Chapter 58: Lily picks-up a guide
The night before I traveled in range of the city, Kat helped me pick a disguise set to wear. If I were to show up in a community of halfs looking like a human, things might not turn out so well. On the up side, I finally got the succubus tail that I wanted! However, Kat insisted that I keep the cat ears. My status now reads that I’m a Succubus/Catkin half for anyone that might take a peek. She had also arbitrarily decided that my eyes needed to be more cat-like, but I wasn’t told about that beforehand at all. I had woken up to a painful stinging sensation in my eyeballs because she had forcefully activated my body manipulation trait to stimulate my dragon blood in them. This has resulted in my eyes becoming slitted like a dragon which is close enough to look feline.
As I get closer, I start to see some agriculture and paths. But there’s no people around, not even a building can be seen. I suddenly sensed what is probably a fairykin flying at the edge of my senses, heading further in the direction I’ve been traveling. Not wanting to lose them, I quickly gave chase. A couple hours later, she lands outside a strange structure that’s built into the ground with guards outside. In the distance is an enormous lake that I can’t see the ends of. The fairykin showed something to the guards and went inside.
While staying somewhat vigilant, I put my weapons in my inventory and approach the guards. The guards are only stage three, not something I can’t deal with should they attack. I’m stopped at the entrance like I expected. That’s when things get somewhat complicated.
“Klfsljf saldfj fdisoi jksdixl utrnnvco dakj.”~guard
I can’t understand their language at all! Next time that Kat owes me one, I need to ask her for a language cheat.
It takes a few minutes of failure before he realizes that I can’t understand him. Though, he does get that I want to go in since I keep pointing in that direction. Somewhat irritated, he finally pulls out a status orb and points to it. I get that he wants to see my status, so I comply. Whatever it is that makes status orbs work, causes it to translate for anyone who sees it. He seemed shocked at first by how powerful I am, but expressed some anger when his eyes reached my curses. Not angry in a hostile way towards me though. Putting the orb away, he makes an easily understood gesture for payment. Pretending to take it from my waist behind my back, I pulled a pouch of money out from my inventory, but was stopped before I could pull much out of it. Shaking his head, he showed a qi and mana stone in one hand and held up four fingers with the other. After handing over some crystals, he finally gestured for me to enter.
The structure led into a long tunnel, slightly slanting downward. I’d only traveled a short way before a voice sounded out in front of me. The fairykin that I had followed earlier had apparently been waiting for me inside. Taking a closer look, I noticed that her other half is of elven descent. Her mana energy is strong. Much stronger than mine, but not quite at stage five. Her looks are pretty nice, like a mature cold beauty and she gives off a stern elder sister vibe. She has her blue hair pulled back into a ponytail and her piercing blue eyes are looking at me coldly.
When she said something to me, seemingly in the same language as earlier, I tried to convey my non-understanding with my expression. She seemed frustrated and took a minute to think before trying again.
“Can you understand elven?”~pretty elder sister
Someone who can communicate with me! Translator GET!
I rush to pull out my writing pad while hoping that she can read elven as well. My actions were a little too quick, which resulted in her building up some mana and readying a spell. She calmed down after a moment though and let me continue what I was doing.
“I can understand elven. That earlier language is new to me as I’ve only just arrived here from the Magic Forest.”~me(note)
“Been a long time since I last visited there. But, back to my earlier question. Who are you and why are you following me? Also, why don’t you speak instead of writing on that?”~pretty elder sister
“I’m Lilia. I noticed you when I was wandering around lost and followed, hoping I would be led to a town or city.”~~me(note)
As for the second question, I just pulled out a status orb and showed her my status. I wanted to earn a bit of trust from her for my next question.
“Mute, huh. Those are some nasty curses you got there. Well, the city is through this tunnel. You might have trouble though, even when you get there.”~pretty elder sister
“Will you help me learn the local language? Or introduce me to someone else who can? I’m willing to pay.”~me(note)
“Such a troublesome thing. N...Y-you! AUGH! Fine, you win. I’ll help you for a day, but I’m not cheap and you need to learn quickly. I will be going on a long dungeon excursion the day after tomorrow. Oh, also, my name is Thessa.”~Thessa
She started out trying to turn me down. I was initially giving her a hopeful gaze with my eyes glistening. Right before she could say no, I switched to a defeated look with dull eyes and flattened ears. Her resolve instantly crumbled.
Yeah, I totally took advantage of my looks. Cuteness is an ultimate weapon afterall.
“In that case, would it be alright to pay with my body?”~me(note)
*GULP* “Wah! There’s no need! Even if you don’t have any money, I can at least do this much for free.”~Thessa
She got red in the face and stormed off down the tunnel. Though, her wandering eyes managed to do a full body check before she finally caught herself. I had to hurry a bit to catch up.
“I was actually just referring to your dungeon excursion. I’m a pretty good fighter and mage. Though, I don’t want to use magic if I can help it now that I have that high energy body curse. I’ve a crossbow and dagger that I’m pretty good with and I can heal. I also still have a few qi and mana stones as well.”~me(note)
“I can consider it next time perhaps, but the prerequisite is that you learn the language first. Having a teammate along that can’t understand the other members could be dangerous.”~Thessa
“I learn really fast. A day should be more than enough to learn the essentials. As for other things, I’d be more than happy to spend some time with someone as pretty as you, even without the language help. I can probably show you a number of new and exciting things that the elves have created since the last time that you were there.”~me(note)
“W-we’ll see about that. As long as you can learn the words for most of thephrases used when in combat, I’ll take you along.”~Thessa
Aww! I can see the imaginary steam coming out of her bright red ears. Best of all, she only avoided the topic and didn't actually say no. Fufu, this one is going to be fun!
We continued down the tunnel for about half an hour before seeing the other end. I started writing out everyday phrases for her to translate for me. She would write the corresponding equivalent as well as speak it out loud for me to hear.
Common is the simple name that has been given to their language. The human kingdoms used english, a language that some of the first heroes had introduced. Though, they arrogantly just call it the human language. Common actually turned out to be a mishmash of human, elven and some unique beastkin phrases. I just needed to learn which ones to use. The grammar used was a mix of human and elven writing, just that the characters used each represent only one sound. There was none of that human nonsense of using one letter to have two different sounds depending on the letters next to it. They also didn’t include the elven language’s seemingly useless fluff.
I had a good deal of the language down by the time we saw the end tunnel, which left Thessa shocked. It would be enough to get by, but I was still going to impose on her for the night and tomorrow she would be trying to teach me most of the area’s unique words and dialect.
There was a blue light illuminating the tunnel’s exit. As we stepped through, I couldn’t help but gape in awe at what I was seeing.
“Hehehe. Surprised? A fairykin hero named Evangeline, from long ago, set up the barrier. Before that, dragons would regularly destroy anything that was built on the land. Welcome, to the lakebed city of Bellusmare. I’ve been told that in an old language of the one who founded the city, its name means pretty water.”~Thessa
It’s beautiful! The barrier uses the water element to form a dense layer which holds off the pressure, it’s interlaced with the air element that cycles in or out the air and it has an inner coating of the light element that distributes the light evenly inside. I can still see through the barrier, but the light coming in is somehow filtered and regulated so that it doesn’t flicker due to the waves on the surface. The city is also lovely, if a bit primitive compared to the elven cities. But the barrier is a genius work of art! I immediately hounded Thessa with questions about the barrier.
I got excited for nothing! Apparently, the barrier has been extensively studied and has been concluded to be the work of the hero’s unique blessing. It doesn’t even seem to have an anchor where an enchantment should be placed. Thus, it’s been classified as a mystery and they’ve given up on explaining it. There’s no way it should be possible with the enchantment ability of the current time, let alone hundreds of years ago. I should’ve known!
Such a cool city! I want one, but not the same as others have built. Since an underwater city already exists, I’ll have to build the other type of fantasy city. Fufufu...city in the sky, meet your maker! Just as soon as I can figure out the necessary enchantments. I hope the elves can finish that project before I can get the chance to visit them again in the future.