You are currently viewing Five, Twenty-three, and Twenty-nine Years Owen’s Collection Chapter 3.5: Meeting the Spiri Raians – Bell Branch Manager

“It has been a long time has it, mister Bell?” the Bell Branch manager greeted from his desk.

Climbing two flights of stairs, the Court Wizards and water spirits have arrived at where the manager was. Entering the office that lay on that floor, they met the man himself who looked like the ages had caught up to him. Nonetheless, the manager was surprisingly calm given the situation.

“Indeed it has, mister Arnald,” Ronald greeted back, taking one of the five chairs that had been moved into this relatively cramped office. The others followed suit with the water spirits floating nearby. “Though we aren’t here for pleasantries.”

“Yes, you’re right,” the manager sighed, slumping in his chair. “I have no excuse to hide this any longer; there is, in fact, an open rebellion against the Kirash monarchy.”

“I see,” Ronald concluded disappointedly. “And how long has this been going on?”

“For years it has been planned for that very moment, I must confess,” the manager confessed. “Admittedly, I’m supposed to stall until the last moment, but after deliberating for so long I decided there is no point doing so.”

“And who told you to do that?” William demanded with his arms crossed.

“Lady Aquarius,” the manager replied. “I believe she has the same standing as you are, mister Trust, is it not?”

“Yes,” William said begrudgingly. “So that confirms she’s doing this behind our backs.”

“But why though?” Alicia asked in concern being a Court Wizard under the greater water spirit.

“Yeah! Why!?”

“Uhn,” Rin nodded in agreement. “Why would Aqua hide this from us?”

“Well, ever since the tragedy of the burning of the Illyer mansion causing the supposed loss of prince Albert and the Illyer family that you have secretly prevented, prince Van ultimately became the ruler of Kirash,” the manager started to iterate, betraying his earlier statement of not stalling. “But as you know, lady Aquarius had publicly denounced him, resulting in the great sea that now separates us from the Fichs.”

“The great sea?” Rin whispered in wonder.

“It is the large body of water separating Kirash and Fichs,” Alicia explained. “After father and Owen’s father saved my mother’s family, they went back with grandfather to meet up with Aqua who has yet to be the Fire Guardian at the time to tell her they were okay.”

“Yeah! Aqua’s like, really mad and wanted to kick Van’s butt in a bad way!”

“So, they instead suggested a different solution,” Alicia continued. “That is erecting an entire ocean to separate the two countries, denying the second prince the conquest of Fichs he desired.”

“And tell everyone else Van’s on Aqua’s naughty list!”

“Whoa!” Rin muttered in awe.

“A lot has happened after that.” Meanwhile, the manager prattled on, “for one, we now know the greater spirits can be angered by harming the people they bless.”

“Oh! I forgot to talk about Aqua’s blessing lady Irene’s family!” Layla realized.

“Uhn?” Rin perked up.

“I have heard of that from mother a lot before,” Alicia said.

“Basically, you know we seek humans to name us to have a relationship with them, right?” Layla explained with a question to which the human girls nodded. “Well, the greater spirits want that too.”

“Oh, I guess they would yearn for that connection too,” Alicia muttered. “But they already have named themselves.”

“And that’s why the next best thing is the blessing,” Layla nodded with her arms to her waist.

“So is that why Aqua blessed my mother’s family?” Alicia asked.

“That’s right,” the water spirit confirmed. “She’s the first to do it, in fact. She saw the first Illyer for what he is and decided to give him her blessing. Soon, the other greater spirits start conferring their blessings as well.”

“Ooh,” Rin ooed in awe. “What does it do?”

“Nothing,” Layla answered nonchalantly, causing the girls to do a double take. Somehow, Owen felt this was to be expected but was still surprising nonetheless. “Same thing with how nothing really happens when humans name us.”

“Ah! But everyone else would think otherwise, correct?” Alicia realized.

“Aqua saying she blessed the Illyers is already breaching impartiality enough. Actually giving boosts to them is a no-no,” Layla continued. “Even so, that doesn’t stop everyone from thinking there are. I’m talking about instant fame, everyone and their grandma swearing fealty to them, the Illyer territory getting bigger and bigger, and most importantly them being a magnet for us water spirits wanting to get named by them.”

“Is that why you chose my mother?” Alicia then inquired with a hint of disappointment in her tone.

That’s understandable to Owen. Especially that girl, many people would approach Alicia for her family’s wealth. This has the same vibe.

“Um, no. I’ve wandered around the Illyers mansion way before lady Irene was even born. If I was that much infatuated I would’ve gotten my name by then,” Layla refuted with puffed cheeks. “But I didn’t ’cause the Illyers got way over their heads with the blessing at that time.”

“Oh. Is that so?”

“Yeah,” Layla nodded. “It’s only until your grandpa that things gotten better, but the problem is until then we pretty much gave them a wide berth, and well… some people took the wrong conclusions.”

“So that jerk thought it’d be a good idea to pick a fight with grandpa!?”

“Uh-huh, and he was successful at that,” Layla confirmed solemnly. “Truthfully, Aqua told me if it weren’t for your fathers, she probably wouldn’t cross the line and done all of that.”

“I see…”

“Impartial to the end, huh?” Was all Owen muttered regards to all of this.


“Thanks in part to that and your intervention, the Illyer territory remained intact,” the manager then continued. “I could not imagine this land being carved up after lord Illyer’s absence.”

“True. Hopefully, Kirash doesn’t fall into that after this is over,” Ronald remarked.

“Hm?” the manager raised an eyebrow. “I thought you Court Wizards preferred it that way?”

“You misunderstand, we are not in the business of splitting countries apart,” Ronald immediately shot it down. “When we say it’s better for there to be multiple kingdoms under an alliance than one united kingdom, it’s only because it’s marginally the least likely to go downhill. Mostly.

“With one large kingdom, if it’s ruled by a tyrant, then everyone suffers; at the same time, if it’s a good ruler, then it will bring prosperity, especially when the ruler can arguably get things done faster than multiple people sharing power struggling to even decide on something. But again, it really depends on who’s in charge and the risk generally makes it not worth it in our world.

“It’s a hit or miss sort of thing. That’s why we say multiple kingdoms are better as it’ll limit the damages of one idiot on one of those thrones, but it’s just as likely that all of those thrones are sat upon by the same kind of despots.”

“I see. That is certainly something to take in,” the manager said.

“While our organization strives to make worlds better places to live in, fracturing ‘bad’ nations is not the answer,” Ronald continued. “Smaller nations are bound to be weaker. Even if they are united in a coalition, they are still ultimately divided and can easily be sowed discord to by the whim of a bigger one. So it may be better if they were more united to balance the scales.

“Furthermore, we prefer reforming nations instead of toppling them down and then replacing them or fracturing them, too much blood will have to be spilled for that to happen. That’s why we have left the Fichs alone despite what it is, not that we would be able to intervene anyway when we’ve only discovered this world long after the empire’s expansionism phase.

“Also, in this kind of era, countries conquering other countries is a natural thing, as immoral as we would think of it. On the other hand, if people want to free themselves from such a predicament, that resolve has to come from themselves, it cannot be something that is seeded upon them by outsiders, be they other nations or even us. Countries instigating separatist movements in other countries by tricking their people only do it to weaken and control them. Divide and conquer.

“Case in point, the self-determination of people must originate from themselves, not through the incitement of others.

“We may nudge a few things here and there only to ensure a good outcome of such conflict, but we certainly will not be the ones who started it,” Ronald admitted and denied. “Unless we absolutely have to. It’s complicated. The next generation may see things differently than us, but that’s not for us to know. Also, different worlds have different standards, so what I’ve said applies differently too, as infuriating as it is.”

Bruh! Daddy’s dragging this longer than mister manager is! (Voice)

Well, you know how my father is. Once he gets into it, he is not going to stop until he finishes his point. (Alicia)

Your father better finishes this soon. (William)

Uhn? Why are we talking in [Telepathy]? (Rin)

Beats me, the pixie started it.

“So while the second prince becoming king is bad in our eyes.” As if Ronald heard the secret conversation the kids were taking care not to let spill over to him, he finished, “it’s not to the point that we’re going to do something drastic like overthrowing him or the like. He’s still the legitimate ruler of Kirash whether we liked it or not, whether Aqua disapproved of him or not.

“If the people of Kirash are to rebel against him, then that’ll be from their self-determination, or by one of the nobles. As long it’s not from outside forces meddling, it’s fine. Besides, Aqua has already taken care of Van a long time ago, we have no reason to start a rebellion.”

The manager blinked, taking a few moments to let Ronald’s words sink in. “…Right,” he muttered. “About that…”

“We were the source of the rebellion,” Ronald said with a frown, the ‘we’ referring to the Court itself.

“Well, after lady Aquarius denounced the then-second prince, king Van had to deal with numerous revolts under her name against his rule,” the manager explained.

Of course, there are still people using Aqua to do whatever they want. (William)

“While troublesome,” the manager continued. “Being himself, he has managed to suppress them and leave minimal damage. Eventually, the revolts began to dwindle as he reaffirmed his grip on the kingdom.”

“Yes, we’ve heard that much,” Ronald confirmed with a nod. “But then what makes the latest rebellion so special that even Aqua was willing to conceal this from us?”

“To that end, I must make one final revelation,” the manager said with closed eyes. “…It has to do with mister Ruze.”

“…Dad?” Owen widened his eyes.

To say it was a bombshell would be an overstatement. The Court Wizards knew Owen’s father was somewhere in Spiri Raia and here the manager confirmed it. Nonetheless, the implications the manager conveyed the confirmation was the surprise.

“So Joshua did end up here,” Ronald said in a serious tone.

“Indeed,” the manager nodded guiltily. “Truthfully, he has been here for a long time… and we, lady Aquarius had known for a similarly long time as well.”

“Damn, to think he was right under our noses this entire time,” Ronald cursed, palming his forehead. “How did we not look for the obvious place he could have been?”


“Then what does dad have been doing the entire time!?” Owen shouted after having the facts settled in, standing up from his seat rather quickly. “Why didn’t he come back!?”

“Owen!” Alicia said worriedly.

“Uhn…!” Rin clenched her hands worriedly.

“Are you good there!?”

“I’m alright, Alicia,” Owen reassured her, calming himself down. “It’s just…”

“Does mister Ruze not contacting us after reabsorbing enough maneg have to do with the rebellion going on?” William then decided to take the logical guess to the manager. “This also refers to Aqua being a part of it with her deliberately hiding this from us.” Narrowing his eyes. “Rebellions from what we saw from the distance that scale don’t happen overnight.”

“…Yes,” the manager confessed, his head hung low. “Mister Ruze is involved with the current rebellion.”

“…Then, why would dad do that?” Owen muttered.

“For that question, I can take it from here. Thank you for your effort, manager of the Illyer Bell Branch.”

Whether because they were too engrossed with the situation at hand or something else, the Court Wizards did not notice the oncoming signature until she was right at their faces. Phasing directly through the window, an adult woman 170cm tall with a slender build with long wavy red hair flowing like liquid as was the rest of her body which was glowing red revealed herself along with the spherical red liquids that always follow her around.

“Wah!” Neptune jolted back.

“A-Aqua!?” Layla muttered in surprise. “W-What are you doing here?”

“Well, I am here because I believe it is time to lift the veil,” Aqua explained as she drifted to the middle of the room. “About the current situation I have voluntarily kept hidden from the Court and of Owen’s father.”

“Dammit, so you were hiding this,” William growled.

Owen, on the other hand, was not concerned about that. “So dad was here this whole time and you knew?” he demanded to which the Fire Guardian nodded. “Then why!?”

“I would explain it here myself, but I do not believe it would be satisfactory,” Aqua shook her head. “Instead, I will take you to your father this instant.”

Azhure: So, what you do all think of this sub-chapter? Is it good? Are there any problems with it? Any reviews or feedback is appreciated as long as they’re not plain insults meant to blow off your stress.

Voice: Don’t do that to people! Not even on the internet!

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