*KUEEEEEE*, a high pitched shriek resounded.
Right after that, a squall that struck down from the sky rolled up cloud of dust and blocked the field of vision. Small pebbles of sand attacked the eyeball which would force anyone to narrow their eyes while covering their face with their arm.
As though waiting for that opening, rain poured down by mixing in among the squall.
However, it wasn't a rain of water. It was a rain that was made from stone needles. The stone needles with total length of around 15 centimeter approached the ground looking really like a heavy rain.
――Coatrice's stone needle
It was the characteristic magic that was fired by a huge black eagle monster, Coatrice. If someone got hit even by a single needle, they would be petrified in the blink of eye. And such needle was fired in a wide area by several hundred needles simultaneously, while the target's sight was blocked by the squall and cloud of dust.
A magic trigger with the chanting abbreviated was whispered with a small voice. Wind that whirled with the caster as the center blew away the cloud of dust.
What appeared was a young man. He had silky brown hair and well-featured face. His body was lean and tight despite being slender and tall. Wearing simple protectors that only protected his body's vital spots, his hands were holding a western sword that was shining faintly in a low stance.
That young man――Amanogawa Kouki didn't even look nervous facing the squall of stone needles, he calmly lifted the holy sword above his head and began rotating the sword fast with only the motion of his wrist.
The holy sword that was starting to rotate like a pinwheel in an instant looked like a round shield in addition with the radiance it was clad with.
Right after that, stone needles showered down on the round shield of holy sword. But, it seemed the stone needles couldn't slip through that shield because of its great momentum, the stone needles were easily repelled and scattered to the surrounding, piercing the ground around.
*KUEEEEE*, a shriek that was unpleasant to the ear resounded once more. It seemed the monster lost its temper from witnessing its characteristic magic gotten scattered.
The coatrice folded its wings that produced squall physically, and then its huge body rapidly swooped down.
Light exploded. Flash gushed out from the holy sword round shield like an explosion, and the shockwave blew away the remaining stone needles.
The stone needles stabbed the surrounding like thorns. If he moved recklessly to dodge the coatrice, he might get hit with petrification from below. Kouki picked this forceful option because of that.
Using "Ground Shrinker" skill, Kouki leaped out to the air in one go.
The coatric put forward the sharp claws at its legs.
Just before both sides crossed each other, Kouki created a simple barrier in midair using light element elementary magic. Using that barrier as a foothold, he changed his trajectory midair. At the same time, he swung his holy sword in a circle arc.
Coatrice and Kouki crossed over each other midair.
The coatrice charged toward the ground without decelerating at all. Its neck plopped off and flew like a joke, and its flesh made a graphic sound with its impact from crashing on the ground.
Kouki twirled midair while rotating his body to fix his stance, and then he landed on the ground. Just in case, he confirmed that there was no stone needle on the ground, but the needles were already crumbling as though weathering from age, so there would be no problem even if he landed on a stone needle.
Kouki confirmed the crumbling of the stone needles and the death of the coatrice, and then he let out a small exhalation to unravel his tension. At the same time, he held down something that was rising up inside.
His complexion didn't change at all. The change of his physical condition didn't show up outside. Even that condition that was becoming typical post-battle was already something he was used to.
(Not just getting used to it, I have to overcome it though……)
Kouki talked to himself inside his heart while using his spirit to push back the breakfast inside his stomach that was gradually rising up as though to say 「You calling?」. He unconsciously smiled bitterly at himself that was like that.
「What are you doing grinning like that, it's disgusting.」
The caustic words that stabbed at him like a throwing javelin caused the breakfast to rise up as though to say 「As I thought you are calling aren't you?」. Using spirit! He pushed it back!
The one who threw the javelin of words from the nearby rocky area was a female knight clad in Hairihi kingdom knight order's equipment. She looked good looking, and she could be seen like a noble's daughter if she shut up and wore a dress.
In fact, the girl was from the background of a noble family though……
Anyway, while Kouki was fighting the coatrice, the girl was hiding in the cover of rocky area and didn't come out at all. She didn't look like she was feeling bad at all about that, far from that, when the battle was over she came out with a violence of verbally attacking her ally while approaching near with a brisk pace.
「Nn, nnh. Err, isn't it going too far calling me disgusting?」
「A man grinning while standing in front of a corpse with its head and body separated from each other, at a scene that is drenched with blood, how could I not call him disgusting? My apologize, I cannot really follow hero-sama's sensitivity.」
「Ah, yea, sorry.」
Seeing the female knight backing away like in a rewind toward the nearby rocky area while her whole body was radiating aura 「It's creepy」, it caused Kouki to consent inside his heart 「Well certainly!」 in desperation while his mouth was apologizing.
「So, hero-sama. We more or less finished exterminating the monster in the request…….are we going back to the town? Or else, will you continue hunting like usual?」
The female knight asked while looking up to the sky. The sun hadn't even reached the zenith yet. This was a time period that was just right if they were going to go back to town to take lunch and reported to the guild about the request's completion.
Normally anyone would do that, but from how the female knight was asking like that instead, it could be imagined that usually Kouki wouldn't return to town in this case.
「The eyewitness report about the coatrice and also the extermination request we received said that there is only one of it but……there was also other eyewitness report of other monster. The monsters of 【Duvune Precincts】 are troublesome. And this place is also nearby Raisen grand canyon, there are a lot of hiding places here. We have time, so I'm thinking of investigating further.」
「……So it's like that.」
The female knight was turning a vaguely exasperated gaze at Kouki and she let out a small sigh.
Kouki and others had went back to earth and returned to school.
But, Kouki who was tormented by his sin persuaded his family and childhood friends and he dropped out of school by his own choice. He immediately crossed over to Tortus, and like this he moved around exterminating monsters as an adventurer to atone for his sin.
At the legendary decisive battle, the monster swarm that overflowed from 【Holy Precincts】 wasn't completely annihilated. Quite a number of them succeeded in escaping. The monsters of 【Holy Precincts】 were powerful. Every last one of them possessed the strength of the monster at the deep part of Orcus great labyrinth.
For the adventurers of this world, these monsters were severe if they weren't adventurer of "Gold" class.
It was for that reason that Kouki crossed over world without waiting to graduate from high school, and here he accepted monster extermination request especially against monsters from 【Holy Precincts】. He asked for cooperation from Liliana, he also appealed to all the branch heads of the adventurer guild, and like this time he was given the preference to receive information and request about such thing.
He was carrying on request with the highest degree of danger by his own wish. It was also wasn't rare for him to have consecutive battle every day. Indeed, there was no doubt that there would be enormous damage is these monsters were left alone, and rapid disposal of them was necessary and also something to be thankful for.
However, Liliana and some others were worried that if Kouki kept being reckless like this then it might brought fatal danger to him someday, they advised him to care for himself a bit more but……
At present, there wasn't any sign that Kouki's action pace would drop. This time too, Kouki seemed to be planning to search for monsters outside of the request and fought them just like usual.
(I wish he will also be considerate about me who is being dispatched as his watcher and also supporter……)
Altough fighting side-by-side with Kouki wasn't included in the range of the female knight's duty, just watching a battle against the monsters of 【Holy Precincts】 was nerve wracking.
At the battle against coatrice just now, it would be the end for the female knight just by getting grazed by the stone needle. Kouki and others of the another world group was in different level when it came to resistance against magic. Most likely, she would be completely petrified in a matter of seconds if she got hit.
Before this too, she felt uneasy only hiding in the cover of a rocky area, so she was hiding herself by creating a trench with godspeed hole digging.
「Aaa, I want to meet Onee-sama……」
「Hm~m, the periodic gate opening is still quite far away I think……」
The female knight whispered to herself while following behind the walking Kouki. Kouki smiled wryly while recalling the onee-sama that this female knight greatly respected, or rather she greatly loved to the degree that might be a bit too extreme――Yaegashi Shizuku.
「I know that already. Aa, I hate my own powerlessness. I thought that trivial thing like the world can be crossed using spirit and guts if it's for onee-sama's sake, but, nugugu」
「If the world can be crossed like that, just what is the meaning of Nagumo's hardships then.」
Kouki's wry smile deepened.
This female knight. Originally she was a royal guard that was attached to Liliana, a direct subordinate of the formerly royal guard commander and the present kingdom's knight order leader, Kuzeri Rail. But, why then she was now accompanying Kouki? If such question was asked――the short answer was, she was demoted.
She was one of the stepsister group that greatly loved Shizuku, she caused troubles over and over again because of her overflowing onee-sama love, and she turned out from royal guard knight -> normal knight directly under the leader -> normal knight -> this girl is no good already.
At the legendary decisive battle, Kouki was at the enemy side. That fact was a common knowledge also because of Kouki's own declaration.
And so, no matter even if it was for hunting the monsters of 【Holy Precincts】, naturally there was also opinions that were uneasy of leaving Kouki unregulated.
Although Liliana declared that such thing was unneeded but……Kuzeri consulted to Kouki with an exhausted expression 「That girl, I'm thinking of firing her」, that being the case in order to give peace to the heart of the people who was yelling their anxiety, let's attach a knight as a watcher, let's make it this girl! That was how it ended up.
「I wish that you won't speak of the name of that son of a bitch.」
「You will meet another painful experience if you keep saying such thing you know?」
「You mean, like hero-sama who got Shizuku-oneesama taken from him so thoroughly?」
Kouki pressed his hand on his chest and fell down. He got on all fours with his head hanging down. It was a terrific counter.
「Good grief, putting aside Kaori-sama, I wished that you would at least protect Shizuku-oneesama to the death. Even I will be able to snatch away onee-sama if it's only from hero-sama……」
「Rather than hero-sama, you are the loser-sama. You are chicken-sama!」
「Hey hey, how does it feel to be treated as "little brother" by a girl the same age with you? How does it feel? Hey hey」
The female knight poked repeatedly with the sheath of her knight sword at the crouching Kouki. She was venting her anger with her all, filled with the grief and lamentation toward the present situation where she couldn't even scratch that son of a bitch demon king.
But, it was at that time that a strong presence was transmitted from the direction of 【Raisen Grand Canyon】.
「……Looks like, I have a good luck today.」
Kouki stood up so easily it was unthinkable that he was getting so grandly humiliated until just now.
And then, he immediately walked forward while urging the female knight to follow with his gaze.
The female knight followed in a hurry. Kouki suddenly turned his face toward such her.
「Aah, that's right. I had asked this several times already but……can you stop with the "hero-sama"?」
Kouki said that with a small smile casually. The female knight spontaneously turned silent, and after thinking for a while,
「Then, I'll call you chicken-sama.」
「Can't you just call me Kouki normally!?」
Kouki spontaneously tsukkomi-ed. As expected it seemed he couldn't turn a blind eye at that.
The female knight slightly backed away and made a shuddering expression while she hugged her breast.
「Asking me so we can call each other by name……please stop, I'll get pregnant.」
「You won't! What are you saying so suddenly!?」
「It's Onee-sama's warning. I received that warning when I went to report to her that I am appointed with this duty. First he would create familiarity by calling each other by name, after that he would nonchalantly increase the body touch rate, for some reason some incident would occur and he would resolve it, and in the end he would smile pleasantly with sparkling teeth. That is that guy's modus operandi you know, be careful okay, onee-sama said to me.」
The tsukkomi of Kouki's heart burst out. The roar of monsters echoed from afar as though hailing in concert with that.
「Well, it's impossible for me to be infatuated to other person that is not onee-sama. Kouki-sama, I'm really sorry but, I hope you will give this up.」
「Why is it like I was confessing and then get rejected……wait, this is bad! Isn't this an aurora dragon!?」
Kouki felt exhausted, but right after that he saw the monster that showed up and he raised his voice in panic. The monster that flew out from 【Raisen Grand Canyon】was the dragon shaped monster that fired breath of extreme light that was once called as grey dragon. The white dragon had disappeared and right now they were called as dragon of extreme light.
Their original specs were high already, but now they were the 【Holy Precincts】 version and their level had been increased. It was a formidable enemy that wasn't really a laughing matter for adventurer.
Kouki gritted his teeth at the appearance of a monster that wasn't in the report while he turned his gaze behind him in order to give instruction so the female knight would retreat.
「Quick, get awa――wait, fast!? No, that's fine though!」
At that time the female knight had just leaped into the trench that she dug before this. It was a wonderful escape.
Kouki's expression was complicated feeling somehow not satisfied, but the next moment he twitched due to the light shining above and he turned around. And then,
He faced the extreme light that was released at the same time and raised a war cry in desperation.
The female knight who was only showing out her face a tiny bit from the trench to observe such Kouki was,
(……Hmm. Even though he actually didn't mind even when he was ridiculed about his relationship with Shizuku-sama, but he cannot endure getting called "hero-sama". What a difficult person.)
Kouki's act before this. Despite his big reaction, but he easily returned to reality. From that it could be understood that he had already came to a clean decision about his relationship with Shizuku. Rather, he was accepting with the relationship where the two of them were like family of older sister and younger brother and felt satisfied with it.
But, in regard of getting called "hero-sama", Kouki smiled cheerfully and acted like it was nothing, but if one looked carefully they would clearly see that he had tense expression.
And then, the emotion that he was desperately hiding in front of the corpse of coatrice. That was……
(It was, fear. Now then, what in the world that fear is about……)
The female knight was watching Kouki who challenged the monster in midair battle with simple barrier as his foothold while pondering a bit.
The current Kouki wasn't wearing the "holy armor" artifact that was given to him from the palace. That was because Kouki returned it himself. He also returned all the artifacts he received from Hajime like "Air Force Boots" and others.
That was because of his guilty conscience that said that those items weren't something that could be possessed by him who wasn't a hero, at the same time it was also a decision that came from his determination to train himself back from zero without relying on artifact.
He was only carrying the holy sword wasn't because he wouldn't let go, but because he couldn't let go of it. For some reason, when Kouki left it behind, it would fly back to him when he moved a certain distance away from it. It was as though the sword was saying it had no user other than Kouki.
In any case, it didn't change that Kouki's defensive capability had declined remarkably, if he was hit by the breath of light then he clearly wouldn't get away unscathed.
Then, in that case, was that linked to his fear then……
The female knight had a hunch that there was no way that was all there was to it.
(Well, it's something incosequential!)
The female knight easily abandoned that thought.
At the distance, it seemed Kouki had finally finished off the dragon. And then, right after that, three more aurora dragons appeared and he raised a shocked scream 「Whaat!?」.
(……Hmm. I guess I better make the trench a bit deeper.)
The female knight who actually was nonchalantly an expert in darkness element magic ignored Kouki who raised a war cry 「I, I WON'T LOSEEEEEEEE-」, and then she diligently worked hard in digging a hole.
「Uguu, I thought I was going to die……」
「How exaggerated. In the end other than getting knocked down by a tail, didn't you normally win without even getting particular wounded?」
「……Kaa-san, thank you for birthing me with a tough body.」
Kouki got a distant look and offered his feelings of gratitude toward his mother that was in different world.
As expected, it would be severe for Kouki and the female knight who had just underwent a mortal combat to continue searching for monster, so right now they returned at their base recently――【Brook Town】.
If one walked at the bustling street, aroma that really stimulated one's appetite would waft from the street stalls. Kouki's stomach was already empty too from his intense exercise. His breakfast that rose up even when he didn't call now didn't show any sign of showing up.
Kouki's gaze was unconsciously absorbed toward the numerous street stalls, but――
「Ah? ……Chih, he is still in this town huh.」
「Is this alright? What if he is scheming something……」
The men who looked like adventurer that happened to pass by were talking whisperingly to each other when they saw Kouki. Their voices entered his ear.
The area around Kouki's chest slowly turned chilly. He unconsciously moved to cover his head with the hood of his cloak, but he stopped his hand from moving and kept his appearance without change.
Their expression that he caught in a glance was clearly feeling disgusted, along with color of anxiety that oozed out. Even though they understood that right now the hero was taking the initiative to hunt the monsters of 【Holy Precincts】, their disgust didn't really vanish. No matter how they couldn't wipe out their unease.
The traitor of mankind. The hero of betrayal. The envoy of evil god……
Would he bare his powerful fang toward mankind once more, could he be scheming something……
Trust that was lost once wouldn't return easily.
It was something he understood. It was something he was prepared for. That was why Kouki didn't hide his face. He looked forward, determined to accept it with resignation.
「Regaining trust is something really difficult.」
The words that female knight suddenly let out caused Kouki's eyes to open wide. The female knight was staring straight ahead while further adding more words.
「It cannot be done in a day. Losing it is easy, but obtaining it is hard.」
「However, giving up is exactly what a "person that cannot be trusted" would do. Therefore, one must never give up.」
It felt like warmth was spreading slowly inside Kouki's chest. He was getting looked coldly at like this was him reaping what he sowed. At the time when he was needed the most, he instead prioritized his own emotion and betrayed everything.
But, like this there was also a person who was concerned for himse――
「Someday I will bloom a second time for sure at central! And then, I will be at Onee-sama's side……guheheh」
「Ah, yea, that's what you mean huh.」
A fatigue suddenly assaulted him. But he thought positively 'Well, my heart is lightened I think!' and fastened his steps.
The inn that the two of them used as their base came into view. The large wooden signboard had "Inn of Masaka" written on it. It was an inn that was used by that demon king and actually was considerably famous, to the degree that it became a bit of sightseeing spot. (TN: In Japan, 'masaka' meant 'don't tell me…')
After all the inn was brazenly advertizing in a big way by hanging down a banner that was written with "Demon king-sama's appointed inn! Your journey started from here!". It seemed the inn was also selling things like demon king manjuu and so on. They had a really good business spirit.
Kouki was making a complicated expression while opening the inn's door and entered inside.
The landlady of the inn welcomed the two of them with 「My, welcome back」 and a gentle smile. It seemed the people of this inn also didn't really think of anything particular toward Kouki. They were always attending to him with an attitude that was the same with other customer.
It was a really calming inn, with the exception of one thing.
Kouki and the female knight took their seat in order to have late lunch. They took the menu to take a look of what they would eat today. It was at that time,
「Today our recommendation is the teriyaki of Kururu bird you know?」
The voice that suddenly resounded from nearby caused Kouki and the female knight to jump on the spot altogether.
The cause was one.
The inn's poster girl who was bringing the two of them water with a cheerful and charming smile on her face――Sohna Masaka-chan. The approach of that Sohna-chan wasn't noticed by the two until she called out at them. (TN: Sohna sounded like 'sonna' which could mean 'such thing', or 'no way'. Sohna Masaka, sounded like 'no way, don't tell me…')
Both Kouki and the female knight were people who served in battle. Kouki's Presence Detection was especially excellent to the degree that it could be said in extraordinary level, even if the other party possessed the skill of "Presence Isolation", as long as they weren't the same another world group like him, he would be able to detect them. The exception to that was like the rabbit eared bunches lurking in a certain sea of trees.
But, such Kouki didn't notice Sohna-chan when she approached him.
「So, Sohna-chan. Since when you were there……」
「Eh? I normally came out from the kitchen bringing water to you two just now though……」
She answered Kouki like that with a puzzled expression. Kouki cocked his head wondering whether it was just him feeling exhausted.
However, this kind of situation had happened several times, like when he walked in the corridor at midnight when he woke up to go to toilet, or when he came out from the bath's changing room, or when he was taking meal like this time, when he noticed she was already behind him. He really couldn't believe that it was just a coincidence.
「Sohna-chan, by any chance, do you have experience of receiving some kind of special training?」
The female knight unintentionally asked that.
Sohna-chan showed a puzzled expression toward that question, and the next moment she let out a chuckle. As though to say that she had heard a funny joke.
「Giggle, geez, what's with that question? What kind of special training that an inn girl would receive!?」
「Ah, no, it's just my feeling. My apologize, it seems that I was a bit confused.」
「You were working from the morning weren't you? Surely you are really tired now. Please eat a lot and get lively.」
Sohna-chan smiled sweetly. By no means that she was a beautiful girl that would make other people opened their eyes wide, but she possessed warm loveliness of a plain flower that resolutely bloomed fully.
Kouki and the female knight also forgot their shock just now and their expression turned warm. Surely, it was just as Sohna-chan said, they were only feeling a bit tired. Thinking that, they ordered their meal before looking at each other's face and exchanged a wry smile.
「Ah, that's right. Sohna-chan. About the dinner tho――ugh」
Sohna-chan wasn't there. It was after she took the two's order, and Kouki and the female knight looked at each other's face only for a moment. Yet despite so, when the two returned the gaze back, Sohna-chan wasn't there anymore. They didn't even feel any sign of her moving away.
Kouki and the female knight unintentionally fell silent.
「Did you call?」
「Ah, no. It's nothing at all……」
「Is that so? Then, please wait a bit until the cooking is finished okay!」
Sohna-chan vanished energetically.
It was like her presence was slippery…….
Kouki and the female knight waited for their meal silently for some reason. When Sohna-chan brought them their order, as expected they also couldn't grasp her presence.
Kouki and the female knight ate their meal silently.
When they finished their meal, Sohna-chan cleared up their empty plates.
But, at that time, Sohna-chan dropped something. A metal plate the size of a hand palm――a status plate.
「Ah, Sohna-chan, you drop――」
Kouki immediately picked it up and his gaze inadvertently moved toward the status plate. Originally, a status plate's content couldn't be seen as long as the owner didn't pour their magic power into it, but this status plate was shining faintly with its content visible, perhaps because Sohna-chan was displaying the content just now because of some kind reason.
Kouki stiffened when he saw the content. The female knight who unintentionally peeked at it also stiffened.
The status plate was quickly pulled away from Kouki's hand.
「Thank you very much, Kouki-san. But, seeing other person's status is a violation of manner you know?」
「Eh, ah, sorry.」
「No, no. It's me who is carelessly leaving it in its visible state after all. But, please be careful the next time okay.」
Sohna-chan smiled sweetly. The smile of a poster girl was dazzling.
The female knight whispered with a small voice while staring at the energetic back of Sohna-chan who was returning to her work.
「Just what is that girl?」
「No, even if you ask me that……」
A strange silence fell.
「We, well, it must be that. This is the appointed inn of the demon king after all!」
「Tha, that's true!」
The two who forcefully convinced themselves excitedly headed out for their afternoon work.
By the way, the status of Sohna-chan that the two saw was,
Sohna Masaka 16 years old Female Level 22
Vocation: None Occupation: 【Brook Town】 Inn of Masaka Employee
Magic Power: 3
Magic Resistance: 3
Skill: Accounting - Love Smell Sensing - Sharp Ear - Night Vision - Rope Descent - Wall Climbing - Infiltration - Diving - Elusive Phantom
It was a collection of skills that was really oriented toward spy except the first two skills. Or rather, as long as one wasn't from another world group, normally a person would only have about one or two skill. Most likely those skills bloomed later on through arduous training……
There was a monster in the inn of 【Brook Town】, perhaps.
In addition, in the evening of that day, a letter from Liliana reached Kouki. The next morning Kouki and the female knight returned back to the palace.
As expected, at that time too, Sohna-chan was behind the two of them to see them off with her presence beyond grasp even from hero. Both Kouki and the female knight couldn't hide their shudder.
Kouki and the female knight who arrived at the palace were welcomed by Liliana and knight order leader Kuzeri.
The moment she saw Kuzeri, the female knight scowled 「Gee!? Leader!?」. Her scruff was grasped by Kuzeri who had pulsing blood vein on her forehead and she was dragged away. It was a really natural flow of event without even any time to stop it, just like how water would flow from high place to low place.
「Eerr, for the time being, it's great that you return safely, Kouki-san.」
「Yeah, thanks, Lily. You wrote in your letter that there is a troublesome monster appearing at the outskirts of the capital but……」
Seeing Kouki who hurriedly gave his return greeting before quickly asking about the monster sighting caused Liliana to smiled bitterly thinking 'just like always huh'.
「About that. I think even the knight order can deal with this monster, but I called Kouki-san just in case. But even though I said that, there is only eyewitness report so far and the situation is nothing urgent. The knight order plan to depart tomorrow morning, so first please drink some tea and rest.」
「I see……. If that's how it is then I get it.」
Kouki who noticed that Liliana was being considerate at him also smiled wryly while he complied with Liliana's suggestion.
Like that, Liliana was about to ask about the problem Kouki was holding in his heart in a casual manner――it was at that time,
『I found you, hero-sama. Please I beg you, save my beloved world.』
From the sky, a gentle voice that gave off earnestness came down.
Both Kouki and Liliana stiffened in puzzlement. Right after that, a pattern of magic circle that looked like hieroglyph character they had never seen before stretched out on the ground below Kouki. The magic circle increased in radiance and overflowed with a power that was falsely similar with magic power.
「Do, don't tell me-」
The face of Kouki who guessed what was happening was grandly twitching.
At the same time, the hieroglyph characters of the magic circle flashed fiercely. Liliana reached out her hand toward Kouki right away, but Kouki shook off that hand and pushed away Liliana instead.
「Lily-, tell everyon――」
Before Kouki could finish talking, the raging light settled down. And then, there was nobody there anymore.
「Thi, this is terrible! I have to tell Hajime-san!」
Liliana was dumbfounded for a while before she raised her voice 「It's terrible! Terrible!」 while rushing away in a feverish haste.
After the light completely blanketed his field of vision, Kouki tasted a sensation as though the gravity was changing direction every few tenth of second. Kouki who could only let his body getting carried away inside the darkness where he couldn't see anything finally found a streak of light.
He desperately reached out his hand to that. The light was rapidly approaching.
Kouki said 「Eei, to hell with this!」 and leaped into the light――
He became panicked from the large amount of water that entered his trachea.
(I, I can't-, breath!? Wa, water!? Underwater!?)
Yes, the destination of the light he leaped into was underwater. At the corner of his sight, he could see the radiant sunlight and the beautifully swaying water surface.
But, he didn't even have the slightest bit of composure to enjoy such sight. He was unable to breath sufficiently, on top of that he spewed out a lot of oxygen because he suddenly coughed. His consciousness was already in red alert state. It wouldn't be funny if he died by drowning right after getting summoned.
He desperately struggled while trying to surface, but his sight was gradually locked into darkness. It felt like his consciousness was falling away.
While it was already getting hard to even think, the water surface suddenly shook.
His dazed mind was barely able to comprehend that a person leaped into the water.
The shining sunlight illuminated that person.
Long white hair. Chocolate colored skin. Sharp gaze that conveyed a strong will, jade colored eyes. Her approximate age might be a bit older than him. She had extraordinary figure that was wrapped with clothes with a lot of exposure, her body was painted with mysterious pattern.
Kouki who was unable to even moved his limbs anymore could only think of such thing in amazement.
Right after that, that woman grasped Kouki and swam up to the surface with a staggering force. It took only a moment until they popped out of the water.
「Gahah, gehoh, –」
「Are you okay? Get a hold of yourself! Come on, spit the water out!」
Voluptuous breast pressed on Kouki while he was being carried. The woman who saved Kouki had a masculine way of talking in contrast with her appearance.
「Gefuh, tha, thank you. Yo, you saved me……」
「Don't mind it. I never thought that you would appear at the bottom of the spring. I was a bit late. Sorry.」
The white haired and brown skinned woman's sharp gaze softened a bit hearing Kouki who was thanking her even while coughing painfully.
From her words, it seemed that she grasped that Kouki would appear in this place, but it could be inferred that it was outside her expectation for Kouki to appear underwater.
To speak further, the voice that spoke from the sky before he was summoned sounded completely different than this woman's voice.
(There is no doubt that I'm summoned but……. It looks like this person isn't the summoner.)
While Kouki who recovered her thinking ability was thinking of such thing, he could hear countless splashing sound of people entering the water.
When he looked there, there were multiple men and women raising their voices saying things like 「Your majesty, you are safe!」, or 「Please leave something like this to us!」, or 「Suddenly jumping in like that, what are you thinking!」.
「There wasn't even a second to waste. It couldn't be helped. Rather than that, let's quickly pull him up.」
「Aah, geez-. It will be a scolding when we go home! Now, hero-sama. Please hold on to me.」
It appeared the woman who saved Kouki was called her majesty――in other words, it seemed she was a queen of a country somewhere. While feeling obliged that the queen personally jumped in to rescue him, a man past middle-aged with great physique and a look like a seasoned warrior grasped Kouki and lent him a hand.
When Kouki looked around, everyone's skin was similarly brown colored. Although, it was only the queen who was white haired.
Kouki who was pulled up to the bank reflexively sat down. The queen who stood imposingly in front of such Kouki opened her mouth with a powerful gaze directed at Kouki without looking bothered at all with the water dripping down her body.
「Now then, this had became an inconceivable first meeting, but for the time being, I'll introduce myself. I am Moana. Moana de Shelt Synclea. I am the one who is currently like the queen or whatever of Synclea kingdom.」
The people who seemed to be her subordinates made an expression that looked like they were feeling headache thinking 「What's with that 'like the queen or whatever'」.
Moana completely ignored them and her expression turned a bit hesitating.
「You might think that my way of talking is pompous, but this is what I'm used to due to my position. If it bother you, then I will try to talk as courteously as possible……」
「Ah, no, it's fine like that.」
Kouki immediately said that which caused tension to leave Moana's shoulders in relieve.
「I see. That saved me the trouble. Then once more, welcome to Synclea kingdom. O envoy of "the mother of all life" "the will of the great blessing" ――Foltina. We are imploring, so that your existence will become our salvation. Please treat us favorably.」
Saying that, she presented her hand slowly.
It was a feminine hand, but looking closer there were a lot of callus on her palm from the result of handling sword. Her skin also had small scars here and there. She was someone who fought. Was it normal in this world for the queen to fight personally, or was her country placed in a situation where she was forced to do so……
Seeing how he was summoned, and these people were looking for help, surely the situation was a fairly troublesome one.
Well, putting that aside, for the time being he had to ask this one question no matter what.
「Is that god-like person, really alright?」
Surely that god wasn't the last boss who enjoyed toying with human right? That was Kouki's question,
It was obvious but, that question only served to make the queen confused.
AN: Thank you very much for reading this every time.
Thank you very much too for the thoughts, opinions, and reports about misspelling and omitted words.
First thing first, thinking that perhaps there will be reader who thought 'The queen's way of talking is different from the queen who showed up for a bit before this!', the supplementary explanation is that this queen's unadorned way of talking is like at the previous chapter after a fashion.
I'm not planning to continue Kouki arc for that long, but if it actually get long then sorry. I'll apologize in advance.
Now then, now is Golden Week huh.
How will everyone of Narou people will spend it?
Shirakome whose heart is moving into a certain village for the lonely people will surely get pursued with dealing with the piling up game.
If possible, I also wanted to upload a short story for Golden Week..
If nothing else, I pray so that everyone of Narou people will be able to enjoy Golden Week.
I revised a few words at [The Obstinate Princess Lily] of the third world -> of the second world.
Thank you very much for pointing that out.
If you find any errors ( broken links, non-standard content, etc.. ), Please let us know so we can fix it as soon as possible.