It's pretty much a 'you're already dead' state.
Blood is spurting off here and there. Along with dirty spraying sounds, followed by thud, thud, thud. Pools of blood are forming on the ground.
Then suddenly, a familiar cry.
That startled me. Looking at the source, there Chimera stood like it had always been there.
(Always showing up out of nowhere... I'm at fault for forgetting it though...)
I had completely forgotten about Chimera after it ran off into the forest.
Even though it could have gotten caught up in the dungeon collapse if I left it be.
(But weirdly enough, I just can't imagine that befalling this little guy.)
Nevertheless I still felt bad for neglecting it, so I approached Chimera to soothe it.
"I forgot. Sorry~. But you kept going off on your own. You're gonna do just fine living freely anyway right?"
I don't know where and what it's been doing but its fur has gotten pretty smooth when I pet it as it purrs.
I thought of one thing.
(This guy's mode of life is a complete mystery. It's gonna do just fine even without me tending to its need, one thing for sure.)
That was when I realized the silence.
I stopped petting Chimera and looked around.
Some are frozen in fear, some can't catch up with the sudden development, some keep darting back between the dead and Chimera trying to understand what's going on.
The marquis has its jaw open wide dumbfounded, unable to process what's happening before his eyes.
Looks like he won't come back to reality for a while.
"W-what... is that magic beast..."
Even 'White Fang' seemed to be frozen in fear, and Kidd was the first to finally squeezed out those words.
"Ah, this little guy's, uh, my companion? No, comrade? Pet magic beast? I'm still not sure myself what this guy's supposed to be to me."
"No way... Are you telling us, that magic beast is under your command? You're joking right? Please tell me you're joking..."
Mary has her staff pointed at us with a twitching face.
I gave the opposite of her wish.
"Hm~? I wonder? Chimera came along with me on its own volition after all. But this guy seems to understand what I say just fine, and even saved me when things got hairy once you know?"
That was when those assassins were targeting me. I would have died if not for Chimera roaring to wake me up.
I held Chimera in my arms and walked up to White Fang.
"Look, isn't it cute? I may fawn over this little guy but I let it roam free and it keeps going off somewhere on its own."
"Hold it right there! Please don't come any closer!"
Danku told me to stop. Firuna added.
"I can feel an even more enormous and far denser mana wave than Wraith King... Is that truly a mere 'Magic Beast'?"
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
"No idea about that either. Or more like, what? What's that mana wave thing...?"
I was going to ask about that maximum chuuni sounding term, but the situation was not ideal.
We were in the middle of annihilating the marquis's villainous force.
The marquis had finally regained himself and started yelling incorrigibly.
"W-w-what! What are you! Who! How did you kill so many! What have you done! Speak!"
"...Like I'd tell anyone my cards. Heck, why would you think I'd disclose that stuff to people trying to kill us?"
"Guunuuu! Oy men, shoot them with all your spells! Make it quick!"
The remaining thugs came to their sense with the marquis's panicked shout. They are hired men at the end of the day. They gotta obey their employer. They were content with that fact. The same fact however let them ignore the scene before them.
Had they accepted the reality of this many people dying in a flash, they could have narrowly escaped with their lives.
But that's an impossible thing to ask from these thugs. None of them has experienced anything like this, so the alarms in their heads never ring.
No, there might have been some who had gone through brutal battlefields. Perhaps, among those who died. No way to ascertain it.
Ten thugs stepped forward and started chanting magic.
However, Mary did it faster.
"O freezing air, o all halting wind! Imprison my enemy! 『Draught of Frigid Gaol』！"
A gale that froze everything it touched spewed out of Mary's staff.
Its coldness was seemingly out of this world, the thugs who got hit by it shrieked in pain.
"Cold! Guaa! Oww! What the hell is this!? Oow!"
"I-I'm freezing to death... What is this..."
"My legs, they're frozen!? Gua! Move dammit!"
"Can't move, too cold?! Dammittall!"
The wind kept raging for a while and by the end, only frozen statues remained.
Yes, these statues were what once the leftover thugs.
(Uwaa... Magic's way freaky... Ain't this crueler?)
"My magic's the best in the whole wooooorld! See! These thugs are easy peasy if I just got the time to shoot my magic!"
"Yeah yeah, count your luck this time. You always get carried away and fail spectacularly. Make no mistake, this isn't just your power."
Melgis cooled the high strung Mary down.
As I was thinking, finally over, a lone figure moved behind the statues.