ZAP – Chapter 55: Eugene speaks to the Prime Minister

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“Go ahead and make yourself comfortable.” 

The high class woman that was by the side of His Imperial Majesty until now is sitting elegantly at a chair in the prime minister’s room. 

Her attire was on the heavy hue side as a woman with her dark blue dress and black cloak.

There were intricate patterns in the dress and cloak, making me feel how expensive it is. 

But what drew my eyes the most was her beauty.

Blonde hair and blue eyes. The usual Empire noble just like Airi. 

She must be from a noble household somewhere. 

“I am Eugene Santafield.” (Eugene)

I placed a hand on my chest and lowered my head. 

“This is the first time we talk, right? I am the prime minister, Catherine.” 

She really is the new prime minister. 

That said, why is she not telling me her family name? 

The nobles of the Empire hold great importance in their family name. 

The prime minister is the right hand of the Emperor. It is to the point where, on the political front, they can take over the Emperor when he is absent. 

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say it is one of the highest authorities. 

They would normally introduce their family name persistently. 

By the way, the Imperial Sword -Pops- can command the imperial army as the Great General. 

Pops can, but he doesn’t do that at all, and when he is leading the army, the only thing he does most of the time is ‘charge to the frontlines’.

I have heard from Airi that the Emperor reprimands him often for that. 

That said, Pops would charge into the enemy army alone, and get the head of the general. 

The tacticians were grumbling with: ‘to hell with strategy’.

“For what business have you brought me here today?” (Eugene)

I asked the Prime Minister in front of me. 

“You are a serious one. You resemble him in appearance, but you are pretty different from the Imperial Sword-sama. Jubei-sama is a free soul after all. I thought for sure his son would be like that too.” (Catherine)

“Pops…runs at his own tune after all.” (Eugene)

By the way, Jubei is the name of Pops. 

The naming of the East Continent is pretty different from that of the South Continent. 

Eugene is apparently the name my deceased mother gave me. 

I heard Pops wanted to name me Musashi. 

…I am sorry for Pops, but I am glad my mother was the one who named me. 

We chatted for a while after that.

(Did she call me without any business?) (Eugene)

That thought of mine must have shown in my face. 

“By the way, Eugene-dono…” (Catherine)

The Prime Minister showed a meaningful gaze at me. 

I notice that the main topic is coming. 

“Am I right in saying you are a pro barriermancer?” (Catherine)

“Yes, I do have a license.” (Eugene)

That was unexpected. 

I thought for sure she would be talking about the Divine Beast or the Demon Lord. 

“Then, there’s something I would like to request of the Barriermancer Eugene-dono.” (Catherine)

“A request…?” (Eugene)

The Prime Minister-sama of the Empire to a student like me? 

The Empire has skilled barriermancers aplenty. 

There must be something behind this.

“That’s right. Will you accept?” (Catherine)

“That’s…” (Eugene)

You normally wouldn’t accept a request this fishy. 

But we are talking about one of the highest authorities in the Empire, the Prime Minister. 

If I refuse, it might trouble Pops…is the worry I had.

“Can I please hear out the details of the request first?” (Eugene)

Let’s hear the details first. 

But the Prime Minister shook her head as if to display sadness on purpose. 

“Unfortunately, this talk is classified information… You will have to accept it no matter what if you hear about it. That’s why I would like you to refuse at this point if you are not inclined to.” (Catherine)

“…………I see.” (Eugene)

This is troubling. 

I pondered for a bit and answered.

“Then, I shall accept. Can you please tell me the details of the request?” (Eugene)

I decided to accept. 

The Prime Minister is relying on a nobody like me. 

It is a way too suspicious request, but let’s just consider it an honor. 

“Fufufu, as expected of the son of Jubei-sama. I believed you would say that.” (Catherine)

The Prime Minister smiled gently. 

That smile of hers looked like she was plotting something evil…or not. 

But she is the Prime Minister of the Empire, hiding her real intentions should be right up her alley. 

I didn’t lower my guard as I waited for her words. 

“Now then, I will speak. Eugene-dono, you know of the Great Demonic Beast that is sealed close to the capital, right?” (Catherine)

“Yes, the Colossal Beast Haagenti. My teacher would often scare us by saying ‘I will drag all bad children to Haagenti’.” (Eugene)

“Yeah, it is the symbol of fear for the Empire after all… The seal of the Great Demonic Beast is on the verge of disappearing.” (Catherine)

“Eh?” (Eugene)

Haagenti appeared in the Chryse Plains around 200 years ago. 

It caused massive destruction, but the Empire put all their energy into sealing it. 

After that, there have been two occasions where the seal dissolved. 

In one of those instances, the capital was partially destroyed bringing forth the disaster 50 years ago. 

“You know about it too, right, Eugene-dono? The Great Demonic Beasts that are called ‘living calamities’ cannot be sealed completely. Even while they are sealed, the miasma of the Great Demonic Beast continues accumulating, and the barrier eventually falls… Basically, that time has come.” (Catherine)

“The seal of the Colossal Beast Haagenti will dissolve…” (Eugene)

The legendary Great Demonic Beast. 

My brain wasn’t working properly because of how grave the matter was. 

This certainly is classified information.

“…So, what should I do?” (Eugene)

She won’t tell me to seal the Great Demonic Beast, right? 

This goes beyond whether I accept or refuse. 

There’s no way I can do it. 

“About the details of the request. We plan on sending an investigation team to check the seal of the Great Demonic Beast tomorrow. I would like you to accompany them.” (Catherine)

“Accompany the investigation team…?” (Eugene)

I should be able to do at least that much.

“I will be counting on you, Eugene-dono.” (Catherine)

“Understood. I won’t take back my answer. I will accept the request.” (Eugene)

But I don’t understand the reason why she would go out of her way to request this of a student. 

Questioning the Prime Minister about this feels kind of rude though…

“Why did you request this of someone with no expertise?” (Eugene)

“Fufufu, you are curious, right?” (Catherine)

The Prime Minister must have expected this question of mine, she smiled gracefully. 

“I actually have Destiny Magic…[Clairvoyance].” (Catherine)

“Clairvoyance?!” (Eugene)

That’s…the same power as the Oracle-sama of Caldia. 

It is a rare power that may or may not be one in the whole continent.

“That said, it is not on the level of the Destiny Oracle-sama. I can’t hear the voice of the Goddess-sama either… However, His Imperial Majesty has high expectations of this Clairvoyance and went as far as appointing me a Prime Minister. I have to answer those expectations of his.” (Catherine)

Her expression was serious as she said this. 

“So, according to your Clairvoyance, I should be heading to the investigation of the Great Demonic Beast’s seal?” (Eugene)

“It is one of the many futures. However, my premonition has told me that your involvement will decrease the harm from the ‘destruction of Haagenti’s seal’.” (Catherine)

“I get the reason now.” (Eugene)

My question is gone. 

I have no issues if this is for the sake of the Empire. 

“You have my gratitude, Eugene-dono. I will be conferring your reward through the Imperial Sword-sama, okay?” (Catherine)

“Yes, I don’t mind that.” (Eugene)

I will have to report this to Pops later.

I accepted the request of the Prime Minister and exited the room. 

◇◇

“Oi, Eugene! Is it true that you accepted the request from the Prime Minister-chan?!” 

When I returned to the house, the rare flustered sight of my Pops welcomed me. 

“I shouldn’t have?” (Eugene)

“No…it is fine if it was a decision you made yourself, but…did she say anything weird to you?” (Jubei)

“…No, not really? That she can use Clairvoyance, I guess.” (Eugene)

“I see. That’s fine then.” (Jubei)

I thought the Clairvoyance matter was a secret, but the power of the Prime Minister is apparently famous.

Stories of the young prime minister didn’t reach the Lykeion Magic Academy though.

“Eugene-kun, are you going to be leaving tomorrow too?” (Sumire)

“Sorry, Sumire. I suddenly got work.” (Eugene)

“Boo.” (Sumire)

Sumire puffs her cheeks. 

I was supposed to guide her around the capital, but ended up having to do other things for two days straight. 

I feel bad about this. 

“Just bring Sumire-chan with you.” (Jubei)

Pops suggested this. 

“…Is that okay? I heard this is a request of utmost secrecy though.” (Eugene)

“It is okay. The otherworlder Ifrit Sumire-chan is basically a walking state secret. She would be safer with you.” (Jubei)

“Eh?!” (Sumire)

Sumire was surprised by the words of Pops. 

I was surprised too. 

“Hm? You were not aware of that? The teachings of the Goddess-sama state to provide the best of treatments to an otherworlder after all. Your looks have already spread through the knights of the Empire. Guards would rush immediately the moment there’s trouble.” (Jubei)

“Speaking of which, Mazio said that.” (Eugene)

I didn’t expect it to be this big of a deal. 

“Eeh…going that far for someone like me… Is that okay?” (Sumire)

Sumire was flustered.

“Then, come with me to the investigation of the Great Demonic Beast tomorrow. We have the permission of the Imperial Sword after all.” (Eugene)

“The leader of the investigation team is most likely a knight chief of the Golden Knights. There should be no issues if you bring out my name.” (Jubei)

“Thanks, Pops.” (Eugene)

“Umu.” (Jubei)

He is a great help at times like this. 

“Got it. Yay, going out with Eugene-kun♪.” (Sumire)

“Then, I will prepare lunch boxes.” (Hana)

I am glad that Sumire is feeling better now. 

Hana-san is being considerate here. 

It is nonchalant as if we are heading out to a picnic, but our objective is to investigate the Great Demonic Beast.

Moreover, a direct request from the Prime Minister.

(Let’s get ready.) (Eugene)

I pledged inside my heart. 

◇The next day◇

“We are heading off~.” (Sumire)

“We are leaving now, Pops, Hana-san.” (Eugene)

“Yeh, be careful, Eugene, Sumire-chan.” (Jubei)

“Have a safe trip, Eugene-chan, Sumire-sama.” (Hana)

Sumire and I ate breakfast and headed to the north gate of the capital. 

The Chryse Plains where the Great Demonic Beast is sealed spreads at the northern side of the capital. 

We moved to the north gate by riding a giant bird called the Express Bird. 

At first, Sumire was scared and shouted ‘Eh?! Big! Scary!’, but she later was all merry and going ‘So fast!! Hyahoooh!’.

Glad to see she is having fun.

By the time we arrived at the north gate, there was still no one there aside from the gatekeepers. 

The monsters in the Chryse Plains are strong and violent because of the effect of the Great Demonic Beast’s miasma leaking.

Because of this, the Chryse Plains are avoided as a mercantile route, and the north gate is always desolate. 

Sumire and I decided to wait for the investigation team at the shade of a tree. 

When I began to swing my sword in my free time, Sumire began to mumble something that sounded like an incantation. 

That’s when I noticed the attire of Sumire. 

“Hm? Sumire, the robe you are wearing is…” (Eugene)

“Noticed? The Academy Principal lent it to me~.” (Sumire)

That is the magic robe that she used for the Trial of Gods from Floor 100 when we fought the Demon Lord. 

It is a treasure tool that would most likely get you enough money to buy a whole small country in the Blue Waters Federation if she were to sell it. 

(I am impressed the Principal can let something like that out of the country so casually…) (Eugene)

I was baffled, but at the same time remembered what the Principal said to me before heading to the Empire. 

 ◇◇

“Eugene, Sumire-kun moving away from the Lykeion Magic Academy for a while means that I won’t be able to keep an eye on her and protect her. You will be my substitute as her guardian.” (Uther)

The Principal told me this with a more serious expression than normal. 

But keeping an eye, he says. That’s quite exaggerated.

“Understood, Principal Uther. Leave the protection of Sumire to me.” (Eugene)

I answered.

“You don’t get it, Eugene. You haven’t noticed what has been happening to the Ifrit Sumire-kun recently, huh.” (Uther)

“Recently? She has been training hard on her magic lately.” (Eugene)

It is slow, but she is showing results. 

Principal Uther sighed.

“So even Eugene doesn’t notice when it is too close to him, huh. The amount of mana of Sumire-kun since she reincarnated in this world has more than doubled.” (Uther)

“Eh?” (Eugene)

I was surprised by his words but it also made sense. 

It is true that I felt the mana around Sumire was increasing by the day. 

But to think it would increase by more than twice in just a few months…

“She is a Half-God that perished in ancient times… No, it is more accurate to say that the Goddesses brought them to the Divine Realm because they were too dangerous to live in the Mortal Realm. Her amount of mana is already the best within the students in the Lykeion Magic Academy.” (Uther)

“That much… But not as much as you, right, Principal?” 

I was surprised, but responded with a casual tone. 

However, the expression of the Principal was still serious. 

“She will eventually pass me -if it is only in the amount of mana, that is.” (Uther)

“Even the Principal…?” (Eugene)

Those words made me tremble. 

I have not met a single mage that can reach even the toes of the Principal including my time in the Empire. 

Sumire will surpass that? 

“Don’t forget it, Eugene. The mind of Sumire-kun might be that of a girl that came from a parallel world, but the body of Sumire-kun has the power of Gods in her. The mind of a human and the body of a God is unbalanced. Sumire-kun is a good and kind girl. But if her mind evolves with her body pulling it… There’s no signs of that as of now, but her mana is increasing by the day, and she has already gotten close to the limit of a mortal. That’s why I am counting on you… Keep an eye on her. She is your important partner, right?” (Uther)

“…Got it Principal Uther.” (Eugene)

I nodded seriously. 

◇◇

And now, the present. 

“What’s the matter, Eugene-kun? You are making a scary face.” (Sumire)

Sumire stopped her incantation and looked at me with a smile. 

It is the usual Sumire. 

“No, it is nothing. Have you gotten better with your magic?” (Eugene)

Sumire grinned at my words.

“Just watch. I learned this recently.” (Sumire)

She said that and…

“XXXXXXXXX.” (Sumire)

Sumire spoke words I couldn’t really pick up. 

This is not the standard language of the South Continent used in the Empire and the Lykeion Magic Academy. 

It is also different from the words of Sumire from her previous world which she taught me a bit before. 

(?!) 

The next instant, my hairs stood on end. 

There were no sparks flying in the air like before.

She looks the same. 

And yet…

(The mana is…dense…to a degree where it is hard to breathe…) (Eugene)

It has a different pressure from the 7th Seal Prison in the Magic Academy. 

The 7th Seal Prison has the Demon Lord and mythological creatures sealed in it. 

This is mana that doesn’t lose to that. 

It was created by a single girl. 

“How is it? I got along with the Fire Spirits.” (Sumire)

Sumire is smiling just like always.

“That’s surprising… But it would be better to not use magic in that state. It would be dangerous if your magic were to go out of control.” (Eugene)

“Really? Yeah, it is as you say, Eugene-kun. Thanks… XXXXXXXXX.” (Sumire)

Sumire said something and the dense mana air dispersed.

Her back is drenched in sweat. 

(I would have been more flustered if I hadn’t heard about this from the Principal beforehand.) (Eugene)

Let’s be grateful to Principal Uther. 

Also, I shouldn’t be this flustered towards my partner Sumire. 

I felt like I had to train myself more. 

This wasn’t the time to be happy about getting through Floor 100. 

That’s when I noticed a group coming this way. 

“Eugene-kun, is that…” (Sumire)

“Looks like the investigation team has arrived.” (Eugene)

Sumire and I head to the group in order to greet them. 

We check the state of the group while approaching them. 

There’s around a dozen Silver Knights with a lot of experience. 

A number of Golden Knights lead them. 

With these numbers, rather than a team, I would call it more like a platoon. 

(I should greet the captain.) (Eugene)

It must be someone from the Golden Knights. Just when I was trying to see who…

(Hm?) (Eugene)

A knight with pure white armor showed from behind.

There’s a golden winged lion crest at the chest; proof of a Heaven Knight. 

A knight I saw just yesterday. 

“……Eh? Eugy?!” 

The female knight had her eyes wide open.

(How can this be…) (Eugene)

Did the Prime Minister not know? 

There’s no way. 

She said so herself; she can see the future. 

No, if the Prime Minister was the one who selected the personnel for the investigation team, there’s no need to see the future.

I have been set up.

The one leading the investigation team is the imperial princess, Airi.

■Comment Response: 

>I knew it. Even if Airi herself doesn’t harbor any grudges towards Eugene, she still thinks that their relationship is the same as in the past? 

-Who knows. 

It might be more clear in the next chapter. 

>Golden Knights… I misperceived them as Gold Saints. 

-Since the time I received this comment, I have been reading them as Gold Saints too (secretly).

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