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8-6: Continue A Little Longer (Part 1)

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Author: Natsuni Kotatsu Original Source: Syosetu
Translator: Mui English Source: Re:Library
Editor(s): Robinxen

The plan’s phases progressed without a hitch.

…However, not everything went as planned, as one would expect.

A carriage carrying rescuers could be seen from the window as it passed through the main street in front of the branch, heading towards the church—a sight I have seen so many times I’ve lost count ever since the earthquakes occurred.

“I’ve verified the achievement. The next scheduled task is after tomorrow, so take your time to rest.”
“…Got it. Thank you.”

Over at the nearby counter, the spokesperson for those who had been guarding the carriage earlier departed with a weary smile.

There were victims. They failed to protect them. Perhaps burdened by such regrets and a sense of powerlessness, similar downtrodden individuals could be sporadically observed in the hall.

“Another round!”
“Um… maybe it’s best to stop soon.”
“Be quiet! How am I supposed to cope without a drink?!”

A man, his face flushed from alcohol, shouted at Cynthia.

Normally, when someone displayed such behavior, people around would give him disapproving looks, but this time, perhaps sensing his emotions, everyone wore somewhat awkward expressions.

“But it’s not a good idea. If you fall ill right here and now, you’ll be rendered incapable for what’s to come, you understand?”

Observing those around him and Cynthia’s unwavering demeanor, the man seemed to regain some self-control and bowed his head as if suppressing his anger.

“I understand… I really do! Just drowning my sorrows here won’t amount to anything!”

Nevertheless, he lifted his gaze.

“But can you understand what I feel…? No matter how many we defeat, the terrifying truth remains that more and more monsters keep surging forth… Until assistance arrived, we had no option but to cower like frightened mollusks… Even though there might have been people still out there! Up until now, all this time I… for what reason did I grip my sword… swing my sword…”

Tears escaped from the eyes of the man, his fist clenched, as he once again lowered his head.

Was he one of the guards from the saved village…? Fear of the monsters and the regret of not being able to offer assistance. To escape from those feelings, to avoid recollection, he had turned to alcohol.

Before him, a tankard was placed with vigor.

As the man lifted his gaze, he saw Fadele. In the presence of the representative of the ≪Azure Sword≫, a name that carried recognition even among the patrol members, the man blinked in surprise.

“If you desire a drink, then go ahead and indulge.”

On the surface, it seemed like thoughtful and sympathetic words, yet the expression remained stern… perhaps that was the reason the man hesitated to reach for the tankard.

Addressing the man, Fadele spoke.

“No need to hesitate. …However, I’d like you to contemplate the significance of downing this drink.”

The surroundings were enveloped in silence, leaving only his voice audible.

“Using alcohol to blot out memories. I won’t label that as wrongdoing. I reckon everyone has undergone such moments. …But, are you really fine with that?”
“Am I fine…? Th-that’s…”
“Indulging in a drink here will let you forget unpleasant memories. …But, that relief would be momentary, lasting only while you drink.”

He interjected, cutting off the man’s words, and confronted him.

“Even if you submerge yourself in alcohol to forget, most likely you’ll continue to harbor regrets. Not merely today or tomorrow. It’ll continue even after this situation is over. So I’m asking. Are you still going to drink?”
“Ugh… then what should I do?! I… I couldn’t fight! I was powerless!”
“Then fight next time.”

He spoke and extended his hand, a wry smile on his face.

“I’m well aware that the monsters are scary. I’ve fought my fair share of monsters until now. I’ve faced opponents even stronger, like the Ice Dragon. That one was particularly frightening.”
“…That’s… That’s because you’re…”
“It wasn’t because I was strong. It was because there were others with me. Because I had trustworthy comrades by my side and people to protect behind me.”

At that point, Fadele’s wry smile transformed into a genuine one.

“The upcoming challenge won’t be shouldered by you alone. We’re all here.”

As if drawn in by those words, the man cast his gaze around. Surely, his eyes must have captured images of people wearing smiles akin to Fadele’s.

“Now, the decision is yours. Will you opt to drown your current momentary fear with a drink, or will you join us in dispelling that fear altogether?”
“I… I will…”

In a wavering manner, his hand quivering as though affected by fear, he hesitated repeatedly. “…I will fight…!” Finally, he firmly grasped the offered hand.

“Very well!” Fadelle chuckled. “Personnel secured!”


He firmly clasped his arm.

“He’s the third trainee today! Treat him well!”

Perplexed, the man received Cynthia’s beaming announcement.

“It seems that you first have to overcome that fear. Good luck!”

And so, the man was shipped… I mean, taken away to the arena for training.

Well, if he were to get injured and miss the main event, that wouldn’t bode well. They probably wouldn’t do anything crazy to him, so it should be fine. Probably.

At any rate, with that, the hall’s liveliness returned.

…Still, a hint of awkwardness remained.

After continuing reception duties for a while, it was time for a break. As I was climbing the stairs since it was time for Haku to wake up, someone called me.

“Big sister.”

As I turned around, Sofia came into view.

Though she had been dedicated to tending to the injured from incidents like the earthquakes at the church, her demeanor now held a certain rigidity, different from mere nervousness.

Descending the stairs, I met her gaze.

“…Is something wrong?”

At my question, Sofia, who had seemed on the verge of saying something, lowered her eyes as if suppressing her words. Then she spoke up.

“I heard there’s a major operation planned.”

It was the reason everyone was enduring the current circumstances.
After acknowledging my response, Sofia went on.

“…I’d also like to contribute to treating the wounded.”
“Your help would be appreciated, but… can you leave the church?”
“Yes. In fact, it’s because the patients themselves requested it. They told me that they were fine, and to assist those who can fight.”

While we’ve made sure to have individuals skilled in healing magic, naturally, the more, the better. The majority of those seeking refuge at the church, including the wounded, are non-combatants. So, their concern is appreciated, and their logic is sound.

However… just that explanation wouldn’t typically lead to such a sad, wistful smile, right? Is something bothering her? …I’m tempted to ask, but based on her recent demeanor, if I were to inquire, she’d likely reply with “It’s nothing” or “I’m okay.”

She’s the type who can shrug off mere insults with a chuckle… If there’s something bothering her, she might just make a remark with no ill will. Considering the present circumstances, it could be something like ‘why is God not doing anything?’

…I just randomly came up with that, but it sounds quite plausible. Still, I shouldn’t just poke at her wounds just to find out…

“Can I depend on you?”
“Yes. I’ll give it my all.”

She bowed politely and departed.

Despite her proposal being approved, her retreating figure seemed somewhat melancholic, as if burdened by concerns.

“Yes, what is it, big sister?”
“There might be individuals from different faiths here, but don’t let it trouble you. Because of your presence, there are people who can be aided.”

It doesn’t matter whether there’s a god there or not. I can’t be sure if she grasped that sentiment. …Then again, perhaps my assumption was misguided.



Her spirited response, as she briskly moved away, was characteristic of her as always.

In the early hours of the morning in Luneville. Despite the dawn’s early light, a significant crowd had gathered in the central square. Standing atop an improvised podium were Ector and Frank.

Even with the distant cries of airborne monsters now and then, no one averted their attention from them.

While the circumstances were what they were, it’s not as if the townspeople were going to turn hostile due to inaction or anything of the sort. Instead, there was an air of stillness, akin to the calm before a storm.

Yet, everyone’s gaze was intense, making it quite noticeable.

“…Is everyone armed?”

Ector’s voice echoed, met with a resounding response.

“Does everyone recall the plan?”

In response to Frank’s voice, an even more resounding reply reverberated. Noticing this, Ector took a moment.

“Very well, then I won’t prolong this.”

With those words, his slightly tense expression melted into a smile.

“The time for patience is over!”
“Unleash all the frustrations that have built up over time!!”
“Reclaim everything that was stolen from you!!”
“This marks the start of a counteroffensive!! Open the gates!!!!”

In perfect sync with his declaration, a volley of arrows soared into the sky, producing a high-pitched sound.

As a signal, a cascade of spells erupted, scattering the monsters positioned near the gate.



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