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Vol 6: Chapter 18 (2)

「Goddess Temple? Is that the one that the church is building?」Mimino asked.

「That’s right. The temple itself is a magic tool. My father said it probably increases the faith in people’s hearts but… there is nothing concrete yet.」Eva said.

「If it’s just to the extent of increasing faith, there isn’t much problem.」Mimino said.

「”Such carelessness will bring fatal consequences.” My father seems to have obtained such information from King Geffert as well.」

After hearing that, Mimino looked over in Dante’s direction. He seemed to have recovered somewhat from the hangover after swallowing Mimino’s medicine, and was deep in thought.

「…It is consistent with the information I received from guildmaster Gurgio. This whole situation just smells fishy… Apparently King Geffert refused to build the temple even after receiving directives from the Church. In the first place, we can’t afford to build temples while the monster subjugation is ongoing.」Dante said.

「I agree with you. But even if they reject the temple construction now, who knows what will happen after the monster subjugation is over.」Eva said.

「Hmm… So, Eva-sama, Anastasia, why are you two here?」Dante asked.

「We hoped to join up with Silver Balance, and to also meet the Knight King.」Eva answered.

「I see. Is there an important matter entrusted by Earl Sillys?」Dante asked.

Eva shook her head and responded.

「It is to search for Reiji.」

Everyone gasped.

「We think that Reiji-san is surely in the undeveloped land, Canion.」Anastasia added.「I am not sure how much everyone knows about Canion, but since Reiji-san could not be found by our vast information network, it’s appropriate to think that he is in a place inhospitable to humans.」

「Maybe he has just not been found yet. This continent is vast, after all.」Dante said.

「But the Goddess Temples cover most of the continent.」Anastasia replied.

「?」

「Reiji-san disappeared together with the pledgers on the day of “World Union”. As such, we think that he is an irregular existence in the eyes of the goddess.」

「There is proof of that.」Eva said, and took out a small note.「This is… a note left behind by El Gu Larun, the high priest of the Holy Kingdom.」

Earl Sillys couldn’t move freely due to Duke Grenjido keeping a watchful eye on him, so Eva, Mira, and Anastasia moved in his stead. They met several times in the old “Altar Administration” building, when Mira accidentally discovered a hidden door leading to a hidden study.

It belonged to El, the rabbit priest.

——If the goddess’ long-cherished wish, “World Union,” is established, there is a chance that the black-haired, black-eyed “Child of Disaster” and the mediators might get in the way of the goddess’ ideal world.

Thus it was written on the note.

They know that El was in Brunstalk on the day of the “World Union”, and was later discovered in a tragic state—as if he had been burned by an inferno from hell.

Until then, almost no one knew that El was a sorcery-based creature. The technology that created El is completely lost, and a number of researchers are trying to figure out the technology. But even a fragment of it has not been understood, it seems.

Who made El and why was he in the Holy Kingdom—the royal family may have known it, but they are silent——Eva and others still do not have the answers to those questions.

「If Reiji had died on the day he disappeared, he would have been found together with El, but he wasn’t found. The whole of Brunstalk is the goddess’ territory, but he wasn’t found there.」Eva said.

「In addition, the area of influence of the Goddess Temple covers the nearby lands around Lake Brunstalk, but the Windle Republic lies slightly outside of it. Representative Holiday has died, but… if he had found Reiji-san in the Republic, he would have surely reported.」Anastasia said.

「W-Wait a minute. What is that “Area of influence”?」

Dante asked, but all Anastasia and Eva could say was, “We don’t know.”

「The only thing we can say is that it’s “dangerous”…」Anastasia said.

「Dangerous……?」

「But Reiji-san is an irregular being as Priest El and the mediators, so I don’t think he will be influenced by the Goddess.」

They know the answer as to why Reiji is an “irregular”.

“Child of Disaster”, is a reincarnated person. He possesses 16 slots, which is twice as many as an average human being.

「Kruvan Holy Kingdom, Saint Knight Kingdom, Lev Magic Empire, Geffert Kingdom in the Keith Gran Federation, and Windle Republic — other than these, there are no other places where Reiji can be hidden now.」Eva said.

「Is it because the followers of the goddess will prosecute the black-haired and black-eyed Reiji if found?」Dante asked.

「Yes, that’s right.」

「In other words, Eva-sama and Anastasia want to talk to the Knight King about Reiji’s search domestically, and then go straight to the Lev Magic Empire. If even there we don’t receive any news…」

「Then we are going to the undeveloped land “Canion”. If Reiji is in trouble, then it is my turn to reach out a helping hand.」Eva said.

Dante groaned despite himself, in response to those unwavering words.

——You are loved very dearly, Reiji.

Dante thought to himself.

** Lev Magic Empire, Checking Station **

Although the audience with the Knight King was successful, they did not obtain the information they hoped for—that is, the Saint Knight Kingdom was not aware of Reiji’s whereabouts.

The only place left is the Lev Magic Empire.

Since the “Red Gate Campaign”, the Levs have been trying to restore their country. Fortunately, due to their small land, the mass outbreak of monsters caused by the “World Union” did not affect them significantly. And there was almost no damage to the civilian population. However–

「The battle is still ongoing?」

Apparently, foreigners are not allowed to enter the country because there are still many areas where battles are ongoing inside the checking stantion, and the urban area is undergoing restoration works.

Half of the civilian population have now set up camps on the south side of the checking station—the same as it was during the “Red Gate Campaign”.

「Chupa. Yes, the situation is quite severe on the Canion side. We are conducting air bombing from the sky with magic airships, but monsters seem to spring up inexhaustibly from over there. Chupa.」

Silver Balance reunited with Abba, Deputy Director of the Forreign Affairs Bureau. Eva and the knights were also listening to the Lev Magic Empire situation at his tent.

Silver Balance used his tent as a base previously, and even the magic tool for detecting Reiji went he was transported to the “Back World” remained. Abba most likely didn’t even have the time to clean up his tent.

Abba was also once again sucking on starch syrup. His lean figure disappeared and he is once again fat. He might be heavier than before. His lizard-like skin was also glossy.

「The magic tool manufacturers are doing their best, but the enemy numbers are just too many. Your friend, Muge, seems to still be demonstrating his expertise in transporting supplies. Chupa.」

「I see… I am glad that Muge-san is doing fine! What about Lulusha-san?」Mimino asked.

「She doesn’t listen to anyone… She is at the front line, repairing magic gears and replenishing catalysts. Chupa.」

「That sounds very much like Lulusha-san.」Mimino said.

「Abba-san, Silver Balance will help you with the monster subjugation.」Dante offered.

「Chupa. It’s the best help one could ask for. Thank you very much.」

「Exactly in situations like these is when we should help each other out.」Dante said.

「Fufufu. I did not imagine this is how I would return to Lev.」Anastasia laughed.

「..You really are able to speak now, Your Highness Anastasia.」Abba said, peering intently at Anastasia.

He also forgot to lick his starch syrup.

「It is all thanks to Reiji-san that I am able to speak now. So I will use this power without hesitation if needed to search for Reiji-san.」

Abba gasped, as sparks danced around Anastasia.

「One more thing, I am no longer “Your Highness”.」

「Ah… w-well, understood…. Chupa.」

「—What are you going to do, Eva-sama?」Anastasia asked, as if taking a stab at Eva.

Eva was sitting with a troubled look. Captain Maxim and the knights standing behind her disagreed with the idea.

「My lady, His Excellency the Earl ordered us to avoid fighting as much as possible.」

「We knights are here to protect you, my lady.」

「Even under normal conditions, it would be difficult to keep you safe…」

Eva did not answer, still a troubled look on her face. In her heart she wants to participate in the monster subjugation, but her status as a noble may get in the way.

Previously, if it was when she first met Reiji, Eva would have immediately decided to help in the monster subjugation.

(She seems to be quite different from what I heard from Reiji. …Reiji, the young lady has grown up a lot.)

Dante looked at Eva with a faint smile.

「I agree. If a noble such as yourself joins the front line, it would end up becoming a tricky situation. If you were to sustain any injury, it would cause the empire to lose face. Just your thoughts and feelings are enough.」Abba politely refused.

「However, it will not be right for a noble of the Holy Kingdom to do nothing when your country is in trouble.」Eva finally responded.

「That would be true if you were officially dispatched as a knight, but right now you are traveling incognito. As the Deputy Director of Foreign Affairs Bureau, your safety is my responsibility as long as you are within the Empire.」

「…………」Eva bit down her teeth vexedly.

「As I mentioned earlier, the ongoing battle is fierce. Just yesterday, a giant bird-like silhouette was confirmed in the northern sky.」Abba reiterated.

「Bird silhouette?」Dante asked..

「It was too big to be called a bird, about the size of a magic airship… Perhaps it is one of the eight giants we have received information on. Or perhaps…」

Abba’s calm and collected eyes met Eva’s frowning eyes.

「It might be a dragon.」