The next morning, they all gathered at the kitchen for their final breakfast in the castle.
Even Yako joined, although she refused to join them on their journey in the end, she wanted to say goodbye to Cleamon.
The breakfast itself had an aura of tensity about it, many of them hadn’t been able to sleep properly, worried they’d forgot essentials things to pack and the test that lay ahead of them.
Comparing them to six months ago, Homian and Cleamon got a lot more muscle due to extensive training. The girls seem more radiant and oozing out their strength. As a result of these changes, people usually avoided them altogether.
During the last six months, Cleamon worked hard to get permissions to leave the city and more importantly, to take everyone with him. At first it was hard getting the king even to consider letting his daughter leave, however after witnessing her progress and that her magic was already at the level where it rivaled many hunters, he had no choice but to consider.
Cleamon threw him a final bone when he told him that they’d be going to the Earth Realm after their test and that they’d bring back materials and important Inscriptions to help the city flourish. He even went as far as to make a Blood Pact with the king, promising he would keep Cecily safe to the best of his abilities.
As to the rest of the families, Cleamon already notified them and asked them to keep quiet about it. Many of the families prepared gift and necessities for the journey, which Cleamon gave them the night before in private.
Izbella had moved back to her normal house and resumed life their whilst studying harder than ever, even her parents were surprised at her sudden thirst for knowledge. When inquiring about it and whether it was because of the boy she mentioned, her face would turn red and she’d mumble to herself.
Jenny, rather devastated she’d have to miss her brother, begged him to take her with them. However because she doesn’t have any magical skills yet, he couldn’t give in to her request.
“We’ll be back within a few months, I promise!” Cleamon said to try and calm her down.
“You know what, if you continue to train every day like you did, I’ll grant you one wish” Cleamon said in panic when she was clinging on for dear life onto his neck.
“Anything I wish!?” her face cleared up almost instantly, clearly having perverted thoughts.
“Yes anything” Cleamon said whilst almost regretting ever to have thought up of it.
“Okay, I’ll do as you say, but the day you’re back you’d better prepare yourself!” Jenny says with a smirk.
Still hanging from his neck, she hugs him tightly and quickly steals a kiss from his lips seemingly happier than ever.
The last night together for a while she clung onto Cleamon in bed and although showing the happy expressions from before, had a few tears roll down her face.
This morning she was visibly shaken up and not in the mood to eat. Lilia tried to comfort her to no avail.
“I must say, it’s amazing what you did to them in these past six months” Yako says to him.
“How so?” Cleamon asks slightly curious.
“Well, creating powerful magicians like these isn’t easy. It’s almost like you’re preparing for something bigger than what you’ve shown”
“Haha, you think so?” Cleamon says trying to avoid further prying.
“Seeing you interact with them from time to time made me realize that you looks at them like they could be gone at any moment. There is a deep sadness in your eyes I can’t explain” she continues.
“Isn’t that true for all life though? Us humans don’t live long compared to most species, magic can sustain us for many years beyond the normal limit, but it’s not like our bodies don’t get weaker as time progresses. If you look at Almar, he certainly is powerful. However over the decades his body has become weak and fragile, while his Magic Soul remained the same. He can make use of his strong magic to fight, but when it comes to hand to hand combat, he will lose to a much younger person” Cleamon says while sipping his drink.
“You for example are almost a God-like existence to us. Your body never ages and unless killed, you won’t die of old age. The same goes for a lot of other creations roaming around. Humans are weak, but there are many of us, that’s how we were able to survive. When you’re weak you try to find ways to survive by cunning and outsmarting everyone else” he continues.
“I guess so…” Yako says contemplation what was said.
“Not being able to die naturally is also a curse, if you didn’t show up and freed me from there. How long would I have stayed in that eternal hell? Dying would’ve been better, many times I’ve tried to get killed, but the invaders couldn’t even put a scratch on me. Not even you would’ve been able to kill me outright” she says recalling the events in her past.
“I guess that’s true, well at least I don’t have to worry about losing you then” Cleamon says with a smile.
“Huh? Why would you worry in the first place?” she asks a bit taken away.
“Even though you won’t admit it, I think we became good friends during the time we spent together. You even came to say goodbye” Cleamon says poking her cheek.
“Tsk, what are you talking about?” Yako says letting her eyes drift away from Cleamon’s gaze.
“See, you can’t even face me properly after I said that. You look cute while trying to avoid me, you’re like a pouting little sister” he says poking her cheek a few times.
Not sure what to do Yako lets it happen.
‘This kid is really annoying me, but it feels kind of nice being around him. It’s a been a long time since I could actually trust someone’
“Say Cleamon… Would you mind continuing being my friend from now on?” she says in a tone he’d never heard her use before.
“What is this!? Are you trying to confess your love me!?” Cleamon says spitting out his drink.
“No you moron, I’m asking you to be my friend!”
“What’s with the weird tone? Didn’t I already tell you? We were already friends, unless you want to take it to the next level, but you’ll have to go through official channels for that” Cleamon says glancing at Lilia.
Lilia just gives him a thumbs up, seemingly understanding the situation.
“You idiot!” Yako stands up and walks up the stairs.
‘Idiot… how can he treat it so casually as if it’s normal… I even tried to harm him before, really this idiot arghh’ Yako pouts entering her room whilst slamming the door behind her.
Lilia looks at Cleamon slightly amused, but with concern.
“Fine” Cleamon mumbles.
He stands up and moves towards Yako’s room.
Without knocking he enters the room, Yako laying on her bed.
“Can’t you at least knock before you come in?” she says.
“What’s the use? You can sense me coming anyway and no matter what I would’ve come in” Cleamon says with a smile.
He sits down next to Yako on the bed.
“Sorry if I offended you, but to me you’re already a friend. I can’t see you any other way, I know that what you did was wrong, but you were trying to protect yourself. I don’t blame you for any of that” Cleamon says putting his hand on her head, stroking through her hair.
Yako buries her face in her pillow.
“Still you could’ve just answered normally” she says muffled through the pillows.
“I’m sorry, I was taken aback by how cute you suddenly sounded and couldn’t find a way to respond properly. I’ve never seen you carry that expression and warmth, it was too shocking”.
“Hmpf, then make it up to me. I could use a good massage” Yako says with a stern voice.
“Fine, but I can’t stay too long. They might suspect we’re doing some naughty things” Cleamon jokes.
“As if…” Yako says.
They spend 15 minutes in silence while Cleamon gives her a back rub.
“See you in a few months” Cleamon says and soon after leaves the room.
“See you soon, friend” Yako whispers before falling asleep.
Coming back Lilia looks curious to Cleamon for the results, he gives her a small nod and she returns the gesture as if agreeing.
As the designated time to leave comes closer, the others are getting restless. Jenny looks as if she’s about to burst into tears.
However everyone having their own spatial bracelet, their things packed and all dressed up in their new armor. They head towards the castle gates.
“Everyone take one look back, we’ll be coming here again in a few month. Please do not separate from the group and sound alarm if anything is wrong. This is not a picnic and it will be dangerous outside. Even though you all have armor that is as strong as possible and you all carry items that prevent lethal damage if only once, strong magical attacks will break through. We will travel on the backs of the lovely sisters Narae and Danmi”
“Please say goodbye to our friends staying behind and let’s head off”