Day Before Stampede
During our meeting, Guildmas said I'm the key in this Stampede, but that can't be farther from truth.
A reminder, I'm just a G-ranked peon.
I don't think there's any adventurer who is *not* stronger than me around.
"I know you're thinking, 'what's this guy on', however you and Almatina have proven yourselves capable of defeating a Hobgoblin and a Bladewing accompanied by ten of goblins unharmed."
"I mean yes, but that only worked well by pure chance and an ambush. It would have been impossible if not for Spark Wolf's horn and Fire Frog's oil."
"Precisely. An ambush that utilizes Spark Wolf's horn. I am thinking of using that tactic."
Meaning the horn is the key, not me.
There's no need for me, is there?
"We had sent guild staff to purchase those in a mat store close by the guild, but another customer had bought the last one they had in stock. Kajikawa, do you still have more horns on you?"
That customer is probably me.
"Yes I do, can I just give the horns to the guild then?"
"In a way, yeah."
"What do you mean in a way?"
"We will have you throw the horn at the raiding magic beasts on the invasion day. You alone by yourself."
"H-hold it right there, me? Eh? By myself?"
"From what I heard, you are able to move things around without touching them and even freely fly at high speed, unbelievable as that sounds."
"Eh, well, uh..."
"You're not denying, it's true then... Just who are you really."
Please don't look at me like I'm some sorta monster.
Wait that's not it!
"What does that have to do with having me go up against an army of magic beasts? Are you telling me to die?"
"Calm down. I'm not saying you to go on a suicide attack. We'll work on the detail now."
...Had I known it'd come to this, I wouldn't have shown off mana control or bought those horns.
I want to take shelter right this instance.
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
The following day.
At the training ground behind the guild, around 100 adventurers have gathered, clattering.
Most of them sound worried about the Stampede. There were also some confident sounding guys among them though, 'Can't wait to go wild'.
Well, we are outnumbered three to one after all. From a quick look, I see that most of them are around level 5 to 20.
There's a group with conspicuously high level members, they're likely tasked to deal with the boss. Can't they leave at least one behind or something.
Standing on a stage in front of these adventurers are Guildmas and Alma's parents.
As well as me, wearing a weird mask that hides my face and some high class equipment I don't normally have.
How'd it come to this.
【Mask of Bewitchment】
<<A white mask that covers top half face. It has an effect of obscuring the wearer's face and outline. It's also capable of camouflaging status against Appraisal skill below a certain level.>>
【Arrow Ward Overcoat】
<<A white overcoat that voids damage below a certain threshold.>>
<<A superior grade of Wind Boots. Makes the wearer moves faster. Also grants wind elemental resistance.>>
【Ring of Mana Storage】
<<A ring that acts as an external mana storage. Can store up to 35 MP.>>
They're all nice equipment Guildmas rented me.
Apparently, he's gonna give me the mask at least, but honestly that's the one I don't want most.
It's not my style. Or rather, I'd take all other equipment instead.
Alma who's standing among the adventurers is staring hard at me, please stop that, they're gonna suspect us...
Guildmas opened his mouth at the murmuring adventurers.
Everybody here shut up at that yell.
Yeah anybody would when they're glared by those sharp gazes and yelled at that loud. It's scary.
"As you're all aware, this town is facing an attack by a group of magic beasts coming from the nearby magic beast forest due to the Stampede. Two S-rank adventurers, 'Sword King' Dukeris, and 'Arch Mage' Lunatiara, will be joining us to eliminate the boss of this Stampede."
The adventurers started making noise when they heard those two's names.
I knew it, they're pretty famous. Wait, did I hear that right, S-rank.
Don't tell me, these two are the world's top class experts?
...Hmm, well, I mean they were running at an inhuman speed and got that overwhelming pressure and all during our first meeting. Guess it makes sense.
"As such, there is nothing to worry about regarding this Stampede's boss. In fact, I pity that boss for having to deal with these two."
"O-oy, is that for real!? Sword King and Arch Mage!"
"Aren't they heroes who saved so many places from Stampedes! That's awesome!"
"Oh man, never seen S-rank adventurers in the flesh! I'm so pumped!"
"Huh, don't you think they kinda look like Almatina?"
"Aren't those two the same people who were running super fast while yelling something loudly..."
The adventurers cheered.
Some looked perplexed, wonder if they saw those two running and yelling in the middle of the town...
"The bigger problem is the raiding magic beasts, you lot will have to take care of them. We anticipate there will be around 300 magic beasts coming here, a head-on clash would turn ugly."
The training ground fell silence with that.
Guildmas resumed regardless.
"Setting up traps now would only affect small localized areas, we can't expect much from that. Thus here's the strategy we propose. 【Soarer】, step forward."
I took a step forward as instructed by guildmas.
By the way, 【Soarer】 is me. But why.
"We cannot divulge his identity due to various circumstances. Just know that I have full trust on this man. Call him with his Job's name, 'Soarer'."
Perplexed voices got thrown out in the venue.
"Never heard a job like that tho'?"
"What's up with that mask. Scary..."
Yup, that Job doesn't exist after all.
And I don't have a choice with this mask. Gimme a break.
"His skill, 'Soar' is an extremely rare skill that allows him to fly around in the air without external help. He will engage with the invading magic beasts and launch the first strike."
Guildmas said that so nonchalantly when that's normally a death wish.
"The strategy is simple, using Soar this guy shall ignite a 'Spark Wolf's Horn' in the middle of the beasts followed by a 'Roaring Mushroom' to rob them of both sight and hearing, that will be your cue to rush on the magic beasts when they're in disarray. Using those items in the heat of a group battle would only result in collateral damage, and even if we could use signals, closing your eyes and ears in the middle of combat is fatal, as such, he will be the only one in charge of the horns and mushrooms."
'Roaring Mushrooms' is exactly what you expect, a mushroom that explodes when you crush it, along with a deafening sound.
The explosion itself is pretty much harmless, but the sound it produces is enough to rupture eardrums apparently.
'Soar'? There ain't no skill like that y'know? I'm just moving my body around in mid-air using mana control.
"Soarer has proven himself by defeating ten goblins along with a Hobgoblin and a Bladewing on his own without the mushroom. Winning against the one to ten odd. Compared to that, it's only a difference of three to one, it's nothing."
No no, I was with Alma okay? It was only five to six times more okay?
What are you BS-ing there. Please don't make them pin all their hope on me.
Look, those adventurers are looking here with dubious eyes.
One of the adventurers spoke up.
"Err, I don't mean to doubt your word, but is that person really capable of all that?"
"There's no point in flying if it's too slow, bird type magic beasts would just shoot him down."
"I am not sure I agree with you guildmaster telling us to just believe in that maskman and go along with your plan out of the blue like this."
Yep, that's reasonable. I mean I would doubt it too if I were in their shoes.
Also, don't call me maskman.
"I suppose seeing is believing... Can you do it?"
I nodded silently at guildmas and stepped forward on the stage.
I took another step at the very edge of the stage which should have sent me down crashing.
And yet I keep walking forward, I'm no longer on the stage, walking mid air.
Though well, I'm just wrapping my whole body in mana and making it look like I walk.
The adventurers looked surprised at this.
"You guys see that? Now, show us your speed."
I nodded at Guildmas and looked at the sky.
Think the same speed I used to chase Bladewing should do.
Ah, but they're gonna complain about flying control or something if it's only that much, might as well go at top speed.
So here we go, 'Soarer' launching!
I soared to a higher elevation at high speed, producing that sound in the process. Can't do what I'm gonna do on the ground, that's dangerous.
Now to demonstrate my control on flying. One, two.
Bwoshbwosh, BWOSH, stop, BWOSH
I flew around freely in the air drawing a ☆ shape, stopping abruptly before speeding up again.
Zigzag, straight line, ask me anything nothing I can't do! Good thing I practiced on my way to gather herbs.
Lastly I went back to my spot in the training ground at high speed. Suspending to a full stop and landing on the stage.
Ugh. The inertia from flying randomly makes me sick. My MP... is barely decreased. Moving my body wrapped in mana consumes little as I figured.
The adventurers in the venue looked stupefied. Fufufu, *smug face*.
Uh wait, they look unsettled? Oh come on, don't make that face.
Ah hey Guildmas, why'd you look agape too. You're the one ordering me to.
I changed my tone before calling out to him.
"Master, was that satisfactory?"
"Y-yeah. Well done... As you guys have seen, with this the raiding magic beasts will be a cinch, any more complains?"
None of the adventurers spoke up. Rather than having no complain, it looks more like they don't even know what to ask.
...Alma Papa whispered behind, 'you went too far'. My bad. Got ahead of myself.
"Very well then, you may now go receive guild provisions from our receptionists. The mission will start tomorrow morning. Gather in front of the east gate. Disband!"
With that order from the guildmas, some went to the receptionists, some flocked to Alma's parents, and some were looking at me doubtfully.
Guildmas approached and whispered in my ear.
"Well damn, the real thing is really nothing like hearsay... Absolutely keep your identity a secret, ya got that!"
"...I went too far, apologies."
"Well, that worked on our favor, shutting down the complainers. No problem at all with the end result. We're counting on you tomorrow."
Tomorrow huh. I would have liked nothing more than running away even now.
But Alma and her parents are gonna take part. No way I'd escape on my own.
Haaa, wonder if I'm even gonna survive this...