Chapter 38 – Struggle

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Author: Kaburagi Haruka Original Source: Syosetu
Translator: Yuki English Source: Re:Library

First of all, I’ll deliver a slash from above to test the water.
Of course, with my meager strength, the power of the sword won’t be that much. However, if I’m able to slip in the L part blade of the sword to his head, there’s no doubt that he would be in trouble.
However, the man easily blocked the attack with his shield.

Because of the recoil, I fell down, it seems like he’s using the stance of Strong Style. It’s a counter type tactic that has a strong emphasis on defense.
That’s probably his way of fighting.
After deflecting his attack, I immediately made a back step.
However, following my back step, he aimed to attack me the moment I land. Of course, I was also prepared to counter that.

And so I received his attack and countered at the same time.
The man was using a solid defensive style to compensate for his lack of power, and it’s quite a challenge to breakthrough.
My feint and thread attacks were also blocked, so it’s not really a match that I could let my guard off.

Adding to that, there is a big disadvantage with the current me.
No matter how much training and experience I’ve had, my current body is that of a child. My body also doesn’t have that much endurance to continue fighting for a long time. If this ends up in a battle of endurance, then I will have no way to win.
If things ended up badly, even Finia might get caught up in this situation if she ever finds me. The goal of the current battle is to end it as fast as possible.

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Nevertheless, my current opponent is a defender type. If it’s only about running away then I will definitely be able to, but I can’t run away with the current situation at hand. If I run away now, the other children’s lives would be endangered.

「What’s wrong, getting tired already? What happened to that momentum of yours!」 
「Seriously, this is really quite an unpleasant opponent!」

The man was definitely provoking me. After all, if I get provoked then I would play by the opponent’s hand.

In order to overcome the current situation, I need to at least be able to bind his feet with string. That is if I could deceive him.
It seems like he also understood a bit about this ability. Perhaps he was able to understand it after seeing the other two getting disposed of.

「You too, why are you getting all serious when facing against a child」
「Are you talking about me being equipped? Well, let’s just say that I assuming that you were able to call the guards. Apparently, it seems like you were not able to, so that’s quite a relieve.」
「I will definitely call them first from now on!」

It is exactly as the man said, but I ran out of time to do so, that’s why it couldn’t be helped.
While parrying his attacks with the hooked part of my billhook, I came to a halt and took a breath.
But my foe wasn’t quite weak enough to let his posture break. He took up a lower stance so as to glide across the ground.
Having waited for me to stop moving, he let loose with quick thrusts.

「Tsk, you are too persistent!」
「That is what I’m proud of after all」

It’s really annoying to fight this kind of battle, so I stick out my tongue to annoy him. I don’t really need to do any big moves as it would still be quite taxing for a defender even if I just send some feints. I don’t see him as a warrior who fights directly after all.

「Even though you were quite skilled, why are you doing things like this!」
「Of course it would be for money. Elves are quite high priced because of their beauty. They also have many uses other than just being sacrificed.」
「You disgusting ⓑⓐⓢⓣⓐⓡⓓ――」
「You are not an elf, but you are quite amazing yourself. Selling you could definitely yield quite a hefty price too!」

So that’s why he’s been trying to disable me, he was actually considering to turn me into merchandise.
Though he probably wasn’t expecting that I would be able to get rid of his two comrades.
Be that as it may, that’s as far as my advantage goes. My knees are starting to shake from fatigue. My stamina is also reaching a really dangerous level at the moment.

Then something happened that made the situation even worse.

「Nicole-chan!?」
「Michelle-chan? Why are you here!」

Suddenly, Michelle-chan appeared in the storehouse. She was carrying a bow and quiver, but she’s not wearing her usual hunting gear. She’s probably carrying her weapon only for self-defense.

「After returning home I immediately went out to search for Nicole-chan…… but what is this?」
「Kidnapping! Hurry, let the guards know!」
「U, un!」
「Oops, if you try to run away, then the life of this will also be gone」
「Eehh!?」

Michelle-chan stops after hearing the man’s words.
That man will definitely do it, and then my hard work would also be for nothing. Understanding the current situation, it was not a surprise that she was not able to proceed.

However, if she stays here, I would also be troubled. It would be much easier if she escapes and calls the guards as soon as possible.

But he had guessed the situation as well.
Approaching the cart that had suddenly toppled over, he brandished his sword.
In doing so, the log that had fallen from the carriage split in two, and an unconscious girl came tumbling out.

It was definitely an Elven child seeing their distinctive sharp ears. Moreover, her hair was like golden threads, definitely a beautiful girl―― well, a beautiful little girl.

「It might take some time to get rid of that kid1, but stabbing the ones over here would be much easier even if they are inside of these wooden caskets」
「Wha――」
「Stop it!」

This is bad, he has completely seized the hostages.
If either of us runs away, the hostages will definitely be killed. The hostage girls definitely have also seen the man’s face so he will definitely get rid of them. As expected, with the current situation at hand, there’s no choice but to try and defeat this man on our own.

「There’s no choice but beat him. Michelle-chan, let’s do this!」
「U, un!」

With my encouragement, Michelle-chan also prepares herself and loads her bow. The problem is with her current weapon, she won’t be able to pierce through that man’s defenses. The arrow she released was easily deflected by his shield. The steel shield was probably enchanted by something, that’s why it couldn’t be penetrated that easily. But well, keeping him busy might give me a chance to turn the situation around so I would like her to keep it up for the time being……

「Crimson One, Ultramarine……」
「As if I’d let you!」
「Guh――!」

While hiding from the shadow of the shield, he managed to stop me from chanting by quickly closing in with a shield bash, but I was able to avoid it. The magic power that I was processing was dispersed as a result.
After that, the man chased Michelle-chan while making sure that he doesn’t move too far away from the hostages. I won’t be able to do anything if he continues to stay in that position.

There were four large logs loaded on the cart. Assuming that all of them were loaded with children, that makes his hostage count to four.
I do have the option of abandoning them. However, if I abandon those children, my ambition to become a hero will be completely shattered.

Although we now have a bit of an advantage with Michelle-chan adding to the combat force, it doesn’t improve the situation at all. My body is also starting to reach exhaustion. With my current state, I can barely dodge the sword attacks aimed at me. My breath is haggard and my vision is also starting to fade. My limit―― it’s definitely close to breaking point.

I could only clench my teeth and maintain the current status of the fight, but I still couldn’t find a way to break this situation. In cases like this, Cortina would probably know what will be the best way to deal with it――

And finally my limit has been reached. When I attempted to evade an attack that I thought I could. My movement shifted differently from what I am supposed to do. I did manage to not get hit in a vital part, but the sword reaches my upper arm and blood splashes around.

「Kuuh!」
「Nicole-chan!?」

The damage was not that deep. But bleeding accelerates fatigue and the pain would definitely hinder my concentration.
If only one the girls wake up, then an opportunity to change this situation might pop up.

「Not, yet…… I’m not giving up yet!」

In order to fire up myself, I shouted as I slashed back at the man. It was the start of a hopeless struggle.



References

  1. “That kid” probably refers to Michelle.

2 thoughts on “Chapter 38 – Struggle”

  1. The moment when an ally appears, but doesn’t stay hidden, so no more surprise attack. Well, Michelle is young.
    Thanks for the chapter!

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