“Hey, Makoto, what’s your wish?” (Noah)
Noah-sama asked me with a bright voice.
“Noah-sama, I would like to get my comrades back from the Calamity Witch. Please help me.” (Makoto)
I tell her my wish while still kneeling and with my head lowered.
“Got it. Leave it to me☆.” (Noah)
What came back was a reliable answer.
I raised my head.
When I did, I saw a white table and two seats on the beautiful flowerbed.
There were tea cups with steam wafting up, and colorful pastries and fruits.
I thought for sure we would be having a strategy meeting for the Calamity Witch, but I was caught off-guard by the unexpected sight.
“Come on, over here.” (Noah)
The Goddess beckoned me over.
I take a seat right in front of Noah-sama as told while still confused.
Noah-sama was gracefully enjoying the tea.
“Noah-sama, the Moon Goddess and Noel-san are waiting outside! This is not the time to be doing something like th—” (Makoto)
“Here, aahn~.” (Noah)
She puts some sort of fruit into my mouth as if trying to cut off my words.
When I bit into it, a whole lot of fruit juice came out, and a mellow scent spread out into my whole mouth.
And most of all, it is unbelievably tasty.
My heart pulsed heavily.
“…This is?” (Makoto)
“Life Fruit. There were a lot of them growing in the garden, right? You only had a few minutes of lifespan remaining after all. Your lifespan will recover if you eat that.” (Noah)
“A few minutes…” (Makoto)
Now that she mentions it, I used almost all of my lifespan in that Sacrificial Technique in order to call the Spirits.
“T-Thank you very much, Noah-sama.” (Makoto)
“Also, you don’t need to worry about making Noel-chan and Nyaru wait. I have made the passing of time in this space slower, so it hasn’t been even a few minutes since you separated from Noel-chan.” (Noah)
“I-Is that so…” (Makoto)
She said something outrageous as if nothing.
But she is a Goddess that has had her powers come back after the seal was undone.
Something like this must be easy for her.
“Makoto, it is going to get cold, you know?” (Noah)
I look at what seems to be black tea in the tea cup in front of me.
Noah-sama was bringing the tea and pastries to her mouth in a good mood.
That motion of hers licking the pastry flour on the tip of her fingers made me skip a beat.
I brought the tea cup close to my mouth and I could smell a nice peach scent.
I took a sip and I felt as if my whole body was floating.
The fatigue from having escaped from the Calamity Witch and the successive days of challenging the Deep Sea Temple disappeared in the blink of an eye.
It is as if I drank an Elixir…
Next, I tried taking a bite of the pastries lined up in front of me, what looked like a macaron.
After a sweetness that felt as if it pierced the crown of my head, joy brinking to ecstasy spread in my mouth.
Of course, it is a taste I have never had before.
“This tea and pastries are things that Eir left behind before. Not bad, right?” (Noah)
“Things given by Eir-sama…” (Makoto)
No wonder every single thing had a taste that was unlike anything in this world.
All of them are from the Divine Realm.
“Is it tasty, Makoto?” (Noah)
“Y-Yes…to the point I can’t put it in words.” (Makoto)
“Oh my, is that so?” (Noah)
Noah-sama giggling was beautiful.
After that, we had a carefree chat for a while.
I have been on edge the whole time because of the danger the world was going through, but for Noah-sama, this is a moment of celebration after her seal had been undone after a long long time.
As her Apostle, I should celebrate her coming back.
“By the way…” (Noah)
The tone of Noah-sama suddenly shifted slightly.
“You said you wanted to save your friends, right?” (Noah)
I return from my chatting mode to my serious expression.
“Who do you want to save?” (Noah)
“That’s…first, would be Princess who has been seized by the Calamity Witch.” (Makoto)
The words of Furiae-san the last time I met her replayed in my mind.
—“I will be waiting. Definitely come back, My Knight.”
Her voice echoed in my brain with her smile on the verge of tears.
“Right. It is true that Furiae-chan is pitiful.” (Noah)
“Can something be done about it?” (Makoto)
“Hm? Yeah, it can.” (Noah)
When I asked this as if in prayer, Noah-sama easily answered with this.
“Can she be saved?!” (Makoto)
“Of course she can.” (Noah)
“What should I do?!” (Makoto)
I lean forward.
“The most certain method would be to have her die once and have her reincarnate. Furiae-chan’s body has two souls mixed in it, so we divide them after separating both her body and souls. Reincarnation is under the jurisdiction of the Destiny Goddess, so you have a connection, right?” (Noah)
“No…that’s a bit…” (Makoto)
I get flustered at Noah-sama who said this as if nothing.
I understand the logic, but having Furiae-san die for that is a bit too much.
“Is there…no other way?” (Makoto)
“It won’t serve to solve the root problem, but how about having the Calamity Witch sleep the whole time? With that, you can have Furiae-chan’s consciousness be the only one showing up on the surface.” (Noah)
“I-I see.” (Makoto)
With that, you could technically say Furiae-san would have returned to her normal self.
“How do we do that?” (Makoto)
“It would be possible if you control Time Spirits. Let’s see, if it is you, Makoto, I think you can manage to do that after training for 50 years. You can just train in the Deep Sea Temple, so it will be safe.” (Noah)
“50 years…” (Makoto)
That would take way too much time.
I can’t make my comrades wait for that much.
“That’s a bit…” (Makoto)
“Well, it is true that that’s a bit too long for humans.” (Noah)
Noah-sama makes a wry smile.
Our senses of time are way too different with her being a Goddess that has existed since the Divine Realm Wars.
But I now know there’s ways to do this.
Also, there’s other comrades I would like to save too.
“Noah-sama, is there a way to save Lucy, Sa-san, and my other friends that have been Charmed by the Calamity Witch?” (Makoto)
“Aah, that ugly Charm, huh… What pitiful children to be led astray by something like that.” (Noah)
“Excuse my words here, but it is magic that can Charm the whole world, you know?” (Makoto)
I strengthen my tone slightly there.
Honestly speaking, I can’t even begin to imagine how to stop a worldwide scale spell like that.
“Oh my. If that were me, I would be able to overwrite her Charm and Charm all the living beings on this planet in 5 minutes, you know? Also, they wouldn’t be questioning themselves like that. They would adore it as if they were in a dream world.” (Noah)
“5 minutes…?” (Makoto)
So that’s apparently child’s play for the recovered Noah-sama.
“That said, it would go against the Divine Realm Regulations though.” (Noah)
If Noah-sama acted personally, anything would be possible.
But she can’t do that.
There’s rules prohibiting Gods from interfering with the Mortal Realm.
“Right~. Wind Spirits would be the best choice to blow away a curse.” (Noah)
“But I can’t see Wind Spirits, so that would be impossible…” (Makoto)
I only have an affinity with Water Spirits.
I can’t use wind magic.
“Fufu, look at your Soul Book, Makoto.” (Noah)
“My Soul Book?” (Makoto)
I take it out from my pocket and open it up.
Spirit User…enhanced due to the return of the Goddess Noah. You can speak with the Spirits of all elements.
“This is…” (Makoto)
“The Spirit User skill has been strengthened with my return, and the Spirits have gotten livelier. You also get the benefits of this as my Apostle, Makoto. Right now you can use the Spirit Magic of all elements, Makoto.” (Noah)
I reflexively look at both of my hands.
From Elementary Water Magic all the way to this point…
“Then, if I ask the Wind Spirits, it should be possible to undo the curse of the Calamity Witch too!” (Makoto)
“It would be a good idea to get the help of the Great Wind Spirits, the Sylph-chans. If you get along with them on around the same level as the Undine-chans, they could blow away the curse on this planet for you.” (Noah)
“Uhm, the same as the Great Water Spirits? That took me 1,000 years though…” (Makoto)
It is a position I finally got to stand on after training in the space of Ira-sama for 1,000 years.
That’s when I suddenly noticed.
“Could it be that…with your Miracle magic, you would be able to make it so that 1,000 years inside of this Deep Sea Temple would only be 1 day in the outside world…?” (Makoto)
“Yeah, I can.” (Noah)
Then, I can take my time training here.
“Fufu, want to try living 1,000 years with just the two of us?” (Noah)
Noah-sama made an enticing proposal while giggling.
But I soon noticed…
“…It is not inside a dream, so I can’t live for 1,000 years.” (Makoto)
“Aah, now that you mention it, that’s true.” (Noah)
She probably wasn’t serious about it.
Noah-sama doesn’t seem to be bothered about it.
“Then, what do we do…?” (Makoto)
I cross my arms and think.
There’s a variety of suggestions, but nothing realistic.
“Makoto, let’s walk for a bit.” (Noah)
Noah-sama stood up and snapped her fingers.
The chairs, tea cups, pastries, and table disappeared.
Not only that, even that flower garden that surrounded me and Noah-sama was gone.
What appeared in exchange was an inorganic floor and a jet black ceiling.
“Where’s this?” (Makoto)
“It seems like the Divine Beast has returned to the Deep Sea.” (Noah)
I see. Now that I look closely, it is the sight of the dark sea I am used to seeing.
Leviathan apparently has returned to the deep sea.
Noah-sama is projecting that with her magic.
Noah-sama slowly moves deeper into the Deep Sea Temple.
I followed slightly behind her.
Just where are we going?
My question should have been transmitted to Noah-sama since she can read my mind, but she is not answering.
She instead threw me a different topic.
“Makoto, you already know that there’s 3 places that are called Last Dungeons, right?” (Noah)
“Yes, I do. The Zenith Tower, Babel; the Underworld, Abyss; and this Deep Sea Temple, right?” (Makoto)
This is common knowledge for anyone who has been an adventurer.
“That’s right. Then, do you know what you get from conquering the respective Last Dungeon?” (Noah)
“Uhm, that’s…” (Makoto)
I dig out the memory of what I learned in the Water Temple.
—Zenith Tower, Babel.
A giant tower that stands tall in the middle of the South Continent.
Each floor is as big as a city.
The top of the tower pierces through the clouds, and it is rumored that it goes outside the atmosphere.
It has 1,000 floors.
The highest floor humanity has reached is floor 500.
There’s apparently only one person who has finally reached half the way in the past 1,000 years.
And then, when you arrive at the floor 1,000 after many hardships, that person will get the right to step into the Divine Realm.
That person will also receive Eternal Life along with permission to enter the Divine Realm.
It is said that the people that finish climbing the Zenith Tower are given immortality.
—The Underworld, Abyss.
At the ends of the north.
A gigantic hole at the North Continent.
It is said that the very bottom of it lies Hades.
The ones living in the Abyss are Demonic Beasts and Wondrous Beasts that are far stronger than those of the surface world.
Also, droves of monsters overflow from the Abyss at a 100 year cycle. The amount of cities that have fallen because of the rampage of the Abyss monsters, the Abyss Stampedes, are countless.
It is also called the Dungeon of Calamity, but there’s no end to the adventurers that dive into it.
That’s because in the Abyss, there’s magic crystals, mythril, and orichalcum everywhere.
Moreover, the deeper you are in the Abyss, the density of the mana increases, and it changes your body.
The adventurers that would get mocked as weak by their surroundings would obtain robust bodies and massive amounts of mana as they continued challenging the Abyss with their lives on the line. There’s even questionable stories about how there have been some who have returned as Demon Lords.
A dreamlike dungeon to strike it rich.
The dungeon with the most high risk high return in this world.
That’s the Abyss.
And the last one, the Deep Sea Temple.
The dungeon that’s said to be in the deepest of places.
Right in the middle of the ocean.
Even deeper down the bottom of the ocean.
At the deepest part of the earth’s chasm, there’s the Deep Sea Temple standing silently there.
Different from the other two, it is a dungeon that’s said to be difficult to even reach the entrance.
The highest difficulty dungeon that all of the star adventurers throughout history have given up on.
Even the one praised as the adventurer king, Uther Mercurius Pendragon, said: ‘it is not worth it’.
…I am impressed I continued challenging a dungeon like that.
The Deep Sea Temple has no reward to a baffling extent.
If not for the fact that Noah-sama is here, I definitely would have backed off.
“Well, you are mostly correct.” (Noah)
“Are the Last Dungeons related to how we can oppose the Calamity Witch?” (Makoto)
“Fufu, that’s right.” (Noah)
Noah-sama smiled meaningfully at my question.
“By the way, the Divine Realm’s name for the dungeon you people call the Zenith Tower is: The Stairs to Heaven. It is a dungeon that was made by Althena in order to create new Gods from the residents of the Mortal Realm. There have been no results at all though.” (Noah)
“I see…” (Makoto)
This is the first time I hear of this.
Isn’t that a pretty important piece of information?
“The Abyss is the complete opposite. It is a completely natural dungeon. Mana really close to Ether continuously flows out from the giant hole that connects to Hades and Hell. Thanks to this, it has become a valuable deposit of magic crystals and metals. However, it is close to Hades and Hell, so there’s a lot of people who get pulled there and don’t return.” (Noah)
The explanation of Noah-sama continued.
As of now, I still don’t know what’s her intention here.
“Now then, we are here, Makoto☆.” (Noah)
Noah-sama, who had been walking a bit ahead of me, spun and turned back at me.
Her glittery silver hair drew an arc.
“Look at that.” (Noah)
What was there was…a gigantic device for something.
It is shaped like a pedestal, and there’s a rotatory lever in the middle.
A big lever that would take several adults before finally being able to turn it.
I doubt I would be able to turn it by myself.
“It is okay. You should be able to turn it, Makoto. Here, try touching it.” (Noah)
Noah-sama went up to the pedestal and beckoned me there.
I went to the side of Noah-sama.
And then, I touch the giant lever.
“Aah…it is true. It is lighter than I thought.” (Makoto)
The lever is light, contrary to its appearance.
The lever easily moved while making that sound.
That said, I still don’t know what this lever is for.
Noah-sama speaks as if to answer this question of mine.
“Only the person that has arrived at the Deep Sea Temple on their own strength has the right to turn this lever. You could say it is the reward of the Last Dungeon.” (Noah)
“This is…the right that the one who cleared the Last Dungeon gets?” (Makoto)
The eternal life of the Zenith Tower.
Treasure and massive power from the Abyss.
Even if you tell me this is going to be akin to that, it doesn’t click.
“By the way, Makoto, do you know what Leviathan is being called by the public?” (Noah)
The topic changed again.
“Uhm…the Guardian Deity of the Sea…?” (Makoto)
The other names I can remember would be Protector of the Ocean, Gatekeeper of the Deep Sea, and stuff like that.
“But Leviathan isn’t really protecting the sea or anything. It simply gets rid of the people that get close to the Deep Sea Temple. Well, that’s because I was sealed there though… The Divine Sea Beast actually has a different important role.” (Noah)
“Other than protecting the Deep Sea Temple?” (Makoto)
I have never heard about it.
What I know is that it participated in the battle between the Gods at the Divine Realm War though.
It is ancient history of 15 million years ago though.
I have not heard anything about the Divine Beast doing anything aside from that.
Noah-sama laughed as if in a good mood.
“Is something the matter?” (Makoto)
“Haven’t heard about it? That’s natural.” (Noah)
“What do you mean?” (Makoto)
Noah-sama wasn’t answering my question.
Rather than calling it beating around the bush, it is more like she is slowly admonishing a child with bad comprehension.
“You saw a lot of living beings in the garden of the Deep Sea Temple while coming here, right?” (Noah)
“Yeah, monsters, livestock, and even dragons.” (Makoto)
I was surprised at first, but they were harmless.
They were all living peacefully with their pair.
“Do you know why living beings are being gathered?” (Noah)
“Because Eir-sama wants to shelter them, right?” (Makoto)
“Why is there a need to?” (Noah)
“So that they won’t become extinct, right?” (Makoto)
“What would happen for them to become extinct?” (Noah)
“…If a natural disaster happens.” (Makoto)
What has Noah-sama been asking for a while now?
I am getting a bit annoyed here.
“Sorry about that, Makoto. I will soon be telling you the answer. In your world, there are things called nuclear weapons, right? If a nuclear war were to happen, the earth, ocean, and even the air would get contaminated, and living beings won’t be able to live there… Have you heard about that?” (Noah)
“I have, but…there’s no nuclear weapons in this world though.” (Makoto)
“Yeah, you are right. However, there have been developments for weapons of mass destruction on other planets in the past. If they were to be used in war, all living beings wouldn’t be able to live on that planet.” (Noah)
There’s no way I would know the history of other planets.
But our whole world is about to be cursed, so it doesn’t sound like we are unrelated here.
“That’s when Leviathan comes into play.” (Noah)
Noah-sama smiles evilly.
That smile looked a little bit like that of the Moon Goddess.
“That’s rude. I am not as evil natured as Nyaru… Conclusion: the role of Leviathan is to reset the planet that can’t be lived in anymore. That’s the Divine Order given by Neptune to the Divine Beast.” (Noah)
I ruminate over the meaning of the word.
Noah-sama said it would reset the world.
In other words…
“Wash it; all the dirt of that planet.” (Noah)
“That…means destroying the world, right?” (Makoto)
I asked in a trembling voice.
Noah-sama easily answered that.
The Divine Beast I challenged was a monstrosity whose objective is to destroy the world.
Even if I didn’t know, I am impressed I survived.
“But it doesn’t simply destroy☆.” (Noah)
The voice of Noah-sama grew bouncy all of a sudden.
“You saw the living beings in the garden, right? The ones being safeguarded there are the chosen ones that are promised to live in the reseted world. Even if Leviathan sinks the world into the ocean, only the living beings in the Deep Sea Temple will survive.” (Noah)
“That’s why they are all pairs, huh.” (Makoto)
The monsters and animals at the garden were all couples.
Pairs so that they make children and leave descendants.
“By the way, the switch to destroy the world is that lever you are touching right now.” (Noah)
Shocked, I hurriedly took distance from the lever.
I turned it a little bit just now though…
“It is okay. You have to do one full spin before the great flood happens.” (Noah)
“P-Please tell me that beforehand.” (Makoto)
That’s bad for the heart.
“That said, this is in such bad taste. The reward for doing your best and clearing the Last Dungeon is to destroy the world… What a bad joke.” (Noah)
I sighed lightly.
Even if I can destroy the world, there’s no point.
Just what is this Neptune-sama thinking?
Now that I think about it, the Water Goddess is the one acting as agent and managing this right now?
Eir-sama really is scary…
At that moment, a soft sensation hit my back.
I soon noticed that it was Noah-sama hugging me from behind.
“Of course, that’s not all. That wouldn’t be a reward. The Hero that has cleared the Deep Sea Temple…what they are given is the right to destroy the world, and…the right to choose who will be living in the next world.” (Noah)
Noah-sama whispered sweetly into my ears.
I froze there for a moment, not understanding what she said.
And then, my brain slowly chewed the words of Noah-sama.
Noah-sama strung more words with her pretty voice.
“This device also serves as a summoning device. See, there’s a magic circle slightly further away, right? By going there and wishing for it, you can call anyone you want to the Deep Sea Temple. Lucy-chan, Aya-chan, Sofia-chan; you can call them all to the Deep Sea Temple. You could even call all the people of the Water Country. That much would still be possible. It will get a bit cramped though. All the West Continent would be impossible though. You can decide, Makoto.” (Noah)
I was about to say ‘that’s not a funny joke’, but I couldn’t.
Noah-sama looked sweet and kind, but she was by no means joking.
She isn’t saying this as a joke.
“Let’s call Furiae-chan too. The Calamity Witch will be coming as well, but with me closeby, the Charm would be nullified. I am the one who rules over Charm magic after all. You can also bring the Hero of the Sun Goddess and childhood friend, Ryosuke-kun, you know. Noel-chan would get lonely after all. There’s also the half-vampire Momo-chan, and the White Dragon Mel-chan. You don’t have to hold back just because they are monsters.” (Noah)
“Is it okay for the believers of other Goddesses to come?” (Makoto)
“Of course. I don’t bind anyone. But that’s only if they don’t get Charmed after being close to my temple though.” (Noah)
Aah…that would be impossible.
There’s no way they wouldn’t get Charmed being close to Noah-sama who has had her powers come back.
I am sure they would immediately have a change of heart the moment they come to the Deep Sea Temple.
In the first place, if I don’t call them to the Deep Sea Temple, they would perish together with the outside world.
If they survive, the chances that they change their religion because of their gratitude is high.
—I am sure the residents of the new world will only worship Noah-sama.
I am sure of that.
The world would become Noah-sama’s.
“That’s wrong, Makoto.” (Noah)
Noah-sama denied those thoughts of mine.
A warm breath hit my ears.
“The world will become yours, Makoto. You will become the king of the world as my Apostle.” (Noah)
The voice of Noah-sama was sweet and gentle to an unbelievable extent.
The Goddess that guided me the whole time since the first time I met her.
There may have been slight mistakes here and there, but I have trusted that voice of hers.
Noah-sama won’t order me.
She would always tell me to act as I wish.
That’s why, this time as well…
“Makoto, I have a request.” (Noah)
By the time I noticed, Noah-sama, who had her arms wrapped behind me, was standing right in front of me.
Looking up at me with sparkling eyes, and holding my hand tightly with cheeks slightly flushed.
The hands of the Goddess are soft like marshmallows, and warm to a shivering extent.
“What…is it…Noah-sama?” (Makoto)
I was about to say ‘I will do anything I can’, but swallowed it.
It is rare for Noah-sama to request something of me.
But what she is going to be asking me here is…most likely…
Her lustrous pink lips moved.
“Let’s destroy this world and make our new world.” (Noah)
That smile filled with affection didn’t have a single blemish at all. The Noah-sama that I worship and deeply respect requested for the destruction of the world.