Days When Bad Things Come From the Sky
The next day, Maki and Chiharu were in the king’s study.
“Are you prepared to hear more now?”
“Yes, please tell us.”
“Hmm. That being said…”
The king began.
“The most important part was told to you yesterday. You two should live the rest of your days here as you please. As I said before, all necessities will be provided for you. If there is anything that you want, you need only tell us. I will do what is in my power to help.”
Rest of your days. So it was true. But she had to at least ask properly. Maki thought.
“So we can never return?”
“…I am sorry. No Saintess has ever returned.”
She had thought as much. Their mouths trembled a little as the king continued. He knew that these two would be able to accept it.
“Today, Aeris and Zynis will talk.”
“I will go first.”
“Of course, Saintesses purify the world of miasma by just existing. However, these human lands are much farther from the shadow world than other lands. Our own territories are along its border, and the miasma is thicker there. As you can tell by how the palace was purified in one day, it is much faster in areas close to the Saintess.”
Here he stopped and looked hard at Maki and Chiharu as if to confirm something.
“If possible, it would be of great help if you could come directly to the elf lands.”
“And the beast lands as well.”
“Do not forget the dwarven lands. Eh, Maki and Chihaaru?”
Grudo said with a mischievous grin.
“Us dwarves are famous for making cider.”
Maki’s eyes lit up. Cider!
“Hey, Grudo, play fair! Why must I explain the troublesome part only for you to come in like this!”
Aeris said frantically.
“Maki, Chihaaru. We elves have wine. And not only that. But honey wine as well. It is made from the honey of bees in our own elven forests.”
Honey wine! Chiharu’s eyes also lit up. And then both of them looked towards Zynis with mounting expectations. Zynis scratched his head with a slightly uneasy look.
“We beasts do not care for such drinks. But, we have skewers of layered meat that are broiled and covered in a special sauce. It is very popular among travelers.”
They thought that it sounded similar to a kebab, and their eyes danced with joy. Aeris saw this and his hopes rose. He would tell them more about their famous dishes to persuade them. However, there was one thing he needed to tell them first, for fairness sake.
“There is one thing.”
Maki and Chiharu gulped.
“Unless we are to take a much longer route, we will have to cross the sea. This means going by airship.”
“Uh, what was that?”
Perhaps he was hearing them wrong.
“I will go.”
Maki said without hesitation. Grudo was in a fit of laughter.
“It looks like even elf ears lose their sharpness after 300 years.”
“That is rude, you are nearly the same age as I.”
Aeris grumbled. And then he asked the two with a concerned voice.
“These airships will fly quite high. Can you handle such heights?”