Dilon and Corete were shocked by Edwy’s words at first, but they quickly returned to themselves. The miasma. Second form. It was likely a monster.
The four of them rushed down the hill. They quickly sensed that Zynis was close by.
“Over there! What!”
There stood Zynis, in his third form, and two birdfolk. And in front of them, stood a young boy and girl. And in the sky above…
“I can’t even count them. Gazers…”
There were so many that he muttered out loud. The monsters looked just like they did when facing an Adventurer in a dungeon. Like they were about to attack. And to Edwy, Maki and Chiharu looked a lot more nervous than they had been at the border town. Next to him, Dilon and Corete changed shape. Their nails became strong and thick. Their maw extended and their fangs sharpened. It was their second form. On close inspection, the birdfolk also had their claws out.
To Edwy, it seemed that the monsters reacted to his voice, and grew larger. As Dilon and Corete moved in to attack, Zynis stepped in front of them.
“They told us not to interfere.”
Zynis’s calm voice made them pause. Still, they remained on their guard as they looked at the boy and girl and the gazers.
“They are so wild.”
“Agitated. You were supposed to grow slowly but were unleashed too early. You became gazers too soon?”
“The cave was small and you couldn’t grow. Do you want to get bigger? You don’t want to return to a stone?”
It was if they could hear the sounds of agitation. However, while they seemed nervous, the boy and girl faced them quietly.
“So, do you want to travel outside a little?”
The gazers swayed to the side.
“What are those two saying?”
“Shh. They are able to hear the voices of the monsters.”
Edwy scolded Dilon. Next to them, Corete and Aaron watched in disbelief.
“You don’t want to travel? Oh, you sure are willful.”
The girl said. And the gazers buzzed angrily. However, it seemed more like they were sulking and muttering. Sulking? That was ridiculous. Dilon shook his head.
As they talked, the boy and girl seemed to grow less nervous, and they even smiled.
“What should we do then?”
Why was that even a question? Monsters should be defeated. That was it. Dilon was incredibly annoyed by the boy. Now that he thought about it, this was the boy who had been selling the Soluna oranges. He recalled the dark eyes and the hands that had held his. No, they hadn’t done that. Dilon shook his head again.
“Can’t you just all join into one big gazer? If you’re too small, you can become bigger.”
The girl said innocently.
“You’ve never done that before? Of course, you haven’t. But you’re made of miasma, aren’t you? Can’t you just all gather together?”
What a ridiculous request. Suddenly, Dilon felt sorry for the monsters. The monsters in the sky seemed confused as they started to converse with each other.
“What? You’ll try? Yes. We’ll watch.”
As if they represented the others, two small gazers came out to the front and faced each other.
The boy and girl held their hands together in front of them as if they were praying.
As the two gazers quietly came together, their large eyes closed and then stuck together. Then their silhouettes seemed to blur, and then it grew larger and a single eye opened.
The gazer blinked slowly.
“How do you feel? You feel good?”
Apparently, they didn’t feel agitated anymore. Upon seeing this, the other gazers started to melt into each other.
“He-hey, maybe three is too…oh…uh… Isn’t that too big? I told you.”
The girl said with exasperation. Still, they continued to melt together until there were only five large gazers in the sky.
“You calmed down now, so you don’t mind returning to magic stones? Why are you in such a rush?”
The boy said with a sigh.
“Oh well. Come on then.”
The boy and girl stretched out their hands. The gazers approached as if they wanted to be petted. And then the stones clinked to the ground.
“This is the power of the Saintesses.”
Before they knew it, there was not a single monster left. Dilon, Corete, and Aaron stood there in shock.