Translator: Zack Tan and Skythewood
Editors/Proofreaders: Ferro, Namo-Namo, JcqC, Nigel, Rockgollem, NoirX
Sensing the sudden change in air movement from his nose, the dragon Tsaindoruks Vaision who had the alias ‘Platinum Dragon Lord’ stirred from his shallow slumber. The emotions he felt after waking were mostly of surprise. Maybe startled would be a better description.
Dragons possessed keen senses that far surpassed those of humans. If their opponents tried to deceive them with invisibility or illusions, dragons would still be able to detect them even from a surprising distance. This was true even when they slept.
As a lord amongst dragons, his perceptive abilities were far better than normal dragons. Hence, anyone who wanted to sneak up to him had to be exceptionally skilled.
Despite his long lifespan, he only knew a handful of people who could pull this off. First would be the dragon lords who were his equals, followed by the assassin Izania of the thirteen heroes, who had passed on from this world. Next would be―
Feeling the presence of the person that just came to his mind, Tsaindoruks Vaision―nicknamed Tsar―twisted his mouth and opened his eyes slowly.
Even in the dark, a dragon’s eyes could see as if it was day.
The presence he felt before him was an elderly human with a flashy sword at her waist, standing out in the open with no intention to hide. She had managed to reach this point without being detected by the keen senses of a dragon―a pure and innocent smile of someone who managed to pull off a prank could be seen on her wrinkled face.
“It’s been so long since we last met.”
Tsar didn’t respond as he stared at the old lady.
Her head of white hair was a testament to her advanced years. However, her face had the vitality of a mischievous child, which did not match her age. She had gotten thinner and frailer as she grew older, but her heart remained the same.
While Tsar was comparing her current appearance with the one in his memories, the eyebrow of the elderly lady twitched to a dangerous angle.
“What? Did you forgot how to greet an old friend? Huh, so even dragons grow senile with age.”
Showing his teeth, Tsar answered with a gentle laugh.
“My bad. I was too touched from seeing a friend after such a long time. That’s why I reacted so slowly.”
In response to the gentle voice no one would expect from such a colossal body, the old lady’s reply was sarcastic, just as Tsar predicted.
“Friend? That empty suit of armour over there is my friend… It’s all beaten up.”
Long ago, when Tsar journeyed together with the old lady and the others, he did so by controlling that armour from afar. Because of this, when his true identity was revealed, he earned the ire of his comrades. It seemed that even now, the score hadn’t been settled yet, since this subject was mentioned again and again.
On one hand, he wished that she would finally put this matter to rest, but on the other hand he was also glad to reminisce about it.
Tsar smiled wryly at their usual exchange and looked at the finger of the old lady.
“Oh? That ring is gone, what happened? I can’t imagine anyone taking it from you… But it is still an item that exceed the realms of humanity. It must not fall into the wrong hands. Especially the Slane Theocracy or the likes of the Black Scripture.”
“Trying to change the subject? But what sharp eyes you have, so this is the fabled dragons’ sensitivity for treasure… Never mind. I handed it over to the young ones, so be at ease.”
An item like that couldn’t just be handed off to someone else on a whim.
It was something that had been made with wild magic. Now, with the powers of magic tainted and twisted, it would be very difficult to create something like that again. His question also bore the feelings of one of the few who could still use wild magic.
However, his friend could be trusted.
“Is that so. If that is your decision, then so be it… By the way, there are rumours that you have retired from being an adventurer? Did you come here to work?”
“That’s impossible. I’m here to visit as a friend. I retired from adventuring and what not. Don’t make this old woman work anymore. My job had been inherited by the crybaby.”
“Crybaby?” Tsar pondered momentarily and remembered. “You mean her?”
Reading the slight emotion in Tsar’s tone, the old lady confirmed it.
“Yes, that little girl Inberun.”
“Ah―” Tsar made a sound as if he was stunned. “I think you are the only one who calls her a little girl.”
“Really? Is that something you should say? I’m about the same age as that child. You are much older right?”
“Well, that might be so… But, you actually convinced that kid to be an adventurer huh? What did you do?”
“Hah. That crybaby kept nagging and complaining, so I told her I will do whatever she wants if she can beat me. And so, I gave her a good thrashing!”
Kakaka, the old lady laughed from the bottom of her heart.
“You are the only human who can beat that kid…”
Tsar shook his head as he spoke with a voice that would make any human break out in a cold sweat. He reminisced about the time he fought against the Demon Gods with the friends he parted ways with. Especially the face of his comrade that performed superbly during the fight with the Demon God of Insects.
“Well, the other party mates will help too. And she knows about undead and the way to defeat them. Even if she loses in terms of pure power, the weakness of an undead will still be the same. No matter how strong the crybaby gets, there will always be someone stronger. For example, you could easily win against that kid. If you didn’t restrain yourself, you would be the strongest existence, even in this world.”
The elderly lady shifted her gaze towards the platinum armour. She thought he would have given a flippant response, but instead his reply was gravely serious.
“That might not be so, the power that corrupted the world might rise again.”
On the right shoulder of the armour was a hole, as if it had been pierced by a spear.
“... So the tremors have come again after more than a hundred years. This time, it isn’t something that will help the world like leader did.”
“...The chances for it being just an unlucky encounter is high, but I could feel that the nature of that vampire was evil. And what a coincidence it was. Was the sudden encounter a bad luck, or was I lucky to have learned about their presence?”
“Two sides of the same coin, just interpret it however you like. I already asked before, but can’t you ask for assistance from the other dragon lords?”
“My answer is the same. It is difficult. To be frank, the ones who survived thus far are the ones who did not fight the Eight Greed Kings back then. And they are the likes of Heavenly Dragon Lord that kept flying around in the sky or Deep Darkness Dragon Lord, who knows what he is doing, holing up in that giant cave underground. I can’t imagine these guys lending us aid.”
“I see. However, there is Brightness Dragon Lord, who mingles with humans while making babies. So we might be able to persuade him, right?”
“... Maybe. But my personal opinion is that the chance of waking ‘her’ who is sleeping at the deepest level of the sea city would be higher.”
“Are you waiting for that while you dream? If leader left all his knowledge behind, there would be less trouble. It’s a shame he died so early.”
“That couldn’t be helped. He was shocked after killing one of the companions who came with him. It was understandable for him to reject resurrection. Back then, weren’t you shocked as well, Rigrit?”
The old lady looked into the distance, nodding slowly with a pained expression.
“Yes, ah… that is… so.”
“Rigrit, I feel bad about asking this of you even though you are no longer an adventurer, but can you listen to my request?”
“What is it? I have a hunch, but let’s hear it anyway.”
There was a sword in Tsar’s line of sight. It was a sword that was not suitable for slashing. However, it’s sharpness was beyond anything in this world, an item that was impossible to craft with modern magic.
This sword―one of the eight weapons left behind by the Eight Greed Kings―was the reason why Tsar couldn’t leave this place.
“This is something I had been doing all this while, but I hope for your assistance. I beseech you to collect information about items that can match that guild weapon-sword over there. Or special items like the Reinforced Armour owned by the Kingdom’s adamantite-ranked adventurers, Red Drop.”
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