In A Different World With A Smartphone - Chapter 233
Arc 24: The King is Busy in Many Ways
Chapter 233: The Sea Dragon, and 「Laboratory」
Southwest of this continent, going exactly west from Great Forest Sea, were two islands. One was vertically big and long while the other was ⅓ the size of the previous one, and both could be seen forming a line.
The larger island was called Igrand, and the smaller Marlette. The two islands combined were called the Igrette Kingdom.
The Igrette Kingdom didn't have any particular resource that was sticking out. It seemed to be a splendid country with a temperate climate and a beautiful unspoiled scenery due to it being surrounded by the sea.
This country appeared to be rural with a culture falling behind against the other countries, but even a country like this had something that couldn't be defeated by those other countries.
It is the existence the Sea Serpent, a sea dragon.
This dragon lived near the shores of Igrette and was being respected by its citizens as a guardian deity. Approximately 100 years ago when the Sandora Kingdom invaded them, it was passed on in a legend that this dragon only sank the ships of Sandora.
There's another legend being handed down on that island. It said that the day when the sea dragon was seen, they would be able to get a large catch.
「So, do you know the one they call the Sea Serpent?」(Touya)
『Yes. It's one of my dependants. It's a type that, by nature, likes to associate with humans, so perhaps he liked the humans living on those islands』(Ruli)
Having heard that there's a dragon, I then went to that Igrette kingdom in a company of Ruli. I sit on Ruli's back who had turned into a huge dragon, and we were heading towards those islands. It was quite comfortable, but I still put up a shield since the wind was intense.
「Oh, I can see it」(Touya)
The isolated islands were seen at the end of the horizon. Is that the Igrette Kingdom?
『Lord. The sea dragon has come to greet you』(Ruli)
Looking below per Ruli's voice, I saw the face of a dragon peeping from the surface of the sea. It raised the sea up and down, wiggling its body like a snake. It was really huge. It's even bigger than Ruli. There was buoyancy in the sea, so there were no big burdens on the body of large creatures. This was probably the reason why it's easier for large creatures to be born at the sea.
『Long time no see, Sea Dragon』(Ruli)
『It's good to be in the presence of the gracious Blue Emperor-sama. Also, Mochizuki Touya-sama, the Lord of the Blue Emperor-sama, welcome to Igrette』(Sea Serpent)
「Huh? You know who I am?」(Touya)
『Yes. The incident on Drachen island has been transmitted amongst the dragons』(Sea Serpent)
Huhuh. Surprisingly, it has become something similar to a rumor. Oh well. We did kill more than half of the dragons in that island after all. The reason why they aren't holding a grudge is thanks to Ruli's influence.
Dragons basically didn't try to oppose humans. If humans had seriously tried to defeat dragons, they would know how difficult it would be. However, the reckless rampage of the young dragons who didn't know something like that due to their long years of living caused the incident that time. It could be said though that the reason was pretty much because they hadn't been educated.
「Even so, you knew well that we would be coming, didn't you?」(Touya)
『I've heard about it from a bird familiar. As such, the ruins that Touya-sama has been searching for turned up to be in the depths of the cave where I myself have been roosting』(Sea Serpent)
「Ah. So that's how it is. Then I guess I can ask you to guide us there」(Touya)
『With pleasure』(Sea Serpent)
We followed the sea dragon that began swimming, moving from side to side.
The sea dragon headed to the small island of the Igrette kingdom. It then entered a thin cave between the rocks after we'd approached the quay of Marlette. We'd also followed suit and entered the cave. We then came out into a space that's considerably large.
It's like a secret base here. I got off from Ruli's back onto a rock inside the cave.
『The ruins you're aiming for are in the end of a cave located deeper that way』(Sea Dragon)
I, having followed the eyes of the sea dragon, could see the cave which led to more depths. I see. Is it in the end of that cave?
It seemed they had a great deal to talk about as well, so I left Ruli with the sea dragon and advanced alone to the depths of the cave.
The rock surface was indiscriminately and smoothly wet. Is it because the surface becomes submerged in the sea when the tide comes in? I advanced through the cave that looked like a pathway for awhile, and I finally reached the object inside of it soon afterward.
The shape was a genuine sphere. I could only see a black globe five meters or more in diameter at first glance, but there were magic stones resembling a marble embedded on its sides with thin slit-like geometric patterns running through.
「Let's see what will happen when I pour magic power in them, for now」(Touya)
I poured fire attribute magic into the red magic stone. Then, the red light started shining from the magic stone towards the slit extending along on the surface of the globe.
The light, while occasionally breaking and bending on its path, encircled the sphere and returned back to the red magic stone.
The blue, green, brown, yellow, and purple stones released lines of light the same way. Finally, when the white light of the no attribute magic run through the globe, it cluttered like a puzzle and its surface slid one by one, opening a small entrance.
The entrance silently closed as I set foot inside, and I saw a magic formation drawn on the floor, scattered in pieces, in the middle of a faint light.
「Wait, wait a moment. Say, is this...?」(Touya)
The pattern was drawn on what appears to be square tiles. Each one was disconnected from the others, allowing them to be moved.
A slide puzzle. The one where the digits were supposed to be lined up in the right order.
It's a puzzle where the part for the number  had been omitted and where assembling it back to its original form required the scattered pieces to be slid one by one using the vacant space.
This one was made of the magic formation laid down on the floor. The magic formation for transfer will probably activate when I line up the puzzle correctly.
The problem was the number of the panels. I'd counted them, and they were in a 10 x 10 matrix, making it a hundred pieces in total. No. Accurately speaking, there were 99 pieces with one piece being left out to allow the other parts to move. Furthermore, it would've been better if those panels were numbers since the difficulty of the slide puzzle jumped up if a picture had to be assembled.
「What an absolutely troublesome puzzle...」(Touya)
I muttered so while sliding the panels on the floor.
That reminds me, grandpa has said a long time ago that there's a slight trick for slide puzzles.
In case they have to be lined up like this, the ones the should be aligned first are...
The ones outside should be done first followed by aligning the inner side adjacent to it.
Like that, and finally,
The panels had to be put together. The puzzle would be completed with this method no matter how large the number of panels it had.
The problem was that this was a panel of a picture. I couldn't move them if I didn't understand which part of the whole a certain panel was.
It would be quite helpful if the original picture was present but....
I spent some time silently moving the puzzle. Assembling it took too much time, so I'd decided to tell Ruli to head back via telepathy.
99 pieces was nonetheless a huge number... In addition to that, the puzzle wasn't a picture but a pattern. As such, this was.... I had no way of knowing if a panel was the correct one until they were properly aligned next to each other.
Nevertheless, I continued to repeat this plain tiresome work. Then, light overflew from the transfer formation on the floor when I'd managed to somehow complete the puzzle, and I'd been instantly transferred.
I'd been swallowed in the usual whirlpool of light, and the familiar scenery of Babylon spread in front of my sight after my dazzled eyes got used to the blinding light.
I could see a white building in between the trees shaking in the wind. Is that [Laboratory]?
Then, somebody came walking to this place as I stepped out of the transfer formation to walk towards the building. Is that the [Laboratory] manager? She had brown hair with three braids placed together, and she's coming towards here in a brisk manner. Based on her appearance, she should be one or two years younger than me.
「Welcome to [Laboratory]. I am this [Laboratory] terminal and manager. My name is Atlantica. Please call me Tica」(Tica)
I faltered a little while looking at the girl who bent her waist politely and greeted me. Her movements were similar to the secretary of the president from a certain company. She seemed to be a diligent and proper girl. Her way of speaking was fluent as well. I guess I can say that she's difficult to deal with for the rough Monica in a certain sense.
「Tica, is it? Nice to meet you. I am──」(Touya)
「Mochizuki Touya-sama, right. I've heard about you from the professor」(Tica)
「From the professor?」(Touya)
「Yes. [The Jewel of Future Vision] that the professor had constructed allowed her to know that Touya-sama would at least come to [Garden] and [Laboratory]」(Tica)
Come to think of it, an artifact like that exists in [Warehouse]. Though it didn't activate even if I tried using it. According to Palshie, the [Warehouse] manager, someone with the same biological wavelength is required for the power of the jewel to reach the future. In other words, I couldn't use it because there's no one that has all the magic attributes in the future.
It, therefore, meant that there wouldn't be anyone that was born having all of the attributes for another 5000 years from now on as the worst case scenario. Unless the flow of the history changed.
I'd tried letting Linzie use it to test the theory, and an old man whom we didn't know of was reflected. As such, I didn't think it's broken. I felt strange thinking that maybe this old man was currently living in this era as a kid.
「Then, how many [Babylon] parts has Touya-sama managed to gather so far?」(Tica)
「This is the last one. I've already found the others and they are all docked together」(Touya)
「I see. This is sufficient enough for someone who's confirmed person. I will then transfer [Laboratory] and me, Atlantica, under master's contract」(Tica)
Having said so, Tica took out a small stick containing an object that looked like a round cotton from her chest pocket and handed it over to me.
「Please put this in your mouth」(Tica)
I held the stick in my mouth as I'd been told, and I was then instructed to take it out after a few minutes.
Tica, having received the cotton swab that I'd taken out, held all of it in her mouth.
「Registration compete. Master's genes have been memorized. From now on, the ownership of [Laboratory], and myself, Babylon number 22, Atlantica are transferred to master」(Tica)
「Is there anything wrong?」(Tica)
「No, nothing in particular...」(Touya)
It wasn't a kiss like before. No, it's not like I was looking forward to it, right!? Or perhaps I should say it was a bit of a letdown.
Perhaps this girl had drawn a line on an act like that because she looked diligent.
「Then please, this way. There is one more job I want master to do before I explain about [Laboratory]」(Tica)
I entered one of the [Laboratory] buildings while being led by Tica.
[Laboratory] was divided into several buildings, and it appeared that each one had a different purpose.
The place we'd entered was called the First Lab. Apparently, Shesca and the rest of the Babylon numbers were born here.
A whole lot of huge objects that appeared to be sleeping capsules similar to the ones in [Alchemy Building] had been installed into the walls. Some sort of luminescent fluid that's quite unknown to me was floating inside the transparent tubes. There were also some raw materials soaked in what looked like formalin floating inside the tubes. This was exactly what could be called as a suspicious [Laboratory].
This was somehow similar to a human experimental facility (It may exactly be like that though), so I was slightly uncomfortable. It even looks like it can remodel a human...Haven't they already made several of those? Though they are closer to cyborgs than remodeled humans.
Tica took me to the front of a cylindrical machine installed in the innermost part of the room and pointed at the part of that machine that acted like a window of a coffin.
The face of a young girl floating in a solution and shining in a light green light could be seen through the glass. Her seemingly long platinum blonde hair could be seen, but I couldn't quite recognize her since I could only see through the window the part from the forehead till the chin. It's difficult to understand because her eyes were closed, but she vaguely resembled Tica in front of my eyes. No, she was similar to all Babylon numbers.
「Say, is this child...」(Touya)
「Babylon number 29. The last number. She's our youngest sister」(Tica)
Has there been 10 people all in all?........ Was she abandoned in the middle of development, or was there some reason not to wake her up?
I was thinking of those things when Tica suddenly threw an extra large bomb at me.
「And at the same time, she's our biological parent, Professor Regina Babylon. I want master to assist with waking her up」(Tica)