Editor: Kabur & Silavin
On the Floor where the elves lived in the southern tower, there was a giant tree.
It was the World Tree, and the elves had built a village around it.
However, there was only one building within a one-kilometer radius of the World Tree.
To the elves, the World Tree is a “Sacred Tree,” and it was a natural philosophy to stay away from the tree.
Only a limited number of people could enter the one and only one building and its surroundings.
Only Collete, the Priestess of the World Tree, and Kousuke, who was recognized by Esena, the Fairy of the World Tree.
The current situation was that Kousuke and Collete were allowed to approach the World Tree.
It was an unspoken agreement.
One elf was about to enter the off-limits area.
However, no one tried to stop him, even though they were watching him.
This was because Collete had issued a notice allowing entry.
The Elf’s name was Sheryl.
She was a former Priestess of the World Tree.
The reason why Sheryl was allowed to enter was simply because she was a former Priestess of the World Tree.
The Priestess of the World Tree sometimes had the same authority as a Messenger of the Gods for the elves.
It was only natural that the elves would respect someone who had once served as a Priestess, even if she was a former one.
Of course, they did not have as powerful a voice as the current Priestesses, but that did not keep Sheryl from being respected by the elves.
Nevertheless, there was a reason why Sheryl was allowed to enter the forbidden area in this way.
That reason lay before her.
The area around the tree was covered with multiple layers of overlapping roots of the World Tree.
Only there, however, the roots had been stretched out in such a way as if it was avoiding the area, leaving the ground bare.
On the ground, Collete was lying with her eyes closed.
This was the reason why Sheryl was allowed to enter.
Collete was in the middle of training to improve her power.
Collete was lying at the foot of the World Tree with her eyes closed, but she was not just sleeping.
It was a different state from the sleep that ordinary people are in.
Thanks to Kousuke’s Divine Blessing, Collete was able to connect more deeply with the spirits, but it was not enough.
She was trying to improve her power.
To put it bluntly, she wanted to evolve just like the rest of the group.
As for Peach, it was not explicitly said that she had evolved, but it was clear from the attitude of Sylvia and Kousuke that she was not saying that for a reason.
Perhaps it was not only for Collete, but for the other members as well.
And right now, she was the only one who had not evolved.
That did not mean that she was in a hurry.
Unlike humans, elves had a long lifespan.
It would be good if she could evolve during that time, but she did not think that she could be content to leave the rest to chance because of her long life span.
It was true that elves have a longer lifespan than humans, but time being finite makes no difference.
The reason she lays there with her eyes closed was to avoid letting in unnecessary information entering her mind.
She was trying to be as relaxed as possible, to only let in information about the spirits.
However, seeing the spirits and hearing their voices was no different from before.
Even elves who had sensitive senses would be able to do so.
If that was the case, Collete’s goal of evolving into a high elf would be a completely different matter.
Looking at Collete lying down, Sheryl spoke as she looked into the void.
“How does it look?”
As if in response to her words, Esena appeared out of Sheryl’s line of sight.
If it was near the World Tree, she could appear even if Kousuke was not by her side.
When Esena appeared, she tilted her head for a moment before answering.
“It hasn’t worked out yet.”
At that reply, Sheryl let out a sigh.
It had already been three years since Collete had started this kind of training.
Sheryl didn’t know if it was going well or not.
The reason Sheryl wanted to check in on her was to see if there were any changes in her condition.
Recently, Collete had been in this state over a period of several days.
Every once in a while she would wake up, drink some water, and go back to the same state again.
Sheryl not only visits to check on her, but she was also entrusted with the management of the South Tower.
She merely merely came to report if there were any major changes in the situation.
Sheryl did not want to be involved in the management of the tower without permission.
Even though Kousuke had given his consent.
Sheryl was helping Collete because she understood what she was doing, but she did not want to go any further than that.
In the end, Collete did not wake up that day, and Sheryl returned to the village as usual.
One day, while spending such unchanging days.
Finally, a change occurred.
When Sheryl visited the administrative floor, she heard from Shrein that Sylvia had finally given birth to a child.
She informed Collete, who had woken previously, that Sylvia was pregnant.
Before meeting Kousuke, Collete had been working with Sylvia as an adventurer and was very pleased to hear that Sylvia was pregnant.
She was so happy that she had to leave her training to go and see her.
Now that she had woken up once more, the story of Sylvia’s safe delivery would be the most interesting one for her to hear.
It had been a long time since she had entered a state of sleep, so it would not be surprising if she woke up anytime soon.
Sheryl was about to go to the base of the World Tree with the information that Collete had been waiting for, when she was stopped by an unexpected group of people.
They were a trio of high elves.
Sheryl asked, surprised to see three of the rarely seen High Elves present.
“Have you not noticed? Or perhaps she hasn’t come back yet?”
Liston nodded in agreement to the other three, not answering Sheryl’s question.
Zephyr noticed this and advised him with a wry smile.
“We’ll be waiting here, so bring the priestess back as soon as you can. We want to give our blessing.”
Sera added after Zephyr.
It went without saying now who the Priestess they were referring to.
At least there was only one person who was called Priestess by the three High Elves.
After bowing to the three High Elves, Sheryl hurried over to Collete and saw that she was glowing as she lay there.
Upon closer inspection, she saw that Collete herself was not glowing, but that spirits were flying around her as if to bless her.
As soon as Sheryl approached, the light disappeared.
Sheryl mistakenly thought it was because she was getting closer, but it was simply because Collete had awakened and the spirits had moved slightly away.
“… Hmm? Sheryl?”
“Collete! You finally managed to do it, right?”
Sheryl jumped at Collete, who was dazzled by the light of the spirits flying around her.
This was an accomplishment she had not been able to do when she was Priestess.
Without a doubt, Sheryl could see that Collete was evolving into a High Elf.
However, Collete looked a bit troubled.
“Oh, yeah. I was able to evolve, but apparently I became a different race than a High Elf.”
Sheryl was surprised by the unexpected words.
“Well, then, what did you become? Or rather, how did you know?”
“Before I woke up, the Goddess Spica told me in a dream. I was able to successfully become a Spirit Elf.”
Hearing Collete’s words, Sheryl’s mind went blank for a moment.
Collete was still scratching her cheek with a troubled expression on her face.
Spirit Elves were a race of people who were said to be the primordial elves, different from both elves and high elves.
However, even though they have been said to exist, their existence seemed to have finally emerged out of mythology.
Some people would even laugh it off as something which raised eyebrows on other people.
Sheryl, revived from her blanked out state, was astonished at the magnitude of what had happened.
Not that the elves on the Floor would do anything to Collete, who had become a Spirit Elf, but she was definitely going to be an object of worship.
If she was not good enough, she might even surpass Kousuke in terms of status in the elven community.
Perhaps Collete saw through these concerns, smiled and remarked.
“Don’t worry, Kousuke won’t care about that. Besides, neither I nor Esena would allow such a thing.”
Sheryl’s concern was that the elves would say they would leave Kousuke’s protection.
It was not wrong to be so concerned, since for all the elven races, Spirit Elves were as good as Gods.
“I, I see.”
Esena certainly never allowed such a thing to happen.
Of course, as Collete herself said, there was no way she would permit such a thing.
Thus, Collete’s evolution into a Spirit Elf brought gradual but definite changes to the Elven community.