Chapter 192 – I Almost Drowned!?
“Are you alright, Miss Alyssa?”
Rienna sounded worried as she sat down on the stairs, next to Alyssa, who was drinking some water.
When Rienna had seen Alyssa clinging onto me, she had gently pulled her off. And then she offered some water and fruit, which she had brought for our lunch, thinking that it would help calm her down.
Thanks to this, Alyssa slowly returned to herself.
She looked very red-faced as she replied.
“I-I am calm now. But Miss Rienna, what have I…”
“There is no need to speak of it. Both Lord Heal and I are quite experienced with this. Aren’t we, Lord Heal?”
Experienced with it. That was an odd way to put it, Rienna… Alyssa looked even more embarrassed now.
“Ah, yes. Alyssa. That was the smell of the sap and spores from the World Tree. If you inhale or eat it… You will start acting strangely.”
“And so… Oh, I’ve done a terrible thing to you, Lord Heal!”
Alyssa bowed her head towards me.
“No, it is I…”
“And in front of Miss Rienna… Both of you, I am so…”
As Alyssa became teary eyed, Rienna waved her hands in front of her.
Alyssa seemed to be very frantic. Rienna and I were often seen together, and perhaps all this talk of experience had made her think that we were married.
I was going to explain, but Rienna opened her mouth first.
“Please don’t worry about it, Miss Alyssa. Besides, there is no need to lie about your feelings.”
“In any case, we can talk about this later. It seems like Shiel has returned.”
Rienna smiled and turned around to look at the top of the staircase.
Shiel was hopping down in our direction.
And on top of Shiel’s body were what looked like three helmets.
“Huh? Are these the masks?”
They appeared to be made of mithril, but there was also a panel of glass inside. The side with the glass was clearly the side where your face would be.
“The glass is likely a Leviathan scale. So Mappa made it for us? This will protect not just our mouth, but eyes as well. Alright, let’s put these on and go take another look.”
They replied and then took the helmets from Shiel. I put mine on as well and we returned to the spot that we had been digging.
While walking, I realized that something was strange.
Rienna walked next to me as she asked,
“Is there something wrong, Lord Heal?”
“Uh, nothing. I just thought that something was strange.”
“Huh? Yes, we do look quite strange in these.”
Said Rienna. Alyssa answered.
“However, I think they would work well with the suits we wear when riding the Mado Armors.”
“Indeed… These helmets won’t look bad when paired with the suits. Perhaps he had made these helmets for that very purpose.”
Judging by how Shiel turned her body as if nodding, it seemed to be correct. So Mappa must have asked Shiel to deliver them to us.
That being said, it wasn’t that the helmets themselves were strange. It just felt like there was something missing… Ah, I see.
I turned around.
But there was no one there.
“Mappa… Mappa isn’t here.”
“Now that you mention it…”
Rienna said as if my words had jolted her memory.
Alyssa looked puzzled as she tilted her head.
“Is it so strange that Mister Mappa isn’t here?”
“Yes, it is. He always appears during times like these… But perhaps he is too busy now with constructing the armors.”
Or perhaps Shiel didn’t tell Mappa that the underground smelled like the World Tree.
In any case, I returned straight to the spot where we had been digging.
There was magic energy drifting around the rock walls. It must be what was creating the smell.
“It’s leaking from over there.”
I could see a small crack in the wall. That was where the smell was coming from.
“Either there was a lot of sap stored there, or some of the tree is still alive… In any case, I’m going to dig.”
I raised my pickaxe and struck the crack.
The rock wall crumbled. What came into view, was what looked like a lake that was filled with sap.
Alyssa used a torch to cast light up ahead.
The surface of the lake sparkled under the light. This sap looked quite yellow.
“It is the color of honey… So the sap of the World Tree was stored here?”
“But it isn’t as thick as the sap of Sheorl’s World Tree. It’s almost like water… Hmm. This smell?”
Rienna raised her helmet a little and sniffed the air.
“Ri-Rienna. That’s dangerous.”
“I’m fine. And more importantly…this is the smell of liquor.”
“Yes. Perhaps the sap and water combined, and after enough time passed, it became liquor. Just like how a liquor-like substance can sometimes be found in old beehives.”
“I see. So this is similar to honey wine?”
That being said, I had my doubts when it came to drinking it.
What if we drank it, and everyone started turning crazy…
And maybe there was rock and charcoal mixed in.
“We’ll take some in a drinking bottle and return. Then I will have Baris and Aries investigate it carefully. And if there is no problem with it, then the people of Arancia can drink it.”
“That is a good idea. I will do it then.”
So saying, Rienna started to open the bottle that she had brought.
But just then, she suddenly became unstable on her feet.
I had meant to hold her from behind in order to support her.
However, my foot slipped, and the both of us fell into the alcoholic lake.
“Lord Heal! Lady Rienna!!”
I could hear Alyssa shouting.
But as the helmet was made so that liquid couldn’t enter, I could still breathe.
Rienna was in front of me, and I could see that she was conscious, as her eyes were open.
So we wouldn’t drown.
“Are you okay, Rienna?”
I said while looking into her face.
Rienna said something and then bowed her head.
Judging by the way her lips moved, she had probably said, ‘sorry.’
Regardless, we just had to get out of the water. But when I thought about this, I saw that something was glowing at the bottom of the lake.
“A jewel? No…there’s a ridiculous amount of magic energy!”
The thing that was glowing had more magic energy than the liquid around it.
The bottom of the lake was not too deep. And so I picked up the glowing object and returned to the surface of the water. Rienna also came out of the water at the same time.
And then Alyssa pulled us out of the water.
“You two! Are you alright!?”
“Aye, I’m fine.”
“I-I’m so very sorry, Lord Heal.”
Rienna bowed her head.
“No, this place is just slippery. Besides, we were fine because of these helmets.”
It was almost as if Mappa knew that this was going to happen.
As you were able to breathe for a short while, it would be very easy to swim in combination with the suit.
“Still, this glowing object…”
It was about the size of a potato, and had wrinkles like some kind of seed.
“A seed…could it be…”
“Lord Heal, this…”
Rienna and I looked at each other.
“The seed of a World Tree!?”
The World Tree seed that we had once planted with our own hands. This had the same shape as it.