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Amidst the fog, within the deep forest, several people walked forth.
“Be careful. This parts aren’t within human territories.”
“By the way, why do we have to go through kind of place?”
At one of the men’s ‘too troublesome’-tone, the man in the middle made a sour face.
“It can’t be helped. We have orders. It’s because there’s some monster or demon around”
“Well I get that. But is there any point in going this deep into unexplored areas?”
“Who knows. But I heard some rumors that some unbelievable monster may have become active. Then again, I don’t know the exact details. What, we’ll just retreat if we didn’t encounter anything after exploring for a few days”
“Even if you say that, how much can we trust that suspicious rumor?”
There were three of them.
Since they were wearing armor, anyone seeing them would think that they’re a country’s soldiers
Though they had nervous expressions, they had the air of people who are burdened by a bothersome task, just oozing off of them.
Even though they’re soldiers, there’s no guarantee that they could leave safely after they enter into the woods.
This peculiarity of functioning with information that they can’t confirm or disprove, naturally led to a complain or two.
Suddenly, the soldier who was walking ahead noticed something and stopped his advance.
“Please wait a minute……, something’s not right”
“What is it?”
The man in the middle who seemed to be the leader inquired, but he also felt the strange atmosphere and stopped on his tracks.
“The fog……got denser?”
The haze worsened on in the initially dim surroundings.
Before they noticed it, the fog was becoming thicker and darker.
“What……what the hell is this!?!”
The men were thrown into confusion yet they immediately put up their guard.
They heard a scream coming from the guy at the back.
The commander attempted to help, but the screaming man’s face was distorted from fear, he retreated.
And finally, he fled in a frenzy.
“What just happened!”
His outreached hand wasn’t able to stop the other.
The commander clicked his tongue but in this dense mist, there was nothing that he could do but grind his teeth.
“This……I have heard of this kind of fog. It’s a fog that destroys one’s spirit, found in the fairy territory”
But in witnessing that phenomenon that he had only heard made his blood run cold.
“Then this mist is……”
The first man paled and immediately shut his mouth, but who knew if that helped in anything.
Remembering his duties, the commander motivated himself.
“Aa, it seems that we have entered a problematic place”
“W-we have to escape!”
“Calm down! You horse-brain! Keep your wits with you! Let’s carefully trace back our steps on how we got here!”
But these soldiers knew nothing.
Fairy magic does not only affect the mind, it also messes with the senses.
Kawazu-san narrowed his eyes as he observed a crystal ball.
The Queen at his side was donning a satisfied smile as she traced the throne’s armrest with her fingers.
This was in the Queen’s throne-room.
There was something called [Wood of Mist] in the fairies’ place, at the center of the large tree.
It was in the Fairy Castle.
“…….thank you, you have excellent tastes”
There was a complex magical formation drawn in the middle of the throne room. It was activated, the magic releasing it’s power.
There were newly added symbols within the magical formation, those parts were altered.
It was all done by Kawazu-san.
Even the Queen who was doubtful at the beginning was in a good mood. She had a change of mind after witnessing the performance of the barrier, no doubt, the results were dramatic.
“The consumption of magical power was lessened considerably compared to before. Even so, the effects had increased” (Q)
“Yes, it should have an increased usability” (K)
Then again, it was also a problem that the result was dramatic.
The Queen looked at Kawazu-san with her cold eyes and quietly placed a hand on his shoulder.
“……could something like this really be done overnight? Who are you really, magician?”
The question was asked in a cold, scrutinizing voice. Kawazu-san wasn’t just calm, he was even lightheartedly laughing, and talked about himself.
“It’s nothing, raising the efficiency of magical formations is just my specialty. It’s natural so it comes naturally. Back in my country, I worked on restoring ancient magics from books”
“Ancient Magics, is it……. . I heard that this barrier is an ancient artifact as well”
The Queen also recalled an old lore that was passed down through the generations way before her own. She smiled in interest.
Long ago, in the era of the gods, there was a legendary magical civilization. Even with a fairy’s long life span, it’s still a dust-covered faraway fairy-tale.
“I see. It’s a well-made magic. Even I haven’t dabbled into something like this”
In extremely rare cases where such direct magic had left it’s traces on books, their footprints are fleeting.
The Queen nodded at Kawazu-san, satisfied. She returned her gaze at the crystal ball and pointed at the panicking people.
“And then? What about those men?”
“Kindly excuse me, but we have left them for a while as they are, so please let them return”
It was quite unexpected, so the Queen raised her eyebrows inquisitively.
“I don’t mind but, is it fine to let them go without killing them?”
It may sound cold but trespassing into the territory of other races would usually result in death, rarely to be left alive.
Kawazu-san briefly nodded to the Queen who was seeking for answers.
“Let’s put those people out of our mind. They should have already learned that this is a dangerous place”
Although it’s bad for the soldiers, he added that like an afterthought. However, suddenly Kawazu-san laughed like he suddenly remembered something.
“Kukuku, we~ll if you fail that gaudily, I think that someone would be bound to follow your footsteps, but it’s earlier than I thought it would be. Besides, I exercised reasonable care” (K)
The Queen widened her eyes after hearing that.
“In the end, it’s for the sake of That, huh…… but I don’t understand”
“What is it?”
As Kawazu-san asked, the Queen expressionlessly stood up.
Lifting the crystal ball, That had a stupid expression that was vaguely projected.
The image wasn’t clear.
It was like an unstable picture, as if something was interrupting it.
“……why are you shouldering That? Are you not afraid?”
Those words escaped the Queen’s lips without a trace of amusement, it was full of doubt and seriousness.
Kawazu-san was fully aware of if, so he quietly closed his eyes at once and replied in a powerless voice.
That voice, if Tarou was around, he would surely immediately remember the old man that once appeared in his dream.
“……that’s right. Your Highness, when a person is about to die, do you think there are things that he doesn’t regret?”
“I wonder? This one hasn’t experienced death yet. However if you’re alive, there might be some things that remain to bother you”
“……me, I had none. No, I may have been desperate. I delved into researched and I had a glimpse of what magic could be. Then I realized that with the body that I had, such majestic magic could only ever be a dream for me”
That was a person’s, an old wizard’s, confession.
“I don’t understand it. What have you seen?”
“Just my frail self. Even so, I can only entrust my dreams to magic. The undertaking that I thought was useless, it succeeded like a miracle. I got to witness it’s effects when I wasn’t supposed to have the chance to do so. The time that I obtained by chance, I do not intend on using it on trivial conflicts”
There was no hesitation in Kawazu-san’s eyes. On the contrary, the Queen caught passion, like lightning, flash in his eyes.
“So you would even discard your race for that? I do not understand”
“That’s just a short time. I only gave That the bare minimum of what is needed. But with just those, That would not be able to hurt anyone. I think that would be my responsibility. From there on out…….would be just my selfishness”
“…….but when you said you only gave the bare minimum, can anything really stop That, realistically? That is something that shouldn’t occur. What about now? Do you think this Mistress will lend you a hand somehow?”
The Queen said.
Kawazu-san immediately met her eyes, and revealed a slight hesitation.
“……that may be so. But whatever the result, I won’t stop trying and I will stop anything that will get in the way. We~ll no matter what I’d do, I feel like That will keep on living freely. What do you think, Fairy Lord? Do you feel like questioning this old man’s sanity?”
With those words, at last, time silently passed by.
It could have only been a few seconds.
The one that broke the silence was a mischief-loving fairy.
“Fufufu~tsu…… my, for a long time now, humans had always been acting strange. Besides, That is also alive. It’s not like being alive, then and there, is a crime. Given, That might also have some purpose. Worry not, I shall observe laissez-faire. No matter how you shall fall, you will pay dearly…… besides, you are interesting”
“I could breath easy, thanks to your assurance”
“Do not be mistaken, human, this is not for your peace of mind. If I had to put it in words…… it should be something like a whim. Let me hear one more thing. What is it that you wish to see?”
“……a real Wizard”
“Fumu, then until time the so-called “Real” is revered, let’s leisurely wait and see. Whether it’s good or disastrous, we’ll see the results”
“Hohoho, Her Highness is indeed a whimsical Queen”
“Fuu, and you’re quite something as well. I’ve always thought that humans are specis that aren’t restless or carefree enough, it seems that it was a mistake on this Mistress’ part”
What kind of result it would be, no one knows yet.
There is no meaning in the result.
There would just be a fleeting dream.
T/N: this was fun. I usually skip extra chapters but I’m fast becoming a fan of Kawazu-san. Also, i’ll be doing 6 chapters a week starting today until the middle of January. 4 regular chapters, 2 extra to make up for my absence, +any donation.
1st regular chapter, I’m officially back
P.S. no editors still, feel free to comment my mistakes and I’ll fix ’em. Thanks for reading!