Siette Cartiel was greatly concerned about the poison that had attacked them.
He naturally believed that the poison that had struck their Duchy was the work of Argenta. He thought that Diello, who he considered to be a timid person and couldn’t carry out revenge, must have had a hidden card. Or perhaps that fragile appearance itself could be fake.
However, the investigation results from Cartiel’s intelligence department were different from his thoughts.
“We have found traces of Alors’ magic in the investigation of this recent poisoning incident.”
Siette, who was unaware that Argenta had planted someone in Cartiel’s intelligence department, narrowed his eyes.
“Yes. It seems that there were attempts to conceal it, but they couldn’t hide the residual magic from the carriage that transported the poison.”
“What is the magnitude of the power?”
If they figured it out immediately after the spread of the poison, it might have been insignificant, though if the magic was detected afterwards, it meant that it was no ordinary magic.
“At least the level of the immediate family of the head.”
“…In that case.”
Certainly, it must be Duke Alors. There was no way that foolish Krua Alors, who couldn’t even move water, possessed such power.
He erased even the slightest possibility, even though she could have used the power of the source that had been used to defeat the monster during their previous meeting. Still, using the power of the source involved releasing an explosive force momentarily, so it would inevitably leave different traces.
If Alors had used the power of the source, the people from the intelligence department would have discovered it immediately.
Since that wasn’t the case, there was only one answer.
He knew he was capable of mischief, but he did it to Cartiel?
“Alors doesn’t know his place.”
Siette furrowed his brow with displeasure and doubt.
* * *
After this incident, Cartiel’s movements became careful. They were more cautious than before and clearly on guard against both Alors and Argenta at the same time.
As we had planted people in Cartiel, their movements were conveyed to us in more detail. Siette Cartiel has become uncomfortable. Moreover, he explicitly emphasized the possibility that Alors might be the culprit rather than Argenta.
It was a perfectly orchestrated misunderstanding I created. But we didn’t have much time to revel in it.
“Both of you need rest.”
Nias, Argenta’s personal doctor, spoke firmly.
“Please make the office warmer for the lord to rest.”
He gave Vielle a command that was polite but impossible to refuse.
“It would be better to rest in the bedroom, but since that seems impossible, I hope you can rest comfortably in the office.”
Considering the recent chaos, it was necessary to manage his health closely.
Thanks to that, Diello’s office was decorated in such a way that just passing by would make one feel the heat. It could truly be considered a healing method in the style of Argenta, who handles fire. On the other hand, my recovery method was completely different from theirs as an Alors.
“Should we go to the sea?”
Although the endless sea was dangerous with monsters appearing, it might be fine as long as it wasn’t a beach where monsters came out.
When I was contemplating—
“I’ll take you there.”
—Diello, who was heading towards the office, smiled mischievously and gestured.
Vielle’s expression was calm as she replied.
To the sea? As I blinked, Diello lightly smiled.
“It’s a small gift for you.”
Although he called it a small gift, from what he was saying, it seemed to be a location.
Instead of explaining further, Diello whispered in my ear as he kissed the back of my hand.
“Rest well. Even if the poison is detoxified, it tends to linger and torment people for a while, so you should rest well.”
His sweet and irresistible voice resonated, and he moved away from me.
“Then, I will escort you.”
And with that, Vielle took me to a huge pool.
“…Was there a place like this in the Argenta mansion?”
I asked, and Vielle laughed.
“Even though this is Argenta’s mansion who, handled fire, wouldn’t Madam also need a place to rest?”
She gestured for me to go inside.
“The lord specifically instructed me to create it.”
After saying that, she added.
“As a surprise gift, without Madam knowing.”
I blinked at her words and burst into laughter. While doing so, I suddenly noticed something neatly arranged inside the swimming pool.
It was a basket containing fragrant flower petals and perfumes.
As I examined the items, Vielle cautiously opened her mouth again.
“It seems that the servants also left a little something for Madam.”
She said, and I examined the items more closely.
[ Aromatic oil that is good for relieving fatigue! ]
Seeing various detailed descriptions attached to them, I couldn’t help but imagine the maids gathering here and attaching notes.
“Apparently, many of the servants were impressed with your behavior during the lord’s last outburst.”
Certainly, the servants must have been terrified of Diello, who seemed like he could devour them at any moment. Hence, they must have been impressed with my ability to calm him down.
Was that why they were sending me this with heartfelt notes?
It must have taken quite some time to prepare, even in a world where magic exists. Moreover, not only Diello but also the servants worked hard to prepare this. And on top of that, they gave me extra gifts.
“Thank you, everyone.”
As I said that, Vielle softly smiled.
“Then, please rest well.”
While Vielle was leaving, I looked around the swimming pool. The small swimming pool was filled with water. And as there was plenty of water, I could feel my strength returning to my body.
After a quick warm-up, I slipped on a light blouse and stepped into the pool. The water was as warm as the hearts of the Argenta people.
“It’s a heated pool.”
They were considerate. It was a bit startling when my clothes got wet, though as they became completely soaked, I felt more comfortable.
As I tapped the surface of the water, the sound echoed throughout the pool. There was no one else around in this spacious place. It was nice to have it all to myself.
However, there was a small problem.
“…I can’t swim.”
Who would think an Alors couldn’t swim? Of course, I didn’t worry about getting into accidents since I could control the water and float. Once I entered the water, it felt like the entire pool became an extension of my limbs.
After contemplating for a moment, I stepped on the stairs in the water and pushed myself further into it. I could feel my legs floating, but it was only for a moment before the water around me firmly supported me.
I tried to shape the water to my liking, creating stairs and gentle hills. The further in I went, the taller the grass, though I could walk around in the water like it was flat.
“It worked out perfectly.”
Although it seemed like this swimming pool was designed for healing, I thought it could be used for other purposes as well. I recalled the feeling of purging toxins from my blood. Of course, it wasn’t something I consciously did. It was almost instinctual.
However, if I could consciously control such precise adjustments…
Above all, I could deliver a devastating blow with just a small amount of water. I intended to practice that. It was a matter of control.
I raised my hand, and the first thing I created was a dagger. While it was reminiscent of a simple blade with a handle, the water surprisingly formed a detailed shape. Even the decorative patterns on the handle were clearly visible.
I wondered where I had seen it before, and then I realized it resembled the dagger Diello occasionally carried. Did it leave such a deep impression on me?
I turned and examined the water-made dagger from different angles.
Then, I threw it back into the water.
Although there was a solid sound as if the metal had been dropped, the dagger returned to its watery form and didn’t reveal its shape again.
* * *
I spent a long time diligently creating and training with various objects. Not only could I move through the water freely, but I could also create waves in the pool.
Although the swimming pool walls and floor had turned into water, it wasn’t difficult to return it to a pool since it was still water.
In the process, I stumbled upon a peculiar object.
“What is this?”
In the center of the swimming pool floor, there was a huge dome embedded in it, surrounded by a weak magical barrier to prevent whatever was inside from coming out. I knew what it was. I had seen the maids release something similar to this in the bathtub sometimes.
Even though I wasn’t sure what it was called in this world, it resembled a bath bomb.
It was much larger than the ones I usually saw…
Curious, I poked the object, wondering if it was a real bath bomb. Then, I noticed a little foam seeping out. Wow, it was actually a bath bomb! Was it intended for use in the bathroom rather than the swimming pool?
Or maybe it didn’t matter and could be used for either purpose?
As the gradually seeping foam filled the air around me like clouds, I realized something.
Perhaps due to the water mixed with the foam, it moved according to my abilities. But considering that air was trapped inside the foam, Cartiel would probably be more adept at moving it than me. When I narrowed my eyes…
From behind the wall of foam that obstructed my vision, I heard the sound of someone cutting through the water and entering.
If it were someone else, I would have been surprised, but now the entire water was in the palm of my hands. I could feel the scorching heat of the flames cutting through the water under my control.
In response to my words, the approaching figure quietly broke through the foam barrier and appeared. A sturdy arm was revealed beneath the wet sleeve of his shirt.
As he raised his hand to brush back his hair, a pink foam stained the ends of his black hair.
Diello, with a gentle smile, approached me and spoke.