Chapter 39: The Birth of [it]
That morning, the users of Drain and Nullify Magic were exhausted. The previous night, the prisoners of the wizard prison had escaped.
Upon realizing the prisoners’ escape in the middle of the night, the guards rang the bell and summoned the Drain and Nullify wizards using carrier birds. If a wizard escaped, their magic power had to be drained first to immobilize them.
It was discovered that the prisoners took advantage of not having their magic completely drained and slowly cut through the iron bars and escaped through the windows.
“It’s because you guys slacked off!”
The prison manager was furious. The Drain and Nullify wizards had no words to respond and hung their heads. They knew that if they made excuses like being busy and tired, they would receive even harsher reprimands.
The prison manager, a user of Fire Magic, had always been domineering towards the Drain and Nullify wizards.
The escaped prisoners fled while stealing magic power from the wizards they encountered along the way. However, in the end, they were stopped at the entrance of the royal castle by non-magical soldiers.
These soldiers had no magic power, and the other magic skills they possessed were insufficient. While they hesitated, they were surrounded and captured by members of the elite Mage Corps, who were skilled in offensive magic.
Afterward, once all the escaped prisoners had their magic power completely drained, it was already dawn. So, by the time it was time to showcase the new magic to the Prime Minister, the Drain and Nullify wizards were all exhausted.
“Now, all of you. Today, we will be showcasing the new magic to Prime Minister-sama for the first time. Make sure there are no failures.”
Upon hearing this from the Mage Corps Captain, Brent, both the Wind Magic users and the Drain and Nullify Magic users, although tired, became enthusiastic. Henry, who was in charge of the magic circle for expansion and convergence, was also enthusiastic.
Due to the tired participants’ determination of “this is the moment to shine, we can’t use tiredness as an excuse,” the new magic became slightly exaggerated. Henry had increased the magnification rate slightly more than the calculated number to deal with the unseen new magic.
In this way, as everyone became more and more conscious of making it bigger and bigger, the showcased large-scale whirlwind was activated without anyone being able to see it.
It was a truly strange showcase.
The first activation of the new magic was invisible, and since the prisoners who were supposed to confirm the magic’s effect had their magic power drained the night before, there was no opportunity for human experimentation. It ended with just an atmosphere of “it seems the spell was activated.”
Seeing the Prime Minister’s stern face due to the showcase with unknown results, the magic users became anxious, and during the second attempt, everyone put their full effort into casting the new magic. As a result, the converged and expanded whirlwind became seventy to eighty times larger than when Conrad was attacked.
The second experiment also couldn’t be seen by anyone. The Prime Minister said, “Next time, use the prisoners as targets so we can observe the effect,” and the showcase ended with a subtle atmosphere.
The gathered wizards disbanded, but the unleashed whirlwind moved forward, leaving the wizards in the training grounds behind and absorbing the magical power of the wizards walking along the corridor.
The magical power-holding maids, the fire wizard cook, and the water wizard working in the garden suddenly collapsed, causing small commotions throughout the castle.
The whirlwind, which was unexpectedly large from its creation, slowly advanced, getting closer to the presence of magical power and absorbing it.
Eventually, the whirlwind collided with the high walls surrounding the castle but effortlessly crossed over them and continued its journey into the streets of the capital city.
Those who collapsed inside the castle fell into a deep sleep. Soon, rumors spread from person to person, saying, “It seems there was a rampage during the unveiling of a new magic.”
Upon receiving reports of the depletion of magical power within the castle, the Prime Minister’s understanding ended with a mere acknowledgment, saying, “Hmm, the effect was indeed successful.”
The feeble wizards, upon being created, lost their power and disappeared once their magical power was absorbed. However, the [entity] created within the castle continued to absorb magical power without vanishing.
The [entity] that infiltrated the capital city slowly moved forward, wriggling and absorbing the magical power of the working wizards in the city.
In the capital city, many wizards gathered from all over the country to work. Suddenly, these wizards experienced a depletion of magical power and collapsed in a panic. Although their lives were not taken, they all fell into a state of unconsciousness for two to three days due to the depletion of magical power.
After traversing the lively city for several days, the [entity] entered the rural area where fields and forests coexisted, leaving behind dozens of victims.
Birds, sensing the presence of unfamiliar magical power for the first time, flew away, while goats, horses, and cows in the pasture tried to escape and became agitated. Some livestock even broke through fences to run away.
Causing panic among the frightened livestock, the [entity] entered the forest.
The dense and powerful concentration of magical power caused wild animals to panic. Rabbits, foxes, wildcats, deer, and boars, which usually avoided human eyes, fled through the forest in a state of confusion, regardless of being predator or prey.
“People in the rural area noticed the animals’ panic and became restless. However, since there were few people with magical power in the rural area, no harm befell them, and the [entity] passed by without a clear cause.
Guided by the magical veins flowing throughout the world, the [entity] slowly made its way to Sloane Territory, located to the west of the capital city.
“Lord Conrad! Something terrible is happening!”
The news reached Conrad Sloane a few days after the new magic was showcased in the royal castle.
“What’s going on? What’s the commotion about?”
“Wild animals are rampaging and heading towards our territory as if being chased by something. In addition, our officials in the capital city have informed us that those with magical power are experiencing consecutive depletions and falling into an unconscious state. Should we inform those with magical power?”
“Depletion of magical power…”
Conrad recalled the incident of magical power depletion from some time ago. He also remembered Haru’s words when he was affected, saying, “It’s because of the whirlwind that absorbs magical power.”
“Have the hunters protect the town. Whether with bows, spears, or stones, make the animals change their direction. Contact those with magical power individually. And then, sound the alarm for [evacuation to their homes]. We must protect the people from the beasts.”
Only four months remained until the great disaster foreseen by Pauline.