“….a rich land, a comfortable and powerful empire, and countless beautiful babies.”
A magnificent voice tickled my ears.
I flinched and opened my closed eyes.
Clap clap, clap clap-
I heard a refreshing sound of water somewhere. No, I was actually half asleep in the water.
“And the descendant of a great dragon that encompasses them.”
At the following voice I looked around the main shore. Then I was surprised.
I was surrounded by hundreds of people who were wearing white hoods inside out with a cane.
‘What the hell, these people……’
I frowned and tried to figure out who they were.
But strangely when I tried to concentrate, my vision became blurred, just like someone was forcing me to press down on my eyes.
The only thing that could be recognized was a stick they all held in their hands.
‘It’s like my mirror rod……’
In the midst of this craziness, such a thought came to my mind.
“Sages who have been given the favor of the golden dragon, are fated to protect all things.”
Again the majestic voice uttered unknowable words.
“But the foolish man who has not done so, and is greedy, will be crushed by the wings of the golden dragon when he holds eternal life in his hands.”
‘What are you saying….’
“The last descendants who wandered in search of our traces.”
It was then. One of the white hoodies that was making noise around me suddenly came a step closer.
“What choice will you make?”
As he asked, he held out his hands over my lying face.
A big, coveted, gold-colored egg on one hand.
And the other hand had a respirator in it. His ventilator dripped and dangled as if it would touch my nose.
‘Was there a respirator in this world?’
I thought something was a little strange. (So till now everything was normal, got it)
However, as if urging the choice, the shaking of the oxygen respirator that swiped the tip of my nose increased.
Of course, I didn’t have to worry too much about it, If I only had to choose one of the two…
It was the moment I reached out for it.
“…cess, princess! Penelope Eckart!”
Someone shook me roughly.
I opened my eyes wide.
“You finally came to your senses? Huh?”
As soon as I recognized the man looking at me with a desperate face, my cough popped out.
I shook my body vigorously, vomiting water.
Callisto, who had been frantically wiping my face with his hands and patting me on the back, finally hugged me when I was done caughing.
“Damn it, do you know how surprised I was when you suddenly stopped breathing?”
“Let me breath! It’s suffocating!”
The power of hugging was terrifying. I shook his shoulder.
“….you’re just so good at making people’s hearts boil.”
But instead of letting go, he hugged me more strongly and murmured as if to pester me.
I suddenly stopped struggling to get out of his arms.
I thought my shaking was because I was soaking wet.
But Callisto’s hand that was holding me, and his whole body were trembling like an aspen tree.
After a moment of unconsciousness, I could see how surprised he was.
I finally put down my hand, which was about to hit his shoulder again, and hugged him. (Awww ♡~♡)
After a long time, we calmed down little by little.
Only then we were able to look around.
The surroundings were dark in a glance, It was a deep underground cave.
The unusual thing was that there was a vast lake filled with water at one side of the cave.
When I saw I was wet from head to toe, I figured that I must’ve fellen into the lake, and Callisto had moved the fainted me to the ground.
“Then again. Why would a rat think of the cat? Your lips are blue, and you look like a witch.” (?)
He raised his hand and touched my lips with his thumb while making fun of me.
I was a little angry, but I remained silent because I had sinned.
Instead, I looked around twisting my head as if ignoring him.
I couldn’t even see how deep the underground was.
“What do we… do now?
Callisto spoke with a great deal of insipidity to my worrying question.
“Let’s hope it’s dawn and someone will notice we’re gone.”
He added with a light smile as if to soothe my anxiety.
“I’m not sure which ones will run first.”
“I’m… on the Maltban side.”
I played along with his joking bet.
“Maybe because he’s afraid of you, but Jean always wakes up early in the morning to check if I’m doing well in my house.”
“Huh, is that really what a guy who put the escort off and was hit in the middle of the night would do?”
Perhaps my nonchalant reply was antounding, so Callisto gritted his teeth and said.
“Speaking of which, let’s talk. Tell me the truth. What were you doing up there……”
“Wait a minute.”
I walked past him, stopping Callisto, who was inquiring me as soon as he got the chance.
“Where are you going, not talking? Is the empress sad?”
He called me as if bewildered, but my gaze was nailed to something that had been pushed to a shallow point by the waves.
The flagpole that fell with us was floating on the water.
“I thought it was a little strange, so…. I brought it to check it when we get back.”
It was just an old silver stick with weak defense ties and little mana for oil.
I’ve always seen it on the way back and forth from the work site, but when I recalled the vibrating white light earlier, suddenly a sense of discomfort soared.
‘Come to think of it, I had a strange dream….’
With that in mind, I looked around the lake in the calm cave beyond the flagpole.
“I think Marienne’s going to be incredibly disappointed….”
“Is it the time to care about that?”
“I’ve spent nearly a year here, but I didn’t know there would be only water like this.. So of course.”
It was not only Marienne who would be disappointed, but I also muttered dejectedly.
Callisto, who eventually gave up prying into my strangely powerless voice, trudged to my side.
I frowned and agonized over my forehead without even caring about him.
“…then why is this place so full of mana?”
“I think they want to live, too. But they’re all hidden in this mountain valley because of all the annoying people like you.”
When I spoke to myself about the mystery, Callisto kicked his tongue out. (?)
Ignoring his ‘Oh, that’s what you think.’ face, I reached out my hand and raised the flagpole.
At that moment, I felt a sharp pain in my palm.
I let go of the flagpole with a short groan.
“What is it? Let me see.”
Before falling into the water again, Callisto, who managed to grab the flagpole, hurriedly unfolded my hand.
Blood was oozing from my palm.
As the blood dripped onto the surface of the water, his face became ferocious in a moment.
“You’re hurt! Damn it, I’ve been carrying you around so not a single strand of your hair would be cut….”
“I guess I was swept away.”
“You’re so clumsy. Come to think of it, why did you only put a few layers of scrolls on your stomach?”
I felt a prick, shivering my shoulders and groping at my stomach.
‘That’s right, the baby.’
Whether the magic of scrolling was still valid, my body glistened with a whitish light.
‘I’m glad I didn’t spare it and used up all the shield scrolls.’
I don’t know if it’s because it overlapped with what I’ve been wearing, but even though I’ve been moving so violently, I was fine without any pain.
“Didn’t you see the heads of snakes? No matter how hard you protect your intestines, it won’t be enough when your neck is cut. From now on, shield around the neck. Okay?”
He talked slowly, as if to explain to a child who knew nothing.
It was the moment when I opened my mouth to stop him from saying such terrible things.
Suddenly, the flagpole in Callisto’s hand began to vibrate again.
At the same time, shoot-!
I could hear the sound of a torrent of water pouring from somewhere.
We both looked back at the lake at the same time.
And then I saw an unbelievable sight.
The water, filling the vast lake, was draining at a tremendous speed.
The water level went down step by step. And what was beneath it began to reveal gradually.
“Oh my God…”
I slowly opened my eyes wide.
All the water in the lake was drained, and the collapsed building site and some of the remaining sculptures were exposed.
faded jewels, gold, and artifacts piled between them.
“…It’s where the ancient wizards lived.”
Even without a mana meter, I could feel a mana so powerful that it tingled my skin.
Ancient wizards had vanished from the world after a great battle with the Leila Tribe.
There have been occasional discoveries of relics or magical remains, but so far, such large remains have never been found.
As if to welcome me, there were steps from where we stood down to where the ruins were located.
‘This could be a big hit.’
With my mouth wide open, I ran on the stairs like I was possessed.
“Princess! Don’t go to those dangerous places!”
The emperor seemed to follow angrily from behind, but nothing reached my ears.
Arriving at the bottom of the lake in a flash, I looked around.
Perhaps because of magic, there was no small life like fish or seaweed, let alone mana, even though it had been buried under the water for a long time.
With curious eyes I watched the floor drying quickly. It had been ironed out evenly like the Imperial City, and then I soon ran to the nearest sculpture.
It was the remains of a building with only one wall left.
“…..It’s not fresh water, it’s seawater, you know?”
Observing it carefully, I put my hands over the salt on the wall.
Callisto, who came down the stairs one step late, shouted.
“Don’t just touch anything!”
“Your Majesty, it must have been near the beach! I didn’t hide it on purpose, but as the terrain changed, I couldn’t find it!” (?)
I began to rummage through historical sites like a madwoman.
Callisto chased and nagged, but I couldn’t hear it because I had already lost my mind.
The last one to arrive was the innermost part of the ruins, compared to other things, the building was kept intact.
A large, geometric, circular structure, like the Coliseum, was half destroyed.
‘What’s this place for? Did they happen to have magic battles here?’
Usually, such a circular building would be a stadium or a theater.
I went around the building in case I could find a clue.
Then, I found ancient texts written on the crumbling debris that I believed to be the entrance.
I used all my five-year knowledge to interpret the words I knew.
“A strong… and beautiful pet animal and plant tournament…”?”
No matter how I looked at it, I could only come up with such a bizzare interpretation.
In addition, the paintings next to the text supported the interpretation.
Snakes, bees, birds, flowers, etc.
It coincided with the weird things I’ve encountered so far.
If the creatures around us were exposed to mana, they kept turning into mana.
“Crazy, then when the surrounding creatures are exposed to mana they turn into demons…”
It has been difficult to find out why there are monsters near the ancient relics.
‘Are you saying it’s just because of ancient wizard humans’ odd taste?!’