But in fact, he just returned to Fort Rohka in about 5 days. In spite of the five-day absence, he had been to the cemetery of Sagrado just before that. Therefore, he thinks he had been away for a longer period of time.
Now, after greeting the gatekeeper, "I'm home," he goes into the fort.
Somehow, he felt at home.
The corridors are made of stone, but they are quite different from those of the palace, with a simple and sturdy structure. The geometric patterns in some places are due to the fact that this fort is a Sagrado structure.
Alexis was even thinking that he might be a member of Sagrado, not Prince Krangal. Just as he was thinking that, he heard a voice saying, "Alexis-sama!"
He looked at the end of the corridor and saw Fransisca standing there.
She still had the same stunning appearance that he had not seen for a long time. Her hair, which looked as if it had been melted with platinum, reached down to her waist. She has well-defined eyebrows and bright amethyst eyes, which give her a mild and innocent impression.
And her white one-piece dress suits her neat impression.
Fatima, dressed in a maid's uniform, was with her. It was a usual combination.
「Yeah, I'm back」
Alexis walks up to her with a raised hand in greeting.
Fransisca also steps toward Alexis, and her smile widens, as if she is trying to hold back her happiness, but can't.
「Welcome back, Alexis-sama. Have you finished your business?」
「Yes, I did, at least」
Alexis pats Fransisca's head lightly and then turns his attention to Fatima who is standing beside him, just in time.
「Fatima, are you free?」
「Now? ...Well, I don't have anything to do」
「Okay, then, go to the command center...or my room, if you like. I need to talk to you. Come with me for a minute」
「All right. But Her Highness...」
「Yeah. Fransisca, see you later.
Alexis says this and leaves with Fatima.
Fransisca was left behind with a gloomy look on her face, not being able to kill her loneliness.
（I know that Alexis-sama is working for Sagrado, but...）
Then, she thinks, "Why leave me out of it?"
There was one day when he was not around, she complained about it to Fatima who came to her private office.
At that time, Fatima had told her.
「Did I ever teach you the duties of a Priest of Sagrado?」
「...Alex is going to touch there. The King of Sagrado has the duty to know and accept everything. But a Princess-Maiden has no such obligation. And since that is the case, you should not listen. Do you understand?」
Fatima's gentle way of speaking falls into Fransisca's heart.
Fatima smiled softly as she answered.
「I understand that you are lonely. But Alex is working for you. I am sure that when this is over, he will be with you as he used to be. Until then, please refrain from.... *Cough* Don't worry, it will pass in the blink of an eye. Instead, try to focus on other things」
「Yes, you are right」
Fatima was right.
Don't worry only about Alexis.
After all, Avalon was not over yet.
For the coming days, she would have to train herself to be as useful as possible.
With this in mind, Fransisca has endured, but there is a limit to everything.
In an empty hallway. Finally, Fransisca let out a sigh.
* * *
Alexis had let Fatima into his private room and was throwing up before he had even sat down in his chair.
「Hey. Can't we manage with the status quo?」
Fatima was stunned and rolled her eyes.
「Anyway, 70% of the land in Sagrado has already been exposed. The other 30%... Well, the area where the royal palace and the capital used to be has not been exposed yet. Though all the ruins are gone, there are still some natural things left. Perhaps we can make do with 70% of what we have?」
Fatima let out a deep sigh.
「What about the artifact that Sagrado has been guarding all this time? Sagrado's artifacts. Eighty percent of them are in the possession of the unexposed royal palace. Without it, there is no deterrent to the neighbouring countries」
Alexis lets out a sigh.
After all, his crotch has not been restored.
He heard about the cup of dispel. And he thought if he had it, his crotch would be back to normal.
「...For me, as long as I have the cup of dispel, I'm good to go...」
Alexis sits down in a chair next to the table and rests her cheek on it, using the table as an armrest.
"The cup of dispel?" Fatima looks doubtful because this is the first time she has heard this intention from him.
「Sure, the Holy Grail has great power, but... it is a terrible thing that turns an artifact into a piece of junk. But what do you want that spell canceling artifact for?」
"Ugh," Alexis mumbles.
...Yes, that's right. He never told Fatima that his thing was altered by the artifact! Until now.
Alexis looked as serious as possible and folded his arms heavily.
「What for? Uh...」
「What...? What do you want it for?」
「That, uh. ...How do I say this? I'm at a loss for words...」
「That? ...Ah, I see. You were saying that the cup of dispel negates all magical effects...」
"Let's just nod for now," Alexis thought.
It would look better if he just nodded to what Fatima was leading her to believe.
Fatima's expression changed suddenly.
Her face, which normally shows little emotion, suddenly lights up.
"Is there really something to it?" Alexis listens to the conversation.
Not seeming to notice Alexis' intention, Fatima speaks up with her own idea.
「What is creating Avalon is also a magic effect」
"Now she's using some tricky terminology," Alexis thought.
Fatima remained oblivious to her true intentions, however, as her expression remained grave.
「It is said that Gorlois, the founder of Sagrado, was a great mage of the first rank even in ancient times. The boundary magic created by such a mage was so powerful that even at that time no one could handle it—or if there was a cup of disple created by the same Gorlois......it might be able to make him disappear...!」
Alexis was involuntarily getting up from his seat with a loud rattling sound.
Now, without a doubt, Fatima had said something quite serious. She had said something that could not be left unsaid.
Suddenly Alexis moved, causing Fatima to stutter.
Alexis sat back down in his chair in a hurry.
After clearing his throat, Alexis nodded his head in the same grave manner as before.
「—That's it, that's it. That's what I wanted to say!」
Alexis pointed at Fatima and Fatima looks relieved.
At least Alexis has the gravitas of a king's son.
「...Our goal is the cup of dispel!」
Alexis made a tight fist.
「If we have the cup of dispel, we may be able to drive out the God from the body of Gorlois, which the Moon God has taken over」
This was something he had thought of just as he was listening to Fatima's story.
It was an eye-opener for Fatima, apparently.
Meanwhile, Alexis was thinking.
"I'm glad we went to the Krangal National Library."
「God can't be killed! ...but God's miracles are created by the same principle as magic!」
Alexis quoted a passage from a book he had just seen at the Krangal National Library.
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