“Very good! Then let’s begin! Open the gate!”
The portcullis began to rise as Remedios shouted. The advancing demihumans were shaken, and their movements slowed down. The defenders were opening the gate of their own accord — optimists might consider it a surrender, but realists would think of it as a trap.
“You filthy demihumans! I’ll skin you and wipe my ass with your hides!”
After being taunted by a feeble human, the frustrated demihumans broke into a charge.
Remedios turned and ran. She planted both hands on the militiamen’s shields and vaulted over them.
The demihumans continued their charge, and several of them fell down as they approached the gate.
Large quantities of oil had been poured there, and only two outcomes awaited those who fell during the charge. Either they would pull down those behind them, or they would be trampled flat instead.
Unfortunately, the big-framed demihumans like the Ogres did not fall, and they made it into the city. The horse-like demihumans slipped and fell, which slowed them down.
A large demihuman’s charge ought to be on par with a collision from a warhorse. However, if they could not sustain it, then all bets were off.
The Ogres continued charging even though their pacing was messed up. They swung their large mauls back and forth, but spears were longer in comparison, and they impaled several Ogres who had failed to properly judge the distance. Unfortunately, the Ogres were not fragile enough to be killed by that.
“Now! Throw them!”
In accordance with Remedios’ instructions, firebombs flew over the heads of the militiamen, and the sounds of pottery smashing could be heard near the gate as an inferno sprang up. The demihumans around the gate were surrounded by a great fire.
The demihumans should have predicted something like this, but Remedios was certain that the fires were far beyond what they had expected. That was because both the oil on the ground and the oil on their bodies had ignited at once.
The Ogres facing the shieldbearers began to falter.
It was only to be expected, considering there was a blazing fire behind them.
While they had thicker skin than a human being, that did not mean they could not be burned.
Wails and cries rose from the vicinity of the gate. However, not many of them had lost the capacity to fight despite being enveloped by a fire of that intensity. Perhaps one had to hand it to the great vitality of demihumans.
Those demihumans only had two options. They could advance or retreat.
Black smoke blocked their lines of sight. Thus, they were robbed of all other options. While many demihumans could see in the dark, that ability did not allow them to see through smoke.
Nobody could act calmly while they could not see, were suffering from the smoke and when they were being burned by the flames.
Retreating was very difficult given the circumstances. That was because others were following closely behind them in order to storm the city. In fact, the demihumans outside the gate were stymied by the fire, but they could not know that given that smoke surrounded everything.
Therefore, the demihumans chose to advance.
That was exactly as Remedios had predicted.
The demihumans attempted an assault, banking on their powerful bodies to carry the day. However–
–The shieldbearers’ third drill consisted of maintaining their shield wall even when surrounded by billowing black smoke.
The spears retreated as one–
–And the hard shafts thrust out in unison.
The demihumans gave voice to savage howls, thinking only of getting out of the smoke, and it was under these circumstances where defense and evasion were very difficult that they ran into the spear line. However, a commoner’s strength would be hard-pressed to impale a demihuman’s body. This was particularly true of the hand-picked demihumans who were intended to break through the gate in a frontal assault.
However, that was no problem.
Remedios did not think that the first wave of attacks would bring down anything.
As long as the shieldbearers were in place, the spearmen could attack over and over again.
“Pull — thrust!”
As she repeated the order, Remedios jumped over the shields in the reverse of her previous actions and cut down the demihumans in the places where the spears could not reach.
Black smoke filled her eyes and throat, but she did not have the time to worry about that. There were very few demihumans who had made it through the oil and the portcullis, about 50 at the most.
First she would kill them all and weaken the enemy’s willingness to fight. Since they were part of the vanguard, they must surely be highly-motivated elite troops. Wiping them out would be more effective than killing mooks.
Remedios’ breathing was calm and unhurried as she killed one enemy after the other.
Large demihumans like Ogres could not bring their full abilities to bear in a pitched melee.
The holy sword roamed everywhere without restraint.
Eventually, the shapes of the demihumans vanished from her tearstained vision. However, she could still hear a large force of demihumans on the other side of the smoke. They might have been in the middle of reforming their lines.
As Remedios slowly backed away, the silhouettes of several demihumans came into view.
“Captain! Come back here!”
Her subordinate paladin shouted to her as she cast 「Under Divine Flag」.
However, Remedios did not retreat. Her instincts were telling her something.
As the smoke thinned, she could sense three demihumans slowly approaching her, and shortly after that, her hunch was proved right.
One of them was a warrior with the upper body of a beast and the lower body of a carnivore.
One of them was a four-armed demihuman woman.
And the last was a simian demihuman who was festooned in golden accessories.
Remedios had originally planned to kill tens of thousands of demihumans by herself here, and she was very confident of doing so. However, she now sensed that fighting these three demihumans at once was extremely dangerous.
There were only three of them. While she could not make them out due to the smoke, she could tell they were brimming with confidence, given their unhurried pace. Even their fellow demihumans seemed to have handed their task over to those three, unwilling to come any closer.
…They’re strong. I don’t know if I can beat them even if it’s a one-on-one fight… or can I? I’ve got no chance if it’s three-on-one.
Remedios’ instincts screamed at her to flee rather than take these three on at the same time. But how should she escape? She had no idea. In contrast, if she beat those demihumans, it would amount to a flawless victory for this theater of combat.
Remedios gripped her holy sword tightly, and spoke without looking back.
“…Paladin Sabicus, Paladin Esteban.”
Both of them replied with a “yes!” and from the sounds they made, she judged that they had come to her side.
“Until I kill one of them, can you two pin the other two down?”
The two of them replied in unison: “Leave it to us!”
Remedios’ instincts told her that she was being unreasonable. They might be able to buy a few minutes for starters. But how about sending more people to take the demihumans on?
No. Remedios shook her head,
Her opponents were a mere three people, who had entered the fray by themselves. Clearly they were confident in their own abilities and wanted to show off their strength. Enemies like those would surely accept a one-on-one challenge. Such was the arrogance of the mighty.
In addition, such arrogant beings typically took pleasure in making the weak suffer. They would take the extra time to torment their victims even if they could have finished them off in a matter of seconds. With that faint hope in mind, she decided on a three-on-three.
“Paladins, if the two who stepped up are defeated, continue fighting them one-on-one. The order goes: Sabicus, Esteban, Franco, Galban and so on.”
They were abandoning their advantage in numbers to buy time. Simply put, she was ordering everyone to kill themselves. However, the paladins did not hesitate for a moment when they received those orders.
This was what it meant to be a paladin.
This was what it meant to embody justice.
This is what it means to sacrifice yourself for others.
This was probably the last time they would be seen alive and unscathed. Even so, Remedios did not take her eyes from the three demihumans for even a moment. She did not want to miss any chances to glean information from them.
I don’t have a clear picture of what’s going on, but the first two demihumans look like skilled fighters. Perhaps that ape-like demihuman is a monk. That four-arms looks like a magic caster. Or is it something else?
There was nothing to fear when dueling demihumans who relied on brute strength alone, but demihumans who had been trained were truly frightening. If they had received warrior training, then they could stack their training and their natural physical abilities to become exceptional individuals who could surpass even veteran warriors of the Holy Kingdom. In truth, the opponent who had given Remedios her hardest fight — Jaldabaoth aside — was such an entity.
She recalled the blow that had plunged into her womb. That was why she paid attention when fighting demihumans and heeded the warnings of her instincts on top of that.
…Spellcasting demihumans are the biggest problem. It’ll be bad if they can fly through the air.
While Remedios could use her armor’s abilities to fly for short periods of time, she would not have her full range of movement while in flight. Ascending, descending and turning were all very exhausting, and she would not be able to use her usual fighting style. If her opponent could cast
「Fly」, she might never be able to reach them with her attacks. While she possessed martial arts which allowed her to make ranged sword attacks, it would be difficult to win quickly when one took into account the fact that their effectiveness was a great deal lower.
The three demihumans entered through the gate, and then stopped.
“–To think we’d have to join forces for a puny human.”
She could not make the three demihumans out clearly through the smoke, but their relaxed tone had reached her.
The hand gripping the holy sword beaded with sweat, and a bitter taste spread over her tongue, something that only happened when danger drew close.
She could keenly feel her opponents’ approach.
The beast and the ape were the cream of the crop. While she was not sure about the four-armed one, the fact that she could stand by their side meant that she must have a certain degree of power. In other words, these three demihumans were all on Remedios’ level.
“This smoke’s getting in the way. What a pain in the ass.”
A strong wind blew the remaining smoke away with a whoosh.
The demihumans’ forms were revealed. Standing at their head was a gigantic, axe-wielding demihuman.
“Zoastia!” Paladin Esteban exclaimed.
Remedios was somewhat baffled. Zoostia? she thought. Was that the demihuman’s name?
“Hmm… well, it makes sense that you’d know of me,” the beastman said with an evil grin on his face. “In that case, I’ll spare you on account of your learning, so that more people will hear of my strength.”
“Heeheehee, Vijar-dono. Jaldabaoth-sama will get angry if you take matters into your own hands like that. At the very least, have him drop his weapon and take him prisoner.”
The entity addressing the Zoastia was the ape-like demihuman.
Thoroughly confused, Remedios turned to the people around her, a question mark floating above her head.
“Zoastia? Vijar? Vijar Zoostia? Zoostia Vijar?”
While she was simply asking the names of the opposition, Vijar did not realize that and so he laughed in delight.
“Kuhahahaha! You’re calling me that because you’ve concluded that I’m the leader of our race? You humans have good taste!”
“She’s just being polite, Vijar-dono,” the four-armed demihuman behind Vijar said in a mocking tone.
“That, that’s right, it’s just a courtesy, Vijar!”
It was only then that Remedios realised she had made a mistake about his species’ name.
Right after that, the demihuman called Vijar twisted his face in displeasure.
“Hm, and I even asked Jaldabaoth-sama for permission to spare anyone who pleased me. Don’t regret it.”
“Who’s going to regret it? You can regret fighting us in the afterlife!”
“Heeheehee, what a spirited girl you are… you are a girl, right? I can’t tell the ages of other species…”
“It doesn’t matter, that ought to be it.”
The demihumans were probably being very serious. This was simply the difference between their species.
”Now then, human girl, I shall introduce ourselves. I am Halisha Ankara. This is Vijar Lajandara, who needs no introduction. And last of all is Nasrene Bert Kyuru-dono.”
“Those names! Aren’t they the White Elder and Iceflame Thunder!?” Paladin Sabicus exclaimed.
“Kukukukuku. Even the humans know our names. The fledgling, on the other hand–”
“–Human. Do I not have a title like that?”
“I’ve never heard of the name Vijar Lajandala. However, there’s an axe-wielding Zoastia like you who’s quite famous. It’s the Demon Claw, Demon Claw, Vaju Sandiknara.”
“That was my old man,” Vijar snorted. “I’m the heir to the title of Demon Claw, Vijar Lajandala. I’ll make sure you think of my name when you hear the words Demon Claw.”
“Heeheehee. We’ll leave the human general to you then, Vijar-dono.”
“So be it. It’s hard enough that you’ve been forced to come right up to your opponents instead of using spells from a distance. Frankly speaking, I was planning to fight them all by myself.”
“Heeheehee. We were ordered to work together, you know?”
“So you’re having trouble because you’re getting on in years?”
The four-armed demihuman (Nasrene) who had clicked her tongue turned and gave Vijar a scary look. In truth, it felt like they might start killing each other at any moment if they were left unchecked.
“Still, I’m really alright doing this by myself…” Vijar stared at Remedios. “But let’s hear your name before that. While it’s a pain to have to listen to some mook name themselves, that sword of yours looks pretty good.”
Vijar and Halisha’s expressions changed, but in different ways.
Vijar was smiling at the thought of taking a strong foe’s blood, while Halisha was surprised.
Nasrene, on the other hand, remained unmoved.
“So you’re the one, huh? You’re Remedios Custodio? They say you’re the strongest paladin in this country. Excellent. If I kill you, I’ll become famous. I’ll be the Zoastia who defeated the strongest paladin in the Holy Kingdom. The new successor to the title of Demon Claw!”
“Hmph. In that case, that must be the holy sword, right? Say, Vijar-dono, how about letting me face her instead? I’ll have my people sing your praises if you let me take your place.”
Both demihumans reacted immediately to Nasrene’s words.
“Heeheehee. So you’re planning to hand it over and then ask Jaldabaoth for a child?”
“Hmph, we’ve decided that I’ll deal with her. There’s no need for you to do anything.”
“–Begging to be bred by a demon? You make me sick.”
Remedios had no choice but to blurt out what she really thought after hearing that exchange, and Nasrene turned an irritated look to Remedios.
“So you don’t even understand what it means to bear the child of the supreme ruler… humans truly are moronic creatures.”
“Even Jaldabaoth-sama would lavish care on the species of his offspring, no? When you think about it, there’s a lot of advantages to being a woman, huh.”
“Oh yes. And if the father’s excellent blood can be passed down, the child that’s born might come close to — no.” Vijar puffed up her chest. “Might even be able to bear children that surpass their father — hm? Though you could consider me an exception too.”
These three demihumans did not act like they were feeling threatened despite being on the battlefield.
Remedios began to boil with anger as she watched them chatter idly.
“How dare you demihumans come here and spout nonsense? There’s no use thinking about a future you won’t have? I’ll crush your stupid dreams here. No, not just you, I mean all of you.”
“Heeheehee. Oooh, I’m soooooo scared.”
While Halisha looked like he was flailing his arms and legs around in panic, he was not actually afraid. That was because he was confident of victory even against an opponent like Remedios. It only served to displease Remedios even further.
Remedios shouted an order to the paladins, loud enough for the demihumans to hear.
“Listen up. This is a duel. I’ll fight Vijar. As for you–”
“I’ll take him on,” Sabicus said as he pointed to Halisha. “In that case, I’ll take that one on,” Esteban said as he walked in front of Nasrene.
“…Oya? …I’m not a warrior so I’m not too sure, but they’re pretty weak, aren’t they?”
“Heeheehee… who knows? Best not to be careless, Nasrene-dono.”
Remedios picked up Vijar snorting at her, and she roared, “Here I come!” He must have sensed that those paladins were weak. No good would come of letting him mention it.
The first strike was key. The militiamen were watching her from behind with bated breath; not only would it wipe away their unease, it would also let her opponent know that he was facing a worthy opponent. For these reasons, she had to make an unreserved blow with all of her might.
Remedios hacked down on Vijar, holding the holy sword in one hand.
In response, Vijar raised his massive battleaxe to intercept her blow.
Both sides collided, and the very air shuddered.
She could hear shouts from the militiamen behind her. There was no time to slowly determine if they were cheers or cries of panic. Her full-power blow had been answered by a counterattack of equal force.
The weapons of both sides were undamaged from that exchange of evenly-matched blows.
If someone had brought a mundane weapon to this intense clash, it would probably have been chipped or bent. In other words, Vijar was also wielding an enchanted weapon.
Remedios’ next swing grazed Vijar’s upper body, sending forth a spray of blood. However, the battleaxe struck Remedios’ chest at the same time.
While her enchanted armor turned the battleaxe’s keen blade, the impact knocked the wind out of her, and it became hard to breathe.
In contrast to Remedios — who had been knocked back by the blow — Vijar roared and stepped forward, bringing his battleaxe down on her.
She did not have enough oxygen to counterattack. Remedios raised her holy sword high and gracefully deflected the battleaxe’s force. That hair-rising strike missed her by a few millimeters and slammed into the ground. So powerful was the hit that for a moment it felt like she was floating.
Remedios turned to face Vijar — now defenseless because his battleaxe was buried in the ground — and lunged in with her holy sword.
Having judged that he did not have the time to extricate a heavy weapon like his battleaxe, Vijar took one hand off its hilt and used it as a shield,
Vijar’s right arm spurted fresh blood.
However, the Holy Sword did not reach Vijar’s face. There were two reasons for that.
The first was because he had used a defensive martial art. The other was because Remedios’ arm was numbed and could not exert her full force.
In that case, she would simply force the holy sword that had already penetrated deeper in — and then the intense pain racing up from Remedios’s leg froze her briefly in place.
The source of the pain was Vijar’s lower body; the forelimbs of his bestial body had swept across Remedios’s legs. Her greaves protected her from most of his razor-sharp claws, but one of them had still managed to slice her leg apart.
At that moment, the battleaxe was pulled free and raised up.
Remedios took a step towards Vijar to keep the battleaxe from moving. Just moving her leg filled her with agony.
As the holy sword stabbed in, Vijar deftly deflected it with his battleaxe.
In response, Remedios took control of the holy sword as it bounced away and guided it into a slash over a strengthened animal forelimb.
If Vijar backed off, Remedios would advance to close the distance between them.
They went back and forth several times, both sides using martial arts.
While neither side had sustained any mortal wounds, each round they fought send blood splashing all around.
Full of confidence, Remedios pressed against her opponent.
If this keeps up, I’ll win!
Delight boiled up in her heart.
If she could defeat these three powerful demihumans, she could protect the people here. That way, they would regain their trust in the Holy Kingdom.
There’s no need for that undead being to show up!
Simply put, the difference between warriors and paladins was that warriors were offensive frontliners while paladins were defensive frontliners.
While it was hard to express in figures, one could say that a warrior’s attack rating was 11 and his defense was 9, while a paladin’s attack was 8 and his defense was 11. Needless to say, paladins could cast spells, but warriors could learn all sorts of martial arts, so it was impossible to make a simple comparison. Still, this was the easiest way to explain the situation to someone of Retardios’ intelligence.
If the question was who would be better against a magic caster, the answer would be a paladin. Thanks to the protection of the gods, they boasted superior magic resistance to warriors. Therefore, if Nasrene had been a magic caster on the same level as Remedios, she would not have been much of a threat.
Next was Halisha, who was very likely to be a monk-type given his weapons and movements. Monks had the advantage against magic casters or thieves, but the reverse was true against paladins. Therefore, that monkey was hardly a frightening foe.
If I can beat Vijar, chances are high that I can slaughter all three of them.
Between “fighting Vijar after being worn down by previous fighting” and “fighting Vijar while unhurt”, the latter option promised better odds for her. Remedios had challenged Vijar based on that decision. There should not have been anything wrong with that decision. However, she had miscalculated–
“My my. Dead already?”
“Heeheehee. Same here.”
–Because the paladins fighting the other two were far too weak.
Had she overestimated those two paladins, or underestimated the strength of those two demihumans? Or was it both?
“You’re insulting me by taking your eyes off me!”
Vijar swung furiously at Remedios.
While she had barely managed to stop that strike, she had still been forced a short distance away. The tide of battle had turned in an instant.
“Remedios, was it… You do know that I am the great Vijar, a being of great power whose name will resound throughout the world? If you don’t put all of your body and soul into it, you’ll die in seconds, you know?”
Remedios bit her lip as she heard the sounds of the others fighting.
“Heeheehee. I wonder if this paladin is strong enough?”
“…He’s no different from the previous one… well, I can’t really tell since I’m not a warrior.”
“I am Paladin Franco.”
“And I am Paladin Galban. I will be your opponent.”
Several seconds after they had spoken, she once again heard the sound of armored men collapsing.
Paladin Franco was a good man. While he was not a very strong paladin, he placed a lot of emphasis on getting along with others and he was well-liked as a result. In truth, he had been assigned here because Gustav trusted him. Remedios knew his character, and so she had given him the task of assigning the militiamen here.
She had heard that Paladin Galban was a newlywed. However, his wife was currently locked up somewhere. He had extinguished his desire to save her and had come to assist Remedios instead, in order to help more people.
These two people — who were too young to die — had been killed.
Vijar roared, and dealt her a blow that was even more ferocious than the previous one. Remedios flung herself towards Vijar, taking the blow on her sword arm, and then she slid her blade — but Vijar nimbly evaded it.
“Hm. What’s this, some kind of bluff? Or did your body remember that movement because of all your training?”
Vijar growled. He was not wary of a worthy foe, but delighted.
“Hey, fledgling. We’re done here, but you’ve been at it a long time. How about it, need help?”
“You must be kidding. My legend will be tainted if I need your help to kill her. Many people will speak of this if I beat her in a one-on-one.”
“Vijar-dono’s words are correct. How about this, Nasrene-dono. We’ll destroy the humans’ shields, and then–”
“–As if I’d let you!”
While she was still confronting Vijar, Remedios took her eyes off him and turned to look at the defenseless pair. However–
“You bitch! I told you already, I’m your opponent!”
Vijar did not allow her to do so. Her defense was full of holes, but he did not swing at her with his battleaxe, instead launching a kick. Remedios took the blow and was sent flying into the shield wall with tremendous force.
She gasped for a moment from the shock of the impact.
The militiamen cried out in fear.
“Focus, human! Fight me seriously!”
Vijar’s shout was followed by the sound of his footsteps. If he swung his long-handled battle-axe, he would smash the shield-wielding civilians far away, creating a gap big enough that returning to formation would be impossible.
Even though Remedios had lost her balance, she still took a step forward, lunging at Vijar who was in front of her.
If possible, she would have liked to finish off Vijar with her own strength, That was because of the power that Remedios had hidden to deal with the other two.
It was a powerful move that the holy sword Safalrisia possessed, which could only be used once a day.
It was a strengthened version of a paladin’s holy strike.
It was the most powerful blow that a paladin wielding this sword could unleash.
Her instincts told her that it would be best not to do so. However, if she did not immediately defeat Vijar, the other two demihumans would kill more people.
I– want to protect Calca-sama’s wish–!
She cried out without words, ignored her instincts screaming at her, and mentally sent a command to the holy sword. At the same time, she infused her holy strike into the blade and made her move.
The holy sword glowed with divine radiance, and light extended out to twice the length of the actual blade.
This light was apparently more dazzling the more evil a being was. In this state, avoiding or blocking this blow would be more difficult. The word “apparently” because it did not seem that bright to Remedios’ eyes.
Remedios raised her holy sword to the sky, and brought it down.
Since Remedios had lost her bearings, predicting the path of the attack seemed very easy, and so Vijar casually prepared to take the blow on his axe and then force her back. However–
Following another wordless cry, Remedios continued pressing down with her holy sword where the battleaxe had caught it, and continued forcing it down.
She did not intend to force her sword to strike its target through brute force.
The reason for this was because the radiance on the sword followed the path of the blade down, passing through the battleaxe and entering Vijar’s body.
This was the ultimate technique of the holy sword Safalrisia.
It was a holy wave that ignored defenses and armor.
The sturdiest armor, scales and hides meant nothing to it. Since it could even pass through magic weapons, it could not be stopped by weapons or shields, which made it an unavoidable finishing move.
Of course, if one did not choose to clash with the blow and was nimble enough to avoid it, they would not be hit by the wave of light. However, there was no way to avoid that blow made with all of Remedios’ speed while one was dazzled by the light.
As the wave of light blew past like the wind, the holy radiance on the blade vanished as well.
However — Remedios’ eyes went wide.
She had clearly hit her target, but Vijar did not look like he had been badly hurt.
“…Hm, what’s this? What a pretty move… but it hardly hurts at all. Is it just for looks? Though I have to say, it did startle me…”
Remedios was shocked.
This guy — he’s not evil-aligned!
This move was more effective the more evil one’s foe was. In contrast, it did little damage to non-evil targets. It did practically nothing to good-aligned people. In other words, the fact that it had hurt Vijar meant that he was not good, but it meant he was certainly not evil.
He made the people suffer! He invaded our country! How can someone like that not be evil!?
“Heeheehee. Well, that was quite a spectacular lightshow, Vijar-dono. Are you really unhurt?”
Halisha narrowed his eyes as he questioned Vijar.
“It was so bright… it’s still scorched onto my eyes.”
Nasrene grumbled from the side.
She had made a mistake — she should not have used that move on Vijar after all.
Vijar limbered up his limbs and made sure his body was fine before shrugging. While he seemed defenseless while doing this, Remedios could not find any weaknesses in his defense.
“…A dazzling light? Well, I’m not too sure what that’s all about, but it’s nothing much, right?”
“…Vijar, I’m kind of surprised. To think you were unharmed by that attack… I might have underestimated you.”
“Hah! You get it at last! Hahaha! Alright, human. You did well in standing up to me. If you surrender, I’ll kill you painlessly. How about that?”
“Don’t make those unfunny jokes! We haven’t settled this yet!”
Remedios raised her sword and shouted at the three demihumans.
Remedios could still fight, like she had said. She placed a hand over her wounds and used her healing abilities. Her pain was carried away by the sensation of warmth.
A lot of paladin techniques won’t work on him since he’s not evil… but since the two of them were dazzled by it, I’ll save them for those two instead.
All she had to do was fight Vijar as a pure warrior.
“Heeheehee. Well then, we’ll leave her to you, Vijar-dono. We’ll be hunting the humans in the rear.”
“What? You scumbags!”
All the paladins she had called up were already dead. The militiamen could not possibly stop them.
“As if I’d let you have your way!”
Remedios backed off and repositioned so she could face the three demihumans at once.
“It seems you’re ready to take the three of us on at once, but Vijar said he wanted to take care of this.”
“Heeheehee. Our aim is to wipe out the humans in the city as needed, not to serve as your opponents. Nasrene-dono, may I count on you to wipe out that rabble in the back with your power?”
There were masses of magical power in three of Nasrene’s four hands. One was ice, one was fire, and one was electricity.
Remedios ran toward the female demihuman–
“I told you just now! I’m your opponent!”
–And blocked the battleaxe swung at her with a roar, but she was flung far away.
At this moment, Remedios realised that she could not deal with Nasrene while fighting Vijar at the same time. While she could have just jumped right to Nasrene’s side, defending against Nasrene’s attacks would leave her open to Vijar.
What do you mean it’s impossible… I won’t accept this! Not being able to do anything is just an excuse!
The moans of the Militiamen played on Remedios’ emotions.
These people had not fled in the face of terror because they believed in her. She could not show them a disgraceful side of herself.
She would not abandon Calca’s ideals — to make a country where nobody would cry.
“Militiamen! Fall back!”
As she gave the command, Remedios prepared herself.
I won’t die from taking a single hit. I’ll rush that female demihuman while activating 「Fortress」!
Vijar laughed as he watched Remedios break into a run. It would seem he had misunderstood something.
“Ho. It seems you’ve made up your mind. That’s the way! Fight me with all you have! Give me a battle worthy of a legend! 「Showdown Declaration」!”
Vijar roared, and there was a special power in it. Remedios legs, which were supposed to carry her towards Nasrene, charged towards Visha like she had lost control of them. Nor was it just her legs — her sword, her mind, her vision, she could not pull any of them from Vijar.
A third-tier spell flew past Remedios’ body and at the militiamen. A spell that Remedios could endure but would be fatal to the militiamen–
“–「Wall of Skeleton」!”
「——<骸骨墙>[wall of skeleton]」
The fireball collided with the grotesque-looking wall of bones that had sprung up in front of the militiamen and vanished.
Someone exclaimed in surprise.
Initially, it was because they had no idea what had just happened. However, it slowly changed. That was because they saw something descend like it was unaffected by gravity and land on top of the frightening wall of skeletons.
That person possessed none of the intense emotions of the battlefield, and spoke with a gentle tone that seemed completely out of place with his surroundings.
“While this is a common enough occurrence on the battlefield, a three-on-one battle is a little hard to watch. You don’t mind if I join in, do you?”
The owner of that voice was undead.
Everyone in this city recognized him. He was the person who had originally refused to fight in order to recover his mana.
He was the Sorcerer King Ainz Ooal Gown.
Oooooooh! An earth-shaking cheer came from the other side of the wall.
Remedios tightly clenched her sword hand.
“What, what’s that, who is that?”
“…By the looks of it, I think it’s an Elder Lich. So there were kinds without skin. Still… can a mere Elder Lich possibly stop my spells? Is it because of his cape? It does look quite impressive. Or no, is it because its summoner possesses great power?”
Remedios did not comprehend the demihumans’ words at all. She heard the sounds, but she did not understand what they were saying. That was because all her energy was focused on quelling the intense hatred welling up within her. She was not even aware that she was standing defenseless in front of Vijar
–Reeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!! Why did he show up!? Why are they cheering for him!? Why! Why!! Why!!! For this filthy undead being!!!!?
A corner of Remedios’ mind was calm enough to note that it was a natural reaction to help someone in difficulty. However, it was overruled by her inability to forgive the civilians for cheering on the undead. They could clearly see the corpses of the paladins who had sacrificed themselves as shields to protect the people.
You’re not cheering for the people who fought as your shields, but for someone who showed up late!!!!!
She was so angry that she wanted to rip her helmet off and scratch her head while rolling around on the ground.
Remedios struggled to curb the anger in her heart, and she addressed the undead being on the wall.
“–Why did you come here?”
The Sorcerer King’;s movements stopped, as though he had been frozen in place. The red flames in his empty eye sockets turned to Remedios.
“…Why? …I came? …To help you, no?”
Why had he not come earlier? Was he waiting until the paladins had died? Did he plan to make a stylish entrance in front of the people.
She wanted to shout that at him, but–
“Then I’ll leave it to you.” She could not bring herself to ask anything of him, and she did not want to say “get rid of the wall.”
“I said I’ll leave it to you!” she unconsciously shouted, Remedios strove to quell her rising emotions. “–And tear down that wall. You can’t?”
In an instant, the wall beneath the Sorcerer King’s feet vanished. The Sorcerer King did not fall, probably because he was using a 「Fly」spell.
Remedios turned her back on Visha. She did not care if he killed her from behind. That way she could laugh at the Sorcerer King for not protecting her.
Having abandoned herself to despair, Remedios trudged back in front of the militiamen. In a sense, it was a little regretful that the demihumans did not attack her from behind.
There was a hint of fear in the militiamen’s eyes. Was the look on her face so horrible?
“–We’ll let the Sorcerer King handle this place! Let’s go help where they need us more!”
After hearing Remedios’ orders, the militiamen looked at each other, and they seemed confused.
“Are you disobeying orders!?”
After Remedios glared at him, one of the militiamen quietly asked:
“Ah, n-no. But… the Sorcerer King, by himself…”
“The Sorcerer King is strong! Isn’t that so!? In that case, something like that won’t be a problem for him! Let’s go!”