“It’s a bit hard to say, but weren’t you always alone back on Earth? Even when you were employed, although you had subordinates and coworkers, there weren’t many people you were close with.” [Kufo]
“That’s true…” [Ryouma]
“Although you’re fine being by yourself and not being a part of a group, it’s not like you’re not interested in being a part of one, right? So, I think you might have been yearning for something like that unconsciously, and that had an effect on your monster affinity.” [Kufo]
“Well, that’s… That’s just really sad!!” [Ryouma]
What kind of depressing reason is that!? I mean it’s one thing if I were to say it myself, but having someone else tell me that straight to my face really hurts. Not to mention, it’s a god saying it! The trust factor is too darn high!
“Ha ha ha! Well, stuff like that happens when you’re alive. Go on, drink.” [Tekun]
Tekun poured more liquor to my cup and I emptied it.
“But because of that you can form a contract with so many types and in such huge numbers too. Isn’t it fine?” [Kufo]
“That’s true. I’m not dissatisfied with the power.” [Ryouma]
I may not be happy with the reason why, but I’m not exactly unhappy with my affinity.
As the mood changed, I took the opportunity to ask about divine beasts.
“I heard that Reinbach-sama formed a contract with a divine beast. What is a divine beast? From what I hear, they’re supposed to be beasts that have received a divine protection from the gods and has been given the duty to protect its territory.” [Ryouma]
“Exactly. As expected, just by having a contracted human, Riforu Kingdom was able to get the right information.” [Kufo]
“Are those lands important to you gods?” [Ryouma]
“They’re important to us, but they’re also important to the world and to its inhabitants. The territory of the divine beasts, also known as the holy lands, they are the pillars of this world that produces mana.” [Gayn]
“That sounds interesting… Can I hear more about it?” [Ryouma]
“It’s fine. After all, it’s not unrelated to why you were brought here.” [Gayn]
“In fact, it’s something that you should be made privy to. After all, you’re going to be related to the holy land from now on.” [Kufo]
“Related from now on?” [Ryouma]
“Ah, I suppose we should start with an explanation of what the holy lands are. They’re not actually that amazing, though.” [Kufo]
Kufo gathered his thoughts and began talking slowly.
“First, this world has something called mana. The people of this world and the monster beasts use it. Mana is exactly as you understand it, Ryouma.” [Kufo]
“But it’s being consumed faster than it is being made, so you had to supplement this world’s mana with that of Earth’s. And that’s why I was brought to this world.” [Ryouma]
“Exactly. Although it’s unfortunate that the balance between demand and supply is broken, this world continues to produce mana. As for what it is that produces mana, the answer would be the ‘natural environment’.” [Kufo]
Plants and vegetables, stones, rivers and valleys… These natural components of the environment greatly affect the production of mana.
“But while mana is being produced in normal forests, it is also produced in human towns. That being said, the production of mana is higher in places where nature is denser, so the amount produced in towns is insignificant.” [Kufo]
“Mana can be born anywhere within this world. The so-called ‘holy lands’ are just places where the production rate is especially high. They’re highly-efficient territories. As for the conditions, they include: ‘an undeveloped land untouched by humans’ ‘has met a certain size’ ‘abundant with nature’… Something like that.” [Gayn]
“But because of that humans that come from outside and monster beasts that get lost could ruin the place and cause us a lot of headaches. To prevent that, we prepared special monster beasts that we bestowed divine protection upon to protect these places.” [Kufo]
That makes sense. And I think I have an idea of what they meant when they said that I would be related.
After all, I’m trying to go to a place abundant with nature that’s hard for people to enter.
“The Great Forest of Shurus is also a holy land, huh.” [Ryouma]
“Yep. The holy land is located at the center. It is because of the mana produced from the holy land that there are so many precious stones and herbs in the forest. There’s no divine beast, though.” [Kufo]
So not all holy lands were provided with a divine beast, huh?
“Is that alright?” [Ryouma]
“It’s far from humans, so it’s still fine. Besides, while there are no divine beasts, we made sure to tighten the defenses. Well, at least Fernoberia did.” [Tekun]
He’s saying that full of confidence and satisfaction, but it’s not like he’s the one maintaining the defense.
“It’s because the Great Shurus Forest is under Fernoberia’s management. One day, he said, ‘Why don’t I station a divine beast too?’ But then he changed his mind and said, ‘It would be easy if I simply bestowed great power upon a monster beast and left things to it, but that’s too simple’, so he went and tightened the security using only a combination of normal monster beasts and some arrangements with the environment. What do you think about that?” [Kufo]
“I know this is a big deal for me to be putting things this way, but if I were to liken the situation to a game, I would say it’s akin to a self-imposed challenge?” [Ryouma]
“I know what a games is, but ‘self-imposed challenge’?” [Kufo]
“It’s when you intentionally don’t use a tool that you have and limit yourself to accomplish an objective in a game.” [Ryouma]
“Ah! That’s exactly it! That’s exactly how he’s like!” [Kufo]
“You agree with him!?” [Tekun]
“But Fernoberia isn’t playing, you know? He just wanted to make more work for himself. And because he’s so good at delicate stuff like that, he has the nerve to look at my holy land and call it ‘crude’.” [Kufo]
…Apparently, Kufo had an issue with Fernoberia regarding that and he ended up complaining at me until it was time for me to go home.
But I was able to find out about the ecology of the Great Forest, so I’d say the trip to the divine realm this time was worth a lot.