|Author: Ryuusen Hirotsugu||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 3039 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1666 words|
Gilbert had always been easily excited when it came to his research. He sprang to his feet and took out his research notes from his chest pocket, it’s pages were filled with random lines all around the pages without any cohesive order. It was one of those notebooks only the author knew how to decipher. As he spoke about his goals, thoughts and theories, he shoved that notebook on Mira’s face.
Mira did not know that prodding a bit at him would stir him up so much, but Gilbert’s words clung to her like a snake without letting her go and making her listen to his lecture.
“And then, after all my research I arrived at a certain conclusion. Everything had started one year before the incident in northern Grimdart. Are you aware of what had happened around that time?”
“Then I’ll tell you about it!”
“Oh, you don’t have to bother yourself.”
“The source of everything was the floating island in the southern part of the Earth continent-”
“I can’t handle this anymore!”
That fastidious lesson was already taking close to the same time they had spent climbing up the stairs and Mira was unable to take it anymore. She climbed back up on the Dark Knight and attempted to escape.
“But I didn’t even get to the main point.”
Gilbert crossed his arms slightly displeased. Heinrich noticed the lesson was over, so he put his maintenance tools away and raised his voice.
“So you’re done now? Let’s continue climbing then.”
And he stood up as if nothing had ever happened.
“It’s the same with you and her, why does no one seem to get interested in this stuff?”
“I think it’s just a bit too annoying, and too long. I don’t think you’re really meant to be a teacher.”
The two exchanged words in their usual attitude, then ran after Mira to catch up with her.
Not too far away they caught up with Mira, then began ascending together. Gilbert tried to continue his earlier exposition, but Mira only gave vague replies without really paying attention to him for the next ten minutes or so. Then, they arrived at the next floor, a large space that spread as far as they could see.
The first floor was a large slope, dotted with piles of rocks that served as fortresses. Red lights like that of bonfires flickered throughout the place, but they were not enough to light up everywhere, and dark presences seemed to lurk in the corners.
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Just as they had expected, there were countless numbers of monsters there. Mira used her Biological Sensing to see how many there were, and she counted at least thirty. But they had no way to avoid them if they wanted to reach the stairs leading to the second floor.
“Now then, shall we get rid of them?”
After jumping down the Dark Knight’s shoulder, Mira said that.
“Yeah. We managed to arrive quickly thanks to your respectable Garuda, but we still have a long time to go. Gil’s lecture also ate our time away, so we should try to move faster.”
Heinrich replied as he unsheathed his sword. But he stopped moving after that, only turning his head to give Gilbert a signal with his eyes.
“I guess I gotta do that. But whatever, let’s just do it like always. Mira-san, just stand back and watch for now.”
Saying so, Gilbert took out one arrow from the quiver on his waist. Yet he did not have a bow to shoot that arrow with, nor did he take one out from his Operator’s Bracelet.
The arrow Gilbert was holding was a thick one, which he held in his right hand while his right foot slid half a step back, then brought the arrow to the side of his face and held it behind his ear. He had a perfect throwing pose after that.
Mira watched his actions in expectancy. His body seemed to swell up for an instant, becoming a launching pad for the arrow and sending it far away, past the flickering bubbles of red light, finally causing hitting something and causing a splash like that of a fountain.
Soon after a second and third arrow were thrown, Gilbert’s arm turning into a ballista. Each of them whistled through the air like falcons closing in on their prey, their heads piercing through the monsters.
All of the arrows hit their marks, piercing through the heads or necks of monsters, severing them of their lives in an instant as if out of compassion.
Some bear-like monsters roared in hatred seeing their kin being slain like that, but a moment later their own heads were pierced and their voices silenced in an instant.
“What a magnificent sight.”
The arrows in Gilbert’s quiver were throwing weapons known as hand arrows. They were fired using one’s bare hands, so there was no need to have a bow. They were a really simple weapon.
While Mira was taken aback seeing Gilbert slay one monster after another, Heinrich was firing up his fighting spirit.
“They seem to have noticed us. Henry, I’m counting on you.”
“Just leave the rest to me!”
After the arrows had claimed the souls of more than ten of their comrades, the monsters finally noticed where that destruction came from and they charged all at once towards the three as their roars filled the space. The bits and pieces of their killing intent that crossed through the long distance painted the atmosphere in a crimson hue as the distance between them turned into a battlefield.
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Heinrich then sprang forward to face them. With a diagonal slash, he cut from the shoulder down to its sides the nimble monster that resembled a tiger who was running ahead of all the others. It only took Heinrich an instant to pick up his pace again. He then turned the blade in his hands, slashing through the next monster in the reverse direction as earlier, then he held his sword to his side and channeled his fighting spirit.
Once he had channeled it to his maximum, the glint from his swings turned into sharp blades which flew through the air and fell upon the monsters. As they all combined, they became like a small typhoon, the monsters caught in that storm being lifted into the air and being cut into small pieces that it was impossible to tell what their original body was.
“Hoh, quite simple skills, but I have to admit they are well mastered.”
Having seen Heinrich’s sword skills, she muttered in slight awe.
Just like there were certain skills only mages were able to use, there were similarly exclusive skills for the warrior classes.
But since they only fought with weapons, all they had involved their fighting spirit and it’s application.
For them, fighting spirit was analogous to what mana is for a mage. It would start rising when a fight was about to start, and only increase the longer the fight was carried on for. It was the only power warriors could actually use.
Applying that fighting spirit meant channeling that driving force into more physical effects once it had risen enough.
And the application Heinrich had used was a really common one and was considered one of the basics, but it was obvious he had put special care in mastering it.
If he applied the fighting spirit he had built up to a simple thrust, it would extend the hit and give it such a piercing strength it would be able to cut through the bedrock. It was also possible to change the fighting spirit into flames, which manifested along the blade, or also use it to strengthen one’s own body for some time.
There were a multitude of applications like that, and it was even possible to layer them and combine them together, which led to many warriors to focus on their own style of fighting.
And application’s effects would also increase the more they used it, and Heinrich had just demonstrated how strong a single attack could eventually be.
“I also have to strive to do better then!”
Mira got motivated to do something herself and she almost ran off too, but she stopped just an instant later. And it was not that there was something like flowers she did not want to trample on in front of her or anything like that, but she had just been thinking about all the past events.
(Phew, that was close. I was just about to make Meilin even more famous.)
If she used her sage skills, those two would start talking about how incredible sages were. And after enough past experiences, Mira had learned her lesson so she stopped her feet just at the right time. Then, she gave the Dark Knight who had been standing by silently its first order in a long while.
“Slaughter them all!”
As if replying to that cold voice, the darkness enveloping the Dark Knight thickened, it’s red eyes like flickering embers turned a deep crimson, and a moment later, it leaped forward like a cannonball.
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The only thing that could be heard afterwards was the slight quivering of throats that expired before a scream could be formed. The Dark Knight was not fighting the monsters with a blade, but it was crushing them with its own body. After dominating the scene with such a massacre, the Dark Knight’s presence seemed somewhat unfit for that kind of battlefield.
“It might not look that way, but you’re pretty nasty, you know.”
Gilbert muttered with a bitter smile after witnessing that scene.
“Just what is…”
Heinrich had ran forward trying to show off, but he also stood still in shock seeing the Dark Knight in action.
“I can’t permit myself to fall behind!”
A couple minutes passed since the battle began. The one man and one entity quickly overpowered everything else in the battlefield and the fight was over.