“However, that doesn’t mean that she was taken inland.”
Sonid said with a pained expression.
“I think they did.”
Said one of the young birdfolk, without a hint of guilt.
“After all, the inland people told us all of the time about how the Saintesses were made to travel everywhere and work, even though they’ve only just been summoned. They felt so sorry for them. They were like birds in a cage. And they said that the Saintesses would be able to live freely in their country.”
Maki felt dizzy. She had not forgotten the way that the inland people treated them at the castle. There was no way that they would change their attitude so easily. There must be something behind it all.
Maki said, addressing the young bird person.
“I’ll admit that it was hard for us, having to do all kinds of things and being busy after we came to this world.”
“Right? You seemed so overworked yesterday.”
The bird person said with an innocent laugh.
“After seeing that, we realized that the inland folks were right. The Saintesses are being overworked.”
There was so much fondness in his voice.
“However, there are only two things that actually hurt us here.”
“Huh? Who hurt you?”
“One of them was the inland people. They said horrible things to us. That we were unclean because we gathered miasma. That we could easily be replaced. Like a cup that could be traded in.”
“Why would we want to go to a country like that?”
Maki continued in a low voice.
“And the other is your friends.”
“You wrapped her up in a blanket and took her away without even asking if she wanted to go. What about that is freedom! Is that what freedom is to you?”
Maki’s angry voice echoed around them.
“Because that is not the kind of freedom that Sauro and Saikania showed us.”
The young brown feathers looked taken aback.
I’ll get her back! Maki was burning with rage. Sauro picked up Maki and was about to take off, but Zynis and Miragaia stopped them frantically.
“Wait, wait. Why are you so quick to act?”
“No, Maki. You don’t even know where she is. If you go without any preparation, what will you do if they pretend to be ignorant?”
“You too, Sauro.”
Zynis looked at Sauro quietly.
“As the next in line, should you really be charging into enemy land directly while carrying Maki? Isn’t there something you and Miragaia should be doing first?”
Sauro’s tense shoulders drooped.
“You can feel responsible after this is all finished. There are many things that the birdfolk can do. You should do that first.”
Sauro looked at Zynis and then said,
“About the basket that we think they used, if we carried it without resting, we would be able to cross the sea in about five hours. The birdfolk would be able to reach the sea from here in less than two hours. So even the brown feathers would have likely already reached the human territories by now.”
“This is bad. No matter how much we hurry, they will take her to the inland country. On the other hand…”
Zynis turned to look at Maki.
“Is it possible for you to contact the gazers in the human territories?”
“It would be like a telephone game, but it might work. But gazers move slowly during the day.”
Maki said. Still, she closed her eyes and desperately tried calling out to the gazers.
“Chiharu might be in the human territories already. Are there any gazers there that I can connect to?”
As Maki said, this would likely be conveyed like a telephone game. However, there were no gazes floating around during the day, and so the chances of finding Chiharu were very low.
“I don’t want to say this, but there will likely be more gazers if she does reach it.”
They were worried, but there was nothing that they could do. Leia, Zyniz, Miragaia, Sonid, and representatives from the catfolk and human Adventurers all gathered together with Maki and discussed what had to be done. As for Sonid, there were some who brought up his responsibility for not managing the brown feathers.
“We need as many wings as we can get now. We can deal with the rest after everything is done.”
Then Zynis began to speak.
“We haven’t confirmed it yet, but we believe that the Saintess was taken to the inland country. First, we have to decide how we will approach this.”
“They moved in a direction with water last night. In other words, a lake in this country, the dwarf country, and the merfolk island and Midland. We have sent birdfolk to all of these locations. They will be searching from morning and should contact us if they find anything.”
“Thank you, Miragaia.”
“The next thing to do is to explain the current situation to the human territories, dwarf territory, and elf territory.”
“I’ll do that as soon as this meeting finishes.”
They continued to decide what needed to be done.
“The dungeon team should be returning to the castle in the elf lands soon. It would be faster to have them go directly to the continent than come here first. At the same time, we should send extra messenger birds to Lowland.”
“No, there are already a lot of birdfolk in Lowland right now. We can just use them.”
“Hmm. That’s fine.”
Maki had been quiet up until now, but she suddenly raised her voice.
“What is it, Maki?”
“According to the young brown wings, she might have been taken inland. However, I don’t understand the reason. Even though we do gather miasma, the inland people hated us. It wasn’t just the childish anger of the prince and princess, even the servants and the king’s brother. I’m sure they aren’t going to hurt her, but I don’t know why they would want her there if they hate us.”
Zynis wanted to say that it was important to move first.
“Maybe it’s because of the magic stones?”
Answered one of the Adventurers.
“There are no dungeons inland, so it may sound strange. But unlike the beastkin who fight monsters because it’s ‘fun,’ or the elves and dwarves who fight because they ‘have no choice,’ humans fight because they really want magic stones.”
Indeed, there were lot’s of useful things in the human and dwarf lands that used magic stones.
“To be honest, I sometimes think about how nice it would be to be able to acquire magic stones as easily as you Saintesses. Of course, it wouldn’t be good for our business though.”
The Adventurer chuckled. However, Zynis and Sauro looked at one another.
“There was a dungeon inland… Is that where they took her?”