He said in a loud voice.
“Please stop casting so many nets into the lake. Then we might meet again.”
He said with a smile. And then he went into the water. It was a promise to visit this lake again.
Once the last of the merfolk had disappeared into the water, Maki and Chiharu saw a familiar pair of white wings.
“Now, let’s go back.”
“What? Didn’t you promise not to come because you draw too much attention?”
Chiharu couldn’t help but say to Sauro, but Norfe realized his identity at the same time.
“You. You’re the Midland birdman! You and the beastkin. Is Midland trying to instigate something!”
See! Chiharu thought with annoyance.
“I’m not from Midland.”
Sauro declared as he combed back his short hair with his hand. Who would believe that!
Chiharu screeched in her heart. At the same time, Norfe raised his voice in anger.
“I don’t believe you. You’re from the castle in Midland. The one who never works and is always playing with the Saintesses.”
“You. Now that I think about it, you’re that rude royal.”
If anything, Norfe was more angry about being recognized so late. Sauro didn’t reply. He just opened his wings wide and then declared,
“Borders have no meaning to us. I just came to Highland to sightsee.”
The other birdfolk declared.
“Then why are the beastkin dogs here!”
The beast answered.
“And these Lowland boys?”
Norfe thought it was ridiculous but was at a loss for words. It was then that Chouze asked the question in a small voice.
“They ran away from home. I’m here to take them back.”
“But they were selling oranges!”
“It must have been part of the disguise.”
Suggested Sauro. Maki and Chiharu were very annoyed now. It was true that they had originally been headed for the elf lands. And the oranges were used as a disguise. So Sauro wasn’t actually wrong. However, who was sent back home by so many birdfolk after running away from home?
“Are they so important for all you to come…”
Maki had been thinking this for a while. The only one here who seemed remotely normal was Norfe. However, the birdfolk ignored him.
“Now, let’s take the little runaways home. The Highland air is wonderful!”
He declared. And then Maki, Chiharu, Edwy, and Aaron were picked up.
“The upward current is especially great!”
“I’m going to go to the royal capital next time!”
The other birdfolk informed Norfe as they took flight.
Chiharu had survived all of the training, and yet when so many wings started to beat at once, she could not stop her wig from blowing off. Her long hair blew in the wind. Norfe saw it and shouted.
“You! The orange girl!”
No! I mean, yes. But, no! Chiharu protested wordlessly. The gazers looked startled.
“No! Maybe? That hair! You are the Saintess!”
Norfe realized it on his own. It was no wonder… Chiharu thought her eyes met his for a second. They had been wide with shock. However, Chiharu and Maki were quickly taken away by the birdfolk, and the gazers followed them.
The only thing that remained now was some stunned soldiers and the prince and princess of Highland.