Back to Hikaru’s POV.
I wake up to the noisy stir of Spirit Energy.
“Hn…what is going on…?” (Hikaru)
“Ah, woke up?”
Rifreya’s face was right in front of me.
Her big beautiful eyes were looking straight at me.
Honestly speaking, I was so surprised it woke me up completely, but I speak without showing this.
“…Speaking of which, we slept together… Good morning.” (Hikaru)
“Good morning to you too. Hikaru…is it really because you are an otherworlder?” (Rifreya)
“Eh, what are you referring to?” (Hikaru)
“…Cause…you really didn’t put a hand on me. Not only that, you even fell asleep in a heartbeat.” (Rifreya)
I lifted my body up. Rifreya is still in her pajamas.
She most likely woke up just now.
Last night, the scenario of me being way too nervous I couldn’t sleep…didn’t happen and I fell asleep pretty quickly.
We had our horse riding training, so I must have been tired.
It is also good that my mindset is that I should go to sleep fast and concentrate on sleeping.
I have 2 little sisters who are pretty attached to me, so they are the type that tend to want to sleep together, so it is probably because I am used to sleeping with other people.
There were even times when Celica and Karen would be by my side despite me having slept alone. Also, this is not a story about my elementary school days, that’s how it was even right before I transferred. The 2 of them are intelligent, but they are still pretty childish mentally. Our parents are like that, so I feel like it can’t be helped though.
Even if so, it would be a lie if I were to say that the sight of Rifreya just waking up didn’t make my heart skip.
Her slightly disheveled platinum blonde hair on her cheek was charming.
It might have been dangerous if I hadn’t fallen asleep quickly yesterday.
“I have told you before. All of humanity on the other side is watching. I even felt apprehensive about us sleeping together like this, you know?” (Hikaru)
“I have heard that countless times before, but… If we hide ourselves like this…with the blankets…” (Rifreya)
“Alright alright, this conversation is over. What about Jeanne?” (Hikaru)
“Eh? Who knows. I haven’t left the room yet, but I doubt she has come back. I don’t hear any sounds after all.” (Rifreya)
“I see.” (Hikaru)
I confirm the time with the Status Board.
6 o’clock in the morning. It is our usual time for waking up.
The Spirits continue to be noisy.
“Is there some sort of event today? Aren’t the Spirits acting weird?” (Hikaru)
“Eh, really? I don’t really feel anything though.” (Rifreya)
“…This feeling…is similar to that time when the Great Fire Spirit came out of the church. Is there a plan for that?” (Hikaru)
“The Great Spirit-sama outside…? There’s no way that’s possible.” (Rifreya)
I have a bad feeling about this.
Great Spirits are like natural enemies for me.
That presence alone is making me uneasy.
“Let’s go outside for now.” (Hikaru)
I put a hand on my sleepwear in order to change, but Rifreya was still sitting on the bed and looking at me.
“…Uhm, I am going to change.” (Hikaru)
“Don’t mind me.” (Rifreya)
“I will mind!” (Hikaru)
I pulled or pushed in order to bring Rifreya out of the room, but she was extremely stubborn here, and didn’t budge an inch like a megalith.
Is this the type where she won’t be moving?
I gave up and decided to just change like that. Well, there’s nothing I would be troubled about being seen anyways.
I take off my sleepwear and fix up my equipment.
Whichever the case, we plan on searching for Jeanne today.
By the way, in the time I was changing, Rifreya was watching the whole time, but she didn’t blink or move an inch, so she might have fallen asleep with her eyes open.
“Or more like, what will you be doing, Rifreya?” (Hikaru)
“Rifreya? Are you seriously sleeping with your eyes open?” (Hikaru)
“…Oh, sorry about that. I froze up there since I didn’t expect you to actually change. Thank you very much.” (Rifreya)
“Even if you thank me for that…” (Hikaru)
This is something I learned after living with Rifreya, but she is a person with a lot of weird sides.
I don’t know if this is a difference in culture between a person from this world and an Earthling. It is also in part because it is not so bad that there’s the need to make changes though.
“Anyways, you change too, Rifreya. I will prepare something we can snack on while you are at that.” (Hikaru)
I try checking Jeanne’s room just in case, but she really hasn’t come back.
I also check the living room and kitchen, but there’s no signs of someone having returned.
She really must have stayed at an inn somewhere.
The Spirits continued to be noisy.
I would even say they have gotten noisier little by little.
I heat the water and make some tea for now.
I look at the kitchen that is cleaned nicely. We didn’t live for long in this house, but it wasn’t bad.
Once we find Jeanne, I will apologize to her, and we will head off to our journey as planned. I also have to communicate that we will be canceling the contract of this house.
I don’t know if what that Chosen called Ferdinand said is true or not.
It would be a lie if I said the matter of Nanami didn’t worry me.
But this is something I have already decided.
“That said, seriously, what’s going on…? If a Great Spirit hasn’t come out, did a different Great Spirit appear, or has a Demon Lord shown up?” (Hikaru)
We are gold rank. The guild would come call for us if a Demon Lord appeared.
In that case, is it a new Great Spirit?
A Great Spirit showing up is a natural phenomenon, and it is apparently something a human can’t do anything about.
In that case, it wouldn’t be strange at all for a Great Spirit to suddenly appear in the middle of the city all of a sudden.
(If that’s so, this might be bad…) (Hikaru)
Great Spirits can detect Loved Ones.
This place is far from the churches to a certain degree, so it is fine, but there’s the chance a Great Spirit moving freely will be able to notice me.
“Rifreya, I am going to check the state outside for a bit!” (Hikaru)
“Eh, ah, okay!” (Rifreya)
I called her from below and went outside.
(I can feel it…! )(Hikaru)
I have not approached a Great Spirit that many times, but there’s no way I would mistake this dense and pure Spirit Energy.
There’s still a bit of distance, but it is certainly approaching.
(What should I do? Run away? But Rifreya…) (Hikaru)
I am a Loved One; a natural enemy of Great Spirits.
We can’t be seen from the street, so I don’t think it has found us yet.
I thought about it for a bit before taking out a Barrier Stone from my pocket and breaking it.
1 Point is valuable, but I have judged that we are already in an abnormal situation.
A Barrier Stone is a stone that keeps hostiles away.
I set a barrier that isolates me physically too and makes me invisible. It is practically all-powerful.
However, it is not perfect against a big opponent like a Great Spirit.
I have used it twice against a Great Spirit, but in both cases, it seemed like the Great Spirits could see me.
Great Spirits are apparently Gods, so they probably have no notion of hostility to begin with.
“…This should keep me safe for now. But why is a Great Spirit roaming around? Is it really a new Great Spirit…?” (Hikaru)
I could tell the movements of the people in the street are getting busier.
It is similar to the time when the Great Fire Spirit showed up. So it really is a Great Spirit escaping?
I have already set a barrier, so I can’t go running away here. I simply watched that sight from outside the house.
“Hm? Hikaru, what’s the matter? That’s a barrier, isn’t it…?” (Rifreya)
Rifreya came out with her equipment on and said this.
She has seen me set a Barrer Stone twice already, so she should be able to tell. The barrier is semi-transparent and it is made in a way that you can tell something is there immediately.
By the way, you can’t go in or out of it. The people who are not hostile can see the inside, but the ones with hostility can’t see the barrier itself. In other words, they apparently will feel like ‘there’s nothing there’.
“There’s probably a Great Spirit over there. I don’t know why though.” (Hikaru)
“Eh…? It certainly does seem like there’s a commotion… The one over there is where the church of the Great Water Spirit is at, you know? No way…” (Rifreya)
“Is something the matter with the water one?” (Hikaru)
“The church of the Great Water Spirit-sama is the only one that’s not a completely artificial church. It is a natural church originally there that was remodeled, and it is calmer than other Great Spirit-samas.” (Rifreya)
In order to make a dungeon city, you have to gather at least 3 Great Spirits.
The power of the Great Spirits draw a spiral, and what appears at its center is the dungeon.
And most of the cases, the dungeon city will be made in a place where there’s already a Great Spirit there -at a place with a natural church. It means that that would be the case for Meltia.
On the other hand, the Great Spirits that have been brought from the outside and installed onto an artificial church are apparently mentally unstable.
It feels weird that a Great Spirit that’s like a God or a natural phenomenon has stable and unstable mental states, but if they say that’s the case, it must be the case.
“The Great Spirit-sama of my home is from a natural church, so it is pretty calm to the point that it doesn’t go out of its way to eat Loved Ones.” (Rifreya)
“Are you saying it is safe?” (Hikaru)
“…No. The dungeon city churches are most likely offered Loved Ones to keep it stable. As for the opponent being the Great Water Spirit-sama…it might be a bit bad.” (Rifreya)
While we were having that talk, the tumult approached, and the one in the middle of it came into sight.
“…That’s…the Great Water Spirit…?” (Hikaru)
A woman that’s around as tall as the Great Fire Spirit.
Wearing a robe that makes you think of the deep sea, her low pigment skin was pale to the point that you could see the other side, and her hair, lips, and even her eyes were of the same color. That figure of hers eloquently said she is the very personification of water.
“….More importantly, Hikaru, the person at her side…isn’t that the one from yesterday?” (Rifreya)
Just as she said, the one there was the person that told us about Nanami yesterday, the 2nd group Chosen, Ferdinand.
Ferdinand was looking over here with the corner of his lips lifted up, raised his right arm and pointed over here in a meaningful manner as he told the Great Spirit something.
The gaze of the Great Water Spirit clashed with mine.
I could feel Spirit Energy coming out from her navy blue robe and asiatic dayflower color hair that even felt as if it had mass to it.
The emotions of the Great Spirit became words and were showered onto my whole body.
— “How can this be?”
— “This sweetness!”
— “Someone as ripe as this!”
— “Even in my boundless eternity.”
— “I didn’t expect a day like this to come.”
— “A day where my chest would burn to this extent!”
This is bad.