The green light spreading from Ellenoa started to encourage life in everything it touched. The unripe grape vine leaves strewn on the ground started growing and small grains of grapes puffed up.
Theodore couldn't escape from the brilliance either. He looked down at his forearms as a tickling sensation went through his body, then he witnessed an amazing sight.
'…The wounds, they're healed…?'
Although Theo hadn't been seriously injured during the course of the mission, that didn't mean there was no damage. There were shallow bruises, cuts, and muscle damage, and some parts of his skin were still stinging. He hadn't wanted to use healing potions for such minor injuries, so he'd left them alone. However, the wounds and scars were now gone without a trace.
It was a recovery similar to the priests who used divine power. Once the light of vitality reached him, the shallow wounds disappeared, and the fatigue in his body became energy. This was the special ability of the high elves, who had inherited the lineage of the ancient species, Arv. The ability of the high elves was to unconsciously amplify the power of nature and accelerate them when used consciously.
This was the reason the Austen Kingdom had sought Ellenoa as a solution to the drought. They thought it really was possible, which is why they came up with a ridiculous kidnapping plan.
'Now, this healing power is the aftermath of waking up Mitra… So, if she concentrates on someone's recovery, she might be able to cure a fatal injury in a flash.' Theo gulped involuntarily.
Would the Cardinal of Aether, a religion known for its healing power, be able to create a miracle like Ellenoa's? Theo had never met a cardinal before, but he couldn't help being inwardly shaken by this amazing sight. Without blinking, he stared at Mitra and Ellenoa who were wrapped in a green light.
At that moment, Ellenoa's voice was conveyed clearly, [Theodore?]
It wasn't a sound that he heard; the voice was being conveyed through his heart. So far, only Gluttony and Mitra had talked to him in this way as it wasn't possible to access the mind of a magician with strong mental defenses.
Yet Ellenoa was talking directly to Theodore's spirit! So, it was natural for Theodore to feel startled.
[I used your connection with Mitra. It is impossible unless I am touching her like this.]
[S-Something like that is also possible.]
As a magician, it wasn't hard to understand the principle behind it. If Ellenoa had bad intentions, then it would be possible to attack his mind directly. Of course, she would be thrown out by Mitra who would realize her intentions. Mitra wouldn't allow anyone with impure intentions to harm her contractor.
Ellenoa's words calmed Theo down.
[From now on, I will awaken Mitra's essence. I don't know the effect it will have on Theodore due to the contract, so please calm your mind.]
Theo closed his eyes under her guidance. His vision closed off first, then his hearing was cut off as he immersed himself in his mind. The tactile sensations touching his skin dimmed as well, and the odours remaining in his mouth and nose were completely dispelled.
After closing all five senses, his sixth sense would naturally sharpen, and the movements of his circles became clearer.
As he admired the stillness, Ellenoa pulled the handle. She opened the door inside of 'Mitra.'
* * *
In the far distant past, there existed a time when humans were just monkeys swinging stone axes.
There were existences who lived beyond the dimensions of a living thing. They were transcendent, breathing in nature naturally and caring for all life. The intelligent beings gave sacrifices to them, calling them by the title of 'god' and praising them.
The praising voices called them into new forms.
[□□□□, please come commiserate with us!]
The man shouted in front of the magnificent altar, and my name became □□□□. My 'form' was drawn by them, and my presence, which had been free, became captured by the wind. However, I remember that it was myself who accepted their captivity.
For some reason, I thought that discomfort was lovely.
It was a life which couldn't withstand a few months of drought; they couldn't dispel the origins of those who were weak.
They were like ants compared to my power, yet I was delighted by their calls. The cries of my name enriched me.
No one noticed that it was a corruption.
When did I realize that the power which caused me to be praised as Mother Earth started to decline?
The transcendent gods started to become closer to destruction as they moved away from nature. The powerful strength withstood for a long time. Their destiny, which was now closer to humans than nature, had been fixed.
Funnily enough, the gods realized their own ego due to the humans and self-destructed from that enlightenment.
I, □□□□, couldn't stop my own end either.
[…Theodore!] At that time, a sharp voice forced his consciousness away from somewhere.
Theo's mind was dull for a moment, but he soon recalled who the owner of the voice was. It was the high elf who had been talking to him using Mitra's connection.
[Oh, you've woken up! I'm glad.] Ellenoa was sincerely relieved.
As she woke up Mitra's essence, Theodore's consciousness had been pulled in. Right now, Mitra was just a subordinate spirit, but she had the presence beyond an elemental ruler. The consciousness of a human who remained inside her essence would be melted, like it had fallen into lava.
Fortunately, Theodore had broken away before that happened.
[This happened because Theodore's affinity is too high. Please stay separate like you are now.]
Thanks to her explanation, Theo understood how dangerous the situation had been and took in some deep breaths. Deep breathing didn't do anything to his mind, but it wasn't bad for a self-hypnosis. Theo sank into his breathing.
Then Ellenoa said in a loud voice, [Slow down your mind and look down.]
He immediately dropped his gaze.
[·········.] His eyes widened with surprise.
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It was huge. A large mountain of an unknown size was moving below him. The peak pierced through several layers of clouds, and it was impossible to distinguish between the mountain and the plains from a distant.
After several examinations, Theo opened his mouth as he realized what he was looking at. [This is Mitra's prototype?]
[Yes.] Ellenoa answered without any hesitation.
['She' is the essence of the elemental contracted with Theodore. She is the seed of an old deity who existed a few thousand years before the beginning of the present age. The deity was a symbol of abundance and fertility.] Whenever she spoke, several scenes appeared in the flood of memories which Theodore had fallen into.
With the exception of a few scholars, it was a name which nobody remembered anymore. Mother Earth who had a higher status than any other god and who opened the agricultural era…
Her great and divine name was [Mother Earth, Dmitra.]
She was the goddess of earth who was worshipped as Ceres in some countries and Demeter in others.
Dmitra made crops grow and the land fertile. Due to being the source of life and the being which ruled the earth, she had a much higher status than other gods. Theo had never thought that Mitra's identity was this big.
Theo looked down at Mitra unconsciously.
'She' met his eyes.
* * *
"Owaaaaack!" Theo screamed as he was thrown back into reality.
It was because the gaze of the giant entity shook his consciousness. Despite only being a faint trace, it was impossible to make eye contact. She was a god, a transcendent being, a monster that even the legendary 9th Circle magicians had to revere. Theo's body was still shaking nervously from the gaze.
Theo had fallen off his chair and onto the ground.
"…Wow, that was more amazing than I thought it'd be." Ellenoa's voice sounded somewhat exhausted.
"Is this your first experience? Your head might be dizzy so take it slowly…"
"No, it's okay." He had already gone through this three times before, and this was actually his fourth time. Theo had become used to it, so he got up without any hesitation.
Ellenoa opened her tired eyes, but before she could speak, something ran toward Theo.
"Wah!" Theo was surprised by the sudden impact and looked down at his legs. There was no pain from the impact, but he couldn't help frowning. Mitra had grown more than before, looking like a somewhat awkward earth doll. She had grown to the length of Theo's head.
[Deo!] Additionally, she called his name with a clumsy pronunciation.
The image of Dmitra disappeared, and the little girl returned.
As Theo stroked her with a relieved expression, Ellenoa said, "The ceremony was a success. Now, Mitra can exercise the power of a lieutenant elemental. As you can see, she has the ability to grow more."
"Growth… is it?" He certainly could feel that Mitra's power had doubled.
Previously, he had to limit the use of earth magic to efficient things, but now he could use a few more elemental tricks. However, Theo was happy to see the small and cute Mitra. An elemental of this size wasn't burdensome.
"You shouldn't become bigger than me. Understood?"
[Yes?] Mitra tilted her head with a confused expression, while Ellenoa understood Theo's words and smiled.