Chapter 56 – Another Me
“It’s been a while and nice to meet you. Lord Tourus and me.” The woman with the red dress said that while giving a curtsy with impeccable polite manners.
Her appearance resembled mine, Altirea Wisp’s.
However, she is clearly older than me. A bystander could easily mistake us as sisters.
But the only children of the Wisp family are me and Tourus. There are no secret children, and if there was one, the dolls would have surely found out about them already.
“Who are you?” In the midst of the confusion within my head, I spouted those words out, “Are you something made by the Sage?”
“… Seems like you didn’t listen.” She shrugged as she said that.
Even this simple gesture took my breath away, and I could only stare at her… She had a certain regal aura to her that made it hard for me to take my eyes off.
“Or was it perhaps my way of saying it? I’m sorry, %$!%$#&@%.” She said.
The last word in her sentence was not in the language of the empire… Or rather, it was not of this world.
For a moment, my brain couldn’t quite process it, but…
–’I’ understood it.
It was not by logic, but by intuition. This was my name back in Japan… Back before I had reincarnated.
“Why do you know that?” I couldn’t help asking her.
My own name… I didn’t tell anyone about it, not even the dolls.
“Did the Sage teach you that?” I asked her.
“I don’t hate the idea of pushing everything against that guy, but…” The woman giggled a bit, then gave off a mysterious smile, “I’m afraid this is my original knowledge. You just can’t forget your own name, right?”
“I don’t get it.” I told her.
Gradually, my confusion was becoming frustration.
Who is this woman?
There can’t be two of the same person. She has to be a fake…
–I then remembered the visions that the Sage showed me.
The original Altirea. The Sage taught her how to create artificial life.
In that case, the Sage himself should be able to do it. Maybe he made a copy that looks exactly like me.
Then, when I trampled him while we were in the spiritual world… It must have been at that time. The Sage must have looked into my memory and poured it into an artificial life.
Yes. This has to be it.
“Shall I guess what’s on your head?” The artificial life spoke, with a voice that sounded just like my own, “That woman isn’t human. She must be an artificial life or something… Did I get it right?”
“Yes. And I’m correct, aren’t I?” I asked back.
“You’re truly stubborn…” The woman sighed, “It’s a bit embarrassing to think that I used to be like this too…
“You clashed with Asklasua too, right? In Malgaroid or Lucemia, or something, right? In a country with a name like that.” The woman asked.
I do know of Malgaroid, since I was there up until ten days ago.
But Lucemia? I never heard of that one. There should be no country with that name in the territory of the human race…
As I didn’t answer her question, the woman continued, “From your expression, I guess you did. In that case, you must have went through that horrible experience in your dreams.
“The ends of the multiple Altirea Wisp. Of lives that you and I weren’t involved in.
“They met ruin just like they did in the original, didn’t they?”
She’s not wrong.
So many things happened since, that it feels like it happened years ago, but… It was actually just a month ago.
The Sage entered my heart and threw me into an endless nightmare.
The despair and downfall of Altirea Wisp. I experienced it hundreds of thousands of times.
“Those were not hallucinations. The Sage said that those lives happened in worlds similar to this one, right? Something akin to parallel worlds.
“In that case, it shouldn’t be that strange that there is another world where %$!%$#&@% reincarnated, right?” The woman asked me.
When she puts it like that, it’s hard to make a counterargument.
It’s hard to judge if she is making this up, or if it’s the truth… What exactly she is, is currently a mystery, but… I cannot say that what she is stating is an impossibility.
“Then, let me ask you something.” I said.
Before I knew it, the palms of my hands were sweating… Somehow, this woman was pressuring me, spinning my words against me.
“How did you come to this world? I never heard of such magic.” I asked.
“Eh? That’s strange. Didn’t you hear it from a doll or something?” The woman tilted her neck, “Like in the old myth? People opened the door to another world in order to fight back against the tyranny of the gods.”
I certainly know about that. Weisster told me about it.
Asklasua was the one that appeared through that portal. He killed the gods and took their seat for himself, doing whatever he wanted in the years that followed it.
“The corrupt aristocrats of the empire’s capital did the same.” That woman said.
“They opened the door to another world…? For what?” I asked.
“For what else? To counter you. They asked for the power of another world in order to deal with Altirea Wisp, who had the terrifying spirit dolls and could, at any moment, attack and destroy the empire’s capital.
“And that’s how I came here. Old men are quite troublesome, aren’t they?” The woman replied.
Doll magic against doll magic… A strategy of using fire to fight against fire… I suppose it would make sense that they didn’t send their own troops to directly attack the Wisp territory in that case.
However, one question still remains, “Tell me then. If you’re me from another world, then why are you following the corrupt aristocracy?
“If you’re bound by magic or something, then I might be able to do something about it.” I asked her.
The different doll magic that I used when Kajero was about to be turned to ashes. To interfere with the threads of fate… If I used that, I might be able to free her.
However… “Oh wow, wasn’t I a total gooody-two-shoes back in the day?” For some reason, that woman sighed, “You think I can’t do the things you can? Don’t you think that the spiritual shackles have long been erased, and instead the aristocracy are the ones who are my puppets?”
“In that case, why did you attack?” I asked.
–Would you get angry if I said it was to harass you?” She replied.
“I wouldn’t get angry, for it makes no sense. There’s no reason for a me of another world to resent me.” I told her.
“It’s not resentment… Oh, it looks like it’s gonna rain again.” The different world me suddenly looked up to the skies.
Although the rain stopped just a small while back, the clouds were started to gather once more.
“Well, I guess that’s enough for our talking while we stand, isn’t it?” The woman said.
I wonder if she’ll then say that we’ll have to continue our conversation later, at the empire’s capital… It’s the kind of line that would certainly fit the current situation.
But instead, the me of another world very naturally slipped right to my side, “Can we continue it inside the fortress instead? I want tea and sweets.” then said this.
… She spoke as if the two of were super close and had a great relationship with one another.
Author’s Note: This Altirea went through various experiences and ended up with a good personality.