|Author: Kobayashi Homare||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2033 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 966 words|
It was late at night when we encroached stealthily near the city and watched what happened there while holding our breaths. Even though it was so late, there was a lot of noise coming from the city, and the streets were brightly lit. Somehow the demon army had decided to burn up the amount of oil that a regular family would take a lifetime to spend within a few days. And from deeper into the city we could hear the endless cries of people.
“Damned demons…they’re just doing as they please…”
A soldier from Strom’s army muttered in frustration. I also wanted to just unsheathe my sword and run in there killing all monsters and demons I saw, but I had to remain calm if I wanted the plan to succeed. I turned around and signaled to Freya and the soldiers to keep their voices down.
“I didn’t consider the enemy might not be sleeping. The plan was to sneak under the cover of night, but that won’t work here so we need to modify the strategy.”
“What exactly should we do then?”
Freya replied in a low voice, and I had to think for a moment.
“Let’s see…how about this. We’ll start the same way, I’ll carry you and your party inside, but as soon as we get there you use your magic. I want as many eyes on us as possible, and when the enemy rushes in to attack you, I’ll go destroy the main gates and let the soldiers enter freely. We’ll forego burning their supplies, and instead focus on being swift.”
“I see. Since the enemy isn’t asleep, I have to make a distraction instead.”
“Pretty much. Let’s do it that way then.”
With everything decided, we only had to carry out the plan. I silently took a deep breath and focused my attention, checking the city with Detector magic. The center of the city was filled with monsters, demons, and people, too many to count them without going insane, though knowing their number was not what I wanted. I wanted to check if there was any lookout outside the city.
“…They don’t seem to have any scouts outside the city. The plan will begin in twenty minutes so prepare yourselves.”
After a nod, all the soldiers began to prepare silently. They all began painting their bodies, armor, and equipment black. That way they would be incredibly hard to see, and all their equipment was made of silent leather. As far as I could tell, they were better trained than the average soldier, showing the king had made an effort to pick capable men.
“Let’s hope everything goes according to plan…”
“It’ll be fine. I’m sure everything will work out.”
Freya looked insecure, but I took her hand and smiled…even though I was also feeling worried. Many people were going to die tonight. Even if I and Freya fought with all our power and killed any enemy on sight, even if the soldiers put their lives on the line and did their best, there would be residents who would fall behind. All of them too old or young to have the strength to run.
I glanced to the side, to Freya. She was probably nervous, her entire body trembling slightly. She was a hero and probably had fought many monsters in the past, but anyone would feel that way knowing many people would die in a few hours. I had been in similar situations many times in the past so I could keep myself calmer, but there was no way for her to gain that experience.
As we waited for the appointed time in silence, all we could hear were the cries from the city, and the evil laugh of the demons. I was getting angrier by the minute, but I tried to suppress it as best as I could until it was time to leave.
“It’s time, everyone holds tightly onto me.”
Freya and her party could not use Flight Magic, so I had to carry all of them. As we floated into the air, we quickly reached higher than the city walls, and ignoring the heart-wrenching cries from below I headed to the center of the city. There used to be a fountain there, but it was completely destroyed now. The statue of a woman holding a jar was missing half its face, and the basin was filled with dirt and garbage. Surrounding it were piles of human bodies, none of which would move again. The demons nearby were all completely drunk, and the monsters could only understand basic orders, so they struggled to understand where we had appeared from, and we had no reason to wait for them to realize what happened.
As soon as Freya let go of me, she joined her hands and began praying. Her party members surrounded her and began praying as well to support her.
“God of Light Lumiere! Lend me your power to liberate the people from the grasp of evil! Grant me your light and justice! Holy Light!”
A wave of light spread from her and covered the entire city. The low-level monsters nearby all collapsed on the ground when the light passed over them, while the demons began crying in pain and held their chest. But the few demons that were less affected quickly took their weapons and ran to attack Freya. While that was happening, I flew high into the air until I could see the front gates, and there I summoned three giant orbs of light which I shot towards the gate. When they collided, the gate quickly crumbled down together with all the surrounding walls, while a loud tremor shook the entire city.
The battle had finally started.
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