Liliarge had said that it was an unforgiving and dangerous disease.

Pheles, who was holding Liliarge around his arms, left her behind with Tiararose and walked up to Sotiris. He slowly reached out to Sotiris’ throat, and his face turned awfully sad.

“It’s a very rare disease indeed. To see someone in this period afflicted by it… Please, wind, bless him when breathing becomes too hard…”

“…!”

Together with Pheles’ words, a gust of wind flowed and the room overflowed with light. The intensity of it all was evidence of how much the fairies loved Pheles.

Sotiris had been breathing with difficulty, but the next moment he started having an easier time doing so, and he seemed much more calm.

“It’s much better now. Thank you.”

“No need to thank me.”

After confirming that the king’s condition had improved, Pheles went back to Tiararose and held Liliarge once again.

『Thank you, Pheles.』

“No problem. I was able to see his face, so shall we leave for now?”

『Yes.』

If they were to stay for too long, Sotiris would get exhausted. After exchanging a few more words with the king, Tiararose and the others left the room.

After seeing them off, he started talking to Ravina about what had happened a moment ago, without hiding his surprise.

“I never thought anyone could use the power of the Sky Fairies like that.”

“Me either. Still, I’m glad you were able to have an easier time breathing. But who are those people?”

“…”

Ravina tilted her head to the side, remembering Pheles, who hadn’t actually introduced himself to them.

Looking at her face brought a weak smile to Sotiris’ face. He had been afraid of dying because of his unknown disease, but Pheles did that thing to help him, and Liliarge knew so much about it.

Perhaps he could still carry on living.

“Nevertheless, it’s the first time I see that man’s face.”

“Huh? Do you think that maybe you know him from somewhere?”

“No. But… I’ve known that name ever since I was born.”

Sotiris had not failed to notice the fact that Liliarge had called that man ‘Pheles’. That name was the very first thing that Sotiris had learned after being born.

◇ ◇ ◇

“Your Highness, Lady Liliarge… Do you have any idea what my father’s disease could be?”

『A long time ago… I contracted the same disease myself.』

“You too, Lady Liliarge?”

After leaving Sotiris’ room, Tiararose and the others went to the tearoom.

Tiararose and Aquasteed, then Pheles and Liliarge, sat down facing each other on the two sofas and started talking about what happened a few moments ago.

Aquasteed wanted to confirm that with Pheles and Liliarge. From Liliarge’s expression, he could understand that it was not just a regular disease.

Biting his lips, Aquasteed asked about how to treat the disease. Since Liliarge is alive and well, there had to be a cure.

Instead of Liliarge, the one to answer his question was Pheles.

“I only know one way to cure that disease.”

“Only one?”

“Correct. It’s how I once cured Lilia. I did my best, but unfortunately there simply was no other way back then.”

Looking at Pheles shrug was enough to realize that there really must be no other way. If they leave it to the doctors to find a cure, they may be too late.

“And also… That doctor said that the risk of contagion was tremendously low, however, that doesn’t mean that it cannot happen.”

“What? Then I have to tell Mother to leave that room at once!”

“Ah, don’t worry about that.”

Shocked by Pheles’ words, Aquasteed quickly got up in order to tell her mother to leave the room, but he then regained his composure and understood that there was no need to rush.

“Unlike Lilia, someone did die from that disease. It wasn’t until that person died that the disease moved into a different person. I don’t know whether that second person was simply nearby, or just someone chosen at random, or if there are any rules that apply to its contagion. But the disease moves onto a new victim when the previous one dies.”

“So what causes the disease is still unknown?”

“That’s right. It’s rather troublesome, isn’t it? That’s why things will get worse if we don’t treat Sotiris. If this situation doesn’t improve, it’s quite possible that Sotiris’ disease may be passed onto Tiararose.”

Pheles’ serious words made Aquasteed tremble with fear. Tiararose couldn’t hide her terror either, as she found herself covering her own mouth and swallowing her own breath.

Aquasteed was taken aback as he tried to ask Pheles about that one way to cure the disease.

“Could it be… the way to cure the disease is…?”

“Yes, it’s definitely what you’re imagining right now. But I can’t get it right away.”

Tiararose got worried seeing the troubled Aquasteed. There is a way to cure the disease, and it’s something that Aquasteed can do. That much can be understood by their conversation.

But at the same time she felt as if there was something severely relentless about that one way.

— I’ll support whatever Aqua decides to do.

『Don’t worry, Tiara. Let’s believe in them.』

“Lady Lilia! Yes. I believe in Aqua, after all.”

Liliarge jumped over the table and landed on Tiararose’s knees. She was able to calm down a bit by gently stroking her fluffiness.

Given Pheles’ previous statement, it may be some time before they can obtain that thing that will cure Sotiris. Tiararose watched over the Aquasteed, who was submerged in deep thoughts, as she wondered if there was anything she could do to help.

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