The second to last chapter. We will finish this arc this week~
ED: clover, eristol
A carriage with Aurelia’s coat of arms went on the bridge over the sea.
Since time hadn’t long passed since the high tide, the sea water was thinly scattered over the stone pavement.
Splashes of seawater splattered on the wheels bathed by the golden lights of the sunset.
From the window of the horse-drawn carriage, Palug was gazing at the Island of Messenger which was going farther away.
The island looked like a towering stronghold as it cast a dark shadow upon the sea.
It was an island where many traces of angels were left behind.
It was a place where she had lived for hundreds of years.
It was a place where numerous memories slept.
A place where her home was supposed to be.
『I am destined to be forgotten forever.
Still, the current freedom is not bad.
I am free, to the extent that I am immersed in the sentiments of parting.』
Palug muttered without speaking to anyone.
The sun went down while gradually repainting the color of the world.
The sea surrounding the island was golden and the sky was shining in the color of flame.
She was staring at that sight where the bright red sun, who loved her more than anyone, blended into the ocean.
『Farewell, my God, my King, my people.
—Farewell, my Prince.』
Her voice which was saying goodbye, along with the sweet sentiment, melted in the sea breeze and disappeared.
『You’re being overdramatic, cat.』
『Because~ I will be swept away to the West, right?
I will not be able to meet Auguste.
It will be lonely and that’s the same as being dead.』
A cat with golden coat stiffly fluttered over the horse-drawn carriage seat.
The carriage is still on the bridge connecting the continent with the island, even after leaving the Island of Messenger for more than ten minutes.
That is too quick to feel homesick.
However, as the new contractor, I also have to care about the well-being of the phantom beast.
“Please bear with it for six more years. At that time, you will see Auguste-sama’s face almost every day.”
『Eh? What, what?
Erica, are you going to get married to Auguste that soon?
Yaay! At that time, please take me along with your wedding preparations to Ignitia!』
Palug expressed her joy by jumping up and down as if her lack of energy just now was a lie.
She had a terrible misunderstanding, so I had to correct it.
“Both Auguste-sama and I are supposed to enroll in the Lindis Magic Academy.
Palug may also come with me to the school dormitory as well.
I’m sorry that I am not from Ignitia.”
『Is that so? But, how do you know things that will happen six years in the future?』
『It is because of an oracle.』
『Oracle? What do you mean by that?』
It is not possible to exclude one person in a group, and besides it is fine for Palug to know about it.
But, how should I explain it?
“I have gotten a future oracle that can happen.
The result of the oracle was brought in the form of a vision seen from the eyes of a certain person.
The only place I could see is Lindis, and the period is only a short period of six years in the future.”
『That looks like a fairly restrictive oracle.
It doesn’t seem very helpful.』
To tell the truth, the fact that I could predict about that incident was also due to the information in the oracle.”
『The information that an angel like you was lurking around was not included even a single word though.』
Auguste fell from the dragon in the tournament.
Erica scorned him blatantly.
The depressed Auguste fused with the contract beast and gained the capability to ride dragons.
These were the only information I have on the incident of the Advent Festival.
I wonder why an angel like her ended up getting involved.
Aah, but when I think about it, the incident six years in the future was called ‘The St. Angel Anthropophagy Case’.
I thought that it was the scenario’s title since it was an incident that occurred on Holy Angel’s holiday.
I had never thought that an actual angel was the culprit.
『Because of an oracle?
You helped Auguste only for that reason?
Even though you would encounter such near-death experiences many times.
You, you can’t simply be such a good-natured person.』
Palug said so as if she was about to jump down my throat.
She was baring her teeth, showing her anger.
The face of a cat was unexpectedly rich in expression.
『Well, dying was not in our plan though……』
“Palug, I have a good reason.
If we didn’t stop your fusion with Auguste-sama, I would’ve been killed and eaten alive.
And you would have used up your remaining power after six years, because you are only a fragment of what you once were.”
『In fact, she almost did get eaten alive by a cat.』
Palug blushed and looked at me with an embarrassed expression.
After freezing for a few seconds, she opened her mouth while tilting her neck.
『Then, wouldn’t it have been fine if you just didn’t enter Lindis Magic Academy?』
『Umu, what the cat said is true.』
“You two, if I did that, wouldn’t someone else have gotten eaten in my place?”
To my words, Tirnanog and Palug exchanged looks with each other.
『Hey, as expected this child is unfathomable……』
『Umu. Only this time I will agree with you.』
The two of them were repeatedly glancing at me while whispering with each other.
I already know that I have no planning ability, so I wish they don’t keep criticizing me.
Next time, I will have to do better.
Trying to escape from the prickling gazes, I forcibly returned to the previous conversation.
“According to the oracle, there are five more incidents that will cause my death six years in the future.
From now on, Tir and I may have to take strange actions secretly, but I want you to pretend that nothing happened.”
『It’s related to the life of my important friend Erica. I will not let you say no.』
『Hmm, I see. That’s right. In that case, it cannot be helped.』
Hearing my request and Tirnanog’s threat, Palug had a somewhat determined look.
She stood up on her hind limbs and hit her chest with her right foreleg.
『I will lend you a hand. You are in need of more collaborators, aren’t you?』
“Ehh! There is no need for Palug to go to that extent.
Since your life has been extended with so much troubles, I want you to take care of yourself.”
『I am a phantom beast who has made a contract with you. So please rely on me more.
I have been considerably weakened, so it would be difficult for me to battle.
Unlike the serpent over there, wouldn’t it save you some trouble if you have more personnel who can move to attack from the rear?』
Certainly, if I have to say my real intention, I really want to borrow the help of the cat.
Even more so since she is the strongest cat-type phantom beast.
“Well then, may I ask for your help?”
『Leave it to me. My life was saved by you. I will dedicate it to you.』
“Wait, that’s too heavy. I don’t need your life.”
『Then, I will help you to appreciate the beauty of blonde hair and purple eyes.』
『Hey cat, that would be too trivial.』
『I-it’s not for you, but for my precious Auguste.』
“Aah, then I’m convinced.”
『Is this okay, Erica……』
Anyway, my reliable friends have increased.
I don’t feel like I would be defeated with the combination of the world’s largest black dragon and the strongest actual angel by my side.
Although I feel a bit uneasy since both of them are weakened.
『If you have decided, I would like you to buy me some clothes.
With the appearance of a cat, there are limits to the actions I can take.』
“I understand. What kind of clothes do you want?”
『Two kinds of clothing first, for a man and a woman. One is in merchant-style and one aristocratic-style.
The most important things are boots that fit my feet perfectly.』
In that way, Palug transformed into a human figure abruptly and raised her feet so as to show off.
I hurriedly closed the curtain of the carriage.
I don’t think anyone was watching, but that is bad for my heart.
『What an unsightly appearance.
If you don’t have the discipline of a domestic cat, the one who will be criticized won’t be you but Erica.』
『What a noisy serpent.』
Palug returned to the form of a kitten and looked away from Tirnanog with a huff.
“Both of you, I wonder if you can get along a little more.”
『You are asking me to get along with this guy? Even if you are the one who requested it, my friend, that is unreasonable.』
『Eeh~? I am always friendly, you know?』
『In what way are you friendly?』
『Please be grateful. Because I didn’t kill you.』
『You should regret it. That you didn’t kill me before.』
In the horse-drawn carriage, the two phantom beasts were running around which made the carriage feel even more crowded.
Sometimes they look as if they get along, sometimes they don’t, I feel lost in my judgement.
Still, they both have friends to quarrel with, and above all they seem to be having fun for some reason.
While being bathed in golden lights, the carriage we rode was running.
The lonely phantom cat turned towards the place where nobody knows her.
But no one will forget her anymore.
Even in the place where the sun sets far westward, the cat will surely be able to do well.