Chapter 5 Dragon-san is in trouble
There are times when telepathy doesn’t work as expected, because the place where you make the connection changes depending on the situation of a Leyline, and you need to find the magical waves of the person you want to connect to.
Having something magical related to that person makes it easier to find that person.
For this reason, whenever I want to reach Nectar, I can send my thoughts over to him by marking my bracelet with a scale. For Aru, I use a strand of mane instead. And both of them can reach me in the same way.
((I believe I will be there in a day or so.))
「Got it. See you soon!」
Then, after ending the communication with Nectar, I unconsciously dropped the hand I was covering my left ear with.
For some reason, like with the telephone calls from my previous life, I can’t seem to be at ease without covering either one of my ears with one of my hands.
It’s strange how I still hold on to this habit as if it’s been more than hundreds of years ago.
So, Aru’s staying with Marca-chan, huh?
He said that he can see the source of the river while he stays at her grandfather’s place. It’s been four or five days since I’ve left on my friend’s mythical beast, so I wonder if he’s adapting well.
Reflecting on how kids grow so fast with a feeling of nostalgia, I exited my bedroom at the inn I’m staying at and return to the living room.
There was a map that spread across the table. Senjiro and Ligurila were there, and both turned to greet me the moment I arrived.
「Oh, the conversation with Nectar is over, isn’t it?」
「He’s out of Ballow now, but it seems that there weren’t many Leylines for him to use. He’s riding a stagecoach and should be here by tomorrow. 」
It’s a short distance from there, so you can basically make it on foot helped only with a staff.
That’s what Senjiro said, with a rather tired look on his face.
「In the end, we couldn’t finish here before Nectar-dono had to come.」
「It’s just that we don’t know what made that many monsters appear near the villages. It’s quite a predicament.」
「That’s right, I didn’t think it would be this much of a struggle.」
Just as Ligurila let out a strained laugh out of regret, I took a peek at the map on the table, which is filled with details about the current situation.
Though that wasn’t according to the Guild’s request.
We received the request from the Guild, and as soon as Ligurila finished informing the necessary people, we headed for the Hezart border together with Senjiro.
However, I was eager to finish the request by spring break, and was not hesitant to get started right away.
I want to play with Aru!
So, when I got to the city in question, I immediately started hunting monsters down.
「Senjiro, this is a great chance to see the results of your training. Give them a good beating.」
「You don’t need to ask me that.」
As Ligurila instructed him with her arms crossed, Senjiro elegantly rushed through the woods infested with second and third rank monsters, blowing those away left and right.
Oh, Senjiro, you’ve become insanely stronger than before, haven’t you?
I used to think he had potential, but I was a little worried about how hard he and Ligurila had fought against each other during this past six months.
Since he headed out first, he knocked out the most of the monsters, and the few that escaped him were plucked out by Ligurila, so I could no longer feel worried.
We remained in the town in question, protecting it as I waited for my turn.
The situation changed when the town mayor, feeling relieved about no longer being under attack by monsters, spoke to us frankly as if he had thought hard about it.
「Truth is, there’s another village that is closer to Hezart…」
The monsters definitely have came from that direction, since there has been no word from that village in several days.
But I could also have been jumping into conclusions.
「Oh, I see. Let us know if anything happens.」
I asked about that other place’s location to the dumbfounded mayor and quickly left towards that other village.
After all, the Guild asked us to exterminate the monsters and investigate the area.
I can’t consider that request fulfilled until I resolve the situation completely, can I?
… Because officially, I planned to clear the mayor and the villagers’ anxieties away, if only a little.
On the way there, I used telepathy to contact Ligurila, and was attacked by several second-rank monsters. I’m glad I was able to bring them down swiftly.
I had this uncomfortable feeling when I reunited with Ligurila in that other village since the mayor there started talking in such a serious fashion.
「Actually, there’s another village ahead, and we haven’t heard from them in some time.」
What’s with this déjà vu?
So, just like before, we defeated many monsters and finally arrived at this new village, now being at the verge of completely crossing over the Hezart border.
「There’s a first-rank monster over there…」
「Seems like you’ll get a good training partner now, Senjiro.」
「Hmm, that kind of opponent should do just fine.」
「…Will we have to leave this village for another one as well?」
As Ligurila and Senjiro marched quickly through the village, the village elder and the other inhabitants soon began to come out of hiding.
We were able to find the first-rank monster through my extensive investigation and Senjiro’s sense of smell.
Though he had support from Ligurila, Senjiro defeated that monster almost one-to-one. While he was fighting, though, I had grown worried because I started feeling that the whole situation was strange.
There were no magical abnormalities in the areas where we had found the monsters.
Although there were some magical disturbances that seemed to have been caused by the monsters, they weren’t particularly dark, and it wasn’t a situation that would generate an abnormal outbreak of monsters.
I was worried that after reporting to the Guild that we had defeated that first-rank monster, we would enter into the Hezart region to repeat this process all over again.
Ligurila and Senjiro had joined me because they considered it would be good training for them, but we hadn’t thought that it would end up being something like this.
It was the third day when we were done with defeating monsters, and I thought that it would take a couple of more days to understand the reason of their appearance, but despite my efforts, spring break had started, and I wasn’t getting any closer to the truth.
I really need to apologize to Aru…
「But what has been causing these monsters to come in swarms like this?」
My eyes were fixed on the map as I stood there with my arms crossed.
By the way, I was in my regular human form, not as Noct.
Since we were travelling across the Hezart border, and they don’t know much about the Black Flame Dragon over there, I figured it would be pointless to use my Noct form.
That’s why I’ve changed to my basic form, even leaving my tuft of red hair as it is.
At first I was happy that I didn’t need to hide, but as the investigation continued, my excitement began to wane.
The map was filled in with the places where we eliminated the monsters, and a rough approximation of the flow of the Leylines.
Why are we doing it like this?
「Oh, I never thought that there would be a land where Leylines were hard to catch up with like this…」
That’s right. The area around Hezart was a land where following the flow of magic was hard, even for me, a dragon.
Understanding the flow of Leylines, which are as intricate as our own blood vessels, is always a difficult task. But upon close inspection, since in this land the Leylines seem behave so differently, the depictions in our map look rather deceiving.
It might be possible to fully understand how the Leylines work here in another twenty or thirty years, but of course, we don’t have that much time now.
So I prioritized picturing the places where we had found the monsters, but we still don’t know where the monsters actually came from.
「I had developed a new technique for destroying these vermins, but in the end, I didn’t get the chance to use it. And since we entered the Hezart territory, we haven’t found a single monster. We’ve been doing nothing but walking across the hills and fields.」
Ligurila had crossed her arms and seemed pretty stressed about the situation.
She’s very patient when it comes to making dresses, so she’s not poor at keeping up with our current pace, but it’s impossible to not feel a little nervous about getting no results at all.
Still, she says she’s not going back home, and that she wants to help me. That gives my heart a somewhat warm feeling.
「Hey, Lava. We won’t just finish this request if we can’t find what we’re looking for. There may be many monsters still out there.」
The reason Ligurila is so calm about it is that even if she gets a little hurt, she can heal herself with the Leylines.
However, she might not need to rely on that ability, since I don’t think that there will be any more second-rank or above monsters left.
「But still, that number of monsters is strange, so this will only take a little more time.」
Seeing that both Senjiro thinks the same way I do, Ligurila made a sullen face and fell silent.
They look like lovers who have came to understand each other perfectly.
「Well, for now, we know that the Leylines near these borders are not the source of the issue. So let’s go a little further into these lands.」
As I said that with a discreet smile on my face, someone knocked on the door at our room.
When we opened the door, we found the inn’s attendant on the other side, looking a little nervous.
「Um… there’s someone downstairs who says he’s an acquaintance of yours. He’s a big and tall magician with long brown hair. 」
「Oh, is that so? Ligurila, Sen-san, could you wait here for a moment?」
I stood up cheerfully and followed the girl to the lobby downstairs.
Kyle was there, wearing light-colored traveling clothes, and a staff on his back.