Chapter 36 Cheating Death – New Members? (Part 4)
Daichi was longingly looking into the distance when Hannah glanced over and asked him what his destination would be once they arrived at the capital.
Without so much as a moment of hesitation Daichi responded “The Lumina Repository”.
Hannah’s eyes widened slightly and then she nodded “That’s a place a lot of people which they could step a foot in. Although you’ll need a lot of qualifications before you so much as get a chance to do that.”
Kaden up ahead made a clicking noise with his tongue expressing his disapproval. In his mind, they were going to one of the most amazing cities on the planet!
One of the four major cities and Daichi’s destination was a library? What a waste! So many beautiful girls in one big city and Daichi wanted to spend his time in a dusty room with dusty books? No wonder he didn’t get along with the guy.
The mare turned were both looking ahead and paying attention to Kaden. Noticing his displeasure the taller girl inquired “What is the Lumina Repository?”
Jumping into explanation mode, Ava began telling the mare about the wonders of the capital and the reason it had grown to become such a powerful state over the years.
“The library in the capital is renowned throughout the entire continent.
It is one of the oldest structures known to man. In fact the entire capital city had originally been built around this structure.
Everyone knows our continent has four major capital cities with the remnants of kingdoms, that still survive in their surroundings. Munten, Sabie, Fiara & Lumina the four major cities that have withstood the test of time.
The four major cities in the world are vast compared to most towns, and all four of them were built around a single ancient structure. All four structures have different values and significance to those cities but the most wondrous of them is the Lumina repository in the capital city of Lumina.”
Looking unimpressed, or possibly extremely shocked to point of being unable to change their facial expressions. It was hard to tell with the mare. Ava elaborated in order to give them some context.
“You see, most towns and academies with enough prestige would have their own repository, covering a general array of topics. The better the books the better the library. The best libraries include some books that contain skills themselves. These towns aren’t that uncommon, and are usually towns with a big academy.”
Glancing at the others and making sure she still had their attention, Ava continued “The library in the capital on the other hand, goes a hundred steps beyond all of those other libraries. The Lumina not only contains a copy of every book that has been written in the past thousand years and more, but it also contains a wide variety of skill books. Hundreds and maybe thousands.”
Seeing the look change on Kaden’s face and even noticing the mare’s footsteps walking a little slower. Ava felt pleased by their reactions.
After all even though the Lumina was well known throughout the entire continent, not everyone knew why or exactly how grand it was. The Kajiya family was in the-know involving a lot of things. Naturally they knew a great deal involving the Lumina.
“Actually… The greatest accomplishment of the Lumina, it’s greatest treasure aren’t those skill books.” Ava said mysteriously…
“Few people actually know, but the greatest treasure that makes the Lumina more than just a library, but worthy of being called a repository of knowledge…
Is that the Lumina contains a separate and very private section which only the truly elite can enter. In this section…”
Finally allowing her own enthusiasm to overtake her Ava let out a huge secret that before the gods awakening, her parents would have scolded her non-stop for divulging,
“The library stores a plethora of books that can teach those with the talent to understand and learn, the very theories behind the creation of various abilities, skills, and mana. The books in this section would grant those with the ability to understand what’s in those books the know-how to create a path for themselves in the world!” Ava said gasping for breath after her long explanation.
Everyone even the mare had stopped walking and were looking at Ava in awe.
The mare were surprised to know that humans had such a wealth of knowledge. Which was more than they’d thought.
Hannah and Kaden were looking stupefied. They’d known the Lumina was an incredible place, but never had they imagined that it was holding such an overwhelmingly powerful base of knowledge.
Even Kaden was moved by Ava’s speech. Kaden was thinking about how many girls would fall for him if he was able to say with honesty, that he was one of the few able to enter the Lumina at will…
Naturally Daichi knew of such things to begin with due to his father being a philosopher. Years ago Daichi’s father had been granted the honor of having one of his books placed into the inner section of the Lumina.
On that trip, Daichi’s father had been allowed not only to enter the Lumina’s outer sector but the inner sector where his book was placed.
Daichi recalled how he had never seen his father so pleased and depressed simultaneously as when we had returned from that trip.
When Daisuke had returned from his trip, he could not stop rambling about the wonders of the Lumina. When he had first seen it he had marveled at it’s size, but once had he had entered the outer section he had been overwhelmed by it’s beauty.
“The second you enter the “Outer” section of the library, which is the largest section of the main building. The very atmosphere changes. There is no ceiling. Instead it’s almost as if you enter another realm! There is a simulated night sky with stars that illuminate the entire library! Apparently it is a long forgotten spell that no one understands.” Daisuke had said with a look of wonder on his face as his hands trembled at the memory
“Once you stop marveling at the wonder of the stars, you notice that in the center of what should be the main floor, in the night sky there is a phrase written in star-light “Lumina in intuneric”. It is from a long forgotten language in our world but there are some books in the library and I was told it had been translated as “Light in the Dark” Daisuke had looked past Daichi in marvel when he said this and then burst out laughing
“I mean, it’s a wonder you will one day need to see for yourself Daichi! I venture to guess that the meaning of that phrase is not as literal as most people interpret it to be, not simply referring to the spell cast or the light in the library but the value of knowledge. You must always remember that.” Daisuke had said to Daichi and the look with which he had said it had been eternally etched into Daichi’s mind.
Daichi had never seen anyone before or since so enraptured by something. Daichi had craved that kind of desire for years, never getting so much as a fleck of it for anything in his life. Not until recently.
Recently Daichi had finally begun to understand his father’s obsession and begun to feel connected to his father for the first time in his life. A spark, a desire for knowledge had been lit within Daichi similar to his fathers.
Daichi could also never forget the absolute depression-filled gaze with which Daisuke had had right after telling Daichi all things.
Daisuke had been granted the privilege of entering not only the outer but inner sector of the library, but never allowed to so much as touch a single book.
What should have been and still was the greatest moment of Daisuke’s life had also been the most heartbreaking experience as well.
Suddenly the world was different though. Daichi was in a different position. Not only had he already gained enough experience and strength to outclass most others his age. Daichi had become exceptional in his own right. Confident in his ability to understand and resolute in his newfound desire.
Besides… Daichi couldn’t help but think that if the capital had been destroyed… Perhaps he could just stroll in and take every book he would ever want to read… Now that would be the best case scenario… Thinking about this Daichi couldn’t help grinning like an idiot (or Kaden).
Everyone had begun to think about their motives and desires for reaching the capital further than the purpose of survival.
Kaden was the only one whose thoughts never veered further than it simply being the only option. In his mind an alternative to reaching another civilization of humans had never crossed his mind. While dreaming of becoming more like his father in his childhood, Kaden had only ever considered the rewards.
The way the people treated his father, the respect and adoration. The looks the women gave him due to his status. The prosperity of their family. Not once had Kaden truly stopped to think about what his father had to do to gain the title of Hero for his village. The acts he had to commit, and the sacrifices he had to make.
It was only after a sudden turn in direction and almost tripping on a branch that Daichi came to his senses and noticed the gloomy expressions on Hannah and Ava.
The mare brought Daichi back from his memory by speaking in their monotone voices unanimously “Amazing.”
Daichi just glanced at them and thought how that was likely the grandest understatement they would never understand.
“Yes, it’s quite amazing. In terms of knowledge, it’s as close to paradise as one can get.” Ava said nonchalantly while fidgeting with her hair for the first time in a while.
Looking in awe, Hannah couldn’t help but ask “Do they really have a copy of every single book written in the past thousand years?”
“Well. Every wide spread book. Some of the ones written by people for their families and such wouldn’t be found there. Still, every book on the major technological advancements from before a thousand years ago until now are definitely in there, not counting historical and miscellaneous texts.” Ava said with the tone of a professor teaching one of her students.
“Technological advancements?” the taller mare probed while leading.
They had been walking for a few hours now with the mare leading.
The mare had been taking strange turns at sporadic intervals making Daichi more and more suspicious.
Daichi while absorbed in his thoughts had allowed this to continue knowing the risks…
In the worst case scenario Daichi would leave the others, after all it was their choice to allow the mare to accompany them. In the best case scenario, the mare would lead them to an ambush and they would be able to swiftly deal with the mare and any other accomplices or just generally deal with them swiftly and as soon as possible.
“Do the mare simply live in the forest? Don’t you venture out? How do the mare live?” Kaden inquired drawing attention away from the mare. While simultaneously asking something everyone was curious about.
The shorter mare replied briskly “We live in the forests. We live in nature. We only live with the natural. We live apart.”
“What do you mean apart??” Kaden pushed
“We generally live by ourselves and attain our own territory. We are solitary creatures.” the shorter mare replied while taking a small pause in her steps, before continuing in a slightly different direction.
“Oh… That sounds so lonely… But you two are together though!” Kaden said with a slightly downcast expression while trying to be upbeat
“We had no seen each other in years before the sky went black. After it did we ran into one another and decided to seek answers together” the shorter mare said, while getting back to a normal pace.
Looking genuinely saddened by this Kaden ventured further to ask “That’s truly sad. Even though you’re both generally alone, it’s amazing what a close rapport you two have together! If you were human you’d be the equivalent of sisters who answer each others sentences! Sort-of!” Kaden finished with some forced enthusiasm.
“We are never truly alone.” the shorter mare said matter of factly.
That last comment disturbing Daichi even more.
Daichi’ was beginning to feel anxious. Every time something suspicious happened Kaden would say something or one of the mare would draw their attention with another question.
The more they said the more questions their answers begged. On top of which their actions were beginning to wear on him, the fact that no one else was saying anything yet or had noticed it… That was beginning to irk him even more.
If no one else was going to demand some answers, Daichi would. In a forest, being lead quite suspiciously, by “people” he didn’t know. Daichi’s trust was at its limit.