Kamil has left the mansion, and so has that child who was secretly staying in the innermost part of the mansion, but daily life here at the mansion didn’t change all that much. Under Earl Terejia’s instructions, I would help him and Bellway with their work, and listen to Claudia tell stories about her time with the soldiers, and I would carefully manipulate Claudia so that I could control the army, my days became even busier than before.
And so spring has ended and summer has begun, and phosphorescent moths known as rinkas have become active.
“Hm…… Is that a type of monster?”
“That’s right. This year, we’ve received reports of increased monster activity in the Monster Forest from the Jugfena royal domain. ……Also, it’s not just the magical beasts in the Monster Forest. We must also be careful of the monsters from the Amon Nor Mountains.”
As Earl Terejia informed me about the reports on monster activity, I could only listen incredulously.
Monsters really do exist in this world.
Since I hadn’t heard much about them, I doubted whether they really existed, but it does seem that once in a while monsters would attack people or their livestock. It’s always been a topic quite distant from me, but come to think of it, Rashiok’s species, the draconis, is also a type of magical beast.
I don’t know the exact definition of a magical beast. Nor do I really know the specific differences between insects, animals, humans, and monsters in this world. In the bedtime stories that I’d heard from Mrs. Galton before, magical beasts are considered to be monsters that can use magic, but I’ve never heard of anything like magic or magical beasts in real life here. In fact, I’ve never even seen Rashiok using any mysterious powers like being able to breathe fire or control the wind.
However, until I met Rashiok, I’d always thought that draconis were fictional, and I suppose that until this spring, I’d always been a hermit cooped up in my mansion that’s never gone anywhere before. Just like magical beasts, magic might really exist as well.
“Come to think of it, I haven’t really heard much in detail about the Monster Forest before.”
Earl Terejia raised his eyebrow as he looked at me.
“Yes, really. I’ve always thought it was only a name.”
“Didn’t Mrs. Galton tell you bedtime stories about monsters and magic every night?”
Earl Terejia seemed to be puzzled as he asked me, but I tilted my head in return. Were bedtime stories really to be believed?
“Yes, I heard them, but I thought they were all made up.”
After all, in Mrs. Galton’s stories, there were people like sages and paladins, and various paranormal phenomenon that could only be explained by magic. Since as far as I knew, they didn’t actually exist, I thought it was fiction. After all, I didn’t believe in monsters.
What’s more, the new nanny, Mrs. Hortensia, doesn’t even tell bedtime stories like Mrs. Galton did. Since I’m still using the common sense from my previous world, it can’t be helped that I didn’t believe in anything until now.
Earl Terejia nodded and made a complicated expression.
“Call Mrs. Marshan over here immediately.”
Mrs. Marshan who was brought to the lord’s office by Bellway, had some kind of box under her arm.
“I heard that you wanted to see me.”
I’ve been so busy lately, that I’ve had less time for Mrs. Marshan’s lectures recently. I didn’t really think anything of it since Earl Terejia had allowed it, but it’s been almost half a month since I last saw Mrs. Marshan, I’ve been feeling too lazy to study as of late for some reason. I wonder if it’s because I remembered just how much I had to study in my previous life.
“Mrs. Marshan, please give Eliza-sama a lecture on magical beasts immediately.”
“I understand. Should I take that to mean that it’s alright to begin right now?”
Bellway must have already filled her in on the details, after a simple confirmation with the earl, Mrs. Marshan took me back to my room immediately.
In any case, I wondered just how important magical beasts and the Monster Forest were. For the time being, it still didn’t seem very real to me yet, so I didn’t know how much importance I should give to magical beasts. The children of other domain lords probably already recognize them as real, as I kept thinking irrelevant things, we finally arrived back at my room. Rashiok who was curled up in a corner of my room raised his head as if to say, what’s going on?
“Mrs. Marshan, what’s in that box?”
“It’s a book, Eliza-sama.”
The box was about the size of my jewelry box in the closet, so it seems to be the type of book with its own box case. Looking at the book and its leather bindings after it was removed from its case, it reminded me of a dictionary, and since there’s no printing technology in Arxia, such a book must be really expensive.
“All domain lords for domains where there’s a possibility of monsters attacking are required to have a copy of this book, but taking into consideration Eliza-sama’s age, I have been taking care of this book until now.”
I nodded, as Mrs. Marshan immediately opened the book and handed it to me.
“First, I’ll have to teach you about monsters. Monsters are creatures that have powers to cause mysterious phenomenon, which we call magic. Among them, we tend to call the ones that tend to attack people and livestock magical beasts. That’s because most of them resemble beasts.”
“I understand that a draconis would be considered a type of monster, but it wouldn’t be a magical beast?”
I glanced at Rashiok who was lying quietly in the corner of my room as I asked my question, and Mrs. Marshan shook her head.
“You already know that draconis mostly eat snow snakes, and since they have high intelligence and are relatively mild-mannered, they hardly ever attack humans. The only magic they can use is said to be magic that helps them fly.”
I see, I nodded again, and Mrs. Marshan went hmm…… and tilted her head to the side as she was thinking.
“……Eliza-sama, have you seen a rinka before?”
At Mrs. Marshan’s question, I couldn’t help but think of small moths that would glow in the dark like fireflies, as I told her I hadn’t. The way that fireflies would leave a trail of light behind them was quite a beautiful scene to behold.
“Rinkas are full-fledged magical beasts. They usually gather by the hundreds and burn down trees with fire magic, and even though they’re a type of moth they’re immune to fire.”
Ehh…… a comment involuntarily escaped my lips. That sounds quite dangerous.
“The buildings in the royal capital all have an outer layer of rinka scales. After all, they won’t burn so it’s the best defense against fire. Anyhow, they’re not considered that dangerous by themselves, but only in large packs.”
I kept nodding. Mrs. Marshan continued with her explanation.
With Mrs. Marshan teaching me as well as using the records from the book, I learned about monsters, and when this crash course ended it was already time for dinner. Since the maids had brought us tea and snacks during the lesson, we had basically spent the entire day on this.
For now, I’ll just sum up what I learned today.
Each type of monster can use different types of magic.
The Monster Forest is so named because only monsters live there with few exceptions. But, monsters actually live almost everywhere.
Monsters have active periods, in which suddenly all of their kind will become active. There are reports that monsters with lower intelligence will behave incomprehensibly.
Although there was also various other things that I learned, those seem to be the most important points. In the domain lord’s book on monsters, it mentioned that in case of monster attacks, of course the domain lord and the domain’s army would be responsible for defending the land.
Even though it’s such a busy time, for monsters to be attacking, this is such an unwelcome event.