Chapter 16

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[Goblins?]

In the city of L’Ecole, which is located in the eastern side of the great Fleuretus forest Is a city were mercenaries live comfortably, where there’s no shortage of job for being near the great forest with a nickname “The forest of magic beast” and has the highest possibility of skirmishes against Seizelia, is where the <Dawn of War> is based.

I was summoned by the lord of the city. I was surprised when the lord asks us, a mercenary of 120 members to deal with exterminating goblins. Honestly, I failed to hide my discontent with this unwanted job.

[Yeh the job I want you to take care of is the goblin extermination on the ruin of Rukdielin the old empire]

The one who gave me the detail is Arngeil, a former skilled mercenary who now works as the guild master of the mercenary guild. It is said that he’s a bout 60 years of age but he works too energetically for his age. With that background he’s someone who you don’t want to be an opponent.

However, even if it came from him, it’s a little out of ordinary for him to request of us to exterminate a goblin nest. It’s not a job for a big group like ours to deal with small-fries like goblins.

[There’s too many of them and the nest may have been quite near since a lot of strays had come from there., and the only group capable to handle it is yours]

 Perhaps sensing our frustration and anxiety he decided to explain the situation to us.

[We can’t move the knight no because Seizelia is starting to move and preparing to invade us. While the dragons would take time till they recover. At any rate we’re really short-handed right now.]

[I’m glad we have work to do]

[Well it’ looks like you had new members in your group. Go treat this as a training]

I put my hand on my chin and didn’t give a quick reply. I’m willing to take the job but of course if the conditions are reasonable. Of course, Argniel knows this and lets out a sigh.

[Orlando, goblin’s might be weak but they can’t be left alone. Right now, there’s 300 of then and no one besides the <Dawn of War> can take care of this]

After giving plenty of thought I let out a sigh and reluctantly accepted it. For the sake of providing equipment to the newcomers I’ll let them get a little extra pay. 

We then discussed the term and condition for a while and finally signed the contract.

On the way out, he said [Make yourself clean when you come to a place like this] in which I replied [I’m a mercenary].

[A request!]

As soon as I came back I said a few word and the once rowdy bunch suddenly stopped what they’re doing and stood in attention.

[Lloyd, Harvey, we’re going to exterminate goblins this time, so I’m going to give the new comers a chance to gain experience. Select them properly.]

As I gave the order the two skilled men saluted with their fist with the arm-band symbol on top of their chest.

[How many do we need sir?]

[50 will do]

He gave them all the detailed adjustment that they need and went to his favorite shop to do maintenance to his partner, a great sword known as the giant slayer. After that I wen to the armor shop to adjust my greaves and look for a new gauntlet and since it’s just the right time, I took the liberty to have a meal then return to the base. Arriving there, there are 50 people gathered and ready for the mission.

I took a look at everyone of them and I saw a woman who’s clearly not equipped for this quest.

[Annie, there’s a lot of people this time. Go wear your armor]

[Please, Don’t tell me how to do my job]

Annie, who is wearing only a hot-pants and a cloth wrapped around her chest to hide her breast rebutted to me while sitting on a chair leaning back and having her feet on the table.

I chuckled at the usual exchange.

This girl is always like this, but she’s competent so I can’t say anything. It’s kind of a poison to the eye for the young people. And it seems that it’s related to the drop of earnings, so I can’t really say anything there.

A mercenary doesn’t save too money

Anyway since all 50 of them are here now, I’ll just have to announce it.

[We will depart tomorrow morning, everyone be ready!]

Everyone answered with [Yes] unanimously.

Even though they’re newcomers they are well trained. I wouldn’t let those goblins kill anyone!

I am confident that I can do it and in fact I don’t see anyway that a death could happen. Even though they’re many of them they’re only goblins. Even if we are surrounded, we can break through them in a heartbeat, so I should allow a bead of disadvantage fort it to be called a training. If someone can’t beat a goblin after all that training, then he has no future here.

=====================================================================================

I checked the movement of the newcomers and give them instructions to reduce the number of goblins while limiting our damage. I think we’ve reduced the number of the goblins by at least a hundred but they are still coming in. This is why the ruin of the old empire is troublesome. There’s just to many of them even thought there’s no one that’s leading them. This might the result of goblins overflowing from multiple nests and then converging to form a large pack.

If what Lloyd tell me is true then there might be multiple goblin’s nest not too far away.

I said [Ugh] and put out my tongue in disgust.

I can’t help but feel reluctant when I think that there would be another goblin extermination that we might receive again.

As the extermination of goblin’s continued some of the goblin’s began to flee. Then, the escapes become a run for their survival as the newcomers started charging to the area were the encirclement got broken.

[Cazetta, this time use your magic to find those who are hiding!]

I covered for Cazetta’s defenses as she began chanting and I gave the order to begin the pursuit. After the chanting ends and the magic activated the platoon started to blockade the escape.

Then we found a large creature hiding at a collapsed building. And since it’s an extermination mission, I have no reason to let it go.

I ordered Cazetta to use more magic to smoke the monster out of it’s hiding. As the flame spreads over a wide area, the monster appears, brushing the flames away from with its arm.

A humanoid monster that I had never seen before sporting a grey skin, burly body and a long tail, and standing on it’s two feet.

[A new species]

No one respond to my muttering. NO one seems to have seen this monster before.

I wonder if I should have brought Alitta and Edward with me If I knew this would happen. Well, it’ won’t be a problem if we could kill it anyway.

I’ll leave the pursuit of the goblins to the newcomers and they’re instructors.

Facing the monster that’s looking at us from above, I thrust my great sword and shake it up and down to taunt it to come at me.

The new monster looks kind of lost but it jumped down from its position and landed on the plaza then head straight towards me.

My men immediately surrounded the monster but it laughs as if in anticipated it.

[Are you making fun of us?]

I took an initiative and slash at him, and a battle that can’t be called a battle had begun.

[What the hell is this guy?]

Arrows don’t pierce him, swords get chipped and spear breaks.

We immediately retreated those who’s weapon is not up to par and have those members who is skilled to confront it.

It’s still received no damage while on the other hand we already have one dead and many who can’t continue.

(This atmosphere is bad)

The situation is bad. Just plain bad. The only people who can fight effectively against that armored body is me and Lloyd. He has the ability to crush magic and doesn’t even flinch from it. It was so underpowered that I have the Cazetta retreat immediately. Now, the only thing that I can rely on is my Giant Slayer, Lloyd’s Warhammer and Annie’s magic sword. I had to draw his attention to me to get an opening for everyone else’s attack.

I throw in a flurry of attack, but almost all of it is deflected by his fist. It’s obvious that he is trying to destroy my sword – which mean he sees my sword as a threat. However, this sword isn’t called the <Giant Slayer> for nothing. If it’s something that can be broken that easily it wouldn’t be able to accompany on the battlefield.

It’s necessary for me or Lloyd to land a blow somehow, but because of the weight and slowness of the Warhammer and the that he’s wary of me, we failed to land some attacks. With the atmosphere that feels like there’s no way out for us here. That’s why se decided to take a gamble.

Annie rushed in with a crossbow on her hands. She definitely breached the order.

[Annie!]

The words [Come Back!] didn’t come out from me. With no way to break out of this situation, I felt hesitant to say it. However, the situation is progressing with no care for my hesitation. The tail of the monster attacked Annie but she was able to avoid by sliding through the tail as f she was sliding on the ground. Then, she aimed her crossbow at point blank range and let an arrow loose. But, the monster caught the arrow by his teeth. He reached out to Annie who was surprised When I was about to step forward to rescue her, she sent out a smile.

She tried to get herself free but quickly give up, instead she pulled out a vial from her jacket and smash it against his fingers, then she undresses the clothes wrapping her body and slid out. When the crossbow fell to the floor it became a signal for me, Lloyd and Harvey to move in simultaneously. Anne also drew her sword and joined our assault. With one of us already in range he prioritizes me and Lloyd, but as expected he really did want to deal with me.

Harvey got knocked out by his tail, but because he tried to block both me and Lloyd, Annie was able to deliver an attack in.  As everyone have expected and even, I expected it. Annie’s attack wasn’t able to deal any damage at all not even a scratch. Annie must have noticed it as well as she tried to follow up her attack.

Somehow I was able to fix my stance for another blow, when I saw his had aiming for Annie I knew I won’t make it in time. But the, he just pokes Annie on the head and throw back her clothes. And when we stood there frozen and dumbstruck on his action, he then pointed at me. I knew what he meant

[I’ll take him on, everyone stand down!]

Thinking back, this guy is only wary of me ever since the beginning. He must have been just testing us all this time, and his only target was me.

[If it’s only me, then I can give up]

I think to myself

[Don’t be an idiot! Do you think you can face him alone!]

One idiot just stated the obvious

(Of course, I know I can’t beat him!)

I knew we had a chance but this guy knocks them all down. I knew the difference in our ability and I knew this might be my end.

I reached out my hand and ruffled Annie’s head who got closed to me and then put a distance between me and her. I told her to get dress where she only responded with [Idiot]. Her voice is shaky. And I looked down to not show my face.

(Sorry…)

I apologize in my mind and tur to guy waiting, I look out to the sky and lamented on everything that happened in my life.

It wasn’t a bad life – not a bad life at all. Once a brat who couldn’t even swing a sword was able to get this far.

I let out a big sigh and refresh my mind.

[Sorry to keep you waiting]

I laugh at the monster and he looks at me in response.

I have regrets, but if I can keep them alive and entrust them to him, then so be it. However, I have no intention to let them die here for free. I have my pride for carrying the <Dawn> on my shoulder and even if I die, I will make sure to deal a blow.

(I have no need for defense, don’t think of surviving, think of going in for the kill)

I hold the Giant Slayer in a stance. The only thing that you need to do for a counter attack is to match your opponent’s timing, anything else is unnecessary.

Perhaps sensing it, he took a stance for the first time. He put his arms to the ground and pulled his legs back as if trying to get to the ground as close as possible. He’ll probably pounce at me with enough force to run me over. And if I get his timing, I can strike him with my – no I’m going to make sure I’d strike him this time!

(Don’t think about your chances of winning, don’t think about your chances of winning. Just concentrate in landing this final blow.)

The standoff continues. I didn’t relax both my stance and guard and made sure not tom miss any action he’ll take. As the they watch anxiously, he suddenly made a move. His right leg sinks. I started to move as well, I took a step forward and swung my sword down, propelling me forward against the monster. I thought I was able to match him perfectly, but he went and increase his speed.

Yes, he hadn’t even shown a sliver of his true ability.

He grabbed my hand faster than I could bring the Giant Slayer down. My last attempt was easily blocked by his hands. Then I realized that he lifts me off the ground. I forcefully pulled out a dagger that I have, but the dagger fell because all of my fingers were bent in the wrong directions.

As the dagger fell, his fang looms closer as he was about to devour me

(Ah, I guess this is it…)

For the last time I look at the members of <Dawn of War> who are here and with the time I have left I gave my last order.

[Live]

Amid the cries of [I’m sorry] I was sure that I heard someone calling my name.

I apologize once more and quietly closed my eyes.

Chapter 16

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