Chapter delayed due to physical injury (not mine).
Anyways, the results of the Best Waifu are still coming in, but it seems Raphtalia is set to take first. Kookie and Atlas are in a close fight for second and third, with Kookie leading at the moment.
Oh, and I just realized that Fohl is the reason for Kiel’s gender ambiguity. This makes me think the author will pair them later.
On a side note, Rafatalia is now Raphtalia. She isn’t fatal anymore (Pun not mine either)
Chapter 194: Dragon Sanctuary
“The problem is…” (Naofumi)
“What is it, Iwatani-dono?” (Female Knight)
“Will Ren go out of his way to target a lone dragon chick?” (Naofumi)
“Isn’t that the entire basis on which this plan is relying?” (Female Knight)
But he seems like the type of person to immediately pick a fight if he knows it’s an opponent he can beat.
Gaelion looks like a child. He’ll probably attack.
As long as Gaelion senses Ren, things will probably go fine.
As long as he pretends not to notice, he can launch a surprise attack.
If that sword is of the curse series, then the sin that would make him attack the lone Gaelion would probably be…
Gluttony… Ren may attack him to sate his desire for EXP.
He seems to like to have a high level, and Solo Players like him generally have such tendencies.
If those feelings of desire were to reach their peak, then he would definitely attack any lone enemy.
Another possibility is Greed… The fact that he’s become a bandit leader, and is collecting treasure may come from his desire for wealth.
I want to say that I have a monopoly on Greed, but I never unlocked that series.
It may be that each weapon has a different curse it can unlock.
Last is perhaps pride.
People who believe that level is everything, and look down on those of low level are common in Net Games.
Perhaps his lone wolf-like attitude is actually a form of conceit.
No, that’s probably Itsuki.
There’s also a possibility it’s of the older variant.
The 7 deadly sins have changed over the years. There were original 8.
Gluttony, Lust, Greed, Dejection, Wrath, Sloth, Ostentation, and Pride.
(TL: Ostentation is pretty much showing off. This list is from Evagrius Ponticus’ Logismoi (A.D. 4th Century). The version listed in the bible is once again a different one (Proverbs 6:16-19).)
Envy wasn’t present, and Dejection and Ostentation were in its place.
Eventually, Dejection was fused with Sloth, and Ostentation with Pride. Additionally, Envy was tacked on.
If it’s the old version, then Ostentation, devoting yourself to showing off your possessions to others, is possible.
In Online Games, strength is merely an illusion, but an individual’s attachment to such strength may be considered as such.
Of course, one can also gain true experiences and strengths through games as well.
In my former world, it was possible to find work with online connections. I had an online friend who asked me whether I wanted to work for them when I graduated college.
I had met him before in real life as well.
I’m not sure his true intentions, but he said something like, ‘Your upfront personality and Guild master Charisma are wanted in this company.’
Now that I think about it, perhaps he was merely praising me to make me work harder down the line.
But from Ren’s personality and relationships (lack thereof), it doesn’t seem likely that he’s had such an experience.
I can imagine him being a lone player going around and showing off the rare items he got off of a boss.
It’s not like he was the strongest, so having him brag over every little thing would just get annoying. As I guild master, that’s my opinion.
But there are plenty who find joy in doing as such, and that’s one of the very reasons for the profitability of the Net Game Industry.
Perhaps Ostentation is the one that fits Ren best. But Itsuki fits it as well.
The activation requirements for the Curse Series are still a mystery.
Perhaps it’s an explosion of emotions equivalent to the destruction of one’s heart?
But… If I don’t discover the specific triggers, I may be in trouble.
Greed is especially dangerous.
This is something I can understand well.
I have learned to control my Wrath, and I have companions to help me.
But Greed would make one covet wealth, right?
When I think of the pile of treasure behind me, a dark desire stirs in my heart.
And an unquenchable desire at that.
… I get the feeling that if I keep thinking about it, my mind will get corroded, so I switch my train of thought.
Anyways, the Curses that Ren is likely to have are Gluttony, Greed, Pride, and Ostentation.
Based on this, he will probably attack the lone Gaelion, as all of these sins deal with the gathering of EXP.
The problem is that he assaulted me, the Hero of the Shield.
Even if he beats me, I don’t think he’ll get much EXP.
And there are way too many risks involved in killing humans in this country.
“Ah, that’s right.” (Naofumi)
I approach the bandits we tied up.
“When your leader fought, did anyone die?” (Naofumi)
“No, there were no deaths. He knocked them unconscious without dealing the finishing blow, and left them in the middle of a field after stripping them of their equipment.” (Bandit)
“I see…” (Naofumi)
So he still has the conscience not to commit murder. Even though he tried to assassinate me from behind.
Perhaps he was thinking rationally, and first tried to weaken me, the one with the strongest defense.
From that train of thought, Gluttony is out.
The other possibilities are…
“Iwatani-dono!” (Female Knight)
My thoughts are interrupted as Female Knight calls out to me.
“What’s up?” (Naofumi)
“That!” (Female Knight)
Female Knight points outside the cave to the spout of fire streaming above the forest.
“So you found him?” (Naofumi)
That’s probably Gaelion’s signal.
I thought this would take a few days, but it seems Ren’s still close by.
… Transfer Sword has probably finished cooling down.
Even with the Curse Series eroding his mind, he’s thinking quite well.
He hasn’t lost his rationality.
“The problem is… we can’t help until the preparations are done.” (Naofumi)
“Yeah.” (Female Knight)
The idea Gaelion suggested required some time to set up.
If we approach before that, then Ren will simply run away.
“Hey, can you use any concealment magic?” (Naofumi)
“I’m not Raphtalia. I never learned how to do it.” (Female Knight)
“I see…” (Naofumi)
I thought we could Use Ren’s strategy and sneak up on him to unleash a powerful attack while he was distracted with Gaelion.
I never thought Raphtalia’s absence would be this irritating.
Taniko is skilled at some magics, but I don’t think she has any concealment magics.
… Wait, we have Rishia.
She’a a jack of all trades. She may have something.
I exit the cave, and approach Taniko and Rishia. Both of them look troubled.
“W-what is it?” (Rishia)
“Can you use any concealment magics?” (Naofumi)
“I know some low level ones…” (Rishia)
“What sort of effects do they have?” (Naofumi)
“Um, the range is me, and one other person. The time limit is one minute.” (Rishia)
That’s surprisingly low.
Even when she just knew the basics, Raphtalia was able to hide for quite some time.
“So it’s a different magic from Raphtalia?” (Naofumi)
“Raphtalia-san’s magic affinity is different, so…” (Rishia)
It seems that Tanukis specialize in light and dark magic.
Even though it’s a low rank, I guess it’s amazing that Rishia even knows it.
On top of Hengen Musou, she can use almost all types of magic.
I guess it’s fine.
“Then Me and Rishia will approach Ren and Gaelion to observe the situation. If the plan succeeds, I’ll call you so be prepared to come over.” (Naofumi)
“Understood.” (Female Knight)
“Will Gaelion be alright?” (Taniko)
Taniko looks worried.
“Yeah, he’ll be fine.” (Naofumi)
Though he lost once, the current Gaelion is several times stronger than the other one, at least according to the older one.
I don’t think he’ll lose too easily.
It will be troublesome if Taniko rushes over in worry.
“Then, let’s go Rishia.” (Naofumi)
“Be prepared to come to our aide.” (Naofumi)
“I shall also assist.” (Atlas)
“Got it.” (Naofumi)
I leave Atlas, Female Knight and Taniko, and depart with Rishia to observe Gaelion’s battle.
We reach what I think is just beyond the edge of Ren’s perception.
Keeping as low a profile as possible, we watch from the trees.
“Tei! Derya!” (Ren) (TL: Sound of putting effort into swinging a bladed object)
Ren and Gaelion are locked in a bout of fierce combat.
Gaelion is in his giant form. He avoids Ren’s attacks as he fires his breath. He’s putting up a good fight.
Ren is moving at quite a fast pace. His style probably relies mostly on speed.
Since I’m in charge of defense, I also focus on speed, and physical ability is a must. But people don’t seem to understand this.
Ah, I started complaining.
Well, if they can get past the shield, then there’s no real point.
Anyways, if we get any closer, Ren will probably notice us.
「Hide… Sword!」 (Ren)
Ren instantly disappears.
“Fool… Did you think such weak abilities would make me lose track of thee!?” (Gaelion)
Gaelion shouts out as he swings his tail at the area to his right which appeared to be empty space.
If I strain my eyes, I can see dust clouds rising as he steps.
There is also a trail of broken grass. Even from here, I can get an idea of his location.
It seems that Gaelion can sense him fully.
“Fueee… Gaelion-chan is speaking.” (Rishia)
“Ah, so Rishia didn’t know either.” (Naofumi)
I didn’t really tell anybody. And of course I keep it hidden in front of Taniko.
Raphtalia probably doesn’t know for the same reasons. I wonder how surprised she’ll be.
「Flashing Sword!」 (Ren)
“That again!? You really don’t learn!” (Gaelion)
Gaelion uses his claws to hide his face as Ren uses his skill.
The area is illuminated for a moment.
“You keep using small, superficial skills… What are you trying to accomplish?” (Gaelion)
「… Rakshasa Meteor Sword!」 (Ren)
Gaeloin twists his body to avoid the black projectiles coming out of the sword.
He’s putting up a really good fight.
Will he just win like this?
No, Ren will run when he is at a disadvantage. There must be a reason why he hasn’t run yet.
Gaelion unleashes his breath attack on Ren.
At that point, I clench my fist, thinking it was Gaelion’s victory.
But I was naïve.
Ren knocks away the Breath with his hand.
So an attack of that caliber isn’t going to do it.
Should I really be doing nothing and watching?
If I get closer, I’ll get in Gaelion’s way, and I may miss a chance.
Thinking back, it was quite good luck to have encountered him so quickly anyways.
If we let this opportunity get away, Ren probably won’t approach us carelessly again.
『I, Gaelion now order the heavens and the earth. Cut and fasten the knot of reason- 』 (Gaelion)
While battling, Gaelion continuously chants magic incantations.
『The Creation of my territory, the reason of my existence-』 (Gaelion)
It seems he’s building up quite a spell.
Ren seems oblivious to this, as he continues to unleash his skills.
The previous Ren would have noticed by now… So the Curse Series does deplete one’s wisdom.
If he were a simple wild dragon with no fragment, I guess Gaelion would have fallen by now.
I don’t know what sort of expression he has under his mask, but I think Ren’s getting impatient.
Using his game knowledge, he must be thinking something like, ‘This species of dragon shouldn’t be anywhere near this tough.’
“… Hey, Rishia.” (Naofumi)
“What is it?” (Rishia)
“When you look at the Hero of the Sword’s stance, does anything come to mind?” (Naofumi)
“Let’s see… Is it some sort of style? His footwork is strange.” (Rishia)
Is it something from Kendo? He’s using a shuffling movement, and I think I can see the Jodan Stance.
(TL: one of the stances of Kendo, I’m not really that familiar. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J%C5%8Ddan-no-kamae)
But am I imagining it? Something’s strange.
Recently, I’ve been sparring with Atlas and the castle soldiers so I can tell.
In a real battle, Kendo isn’t all that useful.
Of course, I can’t really tell you its shortcomings, but Ren’s swordsmanship and footwork seems a bit awkward.
He probably learned a bit of Kendo, and mixed in his own style.
Based on his age, he probably didn’t get that far in it, and he spent a lot of time on VRMMOs, so he probably didn’t devote too much time on it.
And so, after seeing masters such as Granny and Female Knight, his style seems a bit sloppy.
I look at Ren’s movements.
His strokes are full of confidence, but he isn’t putting his back into it, and he’s swinging his blade quite recklessly.
He’s relying on the abilities of the sword, and not displaying much of his own skill…
“Um, Female Knight-san can fight with much more elegance.” (Rishia) (TL: Nicknames are spreading)
Female Knight’s straightforward personality can be seen in her blade, and she has no wasted movement.
I’ve seen her and Raphtalia cross blades before during training, so Ren’s swordsmanship looks childish.
Gaelion seems to have gotten a sense for it, and none of Ren’s attacks are hitting.
But I guess there’s no helping it.
Even if he’s a hero here, he was originally a civilian from peaceful Japan.
In this uncivilized world, Ren would have his share of troubles.
『And here, I proclaim the creation of my sanctuary. The dominion of a Dragon.』 (Gaelion)
“It seems it will be over soon. Rishia, let’s get closer.” (Naofumi)
“Ah, yes!” (Rishia)
“I, who has understood the source of power commands. Let the truth once again be read forth and manifested. Hide our form from the world.” (Rishia)
「Faust Hiding!」 (Rishia)
The magic calls forth a rain of leaves that wash over us, and cause us to become invisible.
The time limit was one minute, right?
We start running forward as soon as the magic finishes.
… As we’re running, I can see that we occasionally become semi-visible.
It seems that the quality is lower in comparison to Raphtalia’s.
Damn. Ren noticed us.
“Too Late! 「Dragon Sanctuary!」” (Gaelion)
With Gaelion’s magic, a barrier like field is deployed around the area.
What is it specifically? I think as I look at it. Suddenly, I feel a light jolt on my skin. I get the feeling that something intangible just passed through my body.
「- Sword!」 (Ren)
Ren shouts out.
Ren’s words are colored with surprise.
Gaelion had used his experiences ‘til now… As a Wrath Dragon and an Emperor. He managed to make a skill that blocked off the use of teleportation.
“The game of tag ends here, Ren.” (Naofumi)