Chapter 312, Busy Reunions
This can’t be normal…
Yes, the Pochisley Agency right at this moment is clearly not normal.
Lina seems happy to see me, but the way she’s clinging to me suggests that something has happened.
A few moments passed as I stood here, confused.
Then, with her pulling me by my arms, I was led downstairs.
…What the hell is going on
For some reason, quite a few people from the Royal Capital Magic Guardians are here — Brigadier Viola, Jeanne, Hornel, Fuyu…
I’m also seeing ten or so other soldiers.
Everyone seems exhausted.
Walking down the stairs, the first guy to notice my arrival was… What the– why’s Barun here, too
And as everyone else heard Barun call my name, they all turned to me.
Oh, I so want to talk to Pochi about this… but she’s sleeping upstairs.
Whatever is happening, my brain is not catching up with it at all.
Countless voices, all so dispirited, echoed through the Pochisley Agency.
And along with the voices, a handful of people approached me — all my familiar friends.
But then there’s this guy, who’s gone ahead and grabbed me by my shirt’s collar… Which is totally what he’d do, to be fair…
“Asley… you! NOW you…!”
I can tell that he WANTS to say something, and the look he’s giving me is… borderline hostile, but I don’t feel any strength in his voice and eyes.
In the end, he said nothing and simply let go of me.
Immediately following that was a little nudge on my abdomen.
It’s from… Fuyu.
All disheveled, with tears streaming down her cheeks.
Quite apparently, no one’s in the mood to celebrate my return, but she does seem happy… in one way, while every other way is sadness and more sadness.
So what God said about the things happening over here was…
“Sir Asley… Sir… Asley…!”
Fuyu kept crying, and to my side, Lina did as well.
And then there’s HER, completely unchanged from when I left…
“Ah! Welcome back, Sir Asley! I just cleaned your room three days ago, so it shouldn’t be too dusty yet, I think!”
Yup, same old Itsuki, despite whatever’s happening right now.
And she’s running around the place, busy with work.
Which reminds me, God did say that the whole Team Silver has evacuated to T’oued.
Wasn’t Itsuki registered as one of their members, too Hmm… well, this is Itsuki I’m talking about.
She probably worked something out.
And Barun is just sitting still in the far corner of the room.
Considering everything, it looks like the first person I must talk to is… that lady.
The lady who, among the people who have approached me, has only been standing around and looking.
I DO want to ask Lina and Fuyu what has happened — and so many other things — but the look this lady is giving me suggests that she won’t let me do even that.
I gave both Lina and Fuyu a pat on their shoulders, then walked over to her, who then finally said something to me,
“…You seem to be in good health.”
“Hello, Miss Viola.
It’s been a while.”
Brigadier Viola of the Royal Capital Magic Guardians.
The fact that she’s here, in this random building in Beilanea, but is not accompanying a certain other person… is somehow enough to tell me everything.
She’s trying to look like she’s fine, but I can tell that she’s not.
Why she’s sad, why everyone’s crying, why the soldiers are exhausted, why Hornel is pissed as all hell… the reason is the same.
And so Viola let her welled-up tears spill as she talked… about what had happened to a certain Great Mage.
Now I know what emotions must be going through Hornel’s head.
Without anywhere to vent my anger, I could only tightly clench my fists.
“It happened just today… I mean, yesterday at noon.”
It hasn’t been long past midnight, according to my Biological Clock magecraft.
They must’ve been here for almost half a day already, then — and they’re still awake through their exhaustion.
Gaston’s death must have hit them hard.
“Month six, day three…”
I muttered to myself after taking a look at the block calendar on the counter.
Itsuki always changes the number blocks right when it gets past midnight.
Which means… Billy and Gaston fought on month six, day two.
“If Fuyu hadn’t sent us here specifically, we would have been in much more danger.”
Viola said as she cast her eyes down.
And what she said is true — if they had teleported back to the Magic Guardians HQ instead, they most likely would have been ambushed there as well.
They’re safe thanks to Fuyu and Gaston’s teachings… And her own talents, of course.
“Um, Sir Asley…!”
Turning around, I saw that Lina’s eyes had turned red and swollen.
It seems that she’s been holding back her tears all this time.
She’s growing up so fast… wait.
She actually HAS grown up quite a lot.
“Lina, what year is it now”
“Ah, well… War Demon Calendar Ninety-Six…”
Huh, so two years and about a month have passed… Same as the amount of time I’ve spent in the past eras.
Man, I’ve been away for so long.
And now that I got to see her up close, Lina has grown up quite a lot, too.
“Sir Asley, what have–“
I could tell what Lina wanted to ask me — What have I been doing, and where have I been
But before she could ask… the Nation interrupted her.
The front door of the Pochisley Agency swung open with a bang.
And the ones to appear from the other side of it are…
“Hah hah hah…”
My second student in this era… Tifa, and her Familiar Tarawo.
They’re both out of breath.
They saw me the moment the door was fully open.
Time seemed to have stopped for a moment as Tifa walked over to me.
She said and threw her arms around me.
Now this is awkward — I can’t bring myself to look aside, either, since that means I’ll make eye contact with someone else… one of which is Lina.
But then it didn’t take long for Tifa to let go of me.
I can tell that she’s not here to see me — she probably didn’t even know that I had returned.
She had rushed over to relay an important message.
So important that she came out here in the middle of the night — so important that she didn’t even stop to make Telepathic Call.
Looks like this isn’t the right time to be celebrating our reunions.
“Guys, we need to move! Tangalán and Dragan are coming — and this time they’re bringing some of the students!”
“She’s right! I saw them, too! The march of champions! They’re here to trample this place to the ground!”
Damn, stop being dramatic for a minute, King Wolf.
But knowing that Billy is actually doing Ishtar’s every bidding… It wouldn’t be beneath him to try and attack this place as well.
“But where can we go Fuyu, has Natsu contacted you at all”
Lina is quite quick to react and take action.
She must have gone through a lot of hardship over the years.
“No, and I don’t think we can teleport over there right now.
Considering how late it is–“
–Natsu’s probably already asleep.
Going to T’oued doesn’t seem to be an option right now.
“If only Tzar and Lala were here, we could at least hop over to Faltown, but…”
Itsuki said as she looked up at the ceiling.
Looks like those two are at Faltown right now… But even trying to contact them now might be too slow.
After all, time never stops for anyone.
I stood up, prompting Lina to look at me.
Honestly, It’s disappointing how little I got to talk to everyone after missing them for so long… But there are more important things now!
“Rise, A-raise! Teleportation & Ground Spell Delivery!”
Good — that Teleportation Spell Circle must be outside of Beilanea right now.
“What speed! And that technique…!”
“A combination effect of magic and magecraft!”
Viola and Hornel are understandably surprised — not that there’s time to worry about them now…
This hoarse voice… Probably ol’ Tangalán.
I drew another Spell Circle on the floor, connecting it with the one outside of Beilanea.
Then I sent a signal to Hornel via eye contact.
“Line up and start moving.
Hornel whispered and directed everyone’s escape.
Now then, I’ll go pay our guests a little visit…
Lina said and approached me.
Is it because I’m walking toward the door
Before I knew it, I felt my mantle being tugged at from three directions.
Lina, Tifa, and Fuyu…
Eh, excuse me
“Hehehehe, things are getting real interesting again real fast~~!”
Itsuki couldn’t help but crack a joke; I ignored her for now, and said to the three others without turning around,
“I’ll go buy us some time.”
With that, they all let go of my mantle.
It’s a good thing that they trust me… but what should I do Really, I have no idea.