ZAP – Chapter 113: Eugene participates in the strategy meeting

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The day after eating together with my classmates from the Legendary Hero Department.

We were participating in the Great Demonic Beast subjugation meeting.

It is to meet the members of the 2nd party and to get the strategy in order.

“Everyone, the brave students of the Lykeion Magic Academy have volunteered to join the 2nd party!”

The vice-commander that I met the other day introduced us.

We were welcomed with loud clapping.

We were told the 2nd party had less people now, so new members are probably welcomed with open arms.

It seems like my classmates from the Blue Waters Federation really are famous.

“The descendant of the Fist Saint-sama… So reassuring.”

“The Hero Candidate Leonhardt-sama… I am so glad.”

“Felicia Brightspark-chan… She is beautiful like an angel…”

I hear those whispers.

This is obvious, but there’s no one who knows about Sumire and I…is what I thought.

“Eugene-dono!”

There’s someone who ran towards me after seeing my face…or more like, a group of people.

I couldn’t tell who they were even when looking at their faces.

“Hey, Eugy-kun, those people…” (Sumire)

It seems like Sumire has seen them before though.

Not good, I don’t remember… Uuh…

“It has been a while, Eugene-dono!”

“I am always watching your flare in the Satellite System!”

“Thank you very much for what you did on the 10th Floor of the Zenith Tower!”

“You are going to be fighting together with us again, huh! You are a hundred men worth!”

I link the memories after hearing the 10th Floor of the Zenith Tower.

“If I remember correctly, we met when we defeated the Floor Boss.” (Eugene)

“Yes, I am the one from the Tomoa Kingdom that you helped defeat the Troll!”

“It has been a while. It seems like you are doing well…. So you guys were also participating in the Great Demonic Beast raid.” (Eugene)

The explorers that I met when we defeated a boss for the first time.

They were from the Blue Waters Federation, and there will be a high reward for this Great Demonic Beast subjugation.

It wouldn’t be a mystery for them to participate.

(But…is it okay to come to the Great Demonic Beast subjugation?) (Eugene)

At the very least, they will end up just being food for Vepar when they were having trouble with the Floor 10 boss.

That worry must have shown in my face.

“Eugene-dono, you see, our mission is…”

The person from the Tomoa Kingdom was about to say something, but…

“You must be happy about reuniting with your crony, but how about leaving it for later?”

The vice-commander reprimanded the people from the Tomoa Kingdom a bit for talking to me.

“E-Excuse me for the intrusion!”

“We will get back to our seats!”

The people from the Tomoa Kingdom rushed back to their seats.

We also sit down.

The meeting got into the main topic.

“Then, we have finished introducing the new members, so I will explain the plan again. Please check this.”

There’s a big video projection magic device in the meeting room. There’s green points of different sizes in a blue background.

Looks like that’s the number of countries in the Blue Waters Federation.

“We are currently in the Golden Country. This is the turf of the Great Demonic Beast, the Black Sea. The place we are heading to.”

There was a black stain on the lower right of the sea chart.

A zone that has been polluted by the miasma that Vepar emits, also known as: Schwartz Mea.

There are a number of islands inside the Black Sea, but I have heard that they are in a state that people can’t live in.

“We considered the Black Sea as a zone of death and prohibited entry. But the Black Sea is spreading slightly every year. We can’t allow it to go on as it is.”

The vice-president looked at the participants with a strict gaze.

“We have discovered that there’s a ‘Ruler’ within the black mermaids that we thought were all one entity. She is normally hiding in the school but, if I remember correctly, there was one that was protected by other black mermaids and giving special orders. We have called this individual as Queen.”

I have heard everything until here from Claude.

“Moreover, we have an assumption that there’s two Queens.”

Unrest spreads in the meeting room.

“How can you tell?” (Alice)

Alice Silvermoon raised her hand and asked this question.

“I shall answer. We analyzed the video recording of the battle against Vepar that the 1st party had left behind with their life, and we could tell that the mermaids were fighting between each other. It is not a fight between comrades, but a conflict between factions. In other words, there’s 2 groups within the black mermaids.”

“There’s 2 groups, so there’s 2 Queens?” (Alice)

“That’s what the tacticians think.”

(So it is not like they have actually confirmed that’s the case.) (Eugene)

“Sailors have been spreading rumors about how the black mermaids would get aggressive in the Black Sea once every few decades. We didn’t know the reason, but it would explain things if this meant a change in the ruler.”

“Change in the ruler… In other words, the ones currently in conflict are the Old Queen and the New Queen?”

“That’s what we think. We can’t guess the age of the black mermaids by their outward appearance, but…look at this.”

The footage changed.

“Wa! Pretty…” (Sumire)

“True.” (Eugene)

Sumire whispered this and I agreed.

What was being shown were beautiful mermaids with long black hair and purplish black scales.

Their skin color is light blue.

The black mermaids in the video are showing bewitching smiles.

I could even feel intelligence from their appearance.

“Is there anyone here who is seeing a black mermaid for the first time?”

Just a few raised their hands, including me and Sumire.

Seems like the ones from the Blue Waters Federation are familiar with this sight already.

“It seems like there are people who see this for the first time, so I will explain. Don’t be fooled by the outward appearance of the black mermaids. You can’t communicate with them at all. It seems like they can speak, but they most likely don’t even understand the meaning of what they are saying. They are probably just imitating the words of the people they have attacked. They are omnivorous, but they like ‘people with a lot of mana’ the most. People are food for black mermaids. They only have a beautiful outward appearance to get you off-guard. Make sure to be careful.”

“Hiih…”

“Sumire, Eugene, you must not be deceived.” (Sara)

“I know, Sara-chan.” (Sumire)

“But I would feel a bit hesitant about slashing a monster with that appearance.” (Eugene)

They may be monsters, but they are pretty much humans in their upper half.

That must be a part of how troublesome this Great Demonic Beast is.

“Now then, that’s basic knowledge until here, but now we have to think of how to lure the black mermaids. They like people with a lot of mana. The 1st party had skilled warriors and mages, but as you know…… They were wiped out.”

The vice-commander stopped talking there for a moment.

“It is not like the 1st party was weak. On the contrary, their combat power and equipment were both high quality.”

“Really? I heard that the 1st party was a bait party to gather information though.” (Sara)

The one who said that was Sara.

“It is true that it was partly that. But it is not like we wanted them to sacrifice themselves. We also formed a fleet of 10 ships and decoy ships with death row criminals in them. We were planning on leaving bait behind to a certain degree after a bit of battle and having them retreat, but…the black mermaids that were aggressive from the succession conflict sank not only the decoy ships, but also the fleet of 10 ships.”

“The black mermaids like people with high mana. So it means that the death row criminals were not alluring enough as bait no matter how many you got, huh.” (Leonhardt)

The Bow Hero, Leonhardt, muttered this.

“Then, what should we do? We would just be following their fate if we did the same, right?” (Soran)

Soran Stormbreaker asked this question with a slightly haughty attitude.

He is royalty within a big country in the Federation if I remember correctly.

The big attitude is most likely deliberate.

The vice-commander doesn’t seem to mind.

He nodded lightly at his question.

“Bring that here.”

The vice-commander ordered his subordinates.

Several people brought ‘that’ here.

That’s not something. It is…

“Eugy-kun, is that a doll?!” (Sumire)

“Isn’t it too elaborate for that? It looks completely like a human.” (Sara)

It is just as Sumire and Sara said. What was brought here was a doll that you could mistake for a human.

The doll was placed at the front of the meeting room.

“100 Real Dolls that we bought from the Empire. We will use them as bait to lure black mermaids by passing mana to them with Mana Link. That’s not all. The Real Dolls have explosion magic drawn in them and hidden. Black Mermaids tend to bring their food to their nest. To be more precise, they tend to share with the school. And the first one to take a bite is most likely the Queen.”

“I see… So you plan on wiping them out with that. Not a bad idea.” (Alice)

Alice Silvermoon from the military school made a face as if saying this is interesting.

“A doll bomb that looks like a human.” (Sumire)

“That’s quite the nasty plan…” (Sara)

Sumire and Sara were making hard to describe faces.

“They had to be from the Empire of all places…” (Eugene)

It is true that it could deceive even the Great Demonic Beast with how elaborate it is.

I am a bit scared of what their original purpose is though.

“The mages are pouring mana to the Real Dolls all day long as we speak. But they need a massive amount of mana, so it will take 6 more days to fill all 100 of them.”

“Isn’t that too lax? The wounds that the 1st party dealt with their lives would have healed by then. Also, it is not like the school will stay in the same place. We will go back to the drawing board if the location changes.” (Claude)

The vice-commander made a sour expression at what Claude pointed out.

“It is as you say, but…we need time to pour mana into the Real Dolls. We need 10 high ranked mages to finally fill up 1 doll. The Blue Waters Federation doesn’t have that many mages.”

“Here! I can help out~.”

“Ooh, that would be a great help.”

The one who raised her hand was the Sage Apprentice, Felicia.

If I remember correctly, she is a Monarch Rank Mage.

Felicia stood in front of the Real Doll.

“[Mana Link]!” (Felicia)

She held the hand of the doll and poured mana.

The Real Doll let off faint light and illuminated the meeting room.

A few minutes later.

“Haah… Haah… How is it?” (Felicia)

Felicia is out of breath, but she asked this to the vice-commander.

“Amazing! From being completely empty to close to 30%!”

“Uwa~, only that even with all of my mana? This is tough.” (Felicia)

Even a Monarch Rank, huh.

Someone like me with a normal amount of mana wouldn’t be of help here.

That’s when I felt a gaze.

“Hey, Eugy-kun.” (Sumire)

Sumire seemed to want to say something.

I immediately realized her intention.

“I am sorry, but please let Sumire test out the Mana Link!” (Eugene)

I raised my hand and proposed this to the vice-commander.

“Of course, go ahead.”

“Be right back, Eugy-kun, Sara-chan!” (Sumire)

Sumire walked to the front of the meeting room.

“Sumire-chan, here, here~.” (Felicia)

Felicia beckoned Sumire over.

“Hey, Eugene, is the Mana Link of Sumire-chan going to be okay? Won’t the Real Dolls burn? Those are rare products bought from the Empire, right?” (Sara)

I was told this by Sara and it made me worried.

Speaking of which, Sumire is not good at delicate mana control.

“There have been almost no big fires recently… Her mana is stable even when she is pouring her mana in me.” (Eugene)

C-Counting on you…Sumire.

I will reimburse them at worst.

But I would like her to not burn it if possible.

That prayer must have worked.

“[Mana Link]!” (Sumire)

*Kah!!!*

The Real Doll began to release light to a dazzling degree.

There were also a few sparks of mana happening, but the doll didn’t burn.

Fuuh, that’s a relief.

“How is it?” (Sumire)

Sumire asked the vice-commander.

“Even if you ask me ‘how is it?’, in just an instant………Eh? Eeeeh?!”

The vice-commander was speaking calmly until now, but he raised his voice and opened his eyes widely.

“Uwa… Sumire-chan, that’s crazy. The mana of the doll is full now.” (Felicia)

Felicia laughed with a baffled face.

“U-Uhm…is it okay to pour that much mana in one go? Won’t there be any effects on your body…?”

The vice-commander was worried about the condition of Sumire.

“I can still go on, so let’s do all the remaining ones~☆.” (Sumire)

It seems like Sumire hasn’t realized just how amazing of a thing she did, she is crossing her arms.

“O-Okay…… T-Then, bring the other dolls!”

The vice-commander gave this order.

The subordinates moved hurriedly.

“Hey, Eugene.” (Sara)

“What’s the matter, Sara?” (Eugene)

Sara poked my shoulder from the side.

“You must know since you have been given mana often by Sumire-chan, but isn’t the amount of mana she has on the level of King Uther?” (Sara)

She asked me this.

What is she asking at this point?

“There’s no way that’s the case.” (Eugene)

I shook my head to the sides.

“R-Right… There’s no way it can go that far.” (Sara)

“Not only Principal Uther, she even has more mana than the Demon Lord Eri.” (Eugene)

“………Huh?” (Sara)

The eyes of Sara were opened wide to a degree comparable to the vice-commander just now.

“The Demon Lord herself said it after all. Leaving aside the Divine Realm Era, Sumire’s mana is higher compared to Eri’s in her sealed state.” (Eugene)

Sara froze up and didn’t move anymore.

Looks like it is something you don’t really notice even if you are nearby.

It might be because of the magic robe that Principal Uther lent her.

“Here I go~☆.” (Sumire)

Real Dolls were being brought one after the other.

Sumire did Mana Link on each and every one of them.

“Uwa… Sumire-chan, scary!” (Felicia)

Felicia was taken aback completely.

—This is how the operation was fast forward by 6 days with the help of Sumire.

■Comment Response:

>The people of the Tomoa Kingdom that are from the Federation and showed up in the 1st party.

-I had them show up again.

>Eugene is being assaulted by girls the whole time. Has there ever been a moment where he has been the one initiating?

-True… That won’t do.

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