Translator: Silver Editor: Namorax
After Sergei returned, he immediately briefed everyone on where the meeting would occur and what we should expect.
Once done, all of us rose and left Sergei’s house.
Sergei walked ahead as we made our way through Doranto, and while various pairs of eyes were directed towards us, Sergei and Dylan paid them no heed and walked towards the center of the village.
As we neared the center of the village, a building larger than those surrounding it came into view.
The building was cylindrical in shape, and once we entered the building under Sergei’s guidance, its interior was revealed to be wooden. It was completely different from any other building I’d seen so far.
The high ceiling and lack of sectioning walls should have prevented the oppressive atmosphere, but the sheer number of people crowded in the area made the building seem incredibly fragile.
However, when people saw Sergei they parted ways and allowed him to continue towards his destination.
Once we reached the center of the room, we saw a large, circular table and two people who were already seated in two of the three available chairs.
These three chairs had been set up for the three village elders.
The elves of Doranto had gathered here to watch the meeting that was about to happen.
I had assumed that only the elders would be in attendance and was caught off guard by all the villagers gathered here. However, before Sergei could take his seat one of the sitting men started speaking.
“For what reason have you called this impromptu meeting, and why have you involved the villagers? Moveover, why are outsiders where they don’t belong?!
The man that spoke was completely different from my expectation of what an elf should be.
I couldn’t tell for sure since he was sitting down, but he seemed to be rather short.
He had the long ears universal among his kind, but the old man, who seemed to be in his late forties by human standards, lacked any green-tinted blonde hair.
Dylan had informed me that the man’s name was Roato Bruni Doranto.
The little man, something Roato was taunted for behind his back, wasted no time with formalities and went straight to the point of the meeting.
In contrast to his aggressive behavior, the other elder calmly took a sip from his cup of tea.
Unlike Roato, the other man was very tall. His white-ish, curly hair reached down his back, the beard and mustache combined with his forelocks made it difficult to read his expression.
His appearance, combined with the gnarled wooden cane at his side, gave the man a hermit-like aura.
He was the oldest of the elders, Iwaldo Weyli Doranto
The majority of the people at his back were women, with the few men there being pushed to the very back.
Men didn’t seem to be fans of Elder Iwaldo.
The final elder, Sergei Ful Doranto, took his seat
Men with relatively young features and well-toned bodies sat at his back.
Dylan stood before them, while Ariane and I stood next to him, with Ponta on the top of my head.
Somehow or other, the people had organized themselves behind the elder they supported.
Given the glares that Roato and his ilk were sending in our direction, I imagine they were composed of the more xenophobic members of the village.
No matter how old an elf got, their outward appearance didn’t change much.
However, there was still a range of appearances.
The equivalent to a human’s late-teens to early-forties made up the rough estimate of the elves’ generational divides.
Based on that assumption, Roato’s followers were composed of those that looked to be in their thirties and forties. On the other han
d, Sergei’s follower consisted of teenagers and twenty-year-olds, and while they were not equaling the thirty-year-olds in numbers, they weren’t a small group by any means.
There was more age variety among Iwaldo’s follower, but t would be better to say that they seemed to represent the female populace in general.
Well, there weren’t any heated gazes from Sergei’s supporters, if anything they looked at us with curiosity.
Curiosity was to be expected from the relatively young.
Many of Roato’s supporter were part of the elven “old guard”. Given that an elf’s average lifespan was four hundred years, they must have been over three hundred.
It seems that even elven elderly were resistant to change and actively fought new movements.
…… Well, let’s see how the first stages of the meeting play out.
While I observed the chaotic meeting area, Sergei was the first to speak up.
“Silence! We will begin the meeting to decide this village’s future! First, you will be informed of the current circumstances by our compatriots from Canada!”
Without any greeting or introduction, Dylan stepped forward and began speaking once Sergei brought order to the room.
Roato was openly irritated by Dylan, but Sergei’s fearless smile keep him in check as Dylan recited the story to the attentive crowd.
“……And that is, more or less, the crisis Doranto faces. If countermeasures aren’t taken immediately, sooner or later this village might be wiped off the map.”
When Dylan had completed the short account of what was going on, the meeting hall had fallen completely silent.
“Two-hundred-thousand undead, what utter nonsense! For what reason do you claim that such a force is headed towards Rouen!?”
Roato was the first one to speak up in the silent room.
His supporters shouted their support of his statement, but Sergei’s followers rebutted them.
“The warriors who fought the monsters suffered heavy casualties! Even if only ten thousand of these monster attack, this village is done for! Assuming it to be a lie from the start, how are you planning to take responsibility if the attack is real!”
One after another, people voiced their agreement and joined the heated argument.
However, their opposition didn’t simply sit there and take it.
“Joining forces with the humans is impossible! If the monsters seek to destroy the humans, let them! Once the land is less crowded we can build more villages!”
“Fool! Do you not realize just how many humans there are!? If Salma and Nozan are destroyed, a more powerful nation will move in to conquer the region!”
“While the circumstances of the humans are dire, it isn’t our duty to protect them! They ask too much of us in exchange for a simple promise! Lending them our power, ridiculous!”
“Thinking like that will only cause the chasm between the races to widen instead of filling it! Increasing our number of allies, even a little, will be beneficial for our future!”
“Let the humans fight, we can destroy the wounded enemy afterward! There’s no need to join their struggle!”
“Even if two-hundred-thousand end up becoming a hundred-and-fifty-thousand, it would make no difference for the village! While the young will be out there, fighting the enemy, the old men will be trembling in their homes! This whole mess is because of the old leadership!”
“What did you say, you little brat!!”
Instead of a discussion about joining the humans or not, this place had dissolved into a bickering contest.
Elves were stereotypically depicted as a wise race, but when I looked at the elves here, there wasn’t anything differentiating them from humans.
As the tension continued to rise, the person who hadn’t said anything so far made his move.
Elder Iwaldo had decided to act.
He grasped his wooden cane and violently slammed it against the ground.
Before the cane managed to hit the ground, a small orb appeared on its tip and in the next moment, the meeting hall was enveloped by a blinding light.
“Wha-, what’s that!?” “Ugh!?” “Kya!”
Ariane and I blocked the light with our hands and mantle respectively, while Ponta covered her face with her tail. However, many of the other people groaned or shouted as the light caught them off guard.
When the light finally faded, people were left rubbing their eyes and groaning.
Once the curses ended calmness returned to the meeting hall.
“Tch! Why did you do that in the middle of the meeting!?”
Roato glared at Iwaldo through strained eyes and cursed at him, but the older elder ignored him and finally opened his mouth.
“If you would like to fight with the humans and join hands with them in the future, you’re welcome to move to Canada. Canada will choose to fight with the humans no matter what becomes of Doranto……”
The hall fell silent as Iwaldo’s statement echoed through the room.
Roato was the first to react.
“Hahaha! That’s right! If you really want to help the humans go join Canada and their ilk!”
Roato’s body began to shake as he fully opened his eyes again and began to laugh again.
As noise began to pick up again after his statement, Iwaldo struck the ground with his cane again.
Everyone took the gesture as a sign to settle down, while Iwaldo had a mischievous grin on his face as he lightly chuckled.
“So what I’m saying is that, above all else, it’s my responsibility to leave the village.”
There were quite a few people incapable of grasping the meaning behind Iwaldo words, he just chuckled again before the eyes buried under his hair were looking at Sergei.
“What would you do? I for one rather like the syrup of Canada’s capital Maple. Will you keep me company and enjoy sweets with one another?”
Sergei directed a fearless smile towards Iwaldo and the shared a laugh.
“Hahaha, sure! Sometimes it’s nice to keep the company of old times!”
Hearing Sergei’s declaration, his young supporters were all showing their approval, with one after another announcing their intention to migrate to Canada.
Confronted with such an inspired display, Iwaldo’s mostly female supporters were taken aback by his proposal.
Sergei’s supporters were the young people, who also made up a large part of the village’s soldiers. Their lovers, sweethearts, mothers and other loved ones soon joined their declarations of leaving the village and moving to Canada.
Even some of the fathers and husbands in Roato’s faction began to join the declaration of migration.
Roato and his older supporters were the only ones upset by this turn of events.
“Wait, wait! Can such selfishness be allowed in this situation?! It’s short-sighted, too short-sighted! Think of the time it will take them to get to Canada, request support, assemble them, and return here! Isn’t the better solution to hide and wait for things to settle!?”
Some of the people seemed to have been persuaded by Roato’s interjection and looked towards Sergei and Iwaldo for answers.
The smile on Iwaldo’s face never faltered, even under everyone’s gaze, as he turned an inquisitive looked onto Dylan.
In turn, Dylan turned his head in my direction.
Naturally, the eyes of the people that surround me, even Ariane’s, were focused on me.
What Dylan was asking was as clear as day.
In that moment, I gave Dylan the thumbs up.
A smile made its way across Dylan’s lips when he saw the gesture, then he went on to ease the two elders’ worries.
“It’s alright, there’s no problem.”
Iwaldo’s smile spread across his face before he nodded towards Dylan.
“There’s no problem.”
When Sergei began to laugh, his supporters stood up in unison, as if they had been waiting for it.
“Begin evacuation preparations immediately! Detailed instructions will be given later!”
With that one order, the people that had gathered in the meeting hall began to clear out one after another, until only Roato and his followers remained.
Ariane, Dylan, and I returned to Sergei’s house.
On the way back Ariane said “That was refreshing.” with a satisfied expression on her face, as she stretched her arms above her head.
Ponta imitated Ariane a top my helmet.
…… the first problem with Doranto had been taken care of for now.
Once we were inside Sergei’s house, we began discussing our future plans with Dylan.
“The central forces of Maple needs to be gathered as quickly as possible, otherwise this village and the nation will not survive.”
Ariane and I nodded when Dylan looked us in the eye and voiced his opinion.
“While Arc-kun’s magic will save us a considerable amount of time, there’s still much that needs to be done. Did you hear how long it’d take the two-hundred-thousand undead to reach the territory of the human alliance?”
Shaking my head almost caused Ponta to fall off my head, and Ariane shrugged and shook her head as well.
“Then, we’ll ask King Asuparf and Margrave Branier when we go to pick up Chiome-dono. They should also be concerned about what progress has been made.”
Dylan seemed to agree with my suggestion.
“Alright. I would like to form a connection with Nozan’s King as well. May I accompany you? I would like to experience the legendary transfer magic for myself.”
While Dylan laughed off his light comment Sergei, who’d been listening up till now, was taken aback by our conversation.
I simply gave him a thumbs up.
Sergei was lost in the clouds after hearing Dylan’s plans but he roughly patted my back once he came out of it.
“I see, I see! Hope surely has sprung up! Hahaha.”
I couldn’t see his face because Ponta slipped over my eyes because of the constant patting, but I was happy that my power could be of use to someone.
“Then we should get going. We should return in a day or so. 【Transfer Gate】!”
After a brief farewell, I evoked my long distance transfer magic.