Day 71 ~ Day 80
Today, eight goblins ranked up into hobgoblins. Three goblins became mages, one became a cleric, and for the first time a shaman goblin was born; the other three became regular hobgoblins.
I was honestly happy at the significant increase in the number of our mage-types, due to the ambush the other day; the increase of Shamans who could lengthen the lifespan of undead units during the day was an extremely useful a.s.set for us.
In addition to that, today three kobolds ranked up to As.h.i.+garu Kobolds.
When they rank up into As.h.i.+garu, kobolds are furnished with a weapon called "Bio-Spear"—organic weapons which are made from the cells of the original body, so it seems that as the original body grows, the weapons grow with them—, the ones who became As.h.i.+garu reported to me this morning, holding their spears.
Even though the three of them should be holding spears for the very first time in their lives, the Bio-Spears that came from their own bodies can be said to be an extension of themselves. Their spear handling was quite something.
However, since they were a far cry from mastery, the three As.h.i.+garu kobolds planned to focus on training the handling of the spear together with the kobold leader, who was the first to rank up into an As.h.i.+garu.
Even so, many ranked up because of the amount of experience points we gained in our battle against the human army. The increase of slaves in our labor and fighting forces is a boon for us.
It seems we are about to clear our first goal. Because we got our hands on some females from our enemy that we can use to breed, we should try to increase our numbers. But if our group becomes too large, the amount of food we need and other difficulties will increase too, so we will have to coordinate the increase.
We have yet to find out how long it will take for a child who surpa.s.ses the rank of a hobgoblin to be born. As expected, even Gobujii doesn't know the answer. But it seems that when a human female is pregnant with a goblin child it takes about 20 days and if a goblin is pregnant it takes about 25 days. Then, if a human is pregnant with a hobgoblin child it takes about 40 days, while a hobgoblin is pregnant for about 50 days.
Although the birthing period varies, I can't hide my surprise about the speed. Now I understand why humans hunt down goblins regularly.
Just in case, I checked if anyone of them acquired a subspecies that matches one of the magic items they’ve used. However, apart from Ogakichi-kun, Dhammi-chan and myself, no one else has gained a subspecies; as expected, the others don’t meet the requirements to obtain a [Divine Protection].
I’ll deal with this problem later.
After today’s morning training, I questioned Rusty Iron Knight and the others that looked like commanding officers about the human army's purpose, whom I put [slave] collars on and threw into prison. I did this so as to gain information from multiple sources to supplement what I obtained from Female Knight and the others.
As a result, I understood the general idea behind this war.
What sparked this war was the ‘Strenbelt Kingdom’―because other countries haven’t been mentioned yet, I’ll call it ‘Kingdom’ for now until others appear―it started when their princess caught a terrible disease.
After infection, your internal organs would slowly rot away as the days pa.s.sed by. More than 99% of the people who caught the disease would die within one year. There were a few cases where the patient survived for about 2 years, but as they also eventually died without being cured, there seem to be no survivors as of now.
Luckily, the disease can't spread by air or water vapor. The fact that there are few cases seems to be the only salvation. However, the lack of cases also means there were few chances to find a cure.
Naturally, the Kingdom was determined to try anything to heal the princess.
She was ill, but still renowned as "Masako", she was even engaged --It was for political reasons, but as the two appeared to love each other, it may as well be a love marriage--, so she needed to be cured all the more.
By the king's command, all doctors and the medical experts in the Kingdom were frantically searching for a remedy.
However, the results were not very rewarding.
Although they found a way to slow down the advance of the illness a little, almost half of each of the princess’ internal organs had already rotted away.
They then decided to forcefully put her to sleep in order to release her from the constant pain that could drive her crazy, while using magic to regenerate the rotten inner organs to prolong her life.
But as the organs were decaying faster than they could be regenerated, they could not cure her.
For a long time they thought she would die without anyone ever finding a cure.
However, a former citizen of the Kingdom; a certain woman, received a [Divine Revelation] from the [DemiG.o.d of Healing]. She had once worked for the one who held the [Job - Female Saint], who prayed everyday.
“To cure the "Chrysindo Disease", you need the secret medicine of the elves that live under the protection of the 【DemiG.o.d of Deep Green】.”
According to this【Divine Revelation】, the forests that we were born in fit the conditions, they had to buy the secret medicine of the elves that lived in the "Big Kuudrun Forest". The young emperor-to-be (who was 24 years old) of the "Kilika Empire" —which will be called the 'Empire', for the same reason as the 'Kingdom'—to whom the princess was betrothed to, negotiated with the elves.
But the elves didn't have much of the secret medicine left, and because of some ancient law --the elves have many annoying and troublesome laws-- they refused to give any of it to the "humans".
He tried to negotiate over and over, but it was all in vain.
The elves have always been a prideful race and looked down on humans. I personally think they would not have given it, even if that law didn't exist.
Anyway, as a fact, they would not give the secret medicine to the Kingdom or the Empire.
There was no doubt about it, the failed negotiations were the cause of the war.
But, listening to this story, there seems to be more humane circ.u.mstances that are involved.
Well, I could keep going on about the little details, but it would be too troublesome and just lead to this conclusion:
"Humans are Greedy"
I think that says enough.
But if I was to give four reasons why elves are better, it would be these:
One, practically all elves are beautiful. They make ideal s.e.x slaves.
Two, elves are superior, as a race, to humans. They have excellent defense, as well as battle prowess.
Three, their mithril; the forest, packed with raw materials and magic items, is extremely delicious from an economical point of view.
'Four, compared to other countries, they live in a place that's much more convenient in times of war. It makes an excellent relay point.'
Listening to the story, I thought those were awfully practical reasons.
The original trigger was certainly the refusal to sell the secret medicine to cure the princess, but combined with the human's great greed and expectations, the original goal was twisted which, in the end, resulted in the current war.
I cannot help but think that humans, as a race, would be a nuisance even in a parallel world.
Because I am in a good position this time to just disappear if need be, it doesn't bother me that much.
I also asked many other things. I was especially careful to ask about the formation of the Human Army; because, I may not be able to defeat my enemy this time, in my current condition.
Because the Rusty Iron Knight belongs to the Empire, he didn't know much about the Kingdom's army―the Kingdom and Empire appear to have an Allied Force―, but the Female Knight who belongs to the Kingdom told me all about that, so it's not an issue.
As expected, the huge Empire has a good amount of soldiers who are superior in quality. The demon squad attached to the "Allied Magical Beast Chimeras" made up of ogres, dragonewts and numerous monsters seems to be very strong.
As expected, the huge Empire has a good amount of soldiers which are also superior in quality. The army had ogres, a dragon-man species called dragonnewts, and the demon troops from the “Allied Magical Beast Chimeras”, which was made by cross-breeding various monsters. It seems to be very strong.
Most of the squad members appear to be slaves. It seems they are forced to fight with their lives on the line by their master. A troublesome and difficult story.
But as troublesome as it is, it will be easy to bring them down if you do it right.
Anyway, we picked up the human in charge of commanding the slaves.
After I got the information I wanted, I had the male prisoners join the goblins and play a game to improve their commanding power.
It was an actual warfare strategy game where the players with the t.i.tle of captain had to keep their p.a.w.ns, that were equally distributed amongst them, under their thumb and crush the p.a.w.ns of the opponent by giving orders to their own.
The p.a.w.ns were equipped with wooden swords and s.h.i.+elds, a bow, an axe, a spear or with just a s.h.i.+eld by itself. The point was to give commands that suited the equipment of the grunts.
Because I acted as umpire, I didn't join the game myself. Dhammi-chan and Supesei-san are both great commanders, so they won a lot. On the other hand, Ogakichi-kun and Burasato-san are good at taking the lead and opening up the front line, but they were too weak. Asue-chan is somewhere in between.
This is the difference between brain and muscles. It's not hard to understand.
Because we took a lot of provisions from the human army, we didn't go hunting today, we only did combat training in a cave. No, it wasn't really training, it was more like playing a game with everyone instead.
Through training, we started to become friends to no small extent, so I wanted to strengthen that feeling.
At first, the humans who were taken as slaves couldn't hide their surprise about our training; but, it was funny to see how their expressions gradually became serious as time went by.
Because the human army barely moved today, we could focus on practicing. This is a good thing.
Later that night, the human women delightedly flirted (with the men( I guess)).
And at night, the female humans happily joined the merriness.
Perhaps because they had greater l.u.s.t than than the elves, or because they simply fell so quickly, they adapted fast.
Only the Blacksmith-san and the others had expressions that showed their mixed feelings; however, compared to when they had just arrived, their ways of thinking changed quite a lot, so they didn't seem to have any real complaints.
Or rather, because it is war, this kind of thing can not be helped.
Besides, it is not like the situation will go haywire whenever it is pushed to the limit; because, it's something you're free to look for. Well, I suppose it’s that; everyone has different things that make them happy.
They were smart, nice women.
They were almost too good for me.
After that, because I noticed some elves here and there who looked at the human females with envy―the human females were in charge of s.e.xual relief right now, so the elves were not forced to―I tried to hook them up with some of our new As.h.i.+garu Kobolds and hobgoblins.
They seemed pretty happy.
Once you snap an elf's pride, it's easy to get them to obey. Well, even so I don’t intend to hit on them myself.
I am pretty satisfied with the current situation; there’s no need to create enemies for no reason.
While training together with Ogakichi-kun in the morning as usual, Rusty Iron Knight, who was set to fight against the Black Skeleton knights――even though he wasn't wearing his iron-colored armor――requested a bout with me.
Just like the other humans, his pride was smashed to smithereens and he was in denial――as a lower n.o.bility of the Empire, he seemed to think that goblins and ogres were on the same level as livestock. And yet, he was being treated like a slave by livestock; it seems to be breaking him.――yet, he was not hitting his head against the wall to kill himself, and silently did the training I imposed on him, even after becoming a slave> I liked that he looked at me straight in the eye, so I decided to agree to the bout.
And so, I felt that Rusty Iron Knight was indeed strong.
If it was just about combat techniques, I was definitely superior; but of all the humans I had fought until now, he possessed the most skill. In addition to this, he seemed to win in basic physical abilities.
Although I wasn't using any abilities, surpa.s.sing an ogre 【rare species】in physical strength is frightening.
The adventurer, whom I killed in Velvet's labyrinth some time ago, was about this strong as well; I had been wanting to fight someone of that level.
While fighting, I asked about his abilities. It seems that Rusty Iron Knight held four combat jobs: level 100+ 【Job-Warrior 】, level 100+ 【Job-Knight】, level 62 【Job-Monk】and level 25 【Job-Templar】. These skills seemed to be the result of all his training thus far.
Rusty Iron Knight's fists were fast and heavy, his body flexible, yet hard; and, without any waste in his movements, he aimed for my vitals.
As well as freely throwing all sorts of skills at me with flashes of pale light――techniques that can only be used by those weak humans, also called Combat Arts in this world――, he was a difficult enemy.
But, he was still not as strong as the wild, naked, Red Bear that attacked me.
In the end, I won.
Because the various kinds of Combat Arts rapidly fired at me were nothing more than abilities that gave various effects , they were relatively easy to counter.
But since it was such a close win, similar to when I had fought Ogakichi-kun, it was offensive to let the opponent think that he might have won depending if he had just fought differently. That’s why I'll confront him and use my abilities this time.
But for that to happen, preparations are needed.
Using 【Job-Enchanter】, I strengthened Rusty Iron Knight's physical defense, recuperative power and defense strengthening, as he was only wearing hempen short pants.
Note: hemp = a material used for clothing, created from the fibre of the cannabis plant
With a surprised face, Rusty Iron Knight looked at me, but I greatly improved my defensive power by using 【Job-Guardian】 and 【Lord of the Mountain's Stout Hide】. Because I improved my offensive power with【Job-Monk】 and 【Lord of the Mountain's Strong, Supple Muscle 】, it wouldn't be a problem.
Or rather, to use abilities of this level, at least this much preparation is necessary to make sure I don’t have to fear them dying from my attacks. If I didn’t suppress my abilities at least this much, I would pierce right through the enhancements I gave them. It really is a pain.
Then, an account of the result. Rusty Iron Knight's ragged form was rolling on the floor.
The guy’s got guts, but i think he might have overdid it a little. Well, he pa.s.sed out with a pretty satisfied look on his face, so I guess he'll be alright.
As I was treating him, I noticed Ogakichi-kun staring at me.
That gaze said he wanted to fight him too. I see, Ogakichi-kun wanted to fight Rusty Iron Knight barehanded.
Surely, if Ogakichi-kun and Rusty Iron Knight go at each other barehanded, it would make for an even better fight than mine.
When Ogakichi-kun fought him before, he completely overwhelmed Rusty Iron Knight; but then it wasn't just about abilities or the like, the usage of so many magical items greatly affected the outcome.
The defensive power of his Tower s.h.i.+eld, 【Black Ogre’s Chopping Board】, was out of the ordinary; the fact that he could repel all of Rusty Iron Knight's Arts like it was mere child's play was proof of that.
That's why he wanted to fight bare handed, he probably wanted to win this time as well.
He wanted to win with his own power, without depending on any tools.
But, he had to wait just a little longer. While I said that, he was already waiting for time to pa.s.s.
In the current situation, his handicap would be too big.
After I had finished healing the now awakened Rusty Iron Knight, I had him fight Ogakichi-kun.
It was a great battle after all. Ogakichi-kun, who has higher specs than me, was about on par with Rusty Iron Knight. But in the end, Ogakichi-kun somehow s.n.a.t.c.hed the win with his inexhaustible stamina.
It was a close fight, but they both looked like they enjoyed it; so, there’s no problem.
Or rather, Rusty Iron Knight did. What was with that seamless adaptability he had? I asked him about it while sharing some Elf-Sake during lunch time.
He said he wanted to quit being a Knight of the Empire and join us.
Listening to his story, I understood that many subspecies lived in the place where he grew up. That’s why there was no racial discrimination like what you’ll see from people of the Empire and Kingdom, so there was no aversion.
In actual fact, because he didn't understand why the humans around him hated subspecies, he didn't mingle much with them.
Moreover, in the place he grew up, fighting was a daily occurrence, perhaps because of that Rusty Iron Knight was taught that it was natural to serve those who were stronger than him.
His servitude to the Empire was because he lost to the previous Knight-leader, so he never felt any loyalty in the first place.
And, when the previous Knight-Leader died in battle, he was replaced by some n.o.ble named, Bonbon, who he’d never even heard of.
Even so, if Bonbon had the ability, he would have consented to it. But Bonbon lost to Rusty Iron Knight without him having to use his real power; rather, he wasn't even at a level to give a regular knight a good match.
At least, if he had commanding ability, it still would have been acceptable. But, he didn't even have that. He only came to be a Knight Leader because of his connections.
For that reason, Rusty Iron Knight felt no loyalty to the current leader whatsoever. Infact, it was the opposite, he hated him.
But if that was all, it would have been alright. He could endure it.
But when the previous leader died, the other knights, who ate rice from the same kettle and had become the only reason for Rusty Iron Knight to stay, had their affiliation changed so that the other n.o.bles, whom the current leaders were close to, could join the same unit.
As a result, for the new men to join as replacements, his comrades went to another knight unit.
Rusty Iron Knight, who had become the sub-leader, was the only one left.
The reason why he was left behind, was apparently for the sake of training the members.
Because he had become an instructor now, he kept on training without scamping his work. This strong unit was the result.
By the way, the current leader died of natural causes, being crushed by a rock. Come to think of it, I have this hunch that a normal soldier wearing splendid armor for no reason was there. But I'm not sure.
Returning to the subject.
Rusty Iron Knight trained all the new recruits. But, because Rusty Iron Knight was a commoner who worked his way up, he was on a different wavelength and had a different mentality than the other members who had n.o.ble upbringing; he couldn’t get along with them. He had also gained some real abilities recently, so the quarrels increased.
Everything became annoying and he had no good reason to stay; so, just when he met us, he’d already thought about quitting as a knight.
‘This is fate’, was my immediate reaction.
It seems to be the reason behind everything that happened.
I see, it's that simple and straightforward.
I knew that it was the truth, without a doubt, because he gave me this information when I used 【Command】 – which I did, just in case, to ensure he couldn’t lie. I had no complaints and accepted him, as Rusty Iron Knight looked useful. It’s best to use people who can be used, just like the elves.
Rusty Iron Knight's collar was released and the cuffs were inserted in his ears by his own will. After fastening the cuffs, I returned his full set of armor and his ‘appearance’ of the Rusty Iron Knight was back.
With this, Rusty Iron Knight was no longer a slave, but a comrade. Because no one else but me accepted him yet, I was looking forward to what he would show us next.
For now, he would be under my direct orders.
In the afternoon, I had to go out to do the setup for our hunting-c.u.m-ambush location.
I had Rusty Iron Knight teach Redhead some Combat Arts in the meantime.
At this moment, Redhead only knew 6 Combat Arts in total.
【Slash】, to increase her slas.h.i.+ng power of a single swing.
【s.h.i.+eld Bash】, to hit the enemy with a s.h.i.+eld to obstruct movements with a certain probability.
【Stab】, to gather energy and increase piercing power to strike at a single point.
【Rush】, to raise the power of continuous slas.h.i.+ng attacks but has long delays.
【Fall】, to strengthen one’s body akin to a monster’s by amplifying magic internally
【Versatile】, to freely use the abilities of a monster for a period of time by eating its flesh and blood.
If you are a 【Job-warrior 】, you can easily use the first 4 Arts aforementioned. The latter two are Arts that can only be used by someone who knows a specific 【Job】 like 【Job-Noire Soldier】.
For a fledgling adventurer, knowing 6 Arts is quite a lot, but the number of Arts that Rusty Iron Knight can use is greater than 70. Because, it seems like you can use them as soon as you start practicing Arts with a 【Job】, I intend to have him teach me as well when I obtain the prerequisite 【Jobs】 to gain the matching abilities.
A monster who can freely use the Arts that can only be used by humans.
Hm, when I use Arts, I should consider limiting the eye-witnesses as much as possible.
Asue-chan dug out a hot spring.
Until now, to wash ourselves we either went to the river, or rubbed our bodies using towels which were soaked through by water generated from the water crystals and collected inside earthenware pots. But with this, I thought that we could relax by soaking inside the pseudo-bathtub; and strangely, I could feel that there were various mysteries about the location, geology and other things of this place.
Well, it’s fantasy. Things like that can exist, probably.
That’s why I collaborated with Asue-chan and co to pour our heart and soul in the project for the hot spring today. Fortunately, we had the manpower of some skeletons, and others, who did not need rest. Allowing us to come up with an otherwise unthinkable level of working efficiency.
By using our abilities, and various feats of strength, we got all the work done before night came.
We divided the baths into three, one mixed bath, one bath with a division in the middle where men and women were separated and one where only Ogakichi-kun and the other top bra.s.s were allowed to use. It turned into quite a big place.
Despite some parts of the hot spring opening to the mountain's surface, it was hard to see from outside due to the obscuring boulders. Also, the steep cliff made it difficult for non-flying enemies to enter here.
But, saying it was ‘just in case’, we heavily b.o.o.by-trapped the place.
Finis.h.i.+ng our dinner, naturally the very first people who entered the completed hot springs were us.
The others, who entered the hot spring for the first time in their lives, were healed by it
Just in case, we drank the water and confirmed there's no harm in drinking it; so there's no chance for someone to die from poison.
Rather, the hot water had the side effect of improving one's recovery just like one in a fantasy; so I will continue to use it from now on.
Well well, it was a good find.
Because of the traps set by us and the Elven army, the humans lost a lot of their numbers, and it appears to have slowed down their advance.
Father Elf taught us nasty twofold, threefold, and fourfold combination traps – they seem to have been very effective.
The humans realized that internal intelligence had leaked because their route for advancing had become a trap-laden forest. So, as a countermeasure the human army temporarily withdrew their front to revise their strategy.
While one of my clones infiltrated to gather detailed information, we started to set up a surprise attack for the Supply Unit, which was scheduled to bring supplies to the humans stationed in the forest.
Supplies are a matter of life and death during a campaign. This being a forest, food and water is easier to come by than, say, a desert; but due to the enemy's large numbers they would need more food than that, and they're also useful even if morale broke. Besides that, arms and armor are also subject to wear and tear.
It'll be especially useful to reduce their expendables, like arrows, from here on. Also, as we can use the weapons we take, we'll be killing two birds with one stone.
The Supply Unit came along from the plains.
We can't attack them on the plains; because obviously, we were too few in number. Our numbers, including the 47 prisoners of war, did not even reach 200 people; the number of those who can fight is even less.
In comparison, the Supply Unit consists of more than 600 people. Almost three times as much as us. Due to this difference in numbers, it would be stupid to attack on the open plains.
Well, they're not an enemy we couldn't defeat if we played our cards right, but considering the damage our side would take, it might be wiser to stop.
For that reason, we waited for the Supply Unit to arrive in the forest.
According to the information I obtained from Female Knight and Rusty Iron Knight, the supply unit had reached the kill point.
I looked at the slaves lurking behind me.
Although some of the slaves' faces went pale because of it, I raised my clones' control power over them using [Parasite]; as a result, there are many among them that couldn't even move a finger out of their own free will.
It would be better if they would fight for me out of their own volition, like Rusty Iron Knight does, but I realized I didn't have another choice. To me, they are nothing but disposable p.a.w.ns anyway.
Because it couldn't be helped if they'd look gloomy after this, I intended to make good use of them.
My next plan wasn't anything special.
First of all, since Rusty Iron Knight was a friend now, there were only 17 male slaves left, I had ten simple n.o.ble Knights, who didn't have any 【Jobs】 like 【Magician】 or 【Enchanter】, go ahead to the Supply Unit.
Then, we pretended to pursue them.
Human Knights running away, followed by screaming, armed Ogres, goblins and kobolds, high on murderous intent.
Watching something like this, it should be enough for the enemy to identify their friends, and usually, one would try to protect those who look like friends without question.
However, because their awareness would be be focused on their enemy, there was a chance they would not help. But, it was a great success.
After it was confirmed they had successfully infiltrated, we hid in a trench that we built a little further away and used our ma.s.s-produced Repeating Crossbows to fire arrows that were smeared with poison at our enemy, being careful not to hit the slaves. Those who could use magic used it to weaken them, and the hobgoblin shaman had 6 ghosts use 【Despondent】on our enemy to add to the weirdness of the situation.
Because of the trees and bushes, the accuracy of our arrows and magic wasn't that high, but our enemy had the same problem. We just had to wait for the preparations to be complete, because all this was to gather them in one place, by stopping their advance, while we lessened their number.
And after a while, the ten n.o.ble Knights, who were mistaken as friends by our enemy, began their a.s.sault.
They scattered the magic item 【Burst Seed】, which is an original creation made by Alchemist-san and me.
It’s made of materials you can find in the forest, like 【Oil Gra.s.s- Yusa】and 【Burst Fruit】.
Because it’s quite powerful, even though it’s easy to make, if you scattered it in a crowded place you could get about 50 victims injured or dead. Because it is so easy to ma.s.s produce, it's a very splendid magical weapon.
TL Note: Oil Gra.s.s is what it is and Yusa is the name, hence the hyphen.
There is a chance you will kill yourself if you're too close to the explosion, but as I had the slaves use them, that didn't matter; because they’re disposable p.a.w.ns.
I gave the order to keep using the Burst Seeds. If they died, we'd pick up the bones.
The explosions of the 300 scattered Burst Seeds thundered through the forest for a moment.
Despite the fact that the explosions had ended, our enemy was still confused. I instructed Asue-chan's party to make the ground under the feet of the Supply Unit collapse. Because we’d done something like this before, she completed the task easily.
They only dropped about two meters, but that was enough.
Because of the sudden change in footing, they lost balance and were unable to run away. As before, we sent down a rain of poisoned arrows and a rain of magic from far away.
And the Elves, whom I’d told to climb the trees beforehand and stand by, sprinkled them with bottles of a venom that I had created myself.
As the venom was a quick-acting anesthetic, the soldiers who got hit dropped to the ground immediately. They weren't dead yet, but they wouldn't be able to fight anymore.
While I gave instructions, I also used 【Job-Minstrel】 and 【Red Crystal’s Tone】. The sound that emerged from my singing voice, combined with an instrument that resembles a guitar, strengthened my allies and weakened my foes.
Because the Supply Unit didn't have any strong soldiers, it wasn't really necessary, but one cannot be too careful. It was possible enemy reinforcements would be attracted by the noise of the exploding Burst Seeds.
That's why we couldn't scamp our work until the end, but we finished the plan without trouble.
Three of the ten Knights who used the Burst Seeds were caught in the blast and died, five were injured by the fragments and the remaining two returned unharmed. Those were all the victims on our side.
I thanked the three who died for their work. Because their bodies were dismembered by the explosion, we all had a bite while we collected the food and prisoners.
By the way, Redhead didn't come with us. Even though she was no longer opposed to eating monsters, she had to abstain from eating any in front of humans.
Some of the Supply Unit's members were seriously ill. As it was a pain in the a.s.s to heal them, we killed them right there – so they didn't have to suffer any longer. I ate all of their hearts and some of their bodies, and changed it into my own flesh and blood.
We ate as many dead enemies as we could. Only those who eat until their death will live. That is an article of my creed.
I also had the other goblins eat their share.
We took those with light injuries as prisoners of war, but they numbered exactly one hundred; all of them males. There were a few women but they died due to the attack.
Well, it couldn’t be helped.
The numbers were sufficient; there’s not much need to capture more needlessly.
As there was an insufficient number of cuffs and collars, I solved the problem by spilling some blood and cloning myself, then inserting 【Parasite】 into their bodies.
Note: cuffs and collars - from the previous days; used for enslaving them
Fortunately, there were many miscellaneous raw materials, like blood, in large quant.i.ties.
【Ability 【Continuous Thrust】 learned】
【Ability 【Helmet Splitter】 learned】
【Ability 【Stab】 learned】
【Ability 【Sneaking】 learned】
【Ability 【Armor Pierce】 learned】
【Ability 【Dance of Sword Storm】 learned】
【Ability 【Attack Force】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Ranger】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Supply Soldier】 learned】
Note: Supply Soldier = tentative name, they’re a soldier in the Supply Unit
I obtained various Combat (Arts) that I had heard about from Rusty Iron Knight.
From 【Continuous Thrust】 to 【Dance of Sword Storm】, they were all Combat (Arts).
In my case, I was pleasantly surprised when the experiment to activate my abilities and Combat (Arts) concurrently increased their power, compared to using them individually.
The prisoners and loot were brought back.
While we were on our way back, looking at the gloomy faces of our new prisoners, I suddenly thought of something.
We still had some s.p.a.ce left in the cave, but it’s honestly complicated as the supply soldiers weren't that strong as p.a.w.ns.
For that reason, I decided to distribute half of them to the Elves.
Just a way of paying my debt.
We walked to the village of the Elves and had Father Elf buy them.
Because I have many p.a.w.ns at my disposal, I have a wider range of options available to me, making this a prompt decision.
As payment I received some useful stuff like magic items.
Incidentally, while we exchanged newly obtained information, I asked him about the secret medicine.
Even though it's strong, there are no side effects to its use and also has many practical applications. Because the power of the 【DemiG.o.d of Deep Green】 is subtly mixed within, it's extremely rare and displays the effect of an all-purpose medicine… This... Wouldn’t I acquire new abilities if I ate it?
Deviating a little from my original thoughts, I came to a sudden realization; I only remembered then that I had already been given the Elf's secret medicine.
Look, at the start of day 54 when I met Father Elf. He gave it to me as a present, together with some sake, but as I was too impressed with the Elf sake, it had been sitting unused in my item box.
Remembering this, I wondered why he had given me a precious secret medicine like that? When I asked him, he answered that it was against the law to give it to "humans", but it wasn't against the law to give it to an "Ogre" who saved his daughter.
That's pretty twisted. So, if the Empire hadn't sent a human to get the secret medicine, they could have gotten it. I drank the medicine on the way back.
【Ability 【Rapid Regeneration】 learned】
【Ability 【Blood Elixir】 learned】
My blood was turned into the secret medicine.
To experiment, I made one of the slaves, whose wounds were not yet healed, drink my blood and saw an unbelievable sight.
All his wounds were healed in an instant.
What’s this? Scary.
If word got out about this, I might be targeted by humans for profit.
To look at the bright side, I raised my healing ability greatly; however, I still had the feeling that the resulting risk wasn’t worth it.
Because humans are greedy, arrogant, fragile, obstinate, but great in number, I have to take care they don't find out.
No, even if it was discovered, I just have to kill those who find out.
While thinking about such things, we returned.
Today I didn't train in the cave, but instead went to the river with everyone.
Well, because the ogres also had to fit, our bathtub is pretty deep; but due to that, many have drowned in it. Since many can't swim, it probably couldn't be helped.
But it's really troublesome if any of them die just because they can't swim.
So, I decided to have swimming practice today.
Because I'd been waiting so long for this opportunity, we went to the waterfall where the Green Lizards attacked us some time ago. Blacksmith-san doesn’t go out very often, but she came along for a change.
Because I had my clones scout the forest, I knew the Green Lizards still lived just above the waterfall and expected that they would attack us, but in the end they didn’t show up.
It's slightly disappointing, but since Blacksmith-san enjoyed the swimming, it's OK I suppose.
It appears we won't get any new hobgoblins until the children are born.
At this moment we have 15 goblins. All of them stopped leveling up after they reached level 100.
In short, these 15 goblins didn't have the ability to rank up. That's too bad.
But, there's no need to grieve. If they can't become stronger quickly by ranking up, they'll just have to steadily train themselves to become strong.
“Training will never let you down. Even if you’re a Goblin, if you can become an Elite Goblin, isn’t that fine?”
That's what I said to the depressed goblins to cheer them up.
And, there’s still room for growth amongst the kobolds on this side.
When I woke up this morning, we had two more As.h.i.+garu Kobolds and one extra Kobold that can be called a Genin.
I put the As.h.i.+garu into the scheduled training course then put my focus on the Genin Kobold.
The Genin Kobold has a short sword named "Bio-Sword"――a Sword version of the Bio-Spear――and he has a thinner build than a normal kobold.
His face still looks like that of a dog, but I can see a glimmer of intellect in his eyes, his physique is also closer to that of a human. Plus, he now seems to be able to use a kind of magic, sorcery――‘Ninpou’.
Because he's a ninja and it seems like he would s.h.i.+ne in areas like information gathering, I instructed him to always keep his presence hidden from today onwards
Doing so, his presence will become thin. I understand really well that his type excels in secrecy. In fact, hiding is natural for him.
Because the human army didn't show any movements yet, we went to the river to for some more swimming practice.
Today I took a day off from training.
Studying, making love, training, and even hunting, there is a reason for everything.
In the morning I shed some sweat by going at Ogakichi-kun, Rusty Iron Knight, Redhead and Female Knight one-to-four in a martial arts match. Then I went and played with the pets.
After that I went to see the Sisters, who were preparing lunch, and tried a bread dish from this world called Melzack, which looked like a sandwich. While snacking, on the way to Blacksmith-san who was as just as focused as usual on her research, I b.u.mped into the guard elves and they a joined me as I proposed a new idea for a weapon.
To ma.s.s produce the Burst Seed, I went to see Alchemist-san to devote myself to the production.
In the evening I went outside and enjoyed myself with Dhammi on a journey through the skies. The night air was a bit chilly, but that wasn’t a problem
We soaked our cold bodies in the hot spring to warm up again.
Then we went to bed together with everyone, Female knight included as of late. I sweated a lot, but I'll clean myself in the hot spring tomorrow, so it's no problem.
I enjoyed the day off.
Hindbear k.u.majiro and the Black Wolf Leader, Kurosaburo, ranked up.
k.u.majiro grew larger than a Red Bear with his grey fur becoming darker and a sharp horn 50 centimeters(20 inches) long made of obsidian sprouted from his forehead; it was no longer a Hindbear, but rather a “Demon Bear(Oniguma)”.
As Kurosaburo became as big as a warhorse, he could give me a ride now. Flames tinged with lightning leaked from his mouth with every breath and he has two heads with two separate minds, so it’s no longer called a Black Wolf, instead it’s a “Double-Headed Wolf (Orthros)”.
To find out the improved specs of the two of them, Ogakichi, the other Ogres, and me――in short, those of us who’d ranked up twice――us six along with our >, a total of only 13 fighters, attacked the Human Army.
The reason we went with a select few was for the sake of leveling up.
Recently, our main purpose had been to increase our level. It was hard to do so, since we needed more EXP and we received less EXP with more comrades around.There’s no problem in raising the overall strength of everyone, but in the end, one can only depend on themselves. As long as I'm weak there will be things I cannot protect.
That’s why I wanted to kick some a.s.s around here and level up.
I left the base to the 5 former slave goblins, who looked like they would rank up soon, and Hobuji-kun, who recently improved his cleric abilities greatly. Besides, I also decided to entrust it to Rusty Iron Knight, who is acting as Redhead’s instructor and the Female Knight―who said “I pledged my sword of loyalty to you, and not the Kingdom, I want to be yours”―as well as some others.
Just in case, I also left three of my clones behind, so it was useless to worry.
Well, after all, the Human Army’s aim is only the Elves.
I don’t think they would go out of their way to attack the home of another race that’s staying somewhere else.
Around 11 AM, I mounted k.u.majiro and the others all mounted the rest of the Hindbears, then advanced into the forest.
The proportion of【Mages】 at our destination was low, but the unit stationed there consisted mostly of those who had occupations which were stronger in close-combat like 【Heavy Warriors】 and 【Knights】.
The unit was comprised of just under 600 people. There wasn’t a single demi-human, only full-blooded humans. All of them appeared to be soldiers that had distinguished themselves in battle. Because another unit was stationed nearby, I intended to reduced their numbers as much as possible and then escape.
We arrived at the garrison after running for about an hour.
It’s a shame that we couldn’t deploy any undead to bolster our forces in the light of day, but as far as I could tell from what we could overlook from our position on the top of the hill, there was only one enemy we had to look out for. Equipped with a black iron short spear with countless small dark red bladed thorns protruding from it, was a white-haired venerable old knight donned with scale mail that emitted a divinely pale white light.
As the venerable knight was equipped with quite peculiar armor I could identify him from the “List of Formidable Opponents from the Kingdom and Empire” that I made using the information that Rusty Iron Knight, Female Knight and the others gave me.Belonging to the Empire, he was a man known by the name ‘Eisen Ritter’, who was renowned as an adventurer in his early years. The black iron short spear is an 【Ancient】 Cla.s.s magic item that he himself acquired from within the Empire's 【G.o.ds Era Dungeon】, it looked like a spear with the power to repeatedly inflict powerful ‘curses’ to the target with just the slightest touch of its blade, if I remember correctly the inscription reads: 【Barbs of Cursed Time】.
Note: thanks to Kemm for catching that Aizen should be Eisen.
The white scale mail that he had equipped seems to be a magic item made from the materials he got from killing the white dragon that was protecting the 【Barbs of Cursed Time】.
I absolutely wanted to taste the spear and armor, and its owner.
So, I decided that this troublesome Eisen would be the first enemy to be killed. By launching a surprise attack and removing the enemy's greatest force right of the bat, our chance of winning would increase; plus it’s safer.
I took out the Vermillion Spear, which I had never used in large army battles previously, from my item box and then loaded it into my Silver Arm, which I transformed into a ballista.
I raised my a.s.sa.s.sination success rate with 【Job-a.s.sa.s.sin】, and because I attacked with a ballista, the abilities of 【Job-Archer】 and 【Job-Hunter】are activated. Moreover because I was using a ranged attack the effects of 【Throw】 and 【Needleshot】overlay for a further increase in accuracy and power. I then aimed for Eisen’s body and fired the Vermillion Spear.
Eisen was standing close to the heart of the enemy’s camp. Measuring with just my eyes, the distance between us was about 200 meters, but the Vermillion Spear came flying at him like a red comet and pierced his body, despite it being protected by the white dragon scale mail.
By hiding our presence as much as possible, it appeared that even the great Eisen could not protect himself against such a powerful blow that came flying at him from outside his range of perception.
His last expression was quite impressive, it seemed to say that he could not comprehend what happened.
This was the start of the legend of surprise attacks
Who cares about fighting fair and square.
After all, in nature where survival of the fittest is law, these who remain are the winners.
And so, my thoughts digressed from the situation.
After thinking about it all, I went back to observing the enemy’s situation.
Because the Vermillion Spear that pierced Eisen didn't slow, it was stuck deep into the ground, leaving behind a pit matching its trajectory. Eisen's body now had a hole where his chest had been and around him I saw the figures of soldiers, just standing there, unable to quite grasp what had just happened.
Even though they realized Eisen had died, it seems like n.o.body had imagined that death would ever come for him. Maybe that’s why they looked like they were hallucinating.
Perhaps they felt like it was all just a dream. But I didn't worry about that, I just waited for some people to gather around so I could use the power of the Vermillion Spear.
The moment I activated it, without any warning, the Vermillion Spear sprang out from the ground.
In an instant, countless Vermillion Spears appeared from their blind spot below their feet, killing more than a 100 soldiers and seriously injuring those within the 100 meters(328 feet) of the spear’s range.
It would have been great to eliminate all of the enemies at once, but I didn't want to decrease the amount of experience points everyone could obtain.
Laughing at the commotion caused by the sudden attack, we charged the enemy.
We took advantage of the confusion caused by the surprise attack to devour the whole enemy camp. In their situation, it must have been hard for them to communicate. Which means, our surprise attack was a success.
It was very easy to feed on the confused rabble.
The speed of the Demon Bear, Orthros, the Hindbears and the Triple Horned Horses cannot be compared to the humans' war horses. In the blink of an eye we covered the distance from the enemy, spread out, and swung our weapons at the confused soldiers nearby.
After the enemy was sent flying like a doll by the tackle of Ogakichi-kun's > , he swung his flame enchanted battle axe at the group of 【Heavy Warriors】.
Maybe it’s their ingrained habit, because despite the confusion, they were still able to quickly prepare their multilayered s.h.i.+eld formation and guard against the battle axe’s slas.h.i.+ng. Though, unable to protect from the flames that flew towards them, they were incinerated by the intense heat. Their s.h.i.+elds were also bent all over from the extremely heavy attacks.
Long story short, those defending 【Heavy Warriors】were burned and thrown back with a dull sound like what you usually hear in a car accident or when you try to bend iron.
Even their defence doesn’t stand a chance against such powerful attacks.
As usual, he had great destructive power. Ogakichi-kun's 【Divine Protection】also increased the amount of heat he could use and the flames that raged around caused more damage than usual, creating a ma.s.s of charred bodies.
He was an Ogre who possessed a problematic tower s.h.i.+eld that can bend and blow over opponents’ s.h.i.+elds while spreading flames around him.
Without a doubt, in the eyes of the enemy, he was definitely an object of fear.
Beside that, Dhammi-chan also used 【Eyes of Bewitchment】to control the enemies. Those who could not resist her were made to kill their allies.
She intended to make many victims without dirtying her own hands.
Of course it was impossible to brainwash everyone. She had to deal with the few enemies who used magic items, arts, or something else that was able to resist her 【Eyes of Bewitchment】 in person.
For them, she pierced her targets with the ice powers granted by her 【Divine Protection】, or cut apart their bodies with the Claymore she got from me as a present.
She looked like she enjoyed the blood of the murdered enemies pour over her like a shower; with a combined beauty and bewitching mystery, it made me aware of how frightening she is.
While screaming her war cry, Asue-chan's War-Pick smashed the earth.
The ground split open and swallowed the enemies that failed to escape, one after another. The risen earth wall also deprived the rest of the enemy of their escape route.
Because most of her attacks left significant openings for our enemy, they coordinated their timing and began to attack; but their steel swords were not enough to cause even a scratch to Asue-chan, who’s a Half-earth Lord with an unusually high defensive power.
Normal attacks were pretty much useless against her.
After seeing that, there were some enemies that tried to use arts; however, the slight gap before the arts were activated became a target. Unlike the big moves she used until now, she burst their bodies open with fast attacks, like rock-crus.h.i.+ng fists, kicks, and tackles.
Asue-chan’s cheerful, hearty laughter reverberated throughout the air.
The muddy stream that Supesei-san created with magic washed away the soldiers who were a little further away.
Because it was an attack that seemed to dump humans into a was.h.i.+ng machine filled with metal armor, spears and swords, the fate of these soldiers was miserable.
Ma.s.ses of corpses were produced, and soon our faces showed wry smiles.
Around 30 blood swords that were created by Burasato-san shredded the enemy while brus.h.i.+ng past. They even grew bigger by absorbing the blood.
The blades rotated at high speed and sliced the enemy within its range into small pieces. To make it worse, Burasato-san's red skin was died even redder by the blood she was drenched in. She looked like a Death G.o.d.
This one sided ma.s.s slaughter was a result of continuous fierce daily training that granted the monsters higher specs than ordinary humans.
While I thought about that, I cut down the enemy's numbers using my Halberd that Blacksmith-san had embedded with an elemental stone previously.
About 20 minutes after the attack began, the battle had ended.
The first hit of Vermillion Spear allowed us to surround the area easily, and I used 【Conceal】on everyone so even if there are any survivors none of them saw our real appearance. Because we achieved our goal, well, you know how it is
I sc.r.a.ped together what looked useful, pulled the Vermillion Spear from the ground, then ate the b.l.o.o.d.y meat of our dead enemy.
Because there were so many, I raked them together with some thread and used 【Improved Digestion】, 【Vampiric Exploitation】 and 【Metamorphosis】to efficiently devour them whole.
【Ability 【Crosswind】 learned】
【Ability 【Wind Storm】 learned】
【Ability 【Regeneration Inhibition】 learned】
【Ability 【Recognition Interference】 learned】
【Ability 【Uppercut】 learned】
【Ability 【Heavy Slash】 learned】
【Ability 【Warrior's Pedigree】 learned】
【Ability 【Knight's Pedigree】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Twinswordsman】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Axeman】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Spearman】 learned】
【Ability 【Survival Instinct】 learned】
【Ability 【Same Race Killing】 learned】
【Ability 【Improved Arm Strength】 learned】
【Ability 【Hawkeye】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Berserker】 learned】
【Ability 【Chicken Heart (Ways of the Coward)】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Grappler】 learned】
【Ability 【All Martial Arts Proficiency】 learned】
【Ability 【Hishōzan (Flying Slash)】 learned】
【Ability 【Kogetsusen (Iai)】 learned】
【Ability 【Chiyari Hyakka (Hundred Petals of A Thousand Spear)】 learned】
【Ability 【Rush】 learned】
【Ability 【Heavy Axe Strike】 learned】
【Ability 【Create Trap】 learned】
Then I proceeded to eat today's main dish, Eisen.
It would have been fine to leave the armor and spear, but this time I decided to eat those too.
【Ability 【Grand Cross】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Kensei (Sword Saint)】 learned】
【Ability 【Job-Dragonslayer】 learned】
【Ability 【Dragonscale Formation】 learned】
【Ability 【Cursed Wounds】 learned】
Our hunting went satisfactorily, we returned home with pleased expressions on our faces.
With a message on the communication device, I was invited by Father Elf.
Because it happened just as I was training with Redhead and Female Knight, I took them along as bodyguards. The rest divided their time training, hunting or studying.
Redhead and I mounted k.u.majiro, Female Knight mounted Kurosaburo and we rode towards the village of the elves.
My plan to visit and I was bringing humans with me were already communicated in advance, particularly nothing problematic happened.
I forced the elves who gave us rude looks, as if they were watching livestock, to turn their gazes away by using 【Intimidating Glare】and taught them the difference in position.
Arriving at Father Elf's mansion, I headed to the room I had been in before. Until Father Elf would arrive, I drank some of the tea that had been prepared for us. Redhead and Female Knight, on the other hand, were looking around curiously, as this was their first time coming here.
Rather than criticizing them, I was collecting and processing the information sent by the clones in far away places.
About 5 minutes later, Father Elf came into the room holding Elf Sake and cups in his hands.
Behind Father Elf was the Elf Maiden-san, whom I saved holding something that looked like snacks for the sake.
He apologized for being late, and offered me a cup for starters.
The sake was poured by Elf Maiden-san.
Of course I drank. I also ate the snacks. It was really delicious.
My mood became very good.
After feeling good for a while, having some chatter and exchanging information, we got down to business.
The topic s.h.i.+fted to the details of next job by the requester Father Elf.
He talked about a.s.saulting the enemy’s main force with an elite corps formed from our combined forces. It seems like he wants to deal with the enemy’s top officers before having their village surrounded.
Well, I guess neither the enemy nor the elves would want to have a drawn out war.
Because there had always been a high tension between the enemy and some foreign countries, it seems they are in a situation where their enemies could take advantage of their war with the elves and invade them at any moment
The elves, who are superior to humans by ability but inferior by far by numbers, already had quite a few casualties. I’m sure they also wanted to have a safe haven where the wounded can recuperate in peace. Besides, the elves have almost nothing to gain from this war in the first place so they wanted to end it quickly.
Well, after all we are mercenary soldiers. We could not ignore our employer’s wishes.
Besides, I was free to do this job how I wanted to, not just that, I would also be paid. Because I would gain a lot, well, this was an opportunity.
I suppose, my greed will lead to my ruin one day.
After we finished what’s important, we returned home.
On our way back, Female Knight asked if I could possibly send the medicine to cure the princess’s illness.
She said that although she already has pledged her allegiance to me, she still wants to deliver at least the drug as her last service as a n.o.blewoman.
Hm, I thought.
Maybe it was a good idea to maintain some ties with the top of the country by indebting them.
Having the country back us or not when something happens could change the situation significantly. Besides, it could also bring about a change in the information we
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