Chapter 355: Two Howls
Once the discussion ended, most everyone left the room in the assembly hall. The place looked quite empty as opposed to before.
Unbeknownst to Saint Matia, a strange force fell on her shoulders. She felt like that force was gradually draining her energy.
Then, she took enough time to say the following.
「…What do you think? Did you take Lugis’ words seriously? I wonder how serious he was.」
It was two shadowy figures who received those words that didn’t hide any skepticism. Ann, who was right next to her, and Eldith, the Queen of Ghazalia.
After hearing Matia’s words, there was a short pause between the two of them. Ann showed a few wrinkles between her eyebrows, displaying an obvious distress, and Eldith seemed to be immersed in her thoughts.
The latter was the first to speak. Her long ears unique to elves were pointed proudly into the air.
「Lugis jokes about many things, and if he must, he’ll lie about them too. I don’t think we can take everything he says that seriously.」
To be honest, Matia didn’t feel like arguing with her. Lugis was a person with a nature that found pleasure in playing with words.
She just opened her mouth lightly in an elegant manner.
In general, human words were kind of frivolous. There were many people who felt that listening to such words seriously was silly.
If Lugis’ words were the same, then it wouldn’t be hard to cast them aside.
“However.” Eldith continued to talk in order to finish her perspective. Her face, sharpened like a sculpture, was searching for words.
「However, he does not tolerate prejudice, so there’s no falsehoods in what he says. If he spoke those words with weightiness, then all of them are quite serious.」
After hearing Eldith’s words, Matia took a deep breath and put her hand on her forehead. Her well-groomed eyebrows distorted in response as she brushed her hair awkwardly.
“Did Ann think the same?” Ann, who made a bitter face and averted her gaze, was probably thinking the same thing.
The strange words spoken by Lugis naturally rung in Matia’s ears.
…The Heraldic Order will become the leader of the magical beast disaster subjugation and will “liberate” the cities that have been invaded by those monsters. It will obtain support from various countries, and it will “rescue” the Gharast Kingdom from that crisis. It will remind the nations that what they need is a force to unite their people, be it a doctrine like the Great Holy Church or a religion like the Heraldic Order. This is our chance. Its irreplaceable.
It felt as if his words were full of nonsense in a single sentence. It was foolish. Matia’s rationality told her that there was no way she would accept such a thing.
In fact, the leaders of the Heraldic Order, who were present in that meeting, didn’t put it into words, but they felt the same aversion in their minds. Matia watched Lugis as her deep wrinkles distorted with suspicion and disgust.
Matia turned her thoughts in order to find an answer. She shook her little lips. Whether what Lugis said was true or false, Matia didn’t want him to spit that sort of information during that meeting.
Because of his systematic bad timing, Lugis had a bad reputation among the leaders of the Heraldic Order.
In fact, he didn’t value the organization and was terrifyingly disrespectful. He repeated his own dogma as if there were no rules at all.
It felt as if he hated the concept of an organization or the gathering of people.
Even those who had power within the Heraldic Order must had felt bitterness in their hearts from his reckless actions. If it weren’t for the increasing followers who saw his behavior as a hero, they would’ve cast Lugis aside.
That’s why Matia understood the feelings of the pivotal members of the organization and diminished Lugis’ actions on that occasion.
Matia said during that meeting that they should sit down and talk a bit more until they reached a sensible decision.
At the very least, Matia wanted to value reason and make decisions based on calculations.
In order to consolidate the organization, making conscious choices were the better path.
“But why do I feel this way?” It seemed to Matia that these thoughts were not right. “Yes, I feel that Lugis’ words were somewhat correct.”
After all, Matia came to see those results. Lugis did everything with an irreverent will. His footsteps were no longer easily traceable.
That’s why Matia couldn’t reject Lugis’ proposal and just delayed the meeting. She couldn’t even open her lips properly, even though she was a Saint. In fact, she didn’t do justice to her title of Saint.
“I’m sure those pivotal members also had similar thoughts, so they kept their mouths shut and swallowed his words.”
「Also, the dissatisfaction from the elders will be heavy. 」
Ann spoke with a frustrating tone. Those dissatisfied voices rarely reached Matia directly. However, in Ann’s ears, those voices entered with a force close to resentment.
“Thinking about it, Ann might be the one who suffers the most from Lugis’ reckless dogmatism. In spite of that, it seems that she’s getting along well with him.”
While listening to Matia and Ann’s talk, Eldith spoke as if perplexed.
「Humans really like to put on the skin of jealousy and push others away. It is disgusting to see that the hero who has brought them to glory is not easily accepted.」
The words that Eldith uttered from her pointed lips were not personally addressed to Matia or Ann. However, it was a voice filled with irrepressible revulsion and lamentation.
Humans quickly forgot how they got their wounds and how they healed them. It seemed like they forgot the intense pain they once suffered by denouncing the person who removed it. Eldith said that heroes, and many of the stories with glorious names, ended in tragedy.
Then, with a sophisticated expression on her cheeks, she continued her words.
「I, no…if it were the elves, there would be no such thing…」
Matia didn’t even blink her eyes and returned her words. Her long hair bounced and swayed in the air.
「…He’s human. I wonder if the elves would’ve accepted him completely. 」
Eldith’s blue eyes and Matia’s big eyes intersected for a moment. They knew what they were trying to say to each other, and what they were implicitly claiming.
That’s why none of them gave up on either of them. They didn’t even want to retreat. Their wide-opened eyes faced each other directly with a deep tension.
After a few seconds.
No one uttered a single word. Only sharpened gazes and heavy breaths were flying around.
Then, Ann finally opened her mouth. Severe fatigue came from her voice.
「…Our current discussion is not about how others treat Lord Hero. I’d like to hear your thoughts on what really matters right now.」
She must have chosen her words very carefully. From Ann’s usual point of view, her voice sounded firm and dull. It even sounded like she had something stuck in her throat.
Still, it seemed she used that voice to cut the tension between Matia and Eldith. Both of them shifted their gaze without saying anything, and then, after another moment, Matia finally said.
「Whatever choice he makes, the conclusion remains the same.」
Ann said that he would be the leader of the magical beast disaster subjugation. How would he accomplish it? There were a variety of means, but in the end, Lugis’ choice was quite obvious.
…Naturally, he will choose the one that will hurt him the most.
Not only Matia, but also Ann and Eldith understood. That was Lugis’ biggest bad habit.
It was as if he had an obsession to sacrifice his own body.
“It seems he has finally gotten to the point where he can listen to what I’m saying. Yet, control has not yet pervaded all of his thoughts.” Matia pondered deeply.
“Not yet…not yet. If something big happens now, he will be hurt again. If so, what should I do? It’s best to keep him under control until I guarantee his safety.”
The edge of Matia’s thoughts was about to reach a conclusion.
Then, Eldith muttered.
「It’s annoying, isn’t it? Lugis thinks he can roll as much as he wants in the palm of our hands, so that he can do things on his own.」
While saying those words, Eldith continued with a tone that sounded as if she wasn’t irritated but decided.
While her blue eyes flickered strangely, her cheeks were filled with the unique beauty of an elf.
…Then, let him understand that we have ideas as well. We shall possess that body.
In those blue eyes, the elf’s passion, which seemed to be bottomless, was emerging.