- 227: Incident
After that, a few days passed.
In that time, the Light Church’s headquarters were -at a glance- passing peaceful days.
Karen-san was endeavoring in her training against the Demon Lords as always, and Yorishiro was purging several number of corrupted components every day.
…Ates’ scheme of taking root into the Knight corps was also steadily proceeding.
It looked like nothing was happening, but things were certainly occurring.
The countdown continues —the countdown to the breakdown of everything.
The first small crack, that could be said to be an omen of this, happened today.
At that day, I was having a heated discussion with the knights about: ‘what is more precious for leg fetishists, the thighs or the back of the foot?’.
In that time, General Grades was participating in it as well, but bad news had come.
“Knight General! This is terrible! An incident has occurred!”
The young knight jumped into the station and said this with lost breath.
“What’s the matter?! Monsters?!” (Grades)
For the knights of the church, an incident normally means monsters.
The Aurora Knights had already been reborn as an actual group that can deal with the monsters under the lead of the new General Grades.
Everyone was trembling in anticipation at the prospects of showing this off, but…
“No, that’s not it!”
The newcomer knight said this with an impatient expression.
“The ones creating an incident are…humans!”
“To think that our first deployment since becoming the Knight General would be against humans. It doesn’t feel right.” (Grades)
The first thing that happened the moment we arrived at the place of the incident were the complains of General Grades.
In reality, the appearance rate of monsters lately has been abnormally low, and it was silent to the point that it felt as if they were waiting for the right moment.
The moment is most likely…the moment we will be encountering the four Demon Lords.
It is as if all monsters were commanded by them, and that in itself was ominous.
“Now now, let’s concentrate on the incident at hand.” (Haine)
It is not only monsters that the knight corps have to deal with; the public order of the Light capital is also an important duty of them.
Depending on the situation, I will also be lending my assistance.
My position in the church has gotten even harder to understand, and it is more like, anything goes for me.
The outline of the situation was the people had barricaded themselves in the metropolitan area.
An armed group suddenly appeared at a certain establishment of Apollon City and trespassed. They took the customers and employees there as hostages, and have barricaded themselves in there.
We knight corps are currently encircling the outside of that establishment. We have closed the escape routes.
“Hey, Haine. What do you think is going on?” (Grades)
“Doesn’t look like it has to do with robbers. If that were the case, they would have robbed money and everything worth it and wouldn’t have taken their sweet time to be encircled by us.” (Haine)
“That’s right. If they were aiming for money, there’s no one who would have chosen this place to do the robbery.” (Grades)
The place we are currently encircling is the Light Grand Library.
It is not only the biggest library in Apollon City, but also said to be the biggest library in the world.
I have used it a number of times myself, so it is a place I am pretty attached to.
What’s there are books about Gods, and I don’t think there’s anything robbers would want to go there to rob.
But if we see it from a different perspective, it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to call it a treasury. The knowledge that humanity has piled up has been stored in this building written in letters. And as you would expect from the biggest library in the world, there’s a lot of old books there. There’s a good amount of books that only exist in this library.
This point was making this incident even more troublesome.
What’s the objective of the perpetrators that have shut themselves in at such a delicate of a place?
“Of course, we will have to take into consideration the employees and customers that are being held hostages. This looks like more trouble than dealing with your run-of-the-mill monsters.” (Grades)
It is just as he says.
For now, what is it we should be doing?
We will warn the barricaded perpetrators with the ethereal speaker, ask about their objective, and hear out their demands.
Just as we thought about this, the other side made a move first.
A single armed person came out from the front entrance of the Light Grand Library.
It wasn’t only me, but many other light knights raised their voice in bewilderment.
Because one of the possible perpetrators was actually a familiar person. It was the previous superior of the light knights after all.
The previous Light Knight General. Abusing his position and authority, that avarice of his had finally bit him back and was fired from his job as Knight General not long ago.
Why is that person here?!
Without caring about our confusion, Dobbe takes out an ethereal speaker as well and speaks out loud with conviction.
“To the mere shadow that was once the Aurora Knight corps and has now rotten to its core! We are the true Aurora Knight corps! The legitimate sword that provides true justice in the Light Church! Its name is Ultimate Justice Aurora Knight corps!!” (Dobbe)
With this, I could now tell at an instant the reason of this incident.
It was so easy to understand now.
“What we demand is the justice and rights that all humans have in this world! Disassemble the high-ups of the current Church that are the source of evil and entrust the church’s administration to us! If you don’t, we will kill all the hostages and burn down this Light Grand Library!!” (Dobbe)
- 228: The enemy of humans are humans
“Knight General, what shall we do?”
The one being called at was the actual Knight General.
Our General Grades.
“Even if you ask me, it doesn’t look like they will be listening to us.” (Grades)
General Grades also looked pretty bummed by this.
This is a group that was newly made for emergencies, and now, its leader was holding his head in pain.
“This is already legit terrorism.” (Haine)
And so, the outline of this matter should be like this.
The decaying faction of the Light Church that had been expelled have congregated due to their dissatisfaction, and have now gone berserk in order to obtain their past glory.
Because of the law, no matter how much they struggle, they have no means of winning. Even if they were to use force straight on to steal it back, they have no chance of winning.
And so, what they have decided on doing was to take citizens hostage to take it in their hands.
They are using the lives of unrelated people to have their wishes granted.
“These people are the worst!” (Haine)
I couldn’t hide the disgust that was welling up inside of me.
Fights are heartless in nature, however, there’s still a line that shouldn’t be crossed.
Even if you can’t win upfront, to attack the weak people that they should be protecting is already the deed of scum. This already can’t even be considered a war.
No matter how big of a justice you stand by, the fact that you have done something like this defeats all purpose.
For scum that doesn’t even understand the rules of fighting, it is impossible to act like humans anymore.
“…But it is true that they have got us where it hurts.” (Grades)
General Grades crosses his arms and groans.
“According to the people that luckily managed to escape, there’s at least more than 100 people inside the Light Grand Church. If we were to include the librarians and employees, the numbers would be even more.” (Grades)
“They have captured that amount of people, so the perpetrators must be quite a lot as well.” (Haine)
“Looking at the number of ethereal cars of the attackers, there should be at least 60 terrorists inside the building.” (Grades)
“Of course, we have punctured the cars to make them unusable!”, a young light knight said.
As expected of General Grades and the new Aurora Knight corps.
Even against human terrorists they are not used to dealing with, their work of grasping the situation is fast.
“But it doesn’t change the fact that this is an incredibly bad situation.” (Grades)
This is the first time I see such a severe expression in Grades.
“In incidents where the perpetrators have barricaded themselves with hostages, it is close to impossible to capture the perpetrators without any sort of damage to the hostages. In this occasion, everything is the worst.” (Grades)
“First of all, the number of hostages is way too many; the perpetrators are also many. If the expected number is at least 60, controlling the situation in an instant would be impossible. If it turns into a melee battle, there’s no doubt that the hostages will also face danger.”
“The place is also the worst, you know. The Light Grand Church has important documents inside it; in other words, a treasury of knowledge. There’s even important documents that only remain there.”
“If the perpetrators were to get desperate and light them on fire, things will get irreversible in a lot of meanings.”
The light knights were bringing out their opinions one after the other, but each one of them were not favorable.
“What are the perpetrators saying?” (Grades)
The question of Grades was answered by a young light knight.
“As always, former General Dobbe is babbling as much as he wants in public. He wants all the current Founders and heroes to quit, and to return him to his position as Knight General.”
“His abilities as a negotiator are abysmal…” (Grades)
I give a proposition to General Grades that was biting his lips.
“How about I deal with Dobbe?” (Haine)
“Don’t don’t. You are one of the center figures in this big reformation, you know? For Dobbe, you are a direct hate target.” (Grades)
If I were to face Dobbe who is a bag full of pride, it would stimulate him in the wrong way huh.
Those people, if I were to encounter them normally, I could have beaten them up in a matter of seconds!
“Also there’s a lot of things we still don’t understand.” (Grades)
Grades says this while stroking his chin.
“The terrorists this time around are at least 60, but what does that mean?” (Grades)
“You will have to elaborate more.” (Haine)
What does he even mean by ‘what does that mean?’.
“Due to the current big reformation, many people who were involved with the corruption had been chased off their job. The Light Church as a whole would have a total of a hundred to two hundreds who were a target of this, but in terms of the Aurora Knight corps, counting that Dobbe there, it would only reach to around ten.” (Grades)
And yet, there are supposed to be 60 terrorists inside the library.
“Of course, if we were to count the people that had light sins and were dealt with by only demoting, it would be a good number, but I don’t think those people would risk the job they barely managed to maintain to join Dobbe’s side.” (Grades)
My very thoughts.
“Even if they were to be fired from the knight corps, the Zeberphon household was still a famous household of the Light Church. Didn’t they gather troops with their assets?” (Haine)
“There’s that possibility, but if they were to do something like that, it would have reached our ears beforehand in some way or another. Don’t you think strange the very fact that those careless people were able to carry out this plan without raising the attention of the knight corps?” (Grades)
We weren’t even able to see a single smoke before they went into action after all.
That they are skilled enough to manage that…is an impossibility.
“Also, now that they have been chased off the Aurora Knights, their divine tools that serve as their method of attack have already been confiscated. Since they have entered into violent actions, it must mean that they have no choice but to rely on simple swords and bows.” (Grades)
Even so…we were still looking at Dobbe who continues shouting at the entrance of the library. In his equipment, it was clear that he had something that was far stronger than a sword or a bow.
“…That’s…without doubt an ethereal weapon, isn’t it?” (Haine)
“Well, you should be the one who is most versed in that, Haine. It is a known truth that the creation of ethereal weapons is prohibited. But in the Wind Church that is said to be the most advanced in research, there’s rumors saying that they possess that kind of technology.” (Grades)
It reminds me of the bombing incident at the heroes match.
“Could this possibly be the evil produced by the reconciliation of the churches? It would mean that those kind of things will be circulated more and more in the underground society.” (Haine)
“Rather than the danger of the future, it looks like the present is already in a dangerous state!” (Grades)
Thinking about the present, the danger of the situation is clearer and clearer.
In the end, there’s a limit to how much a sword and a bow will be able to kill at once. But what if they utilize something similar to the bomb used at the hero match from before?
…The situation would be even harder to deal with.
“Currently, that idiotic Dobbe is just ranting on his own and hasn’t brought out clear demands. For now, we shouldn’t provoke him unnecessarily and have him speak as much as he wants.” (Grades)
“It will be a matter of buying time after all.” (Haine)
But maintaining the current status quo won’t resolve the matter.
This might be one of the most difficult situations we have had to face until now.
The opponent only has the brain of a monkey, and yet, those idiots have obtained the worst kind of weapons and are holding hostages.
We have to avoid hurting the people there and, at the same time, not hurt the documents that would be considered the treasure of humanity.
These are way too delicate of conditions, but even so, we have to take action!
- 229: Clash of objectives
Dobbe, who is no longer a General and is now a simple human, continues doing what he specializes in doing; nonstop talking.
“…And so, the current Founder -Yorishiro- is an evil, underhanded, and lying witch! Just like the shitty hero Karen! Those two are going to bring the Light Church into the path of destruction, and the world will be dyed in evil! That’s why we have stood up! We -the Ultimate Justice Aurora Knight corps- are the true knights of justice of the Light Church! True light knights at heart! If you are of right heart, stand up and defeat evil! If you do that, the sin of abandoning me and dropping me into hell, I will consider making it lighter! Wahahahaha!!” (Dobbe)
His speech was not even worth hearing. But it did serve to extend the current status quo.
However, we can’t go prolonging this too much.
The hostages also have their own stamina and stress limits, and now that they are in a situation where their very life is in danger, their limits will be reaching faster than normal.
We have to tackle this matter as fast as possible, or it will end in a situation that can’t be reversed.
Even so, we couldn’t find a method to breakthrough this situation.
For example; if the wind hero Hyue were here, she would be able to grasp the situation inside with precision using her ultrasound, and would be able to use her accurate sniping to silence them; or if the earth hero Sasae-chan were here, we could burrow underground and break through the place to make a surprise attack at places they wouldn’t expect; however, these girls are currently training to face the Demon Lords in their respective nations.
Even if we were to ask for their help, it would take too much time for them to get here. Moreover, this is a situation that has nothing to do with monsters; this is an internal matter of the Light Church.
We have to resolve this matter on our own.
This alliance and reconciliation wasn’t done in order to ask for help in this kind of matters.
But…with the methods we currently have, the pieces simply don’t fill.
The dark matter I use would not only wipe out Dobbe and the other lowlifes, but also the hostages and the important documents in the library.
Dark matter possesses the highest destructive power in the world and is the ultimate method of destruction, but it lacks the precision. To think that its high destructive power would prove to be its biggest fault at this moment.
“General Grades! Assistant Haine!!”
A young knight runs into the meeting room.
“Reinforcements! Reinforcements have arrived!”
“Reinforcements, you say… This place is currently in a stalemate, and even if we were to increase our numbers, this isn’t a situation that would make a difference—-?!” (Grades)
Contrary to our confusion, the person that entered into the tent was an unexpected person.
“Yes. I am the commander of the reinforcements.” (Ates)
Are you saying that the previous hero has come all the way here?
“The Founder Yorishiro-sama is really hurt by this incident. She said that her own impatient reformation has created displeasure in the surroundings and had created this kind of violence. In order to not lengthen the worry of Yorishiro-sama, there’s the need to suppress the perpetrators as fast as possible.” (Ates)
“We understand that…but…” (Grades)
General Grades wanted to explain the current situation, but before that happened, Ates proclaimed.
“I will be taking command and break into the library. Please select the elimination squad.” (Ates)
Grades and I lost our words at the suddenness of this.
And soon after, we were heavily confused.
“W-Wait please! Inside the building there’s more than 200 hostages! Moreover, the place they are barricading themselves in is the Light Grand Library! It is filled with important documents! If they were to catch on fire in the middle of battle…!” (Grades)
“Even so, there’s no other good option, right? In that case, no matter how much time we take, it would be the same —no, the more time we take, the more chances they will notice our hesitation, and it will make the terrorists more confident.” (Ates)
“In that case, we have to take a firm attitude and break in to wipe out the perpetrators at once. We have to thoroughly teach those insects how fearsome we are and that such methods won’t work against us. A number of casualties can later be handled as sacrificing a few for the greater good.” (Ates)
“Don’t joke around!” (Haine)
I glare at Ates straight on.
“Like hell I would accept humans being killed for such a reason! We will save all the hostages. We won’t hurt the treasures of the past either. Those are the conditions!” (Haine)
“It is nice to be idealistic, but ideals that can’t be made into reality are simply delusions. Are you saying you have a great plan that can make that ideal a reality?” (Ates)
I couldn’t say anything.
If I had such a convenient method, we would have already done it a long time ago.
More people enter the tent; they were no other than Yorishiro and Karen-san.
The heads of the Light Church were currently gathered here!
“Yorishiro-sama! Karen-san!” (Ates)
“Ates-san, I don’t remember giving you permission to mobilize. If you belittle my intentions, I will have you leave the Light Church.” (Yorishiro)
“Also, I will have you stop your talks as if you were talking in my sted and recreating it as you imagine. I will be speaking my words with my own mouth.” (Yorishiro)
“…I am truly sorry.” (Ates)
That Ates came here arbitrarily, and yet, she planned on wrapping it all up on her own?
Karen-san runs towards me.
“I am glad I made it in time. Actually… a completely different report arrived to Yorishiro-sama. It was supposed to be a really small incident, and there was apparently no need to report to Yorishiro-sama. Just in case, I checked the details of the report myself, and we were both surprised!” (Karen)
It must have been Ates who bribed the secretary or had a grasp of her weakness.
Proof incriminating her will definitely not come out to light, but on the strange things that occur, there’s always the shadow of this person —is how things have been working lately.
Then, why did Ates go this far? Why did she go so far as to get a dashing start on Yorishiro to get this deeply involved in this incident?
This barricade incident is starting to smell even more suspicious than before.