Two Saints – 154

The Mirror Lake

Maki rested up that night. She was worried that she wouldn’t be able to move if she didn’t rest, and she was also tired from her travels with the birdfolk. And so when she opened her eyes, the sun was already high in the sky.

“Damn it! I slept for too long!”
“Don’t worry. It would be no good to travel if you were still tired. You would not be able to move enough.”

Sera said as Maki got up frantically. She would usually come into the room after Maki or Chiharu had called them, but she was already in the room now. And she immediately gave Maki some tea.

“Hehe. It’s green tea.”
“Yes. Midland is not like your country, where there are big differences in the four seasons. So new sprouts grow out all of the time, meaning that you can always enjoy new tea. This is all thanks to you, Saintess Maki.”
“Oh, not at all. I just happened to know.”

Sera had timed it so that the tea would be read when Maki got up, and it did wonders for clearing her head. She must have been very concerned about Maki.

“You’re worried about Saintess Chiharu.”
“Yes. I thought she was in danger at first, because this was the inland people. They mocked us, saying that we were replaceable.”

Maki said as she recalled the information that Chiharu had told her yesterday.

“But it seems like they are keeping her imprisoned as a way of easily making magic stones out of monsters. That angers me, of course. But it at least means they won’t hurt her as long as she is useful to them.”

She then finished her tea and stretched her limbs before getting out of bed.

“And so it’s fine. Well, it’s not fine.”

Maki smiled wryly.

“I’ll leave the political stuff to Arthur and the others. So I can focus on freeing Chiharu as soon as possible.”

She declared.

“Your wellbeing is also very important, Saintess Maki. Please don’t push yourself too hard.”
“Yes! I actually bought you a gift, Sera. But it will have to wait until this is all over. Because I left it in the beast lands.”
“Oh, I look forward to receiving it, once you two are together again.”

And so she left Sera in order to talk to Arthur and the others about the future, and by midday, Maki left with Edwy and the birdfolk and headed inland.

Their destination was the mirror lake. The birdfolk who would be carrying the merfolk had already left early in the morning. She didn’t know how they would meet up. But nothing would begin until they went. The bridfolk were nothing if not a ball of action.

“As long as they think it’s interesting, anyway.”

“Exactly. But I have no idea why they would find it interesting to carry some heavy merfolk.”

Maki and Edwy would talk about such things.

They took one break along the way and then headed straight for the mirror lake. The last time they had traveled inland from Lowland, they had taken multiple breaks and even stopped at an inn before finishing the last stretch by carriage. That time, the power and speed of the birdfolk was on a different level, and Maki and Edwy were now tougher as well. By the time that they arrived at a mountain clearing near the mirror lake in the evening, Maki had to chuckle at how much she had grown.

“The last time we were here, we snuck out of the inn, and then there were dogfolk who were scared of us.”

The season hadn’t even changed since then. But this was no time to be basking in such memories. Just then, she saw a bird person moving towards them from the lake. But the white feathers had only left Midland that morning.

“Ah, Mick. Were you able to meet up with the merfolk?”

It wasn’t as if they were hiding. They had been flying boldly in the sky, and they would have been visible from the lake. And so this bird person called Mick arrived as soon as Maki and Edwy’s feet hit the ground.

“I suppose that you can say that we did.”
“What? That’s vague. What do you mean?”
“Well, it’s…”

Mick hesitated.

“In any case, come to the lake villa. You will understand if you come.”
“Wait. We don’t want the royals to find out that we are here.”
“That won’t be a problem. The villa is under our control now. There is no danger for the Saintess.”

Time seemed to stop after Mick said those words.

“Under control?”
“It’s difficult to explain! Just come with me!”

It seemed like Mick was someone that they could trust. And so Sauro and Saikania suggested that they do as he said.

“Alright. And it’s close enough to walk.”
“Yes, let’s do that then. He-hey!”

In spite of it only being a fifteen minute walk, the birdfolk ignored Maki and Edwy’s protests and carried them away.

“This is where we escaped last time.”
“And this time, it’s where we will enter.”

While it was only a short trip, Maki and Edwy looked a little tired as they landed in front of the room where the merfolk chief had been held, no, stayed because he couldn’t be bothered to escape.
When they turned around, they could see the mirror lake. Normally, the beautiful orange leaves of the trees would have been reflected in the water’s surface. Normally.

In other words, there was so much traffic going on now. The lake was filled with splashes as people swam to and fro. In other words…

“Maki. And the Midland prince. You’re late.”

We’re not late. And hadn’t he said something about sending light merfolk so that it would be easier for the birdfolk to carry them? But Amia was incredibly heavy.

A bench had been brought outside, and Amia was sitting gracefully on it. Maki watched him and recalled how hard it had been to carry his weight.

“Amia. What is going on here? I did hear from Sauro that you wanted merfolk carried to the inland castle, but why are you here too?”
“Well, we merfolk could not stay quiet after Chiharu was abducted.”

Amia replied to Edwy as if this were a very silly question.

“Then let’s just ignore the fact that the merfolk chief is here for now. What is happening in this villa?”

Edwy’s voice seemed to be shaking a little. There were no humans to be seen. However, there were a lot of merfolk moving around with curious expressions.

“It’s quite simple. As it was an emergency, we took possession of the villa.”

Took possession.

“What happened to the servants and guards…”
“The guards wouldn’t listen to us, so they were put in the dungeons. The servants continue to work.”

In other words, it had been taken over by force. That’s what had happened.

“Now that I think about it, Saia said that they aren’t protected by any territory, nor do they want to help anyone. He said that he wouldn’t do anything to change the current balance.”

Maki recalled with some annoyance.

“Hmm. That is also true. But the inland people are the ones who abducted the precious child first. It is the same thing as declaring war on us merfolk. We explained this to them very carefully. And it was only those who would still not listen that were put in the dungeons.”

Amia said, as if there was no problem at all. Maki felt her head start to hurt. But she decided to leave the matter to Sauro and Edwy.

“Well, if that’s the case. Then this can be our base.”
“Yes. It should be fine as long as the prisoners are treated well.”

They adapted too quickly! Sauro, Saikania and Edwy were already acting as if the matter had been settled.

“Then as a human representative, I will go and put the minds of the servants at ease. Maki, you should rest for a while.”
“We’ll discuss how we should go to the castle. Maki, you stay here with Amia.”

And then they went off somewhere.

“Well, you should rest next to me.”

Still stunned, Maki walked unsteadily towards Amia and sat down next to him. She missed Chiharu more than ever…

Next Chapter

Two Saints wander off into a Different World

2 Comments Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: