Hello everyone, I am thinking of continuing this series at least until the previous translator can continue it again. So I apologize if there are wrong words and bad translations. I myself am still learning and trying to be better in the future.
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Thank you, stay healthy and hope you can enjoy it.
…Oh, I’m getting so strong. This makes me feel like a famous person.
“Hahahaha! There’s only one word to describe it, and that word is amazing!”
Sylvird laughed loudly with his eyes wide open. Because it was a magic stone that was called a national treasure, its effect was a considerable result that surprised even him.
“Fufu… Ain, you have become more amazing.”
“Ah, um… thank you?”
“Umu. This is a good result.──But I can’t figure it out.”
It has been very impressive so far. However, in a complete change from the shock, Sylvird suddenly realized something. He put his hand over his mouth, pondered, and glanced at Olivia.
“──Olivia. You’re not planning this, are you?”
When the atmosphere tightened up, Olivia opened her mouth with an expression of contemplation.
“Ara, have I been exposed?”
“You, who love Ain so much. You should have known about Ain’s ability to absorb magic stones.”
…So, where should I start? Olivia continued without saying anything roundabout.
“Grandfather? What are you talking about…?”
“It’s not a big deal. It’s just that Olivia had planned this day very carefully.”
Olivia laughed softly at Ain’s confusion and began to explain her true intentions.
“…I was afraid to commit root on Logas. I knew it was for the sake of Ishtalika, but I wasn’t ready to give my life to that house and share life and death with Logas.”
The word “root” was familiar to him. But since he had not heard what it meant, Ain listened quietly.
“I was not ready to share my body with him as his wife. This is unforgivable. But I am a Dryad. To take root so easily, I sometimes cry just thinking about it.”
Olivia’s face clouded as she continued to speak.
“But I was married. If we don’t have a child, the secret agreement between the countries will not be fulfilled. Therefore, I gave birth to Ain as a dryad.”
Then, Sylvird’s expression became cloudy. He also felt guilty.
“After that, I just focused on Ain’s happiness. He was compared to his brother, treated in a way he never wanted to be remembered, so there was no reason for him to stay in that house… that was I thought.”
However, the problem of the sea crystals remained. This is why Olivia went to investigate the sea crystal alone to solve the problem.
“The power to absorb magic stones. If I announce it in Heim, where the differences in people are still minimal, if I’m not careful, he could be killed.”
In other words, she knew that Ain was capable of absorbing magic stones. Nevertheless, it would have been ill-advised for her to tell anyone about it in Heim, and so, she couldn’t bring herself to tell anyone. Therefore, she thought of Ain and returned to Ishtalika.
This was her plan for Ain to get to Dullahan’s magic stone.
(I-it’s… a lie, isn’t it? That means that she had been thinking about today for that long?)
The unexpected plan left Ain dumbfounded. But Sylvird, on the other hand, opened his mouth with a serious look on his face and asked Olivia.
“And Ain is a child born from the Dryad’s special characteristics?”
Olivia nodded, but her face looked a little embarrassed.
“What do you mean by “born from the Dryad characteristics”? And what does it mean to take root?”
“I apologize, but I don’t think I should be the one to tell you that.”
Ain leaked a weak, lamenting voice. Sylvird laughed at Ain’s voice and said his next words in a slightly harsh tone.
“I have decided to preach to Olivia. So, I apologize, but I think you should hear it from Warren and the others.”
After that, they left the treasure room in an extremely awkward situation.
What are they talking about? Ain wondered, and after leaving them, he walked around the castle looking for Warren.
◇ ◇ ◇
“Fumu… no matter how many times I see it, it’s still a wonderful stats.”
“As Warren-dono says. The power of toxin decomposition and absorption, combined with the gift of training that Ain-sama obtained himself! No, there’s no better combination than this…!”
The place where he had arrived was a salon in the corner of the castle. He found Lloyd and Warren taking a break and told them what had happened in the treasure room. After showing them his status card for more than ten minutes, they looked at it over and over again and let out words of surprise.
“Ah, Warren-san. I came here because I wanted to ask you something.”
“To me? Yes, you can ask me anything.”
“──What does it mean to take root?”
In the next moment, the air froze. The two men looked at each other and then looked at Ain as if to say something.
“Suddenly talking about taking root… what’s going on?”
Warren said to him, and he told him what Sylvird had said before he went to give the speech to Olivia. The content is small, and the information is limited, but Ain explained it in detail.
“…Haha, I see. So that’s the reason.”
Lloyd nodded with a satisfied expression.
“I didn’t understand what it meant at all, and I didn’t get the point of what Grandfather was saying either.”
In the first place, what are the characteristics of a Dryad? This is where he needs an explanation.
Then, while the two of them were stammering, a new person arrived.
“Ah, Ain. There you are-nya.”
Katima came in with a light-hearted attitude that could be called a helping hand.
“Huh, Katima-san? What’s wrong?”
“My little sister asked me to help you, so I came-nya.”
She walked up to him without hesitation, sat down on the sofa, and threw a piece of tea cake from the table into her mouth. She looked at the two who had been stammering, wiped her mouth, and began to talk.
“Well, I’ll tell you everything-nya.”
Ain swallowed his saliva. That is because the mystery is going to be solved at last.
“A Dryad can produce the same Dryad only once in their life, without intercourse with the opposite sex-nya.”
“…You mean single reproduction?”
“Hmm-nya, in the case of Dryads, it’s root division-nya. Although you do need blood from the opposite sex for that-nya.”
According to Katima, it’s a bit complicated. By sharing a magic stone and a core, a Dryad can give birth to a being that should be their own guardian. Their appearance, personality, and other details reflect the influence of the being who will be their guardian. These characteristics exist for a reason.
“And the other characteristic is the root-nya.”
She tossed another tea cake into her mouth.
I want you to tell me quickly. said the frustrated Ain inwardly.
“Dryads are a race that can only mate with one person in their lifetime-nya. When they do, they share their life with that other person… which means that this difficult characteristic is taken root-nya.”
What is this cat talking about? Ain looked at her with such eyes.
But she’s very serious.
“What’s with your eyes-nya? It’s the truth-nya! That’s why there are so few Dryads-nya!”
“…Is that true?”
When Ain looked away and looked at Warren, he smiled and nodded.
“I see, then I believe it.”
“Why don’t you believe me-nya?”
It’s not that Ain didn’t trust her, but Warren was very persuasive. He was the Prime Minister, and he had that much influence.
“Well, it’s a bitter pill to swallow-nya. Besides, Dryads have the ability to hypnotize, so by using this ability, she can avoid the night service-nya.”
It may have been a measure to avoid the so-called nighttime interaction between the couple.
Ain was appalled by this explanation.
“And the reason is probably the death of the previous Earl of Roundheart-nya.”
When Olivia married, she had intended to fulfill her duties. The reason why that feeling quickly dissolved was probably because she was disappointed by many things. As well as her feelings for Roundheart, she was also disappointed with the research team in her home country of Ishtalika.
──In the midst of all this grief, she was afraid to take root, to risk her life. This is where the two of the vassals feel a strong sense of regret.
“…Olivia got away with a bit, but I hope you’ll forgive her-nya.”
The way she gave birth was unusual, but still, she gave birth to Ain. This is where the fear of taking root, of sharing life, should be taken into account.
In her distress, she chose to use her characteristics. This was necessary to save her own life.
“Father also said he was going to preach to her, but he was probably just talking to her.”
“…Thank goodness. I’m so relieved.”
Ain felt pity for Olivia, and his heart clenched tightly. It’s the same for Lloyd and Warren, and their expressions are gloomy.
“Phew… Now that I’ve heard so much about it, I feel relieved and convinced, and I feel really hungry.”
He laughed in a light-hearted manner.
“Y-your nerves are so strong-nya…? Or are you just an idiot-nya…?”
“I must say, I’m relieved that mother is not taken root on fa ─ Logas. That means that there’s no need to worry about her life.”
Then Ain speaks with a refreshed face.
“I’ve learned something that I didn’t know, and that’s enough for me.”
Olivia herself had worked very hard for Ishtalika. She rewarded her own fears by avoiding interaction with Logas. The fact that she had been able to put together a deal for the sea crystals should have been enough to fulfill her duties as a princess.
“But if the two of you feel that this conversation is inappropriate, I don’t think it can be helped.”
What do you think? Ain looked at them with such eyes.
“Royalty has their duty, however.”
Warren said. Before he could finish, Lloyd opened his mouth.
“However, due to the fault of our subordinates, we have done a great deal of harm to Olivia-sama.”
“You are right, Lloyd-dono. Moreover, the secret agreement was broken by Heim in the first place.”
The condition of the secret agreement was that Olivia’s child would become the head of the family. The first to break this agreement was Roundheart. And Heim didn’t rebuke them for it.
“We have no intention of complaining about Olivia-sama’s actions.”
Warren said at last, and Ain took a breath.
“Hmm? I mean, how did I get born, then?”
“Dryads are not born from embryos, so they must be born from large nuts.”
Ain couldn’t make sense of it. He looked at her with eyes that said, “What is this cat talking about?” again.
“If they are in the human body, their stomachs are usually bigger-nya. When they give birth, they return to their Dryad bodies and drop nuts from the tree branches-nya.”
I see, I don’t understand.
However, I had to accept that this was the way of the species.
“…I mean, Katima-san. I think you’re eating too much.”
This is because Katima, who is supposed to be here to explain, is throwing tea cakes into her mouth whenever she has time. Doesn’t her mouth go dry when she eats one and then another?
“Don’t you think you’ll get fat if you eat too much?”
“Since I used my head, I need something sweet-nya! You’re just saying strange things-nya!”
From Ain’s point of view, this woman, Katima, was easy to understand. Perhaps it’s because she meows so much that she’s so easy to get along with.
(That’s what you call feeling like a pet, right?)
Although he can’t say it out loud, it’s funny to think about.
“By the way, back to the magic stone, there is actually another magic stone that is considered… a national treasure.”
Light and wind… the sight of that fog-shrouded scene, he was puzzled as to whether there were more magic stones than that.
“──Actually, the Demon King’s demon stone is displayed in the audience hall.”
“Eh… Uee? Is that true? The Demon King that the one that the first king defeated…?”
He had just heard the heroic tale of the first king. It was said that there is a magic stone of the demon king who appeared in the heroic story of the first king that he had just heard, and he was so surprised that he could not speak.
“Yes-nya. So, Ain, don’t go to the audience hall when you are hungry-nya. And just so you know, you can’t go to the audience hall on an accidental or not-so-accidental basis either-nya.”
He was deeply nailed, and Ain turned away with a black-and-white look in his eyes.
“…I would never do that.”
“Oya? Ain-sama, why is your face so loose?”
He was easily noticed, and he sipped his tea uncomfortably. He tried to deceive them, but they laughed at him.
“His Majesty, the First King, was the most powerful king of all time. Not only in power but also in the heart. We knights admire him.”
Lloyd repeatedly nodded as he recounted an anecdote that had been handed down to him, though he did not know it at the time.
“…Stronger than anyone else?”
Then the current words linger strongly in Ain’s mind.
The First King was stronger than anyone else, which was only natural since he had defeated the Demon King.
“Of course. Everyone in this country respects him from the bottom of their hearts.”
In other words, not only was he a great king, but his power was also at its peak.
When Ain sorted this out in his mind, he thought back to his exchange with Sylvird.
“I’m still trying to figure it out, but… I do admire His Majesty the First.”
He said that, to which Sylvird replied that it was an excellent admiration.
He noticed something. He spoke to Lloyd in that manner.
“If someone as strong as the first king, will his name reach Heim?”
“Of course. No matter how far away the country is, their prestige will reach them.”
When Ain heard this, he felt assured and got the last piece he hadn’t fitted.
(Oh, so that’s how it should be…!)
He could look back at not only Logas and the others, but at Heim itself, and prove Olivia’s worth. Also, as the crown prince, he was perfect and came up with the best way to solve everything.
(If I work hard enough to have my name reach Heim, like His Majesty the First, then… everything will be solved──!)
The moment he realized this, his mind was filled with a refreshing feeling.
“Um… Lloyd-san, how can I become like His Majesty the First?”
If it had been before he absorbed Dullahan’s magic stone, Ain would not have been able to ask such a question. With the confidence that he has gained thanks to Olivia, he looked at Lloyd with strong eyes.