Published at 21st of November 2020 09:27:41 PM
Editors: Ana_Banana, Yahiko
Frey and Ivan followed Snow as she began to head downward.
“We’re going underground?”
“To be precise, we’re going to the roots. Huhu. Usually, only Queens and a few Elders are allowed to enter. You should feel honored.”
“You’re taking us to such a place?”
Ivan spoke a bit hesitantly.
Rather than feeling honored at such an opportunity, he felt more like he was being dragged into something troublesome.
“It doesn’t matter. It was Mother who gave me permission after all.”
They continued a bit further.
The surroundings began to darken, and they could no longer feel the presence of Elves around them.
Frey realised that they were really close to Hruhiral’s roots.
One interesting thing he noticed was the fact that although it was not bright, it was not very dark either.
And the reason for this was small firefly-like creatures that floated around and gave off gentle light.
“What are these? Fireflies?”
“You’re so rude. They’re Spirits.”
“…there are Spirits this weak?”
“It’s because they haven’t even become low-ranked Spirits yet. In a sense, they are the closest beings in nature to true purity.”
Snow nodded at Frey’s words.
“Don’t touch them. They don’t like savages like you.”
“Sorry for being a savage.” (TL: classy, bougie, ratchet)(YH: a savage wouldn’t say that :o)
After a while, they arrived at a huge room.
The strange thing about this room was that it was brighter than the others, and there was a tree in its center.
Ivan made a strange expression.
“There is a tree among the roots of another tree?”
“In truth, this is Hruhiral’s true form. If Oydin knew about this, he would have come here to contaminate Hruhiral instead of going to the top.”
This tree was much smaller than the ones on the surface.
The trees in the Great Reynols Forest were all quite large, but this tree was only about half the size of the others.
Nevertheless, despite its small stature, this tree exuded a majestic aura that surpassed even the enormous Hruhiral on the surface, so much so that even Ivan, who usually had a smart mouth, had nothing to say.
Snow walked up to the tree before leaping lightly and picked two fruits that were growing on its branches.
She then smiled and stretched her hands out to Frey and Ivan.
Ivan made a face.
“…although it’s not a salad, I don’t particularly like this gift any better.”
“What nonsense are you saying? This is Hruhiral’s fruit. For those like you, who walk the path of magic, it is a precious item that they couldn’t obtain even if they were willing to spend thousands of gold coins.”
“A treasure? Well. I’ll admit it does look better than an apple.”
Snow turned her head with an angry expression and looked at Frey.
“Frey, you understand its true value, don’t you?”
“Right. It is truly amazing. It is an item that doesn’t fall short of any known elixir. Ivan, eating it at least double your mana capacity.”
Mana was the most important power source for Magic Warriors. Especially for Ivan, whose martial art required much more mana than the others.
If Ivan’s mana capacity could double just by eating this fruit, then it would benefit him greatly.
Snow shook her head.
“You’re like a monkey who can’t even recognize a treasure that’s right in front of your face. It’s been over a hundred years since anyone other than an Elf was given the chance to eat this fruit…”
“Hruhiral has given us an amazing gift. It is a great honor.”
Snow’s expression softened a bit when Frey expressed his sincere gratitude.
Ivan simply glanced at the fruit before taking a bite out of it and beginning to check. “
“Well. The taste isn’t bad.”
Frey and Snow both had shocked expressions when they saw this.
“Y-, you idiot! If you eat it like that without any preparation…!”
Ivan’s blank face suddenly turned red.
Frey instantly slapped his palm onto Ivan’s back.
“Sit down and focus immediately. I just scattered the fruit’s mana. When the shock disappears, the fruit’s mana will begin running wild once more.”
“If you want to keep your insides where they are, you need to concentrate.”
Ivan nodded, his face covered in cold sweat.
Looking at him, even Frey couldn’t help but make a comment.
“What an idiot.”
* * *
“He’s going to be like this for a week.”
Frey sighed as he looked at Ivan.
He was sitting on the floor with a serious expression on his face, doing his best to keep his mana in check.
It was a good thing he was a First Class Magic Warrior who had trained his body to the peak, or his body would have already burst like a firecracker.
Snow looked at him with a bit of pity.
“This guy really knows nothing. Has he never taken an elixir before?”
“If you think about it, he’s actually pretty amazing.”
“If he never took an elixir before, it means that he reached his current stage just by training.”
He wasn’t saying that it was wrong to rely on elixirs but that Ivan’s talents should be recognized since he was able to become a First Class Magic Warrior with nothing but pure effort.
Especially when considering the fact that the martial art he practiced was none other than Kasajin’s Warrior King’s Fist.
Frey only had superficial knowledge of it, so he wasn’t too certain, but he was sure that the higher the stage, the harder it became.
At the least, it would have been impossible to reach Ivan’s current stage without working yourself to the bare bones.
As Snow was someone who walked the path of the sword, she was the first to admit to Ivan’s effort.
With just a glance one would see that his entire body was covered with scars, which showed that he devoted himself to hellish training.
“It can’t be helped. Frey, you still need to prepare for tomorrow’s event.”
Frey’s expression stiffened a bit.
Suddenly, he became a little envious of Ivan’s situation.
As if she guessed his thoughts, Snow’s expression became a bit serious.
“Elves do not forget favors. You wouldn’t stop them from showing their gratitude, would you?”
“…I guess not.”
“I think so too.”
Snow smiled brightly. At that moment, it seemed as if the dark underground suddenly brightened.
Snow’s beauty was truly destructive.
‘She can only be like this in an Elf village.’
Elves who valued harmony and balance in nature would only feel admiration and awe at Snow’s beauty.
However, if Snow were to appear in a city of humans, who were more sensitive to beauty than any other race, there was no telling what hideous acts might happen.
Frey shook his head slightly.
“When will you eat the fruit?”
He looked down at the fruit in his hand.
Although it wasn’t much compared to Torkunta’s heart or the Frozen River, it was still a significant stepping stone to his goal of 8 stars.
Besides, he wouldn’t need to control his mana for a week like Ivan.
Frey’s current body made it easy for him to absorb elixirs.
In addition to this, Frey’s superb mana control meant that he would be able to absorb the fruit’s mana within one or two days.
In other words, there was no need for him to rush.
“I’ll take my time. First, I need to prepare for tomorrow.”
“Well. That’s a good idea too.”
Snow let out a soft laugh.
* * *
The next day was bound to be very busy.
Frey was going to be thanked directly by the Elven Elders as well as the general High Elf population.
“You saved our lives…”
Their eyes, which had been filled with suspicion and hostility before, were now filled with warmth and gratitude.
This was to be expected.
After all, Frey and Ivan were two heroes who helped save the Elf village in its crisis.
He wasn’t sure what would have happened if Snow killed Oydin and had to deal with the Bone Dragon herself and if there would be less damage.
‘It’s a good thing Ivan isn’t here.’
Frey shook hands with the elves.
They grabbed both of Frey’s hands, their gazes filled with gratitude.
With Ivan’s personality, it was almost certain that he would not have been able to handle such a stiff atmosphere.
To be honest, even Frey found it a bit tedious and tiring.
Contrary to his inner thoughts, Frey’s outward appearance and reactions were excellent.
“Savior, I praise your courage.”
“The scar on the forest is not light, but I believe the children of Hruhiral will be able to overcome anything.”
Frey remained humble and listened to every one of them while maintaining a smile on his face.
The Elves became even more enthusiastic when he even gave a light greeting during the event.
The Elves reacted as though they were personally witnessing the Heroes’ return.
‘That wasn’t much.’
Inwardly, Frey was quite shocked. The Elves he remembered were a much simpler species.
Even if they were sincerely grateful inside, they would still express it in a modest manner on the outside.
However, these Elves were expressing their emotions as clearly as humans.
Well, 4,000 years had passed after all, so it wasn’t strange that they might have changed after their interactions with humans increased.
The next one to step forward was Camille, who wore a tired expression on her face.
She looked at Frey before saying.
“You’ve truly become a hero.”
“Camille, I’m sorry.”
He felt like he had no choice but to apologize to her.
On the day they fought Oydin, Camille had knocked out the elves who had been monitoring him.
Fortunately, Camille was quite skilled, so no one knew that she was the one who did it. Nevertheless, Frey felt sorry for asking for her help knowing she wouldn’t refuse.
“It’s okay. I’m more sorry for not being more helpful. All I could do was watch from the side.”
Camille’s eyes shined.
“It was my first time seeing Hiralgard’s Swordna in person, but she is just as strong as the rumors claimed. Same with that man, Ivan… come to think of it, where is he?”
“…he had a bit of a situation. So he’s recuperating at the moment.”
“Hmm. He looked fine to me, but I guess it’s impossible to fight a Bone Dragon without sustaining any injuries.”
Frey didn’t bother to fix Camille’s misunderstanding.
She gave a bright smile while saying.
“Anyway, why don’t you come over later? The brats with me want to try their hands against you, and even I’m itching to have a go.”
With that, Camille left.
Frey greeted a few more Elves before returning to Syax’s house.
Syax and Snow were sitting at the table and seemed to be discussing something.
When Frey appeared, Syax got up and bowed,
“Then I will take my leave, Your Majesty.”
“…hmm. Right. I understand.”
Frey felt that she was fleeing the house.
When Frey turned and gave her a curious glance, Snow sighed.
“When I first came to Lilund, Syax and I were the closest friends. She was very curious for an Elf. She was the only one who came to see me, an Ice Elf. I was very happy back then…”
Snow seemed to reminisce about that time.
However, after shaking her head a few times, she returned to her usual demeanor and turned back to Frey.
“There’s been some news. Riki wants to see you. He said he wants to discuss something about the upcoming Demigod meeting.”
When he asked this, Snow shot him a strange look.
“It seems like he intends to take you there.”
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