After approximately one week, Lyra finally finished her very long blink!
The next moment I opened my eyes, the beastman Clavis that I was familiar with was… no more.
I opened my eyes wide in surprise at the sight before my eyes, still with my hand holding a sword and blocking the other monster’s attack. I also poured in my signature ice magic to slowly freeze it. The moment it noticed that something was wrong and wanted to retreat, my ice magic already bound it to that spot.
With the disturbance out of my way, I could focus on the spectacle before me.
Yes, the familiar Clavis that I knew was no longer there.
Instead, the Clavis before me was… so different.
And no, he didn’t transform into his wolf beast form that I saw that day with Alt-nii, too.
How to say it…
I saw that his wolf ears and tail seemed to grow even bigger than it normally was. Its silver color seemed to be enhanced than it normally was, with several red markings engraved in his fur.
His human hands and feet had fur growing on them, still with the same red markings. Furthermore, Clavis seemed to have grown claws!
The red markings were glowing beautifully there.
As I observed Clavis, I noticed that his body seemed to be more built-up than his usual ‘skinny’ body.
As for the monster in front of him…
I noticed the monster was howling in pain with blood gushing out of its face—the claw marks on them revealed that it was Clavis’ doing!
It was at this time that Clavis turned his head to me as he asked, “Are you alright?”
But my mind was stupefied by Clavis’ new appearance. His gray eyes were now replaced with the same eyes that I saw in his wolf beast form—red irises and gray pupils. But those eyes were more ‘humane’ than the look I saw in his wolf beast form.
I noticed Clavis’ upper canines seemed to be longer than they normally were when he was speaking.
Furthermore, his face had the same red markings he had in his fur…
And I noticed his three-claws necklace seemed to have changed its color—perhaps it was because Clavis changed his “mode”, so the necklace also changed its “mode”?
Clavis asked again, with face full of concern.
Finally, I snapped out of my daze.
“I-I’m okay! Thanks, Clavis! I have some questions for you, but for now…”
“Yes, it’s time to focus on the fight first, right?” Clavis nodded.
With that, I leaped from my spot, ready to take another chimeric monster to defeat when I saw Clavis… jumped very highly before he lunged his kick at the chimeric monster he took from me.
With the kick he landed, the chimeric monster collapsed on the spot.
Clavis seemed to have gained a power that transcended even the humanity or the “beastmen”-ity.
I knew for sure that he wasn’t as strong as he was now.
Before, he couldn’t jump that inhumane height, nor could his kick make a big chimeric monster tumble so pathetically like that.
And more importantly… what was with this speed?!
Before the chimeric monster could even stand up, Clavis already landed another hit to it, along with claw attacks until it was finally defeated.
Clavis left no room for the monster to even defend itself.
And his surprising changes rendered me speechless and motionless for a moment.
Clavis’ breathing seemed to be rougher than it was before, and his husky voice could be heard.
He said as he smirked.
Before I could even comprehend the meaning behind his word, Clavis already leaped to another chimeric monster that was fighting with Kiri, sending it flying.
Kiri’s face was so priceless. He was so surprised and perhaps a bit frightened by the sudden movement that Clavis made. Luckily, he had already defeated the other chimeric monster he was fighting.
…Alrighty then, since Clavis was so diligent in helping the others fighting their share of chimeric monster, it was my time to do so, too.
But the moment I turned my head to look over my surroundings, I noticed that all monsters were either defeated or preoccupied on 1-vs-1 fight with my party members.
Dumbfounded, I decided to help a bit by freezing the ground—all the way up to the monsters’ feet. Since I could control the movement of my ice magic well, none of my allies got trapped up in my ice magic.
But at that time, exactly by the time I finished trapping the rest of the enemies in my ice magic…
“All mine! Outta my way!!”
Clavis’ excited voice could be heard as he dashed from a monster to another, attacking them without a pause.
Everyone was dumbfounded by this sudden turn of events that none of us managed to react in time.
Yes, by now, all of the monsters already decided that they would be coming after Clavis.
Instead of being terrified, Clavis laughed happily instead.
The first one to snap out of it was—as expected, Alt-nii.
“Clavis!! Snap out of it!! Don’t be so reckless!!” He shouted.
“Hahahahahaha!!” Clavis answered with another laugh as he fought the rest of the chimeric monsters alone, before adding, “THIS IS FUN!”
“Hey, Clavis! Even if we can heal your wounds with magic later on, it’s not good overdoing yourself like this!!” Alt-nii scolded Clavis nevertheless.
By this time, Luca also snapped out of his daze as he shook his head.
“It’s no use. He doesn’t seem to be paying any heed to our words.”
“…What happened?” I asked as I still couldn’t correlate this Clavis before my eyes with the Clavis I knew.
“…[Fiendish Fervor]. To think that I could witness it directly…!!” The youngest member, Ein, suddenly said as he looked at the fighting Clavis with awe.
Ein turned to look at me.
“You didn’t know?”
I shook my head honestly.
When I turned to look at the others, I noticed them all looking with eyes full of expectation towards Ein… with the exception of Luca. Should I say that it was to be expected? I guess it was natural for him to know about it as the crown prince.
For the first time, I felt like my past life’s knowledge was useless to the extent that I lost against these first-timers in life.
“[Fiendish Fervor] is the name of Clavis’ state right now. It’s a state in which a werebeast could unleash their power while in a more humanoid form. You can say that it’s the ‘stage’ bridging his beastman form and his werebeast form.”
Ein explained like he was some kind of a walking encyclopedia.
“It’s my first time hearing that. But how do you explain his condition right now?” I asked.
And right at the moment, we heard yet another heavy thump, signaling yet another monster defeated.
Our attention was quickly caught there. We turned to look at Clavis once more, who was now standing alone in the middle of the collapsed monsters with his rough breathing.
“More… more…,” he mumbled.
“Clavis, it’s enough. We’ve defeated the enemy. You can revert back now,” Alt-nii said.
But at that moment…
“Interesting! If that’s the case, then I volunteer to be your opponent!”
An orange figure flew through us very quickly before she floated right in front of Clavis.
Yes, it was Carbuncle.
Before, she was only lazing around, wanting to only observe us in fighting the monsters, ready to help in case of an emergency.
Repeating her words: “Wouldn’t it be cheating if I were to join your slaughters? Hahaha!”
So, right now… Right in front of us, there were a werebeast in his [Fiendish Fervor] state and a dragon currently in her half-humanoid and half-draconic state as well, facing against each other.
“Wait, don’t fight, Kuu-chan!” Iris seemed to have noticed Carbuncle’s intention as she shouted.
“Well, well, this little Clav is the one seeking a fight here, so I’m just being kind enough to provide him with a worthy fight, right?” Carbuncle said without looking back at us.
“Don’t joke around! Even if Clavis is a werebeast, how could his power be comparable to yours—a dragon?” Alt-nii tried to give some sense to the excited dragon.
“It’s alright, I will make sure to hold back. It’s not like I will hurt little Clav. Don’t you believe me?” Carbuncle said as she waved her hand.
“Are you going to fight me?” Clavis said with a tremulous voice.
“Yes, sure, entertain me well, wolfie~,” Carbuncle said as she licked her lips.
She was yet to do anything when Clavis leaped towards her, aiming his claws.
“Clavis!!” Harvey and Alt-nii were surprised to see their friend doing this.
Yes, even I was also surprised. Clavis was normally a moderated person who wouldn’t provoke unnecessary things. It seemed like his personality also changed with his newly awakened werebeast power.
Carbuncle smirked as she said, “I wasn’t the one to start it.”
She then lightly floated to the side, dodging Clavis’ attack with ease.
At the same time, she wrung her tail towards Clavis. Clavis quickly noticed it and did a somersault.
He barely landed when Carbuncle’s voice could be heard.
“My turn to attack!”
Carbuncle said as she lunged towards Clavis very rapidly, ready to tackle Clavis with all her weight plus the impact of the crash.
Luckily, Clavis was fast enough to dodge Carbuncle’s attack. Just as I thought Carbuncle was going to crash into the ground with this kind of a speed, she suddenly did an U-turn, as she floated above the ground once more.
…That is surely a very great mastery of flight.
This time, Clavis didn’t manage to react when Carbuncle showed up right in front of him, wringing her tail to him.
Clavis was quickly shoved by Carbuncle’s tail wring, but before he crashed into any tree or anything, Clavis managed to stop his body with quite a difficulty.
“…,” For some reason, Carbuncle’s excited face turned calmer now.
She didn’t launch any attack after that. She only floated calmly on the ground while Clavis ran towards her, charging attacks by attacks.
And each time Clavis attacked, Carbuncle managed to dodge it with slight effort.
“Hm… I expected too much. It’s getting boring,” Carbuncle said as she tilted her head—while dodging Clavis’ attacks.
“Shall we end this now?”
Carbuncle seemed to have decided her mind, as in the next instance, she extended her hand to Clavis’ body and…
Yellow sparks appeared from her hand, landing on Clavis.
Yes, Carbuncle sent Clavis some electric shocks!!
Clavis’ body jolted at Carbuncle’s unexpected electric shocks before he fell on the ground.
“Kuu!!” Iris shouted in her surprise.
“What? Don’t yell at me when I’m helping all of us!” Carbuncle protested.
I was about to question her when I noticed Clavis’ body—who was still lying on the ground with his face kissing mister earth—seemed to have reverted back into his usual form.
“I’m sorry! I didn’t expect that to happen!” Clavis said after he regained his consciousness.
We were now taking a break as we healed ourselves with healing magic and some healing items Iris prepared for us.
“Well, you’re still pretty weak to be a decent opponent to me, so no worries, hahaha!”
Carbuncle laughed as she sat on the ground cross-legged with her hands crossed in front of her chest, too. She had this smug look on her face, too.
“Ugh…,” Clavis seemed to be crushed by Carbuncle’s laugh.
“Speaking of which, Kuu! Are you the strongest one in your homeland, too?” I asked.
Carbuncle stopped laughing and her face stiffened.
Oh, it’s a ‘no’, then…
“Anyway, what happened? Is the restraining necklace too weak to prevent that?” Alt-nii asked with concern.
“Uh, that…,” Clavis hung his head down.
“I heard that [Fiendish Fervor] came with a downside. That is, blood rushes to your brain fast as well, so you are in a constant state of excitement or feeling the adrenaline rush in your body, and that is up to you to control… am I right?” Ein asked.
Clavis turned his head to look at Ein with face full of disbelief.
“He might have read it somewhere. He’s the heir of the Loera clan, so it’s not that unbelievable,” Luca explained on behalf of Ein.
Clavis seemed want to question Luca’s explanation further, but he decided to swallow his question back and explained.
“Ein is right. It seems that my control isn’t that great… yet. As for the necklace, it can restrain my transformation due to unintentional burst of emotions I feel when I’m still like this, but if I were to intentionally transform, it will change its mode and only restrain me from raging. As Ein said, it’s up to me to control myself from getting too engrossed in the adrenaline rush.”
“…And I failed just now, much to my shame,” Clavis hung his head down again.
“But you seemed pretty confident in your new strength before, which means… you should be having a good control of it, right?” I tilted my head in wonder.
There’s no way Clavis would risk himself by transforming carelessly if he still has a bad control over it.
“Well, yeah… I should have a good control already, but…,” Clavis hesitated to say.
“Aww, it’s fine. You can practice more, then,” I patted Clavis’ back as I noticed his hesitation.
If he hesitated to say the reason, then there was no need to force himself to say it.
“…You’re right, Lyra. Thanks,” Clavis smiled wryly.
“Ah, thanks for saving me too back there,” I quickly thanked him when I remembered what just happened.
“Lyr could have gotten off that situation just fine, though?” Carbuncle nonchalantly added.
“Urk…,” Clavis’ face turned awkward.
“But I will be hurt in the process, so what Clavis did was just minimalizing my injury, so it’s fine. Besides, Clavis took down the rest of the monsters after that, haha!” I quickly added, to make Clavis feel better.
“Aaaaa…,” Clavis seemed to be more dejected instead.
…Did I say anything wrong?
At this time, I didn’t notice that my words just reminded Clavis on how he lost control of himself and showed us something that he deemed as shameful.
“Still, a werebeast is so strong. I’m impressed,” Luca said.
“T-thanks…,” Clavis awkwardly smiled.
“It will be scary if you were an enemy, though,” Kiri added. Clavis’ smile grew stiff.
“That’s why, you should just get stronger, strong enough to not fear werebeasts!” Luca smacked Kiri’s back a bit strongly that Kiri yelped a bit.
“Y-yes!” Kiri said as his face contorted in pain.
“Alright, enough showing off your power. Didn’t that make you feel tired, Clavis?” Alt-nii asked.
“Y-yeah… Being in [Fervor] state caused fatigue to be accumulated in my body after that.”
It seems like the werebeasts are referring to [Fiendish Fervor] as just [Fervor].
“It’s like using too much magic, huh? I see, I see…,” I nodded in understanding.
“Okay, let’s hurry and clear this field so we can all take a good rest, then!” Alt-nii decided.
We all agreed.
“And no transforming for you, Clavis,” Harvey quickly added before all of us forgot.
“Okay, okay, I get it…”
Clavis’ dejected face was so cute that I ended up laughing. I tried to hold my laughter but I couldn’t. Oh well, it would be fine since it was Clavis we were talking about, right?
At that time, I have yet to know that the reason Clavis lost control of himself in his [Fervor] mode was… because he got too happy that he finally could protect me.
Normally, I was stronger than him, so the chances of him protecting me was practically nil.
But, how could this dense me be aware of Clavis’ developing feelings for me?
It wasn’t until later on that I learned of it.
Verrrrryyy later on.
And yet, I didn’t expect that there would be a troublesome matter finding its way to me in the near future…
Something that made me have a headache that I actually had to put my hand on my forehead.
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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.