Chapter 276 – A Serious Charade
Caroline who was sleeping peacefully opened her eyes.
She opened her eyes and blankly stared at the ceilingーーbut it was only for an instant.
She jumped out of her bed as if she was triggered by something.
She shouted with a desperate voice as she looked around.
「Don’t worry, I’m here」
「Ahh! Thank goodness……」
Caroline found me and showed a clear relief.
「Have you slept well?」
「I see. From now on, you should sleep properly」
「But I want to hear Godーー」
「Don’t worry, I’ll be by your side when you wake up. More importantly, you should take care of yourself」
Caroline stared straight at me.
She seemed to be waiting for me to talk to her, not saying anything unimportantーーat least that’s how it seems.
Her eyes looked strong as she looked at me, making me feely rushed without her saying anything.
『It looks as if a pet dog is waiting for her owner to lead her out for a walk』
Eleanor’s whisper made me strangely convinced.
Even a well-trained dog, if their owner shows up with their leash, they would become excited and even bark sometimes.
Caroline’s eyes as she stares at me make me feel something similar to that.
It makes me want to answer her expectation.
「There’s something I want to tell you. Gather everyone to the chapel」
Caroline’s eyes were filled with more expectations and she rushed out of the room.
I hid my appearance with my camouflage aura and left the room a moment later to tell her the oracle.
The fact that Caroline woke up and an oracle will be sent immediately spread out, so people gathered within the chapel.
The fact that they were told that there is going to be an oracle, more people gathered compared to yesterday.
I stood in front of Caroline who prayed in the same position as yesterday and waited for a while. After seeing most of the people have gathered, I opened my mouth.
The surroundings were stirred. They were so loud that ordinary voices were turned to mere noises.
However, it was irrelevant to Caroline who can only hear God’s/my voice.
I told that Caroline about Sybil, telling her to make the church shelter and aid her.
The woman’s story about using her own wealth to educate children from poor villages calls for empathy and immediately gathered respect.
Adding to the fact that she was being noticed by god, the church immediately took actions to shelter her.
The next day.
After breakfast, I was relaxing in the living room for a while.
I caught Miu and MofuMofu-d her, charging my energy.
Hikari and Chibi Dragon entered the living room.
「What’s the matter, Hikari」
「Is Otou-san busy today too?」
「I’m planning on going to Caroline today too. She’s been working since yesterday, so I’m planning to take a look if there are any results」
「Oh. Can Hikari go too?」
「Of course you can」
I patted Hikari’s head.
「It might be necessary to use force if the situation starts to move. In that case, it’s reassuring if Hikari is there too」
『I should be enough』
「If it’s just you, no matter how strong you get, 99% is the limit. Only when Hikari is there together with you that we can reach 100%」
「Un! Hikari will do her best for Otou-san〜!」
I stroked Hikari’s head more dearly.
My beloved daughter is so cute. She’s so cute that it makes me want to just stroke her head like this for the whole day.
『Hmph……you should feel fortunate that Hikari’s your daughter』
「Of course. If there comes a time that someone describes Hikari as a failure of a daughter, I will throw them to hell andーー」
『I didn’t mean that……I’m saying that she might’ve fallen because of that earlier』
「n? What are you muttering?」
Normally, there’s nothing I would miss with my 777x hearing, but only Eleanor’s voice was not affected by hearing, so there are sometimes when I won’t hear what she’s whispering.
Well, there should be no problem if it’s the words Eleanor whispered silently.
She is a good woman too. If it’s needed, she’ll say it many times enough for me to hear her.
I continued to stroke Hikari’s head until we headed out.
I warped to Ainon’s church and received Caroline’s report as she was surrounded by believers just like yesterday.
Caroline looked around as if to search for someone, then stopped her gaze at one man.
The man who was Caroline was looking at seemed troubled.
Caroline tilted her head in confusion.
【Tell him to just speak. I’m listening】
「God said that he is listening」
After hearing Caroline, the man started to report.
「Yesterday, we sent people to all of the villages Sybil-san is visiting, but she was missing since three days ago after she left Amphi. They said that usually, she would head to Coza, but the people from Coza thought of it strange since Sybil-san didn’t come to Coza」
【Did you investigate between Amphi and Coza?】
「Did you investigate between Amphi and Coza?」
「We are investigating it right now」
I thought for a while.
It’s an accident, so it’s easy as long as the accident was resolved.
There is only one problem.
That is when Sybil is already dead.
I want to use the accident to raise Caroline’s reputation, so I want to bring her and solve the case in front of the believers.
I can solve almost any accident, unless she is already dead.
If by any chance that she’s already dead and I brought Caroline, her reputation would drop drastically. In that case, it’s better not to bring her.
It’s been three days since she was missing.
It depends on how you look at this length of time.
At Chiye’s mountain path between Amphi and Coza.
Caroline advanced through the mountain path while being protected by many believers. Her appearance looked similar to that of Carline.
A higher ranked servant of god being protected by ordinary believers. However, their eyes and expressions were filled with strong trust and conviction, as if they would protect her at all cost.
In that sense, Caroline is treading the same path as Melissa.
I was walking far ahead of that group.
After thinking it through, I decided to make Caroline and the believers come.
Instead, I will go far ahead of them, and in the worst caseーーin other words, if Sybil was dead, I will conceal it with my aura.
『She shouldn’t be dead』
「What’s your basis for saying that?」
I asked back, hearing Eleanor say that with an asserting tone.
『It’s because the one who mentioned this case to you is Rica. I don’t believe that that woman would make such a mistake』
「You have a high evaluation for Rica」
『I am not speaking about that. Although I would not say otherwise as well, it is an information given to you by your woman. If so, then one mentioned in the matter must be outstandingly beautiful』
「That’s not all, to describe a good woman」
『Rica has her pride as a woman as well』
It’s difficult to judge what kind of pride was mentioned here.
『I’ll say it in a different way. That Sybil must be a woman offered to you to become yours in bed』
「Well, that might be true」
At that time, Rica didn’t say anything, but I think so, judging from what she’s doing recently.
Or rather, if that wasn’t the case, she might not have mentioned this to me.
『If so, then there is no way she’ll let her die. At the very least, she should’ve done some insurance』
While being convinced by Eleanor’s words, I fully controlled my senses to search.
I focused on the mountain path, so that I won’t miss even the smallest hint.
Suddenly, I heard a faint voice from the side of the mountain path.
I stopped to listen, it was a human voice.
I looked at the direction where I heard the voice. It was the mountain path, the walls made of soil were stretching.
「This part looks new」
『Umu. Look above as well』
『Ah! The wall’s fallen』
I looked up as I was told.
And just like Hikari had said, the mountain looked like it was partially collapsed.
「In other words, the wall was collapsed to close inーー」
『Something’s coming from above!』
I reacted hearing Eleanor’s voice and slashed as I unsheathed the Demon Sword.
I slashed, tracing an arc above my head.
Something came flying, it wasn’t at the speed of free falling, so I instinctively countered attack using the Demon Sword.
There were also earth and sand among the things that fell. The “enemy” hid itself within those as it attacked.
Eleanor’s slash avoided the earth and sand and chopped it into two.
That thing that was chopped into two without even allowing it to scream looked like an ape a size bigger than a mountain gorilla.
「What the heck is this?」
『Moz Monkey. It’s a monster that attacks humans and animals, buries them alive and preserves them as food』
「You knew that, Hikari?!」
This really surprised me.
『Ehehe〜, O-chan told me right now』
『Un! Since returning from the “past”, I can now stay with O-chan always』
『She is now Hikari’s familiar after all』
Eleanor added and I was convinced.
「I see. We found out something new again. In other words, Sybil is buried here alive, preserved as fresh as she could be, and it attacked us so it could do us the same」
『That seems to be the case. I also realized something new』
『Because you defeated it on impulse, you can’t raise Caroline’s reputation anymore』
I couldn’t help but furrow my eyebrows. I heard Eleanor’s “Kukuku” laugh inside my head.
Now that she mentioned it.
It was so sudden so I couldn’t help myself from defeating it, but that isn’t good.
No, it’s fine with me defeating it.
But I should’ve done it when Caroline was around.
I should’ve done it while she’s present, best case scenario, the Moz Monkey attacked her and defeated it while hidden by my camouflage aura, making it seem as if she has god’s protection.
That’s the best case scenario.
「Damn it, I don’t feel the presence of something similar nearby」
『O-chan told me Moz Monkey likes living alone. She told me that that’s why it would preserve lots of food』
I couldn’t help but groan.
It’s not like there would be any problem if this continues.
I can just give an “oracle” to dig the wall when Caroline passed by here along with the believers.
That is fine too, it is, but.
「After finding out this monster’s existence, it makes me feel regrettable」
『It can’t be helped. It’s spilled milk. You should compromise』
『Ne〜, ne〜, Otou-san. O-chan’s saying she wants to be of help』
Olivia wants to be of help……?
What does she mean? I don’t really get it.
I don’t get it, but.
It’s Olivia, it’s that Olivia.
「I got it. I’ll leave it to you」
After Hikari said that happily, I almost reacted again.
Demon Sword Hikari, a tremendous power flew heading towards the sky from her blade.
I couldn’t help but brace myself although I was told beforehand, it was that tremendous of a power.
While I thought what it was, I heard voices and footsteps coming from behind.
It’s Caroline’s group.
I quickly enveloped myself with my camouflage aura along with the Moz Monkey’s corpse.
The group’s voices gradually approached. Finally, they passed in front of me.
I didn’t move as I hid my appearance.
I can’t move first, I can only wait for Olivia.
I heard Eleanor’s voice once again.
She sounded a lot calmer than the time with the Moz Monkey, but her tone was a few levels more serious.
Something came flying from above. I unsheathed Eleanor and blocked it.
「What’s going on?!!」
The mountain shook and the believers panicked.
The next instant, a dragon fell from the sky and landed.
It was a dragon with red eyes and dark scales, enveloped by an ominous aura.
Those two words appeared in my mind.
Although its appearance looked ominous, I immediately knew that it was Olivia.
It was because her presence felt like it was from Olivia and Hikari added together and divided by two.
「W-Why in such a place?!」
They panicked. A third of the believers immediately tried to run away.
They can’t be blamed. That’s how frightening Olivia is right now.
Olivia who had her appearance changed with Hikari’s powers. She looked as if her “Terror” stat parameter was maxed.
Within the handーーthe claws of Olivia, one human was captured.
It’s someone I’ve never seen before. I realized something and quickly looked at the mountain walls.
That place that seemed like it was gouged out was the place where I heard the groaning voice from earlier.
『She dug her up at the same time as she landed』
『O-chan, she said she’ll be the bad guy』
Olivia suddenly grinnedーーthe next instant, she spat out something from her mouth.
The people that Caroline brought with her ran with panic.
I got in between Caroline and Olivia and blocked it away using Eleanor.
It was heavy, it was unbelievably heavy.
The huge hole was made in mountain walls where I blocked it away shows how strong it was.
That Olivia’s attack was enough to make me reminisce her strength when she was a Red Dragon.
On the other hand, thanks to me blocking it.
「I-In front of Caroline-sama……」
「It’s a miracle, it’s a miracle!」
「God’s protection is upon us!」
The believers cheered.
I quickly told Caroline.
【There is no need for you to move. Just stand there】
Caroline made a huge nod.
Although they were not aware of what Caroline and I were talking about, seeing Caroline’s expression was enough for the believers to be relieved.
Olivia made a turn and swung her tail.
Her tail that was bigger than my mansion’s pillar attacked Caroline.
I stopped it using the Demon Sword, but the shockwaves made the mountain collapse.
She’s really not holding back. Olivia is probably serious.
Olivia is attacking seriously.
【……what a good woman】
I became happy and fought against Olivia.
Against Olivia’s onslaught, I answered with Eleanor and Hikari, using the full powers of the mother and daughter Demon Swords.
From the side, it must’ve looked like a strange fight.
The evil dragon is attacking Caroline, its attacks were enough to make the mountain tremble and split the earth, yet all of them would not reach Caroline, as if they were being blocked by a mysterious power.
Caroline placed her hands together and started to pray. Seeing that, the other believers started to pray.
Caroline is being protected by god. That recognition seems to have spread among them.
Seeing that, Olivia’s attacks got even more intense.
Olivia is really a good woman. She didn’t hold back at all, unleashing attacks that looks even more powerful.
And to block that, I needed to fight her seriously. If I lose my focus even for a second, Olivia might defeat me.
The more Olivia fought seriously the more reputation Caroline gains.
Knowing that, Olivia is attacking seriously without holding back.
And, that is why.
【Let’s end it with the next attack. Eleanor, Hikari】
I can’t make the fight last longer.
Did she feel my powers soaring? Olivia opened her jaws, filled with sharp fangs, wide enough to swallow Caroline and the rest.
I counterattacked using Eleanor and Hikari with a cross slash.
The instant the evil dragon was about to bit Caroline, its head was blown away in pieces.
A second later, cheers of joy were raised from the believers.
I gently received Sybil from the disappearing (returning inside Hikari) Olivia.