"[Dragon King's Aura]"
"*Sigh* He's all better now, Germundo.."
"No matter how I see it, what you're doing is extraordinary, Orion-dono.."
"Just don't mention it to others outside the village, alright?"
I don't want troublesome things like nobles coming after me because of my healing powers after all..
Germundo told me that healers were scarce in this continent, even though various diseases run rampant..
Apparently, it was due to the fact that long ago, we didn't need healers considering the medicine from the "Elves Continent" were just that effective against any kind of disease that showed up..
They grew carefree and conceited, that only the "Holy Church" of this continent, based in the city of "Virgo" were healers..
But when the war started, they cut off all trade routes and all kinds of business that had to do with the humans..
It was also rumored that the one who started the war were the human nobles, getting arrogant, and forcibly kidnapping elves to make medicine exclusively for them, totally opposite to the public information that the elves just started attacking to take over our land..
I cannot say for sure, but I for one, am leaning towards the former, since I knew for a fact that it was human nature, and some, mostly give in to their greed, basing on my experiences in the past..
But, this was all speculation until I find out the truth..
For now, I had to wait for this child to wake up..
I look away from Germundo, the village chief, thus ending the conversation, and moved towards the sleeping kid..
Well, if you could call him, a kid..
The reason why I'm saying that is because unlike the humans I've met, this one had two ears that sprouted from his long, brownish-black hair. They seemed to look like it was either wolf or cat ears..
They would twitch from time to time, which was peculiar, leading me to believe they weren't fake..
I couldn't even tell his gender, whether he was a boy or a girl, since it looked like it could be both..
The child also had a tail, again I could not tell the difference between animals, since it looked so unnatural..
So, I tried to access the recesses of my memory, in case my alter-ego had any information about this, but to my surprise, I was suddenly blocked from accessing my memories..
[Aura Persona] has detected [Orion]
Program is now booting up..
Ah, it seems he woke up..
It will be some time before he gets his bearings in order, I suppose..
I guess the [Aura Persona] skill activates by itself, when a new personality is detected..
I have to study more about this in the future, but for now, let's abandon finding out what this child is by myself..
If I cannot do one thing alone, ask for help..
This was one of Mizuki's teachings to the precocious and arrogant me from childhood..
So, I tried to ask the village chief as to what this child's identity was..
After hearing my troubles, he sat down, and told me his story..
According to him, the child was a boy named Jin..
He said that Jin came here with his mother..
Apparently, their race was called [Beastman], and they were part of the [Wolf Tribe], a prestigious clan inside the capital city of "Elshion" located east, towards the "Beast Continent, Feriad"..
But, when their family was visiting the "Human Continent" because his father was a merchant, and wanted to try his hand at trading with the humans, which was a big mistake..
After settling down for a while inside "Libra City", a certain noble saw them, and the mother caught his fancy..
The next day, their house was raided, and the father killed in front of the child's mother..
Fortunately, the child was asleep and couldn't see the tragic sight of his father being murdered when he was just at the age where he learned how to toddle by himself..
After that, they were captured, and taken as slaves for the noble's sick deeds. He included the child, Jin, because he knew that he could find a buyer among his other like-minded noble acquaintances..
But by some twist of fate, when they were travelling to the royal capital, a strange old man passed them by..
From their story, the old man looked to have long hair, and a grey beard, but had eyes filled with intelligence..
He displayed overwhelming strength when faced with the noble's 30 guards using just a swing of his hand, to blow them all away. Because of this, the mother and child were saved, and they were given food, clothing, and a little money from the mysterious old man..
When they turned around to thank him, he suddenly vanished..
I was slightly intrigued by this part, since the mysterious entity may be someone I had to fight in the near future..
I was hoping it wouldn't have to come to beating down old men, but if it was necessary, I would not hesitate..
I am merciless towards those who go against me, no matter who they are..
A silent rage was burning in my chest, further resolving my own self while I listened to the continuation of the story..
Apparently, after a few weeks of travel, they made it to this secluded village, far away from the cities, and met with Germundo by chance, begging him to let them stay here, but in confidence..
The reason why they couldn't cross the border to the east, was because they didn't have any identification, since only Jin's father was a member of the "Merchant Guild" and they would be treated as criminals without it..
Germundo was surprised at two beastmen showing up on his doorstep, but since they looked to be in need of help, he naturally accepted. Since he was taught by the previous chief, his father, to not judge others based on appearance, was the reason he gave me, when I asked why he did what he did..
This guy, is really big-hearted..
I thought to myself, changing my impression of the gruff village chief..
They were avoided at first, but with the chief's help, and active cooperation, the villagers naturally got used to seeing the two, mother and child, and started treating them as if they were villagers themselves..
I guess this village had little prejudice, considering the fact that it was saved by a member of the fairy race..
A few years had passed, and Jin started to play with Sharon, the chief's daughter, thus they became childhood friends that did almost everything together. They were enjoying their peaceful life here in the village..
Well, until now, that is..
That was the end of what Germundo knew, right up to the present..
Right as we were done talking, I heard a groan..
"Guu..huh? Where am I?"
Okay, now that he's awake, I can finally ask what he said that time, when he collapsed at the door..
It was something about his mom being in danger, but I didn't dare to jump into conclusions and rush in there like a reckless idiot, basing my assumptions on a vague cry for help..
It just wouldn't be wise, considering the climate outside..
So, I walked up to where he was sleeping a while ago, and sat down in front of the small boy..
"Hello there, my name is Orion, what's yours?"
Of course, I already knew, but I had to ask him out loud, otherwise it would look suspicious..
So I put on the best gentle smile I could while talking to him, to make him feel at ease..
When he saw my face, I don't think he noticed it, but his tail unconsciously swayed from left to right..
I guess I have that effect when I grin, huh..
Well, I was of course, an expert at faking my emotions to please other people..
Emotions are just a tool to get what you want, was what I thought before I met Mizuki, and the elf children..
I gradually got to know that emotions had a use other than that, but my old habit still dwells withing me..
It's hard to break something you're already used to doing..
Well, no matter. Let's hear his reply..
"U-um, I'm Jin. I am a wolf type beast man.."
His sleepy blue eyes, as blue as the ocean, were darting around the room, seemingly trying to remember something..
It was evident in his anxious expression, but I guess this happens when you're normally in a strange place..
"Okay, Jin, do you know where you are right now?"
I ask, trying to probe his memory to resurface..
"Ah, this is the village chief's house. I used to play here a lot with Sharon, well before we both got sick.. Huh?"
This kid already had the intelligence to observe the situation and surroundings calmly, and analyze it in a short amount of time. How impressive..
He started to touch his body in all different kinds of places, and then stopped at his feet, feeling the warmth..
"Strange, it's gone. I don't feel weak anymore? I can walk, and move fast no-Uwaaaa!"
After abruptly standing up, he was trying out his legs, by slowly wobbling in place, walking, and then sprinting..
Which eventually made his legs give out from the sudden movement, and made him crash into a flower vase placed at a small table in the corner of the room..
"*Chuckle* Now, now.."
I found myself chuckling at the antics of the small wolf-child..
So, I stood up and helped him back to his feet..
"Ah, thanks onii-san.."
That got me..
When Jin looked up at me with upturned eyes, my facade mask was broken in an instant, and I suddenly found my cheeks loosening when I stared back into those deep, big blue eyes..
Coupled with the words, "onii-san" which no one has ever called me that before..
I couldn't speak for my alter-ego though..
Just like Mizuki said, I was weak to kindness being shown straightforwardly...
Or was it kids younger than me..
I can't remember, anyway..
This is bad..
Why is my heart beating this fast..
Am I weak to this kind of thing? No, I must not let myself get swayed, I am a calm, collected, and most of all, intelligent, wise being atop all others, meant to rule over-guh....
Ah, it's over...
I was currently being hugged at the waist by Jin, the small wolf child..
"You smell nice, onii-san. Why is that?"
No, no, no..
Why would you suddenly hug someone because of their smell? Isn't that weird?
I found both of my arms shaking, and were trying to attempt hugging Jin back..
"*Dry laughter*, wha-what do you mean Jin? What about my smell?"
I ask in desperation before my instincts took over..
My arms were currently in midair, with my fingers moving at strange directions, only being held back by my sheer willpower which might not last long in this case..
But just when all hope was lost, a miracle happened..
"Yes, you smell just like, mom.... Eh? Mom...."
Well, it wasn't a good miracle for Jin, but for me, it was slightly better than giving up my dignity..
Which I place in high regard to be concise..
"Where's mom? Oji-san, where's mom?!?"
I got suddenly shocked at being called "Oji-san" but I was relieved that he was looking towards Germundo instead..
Eh, why was I relieved just now?
Anyway, to that question, Germundo suddenly started sweating and began acting like a scared old man..
Was Jin stronger than him, were the idle thoughts I had, observing the situation..
"Ah, that's what were about to ask you. What happened exactly?"
I said to Jin, attempting to calm down both myself, and the situation..
And maybe save the chief from a dark fate, which he was now, exhaling in relief..
You owe me for this, I signaled towards him with my eyes, and turned back to Jin..
After I looked at him, coercing him to speak, he told me his story..
"Uh, yes, mother was sick, so I went to the forest to gather some herbs to heal her. There was no problem there, since I brought my dad's sword with me. But when I got home. some men were destroying the house, and putting mom in a cage, soon after burning our house.."
It was a sad tale, but I still had to continue listening..
"I was very, very angry at the large men who took mom and destroyed the house, but I thought that it was not possible to save mom by myself because there were lots of them, and only one of me. So I opted to ask for help from the village chief, but since I was noisy, I was found by them. I quickly ran, but they shot an arrow at me, making me sleepy.."
Yes, that arrow could have been a tranquilizer, to put him to sleep. Combined with the fact that he was sick with 'frostbite", I'm surprised he even made it this far. Since according to him, his house was at the far end of the village..
Also, I never noticed it before, but was this kid speaking human language or beast man language?
Either was fine for me, since I had the [Continental Language Comprehension] skill..
But if it was the latter, it leads me to question how the humans in this village understood him..
This may need further investigation later, but for now, let's keep quiet..
"And that's when I made it here. Do you know where mom is onii-san?"
Ack, I can't resist those teary, pleading eyes staring at me..
Why is this, of all people, happening to me?
"Yeah, I'll do what I can, Jin.."
I have grown weak..
Not in a physical sense, but you know what I mean..
While wallowing in regret acted towards myself, I searched the area with my new skill, [Aura Map]..
The map size was currently at a 5 kilometer radius around my position, showing all kinds of different colored dots..
These dots represented if someone or something was friendly, neutral, or hostile..
It showed a blue dot if they were friendly, green if neutral, and red if hostile..
If they were dead, or an item, it would appear grey for some time, then disappear, since it only detects magic..
Exactly like a game that my alter-ego used to play before..
The trick was, to use [Aura Perception] and convert it into a 3-dimensional map inside my head..
Spreading my aura into the atmosphere whilst using [Aura Trace] since I have concluded that every living being in the other world, had magic. This was yet to be disproved, since everything sentient that I have encountered so far, had something like a [Mana Core] in their bodies, located at the center..
Humans differed from other races though, as do demonic beasts, so I can easily differentiate between them..
I would explain more about those cores, but since we don't have time. I can only say this..
I was an exception to this rule. Apparently I had something like an [Aura Core] instead..
This led me to believe that it could somehow be used when detecting the other heroes, but that was all a theory for now.
Added with the [Aura Archive] which can hold almost infinite information and processing, it was made easier..
Because of that, the skill was made, but it was not yet in a complete state. But for now, I had to make use of it..
I scanned the map one area after another, until I found a large amount of red dots currently moving in the center of the village, whilst green dots were running away from them..
While 5 green dots were at the center of the enclosure..
I guessed one of them was Jin's mom..
It was a high chance, that they were those people Jin was looking for, wreaking havoc in the village to smoke Jin out, or convincing the village chief to willingly hand him over..
That was one of my speculations observing the situation..
After I confirmed the direction, I cancelled the skill since it takes a large amount of mana whilst activated..
"Your mom is safe, for now. I know where they are. I'll be back soon, wait here.."
I said to Jin while moving to the direction of the door..
But I was suddenly stopped from a pull on my sleeve..
When I turned around, I found Jin looking up at me, with resolute eyes..
Naturally, I predicted what those eyes implied..
As I was about to open my mouth, he stopped me with his words..
"I know that I might be a nuisance to you, onii-san. But that is my mother, and I want to help save her.."
Such determination inside a little body..
"Why, you could stay here and I will bring her back, all the same.."
I ask, slightly curious..
But then he suddenly made a face that didn't understand what I was saying..
"Isn't that natural? She's my family."
Those words struck a chord within me..
I could say nothing back..
I wonder why I never felt like this towards my real parents..
I slightly regretted the fact that I took them for granted, and just made the excuse that they were busy..
But this kid, Jin, made me realize something..
That sometimes, you had to do something stupid, if it's for a loved one..
This went against all my policies in logical thinking, since a little kid was going into the fray of battle with rough adults..
But somehow, his words swayed me, and I found myself ruffling his scruffy black hair before I noticed it..
"Such a stubborn kid, alright, but stay behind me and don't rush in okay?"
With my words as the trigger, Jin suddenly beamed into a smile..
"Un, I will. But don't underestimate me onii-san, I know how to use the sword you know?"
He said that with a slightly arrogant tone, and puffed out his chest in false pride..
I wanted to comment on it, but I just blew air out of my nostrils in reply..
When he saw this, he pouted with his cheeks puffed up. Hard to believe this was a kid at death's door a few hours ago..
"Alright, alright, now, let's move, we don't have any time to lose.."
I said as we went out the front door, into the cold, winter night..
"We'll be going now, Germundo! Evacuate the villagers into a safe place, because this might get rough.."
"Ah, *Dry laughter* Sure, just please don't destroy the village in the process. I beg of you.."
"Well, I'll do my best.."
"See you later, oji-san!"
With our goodbyes, and the chief's pale face as he waved to us, wishing us luck, we started running..
The scenery around me changed more and more as I started moving..
Then, I noticed it..
I was so used to moving fast that I forgot that Jin was coming with me..
I got mad at myself for forgetting that simple fact, and stopped for a second because I thought I had to come get him again and slow down my speed in the process..
But suddenly, a few moments after I stopped, a gust of wind flew past me, making my hair flow in the breeze for a few seconds. Then, the moving object suddenly stopped too, and went back to me..
To my surprise, it was Jin..
"What's wrong, onii-san? Tired already?"
Even though I was only using 10% of my maximum speed, he still managed to keep up with me..
"Right? Right? I'm confident in my legs too, but I never knew you were fast too onii-san. It really surprised me.."
I suddenly went back to reality from my inner thoughts..
It seems I was dazed, being impressed by this mysterious wolf child..
"Ah, what are you talking about? Let's get a move on!"
I said, while flustered, trying to take back what I said out loud..
"Alright, let's go!"
But Jin seemed to not notice my inner turmoil..
I was relieved at that but at the same time, mortified..
I could never predict what this kid would do next, and that was saying something..
It's like he reminded me of someone..
Still, I had no time for these reminisces, and started moving faster, at the same time, testing Jin's speed..
After a few minutes, we made it to the center of the village..
Apparently Jin at his best, could keep up with 14% of my maximum speed, it was an impressive feat that shows how much work he puts in, training by himself..
It could be further improved with someone teaching him though..
I want to teach him the martial arts from my world, but I wasn't someone who could teach others despite being smarter than most people. I didn't want to think about it, but I might have to concede to my alternate personality, just this once..
But this was not the time to think about the future..
It was eerie inside the village square..
There were the men who were breaking into houses, and taking valuables, but that was it..
At the center of this was a carriage..
A luxury carriage with four horses pulling it..
It seemed to have belonged to a noble. Behind the carriage were armed men, stationed to guard a cage filled with women. Some were unconscious, but one was obviously different than the rest..
For this one woman had long wolf ears that were twitching from time to time..
"Is that your mother?"
I pointed towards the cage, and it took a while for Jin to see her since we were far away, and he didn't have enhanced eyesight like me. But then he said..
"Ah, yes, that's her. I hope she's okay.."
It looked to me like she was beaten up quite a bit, and was coughing erratically..
But I couldn't tell the truth to the innocent Jin..
"I'm sure she's alright.."
I said, to make him feel better...
Now, let's do this quick, and finish this fast...
I walk up to the cage nonchalantly, when I heard the carriage door creak open..
What came out was a person dressed gaudily, with puffy sleeves, various jewelry, and an arrogant air around him..
He was also followed by a blonde-haired swordsman?
It was strange, since I couldn't read the swordsman's expression, much less his strength..
I took slight caution at this..
"Finally, the brat came out of hiding. Come to rescue your mother, child? *Snicker*"
I felt like he was mocking Jin, so I released some blood lust unconsciously and withdrew it the next instant..
After that, I saw him and the knight? had beads of sweat on their foreheads..
"Sir, this man is dangerous.."
The knight whispered to the gaudy man..
"Fumu, well then, where are my manners. I am the one known as Tyler Nova, of the proud Nova family, retainers of the king himself! Speak commoner, I allow you to address the one known as I!"
Ah, this is going to be troublesome..
"My name is not cheap enough to be known by the likes of you.."
I said in a calm manner..
But to this, his face boiled up beet red, like an octopus..
"Su-such insolence! Well, I shall let that comment go if you hand over the wolf-kin brat to me. Do it.."
He blathers incessant words towards me, and demanded that I give him Jin right off the bat..
Honestly, were most nobles like this guy, and my foster parents from when I was reincarnated in this world?
Judging a person by their status, their wealth, and appearance..
It makes me sick..
He signaled to the knight to take Jin, but right as he was about to touch his shoulder..
I grabbed his outstretched wrist, and held it in place..
"Take your hand off, or I will rip it right out of your arm.."
I activated a little bit of [Fear Aura] into my voice using my new skill, [Aura Voice]..
It allowed me to mix any aura that's applicable into my own manner of speaking, given the situation..
I thought that the knight would faint after hearing my blatant threat, but it seemed he was stronger than I first thought..
Not because he was only shaking a little bit after he heard me, but..
It was because a gleaming silver long sword was suddenly swung at my hand, after I grabbed his..
Such fine-tuned reflexes, that could only be gained by intense training, and multiple experiences in battle..
I thought, as I dodged the sword swing, along with Jin, taking distance from the unperturbed warrior..
When I looked towards the gaudy man who called himself Tyler, he was quaking in his boots..
Eventually, his legs gave out, and sweat was evident on his face, flowing like a river..
When he finally opened his mouth..
"W-what a-ar-are you-u doing sta-standing around? Kill that man!"
He was having trouble forming words due to his chattering teeth, but he made sure to scream the order to kill loud and clear towards the knight who had good reflexes..
With those words as the trigger, the fight started..
The knight moved faster than before, striking me with the sword, which I had to evade since I wasn't well-versed in swordplay. I tried creating two pistols with [Aura Weapon Creation] which made the knight surprised..
When I looked towards Jin, he was fighting off the guards by himself, which was impressive for a kid..
I knew, judging from his movements, compared to his opponents, that he would handle it by himself easily..
I was too naive..
The fight lasted a few minutes, with the knight dodging my bullets which he adapted to after some time, and Jin supposedly defeated all the guards..
He was currently breaking the lock to the cage while talking with his mother in between..
Just when I was thinking about a strategy to finish this fight quick, a voice resounded..
"I-I have no other choice, but to flee. Do it! Shoot the kid instead!"
At that moment, time slowed down..
While I was preoccupied with the knight, an arrow suddenly shot out towards Jin's direction..
I tried to move, but the knight wouldn't let me..
I was angry at how this knight could even begin to hold me back..
But suddenly, the cage broke open, revealing a giant beast with large fangs and golden eyes..
It looked like one of those fictitious creatures from those stories I used to read..
The beast suddenly leaped in front of Jin, and..
It filled me with rage..
Seeing the spectacle..
"[Aura of Wrath]"
The next moment, a body hit the floor..
Time started moving again..