Chapter 3 – Part 1
“Ahh, I want to return…”
In the carriage that was heading toward Lord Taul’s castle, Shin sighed.
It has been several days since the ‘Large Flood’. The investigation of the periphery, the monsters’ raw material extraction and their corpses removal and so on, were mostly over. Shin and the others received an invitation.
Apparently after each ‘Flood’, A party was held and the person who had the most distinguished achievements would be awarded. It was said that they wanted all the Chosen Ones to come too.
After the war ended, Shin was asked to stay for awhile. He agreed because he intended to help with the removal work. Their idea of “stay” though seemed to be different from what Shin envisioned.
“That’s my line.”
Next to Shin was a gloomy looking Tiera. She was not a Chosen One, but many soldiers had witnessed her figure shooting the monsters from the top of the rampart. So it was natural that she was asked to attend as well.
Though they tried to refuse because they claimed to be too busy with work, the people who they were working with shot down the excuses by saying “We’re good here, so go”
For the residents of Balmel, it was unthinkable that someone who had achieved so much for them and who deserved a medal of honor for their service would go without receiving proper thanks, or so they said.
“Because everyone who told me to go ahead had great smiles, I couldn’t decline.”
Since they all said it with such good will, she found it impossible to refuse. Shin was in the same boat so he understood what she meant.
“Shin’s achievements were reported by the knight squadron, right? The people living here, do that without fail.”
“That doesn’t mean that this is going to be a formal ceremony. If you worry about it too much, you’ll just tire yourself out.”
“Think about being able to eat food for free. Just like a noble’s party, no suspicious envious guys should approach you.”
Schnee, Shadow and Holly, who had experienced this kind of party before, tried to reassure them. Hibineko didn’t express it in words but he also wanted to say the same thing.
“I’ve just never been to a ceremony like this before, you know?”
“Well, there’s no time like the present to get used to this then. We have been through this a few times. It’s better if you get used to this now while you’re still young. It might prove useful in the future.”
Though Hibineko said that, there would hardly be a ceremony like this in real life, Shin thought. On the other hand, he was already committed and could no longer back out since he’d come this far already. He decided to just accept his fate. Just in case, he lightly re-checked his attire to make sure he wasn’t looking scruffy.
As for what Shin wore, it was a Kalkia’s formal suit, the same clothes he wore when he went to Bayreuth’s royal castle. After removing the dirt, it was in mint condition.
As for Tiera sitting next to him, she wore a bright green dress. Her black hair was gathered together at the back of her head and she had put on light make-up. The combination made her beauty look even more polished. For her one-piece dress, a section from her shoulder to her upper arms was cut out and the skirt was longer on the right side than on the left. It was an asymmetrical type dress. It fit tightly around her waist, which accentuated the thinness of Tiera’s waist. The only thing wrong with the outfit was the person wearing it, because she had drooping shoulders and a depressed expression.
Even though she seemed distressed, she still looked amazing. If someone had announced that she was the princess of a country, nobody would doubt it.
Holly and Shadow who were sitting in front of them, wore a white dress and a black suit. It was indeed the proper attire for a ceremony. Holly’s dress was a long type skirt that was called a mermaid type dress. A strap on her left shoulder held a gem that emitted a blue glow which emphasize its presence. With a dress that is showing more body lines than Tiera’s, Holly’s good sense of style stood out. Shadow who was perfectly dressed in his suit, didn’t stand a chance.
Though Hibineko also wore a suit, he gave off a slightly comical impression due to the nature of his physique. However, it was clear, that he was used to wearing a suit. Like Shin, he typically didn’t feel the need to dress up in clothes like this, but in such a place, at such a time, his experience meant that he was comfortable dressed up.
That said, the most radiant one there was Schnee. Since it was widely known that Schnee Raizar rarely participated in events like this, she was attending as Yuki, Shin’s fiancée.
As part of her disguise, her hair had been changed from silver to gold and her eyes had been changed from blue to red. Because the skill she used prevented her from being noticed when she used it on herself, that level of disguise was sufficient.
Her hair which was lightly tied behind her head was held in place by an ornamental hairpin. The hairpin included a red jewel to match her new eye color. The white dress she wore boldly exposed her back from her shoulders to her waist.
Since the dress was designed to tighten the cloth under her arms, her chest was strongly emphasized. Because Schnee’s breasts were already naturally large this attracted the gaze of groups of males even though it was not a low-cut dress.
However, the color of the dress combined with Schnee’s natural demeanor didn’t reflect a feeling of excessive sex appeal. The neat look in combination with her allure, instead made her an enchanting figure who exuded charm.
Schnee was already a beautiful woman to begin with, but her beauty rose by one more rank when she dressed-up. Seeing her like this for the first time, Shin was charmed by her.
“Both Tiera-san and Schnee-san are wearing dresses. The dresses that you two are wearing, are they traditional dress for elves or something?”
“Eh? Oh, I just borrowed this dress. Is the design unusual?”
“They’re pretty rare. I’ve studied clothing a lot on my own because I think I’d like to do clothes-related work. Most of them are very similar designs for some reason.”
Kaede was an elf brought up in Balmel. She didn’t know what clothing styles might be normal at the elves’ garden well.
Though Holly was a High Elf too, she might not have such knowledges due to her being a former player.
What Holly owned was made by players, but Kaede seeing the dresses of various designs seemed to be fascinated by them. Kaede herself was wearing a simple yellow one-piece dress. It matched Kaede’s character and created a good atmosphere as well.
While they were talking, the carriage passed through the gate. They were near the destination. Inside the carriage, was Shin, Schnee, Tiera, the Kurosawa family and the two animals, Yuzuha and Kagerou. Kagerou was as usual inside Tiera’s shadow. Yuzuha was also at its usual position, on top of Shin’s head.
Because there would be many adventurers attending the party too, the dress code seemed fairly flexible, with many different kinds of attire as evidence. There were also many who seemed to recognize that Shin was an upper class Chosen One too.
Before long, the carriage stopped.
If one looked at the front near Holly and Shadow, Hibineko could be seen taking Kaede’s hand. Mimicking Hibineko, Shin also held out his hand to help Schnee get off the carriage. Though he’d often seen things like this in movies, no one was aware of how very embarrassed Shin was to do it for real.
“Young lady, please give me your hand. Or something like that..”
“Fufu, thank you very much.”
Did Schnee want to play along? She took Shin’s hand while smiling wryly.
Was it because similar scenes were unfolded around them? Shin seemed to be able to speak the lines smoothly now.
“Now the next young lady as well.”
“How should I say this, it doesn’t seem to suit you.”
“Don’t say that!”
Unlike Schnee, Tiera’s held her mouth to keep herself from laughing.
When everyone had descended, they went to the assembly hall.
“Will you escort me too?”
“If you are fine with me.”
Schnee causally linked her arm with Shin. Then the other arm was also being pulled.
Of course, it was Tiera.
“Are you really going to make me go alone? Since your other arm is available too, let me use it as well, okay?”
“Is it alright?”
“Because Tiera and I are both pretending to be your fiancée today, isn’t it fine?”
“You are blessed by two beautiful women, you know? Might as well enjoy it.”
Because both Schnee and Tiera were in unusually good moods, Shin stopped talking about it. There was no need to be a downer.