get to know her body. Even I, who had the sensibility of a dragon, could tell that they hold affectionate feelings toward Christina. However, Christina has no intention of answering their feelings. Maybe she just doesn’t want to be tied down, or perhaps she’s just shy.
It can’t be help that, from my point of view, watching how Christina-san handle the girls was very amusing, but it seems that the number was overwhelming and she’s mentally exhausted as the result. Being together with us help her ease the tension, and she seems to be able to relax just fine. Parting her red lips from her cup, Christina lets out a sigh toward Marle’s words. The situation is even more severe than I thought.
“I don’t mean to offend, but I’m tired and I don’t feel well enough to handle such things properly right now. For me, fighting Geren is much easier than having to deal with that matter.”
After showing her frustration, Christina finished the wine in her cup in one go. The muscle beneath her white skin covered neck moves vigorously each time she gulp down the wine. Her indecent action completely betrayed her refined appearance.
“I feel unpleasant and I never want to fight that person again. His look was like something right out of a nightmare…..
Christina-san, do you always feel like that at your Academy? From what Marle said, I have a feeling you’re very popular there as well.”
Selia is very curious about the human’s ways of life, and so she asked Christina and waits for the reply while hold her cup of wine with both hands. After becoming accustomed with the everyday lifestyle in Bern, Selia’s sense of wariness toward humans had faded away, and now she’s inquiring about the city as well as school life.
Before she starts answering, Christina pours more golden-ish purple grape wine into her cup and empty it into her stomach in a flash. That’s surprising, is she a heavy drinker? So far, she seem to have quite a tolerance for them.
“To tell you the truth, it’s not as proactive as how it was here, but I do receive lots of letters and gifts. Eyes were always on me. For god’s sake, I’m not a spectacle, honestly.”
Christina-san lost her cool and pouts. Fumu~ she’s rather cute. She’s not drunk, but could the atmosphere around her had swept her away? I can’t imagine what kind of life you live hidden from the others. I wonder, are you really a seventeen year old girl? No matter, she’s a special one that’s for sure.
So far, she had been wearing the atmosphere of a beautiful girl with enough charm to bring down any man, but just under that image hid something dangerous. Right now, there’s none of the facade and the temper of a young girl is exposed, and I like her much better this way. I’ve yet to reach the age of twenty as a man, but I can’t help but to feel sympathy for someone who is suffering everyday for whatever reason.
“It’s probably due to Christina-san’s outstanding features. Although, looking at you right now, I doubt there will be as many people who would longed for you. Beside that, is studying at the Magic Academy fun?”
“Nothing particularly stands out for me. However, I do remember seeing others beside me having delighted expression around the academy. I, um, I guess you can say that I’m not the best at socializing with others. I would feel….uncomfortable whenever I was with someone….more or less. Truthfully, I don’t have any friends…none, yeah, no one at all.”
Suddenly coming to that conclusion, Christina turns her face away, and start mumbling in a low voice that’s hard to make out.
Ah, Christina-san, she’s seldom on friendship, but I’ve guessed as much. I feel pity for her on this topic of discussion.
“What, no way, Christina-san doesn’t have any friends?”
Just as I was thinking to myself, Fio splendidly stabs Christina in her weak mental state. Moreover, Fio did it with no ill intention in mind as she ask while blinking her eyes in astonishment. After all, she became extremely popular among the forest dwellers in the span of only a few days. It’s hard to imagine that she doesn’t have any friends over at the academy she attends, but I don’t want to speak my thought out loud out of pity.
“Ehhh. Is that the truth?”
“N, no, that’s not the case…..not at all. I do greet others, and there are people at tea parties as well….once, or a couple of times…..”
“Ah~ I beg your pardon. Uh. You honestly didn’t think that I would think that you don’t have friends? Not at all, right?” (T.L. Try and follow the logic fo a drunkard.)
“……Fu, it’s fine. At any rate, I’m…….”
Altogether, Christina drops her shoulders, goes silent, and resume drinking wine.
Fumu, she’s sulking again. Eh, eh, Fio finally starts to take notice of the severe damage she’ve inflicted, don’t nervously look at Selia and me for help. Seeing how Christina is, even I can’t think of a quick fix solution to save you. While I was thinking in my head, Selia’s cheerful voice break the awkward silent.
“Now, now, cheer up Christina-san. Everyone here likes to be around you. I’m your best friend~~~!! Dran-sannn~~ you like Christina-san, too~~~?”
Huh? There’s something fishy about this. She’s red from the base of her neck up until her ears, did the wine finally taking its effect? Speaking of which, there’s an empty wine bottle next to her…..Oh well, since we are on the same wavelength, I might as well follow, I suppose.
“Yeah. Just like Selia says, I like Christina-san. Needless to say about your beauty, you are courageous, kind to others, and is a very lovely girl. I need to thank the fate that allowed us to meet.”
“Marle~ also Christina-san, like a lot~-desu! Christina’s silver hair esspeeecially~ When bathing under the sunlight, it looks like glittering silver. Very very~ pretty~”
“I like you too~ not just because you saved Marle and helped us but being near you give me a sense of comfort~”
“Hahaha~ I’m a Lamia~”
Selia start laughing uncontrollably. The wine definitely affected her, but the alcohol content wasn’t that high. The tip of her tail start to twitch and rattle so it would seem that maybe her snake portion has gotten drunk.
Laughing “hahaha~” is the current condition of Selia and Fio. Not joining the conversation just now is Diadora who was simply taking small drinks from her own cup. I could not spot any change on her white skin in the dim light, so I assume the effects of wine have yet to touch her.
“What about you, Diadora~ You, have been doing nothing drinking wine~ come on~ talk to us~”
“If I had known that you’re such a bad drinker, I might not have brought the wine. Fio, dear, did you get permission from Deo to drink wine?”
“Whaaattt~~ Even without Oto-san’s permission, I can still drink wine. Look here~ this flower wine was made from a lot of flower~ I pick some of them myself from those that I’ve grown. I drink so my muscles can relax~”
“There’s no winning against a drunken person. Honestly, about that question, I suppose I don’t dislike Christina. I can’t help but feel gratitude toward her. She fought with her all, and when the fighting was over, she even helped everyone as much as she could.”
“No, I only did what was natural. I don’t deserve to be praised like that.”
As the result of positive comments in succession, Christina finally broke her silence and looked up. Her face has reddened but that’s not the effect of alcohol. Fumu~ she’s embarrassed it seems.
“No way, Christina-san, your face is all red. I’ve seen your adorable side.”
“N-no, there’s no such thing. I’m not like that. There’s no way I would feel embarrassed.”
Well, well, you can deny it all you want.
Afterward, we continue pouring wine cups after cups, and drink until our heart’s content, chatting happily and not having to worry about tomorrow’s sad goodbyes. Since Christina possesses the body of a Superior Original, she seems to have an exceptionally high tolerance to alcohol. Even after emptying cups of wine, she still doesn’t show any signs of being drunk.
As for the powerful Spirit of the Black Rose, Diadora, her tolerance doesn’t seem to fall short of Christina either. At the sametime, Marle, Fio, and Selia don’t have the affinity for the stuff. The first one to enter the dreaming world is Marle. She lies on a piece of cloth inside a basket and sleeps soundly while letting out rough breathing. As time passes, the two remaining drunkards have a gloomy atmosphere around them, but with so much food and high quality drinks befitted of a village’s festival feast laid before me, and surrounded by beautiful women of various race, I was able to keep enjoying the atmosphere. As the night grew old, Fio starts singing songs her race loves, and I too share one or two from my own village.
Although we do not have any musical instrument, and everyone is in a merry state, our songs were widely complimented, but we take care not to be too loud since Marle’s sleeping in the room. After a few more songs were sung, the drunken atmosphere thicken even more, but it’s enjoyable nevertheless. Christina’s mood, too, seems to have gotten better, and starts singing the poem her mother taught her about the olden days.
It is an old, old tale. How old exactly, no one knows. It was about a hero who lived in the distance past.
There was once a boy who lived in a certain place. Someone who could not help but reach out to others in trouble and refused to leave them to their suffering. It was such a boy. Before long, the boy grew up and left his birthplace to go on an adventure, visiting various lands. He encountered many different kinds of people, helped those in need, endured hardships, and kept on journeying throughout the world. A continent that float high up in the sky. A castle built on the bottom of the sea where no light could ever reach. Traveling across lakes that were formed by large cracks in the earth. Whichever unexpected land he visited, the boy met lots of people, formed bonds of friendships, and gain companions along the way.
A High Elf who could communicate with the Spirit King and control all spirits.
A young priestess who was raised to serve the Gods from a young age.
A magician who understood and was capable of unraveling every law of the world.
A swordsman from a certain country who used unique swordsmanship and donned unique armor.
A strong warrior who was born in a savage village that fought in a remote region.
A certain priest belonging to a sect which spread their beliefs among the people.
Soon, the boy became a young man who experienced adventures alongside his companions. Throughout their journey, they accomplished many good deeds, were famous among the people, and was hailed as extraordinary Heroes. The young Hero then would go on to become the greatest of all. The young Hero’s fame spread throughout every corner of the world, and would touch the hearts of many people. When the world tree’s root was attack by an Evil Dragon, they received help from a white scaled dragon. The story is transmitted through Christina’s transparent voice so well that I feel as if I was experiencing the tales first hand.
At the laughter of Selia and Fio, who are now both very intoxicated, Christina purse her lips and stop singing. Her song stopped at the mention of a white dragon’s involvement in assisting the seven heroes in defeating the Evil Dragon. There’s more to the story but it can’t be helped if the singer doesn’t want to sing.
After Christina’s song was over, silence returned to the room. Noticing that we are looking at her in silence, Christina lower her face in a shy manner and once again turn red from embarrassment.
“Ahaha, I’m sorry for making everyone listen to my boring song. It was taught to me by my mother, and I did not sing after so long, aha.”
“Oh no, not at all, Christina-san. It was very good, and was enough to put usssh~ all to shame.”
Selia seems to have trouble speaking just now, her words sound a little disconnected. Still, she then expresses her true feelings toward Christina’s song, while her blue eyes sparkling like stars.
“Oh, oh, and then! When I heard about the High Elf that could communicate with the Spirit King, I thought I heard it wrong, and was very surprised. Christina-san’s voice was so beautiful to listen to~ I want to submerge myself in the song, Christina-san, I want to listen more.”
“Is, is that so? Haha, my mother would be very please to hear that. I was afraid my singing would bring embarrassment to myself.”
Still feeling a little shy, Christina replies. Thinking to myself, there’s a few things I want to ask her. Even after accepting the fact that I was reborn as a human, my feelings can’t help but stir at the contents of the song.
The song had brought back my memories of the past, a very nostalgic feeling. That is because the young man and his companions from her song, they were undoubtedly the seven who robbed me of my life as a dragon. In a calm voice, I ask.
“Christina-san, you said that your mother taught you that song? It’s one that I’ve never heard before from my village, and I was wondering if it’s something passed down in your family from generations to generation?”
“Eh? Ah, this song was indeed passed down from generations in my mother’s family. Ever since I was small, I was taught this song and I constantly practiced it. I remember everything as clear as day.”
“Dran? What’s wrong? Is something bothering you?”
Mistaking my intention, Christina looks at me anxiously.
Fumu, there’s nothing you need to worry about Christina-san.
“I liked it a lot. It’s easily my favorite song. However, I believe the song didn’t truly end when the Evil Dragon was defeated. If there’s still more, I would love to hear it.”
“I, I see. I’m sorry it’s finished. The song ended there. With the help of the White Dragon, the Hero slew the Evil Dragon, that’s the end.”
Christina tighten up a little at my request and decline me out right. To me, it’s obvious that she is lying. Maybe she doesn’t feel comfortable continuing.
From experience, I decide not to pursue the subject any further for now. Although I have doubts, if Christina is really who I think she is, then it’s quite ironic for the three Fate Goddesses to spin our destiny like this. Well, you never know what might happen.
“So there isn’t a continuation. That’s too bad. Truly regrettable.”
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to disappoint you, it’s just….”
Hearing my saddened words, Christina grows a little depressed as well. Darn, I failed to conceal my emotions.
Seeing the awkward atmosphere between Christina and me, Selia wraps her arm around my neck and, with the other hand, starts pulling my cheeks strongly. Ouch! It hurts! Don’t tell me she’s intending to peel my cheek off!?
“Drannn-san~~ what did you do to Christinna-san~~did you embarrass her~~? Bad Dran~~ you need to be punished!!”
Fuun~ Selia lets out a displeased snort, then pulls my cheeks even harder, and at the same time, wraps her heavy tail around me tight. Guoo, she can’t control her strength when she’s drunk! Hey hey, if I was like any ordinary human, all my bones would have been broken by now!
“Ahahaha, way to go, Selia~~!! That’s what he gets for bothering Christina-san~~!!”
“They’re really bad with wine, how childish.”
No, Diadora! At times like this, instead of sighing, you should help me!
“D-Dran, are you alright? Selia, please don’t over do it. Look, I’m fine, don’t be upset.”
“Fufufufu, Christinsa-san~ you’re too nice-desu~~ if you…leave me to it….it would have been better. But since you say so, haha, I guess I’ll stop, haha.”
Her breath has a strong smell of alcohol. Looking next to her, I see several empty bottles of wine lying around. The alcohol had taken a great toll on her body and even though she said she would stop, my body is still being coiled by her powerful tail. If she was to ever be offered a drink in the future, I will make sure she won’t intoxicate herself.
The next morning, after waking up in a room that smelled like a wine cellar, we are escorted by Olivier, Diadora, Gio, Fio, and Marle to the gate of the village. In addition to the things we had brought along from Bern, we were also given rewards for helping with the conflict. Now, our luggage had doubled compared to when we left Bern, especially for Christina. After the short period of time spent in Sai-West, she had gained quite the number of followers.
“Onee-sama, please accept this. This is the clothes I’ve made using my threads.”
“Christina-sama, please take care. Please eat lots on your way back. Please take this fruit salad I’ve made for you!!”
Surrounded by girls in every direction, Christina seems really itching to leave.
Fu~mu. Watching from the side, I’m envious, but I’m not sure if I want to be in that situation.
For me, waking up this morning with Selia squeezing me tightly was pretty uncomfortable. In addition, the alcohol had yet to get out of my system so I’m having a slight headache. I want some peace and quiet. (T.L. I know dem feels Q.Q)
“Selia~ are you alright-desu? Although Marle had gone to sleep halfway through, Marle knows that drinking too much is bad for you~”
“She’s fine. After all, Selia must have had an ulterior motive for coiling around Dran all night.”
Hey now Fio, I wonder if you realize the meaning of those words. Maybe some spirit has possessed you, please don’t add fuel to the fire.
“Un, yeah….I’m fine, but I will have to reflect on this. Erm, Dran-san, I’m sorry for leaving my scale marks all over your body….I’m sorry, for being such a handful.”
“I don’t mind. I just want you to take care from now on. Alright, let’s leave soon. If we take too long past the promised time, we’ll only cause the people at home extra worries.”
I calmly answer Selia, taking care not to sound too bothered. Meanwhile, Christina is finishing up packing the gifts from the girls, and lets out some relief. It seems like fighting devils really is a lot less troublesome for her than interacting with the female fans. After a bit, we are all set to take our leave, and Olivier and Diadora bid us goodbyes.
“Christina, it looks like meeting Dran is really beneficial for you. I’m happy for you. Selia, you’re also a dear friend of hers, thank you for being her friend. Although, please take care with the alcohol. And Dran, not only are you an excellent magician Denzel had recommended, you are also an outstanding fighter. If you ever go to Galios, please give the academy a visit, we will welcome you.”
“Magic Academy. I will keep your kind offer in mind, Olivier-san. It’s an appealing offer since I would be able to meet Christina there.”
“Please give it some thought. I want to, once again, show you my gratitude for your effort in helping us solve our crisis. Thank you very much”
After saying so, Olivier gracefully bows. Then, Diadora steps forward while holding a small bag in her hand, trying to hide her bashful tone by speaking bluntly.
“This is for you, Dran particularly. Because you helped me many times, I want to at least show my gratitude. Please accept.”
Accepting the small bag, I look inside and find that there were rose seeds inside.
“This is, I see, they are Black Rose seeds.”
“Erm, correct, they are my seeds. When they bloom, they will make excellent ingredients for magical medicines and such. They are special and is very easy to take care of, you can have them planted in you village. Once harvested, you can sell them, use them as ingredient, or whatever else you want to do.”
“Fumu~ I shall accept this unexpected gift. Although you wanted to thank me, for this, allow me to say thank you, too. Thank you, Diadora. Your thoughtfulness, I will accept them. If you have time, please come to Bern and visit. Although it’s not a special place by any means, I will arrange appropriate hospitality for you. I’m glad we met, Diadora.”
“Really? I look forward to meeting you again in the future, Dran. Now, this is my personal way of thanking you.”
Suddenly, Diadora steps forward, and just as the sweet smell of rose tickles my nose, Diadora’s lips were overlapping with mine. Feeling the sensation of her soft and moist lips, adding along with the aroma she has, I could only open my eyes wide in complete surprise at Diadora’s boldness. Our lips stayed overlapping for some time in full display for the others to see and be amazed.
Staring at our intense kiss, Christina’s neck and ears looks like that of a boiling octopus, completely reddened and her mouth gasping for air like a fish out of water. Apparently, our deep and long kiss is too stimulating for Christina.
From the outside, she looks like a mature woman, giving off a charismatic charm, but she’s still a little innocent girl inside. This is a little surprising. Finally, Diadora parts her lips from mine, just in time for Selia’s mind to recover from the massive disarray and shout out in loud voice, almost to the point of crying.
“Eh, ehhh, EHHHHHH~~~~~!!! No way, Diadora-san, whaa, what are you doing-desu!?!? Even I haven’t done that with Dran-san yet!!!!”
“You know, that was just a way for me to show my appreciation. Dran saved my life, so it’s only a natural thing to do.”
To Selia, who was trembling and on the verge of crying, Diadora answered with a straight face. However, I could see that the tip of her ears are bright red. To me, Black Rose is someone who is very bewitching, but also cute in many ways. Recalling what had just happened, Selia suddenly became embarrassed. Exchanging a final look at Diadora, I turn away and the anxiety I’ve held in my chest since the battle against Georg eases a little. At the time, I temporarily released my true power in Makai, and there’s a good chance that one or two Evil Gods might have sensed it and connected the dots, probably guessing whose power it was. I can’t help but to worry about my future life as a human.
………..I found it. I found it I found it I found it. Hahahahaha, fufufufu, hahahaha! Even though you have perished, yet there’s no mistake that it belongs to you! Hahahaha, it won’t be long until I get to play with you again! I’ve been waiting, Dra-chan!
[To be continued]
This marked the end of volume one and serves as the prologue to the next arc.
(Zeke)Bro Almighty, Master of the Editing / Proofreading Process, Complainer of Binh Making His Staff Do Large Chapters at a Time and Not Splitting It Into Parts, Long-Term Otaku Leecher Turned Staff Months Prior, and the Unlucky One with Summer Courses During Summer -QQ cries-.
Check out the raw here and rate the author. -T.L.