It attacks Alexis and the others with a low roar, and they have no choice but to deal with it with their weapons.
As Fransisca stands around, she tells them that the monster must not be allowed to leave the sanctuary.
She clearly refers to the being in front of her as a "monster."
（Why are there monsters outside of Avalon? Did they crawl out from Avalon? —No way, that's impossible. Fransisca said that the door leads to the royal cemetery, didn't she? But the royal cemetery in Sagrado, that means—...）
"...Avalon?" Alexis mutters.
At that moment, the log-like arm of the monster swings at Alexis.
「Alexis-sama, look out!」
Fransisca shouted, and Valencia said, "I'll help you!" and cut at the monster.
Alexis came to his senses and hurriedly blocked the monster's attack with his shield.
A clash of steel is heard, and a heavy and fine vibration is felt on the arm holding the shield.
「Please hold on to your shield. We'll make a rush and crush it while we still can!」
Fransisca shouted, and Fatima and Valencia responded.
While Alexis blocked the monster's attack with his shield, Fransisca and Valencia cut at the monster from both sides. Fatima also fired several attack spells in succession.
The monster's legs collapsed and fell to its knees, falling to the ground in a blink of an eye.
「I-Is it all right now...?」
Alexis breathes, looking down at the motionless monster.
"It is dead...?" He asks, looking down at the motionless creature. Besides, after a few moments, Fransisca, Valencia, and Fatima put away their weapons.
「Is it bad, Your Highness?」
Valencia asks, to which Fransisca replies with a sigh.
「Haah... I thought I could handle it a little. I tried to be careful, but my hand accidentally hit it, and here it is」
「Anyway, we should put it back in quickly, this...」
「Yes. Valencia, can you help me?」
「Of course! I'm with you, Your Highness」
As they talk, Valencia holds the monster's foot while Fransisca holds the monster's hand. They drag it back into the cemetery, and the door that had been open is now closed.
So Alexis inadvertently missed the chance to look inside the cemetery.
「What is that? What the hell is that!?」
He asked Fatima, who remained nearby.
「...I'll be brief now. That is one of the reasons why the Sagrado are a people of priests. It is one of the secrets of Sagrado, Alex. And it must be... one of the reasons why Her Highness does not want you to join the royal family」
Fatima answered without hesitation.
「...What do you mean?」
Alexis muttered with a stunned feeling.
He had just seen one of the secrets that are usually never told.
In such an understaffed situation, moreover, Fransisca must have made a "failure." If not for that, she would never have intended to expose it.
Fatima felt uneasy when she saw Alexis' silent, thoughtful attitude.
「...Are you disgusted? Are you tired of being a part of our kingdom?」
Fatima asked in a muffled voice.
Seeing her like this, Alexis knew immediately that he should not behave like this.
「What are you talking about? When I got involved in Avalon, this was normal, wasn't it?」
That was Alexis' true feeling as well.
Fatima looked somewhat relieved and muttered, "I see."
「...But please don't hate Her Highness」
Alexis wondered why she was asking him not to hate Fransisca.
But he nodded.
At that moment, the closed stone door was finally opened with a sound.
Fransisca and Valencia came out from inside.
In Fransisca's hand was a shiny pale stone the size of her fist.
It was not processed like Fransisca's pendant but looked like a rough stone cut into a square shape.
Whether her pendant or the stone, the light color is similar to the magic crystal found in the Avalon dungeon.
However, while the magic crystal has a strong blue transparent color, the stone she has had a strong white cloudy color and a strong glow. This makes one realize that they are not the same.
Fransisca takes the stone in both hands, stops in front of Alexis, and shows it to him.
"I have it for you, Alexis-sama," Fransisca reports with a smile.
「Oh, thank you.」
Alexis thanked her and added, "I'm sorry."
「I'm sorry I made you reveal your secret.」
「Yes, I know. But that was half my fault. And when I brought you here, I was prepared for that to some extent...」
With a wry smile, Fransisca said, "Shall we go home?"
Alexis and the other two nodded.
* * *
As they were rocked by Valencia's carriage on the way back, Fransisca began to talk.
It was about the cemetery.
「You saw something like that. Aren't you curious, Alexis-sama?」
Fransisca asked, and Alexis nodded.
「Yes. How could I not be curious?」
「You've earned the right. You've seen it, and I'll tell you as much as possible. What do you want to know?」
Fransisca asked simply.
Alexis was surprised at how easily she had said she would never reveal anything, but he thought she might be testing him.
By revealing only a part of herself, is he really ready to become a priest-king? Is he willing to go beyond that? Maybe she wants to find out about that.
And Alexis knew it was time.
Joining the royal family of Sagrado has a completely different nature than normal royal marriage. It means to be a "priest's people" and a "descendant of an ancient mage."
（But it's my decision. Maybe one day I'll think of it as a drunken madness）
But it's too late for that. What does it matter if he chooses a life that he regrets now? Alexis' life was riddled with failures long ago. The tentacle between his legs is a prime example.
（Then don't hesitate. I'm a man who always does what I want to do）
Alexis nodded and opened his mouth.
「So, why don't you tell me all about it? As much as you can say to me」
For a moment, Fransisca looked surprised. But she immediately smiled and nodded her head.
「...Yes, I understand. Alexis-sama」
Fransisca nodded and told Alexis, "Then I will tell you everything I can here."
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