One by one, my sisters start coming out of the house— first comes Lucy, then Sienna, and finally Arya along with the twins. Just like me, the moments they see the carriage standing majestically in the garden, all of them become completely awestruck.
“Hephaestus did a much better job than I expected. I had my doubts, but I guess your conversation did go well, huh?” Lucy mutters, coming to stand next to me so that others couldn’t hear her.
“Yup, it went well.”
“Wow, brother. It’s so beautiful!” Iris exclaims, her eyes sparking cutely.
“Yeah, but I wonder where the horses are…” Arya says, looking at the front of the carriage in confusion.
Ivy, on the other hand, doesn’t say anything but just keeps staring at the carriage, looking only mildly impressed.
“Lucas, the carriage is really magnificent, but how did you get hold of it in a single day!? It looks so expensive,” Sienna asks.
I guess I have no choice left but to lie to her. No chance of running away like yesterday.
“You see that symbol?” I say, pointing at the door of the carriage.
With a frown, Sienna looks where I am pointing— and her eyes open up wide.
“That symbol… Hammer and anvil…Hephaestus!?” she asks, shocked.
“Yup, a demigod friend of mine is Hephaestus’s son. I contacted him yesterday through a magical item and asked him if I could rent me his best carriage for a few weeks— Well, he agreed but declined to take any money no matter how much I insisted,” I say with a shrug.
“Oh, you got a really nice friend then. By the way, where is the guy who delivered it?” Sienna asks with a frown.
“Yeah, my friend mentioned that the delivery guy had to make another delivery to a town nearby. It was urgent, so he probably left without meeting us,” I continue my lie easily without even batting an eye.
“Ah, I see…”
Sienna looks fairly satisfied with my answers. And thankfully, she doesn’t ask anything about the missing horses like Arya— even I don’t know anything about it yet.
“Anyway, shall we take a look inside?” I ask, rubbing my hands together in excitement.
Getting the approval of everyone, all of us move to the door of the carriage enthusiastically.
The moment I open the door and enter inside, a wide grin forms on my face unintentionally.
Due to magical enhancement, I knew that the carriage is going to be bigger than it appears from outside— but I wasn’t expecting it to be this big. Standing in the middle of a fairly large corridor with more than 20 rooms distributed evenly on both the side, I cannot help but become thrilled like a child.
Magic is amazing…
Even from the inside, the metallic walls are painted to look like real wood, though the floor is completely covered with beautiful tiles. To check how the interior of the rooms is, I open the one directly in from of me, only to find out that it’s already furnished (to my relief) and even has an attached private bathroom.
Although the room slightly smaller than the rooms in our house, the modern look and design make it seem bigger.
“How is it?” I ask with a smirk, turning around to look at my sisters.
None of them answers me. They are rendered speechless.
Chuckling at the dumbfounded look on their faces, I close the door and start moving to the left side of the corridor. After passing several other rooms, we exit the corridor and find ourselves in a large dining area with a medium-sized, fully equipped kitchen occupying the entire right portion of the room.
The dining table, which is placed on the left side, is big but there are no chairs around it. As its height is really low, it’s easy to tell that one needs to sit down on the floor to eat.
“This is great, isn’t it? We can cook our own food!” I say cheerfully.
Once again, I am greeted with shocked silence. Obviously, I am as surprised as my sisters by the grandness of this magical carriage, but still, I am enjoying their reactions even more.
Laughing again, I turn around and enter the corridor again, intending to explore the other end as well. On the way, my gaze falls on a door slightly different than the others. It’s a bit large in size and there is a small sign attached to it, reading— Common bath.
Hmm… Interesting. I will check it out later.
“I-It’s almost like a house, isn’t it?”
Finally, Iris becomes the first one to break the silence among my sisters, though her voice is really low and timid.
“Not almost, it is. To use this level of Magic…” Sienna mumbles, her voice trailing off.
Well, a God made this carriage so…
“As you can see, my friend upheld the reputation of being the child of Hephaestus,” I say, a bit nervous.
“He upheld it a bit too well, don’t you think? Enough to make a person suspicious,” Lucy whispers in a slightly stern tone, moving closer to me.
“Well, I cannot deny that. Hephaestus has gone a little overboard with this,” I whisper back.
Moving ahead, unlike my expectations, we find a door at the right end of the corridor.
Hmm? Another bedroom or something else?
Excitedly, I open the door— only to be let down immediately. This room is probably the smallest in the entire carriage with a shape similar to the inside of a cone.
A large curved glass is attached to the conical wall in front through which I can see the garden of our house. Directly under this window, there is a bronze table placed with a comfortable looking chair behind it. But other than these two things, the entire room is completely empty.
Hmm… It is the front portion of the carriage— clearly not enlarged by magic though.
What is the purpose of this room!?
“Look, there are some buttons on top of the table!”
Arya says suddenly, pointing at the table.
Getting a closer look, there are indeed some strange buttons fitted on the table— five, to be exact. Evenly placed across the table, there is something written under each of them as well: Driving, Visibility, Attack, Defence, and Miscellaneous.
Out of curiosity, I push the Driving button. Immediately, a small, rectangular cavity appears directly below it and two more buttons rise from inside the table mechanically. Again, there is something written underneath them: Manual and Automatic.
Hmm… Let’s see.
This time, I push the automatic button and the next instant, a low humming noise of gears turning starts resounding inside the room. Though I cannot catch the source of it.
After a few seconds, the noise stops completely, though I cannot see any change anywhere.
“Wait, don’t tell me that this thing broke—”
“Brother, look outside the window!” Arya says.
To my utter shock, there are four huge horses standing in front of the carriage now. From top to bottom, all of them are Black in color, shining impressively in the faint rays of the rising sun.
Why are they shining? They shouldn’t shine like this…
With a frown, I move forward to take a closer look.
Metal! They are made out of metal!
“These horses— they are freaking automation!” I exclaim.
“Settings are changed to Autopilot mode. Please tell me the name of your destination.”
Suddenly, before my sisters could react to what I just said, a cool female interrupts us.