Adam could tell Silber was as relieved as he was. Though, it was more than just something Adam saw in Silber’s posture or the way he acted, somehow Adam just… felt it from Silber.
The Silver Saviors around Adam had already noticed Silber’s transformation. The men who were guarding Silber and the others sheathed their weapons.
“I can’t believe you actually succeeded!”
Murmurs of agreement spread. Adam could scarcely believe it himself! It didn’t take long for Heinrich to hear and make his way over.
With a boisterous grin, Heinrich spoke: “I knew you’d be able to do it!”
Adam gave a weak smile in reply. He was still tired, despite the sleep he had managed to get. Heinrich continued: “Why don’t you get something to eat. Then let’s see how Silber does, helping us track down some Ghuls!”
Adam nodded. Despite how tired he felt, there was still a job to do. And an important one at that!
Adam sat with Silber and ate some of the food that had been cooked earlier that morning. He couldn’t help petting Silber after every other bite. He had been so close to losing him… Silber also showed a rather large appetite, eating twice as much as he normally did!
After they finished, Adam stood up and walked to Heinrich. Silber trotted along by his side. At the same time, Adam felt an odd sensation from Silber again. It was another feeling. Adam gave Silber an odd look, as he tried to understand it… Silber was waiting… following… leader? It was odd how these feelings translated and Adam wasn’t even sure if he was just imagining it.
Adam shook his head: “C’mon, let’s see what Boss has for us!”
Heinrich waved Adam over when he saw him: “I’m giving you over to Isley and his group. It’ll be one of the last patrols we send out.”
Adam curiously asked: “The last patrol? You think we’ve already found all the Ghuls?”
Heinrich shook his head: “We’ve been catching things as they turn and Ghuls that have yet to understand just what they can do. With this much time passing by… it’s far too dangerous to send out random patrols! We will have to wait and check for signs of Ghul infestations. I can only hope the Earth Essence the Dragon sent out didn’t go very far… Regardless, I’m hoping with Silber being a Geisttier that he might catch something we’ve overlooked. It’s worth a shot anyway.”
Adam looked at Silber, who just cocked his head to the side while wagging his tail. Adam smiled and shook his head: “I’m not sure Silber knows exactly how he’s changed. I’ll grab my gear and then head out with Isley.”
Adam kept a close eye on Silber during the patrol. Silber didn’t do anything special that would suggest he was a Geisttier, besides his fur glowing. He seemed to be his exact same self if a little more energetic. Adam did notice, however, that everyone in the patrol group kept on glancing over at Silber. He was a marvelous sight to behold and they couldn’t help admiring him.
Most of the patrol was rather uneventful. There were no signs of Ghuls or most kinds of wildlife for that matter! Rather, that was until Silber’s fur turned on end as he hunched low to the ground!
Everyone stood still as they noticed this. Adam quietly asked: “Silber, have you found…”
Despite leaving half his question unasked, Adam felt a confirmation from Silber. Isley spoke: “If Silber’s found something, let him loose. We’ll follow behind and we can see just what Silber is capable of!”
Adam nodded “You heard him, boy. Lead us on!”
Silber took off… faster than they could follow! Silber stood beyond the edge of the group, he had traveled almost ten meters in what seemed to be an instant! Silber gave a glance back and Adam felt a sense of indignation. Adam could almost hear Silber’s thought: ‘Why aren’t you moving yet!?’ Despite the gravity of the situation, Adam couldn’t help a small chuckle. Silber was annoyed that they were so slow!
Adam and the others quickly ran after Silber, who had to constantly stop in annoyance to let them catch up. A few minutes later, they finally caught up with Silber who had slowed to a crawl.
As they silently stalked after Silber, he suddenly pounced on a burrow hole! Instead of slowly digging the burrow out, Silber was ripping the ground up in gigantic pieces! Everyone once again froze in surprise! Adam used his elemental sight to gaze through the ground and saw Silber’s target!
At that moment, a scree! Pierced the air, causing everyone to clutch their ears. A rabbit then fled from the burrow Silber was digging up! The rabbit that appeared before them was covered in gore from killing the other rabbits in its warren! Patches of fur were missing from the rabbit, revealing pale skin with blood veins pulsing with a sickly yellow color. It looked between each of them, deciding who to attack first!
Before anyone could even shout the word ‘Ghul!’ Silber had pounced upon the rabbit and viciously bit down on its neck, shaking it left and right! The rabbit was clearly surprised that there was another creature in the world that could match its newfound strength and speed. It briefly kicked and screamed before becoming limp.
Silber happily trotted over to Adam and placed the dead Ghul Rabbit at Adam’s feet. He felt a sense of satisfaction and pride from Silber, who was wagging his tail while expectantly looking up at Adam. Adam smiled: “Good boy!”
Isley shook his head: “Guess we now know what Silber is capable of…”
The next day, Heinrich started marching the Silver Saviors back home. There was little more they could do without more men and supplies. They would have to alert the kingdom and they would hopefully send out a detachment of the army to patrol the area. At least they would be interested in recovering the Dragon’s body. Just about every part of it could be sold at high prices! A few of the Silver Saviors had asked about keeping parts of it, but Heinrich stopped them. There was no doubt that the kingdom wouldn’t let them keep any part of a dragon found in their territory, regardless of the fact that they were the ones to kill it.
At the few villages and towns they stopped at along the way, Silber drew everyone’s attention. His luxurious fur was easily spotted in any crowd and he seemed rather pleased by the attention. Adam felt smug satisfaction from Silber whenever someone commented his fur.
This was even more noticeable when they finally arrived at Hessler. The bustling streets of Hessler that would stop for nothing paused when the Silver Saviors arrived! Silber had run to the head of the marching Silver Saviors and proudly strutted in front of them, showing off for all to see.
Adam shook his head at Silber’s antics. He turned to Heinrich: “If you don’t mind, I’ll take Silber and head home.”
Heinrich nodded: “That is fine.”
Adam ran up to Silber and spoke with a smile: “Let’s go surprise Helen and the others.”
Silber seemed to like the Idea and quickly joined Adam as he started towards Madame’s. Stares followed them along the road and more than one person asked to pet Silber. None of them realized just what Silber was as a Geisttier. If they did, they might have been more nervous than excited. Silber was stronger than a regular Human was. If he decided he wanted to knock you down and lick your face, there was no stopping him! Adam had found that out at his own expense on the way back to Hessler.
Entering Madame’s courtyard, Adam saw Alfred. He waved and called out: “Alred!”
Alfred quickly turned around: “Adam! Your bac-”
Alfred stopped speaking the moment he saw Silber. After a moment of silence he said: “What… what happened to Silber?”
Adam sighed: “It’s a bit of a story. Is anyone else on break? I’m sure everyone wants will want to hear it and I don’t want to tell it ten times!”
Alfred laughed: “Sure. Helen just got off her shift. Bruno and Clyde are somewhere around too.”
It didn’t take that long for Adam to gather most of his friends up and tell them the startling story of how he faced a dragon! Helen intently listened to it while fawning over Silber’s fur, to his delight.
After Adam finished the story, Helen shook her head: “That was too dangerous Adam. You need to be more careful! Also, you should probably prepare yourself when your mom hears about this. She’s probably going to freak!”
Adam inwardly groaned: “Your right, but who would have ever expected a dragon!?”
Throughout the rest of the day, Adam had to retell his story five times! It was fun the first one or two times, but saying the same things over and over got… boring. To Helen’s credit, Vivienne did ‘freak’ when she heard the story.
After she calmed down, she gave Adam a fierce hug: “I know you can’t control everything about your missions, but please be careful Adam. I wouldn’t be able to bear losing you…”
Adam nodded as he hugged her back: “Don’t worry mom, I’m not planning on hunting another dragon down any time soon. Or ever, really. That was scary!”
When evening came, Adam found himself where he always went when he wanted to think or calm down; The Hill Garden. Helen was there and Silber was too. He sat back against a tree while Helen petted Silber in the grass.
Adam still remembered the kiss on the cheek Helen had given him before they left. Looking at her now, butterflies floated in his stomach. That was until Silber rolled over for Helen to pet his belly. Adam shook his head with slight annoyance. Adam always knew Silber rather liked Helen, but the feeling he was getting… Silber revered her more than him!
‘I’m his owner, aren’t I!? Though, I suppose he actually lives with Julianne… No, that doesn’t matter! Shouldn’t he like me more?’
Silber noticed Adam’s anguish over the question, so he got up and trotted over and started licking his face. “Oh, now you’re going to try and butter me up? Don’t think I didn’t notice, you like her more than me!”
Helen chuckled: “Don’t get jealous, Adam.”
Adam didn’t know how to reply to that. ‘Did she mean not to get jealous that she was paying more attention to Silber, or that Silber was paying more attention to her? Gah- so complicated!’
Adam decided to simply pout and ask Silber: “Why do you like her more than me?”
He didn’t really expect a proper response, but he still got one! Silber looked at Helen and Adam got a sense from him… something higher. Then he looked at Adam as something a little lower.
Adam shook his head. “That doesn’t tell me anything! It’s just the same as you saying you like here more!”
Helen sat between Adam and Silber to separate them; “Don’t fight, Adam.”
Adam gave a sigh and then frowned when he sensed smugness coming from Silber. It was almost as if he was saying: ‘See.’ Then Adam put it all together and was horrified! It was terrible to have Helen angry at him so he always listened to her! If they were in a wolf pack, Helen was the alpha wolf! Adam saged against the tree in defeat.
Moving past the reason why Silber like Helen more than him, Adam suddenly realized how close Helen was sitting next to him! He tensed up a little while thoughts raged in his mind: ‘How do I find out what that kiss meant? Do I ask? Can I touch her hand? What do I do!?’
Helen solved some of his problems by leaning over onto his shoulder! She spoke softly: “Adam?”
“I… don’t like it when you go off on these missions. You always come back cut, bruised, or with a scary story like that dragon! I’m afraid you won’t come back one day…”
Adam relaxed his muscles as he contemplated her words. “Sometimes it does get rather dangerous, but… I just feel like there is so much I could do out there! I helped calm that village’s fire. I’ve prevented bandits from preying on travelers. And that dragon… Heinrich might not have made it out alive if I hadn’t been there! Isn’t it worth that chance if I can really make a difference out there for someone?”
“There’s also a lot you could do here… with me.”
Adam’s heart caught in his throat. A selfish decision started forming in his mind. He turned to Helen and she looked up. Adam gently leaned in and kissed her. A small voice in his mind screamed that she was going to push him away or slap him! But… she didn’t.
Adam pulled back from his sloppy kiss, a little red in the face. He looked at her gorgeous rosy aura and said: “I’ll give it all up if you want me to.”
Helen shook her head: “I’d like that, but… I know you can handle yourself out there and you really do like doing those things. Maybe find a better way? Maybe I’m just being selfish.”
Adam gave her a smile: “It’s fine to be selfish. You’re right, too! Anyone can fight a bandit, but few can… control a fire like I can. It’s my abilities as a Spiritualist that have always helped the most. Maybe, I should be putting more effort there. I’ll speak to Heinrich tomorrow about this.”
Helen smiled back and gave him a soft peck on the cheek before settling back down on his shoulder. Adam felt a sense of rightness. He couldn’t help a broad grin from spreading further across his face.
The two stayed like that for a while longer before finally heading back to Madame’s, hand in hand.