After one busy night…
A peaceful next day didn’t begin, instead, a tense atmosphere was filling the castle -more specifically speaking, the Queen’s room.
“We received a contact from the scout.”
Niva-san had a more serious atmosphere than usual, continuing to report to the Queen that had her muscles of her face already exhausted. Niva-san and the Queen have not slept a single wink. If they were able to sleep after hearing what I told them, that would be impressive.
“Currently at the northwest of the capital, in the Mishro Forest, we have confirmed the Empire’s army is on their march here. It is estimated that they will arrive at the capital after four days.” (Niva)
“…I see. It is exactly as Makoto-kun said then.” (Caril)
“Yes. The report states that it is a mix of cavalry and mages, but the armor of the Empire’s army is not regular.” (Niva)
“…Magia Armor.” (Caril)
I listen to the conversation of the Queen and Niva-san, so I ask O-san by my side.
O-san didn’t sleep a single wink last night either, but as expected of the Knight General, he doesn’t seem to falter to something of that extent.
“Hey, what’s Magia Armor?” (Makoto)
“Magia Armor refers to the armor that is made from an alloy that the Empire developed. It has resistance comparable to that of mithril.” (Gallahart)
Mithril is a term that is heard often in manga and games. It is a type of magic metal.
It excels in magic circulation, and not only is it obviously strong against physical attacks but also strong against magic. A metal that holds high value. In order to create metal that rivals it would require high alchemic technique and high blacksmithing skills. On top of that, to be able to have the assets to provide it to over tens of thousands of knights and soldiers, I feel like I have gotten a glimpse of the fearsomeness of the Empire.
“That sounds like it will be difficult to go against.” (Makoto)
“It is not on the level of being difficult. We are already in an overwhelming disadvantage in terms of numbers…” (Gallahart)
The frustration that lied in those words that Gallahart tried to swallow were overflowing in his face, and his clenched fist had blood coming out of it.
“Ah, right. —Niva-san, did you get the materials?” (Makoto)
“No. Looks like the Detorashta’s Bulb is difficult to obtain because of the season. We are currently earnestly searching.” (Niva)
“I see. Then, I will be tidying up a separate case.” (Makoto)
I stand up with a ‘Heave-ho’, and wind up my arms.
“Leave the illegal immigrants to me. You search for definite proof of their connection to them.” (Makoto)
“—! Don’t tell me…you are planning on going on your own?!” (Caril)
The Queen must have noticed what I am trying to do. Her emotionless expression made a complete turn to that of surprise with eyes opened wide.
“Hmm, it is not accurate to say alone, but since I will be doing it, I will take responsibility till the end. —Didn’t I tell you that’s my motto?” (Makoto)
“Eh, not alone…? No, but…! This is different from all the cases before. I don’t want to involve you in a war that—” (Caril)
“Okay, stop.” (Makoto)
Hearing more than that is pointless.
“I am selfish. If it is for the sake of my self-satisfaction, the feelings of others end up as second priority, you see.” (Makoto)
“Also…the Motoyasu Kingdom has taken care of me, so if I don’t repay the stays and the meals provided, I will simply be a leech.” (Makoto)
I put it in a terrible way, but it looks like that wasn’t the case for the Queen.
“What are you talking about? Even though we have a debt we cannot manage to pay back…” (Caril)
“And I am saying this is my own selfishness. If you are a ruler, show me that you can fully utilize your pieces. —It is weird for me to say it myself but, I work pretty hard, you know?” (Makoto)
“…I already know that.” (Caril)
Tears well up from the corner of the Queen’s eyes, and she makes a troubled expression as she silently stands up, and then, she lowers her head deeply.
“Please save this country.” (Caril)
This sudden action of hers bewildered Gallahart, and he tried to stop the Queen. However, the person that normally is the one in the standing to stop her, Niva-san, was also lowering her head like the Queen, further increasing the bewilderment of Gallahart. He is probably thinking that, no matter my background, the Queen of a kingdom shouldn’t be so easily lowering her head.
I will leave the explaning to the Queen and the others. For now, I will go clean up the problematic stuff.
“This may be how it has always been but…you are being really lighthearted.” (Caril)
“Because the opponents are humans after all. It is a lot easier than dealing with dragons and sacred beasts.” (Makoto)
“…I feel as if I heard something I shouldn’t’ have.” (Caril)
Don’t mind that.
“Well then, I will be going.—Ah, right. How are the Hero-kuns doing?” (Makoto)
“If it is Yuichi and the others, they are diligent in their training… However, it seems they are acting strange.” (Gallahart)
“I see. When you see the chance, please ask them the circumstances.” (Makoto)
“I know, so don’t worry about it.” (Gallahart)
It would trouble me if they were to dispatch Yuichi and the others thoughtlessly, so it should be okay if I leave those matters to Gallahart.
Now then, let’s go control the illegal immigrants I suppose.
☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆ ☆☆
I think there’s a number of routes that can be taken from the guard station at the Stream mountain range to the royal capital of the Motoyasu Kingdom, but advancing an army of tens of thousands while staying hidden is impossible.
I confirm the Marker with the Invisible Window, and I check the surroundings, and I could see a cloud of dust being made straight at my right.
Their march isn’t fast or slow, but if they are going to head to the capital with those numbers, it should have taken at least 2 weeks. With that in mind, it means that the Bald Geezer has been hiding this trump card from way back.
If only he had poured that passion for the sake of Motoyasu. If it is me, I wouldn’t want to be a king even if asked to.
Watching the cavalry and foot soldiers raising clouds of dust with a synchronized march would be fun if they were allies, but as enemies, they bring about fear.
That synchronized march of theirs is show of their high coordination and loyalty after all. But well, there might be some other feelings aside from loyalty, however, that’s something only the person themselves would know.
“Okay, let’s do this.” (Makoto)
I take out Shirayuki from the Item Box and…
“Wake up, Phal.” (Makoto)
I take it out from its sheath, and hold it up in front of me.
A beat later, the silver blade shines with the sunlight, and the face that was reflected in the blade changed into that of someone else. In an instant, a gust of wind blew through and a wave of magic power began to well up from my back, and began to tremble violently.
“It has been a while, My Lord, Demon Lord-sama.”
“Right… How many years has it been now?” (Makoto)
“58 years, 27 days, 17 hours, 57 minutes, and 43 seconds.” (Phal)
Oi. It was a decently real sounding number, so I seriously thought it was real. That’s about how much time has passed since that world after all.
“Please stop the jokes with a straight face. I have told you that many times.” (Makoto)
I turn to my back, and there’s a 15-16 year old-looking girl in maid attire standing there with trained posture. Her white hair swaying with the wind and her half-closed straight stare that was bordering a glare as well as her sighing for show were sights that made me recall those days, and my face naturally loosened.
“If we take out the straight and funny man comedy routine between Master and I, conversations can’t properly take place though?” (Phal)
The right hand of the Demon Lord, as well as the girl that possesses the root power of a Demon Lord, Phal.
She is currently sleeping in the kodachi -Shirayuki- because of a few circumstances. Right now her current body is incorporeal. Her body is formed by a technique called ‘Spirit Energy Style Conductor’ which has a high compatibility with magic power, but that ability is the real deal. It has saved me a number of times, and it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say she is a partner I can trust from the bottom of my heart.
Just that, when I first met her, she was decently docile, and yet, right now our communication has changed into one of being a pain which is a regret.
“It is not in that bad of a state… Or more like, time for work.” (Makoto)
“Dirty work again? My body has already been dirtied by the bodily fluids of many men—” (Phal)
“Just say blood! Don’t put it in such weird roundabout ways.” (Makoto)
“The only bodily fluid that can enter my body is Master’s.” (Phal)
“As I said, don’t say those kind of things with a straight face. —Don’t try to flip your skirt, idiot!” (Makoto)
Awful. It has been a while, but she is still as awful as ever. Or more like, is it my imagination that her character overlaps with Niva-san? No, that must be my imagination. Niva-san wouldn’t flip her skirt in front of me.
“You were thinking about another woman just now, weren’t you?” (Phal)
“How can you tell?” (Makoto)
“The idiotic face of Master—Excuse me. Your fearless face turned hopeless for a moment there after all.” (Phal)
“Even if you reworded it, it still didn’t change the fact that it was cruel!” (Makoto)
I can’t handle this girl.
“And so, should I wipe out those guys there? If it is only that much, it should be easy for Master alone though? Could it be there’s something wrong with your body?” (Phal)
“I am the very definition of healthy. I have my own things I have to do. I want you to incapacitate them from the outside. —Ah, don’t kill anyone no matter what, okay?” (Makoto)
“I am not good at holding back… I will do my best, to the extent that I can, in taking care not to kill anyone.” (Phal)
A line of words that only bring uneasiness in my mind.
However, if I want to defeat everyone, I need her power.
“Well then, let’s go.” (Makoto)
“Ah, Master, wait please.” (Phal)
“Please give me a transforming set too.” (Phal)
Her unfriendly face made a drastic turn into a sparkling one, and I make a dry laugh at this as I take out from the Item Box a bag that’s called ‘Phal’s exclusive transformation goods’. And she equips it while humming. <Mio, is that you?!>
This is a disguise magic tool I made by selecting from the true animal hair that was given to me by the Sacred Beasts. I received the seal of approval from the beastkin telling me that they couldn’t tell me apart. That sensation of being the fitting size when equipping, and the smoothness of the suit that doesn’t give any uncomfortableness, as well as its charm. There’s no questioning that it is one of my best creations, but it is serving as exclusive use for Phal to disguise herself. Even if I were to put it on, I would just look like a pitiful guy after all.
“Perfect-desu nyan.” (Phal
“…So you are going for the cat-eared maid this time around, huh.” (Makoto)
“No-nyan. Dancing like a leopard, scratching like a lion… People call me, Nyanko Kamen-desu nyan.” (Phal)
Phal takes a transformation pose like those of heroes with a ‘Nyan!’, and inside my heart I shouted ‘No one is going to call you that!’ as I shove in the bag that she gave me back into the Item Box.
“Oh, I was forgetting. Catch.” (Makoto)
“Thank you very much… But isn’t this overkill?” (Phal)
I gave Phal her weapon of preference since I remembered, but she responded with that.
“Take into mind holding back by warming up first. Also, try not to go too far away, okay?” (Makoto)
If she separates too much from her actual body that is Shirayuki, her strength decreases. Even if her strength decreases, there’s not much problem against humans, but if it is against monsters on Dragon level, it would be a different story.
“Understood… I want to ask you a variety of things, but first comes wiping out—” (Phal)
“I mean, incapacitating the enemy to the best of my abilities.” (Phal)
Swinging around her preferred spear, Gáe Bolg, I was feeling slight uneasiness from the energetic Phal as I return the white kodachi to its sheath.
“Well then, I will be going.” (Makoto)
I turn over my mantle and jump. Being given my farewell with a ‘I pray for your success’, I teleport in front of the cavalry that was moving at the forefront.
“Hey there, good morning.” (Makoto)
“W-Who are you?! —GUAAAAAAH!!”
The landscape swayed, and my vision changed into one covered with an army of foot soldiers and cavalry. Seeing the suspicious individual that suddenly appeared, a knight on top of a horse shouted loudly, and I jump to him and give him a roundhouse kick.
As the knight fell from the horse, I elbowed a soldier close by, then roll over, and kick the soldiers at the back.
A shout rang in the area. I ignore the shouts of an enemy attack that rang one after the other as if they were ripples, and run straight at my objective.
I mow down the knights that were blocking my way, and while listening to the chorus of battle cries and screams, I find two knights with horses that have better harnesses equipped on them.
“Don’t let it get close to the Commander!”
“Damn it! What speed!”
Thrusting the scabbard of my kodachi on the knights that were jumping at me, I strike their chests to push them aside, and jump.
I step on the head or shoulders of soldiers one after the other, and then once again jump as I look at the two knights that were in front of me.
“Good morning, people of the Empire army.” (Makoto)
At the same time as I land, I activate [Silent Box], enclosing 20 meters in every direction, and I blow away the soldiers that were in the surroundings with a magic power release.
The soldiers raise pitiful cries as they fly in the air. The men on horseback were surprised by the intruder that suddenly appeared, but with the sound of the soldiers falling to the ground, they returned to their senses. In the next instant, they draw their swords and take stance with sharp eyes.
“Who in the world are you?”
“Do you think I will answer if asked? Illegal immigrant-san.” (Makoto)
“…Someone of Motoyasu, huh.”
At the same time as that steep voice rang out, I avoid a sword that came from the side, and twist their wrist.
“Guuuh! —R-Release me!”
“You tell me to release you, but…you lack manners for attacking while we are having conversation here.” (Makoto)
“Kuh! —You are the last person I want to hear that from!”
There’s no way you would want to hear that from an intruder.
The one who came attacking me was a young gray haired man with a different-looking armor from that of the other knights. If I remember correctly, he is one of the lieutenants.
“I was intending to have a friendly conversation though. Can you please pull back your sword for now?” (Makoto)
“Shut up! —What about this is friendly?!”
Just as the man that I am twisting his wrist is saying while spit is flying out, there’s soldiers lying down and groaning, and their mouths were wide open.
The soldiers were bewildered at the sudden intruder, but they must have regained their composure as time passed on, some of them were holding their spears or swords as they keep me in check.
What a truly well coordinated group. An incredible pain to the extreme.
“But did they die? Injuries can’t be helped. You guys did enter illegally after all.” (Makoto)
How to say it, this guy really talks a lot.
“Aah, geez. Can you shut up for a bit? —And so, you are the commander of this army, right?” (Makoto)
“Yeah, that’s right.”
The big man with dark green hair looked down at me on his horseback. The young man that I am still twisting the wrist of is shouting ‘Commander!’.
I already confirmed yesterday night whether he is the commander or not and had placed a Marker on him, so there’s no point in the confirmation just now, but well, it is a form of tradition. Also, it tells me whether that person is possible to converse with.
Anyways, his looks are that of a thirty-something, but his aura is that of an experienced warrior of many battles. He is not showing a single opening, and most of all, those eyes of his don’t have a single hint of ridicule.
“I will be straight. —Can you please withdraw at once?” (Makoto)
“D-Don’t speak rubbish!”
“As I said, I’m not asking you. —Lieutenant Mirtoshna-kun.” (Makoto)
“Y-You! How do you know my nam—GYAAA!!” (Mir)
The Commander seems to be a person that can be conversed with, but it looks like this one isn’t. And this is supposed to be a lieutenant? Isn’t this a mistake in personnel selection?
He was getting noisy, so I let go of his wrist, grab his neck, and hit him on the ground with brute strength.
“When people are talking, be quiet. Didn’t you learn that in school?” (Makoto)
Mirtoshna groans in agony as he writhes, crashes onto a soldier that was collapsed on the ground, and stops still. A number of the soldiers who saw that tried to escape, but their legs stop.
“W-What is this?! There’s a wall here!”
“What?! Ah, you are right… The other side is shouting something, but I can’t hear anything. This is strange!”
“What in the world is happening?!”
“As if I would know! Damn it! The hell is this!”
Unable to advance because of an invisible wall getting in their way, a number of shouts of confusion were being raised here and there.
“What did you do?”
“As if I would tell you. —And so, your answer?” (Makoto)
The other side also knows that I won’t be answering obediently. Moreover, the intruder in front of him is wearing all black, with a worn out mantle, and a masquerade mask hiding his face, so the suspicious factor must be exploding right now.
This masquerade mask is a magic tool, too, called ‘Dark Raven’. It is an impressive item that when equipping the mask changes the clothes in your whole body.
“Ah, right. Think well before answering, okay?” (Makoto)
“…What do you mean by that?”
“I am saying that, depending on your answer, it can lead to the death of tens of thousands of lives.” (Makoto)
This person might look like the straightlaced type, but he is an unexpectedly good listener.
“Ah, by the way, what’s your name?” (Makoto)
“Do you think I will answer?”
“Right. But I would have liked it if you were to have answered, Commander Latius-san.” (Makoto)
“…If you knew, there’s no need to ask.” (Latius)
I learned that yesterday though.
This Commander-san seems to properly have the eyes to see through things. There’s no one as reliable of an ally as someone like him, but it is troublesome to have as an enemy.
“You are quite the grandiose man.” (Latius)
“Appearing right in the middle of our Empire’s army by yourself… Even though we have people who are specialized in detection. I am incredibly interested in how you appeared.” (Latius)
“I won’t tell you though?” (Makoto)
However, this is troubling.
Since he can be talked with, I don’t want to take any violent measures yet. If possible, I would be grateful if they were to withdraw their army as it is, but he gives me the impression that he is a lump of loyalty, so it seems like that will be difficult.
“Can you please withdraw? I don’t want unnecessary deaths, and you guys don’t want to run away pathetically, right?” (Makoto)
“…It is as if you are saying you can win on your ow—!” (Latius)
I broaden my senses, and release killing intent. When I did, the soldiers inside the Silent Box fell one after the other, and the horses were neighing and going wild.
“If you can’t endure killing intent of this extent, how are you even planning on fighting? Also, I am not alone.” (Makoto)
The only one conscious is Latius and Mirtoshna, huh. The others were knocked out by only a single snap of my killing intent. That’s pitiful.
Latius directs his gaze at the direction I pointed at, and when he saw people being sent flying to the air, he stared blankly for a short while.
…Phal, you are overdoing it.
The people flying on the air were like grass in a lawn being pruned.
The other side of the barrier is most likely mixed with angry roars and screams, and a portrait of hell is probably taking place. The rampaging lawn mowing that was slowly approaching was creating slight fear in the eyes of Latius, and then, he directs his gaze at me.
“I see. You had another comrade, huh… Moreover, it seems they are not below you in strength.” (Latius)
“Complimenting me won’t get you anything, you know? Or like, bring more useful soldiers… Ah, did you think this much was enough to bring down Motoyasu?” (Makoto)
Keep the cowardice to a limit.
It was just killing intent on the extent of slightly surprising a dragon, so I thought they wouldn’t get knocked out from just that. To think only two would keep their consciousness from that, what a betrayal of expectations. Was that display of coordination just for looks?
Latius is trying to send killing intent to me with a refusal to give up, but it is quite the lukewarm feeling. If it were a little bit more than this, it could spark the interest of a dragon, but with this much, I would say they wouldn’t even pay you any attention.
“Now then, I will ask again. —What will you do?” (Makoto)
If he withdraws like this, that will be the end of it.
“If you want to continue your march, make sure you are prepared to be wiped out.” (Makoto)
“Are you saying it will be possible for just you two?” (Latius)
“It is. And as you can see, I managed to break through without any injuries, and against these numbers, I would say 3…no, 2 hours to wrap things up. Ah, of course, that’s if I were alone. So with two, it would take half that.” (Makoto)
“Or, do you want to taste the despair of losing your comrades a little bit each day? I think all of them will be dead by the time you reach the capital though.” (Makoto)
This is no lie or exaggeration. I have the confidence that I can pull that off with this level of enemies.
“—! I see. Could it be that you are a Hero?” (Latius)
“Huh? …What are you saying? There’s no way I am a hero.” (Makoto)
I am a former hero, but that doesn’t apply to me now.
“Then, what in the world are you?” (Latius)
“Hmm, it is rude for only me to not introduce myself, huh… Right, my name is Crow. —Just think of me as a wanderer. Nice to meet you.” (Makoto)
‘Wanderer of parallel worlds though!’, is what I retort inside of my mind in self-derision, and laugh back at Latius who was looking at me without lowering his guard.