I wanted to take Lady Demy all the way back to the castle, but sadly, since she went out incognito I couldn’t accompany her all the way to the end so she reluctantly said goodbye and turned towards the Nobles’ ward.
I then loitered around the shopping town, still looking for a kettle.
Well, if I went back without buying one, Mist was going to yell at me ….
Then after asking a passerby for help, I somehow found the store in ten minutes, but this time I racked my head over what to buy. From the chat with the lantern shop owner I knew I’m not good with judging items. That said, if I went back with a random one — no, no matter how you put it I’ll definitely be yelled at once I get back. I have to prepare myself.
Anyway, I should at least hold on and bought something reasonable.
The E:ID phone rang.
“Ah, a call. — A CALL!?”
Oi oi, I’m in another world right now!
Who the hell is calling me!
[Hello, Yuu-kun? It’s Arina]
“SO IT’S YOU AFTER ALL!”
I reflexively retorted in front of the store!
[Ddddddd did I do something bad?]
“HUH? Eh, what, what’s going on? How are you phoning me just like that!?”
[B, but I have an E:ID phone, too …]
“SO YOU HAVE ONE TOO AFTER ALL!”
Well, Arina’s a student at the college town’s school Oumi academy too, so of course she would have an E:ID phone just like me. In fact, since the developer of the Elixir-Replica System was Arina’s mother, Emiko-san, it would be weird if she didn’t have the exact same thing as mine.
“No no no, hold on a sec. You can just handwave the base station and how you dial the number with magic cores, but say something earlier!!”
[Y, y, you didn’t ask …]
Yep. I didn’t ask.
“No, but still! If you had one then you didn’t have to go missing back at Occa village! We could’ve settled that easily with a phone!!”
[Ah, you’re right …]
I spun myself around once like a piece of broken garbage.
The shopkeeper was watching me as if saying “what are you doing making all that racket by yourself”
Well, in this world without phones, it’d look like I was talking and yelling to myself.
I couldn’t stand it and left the store.
[A, m, m, maybe it’s bad to call right now? I … I’m sorry!!]
“No, the phone call itself is fine. I’m just surprised that it went through”
“Nah, I can’t spoil the mood between you and Lady Demy. S, sorry, Arina, isn’t considerate enough …”
“Yer gettin’ it wrong! Why are you acting like … wait, hold on? How did you know I was with Lady Demy?”
[Eh? Well, since you’re not with Mist-chan then you must be with Lady Demy, right?”
“Don’t factorize me weirdly like that! But, how did you get it exactly right, goddammit. Lady Demy just got back earlier … Is Mist there?”
[Ah, AAAH … t, t t t that’s right!! Yuu-kun, this is bad! Mist-chan is!!]
A girl wearing a pastel-colored costume was standing on the crater-like cavity on the road. She was holding a staff that was as long as she was tall, and was wearing a three-ply haori and skirt and a large ribbon on her back.
At the tip of her staff was a large crystal ball, and charms attached to her head, ears, and wrists.
Her upper body was clad in metal armor, but its pink color and heart-mark inlays made it look more cute rather than imposing.
But what draws the eye the most were the two shoulder cannons.
She looked just like a …
“M, magical girl?”
“Yeay! Did Phinegar-chan’s Super ☆ Transformation surprise you?”
The girl made a pose doing a V-sign on her forehead.
“Hello, Yuuki-kun. I’m the alchemist Phinegar-chan, nice to meet you – ♪”
She was the type of girl that, how should I say, likes to play around, or maybe acts all cute and hyper. She was wearing something kinda bold before she transformed, too ….
Also, I think I’m sure she said Salamander Cannon just now?
The Salamander Cannon was one of the weapons fitted in my E:ID phone.
The Magical Girl’s shoulder cannons looked similar, but in that case how did she get the same kind of weapon as me?
“I don’t really get it, but I’m going to make you say sorry for doing bad things to Mist!”
“Eh? You’re looking for a fight? Your replica can’t possibly win against my Elixir, you know?”
Then Phinegar winked and said,
“But do you still want to try a shot?”
The first one to move was Phinegar with Bombardment.
BOOM, BOOM, Magma Shells exploded.
“Damn! Strike Bubble!!”
I made a Bubble Barrier to protect me — but it failed!!
The shells easily pierced the bubble and came straight at me.
— BAM, the magma shells exploded.
It was Arina.
I thought I told her to go hide somewhere, but I guess she can’t just stay silent and went out.
“Y, Yuu-kun, I’m sorry!”
Arina rushed over to me.
“I came out …”
“No, well, you saved me”
Honestly, if she didn’t appear I would’ve been screwed.
I suppose I was relying on the Bubble Barrier too much ….
“Huh—? Who’s the plain little girl? I never heard about you?”
A butler-looking guy appeared next to Phinegar and said,
“Arina-san who works together with Yuuki-san in the Isky residence, I hear …”
“Hmm~ An extra? Anyway, how many girls do you have waiting on you, Yuu-kun?”
“Don’t say waiting on me! … ah, but um, I guess I can’t deny all of it”
“Deny all of it now!”
Mist pinched me hard.
“Um, can you have a lover’s quarrel somewhere else? You understand Phinegar-chan’s power now, right?”
Phinegar pointed her staff at me.
“— Now, I’m going to go at it a little more seriously, okay? If you don’t want to get blown up answer my questions”
She said without a trace of her playfulness left.
“Shimoyama Yuuki, who are you? Where did you come from? What did you do to Rosé and to Mist-chan there?”
“… h, huh?”
What the hell is she saying?
“It’s no use playing dumb. I can see it slightly. There’s something other than the ‘bug’ inside Rosé when she came back from the Isky residence”
“Yuu-kun really doesn’t know anything!”
“Listen, Mist-chan. You can’t trust this guy. He erased your memories. — Don’t you feel that there’s something out of place?”
The absurd statement made Mist falter.
… Looks like she has some baseless misunderstandings about me ….
“All right, I get it”
I put my sword away in the E:ID phone.
“I don’t really know what you’re talking about, but let’s talk”
“I’ll tell you all I know. Even about Mist. I have a responsibility. I don’t really know about Princess Rosé’s body, but I’ll tell everything I know just in case I might have had some influence there”
“Eh. What’s going on where. It’s a bit unexpected, but, hey Mailles, what should I do?”
The butler called Mailles groaned.
“I’ve been thinking it for a while, but don’t we seem like the bad guys here?”
“Eh? No way. Seriously? Uh oh. Well, can’t be helped”
Even though I said I’d talk, she did a surprise attack on me!!
Arina defended me again, but,
“Talk? Responsibility? You expect me to believe you? Yuu-kun, don’t you think you overdid it when you made Rosé your love slave?”
BOOM, BOOM, bombardments came at me one after the other.
“If you can’t say it properly then Phinegar will. You’re not the only one who used the ARN to meddle with this era you know”
“ARN? U, um, I really, really don’t know what you’re talking about!!”
“I know you’re trying to do the same thing Glenn did. — I’m not going to let you…!”
[‘Fenrir Lancer’. Make it to equip!]
Phinegar’s bombardment stopped, and in exchange her staff turned into a lance.
At the same time, the air around us became cold.
Since it had the name of the ice monster Fenrir it’s supposed to create ice, I guess.
“I’M NOT LETTING ROSÉ TURN INTO THE DEMON LORD!!”
Readying her not-normal-by-any-means lance, Phinegar broke into a run.
This is bad, I’m really getting killed this time —, but then…
“HEY YOU LOT!! WHAT ARE YOU DOING THERE!!”
Fweeee, a whistle sounded.
A guard, a policeman of this world appeared.
“…. whoops, this is not good”
Phinegar’s lance turned back into a staff.
Looks like even she doesn’t want to get in trouble with the cops.
“This is not like me to get so heated. Not cool”
“Indeed, not cool— oof!?”
Phinegar punched the butler who agreed with her.
“Yuuki-kun. Let’s leave it at this for today. Whoop!”
She stabbed the ground with her staff and the craters we made turned back into its original paved stone road.
“Be ready next time we meet. Bye, let’s play again later”
Phinegar made a peace sign and disappeared.
We stood there amazed for a while after the girl who appeared like a storm disappeared, but
“Aaaah, we have to run away, too….!”
I don’t know what to say if we get caught.
Mist turned into mist and blinded the policeman while we used the time to escape.
“— please explain one more time,” said Rosé pointedly in an office inside the castle.
There were paintings and sculptures in the room, and in front of her there was a table with white cloth spread over it.
The furniture would lead a stranger who’s unfamiliar with the customs of this world to think this was a place where nobles eat. This was the meeting room where royals and officials would personally meet with members of the senate. The impression of an eating place was not too far off the mark, because this was a country ruled by royal command, and the peculiar custom was that it was done with food and tea on the side. This room was furnished and named for that.
The one sitting in the white seat was Princess Rosé in a white dress. One of the consuls was seated across from her.
“With all due respect, Your Princessly Highness’ command to ‘override the fake seal’ is not practically doable at this time”
The old man was speaking politely but with a somewhat businesslike tone.
Rosé scrunched her eyebrows.
“So you’re saying you are going to leave the imitation bearing my, Rosé’s, name alone?”
“That would be preposterous. However, the fake was actually made with delicate precision. Even we who inspected it was fooled”
“Well it certainly did surprise me. Which is why you should do something as soon as possible”
“Your Ladyship, we can’t invalidate it. It’s already become the real thing. If we did invalidate it then the real one would lose its value too”
While it’s true that if such an elaborate imitation was circulating around the real thing would’ve gotten rolled up were it to be invalidated, but nevertheless, she couldn’t let Maar’s family die and do nothing about it.
“Then please make me a new one. Let’s investigate all the current seals and only stamp the ones I approve of”
“Your Highness, are you saying you would allot tax funds for that work alone?”
“We can’t be frugal. There are people who will suffer tomorrow’s living because of the fake seal”
“Your Highness, if we do that, we will have to reassign some from military expenditures. But now after Marquis Isky’s fall, the situation with Cidre is unstable. The enemy would likely sense what was going on with the reissue of the seal. In the worst case, the whole country would go down just for one citizen”
Alone in the office, Rosé had her head in her hands.
‘Capture anyone who was caught using the fake seal, will this be alright?’
The consul left with that conclusion.
That’s going to be too slow.
Who knows how long that man would take until he found the criminal, who knows how long until Maar gets lost by the wayside.
She made Maar a promise she can’t betray.
And yet, she couldn’t do anything.
So the clean and pure Rosé is this powerless….
[Princess Rosé can definitely do something right now]
Reminded of the words Yuuki said, Rosé raised her head.
“Not yet …! There’s still something I can do …!”