Prologue 4

Kays Translations

Just another Isekai Lover~

0-4 Departure

 There was not a single person, let alone a soldier, in the station.

 I turned back, thinking I had entered the wrong place, but the words on the sign didn’t change.

“Are all festivals in peaceful countries like this?”

 Or maybe that’s how special this festival was.

 It’s probably because there’s no precedent for this, it’s unheard of for a princess of a country to go to the “land of the dead”, but after directly crossing blades with her, I knew that she wasn’t just a decoration with a sword in hand for this country. This is why the mages who serve her were so stubborn and forced themselves to go through with it with pride.

 At the end of a not-so-long corridor, I passed through an open door.

 It was a bleak, cramped room. The only thing that indicated that this was a hospital room was the medical table lined up in the space, which was not very large considering the size of the room.

 Naturally, there was no one who looked like a full-time doctor. Instead, I saw the familiar back of a little figure beside the table on which a man was lying.

“How’s he doing, Marie?”

“Not so good. His magic has stopped, but he’s still in a coma.

 The vial I received from Marie, who turned around, was empty. After all, it seems he was a user with a considerable amount of magic power.

“I see. Well, I guess he’s past the point of life and death now. By the way, ……”

 I shift my gaze to the men who were sitting at the edge of the room. The men who had taken off their black robes are watching the situation here while showing an expression that interweaves colors of haggardness and fear in a complex way.

 But now’s not the time to worry about their inner feelings.

“Isn’t there a full time doctor? If there’s a highly skilled user of healing magic, this guy will recover quickly.”

“…………”

 Silence. There were three of them, and none wanted to open their mouth.

 I knew they wouldn’t say he wasn’t there, but was he really gone? Or–

“If that’s the case, he’ll be here soon. Other than that …….”

 A man stood up, his voice quivering.

“Who are you …… that you could use such a technique single-handedly, unless you are a holy knight ……!

“When he comes, tell him I’ve taken care of the restoration of this guy’s magic.”

 He hadn’t even planned to help these people, and now he was being scrutinized.

“……And you, I’ve been pushing myself too hard, and almost got myself killed. I think you need to reflect on yourself before you start questioning people.

 I said bluntly and quickly turned myself around. However, just as I was about to go through the door, I collided head-on with a person who had appeared, and my forehead emitted a magnificent high-pitched sound.

“Ow..!”

 I was taken by surprise, and the pain of hitting my head made me let out my voice. I had no time to use magic to protect myself because my vision was limited due to the hood.

“I’m sorry! I was in a hurry. ……”

 At the sound of a familiar voice, I rushed to hide my face and pull my hood down.

 I glanced up at the figure passing by with a sound, and saw that it was the knight who had been called “Chris”. Her profile was tinged with red as she ran, out of breath. She was followed by a man wearing a black robe. He must have been one of the last to use magic at that place.

“Princess! Gray!”

“I know!”

 Marie involuntarily pulls away at the sight of Chris, who rushed into the room with such force. Chris stopped in front of the examination table, hurriedly caught her breath, and started mumbling something in a faint, inaudible voice. She placed her palm, which had begun to glow, on the man’s chest and clamped her neat mouth shut.

“‘I’ll heal you right away ……!”

 The light around Chris’s palm began to disperse.

 The light, which appeared irregularly like a cloud, concentrated above the man’s head and spread out in a circle. A single drop spilled from the center of the circle and fell on the man’s forehead as if it were being sucked in.

 Sage, who should have been just sneaking a peek at the scene at first, unconsciously forgot to hide himself and gazed feverishly at the scene.

 The phosphorescence melted away against the pure white background, and a silence fell over the room.

“………… Ugh.”

“Gray!”

 The man lying on the floor let out a strangled groan.

 The man called Gray tried to sit up, his face twisted in pain, but Chris chided him.

“Don’t. You’ve got magic power deficiency, so don’t overdo it…….”

 When the man sank down on the table, Chris’s body tilted backward, as if she had lost the thread of tension. Marie, who had rushed to put her hand on her back, looked into her face and furrowed her brow.

 Her cheeks, which had been rather reddish, had turned unnaturally pale. Her eyes, which looked like polished amber, were vaguely unfocused, and her limbs lacked strength.

“Marie, give her a drink!”

 Sage, who was leaning his back against the door, threw a small bottle from his pocket. Marie grabbed it without any trouble, opened the vial with her fingertips, and brought it to Chris’ mouth. Instantly, Chris’s eyes, which had been unfocused, came to life.

“—-!”

 Chris’s whole body, which had been tense, moved like a repellent strand and entered a fighting stance. It was a reflex action that did not require any intervention of reason or will.

 But sooner than that, Marie’s fingertip touched Chris’s lips.

“It’s okay, calm down. It’s just a magic supplement, so don’t worry–“

 She pressed her fingertip against her lips and let it glide along her skin. She stroked Chris’s cheek as if she were calming an animal. She smiled softly at Chris, who blushed while being stunned.

“Oh,  beast taming technique”

 Marie tipped the bottle, ignoring Sage’s complaint. The small amount of liquid that flowed down Chris’s throat had an immediate effect.

 Chris observed her body curiously as Marie took her by the hand, and then she looked up as if he suddenly remembered.

“Um……I……that’s right, Gray–!”

 Chris tried to sit up, but her body stiffened and convulsed as if she had been struck by lightning.

  When Marie looked at him, Sage joined her and carried her trembling body to the examination table. He couldn’t accompany her to the point of removing her armor, so he left that to Marie alone.

 Sage looked down at Chris, who was gazing at the ceiling in a daze, and his expression under his hood changed grimly.

“You’ve said it yourself. For a magic user, magic power deficiency is a matter of life and death. Please take care of yourself.”

Sage’s rough words were half directed at himself.

 He should have ended that sword fight sooner ……

 Chris was in the air, deploying wind magic around herself. If the wizard, who had that as his main occupation, had repeatedly practiced and still ended up using up all his magic power, there was no guarantee that Chris, who was the star of the performance, would not end up facing the same thing.

 What’s more, Chris had just returned from “the land of the dead”. Sage hadn’t realized something so simple, and he had unconsciously put his anger at himself into the words he had said to Chris.

 Chris clenched her mouth tightly as if she were biting down on Sage’s words. Her body was lying down without strength, but only her eyes, which were tightened and flaming inside, were full of life.

 After taking off her armor, Marie brought out a pillow from somewhere and put it under Chris’s head. Chris thanked her with a troubled look, and then slowly opened her mouth.

“…… This festival is also a requiem. It’s an important ritual to send the souls of our country’s great ones to a holy place that is said to be far away somewhere.”

 As she spoke, there was no trace of the warrior who wielded two swords in the sky. The color of her cheeks as Marie touched them regained a healthy blood color, and in fact, they were even redder than when she had run into the room.

 It was the expression of a girl of a certain age, as if she were looking at the person she loved from a distance.

“…… What’s his name?”

 Marie, who had been clinging to Chris, said in a low voice.

“What?”

“He must have been an important person for your Highness. It’s written on your face.”

 Marie smiled as if it was nothing, and Chris’s face turned completely red.

 Innocence is a sin, as it should be.

 If Marie hadn’t looked like a young girl, she might have been suspected of political scheming, such as intruding on the affections of the princess who would be the future leader of the country. But Chris opened her mouth as if she wasn’t aware of it.

“The …… truth is, we don’t even know if he’s alive or dead. Since his beloved sword was found on the border, he is officially considered deceased. ……”

 –Hmm?

 ”I’ve been to “the land of the dead” and only found the sword ……?”

 Sage, who had been casually taking in the meaning of the story he had been listening to as if it were something else, understood the answer and backed away.

“That man is a gentleman named Sage Luxuria. As a knight, he was the first person I admired. ……”

Sage’s reaction to Chris’s slurred words, “Maybe as in the opposite sex……” expressed a sense of adolescent bewilderment.

 (I’ve never heard of another person with the same name stepping foot in “the land of the dead”.)

 My heart was beating strangely. I wondered if I had raised my voice in a strange way.

 Various sentences ran through his mind, impelling Sage’s body.

“…… Hey, Marie, I’m about to leave you.”

“Oh, I still owe you thanks for the medicine!”

 As she tried to sit up, a strong pain shot through her body again, and Chris gave Sage a sad look as he left the room.

 In her profile, Marie softly whispered in her ear.

“You’ll see him again soon.”

 In front of Chris, who was stunned and opened her mouth, Marie put her index finger to her lips.

“Please take a good night’s rest for now. Everything depends on your physical and mental health.”

 Chris couldn’t find any words to reply, and felt a strange sense of entrapment in the room, where she could no longer hear the voices of the two people who had passed by like a breeze.

 –I haven’t been treated so closely since the time I lied about my identity and spent all my time training as a knight.

 But still.

“You could have at least told me your name…….”

 When she looked at the open doorway, a glittering light caught her eye. The man in black who had been attending to Marie at her bedside noticed Chris’s gaze and picked up the glowing light.

“Hey, Chris. This is …….”

“Did he drop it?”

 The man with a raised voice spread his hands in front of Chris’s face as she lay down.

With a grim expression on her face, she looked at it and thought, ” a necklace? It didn’t have a lot of decoration, but it felt as light as a feather in her palm. From the feel of it, Chris felt a sense of nostalgia that somehow calmed her heart.

 

She knew the reason immediately. She shifted her gaze and saw a design engraved on a small metal plate tied with a chain.

 It was a sign of heroism that no one, not even royalty, was allowed to wear.

“Ah…………”

 With a voice that sounded like it was being squeezed out, an urge rose up.

 I slammed my fist against the intense pain and tried to push myself up, but my trembling arm was easily pushed back by the weight of my body. {TN: Switched to Chris’s POV}

 Even though I was frustrated, I couldn’t even make a fist. It was as if a chain made of something other than the extremes of injury and fatigue had loosely bound my entire body. This fact alone made my heavy body sink even deeper into the bed.

 I looked up at the white ceiling in resignation, but my body, which was supposed to be exhausted, would not rest at all.

 After a while of inactivity, the metallic sound of armor kicking the ground rolled into the quiet space.

 The owner of the footsteps spotted Chris and knelt down near the entrance of the room.

“I’m sorry to report this, mam. Several of the soldiers who were guarding the castle said that they saw a figure disappearing into the sky to the north.”

“A figure? To the sky?”

“Ha! It is said that one of them was still in the form of a child, but there have been a number of detailed and similar reports which is puzzling. ……”

The man’s reply made Chris look away, shrug and smile wryly.

“Since we’re in the middle of a festival, no special measures are needed.”

The man who led the soldiers turned and waited for the footsteps to stop before opening his mouth.

“Did you hear that, Chris? He’s alive after all, isn’t he?”

 The man, who must have taken in the situation, whispered deliberately.

“…… He’s always been a pain in the ass.”

“What ? Can I expect some good news?”

“Yes, of course!”

 She was aware that her voice was rising, but her eyes were shining like a child’s on his birthday.

 Tomorrow, the festival would be over. Her physical and magical powers would be restored within a few days. What to do after that was already decided in her mind.

 When I decided to heal my exhausted body, my weakened body accepted the rest easily. In my fading consciousness, I thought I heard the words of the silver-haired girl who had been called Marie.

–Three days later. Three days later, in the early dawn of the day just after the curtain of the birthday festival fell, I left the royal capital.

 In front of me, the light of the Boundary Line filled my vision. I had never imagined that I would visit this place twice in such a short period of time.

 As I expected, my father was softly opposed.

 But as soon as I showed him the necklace, he turned black and white  {TN: Means he started panicking}, and surprisingly changed his mind.

 It wasn’t just my father’s change of heart. It was this necklace that had the power to persuade the king of a country to retract his previous words. That’s what I’m about to touch.

 I was afraid. But the curiosity and the itchy, inexpressible feeling in my chest far outweighed it. So.

“Christia, is coming!”

 Chris shouted a battle cry and drew her sword.

 A moment later, the girl’s body, which had kicked the ground lightly, disappeared from the human world.

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