Soon after gaining valuable information from the [Time] Demon Lord, we headed back home.
And today, considering I shouldn’t go outside, I did my work in the carriage parked near the [First Tree]. The reason I shouldn’t go out was…
“Aura, are you sure Stolas is going to wake up today?”
“Yes. Her body has completely recovered. As far as her consciousness is concerned, it’s stable. A little coaxing should be enough to wake her up. These are all thanks to my earnest efforts in healing her, master! Praise me, please!”
Aura said so with a self-satisfied grin while also puffing her ample bosom.
I praised her good job, good job and then brushed her head. To that, she giggled ehehe.
She really did a good job. I should buy her that cake she loves so much later.
While thinking that, a sound came from somewhere.
It was from Enlil the Storm Dragon Knight Bahamut who had come to Avalon together with Stolas, his sleeping master.
When I looked toward his direction, I saw that he was licking his master’s cheek. It was perhaps his way of trying to get Stolas to wake up.
Much like Duke who could change his form, Enlil was able to reduce his size to that of a kitten’s. Ever since coming to Avalon, he had remained in this cute form and vigilantly remained at his master’s side.
And then, suddenly, there was movement in Stolas’s eyelids.
“Where am I? What happened…?”
After more than a week, Sleeping Beauty finally awakened.
However, having woken up in an unfamiliar room, she was understandably bewildered.
Enlil made an affectionate sound and then rubbed his head against Stolas’s cheek. After noticing it was Enlil, Stolas immediately embraced him.
“Oh, Enlil, that tickles. That’s right. I… I named you Enlil, and then lost consciousness, and then…”
At that point, she examined her surroundings and then made eye contact with me.
“…and then, you helped me, Procell. The fact that Enlil’s still here means that my crystal is still intact and that we won the war, doesn’t it? Thank goodness. It seems I owe you a great deal, Procell.”
“Yeah. I’d greatly appreciate it if you do someday.”
I jokingly replied so. Hopefully this way, she would feel less pressure to pay me back.
“So, Procell, can you catch me up on things? First of all, I don’t know where we are.”
“You remember up until you passed out, right? Well, you naming Enlil has caused quite a disaster. You see, that damaged your magic circuits to the point that there was even a chance your magic power and Demon Lord abilities might not ever return.”
Enlil was so strong, the act of naming him caused this much burden on her magic circuits. If we didn’t have Aura, recovery might have been hopeless.
“…it’s to that degree? The risks were far greater than I thought.”
“Yeah. That’s why we brought you here in Avalon so that Aura—a healing expert—can look after you. Moreover, can you feel that warm and gentle life energy? That’s from the First Tree, a sacred tree that’s comparable to a world tree. That overflowing life energy helped in speeding up your recovery.”
“I see. That means I truly owe Avalon a great deal. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
“Don’t worry about it. We’re friends and this is what friends do, right?”
I sincerely believed she would have done the same for me if our roles were ever reversed.
“So, has your magic power and Demon Lord abilities returned yet?”
“Let’s see… Nope, no matter how much I try, I can’t gather any magic power or perform any of my Demon Lord abilities. I’m now actually worried. It won’t be like this forever, right?”
I understood what she was feeling at the moment because I had undergone a similar situation.
I then looked Aura to give her the cue to talk.
“You don’t have to worry, Stolas-sama. Between my medical treatment of you, the potions made from the golden apples, and the First Tree, you should recover soon. In fact, I estimate the return of your magic power and Demon Lord abilities in 10 days.”
Hearing that, Stolas felt relieved.
In ten days, huh. Making her just rest in that time period is kind of a waste. We should let her re-experience the joys of Avalon as much as is possible.
“In ten days? Okay. Sorry to be a burden, but please continue to look after my health. Also, will it be fine if I came home even for just a day? I want to see for my own eyes that everyone is safe and doing fine. I’m a bit worried about my dungeon too.”
Stolas appeared uneasy as she said so. It was perfectly understandable though. If I were to be away from Avalon for a whole week, I would not be able to calm down.
“Can that be arranged, Aura?”
“If Stolas-sama leaves right now, I fear that it will delay her recovery drastically. But, if she’s to leave after 4 days’s worth of rest and treatment, one day outside should be acceptable.”
“Alright. There you have it, Stolas. You should delay your temporary return by at least 4 days.”
Surely, with Rozelitte—someone that’s like a sister to Stolas—in charge, every thing should be fine, if not great.
“Yeah. I’ll be in your care, then… my debts are piling up, aren’t they? I have no idea how to repay you.”
I could have said some non-committal request, but considering her personality, anything too trivial would have been rejected. Thankfully, I came up with a good idea.
“Actually, I might have an idea. I want you to become my trump card.”
I had decided that I would be borrowing her powers in the fight against the [Black] Demon Lord.
Our pre-fight—our fight that didn’t took place in the battlefield—would probably continue for a while. It was hard to imagine things would escalate fast enough before Stolas could recover.
Her powers were the perfect thing to take my opponent by surprise.
Ten days had passed since Stolas had awakened.
Today, I was enjoying air travel via the Darkness Dragons that each carried a container full of gold and silver.
Six days ago, I had received a message from Prince Leonard confirming that their side had accepted the terms of our deal. Right away, we sent the first half of the financial aid I promised the prince. As for the other half, it was what we were bringing.
Aside from the delivery, the purpose of my visit was to attend a meeting. Apparently, this time, the prince was not the only one I was going to have a meeting with; I would be dealing with king as well.
The Axela Kingdom’s attacks on the [Dragon] Demon Lord’s dungeon had stopped. However, soldiers were still stationed near the dungeon in fear of retaliation.
As such, it was arranged that Prince Leonard and the [Dragon] Demon Lord would also have a dialogue the next day about the withdrawal of those soldiers, among other things.
Accompanying me for this journey was of course Kuina.
“This is exciting, isn’t it, Kuina? To see for the first time the church built in the humans’ capital.”
“It sure is! Yay~♪!”
Through the deal, we had gained permission to build a church in their royal capital. The Dwarf Smiths came as soon as the permission was granted, and in just three days, they were able to finish the construction of the church.
Additionally, the church was built to have a hidden basement. I decided to move the Avalon-Ritters that were supposed to be Ruru’s back up to the said basement because they would be nearer and better hidden than if they were positioned in the outskirts of the capital as originally planned. The hidden basement was also later on filled with weapons.
According to the reports, the carpenters and clergymen were about to finish all their preparations today. The carpenters were working on the interior design while the clergymen were working on preparing for the worship ceremony.
By the way, the clergymen were actually conmen introduced by Conanna. Apparently, these actors hired with gold were much more convincing than even the real thing. As impressive as a shrewd merchant could be, he has connections to even these kinds of things.
Of course, the conmen-turned-clergymen were properly indoctrinated into our faith. They would never betray us. They’d go to all sorts of great lengths just to spread the Holy Grail Faith.
“I wonder just how he’ll welcome me.”
I whispered so to myself.
There was no doubt in my mind that the [Black] Demon Lord would certainly make a move this time.
After all, there was no way he would sit idly by as I did whatever I want.
And yet, according to Ruru who was guarding Prince Leonard, no attempts on the prince’s life had been made other than those by human assassins. Not even in order to prevent the prince from convincing his brothers and the king to trust me and make peace with the [Dragon] Demon Lord. Nor were there any steps taken to prevent the royal family from being purified by the Avalon Wine brought home by the prince.
This passiveness was truly suspicious. It definitely looked like something was up.
…For that reason, I’ve dangled a delicious, easy-to-capture bait before him: me. If ever he was going to pounce, it was going to be today. If all went well, we could corner and punish the [Black] Demon Lord.
“Also, Kuina, it’s Prince Leonard that has invited us, so expect lots of food.”
“Air trips with Oto-san are the best!”
This was going to be a fun and exciting air trip, in more ways than one.
After a while more, we finally reached the royal capital. It was not wise to take the Darkness Dragons beyond the city’s walls, so we landed in a place designated beforehand by the prince. We then loaded the cargo we were to deliver into the carriages prepared by the kingdom. This time, instead of the dragons, the golems were going to be the ones to help us transport the cargo.
While we were busy on the transfer, Kuina’s fox ear twitched.
“Oto-san, Kuina detects monster presence. They’re watching us from afar. They’ve erased their presence to the point that even Kuina can barely detect them. They’re dangerous.”
“Yeah, be vigilant. Assume that the royal capital as the enemy headquarters.”
“Understood. But, Oto-san, also assume that in the worst-case scenario, Kuina alone wouldn’t be enough.”
The enemies who were strong enough for Kuina to say such words had entered the stage already at such an early point.
Which was all within expectations. Now then, let’s move on to the next piece of work to do here in the royal capital.
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