[Vol.3] Quest 237- Festivities
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In front of the Moonlight Tower.

“Well, we're all here except for Supporter, Haruhime, and Mikoto.” Said, Hestia. “So they must still be inside. By the way, Bell, how was that wrestling?”

“It was fun! I have never seen normal people fly through the air so high without a status!” Bell said still excited from the match.

“Hm! Hm! It was really amazing!” said Welf. “Sorry Hephaestus, I left you but next time I’ll be sure to take you! The energy of the crowd really gets one blood pumping!”

“I’ll make sure you keep that promise." Hephaestus said nodding her head. "Hermes, are you going to come in as well?”

“Of course! What better way to end the night than with the main show! Asfi, you got information for the next match, right?”

“Yes, it’s in a week from now. I already have tickets.” She said still not getting why they liked wrestling.

“Great!! Now shall we enter!”

 

They walk up to the guard post and after a bit; they are let in and enter the central tower to find it extravagant.

“Wow seems they went a bit all out.” Said, Hestia. “I wonder how much a lot of this costs? With the reconstruction and various other stuff?”

“Probably 10 times what you owe me, Hestia,” Hephaestus said. “I see Artemis over there, come along.”

“Hermes, be honest with me. How bad did I have to mess up to where, Artemis who never cared about wealth or fine living managed to get this…” Hestia gestures to the whole place.

“She put a lot of work in Hestia, something you should have done when you arrived and mooched off Hephaestus. Now come, don’t you wanna meet your friend?” Hermes said.

“Yeah… maybe she can give me tips on building my own Familia?”

 

They walk up to Artemis, who is talking to Demeter, Freya, and several other goddesses.

“So the children you sent were all very skilled! They're having so much fun farming!” said Demeter.

“I’m glad they are doing well! But you should really thank Quetzalcoatl for that. She and her Familia have been working hard to educate so many people.” Artemis said.

“Hey! Hey! Artemis!” said a goddess. “Where is your handsome man?”

“Yeah! Yeah! The Holy Lance!” said another. “Said to capture the hearts of all virgin goddesses who gaze upon it!"

“H-Holy Lance? Is that what Cirrus is being called?” Artemis asked, a bit surprised.

“Well, he did 'penetrate' your defenses, didn’t he?” asked Freya with a curious and mischievous smirk.

Artemis’s face blushed red.

“Aww~ your so cute when you make your cheeks all red and like a strawberry!” said Demeter.

“So… how was he?” said another goddess.

“U-um…”

“Come on, do tell we're all interested.” Said another.

“If not, I could test to see if my charm works on you now.” Said Freya wanting details.

The goddesses began to crowd around Artemis, demanding to here the details.

“F-f-fine!” she caved in, turns out she’s very weak at peer pressure… and social gatherings in general. “H-he was… v-very--“

All the goddesses were smiling as she was about to spill her own beans when just then divine intervention came.

“Artemis!!” said Hestia, coming in shielding Artemis from the other goddesses.

“Hello, Artemis.” Said Hephaestus coming up next to her.

“Ah, Artemis! Lovelier than the last we met!” said Hermes. “Oh? Did we interrupt something?”

‘Yes!! The chance I was waiting for!!’ thought Artemis.

“Not at all! When did you get here?” she said, walking up to Hestia and hugging her.

“Just now!” Hestia was, of course, oblivious to the situation.

“Aww~! Hestia, we were just about to get to--“

“The main event! Wait here a second!” Artemis interrupted Demeter and took the elevator up.

“Tsk!” said many of the goddesses.

“We got her drinking to loosen up those lips, and she got away.” Said another.

“She must have known this was a trap.” Another said, taking a sip of her drink.

“Oho!” said Hestia. “Seems even after so long I’m still the one helping her out! Just like in heaven!”

Hestia tried to make herself feel better, even if a little after seeing how a goddess of the wilderness managed to get and run an entire district with so many people.

“Pfft!” laughed Loki coming up to them. “Yeah, as a distraction!”

“Guh… Why are you here?”

“They invited me! Many gods were! But…” Loki looked around. “I didn’t think she would invite so many into her home.”

“What don’t you do that?”

“Of course not! Only that oddball Ganesha does that!”

“I AM GANESHA!!!!” he said, coming out of nowhere and posing. “I’m so happy to see so many gods and their children having fun! It’s like an extravagant festival!”

“So anyway, only this one does it. If any of us does it, many gods would just look around for some dirt to take advantage of you.”

“Ooh… I see, but…” Hestia looks around. “What could you possibly go to find dirt? This place only has 3 floors?”

“….Huh?”

“Huh?” they all said, surprised by her noticing it.

“… You know there are elevators, right?” said Hephaestus. “And there…”

They look to the elevator and it’s right in the back with glass sides.

“Yeah, if you go up it everyone is going to see you.” Said, Hermes.

“And then 3 floors?” asked Loki.

“I Ganesha!!! Have looked and they are all guest rooms!”

“You went to all 3 floors and checked the rooms!?” they said, shockingly.

“Ah um no Artemis told me they are guest rooms, there are so many in case of an emergency happens and for when her children are exhausted they can simply take one and sleep. Frankly, this place is essentially god proof, it revealed anyone who tries to snoop for information to everyone.” He said in a clear and thought-out voice.

 

Somewhere else in the room.

“Hmm… where are Lili and the others?” said Bell.

“They're over there.” Said Welf. “I can see Haruhime’s ears sticking out.”

They see her ears and begin to move toward them and when they did:

“!?”

A beauty greeted them to match Freya’s, but her beauty seemed more… unattainable. She stood about around Freya’s height, if not slightly taller.

“Sir Bell, stop staring at Lady Yoru!” said Lili coming up to Bell.

“Oh? You're blushing!” Nox said as she leaned into Lili's ears. “You certainly have fine tastes.”

“C-c-come on! I’m 15! I’m not 8 anymore!”

Waved her arms to get Nox to back off a bit.

“No, but you're around the same height! Hahahaha!!!”

“Hmmmmm!!!!” Lili began to hit Nox for how she had embarrassed her.

“Um Lord Bell, this is Lady Yoru. She was one of Miss Lili’s caretakers when she was a child.” Said Haruhime.

“And she is the Uncrowned Emperor’s musical partner.” Said Mikoto.

“R-really!” Bell said surprised.

“I am and you…” Nox looked at Welf with sharp eyes.

“U-um, do I have something on my face?” Welf said a bit intimidated by her beauty and sharp gaze.

“… Let me see your hands.” She went and grabbed them and felt the fingers.

"I-um! I have some I--"

“Your fingers… they're rather tough.” Nox looked Welf in his eyes as she put her arms by her side, ignoring Welf's implications.

“I-I am a blacksmith, after all!” He said, a bit red in the face.

“No rough as in you slacked off in playing an instrument.”

“H-how did you know I played an instrument?” he said, surprised.

“You played an instrument!” they all said.

“Y-yeah back in Rakia, but… how did you know?”

“The way you walk, it has the same stride and breathing of a musician, an out of shaped one.”

“You can tell from just the way I walked!?”

“Of course! My eyes and ears are very sharp! And hands even more!” she held up her hand to show Welf and Bell’s wallets.

“H-how did you get them?” said Bell and Welf.

“Nimble hands are very useful for playing an instrument and for smithing. Sometimes you just need to be a bit soft to hit it just right,” she said, handing them their money back.

“So… if you were Lil’ Lili’s caretaker, does that mean she also plays an instrument?”

“Of course she did! She played 3 instruments with wonderful skill! She played the violin, flute, and drums! You are still at least practicing the flute, right?” Nox glanced at Lili.

“Of course! I, um, had to sell the others since they took up space and I needed to raise money.”

“That’s my little survivor! Hey, how about another show for old times’ sake! We have one planned once Cirrus is done with work which should be about…. nnnnnow!”

 

They look to see coming down in the elevator was Artemis hand in hand with Cirrus and Ai, who looks exhausted.

“I’m so tired, I haven’t been this spent since pulling those 5-day overnighters going over documentation and contracts for Fuyukusa and Fuyuhama.” Said Cirrus exhausted and mentally drained.

“Art… I really wanna sleep. Fuck these people, I’m tired.” Said Ai, exhausted and also mentally drained.

“Come on! Just a bit longer! Besides Cirrus, you still need to perform!”

“Ah fuck I do, shit.”

Ding!

They got out and talked with several people. Eventually, he walks over with Ai to Nox.

“Seems you guys made it,” Cirrus said with half-closed eyes.

“You seem exhausted Sora.” Said Lili.

“Yeah, well, finishing hundreds of paperwork really makes one mentally exhausted and just plain exhausted.” He then stuffs his face with food.

“Say, wasn’t Ryuu supposed to be here?” Ai said.

“No, she’s busy with the pub. Seems they're rather busy drumming up customers.”

 

Mia’s Pub.

“Come on!! Make a cuter expression!!” shouted Mia.

“I-I’m trying my best!!” said Ryuu, trying her best.

“Not enough!! Syr is putting in most of the work!”

 

Back to the Festivities.

“Will you be able to perform Cirrus?” said Nox.

“I’ll be fine… probably… so did you guys enjoy the district? I worked pretty damn hard to get it up and running.”

“It’s really fun!” said Bell.

“Yeah, especially wrestling!” said Welf.

“Glad you like it; you should see when Quetzalcoatl performs. It’s a real sight to see!”

“Ah, I remember that! Artemis fought against her, and it was a draw!” said Nox.

“Oh, it was so cool! It was a sight to see! Then I would eventually fall to her teachings of Pankration. Lady Astraea sealed my Falna to make it fair… it fucking hurts.”

“Not as much when she found Hermes and beat him up a bit for that!”

“Hahaha! I remember he had to walk around with crutches from how bad his legs got banged up!”

The two began to reminisce about their past adventures and everyone else simply listen on as these two were like old friends catching up.

“Say, how come you never took Lady Yoru as a wife?” Lili asked.

It quickly quieted everyone but Cirrus without a second to think simply said.

“Because she is like an older sister to me who has been with me for a long time, our closeness is an on a pair with this one here.” He said, pulling Ai in. “So I never really considered her as a love interest as she would always be there for me.”

'That and the fact I knew her more as a owl then a woman.'

A big smile grew on Nox's face.

“Aww!! Thanks!!!” she hugged him and Ai warmly and tightly.

“Hmm, so warm and soft…” said Ai getting sleepy.

The three were like siblings. The level of unity between them was something they found wanting.

‘Maybe one day… I’ll have a bond like this with everyone else!’ thought Bell.

 

Sometime later.

“Alright!!” said Artemis on stage. “To commemorate this day is the group Night Sky!!”

“It’s time Lili, are you ready?”

“Of course!”

The 3 of them left and after a bit came on stage.

First, Nox stepped up and placed her hands on the mic. Cirrus was on the piano and Lili the drums, a modified one for her to use.

The crowd was silent as Cirrus and Lili started.

♪♪♪~

A nice gentle and smooth melody filled the room, and the Nox began to sing.

“♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪~”

Then it became something truly unique. Every bard wishes they were here to listen to this song and sound as it lulled everyone into peace of mind.

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