???: [Hmm~, truly troublesome…]
???: [Hmm~, that's right. What should we do?]
The two people standing side by side, crossing their arms, are racking their brains about the same thing.
One is a beautiful girl with long silver hair and dazzling amethyst eyes, and the other is a young-looking girl with milky honey drill hair and embroidered eye pupils with an eye-catching pattern.
The girls named Emilia and Beatrice are now tilting their heads, racking their brains in the same manner, as if they were sisters. However, when it comes to the topic as to which one of them is the elder sister, neither of them will back down.
The two are currently in a white space, It can only be described as an incredible place.
The floor, walls, ceiling, everything, is filled with pure white. A place where the perception of distance is confused, whether the place is wide or narrow, and the boundaries between up and down, left and right are blurred.
If we say there's a sense of disharmony in such a space, it is...
Emilia: [There are way more slabs than before.]
Looking at the black slab floating in front of them, Emilia couldn't help but complain. In front of her, there were countless slabs floating, it gives people a strange sense of unease.
Beatrice: [Ah! Emilia! What are you doing?!]
Emilia casually poked one of the slabs with her finger. Seeing this play out, Beatrice widened her eyes and yelled in a huff.
She leaned close to Emilia who was much taller than herself and unceremoniously scolded her for her actions.
However, what is done is done.
The slab that Emilia touched suddenly shot out a white light that filled their entire line of vision. In the next instant, the countless slabs scattered in the white space disappeared, and only one slab was left.
Emilia: [Hmm, it didn't seem to work.]
Beatrice: ["It didn't seem to work..." Of course it didn’t work! Why, do you always act rashly and mess things up? I can't believe it, in fact!]
Emilia: [Sor..., I'm sorry. But you see, you can challenge the trial as many times as you want.]
Emilia apologized to Beatrice whose face was flushed with anger, and she walked briskly towards the slab. To the last remaining slab, Emilia reached out her hand and touched it.
???: [...Touch the brightest of the heros destroyed by Shaula.]
In an instant, in response to the sound, the white light filled the entire room. Then, now again as before, countless slabs filled the white space.
Emilia: [You see, right?]
Beatrice: [“You see...” Of course I see! Didn't I tell you to stop doing things on a whim, in fact!]
Beatrice closed one eye and shouted out to the self-righteous Emilia. In the seemingly boundless white space, Beatrice's nagging voice echoed endlessly.
Meili: [Fufufu, Nee-san really, did you make Beatrice-chan angry again?]
Seeing Emilia who was walking downstairs listlessly, Meili, a girl with braided hair is at the bottom of the stairs, covering her mouth and snickering.
Emilia: [Ah, Meili.... Hmm, it's like that. I am reflecting on it veryyy deeply.]
Beatrice: [Isn't it natural to reflect? Really, Emilia has no idea what kind of place this is, I suppose. Betty can’t believe this, in fact!]
Meili: [Fufufu, seeing this spectacle, you two really look like sisters.]
Looking at the puffy Beatrice and the listless Emilia, Meili said mischievously. Upon hearing this, "Eh!" The surprised Emilia and Beatrice reacted bipolarly. Emilia's eyes shone, but Beatrice's face was displeased.
Beatrice: [If Betty had such a troublesome sister, I would be troubled to death…]
Emilia: [Hehe! I'm the elder sister, and Beatrice is the younger sister, right?]
Beatrice: [Don't kid around, I suppose. Betty is also older in actual age, and my temperament compared with Emilia is extremely different in fact. If Betty isn't the oldest sister then what is she?]
Seeing Beatrice's triumphant look, Emilia puffed her cheeks in anger. From the outside, Emilia does indeed look older, but from this conversation alone, Beatrice is clearly more mature. ...In Meili's view, both of them are sisters with an amicable relationship. Who being the elder sister is a trivial matter.
Meili: [But as expected, the balance is stumbling. It's because of the absence of onii-san.]
Emilia: [.. Hmm. Yesss. Beatrice being so cautious is because she is worried about the sleeping Subaru…]
Beatrice: [The reason why Betty is angry is not because Emilia is being reckless, in fact. Although I am also worried about Subaru, it is best to consider this as a separate issue.]
Noting that Emilia is hiding her worries in a bid to make up for her faults, Beatrice sighed. In the depths of her little chest, the seeds of unrest were indeed sprouting.
...Right now, Beatrice and the others are in the Pleiades Watchtower. It is commendable in itself that they managed to break through the nest of demon beasts and even the Augria Sand Dunes itself, which is rumored as being extremely difficult to traverse. But it is definitely not a situation that can be treated lightly.
At the last hurdle before reaching the tower, the group suffered a huge blow and ended up in a situation where almost half their companions were lost.
Emilia: [Thanks to that woman, it's great that it didn't become like that…]
Hearing the whispers that Emilia made while covering her mouth made Beatrice show a complicated expression.
The person who became the topic was originally the only person in this tower, she is currently not with Beatrice and the others. She was silent, expressionless and completely ignored Beatrice and the others' questions. To be honest, Beatrice's anxiety has gradually reached its peak, but...
Meili:[It's the naked onee-san who helped onii-san. Although I can understand Beatrice-chan's anxiety, that point is also true, right?]
Beatrice: [Be..., Betty knows that, I suppose. So, Betty doesn't have any extra thoughts, in fact.]
Beatrice pouted when Meili pointed out her inner anxiety. Then, she exhaled deeply and decided to change her mood.
Beatrice: [It's no use staying here all the time. Let's go check on Subaru, I suppose.]
Emilia: [Ah, then, I'll go with you too. I’m also worried about Ram. What about you Meili?]
In response to Beatrice who stretched her back, Emilia also proposed to go with her. After hearing Emilia's question, Meili tilted her head and thought.
Meili: [Now that I think about it, the structure above the stairs... you still haven’t figured it out, right? It looks like it doesn't matter how many times you poke it, can I go try it out?]
Emilia: [I don't think there is a problem... but is it okay to go alone?]
Meili: [No problem. Besides, if you fail to achieve your goal in this tower, you can't go back, right? I don't want to stay in this sand-filled place forever.]
Meili waved her hand and went upstairs after speaking.
Watching her small back.
Emilia: [Is this okay?]
Emilia turned her head to look at Beatrice.
Emilia: [Of course not, I am veryyy happy that Meili is trying to help, but…]
Beatrice: [In that space, there is no mechanism that can harm people, I suppose...This is also the same conclusion that Betty and Julius came to, in fact. So, that little girl should be fine.]
Emilia: [Really... Eh? If that's the case, why were you angry with me just now?]
Beatrice: [Knowing everything and acting accordingly is completely different from acting recklessly without knowing anything! God! You're not reflecting at all!]
Emilia: [Not... not at all!? Ah! Let's hurry up and get down to them! Subaru and Ram are impatiently waiting, let’s hurry up!]
Beatrice: [Ah, hey, Emilia!]
Emilia hurriedly turned away from the subject, gently picked Beatrice up and ran down the stairs.
Shaking in Emilia's arms, Beatrice puffed her cheeks.
Beatrice: [As expected, no matter what you think, Betty is more fitting as the elder sister, in fact.]
???: [Hmm? Emilia-san and Beatrice-chan are coming down.]
Emilia: [Ah, Anastasia-san. And Julius too.]
Emilia, who was holding Beatrice and running down the huge spiral staircase noticed Anastasia and Julius who were waving towards them at the lowest level.
Retaining her running momentum, Emilia made a "Hey!" sound and jumped off the steps of the spiral staircase ...Facing against strong wind, the distance was reduced by almost ten meters in one breath.
Emilia: [Ha... safe landing, that was really scary, let’s not do that again.]
Beatrice: [That kind of thing, coming out of Emilia's mouth is useless... Emilia is afraid of nothing...]
Emilia: [Hmm, I wouldn’t say that. I have things that I am afraid of. Hmmu, that said, I am thinking about it, please give me a second.]
In order to remember the things she was afraid of, Emilia started thinking about it.
Beatrice gave up thinking about this meaningless search, broke free from Emilia’s arms, stepped onto the floor of the lowermost floor of the watchtower with a plop, and looked at the dragon carriage… The thing that a group of people can board in.
In the dragon carriage, Beatrice’s contractor, Natsuki Subaru was sleeping inside.
Beatrice: [...Almost a whole day has passed, right?]
Julius: [Are you worried about Subaru?]
Julius who was standing beside Beatrice who was looking at the dragon carriage, asked. Glancing at Julius, Beatrice narrowed her blue eyes.
Beatrice: [Julius, don't come too close. Betty has a contractor, in fact. You are tempting a spirit who already has a contractor, your personality must be really bad, I suppose.]
Julius: [...Apologies. However, this is the effect of my "Divine Protection of Gathering Spirits", which is something that activates on its own regardless of my will. Please don't misunderstand.]
Beatrice: [Hah, it's just a little joke, I suppose. You who just accepted it… You are too innocent, I suppose.]
It didn’t come out as a joke, Beatrice sighed, right now she came across as very serious. Because she is aware of that, Beatrice didn't say anything more.
Due to the “distortion in space” that occurred in the Augria Sand Dunes, Subaru and the others were seperated for a while. Although in terms of time, it was just a few hours, the amount of worries and concerns are difficult to measure.
At least, he can be seen to be safe after reuniting, her worry has been somewhat healed.
Beatrice: [What a super slacker.]
Beatrice whispered softly to her contractor who was still asleep as she once again reunited with him in the dragon carriage.
Because of the feeling of being connected with Subaru, she knows that his condition is not serious. But there is also a precedent, "Sleeping Beauty". ...Even if there is no problem with his body, he won't wake up. Once she considered this possibility, she was unable to feel optimistic.
Anastasia: [Beatrice-chan seems worried, is Emilia-san doing okay?]
Emilia: [Me? Of course, I'm also very worried about Subaru...but I also learned from Anastasia-san that he worked veryyy hard when he was in the tunnels. Subaru will be fine.]
Anastasia: [This is, what kind of trust is this?]
Emilia: [What kind of...? Since Subaru is my knight, isn't it natural to believe in him?]
Emilia tilted her head blankly, and Anastasia smiled bitterly. This kind of trust was obtained by Natsuki Subaru's desperate struggles.
While everyone was talking, suddenly, there was a noise coming from the dragon carriage in front of them. Just when Beatrice and the others were surprised by this, immediately after..., the door of the dragon carriage opened, and a figure rolled out from the inside.
An expression of bewilderment fell on the floor of the lowermost level of the watchtower
Emilia: [Ram! Great, you’re awake!]
Ram: [Eh? Emilia-sama?]
Ram, who rolled out of the dragon cart, looked at Emilia who was running over, her mouth trembling. Ram, who has always given the impression of being indifferent, strong and powerful is now in chaos.
However, Ram immediately put on a calm face.
Ram: [Emilia-sama, it's great that you are safe. However, is Rem with you too?]
Emilia: [Mhm, it's okay, don't worry. Rem is resting in a safe place.]
Ram: [That, that's great.]
Letting the feeling of peace of mind relax her whole body, Ram soothed the corners of her lips. Holding Ram tenderly, Emilia stroked her back.
Seeing this play out, Beatrice and the others also felt relieved.
Julius: [It seems that there are no noticeable problems with Ram-san.]
Beatrice: [Seems she just overexerted herself, in fact. She won't have any problems now that she has woken up, I suppose.]
Anastasia: [Why did Beatrice-chan's face show a relieved expression when she said that?]
Beatrice: [...Shut up.]
Squinting at the snickering Anastasia, Beatrice shrugged her shoulders.
Note from the Original JP->Chi Translation: "肩を竦める" is a gesture made to express dissatisfaction with the other person
Surrounded by these reassuring gazes, Ram stood up.
Ram: [Then it seems that we are in a strange situation right now. Can you tell me in detail what happened?]
Emilia: [Of course. But, is your body okay?]
Ram: [Eh, it's okay. After all, I seem to have slept for a long time…]
Emilia: [Yeah, that’s right. Because Subaru was hugging you tightly…]
Ram: [...Please wait a minute.]
Ram's cheeks stiffened when she heard Emilia's innocent words.
Emilia, who heard Ram’s response, tilted her head with an "Eh?".
Ram: [That, what happened in the dragon cart…?]
Beatrice: [Ah, yes, I was surprised in fact. When we reunited, Subaru was hugging you tightly...it made us worried.]
Emilia: [Eh? Ram, what's wrong? That way is the dragon carriage....]
Ram was swaying back to the dragon carriage in her field of vision. Like that, Ram took out her wand from her pocket and started chanting weakly and created a powerful wind. The purpose for that...
Ram: [If I don't exterminate that Barusu…]
Emilia: [Wait! Wait! That’s dangerous, Ram! Calm down!]
Ram: [Please don't stop me Emilia-sama. If Ram doesn't get rid of this filth...]
Facing Ram's aggressive power, Emilia panicked and hurriedly pressed her body down from behind. Despite this, Ram refused to stop, and Julius also hurriedly stepped forward to stop her.
Seeing such a scene, Beatrice touched her forehead with her small hand.
At the same time...
Beatrice: [Everyone is so troublesome, I suppose... If you don't wake up soon, it will be troublesome, in fact, Subaru.]
Beatrice whispered in the absence of her main pillar.