This is the last chapter of this arc. After this, I want to ask you to put in reviews and rate the story on novelupdates~
ED: clover, xtostos, eristol
■ Historio Electrum
Classification type : Black
Class number : 0004
Date : 1880/07/01
Place : Karkinos · Ignitia’s territory 〈City of Reconquest〉, Margrave Ode-Ignitia’s residence, Prison Tower
The room made of stone was divided into two by iron bars.
The interior was dim, and couldn’t be determined whether it was day or night.
The surface of the floor was sandy and the air was dry.
There were two people in the room.
On the other side of the iron bars, Louis Ode-Ignitia was sitting on a simple chair.
On this side, a secretary wearing the emblem of the Ignitia royal family was sitting in front of the desk with a pen in hand and observing Louis.
The heavy iron door opened.
Three people consisting of Eduard Aurelia, Elric Actorius, and Klaus Hafan entered the room.
Louis gave a sidelong glance and confirmed the appearances of the people who just entered.
The secretary stood up and left the room passing by the three people.
Eduard put the chair where the secretary was sitting on before in front of Louis and sat down.
Elric and Klaus were standing at the right rear and left rear of Eduard respectively.
Elric pressed a handkerchief on his sweaty forehead, and Klaus was also wiping the sweats that were dripping down his chin unpleasantly with his sleeve.
However, Eduard and Louis kept a calm expression without sweating.
“Hm, so today it’s you, huh. Eduard Aurelia.
I will tell you, no matter how many times you ask me, my argument will stay the same.”
“Sorry to betray your expectations.
But today I’m not here to ask you about the crime you have committed.”
“What did you say?”
The expression of Louis became steep hearing the words of Eduard.
Klaus stared at Eduard with his eyebrows furrowed.
“Klaus-kun, you don’t need to worry.
You ought to do it as we have discussed.
It’s just that the content of the interrogation will change just a bit.”
Eduard handed over a piece of amber with the size of a bean to Klaus.
Klaus swallowed the words he wanted to speak and started to cast a spell.
Spellcards were deployed throughout the room, and a magical light similar to the moonlight shone.
As the magic circle was completed, Historio Electrum was established.
After this, several types of magic observation results including Glam Sight were added to the record information.
Elric also prepared a staff and spellcards.
After preparing so he would be able to cast at a moment’s notice, Elric made eye contact with Eduard.
“Today is awfully grandiose. What are you going to do to me?”
“It’s just a little chat. Please be at ease.
That’s right, for example……have you gotten used to your new life?”
“What, have you come to ridicule me? You sure have a lot of free time, Eduard.”
Louis glared at Eduard as he reclined on the shabby chair.
“Hm. How can I get used to this. This is the worst.
This room has a poor ventilation, it’s dusty, and it’s hot.
The meal is also unpleasant. And the bed is hard.
Who the heck do you think I am. In the first place, you guys are supposed to be charged for lèse majesté.”
“Unfortunately, your ‘Kingdom’ is only limited to the inside of those iron bars.
Stop forcing your delusion onto this side.”
Listening to Eduard’s response, Louis clicked his tongue.
“Delusion? What you see is the reality, Eduard.”
“Reality, huh…… Apparently, there seems to be a discrepancy between mine and your reality.
Can you explain about the ‘reality’ you think of?”
“That’s fine. Listen carefully.
And think carefully. Together with the hanger-on behind you.
It’s better for you to sit, I will explain it so that even fools can also understand it.”
Louis leaned forward in his chair and lowered his voice.
“Listen, I am the legitimate successor to the Ignitia’s throne.”
Eduard shrugged his shoulders.
“I’m tired of hearing that claim.”
“Because you don’t understand, it is getting repeated many times.
I feel a little sorry for you.
Today there is no that abominable foolish older brother of mine, and the secretary that Henri had handed over was taken away by you.
……I will add special, important judgment materials.”
“I see. I hope that this will not be a boring conversation.”
“Far from being boring, it will shock you to the core.
What I’m going to do is to talk about the dark side of Ignitia.”
As Louis finished his words, he raised his lips in a form of a smile.
“I have a higher opinion of you, Eduard, than any of the other foolish people.
You are not as good as I am, but you are an excellent guy.
That’s why, after you listen to this story, you would want to get to this side.”
Eduard silently urged him to continue.
“My argument that the current King, Henri, is an usurper has a firm basis.
It is impossible to say these things in front of the people who have only breathed the present government.
Of course, don’t you tell a word about this to anyone.”
“Alright. I swear to God, that what you said here won’t leave this room.”
“You are someone who doesn’t believe a thing about something like God, do not spout oaths to God carelessly.
Swear to the most important thing to you.”
Then, Eduard was contemplating it for several seconds.
Eduard raised one hand and declared.
“I swear to my beloved sister, Erica Aurelia.”
“Yosh. The other two also have to do it.”
“Oi, us too?”
“Klaus-kun, Elric, I’m begging you. Please go along with me.”
Klaus and Elric, while being reluctant and shy respectively, raised their hand.
“Then me too……no, I decide to swear to my sister. Is this OK?”
“I can swear to God normally, right?
I swear to never speak of anything I’ve heard here.”
“Alright. I will talk. Be grateful.”
After he said that arrogantly, Louis leaned his body forward once again.
“The First Prince who was the Crown Prince died a mysterious death during the period when the previous King was in his sickbed.
As you can expect, my father who was the Second Prince should have inherited the throne.
However, in fact it was Henri, the Third Prince, who has inherited the throne.
Don’t you think it is strange?”
Eduard didn’t answer.
Louis kept going without regard.
“This is the first fact. The First Prince was not the only one who died a mysterious death.
His twin sister, the First Princess also died at the same time.
Officially, the First Princess was supposed to have died a week earlier, but it was clearly a pretense.
The First Prince was not present at the funeral of the First Princess due to some ‘illness’.
Also, there was no one who saw the inside of the coffin at the funeral of the First Prince.”
“At that time, you shouldn’t have been born yet.”
“It is the information I gained from reliable sources. The same testimony can be picked up from several other people.”
Louis kept going after a while.
“This is the second fact.
Just before the death of the First Princess was announced, an Earl was invited to the Island of Messenger.
The Earl was ordered to be the instructor of the newly constructed ground dragon unit and was provided a mansion owned by the royal family.
Strangely, although the mansion was prepared the same day, it was only a few days after his arrival that the decree was issued.
Moreover, even though his wife the Countess had just given birth to her son right before, she accompanied her husband to the Island of Messenger.”
“……What are you trying to say?”
“I want to say that the purpose of this sudden imperial command was his wife. Do you understand now?”
Louis glared at Eduard.
Eduard kept smiling and took Louis’ glare head on.
“Don’t be stupid. You realized it by now, right?”
“The First Princess gave birth before she died.
Or rather, her child was taken from her womb right after she died.
The invited Countess secretly played the role of a wet nurse.”
“What do you—”
Klaus suddenly raised his voice.
Eduard looked back and held his forefinger in front of his lips.
Klaus held his mouth with the palm of his hand and retreated one step back.
“If we go by Ignitia’s custom, the firstborn inheritance is the principle.
Though I’m unwilling to admit, let’s say it can’t be helped that my father abandoned his inheritance right.
However, if the firstborn of the First Princess has reached adulthood, Henri should return the throne to him.”
“If the child hasn’t abandoned his succession right to the throne, that is correct.”
“I thought you would say so, Eduard.”
Louis stood up in a dramatic manner.
Looking down at Eduard who was sitting on the chair, Louis continued.
“This is the last piece, Eduard.
Before I was born, my father had abandoned the right to inherit because he couldn’t have a child for so many years.
However, despite my father’s abandonment of his succession, I am still ranked third in the succession for the throne.
Have you understood it yet?
I am the First Princess’ child, the True King.”
Louis declared it loudly.
Eduard opened his mouth after being silent for a while.
“Is that your argument?”
“I have listened to your story until the end.
If you have nothing more to say, please sit down.
Your throne is right there behind you.”
Louis’ face flushed in anger at the assertion, but sat down according to Eduard’s words.
“By the way, Louis Ode-Ignitia, how old will you be this year?”
“Why so sudden? How does this concern you?”
“I want to hear a clear answer from your mouth. Humor me.”
“I’m 14 years old. I will be 15 when October comes.”
“So, how many years have passed since His Majesty Henri was enthroned?”
“Nineteen……no, it has been about 20 years?”
“According to your survey, how many years ago did this incident—the death of the First Prince and the First Princess, happen?”
“It was……twenty years ago……w-wait, wait a minute……
Eduard, wait, wait please……I want to take a deep breath.”
Louis’ face was pale.
Eduard shrugged his shoulders and waited for Louis to compose himself.
For two minutes from that point on, only Louis’ breathing sounds were recorded.
“That’s weird. Why is it……I am……I am supposed to be the First Princess’ secret child……”
“I also thought that it was strange.
You were smugly talking about something that is unlikely to have any connection with your legitimacy.”
“W-what did you say?”
“The secret son of the First Princess—I already know who it is.
As long as the person himself doesn’t come forward, I will carry the secret to my grave.
Most likely, considering his character, he will not claim his position and birthright.”
Eduard turned his gaze towards Elric for a moment.
Elric nodded in a miniscule way.
“Indeed, if it’s him, no matter who asks him, he would never come forward.”
Louis raised his face.
On his forehead, sweats were forming densely.
“Now then, have you calmed down?
Don’t worry, Louis Ode-Ignitia.
Because there is no doubt that you have the blood of the royal family flowing within you.”
“That’s right. I am a legitimate prince of Ignitia……
I can ride a dragon better than anyone.
My dragons are stronger than any other dragons.
I’m different from that swindling bastard Auguste.”
“The swindling bastard here is you, traitor.”
“Nothing. It’s just your imagination. There have been precedent that chant sounds slightly like a curse.”
Klaus shrugged his shoulders, averted his eyes unnaturally and flipped through his spellcards.
“Well, that’s right. I cannot believe that the ability of His Highness Auguste is fake.
I also used a variety of sensing magic at that time to observe it.”
“But, supposing that in the unlikely event he was faking it, then he had to have done that with unknown means of deceiving all existing sensing magic.
And, although it is an unlikely story, suppose that he has been removed from inheritance due to his lack of riding ability.
Still, there is the Second Prince, His Highness Jules.”
“Jules is only three years old. He is too young to carry the heavy responsibility of a King.”
“His Majesty Henri is still youthful and healthy. When the day His Highness Jules enthroned comes, don’t you think that he would still be pretty young at that time?”
Louis’ breathing became unstable again.
He fell off the chair as if collapsing and knelt on the floor.
“That looks painful. Shall I call a healer?”
“Haah……haah, leave me, alone…… You’re going to……poison me, right……?”
“I don’t care about you, but if you die, Sir Charles would grieve.
No, in fact, I do not care about Sir Charles.
To put it the other way, there is no inconvenience even if you are alive. You should live with a peace of mind.”
“Fuguguh……, fuuh……, fuuh……”
Eduard looked back and made a sign to Klaus during the gap when Louis hung his head down.
After Klaus confirmed the numerical values that composed the magic circle, he shook his head slightly towards Eduard.
Eduard’s expression clouded for a moment.
However, Eduard immediately put on a mask of a calm smile and turned towards Louis.
“I, I am the only one who is thinking for the sake of the Kingdom.
As if the war mania of Henri could bring peace to Ignitia.
Charles’ fanaticism is the worst.
He is convinced that the people of the royal family are gods or something.
His tendency to find faults in me, and not once ever deeming me acceptable.
His favorite phrase is, ‘By the way, those dirty Gigantia ought to be burned down to the ground by the Holy Flame’, and other careless remarks.”
“That sounds like something Sir Charles would say.
I will agree that he is crazy.
But, his severity for you is probably his expression of love towards you.”
“How foolish. What do you bastards know about that foolish older brother of mine!”
“When we entered Lindis, Charles Ode-Ignitia was one of the prefects.”
Louis who was beginning to become hysterical calmed down.
With a quiet tone of voice, Elric followed up Eduard’s words.
“Eduard was particularly indebted to Charles-senpai.
How nostalgic. ‘Dirty Gigantia’—that’s still his favorite phrase, huh.”
“Elric too, you should meet him again.
If you wait in the chapel, you should be able to see his face three times a day.”
“Ahaha, I think I should hold back.”
Elric made a troubled expression while making excuses with a smile on his face.
Louis’ eyes swam between Eduard and Elric.
“You misunderstood the man named Charles Ode-Ignitia.
Ever since he received a report that you were imprisoned, he has been going to the chapel everyday and praying for your rehabilitation.
He also cut off alcohol and meat during the festival, and cut down his sleeping hours.
He’s a clumsy man.
Probably not in the form of the kind of favor you want.”
Louis kept kneeling and looked up to the air in a daze.
A wave of intense emotions had left, and a deep, quiet regret arose in his expression.
“Aah……why, why did I……
Eduard, please, tell me.
My dragons are……how are Camellia and Silvetica doing now?
Are they still alive?”
“They are still alive.
They can neither fly nor crawl, but they are alive.”
“It’s because of me……because of me, they are—!”
Camellia, Silvetica, I must apologize to them!
I have done something irreparable……!”
They are on the Ichthyes continent.
In your current state, you will not get the permission to travel or visit them.”
“I see……that’s right……
Why……why, did it end up like this.
They are the dragons that my father had chosen for me……
They are my precious dragons……nevertheless……”
Tears overflowed from Louis’ eyes.
He was quietly crying at the beginning, but gradually his sobs changed into a wail.
“My father told me to be an able knight who can assist the King.
Even my stepbrother, he said that he would be the one who would govern this land, while I would be the one who would protect it.
Why did I……say that I will be the King? Say that I will steal the throne?
To leave this southern land, I abandoned my job……
And struck Cursed Nails into my precious dragons……!
Impossible……it can’t be! Why, why!?”
Louis struck both of his fists against the stone floor.
After several times, his skin was torn, his fists were bleeding, but he didn’t stop.
“Louis Ode-Ignitia, now, can you hear my voice?”
“What, what more……are you going to ask of me……?”
For the first time on that day, Louis gazed straight at Eduard’s eyes.
Eduard also stared right back at Louis’ teary eyes.
“There was a man.
He was in the same grade as me, but he was not very friendly.
I hate that guy, and that guy should also hate me.
If asked what I know of him, I would hardly be able to say anything definite.”
Louis listened to Eduard’s words without interrupting the story.
Elric’s expression became dark as he looked down.
“But, there is something definite.”
“What is it?”
“He was a man who would absolutely never raise his hand against his own family.
To say nothing of massacring his whole clan, that should not have been possible for him.
Not to mention that there were even infants among those killed.”
“Massacre……that, perhaps, you’re referring to the incident of Lucanrant last year, that incident?”
Towards Louis’ question, Eduard confirmed it.
“I don’t know where he is. And I don’t know whether he is alive or dead.
But, Louis, you are still here and alive.”
“To be honest, I despise you. In particular, I still hold a grudge about Erica’s incident.
However, you shouldn’t be such a tragic person.
There should be some people trying to manipulate you by taking advantage of your ambitiousness and patriotism.
Tell me about the one who incited you.
It’s not too late yet.
Since it’s not too late, I’d like you to return to this side.”
Eduard stood before Louis who was on his knees and lowered his back.
When they were facing each other at the same eye level across the iron bars, Eduard offered his hand.
Louis tried to grab the offered hand with his trembling hand.
“Eduard……please……, please help me……help me……”
On the verge of touching hands, Louis’ hand dropped suddenly.
Louis stood up in a wobbly manner as if he was being pulled up by invisible threads.
A vacant smile akin to a hollowed out tree showed on Louis’ face.
At the sudden change, Eduard and the other two had their wand and staffs respectively at the ready.
“Eduard Aurelia, your delusion is also large, huh.
Moreover, towards the end you seriously wanted to convince me with some sob story?
Such a cheap play, it will not be popular even in the theater for general public these days.”
Louis spread his hands next to his face, and swung his body in a dancing-like movement that made him appear like a jester.
His expression remained rigid in the shape of a smile that was separated from human beings.
“Oi, Eduard, this is—”
“Klaus-kun, is this a mental manipulation?”
“No. Neither Glam Sight nor Analyze Dweomer reacts.
The other sensing spells are the same.
There is no magic in this room except for the magic that we have cast.”
After he exclaimed that, Klaus put in additional spellcards.
A number of sensing spells were expanded and a more detailed analysis was added.
However, all of them showed that Louis had not received any mental manipulation.
“Hahaha. Of course.
Did you think that I was a poor victim, who was being manipulated by someone?
That’s why, please help me.
What a foolish bunch.
Everything was done by my own will.”
“Louis, you sound as if there are two wills mixed with each other.”
“Hm? What are you talking about?
me just speaking normally though?
Please help me.”
“Elric, it may be useless, but just in case, please make a Protective Circle.”
Elric cast spells and expanded spellcards to surround Louis.
However, Klaus looked at it and raised a voice to stop him.
“No! Don’t use that spell!
Switch control of the sensing magic with me, Actorius!”
Elric abandoned the spell that he was casting, and took over the chanting of the sensing magic.
The performer of the sensing magic switched to Elric.
After this, the accuracy of the observation result slightly decreased.
Klaus deployed a Protective Circle that differs in detail from Elric’s on the whole room.
Louis was looking at the three of them moving about in confusion while smirking.
“Tch! Is it really not mental manipulation?”
“A spell specialized in mental defense, huh……more importantly, Klaus-kun, continue this way.
Even if only to prevent mental manipulations after this, this is sufficient.”
“As expected, Hafan’s noble son. What an excellent child.
There is no mental manipulation involved in this, you knew this better than anyone here.
You are the purest one, the one with the most gaps.
If there weren’t those scary guardians here, I would break out of here through you. Help.
Like what I did to Auguste, I will take my time and torment you little by little.”
In response to Klaus’ anger, the magical power supplied to the Protective Circle temporarily increased.
Surplus magical power overflowed from the spellcards, it became phosphorescent and was revolving.
Klaus concentrated his consciousness to suppress his emotion and stabilize the magic.
“Things like legitimacy come later.
It was not because the Founder King Guillaume was loved by God that he became the Conquest King.
It was because he was a conqueror, that there is the legend that he was chosen by God.
I am the same. Someone.
After I become the King of Ignitia, I can create a legend like that.
No matter how underhanded the method to take over the kingship is, it’s fine as long as I win.”
“You will sell your own country to the enemy country Gigantia?”
“That’s right. Help.
To begin with, even today, Ignitia is allying with enemy countries.
Help me, h e l
The barbarians of Lucanrant, the exclusionists of Hafan.
And the country of madmen, Aurelia.”
Klaus noticed something and trembled.
Several factors, including fear and distress, among the recorded emotional components of Louis, had disappeared at some point.
“Good job interfering with my plan, Eduard.
But, you will learn that clashing with me was a mistake on your part.”
Louis lifted his right hand and pointed his finger at Eduard.
“I will predict it, Eduard Aurelia.
Six years after this, your sister—Erica Aurelia will meet a more repulsive death than anyone else.
At that time, you will become the same thing I am.”
Louis showed a particularly distorted smile.
Suddenly, power faded out of Louis’ body and he fell to the floor.
Observation results showed that Louis was completely unconscious.
“Elric, summon Charles and a healer!
Klaus-kun, cast the most powerful dispeller that you know!”
Eduard barked out his orders.
The other two started to move with a snap.
Almost at the same time when Elric ran to the door, Eduard destroyed the iron bars with Disintegration.
Klaus used Break Enchantment, but there was no change in Louis.
Because Elric had left, the observation by sensing magic had stopped.
The Ignitia’s secretary entered in exchange for Elric.
Eduard extracted medical equipment, wand, medicine, etc. from his own bag.
While briefly explaining the situation to the secretary, Eduard examined Louis.
Klaus used Arcane Disjunction.
It became involved in the magic effect, and the recording stopped.
■ Historio Electrum
Classification type : Ash
Class number : 0006
Date : 1880/07/01
Place : Karkinos · Ignitia’s territory 〈City of Reconquest〉, Margrave Ode-Ignitia’s residence
Klaus Hafan was sitting in a small, simple room.
Eduard Aurelia entered the room and locked the door.
Eduard took a seat in front of Klaus across the table.
“What. Eduard, are you also going to record my testimony?”
“Just to be sure. I don’t doubt you.”
“I wonder……well, it doesn’t matter.
To be honest, I don’t know exactly what just happened.”
Klaus shook his head.
Deep wrinkles were engraved between his eyebrows.
“Klaus-kun. I think that was much-too-severe an incident for you who is only a 10-year-old to be involved with, but……”
“While you were talking with Actorius, I have calmed down a bit.
Your concern is unappreciated. To begin with, it feels unpleasant that you are being thoughtful to me.”
“You can speak what you like, I want your honest opinion.
……Now then, from your perception, how was Louis like?”
“It is as the recording footage said. I don’t know anything except that.”
“I want a frank opinion of what you think.
Perhaps, you might be aware of what I overlooked.
If not, then it is still meaningful to organize known information.”
Eduard put a sealed amber with faintly shining magical characters that looked like a live charcoal—a Historio Electrum on the table.
Klaus looked into the amber for a while and checked the recorded information.
“As expected, there is no trace that he was being manipulated by mental manipulation or sorcery.”
“Other than that?”
“The guy who made Louis like that seems to have a befitting evil-like personality.”
“What is your basis for thinking so?”
Klaus presented the information recorded in the amber to Eduard.
“Some emotional components were much stronger than that of an ordinary human.
At the beginning of the recording, they should have been in almost the same condition as in normal times.”
“What kind of emotions were they?”
“Love, nostalgia, loneliness, regret, and sorrow.
It is similar to the pattern immediately after the death of a close relative.
Considering what Louis did, I also feel that the story didn’t mesh well.”
“It is a sufficient trigger alone for a person to break.”
Klaus thought deeply at Eduard’s words.
Eduard finished checking the record and handed the amber to Klaus again.
Klaus muttered while rolling the amber in his hand.
“When did Louis’ parents die?”
“It was four years ago. Both of them at once.
It was an unfortunate accident.
Charles and Louis hadn’t been prepared to do anything.”
Klaus and Eduard fell silent.
After a while, Klaus opened his mouth to say something.
“However, as four years have already passed……”
“Is it unnatural?”
“……How should I know? I have never lost my immediate family.
I merely know about the mental state that can be derived from the combination of the emotional components from a lecture.
I don’t know anything about raw emotions that are not entwined with magic.”
Klaus cut off his words and looked at the palm of his hand.
“No, there was a moment when I thought that I had lost an important person.
Although that person was barely saved at the last minute.
If I had lost that person, I—”
Klaus looked at Eduard.
“Right, didn’t Louis say something similar?”
“Is Erica going to be okay?”
“If Louis really has something like a precognition ability, it seems vague enough so as to not let us disprove him.”
“That’s true, but……”
Klaus seemed distressed.
Eduard looked at Klaus and shrugged his shoulders.
“To tell the truth, I cannot keep my composure either.
When I heard Louis’ words, I was so frightened that I felt like all the blood in my whole body froze.”
“Even you felt like that, huh.”
“Hahaha, Klaus-kun, what do you think I am?”
Klaus kept silent while sporting a dark expression.
“Actually, I’m someone with weaker heart than most.
Because of that, what depths Louis could have sunk to, I can clearly imagine.
If I were Louis, what would torment me most?
And in turn, how might one break my own heart?’”
“Wait. From the way you said it, it sounds as if Louis’ circumstances were set up by someone.”
“Aa, I believe that it was all completely arranged.
Charles being on bad terms with Louis, his graduation from the academy and his homecoming.
The death of both his parents that occurred shortly thereafter, Charles’ court rank inheritance.
All of those happened at the same time when His Highness Auguste’s dragons were supposed to hatch.
If, without one’s knowledge, one were to set up one or two distressing elements of some kind around then……”
The smile left Eduard’s face, his gaze now serious.
Standing directly before his gaze, Klaus felt the full pressure of it.
“You, will you laugh it off as too farfetched?”
“I cannot laugh, I’m completely unable to.
Especially with there being someone who’d kill one to corrupt another.
……After all, my sister nearly died at such a dangerous time..”
“That’s right. Everyone can be in the same position as Louis.
Just a few mistakes in gears will cause destiny to roll in a completely different direction.”
Eduard finished his words.
Klaus fell silent while contemplating about it.
After a while, Klaus remembered the existence of amber in his hand and put it on the table.
Eduard took the amber from the table and operated it.
The playback of Historio Electrum stopped, the letters on the amber changed to indicate sealing.
Eduard put away the amber and took out two keys from his pocket and placed them in front of Klaus.
“I’m counting on you, so I will entrust this to you.”
“What are these keys for?”
“I have gathered the light of a star in a certain place. When all the lights have disappeared from this world, that star will be the last light……maybe.”
“Where is the place?”
“You will know when the time comes.”
“When will that be?”
“For example, when I die and can’t protect Erica.”
Klaus stood up kicking the chair.
Eduard donned an unfathomable smile on his face.
“It’s only in case of an emergency. I will not entrust my precious little sister to you so easily.”
Eduard rose quietly and turned his back to Klaus.
“……Now then, I have kept talking with you this long.
I have to consult with Sir Charles on how to deal with the possibility that Louis will not wake up at this rate”
Eduard who was stopped looked back at him.
Klaus took out an envelope from the inner pocket of his robe.
“Don’t tell anyone that I handed this to you.
It is supposed to only be shown to the people of Hafan.”
“A transcript of the spells I managed to see through at the moment Louis fainted just then.
The magic that caused his coma wasn’t found in there.
However, in case of the multiple camouflaging spells most of them could be analyzed.
Look at the name of the performer.”
Eduard opened the folded parchment and closed it immediately.
“Cain Grendel……the name of the last King of Casketia.”
“Don’t say that name in front of the people of the East and North. I cannot guarantee your life.”
“Do you think it’s the real deal?”
“Who knows. Whether he’s the real deal or fake, it’s been decided to hunt, kill and bury him in secret.”
“This, why me?”
“It’s not for your sake. I just don’t want to see Erica’s sad face. So, it’s for my own sake.”
Eduard put the envelope in the inner pocket of his outer jacket carefully.
“Thank you. This will help.”
“Be careful, Eduard.
Those who have appeared so far assuming for themselves the title of Lunatic King, have apparently all been of considerable deceptive skill.”
“Klaus-kun, you also need to be sufficiently careful.
The curse on the necklace that lured you siblings to that extremely dangerous place……the performer was also called Cain.”
Klaus opened his eyes wide and glared at the void.
The magical power which swelled up as if being dragged by his shaken emotion became blue sparks that scattered about.
“Thank you, Eduard. For telling me this.”
Eduard returned an icy smile to Klaus who looked enraged against the invisible enemy.
Eduard turned on his heel and left the room.
The Historio Electrum ended normally.
A medium-sized ship was advancing forward in the dusk.
The ship departed from the western port of the north-western peninsula of the continent of Karkinos and headed for a certain island.
The destination island was a solitary island in the sea just in-between the south-western islands and Karkinos.
There were two young men on the deck.
They were Eduard and Elric.
“Alright, I was able to alter the course. It will delay us by half a day, but we will be able to arrive without any problem.”
When Eduard passed down two or three instructions to the sailors, the entire ship moved like a living creature, and the hull leaned gently in the opposite direction from the former course promptly.
It showed that the command of the brain called Eduard reached every corner of the nerves.
“As expected of your skills, Eduard.”
“No. That was thanks to your warning about the horde of sea serpents earlier.
You noticed properly that the sea serpents are in the sea even without observation by magic.”
“It’s because the movements of the seabirds were unusual. So I thought, why did such thing happen—”
Elric explained the inherent habits of the seabird, and about the abnormalities in the movement of the school of fish underwater.
Eduard was unable to understand 70% of the technical details, but he listened to the explanation with a friendly grin as if it was enjoyable.
When Elric finished with his explanation, Eduard showed his gratitude.
“I’m glad you came along. If we were a little bit closer to that horde, we might not have been alive right now.”
Over the past few years, shipwrecks by the sea serpents had increased in the waters near the continent of Karkinos.
It was not an exaggeration to say that their ship might have become a watery grave without Elric’s quick-wittedness.
“Haha, I can at least do this much, so it was nice to be useful.”
“In truth, I didn’t want to push this troublesome thing to you, but—”
Originally Klaus was going to accompany him in this ship, but due to the urgent business related to the grave robbery case, he decided to temporarily return to the Duchy of Hafan.
For that reason, Elric who was supposed to return to the academy immediately was offered to do the same thing as Klaus on his behalf.
“Oya, so recently you have been pushing the troublesome matters on the heir of Duke of Hafan?”
“That’s correct. Well, I temper Klaus-kun up to this extent because he’s a boy, though.”
“And because he at the same time also has a debt, it’s convenient, huh. No, maybe you’re tempering him as a scheme because he’s a candidate for your sister’s fiancé?”
“No, no, I’m not such a kind person. If anything, I treat him harshly because he’s getting too close to my sister.”
Eduard showed a gentle smile on his face as he said those words.
Elric smiled wryly at his friend who was making a show of his fault which could be heard even when he was trying to hide his embarrassment.
Although he was Eduard, who seemed unrestrained, he was visibly overprotective of his sister Erica like a mother.
“By the way, Eduard, what is the object of our investigation this time?”
“It’s an altar on a small island inhabited by about fifty residents. It seems to be an important location for the ley line.”
“Heeh, the ley line? There is something like that in that place?”
When Elric asked, Eduard nodded.
On the contrary, Elric’s mind had new questions.
If it was a location for a dense ley line, even if it was in a remote place, a transfer gate using that magical power should have been made.
“Did you not get a permission to go there using the transfer gate, even when you asked Lindis for it?”
“No, there is no gate. Since the ancient altar is in a remote area, the gate was not installed.”
Eduard took out a bunch of vellum paper from his bag and handed them to Elric.
In the received data, a declaration stating that the altar was under the jurisdiction of the church was printed.
Some important parts were concealed by blacking it out, but he could understand the main points.
“A magic or sorcerous system that supplies magical power to angels……heeh, so angels truly exist, huh.”
“Although the relevant facilities have been found, the angels themselves haven’t been confirmed yet. I suspect there were at least some kind of phantom beasts.”
“Even now, it hasn’t been fully elucidated. It certainly is not possible to build a gate there.”
Some of the magic and sorcerous systems made by the ancient civilization remained unresolved even now with the advancement of magic and alchemy.
There were variety of reasons, such as information and technology being scattered and ultimately lost, damages by time-related deterioration and magical beasts, etc.
To Elric, who seemed to be convinced, Eduard kept talking about the object of their investigation.
“It’s quite important even among the altars that exist around the continent of Karkinos.
It seems there are some other similar altars.”
“No way……that, isn’t the vulnerability rather high then?”
“Yes. That’s why a joint team of the church and the academy was dispatched ahead of us to investigate the altar, destroy the vulnerable areas if possible, and reconstruct it in a more secure form.
Take a look at the eighth article.”
Elric turned over the material.
A tragic case of a serious curse which infected the whole investigation team was recorded there.
To the shocking content, Elric covered his mouth without thinking.
“Is this due to an ancient trap?”
“It’s still unknown, but I think that there were malicious changes made within these past few hundred years, including the vulnerability of the altar.”
Eduard said so, with a tone of voice as if he was confident about it to a certain extent.
Was it the evil deed of a religious fanatic, a traitor, or an atheist with a completely different intention?
Elric had no clue, but no matter who did it, it didn’t change anything.
“I see, indeed this is a request designed for you, Eduard.”
Elric was convinced.
With the alchemist Eduard Aurelia, one can conduct investigation safely without worrying about curses by using golems.
He was also familiar with the investigation of ancient sorcery and had a track record of perfectly executing the royal family’s request.
To the best of Elric’s knowledge, Eduard was the perfect person for this.
“What you want to ask is described on the last page and I will be saved if you confirm it by the time we arrived.”
“Hm, I understand…… —uwaah!?”
The ship swayed greatly at the moment when Elric was about to check the data while correcting his glasses that were misaligned.
Eduard supported Elric who had lost his balance.
“I’m sorry as always.”
“It couldn’t be helped. The injury from last year still has an effect on you, right?”
Eduard looked towards the sea as he took his hands off of Elric.
The sun was sinking to the horizon.
“By the way, what is your opinion on Louis?”
“Ah……aah, him. As expected it is regretful. Poor Charles-senpai.”
Hearing the sudden question, Elric answered while feeling a sense of incompatibility.
Eduard hesitated for a bit and then repeated his words from before.
“I think that there is a part of Louis’ circumstances at that time which is similar to that guy.
I also wanted that guy to tell me about the muddiness of his consciousness like Louis and find traces of some sort of manipulation.”
Elric widened his eyes and looked at Eduard.
The usual smile had disappeared from Eduard’s expression.
“I see……so this is why you invited me, huh.”
“You retained your consciousness until the end, so it’s fine, right?”
“……Claude was without a doubt normal.”
Eduard was the one who was surprised this time.
He asked Elric again with an expression as if he was hearing an unbelievable thing.
“Yeah, he was very clever. There was nothing muddy about his consciousness.
However, why did he try to kill us and leave without delivering the finishing blow?
What did he do after we all lost our consciousness?
And then, why couldn’t we stop him at that time? ……These are the questions that I still have to this day.”
Elric continued on matter-of-factly even though Eduard was staring at him.
He kept his usual gentle tone of voice, but mixed feelings could be seen emerging in his facial expression.
Regret and disappointment, anger and hatred.
Perhaps those feelings were for Claude, but Eduard felt as though they were directed at himself and he became speechless for a while.
“Thank you, Elric. I was worried that Louis had gone insane and that the same incident would happen again, I just wanted to hear that no matter what.”
Eduard was finally able to reply after a particularly strong sea breeze blew against them.
“It’s fine, Eduard. I’m sure such a thing won’t happen.
Besides, you will be able to prevent it this time, right?”
Elric, who returned to his usual smiling face, said so as if it was a matter of course.
“……You said that so easily, huh.”
“Because I trust you completely, so it can’t be helped.”
“Speaking of which, recently I’ve got many problems, so even for me it’s hard to see through deceptions.”
Eduard sighed, thinking about the recently involved projects.
Everything seemed like a deeply rooted curse that reached a dead end when he investigated it.
“Oya, that’s unusually timid of you.”
“It may be my imagination, but everything seems like a big tide.
Maybe it’s a sign that this will be worse than the incident in the North, before the worst event happens.”
Although it’s fine if it’s just my wild idea, Eduard added in his mind.
From a cursed necklace under the name of the Lunatic King to the insanity of the throne inheritance rights under the name of the Lunatic King.
Nothing that dangerous enough to destroy the world, but they were all full of malicious intent.
And, how they were not unlike the situation surrounding his mother in the past.
Eduard who was caught up with such thoughts smiled with a troubled face.
“So, just as how you noticed the sea serpents from the movement of the seabirds, I think that we have to carefully keep up with the small problems.”
When Eduard looked at the dark night sky in the distance, he saw seabirds passing over.
Like that, the world surrounding them became strangely still as if telling them about the arrival of something.
End of Arc 2
Break Enchantment: A dnd spell, this spell frees victims from enchantments, transmutations, and curses. Break enchantment can reverse even an instantaneous effect. (source)
Arcane Disjunction: Another dnd spell, the caster sends forth with a low pinging sound a rippling wave of dead Weave energy in a 20’ radius. Any spell of 9th level or lower in the area of effect ends immediately. (source)
Analyze Dweomer: Yet another dnd spell, it discerns all spells and magical properties present in a number of creatures or objects. In the case of a magic item, one can learn its functions, how to activate its functions (if appropriate), and how many charges are left (if it uses charges). In the case of an object or creature with active spells cast upon it, one can learn each spell, its effect, and its caster. (source)
The plot thickens! What is Cain’s aim? How does he know about what will happen 6 years in the future?
Also, I tried to use a strikethrough for the words of the real Louis to make it seemed like it was a background noise and bold the dialogues when he was manipulated to show the duality. What do you think?
Edit 11/10/18: edited by xtostos. So apparently, the Lucanrant Massacre was something out of character of the one who did it. I guess Cain also manipulated him at that time. And, Cain has been appearing throughout the history and been secretly hunted by Hafan. And, Eduard is collecting ‘light of a star’, which most likely is the Wand of Sailor’s Song. Also. I guess Louis won’t ever wake up from his coma.
Edit 8/12/18: an additional scene from LN volume 2.