Translator: Silver Editor: Namorax
We left the Ena’s main village under a rather anxious atmosphere, but now a somber mood hung over the entire party.
No, the tiger tribe warriors were still angry at the giants and the subjugation force was still feeling tense, so it didn’t feel like anything had changed at all.
It was obvious why things were the way they were.
Chiome was sitting in front of me, my arms reaching around her to hold the reins of the dragon mount, so there was no way for me to make out her expression.
I remember her talking about taking some Kraken meat to her senior Sasuke when we ventured to this continent on the Liebbelta.
My current body was that of a skeleton and with my emotions bottled as they were, I couldn’t offer her any actual sympathy despite knowing how much she must have been hurting.
If I were to regain my physical body, my reasoning would be hampered the release of my suppressed emotions. I wouldn’t have that much confidence in that situation.
The reason I was able to think rationally about this was due to me being in my skeletal form, perhaps this kind of state is similar to the emotional detachment hardened soldiers have.
However, Chiome has not yet reached that state.
……she isn’t a soldier with a long service record, after all, she is just a little girl.
I shook my head and sighed at that fact.
I’m not that good at thinking things through, so it couldn’t be helped.
With my sword I could cut down any enemy, with my shield I could protect my friends from any attack, and with my armor, I was safe from all harm. Merely worrying about this won’t solve anything.
……Well, I suppose I did make the mistake of leaving my sword and shield behind previously.
Just how long has it been since we left the destroyed village?
So far, I’ve only had three requests to apply soreness relief with recovery magic.
Since we couldn’t afford to lower our speed, I had to reach behind my back to invoke the spell, so from the side it looked like I was trying to grab Ariane’s butt.
I sighed and looked towards the sky to estimate the time. Daylight was starting to wean and dusk wasn’t far off.
Lunch time had probably passed by now.
Shortly after, the subjugation force reached the hill the village rested on.
The village didn’t even amount to ten yurts. A herd of livestock was close to the village and a group of warriors in front of the village took note of us as we approached.
The village showed no sign of damage and everything appeared to be peaceful.
It seems the giants hadn’t arrived yet.
As we decreased our speed, Hou came to a stop and dismounted in front the people that gathered at the village entrance.
I brought our mount to a stop near the village as well.
However, as soon as I did so, Hou faced the subjugation force and started shouting instructions after confirming something with the villages warriors.
“The giants passed by this village and headed north! Move out!!”
We immediately set off in that direction after that.
The clan leaders were at the head of the pack and I caught sight of them riding close to one another, discussing something.
Was there some kind of problem?
That question was soon answered.
The subjugation force came to a stop atop a small hill.
No, where we stood now was roughly the same height as the plains behind us, and beneath us were lowlands.
From here I could even see the sea opening up at the edge of my vision.
There was a gentle slope leading into the lowland and, as
if it was drawing a border from the east to the west, a wall-like construction had been built across the entirety of it.
This structure was like some sort of castle wall, resembling the world famous Great Wall of China that stretches across thousands of miles.
There were countless rectangular embrasures spread across this wall, and it was apparent that this was primarily a defensive bulwark.
The embrasures were big enough to let us see the cannons… no, some kind of ballistas had been mounted in there.
Seeing all this, I remembered hearing from some beastman that humans were living behind a giant wall on the other side of the plains.
In that case, behind this wall must be the human territory.
For some of the tiger tribesmen, this was their first time seeing these walls. Quite a few of them were unable to hide their surprise.
Well, that was to be expected in the face of such magnificent architecture.
Just how much labor and resources were but into making such a thing…… I couldn’t even wrap my head around it.
“So, it seems the giants headed towards the human-occupied, northern peninsula.”
With that statement, Hou looked down upon the wall with an annoyed glare.
So we were looking down upon a peninsula.
And this wall had been built to seal off said peninsula.
However, I noticed something amiss with that massive wall.
Evenly spread across the length of this wall, giant, tower-like structures had been built that probably served as both lookouts and barracks.
However, there wasn’t a single living person to be seen anywhere. When I looked to the hundred and fifty warriors along the hill, I could see tension clearly building amongst them.
“There’s not a single person on the wall, is it normal for it to be left unattended?”
The wrinkles on Hou’s forehead deepened as he looked down at the wall and thought over my question.
“No, there are always soldiers stationed near the ballista to fend off any harassers that turn up.”
I once again looked towards the ramparts but was still unable to see anyone.
In fact, it was rather abandoned at the moment.
One of the warriors shouted for Hou as he rode towards our direction on his dragon mount.
Judging from his appearance, he must have been a scout.
The urgentness of his report was clear on his face.
Hou turned his mount towards the approaching scout and silently signaled for him to speak with a nod of his head.
“A section of the eastern wall has been breached! There are also the corpses of multiple giants that appear to have fallen in battle!”
The clan leaders and surrounding warriors began to stir after hearing the report.
“The wall’s been breached!? How deep is it!?”
“All the way though! The Giants probably attacked the humans’ wall!”
The clan leaders and warriors were surprised by that bit of information.
It was hard to tell how large the wall was, but it should be roughly around ten meters high.
However, since the giants had an average height of six meters, the wall wouldn’t have been much of a hindrance considering their strength and endurance.
The fact that several giants had been killed, showed that even humans could oppose them to some extent. Most likely by shooting spears into their chest with their ballistas.
“The wall has been breached!? I couldn’t make it past that wall no matter what I tried!”
“Was that guy leading the giants towards the human settlement since the beginning!?”
While the other clan leaders were shouting, Hou was thinking about what the scout had reported.
“All warriors, converge at the breach in the wall!!”
At his commanded, everyone headed towards the eastern section of the wall.
The location in question wasn’t that far away.
At the place where the wall had been breached, the massive walls had been reduced to a mountain of rubble. One could even see the other side from here.
Surrounding the hole in the wall were innumerable traces of the giants’ rampage, with ballista arrows covering the ground in front of the wall like a thicket.
Six dead giants laid on this side of the destroyed wall, all of them with large, spear-like arrows sticking out of their chests. There was the occasional corpse of a soldier, but no sign of any survivors.
I then caught sight of a figure running into the grasslands from the behind the mountain of rubble.
Based on the reactions of the warriors I wasn’t the only one that saw it.
Roughly around twenty years old, one of his ears had been torn off and his tail was rather short. I had no idea which tribe this person was from, but he was definitely a beast man.
Black irons, attached to broken chains, were wrapped around the person’s limbs and neck.
As the man approached, his worn-out and torn clothes became noticeable.
He’d probably been a slave working near the wall. When he caught sight of the tiger tribesmen subjugation force, he must have come running out of his hiding place.
Or so I thought until I saw bits of the wall crumbling and a giant appearing from the other side of the wall.
The giant’s accompanying roar caused the young beastman slave to cower in fear.
“Everyone, don’t allow the giant to reach him!! Slay the monster!!”
On Hou’s command, the warriors charged down the hill with a battle cry.
However, I didn’t take part in the charge and stayed put.
It was to be expected. While it seemed that they were just charging forward at full speed, the warriors managed to maintain an even distance between each other
This wasn’t something an amateur could learn to do simply by watching them.
The giant let out another roar as the ground around it began to rumble.
However, there was still a bit of distance between the giant and the warriors, while the slave as within the giant’s range.
The giant had already set its sights on the young slave.
The warriors wouldn’t make it in time, so I invoked a spell to create an opening.
“Full power! 【Flame Bullet】!!”
When I put as much strength as I could into the spell, the huge ball of fire that formed in my upraised hands was hot enough to heat up my helmet.
The warriors were shocked when they looked back and saw the sheer size of the fireball.
Nearly everyone’s eyes were fixated on the fireball as it cut through the air on a collision course with the giant.
The fireball flew over the heads of the charging warriors and caught the giant in the center of its chest with a flashy explosion.
“Oh? Look, Ariane-dono, it managed to hit it!”
“Wait, what? You didn’t even aim that thing!?”
It hadn’t been my intention to hit the giant, I just wanted to stop its movement. That’s why I made the fireball so large, I didn’t expect it to fly so fast.
By the time the subjugation group had reached the giant, it’s charred body laid on the ground unmoving.
Since it was covered in black fur, it was hard to tell where the burns were.
When the clan leaders managed to regain their senses, they rushed over to the young slave, and asked me to treat him we I reached their location.
“── When the Giants tore through the wall everyone else was…… I was the only one.”
The young man began answering Hou’s questions after I healed him with my magic.
Looking beneath his tattered clothes, his unhealthy thinness showed that he was malnourished.
“Is the town ahead named Tajiento? Are there still other beastmen are imprisoned there?”
The young man silently nodded his head at Hou’s follow up questions.
The clan leaders began to discuss what to do with the young man’s reply.
“What’ll we do? Now that the walls have been breached, this is a good opportunity, right?”
“We can take advantage of the chaos while the Giants run amok in Tajiento.”
“We need to decide now, once the trouble passes so does our opportunity to strike.”
“We don’t know the town’s scale, it’ll be impossible to cover the entire thing if it’s the size of Fernandez.”
“Then do we just abandon this chance?”
As the clan leaders discussed things amongst themselves, the warriors began voicing their opinions, while I remained focused on Hou.
Hou and the rest of them leaders eventually linked arms as they reached an agreement.
“We shall invade the human town and rescue the beastmen slaves! The humans have attacked and imprisoned our brethren for far too long. However, ignore them when possible and focus on freeing the slaves! If a giant blocks your path slay it! Be on the lookout for the retreat signal!!”
Cheers erupted from the nearby warriors. The one hundred and fifty members of the subjugation groups were divided into seven infiltration units.
Well, eight if you included my group.
My shoulders drooped at thought of the tiger tribe Vs giant battle.
Then my eyes landed on Chiome, staring out into the distance, and I remembered the other issue that remained.
The rematch was fast approaching.