V2 Chapter 77: Sora and Ursula

“So, something like that happened while I was unaware,” Ursula sighed deeply as she listened to the story from Sora and Claira on their way to the Demon Gate.

She had heard some of the story from her superiors, Shukuya and Dialt, but most of it was speculation, or just a surface touch of the truth. She had no way of knowing the deep details, and she knew absolutely nothing about Claira’s actions after leaving the island.

Even though she wanted to discuss things with her classmates like Ayaka, as a Green Woods Warrior, Ursula had her duties. Nowadays, with the Kijin Tribe increasing their aggression towards the Demon Gate, there was practically no free time for a Warrior in charge of defending the Demon Gate. Days had been passing with her unable to move, while worrying about her friend.

Because of this, her joy at seeing Claira safe and sound was immense.

With heartfelt gratitude, Ursula bowed her head to Sora.

“Sora, first and foremost, I thank you. You saved my friend.”

“You’re welcome–I’d like to say that, but I didn’t act out of friendship or kindness. I’m getting a proper compensation, so there’s no need for thanks.”

With that, Sora gave a flippant laugh. It was a kind of laugh and an expression that Sora from before wouldn’t have shown.

Ursula squinted at Sora. She didn’t take his current evil-ish attitude seriously. She guessed it was some kind of embarrassed cover-up.

However, she was curious about his mention of compensation.

This time, not only did Sora save Claira’s life, but to find Klimt who had disappeared beyond the Demon Gate, he used his connections to go to the capital, and even received a signet ring from the emperor.

Ursula might not know much about matters beyond the island, but she could understand that Sora’s connections and initiatives were beyond ordinary.

What did Sora ask from Claira as compensation for such efforts? If it was too excessive, she couldn’t stay silent.

Of course, Ursula, who couldn’t do anything for Claira, had no right to blame Sora, who actually took action. But she thought she could share the burden of the compensation imposed on Claira.

As Ursula glanced at Claira, her silver-haired friend returned a calm smile and shook her head slightly. Probably conveying that Ursula’s secret worry was unnecessary.

Seeing that, Ursula realized her worries were baseless. Regardless of the interaction between Sora and Claira, seeing Claira’s face now made her feel there was no need to worry.

Ursula let out a sigh of relief, but at the same time, she felt a little uneasy about Claira’s calm demeanor.

―― It’s been a while since I’ve seen Claira so calm.

And there’s the matter with Klimt. It wouldn’t be surprising if she were more worn out, yet there’s a certain sense of composure emanating from the current Claira.

Even when she was confronting Dialt earlier, Claira seemed to maintain her composure while feeling a sense of tension. The previous Claira would surely have been more timid in the face of her brother whom she revered.

Something is protecting the softer parts of Claira’s heart―― considering this, Ursula observed Claira’s state with a different eye than before.

The distance between Sora and Claira as reflected in Ursula’s eyes is very close. They aren’t necessarily walking hand in hand, but if they wanted to, they could easily link hands.

Observing Claira walking as closely as possible to Sora while remaining modest so as not to disturb him, it’s clear who wants this distance.

And, once you understand that much, there’s no need to ask further. What supports Claira is trust in Sora, or perhaps affection.

―― Is it a case of gratitude for being saved, leading to admiration?

Ursula placed her hand on her chin and pondered.

She usually wouldn’t pry into someone else’s romantic affairs, and wouldn’t even direct her attention there, but as a friend of Claira Berch and Ayaka Azurite, she couldn’t be indifferent to the sight before her.

Her gaze naturally turned towards Sora.

Her earlier words, “I was surprised at how much you’ve changed,” were no lie. The current Sora is naturally facing forward, puffing out his chest, and walking firmly. The dignified figure backed by strong confidence was something that could never be seen in the ‘Sora Mitsurugi’ before he was banished from the island.

Just walking beside him, you could feel the immense Kei filling Sora. Even this alone showed the marked growth of their former classmate.

The feats Sora performed, which she had heard about from Ayaka――beating a earth spider in the trial, slashing down the invading Kijin on the island, and finally defeating the manifested Demon God, were undoubtedly true. Moreover, the story of him defending the Kijin girl, warding off Gozu, Klimt, and Claira, and slaying the Hydra, must also have been true.

For Ursula, whose father was killed by a Kijin, Sora’s actions weren’t something she could wholeheartedly praise. Still, she was glad that Sora had obtained the power he desired.

In Ursula’s field of vision, the back of the young man walking ahead and the back of the boy from five years ago overlapped.

The Sora of five years ago was weak, immature, and if asked if he was sufficient to look up to as the head of the Green Woods warriors, one could only shake their head.

However, Ursula never looked down on Sora because of that. She knew that Sora was more aware of his own weaknesses than anyone else.

She also knew that Sora was working hard to change his weak self. Ursula herself had accompanied Sora in his practice when asked.

In the end, his efforts didn’t bear fruit while on the island, but Ursula never disliked Sora Mitsurugi, who was earnestly practicing…

“―― Sora.”

Unknowingly, Ursula had said Sora’s name.

Sora turned back with a puzzled look and addressed her.

“What is it?”

“Ah, no, it’s just… Do you want to have a sparring match? Of course, I mean after we finish everything.”

“That’s rather abrupt, isn’t it?”

Looking at Sora, who spoke in an astounded tone, Ursula’s face turned slightly red.

Indeed, it was abrupt, she thought. The embarrassment of inadvertently calling someone by their name had caused her to blurt out something strange.

Ursula was about to quickly retract her statement, but Sora’s response was slightly faster.

“I don’t mind.”

“… Really? Is it okay?”

“I don’t know if you remember, but when I was on the island, you used to spar with me, right? Now it’s my turn to do the same.”

Hearing that, Ursula blinked.

“You remember the sparring too, Sora.”

“Yes, I remember very well. I was only able to be one-sidedly beaten.”

Facing Sora, who was purposefully glaring, Ursula also shrugged her shoulders exaggeratedly.

“I wish you wouldn’t look at me with such resentful eyes. Weren’t you the one who said to not hold back?”

“Indeed, I did say that. Alright, let’s go with that this time. I’ve been yearning to fight someone in a full-force battle with soul equipment. By the way, how about the loser has to do one thing the winner says, whatever it is?”

“Anything, huh?”


With that, Sora smirked suggestively.

“If you win, you could even clear Claira’s payment, right?”

It seemed that not only Claira, but Sora as well, had seen through Ursula’s apprehensions. Hearing Sora’s words, Ursula let out a bitter laugh.

“I’d definitely want to take advantage of that. But just out of curiosity, what are you planning to ask if you win? I’d appreciate it if it isn’t anything too scandalous.”

That was Ursula’s attempt at a joke.

She was aware that her physique was a subject of attraction for the opposite sex – more specifically, Ayaka and Claira had incessantly made her aware of it – but she naturally believed that Sora did not see her in that light.

The Sora she knew was sincere when it came to matters of romance.

Five years ago, he wouldn’t spare a glance for any woman other than his fiancée, Ayaka. Their relationship changed inevitably with his banishment, and whether Ayaka still held a place in Sora’s heart was unclear. However, even if another woman were to take Ayaka’s place, Sora would remain devoted to her. He wouldn’t take advantage of a bet to make a move on Ursula.

In response to such trust from Ursula, Sora, showing no signs of being flustered, opened his mouth to speak.

“Don’t worry, I wouldn’t use a bet as an excuse to make a move on a woman– ah.”

Just as Sora was about to confidently declare that he wouldn’t, he abruptly stopped, seemingly noticing something, and awkwardly averted his gaze from Ursula.

Ursula, narrowing her eyes, watched him.

“…Sora? You were supposed to reassure me by affirming that confidently, weren’t you?”

“Ah, yes, of course, I won’t. I mean, why would I?”

Seeing Sora forcing a laugh, Ursula put a hand to her temple and sighed.

She might need to slightly adjust her understanding of Sora. Just as she was contemplating this, she noticed Claira’s gaze upon her.

Seeing Claira with her eyes wide open in surprise, Ursula asked in confusion.

“Claira, is something wrong?”

“No, not exactly… but, were you and Lord Sora close? You seem to converse so naturally…”

Facing Claira’s hesitant question, Ursula tilted her head. She didn’t think she was particularly acting familiarly.

However, now that I think about it, I did speak a lot to the person I reunited with after five years.

Even for me, who usually doesn’t talk much with others, my mouth moved fluently, that’s for sure.

–Perhaps it’s because I didn’t need to care about the name of the Utgarza family?

Ursula interpreted her ease of conversation with Sora in such a way.

The Utgarza family has a history of serving the Mitsurugi family for a long time. Although they didn’t reach the level of the Skyship family or the Kumon family, which have continued from the first generation, they were a more long-standing lineage than, for example, the Berch family, which has rapidly risen in this generation.

Furthermore, they were also a family that monopolized the position of the Police Commissioner, one of the Four Lords, over many generations.

However, when the famous houses and clans are mentioned in the Mitsurugi family, the name of Utgarza is never raised. On the contrary, most of those who heard the name Utgarza always frowned unpleasantly.

The position of the Police Commissioner is deeply involved in this.

The role of the Police Commissioner is to maintain order in Demon Island and the Mitsurugi family. The main mission is the suppression of criminals.

But the opponents are not ordinary criminals. What the Police Commissioner suppresses are crimes related to the Green Woods Eight Banners, so the offenders of the Green Woods Banners were the targets of the Police Commissioner.

Perhaps it would be easier to understand if I said they were military police who regulate crimes within the military.

A Green Woods Banner soldier who has the authority to suspect allies, investigate allies, and arrest allies as criminals. Even though we say ‘arrest’, it’s difficult to capture without harm since both the chaser and the chased are Green Woods Banner soldiers. It wasn’t unusual for there to be casualties when the Police Commissioner acted.

In particular, the former Police Commissioner, Ursula’s father, was competent but often took forcible measures, often resulting in casualties. He often incurred the resentment of others, and it was so much that the bad mouthing about him being a ‘God of Death’ was almost public.

When her father died, Ursula was still small, but she remembers that it was a lonely funeral with few mourners.

And among those few mourners, Ursula clearly remembers the figures of Ayaka Azurite and Sora Mitsurugi…

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