When I patted his wet and sticky black hair, his unstable breath gradually regained stability.
Then, as if he had fallen asleep, his breath became calmer and quiet.
I called the prince, who was hiding behind a tree a few steps away and was stretching his head out distinctly, peeping at us.
He was surprised at my calling as if he was caught off looking at something that he shouldn’t look at.
“Can you please help me”
Zen’s body, like a hot stove, was heavier than I thought.
I was inevitably lacking in stamina and strength to walk while carrying him.
I had always been lacking in protecting something.
* * *
Having already been attacked by a monster we encountered while going into the cave, we had no intention of going back inside.
As the next best option, I laid Zen down inside the hollow hole made by old trees between thorny bushes.
His burning body was hardly cooled down.
With a cloth soaked in cold water on his forehead, I looked at his reddening skin helplessly.
The thin patterns that covered his whole body didn’t disappear.
“Mana shock .
Listening to the prince muttering next to me, I tore my inner skirt once again.
If I had known this would happen, I would have brought some handkerchiefs, but I had no choice but to use this instead.
It was fortunate that the dress, ragged on the inside, looked fine on the outside.
Even this kind of appearance would be enough to make Orion pass out.
“Can you please wipe Zen’s body with this”
He hesitated but then accepted the cloth.
He stared at me and Zen in turn with a confused expression, then muttered lowly.
“I heard that if mana shock is delayed for more than a certain period of time, it can’t be fixed anymore.
Especially if it was accompanied with a high fever.”
“Yeah, that’s how normally it is.
That’s because their mana becomes unbalanced as it breaks the core.”
My hand slowly touched Zen’s emaciated face, which he revealed after a long time.
The unquenchable warmth of his cheeks reached my fingertips.
While carefully touching him, I faintly added,
“Zen is a bit different.”
The prince hesitated after hearing my words, then asked,
“Are you also planning to ‘tell me that later’ too”
“If you’re curious, then.
And also if you keep the secret well.”
He closed his mouth, then slowly opened Zen upper clothes and wiped it carefully.
I looked around.
Between the swaying leaves, a rabbit peeked its head out.
As if its big and innocent eyes were low on guard, it stayed and examined us.
The prince’s voice rang lowly and calmly.
“I think I saw the guard’s flag flapping in the distance when I was trying to run away.”
“By guard, are you talking about the knights led by Young Duke Bolton”
“I saw it very far away.
And it quickly disappeared so I can’t be sure.”
Before I could ask more, the prince continued,
“I don’t know about the others, but this person, if he is caught by Young Duke Bolton, will be in danger.”
“Because the mages that aren’t permitted to be around His Majesty couldn’t stay here.”
I recalled the expressionless eyes of the man protecting the emperor’s side.
A man who thoroughly acted according to efficiency and necessity, without regarding any emotions.
Also the terrifying scene, where he slayed and tossed the palace’s workers as if they were wyvern’s food.
“For him, anything threatening other than His Majesty must be excluded and dealt with.”
I slowly nodded at that.
The high-level magic that Zen just showed off was by no means common.
In terms of age, it was no exaggeration to call him a genius.
Although it’s a problem that he couldn’t control the power he has.
It was rather fine for simple low-level magic, but the problem would get serious if the high-level magic was used when his condition wasn’t good.
I swallowed a sigh and changed the topic.
“If they are searching around here, it seems like the wyverns in the vacant lot have been resolved.”
The prince looked like he still wanted to ask about Zen, but he mildly agreed with me.
“Then, Orion will soon come.”
Even if he didn’t, there was the paladin order.
I knew that if need be, Bertin would take the risk and enter the forest alone.
The prince stopped wiping and raised himself.
His eyes looked proud.
The patterns on Zen’s upper body, which was wiped with a high-quality cloth, was already blurred.
The boy’s eyes sparked at me.
Look at this.
Looking at his boastful eyes, I thought for a while then said something awkwardly.
did a good job”
“Because this is something that I can do.
Do you happen to need any other-”
I quickly shook my head when the prince’s gaze slightly looked at Zen’s lower body.
“No, I think that’s enough.”
There was a slight regret on his face.
“Unexpectedly, doing something reduces my anxiety and fear.
But there is no need to reduce your anxiety and fear by wiping other’s bodies.
Well, I do want to know which part has become fine now, but I feel like I shouldn’t know it too.
I had mixed feelings.
Zen’s body, which had complex patterns, was becoming fine, leaving only faint burn marks.
The dangerous atmosphere in the forest had also subsided.
Perhaps he was more relaxed, the prince began to doze off with a cloth in his hand.
Then naturally, his body slipped to the side and settled next to Zen.
“Your Highness, are you sleeping”
Looking at the prince quietly digging into Zen’s side made me laugh.
“Well, he must be tired .
Even if he grew up unwelcomed, when would the prince who grew up in the palace be covered with dirt and roll around the forest
“They look completely different like this.”
How could I think they look similar
Looking at the two, who laid side by side, I turned my stiffened neck to the side.
As I relaxed, finally all the spots around my body screamed.