Section 16: Selfless Love
[Iris]: “……..The older sister’s, older sister? ……..In here?”
I know it’s rude to point, but I had to confirm with the older gnome sister what was being claimed here. I pointed at the gnome sister before then tracing my finger through the air and towards the cold, crushed sphere in the ground.
The two gnomes were bouncing around while nodding their heads.
One word after another flitted across their stone slabs, disappearing after a second before being replaced by a new one.
They were taking turns throwing up their stone slabs, trying to work together to form a coherent sentence with their limited character space. All the while tears and snot trickling down their faces.
Out of nowhere, the sphere began crumbling away.
[Lapris]: “Nu!? This thing’s breaking on its own……”
The cracks running down the sphere were growing deeper, and chunks of its outer shell were collapsing onto the ground.
[Lapris]: “Get back Litzreich!”
As the sphere’s self-destruction progressed onto the point where everything had been completely broken down, a single gnome stepped up and stood on top of the wreckage.
No, it might look like it’s standing at first glance, but she is actually floating slightly off the ground.
Her body is swaying through the air like a leaf that had fallen to the surface of a gently flowing stream.
Although she was wearing an old-fashioned dress just like her younger sisters, her face is much more mature than those two’s.
The two sisters rushed ahead of Litzreich. The word ≪Sister≫ scrawled across both their slabs as they ran up to the gnome that had just appeared from inside the sphere.
Lapris tried grabbing their hands to stop them, but her own short little arms got nothing but air.
A second later, a huge crack appeared in the ground where the two sisters were standing.
Neither of them were able to react in time to the sudden hole that had split open underneath them, and they were about to fall in just like that.
Since they’re gnomes, I’m sure they would be fine even if they did get swallowed up into the ground, but who knows what kind of state they would be in the next time we meet.
That one gnome golem was incredibly more sturdy than any of these bold loires, and we were barely able to destroy it. We would be in big trouble if something were to happen to the sisters and we had to fight more of them.
[Carol]: “Oops. It’d be troubling if you two were to get caught after we just saved you.”
But Carol moved before I could. Just before the sisters were swallowed up by the huge hole, she came sprinting in from the side and scooped them up.
*Grogogogogogogogo-gon!!* The cave was filled with the sound of rock breaking and scraping against itself as the hole closed back up.
[Iris]: “Thank you Carol!!”
I rushed to Carol’s side who, after safely landing back on her feet, was setting the two gnome sisters back on the ground.
[Carol]: “You can’t go getting lost after all the help we’ve given. You still need paid me back for having saved you and everything.”
[Iris]: “Geez, Carol”
Even though she doesn’t actually think like that. No wait, Carol might actually think that way? Her way of thinking does tend to fall in the more severe category compared to our other party members. Hmm, which is it? I can’t tell if she’s joking or not just by looking at her face.
≪You saved us≫
Anyways, I’m glad they’re safe. I relaxed my shoulders when I saw that the two sisters were going to be okay, but Lapris’s voice pulled me back to the more pressing problem.
[Lapris]: “Oi, where’d that other gnome go!?”
I turned back towards the pile of rubble that was once the sphere and found that the oldest gnome sister was nowhere to be found.
[Saluena]: “She must have jumped into the hole she created while we were focused on the other two and ran away.”
Saluena voiced her thoughts aloud while brushing her hand across the floor.
[Lapris]: “Tch, I got careless because I didn’t sense any more mana from her. We broke the pod, but she must have had some power in reserve without me noticing.”
[Toslin]: “……..so that means?”
While Lapris was kicking herself with regret, Toslin and Carol were looking strangely joyous.
The only thing reflected in their eyes was the forest of stationary bold loires that had their power cut off.
Ah, I get it. It took them but a second to roll out.
[Carol]: “It’s finally time to strip off the jewels!!”
[Toslin]: “Let’s go Carol!! Don’t leave a single one behind!!”
[Carol & Toslin]: “”Wahooーーーーー!!”
Yeah, just like I figured.
For some reason these bold loires are bedazzled with gems all over their body. I’m guessing it’s so they look more like decorative statues and can catch people off guard.