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If you called it ridiculous, I wouldn’t disagree.

I can still remember it now.

A cool spring morning.

It was just happenstance that I caught a glimpse of that child.

The gleam of his soul was so small. Incomparable to Ottar and them.

But it was beautiful. Translucent. A color unlike any I had seen before.

—I want it.

The moment I saw it, that thought struck me.

A gorgeous light, a rare color, a powerful sparkle. I have a bad habit of wanting to collect the souls that catch my attention when I see them.

At first it was just an unvarnished lust.

I chuckled in the back of my mind when he looked so heatedly at me, and I approached that child who like a baby rabbit was so cautious of his surroundings, and I reached out for the magic stone hidden in his breast.

“You dropped this.”

It began with a lie.

The start was just a fib.

Because the one who met him first was Syr and not Freya.

“I’m Syr Flover, Bell.”

If it were my usual self, I would have just tried to steal him right away. I would have found out the familia he belonged to, and if it turned out not to be bothersome, I would have approached like the cruelest of witches and stolen him away.

But at the time, I controlled myself.

Because it was Syr who had met him and not Freya.

It was a game. Role playing.

So I decided to go at it differently, for a change of pace. I decided to restrain my divine arrogance just a little bit, and watch him develop for a little while. It was still me after all, though. I was sure I would end up not being able to resist and reach out to take him before too long. So I figured why not wait a little at first.

Moreover, I had failed so many times before.

My true wish is to happen across my Odr.

God or child, it mattered not to me. I searched for so long for someone worthy of standing beside me, in the heavens and in the mortal realm as well. So I had my hopes up for the child, for that soul was like none I had seen before. I decided to treat his soul more carefully, more preciously, more deliberately, to draw out its true shine.

Thus began a relationship between a boy and a girl, different from anything else I had done. To anyone who knew me, it would seem quite slow and uncharacteristically passive.

Thinking back now, that might have been a mistake.

At first it went just like I’d expected.

I was not content to just sit back and wait, so I incited the silverback, and thinking he was lacking, I gave him a grimoire. To make him stronger, worthier. While interacting with him in the tavern and when I stared down from Babel all those days, my thoughts were only of my future Odr, and so I tried to polish that child’s soul.

But unexpectedly, something started to grow strange.

It was not sudden.

Quietly, slowly, before I even realized it, the gears stopped meshing and started to creak. A ripple spread across the cool, calm spring beneath the moonlight. My divine will was gradually corrupted by the clear water.

There were signs.

Even as I was preparing the minotaur trial where he might easily die, I appeared before him as Syr that night and said something strange.

“But you don’t have to go on adventures, right?”

It was wholly contradictory. Laughably absurd.

Those words praying for his life in the mortal realm, even though I had decided I would chase after his soul if it was returned to the heavens. When coming back from the tavern, I cocked my head in confusion at my own actions.

At the time, I concluded that I had gotten a little too much into my role playing. Sure, Syr might say something like that, but that was not my will. I had become too focused on the roll of the dice.

And the slight discrepancies began to increase.

The frequency of my interventions decreased, and I acted more to protect him. His return from ruin, when I spurred him to face the minotaur once more when he was on the verge of awakening, I grew agitated and ordered my followers that he not be allowed to die.

My time as Freya decreased, and my time as Syr increased.

I was astonished when I realized it. Something had changed inside me.

What was the cause?

Because I had kept making such clumsy lunches like an innocent maiden?

Did the name I had received from Hörn somehow exert some sway over my body?

Or was it because that child was so utterly foolish and pitifully naive and straightforward?

Was it because his potential and the way he chased after what should have been an unreachable goal at full speed was so brilliant that it made my unchanging self jealous?

I don’t know. I don’t think there was any direct reason. If I had to put it into words, I could only say it just sort of happened.

It wasn’t long before I was constantly watching him, searching for him at all times.

When I gave him the packed lunches.

I loved the smile that spread across his face.

When he was talking to another woman.

It bothered me just a bit when his face grew red because some other woman was teasing him.

When his pure white will showed hints of gloom.

When he was worried, hurt, yet still holding his head up and trying to keep pressing forward, I really thought, without any ulterior motive, that I wanted to support him.

And, and, and…

There were so many examples, I could not list them all, even as I spent laughably trivial moments of time with him—and in the course of it all, I fell in love with him.

I did not understand it. I realized it was an exceedingly embarrassing thing. I did not want to acknowledge it at all.

But I was attracted to him.

Not as a deity, but as a woman.

It was easier and simpler once I acknowledged that fact.

But at the same time, I could hear my thoughts as a goddess scoffing at that idiotic result in the back of my ears.

I mean, obviously, right?

I had become so engrossed in a child during my role playing, as the resident of a game.

Silly does not begin to describe it. Hopeless does not begin to describe it.

I was just playing a part. I was just looking down on the game board that was the mortal realm and controlling a piece on the board, a single little girl. Unlike a normal board game, the characters were not wood or stone pieces—they had will; they had life. But so what? I changed my voice, moved the Syr piece, interacted with them, but when I realized I was just looking down at the board from above, I was gripped by a terrible emptiness. It was like falling in love with characters in a book, like dreaming of a rendezvous with a fictional character. Everyone knew it was impossible to live in the world of fairy tales.


The one who saw him first was me, the goddess.

But the one who fell for him was me, the girl.

So it could not happen as Freya.

What I was chasing after had to be attained by Syr to have any meaning.

Syr should have just been a means to Freya’s end, but somewhere along the line, things had been turned on their head.

At some point I was freed from the goddess’s yoke. I embraced anew the hope that I should have cast aside tens of thousands of years ago. And a breakdown occurred.

And this is the result.

I cannot gain anything as Syr anymore. So I just threw away that game piece and returned to my original self. As Freya, I was true to myself and to the lust I had felt all along.

To make that soul mine. To have my maddening Odr with me. To keep him to myself.

I do not need any proof. In the end, I have only love.

Ahnya and all the other pieces on the board looking up at me and saying I’m not Syr. Demanding I give back Syr.

What a joke. I told them already there is no Syr. I can’t help laughing at the ridiculousness of those girls. And at myself for being so hurt by that reaction.

I spent a little too long as Syr.

And using that opening, he and Hestia flipped the whole board on me.


…It’s not that.

A voice.

A voice echoing in my head all along has been muddling my heart.

—When will you realize what it is you really want?

Ahhh, so annoying.

The voice of someone who should already be dead and buried still echoes in my heart—






Extract from a note found in a hidden room in Erlandr’s Cathedral.

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