2 parts post. part II will be out tomorrow
Chapter 5 ──── Black Rose Spirit(Fairy)
The ancestors of the elven species migrated from the spirit world that exists in a different time and space from the material world.
In other words, they are a race that lives in the space between the material world and the spirit world.
Elves are referred to as grass elves, sea elves, mountain elves, and so on, depending on their habitat, but the largest number of elves are known to be wood elves, whose friends are the plants of the forest.
There are a total of four Wood Elves that we now see in front of us. But there are three more who are watching us, cleverly blending in with the colors of the forest, holding their breath and not showing themselves.
They have not relaxed their vigilance towards us.
In the past, the wood elves who negotiated with the people of Berne village did not have that much dislike or hostility towards humans.
If that was the case, then their overly cautiousness should be considered to be the urgency of the situation happening in the Entete Forest, which was robbing them of their usual leeway.
One of the Wood Elves advances directly in front of us and stops ten paces away from us.
He is a young man with a dark green bandana and pale gold hair, with a sharp eyelet that reminds me of a bird of prey.
He is dressed in green clothing that seems to have been spun from the veins of a giant tree’s leaves, and his slender fingers hold a well-handled short bow.
If we acted suspiciously, this young man’s arms would move like a flash of light to shoot an arrow.
The young man in front of me had an unmistakable awesomeness that only made me think so. The reason why he appeared in front of us is because he is trusted by the surrounding Wood Elves.
He must have always led the way against danger and protected his friends.
The young man called out to Marr, who was wavering between him and us, in a sharp but concerned sounding voice.
“Marr, get away from them and come over here.”
“Gio, but these humans helped Marr a lot.”
“I know. As long as they don’t do anything, no harm will come to them. So just get in here, quick.”
Marr was prompted by the Wood Elf, who she called Gio, looked back at us and bowed once in a big way, and then flew towards the Wood Elves, looking back at us several times.
As Marr passed by Gio’s side, the Wood Elf girl who was waiting behind Gio called out to her with a bright smile on her face.
From the way she appeared to be worried from the bottom of her heart, she must be a close friend to Marr.
“Marr, you’ve been warned to not go out alone in there. The forest is very dangerous now.”
“I’m sorry, Fio. But I couldn’t help but wonder what was going on out there. I just wanted to know how everyone in the forest was doing right now.”
“I know how Marr feels about it, too. But you mustn’t go out there by yourself again. I was so worried about something bad happened to Marr, you know.”
When the girl, whose face is vaguely similar to Gio’s, complained with tears in her large eyes, Marr apologized many times for making her precious friend worried.
Watching the two of them like that, I was truly glad that we were able to save Marr.
Then Gio turned to us, his corner of the eye, once again grim, as if to tighten the slightly relaxed air.
Gio’s eyes, which seemed to capture the greenery of the trees, were fixed on my face. As if searching for our true intentions, Gio’s eyes shoot straight into mine.
“Humans and Lamia. First of all, let me thank you for saving our friend Marr. Thank you. But this forest is the domain of all who live in it, including us Wood Elves. And we will not invade the realm of humans as long as humans do not invade the forest. This was the agreement we made with the humans who once ruled this neighborhood. Why did you break that and set foot in the forest?”
First of all, I liked his discipline in thanking me for the matter with Marr. It wasn’t as if he was suddenly going to shoot a bow at me, and if I explained the situation properly, I could avoid any rough stuff.
I explained that the beasts that were supposed to dwell in the forest of Entete had begun to appear near the village, and that we had come to investigate them, assuming that something strange was happening in the forest.
In fact, our speculation was correct, and the forest of Entete is experiencing an unusual situation where demon soldiers are appearing in the forest.
Gio, who heard our explanation, wrinkled deeply between his eyebrows as if to say “as I thought”.
Even from the wood elves hiding around him, you can feel the turmoil disturbing the surface of his spirit.
Fio’s innocent face and other features were clearly overshadowed, and she seemed saddened by the fact that the forest’s mutation was affecting the outside of the forest as well.
“If that’s the reason, I don’t blame you guys for setting foot in the forest. Also, if it is the case that you fought against the demon soldiers again, I can’t just turn you away without telling you anything. Now, a conflict with the demons is taking place in the forest of Entete. The ones who showed up near your village are probably the ones who got caught up in the conflict and were chased out of the forest.”
“An army of demons?!”
Christine-san was stunned by the revelation that Gio had told her.
The demon world, which almost all humans will never have any contact with until their lifetime ends. Christine couldn’t help but be surprised when she heard that she was in contact with such an otherworldly being.
As for me, I was biting down on a bitter bug in my heart, wondering if the troublesome one among the two possibilities I had expected was on target.
In the past, it was possible to move freely between the heavenly realm of good gods and the demon world of evil gods to the human world.
However, after a fierce battle between the gods when I was still alive as a dragon, a kind of rift between the human world and the heavenly and demonic worlds that even gods and demons can’t easily pass through was created.
The construction of this inter-world rift also involves my fellow dragon species, but I’ll leave it at that for now.
The rift is not completely blocked, it is filled with small holes like a web, and the higher the rank and strength of the person, the more difficult it will be for him or her to appear in the material world.
Even if they were able to appear, they would not be able to fully display their powers and abilities, and if they were a high-ranking god, they could only convey a little of their power and speech to the earth.
On the other hand, if they are weak or low grade beings – a demon soldier like Zelt, for example – they won’t lose much of their power when they appear on earth.
However, even a low-level demon soldier like Zelt would still be in an unusual situation if a group of hundreds of them appeared on the surface.
Does this mean that the gates that are permanently connected to the demon world have been opened in the Entete Forest?
If I had maintained my senses as a previous life’s dragon species, I would have noticed the spatial anomaly in the opening of the gates …… No, it’s too late to regret it now.
I’ll have to think about what I can do now. I’m going to have to close the gate that is connected with the demon world immediately.
If this gate is left open for too long, the demonic energy will eat away at everything on this side of the gate, and more and more high-ranking demons and demonkind will appear on earth.
If this happens, the destruction, death and fear that will be brought to the earth will be immeasurable.
I felt a dark flare of emotion inside me, saying that I must destroy the demons that come over here before they are destroyed.
I wasn’t going to show any mercy to those who harmed my family and friends now.
Even if it was known that my soul was a dragon and I was forced to leave my hometown, I would not hesitate to wield my power to protect everyone in my village.
While I was thinking in my mind about those from the demon world, Christine-san, who was shocked by the unusual situation of the emergence of the demon world’s army, was asking Gio a series of questions with a force that would eat him up.
In the past, stories of the demonkind that appeared on earth have been known to humans, and all of them are said to have caused eye-watering damage to the earth.
If the legend can be reenacted, no one will be able to calm down.
“So, how long have these demons been around? Have you informed the kingdom of this situation? How are you guys dealing with this?”
“Ch, Christine-san, don’t be so flustered, you see, Gio-san is in trouble.”
Serina, who still has her eyes closed, hurriedly calls out to stop Christine-san’s uncharacteristic appearance.
The reason why Serina looks calm compared to Christine-san is probably due to the fact that Christine-san is much more flustered than I am, and I’m maintaining my composure.
On top of that, from Serina’s point of view, it might not feel real at the moment, even if it’s called the army of the demon world.
” Serina, but this is not an unusual …… no, that’s right. I’m sorry. I was a little distraught.”
“No, I understand why you’re upset. But this is our problem. We, who live in the forest will defeat any who invade it. This is no concern of yours. You can go on your way back outside. Before long, the forest will be no longer in danger and the foresters will no longer be seen in your territory. Gio, Wood Elf of the Forest of Entete, I promise you this for the pride of your clan.”
You can see the determination and pride on Gio’s face as he swore an oath to himself.
But if they are from the demon world, we can’t leave matters to the Wood Elves.
I’m not sure what level of strength they have, but they want someone who can fight, even if it’s just a few.
“It’s not that I doubt your words, but I can’t just take you at your word this time. If the enemy of all life on earth, the demons of the demon world, has come, we can’t just go back to the village without a fight. At the very least, we should at least check out the war potential and movements of the demons that have appeared in the forest with our own eyes. Of course, we will do everything in our power to help them. That’s what I’m thinking, but what about Christine-san and Serina?”
“I’m not going to say no. I was just hoping to see with my own eyes what the situation was like.”
“If Doran-san and Christine-san are not returning, then I won’t be going back as well. Besides, when I saw that demon soldier called Zelt just now, I had a very bad feeling about it. That thing shouldn’t belong in this world. If Gio-san and the others can get rid of it alone, that would be a very good thing, but we can help you with that, too. No, in fact, don’t we need to help Gio-san and the others?”
Christine-san understands the dangers of the demons in the realm of spirits and instincts from her extraordinary senses, and she seems to have been willing to provide her assistance to the Wood Elves based on the ethical and moral standards she has developed in her life.
And Serina seemed to understand the danger of the situation better than I thought. I wonder if the curse of the demon snake running through her body is buzzing from the proximity of an equally cursed presence.
The three of us refused to leave the forest together, Gio let out a big sigh and shook his head from side to side without effort.
“I am grateful for your offers of help. But those who defile the forest must be defeated by those who live in it. That is the law of the forest. This law is now and always will be the same and must not be changed.”
“But even as we talk like this, the forest and those who dwell in it are being threatened by those in the demon world, aren’t they? Then I want you to fight with us, even if it means bending the law for a time. The law is there to keep life alive, but isn’t it the end of the world if we sacrifice our lives to keep the law? When the battle with the demons is over, or if we have enough information, we will leave the forest as you say. Will you think about it?”
“I appreciate the …… offer. But …….”
Gio himself seems to understand the urgency of the situation. But even so, his pride and sense of duty as a person living in the forest surpasses him, and he cannot seem to accept our offer with open arms.
Fio who’s beside Gio and the wood elves who hide around him were watching Gio’s decision with bated breath.
Looks like our power, which defeated Zelt and the others with outstanding skills be what they need, and is at their throats to spill out, but it would be emotionally difficult for them to accept those outside the forest for a simple reason.
I understand that, but if we continue to push back and forth here, we will only be wasting our time in mischief and helping those in the demon world rather than helping them.
As for us, we don’t intend to break, so we must do everything we can to persuade Gio to accept the grant and obtain information from the people of the demon world.
Now what kind of persuasion, not only I, but also Christine-san and Serina thought the same way, when Marr, who was standing on Fio’s shoulder and resting her wings, timidly opened her mouth.
“Gio, Doran-san, Marr believes that neither of you are wrong in what you two are saying. But the sun is about to set. If we keep talking, it will be nighttime, won’t it?”
The sun had already begun to dip as Marr had said and was setting in the west. It was already noon when we arrived at the Entete Forest.
Now that we continued to go further and further into the forest from there, the sky was gradually turning from the color of azure to a light purple color.
The demon world’s beings generally tended to prefer the darkness of night and the night air, and they were more active at night. Welcoming the night in the middle of the forest was undoubtedly an extremely dangerous act.
At Marr’s point, Gio’s neat face changes sternly in a different way again, and a hesitation appears in his eyes as he looks at us.
“Brother, we won’t get anywhere if we keep talking like this. Even if we ask these people to go out of the forest like this, it would be dangerous if night falls on the way, so let’s have them come to the village once and tell you what we know there. Then these people might have some understanding and change their minds. Besides, we have to get back to the village before the night comes. ……”
“Fio …… Surely you and Merle are right. It’s unavoidable. You’ll need to spend the night in our village. I’m sure you’ll find that this forest is far too dangerous to spend the night as it is. Normally, we would not allow outsiders to enter our village without reason, but considering the current situation, we have no choice.”
“All right. Thank you for your generosity. Should I leave the sword with you guys?”
Gio shook his thin head from side to side at my question.
“No, keep it. I’m sorry, but you’re going to have to take care of yourself. We don’t have much time to spare.”
Considering the possibility of an attack by demon soldiers on the way to the village, they thought it was not a good idea to take away the weapons from us who had the strength to fight.
“All three of us are going to be able to at least take care of ourselves. Serina, you can open your eyes now.”
I pick up the long sword at my feet and strap the scabbard to my waist belt.
Christine-san and Serina quickly finish their preparations as well.
The Wood Elves who had been hiding around us emerged and we proceeded through the forest towards their village, with Gio and the others surrounding us.
The forest was dimly lit by the branches of the trees overhead, but as the sun began to dip, the darkness rapidly deepened.
Serina, the lamia, has the ability to visualize heat, so the darkness is not so inconvenient, but that’s not the case for Christine-san and I.
We need to pass magic power through our eyes and change them to magic eyes that have been given magical vision, or else it will be difficult to see in the forest where the dawn of night is falling.
I’ve changed my magic eye to catch every single hair and pore of a distant object, no matter how dark or light it is, and Christine’s red eyes shine bewitchingly like a full moon stained with blood.
Serina, who has the ability to charm other species and is herself a beautiful girl of the highest caliber, occasionally would look at Christine-san and she would be restless, It’s because Christine now wears such a bewitching beauty that even the same sex can’t help but be attracted to her.
The Wood Elves were spread out in a circle around us, but unexpectedly the circle was disturbed when Fio, with Marr in tow, stepped closer to us.
Being a long-lived Wood Elf, I don’t know her actual age, but Fio, who is not so different from me in appearance alone, has a curious look in her jade-colored eyes.
Aside from her actual age, as far as her mental age is concerned, this Wood Elf girl might be just as she looks.
“I’m sorry, I came all the way to the forest and got you involved in this kind of thing.”
I replied, smiling at the sight of Marr slumping over Fio’s right shoulder, and I hoped she wouldn’t mind.
“It’s not your fault, you guys. From what I’ve heard, it seems that you guys are the ones who are in trouble. It will not be an easy battle against the armies of the demon world. Are you able to help the other Wood Elves and cooperate with the foresters? We must fend off those from the demon world before it becomes something that the human army can mess with. It’s unlikely to end well for humans to set foot in this forest.”
I myself don’t know the slightest bit about what kind of people are in charge of the politics of the kingdom, but I learned in my previous life with bitter experience that it’s best not to expect too much goodness from the human race as a group.
It’s not something I want to learn, even if I look back on it now.
“Of course we will defeat all the demons in the world! It’s not just us Wood Elves, the other races that live in the forest are also joining forces to fight. Besides, help from other species in the forest should be coming soon. When that happens, those who came from the demon world will be absolutely obliterated.”
Imitating Fio’s boastful exclamation of humph, Marr also puffed her little chest out, saying, “Ehen”. They were so cute and soothing to watch.
“I see. Haha, you’re both in good spirits. I would like to help you guys if I could, but now, I wonder if Gio will allow me to do so.”
“I think the chiefs will decide whether or not to get help from you, although I don’t know because my brother is a little hard-headed. The people who went out have come back, and I think they will be able to manage without your help.”
Hmm, basically elves rarely leave their own society, but there are rare young people who leave the village with a longing for the outside world.
They have a means of communicating with those who once left the outside world from the villages of Gio and Fio, and they probably used it to bring them back to their villages.
Those who were tortured by the rough seas of the outside world would have learned to fight to some extent, so it seems that they can be relied upon.
The Wood Elves around us don’t seem to have paid any attention to our chatter. Gio also doesn’t chide his sister, but is paying attention to the signs and changes in the surroundings.
As long as we don’t know when and where the demon soldiers will attack from, Gio and the others are right to act.
I’m not sure if it’s because I didn’t have to prepare myself for the Wood Elves, or if it’s because Serina, who has relaxed a little bit, crawled out to my right side and called out to Fio and the others with a smile.
Fio and Marr didn’t seem to be alarmed by Serina, the lamia. Perhaps they knew a lamia or a subhuman of the snake.
“What is your village like, Fio-san? Do a lot of fairies like Marr live there too?”
“Our village is the westernmost village in the forest of Entete. We live with flower fairies like Marr and tree spirits like Dryad and the others. There are other werewolves and Arachne’s village nearby, but they’ve joined forces to fight the demons. They want us Wood Elves to join forces for now.”
“Are the other Wood Elves okay?”
“Umm. Even the closest one to our village is quite far away, and we haven’t received any reports of other villages being attacked. As I said before, we have received a call from a nearby village that they are gathering a few people to come and help us. We’ll be fine. As for you guys, after spending the night in the village, you are the ones who are going to come back outside. I have heard that the people who came to negotiate with us in the past were polite, but there are people in the village who don’t have good feelings towards humans. Serina is a lamia, so I don’t understand.”
The situation must be quite urgent, but apparently Fio is not only not shy, but also quite chatty, and she and the good-natured Serina were immediately comfortable with each other.
From time to time, Christine-san would also bear the brunt of the conversation, and even though she is by no means a prolific talker, she was successfully prompted by Fio to speak back with a few words.
When I saw Christine-san’s expression begin to unravel, I thought the three of them seemed to be able to transcend the barriers of their race and become friends.
The story of Fio and the others eventually spread to the surrounding Wood Elf women as well. It became only Gio and I, and the other Wood Elf men, who were tightening their expressions and being vigilant about their surroundings.
Even for the Wood Elf men, I’m a little suspicious of whether they are really focused and alert, since they occasionally look at Fio and the other bright faces and loosen their mouths.
I called out to Gio’s back as he walked ahead. This youth would have at least one word to chide me, but ……?
” Shouldn’t we stop to chat amongst ourselves? We shouldn’t raise our voices too loud, or the demon soldiers might notice us.”
“Since the attack by the demon soldiers, Fio has been consciously acting cheerful. The reason for this is to encourage everyone who might be trapped by fear and anxiety. I couldn’t even tell her to take a break, because I know she’s pushing herself too hard, but her smile helps with that. But now, that smile is not a forced one. I think it’s partly because she’ s always been interested in what’s out there, though. Don’t worry about the voices. I’ve already asked the trees not to leak over the rustling of the trees.”
In Gio’s face as he looked at his sister, I could certainly see the warmth of affection he had for his own family.
And I could also see that Gio was right about the trees around them, and that their trunks reflected the sound of their branches and leaves rubbing against each other and the flow of the wind, keeping Fio and the others’ voices from getting out.
“Then I don’t have anything to say about it.”
—Part I end—
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