TWEM Vol. 3 Chapter 17 Part 2
We arrived in front of a large, old door.
I fearfully opened the door and found a large space with a large number of bookshelves lined up.
“This is more like a library than archives…it’s nothing short of spectacular.”
“I didn’t expect the archives of the royal castle to be this amazing.”
Finne and I let out such impressions.
“I knew from the map that the archives were huge, but I didn’t expect it to be this big…”
“Hey, Kusel, is it okay for you to be saying that, as a vice captain?”
Isn’t that a pretty prominent position?
“I’ve never had a mission that required me to go inside. And personally, I’ve been trying to stay away from places with lots of books!”
“Now I’m wondering why I even bothered to bring you along…”
While the three of us were having a blast, Iris remained unconcerned.
“Aren’t they usually like this? It’s not much different from ours, I think?”
Wow, as expected from a royal…
“I-Is that right…I guess I should begin gathering information about the summoning circle. But with this amount of information, even I can’t…”
I pondered about how long it would take me to find the books related to the hero summoning.
Thinking about it, I began to feel depressed.
Then, the maid who was showing me around spoke to me coyly.
“Umm, Master Haruto…”
“There is one librarian who manages this archive. I was told that this person knows the location of all the books…”
Oh! That would be most helpful.
“Oh that’d be great, could you please get her then?”
I asked, and the maid went into the door on the right side of the archive.
After a while, she came back with an elderly man.
…Could he be the librarian?
The maid bowed and left, and just as I was about to open my mouth, the man asked first.
“Are you the Lord Haruto who is currently rebuilding this country?”
“Yes, that’d be me. Well, not just me to be exact, but a collective effort…so, are you sir, the librarian here?”
“Yes, I am. My name is Ruben, I am the librarian in charge of this archive. How may I help you?”
“Right. I’m looking into the hero summoning magic circle. Are there any related books or documents?”
Ruben ran his hand over his chin and rubbed his long beard.
“Hero summoning magic circle…I think there is something related to it in the forbidden library. It’s usually off-limits, but…for someone of your prestige, it’s no problem. Please be mindful not to divulge any information you obtain within.”
“Thank you very much. Now, if you would please follow me.”
As we walked with Ruben, I asked him about the forbidden library.
“Hey, Ruben. What’s this ‘Forbidden Library’?”
“It’s an archive where forbidden books and other valuable documents are kept. I’m the only one in the castle who has access to it.”
“I see……are you sure we’re allowed inside?”
“No one would say a word if it’s Lord Haruto. You’re a Hero* who is helping in rebuilding this country after all.” (TLN: Designation by deeds as opposed to a title like Tendo and the others.)
However, I’d like to correct one thing.
“I am no hero.”
Ruben’s eyes widened at my words.
“Why is that? The country was rescued thanks to you. You saved this country, and now the capital has been restored to life. You are undeniably our hero for bringing about this change.”
I shook my head.
“No, I’m not. I’m not a hero after all. I’m just a revenger.”
“That’s right. You may already be aware that I was summoned as a hero and was almost killed when I was kicked out because of my lack of power, and I killed the king and his guilty cohort out of revenge. I didn’t do it for the country, I did it for myself…which is why, I am by no means a hero.”
Ruben looked sad for a moment at my words, then turned serious.
“Still…still, you are a hero to the people of this country. No matter what you think of yourself, that won’t change.”
Ruben’s words somehow made me feel relieved.
While we were having this conversation, we reached the far end of the archives, where a heavily locked door appeared.
Ruben unlocked the door, and beyond it was a staircase leading to the basement.
Beyond that, was another massive door, which Ruben unlocked again.
“This is the forbidden library. Please come in.”
The inside of the forbidden library was dimly lit with light magic in several places.
The books on display ranged from old to new and were all in good condition. They were probably preserved with some kind of magic.
“Anything related to hero summoning can be found here.”
As I followed Ruben, he suddenly stopped, took an old book and handed it to me.
Then he started walking again, stopped, took a book and handed it to me, then started walking again…and on and on he continued.
Halfway through, I couldn’t carry them all by myself anymore, so I asked Finne and the others to help out as well.
“——And that’s everything.”
By the time the last book was piled up, there were dozens of books.
“This is a lot more than I thought…thank you for your help, Ruben. I can’t even imagine how many days it would have taken us to find them if we were by ourselves. I suppose it would be too much to ask if I could bring them out?”
Since it’s stored in a room where only Ruben can get into, it’s probably impossible to take them out.
Was my thought, but Ruben shook his head.
“Of course not. So long as you let me know, you can bring them with you if you like. Just make sure you handle them with care.”
“Sure, of course. Thank you.”
After which Ruben said, “Now, if you’ll excuse me. Please let me know if you need anything else”, and left.
We put the books on a nearby desk and sighed.
“Haa…let’s look through these for now.”
Everyone stared at the pile of books and looked blatantly disgusted.
“I know how you feel, but we gotta do this…”
“The sheer amount. Haa!…”
“Welp, let’s get it over with!”
In order, it was Finne, Iris and Kusel. Kusel was quite energetic, and…is it just me or she seemed a little too optimistic?
And so we searched through the mountain of books for information about our return.
——A few hours later.
“They are definitely related, just that…”
“…They are all fairy tales.”
Me, Finne, and Iris muttered.
Kusel, on the other hand, was long gone. She had bolted, hadn’t she?
Anyway, we checked the books and found that there was indeed a way to return.
Just that, they were all fairy tales, like the hero who defeated the demon king and was sent back to his original world by god on the spot.
Wait a minute, I’m sure that god never sent anyone back though…
As I was flipping through the last book with this in mind, I found a description that caught my attention.
“What is it?”
“Well, I may have found something akin to a ray of hope.”
I showed the page to Finne and Iris and read it out loud.
“‘The hero completed his own Return Magic Circle and returned to his original world’, apparently…”
“But it doesn’t contain the said magic circle though…”
“Seems like it…”
Finne was right, the page did not show the most crucial part, the magic circle.
I perused another page to see if I could find the information.
“There it is…”
The only thing written on the page was a simple statement, “I fooled around with the magic circle for summoning”.
It doesn’t say where or how he played with it, the only thing written was, ‘He said all of a sudden, “I got the feeling that if I fiddled with it just right, it would work”, and just like that it got activated, and then he was really gone. And since the magic circle disappeared along with him, I couldn’t record it’.
No, no, no, you’ve got to be f*cking kidding me!?
This was too messy, this offered practically no leads.
At least, now we knew we could just fiddle around with a magic circle for summoning.
We borrowed only some of the books and headed back to the summoning room.
We had a copy, but we wanted to compare the article with the real thing.
We went over the composition and mechanics of the magic circle thoroughly.
By the time we stopped to take a breather, it was completely dark outside.
“…Dammit, we’re getting nowhere with this! Let’s pick it up again tomorrow. Let’s go have dinner and go to bed.”
“You’re right…I’ve been staring at so much text, I think my eyes are going to pop off.”
As if to agree with me, Finne and Iris also nodded.
We went back to the room to discuss our next move.
“Thanks to that document, I have a rough understanding of how the summoning magic circle works. Now I just need to figure out how to go about fiddling with it, but…”
“Then it looks like we’ll be able to leave the capital the day after tomorrow as planned.”
“Yeah. As long as I have the copy on paper, I can work with it from anywhere.”
Tomorrow morning, I would dig a little into the interval between the summoning, then we could get ready to leave.
I sighed and laid down on the sofa. I’d been staring at books and magic circles all day, so I was exhausted.
As I was resting, I suddenly felt something warm on my eyelids.
I reflexively picked it up, and found that it was a warm towel.
As I turned my head, Finne called out to me.
“Did I disturb you? I thought it would help you relax…”
It seemed that it was Finne who had placed the towel on me.
“Not at all. It was nice and warm. Thank you. This should help my eyes to recover a little.”
“This is just about all I can do to help.”
No, no, no. You were of tremendous help with the research, don’t you think? You should get some rest as well, Finne.”
With that, I closed my eyes again and placed the towel back.
I certainly could feel my fatigue melting away.
——The next morning.
I headed to the summoning room to do a little research.
I also copied down some parts of the forbidden books that I was interested in, and now I could study the magic circle on the way to the Nargadia Labyrinth.
After moving to the cafeteria, I ate with Finne and the others while we worked out our plans for the day and tomorrow.
“We’ll leave tomorrow morning as planned, and use today for training and preparation…sounds good?”
“Sounds good to me too.”
“The labyrinth huh…I can’t wait. Gotta keep our form in training today as well!”
Finne, Iris, Ephyr and Kusel all said so respectively.
“Oh, yeah. That’s right. Good luck with that…are you okay with that as well, Asha?”
“Yes. No problem.”
“All right, well, you guys get ready. I’m going to go make my rounds.”
After finishing breakfast, I headed to the government building.
Although I had already told them yesterday that I was leaving the capital. There were a few things that needed to be communicated, but I decided to leave everything to them.
Next, I called Aegan.
When I told him that we were leaving, he got down on his knees and begged, “Please take three of us with you, or even just two!”, Aegan begged me.
Nevertheless, Aegan and the others would have to continue to monitor the royal family and nobles. In addition, they still needed to send their people back to the Elven Village, so they couldn’t afford to send any personnel resource to come with us, so I declined.
After parting ways with Aegan, I headed to Mariana’s room.
Mariana looked surprised and confused at my sudden visit.
“Haruto Yuki…I mean, Master Haruto. Why have you come here?”
That’s a little harsh geez, I guess she can’t help it, so I’ll let it pass.
“Yeah. I’m leaving the capital tomorrow, so I thought I’d stop by and say hello.”
“I see. Did you come all the way here just to say that?”
I didn’t miss the slight relaxation on Mariana’s face at my words.
“Well, yeah…perhaps now, you’re thinking you could finally make your move?”
“My move? What are you talking about?”
This time, Mariana’s expression tensed up.
Was she always this easy to read?
“Unfortunately, the surveillance will remain in place even after I’m gone. It doesn’t change the fact that you have no power.”
“Also, as I’m sure you’ve been informed, all members of the royal family except the queen and the prince have been disposed of. The royalist nobles have all been identified through the royal family’s information channels. There’s no noble left around to take your side.”
“…I, I see.”
Mariana managed to squeeze out a few words.
If the royalist nobles whom she would have relied upon were captured, Mariana would become a total figurehead queen.
Even so, this bitch will probably try to return to power by any means necessary…but as long as Aegan and the other elves are watching, that opportunity will never come.
“So long. Daughter of the Foolish King.”
Mariana glared at me sharply as I left, as if it was her last stand. I felt her gaze on me as I walked out of Mariana’s room, thinking this would probably be the last time I saw her face.
Thus ended the revenge play featuring me and the elves.
That night, the Prime Minister threw a party for us, and we had a great time.
From then on, they will be the ones to make this country prosperous.
We enjoyed the party, wondering what kind of country it would become.