Chapter 68 – The Southern Forest

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Author: Kaburagi Haruka Original Source: Syosetu Word Count: 2579 characters
Translator: Aurum English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 889 words
Editor(s): Deximus_Maximus

The scene instantly changed once I jumped into the Gate.
Even though it’s still April, the heat is so stuffy. The humidity causes the heat to feel like it’s coiling around your skin. A grassy smell pricks the nose, an unpleasant smell of verdure. Maxwell who came before us checked to confirm everyone had arrived before speaking, “The area around the Queen Blossom should be stable, with no dangerous monsters around since she controls the whole ecosystem.”
“Hrmmm….”

While listening to his speech I strain my ears.

“Gyaaaa!”
“Kukekeeke! Kukekeke!”
“Ssshagyagya!”

The voices of ferocious beasts are heard around us with tremors reverberating here and there amongst them. The tall trees blocking off the sunlight coupled with the dim view around us made it seem like a peaceful forest.

“Maxwell, no matter how you slice it, there’s no Queen Blossom here.” (Nicole)
“…that can’t be.” (Maxwell)

As I point it out, Maxwell hangs his head dejectedly. If there was a Queen Blossom here and it had garnered control of the ecosystem, there’s no way we should be hearing the sounds of monsters fighting each other like this.

“Perhaps we should take the time to search. The four noncombatants group up in the center. I’ll take point with Cortina following behind, Maria and Maxwell take the right and left.” (Lyell)
“I’ll cover the rear as usual.” (Gadius)
“I’ll leave it to you Gadius.” (Lyell)

Lyell quickly gave out orders. Previously, I’d be standing next to him instead of Cortina as I searched for traps, but since I’m not there anymore, Lyell has to take point on his own.

“Why is Gadius, the strongest defensive fighter in the rear?” (Letina)
“Oh, that’s bec…” (Cortina)
“In case of a rear attack. Because in areas with poor visibility like a forest, an attack from behind is far more dangerous.” (Nicole)

Letina questioned the party’s arrangement. Similar to many newbies. It looked like Cortina was about to explain but I took the lead and finished her statement.

“Huh?” (Letina)
“Wild animals will be wary of strong opponents so they’ll almost never strike head-on. You’ll need to prioritize your flanks and rear instead.” (Nicole)
“I seee.” (Michelle)

Letina and Michelle looked on in awe.
Oi, hold up.

“Michelle, you’re a hunter, so didn’t you already know?” (Nicole)
“I never knew the reason for it though.” (Michelle)
“Did you coast through it?” (Nicole)

Seems her honest personality made her absorb the theory her dad taught her without understanding the reason for it, which is a bad habit to get into since it prevents you from adapting to new situations.

“That’s true, that’s a bad habit to get into, also watch out,” when Cortina said that, I unsheathed the katana on my back and… tried to do a single strike. However, Cortina’s long staff came flying faster. My reaction speed was faster, but her attack speed outstripped mine.

“Unnecessary!” (Cortina)
“Wha!?” (Letina)

With a loud bang, a red splash scattered about. A single snake was coiled around a branch ready to launch a strike at Letina, but Cortina splendidly crushed its head in.

“Like this, there’s all manner of danger in a forest.” (Cortina)
“Even so, Cortina aside… Nicole was it? Your reaction was quite fast, little lady.” (Gladius)
“That’s right. It startled me to see you start to move before I did.” (Cortina)

Originally, it was my role to scout, so I was very wary of my surroundings.
It’s rare to get the drop on1 wildlife. In the case of the vultures, it was easier because they had to swoop in from out of range, but… putting aside Letina’s safety, was it bad to move carelessly here?

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“Umm, I often go into the forest with Michelle.” (Nicole)
“Speaking of, you’re always the first to spot prey. You spot it before me, quietly sneak up and bring it down in a single strike.” (Michelle)
“Hmm, showing up Michelle who is a hunter, you show great promise.” (Cortina)
“She might have talent in scouting. Who does she remind you of?” (Gladius)
“Nicole is pretty competent.” (Maria)

Maria puffed her chest out in pride upon hearing Gadius and Cortina praise me. I appreciated the compliments, but paying too much attention to me risks exposing my identity. As I was considering how to change subjects, I sensed slight tremors in the ground.

“Hm?” (Nicole)

The tremors kept coming with regularity unlike the continuous shaking of an earthquake. Clearly, this was from a large beast walking along the ground. I’d felt something similar before and while I was racking my mind trying to decide whether I should report it or not, Lyell picked up on the vibrations.

“Silence, seems we got an enemy approaching. And it’s not a snake this time… it’s a big one.”

While being vigilant for the enemy, Lyell drew his holy sword, ready to attack. In addition, Gadius moved up to set up his shield at the front of the party. While smashing the remarkably large trees aside, its large build finally entered our field of vision. What popped out after mowing down many forest trees was a giant with flames covering its body… A Fire Giant.



References

  1. If I don’t include the link, silva will be sad again.
    https://www.yourdictionary.com/get-the-drop-on
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