Chapter 78: The Goddess of Earth
John Dae started to shout after he heard that Seiya wanted to return to the God’s realm. I tried to explain to John Dae that the heavenly world was different from the earthly world. The flow of time was different in both worlds. Even though it’s been a while since we’ve arrived in Exfolia, only one hour has passed in Exfolia in the perspective of the gods in the God’s realm. In other words, for the gods, time was slow in the earthly world, while for the people, time was fast in the God’s realm. Somehow, I managed to convince John Dae.
Suddenly, John Dae’s expression changed and he looked at me with a serious face.
「Goddess, if that’s true, then there’s something I want you to do before you return to the heavenly world.」
「Eh? What do you want me to do? 」
「I…I want you to let me die. 」
「John Dae! What are you talking about? 」
The Queen raised her voice, but John Dae smiled tenderly at her.
「Queen Carmilla. Humans who have become undead won’t be able to return to being humans. It’s impossible no matter what kind of techniques or tools they use. On the contrary, our mind will slowly disappear and, once we lose our reason, we’ll attack the people around us.」
Both the Queen and I were at a loss of words.
…Even so! I won’t be able to let such a great general die in vain like this…!
「Goddess of the heavenly world. Please use the power of the heavens to grant my wish.」
John Dae smiled at me. I didn’t know what to do, and so, I looked at Seiya. Then, the cold-hearted hero nodded his head and spoke as if it weren’t anything special.
「Yeah. You may lose your mind at any moment. You should perish as soon as possible. 」
…!! So terrible!!
General John Dae wrinkled between his eyebrows.
「It’s absolutely annoying to hear you say that…But, well…I guess you’re correct. Goddess. Just do me this favor.」
「Is it really…okay? 」
John Dae nodded positively. It seemed that the Queen had accepted his decision. Then, he looked at me with his sincere expression and bowed respectfully. He said, 「I beg you 」. The Queen said the following words to John Dae before his ending.
「John Dae…I thank you sincerely for everything you’ve done for Tarmine. 」
「Queen Carmilla. I will be watching over Tarmine from the heavens. 」
My eyes ached painfully from watching this sad farewell. However, I mustn’t cry! I was a goddess after all! In order to grant John Dae’s wish, I had to do my best so that he could ascend to heaven smoothly and without pain!
I put my hand on John Dae’s forehead.
「Then, from now on, the soul of General John Dae shall return to heaven! 」
I activated my healing powers. The holy healing spells caused a reaction on the body of the undead. A white smoke came out of John Dae’s face where I put my hand on.
John Dae’s face was full of anguish.
…Three minutes later. John Dae opened his mouth impatiently.
「Go…Goddess…! If you can…please, do it quickly …! 」
「Ye…Yes! I know! 」
What the hell was I doing! I had to do it with much more power! The longer it takes, the harder it will be for General John Dae!
I took a deep breath and opened my eyes wide.
Ohhhh!! Let’s burn the microcosms!! My full ultra-goddess force!! Open up!!
*strong simmer sound*
However, the holy light didn’t spread more than three centimeters in diameter and burned only the forehead of John Dae.
Finally, John Dae grabbed his hair because of the ongoing pain.
「I can’t do this anymoreeee!! This is too painfulllll!! This feels as if the sun is burning my skin with a magnifying glass!!」
「I…I’m truly sorry!! 」
With my current limited divine power, it could take a few hours to ascend John Dae to the heavens. Seiya said, 「Stop it 」, while approaching John Dae.
「It’s no use. Let me push you to the nucleus of this earth by the power of the Endless Fall. 」
「That will ascend me to hell instead!! I absolutely refuse to be killed by someone like you!!」
Then, Seiya exhaled a big sigh.
「This is a big waste of time. Let’s leave him like this for now. However, I activated some earth snakes to exterminate him if he ends up losing his mind.」
And then, John Dae got several snakes wrapped on both of his hands, feet and neck like jewelry accessories.
The Queen put her hand on John Dae’s shoulder, while displaying a very unpleasant expression.
「Okay then. John Dae. You shall be under my guidance for the time being. 」
The result ended up unfinished because of my failure. Nevertheless, I felt a bit happy to see the relaxed expressions of both the Queen and her general.
Then, Seiya and I went through the portal and we returned to the God’s realm…
After arriving in the God’s realm, I asked Seiya immediately.
「Seiya. How are you going to prepare for your fight against the Imperial Machine Corps? 」
「I want to improve my existing abilities this time rather than acquiring new skills. In other words, I want to perfect the mastery of earth magic.」
「Do you mean…to practice with the God of Earth? 」
「That’s right. If you know who it is, great. Because I want to start practicing straightaway. 」
The gods of nature, such as fire, water, and earth, were also major entities in the God’s realm. The God of Earth. No, it’s actually the Goddess of Earth. I’ve met with the Mariya, the Goddess of Earth, several times before. I remember that she had a very gentle demeanor.
When we walked up a little further inside the square garden, we ended up finding the beautiful Flower Garden of the God’s realm.
Under a clear sky, I saw a woman with a straw hat on top of a beautiful hair. Mariya, the Goddess of Earth, was watering some colorful flowers with a water pot.
「Lady Mariya. Hello. 」
「Oh my, Listarte. Hello. We have such a nice weather today. 」
A refreshing smile. Yes. As I thought, Mariya was a wonderful goddess!
When I told her that Seiya wanted learn earth magic, Mariya shook her head.
「But, as I can see, your hero is already familiar with earth magic, am I right? 」
Certainly, Seiya’s earth magic was already at a high-level by now. He probably reached the “perfect mastery of earth magic”. What did he want to learn then?
Seiya spoke to Mariya.
「To put it bluntly; I want to create monsters that are stronger than the earth snakes. I tried various things. But, it was too difficult to accomplish by my own. You, as the Goddess of Earth, are able to do it?」
Mariya nodded slightly.
「If you learn the “soil” first, then, you should be able to learn the “rock” element thereafter. If you learn how to master it, then you’ll be able to create Rock-based monsters. If you’re strong enough to cast them bigger than just mere rock monsters, you will be able transform those monsters as golems. They will be much stronger than earth snakes.」
「Golems!! I see!! So, you’re trying to create a horde of monsters to fight against the Imperial Machine Corps!!」
「Yeah. That’s right. 」
Both of us stared fixedly at Mariya. Before long, the Goddess of Earth smiled sympathetically.
「Based on the present status of the hero…I think it will be possible to achieve that much. However, I must warn you that rock-formation monsters are the highest degree of difficulty in earth magic. As a human hero, you won’t be able to learn it overnight. I’ll teach you everything you should know starting tomorrow.」
「No. I’d like to learn it as soon as possible. 」
This was getting into the usual course of action; therefore, I tried to explain to Mariya what Seiya was capable of.
「Huh, sorry Lady Mariya! But, this hero is amazing, you know! He learns the gods’ skills extremely fast even though he is supposed to learn them in days! That’s why…」
Mariya interrupted my words on that point.
「I’ve heard about this hero. A rare talent that the higher gods entrusted with the salvation of the SS-rank difficulty world. Certainly, he might be able to learn these earth skills quickly… Where one needs a full month to learn, he can probably learn it today or even tomorrow.」
「Yes! That’s why…! 」
「This is different. I have one personal problem. 」
And then, Mariya had a slightly troubled face.
「Actually, I have a time limit. From noon to dusk is the only timeframe I can work with.」
Mariya put her hand on the straw hat and looked up at the sun in the sky.
「The sun will set soon. I can only act freely for two more hours today. 」
「Why? Why do you have a time limit? 」
「Unfortunately, I can’t tell you the reason why. 」
「We have to save the world. The gods from the heavenly world usually cooperate with humans on times like this, am I right?」
「I am truly…sorry about this. 」
Mariya bowed her head to us in apology. I tried to defend Mariya’s limitation excuse.
「Se…Seiya!! It’s too bad, I know!! But, I’m sure that Lady Mariya must have deeper reasons for this!!」
Seiya was silent for a while…
「Well…it’s all right. We can still practice on the remaining two hours. 」
「Yeah. I understand. So, let’s get started now. 」
In this way, Seiya began his short training session.
Afterwards, I decided to leave the Flower Garden because I didn’t want to interfere with Seiya’s training.
…However, it was rather strange that a goddess had a time limit. Did she had, perhaps, an “illness”? But…But, did the God’s realm have such weird things as earthly viruses?
After I returned back to the square, I saw a few familiar faces.
I saw that Aria and Adenela were sitting on a chair at the garden table of “Cafe de Celseus”. Speaking of which, Celseus was carrying some coffee cups. I finally felt that I came back to the God’s realm after I witnessed my family and friends. I smiled spontaneously.
「Aria! I’m home! 」
Aria rushed from her chair and hugged me tightly.
「I’m glad you’re okay! It seems that you’ve successfully activated the secret of the Six-Hexagram to defeat the enemy and freed the Tarmine Kingdom! I’m so happy that you finally returned to the God’s realm!」
「Ye…Yes. Well…you know. We managed to survive somehow… 」
In fact, the Six-Hexagram failed because of me. Then, Adenela recommended me some coffee to drink.
「O…Okay. Just drink…drink this for…now. It…It’s not delicious…it’s rather a mess…a boring…and useless coffee.」
「Hey!! Why are you talking like that!? I did my best to brew it carefully!! 」
I put the cup to my mouth to drink a little. Actually, it wasn’t an awful coffee at all.
「Celseus! This coffee is not bad! I get a nice feeling as if it were a “delicious instant coffee”!」
「Oh…Oh, I see…What!! I used luxury beans to create this high-grade coffee!! And why are you comparing it to a common instant coffee instead!?」
Celseus’ wrath felt upon me. Then, Aria asked me the following.
「Listen, Lista. Where is Seiya? 」
「Hmm. He is practicing right now with Lady Mariya, the Goddess of Earth. 」
「…Mariya, you say. 」
I felt a little anxious because of Aria’s silence.
「Eh!? It…It isn’t all right!? Don’t tell me that she’s another strange goddess!? 」
「Ah, well. I didn’t hear any strange rumors about Mariya. However, she does have something odd going on…because, Mariya never shows herself in the evenings…」
「Ah, I see. So, she does have that time limit. 」
「That might be a rule that only applies to her. There shouldn’t be any problem if Seiya practices with her during the day. Just respect her decision.」
「Yes! I understand! 」
Afterwards, I stood up. I went to the dining hall in order to prepare a meal for Seiya.
…Although the short training had a time limit, it seemed that Mariya, the Goddess of Earth, was a normal goddess according to Aria! There should be no problem when compared with the lewd Mithis, the Goddess of Bow, or the crazy Zeth, the other Goddess of War!
…That was what I believed at that time.
Yeah, just you wait until you see the real reason why Mariya doesn’t stay until nightfall…
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