In the morning.
Having assumed his identity as Breman once more, Breiya was now snoozing away on top of his bed without a care in the world.
I guess this was to be expected. Last night was, at the very least, the first time I had seen her cut loose and enjoy herself as a female. Now was time for a much needed rest.
Compared to his usual demeanor, was that slightly domineering attitude his real personality?
Walking down to the first floor of the Checkered Path, I found my friends already sitting around a table enjoying their breakfast.
Mo Chuan: Morning.
Di Qi Ju: Morning…exactly why are you wearing that?
The seasonal wolf was currently wearing a white cleaner’s cap and had a light colored apron tied around his waist. In his hands were a pair of brooms. This immediately brought up memories of the cleaners I saw on Earth.
Mo Chuan: …working off my debt I guess.
Di Qi Ju: …huh?
At the side of the dining table was a serious looking One’day High who seemed to be contemplating an extremely serious matter.
One’day High: This feeling…
One’day High: It’s so intoxicating.
Di Qi Ju: Is the breakfast really that good?
One’day High: No no, I’m talking about the flower district.
Di Qi Ju: Did you even finish your job properly last night…
Di Qi Ju: Oh right, where’s Sole’shot?
Mo Chuan: He got stabbed in his thigh last night. Given his constitution and wish abilities, he’ll probably be okay by tomorrow.
Mo Chuan: Just let him lie in bed for today, Halfmoon Leak’age can take over his job.
Di Qi Ju: Must’ve been a really dangerous job…
Halfmoon Leak’age: Oh right, Di Qi Ju, here you go.
He took out a Traveller’s Time from his pocket and gently placed it on the table; the cracks which ran down its clock face were now completely gone.
Halfmoon Leak’age: It’s been fixed.
Di Qi Ju: Oh—thanks!!
Halfmoon Leak’age: I lucked out and managed to find a skilled craftsman who managed to fix it without even changing any parts.
Di Qi Ju: That skilled?
Halfmoon Leak’age: Rather than skilled, I guess strange would be more appropriate.
Di Qi Ju: Strange?
Halfmoon Leak’age: She used a tool that resembled an extremely long awl, it was probably as long as her arm. Not only that, she wielded it as if it was a sword while fixing the cracks.
Halfmoon Leak’age: Initially, I thought that thing would pierce a hole right through the Traveller’s Time. Instead, wherever its tip passed through, the cracks would disappear as if it had been enchanted with a wish ability.
Di Qi Ju: Woah…that is pretty strange.
Halfmoon Leak’age: I did however make sure that it was actually fixed and not some illusion.
Di Qi Ju: Mhm, what’s important is that it’s fixed and not the process.
Di Qi Ju: …
Di Qi Ju: This…
Halfmoon Leak’age: …what’s the matter?
Di Qi Ju: The object inside…it’s gone.
Halfmoon Leak’age: What object??
Di Qi Ju: There was a tiny white pebble inside…it’s gone.
Di Qi Ju: …
Di Qi Ju: ……
Naysis Ferne: Welcome back, Di Qi Ju!
Di Qi Ju: ……
Bailey: Di Qi Ju?
Di Qi Ju: …oh.
Naysis Ferne: hmm?
Even after I returned to school, all I could think of was that missing fragment of Starfall. It wasn’t anything special really but it had a significant meaning to me. It was a reminder of the day I undid half of my disguise ability and smashed Starfall to pieces.
It’s a warning of sorts, a warning to remind me of my true appearance and to always remember to retain my humanity.
Losing such an important object was…disconcerting. Not to mention I had once promised it in my heart to bring it to the Divine Hall and complete its last wish.
Ever since I experienced that deep sense of loss after coming to this world, I began to place more importance on such sentimentality and benevolence.
Poppy: …that will be all for today, however there seems to be some time left over.
Unknowingly, morning classes had passed by in an instant, and yet I hadn’t paid attention to a single word she said.
Poppy: How about we discuss about everyone’s views on God and wishes?
Poppy: The Divine Hall doesn’t severely restrict the faithful’s views on Westrealm so I’m sure all of you have your own opinions on this matter
Poppy: How about we start off with what kind of God do you think Westrealm is?
Poppy: Hmm, go ahead Bailey.
Bailey: I feel that Westrealm is a God that bestows on his followers an equal amount of blessing and tribulation.
Bailey: While wishes might seem omnipotent, such omnipotence is a combination of such tribulation and blessing.
Bailey: When we put our faith in God that he will fulfill our wishes, God will also instill along with his blessing, a tribulation into his faithfuls’ lives.
Bailey: If a person has suffered too much tribulation, under the guidance of God, he will be sure to receive an equally large amount of blessings.
Bailey: If a person is already prosperous and tries to be greedy with his wishes, he will instead encounter a tribulation he doesn’t expect.
Di Qi Ju: …
Poppy: Oh…that’s a pretty balanced view.
Poppy: Neither too pious nor too critical of God’s weaknesses. The fact you have such a view must be because of your background, isn’t it?
Poppy: I hope someone’s words will bring you strength in the future.
Bailey: …oh? Alright then, teacher.
Poppy: Miss Naysis, how about you?
Naysis Ferne: Me? Must I really?
Poppy: Yes. I think I’ll get a completely different answer from you.
Naysis Ferne: ……
Naysis Ferne: Westrealm…is nothing but a fraud.
Naysis Ferne: I invested all of my wish points into a single wish and yet it doesn’t seem to work at all.
Naysis Ferne: This so called God is nothing but a sham that won’t fulfill your wishes so easily.
Naysis Ferne: The more I learn about theology, the clearer that becomes.
Poppy: What kind of wish did you make?
Naysis Ferne: …I have the right not to answer.
Poppy: Princess, the wish points given to us by God can only impart benefits on you if you follow a fixed set of rules.
Poppy: Some wishes are only effective after investing a huge amount of wish points. Without that, their effects will be miniscule.
Poppy: While some wishes won’t work unless you take some action on your own.
Naysis Ferne: I didn’t wish for such a complicated thing. My wish is extremely simple.
Poppy: “To find a boyfriend?”
Naysis Ferne: *spit* What kind of person do you think I am, Teacher?
Carmen: Exactly, this interrogation is over for today.
Carmen: School’s over, let’s go Princess.
Naysis Ferne: Mhm.
Poppy: —alright then. Class is over, students.
Di Qi Ju: …
The girls in the classroom began to leave and yet I didn’t have intention of doing so. For some reason, Bailey and Naysis’s words felt like they were aimed at me.
Poppy: Little Ju, you seem a little distracted today, are you still recovering from that incident?
Di Qi Ju: Ah? Ah…no.
Poppy: Then is it because you went overboard drinking and gambling with a certain girl last night?
Di Qi Ju: …
Di Qi Ju: So you found out about that…
Poppy: You have me already and yet you still fool around with a flat chest like that.
Poppy: …you’re such a mischievous boy.
Poppy bent down slightly and gently rubbed my head. As if on purpose, her cleavage seemed to have lined up at exactly eye level. Fearing a certain reaction from my body, I immediately turned to the side.
Di Qi Ju: …that’s because when I came to find you yesterday, they told me you went out to buy supplies.
Poppy: Supplies? How could that be…given my position, leaving the school would be a very dangerous proposition.
Poppy: Don’t forget that the clergyman of the Outer Ring might be given missions near the outside of the Divine Hall from time to time. Why would I do such a thing?
Poppy: I think that teacher just doesn’t wish for you to be so clingy towards a teacher like me.
Di Qi Ju: …do I seem that clingy?
Poppy: Hmm who knows, you should know yourself best.
Di Qi Ju: ……
Di Qi Ju: …about Breman, you found out about his secret using your ability didn’t you?
Di Qi Ju: …you won’t tell anyone about it will you?
Poppy: Oh you…still talking about another woman at this time…
Poppy: Even if I wanted to tell anyone, who would I tell it to?
Di Qi Ju: That is true…
Poppy: Back to the question at hand, why were you so distracted today?
Di Qi Ju: I…lost something.
Di Qi Ju: A stone.
Poppy: Stone? What kind of stone? Did you pick it up during the expedition?
Di Qi Ju: You could say that.
Di Qi Ju: …!
As I said that, a thought suddenly occurred to me: perhaps she still didn’t know what I looked like after undoing my disguise ability.
While I might have roared at Starfall back then, it wasn’t using a human’s voice and shouldn’t have fallen within the range of her ability.
And her ability was only limited to what was said and heard, so barring any other ability, she shouldn’t be able to gather any information regarding that stone.
In that case, there’s no need to elaborate on this matter, that will merely add to her troubles.
Di Qi Ju: …it’s nothing. It’s just a memento. If it’s gone it’s gone.
Di Qi Ju: It’s not like that’s the only memento I picked up during the expedition.
Poppy: Alright then. You better not be so sullen tomorrow or I might just think that you dislike seeing me.
Di Qi Ju: No way…
That’s right, if it’s gone it’s gone. If it’s just about fulfilling some promise I made arbitrarily, I could always just head back to Starfall, grab some rock and bring it to the Divine Hall.
Who knows, I might just forget about this matter entirely as I grow older…
After all, I’m just a sixteen year old, who knows if I might grow up to be some cold hearted person…
Having said my farewells, I left the school and prepared to return to the Checkered Path for lunch.
Come to think of it, I haven’t paid a visit to Lee Sole’shot after he got injured…I should send him my condolences…
Di Qi Ju: …
Di Qi Ju: ……
The sound of something knocking on my heart.
My wish ability…activated.
I immediately swivelled my head around and searched for anything suspicious within the crowd.
Thus, I stood there with my heart in my throat for several minutes. In the end, I couldn’t find anything suspicious, not even a single sign or trace.
It was the same old street with nothing dangerous in sight, and yet the fear within my heart refused to go away.
Carmen: Princess, how’s the situation with Di Qi Ju going?
Naysis Ferne: …not well at all.
Naysis Ferne: I think he still hasn’t recovered from that trial. If it was me, I would still be traumatized by all that.
Naysis Ferne: He didn’t even react to my staring at all today, I wasn’t able to learn anything new about him.
Carmen: Haha, that’s just how kids attract one another’s attention…
Naysis Ferne: He isn’t that old either, he’s just one year older than me.
Carmen: Since you only have one target right now, wouldn’t a more mature approach work as well? Just chase away all the other flies around him.
Carmen: I just so happen to have picked up an interesting piece of material yesterday, would you care to have a look?
Naysis Ferne: Oh? What kind of material?
Carmen: It’s a white rock with an extremely flawless surface. It’s practically made to be an accessory.
Naysis Ferne: Eh—
As Carmen unfurled her fingers and dropped the stone onto her palms, she discovered that it was actually slightly smaller than the nail on her pinkie.
Lifting it up to the light, she could almost see a strange, pure light swirling around inside of it. It had a strange texture that a normal gemstone or metal didn’t have.
Like she said, it was the perfect material for an accessory. Wearing that, she would instantly be the star of any banquet she attended….and of any man.
Naysis Ferne: Not bad. Fashion it into a ring for me, make sure not to damage this rare stone.
Carmen: No problem, Princess.
Special thanks to Steve Granger, Kaung Thant Win Naing, and Antoine Thompson!!
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.