WM – Chapter 87: Takatsuki Makoto learns about the dark and light of Highland

““Eh?””

Nina-san and I let out a dumbfounded voice.

“R-Rebellion?” “What do you mean by that, Danna-sama?!” 

“Quiet. I will explain.” (Fuji)

According to Fuji-yan, he read the mind of the shopkeeper and learned that a large scale plan to rebel against the nobles in Symphonia would happen soon. 

The reason being the severe hierarchical system’s discontent in Highland.

“But the hierarchical system in Highland is slowly being relieved! Especially Princess Noel who is next to the throne, she is on the side against the current hierarchy system. Why this timing?!” (Nina)

Nina-san is flustered.

“I know that too. Honestly, I find it hard to understand why at this time…” (Fuji)

Fuji-yan seems to be confused too.

“Fuji-yan, why is the Sun Country so fuzzy about the hierarchy?” (Makoto)

“Fumu, it has to do with the dark ages 1,000 years ago…” (Fuji)

History that the Water Temple didn’t teach me.

In that dark era when the Great Demon Lord ruled, the ones who received the worse treatment by the demons were the humans.

Humans are weak.

They have the Divine Protection of the Holy Gods now, so the ones who are prospering the most in the continent are now the humans though.

 Beastkin, elves, and dwarves are strong even without Divine Protection.

That’s why there were many of them who managed to escape from the rule of the demons. 

But the humans received ruling of the demons the heaviest.

As a result, humans were treated as the slaves of the demons, and created the warped result that are the devilkin. 

And then, the Savior Abel appeared.

This continent was saved by the human Hero.

The country that the Light Hero founded became the supreme power of the continent.

From there, the ruling from the humans to other races began.

…In other words, the bullied gained power, and they are getting back at them.

History repeats.

The demi-humans who are being discriminated against are trying to fight back.

But even if I am told about a rebellion, it just doesn’t click.

It is basically like a ‘war’, right…?

This place is the strongest city of the continent.

Who knows how many casualties it will cause.

By the way, there’s something that bothered me.

“Now that I think about it, Fuji-yan, you told Nina-san about your Mind Reading Skill, huh.” (Makoto)

“Yeah, I didn’t want to hide it from my wife after all. I told Nina-dono and Chris-dono.” (Fuji)

I see.

I glanced at Nina-san, and her long ears were loose and twitching up and down.

“At that time when Danna-sama told me about his Mind Reading Skill, I felt like my heart would stop.” (Nina)

“That much?” (Fuji)

“It is a legendary Skill that the founder of the Frantz Company’s president had, you know. Chris fell on her butt when she heard that.” (Nina)

Nina-san giggled.

That’s a relief. Looks like his two wives accepted the Skill of Fuji-yan.

The air relaxed a bit there, but Fuji-yan soon made a serious expression.

“Returning to the topic. Teogir-dono is a diligent person. The fact that he is tragically participating in this rebellion means that this is by no means a situation we can look at positively. There must be a reason.” (Fuji)

“Fuji-yan, wouldn’t it be better to tell Sakurai-kun and Princess Noel?” (Makoto)

I honestly feel like this matter is too much for us.

“Yeah. But we can’t tell them something half-assed. First we will consult with Princess Sofia via Chris-dono, and we will gather information from the merchants of the capital.” (Fuji)

“Danna-sama, if it is a large scale rebellion, the acquisition of weapons is essential. Let’s investigate the weapon merchants.” (Nina)

“Right, let’s go.” (Fuji)

…Ooh.

They are quickly deciding their moves.

I want to help out too, but I will probably get in the way.

Let’s leave this to the pros.

“Sorry, Takki-dono. We will have to separate for today. Please prepare for tonight’s party, Takki-dono.” (Fuji)

“O-Okay, got it. Fuji-yan, if there’s anything I can help you with, tell me.” (Makoto)

“Of course-desu zo!” (Fuji)

Saying this, Fuji-yan and Nina-san left with quick steps.

I walked the way back to the inn alone. 

(The hierarchical system and a rebellion, huh…) (Makoto)

I have learned about this in history lessons, but being told that it will happen in the future, it really doesn’t feel real…

The American Civil War between the north and the south that revolved around the slave system, was it?

But this time around it is the people of lower social standing going against the nobles. It is a bit different.

It is closer to the movie I have seen before about the Spartacus Rebellion?

I returned to the inn while thinking this.

Lucy and Sa-san were not here yet.

I decided to offer a prayer to Noah-sama and train in Water Magic.

◇◇

The night that day.

In the end, Fuji-yan, Nina-san, and Chris-san didn’t return to the inn.

Are they gathering information about the rebellion?

“Come on, Lucy. Let’s go.” (Makoto)

“I told you I am staying…” (Lucy)

“It is okay, Lucy-san. I will be there too.” (Aya)

Sa-san pulled out Lucy who said she was staying in the inn and wasn’t listening.

We three headed to the Highland Castle.

“…Big.” 

“Vast.” 

“So many people.”

Sa-san, Lucy, and I were overwhelmed by the giant hall in the Highland Castle.

It was a scale that couldn’t be compared to the simple and elegant Rozes Castle.

Ice sculptures and ornaments.

The many palace dishes that would be impossible to finish all.

“Is this the Versailles Palace?” (Aya)

I heard the mutter of Sa-san.

“Have you gone there?” (Makoto)

“No, but it gives me that impression.” (Aya)

“True.” (Makoto)

It reminded us of a certain famous france palace.

The people here are also splendorous. 

Wearing fancy accessories on their bodies, they smiled elegantly as they conversed.

I couldn’t feel the signs of rebellion that I heard from Fuji-yan during the day. 

It was like a work of art that came straight from a movie.

“We have been waiting, Water Country’s Hero, Makoto-sama, and your entourage, right?” 

We were guided by a receptionist, and we entered the venue. 

The one waiting for us there was…

“You have come. Leo, explain the rules of parties in the Sun Country to Hero Makoto.” (Sofia)

“Yes, Nee-sama.” (Leo)

Princess Sofia and Prince Leonard, different from the time at the banquet in the Rozes Castle,  were not wearing as flashy of outfits.

The two are good looking, so anything looks good on them.

“Makoto-san, do you know the reason why there’s a difference in the height of this floor?” (Leo)

“…Now that you mention it…is there a meaning to it?” (Makoto)

Now that I look carefully, the floor gets higher the deeper you go.

There’s a few short stairs as it goes.

“This side here is the commoner’s area; the next is the noble area; then the sacred profession area; and the deepest is the area for royals.” (Leo)

“…I see.” (Makoto)

There’s a class difference even here?

What a pain of a country.

“You are a Hero, Makoto-san, so you are on the same level as nobles. You can go as far as the third level.” (Leo)

“I see. By the way, what about Lucy and Sa-san?” (Makoto)

“The two are treated as escorts of the Hero, so 4th, in other words, the current space here is the only permitted area.” (Leo)

“So he says.” (Makoto)

I turn to Lucy and Sa-san.

“Got it.” (Lucy)

“Okay, I will be careful~.” (Aya)

I don’t have acquaintances here, so I might as well stay here in the group.

…Is what I thought, but…

“You, you are the girl that defeated 10 Sun Knights in succession at the training field, right?!” 

“Hoh, even though she is this small? That’s impressive.”

“The rumors about the adventurers of the Water Country being strong were true, huh.” 

“N-No, that’s not it.” (Aya)

Sa-san is surrounded by high grade knights.

Looks like she did an astounding performance at the training field yesterday like the time in Rozes.

It is true that she doesn’t look strong when surrounded by tall knights, but she has Hero levels of physical strength despite her looks.

“Hi, that dress is beautiful.” 

“What’s your name? Want to talk with us?” 

“Your hair is beautiful like a red rose. I am jealous.” 

“My name’s Lucy. I came from the Wood Country, Spring Log. I came to Makkaren and am currently adventuring with the Water Country’s Hero.” (Lucy)

Lucy was surrounded by young noble ladies.

She has a flashy dress and an outward appearance that pulls the gazes of people, so she ended up gathering attention.

I am impressed by how she can speak so straightforwardly to people she first met.

And in my surroundings…there’s no one.

Why?! 

…I soon learned the reason.

I used the Eavesdrop Skill.

“That’s the Hero that almost killed Geralt-sama, huh.” “I can’t believe it. Geralt-sama is the eldest son of the Valentine Household, you know.” “That mad wolf Hero…?” “There’s no doubt he is quite the crazy guy.” “I am slightly interested. Maybe I should try talking to him?” Don’t! Nothing good will come out of it.” “How scary, how scary.” 

…As I thought. Fighting the Lightning Hero was a mistake.

I am being treated like a tumor.

(Oh my oh my, isn’t this supposed to be a banquet to welcome you?) (Noah)

“That’s what I heard.” (Makoto)

I am just an exhibition here though.

Am I some sort of wild beast?

Noah-sama, what should I do at times like this?

(…Do your best.) (Noah)

The Goddess ain’t helping! 

(Damn it, I don’t have any other acquaintances…) (Makoto)

Princess Sofia is talking to the other royalty.

Prince Leonard is accompanying her.

Sakurai-kun is a Hero, but he is in the royalty area.

He is engaged to Princess Noel, so that’s a given, huh.

The Great Sage-sama…is not here.

Fuji-yan, Nina-san, and Chris-san are obviously not here.

(I know so few people!) (Makoto)

Haah, I’m a loner.

I take one wine bottle and glass there, go out to the terrace, and sip on the wine glass while enjoying the night view.

This tastes good.

It has the same high class taste as the wine I drank with Fuji-yan at the Flying Ship in the past.

That’s the rich country of Highland for you…

You can drink as much high class wine as you want, huh.

The Highland Castle is in a slightly elevated area of Symphonia. 

You can see the whole capital from the terrace.

Even at night, the lights of the city are shining without going out.

It reminds me that there’s the livelihood of people for as many lights there are out there.

  • The banquet in the Highland Castle is extravagant and gorgeous.

The Symphonia capital is prospering together with a lot of people.

(…Will a rebellion truly occur?) (Makoto)

While I was thinking that…

“Oh my, what is the Hero-sama that’s the spotlight of this banquet doing here?” 

A cheerful voice as if teasing me.

The reason why I can’t feel any sarcasm at all from it must be because her personality is showing in her voice.

“Princess Noel, thanks for inviting me.” (Makoto)

The one who appeared is the party organizer.

“That’s no good, everyone. Not speaking to the main guest, Makoto-sama.” (Noel)

“Looks like I overdid it yesterday.” (Makoto)

Princess Noel sighs slightly.

“Geralt is currently in house arrest. There’s actually a lot of people who want to talk to you because you defeated the Lightning Hero, but they are probably refraining due to the head of the Valentine Household.” (Noel)

She glances at the noble tables.

A blonde middle-aged noble was glaring at me with hatred.

Yeah, I did feel his gaze.

I tried not to look over there though.

“That person is the father of Geralt. It seems he knows that his son was at fault, but…emotions and logic sometimes don’t mesh.” (Noel)

Princess Noel mutters with a troubled expression.

Well, his own son was on the verge of death, so of course he would hate that person. 

When it comes to nobles, there’s also the problem of reputation.

…I should stay docile.

“Oh my, the ball dance has begun.” (Noel)

The comfortable music changes to a slightly good tempo.

There’s a dance space at the middle of the hall, and the nobles were dancing elegantly with pairs of men and women.

The one who attracted the most attention within that was…

“Sakurai-kun?” (Makoto)

The Light Hero-sama was dancing with a beautiful lady.

I look at Princess Noel at my side, and she doesn’t show any signs of minding.

Is Princess Noel not dancing?

“That person is the second fiance of Ryosuke-sama. His fourth is waiting next in line.” (Noel)

“…Oh, that is?” (Makoto)

The rumoured more than 20 wives thing?

Yokoyama-san is…ah, at the back.

Sakurai-kun is dancing with all of them? That’s rough.

“Are you okay with not being there, Princess Noel?” (Makoto)

“Everyone knows that I am the first fiance. Appealing that to everyone at this point would look unfavorable instead.” (Noel)

She answers with a smile.

Is that how it works?

“Is the third one not there?” (Makoto)

The song changes and the fourth (a beauty) dances with Sakurai-kun.

I ended up asking.

“She is pregnant after all. She didn’t come to the party.” (Noel)

“?!” 

I was shocked by that and ended up snapping my head quickly to where Noel is.

“Oh my, you didn’t know? Ryosuke-sama currently has 2 children. If we count the ones who will be born, it would be 5. One of them is an otherworlder called Kawamoto Eri-san.” (Noel)

“…”

Seriously?

I didn’t know at all.

Sakurai-kun and Yokoyama-san didn’t say anything.

No wonder I didn’t see Kawamoto-san in Laberintos or yesterday.

…Being the partner of more than 20 everyday…

It is the duty of the Light Hero to leave descendants…huh.

It has been around 2 years since Sakurai-kun arrived at Highland.

Of course he would have one or two children, huh…

I wonder. A friend of mine now has children, but should I be congratulating him?

Hmm…

It really makes me wonder.

“You also have two cute girlfriends though, Makoto-sama.” (Noel)

“Huh?” (Makoto)

The bright voice of Princess Noel made me respond with a dumbfounded tone.

“Oh my, was I wrong?” (Noel)

“You are.” (Makoto)

I haven’t touched my party members! 

“Maybe you plan on marrying Sofia-sama?” (Noel)

She peeks at my face as if hinting something.

“No, not at all.” (Makoto)

That’s impossible.

If you say that, Princess Sofia is gonna get angry, you know?

But it looks like that response of mine was unexpected for Princess Noel.

“You are quite the earnest person. Does that mean the Hero Makoto-sama doesn’t plan on concentrating in love till after defeating the Great Demon Lord?” (Noel)

“After the Great Demon Lord…huh.” (Makoto)

Hmm, after the last boss that is the Great Demon Lord.

“If you defeat the Great Demon Lord together with Ryosuke-sama, new legendary heroes will be born. The wealth and prestige in this world will all be for the Heroes, you know.” (Noel)

Noel-sama says something captivating with a smile.

…But you know…

“After defeating the Great Demon Lord, I have another dungeon I have to head to.” (Makoto)

The Deep Sea Temple where Noah-sama is waiting.

What’s waiting for me there is said to be even stronger than the Great Demon Lord, the divine beast, Leviathan. 

No, that’s a long path.

I wonder if I can actually clear that.

“…Why? You can obtain everything you desire, you know?” (Noel)

Princess Noel has surprise in her expression.

“There’s someone (the Goddess) that’s waiting for me.” (Makoto)

“…Is that so?” (Noel)

Princess Noel didn’t know how to respond to that.

She had slightly cold eyes.

Hm? Did I say something weird?

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