Lyle Walt Stands
After blowing up Guild headquarters, I headed to the plaza. It was filled not only by the alliance and Cartaffs’ soldiers cooperating, but by Beim’s soldiers and residents as well.
A cloudy sky. Before the people who gathered so early in the morning, I declared.
“Ladies, gentlemen, you’ve now experienced war first hand. How did that go for you?”
On my riling words, there was some who gained malice alongside the building clamor. I could sense their indicators change from yellow to red with the Sixth’s Skill as I continued talking.
“Oh, are you angry? When you were all fighting without the slightest intent to win, I was completely convinced you were just waiting to get trampled down.”
Aria and Miranda acting as my guards nearby sent looks at me. I’m sure they were thinking of how unbearable it would be if a riot broke out here. It’s true, it would be easy to make an ally of Beim by appealing to safety, justice, and misfortune.
What poor people. No one could have predicted something like this. Next time we’ll be there to help you out… wonderful. It was so easy it made me want to laugh.
But that would be troublesome. Currently, my standing was one where I was simply borrowing soldiers… from the Alliance, and Cartaffs, Djanpear and Faunbeux. Especially from the eyes of Zayin and Lorphys of the alliance, alongside the former people of Selva, Beim was nothing but pure villainy.
The peoples’ dissatisfactions spread, and they directed hostility at me. How wonderful.
“Coming back at this point! You’re too late!”
“give them back! My family… my house… give them back!”
“There are children here whose parents have been killed!”
Hearing the voices of Beim’s residents, I scoffed.
“And so? When you’ve used these means all you wanted to harvest money from foreign lands, this is what you say when you’re on the receiving end? What a self-centered lot. I see, so you don’t need my help. Then we’re leaving. Let Bahnseim trample you down with dignity. I think killing yourselves before you’re toyed to death is a valid option. Good grief, when I came to help out, it was all for naught.”
When I said that, I heard some incoherent words from the townspeople.
“Y-you’re running away!?”
“To hell with hero! You fraud!”
How terrible. Any decent person would be thinking how words weren’t getting through to them. But the Third offered some advice from the Jewel.
『Well, that’s just how it is. They can’t think level-headedly in this sort of situation. They aren’t actually thinking rationally about the words coming out of their mouths.』
Atop the temporary stage set up in the plaza, I called Thelma-san over. On the appearance of the former Holy Maiden, the surrounding rabble quieted down a bit.
When I directed her a smile, she nodded. I never intended to bring her along, but this was truly a nice play by me. As I thought, I’m a man who’s got it.
Spreading out her arms, Thelma-san addressed the residents of Beim.
“People of Beim. In this war… it truly is a terrible situation. My country of Zayin has heeded Lyle-dono’s words, and dispatched soldiers. Even among the soldiers gathered here today are some hailing from Zayin. But the moment Zayin’s dispatch was decided, many soldiers showed their disapproval. For many years, they were tormented by the mercenaries sent by Beim. To stand a fair chance, we had to pay money to hire them, and by the enemy countries that employed them, our villages were attacked, our families killed, and our lands pillaged. That we sent aid to Beim even so was because of the words of our country’s savior, Lyle-dono.”
I heard some objecting voices from the surrounding residents, but their voices were fewer than when I was up there. The armed soldiers of Zayin glared at Beim’s inhabitants.
“… The reason we came into Beim is because the brains- the merchants and the Guild’s top executives- have fled by ship. If they had not, we wouldn’t have even been able to come running to the city’s aid. The one who called us to action was Lyle-dono.”
As expected, when a beautiful woman was persuading them, there were less objections. Around the time it went quiet, I decided to rotate into my address. Rather than the talk’s contents, I wanted to get a beat in.
“… Listen well. Abandoned gentlemen. Will you drive me out, and be trampled by Bahnseim? Or otherwise… will you follow my words, and hand Beim to me? Give Beim’s everything to me. If you do, I shall grant you all the grace of victory. I will drive Bahnseim out, and breathe life back into Beim. Now choose to me as your king, or prepare for your deaths here! I’ll just say it, but just pushing back Bahnseim once or twice, looking to the country’s national power, it’s more than possible for them to send a force of equal scale again.”
It was possible, but I didn’t say they would do it. At the very least, it would require a few years, but I didn’t have the mind to grant them that time.
“Or will you take back your merchant’s law, and put those that run away at the top? Will you leave defense to adventurers, and lose once more to be trampled? … Let it be known. I shall not abandon my people. If you’re to obey me, then get on your knees!”
As I put in my gestures, Eva activated her Skill 【Allmind Language】 from behind… it was a certain sort of Skill similar to brainwashing. To Eva who wanted her songs heard, it was a Skill that could be called the strongest. What it called for was a voice to be brought across in a way the listener could understand.
It brushed away the wall of language, among various other things, and made words resound with the heart. To a singer, there wasn’t a Skill to be found as convenient as this.
Eva had hesitated to use it, but having the current me’s voice delivered was our first priority. Nothing would start if they didn’t listen to me.
As always, the shills got on their knees. I had a considerable number of shills mixed in, and as they kneeled one after the next, their number increased. Eventually, only a few hundred were left standing in confusion.
“A-are you lot sane!? Beim is the independent city of merchants! You’ll silently let it be played by that brat!?”
“He’s a man of the very same Bahnseim that’s invading us now!”
“That guy’s sister is the Bahnseim’s Queen-to-be!”
As I thought, even if I used Skill and shill, there were people who resisted. But a majority had decided to follow me.
I spread out my arms, and wrung out my voice.
“Very well. From this day forth, Beim belongs to me. Gentlemen, this is the tale of a hero. For you shall be following the marvelous me! Fwahahaha!”
Ah, being watched by tens of thousands of people, I raised a loud laugh as I thought.
Of how wonderful it felt.
… The knight leading Bahnseimian soldiers of reorganized unit and changed weaponry stared at the scene before his eyes as he cried out.
“What the hell is this!? Why are you all… this is the opposite, is it not!!?”
The occupied road was of a moderate width.
Thinking field battle equipment would make it difficult to fight in the city, they had abandoned the long spears they had held up to now for their invasion.
As they couldn’t establish movements for too large a force, they were moving in smaller numbers. It was in order to combat adventurers. But what stood before the soldiers of Bahnseim was a fully armored cavalry.
Holding shield and sword, they commenced their attack on the confined street.
The knight fired magic, but it was easily defended against by the Magic Shield deployed by the cavalry. Having a Magic Shield out was a fundamental tactic for cavalry, even in Bahnseim. But they couldn’t believe the scene of Beim actualizing it.
And seeing their assault, from the knight’s eyes, they had to be considerably trained.
“You’re all, soldiers of Beim, and…”
In the confined road… the unit of Bahnseim run down by the cavalry suffered serious damages…
“So they blocked up the smaller roads, and removed the rubble on the major ones. Not bad.”
From atop a building, I watched the charge of the cavalry headed by Aria in admiration.
Surrounded by Monica, Valkyrie Units One and Two, and Three who met up with us, I confirmed the surrounding roof-top situation with Miranda.
In green armor, Miranda removed her helmet, and shrugged her shoulders.
“It’s something Aria thought up. She’s capable when she’s up to it, so I’d have preferred she got up to it sooner.”
She was fed up, but she seemed a bit relieved as well. In other places as well, reinforcements arrived one after the next, and now that the difference in numbers had been filled in, Bahnseim’s superiority was crumbling.
Miranda stroked her hair.
“So what are we going to do next?”
I showed a fearless smile. I’m sure it fit me too well.
“We’ll turn Bahnseim’s army back from the urban areas, and then breach them head-on. This is the important battle of my war declaration against Celes. I can’t think of any other way.”
Miranda let out a sigh.
“Hah… playing fair and square at this point, even if you say head-on… from the enemy’s point of view, they’d definitely object.”
I flipped my hair.
“That isn’t my fault. I went out of my way to circle around to Bahnseim’s front lines. It’s their fault for splitting their forces in two. I’m not at fault.”
The Seventh in the Jewel agreed with me. As expected of my grandfather.
『That’s right. While we devised it to go that way, the ones who handed down the decision were, in the end, Bahnseim’s side. Yes! The ones at fault are Bahnseim’s generals!』
I pulled the Katana hung at my waist. Miranda traced the line of my eyes. I spoke to our guests.
“So you formed a unit centered around Bahnseim’s remaining elites. It isn’t bad, but because of that, your other units are going to have it rough.”
Before our eyes, were fullplated knights.
We were standing somewhere conspicuous, so they had spotted us. One of the knights spoke.
“The knight in green armor… there’s a blue one there too, but he doesn’t matter. We’ll be the ones to kill you!”
Those were likely Magic Tools. Their equipment was centered on Magic Tools, and they came at us with their specialized weapons. Miranda upt on her helmet, and waved her left hands.
Wires came out of her fingertips. Those sticky threads… failed to capture the knights.
“You think that’s enough!?”
One of the knight’s armors blazed up, burning away the wires as he attacked. Was that the specs of his magic tools, or perhaps a Skill?
“Interesting. Then I’ll…”
When I took a step forward, a knight wielding a large sword attacked from my left. Valkyrie caught the attack with her wing-like binder.
“I won’t let you.”
Easily taking the attacks of that knight, who boasted both speed and power, Valkyrie Unit One pulled her own sword from her binder. She sent the enemy knight back sliding back, while Units Two and Three took their weapons on hand as well.
“Hmph, looks like there’s no need for me to step in.”
She shook her head as she watched the fighting Valkyries.
Miranda let wires out of the fingertips on both her hands.
“【Wire Frame】… Can you burn through this one?”
Towards the knight who’d burned through her threads, Miranda wound up her wires, and shot a weapon made of them. The dagger pierce through the blazing armor, and Miranda went right into tugging the wire attached to the dagger, slamming the knight at a building.
Everyone was doing their best, so I reluctantly returned the Katana to its scabbard, gripping the Jewel.
“There’s no helping it. I’ll have to announce myself.”
As I changed the Jewel in my left hand to the shape of a bow, unlike before, it’s silver limbs… sprouted ornaments. The portion I gripped had an ornament like the head of a hawk, and it had become a weapon worthy of the hunter, the Second.
Monica looked at it.
“Its shape has changed from the last time.”
“Isn’t it cool?”
Saying that, I pulled its string, forming multiple arrows of light. It’s form was different than it had been. As I let the arrows loose on the knights coming at me, the arrows spin as they made their way forth.
When the supposed leader said that, the knights began moving separately. Perhaps they had determined the arrows of light to be dangerous, but…
“Too bad. These ones are special.”
The pursuing arrows followed the knights without losing momentum. Piercing through them, one of them even blew through a different building.
For the knight who sacrificed his arm to somehow block it, the arrow of light pierced through, and exploded.
The leader man ran up to me. Perhaps he had a similar Skill to Aria, as he was able to shorten the distance in an instant to lower his sword at me.
I swung the bow in my hand. The ornaments on both its limbs were sharp, making it capable of cutting foes. It cut through his armor into his body, and the silver weapon began absorbing his Mana away.
Monica looked at my fighting style.
“Your output’s risen even further. Looks easy to use.”
I leaned the silver bow against my shoulder, looking around.
“Looks like we’re done. Now then, let’s get about collecting their magic tools. I can’t use them, but granting them to the ones who perform well may be nice.”
Miranda looked at me.
“Thinking you’re irrelevant to Magic Tools, you’re quite out of the norm yourself, Lyle.”
I spoke to her.
“Let me tell you something. It’s all about mastering the Skills themselves. Even if you keep a number of Magic Tools on you, there’s no point at all if you can’t master them. And you see… as expected, they still fall short of Skillholders who’ve reached their third stage Skills.”
Right. The strong point of Magic Tools was that they could grant Skills to anyone, but there were very few people capable of using Magic Tools with powerful Skills engraved onto them.
Like a me of times past, it was often the case their weapon would suck away most of their Mana, and render them useless.
“Well, it’s also the case that I’m simply too strong.”
There, Miranda removed her helmet, and stared intently at me.
“And we’re weak, you mean to say?”
I looked at Miranda, reverting the silver bow to its Jewel shape, and rehanging it around my neck.
“Don’t be stupid. I became strong because I wanted to protect all of you, didn’t I? Just let it slide as a boy’s bluff of courage. I love you, Miranda.”
Monica and the Valkyries whistled.
“When he opens his mouth, he pledges his love. Good grief, the chicken dickwad’s quite the smooth one. Please say it to me too. I’ll record it in the highest possible resolution and bitrate. I’ll replay it for eternity, while bragging to my younger sisters all the way. Now! Pledge your love to me!”
I wouldn’t mind saying it, but teasing a girl who wanted it was a fun thing to do. I turned to Monica.
“Don’t be foolish, you’re making me blush. You should be able to tell even if I don’t say it. Now let’s return to our jobs.”
“I see you’re having fun playing with my feelings! This Monica has already told you she enjoys it this way as well! It’s a reward, please rile me more!”
“You sure are cute. Okay, once this is over, I’ll give you a lap pillow. How about you, Miranda? I had quite a few takers inside the ship.”
Miranda looked a little troubled. And staring at me…
“… I’ll be asking you for it when you get your sanity back.”
I raised a laugh.
“Come anytime. It’s my duty to accept all of your love. My love is great enough to envelop the world!”
Monica and the Valkyries started clapping as I broke into a grand laugh on the spot.