Garuda carrying the wagon that Mira and Cleos rode had descended at the plaza in front of the Arkite Castle’s gate. To guards, this appeared to be a familiar sight, they immediately straightened their backs and saluted.
After Cleos got off, of all things a girl with sparkling silver hair had appeared from inside, which left the guards astonished for an instant. When they realized this girl was Sage Danbulf’s disciple, they hurriedly corrected their postures.
“Thank you, it was comfortable.”
“I’m happy to have been of use.”
When Mira said her thanks to him, she looked up at Garuda and “You too, good work" she called out to it. Garuda must have understood those words as it faintly chirped back.
“Well then, Mira-sama. Take care.”
“Mm-hm. You too, do your best.”
Cleos prayed for her safety during mission and Mira asked him to work hard on training newbie Summoners. During the travel in the sky, from among the Magic-Sealing Bomb Stones she took from the tower Mira picked out ones that could be of use against Armament Spirits and passed them to him. There was a fair number of them so Cleos greatly rejoiced and he was filled with even more motivation.
After Mira saw off Cleos who got back on the wagon and left for the Arkite Academy, she entered the castle. Then being guided by a maid who was nearby, she was taken to the reference room in the back of the castle.
“Mira-sama. I have been waiting. Now, please come this way.”
Taking over after the maid, Lily led her further into the back of the reference room.
The reference room had white walls and tall ceiling, the space near the entrance was an open well and it was split into three levels. Gray shelves made of metal were lined up in logical manner and on them were stored documents from all over the world, split into sections.
Mira was guided across the room to a room in the back of the first level. Waiting for her in there were Solomon and Luminaria.
“Good work, I will take care of the rest.”
Lily energetically bowed and when she was leaving, “next time please tell me your impressions on the clothes” she whispered into Mira’s ear.
“So, I heard that a problem had appeared, what problem exactly is it?”
After sitting at a suitable chair, Mira asked.
When she did, Solomon made a difficult expression and passed a single piece of paper to her.
“We managed to decode it up until this point. But for the essential part of it, it appears Süleyman’s knowledge is not enough for this.”
“Hooh, even with all his knowledge?”
After Mira lowered her gaze at the paper she received from Solomon, she muttered surprised. Süleyman’s competence was not something just any scholar could compete with.
The document were left for decoding not by some scholar but by one of players, Soul Howl. Although it was something that covered various different material, with Süleyman’s brains it was not something that would be difficult to decode. Solomon and Mira thought so.
However, when they started to actually decode it, there spread a sea of unknowns that made even Süleyman struggle.
On the paper there was information that had yet to be decoded.
First, it was necessary to acquire the material that would become the foundation of the Brilliant Chalice of Divine Decree.
Apparently it was possible to acquire this material in the South of the continent, but he had trouble with decoding the exact location.
“By the way, this is the keyword for it.”
While saying so and sitting down on top of the desk, Luminaria put the piece of paper she had in her hand in front of Mira.
On it 『Surrounded by weeping in the North and mountain in the South, red spiders spread to the West and a birch sprouts in the East. Pierced in there, use the sword that flattens many lands to create the vessel1Weeping, mountain, red spiders and birch all refer to different plants, Weeping Willow, Yamazakura, Red Spider Lily and birch is self explanatory. Also, “land” in the second part is written in katakana (チ) so it might be a reference to some plant, too, but I went over many candidates and couldn’t find it』was written.
There was no way Mira could decode a code that the number one brain of the kingdom cannot understand, and immediately after passing her gaze through the paper she immediately looked up to the heavens and gave up on thinking about it.
“I didn’t expect anything out of your smarts. About the problem, there is a single clue. I want you to, by all means, take charge of it. Which is why I called you.”
“Nhh… So, what kind of clue is that?”
Although Solomon’s words were straightforward and had no ill will, being unable to refute Mira supported her head with her arm she had on the desk, then she glared at him and pursed her lips.
“We discovered that it is somewhere on this continent. And, speaking of the South of the continent, our country has perfect documentation for it, right?”
Putting on airs, Solomon turned his gaze outside the window.
“I see, mm. You mean the Fool’s Wunderkammer2https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabinet_of_curiosities Changed katakana original a little here, though it’s still a weird mix of English and German. Also Kanji meaning says “Room of Fool’s Menace”.”
Under the Arkite Kingdom there was a labyrinth. It was a place called the Fool’s Wunderkammer.
In the distant past, there was a certain person called “the Crescent Fool" who loved the land and devoted his entire life to researching it, and it was place where he stored the research documents collection he had gathered within his lifetime.
Mira knew that place well. The reason behind that, lied in founding of Arkite Kingdom.
In the past during the era of country-founding rush all over the continent, Arkite Kingdom fulfilled the special condition for establishing a country here and was born in this land.
The special condition was to do something about Lunatic Lake’s monster.
Lunatic Lake was the habitat of a monster who on every full moon crawled out to cause great destruction to the surroundings. In order to build a country in this land, it was necessary to restrain this monster.
Although the method did not matter, the monster was dreadfully strong and was not something they could subjugate back in the day.
Therefore, Solomon decided on the negotiation method. On that occasion he examined the Fool’s Wunderkammer’s documents regarding the monster, then used items to negotiate.
And now is the result of that.
Naturally, Mira did help out with searching the documents back then, and she did understand the usefulness of the documents that were in there. To investigate the Southern part of the continent, there was no better place than that.
In addition to that, the Fool’s Wunderkammer was a highly difficult dungeon. Mira was convinced about the reason she was called.
“Hmm, so that’s where I come in, right.”
“That’s it. Can I ask you to do it?”
Solomon returned his gaze from outside the window to Mira, then spoke care-freely. It was as if he was telling her something that was already decided.
“Good grief, it can’t be helped, mm.”
Mira leaned on the back of the chair, she stretched grandly and acknowledged it.
“So, that place was a dungeon, wasn’t it. In which case, do I have to go to the union?”
“Ahh, about that, that’s a non-issue.”
In response to Mira’s question, Luminaria took out a single key.
“That’s quite elaborately-made key. So, what’s this for?”
What Luminaria was holding, was an very elaborately-made silver key. Mira leaned forward a little and stared at the key to examine it.
“The fool’s room has many historical documents and its entrance is under the academy, as such, as exception it is specially managed by the country.”
Elegantly crossing her legs again, Luminaria spoke while putting up airs of importance, then extended the key.
“Hmm, I see, mm. Which means that’s the key to the entrance.”
Receiving the key, Mira felt it to be a little heavy and "I’ll hold onto this" she said before putting it in the item box.
“That’s how it is. By the way, Solomon and I, as well as each of spell type’s substitutes hold one key each, and to enter it’s necessary to have two keys.”
“Nhh, is that so. In that case, c’mon, gimme the other one.”
After glaring at Luminaria who spoke in a mean way, Mira extended her arm toward Solomon with and open palm and prompted him.
“Umm, wait a moment. ...Hmm, huh?”
After taking a look at the item box’s list, Solomon hurriedly rummaged through his pockets.
Then after a while, he walked up to Mira and put his left hand on the palm of her hand.
“Wait, that’s not what I wanted.”
“It kind of looks like I left it somewhere.”
Holding his hand on top of hers, Solomon said so and smiled, not seeming to feel guilty at all.
“There’s no helping it with you, mm. Well, fine. If it’s in the academy, then Cleos should be there. I’ll go pick the other one from Cleos.”
Mira flicked away Solomon’s hand and proposed an easier method than going out of their way to search the missing key. Last night Mira heard that Cleos was going to do a lecture on precautions for the contract applicants, so if he was is in the academy, it was faster to just visit him during that.
“Ahh, well. Do so then.”
Solomon who has forgot where he even put his key, pat Mira’s shoulder and immediately agreed, then smiled to gloss over his own failure.
“So, about the fool’s room.”
As if to say that the talk of the key was over, Solomon moved onto another topic and opened a box that was lying on the desk, from inside which he took out a single book.
“What is that book?”
When Mira asked, Solomon turned the book over and “This is fool’s room’s book index" answered, then took out a single piece of paper that was inserted between pages.
Receiving that, Mira took a glance at it. Written there were titles of what seemed to be research reports, their names being “Ancient Species and Rules of Divergence Caused by Evolutionary Process”, “Sediment and Climate Classification-based Plants Distribution Map” and “Adelheid Report #47”.
“That’s some difficult-sounding titles.”
Mira grimaced as she muttered, then put the paper on the desk and heaved a sigh.
“When Süleyman checked this index, he said that these three can be of help in decoding. And you see, according to the index these documents are on the third level.”
Solomon said and put down the opened index on the desk.
“The third level, you say?”
Finding interest in these words, Mira leaned forward and cast her gaze down at the book index. Among countless titles written down in detail, there was certainly text pointing at the third level of The Fool’s Wunderkammer.
When she confirmed it, Mira furrowed her eyebrows and stroked her chin with a finger. It was because according to her memory, this dungeon called the Fool’s Wunderkammer had the second level as its deepest part.
Between the first and second level, the documents that were stored there changed completely and the knowledge became even more technical, as expected of a dungeon that was an enormous museum.
Since it was inside the country and was related to the foundation of the kingdom, Mira knew the dungeon well. However, it was her first time hearing there was a third level to it.
“Looks like you haven’t heard of it yet. I guess this is the result of this world becoming reality, the number of places we can go now to has increased. And this third level is one such place.”
The game world that became reality. Although it was an already vast world, apparently it had expanded even more. It was places deep in the dungeons like this one or places that used to be blocked by the system previously, there were many such cases.
“So that’s what it was. No wonder I didn’t know of it.”
The moment Mira learned the reason, her expression was dyed in curiosity. In other words, the number of places in which she could adventure has increased. It could not be helped that it interested her.
“I don’t mind going there, but if I’m not wrong those documents and other items have a spell on them that makes it impossible to carry them outside, right? What about that?”
Just like Mira pointed out, all documents in The Fool’s Wunderkammer could not be carried outside. The moment one tried to carry them out, an alarm activated and a device teleported document and parts of the collection to their original location, and a large amount of defensive golems appeared.
That moment, from the desk’s drawer Solomon took out a bundle of paper.
“This is an item that allows copying anything flat just by pushing this onto the surface. For a while now, whenever we needed documents from the fool’s room we used this to copy them.”
The paper that Solomon was holding as he said so, was apparently a type of newly-developed spell tool.
“Hooh, to think there’s even something like that. I see. Looks easier than copying by writing.”
Receiving the bundle of papers, Mira picked out a single of them, raised it to light and turned it around. She was impressed seeing it was no different from normal paper.
“Oh, also. To enter the third level, it’s necessary to have the “Firefly-Blazing Light Stone” that can be collected in Ragedd’s Copper Mine, but that thing can only be used for half a day after being collected, you see.”
Solomon said so and sitting on the opposite side from Mira, he joined his hands on the desk and there was a glint in his eye, making him look like a certain commander.
Ragedd Copper Mine was in the mountains away from Lunatic Lake, in a distance that required about ten hours to make a round trip.
“What, you intend to ask me to go and get that, too?”
Seeing Solomon make an indescribable look on his face, Mira furrowed her eyebrows and answered so, clearly finding it bothersome.
“Oh no, you see. That is not a place that would require you to go there, I already decided to dispatch someone. Galet returned together with you, and with armored jeep I guess it should be possible to go there and return within about three hours.”
“What, is that so? In other words, it’s necessary to wait until they return, right. That’s fine then. So, when are they supposed to come back?”
If the Firefly-Blazing Light Stone still hasn’t arrived she couldn’t go inside the the Fool’s Wunderkammer, Mira thought. However, Solomon smiled as if to hide something and continued his words.
“You see, it was a little sudden and we don’t have the personnel that could act as the team’s fighting power.”
Solomon said so as a prelude, then started explaining the current situation.
At the moment, the military is busy with vigilance and coping with monster herds, which is why they are very short on personnel. In addition to that, the monsters all over the continent act very invigorated, magic beasts also often leave their own territories, which further accelerated this situation. Because of that, there were some locations where only teams of four soldiers, including members of certain level of strength, were allowed to act.
The area where Ragedd Copper Mine was, truly fulfilled those conditions and they could not have Galet go collect the item alone.
After explaining this carefully, “And I wanted to have a steep slope driving experiment while at it, too" Solomon murmured his true feelings and with expectation in his eyes, he repeatedly glanced at Mira.
Hearing about the armored jeep, memory in the back of Mira’s head was revived vividly. At the same time, she turned her face away from Solomon’s gaze.
“I’m never riding that thing again.”
Mira said so and summoning a Dark Knight “If you need fighting power, we can have this guy here go with them" she proposed.
Even among low-class Summoning, Armament Spirits had extremely high versatility. Depending on the instructions given them, they were capable of acting as escorts or acting alone. But it could be said that they could be used this freely only because they were Mira’s Armament Spirits, which experienced many things and went through learning process.
“Nice, very nice. Certainly, it’s more than enough as fighting power. This helps.”
After staring with satisfaction at the Dark Knight, Solomon immediately answered. It was as if he predicted Mira would do this.
“Well then, let’s meet up with them right away.”
Solomon said and stood up, then with light footsteps he left the reference room. After a short pause, Mira and Luminaria followed him.
Ahead of where they headed to, there was the garage Mira had previously come to. Yes, the place where she saw the armored jeep for the first time.
At the same time Solomon and Luminaria showed their faces, the three on standby in there had saluted. One of them was Galet and the other two were young men who still hadn’t gotten used to their military uniforms.
And behind the three they could see the armored jeep that was perfectly ready. Mira who looked inside after Solomon, twisted her expression upon seeing it.
“Everyone, good work.”
Solomon said so and looked toward Mira. Receiving that sign, Mira summoned a Dark Knight who was adjusted for escorting, having improved summoned time duration and endurance. When the black knight suddenly appeared, the young soldiers faltered.
“This will be your last member. Make sure to get along.”
Solomon jokingly said. That moment the two youngsters corrected their posture and “understood” they said before saluting again. As for Galet, the moment he saw the Dark Knight he was convinced and said “Roger that” before he saluted as well.
Like this, the collection team had acquired the required number of members. Then holding some kind of measuring instrument, they got on the armored jeep and departed.
After seeing Galet and others off, Mira and the two headed to the dining hall to have a lunch. It would take about three, four hours until the collection team returned. During that time they decided to have a meal, a strategic meeting and tell the stories that accumulated.
The lunch in the castle was indeed luxurious, and seeing all of it Mira got all excited. Currently, she was lying on a large sofa as she waited for the food to digest.
“You can eat it whenever you come here, there is no need to stuff yourself like that.”
Sitting by such Mira’s side, Solomon passed a glass to her and laughed.
“I guess it’s a habit…"
Raising herself a little she received it and sipped some, then returned the glass and smiling bitterly she fell back on the sofa.
“When I look at you like that, it reminds me of when we went to a vegetarian diet food buffet before, the three of us.”
Luminaria said so, seeing Mira listlessly rubbing her belly.
“Ahhh, there was that. It was same as now. It might have been diet food, but there was no point since you ate too much.”
The two laughed to each other nostalgically. Mira turned around in a different direction and “cut me some slack" she muttered while pursing her lips.