09-20 Inviting Hannah-chan
The next morning after Jin returned to Kaina Village after a long time.
“Ah, what a nostalgic smell.”
The smell of unripe wheat. The smell of the households’ cooking. The smell of trees. The smell of the wind. Jin breathed in a lungful of it all.
After breakfast in Martha’s house, Jin brought up what he had decided upon yesterday.
“I was thinking about seeing Elsa off after this and going back to the research laboratory for now.”
The first one to reply was Hannah.
“Onii-chan, you’re going back?”
Jin who had thought she might say that at once added,
“Do you want to come along too, Hannah?”
Hearing that, Hannah nearly jumped with joy.
“Eh, really!? With onii-chan, to his house?”
“Yeah, as long as it’s alright with Martha-san.”
Before he had finished speaking Hannah had already run over to Martha and asked her while gasping.
“Grandma, hey, grandma! It’s alright if I go to onii-chan’s house, alright?”
Martha smiled faintly and said,
“Ah, it’s alright. But don’t cause any trouble for Jin, got it?”
“Yeah! I’ll do as onii-chan says!”
And so it was decided that Jin would return to Hourai Island, bringing Hannah too with him.
“Well then, Hannah, it may be uncomfortable but could I have you cover up your eyes until we’re there?”
Knowing how to go to there and such could direct unwanted trouble to Hannah, so Jin suggested this out of concern but Hannah only gladly accepted the idea.
Jin carried the blindfolded Hannah on his back. Just that pleased Hannah and she said,
“Onii-chan’s house. I can’t wait~”
And so on and so on, she was in high spirits the whole trip on Jin’s back. Elsa who was walking next to them looked at Hannah and smiled fondly.
Meanwhile they exited the village’s borders and soon arrived at the shelter which had the Warp Gate in it.
“I’m sure I came out of here too. And yet, after I left I couldn’t find the place any more.”
Elsa said and explained what happened the other day. Jin replied apologetically.
“Ah, that’s because there’s quite a few barriers put up to prevent anyone from carelessly wandering in.”
“Is that, so?”
“That’s right. There’s a barrier to hide the entrance. A barrier to protect against intruders. Barrier to prevent magical detection. Although none of them have any effect when coming out from the inside.”
Elsa tilted her head in puzzlement after Jin’s explanation,
“But, then Jin-nii can’t go in either.”
She voiced her problem. Jin also explained that.
“My Magic Energy pattern is the only exception. There’s an infinite variety of Magic Energy patterns so there’s hardly any people with the same one. That’s why no one except for me and the golems I’ve made can use it.”
Jin said and extremely naturally reached out towards a place that seemed to have nothing in it and made a show of opening the door.
Although Elsa couldn’t see it. Because the Magic Energy in the brooch wasn’t enough. Jin then took Elsa’s hand.
Elsa let out a voice in surprise.
The second Jin’s hand grasped hers, an open door appeared in front of Elsa. The door she had gone out of the day before yesterday. The door to return, which she couldn’t find no matter how long she searched for it.
“Come on, let’s go home.”
Jin said and led Elsa into the shelter by hand through the door. Reiko also followed them. And although they couldn’t be seen, the SP dedicated for Hannah, Iris and Azalea also followed.
＊ ＊ ＊
The group first went to Hourai Island using the Warp Gate, then subsequently warped to Kunlun Island.
Once they got outside, Jin took off Hannah’s blindfold. Hannah who had been quiet ever since they had approached the shelter once again opened her mouth.
“Wow! This is onii-chan’s house?”
“Yeah, that’s right. How we got here, that’s a secret. Got it? And don’t tell anyone other than Martha-san about this, alright? If you can promise that then I’ll bring you along some time again.”
“Yeah! I promise! I won’t tell anyone! It’s a secret between onii-chan and me!”
Hannah happily promised.
And then Mine came running. Despite what she said, she had probably been worried about Elsa after all.
Hannah looked dubious and asked.
“She’s Elsa’s mother.”
“Eh? Then she’s onii-chan’s mother?”
“No, me and Elsa aren’t related by blood. And so Mine is just Elsa’s mother.”
Just how much of that Hannah understood was unknown, but she nodded once and intently stared at Elsa, then Mine who was hugging Elsa.
Mine had spoken with Elsa about something, but now turned to Hannah and,
“Hannah-chan, right? I am Mine. I’m Elsa’s mother. It seems you’ve helped out my Elsa, thank you very much.”
She said and lightly bowed her head. Hannah then blushed a little and replied only,
“Well then, I’ve got to go do some work. I’ll be back in an hour or two.”
Jin said so in front of the mansion, then Mine spoke.
“Jin-sama, I apologize for the inconvenience Elsa caused you. Please let me have the responsibility of taking care of Hannah.”
This was a godsend to Jin who was thinking of having Reiko do that and,
“Then I’ll trust her to you, okay?”
She left Hannah in Mine’s care. Then,
“Hannah, sorry, but for just a little while, I’ve got a bit of work to do so could you please wait?”
Jin said to Hannah while looking concerned. Mine thought seeing Jin like that was unusual.
“Yeah! That’s okay! I’ll wait!”
Hannah replied cheerfully. Jin was relieved.
“Jin-nii, it’s alright. I’ll be with her too.”
As Elsa also said so, Jin could return to Hourai Island at ease.
＊ ＊ ＊
“Celuroa Kingdom’s army is pressuring Egelia Kingdom’s army.”
“Frantz Kingdom’s army is overpowering Cline Kingdom’s army.”
Information was sent in from the battlegrounds.
“Ha ha, just as we’ve plotted.”
Then another voice spoke. It appeared to have come through some communication device resembling a ManaCom.
“The current declined countries can’t win against ancient technology, can they?”
“Ah, Elena. Did something happen over there?”
“No, nothing. It’s just that there’s someone very interesting in the city I am currently in.”
“Hm? Who is it?”
“The Magi Craftsman of Shouro Empire, Reinhardt.”
“What? You mean the Magi Craftsman Marcello once captured?”
“Yes. It seems he arrived here in Astan yesterday.”
“Hm. That’s where Donald was too, right?”
“Yes, he’s with me.”
“In that case, Elena, could you somehow try to meet with that fellow?”
“It seems possible. We should be able to just apply [Seduce] to someone in Reinhardt’s employ.”
“In that case, please give it a try.”
“I understand. Should he be captured?”
“I’ll leave that decision to you, Elena. If you think he’s got any use value then capture him. If you think otherwise… Erase him.”
“As you wish. It would be preferable if he was of some use, wouldn’t it? For Reinhardt, and for us.”