QualiA – Chapter 16: The bird in the cage ②

TLN: Happy Halloween guys!

I honestly am not the type that celebrates halloween, but well, I still went for my own style of double-up trick-and-treat here. Stalling the chapter for 1 day, trick; and bringing two chapters; treat!

Enjoy! :DDD!!


Almina, who I hadn’t met since a few days ago, looked pretty haggard.

Can’t be helped. The thing that got the most disagreement in with the protection was actually the place where Almina should be living in.

If it were inside the royal castle, the prime minister would be noisy about it, and it would be pointless if it were the temple. Having her outside the royal capital was rejected because our eyes wouldn’t be able to reach there, and in the end, what was decided was to use the inner palace.

A place that is inside the areas of the royal castle, and it is a sacred place that no one can step into -that’s the former inner palace.

As the word ‘former’ implies, it is currently not being used, and even if this place is at an area of the royal palace, aside from an old man supervising it, it is isolated and no one is allowed to enter.

As one would expect from being the residence of the king and the queen, its internal structure is made in a way so that intruders can’t easily get close to it, so it is not lacking in the point of protection.

Moreover, since it is a separate structure from the royal castle, strictly speaking, it is not the royal castle.

In the long past, it was apparently connected to the royal castle by a corridor, but it has been dismantled, and it is currently separated. It is inside the area of the royal castle, but it is not inside the royal castle. Niva-san told me that the Queen was grinning when she successfully managed to push that play in words.

“Uhm, what business do you have today?” (Almina)

The eyes of Almina were showing slight fear.

She is in this place where she has practically no conversations with others, and it must be boring for a teenage girl like her to stay in place for several days straight. And the only ones who visit her are personal maids of the Queen like Niva-san.

Their social standings are so different that she probably is mentally cornered.

“I was thinking of increasing the defense of this room today.” (Niva)

“Increase the defense…?” (Almina)

Oi, I didn’t hear anything about this.

“I didn’t tell you after all.” (Niva)

“As I said, don’t just casually read my mind.” (Makoto)

“Excuse me for that. When I look at Makoto-sama’s face, for some reason, I feel like teasing you to the ground.” (Niva)

“You really are cruel.” (Makoto)

Abusing me while apologizing. That’s quite the advanced technique you got there. While I was thinking this, it seemed like Almina found this funny, her shoulders trembled and she laughed out loud, but then she came to her senses, and lowers her head.

“Ah, s-s-s-s-s-so-so-sorry!” (Almina)

“No, don’t worry about it. Makoto-sama isn’t the type of person that would get angry from just that much.” (Niva)

You are not a qualified person to say that.

I don’t really plan on getting angry, but she is saying it as if I am normally angry.

“And so, why was I called here?” (Makoto)

“There was the need for the help of a man, and there was no one else more convenient aside from Makoto-sama.” (Niva)

Convenient, you say…

“That was a joke, but I would like to ask for the help of Makoto-sama in some ‘physical work’.” (Niva)

“Physical work, huh.” (Makoto)

What’s with this word that gives me bad vibes.

I don’t want to work-de gozaru. I want to pass my time leisurely in my room-de gozaru. I want to mofu mofu the ears of Erin-de gozaru.

“And so, Almina-sama…” (Niva)

“Ah, yes?” (Almina)

“Until our preparations are done, I am sorry but, can I ask you to clean the room?” (Niva)

“O-Okay, understood.” (Almina)

Walking to the tool box, she takes out a broom and a dustpan, and begins cleaning.

“Well then, Makoto-sama, over here please.” (Niva)

“Where are we going?” (Makoto)

“We are going to get something necessary.” (Niva)

Niva-san then says to Almina ‘we will be going’, and we both left the room.

☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆  

Niva-san was leading me today thoroughly.

I am not familiar with the structure of the inner palace, so I don’t know where we are going, but Niva-san was most likely heading to the location without losing her way.

“Niva-san, care to tell me where we are going?” (Makoto)

“Right.” (Niva)

Niva-san stops in place and turns around. Her eyes were not showing the usual mood, and had pressure like that of a warrior of many battlefields.

“Last night, there was someone around the perimeter of the inner palace.” (Niva)

“Did you manage to catch them?” (Makoto)

“No, sadly to say, they escaped.” (Niva)

“I see. At what time?” (Makoto)

“At the time when the day was about to change.” (Niva)

Ah, at that time I was asleep.

In the times I am sleeping, I can’t confirm the map, and it doesn’t have a recording function, so I can’t tell if something happened. I do think there’s the need for improvements in this kind of areas, but I haven’t had the time lately, so I haven’t gotten to it yet. For the sake of the future, maybe I should advance the improvements while there’s still lulls.

“At that time, I was sleeping. If I had been awake, I could have confirmed it though.” (Makoto)

“And so, I have a request for Makoto-sama.” (Niva)

I have already given simple explanations of the magic I can use. When I explained them at first, everyone had their eyes round in surprise, but Niva-san was interested in a variety of things, so she asked me for explanations many times.

“Just have to protect the room of Almina, right?” (Makoto)

After coming this far, I can tell what this request of Niva-san will be.

Strengthening the place that one can’t protect 24/7. If I have been called for this, there’s only one way.

“But, what’s the reason for their side to target her?” (Makoto)

“It is true that the hero summoning was successful, and this has begun spreading to even the area near the castle. That’s why, if Almina-sama were to be treated unfairly, even if it is the prime minister, his standing would worsen… But if something happened to Almina-sama who has been taken under the protection of Ohi-sama, it would be the responsibility of Ohi-sama and she would be condemned for it.” (Niva)

“True… Or more like, no matter the case, she would end up being targeted. Isn’t that girl way too misfortunate?” (Makoto)

“Also, there’s the possibility that, if Almina-sama were to be taken hostage, the Hero-samas would end up going to their side instead.” (Niva)

“…Aah, I see. The return magic circle.” (Makoto)

Almina’s…‘worth’ is incredibly high. That’s only if they know that though.

If the hero summoning’s success has begun to spread to the areas close to the castle, then, if the main contributor to this fact -Almina- were to be treated unfairly, the antipathy that it would create in the citizens would be quite a lot.

But if Almina were to be assassinated in the place where she was protected in or be kidnapped, it will be seen as the responsibility of the Queen for mismanaging, and she would be the center of the blame.

On top of that, if the Hero-kuns were to learn of Almina’s secret, they would want to try and get her back no matter what. With that in consideration, if it meant protecting Almina, they could even turn into enemies. She is the only key to return to our original world after all. Precisely speaking, the necessary key to return to the time we were summoned…but I don’t think anyone knows about this part.

In the worst case scenario, I could return us, but…because I can’t do the calculation process of the time axis to return to the day we were summoned, there’s a big chance that the amount of time that has passed here would also be the amount of time that shifts when we return. The reason I am being vague here is because I haven’t tried it, but the Spirit king, the Dragon god, and a variety of other people have told me information regarding this matter, and the result of putting all that information together was that it is practically settled that ‘we won’t be able to return to the day we were summoned’. In other words, protecting the life of Almina is, strictly speaking, completely necessary until the inside formation has finished.

“Wait, now that we are on the topic, the hero summoning succeeded, and yet, why is it that it hasn’t been announced?” (Makoto)

“His Majesty is currently in sickbed, so it has been considered whether to postpone it, but it is usually announced after they return from the Selection Ceremony.” (Niva)

“I see. Meaning that they are announced after they have obtained their proof as heroes. It would look good to the public after all” (Makoto)

“Please don’t say things that would make us look bad.” (Niva)

“But it is the truth, right?” (Makoto)

“……”

Silence is confirmation. Or more like, don’t avert your gaze.

“Makoto-sama does have a point, but that’s not the problem.” (Niva)

“Is there something more?” (Makoto)

“Announcing the Heroes to the public would also mean announcing it to outside the country as well.” (Niva)

“…Diplomatic problems, huh.” (Makoto)

Political problems are the number one most pain in the neck, ugh.

“There has been no past precedent of a single priestess succeeding in the hero summoning. Because, normally, several countries would gather priestesses and challenge the hero summoning after all.” (Niva)

“I see. Since you guys would be receiving assistance from the other countries, they would have the right to utilize the heroes too.” (Makoto)

“As I said, please don’t say things in a way that would make us look bad.” (Niva)

“But, even if I change my wording to make it sound better, it won’t change the reality of things.” (Makoto)

“……”

Silence is confirmation, part two.

“Hmm, that’s why, with all those things in consideration, the Heroes are under the protection of the Motoyasu Kingdom until their existence is announced. But once that’s done, it will be possible to directly negotiate with the Heroes. Of course, the guardianship is under the royal family of Motoyasu, but the final decision is under the Hero-samas. The royal family has no room to deny the decisions of the Heroes.” (Niva)

“Wouldn’t that…be a problem in a variety of ways? Like, bringing out impossible tasks, and making false promises in their negotiations.” (Makoto)

“We can only trust the judgment of the Heroes.” (Niva)

The one that worries me the most is Yuichi who is the most hotblooded of the group.

“In the past, there were a variety of problems as well. But only the Motoyasu Kingdom can perform hero summonings, so in the sense of avoiding a monopolization of power, this is a necessary measure, or so I have heard. The Heroes are a valuable people that will save the world, so they can’t be bound by the countries’ frame —at least that’s the front. Excuse my words there, I meant, that’s the opinion of the various countries.” (Niva)

“…They are supposed to be fighting the Demon Lord, and yet, what’s with the humans fighting amongst themselves?” (Makoto)

“It is exactly as you say. It simply pains me to hear it.” (Niva)

I let my true feelings out and Niva-san shrugged her shoulders and sighed.

“Well, leaving that aside… Should I create something?” (Makoto)

“No. There’s already something stored that had been used in the past inside the royal castle, so we will be using that.” (Niva)

“I see… So you called me to give it maintenance.” (Makoto)

“Sorry for that. I am not well versed in magic tools.” (Niva)

“I don’t really mind. I do have interest in the magic tools of this world.” (Makoto)

There’s magic tools in the room I am staying in, but they are daily stuff like lamps and wall clocks that are not much different from the ones I know. These kind of magic tools are mass-produced, so they only have the minimum required functions.

“It is in the room here. I will be counting on you.” (Niva)

I follow Niva-san, and my heart was throbbing in excitement at the magic tools I haven’t seen yet.

☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆

There were shelves lined up orderly inside the room I was guided to, but the things in those shelves were placed haphazardly, and dust had accumulated slightly on them.

“I haven’t been able to come here aside from scheduled inspections, so I couldn’t clean this place. Sorry.” (Niva)

“It can’t be helped if you are busy.” (Makoto)

I look around the room while answering Niva-san.

The room is around 20 tatami mats in size and it looks like it would be quite difficult to clean it up. At present, even the royal castle is busy to the brim, and since it is the former inner palace, they can’t simply give permission to anyone to step into the place.

“So, what are we using?” (Makoto)

“The ones here.” (Niva)

At the place where I was guided to, there were squares of 30 cm on all sides. They were all lined up orderly in the shelf in front of me. What a sight.

“These are…?” (Makoto)

“They are magic tools that create a simple magic barrier.” (Niva)

I was excited internally by something I had seen for the first time, and the response surprised me.

“This? A magic tool that deploys a magic barrier?” (Makoto)

“Yes. Is there something strange about it?” (Niva)

Niva-san did say she wasn’t versed in magic tools, and this is probably the ‘normal’ in this world.

“Ah, nah. It is just that the ones I know of are— well, it would be faster to show you.” (Makoto)

I activate [Item Box] and stick my hand into the air. She was surprised for a moment just like Erin when my hand was gone all the way to the wrist, but she didn’t mind it and simply watched.

When I grab the object I was searching from the list, this time, Niva-san was looking with an expression of wonder as she tilts her head. Oh my, how cute.

“This is a magic tool that creates barriers.” (Makoto)

“This is…? But isn’t this a charm?” (Niva)

What I had in my hand was a card the size of a regular trump card. A total of 10.

Those cards were branded with written characters and complicated holy numbers called rune graphs. The reason why it is shining slightly is because it is absorbing my magic power.

“I can use only one set of this, but it is originally made to be used with several of them at once.” (Makoto)

“…I see. Even so, this was unexpected.” (Niva)

“Surprised?” (Makoto)

“Yes. At any rate, those charms look like they are releasing magic power?” (Niva)

“Yeah, they are currently lacking in magic power, so they are currently sucking it from me.” (Makoto)

“…Eh?” (Niva)

These cards have an energy conservation setting, so they normally absorb the magic power from the atmosphere so that it can activate for a long period of time with only a bit of magic power. But if they are left without maintenance for a long period of time…they will enter a hungered state where they will devour the magic power that’s closest to them.

“Are you okay even when it is being absorbed from you?” (Niva)

“It is normally okay to touch them, but right now they are hungry, so if you were to touch it right now, it might completely take away your magic power.” (Makoto)

Laughing at Niva-san who took one step back, I wait for a bit until the 10 cards are full.

“Okay, it should be fine now.” (Makoto)

“How do you use them?” (Niva)

“The basic use is to set them up first, so I think it is the same as how you use those.” (Makoto)

By ‘those’, I mean the 30 cm cube.

Seeing that they are in groups of four, I assume they are the type that has to be set in four different locations to activate. While thinking how orthodox of a barrier device it is, I sigh. This will most likely bring about a variety of problems.

“By the way, are these the devices you use presently?” (Makoto)

“No, they are old versions. But they are articles ordered by the royal family, so the materials used to make them are of the highest quality. They are slightly bigger than the ones we use at present, but in terms of performance, I think they are on the level that should pose no problem to utilize.” (Niva)

“I see…” (Makoto)

So they really are old types. But they are high class ones, so they are on a different level from the regular ones going around, huh.

But this is big. The ones I know of were half the size of this, but the alchemists were still thinking of ways to make them smaller than that.

I activate [Analyze].

[Simple barrier activation magic tool].

[A barrier tool that requires a set of four to utilize.
There’s the need for a special magic tool to activate the barrier.
Magic stone’s charge percent is 10%].

It is a pretty normal one, but the fact that it is able to activate remotely, as expected of items from the royal family. And so, since they are placed in the storehouse, they don’t have much magic power left, but aside from that, there doesn’t seem to be any glaring problems.

“Hmm… This is…” (Makoto)

Even so, it wouldn’t be fun to use them as it is.

Niva-san asked me to give them maintenance, but can’t I modify them?

“Niva-san, is it okay to just give them maintenance?” (Makoto)

“What do you mean? Could it be that they are defective now?” (Niva)

“No, from what I see, they don’t seem broken. Just that, if I were to give them maintenance as they are, the insides would stay the same, right?” (Makoto)

“…Yeah.” (Niva)

“Then, if they were to have a countermeasure for it, that would spell our doom.” (Makoto)

Understanding what I am trying to say, Niva-san nods in agreement.

“On top of that, look there.” (Makoto)

“…This is…” (Niva)

At the lowest part of the shelf where the barrier tools are, it was as if only the things from that place were gone. Because there’s dust in the place, the traces of it were clear to the eye.

“The numbers probably don’t match.” (Makoto)

“! Excuse me.” (Niva)

Saying this, she began to count the cubes in the shelf.

……

A few minutes later.

She finished counting and searched every nook and cranny of the room, but it seems like four are missing.

“…A set is missing.” (Niva)

“Looking at the marks of the dust, the chances it was recent are high. The intruder of last night might have been aiming for this.” (Makoto)

“I would say it was around a week…no, around two weeks ago.” (Niva)

I thought it could be the intruder of last night, but the marks of the place in question have dust accumulated in it already. Comparing it to the dust of the surroundings, this place only had dust accumulated thinly, and from Niva-san’s eyes, she assumes this happened around two weeks ago. But that’s not the problem.

“A theft in the royal castle… Isn’t that bad?” (Makoto)

“…..Yes. An incredibly big problem.” (Niva)

“For now, Niva-san, wouldn’t it be better to check if there’s any other things missing?” (Makoto)

“R-Right.” (Niva)

Looking at the rare sight of Niva-san panicking, she said ‘Excuse me’ and left the room.

I see off that figure of hers with a bitter smile.

Now then, I began to ponder what I should do.

I did get the permission of Niva-san to modify them. I was thinking of something simple like, ‘the outside looks the same, but the inside is totally different’ which would surprise them, but I should leave that aside for now. More importantly, I should probably first set up an anti-theft system here.

…This should do. A trap device that I created on the spur of the moment when I was an alchemist.

This thing, that was completed with the cooperation of my guild acquaintances and the imprisoned criminals, is a device that can make a robust man cry out loud and give them a trauma.

Sorcery trap device – [Mission Impossible: Type – Thousand Hells].

The magic power waves from the main device are transmitted to the sub-devices set up at each location, and when the magic waves catch an intruder, a trauma-inducing mind attack will be deployed.

In my opinion, this was a satisfactory creation, but the people around me had an extremely bad reaction towards it.

“…Hm?” (Makoto)

When I was thinking what I should do, I felt the presence of someone.

“Oya…there was someone here?”

And the one who opened the door of the room and entered was an old man who raised a voice of wonder.

“Hello.” (Makoto)

“Hi there.”

With a smile on his face…

“…So, who are you?”

The gray haired old man asks me.

This is my first time meeting him, but this must be the person that the Queen talked to me about. He certainly does look kind, but the aura that comes out from him…doesn’t match his age.

A fighter, huh.

I can understand why the Queen said he is the number one person you wouldn’t want to have as an enemy.

“I am Kamiuchi Makoto. I am an ordinary citizen caught up in the hero summoning. Nice to meet you, previous King-sama.” (Makoto)

“…Hoh, so you are the one.”

This gray haired old man is the manager of the former inner palace, and he also holds the title of being the previous king.

The old man had a daring smile on him as he looked at me with sharp eyes.

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36 thoughts on “QualiA – Chapter 16: The bird in the cage ②

      1. *Haachoo !*
        …………
        ………
        …….
        …..

        .

        I’m lying on the bed here and suddenly sneezed. Why do I have a feeling that someone is talking bad behind me ?

        Liked by 2 people

  1. Thanks for the chapter!

    Hallow Happyween everybody! May you either get a lot of candy to eat or have a lot left behind afterwards to have for yourself.
    Or if you don’t celebrate it, hey, stores are gonna slash candy prices to get rid of their stock starting tomorrow. Enjoy it your way!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ooooh! Niva and Makoto daaaaaaaate! Well, it’s basically a date.

    She already gets him really well and knows just how to tease him, which he responds in kind.
    And to top it off, we slip a “how cute” flavored with Common-Sense breaking. Delicious.

    Yeah okay. Sorry Esthella, but I’m fully on the monogamous KamiuchixNiva ship now. With any luck, you’re actually the same person reborn as the silver hair implies, but if not, then I’m in Niva’s corner.

    Oh, also the old king appeared and he seems like the cool old dude type or something. That’s cool too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. naaaiiissuuuu~~
    tday muh birthday and its double chapter ‘ v ‘ )
    yipie kay yey~ so…. the last one is the former king ? or is it kinda like butler of the previous king ?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t want to work-de gozaru. I want to pass my time leisurely in my room-de gozaru. I want to mofu mofu the ears of Erin-de gozaru. Gosh, that sound like the paradise. I wish i was there,

    Like

  5. Thanks for the threat Reagokai-sama, good chapter, wondering if the former king is the battle maniac type, wondering when will he go teaching some tricks to the Heroes I think he will wait till they fully integrate with Magic and such.

    Like

  6. Something’s going wrong with my notifications, nearly 20 hours had past do I only noticed there is a new chapter.

    I checked this site this morning which was past 12 hours ago and there was nothing new that time.

    Still, thanks as usual 麗護解 for your continuous contributions.

    Like

  7. Thanks for the chapter.
    I wish we had devices like that for society so we could all leave our doors unlocked, but “safe” from intruders. That would be really nice. I guess technically doors are ‘unlocked’ if you have the key. But you know, I still would like it if we could trust each other. Ah well.

    Like

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