16-70. Saga Empire, Battle at the Imperial Capital (3)
Hero Fuu who was summoned to Saga Empire's audience hall by his attendant looked around for the source of a voice with a familiar tone calling his name.
"Fuu-han, everybody's gonna get suspicious of ya if ya keep fidgeting round and round like that."
Hero Fuu turned around when someone clapped his shoulder.
The one standing there was not a small man he expected to be, but a young man in chamberlain attires.
Appraisal skill given to Hero Fuu by god Parion informed him that this young man is a homonculus.
"Oh this thing, 's what they call messenger boy y'see."
The young man took a pocket watch out of his pocket breast while speaking in a voice that belied his face.
"Yeap, an acquaintance of mine imported this from Weasel Empire, see."
The homonculus replied to Hero Fuu who noticed [MADE IN JAPAN] word engraved on the back of the pocket watch.
"In 10 minutes, right at 12 o'clock, the barrier will loosen up for an instant. Use that chance to ask Ramiko-han's help 'k."
The homonculus clapped Hero Fuu's shoulder as he walked passed by him toward his back.
"How did you know about Ramiko-san--"
The homonculus was nowhere to be seen when Hero Fuu turned around.
"The demon lord's head regenerated into a goat's!"
Shouts from people in the audience room reached Hero Fuu's ears as he looked around at the surroundings.
The demon lord's head that should have been lost by a shot from mysterious sniper has regenerated.
"Goat head, but isn't it a vampire? Sabbath? What does that mean?"
Flustered voice of Hero Seigi could be heard too.
Both the ministers and the heroes were thrown into confusion.
"Quiet down, Seigi. I'm gonna roast this demon lord up, come with me."
"Hold on, Yuuki, don't pull my hand. Aren't you gonna take Fuu too?"
"--Fuu? Nah, not that guy."
Hero Yuuki's words stabbed Fuu's heart.
Due to that, the continuation from Hero Yuuki , "That guy hardly ever attended the practice. He's gonna get hurt real bad if we take him with us" never reached his ears.
The future might take a different turn had Hero Fuu actually heard those words.
"Fetch everything! Anything to hold down the door!"
A knight in black armor shouted as he held down a huge door leading out of a chapel.
Around ten soldiers were holding down the door along with the black knight, their foots floated up whenever the door got knocked hard as they desperately held down the door.
Behind them, orphaned children from a joint establishment of the temple, and apprentice priestess who take care of these children are looking at them with terrified expressions.
"Parion-sama, please give your protection to these courageous knights--"
When an apprentice priestess girl offered her prayers to god, the other apprentices and orphans started to go along with her in desperation.
However, the world is ruthless.
The bulky door let out a creaking sound, and then a red eye peek from the crack.
The knights and some of the soldiers spat out curses, while the majority of people here screamed.
The mouth that was peeking from the door warped into a sneer.
The red eye disappeared from the crack, and right when everyone breathed a sigh of relief--.
BOOM--with a roaring sound, the bulky door got blown away along with the black knight and soldiers.
A Vampire Knight with hunched back showed up.
Its eyes looking for prey stare at the apprentice priestesses next to the orphan children one by one.
The Vampire Knight's tongue squirmed like that of a snake, its red eyes and split mouth formed crescent shapes.
The Vampire Knight slowly steps forward as if to fulfill its sadistic heart.
"You shall not pass! So long as I wear this Black Steel Armor granted by his majesty, my knees shall never yield before evil spirits!"
The black knight stood up, drew a sword hanging on its waist, and stepped forward to block the Vampire Knight.
His sword is clad in red light, the light produces another blade on top of the sword itself.
"--That's Magic Edge!"
One of the orphan kids shouted, hope dwelt in other kids' eyes.
"Here I come, you knave!"
The black knight rushed out toward the Vampire Knight at a speed belying his heavy armor and swung his sword with a great force while leaving trails of red light behind.
The orphan kids and soldiers cheered, a scene depicting the black knight's victory played in their eyes.
However, the world is ruthless--.
After a fierce clash, the one that fell down in pool of blood along with a thunderous sound was the black knight instead.
The Vampire Knight slowly stepped toward the black knight while sneering 'kisha kisha'.
One of the apprentices with Appraisal skill noticed that fact.
Only heroes and select few transcendental beings reached this height, a domain reserved for heroes and devils.
No matter how capable Saga Empire's black knights are, they are still within the confine of the domain of men.
"I, won't, let you."
The black knight stood up.
Even after losing one of his arms, with blood all over his body, he keeps standing up to show his back on those whom he must protect.
Soldiers who saw the very model of a knight in him whipped their trembling legs and formed a meat wall in front of the people.
The Vampire Knight who was fighting bare handed before turned the nails on both its hands red, and stretched them out into ten blades.
The Vampire Knight licked one of the blades, smiling sadistically.
While sensing that this battle would be his last, the black knight produced magic edge on his sword.
The Vampire Knight hazed out and showed up in front of the black knight.
The black knight managed to block the ten blades' assault twice before his sword broke on the third clash.
"My sword may break, but my knight heart shall never shatter. That's the creed of my family."
The Vampire Knight sneered 'kisha kisha' at the black knight's words that sounded more like a self-persuasion.
The Vampire Knight roared.
Two roars echoed back, and two black shadows appeared from the entrance that had lost its door.
"You're shittin' me..."
"Why can't these reinforcement be on our side..."
The soldiers let out tearful voices and curses.
The black knight silently gripped his broken sword.
From whose mouth that word escaped out exactly.
Was it god's mercy that no one here noticed the irony that the Vampire Knights going after them were created by one of those heroes himself--.
The response to that were a tremor that shook the whole chapel up and innumerable claws that pierced through the chapel's thick walls.
The Vampire Knight looked up at the passage window on the second floor of the now drafty chapel.
A small shadow smashed through the window and landed in the chapel.
"Golden Knight Yellow makes her entrance, nanodesu!"
It was a small hero covered in golden armor striking the shupit pose.
The Vampire Knight hazed out and drew closer to the golden knight.
A similar scene like the fight with the black knight earlier played out, but this one had some differences.
The ten blades brandished by the Vampire Knight were broken into pieces by the white sword wielded by the golden knight, the blood breath that could melt even rocks couldn't even manage to burn her yellow mantle, dispersing into floor instead.
The remaining two Vampire Knights ignored the golden knight and rushed toward the civilians instead.
The black knight attempted to stand in their way, but he has no strength left in his arm and legs.
The soldiers went ahead to protect the black knight, but they were blown away by one swing of the Vampire Knight, rolling on the ground like barrels.
The Vampire Knight swung down a killing blow at the black knight.
The apprentices closed their eyes, fearing the worst.
"Chicchicchi, nanodesu. You shall not carry out a honey nose act in the presence of Dog Hero -- nodesuyo."
The apprentice priestesses opened their eyes to hear that somewhat silly voice.
The golden knight was shaking her finger as she stood in front of the black knight, protecting him.
If her master was present here, he might have corrected her to use [heinous] instead of [honey nose], but no one in this place could afford such right now.
Additionally, the [Pochi] part after the 'Dog Hero' part was overwritten with an electronic buzz sound produced by the golden armor's support AI.
"Aah! You can't run away nanodesuyo!"
The Vampire Knights that had realized the disadvantageous situation they were in scrambled for chapel's entrance.
The golden knight caught up to them with Flickering Step, cut apart one of the Vampire Knight like zunbararin, and dealt with the the other one using her charge forward finisher.
The last one barely escaped her pursuit and went outside the chapel.
"You won't get away nodesu!"
The golden knight stopped her rushed for the entrance.
The Vampire Knight that should have run away went back into the chapel, looking frightened of something.
Its 'kisha kisha' laugh disappeared as it stared outside the chapel in fear.
Blood overflowing out of the Vampire Knight's body turned into dark red armor, a lance and a knight shield of the same color materialized in its hands. The Vampire Knight had entered into maximum battle mode in a short amount of time.
A white blade sprouted of its back.
The lance and shield that had just been materialized fell down as liquid, the Vampire Knight itself disappeared into ash.
At the opposite side, a golden knight holding a dragon spear stood unassumingly.
"『Golden Knight Orange』 nanodesu!"
Golden Knight Yellow's careless remark got overwritten with a recorded audio provided by the golden knight's support AI.
"Yellow, let me ride on Lyuryu. We'll close in on the demon lord from the sky."
"Yes nanodesu. But, it'd be bad if we don't give medicines to the knight person first nanodesuyo?"
"No need to worry about that."
Golden Knight Orange turned her face toward the black knight.
A ninja wearing a cat mask that appeared out of nowhere was already treating the black knight and other injured people with gauze rolls on green ground.
"As expected of -- nanodesu."
"We should hurry."
"Roger nanodesu. Lyuryu, come on, nanodesu!"
The two golden knights that went out of the chapel got wrapped in huge hands covered in white scales and disappeared beyond.
The people who finally noticed their life had been saved uttered words of gratitudes and prayers.
<TLN: If you're reading this novel at any other site than Sousetsuka .com you might be reading an unedited, uncorrected version of the novel.>
"Ain't it too big?"
Hero Yuuki who had got on one of the fortress towers murmured as he looked up at the goat-headed demon lord clinging on the castle walls.
Hero Seigi, four black knights and two casters are present next to him, acting as supports.
The attendants who summoned these heroes to the audience hall are not suited for battle, thus they're not here.
"It sure is.... Well, that demon lord at Holy Land Parion was huge too, but your magic will take care of it, right Yuuki."
"You say that like it's so easy."
In addition to Hero Yuuki's Unique Skills strengthening his magic, he also took a magic potion that boosts magic which his attendant, Michael aka Mieka forced on him.
Fire magic advance spell that had been strengthened to double its power exploded on the demon lord.
Flames filled the castle, turning the beautiful gardens and luxurious interiors into ashes.
The heat that could even melt rocks carbonized the demon lord's body.
"Yippee! It's working! Yuuki, do that again, again!"
"That just now has a cooldown time, so I gotta wait."
"What, it's useless. You a single cartridge gun or something."
"I don't want to hear that from you specifically."
Hero Yuuki and Hero Seigi got into a quarrel despite the situation they were at.
One of the black knights that came with them as guards warned.
Looking up, the demon lord appeared to be inhaling greatly.
Not sure what it is, but the demon lord is clearly trying to attack back.
"You guys, run!"
Hero Seigi jumped off the tower using Flight Shoes, Hero Yuuki followed after him slightly later.
A moment later, a dark red breath enwrapped the tower they were on before it got blown away by the shockwaves, melting the remaining foundation.
"Geh, it's coming here. So fast!"
"W-within my calculation!"
"Then, what's your best bet?! Surely you got one!"
"I wouldn't be running away if I did!"
"I'm telling you, battling is outside of my specialty."
The demon lord went after the heroes while smashing apart castle walls, towers and other facilities inside the castle.
The fact that it couldn't catch up to the heroes due to the defensive ramps and walls seemed to make it quite irritated, it pulled out one of the towers, and hurled it at the heroes.
Hero Yuuki used Explosion Magic instead of his specialty fire magic, blowing apart the incoming tower.
"Ouch ow ow, Yuuki you moron! You're making splinters flying here using explosion magic you're not good at!"
Seigi shouted and cursed as he got hit by small splinters.
"Shut up! Better than eating a flying tower in the face!"
The demon lord drew nearer behind Hero Yuuki as he snapped back.
"All right, Recast Time is over--Inferno"
With the second flame, the demon lord's arms got carbonized before crumbling down.
"We did it! You're awesome Yuuki--agh, it's regenerating! It went and regenerated!"
Seeing the arms that should have been carbonized returned to original form, Hero Seigi screamed.
"This is bad."
"I don't wanna hear it, but what is!"
Hero Seigi asked as they resumed their escape.
"Burned through 10% of my mana."
"A-and your magic potion?"
"You idiot, why aren't you carrying them with you!"
Hero Seigi took a bag with magic potion inside from his Inventory.
The heroes dodged in a hurry.
The demon lord's arm missed them by a hair's breadth.
Bottles of magic potions fell out of the opened bag, Hero Seigi frantically juggled the last one.
"What are you doing, Seigi!"
The last bottle that escaped out Hero Seigi's finger toward the ground was snatched by Hero Yuuki from the side.
Right when he was going to open the bottle's lid, one of the splinters unluckily flew toward it breaking the earthenware bottle.
Hero Seigi booed at Hero Yuuki who stared at the broken bottle in disbelief.
"I don't wanna hear that from you Seigi!"
The two continued to flee even while quarrellings.
"Noo, it's over! It's catching up to uuuus~"
"If you've got time to talk, you've got time to beat it with you Unique Skill, Seigi."
"Can't do that while moving this much!"
Reached out arms of the demon lord approached the heroes in an attempt to seize them.
The heroes barely managed to dodge the fingertips by stopping them with magic, but they were gradually cornered.
Right when they were about to give up as the fingers were coming for them from both sides, the fingers abruptly got pulled backward.
The two looked back and saw the demon lord tripping on one of the towers.
They got out of this alive, saved by coincidental terrain.
"Sa-safe. Lady luck must be on my side."
"Luck? Then I'm gonna leave the rest to you, Lucky Boy."
Hero Yuuki speeded himself up with wind magic.
"Wha, that's unfair, Yuuki!"
Right above the complaining Hero Seigi, the demon lord flew over him with a long jump.
The demon lord ahead turned around and spread its arms wide as if to block Hero Seigi.
"It's all oveeeeeeeeeer"
Hero Seigi screamed out in despair.
The next moment, cloud of dust whirled up around the demon lord.
Glittering utility pole-sized spears rained down on the demon lord, stitching it on a nearby fort.
One figure descended down from the sky.
"Purple hair? --Is that Shiga Kingdom's Hero Nanashi?"
Hero Yuuki stopped running and looked up at the figure, Hero Seigi who just had a close call also looked up at his savior while catching his breath.
The figure--Hikaru restrained the demon lord on the ground with glittering lights.
She kicked the air and landed near the heroes.
"You all right? Boys--"
Dazzling lights wrapped the heroes.
"I'm being generous here. It's a reward for you hard-working boys."
Right when the buff magic had done its magic, the demon lord broke apart its restrain and moved again.
"Weird, no? It's a vampire yet it didn't try to escape by turning into mist..."
"More importantly! That attack magic earlier! Shoot it, quick."
Hero Yuuki haughtily gave an order.
"Geez! Don't forget honorifics when you're talking to your elders."
"Forget about that! It's coming! The demon lord is coming!"
Hero Seigi pleaded frantically.
"I mean, I'm not that good at attack magic."
"Who cares, just do it!"
"Nn, it's okay."
"Uwaaaaaa, it's hereeee"
Hero Seigi ran away as fast as possible in the face of the castle-breaking incoming demon lord's intense force.
"It's okay. Look--"
"The other two heroes are fighting out there, and all you do is just trembling over here!"
Hero Fuu who had missed his chance to get away from the audience hall was being overbearingly reproached by a young nobleman who was supposed to be his attendant.
Other ministers who noticed that began to take part in verbally abusing Hero Fuu.
(Weren't you guys that called me here. I never asked you to bring me here.)
Hero Fuu could only look downward in silent, but he was rebutting them furiously in his mind.
"You failure of a hero!"
(And you guys are failure of attendants.)
"Even Hero Yamato who was called a failed hero managed to defeat [Golden Wild Boar King] and founded Shiga Kingdom, but look at you, you truly are a failure."
(Shut up, you useless ministers.)
"Are you frustrated, then fight!"
"It's useless. Like this coward has any backbone."
"You botched hero who can do nothing but hanging your head in silent!"
(So these are the people who have been summoning, no, kidnapping heroes for generations...)
The ministers and hero Fuu reciprocally derided each other.
--Fuu. Hero Fuu.
The voice of a child reached Hero Fuu's ears.
--Open the eyes of these depraved foolish children.
Only Hero Fuu could hear that voice.
(That's right, goddess-sama asked me. I'll drop down the hammer of justice on this kidnappers' country, I'll bring them back to their sense.)
While ignoring the increasingly verbal abuses thrown at him by the ministers, Hero Fuu made his resolve.
"Ok, ok, I'll do it, I just have to do it right!"
Pretending to snap, Hero Fuu activated Flight Shoes, and jumped out of the window timidly.
"Who do you think you are talking to with your tone!"
"You third-rate who can't even use Flight Shoes well!"
The ministers laughed at his figure.
The emperor who was focusing on gathering mana from the empire's satellite cities to the capital paid no heed to these trivial matters, forever losing his only chance to prevent a catastrophe from happening.
Hero Fuu who somehow managed to learn to use Flight Shoes got far away from the audience hall.
"I managed to get out of the hall. One minute. That's the remainder of your lives."
Hero Fuu muttered while smiling darkly.
"Lyuryu, over there nanodesu!"
The white dragon made a nose dive when it reached the sky above the demon lord.
"Roger tha~t, nanodesu."
Two figures who leaped off the white dragon that was speeding like a cannon ball pierced through the demon lord.
The demon lord screamed out unsightly.
A platinum beast rushed up from the horizon along with a gale and furiously bit off the demon lord, fiercely dragging it around and turning it into another wreckage in the castle.
The cloud of dust got swept away by the gale that enshrouded the platinum beast, revealing the figure of a divine beast.
The platinum wolf that made a short work of the demon lord suddenly thrust its fangs into the demon lord, and pulled a purple light--[God's Fragment] out of its body.
Hikaru voiced her astonishment to see the platinum beast holding a [God's Fragment] in its mouth, whereas normal methods cannot even interfere with them.
Golden Knight Green--Mia who showed up riding the wind held up her small hand toward Hikaru and Hero Yuuki.
Apparently, that platinum beast was an artificial spirit Mia summoned.
"Arisa, done taking the civilians to safety, so I report."
"OK, well then, I'm closing the Teleport Gate."
Nana and Arisa had focused on helping civilians to take shelter while leaving all the flashy battles to other girls.
Lulu who's riding her Floating Fort drew near.
"Arisa, I've dealt with all the flying monsters."
"Looks like Tama-chan has finished off all the small monsters the scout drones found all over the places."
"Nothing less to expect from Cat Ninja Tama."
Arisa and Lulu broke a smile without warning.
In the distant, the demon lord fell down.
Mia's voice reached the two through [Tactical Talk].
"Looks like they've beat the demon lord."
They saw the platinum beast's victory howl.
『This minor revision for fighting demon lords, the Lesser Fenrir is pretty nice.』
『And, how's the demon lord?』
『It doesn't seem to be reviving. The Dark Purple light got sealed off in a Talisman that Saga Empire's heroes carry with them.』
『Oh my, that was quite anti-climatic.』
Arisa who heard report from Hikaru murmured in whisper, "Thought it would be a wee bit tougher when I heard it was a vampire demon lord."
A Cat Ninja came out of shadow.
Not the split bodies wearing a cat mask, but the real one with the golden armor and all.
Sounds of an afternoon bell could be heard in the distance.
Looks like a Saga Empire's magic tool that acted as a time signal had rung.
Tama who was lazily flopping down stood up.
Her ears inside the golden helmet twitched, picking up small tremors shaking the ground.
"Arisa, it's time for the afternoon break, so I inform."
"Hmm right, let's just leave the remnant hunting to Saga Empire's folks--"
Arisa paused midway.
Nana knelt down and peered in on Arisa's face.
"Arisa, what's the matter, so I ask."
"Oh sorry sorry, master just contacted me through Familiar Link. He's having it hard over there too."
Arisa's smiling face suddenly froze by a sudden disastrous earthquake.
It appears that the crisis that befalls Saga Empire has just started.
※ Next update is planned for 11/4.