Chapter 184: Gifts

Leaving Loki on the couch, Vahn moved to the opposite couch where he was flanked by Tiona and Ais as Lefiya stood at the side and Tione took the place where Vahn had left an occupancy next to Loki. After everyone had found a spot where they were comfortable, Tiona asked, “So, what happened to cause you to turn Loki-sama into putty?” She still had an amused grin on her face since she had never seen her goddess in such a compromised state.

Vahn explained everything that happened during his private meeting with Loki, including the parts concerning Divinity, [Enkidu], and pregnancy. As for the reason why Loki was currently a goddess-shaped blob, Vahn explained that she was acting brazenly after getting drunk and he decided to help her relax so she wouldn’t be so restless.

Loki, who heard his explanation uttered in a distressed and tired voice, “Don’t listen to him…He didn’t help me relax at all…” However, though she was speaking the truth, none of the girls present seemed to care about her current state. Lefiya looked as though she was enjoying Loki’s suffering while Ais just muttered in a plain tone, “Sneaky…” She then grabbed Vahn’s right hand with hers and gave him a somewhat inquisitive look.

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Vahn understood what she was trying to ask, so he began to channel his [Hands of Nirvana] with the intent of ‘relaxing’. Ais felt the warm energy enter into her hands so she smiled and said, “Pleasant feeling…” Tiona seemed to be incited by her actions and took Vahn’s other hand and asked if he could do the same for her, so he did.

Tione stared at the three with a bit of annoyance and asked, “Does it really feel that good?” In response to her question, Ais nodded her head while Tiona just started laughing with a cheerful expression on her face. Ever since she had lost her virginity to Vahn, Tione had been bugging her for details a lot. There was even an incident where she tried to sneak into Finn’s quarters in the middle of the night before being promptly booted out.

For the next hour or so, the entire group continued to talk about the events that had taken place since the meeting between the other girls. Though Lefiya blushed after knowing Vahn was aware of her presence at the meeting, she still contributed to the conversation a bit. Both Tiona and Ais ended up apologizing to Vahn for pressuring him into having sex with them. In response, Vahn frowned and shook his head as he denied them any blame. He admitted that he was just as curious as Ais, and the entire reason he had shown up that day was that he genuinely cared about Tiona’s desire for children.

Even though Vahn agreed that things had developed too fast, he explained to both girls that he cared about them deeply. He told Tiona how he liked her active and cheerful demeanor and how she was always outgoing. For Ais, he explained how, though she might seem to lack expression, he greatly appreciated her kindness and admired her strength. When they had dueled after their first meeting, she constantly tried to take his state-of-mind into consideration and tried to encourage him to grow stronger.

Ultimately, Vahn managed to convince both girls to not blame themselves for what had happened, and Vahn even expressed his intention to continue their relationships in the future. From now on, they would constantly be together on expeditions, and Vahn wanted to protect them both while trying to increase his own strength. When the conversation got to this point, Tiona was in high tensions and had glued herself to Vahn’s body while Ais leaned against his shoulder while still holding onto his hand.

Lefiya had a somewhat sad expression as she watched the three acting so affectionately toward each other while she stood off to the side on her own. She had known Vahn just as long as Tiona and Ais, and they have even shared a few intimate moments in the past. Vahn had always been kind to her and tried to cheer her up when she was scared with the same warm hands that were held by Tiona and Ais. Remembering his hand against her back in the fight against the Juggernaut and his subsequent collapse from the mental attack, Lefiya felt a bit saddened to be left out.

She wasn’t the only one having strange thoughts, as even Tione and Loki looked at the trio with a bit of frustration on their faces. In the hour they had been talking, Loki finally managed to recover and had begun slowly drinking her wine as she made weak attempts to jump in on the conversation. Tione herself had actually been resenting both Vahn and her sister ever since their tryst because she felt jealous due to her on unrequited love. She imagined her and Finn enjoying the company of each other and being affectionate on the couch, and couldn’t help but join Loki as the two continued to drink their troubles away.

After a while, Vahn managed to free his hand from Ais and laid out a variety of weapons on the table starting with the massive [Dance of the Amazon]. Fortunately, the table was of a rather high quality, so it was able to support the weight of the weapon without too many issues. Everyone in the room was somewhat confused at the sudden appearance of the weapon, so Vahn explained, “I’ve been trying to improve my forging so I can create an item for Hephaestus before the Denatus. Though my products may not be the best, I wanted to try and create items that would be beneficial to those I cared about.”

Hearing his explanation, Tiona’s face immediately brightened since she realized the similarities between the current weapon and her own Urga. Before Vahn even explained anything about the weapon, she grabbed his head with her hands and began to kiss him passionately with a somewhat fervent expression on her face. Fortunately, Tione and Ais managed to separate the two before Tiona got even further out of hand. Since Vahn triggered her instincts as an Amazon, even if she tried to control herself it was very difficult when he did things that pleased her to such an extent.

Vahn made a mental note to be more cautious around Tiona as he explained the specifications of the [Dance of the Amazon] to everyone present. Hearing each different feature of the weapon made Tiona’s expression turn more flushed and she had to be placed in between Ais and Tione as Vahn sat next to Loki who was eying the weapon with clear intrigue on her face. Eventually, she turned to Vahn and asked with a mischevious smile on her face, “Given the design of this weapon, I can’t imagine it costs less than ten-million Valis. Are you really going to give it away for free?”

Vahn returned her gaze for a few seconds before turning he head and matching the ‘fierce’ gaze of Tiona. The moment he looked at Tiona, both Ais and Tione tightened their grip on the girl as Vahn said in a serious and sincere manner, “For the people I care about, there is no price I’m not willing to pay. Ten-million Valis is nothing if it’s able to keep them safe for even a minute longer.”

Not only Tiona’s, but everyone in the room had their eyes widen to various degrees before they showed different expressions. Loki began to laugh at the bold proclamation while Ais gave him a happy smile. Tione seemed to be frustrated while Lefiya had hung her head low and had a somewhat sad expression on her face. Tiona herself looked like she was about ready to eat Vahn alive and if not for the two Level 5 girls holding her at bay, Vahn may very well have had to beat a hasty retreat.

Eventually, things developed to the point where Vahn had to use [Hands of Nirvana] to help Tiona calm down before she left the room holding [Dance of the Amazons] like a precious treasure. When she left, Vahn felt a bit sad at her departure but could also feel a heavy pressure relieved from his shoulders. After settling back down, Vahn took out the next weapon which was [Gram].

As if she had taken a note out of Tiona’s book, Ais gave Vahn a short but deep kiss for nearly a minute before she lifted up the sword and inspected it with a slightly enamored expression on her face. Vahn was still a bit dazed from her affectionate display and it took him a few seconds before he began explaining the features. Hearing that it provided her a benefit against dragons, Ais looked at Vahn with the closest thing to a ‘loving’ gaze he had ever seen from her.

After placing the sword back on the table, she tried to embrace Vahn’s face and kiss him again before Loki shouted out to stop her actions. Watching Vahn constantly being kissed and acting passively had triggered her a bit and she couldn’t help but try to put a stop to things before they got out of hand. She couldn’t help but wonder where the ‘dominant’ Vahn that had tormented her for nearly half an hour had disappeared to.

Though everyone had assumed he was finished with the weapons, Vahn had noticed that both Tione and Lefiya had strange reactions to everything that happened. After a brief period of thought, Vahn decided to give both girls gifts as well, albeit much less impressive than the ones he had given Ais and Tiona. Placing his hands over the table, Vahn removed [Gale] and [Tempest], the twin swords he had forged when he first entered the orb.

Ais didn’t seem to have much of a reaction, but Loki, Tione, and Lefiya stared at the two intricately designed swords with confusion and intrigue. Vahn looked at Tione and she seemed to understand his intentions as she pointed to her own face and asked, “For me?” Vahn nodded his head with a smile and began explaining the functions of the two swords. Since he had seen that Tione used shortswords in the past, he thought they suited her well.

As she listened to his explanation, Tione took the two swords into her hand and admired their structure. Since Vahn had put a lot of effort into every minor detail of the sword, they both looked almost ceremonial in their make. Even a novice could understand the effort put into their creation, much less a skilled veteran like Tione. She looked at the boy who was supposed to be her sister’s lover and asked with mixed emotions and a frown, “Don’t tell me you’re trying to get to me after getting your hands on my sister?”

Since Tione had intended to try and pressure Tiona into being with Finn when she finally managed to break down his resistance, she thought that Tiona and Vahn had developed similar fantasies to her own. Though she thought highly of Vahn as well, she still had far more affection for her Captain, even though he never reciprocated. After hearing Vahn’s words about protecting the people he cared about, she couldn’t help but think he was trying to win her over.

Vahn shook his head and explained without losing his smile, “If something were to happen to you, Tiona would be heartbroken. If these swords can protect your and her smiles, I think that would be the best situation for everyone.” Hearing Vahn’s words, Tione frowned and accepted the two swords without complaint. Knowing that Vahn was just giving her the swords to make her sister happy, Tione felt several conflicting emotions in her heart and mind.

After Tione accepted the swords, Loki and Lefiya stared at Vahn with a slight anticipation on their faces. Even though Lefiya had a lot of difficulty dealing with her emotions regarding Vahn, seeing him give out weapons to even Tione made her slightly expectant. Remembering how Vahn had said he wanted to protect her back in the dungeon, Lefiya believed that she might fall into the category of people that he had forged an item for.

Unfortunately, Vahn had only originally forged items for Tiona and Ais, so he didn’t have a staff on hand to give the bashful young elf. The [Gale] and [Tempest] had been made on a whim and now he was in a mild predicament as he noticed the hopeful look in her eyes. Since he had decided to give them both gifts previously, Vahn ended up having to purchase a staff from the system and ‘gift’ it to her. Fortunately, Lefiya’s affection for him had reached 84 points since he had fallen unconscious in the dungeon.

The staff he gave her was the same [Heal] that he had purchased long ago. Since it cost 2,000OP, it was actually slightly higher quality than the items he had forged for Tiona and Ais. Of course, Vahn didn’t think that was the case since the OP reward he got for naming an item probably had no correlation with its rarity considering that [Heal] was C.

Vahn gave the staff to the fiercely blushing Lefiya who received it with shaky hands. After explaining its functions, everyone in the room had somewhat shocked expressions when they found out that it was actually capable of healing any non-lethal wounds as long as the user had enough mana. The only downside was that using the healing effect of the staff would affect its efficacy until finally breaking after a certain number of uses.

Lefiya hugged the staff to her chest as she looked at Vahn with slightly teary eyes and bowed. With a quiet and shaky voice, she said, “Thank you…Vahn. Thank you…” Vahn didn’t know why she was so affected by a simple gift so, since he had been standing when he handed it to her, he reached out his hand and began channeling [Hands of Nirvana] as he had done for her several times in the past.

Feeling the somewhat familiar and warm sensation coming from the marginally larger hand of Vahn, Lefiya felt like she wanted to cry but managed to keep her tears contained within her blurry eyes. Vahn was always so nice to her, and he had even given her an item that not only increased her combat capabilities but also allowed her to save the lives of her allies in a pinch. Healing magic, especially healing magic that could be used from a distance, was incredibly rare. Lefiya, along with everyone else in the room, had never even heard of a staff like the one Vahn had presented to her.

After Lefiya had calmed down a bit, she ended up excusing herself from the room since she was in an unstable state. Vahn had asked Ais to take care of her which made the elf blush and hang her head as the two left the room in silence. Loki gave Vahn an inspecting gaze as she asked, “That staff, did you make it?”

Vahn turned to make eye contact with her and noticed that even Tione was giving him an appraising look. After a brief consideration, Vahn realized it wasn’t incorrect to say that the items he purchased from the system were created by him. Since ‘The Path’ had bonded with his soul, that meant that everything it produced was a product of his soul, which was the same as being a product of Vahn himself.

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He affirmed Loki’s words with confidence and it seemed to work since she actually seemed to be impressed and said in an appreciative manner, “Thanks, Vahn, that kind of staff couldn’t have been easy to make. I’m sure it’ll be very helpful in the dungeon if anything happens. If possible, I’d like for you to create even more and I don’t mind paying for each of them.”

Vahn shook his head and explained, “That staff is forged with a very special method. Other than Lefiya, nobody else would be able to use it.” Since it was technically true, Loki couldn’t see through his words and just showed a bit of disappointment for a brief moment before her expression turned into a teasing one as she asked, “So you made that staff especially for Lefiya~? At this rate you might end up conquering all the girls in my Familia, myself included~!”

Tione seemed to latch onto the words as she also tried to tease Vahn a bit, “Really, if Captain doesn’t change the way he treats me soon, I might have to compete with my sister for your affection. Since she was able to take on that little monster of yours, I should be able to handle it just as well.” Her words caused Loki to ask, “Little monster?” Though she somewhat understood what Tione was implying, she wanted to confirm her suspicions.

Tione laughed and gave Vahn a playful look as she leaned over and whispered into the grinning Loki’s ear. After a few seconds, Loki’s eyes widened and she looked at Vahn with an incredulous expression. If what Tione said was true, she nearly made a grave error earlier when she tried to goad Vahn into having sex with her. She might need to prepare herself both mentally and physically before she tried approaching him in the future.

(A/N: Alternate Title: ‘The Legend Lives On’,’Vahn casually gifting out 100MV of items’,’The Danger that is Tiona’)

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