Hello people! Here is chapter 9, sorry for the delay, it’s a pretty long chapter and I’ll be having my finals very soon so I’ve been doing some studying, plus the editing was pretty hard to do on this one.
Also, just so you won’t get confused, I changed the “demon beasts” into “magic beasts” so that you won’t confused them with the story’s actual demons.
Anyway, here is chapter 9 of this volume, I hope you’ll enjoy it!
Two days later, in the morning, when the light of the sun finally started appearing in the sky from the east, Kyle and his companions were outside the outer wall which surrounded Archen.
In towns surrounded by a defensive wall like Archen, the main gate would usually be locked from sunset until around sunrise, to stop people from coming and going as they wished. Therefore, the group left Archen a day prior and set camp outside the wall, taking turns and alternating between napping and waiting on standby by the side of the gate while staying in hiding.
【”So, how are we going to tail her? Wouldn’t it be bad if we get too close to her?”】
“Plus the other side’s going to be constantly on the alert, aren’t they?” Said Lize.
【”Mhm, this is where one of my abilities is going to come into play.”】
As she said that, Sildonia’s body turned into particles of light and changed shape.
When the light subsided, an imposing hawk had appeared.
【”Huh? Wha, What just happened?”】
Lize raised her voice in surprise.
【”My actual body is the sword’s jewel, my human body is just something I made from mana. Therefore, it’s no trouble for me to change its shape as I wish.”】
Said Sildonia loudly in her Hawk form, to the three astonished friends.
“On top of that…”As she said that, Sildonia flapped her wings and flew high up in the sky.
A short while later, an aerial view from very high above the ground appeared on the sword’s jewel.
『This way, I can project everything that this body sees.』
The proud voice of Sildonia could be heard from the Jewel.
Urza, Lize and Seran were once again struck with admiration.
【”That’s amazing, depending on how you use it, this can be more useful than having a strong weapon.”】
【”Yes, it’s really convenient.”】
【”I’m so jealous, you can peep on people as much as you want with that.”】
There were some magic tools that could similarly project a distant view, but they could only see fixed locations; being able to project images while in movement and in such detail was out of common sense.
In his previous life, thanks to this ability, Kyle was able to get a very clear understanding of his enemies’ battle formations, which had been a great help. Now that he was able observe the princess and her troupe with this, he could rush to their aid at the ideal timing if anything were to happen to them.
【”Now we can follow them without any problem.”】
【”Yeah, the only problem left now is, just what in the world is that danger that they’re going to face?”】
【”I wanna try to look good when I save her. Then, if things go well…”】
【”Guys, we’re gonna be tailing the princess now so keep it down.”】
Although Kyle gave the three of them a warning because they kept talking, in his mind, he was actually feeling grateful towards them.
Putting Seran aside, but Lize and Urza had both believed in Kyle when he told them “I don’t know why, but apparently the princess is gonna slip out of town early in the morning and is going to end up facing some kind of danger, so let’s go help her”, even though his explanation was really suspicious.
The same applied for Sildonia, even though she was collaborating with him on this, he was still thankful that she came along with him.
Truth be told, Kyle felt like he was too spoiled by Lize and Seran. He was confident that they would both always have his back, no matter how absurd or unreasonable his actions were.
But, conversely, if Lize and Seran were to ever tell him “Please lend me a hand but don’t ask anything.”, he would be more than willing to help them.
He was proud of that relationship of mutual trust.
But for that reason, he was feeling sorry for Urza.
She had no obligation to accompany him, yet she still came along together with the group, despite seeming to be quite sleepy.
(Once we’re done with this, I’ll take her to that famous sweets parlor in the royal capital. )
Said Kyle in his mind, knowing that Urza surprisingly had a sweet tooth. At that moment, Sildonia’s voice came from the sword’s jewel.
『I found the carriage.』
Most of the highways in the human tribes’ areas of the continent had been built in the era of the ancient magic kingdom Zares and had been in use for more than a thousand years.
On the projected image, it was on one of those wide highways that a splendid coach, with the royal family’s crest on it, was riding.
『There are only about ten people escorting the coach. But they’re not the royal guard’s knights from yesterday. Maybe they’re the town’s guards?』
Just like Sildonia had described, the projected image showed around 10 people escorting the carriage, and they seemed to be part of Archen’s town guards.
【”As I thought, the royal guard’s knights really aren’t there huh….”】
Although the town guards had likely received a training fitting for their job, a Hydra would probably be too much for them to handle.
They wouldn’t be a burden but it would still be better to get them to focus entirely on protecting the carriage.
Kyle took out a map and confirmed that this highway was a straight road towards the Sanes villlage.
So far, everything had gone as he expected. All that was left to do now was to immediately rush to the troupe’s aid as soon as the Hydra would appear. While waiting for that time to come, Kyle and the others kept on following the princess while keeping enough distance between them and the carriage in order not to be noticed.
Much later in the day, after the group had covered around half of the distance between Archen and the Sanes village, it happened.
『Oh, something strange happened.』
【”What’s the matter? Did the magic beast finally come out?”】
Kyle asked in curiosity.
『No, that doesn’t seem to be it… The man who was driving the coach suddenly stopped the horses just now and started attacking the surrounding guards.』
【”And you call that just “Strange”?!”】
Kyle also felt the same way, but his body moved faster than his thoughts and he started running at full speed.
He did not take that long to reach the place, but when the coach came into his sight, most of the guards had already been slain.
There seemed to be only a single guard left alive, and even though he showed his intention to surrender, he was still mercilessly stabbed.
There were two men left standing there. One of them looked like a coachman while the other looked like a servant. Both of them were holding swords, and judging from the opened door of the carriage, it seemed like the attendant had come out from inside.
Without a chant, Kyle cast a Haste spell on himself and dashed forward to the coachman, who had his back turned towards him.
He was glad that he had worn a leather armor which did not make noise and did not hinder his movements.
Upon seeing Kyle, the other man tried to warn his companion but he was too slow.
Kyle unsheathed his sword and swung it downward at the coachman’s right arm with which he was holding his weapon.
Since Kyle had used the flat of the sword, the man’s arm was not cut off, but it seemed like his bones were completely broken. With a painful groan, the coachman dropped his sword.
Adding to that, Kyle drove a sharp kick to the side of the man’s abdomen.
The coachman’s body was blown off and started rolling on the ground while raising a cloud of dust. As Kyle thought “Is he finally done rolling?”, the man stopped moving.
Thus, having neutralized the first man, Kyle turned towards the second one.
Although he was shaken by the sudden intruder who had knocked down his companion, the man, who appeared to be a servant, still managed to pull himself together and to turn his sword towards Kyle.
Seran’s voice came from behind. That voice did not have the slightest hint of tension to it.
【”Leave the princess to me!”】
With a thumbs-up, Seran slipped by the side of Kyle and the other man, and ran at full-speed towards the carriage.
In turn, the man tried to chase after him, however…
【”Sorry, that’s not gonna happen, I’m afraid can’t let you go there.”】
As Kyle slashed at him, the man used his sword to receive the attack with a click of his tongue.
【”You two, go with Seran. I’ll join you directly once I’m done with this guy.”】
Said Kyle to the two who came a little after him and Seran, while keeping his eyes on the man in front of him.
Urza was about to say something, but after seeing Lize go directly to the carriage, she hesitated for a short time and then ran towards the same direction.
【”Now then… It’s been a while since I last had a real life-or-death fight, hasn’t it?”】
Although this was a fight against an unexpected opponent, Kyle had a composed and fearless smile as he slashed his sword forward.
After several exchanges of sword blows, the resistance that Kyle was faced with was different than what he had expected.
The opponent’s movements were backed by a proper training, and it was clear that he had experienced many real fights in his life. He was skilled enough to be able to fight to some extent against Kyle.
【”Who are you? Why are you doing this?”】
Asked Kyle, without expecting an answer.
And just like Kyle thought, the man, who appeared to be an attendant, remained silent.
【”That’s princess Milena’s coach. Can I assume that you’re going against the princess? Cause if so, you’ve basically already failed since you’re having so much trouble handling some unexpected intruder like me.”】
Kyle asked that question in order to agitate the man.
However, he man remained silent all the same, yetr Kyle could clearly feel that he was getting impatient.
This man probably wanted to quickly get rid of Kyle and to then dispose of the three remaining people.
But from this exchange of sword blows, it should have become clear to him that this intruder, Kyle, was stronger than he expected, and stronger than him.
As the man wondered whether he should hold his ground or run away, his hesitation was displayed on his face.
Furthermore, Kyle did not overlook that hesitation, and accordingly, he purposely showed a gap in his defense.
Although this was a blatant lure, the man, who was in a hurry, delivered a large and powerful blow in order to bring the combat to its end in one stroke.
Kyle dodged that attack so barely that it grazed his hair.
Having dodged the attack without losing his stance, Kyle slashed his sword at the man, who could not use his sword to defend himself anymore.
The man’s sword wrist flew up while rotating in the air.
As the man reflexively pressed on his wound, Kyle drew even closer to him and made him pass out by hitting his head with the handle of his sword.
He then quickly tied him up with a rope and did some simple first aid to stop his bleeding.
『You’re pretty good at this.』
【”Well, that’s just experience.”】
In the days when Kyle was battling the demons, having to perform first aid on hand injuries like this one had been an everyday occurrence for him.
【”Well then, this much should be enough for now. There are some things I want to ask from these guys.”】
This could have been much more simple if he had simply killed them, but he wanted to capture them alive if possible in order to make them explain this situation.
Just who were these two people and what was their purpose? And what was going on with princess Milenia? Kyle wondered.
When he turned towards the carriage to confirm the state of said princess, Urza came back.
【”Is it over?”】
【”Yeah, but putting that aside, is the princess safe? “】
【”Well, about that, she’s alright, she’s in the carriage right now and she doesn’t have any injuries, however…..”】
At that exact moment, Kyle and Urza heard faint noise that was accompanied by a slight vibration.
Looking at the forest where the sound was coming from, there were birds flying away all at once while trees were falling down.
【”This sound is…”】
『Mhm, your guess is probably right.』
Said Sildonia, with her voice coming from the gem.
Kyle quickly analyzed the current situation and searched for the best course of action to take.
He first thought about escaping from this place, however, if he did that, he would not be able to interrogate the two enemies he had captured, and he would also be abandoning the fallen guards’ bodies.
Besides, the group would probably not be able to run away by running normally, realized Kyle as he kept thinking fast.
More importantly, in order to escape together with the princess, he would have no other choice than to use her carriage, however…
【”Damn, the carriage’s reins have been cut off. It’s gonna take some time to fix them.”】(Seran)
At that instant, Seran’s voice came from the carriage; Kyle didn’t know if he should call that a very good or a very bad timing.
Nevertheless, upon hearing that, he steeled himself and gave an instruction.
【”The three of you, watch the carriage!”】
The priority at the moment was the princess’ safety. If something happened to her, the whole operation would become pointless.
In addition, the assassins might have had other companions who were still aiming for the princess’ life.
【”But, you’re gonna face that thing… by yourself?”】
Perhaps because she knew what was coming from the forest, Urza’s complexion had turned pale.
【”I can do this, trust me, I wouldn’t try if it was impossible. I gave this some serious thought and judged that it was the best course of action. Anyway, I gotta go there, I’m leaving the coach to you.”】
【”…..I’ll believe you, so don’t die.”】
Saying that with a pained expression on her face, Urza headed for the coach.
Kyle looked at Urza’s back with a small smile, and then directed his gaze towards the forest on the side of the highway, where the noise from earlier was gradually becoming louder.
When faced with a Hydra who could mow down trees so easily, even a first rate adventurer would avoid fighting if possible.
As the creatures’ heads swayed from side to side, Kyle could not tell if it had twelve or thirteen of them.
“Turns out the bad feeling I had about this was on point.” He complained, while faced with a hydra that was about as big as his parents’ house in Limaze.
There were several reasons why the hydra was a feared creature.
First, due to its gigantic body, its attacks held an overwhelming destructive power. That was especially true when it attacked using two or more heads, it would be like fighting against multiple opponents who shared the same body. Its toxic breath attack was also quite troublesome.
And because of the protection offered by its hard scales and thick skin, normal attacks would just bounce off of it.
However, all of those things were not really dangerous for Kyle.
No matter how strong or fast it was, it had a mere beast’s intelligence, so its movements were straightforward and easy to read.
Since Kyle could predict the attacks, it was easy for him to dodge them, and given that he was used to fighting by himself against multiple opponents, he was able to manage even when the beast’s heads attacked him simultaneously.
Moreover, although the Hydra’s toxic breath was supposed to be its most dangerous attack, Kyle’s dragon-leather armor almost completely nullified the effects of the toxins.
As for the defensive power of the beast’s scales and skin, that was no issue for him either.
Kyle threw his third “blizzard” magic stone. The blades of ice teared the hydra’s scales apart and the cold penetrated its body.
The Hydra’s movements had clearly slowed down as it shouted in anguish, and made a desperate attack.
While avoiding the attack of the beast’s huge mouth which could swallow a human whole in one bite, Kyle slashed at its head with a battle cry.
Combining both the arm strength of kyle and the sharpness of Sildonia’s sword body, that slash cleanly sliced off the snake head, which was as big as a tree.
This was the fourth head that was cut off so far, while, on the other hand, Kyle only had a few scratches on him; it looked like he was overwhelmingly dominating the battle.
『Mhm, you’re more at an advantage than I expected. I thought this would be a bit more of a close fight.』
Sildonia was impressed.
【”Even I’m surprised. Well, I did some good preparations beforehand, and it seems like my body’s strengthening is progressing better than I thought.”】
He was also using self-strengthening magic, but still, he did not think he would able to fight against a Hydra upfront, this was a happy miscalculation.
【”Still, this is becoming annoying.”】
Before Kyle’s eyes, at the base of the neck that he had sliced off at the very beginning of the battle, there was already a new head swaying from side to side.
Indeed, this was the most troublesome point of Hydras: their vitality and their power of regeneration.
In a short time, a hydra could heal a wound that would be fatal for other magic beasts, it could even regenerate parts of its body after losing them.
【”Seriously, that regeneration is ridiculous.”】
Although Kyle held the advantage in the battle, the outcome had yet to be decided. That was because, in short, he was unable kill the beast.
To defeat a Hydra with such a strong power of regeneration, one would have to kill it instantly, or to keep dealing damage to it continuously in order to prevent its regeneration from catching up.
【”Originally, I wanted Lize and the others to help me here but…”】
Kyle’s original strategy was to attract the beast’s attention from the front while the others would attack it from the back, but given the situation and the fact that there could be other enemies beside the Hydra, the others could not separate themselves from the carriage.
Though he would be able to win anyway as long as he kept on dealing more and more damage, he could not afford to use up too much time since there might have been some other enemies.
Attacking the hydra with the sword certainly did deal some damage to it, but killing it instantly with one blow would be difficult.
As for the magic stones, while they were also effective, they could not kill it instantly either; on the other hand, high-class spells could indeed kill it in a single blow, but Kyle was still not able to use them as of now.
【”I really should have practiced my attack magic a little bit more.”】
Originally, Kyle was not good with attack magic, so he used a magic support system as a weapon instead.
Due to his lacking mana, Kyle could not use anything above upper grade magic back then, so even if he used attack magic in combat, it would not have been really effective against demons. Therefore, in those days, he merely used support magic on himself and fought by using his sword only.
Now that he was not lacking mana anymore, it would be possible for him to use high grade magic, but at present, he already had his hands full with training his body, so he had yet to train his magic.
『It’s no use asking for what you can’t get. It’s important to be able to do what you can with what you have in a fight.』
【”You don’t have to tell me, I already know. Rather, compared to the fights I’ve had so far, I’m pretty well off right now.”】
Saying that, Kyle took out several “explosion” attack magic stones.
【”Well, no matter how strong its vitality is, it will be useless if I strike the root of its heads.”】
Even though a hydra’s power of regeneration was very high, it could not increase the number of heads it had, and its sliced heads could not give birth to a new hydra either.
Kyle’s eyes were looking at the part of the hydra’s body from which its heads grew back.
The hydra itself was likely aware that that part was its weak point, because when Kyle approached it, the beast used one of its snake heads to interpose.
To aim for that part, Kyle would have to slip through all of the beast’s more than ten snake heads.
【”…It’s been a while but I guess I’ll use that.”】
Kyle stepped back and put a great distance between himself and the magic beast. Because its regeneration would be delayed if it moved, the Hydra did not chase after Kyle and concentrated on recovering instead.
Kyle lowered his center of gravity and turned his sword horizontally in order to strike the Hydra with it.
He focused his entire mind on pushing the effect of his acceleration magic to the utmost limit to raise his speed for just an instant.
Since, originally, Kyle was already proficient with support magic, it was possible for him to use it with such detailed adjustments.
Having just finished regenerating its heads, the hydra started running towards Kyle.
Kyle took a deep breath, and with a loud battle cry, he stepped forward using his entire strength.
As he rushed ahead, the highway’s stone paving was crushed underneath his feet. That speed was beyond the reflexes of magic beasts.
Kyle then jumped at the center of the hydra’s body, which was the root of the beast’s more than ten heads, and he stabbed his sword in there.
The dull sound of an impact, that seemed to come from the bottom of the hydra’s abdomen, resounded in the whole area, and the huge beast took several steps back after being pushed behind by a man that weighed one hundred times less than itself. All of its snake heads coughed up blood while shouting in pain.
Kyle had increased his speed to the very limit with his magic, and then had taken advantage of the power of the resulting charge in order to stab the enemy by using his own body’s momentum; this was a simple attack.
But it was that simplicity that made it powerful, so powerful in fact that an enemy at the size of a human being would be reduced into smithereens by it.
However, even when compared to the other magic beasts, the gigantic hydra’s vitality was particularly great, so even this attack was not able to kill it at once.
After moving the planted sword around in order to extend the wound, Kyle instantly pulled it out and then pushed his left hand into the wound as deep as he could.
Once his whole upper arm was inside, one of the snake heads, which had recovered from the shock, rammed him from the side.
Since his arm was still stuck inside the wound, Kyle was not able to dodge as his body was shoved away by the hydra and was sent rolling on the ground.
However, Kyle immediately recovered to his feet. Although this attack would normally have broken many of his bones, it seemed like he only had a few bruises.
【Ouch… I’m glad I bought this armor.”】
Once again impressed by his armor, Kyle put his sword back in its scabbard while his fighting mood left him despite the fact that the enraged and injured Hydra was coming at him.
And then, the moment the hydra’s fangs reached Kyle, it blew up from inside.
【”Nice, everything went well.”】
Kyle clenched his fist in a triumphant pose.
Had he simply hit the hydra with the ‘Explosion’ magic stone, it likely would not have damaged it much due to the beast’s thick skin and hard scales. Therefore, he had forced two of those stones inside the hydra’s body through its wound.
Since the explosion had happened inside of the beast, its defense had been useless. Nearly half of the its body had blown up, and that was enough to kill it.
『You won. Killing a hydra with more than ten heads one-on-one is quite a big deal. By the way, what was that last technique? It was pretty powerful.』
【”I call it ‘Shukushi’.”】(Tln: If you’re interested)
Kyle was the one who had come up with this skill in his previous life. When a certain man, who had come from an island country located across the east sea of this continent and who used a strange curved sword, saw this skill, he had yelled out “Shikushi” out of astonishment; since then, Kyle started calling it that as well.
【”Well, the skill merely gives speed and strength. I need some time to focus before using it, it would not work on a true master or a demon, or rather, on anyone or anything that has some wisdom.”】
Moreover, when this skill wasn’t entirely decisive, it would give the enemy a big opening to exploit, so there were few settings where it could actually be used.
【”But I don’t think I could have used this technique if my body hadn’t come to be able to endure the effects of my magic. Still, I know I’m the one who did all this, but it was pretty brutal, huh.”】
A large amount of flesh, organs and blood was scattered all over by the explosion, it was a terrible sight.
There was also a bloody stench and an odor of burned flesh due to the explosion, making the surrounding smell just as terrible as the view.
【”…They won’t get mad about this, right?”】
Kyle’s face became stiff upon seeing the blood that had stuck on the royal family’s personal coach, and the organs and flesh which had fallen on its roof.
After convincing himself that this had been inevitable, Kyle approached the carriage. Thereupon, he noticed that there were corpses of hellhounds, which were magic beasts that looked like large wolves.
Given that their heads were either crushed or burned, it appeared Lize and the others were the ones who had killed them.
【”So these beasts were attacking at the same time… that’s pretty strange, isn’t it?”】
The magic beasts had their own respective territories, so it was a rare to see different types of them appear at the same time.
Especially since there was a hydra close by at that moment. And given that the creatures that had appeared were just some weak hellhounds, this situation was all the more unlikely to happen.
【”Kyle! Are you okay?”】
Having defeated the hellhounds, Lize and Urza came up to Kyle.
【”You really killed a hydra… that’s amazing.”】
【”That’s natural, a mere Hydra is not worthy of being my opponent.”】
Responded Kyle a little proudly after Urza expressed her surprise towards this unbelievable outcome.
【”But did you really have to go about it this way?”】(Lize)
Said Lize with an unpleased tone, while looking at the disastrous scene in the surroundings.
【”…Yeah, I’m reflecting on that a little bit…”】(Kyle)
【”Also, you smell awfully bad, Kyle.”】(Urza)
Upon smelling the stench that was coming from Kyle due to the hydra’s blood which had covered his body, Urza frowned.
【”Sorry but please don’t come near us until you get that smell off of you.”】(Lize)
Urza and Lize both took a step back away from Kyle with their eyebrows frowned.
Kyle’s shoulders dropped a little as he walked away from the carriage.
『… Disappointed? You wanted a bit more praise than that, didn’t you?』
【”Oh shut up.”】
While feeling slightly dispirited, Kyle took a water container and poured water over his head.