And so, like this, we changed destinations and decided on heading to Rudras Metropolis.
Rudras Metropolis is an unusual city that’s riding on top of a giant ethereal transportation device. The trait of it is that it is always in motion.
That’s why it is extremely difficult to grasp its location and it is normally referred to as the Mirage Land; an existence shrouded in mystery.
But in the current times where the Churches are having a good relationship, Rudras Metropolis has been sending wireless transmissions and telling the others of its location themselves, so it is decently possible to visit them now.
Karen-san and I have arrived close to the city, and after travelling by foot for a day, we should be able to arrive. The Mirage Land was already at sight.
Well, there’s still an inspection of sorts before entering the city, but we have obtained permission from the highest authority of the Wind Church, so we can pass just by having our faces recognized.
We could enter normally.
The Wind city, how long has it been.
The first time I arrived here was when the Five Founders’ Conference was opened, and the next time was in the heroes match.
This would be the third visit.
Moreover, it has changed a lot in atmosphere since the second visit… it felt festive.
““Welcome to Rudras Metropolis!!””
That’s the kind of welcoming we received the moment we entered.
That’s not all.
The cityscape of Rudras Metropolis is the very definition of cheerful.
The hanging boards decorating the buildings, the balloons rising here and there, there were flowers decorating the stores without exception, and all the girls that were at the streets were saying ‘are you going to be participating in the martial arts tournament?’, which made us want to question it.
“…What in the world is with this commotion?” (Karen)
Karen-san and I were dumbstruck by the weird state of the city.
“…From what I remember, Rudras Metropolis was a lot more calm. I remember it giving out a bloodthirsty atmosphere.” (Haine)
My confusion didn’t lose to hers.
Maybe because Rudras Metropolis is standing on top of a moving object, the feeling of being artificial and cold was oozing out from the whole place, and I have memories of the people in this nation not showing themselves much.
The Wind Church was thorough in their secretive policy for many centuries.
As if showing off this stiffness, the first time I came to Rudras Metropolis, it felt like a cold gale of a city.
And yet, now…
“Now it feels like a spring breeze…” (Haine)
The people are cheerful and warm; the cityscape is cheerful and showy; I can’t think of this place as the same city I visited before.
Just what in the world happened in the time between when we left Rudras Metropolis the last time until now?!
“…Haine-san, please look at that!!” (Karen)
Karen-san noticed something and points at it.
When I follow the direction of her finger with my gaze, I saw a normal mercantile house.
It was in a festive state like the other stores, but they were the same as the stores in the city, and there’s nothing that really stands out.
…Well, having that thought itself makes it clear that the whole city itself is plain weird though.
“That’s not it! What I want you to see is the sign!” (Karen)
There’s certainly a sign that seems to be hastily made at the store’s front, and there, this is what was written in a congratulatory manner: ‘Celebratory sale in commemoration for Founder-sama’s marriage!! 90% off at most!!’
“90% off?!” (Haine)
What a discount!!
No wait, don’t get fooled!
If they were to make such a big price reduction, the store would fall! It said ‘90% off at most’, so the important part is the ‘at most’. In other words, if only one item at the store were to be sold at 10%, the ‘90% off at most’ would not be a lie!
The other articles would be at 50% off? 30% off? Or maybe, they are actually selling at the established price and saying ‘this is the lowest price we can go’?!
By reducing the price on trash-like stuff that no one wants, they bring in the customers, and then, sell the actual goods they want to sell in their actual price!!
But if we search properly, we might be able to find something that’s at a good price!
Let’s go inside and check!!
“Haine-san! Haine-san! That’s not the part you should be concentrating on!” (Karen)
What?! Do you understand what you are saying, Karen-san?!
“What I want to see is what’s on top of the price reduction! The ‘Commemoration of Founder-sama’s wedding’!!” (Karen)
“Founder-sama’s …wedding?” (Haine)
Meaning that they are selling cheap because of this?
“Founder? Whose Founder?” (Haine)
“The one in this Rudras Metropolis! The WInd Church’s Founder!! When they talk of Founder, it is obviously the Wind Founder-sama!!” (Karen)
Toreido Shiva huh.
Now that I think about it, he did talk about marriage or something.
In that case, this festive mood in the whole Wind capital is to celebrate that?!
“Well, the Founder is the top of the Church after all. If it is such an auspicious event, it is natural for the whole Church to celebrate, but…” (Haine)
To think that the cold and iron-like people of the Wind Church would get so heated up.
Is Shiva surprisingly liked by his subordinates?
- 342: Change to a homely person
We slipped through this festival, and finally, managed to get an audience with the person in question.
“I welcome you here from your long journey.” (Shiva)
Wind Founder, Toreido Shiva.
“I have already heard the details from Yorishiro by wireless transmission. I am grateful for the consideration of the Light Church as the Wind Founder.” (Shiva)
“The Wind Church will give you a warm reception in your stay at the Wind capital. Think of it as your own homeland and stay for as long as you wish.” (Shiva)
I ended up instinctively saying this.
It is a totally out of bounds complain to the number one authority of the place we are visiting, but…I couldn’t not say it.
Because you know…
“That’s not your personality at all!” (Haine)
What’s with that proper welcoming?!
The first time we met Shiva, he was more haughty and snappy, and it felt as if you could get cut with that edginess!!
And yet, what’s with this mildness here?!
“Haine-san! No matter what, that’s way too rude! Towards the Founder-sama of another church…!” (Karen)
It is obvious that Karen-san would reprimand me.
“It is fine, light hero. You can already consider Haine and I as friends of several years. Speaking in a slightly loose manner just means that we are that close.” (Shiva)
However, this Wind Founder spits out words like those of a saint.
Where is the sharpness of before, Shiva-san?!
“How to say this… It is as if you and Rudras Metropolis have made a complete turnaround!” (Haine)
“Ah, so you have already witnessed thoroughly the state of the city before coming here huh.” (Shiva)
By here, he means the reception room of the Wind Church that we are currently in with Shiva.
“Quite the exaggerated reaction those guys have. A wedding is simply like a door that everyone has to pass through at least once. Just because it is the Founder, the city is in a celebratory mood… Well, as the one being celebrated, I am quite happy though.” (Shiva)
It was quite the adult way of dealing with it.
“I want you people to participate in my wedding as well. I will assure you your stay here until then, so it is fine to tour around or have some cultural exchange.” (Shiva)
“It really is gross! Shiva-kun, why did you become such a mild guy?!” (Haine)
If a human loses their edge, it is the end, you know?
I may be persistent here, but where is the edginess Shiva had when I first met him?!
“Haine, the single you might not understand yet, but once a man marries, their personality gets more depth.” (Shiva)
“Is that so…” (Haine)
“When I was an unmarried man, I let my youth take over me and felt as if I could do anything. After obtaining a woman I can love, feeling the need for a family, and gaining someone you wish to protect, you will naturally end up softening.” (Shiva)
“Women are kind and gentle at their roots. By being together with a woman, the wildness of the man will lay in rest. Meaning that it gives room for your personality to grow. Marriage has that kind of effect.” (Shiva)
I feel like…the conversation has turned into preaching?!
“On top of that, by having a partner, you can perceive others more clearly, and acknowledge that there are people with other way of thinking than yours. From the very beginning, the body of men and women were made differently, so there’s no way their ways of thinking are the same. By being together with the other gender, by clashing small opinions in trivial daily matters, you obtain knowledge.” (Shiva)
Growth as a human.
“That’s the meaning of marriage, Haine.” (Shiva)
“Like hell I care!” (Haine)
Why is it taking a direction as if I’m being taught?!
“It is splendid, Founder-sama! I have been moved by your words!!” (Karen)
And Karen-san is totally into it!
“So marriage had that kind of meaning! By being together with the person you love, your own personality grows! What splendid words!!” (Karen)
“Light hero, that’s not what I meant.” (Shiva)
Oi, Founder. Don’t get all-knowing in here.
“You don’t grow yourself, you grow together with the person you are tied together with. A man and a woman that have become one with the link that is a family; that is truly a single being. It is impossible for just one side to move forward.” (Shiva)
“It is even more splendid! I am feeling the need of marrying now!!” (Karen)
While there was this charade going on, Doraha finally spoke.
As a mentally young girl, she didn’t have much to say in this kind of conversation, so she was silently drinking coffee until now, but…
“This black drink is bitter and not tasty. Is there no tea?” (Doraha)
Is what she said.
That’s because what she said was the number one phrase that would piss off the super coffee maniac Shiva.
Even putting milk or sugar in your coffee in front of him is unforgivable, and yet, she even went and said to bring out tea instead, so Shiva will definitely snap.
If it is that Shiva, he would definitely be pissed off!
Is what I thought, but…
“I see. The tongue of the young really can’t stand the bitterness huh… Oi.” (Shiva)í
Is what Shiva says as he calls the maid that was at standby at his side.
“Change it to a sweet cappuccino please. With lots of milk and sugar.” (Shiva)
This Shiva has completely turned!!
To think he could accept another person that has different tastes!! Is the married Shiva totally unfazeable?!
“It is incredible, Haine-san! This must be the power of marriage. We must learn from this too!!” (Karen)
“Not ready yet, so no!” (Haine)
“Also, sorry but, I also want a cappuccino!!” (Karen)
Humans don’t stay with the same personality from birth to death.
By experiencing many things and receiving influences from their environment, they can change their ways freely.
That is also one of the great things of being a human.
- 343: In the face of right and wrong
“But you people have come on a mission. Let’s have a slightly serious talk.” (Shiva)
Shiva was merry because of his marriage, but he returned a bit to his past atmosphere.
Well, his face will definitely loosen again in a little while though.
“Battles occurring almost at the same time on different nations. That has reached my ears thanks to the wireless transmissions. To tell you the truth, I was absent for a while because of some business, you see. When I returned, a lot of reports came to me to the point it flustered me.” (Shiva)
Shiva is currently keeping it a secret that he is incarnation of the Wind God Quasar.
He cooperated heavily in returning Mantle.
…At that time, his brain didn’t look like it was a flower bed like now though.
Maybe it got rewritten temporarily because of his bad relationship with Yorishiro?
“From the four Demon Lords, three have already clashed with humanity. Moreover, the results were not a victory or a defeat, but a reconciliation. They were reports that made me doubt my ears.” (Shiva)
Shiva giving out that impression is something reasonable.
That’s because he is one of the first people that encountered a Demon Lord after all.
The first one to appear in front of humanity was the Wind Demon Lord, Raphael, and it was Shiva who fought him with weapon in hand.
At that time, we both fought against him together and somehow managed to erase him, or at least that’s what it looked like.
The price for that was that a warrior like Shiva, who had both the jobs of a Wind Founder and hero, was unable to continue doing that. Receiving damage that rendered him impossible to return to his line of job as a hero.
Giving his position of hero to his little sister, Hyue, he decided on concentrating on his Founder position.
“Shiva, I want to ask you this. Do you think humans and demons can join hands?” (Haine)
I want to hear his opinion as someone who fought against a Demon Lord to the point of breaking his body to an irreparable state.
“Rather than me, shouldn’t you be asking the Demon Lords?” (Shiva)
Shiva answered composed.
“Both sides suffered a great deal of damage in that fight. Raphael has the ability to change every single one of his cells into insects and regenerate himself, but your dark matter erased most of it and left just a few.” (Shiva)
“It is true that, even if he is a Demon Lord, that’s not something you can regenerate from immediately.” (Haine)
Because of that, I thought Raphael’s actions were slightly dull compared to the other Demon Lords.
“Normally, there’s no one who wouldn’t hold a grudge after being done something like that.” (Shiva)
“That’s just…!” (Karen)
Karen-san interjects as if she couldn’t hold it.
“That’s just unreasonable! When Raphael appeared, he was the one who attacked us first! We simply fought back. Getting angry for being greatly injured after that would be misguided blame!” (Karen)
“That logic is correct. But it is also true that the other party has their own view of things.” (Shiva)
With his marriage, Shiva has now obtained the ability to see other people with their different ways of thinking.
“Moreover, the problematic thing is that, in reasoning, being right or wrong isn’t that important. If we were to put it in an exaggerated way, you could get a hundred people and those hundred people might be in the wrong. Once one person thinks they are in the right, it will become their way of acting.” (Shiva)
“Especially in battle.” (Haine)
“Of course, there’s no way we would allow our destruction on reasons that are clearly wrong. If they are to attack, we will simply face them. That’s all we can do.” (Shiva)
‘That’s all we can do’, those were words show the limit of Shiva.
“Are you saying that, against a wrong reasoning, there’s no other way to stop them aside from fighting and defeating them?” (Haine)
“I don’t know if we can join hands like the other Demon Lords and Churches. That is something the other party has to decide. We don’t have the choice.” (Shiva)
The cool-headed decision making of Shiva as a Founder was shown.
Their fight with the Wind Demon Lord had begun since long ago.
This will probably be a totally different battle from the other Demon Lords that had begun their own fights recently.
The sparks were already there and they will not disappear just like that.
“And so, I have ordered the military force of our Wind Church -the Kazama Shinobis- and the wind hero to be on alert. So that, even if the Demon Lord were to attack us, we will be able to react immediately.” (Shiva)
“I thought the inside of the city was a festival, but it looks like you are properly putting ground on the places where it is required.” (Haine)
“Of course. Or more like, because of the dangerous times, I was thinking of doing my wedding as simplistic as possible, but the guys below are not caring at all of the person in question and are going all festive.” (Shiva)
Shiva makes a wry smile.
He says all that, but it looks like he is still happy that everyone is celebrating them.
“Uhm…that means the wind hero…!” (Karen)
Karen-san says while fidgeting.
“Uhm…is Hyue-chan also…” (Karen)
“Of course. Now that you are in Rudras Metropolis, I would like you to meet her as well. It looks like she has been worrying about you people everyday.” (Shiva)
“Ah, yes!” (Karen)
Karen-san’s voice changed from timid to a springy one.
For her, her other hero comrades are also important friends. She has already met Mirack, Celestis, and Sasae-chan, so the remaining one is Hyue, and she must be worried about her.
“It looks like she is also preparing a lot of things for the upcoming Demon Lord battle. I would like it if you were to give her advice as someone who has already experienced battling with Demon Lords.” (Shiva)
“Yes, then, I will go immediately!” (Karen)
Karen-san quickly gets up from her seat and was intending to head to Hyue’s place right now.
Even though she hasn’t heard in what part of Rudras Metropolis she is yet.
“I will have someone of the church guide you. Work has piled up on me, so I can’t go with you guys. Please give her my apologies when you see her.” (Shiva)
It took us a lot of time to return Mantle after all. Of course work would pile up. Moreover, his wedding will be taking place soon, so it is a situation that’s clearly busy for him.
…Sorry about that, Shiva-kun.
“Understood! Haine-san, Doraha-san, let’s go as well!! Hyue-san may look like that, but she actually gets lonely easily!” (Karen)
“Understood, Karen-sama.” (Doraha)
Doraha follows after Karen-san who runs out of the room.
After confirming that only Shiva and I remained in the room, I ask him in a whisper.
“And so…what about the God Hero matter?” (Haine)
“No problem. Inflation— I mean, Yorishiro has already embedded the component to become a God Hero inside of Hyue. What’s required next is only to pour a part of a God inside of it.” (Shiva)
‘Seriously, since when did she manage to do that?’, is what Shiva said questioningly.
“Just that, there is a part that bothers me aside from that.” (Shiva)
“Something that bothers you?” (Haine)
“For that sake, can you meet with Hyue once? She is the wind hero, but at the same time, she is also the little sister of this Toreido Shiva. I want her to have a fight that she can acknowledge.” (Shiva)
Six Gods of Creation, further divided into four Base Elements. Within that group, the Wind God Quasar was the one who noticed the potential of humans the fastest, and in order to learn about humans and change it into power, he incarnated as a human.
As that went on, he would have a new family, a new lover, and new emotions to interact with his important people.
Quasar had reincarnated several times already.
For the Toreido Shiva that only exists once, Hyue is his only little sister.
“Understood. I will go check it out.” (Haine)
I also stand from my seat and follow after Karen-san and Doraha who had left the room before me.