It’s Ko-Fi’s Supporters’ chapter (115/125), enjoy~
As they proceeded through the corridor, which was at the lowest level visible, they were greeted by a huge door. It was much larger than those of the treasury in the royal castle, and its entire bronze-colored surface gave it an unmistakably massive appearance.
Instead, something was carved and painted on it.
A man and a woman were facing each other in what appeared to be a forest.
(Is cobblestone pavement normal?)
They must find another way to open the door to the shrine.
With that in mind, Ain looked around.
There was nothing new on the floor, the walls, or the ceiling, and the only thing in sight was the bronze door. All that remained was a row of lamps on the wall, each made of a medium similar to magic stone.
“I guess the only thing we can do is try to touch the door.”
“Oh, I’ll go first then.”
Chris stretched out her hand without hesitation, but the door didn’t budge.
“Let me do it next.”
Ain continued to reach out his hand, but the result was the same.
“Let’s touch it together to see if it works.”
However, the result remained the same: the bronze door did not budge. Then Chris couldn’t hold out any longer and pulled out her sword.
“Let’s destroy it.”
Ain put his hand on Chris’s shoulder and rebuked her, which made her ashamed of the action that had just occurred to her. But it wasn’t just her.
In fact, Ain was thinking the same thing.
“I’m itching to destroy it too, but let’s just think about it for a little while longer.”
It would be too late if something happened after destroying it, Ain added.
The reason why the two of them are considering violent means is solely due to the situation of the Sith Mill. They wanted to get things back to normal as soon as possible, so they were not afraid to force their way through if the need arose.
“Is there a trick somewhere else?”
“Maybe. If it is outside this room or hidden outside the shrine, for example, behind the waterfall, then we can choose to force our way through in earnest.”
“I agree. If push came to shove, I would destroy it myself.”
“Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that. In the meantime, we need to take a look around this corridor.”
“──Even so, there is nothing of interest except that thing.”
Chris said and pointed to a lamp by the wall. It was the only thing that was there, and it certainly didn’t look like a gimmick.
“I’ll go touch it.”
Thus, she made a short run to the wall and immediately touched the lamp. But there was no change at all in the lamp or the door, for that matter. She touched every lamp and looked around, but it was the same.
Ain followed with the same action, but the result remained the same.
The two were stuck in a stalemate, with no buttons hidden behind the lamps. Unsure of what to do, Ain sat down in front of the door and crossed his arms.
As he groans, he is suddenly overcome by an intense feeling of hunger.
Come to think of it; they haven’t eaten anything today.
“Let’s take a break. I need to get some energy in my stomach.”
“Right… it’s going to be a long time. I’ll have it ready in a minute.”
The magic tool of storage is useful, and meals can be prepared quickly in these places. However, heating up the food requires other magic tools, and elaborate cooking is impossible.
“Here you go.”
She prepared soft bread and grilled meat.
When Ain chewed the bread, the aroma of rich barley and its unique flavor filled his mouth. When the grilled meat was brought to the mouth, the stimulation of the well-prepared spices stimulated his brain. The meat was tender even when cold, indicating that it was not some cheap product.
Finally, a glass of water to moisten the mouth is all that is needed.
There was not much room to enjoy the flavors compared to usual meals, but it was enough to fill up the stomach.
Yes, it is enough if it fills you up.
(Maybe it is not enough.)
Ain was still suffering from hunger, but he looked up at the door instead of talking about it.
He looks at the lamp on the wall, and his gaze is caught by it. What if…? What if it was a magic stone?
In the past, when he became hungry, he used to suck the magic stones around him. In other words, if the lamp were a magic stone, he might be able to fill his stomach with it.
This is something he would never say to Chris. Chris would be appalled by his apparent lack of nervousness.
“I’ll go take another look.”
So he walked over to the structure to check it again and touched the lamp.
As he pays attention, he feels a hint of magic from the lamp. He let the toxin decomposition and absorption take effect, and as he vigorously absorbed the magic power, he felt his hunger fill up in the blink of an eye.
“Was it a magic stone?”
“‘Looks like it. I’ll try to absorb it all while I’m at it.”
No more of this is due to hunger but at the expectation that the door will open.
One, two… three.
Touching one at a time, he absorbs the magic and quickly finishes one side of the door. The rest were also absorbed easily without much to mention, and the lights went out completely, leaving pitch-black darkness.
──Without prior indication, the cobblestone pavement glowed in a dull manner. It glowed in a manner similar to the pillars that were outside, and the entire floor glowed fantastically through it.
Eventually, the door opened with a dull thud.
Ain saw it and exchanged glances with Chris, who was in front of the door.
“Looks like it’s open.”
“…What is it, how does it work?”
Oh, was it destined to be stunned by any means?
Her indescribable expression turned to Ain after she turned to the door.
“I’m not appalled at you, Ain-sama! I’m appalled by this shrine itself!”
“I don’t know how to describe it either, but I think it was an… unusual contraption.”
That is all he can say. He made up his mind not to mention that the key was the food at all costs.
“Shall we proceed?”
He made excuses to himself that he would push forward toward his main goal. Following Chris, who was walking a few steps ahead of him, he stepped forward.
The moment she went further behind the door, the door flashed a dazzling light in front of Ain, who was delayed behind her.
Just as in the previous picture, he was struck by a powerful headache.
──Yes, it’s the same again.
As he closed his eyes, an unfamiliar scene appeared behind his eyelids. This time it was in the forest, just as it had been inscribed on the door.
“It’s all right now.”
And the voice is the young man from earlier.
In front of him is a girl with her knees bent and her hands folded as if she was worshiping him.
Ain knew exactly what the girl was wearing. It was very similar to the Elf’s everyday clothes, albeit with a slight difference in design.
And her face had the look of the chief he had just met the day before yesterday.
“You saved us, didn’t you?”
“It’s not that big of a deal; you were in trouble. I just helped you out.”
After he finished, the young man extended his hand to the girl. The girl stood up and looked up at the young man.
The girl still held her hands together and respected the young man.
“…Let’s go. Your forest is safe now.”
He scratched the back of his head shyly and looked up at the sky.
…..Maybe that man…!
He couldn’t say it out loud.
But Ain tried to reach out.
He found himself in the same situation as when that view came to him abruptly. The scenery in his field of vision remained the same as usual.
The only thing that is missing is the figure of Chris walking ahead of him at the tip of Ain’s outstretched hand.
“Could that person be…?”
Let’s not jump to conclusions; let’s just move on for now.
Following Chris, Ain took a breath and stepped forward.