Nevertheless, she finally seemed willing to do the serious work by repeatedly being told that "there is nothing we can do if we don't proceed with the attack."
「I know where there is a mineral that is made of the same material as this pendant」
She began to speak.
「And I'm sure it's somewhere accessible.」
She puts her hand over her mouth as she says this, and her gaze drifts over the pendant as if she is still pondering something.
Her hand on her knee, which is on her leg sitting on the bed, makes a tight fist.
After that, Fransisca turns her head down and begins to be silent, and Alexis calls out to her.
「Well, the area, which was affected by the darkness, was narrowed down. Sure, it may be in ruins, but I'd like to go there if there's a chance. You know where it is?」
「Yes, I know where it is. And if I may say so...」
She awkwardly confides in Alexis.
「The place should not be consumed by darkness from the beginning. It is not a rough place or anything like that.」
Alexis was surprised to hear this.
「Then it would be even easier to go there. Why didn't you do anything before? You knew it was effective against monsters...—」
"...because it's a royal cemetery, Alexis-sama," Fransisca said firmly.
Fransisca got up from the bed in front of Alexis, who kept her mouth closed, wondering what was happening.
「...If you decide, let's go. I will show you the way. But I need you to promise me one thing.」
At Fransisca's quiet voice, Alexis asks, "What do you mean?" Alexis asks.
「You must not enter the cemetery. I will take Fatima and Valencia with me to act as a lookout.」
That was all she said as she looked down apologetically.
* * *
Despite the many mysteries, the preparations were completed, and they were ready to leave.
The preparations were the same as when they went to the dungeon. They put on their gear and carry their weapons. Although they are not going into Avalon, they know it is a reasonable distance away. And even though almost no one comes here, Sagrado is now almost a lawless area, so they have to watch out for bandits and wild animals.
Despite all the mysteries, Alexis had one thing in common. The destination would bring him into contact with the secrets of the Sagrado royal family （the royal cemetery）.
（Royal cemetery, huh?）
Alexis thinks as he rides in the carriage with three other women.
This time it is Valencia's job to lead the horse.
"I'll do it," she says as she volunteers to do it.
Although Alexis felt he was not busy, as soon as he got on the back side of the carriage, he began to think that it would be nice to do something like this once in a while. It was easy to linger and watch the scenery outside.
For a while, Alexis had been thinking about the scenery.
（Fransisca told me there is a cemetery away from the center of the town, in a place called the sanctuary. A normal royal family, for example, the Krangal royal family, would not mourn in such a way, no way）
In the first place, Krangal does not even have a place called a sanctuary.
There are too many differences between Sagrado and Krangal.
（Sagrado people are said to be people of priests. And it is said that they are strongly related to ancient mages. Is there a reason for this?）
This might be revealed if Alexis marries Fransisca early and joins the Sagrado royal family.
But since then, he has not been in such a mood, no matter how hard he tries. Fransisca never tried to initiate the marriage, and it was a marriage between royal families, to begin with. Also, many preparations must be made because it cannot be done on a small scale without any ceremony.
Besides, if he was going to join Sagrado, he had to follow the rules of Sagrado. However, Fransisca does not even want to cut out the rules of Sagrado.
（I don't understand the feeling of reluctance for political strategy... but anyway, it has to be done at some point. If Krangal continues to bite on Sagrado's attack on Avalon. I must plunge my feet deep into the abyss）
It is a boat that he had already jumped. So, he could not stay in the halfway stage any longer.
（Anyway, Fransisca said that Avalon does not cover the sanctuary. I'm curious about that too...）
Anyway, she is aware that it's time for her to realize that it can't go on like this any longer...
There is silence in the carriage, and suddenly Alexis speaks up.
「I've already made up my mind. I have decided. I'm ready to share your fate」
Fransisca blinks as she hears Alexis' words and turns to Alexis, sitting next to her. It was a sudden thought. Soon, however, Fransisca's eyes narrowed.
It seemed as if she had just said what had been bothering her, Fransisca realized.
「Yes, I think so. It's about time...isn't it?」
Fransisca takes her eyes off Alexis and turns her head toward the landscape.
The place looked like other affected areas, which was dark beyond a plain of scrubby trees.
Sagrado is still far from peace.
「...But wait a little longer before you make up your mind」
「I think it is not too late for you to decide after you have seen my father, after you have seen what he has become」
"...Your Highness," Fatima murmured with an anxious look in her eyes, seeming to understand the meaning of Fransisca's words.
Alexis questioned and then closed his mouth.
Fransisca's father had not been seen since he was swallowed by Avalon. Alexis had always assumed that he had died long ago.
「...Is he alive?」
He voiced his suspicions without thinking.
Fransisca became silent.
After a while, she decides to speak. She opens her mouth and says in a quiet voice.
「...My father is... If you say he's alive, then... maybe he is」
She slurs her words like that.
「...The man on the throne... must be my father」
"...Your Highness," Fatima murmured again.
「Didn't you tell me that it is an area boss who is on the throne?」
Alexis couldn't help but say it, and then he hurriedly shut his mouth.
At that moment, he realized that it was just like Jerome.
But there are a couple of oddities.
One is that the death would have turned into a monster. Certainly, it is more likely that the king is dead, but he is also possibly alive. Moreover, the king's vicinity should always be guarded by a strong Kingsguard. There is a sliver of hope that he might be alive. Fransisca also says that the area boss is his father means that Fransisca dismisses this possibility.
Another point is that the monsterized dead cannot be the area boss, as with Jerome. They should exist in the dungeon as mere miscellaneous wandering monsters.
As he was thinking about this, Alexis suddenly called out.
It was Fatima who spoke to him.
She moves from the front side of Alexis to the one next to him and sits down again. She puts her hand on Alexis' shoulder and speaks in a whispering voice.
「Don't... don't say anything more, please. Her Highness knows best. But she doesn't want to meet him and bear it」
"...Yeah, I see. I agree," Alexis nodded his head.
Fatima was right.
Fransisca and the royal family have many secrets. It's a secret that seems to go to Avalon's very heart. But even now, if he looks at her, he can see Fransisca's mouth tightened as she turns her eyes toward the view.
She must have reasons for not wanting to talk about it, more than just the royal family's secrecy. But what is it? Alexis doesn't know. So...
"...It would be better if I don't ask her," Alexis thinks.
At least it's not something to dig into, at least not if it's not necessary to the dungeon exploring.
「—Everyone, we're almost at the destination!」
Valencia, perhaps sensing the atmosphere, speaks up.
「Even though the sanctuary is outside Avalon, we don't know what will happen. Please stay calm for a while」
Since Valencia changed the subject, Alexis decided not to inquire further.
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