They departed in the morning. Taking breakfast while moving.
Lecan spoke out sternly as they approached a small mountain.
"Vandam. It's magic beasts."
"Around 100 magic beasts are heading our way. The leading units are already 1000 steps away. They're fast."
Vandam looked like he couldn't believe what Lecan just said.
"Vandam-dono. If that's what Lecan said, then that's what it is. Your orders please."
As expected of a veteran, he turned around fast.
"Retreat 50 steps back, get away from the forest! Hurry up!"
After 50 steps back, comes another instruction.
"Orst, stay put inside the wagon with door lock shut. Ghett, manage the horse from acting out. Zeki! Come forward. Once you've fired off a big one, get back behind the wagon and cover us! Nike, to the front row! I'll take care of the rear right, Lecan the rear left! And Eda..."
"Gonna hop on top the wagon."
Zeki immediately went forward on his horse, grabbed the wand that was in his chest pocket in his right hand, and pushed the jewel embedded on its grip against his forehead before starting to chant.
"O Great Wisdom, Ruler of Wind and Fire, I desire for Sun above ground, I offer you my sacrificial blood, destroy those ignorant of the end, grant your blessing unto those who verify the glory of gods..."
Nike's position is baffling. Since her weapon is a short sword, she's more suited for the rear guard than the vanguard. Moreover, she's way too far away.
Right when they were about finished taking up their positions, the enemy came into view. It's Red Apes (Urd) and Spider Monkeys (Lind). They're moving along top of trees. They would have jumped straight from tall trees were there trees around them. But since they've secured some distance away from the forest, these magic beasts would have to get down before they could attack.
Zeki unleashed his magic right as the enemy's vanguards got on the ground.
"<Gaol Flame (Gelvan)>!"
A huge mass of flame shot off. It gradually got bigger, and eventually got about as big as 30 step in diameter before it swooped down on the apes.
Many apes running on the ground fell over. A not insignificant number of the ones on trees fell victim to it either.
Though not a lot of them outright died, around 20 apes got hit by the flame or suffered grievous wounds. Most importantly, it managed to chip off enemy's forces.
However the enemy is great in number. They're rushing in like a surging wave.
Right about then, volleys of arrows rapidly rained down on the beasts at great speed.
Her speed is tremendous, but what's even more surprising is her accuracy.
All her arrows managed to hit the magic beasts. Moreover, she's not hitting their limbs nor heads but chests and bellies.
And that's good. Aiming for bellies or chests with 100% accuracy is the right thing to do in this kind of situations.
The magic beasts who have slipped past Eda's volleys of arrows finally get closer to the wagon.
Nike drew her sword. Its blade, that of white light, stretched out.
The sword itself is not elongating. The magical light that wraps the sword is. Its length rivals that of Lecan's height.
First off, three Red Apes leaped toward Nike.
Nike lopped two of the front Apes' heads off, quickly moved to the right and then scythed down the leftover ape's head. She should have been completely out of range, but her magic sword had stretched out twice as long. Three headless magic beasts fell down where Nike was.
Four Spider Monkeys rushed in without giving her any time to catch her breath.
Nike's magic sword expanded even longer as she mowed down all four magic beasts at once with a slash that zoomed past the earth.
The magic beasts fell down with their limbs and heads cut off.
<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.>
Nike masterfully wielded her length-shifting sword as she ran all over the battlefield.
She's exterminating the magic beasts at terrifying speed.
Magic beasts that attempted to charge at the wagon from the flanks fell prey to Lecan's and Vandam's swords.
Lecan kills one magic beasts with every swing of <Sword of Rusk> in his hand. Vandam slashes at the magic beasts' legs to deprive them off mobility then delivers the finishing blows as they crawl on the ground.
Zeki who's hiding behind the wagon to look out for any strays gets no turn.
Lecan observed Nike's movements while swinging his one-hit-kill slashes.
Her control of magic sword is the most shocking part. Since the sword's length must come from her mana, she must be adjusting it through the control of mana. Her ability to adjust the length of her sword at such promptness and precision is exactly what makes it so astounding. Ordinary people would only see her as an incredible swordsman. However, it's right at this moment that Lecan is witnessing a show of Nike's prowess as a mage.
After a short while, the wave of enemy stopped. But Lecan, kept glaring at the forest.
Vandam who had breathed a sigh of relief stiffened up when he saw Lecan.
Here it comes.
Large ape magic beasts walked lumberingly. There are three of them. These magic beasts have bright yellow fur and faces, their bulging muscles must be hiding terrifying powers. These might be the third rank of Ape Ogre magic beasts, Yellow Ape Ogres (Paudug).
Without any prompt, Nike, Lecan and Vandam faced off against one of these beasts each.
The three apes stopped all at once as if they had arranged it beforehand, then they began striking their chests hard while howling out. The terror from these would have frozen over and crushed the soul of an ordinary traveler to pieces. Then the magic beasts swiftly charged forward at speed belying their giant frames.
Nike was the first who come into contact in the center. She lopped the beast's head off from outside its range.
Lecan charged forward with <Sword of Rusk> in his hand, but as he was about to launch an attack, a curious sensation assailed him. As he thrust his sword forward in accordance to that sensation, some sort of word was formed in his mind.
Right, Puncture. Lecan just unleashed exactly that technique.
Then, <Sword of Rusk> easily punctured through the enemy's neck uncannily. Lecan pulled out his sword with extreme swiftness and jumped backward.
The magic beast slowly fell down.
Lecan realized at this point. The skill from Golden Potion back then was <Puncture>.
Stabbing attacks are risky. It's powerful, but it's also highly prone to failure, then you'd find yourself in a tough spot. As such, Lecan never uses stabbing attacks unless he's fighting in a very cramped location.
However, he had a conviction that the technique would definitely pierce through his opponent a moment before he unleashed it just now. He knew just where and how he should adjust his strength right. Enabling him to wield his sword to unleash a stab that far exceeded even the best thrust he did before.
Looking to the side, Vandam has just delivered the final blow to the giant ape. However, it seems he's suffered quite a few wounds himself.
Once everything was over, Orst got off the wagon and shouted out in elation.
"What a truly wonderful fight! I knew that we had truly dependable forces on our side this time, but I never imagined it would be to this degree! Marvelous! Simply marvelous!"
Eda smugly swiped her nose with her right thumb on top of the wagon.
Lecan came closer to the wagon and asked Orst.
"Orst. Did we camp at a spot outside the plan yesterday because you had anticipated this?"
Orst smiled wryly as he replied.
"Well, we knew we would be raided. Some revisions to our plans were in order."
Even if the escorts are a pro at their job, an escort mission would still be a challenge if their client kept handing out foolish orders.
However, it seems safe to deem that there is no need to worry about that in this mission.