C6: Prologue (end)
“Looks like we got away with it.”
“That magic was incredible.”
The three members of the heroic party, except for Kagehiko, were standing in a grassy field tens of kilometers away from the royal capital of the Brave Kingdom. In Yuji’s hand, he held a white bird feather. It was one of the powerful magic items he brought back from the Demon King’s Castle, and it had the power of spatial transfer.
“That’s Kurono-san. I’m glad that he prepared an escape route in anticipation of the king’s betrayal.”
Yuji’s voice was filled with respect for his older companion. The nominal leader of the party was of course the [hero] Yuuji Shirai. However, Yuji thought that the real leader was Kagehiko Kurono.
Kagehiko was basically a fast-paced and lazy man, a model of a bad adult. However, when it came down to it, he was always there to help the party with his wealth of magic. Because he was the oldest, he also took the initiative in negotiations with the authorities of other countries. Although he never said it out loud, Yuji and the others really relied on Kagehiko, who was always aloof and never lost his composure.
“Then again, is the……thief thing serious?”
Rena said in disgust. The three of them had been told beforehand by Kagehiko to use the magic item to escape if the king betrayed them. From that point on, they were to separate from Kagehiko, and no one knew where the oldest of the group was.
Although they were reluctant to part with a dependable adult, in the end they decided to respect Kagehiko’s wishes, saying that he had a dream he wanted to fulfill. He didn’t tell them what that dream was, but they was surprised to learn that it was a childish dream of being a thief.
“Kurono-san had a childish side too.”
Kagehiko, whom he had admired for being an elusive adult, was apparently even more of a child than he had thought. Yuji smiled bitterly.
“Anyway, let’s head to the neighboring country now. Maybe there really is a divine artifact that can bring us back to our world.”
Yuji suggested to Rena and Shinon, who nodded and offered their own opinions.
“Yes, I’ll follow you Yuji.”
“I’m going to the Holy Land. The high priest of that country is a trustworthy man and he will probably help me.”
“Well, shall we go with you to the halfway point?”
“Next time I see you, I’ll be a stronger man. I’ll be a grown man that Mr. Kurono will be proud of.”
Yuji and his friends set out to find a way to return to their world. And so, the party of heroes was dissolved, and each of them began to walk a new path. This happened a month before the appearance of a mysterious thief who calls himself the Shadow Thief.