[Magdala V3] Act 4

But despite saying this, Kusla had no idea as to how he was going to do this.

Proving one’s identity as an Alchemist was practically an unsolvable ordeal.

As Autris said, they would not be able to prove it if they could not go as far as reviving the dead.

And even in the myths about Alchemists, the art of revival was so ridiculous, it was considered something troublesome to discuss, and as overturned by many alchemists as the idea of turning lead to gold.

Reviving the dead would undoubtedly be resisting the truth of the world, and those that dared to challenge this power were not few in numbers.

But in fact, the records left by the past were just mockeries by people who had their brains boiled out by mercury vapor. There was an example of setting up a magic array, putting a pot above it, containing the semen of cow, the eyeballs of frogs, and the fresh blood of a virgin, boil the corpse in the mixture, chant a few spells, and one could revive the dead. In such situations, it was logical as to why some would seek clues in the in such myths, as Fenesis did. They assumed that by piecing corpses together and inserting horse blood, they would surely be able to revive the dead.

However, all plans ended in failure.

This was not because the ancients were fools. Rather, ancient records were more reliable. The ancients felt that one day, the dead could be revived, and thus entrusted their hopes on the corpses to preserve such techniques. Boiling corpses in pots containing all kinds of mixtures was considered heresy, however, the techniques to preserve corpses remained widely used in the quest to preserve the bodies of the Saints who went running around the battlefields. Of course, only an envoy of the Creator could trigger the miracle called resurrection, so even if people had misconceptions about the preservation of corpses, they would not call it a ritual to revive the dead.

But the main drying agent used to preserve the corpses would be the yeast powder used for baking bread, and it was peculiar. People lived on bread, their corpses preserved by yeast powder. That thing was originally meant to make bread tastier.

Pondering about this, Kusla continued walking to a corner of the town.

It was said to be a quiet residential area, but the alleys inside were so complex, even an adult could get lost. In the bustling town of Gulbetty, there was such an old, dark area.

The security here was poor, and the people holed up here were those who could never see the light of day, rather then the low income group.

Kusla stepped over a stray dog that was lazing around, and arrived in front of a house.

The boss of a motel informed Kusla of this residence. Due to business reasons, they had a firm grasps of the buildings in the town, and wanted to prevent any random person from taking an empty house to build a motel and affect their business.

Thus, they knew everything well, even the house for the nobles to harbor their mistresses.

“You’re in, right?”

Kusla stood beneath a window, calling.

After a while, there was still no response. Only the sound of the kids playing afar could be heard.

“What is it~?”

Weyland’s voice could be heard. He had a hand on the window frame, but his face could not be seen.

“It’s not locked, right? Come down.”

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Weyland seemed to be pondering as he remained there for a while, before he pulled his hand back. Soon after, the door opened.

 

“I never thought you would come save me, Kusla~”

Weyland looked lethargic, but it was not due to the wrinkles on his clothes. He always looked unenthusiastic, but this time, he looked really weary.

It was likely that the noble princess kept hugging him, pleading him all night long not to leave.

What is so good about this chap that is worth loving? Kusla could not help but wonder. However, lovers tend to beautify things.

“If you want to go back, you can go back anytime you want, right?’

“…Well, yeah~”

Weyland was not being locked up here.

This was a house for lovers to have their night espionage. He definitely had his reasons for not going out.

Thus, though Kusla had intentions to save Weyland to stop Fenesis from pulling mischief again, it would be better for him to hear of the man’s will.

“Do you still have feelings for that lady?”

Weyland was leaning at the wall, showing Kusla a sheepish smile,

“Don’t mock me now~…”

“It’s your fault that we got into some unexpected troubles.”

Kusla grumbled, and looked back at Weyland, scratching his head.

“I guess it’s a mistake to have two Alchemists together in the same workshop.”

As expected, Weyland wanted to take full responsibility for this incident.

Kusla still felt that he was a scumbag, but he could make proper decisions on occasions that mattered.

“But you came to save me~”

“Friendship, I suppose.”

Seeing Kusla’s stare, Weyland finally let out a chuckle.

“You do know how to joke, Kusla. It’s because of Ul, right~?”

The probably reasons were narrowed down to an extent one could make a valid guess.

However, Weyland was able to state the reason without hesitation, and it appeared that he could see through anything involving Fenesis.

Kusla sensed that he was peeved about this, and felt inadvertently anxious unnecessarily.

Was this not similar to jealousy?

“She was fuming about the fact that I wasn’t willing to save you. I wanted to lock her by the collar and yank her off, but I decided not to.”

“Oho…”

“However, I am curious as to what you think. What do you intend to do? Stay here and be protected by the noble for the rest of your life while continuing your research? In that case, I’ll convey your thoughts to her.”

Kusla said with a smirk, and Weyland looked down at the floor of the corridor, his head lowered, not leering away like usual.

Seeing Weyland in such a state astonished Kusla somewhat, more than the latter did when Weyland easily saw through Fenesis’ intentions.

“Is Magdala just that much to you?”

Weyland lifted his head, showing a shocked face.

They wordlessly stared at each other, and the first to move was Weyland.

I got to hand it to you. He chuckled.

“Haha, looks like little Ul has become a little sharper~”

“Huh?”

“Nothing. But it is a waste of effort to hesitate now. Same goes for smelting~”

Weyland scratched his head, looked up at the ceiling, and said,

“I too wish to head to Magdala. That’s why I have to go to Kazan. There’s too little for me to obtain here, and life…”

Smiling, he let out a sigh,

“Is short~”

“Well, I’ll give you a hand.”

Kusla noted with displeasure, and Weyland cackled.

“Such a strange line~”

“For me, it doesn’t matter what happens to you.”

“…”

Weyland lowered his head, and peeked up at Kusla before averting his eyes, shrugging bitterly.

“But do you have any ideas?”

Hearing Weyland’s question, Kusla bluntly replied,

“Do you have a plan?”

Weyland smiled, and again, he shrugged.

 

It would be bad if the noble princess was to come by, and Kusla bade Weyland farewell before then as he head off to the market.

From the chat with Weyland, Kusla realized that the former too was wondering if there was a way to seemingly revive the dead. All they could think of were some methods rumored on the streets, almost superstition level. Myths of reviving the dead were not unique only to alchemists, and there were such rumors everywhere.

Such rumors practically knew no boundaries between fantasy and reality, and it was only because of people’s desire to revive the dead that all that glittered might appear to be the case.

But even so, there were some cases that were plausible.

And in such cases, there were a lot of such corpses found in the markets, so it would be easy to go there and gather. Thus, Kusla head off to that place.

He stopped in front of a butcher that had a lance stabbed through the head of a goat, sheep, and cow. The assistant inside was loudly promoting the freshly dissected meat. There were also hare and chicken meat hung up in front of the shop, and on first glance, one would assume it was a barricade.

Kusla stopped, pondering about his dilemma, and the shopkeeper, sharpening the chopper blade, called out to him.

“Welcome. Today’s dinne…now, you’re here for experiment ingredients, right?”

As to be expected of a butcher, Kusla could not help but think as he saw the beaming smile on the boss’ face. Those who swing choppers that could cleave people in halves and metal rollers of bread that could crush a bull’s skill would always be far gruffer than a blacksmith. If there was a riot in the city, thse two guilds would likely be the ones leading the charge.

“I heard of a method to make chickens sleep in the past. Is that true?”

This sudden question left the boss a little perplexed, “Ahh.” before he let out a chuckle.

“The assistants typically use this method when they’re lining the chickens together before slaughter. Cover the chickens’ eyes, stick their backs to the floor, hold them down, and they will freeze up. It does feel a little terrifying lining a few chickens together before slaughter.

“H…mm.”

However, this could not be dismissed as reviving a dead chicken.

It was said that a chicken could jump about for a while even after its neck got chopped off, but that was not revival either.

Kusla stared at the chickens hanging there, What if I put yeast powder in a chicken’s belly? at the same time, he wondered. A chicken with its belly expanded would not appear to be breathing.

“Are you looking for ingredients for magic?”

The boss gave an intriguing smile, both curious and skeptical.

“Has there been news of some dead body reviving and causing a commotion?”

“What?”

The boss raised the chopper to his shoulder, flexing his arm that was as muscular as a cow’s thigh. Even a mercenary would not have such massive arms.

However, he appeared to be a nice fellow to talk to.

“Well, there are such sales from time to time.”

“Oh?”

“But it will be troublesome if others is to find our shop’s people to be foolish.”

“Relax, I won’t say it. On a side note, I’m going North tomorrow or the day after with the Azami’s Crest coming to this town.”

“Oh…well, why didn’t you say so? Anyway, raw meat isn’t suitable for travel, but we do deal with processed meat too. Right now, there should be some fine pork.”

“That will depend on the contents.”

Kusla chuckled, and the boss raised a smile.

He scanned his surroundings, and lowered his voice, saying,

“There are quite a few of such cases. However, those assistants that aren’t used to this work will assume mistakenly that they’re revived. They probably aren’t fully awake.”

“It’s fine. How’s the situation?”

“But this didn’t happen in our shop, but the one next door.”

The boss, mindful of his reputation, added this first, and then continued,

“The most common case was the corpse moving after their necks got chopped.”

“No matter the livestock, they can move after their necks got chopped off, right?”

“Kind of. Chickens are the most unique with regards to this. However, livestock freeze up like rocks after dying. When the dead bodies move, people would say that they revived.”

“Oho.”

“Once such incidents happen, us in the know would understand that it was nothing much. Those oblivious will believe it to true though, sometimes even causing a tragedy.”

Kusla stared at the boss with some intrigue.

“A few years back, there was a village nearby. Someone was dying, and the Father used the fragrance oil for baptism to send him to Heaven. After he died, he opened the eyes. Everyone said that it was a miracle, and there was a commotion. They canonized the dead man as a Saint, and the Father who applied the oil. It was fine if they stopped there, but they believe it was a miracle, even boldly proclaiming it. The Church ended up investigating, and so,”

The butcher pretended to cut the head off, doing it in such an eerily similar fashion.

“They were said to be deceived by the Devil. The Father was hanged, and the family of the dead was deemed as heretics, chased out of the village. If they knew that the dead could move, they would understand this was a coincidence.”

That certainly seemed to be the case. There were quite a few alchemists who were fooled as well. Though he had such thoughts, Kusla could only think about how to make dead bodies move.

After all, Autris would not insist that the dead had to get up, talk, and continue with its daily life.

While Kusla was pondering, he heard a heavy sigh.

The butcher boss was glaring at him.

“Well then, are you going to buy anything”

Are you going to just listen? That was what the butcher was implying, so Kusla took out a few gold coins for the furious boss, buying some hares and chickens.

Fenesis was at the workshop, and Kusla did not want to let her see what he was about to do, so he went to Sophites’ workshop.

People would assume an Alchemist would be preparing for some strange experiments if he brought chicken and hare back. However, if it was a visit to a blacksmith’s workshop, everyone would assume it was a gift.

“But even so, that’s too much.”

Sophites said, looking a little mystified. The butcher broke a grin once he saw the gold coins, and decided to compensate Kusla appropriately. However, it was better to have more for experimenting.

“Want some?”

“…I don’t know what you are planning, but this might bring about some retribution.”

Sophites said as he picked up a round, pudgy hare.

“I’m looking for a way to revive the dead.”

“…”

The blacksmiths of the same age as Sophites, well advanced in his age, had already ascended to the afterlife.

But after hearing Kusla’s words, Well, whatever you want. he could only tilt his head in disbelief and mutter, before taking two hares to the kitchen.

“If I can make the hares open their eyes and cause a commotion, that will be enough.”

Kusla recalled what the Herald said. They were headed North, to the area ruled by the barbaric, ignorant pagans. Fenesis’ presence there could easily intimidate the pagans and once they saw her, the abnormality on her would strike fear in them.

Thus, if he could should a miracle of revival to the pagans, the commotion in that village would surely occur again. This should help the Knights suppress the pagans.

Thus, Kusla’s group would be able to make their mark, and the Azami’s Crest, so efficient at valuing gains and losses, might refute Autris’ mischief and let Weyland come along to Kazan.

But as the butcher said, whether the eyes or face would move would simply be down to coincidence. It was said that the hands or bodies shaking were common, but it was impossible to have a corpse reanimated back to life in front of everyone.

Also, hares and chickens were small, so the little actions might not be too obvious. Perhaps it would be more intimidating if something as large as a cow was moved. However, killing a cow itself was hard work, and that would be enough to cause a commotion. Thus, a revival performance might not be as effective as desired.

Back then, while Kusla was asking the butcher, he was wondering what would happen if yeast was used. If he had some yeast powder and wheat mixed inside a chicken’s belly and have it expand, perhaps it would appear to be breathing.

Thinking about this, Kusla hurriedly borrowed some ingredients from Sophites’ kitchen to experiment, but it was for naught.

While creating a visible timer, he found that the yeast was able to expand enough for a pot placed on it to topple, but it was too slow, way below his expectations.

“Stuff a chicken? That will be nice, but it takes too much effort. Also, since you’re making it, you might as well stuff a quail inside it.”

Sophites poked his head out from the kitchen to comment.

Kusla felt that Sophites understood luxurious cuisine quite a fair bit, but he decided to ignore it.

“The best way to do it is to wrap the quail in cow bladder, pour stock into it, and then stuff it into the chicken’s belly. However, if you stuff too much of it, the filling might break. The fire…”

Sophites probably experienced the joy of cooking after he retired, for the complicated cuisine he mentioned was something Kusla never eaten back. Right when,Kusla was about to tell the rambling Sophites to shut up.

The fillings would break?

If the fillings break and cause impacts, it would make a dead chicken appear to be revived.

However, if stock could break a cow bladder, could it cause the body to jolt and feathers to flutter? Just a little movement would not be convincing enough.

Despite this, Kusla could not help but sense that the end of this thought patter might be what he was seeking. The anxiousness of having the answer right within his grasp caused him to scratch his head.

And then, his hand slid to the back of his neck, touching a burned place.

While the pain caused him to wince for a moment.

An appropriate item appeared in Kusla’s mind.

“…So there’s this too.”

“And finally, about the spices…hm?”

“Do you know of any gold blacksmiths?”

“That was sudden. Well, I do.”

“I have some things I want to collect.”

Sophites raised his eyebrows in surprise, almost to the point of reaching the wrinkles on his forehead.

“Mercury and a cauldron?”

“I want to make some chicken filling.”

All that was left was how to show it.

Even if Alchemists could show the world how to turn lead into gold. It was impossible for the them to show the world how breaking the fillings could revive the dead.

 

Kusla made some preparations for the method he prepared. Technical-wise, it was not too complicated. Perhaps there was some difficulty in waiting for the right moment, but the most important aspect was to act it out.

Of course, he could not say it to Fenesis, so he wrote all the steps in a letter, and added Weyland’s signature to it. To make it appear that it was delivered from where Weyland was in custody, Kusla had the town courier deliver a letter here.

And on the other hand, Kusla told the Herald Alzen that this method could effectively quiet the pagans in the North. He informed Alzen, for this method would come into effect when they head North, and even if he had to take them away from Autris, the gains would outweigh the losses. What Kusla was about to do would trigger a somewhat major crisis of faith, and thus, he came to discuss.

At the very least, he had to obtain Alzen’s agreement. While the latter would not be moved by pleas, but if it were deals, it would be a different case.

The biggest issue however was that the one with the ultimate authority was the Archduke. After Alzen passed on word to the Archduke, the reply was that the Archduke wanted to personally witness the effects. Thus, they had to summon crowds and make things lively.

In any case, the Archduke personally found it to be some decent entertainment.

Someone constantly curious enough to get Alchemists to perform fire breathing would certainly like this performance. Kusla was confident. He plotted a strategy that would make use of an Alchemist’s ‘plating’ to its fullest extent.

And with everyone watching, he would be able to keep Autris quiet.

Thus, Kusla hurriedly went around the town, asking for a cauldron and wood. After all the preparations were done, he returned to the workshop.

Irine scowled, asking,

“…You want us…to wear this?”

Kusla did not know how seriously the Archduke viewed this experiment, how serious he was to affirm this, or whether he simply wanted this out of entertainment.

It was likely that for the nobles, the crusade against the pagans was merely a form of entertainment to pass the time. Thus, an Alchemist’s maniacal search for the land of Magdala would be more unlikely to be in their sight.

Kusla would not curse out at any force he could not fight against making a mockery of him. He would simply live on as ‘Interest’ as per usual.

If, no matter what, the wishes of Kusla and the others would be down to the Archduke’s decision, he could only abide by the Alchemist’s code, and be prepared for everything.

Part of the preparations was the clothing Irine was holding.

“Wearing this can give quite a lasting impression.”

“Though you say so…”

Irine said, and took out the clothes she found in the storage, hesitating. As for Fenesis, it appeared she had no idea how to put on these clothes.

“This thing was used when that illness called the Black Plague was rampant, right?”

“It isn’t limited to the Black Plague. Whenever there is a plague, or poisonous gas, this would be worn. Actually, the bent part at the nose is stuffed with spices, but we don’t have to do this much. This however should be enough to please the Archduke.”

“…Understood. This is the only way, right?”

“Looks that way. I guess so too.”

Kusla casually quipped, glanced aside at Fenesis, and said,

“Irine. Lift the hem of her clothes a little higher. Also, do you understand the steps?”

“I do…but is this really alright?”

“I tried it out. It’s definitely dine.”

“…”

Irine nodded reluctantly.

“You’re fine with it too, right?”

Kusla said to Fenesis, who as usual, ignored the former.

However, she was really motivated, thinking it was Weyland’s plan. It seemed there was no chance of it failing.

And as he held his tools, Kusla said.

“Let’s go then.”

 

News spread all over Gulbetty that the Church was going to carry out an experiment, to prove that this method could cause the ignorant pagans to succumb to the power of Orthodoxy. The Choir ranks in the Azami’s Crest indicated that they did not care about the methods used, as long as it could wipe out the pagans. They felt that they would use anything that could work; perhaps, mentality wise, they were not too different from the Alchemists.

And so, there was wood stacked up at the plaza of Gulbetty, a large cauldron was was set up there, while the onlookers who came by upon hearing the news were flooding the place. There was a tower set up at a position overlooking the venue, and a throne on it, which the Archduke was sitting on.

Kusla scanned for the Herald, and found that he was on standby beside the Archduke, along with Autris. Weyland was not present, but Autris looked on grimly. He too probably realized this experiment was for the sake of saving Weyland.

“Now then, let us have the Alchemist carry out the experiment. This is to erase the pious beliefs of the pagans, a recreation to the Truth God created.”

Alzen took a step forward, raising the prized sword as a referee, and declared.

At the same time, he was announcing that no matter what happened next, all responsibility lied with the Azami’s Crest.

“Begin.”

The Archduke raised his right hand, declaring like a king.

Kusla arrived at the plaza, and bowed to the Archduke.

“I am the Alchemist Kusla. As according to the proposal by my comrade, the Alchemist Weyland, I hope to present alchemy that will strike fear in the ignorant pagans, my lord.”

“Oho.”

The Archduke, whose beard was messier than the fur on Fenesis’ ears, looked delighted.

Kusla waved to a corner, gesturing for his assistants.

And at that moment, the atmosphere of the crowd at the plaza started to boil over.

Irine and Fenesis were dressed in protective clothing that indicated the ominous death, only used for treating plagues.

“Hey…”

“That’s ominous…”

The crowd chattered, and there were even children beginning to cry.

From head to toe, the duo were dressed in robe-like clothing, two pieces of glass at their eyes, a sharp beak at their mouths, similar to a large bird, and even their fingertips were covered in clothes. Their fingertips had sharp hooks on, to scratch at the pus of the sick and let the dirty blood out. The sharp beak at their mouths had spices in them, to filter off the airborne disease. In any case however, they appeared to be the envoys from hell using the magic of pagans.

However, this attire was one of the recognized tools by the Church. No matter how mysterious it looked, there was not a crisis of faith.

“This time, I shall show to everyone the Alchemy that is akin to betraying the truths of the world, and for this demonstration, I shall use a chicken.”

Kusla received the dead chicken from Irine’s hand, and then the butcher from before yelled, It’s ours! Kusla gave him a smile, and continued,

“This chicken was well alive, and even jumped a little despite its neck being snapped. But as everyone can see, it is dead.”

Kusla raised the chicken by the neck, and the head immediately dropped weakly.

“Some might be mistaken in thinking that what I’m going to do next is a ritual to revive the dead. That is not the case. In fact, you can think of it as basically collecting the soul left in the dead. Just like squeezing out the remaining traces.”

The onlookers, upon hearing Kusla’s words, looked at each other, and started to chatter. Their faces were that of one reproaching others for immoral acts, and at the same time, unable to suppress their curiosity.

Kusla nodded, seemingly delighted by their responses, and then turned to look at the mercury boiling in the cauldron.

The silver liquid swirled in the cauldron, and if one were to stare at it carefully, it would appear that he would be dragged to another place.

“Of course, this isn’t something that can be done by us puny humans. We need to borrow the power of God.”

Once he said that, as agreed upon, Fenesis held onto a Bible, went to the cauldron, opened it, and started mumbling some Psalms. Irine too followed suit, pouring some herbs and such in a pretentious manner, looking as though it was the real thing.

To the outsiders, they were like witches, praying, but they were using things created by the Church.

Irine stared at the mercury in the pot, and from beyond the glass, she gave Kusla a look.

“Now then, let us marvel at the power of God.”

Once Kusla said that, Fenesis closed the book, and received the chicken from his hands.

“Calm down. This isn’t difficult.”

Fenesis did not look at Kusla, probably because she was still fuming, or nervous.

In any case, all he could only hope for was that things went smoothly.

Kusla moved away from Fenesis, and said,

“Mercury is supposed to mean death, but the movement of the soul’s remains…”

Irine cautiously lowered a metal ladle into the mercury, looking somewhat anxious. Once the ladle went in, the mercury bubbled. It was obvious that it was at a dangerous temperature, but the most important aspect of this experiment was the temperature. She did not left up the ladle immediately, and the onlookers awaited her actions, ostensibly forgetting to breathe.

And at the same time, Fenesis knelt down beside Irine, inserted a funnel into the dead chicken’s mouth, and held its body with her hands.

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This heretical scene caused some in the audience to put their hands together, making prayers.

However, the prayers only lasted until Irine lifted the ladle.

Everyone was looking at a single spot. Irine held her breath, and lifted the ladle high up into the sky.

“This is Alchemy! Watch!”

And then, the boiling mercury was poured into the funnel.

A few days back, Kusla got burned by the mercury due to Fenesis’s mistake. Mercury was viscous, and when it boils, the air bubbles were likely to gather within before exploding. To avoid this, one had to slowly stir it and heat it under low heat.

But at this point, Irine poured the already boiling from high above.

Like a large metallic hammer striking a red hot piece of metal.

And with a loud sound, the mercury exploded inside the chicken.

“Wo-woah!”

There was a commotion from the onlookers, and the bearded Archduke widened his eyes, standing up.

Irine placed the ladle down, and at the same time, Fenesis let go of the chicken and the funnel before setting down on her backside.

An unbelievable scene occurred in front of the crowd.

“Look, the chicken!!”

“It’s revived!”

The dead chicken twisted its neck, flapped its wings, and jumped up, even its legs were twitching in numbness. The boiling mercury continued to explode in the body, moving the muscles.

That overly violent action appeared as though someone was forcibly dragged back from the world of death, and yet, as though one’s lifeforce was at its limits, making its final struggle. The chicken body’s shook once, twice, thrice, and four times. The more it jolted, it lesser it appeared energetic.

However, the chicken soon quiet down. After a while, it merely twitched from time to time, and finally stopped.

The scattered feathers soon fluttered around the chicken that was collapsed on the ground, before it stopped moving.

The scalding mercury overflowed from the chicken’s beak, as though its soul came out.

Everyone present was speechless.

Kusla faced the altar, and said.

“This can terrify the pagans now, right?”

The Archduke, leaning over from his seat, finally appeared to have recovered.

He coughed a little, stood up, and raised his right hand, saying,

“Alchemist, this act of Alchemy is stupendous! Enough to open the eyes of the pagans!”

It appeared the Archduke was elated.

Autris stared at Kusla with a grim look.

However, the Herald whispered a few words to him, and he barely managed to suppress the anger within him, nodding. He then turned to a corner of the plaza, pointing there. Kusla too looked over, and found Weyland standing there calmly, holding a noble princess by the hand.

“Now all that’s left is for him to decide what he wants to do.”

Kusla muttered to himself, looking down at Fenesis and Irine, seated on the ground. Both of them looked shocked, ostensibly taken by surprise at how effective it was.

The clothing used for treating the Black Plague covered their faces, and as Kusla could not see their faces, their reactions were up to his guesses.

“Right. Time to clean up.”

Only at this moment did Kusla act like an alchemist, saying this briefly.

 

In the end, Autris had to abide by the request of the Azami’s Crest, and let Weyland free. After some discussion, Weyland too had the noble princess grant him his freedom.

One had to wonder what Weyland said to that noble princess, but on the day after the performance, the noble princess was weeping as she bade farewell, but she did her best to make a smile.

The wagon carriage were lined up together, and Kusla was seated at the cargo, looking displeased as he watched this scene.

Irine, seated in the same carriage too, looked over, but she was murmuring something, probably envious or so.

Fenesis stood beside the carriage, staring at Weyland. The latter bade the noble princess farewell, and came running over. Fenesis was hesitant as to whether she should smile, but she finally did.

“Is this fine?”

Irine asked Kusla, who looked away from Fenesis, and open the book he got from the workshop.

“She can do whatever she wants.”

During the two days since then, Fenesis never said anything to Kusla, not once looking at him.

It appeared Irine abided by the agreement, and told Fenesis that it was Weyland’s plan.

Kusla never thought of admitting his part in this. He just hoped for Fenesis to not have any simple, innocent thoughts.

This thing called rage would only subside slowly as long as they worked together in the same workshop.

“You’re stubborn.”

“It’s a matter of a way of life. This is insistence.”

Irine shrugged, put her hand by the edge of the cargo carriage, and put an elbow there with her head in her hand, watching the town.

Irine probably would never return to Gulbetty again. If such a firm-willed lady was to cry upon leaving the town, it would be an interesting sight. Though Kusla had such a thought, Irine remained unfazed despite Sophites’ sudden appearance. She merely greeted him, and held his hand.

After doing that, Sophites left immediately. Perhaps he was worried about Irine doing anything rash if he stayed for long.

And finally, Weyland patted Fenesis on the head, the latter clearly elated at his return. He went to the side of the carriage, and hopped on.

Irine saw him board, hopped off, and went to the other carriage to sit with Fenesis.

“The great Alchemist Weyland has arrived~”

“Curse you.”

Weyland chuckled in response to that.

The front of the vanguard began moving, and soon after, the carriages Kusla’s group were on started to move.

“Without that experiment, I would have difficulty trying to convince her. You really helped me out there~”

“Right, you owe me one.”

“I’ll remember that~. But little Ul shouldn’t know?”

Kusla narrowed his eyes at Weyland, saying,

“I’m inhumane for not being willing to save you.”

“Haha. You really aren’t honest there, Kusla~”

“I might have considered if saving you could bring some benefit. It’ll be tougher to train her if she thinks of me as a kind person.”

“Hm…but without any friends, you will feel lonely, right? That’s a fine reason too~”

Does he intend to continue fooling around? Kusla could not do anything about this, and looked back at the book.

“But I never thought that you would really come save me there~”

He gave a look of vague intent.

Kusla could only shrug.

“Fenesis said something unexpected, and I had no choice but to save you.”

“I heard from Irine there. Little Ul was being decisive there, right?”

“Way too much.”

Kusla sighed, and stared at the loading platform of the carriage in front of him.

The Archduke at the plaza appeared pleased with Kusla’s group, and the soldiers too were shocked, and thus, they were treated as royalty.

At this point, they could simply sway about and reach their destination. They could relax.

“But she has learned how to do as she please, somewhat.”

“I heard from Irine that she wanted to declare herself as being part beast, made by an alchemist.”

“She’s always doing things without care of her own safety. No number of lives will be enough to save her from death.”

“It’s because of this that there’s value in protecting.”

Weyland said in a standoff manner, and casually laid down.

“I haven’t had a good sleep in a while. Let me sleep.”

“So that’s the reason why Irine and Fenesis are angry?”

Weyland showed a smile, and immediately closed his eyes, snoring.

“Goodness.”

Kusla cursed, and went back to reading.

During the time Weyland caused a ruckus, Kusla had been researching on the wanderers the Herald tasked him if. If they were prospectors investigating the mines, once he was done with them, he would probably be valued better. This incident itself pleased the Archduke, and with further progress, he should definitely be able to gain more freedom in Kazan.

He definitely could not let go of this opportunity, and provide some accomplishments.

Even if he had to rile up the wanderers or lie to the Archduke, he had to make contributions.

Kusla focused on the book.

Once they left town, the dry, frigid winds came blowing immediately, but he did not mind.

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