Chapter 11 – Troublemaker
In front of me, there is a dumbfounded Goddess.
“Yeah. Friend.” I repeated.
“Isn’t it… that super cheesy concept humans invented…?” Yoko asked, narrowing her eyes.
“Well, that’s an interesting way of seeing things, but yeah, I guess.”
Her forehead frowned, her eyes full of suspicion, she kept looking at me without saying anything. I think she was trying to find ulterior motives in my request.
“What are you so suspicious about? I just want a friend.” I told her. “I hate to say this, but I’m not really good at socializing. The maids and the butlers are really nice at the mansion, but in the end, they’re still servants. They are under contract. Besides, if it’s you, I’d have nothing to hide. You understand my point?”
“Actually, I don’t.” Yoko responded. “Why would you want to hide anything? And did you just say ‘maids’? ‘Butlers’? Are you saying that you’re living with the humans, right now?”
“Well, pretty much. Long story.”
“I just don’t understand… It doesn’t make any sense. I think my head is going to explode at any moment… Actually, ever since I met you, nothing makes sense anymore. Your whole existence doesn’t make sense…”
“Hum… That’s kind of offensive, you know?” I said, with a slight tone of irritation.
“Whatever.” She shrugged. “I’m done trying to understand. I’ll be your friend. Not like if I had the choice, anyway. You did create me after all. I guess I owe you that much.”
“I-Is that so…? Then I’ll be in your care.”
Yes!! First friend, GET!
It is quite different from what I have been imagining, but I guess this will do. Instead of being a cute girl, my first friend is an arrogant Goddess who is a thousand times older than me. Thinking about it, it is pretty awkward. I think we both thought the same thing, as we stared at each other blankly, without saying anything for a while.
“Right. By the way, how should I call you?” Yoko suddenly asked, breaking the silence. “We seem to have agreed that ‘mom’ is out of question. I can accept the fact that you’re the Creator and my… Parent… but I still have my pride. And it’s not like I can call you by your [Name] either. I mean, you are the Goddess of All Creations. That would be inappropriate and disrespectful.”
“Is that so? Well then, Lynett or Lyni is fine. That’s how I’m being called among humans.” I answered.
“Lynett? Sounds like a mascot name.” She said bluntly.
“D-Don’t say that… I like it.”
She shrugged. “No need to feel bad about it. Humans were never original when it comes to names.”
“Is that supposed to cheer me up…? Yoko you… I should have called you Naruto or Swiper…”
“Naruto? What does it mean? Is it an insult or something?” She asked, raising an eyebrow.
“Not really…” I muttered.
She narrowed her eyes, clearly not believing me.
“Anyway… Returning to the main topic, who is the intruder?” I asked, immediately changing the subject. “How come you haven’t gotten rid of him yet? If it’s a Low God, it should be easy for you, right?”
“That’s exactly the problem…” She sighed. “It’s not a Low God. If he had been one, I would have killed him already.”
“… You sure don’t do things by half…” I said, as a forced smile appeared on my face.
“Don’t give me that look. I’m not impulsive enough that I would kill a Low God without a reason. As useless as they are, they’re still my colleagues’ creations. I would have given them a warning first, just like I did with you.”
“Oh… So it’s not a Low… A Mid?”
Wow… Two Mids? I’m starting to understand better how she ended up blowing half of the forest away. Still, I’m pretty lucky. Who would have thought I’d end up meeting two of my Mid Gods so fast? I wonder which one is it…
“I just can’t get rid of him…” Yoko continued. She marked a pause, and then she looked up at me, her eyes full of blame. “Because somebody created us to be all on the same level, even if we each have our own specialties, it always ends up in a tie. It’s not like I can prolong the fighting either. Until now, we were lucky, but if this keeps going, there will be human causalities.”
“Eh? So you do care after all!” I exclaimed.
She shook her head. “Don’t misunderstand. I couldn’t care less about them. But I don’t want to have Naia on my back. She doesn’t like it when we kill her beloved humans.”
“So, how are you going to deal with him?” I asked.
“I won’t. You will.”
A smirk slowly appeared on her face.
“Up until now, there was no one above us, so there was no one to judge. Thus, settling disputes between Gods was often a delicate matter and it could last decades, or centuries.” She explained. “But now that you’re here, it changes everything. You’re the Creator, he’ll listen to you. One word from you, and he’ll back down. Right, friend?”
Yoko strongly emphasized on the “friend”. She totally expects me to take her side on the matter. Well, if she’s the one who has been invaded, I guess it’s a given.
“I’ll see what I can do…” I muttered.
“Good. Let’s go.”
I glanced at her, a little surprised. “What? Now?”
“I want him out as soon as possible. I can’t stand his presence…” She grunted. “And don’t worry, in my fox form, it’ll only take fifteen minutes to get to him.”
“Is that so…? Well, it’s fine I guess…”
“Hum… Y-Your Holiness…?” A small voice suddenly called out.
Who spoke? Turning my gaze to the direction of the voice, my eyes fell upon the man who brought me here. Yoko’s worshipper. Crap… I had completely forgotten about him. Was he here the whole time? So he heard everything, didn’t he? No, wait… Yoko created confusion with all her attacks, maybe he didn’t hear…
“What? You’re still here?” Yoko asked with an indolent voice, turning to him. “I thought you had run away. How come you’re still alive?”
That’s not what you’re supposed to ask, Yoko… The man did not answer. Instead, he simply lowered his head in shame. In order to confirm my suspicion, I tried calling him out.
“Y-YES?!” He responded hastily.
His body immediately stiffened up as he looked up at me. The eye-contact didn’t even last for a second. As soon as his eyes met mine, he bowed, burying his face in the ground.
… Well, with such a reaction, I guess I can forget about the possibility of him not knowing. No. Even if he didn’t hear anything, he definitely saw me toying around with Yoko, treating her like a pet. Seeing this, even a child would have understood that I was above her. She is supposed to be his Goddess. Of course he’d get intimidated by me after seeing the way I act with her.
Damn it… I got careless. I was too focused on Yoko that I completely forgot about his presence. What should I do now? Disposing of the witness? It doesn’t seem like a pertinent choice, the poor guy didn’t do anything wrong… Should I ask Yoko to do something about him? No, not a good idea. I’m pretty sure she will just kill him. Threatening him? It is less safe, but I guess that is the only option I have.
I stepped forward.
“Raise your head.” I ordered, trying to be as cold as possible.
The man obeyed. He slowly lifted his head up, but he was still unwilling to look at me in the eyes.
“How much have you heard?” I asked with the same apathetic voice.
The man froze. He probably understood that he had heard something he shouldn’t have and that I wasn’t very pleased about that. Still, he didn’t dare to lie.
He swallowed. “Y-You are Her Holiness’ Creator a-and the Goddess of A-All Creations…”
Yup. As I thought, he heard too much. I crouched down in front of him and lifted his chin, forcing him to look at me in the eyes. I made sure to show him my most sadistic smile, to make him understand what I was thinking.
“Is that so? This is not good. This is supposed to be a secret, you know~?” I told him.
Yoko suddenly spoke up. “Eh? If you don’t want him to know, why don’t you just kill him?”
As I thought… Hearing this, the man started shivering. Ignoring Yoko’s remark, I continued.
“So… You can’t tell anyone about what you saw or heard today, understood? It will be really troublesome if you started saying unnecessary things… I don’t like troublesome things… You… understand my point, don’t you? You should know that I see everything… I know everything…”
This is embarrassing. I think I have to work on my villain lines. Hearing something like this from a teenage girl can’t possibly be intimidating, yet, for some reasons, it worked. Seeing the sweat droplets on his skin running down his face and his body shivering, I concluded that he had understood. Besides, I highly doubt anyone would believe him even if he started talking. People in this world aren’t aware of my existence… I think…
The man quietly nodded.
“Can we go now?” Yoko asked, the tone in her voice clearly indicating that she was losing patience.
“Before that, there is something I want to ask you.” I said, returning my attention to her. “I’m looking for someone. A man. It’s been a few days he disappeared and his son Axis is looking for him. Since you are the one who knows this forest the best, do you happen to know anything?”
Yoko stared at me with her squinted eyes for a while, seemingly thinking about something. She then turned her gaze on the man, bowing on the ground, completely stiff.
“Hey, Goyle, Roy, Troy, or whatever your name was. Didn’t you say that you had a son named like this too?” She asked.
Processing what she just said, my eyes slowly fell upon the man on the ground, who was now as rigid as a statue. It can’t be… Him…?
“It’s Troy, Your Holiness…And I-I may have mentioned s-something like this but…” He tried to speak up, however, his voice fell silent again.
…What in the world? He is Axis’ father? But… He seems well and uninjured. How come did he not return to his son? No wait… Is he not Yoko’s worshipper? I turned my gaze to her, with a meaningful look.
“I told you already, I did not kidnap anyone,” she said, answering my unspoken thought. “I found this one weakened, wandering near my den. Ever since, he wouldn’t stop following me. And since he’s not completely useless, I granted him a little protection against the miasma. End of the story.”
It doesn’t make any sense. That doesn’t explain why he is still here, on his own will. If she had saved his life, maybe I would’ve understood, but knowing Yoko’s character, I’m pretty sure she simply went on her way, ignoring him. Yet, he’s here. Why would a man leave his family behind in order to follow a Goddess? Unless… Does he want something from her? This is suspicious…
“Looks like you’ve found your man.” Yoko said with an unenthusiastic voice. “Now that you’ve settled your problem, can we go settle mine?”
“Sure…” I responded, not turning my gaze away from the man. “But we have to bring him too.”
Yoko frowned. “What? Why would you want to bring a mortal?”
“I told you, I’ve been looking for him. I can’t let him go now that I’ve found him. I might lose him again. Besides, he could run away…”
“Still, it won’t be possible. He’s a mortal. He won’t be able to follow.”
“Heh?” I tilted my head to the side. “I thought you were going to bring us…?”
“I’m fine with you, but I’m not carrying a mortal.” She bluntly said.
… Of course… Here we go again with her Goddess’ pride.
I looked at her blankly for a few seconds, making her understand that it was ridiculous. But since she didn’t seem willing to reconsider, I sighed.
“Oh well, I guess we can walk then… It’s not like you were in hurry, right?”
Yoko clenched her teeth as her eyelids twitched. She’s annoyed, clearly understanding that I wasn’t going to back down either. She clicked her tongue.
“Fine… But he’s not getting on my back…” She snorted.
Without even waiting for an answer, Yoko started changing. A white glow enveloped her body, and her figure gradually became larger, taking the shape of a giant fox. As the light subsided, she laid her massive body on the ground, and gave me a quick glance.
“Get on. And hold tight if you don’t want to fall down on the way.” She ordered, with a much hoarser voice.
Nodding, I started climbing her shoulder by grabbing her fur. How fluffy! After making sure I was comfortably seated on her back, she got up. She didn’t lie; even though she barely moved, I had to hold tight in order not to fall off. Looking down on the ground, I noticed how high I was. Fortunately, I’m not scared of heights, but it’s still a little unsettling. Yoko then approached Troy, who was shivering in apprehension.
“Yoko, be gent-“
Before I could finish my sentence, she bit the man’s arm, lifting him off the ground. The poor man cried out in pain. What a delicacy… I thought she was going to grab him by his collar or something, like a mother carrying her offspring, but obviously, she seems to lack maternal instinct –or maybe she simply has something against the man.
Without further delay, Yoko set off. The journey did not last very long. To be honest, I was too focused on not falling off to enjoy the scenery. Despite being in a dense forest, she was really fast, which made it harder for me to stay in place. If I had to compare, I’d say she was as fast as a train. If not for the pain of being bounced in all directions, I’m pretty sure Troy would have fainted.
After about a quarter of an hour, Yoko finally stopped. She threw off Troy on the ground and bent down, allowing me to get off. The poor man was on his knees, a hand grabbing his chest, throwing up his meal.
“Is it here?” I asked, inspecting the surroundings.
“Yeah, he shouldn’t be far from here. I can feel his presence…” Yoko responded, as she returned to her human form.
We were in a deeper part of the forest. It wasn’t much different from the place we were at just a few moments ago, besides the fact that there was an abnormally high amount of mana leaking everywhere, probably due to the other Mid God. Feeling the mana that wasn’t hers, Yoko clicked her tongue.
“That asshole… What is he doing to my forest?” She growled, clearly irritated.
“Y-Your Holiness…” Troy spoke, as he finally managed to pull himself together. “Are we really meeting another divine being?”
She ignored him.
As a puff of wind swept across the forest, I noticed red petals flying among the leaves.
“Roses? Here?” I said.
“It’s him…” Yoko responded with a voice full of anger.
“What do you mean?” I asked, turning my gaze to her.
“This forest did not exist a few decades ago”, she explained. “It started to appear once I settled down here, and only grew bigger over the time. The environment simply reacted to my mana. It’s the same with him. His only presence here is starting to change the environment at his convenience. There shouldn’t be any roses here…”
“Is that so…? But why roses?”
“This bastard just has bad taste.”
Eh? O-Ok… Why not… So basically, the other Mid God is changing Yoko’s forest to his taste, making it his own. I can understand why she is so upset and why she is so desperate in driving him out. No one would appreciate having a stranger barging into their house and changing it to their convenience. But roses? I don’t remember having a Mid God who would want to have roses in-…
... Oh no. No, no, no, no, no…This is not good. I do remember. I have a very bad feeling about this… It can’t be him… right? There has to be a mistake… I could feel me face paling and cold sweats forming on my forehead.
“Lynett, is something wrong?” Yoko asked as she saw my expression.
I swallowed. “Y-Yoko… Thinking about it… You never clearly told me who the intruder was… Which Mid God is it…?”
“I didn’t mention it? It’s Harri, the most annoying guy that I know of. You’ll want to punch him each time he opens his mouth.” She answered.
… I knew it… This is terrible… Of all people, it had to be him…
“We need to go back…” I muttered.
“WHAT?!” Yoko exclaimed. “Why? We came all the way here to kick him out, didn’t we? You said you were going to help me!”
“I know, but… I didn’t know it was Harri… That changes everything… I can’t meet him…”
Troy, who had stayed silent until now, widened his eyes.
“A-Are you not the Goddess of All Creations…?” He asked with a small voice. “Why would you be so scared of him…? Is he that dangerous…?”
I turned my gaze at him. Slowly, I placed my hands on his shoulder, sinking my eyes deep into his, with a serious expression. He stiffened up.
“Listen, Troy.” I said. “Trust me; you don’t want to meet him either. He is my most evil creation of all times. He is so dangerous that you’ll die of a heart attack even before doing anything. He is not someone we can handle. I created him when I went through the worst period of my life… That’s how bad the situation is.”
As I explained Troy the situation, his face, distorted in fear, kept getting paler and paler. On the other hand, Yoko rolled her eyes, sighing heavily.
“Well, I get what you mean and why you don’t want to meet him, but there is no turning back.”She said. “I want him out. If you’re not going to help, you’ll have the death of thousands of innocents on your conscience when I’ll stop holding back while dealing with him myself.”
Crap… She’s serious.
Before I could change my mind, Yoko started leading the way, as she had to drag Troy behind, who became unwilling to meet the intruder after hearing my explanations. Slowly, we headed toward the place where Harri’s mana was the strongest. The more we approached, the more I became nervous. The unsettling feeling of apprehension kept growing in my chest.
Eventually, we stopped, as the scenery in front of us completely changed. Yoko immediately flinched in horror. I could see the veins forming of her temples as she was biting hard her lower lip. On the other hand, Troy’s fear subsided when I saw the scenery. Instead, he squinted his eyes and wrinkled his nose in disbelief.
“This son of a… What the fuck did he do to my forest…?!” Yoko grunted, angrier than ever.
“W-What the hell is wrong with this place…?” Troy asked, as his brain was unable to comprehend the images his eyes discerned.
In front of us, the familiar forest scenery completely disappeared. Instead, there was a vast meadow. My eyes were instantly assaulted by different shade of red and pink colors. Instead of the proud pines, there were blossomed cherry trees standing. Instead of forest floor, covered with leaves and branches, the ground was covered in flower beds. Thousands of roses filled the meadow. Instead of white clouds, there were cotton candy floating in the sky. There were even some unicorns grazing under the cherry trees.
I feel like throwing up a rainbow…
“Well, well, well. It seems that I have visitors.” An unknown voice suddenly called out.
Turning in the direction of the voice, I saw him.
A man who appeared to be in his late twenties was standing there. He had a structural and muscular body, without being too imposing. He had fair skin and a nice proportioned face. His golden eyes reflected the sunlight and his long, blond hair was silky smooth and braids ran tidily down his back. He was wearing a royal outfit and a white cape fell from his shoulders. W-Well… I did design him after the Prince Charming…
That’s right. This man is my most embarrassing and shameful creation ever. No matter how hard I tried to forget, I never could. The God of Love and Chivalry, Harri…
Uuuugh…That level of childishness and vacuity is giving me cancer –again.