|Author: Kaburagi Haruka||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2579 characters|
|Translator: Mui||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1086 words|
We rushed back to Cortina’s side and told her to issue the evacuation. Then we conveyed that Michelle wanted to protect these lands and the possibility to do so. However, Cortina’s reply was concise.
She rejected it in one word and ordered us to evacuate like the rest of the kids.
“Even if it’s possible as you say, it’s still a no. Hurry up and evacuate with the other students.”
“Listen, you are certainly an abnormally outstanding student. But you are still that – a student. We, teachers, have a duty to protect you.”
In this excursion, there was a leading teacher appointed from the Adventurer’s Academy too. However, there was a difference in status between them and Cortina. In cases of emergencies like this, Cortina had received the unconditional right to command.
I was aware that she would prioritize the safety of the students and give them such directions.
“Even… Even though I have the power to protect this place… Why can’t I?”
“You can’t and that’s it. Even if you could beat it, I would still be blamed for allowing you to do it. My duty right now is to protect the students. You have to put up with it now.”
I understood Cortina’s point. Michelle was the one being unreasonable here. She wouldn’t be able to call herself a teacher if she allowed her students to face such a danger. Even if they had a way to subjugate it, she had to prioritize the students’ safety above all.
“Nicole, please tell her too!”
“…Sorry, but Cortina is right.”
I understood that she wanted to protect this place that reminded her of her hometown. Even so, I wouldn’t be able to convince Cortina given her standing. No, if she allowed minors to head to the battle, she’d lose her qualifications as a teacher.
So instead, I forcefully pulled Michelle away from Cortina. She had her duty to evacuate other students so it wasn’t good to waste her time.
“What should we do… At this rate…”
“Yeah, this place would probably be devastated.”
“If you know that, then why—”
“Cortina has her own circumstances. She can’t be partial or show special treatment to a single student.”
“I know full well that it’s dangerous.”
“Still… She can’t.”
Nevertheless, Michelle wasn’t the one to obediently step back, and I knew that full well. At this rate, she would head out to subjugate it without telling Cortina. If that happened, she would, without a doubt, die.
She certainly had both the firepower to kill and the skill to hit it… But that was it. She would probably approach it without even finding its weak spot and get crushed or swallowed by its gigantic body.
For that reason, she needed a cooperator. As well as a plan to realize it.
I needed to protect Cortina’s reputation while also meeting Michelle’s expectations. But those actions were clearly contradicting each other…
Cortina, Elliot and the rest of the teachers were having a discussion while escorting the kids towards the teleportation spot. I used my Stealth Gift to approach them from behind. As I thought, they seemed to be talking about how to deal with the Mountain Serpent.
“We have to evacuate the students to the teleportation spot first.”
“Are we evacuating them to the capital?”
“If we do that, there wouldn’t be enough magic power left to transport the army here. Teleportation requires a huge amount of magic power.”
“But, Lady Cortina, we can’t guarantee the students’ safety at this rate!”
“Even if we evacuated them to the capital and left the Serpent be, that wouldn’t guarantee their safety any better. It’s possible that it would charge straight towards the capital.”
It seemed that they were talking about our safety, after all. They didn’t know whether it was safer to teleport us all the way to the capital or evacuate us locally. If we were evacuated to the capital, there wouldn’t be enough magic power left for the army to make it here. If that happened, there was no knowing how far the Serpent’s destruction would spread.
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This was still a rural region. There was no expectation that they’d have enough defenses here to ward off the Serpent, so it was necessary for the capital’s forces to intervene.
“We can’t satisfy both conditions, what a troublesome situation this is.”
“Makes you think… why now of all times? If we weren’t here now, the capital’s armed forces could come here without problems.”
“What do you suggest, Ms. Cortina?”
One of the teachers asked Cortina, as she was the one with the most influence around. Perhaps they asked for her opinion to support their own minds. That’s just how much threat a Calamity Beast had.
“Let me think…”
Cortina paused her speech and glanced at the students that were in the middle of taking refuge. Next, she looked around while holding her chin. I moved behind someone to escape getting noticed by her.
Regardless of the Stealth Gift, she would realize I was hiding if our eyes met.
“If I’m not mistaken, there was a big valley west of here, right? If we can lure it there, it should restrict its movements to a degree.”
“I see. It’s certainly a big valley so once it goes there, even a Mountain Serpent would be unable to move about freely.”
“That said, given its gigantic body, it can probably climb back up from that height. At best we can only restrict its horizontal movements.”
“If it can climb up, then we can’t really confine it there.”
The teacher who asked her probably wanted to hear her opinion about the students, but Cortina replied with the subjugating strategy.
“A Mountain Serpent can be baited by animal fodder, and it can only move by crawling, so a skilled magician could block the way with Earth Wall and lead it towards the valley. It can probably destroy it given its absurd strength, but it doesn’t move with a clear goal in mind that would make it want to break that wall and proceed beyond it. That said, our current battle power isn’t enough.”
“So all we can do is run, in the end…”
“Well, we are only teachers, after all. Subjugating monsters isn’t among our duties.”
She calmed the other teachers with those words, but I felt like the earlier strategy was directed towards me. Perhaps she noticed that I was hiding and listening to them from nearby.
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