It was then announced to the others that the Saintesses were tired, and so while the guests were disappointed, the banquet continued and ended without the Saintesses ever appearing. The only thing left for them to do was finish their work as diplomats, sightsee, and leave.
But after the banquet, representatives from each country were called to an emergency meeting.
And unlike during dinner, Arthur was here with a severe expression.
“I am sorry to keep you here at this hour. Let me be frank with you all. The Saintesses have vanished.”
“They left a note saying that they will be traveling. We now know that they have taken a train. They are headed for the dwarf country now. However, we are not sure where they are exactly at this moment.”
“There was an official visit planned soon after this very ceremony, so why…”
The elf representative mumbled.
“Perhaps they didn’t want to stay here another minute.”
“Chief of the birdfolk.”
“My son was insulted by them as well. But I hear that their attitude towards the Saintesses was most extreme. Especially yesterday.”
Miragaia said as he gave the inland people a meaningful stare.
“Afterall, the people who caused the uproar are still here.”
If Chiharu were still here, she would have been quite surprised at how thoughtful the birdman seemed at this moment.
“Hmph. Arthur, perhaps it is this country that has not treated the Saintesses adequately.”
“What did you say!”
It was the beastfolk and elves who stood up from their seats.
“Even if they are gone now, God will just bring down another one. Why are you all so worried?”
“You. Were you not listening to Maki when she shouted yesterday? Saintesses or not, they have families, they have their own lives. And yet they are forcefully torn from all of that when they come here. Even if it is the will of God, it is a grave thing. You should know that well after yesterday.”
“It took six months for these Saintesses to arrive. And for some reason, it was two that came. They say that God created this world on a whim. How can you not understand that he may destroy it on a whim as well?”
Arthur looked at everyone and continued.
“We will, of course, search and if possible, bring them back and start their journey again properly. But there is no guarantee that something like this won’t happen again. These Saintesses are active, and we do not know when or where they will appear in a different country. And so I wanted to tell you now. Also…”
He looked harshly at the inland people.
“There is one country that needs to reconsider its stance on God and the Saintesses. You are therefore banned from entering this country until there is an official apology. Tell that to your king.”
“The people will not stand for this.”
“The dwarf lands.”
“And the elven lands. We will all break off with any relations with the inlands. This will continue until Arthur accepts your apology.”
“Hmph. There was hardly a relationship between our countries to begin with. We will be leaving then.”
The inland people said as they stormed out of the room.
“I can only hope that their king understands the impact of delayed imports of magic gems. Should we send some bird people to tell him?”
“I am not that kind. It will take them 10 days to return. It will then take several days to fix this problem, supposing that they understand the message properly. It will be hard for their people, but it has to be like this, or they will just repeat the same mistakes. They need to suffer a little for once. Also, Sauro and Saikania.”
“Didn’t you two say that you didn’t carry the Saintesses?”
“We didn’t carry any Saintesses dressed like boys. If you meant Saintesses dressed like girls, we did carry someone like that.”
“Such trickery. We could have moved much faster had we known this.”
“Maki and Chiharu needed their freedom. That is what we thought.”
“It seems that you two may have already grasped the root of the problem then.”
During this time, Maki and Chiharu were already inside the inland region of the dwarf country.
“Maki-chan, I just realized something.”
They were pretending to be siblings who were traveling to meet relatives that were adventurers. Chiharu, the younger of the two spoke sadly.
“I won’t be able to get drinks in this disguise.”
Their journey had only just begun.