Finally, it took a lot longer than I planned but it is finished
120 Part 2
“Ah, it’s nothing. I was just surprised to see that Maat seems to be unusually strong.”
The surprised Karen blinked repeatedly as she looked at Haruki’s hand.
Then, she gasped as if her breath had been taken away.
“Not only is she immensely cute, she is also unusually strong, Karaboshi?”
“Yeah… Well, only as far as I can tell…”
To Haruki’s bafflement, Karen’s eyes started to well up in tears.
— What on earth is going through her mind?
Looking into her eyes, Haruki could tell that she was somewhat jealous.
— She must have compared her to Chep…
If you compare a self-proclaimed-princess-freeloader fish with a white, fluffy and strong little bird, everyone would choose the latter.
Anyone who would choose the former would need to get their senses checked.
Karen is one of those healthy people who would choose the latter.
And of course, she would be deeply saddened by the bad karma that had forced that useless fish into her care.
— Poor Karen.
Though Haruki had taken pity on Karen, that didn’t mean he had any intention to trade Maat for that useless fish.
That bad karma might have something to do with her Luck skill. Probably.
Because of that, Haruki thought he should let Karen take care of it.
That’s how much Maat’s cuteness had affected him.
“I don’t know why, but I feel I’m being utterly ridiculed by you two! I have done nothing to deserve this!!”
“Must be just your imagination.”
— Yes. You’re just imagining things.
The voice that came out of Karen’s pocket was that of the devil’s hand, stretching out of the depths of hell.
Nothing good could come out from getting involved with such a thing, so Haruki simply ignored her as if to kick her outstretched hand.
Haruki pondered for a while as he looked through Maat’s skills.
Maat’s skills were comparable to Haruki’s.
Haruki’s are slightly stronger only because Maat’s trees hadn’t been enhanced yet.
However, Haruki and the others had to use the Skill Board to reach those skill levels.
If he were to allocate Maat’s skill points, she could very well surpass Haruki’s level.
And that was just about her skills.
Her physical level was still unknown.
How come such a strong bird had just hatched from an egg?
What guarantee did Haruki have that Maat, being so strong, wouldn’t turn on him?
Haruki’s chest was filled with anxiety and doubt.
But no matter how hard he would think about it, he wouldn’t be able to know for sure.
— Let’s make sure she’s properly tamed for the time being.
Even if Maat would untame herself at some point in the future, all Haruki had to do was to be stronger than her so that he could defeat her, if it came to that.
After making up his mind, Haruki decided to assign points to Maat’s Safeguard skill.
There might have been some better options, but what made Haruki decide was his own curiosity. It was more important for him to know what kind of god would appear under Maat’s Safeguard.
Skill Points: 17 → 15
Safeguard: 1 → MAX
Safeguard: Trial One <??????> → Angel of Judgment <Akatriel>
Haruki unconsciously expressed his amazement with a long breath after seeing the name of Maat’s Safeguard.
Akatriel was one of the angels of the lowest order.
However, contrary to his rank, his power was tremendous, and his role is to be the “head judge” above all other angels.
There is a passage in the second Book of Kings from the Bible that describes Elijah witnessing Akatriel as he ascended to Heaven while surrounded by 1.2 million of his subordinates.
This means he was influential enough to have that many subordinates.
No one would possibly dare to bully or tease him with 1.2 million subordinates backing him up.
In Jewish Kabbalah, Akatriel was also the name of an angel who ascended to the Throne of Glory, so some theorize he could even be the biblical God Himself.
Akatriel was also an angel with many names across different texts, also appearing as Aktariel, Aktriel, Ketriel, Yehadriel, and Akatriel Yah Yehod Sebaoth.
Haruki’s long breath had surely been quite over the top, but it was a fitting reaction knowing that a minor angel had given Maat her Safeguard.
He almost felt as if he was enjoying himself, talking with my comrades who share the same pastimes on the same topic.
“I wish I was protected by an angel, too…”
Of course, in terms of coolness, any of the five more famous seraphs –Raphael, Uriel, Michael, Gabriel, and Lucifer– would have been even more impressive.
However, Akatriel’s element was ”judgment”. Or rather, “trial by ordeal”.
— So cool!!
— Do you think I could get her to trade it to me for Medjed?
— Ahh, I can’t do that, can I? Bummer…
He was eager to exchange it for Medjed, whose element was “transparency”, but he couldn’t do it.
Disappointed, Haruki dropped his shoulders.
Haruki asked Chep to connect Maat to their line so that their experience would be evenly distributed.
With this, she could level up without having to participate in battle.
It would make little to no difference to Maat, but for Haruki, it was a matter of life and death.
If he didn’t limit the amount of experience by increasing the number of people to distribute it to, he could soon end up not being able to fight again.
After connecting her to the pipeline, Haruki decided to keep Maat somewhere safe.
He had already planned something for that, but…
“Hmm? Are you sure? You’d be safer somewhere else, though…”
Maat seemed to think that place was okay.
That place was inside Haruki’s Kokko Feather Necklace, which Haruki had enhanced a few days ago.
Since the amount of feathers had increased, someone with Maat’s size would be able to sneak inside.
However, it wasn’t enough to completely hide her body.
As long as she stuck really close to Haruki while inside the feather necklace, she wouldn’t get in the way of Rhea’s shooting.
— Well, if she said it’s fine…
Haruki then allowed Maat to hide inside his feather necklace
After that, Haruki began his preparations for today’s adventure.
The idea was to practice with Werewolves in order to get used to their bodies, which had become quite stronger in a very short time.
After having leveled up so much, Werewolves offered little to no challenge.
But their abilities were high enough to still be of use to Haruki and the others.
Not being powerful enough doesn’t necessarily mean that one’s not skillful enough.
Relying only on brute strength to go forward will only work until a certain point.
Which is why it was important to train one’s skill with the Werewolves.
They offered the best training to synergize one’s brains and brawns.
“Listen, Maat. You stay out of fights, okay?”
Maat flapped her fluffy wings as if saying “Got it!”
Haruki felt his face melting at her cuteness.
Immediately after that, Rhea slapped Haruki on the back of his head.
Haruki wondered if his head would have split open with the excess of momentum if her slap had been infused with energy.
Remembering that he had a hard time getting back in Rhea’s good books that morning, Haruki panicked and quickly changed his mind, like a playful dog that had been told off after breaking something he shouldn’t have.