Translator: Silver Editor: Namorax
A port city lied in the distance…… based on the description Branier had provided beforehand, and the magnificent fort built along the nearby hill, it was safe to assume that this city was Larissa .
After she spotted the city, Ferufivisurotte gradually lowered her flight speed and began to hover in the air .
Even from the sky, it was clear that the city was far from the state it would be in during peace times .
In the harbor, several ships were anchored, but all of them were heavily damaged or had pillars of black smoke rising from them .
Only a few boats had managed to drift out to sea, but their sails had been shredded or their masts had been snapped off .
The city was also heavily damaged, with multiple breaches in the city wall . Pillars of black smoke were rising throughout the city and destroyed buildings were visible even from up here .
Just as Branier had predicted after hearing from the messenger dispatched by the capital, Larissa had fallen victim to the undead ambush .
From this height and distance, it was impossible to tell if there were any survivors .
Ferufivisurotte seemed a bit puzzled as she observed the city below .
《Ara, there are a bunch of undead in that city, have you ever seen so many of them? There’s one large signature in a sea of smaller ones, ten thousand of them, perhaps?》
To grasp the situation on the ground from this distance, as expected of an exceptional being .
Although my current body had good eyesight, it was still within the realm of common sense . Even I was incapable of observing the ground with satellite-like clarity from two thousand meters in the air .
However, her ludicrous sensory capabilities weren’t the problem . The problem was the number of undead she said were in the city .
Branier had said that Larissa had been attacked by two-hundred-thousand undead . If the vast majority of them weren’t here, it meant that they were already on the move .
The undead in the city were probably left behind to guard the occupied territory .
The messenger from Larissa had arrived in margrave Branier’s remote territory seeking aid shortly after the attack had begun . Considering the time it took the margrave to reach Nozan, a considerable number of days had passed since the ambush .
It was possible that the undead army had already reached Branier’s territory, but from what Goemon had witnessed in Delfuento’s capital, it was unlikely they could move immediately after capturing Larissa .
Though the spider-chimera could match a
horse in regards to running speed, the undead soldiers which made up the majority of the army’s soldiers were no different from humans .
Since that was the case, there was still a bit of time left .
“Ferufivisurotte-dono, we still need to establish a transfer location, can you land us in a suitable location?”
For future actions, it was necessary to draw the scenery of the location that would act as the Larissa transfer location .
《Ho, a suitable locationー》
Ferufivisurotte shifted the angle of her wings when she said that .
“OW NOOOOOOO!?” “Kyun!”
We suddenly began dropping out of the sky, the rapid updraft nearly throwing me off with the same force that had pinned me to Ferufivisurotte during our ascension .
I clung to her back in an attempt to fight against the weightlessness, then a thundering boom preceded a shock that ran through her massive body .
Two spider chimera had been patrolling the area, and Ferufivisurotte had crushed them beneath her feet, cutting down the remaining undead around her with the crystalline tip of her tail .
It was a leisurely swipe of her tail, but it cut across the ground like the grim reaper’s sickle, and all the undead within her tail’s range were bisected .
《Uh, the stench is making my noise weep . 》
Ferufivisurotte show of overwhelming power was somewhat marred by her complaint about the stench of the undead .
The place we’d landed…… appeared to be a field next to Larissa .
It was no longer possible to harvest the now trampled wheat .
Not all of the fields had been trampled, but considering just how many people could survive on what little remained…… My gaze wandered over the city overflowing with the dead and undead .
Because we couldn’t afford to be leisurely about this, I unwrapped the furoshiki, took out my drawing implements and began sketching the area .
However, just as I was about to begin my work, I caught sight of several spider chimeras and a host of undead soldiers approaching our location .
It would take too much time to annihilate all the undead loitering outside the city, and Ferufivisurotte just seemed annoyed by them as she watched their approach .
“Ferufivisurotte-dono, I’m apologise, but would you mind dealing with the surrounding undead while I finish the task at hand?”
She proudly puffed out her chest when she replied to my question .
《I’ll play around with them for a while, give me a shout when you’re done . 》
With that she kicked the ground as she flapped her wings, basically gliding towards the undead as she unleashed her reaper’s sickle upon them .
The sound of a whiplash rang out as
as she began to reap the surroundings .
The undead vanished in an instant and the wheat stalks were thrown into the air and fell to the ground like confetti .
Ponta’s cry drew my attention away from her colossal back, and I resumed my drawing in a hurry .
If I didn’t hurry, she might actually clear out the surrounding undead and turn her attention towards the city .
I decided on the space directly in front of Larissa’s city wall as the transfer location and began recreating the scene on the parchment . Since there wasn’t much time, I only drew a rough sketch and planned to fill in the details later .
“It would be nice if I could immediately envision landscapes when I invoke transfer magic . ”
That utterance left my lips as I compared the drawing to the actual location .
Although it’d been a rushed job, I’d say I managed to capture the general image .
After finishing my work and putting away my implements, I shouted Ferufivisurotte’s name while she crushed some undead beneath her feet .
Her hearing was quite impressive, as soon as I called her, she stopped cutting down undead and leisurely flew back to me .
《That was unexpectedly quick . 》
Ferufivisurotte sighed and looked back at the capital as she said that .
Her purple reptilian eye blinked once as her sharp gaze poured over the city .
“Is something wrong?”
When Ponta and I voiced our concerns, Ferufivisurotte slightly shook her head and glanced back at me .
《The one large presence that had been in the city suddenly vanished……》
At her comment, I turned my attention to the destroyed town .
Because I lacked Ariane’s and Chiome’s high-level sensory capabilities I couldn’t understand what Ferufivisurotte meant with she talked about presences .
However, that big presence she spoke of probably wasn’t a spider chimera or an undead soldier .
Perhaps it was a cardinal, or even the pope .
The fact that they suddenly vanished could mean that they had access to transfer magic like mine .
If that were the case, it would be impossible to follow them, and it meant another problem for us .
“Ferufivisurotte-dono, the main body of the undead forces have probably begun heading for Margrave Branier’s territory . I would like to pinpoint their current location, so may I borrow your wings?”
We were supposed to return to Soulia once we set the transfer location, but if the undead host was already marching towards Branier’s territory, then we needed to keep track of its present position .
Depending on their estimated time of arrival we might have to alter our plans .
However, her reply
her reply to appeal was a rather plain one .
《Arc-han, didn’t I already say I would lend you my power? Stop wasting time and climb on my back . Get a good grip, because I’m gonna fly a little recklessly . 》
“No even a second of hesitatioooooonnnnnnn!?”
After I tied my bag to my shoulders again and sat on her back with Ponta, Ferufivisurotte took that as the signal to ascend into the sky .
Ponta let out a happy cry, even as the wind forced her against my chest .
Eventually, the intense wind pressure subsided and Ferufivisurotte began flying in a circle before asking me a question .
《The Branier territory is east of here, right?》
“That’s right . I want a grasp of our enemy’s current location . ”
When I answered her question, she nodded and immediately turned to the east .
“Come on, let’s go!”
Ferufivisurotte spread her wings wide open in response to my comment, their purple patterns rippling as she flew faster and faster eastward bound .
An intense headwind bombarded me, but Ponta just looked immensely pleased .
There was a strange air bubble surrounding Ponta that seemed to lessen the wind force she experienced, it was quite a skillful use of magic . I’d heard that riding the wind currents was a fluffy fox’s primary means of transportation, so it was probably a racial skill .
It was an enviable ability to have for someone at risk at being knocked off by the wind .
However, I didn’t have to endure the wind for long .
Ferufivisurotte lowered her speed and urged me to look down .
《Arc-han, down below . 》
I held my breath as I took in the spectacle on the ground below .
Scattered across the plains were these small, black spots…… those spots being a countless numbers of undead all heading toward the east .
Their movement wasn’t like what I’d seen from the forces of the Holy Leburan Empire, but they were still slowly but surely marching towards the Branier territory and the elven populated Rouen Forest .
“Given the distance from here to Larissa, it will still take them some time to reach the territory’s border, but that isn’t anything to be optimistic about……”
An utterance escaped my lips as Ponta intensely stared at the ground .
《Once they gather in one place, one of us can blow them away with magic . It’ll be messy with them scattered about that . 》
Ferufivisurotte didn’t even try to hide the disgusted sound she emitted before looking back at me .
《How about it, Arc-han?》
It was as she said, we could annihilate the hundreds of thousands of marching undead, but marching undead, but the manner in which they were spread out meant that there was no guarantee that an area of effect spell would destroy all of them .
While it was possible for Ferufivisurotte and me to kill them all, we didn’t have the time to spare .
Since we could no longer hope to deploy troops at Larissa, the next transfer site candidate would have to be on the border of the margrave’s territory .
However, it was possible that the army would split in two to attack the elven village Doranto in the south once they breach the territory .
If we wanted to destroy a significant portion of the enemy’s war potential we needed to find a location that would hinder their movement……
I considered that while trying to remember the map layout of the area .
《The Uiru river should flow along the border . How about we prepare a greeting for them there?》
As if she’d read my mind, Ferufivisurotte spoke the idea I’d just thought of .
“Yes, we should set the new location near the fort that sits on the edge of the territory . ”
According to margrave Branier, a few forts remained on the eastern bank of the Uiru river from back when the territory had belonged to Nozan, and he’d restored them back to working order .
While the official statement was that they were meant to protect important highways, their real purpose was to fend off harassment from other Salman nobles and the neighboring territories .
Villages in the Branier territory had fallen victim to bandit raids until the margrave restored the forts .
Ariane didn’t seem to understand the connection between those things, but King Asparuf accepted it as if it were a common occurrence .
It seems that the Branier territory was under constant threat of invasion from both outside and within .
Regardless, our first step will be to visit the Uiru river fort .
“Ferufivisurotte-dono, can you overlook them for now and take us to down near the Uiru river? We’ll set the new location there and return to Soulia immediately afterward . ”
Ferufivisurotte accepted the new timetable I suggested with a nod .
《Okay, I’m setting off again!》
After she made that declaration, she flapped her wings and resumed her eastern flight .
The undead didn’t seem to notice us flying above them, and in almost no time we’d left them far behind .
Against such a strong headwind, I squinted my eyes and focused on what was straight ahead .
Ferufivisurotte flight speed was the same as it’d been before, so it should be possible to estimate how long it would take to the undead army to reach the river .