In Makoku, there were people known as the Thirteen Steps.
They were all first-rate magicians, who accepted secret orders from the Makoku king, and then unleashed their power.
The Thirteen Steps were like a symbol of the country. You could say they were its most powerful sword and shield.
Unlike the Shadows of Ryukoku, their existence was not a secret.
Sixth Step Luknos wiped at the sweat that seemed to pour from his face.
He was at the Royal Palace of Ryukoku. This was enemy territory.
The corpses of palace soldiers were piled at his feet.
“I cleaned the area behind us of enemies.”
Said Ninth Step Imelda as she walked up to him.
“Now there is no chance of us being ambushed from the back.”
“It will be fine.”
“Good. Let’s go.”
Luknos and Imelda had not been invited here by Ryukoku.
They had invaded the palace with many of their subordinates.
The palace guards were quick to discover them. And two great battles had been fought already.
“It seems that the next area will be crawling with soldiers.”
“Should we go around then?”
“They may be expecting us to. Besides, I’m worried about the others. It will help them if all the soldiers gather towards us. Let’s keep going.”
“I don’t know if it’s necessary for us to become bait.”
“Well, we should be able to manage them. So, we might as well. You still have more power, don’t you?”
Luknos was in his mid-thirties, and he was near invincible when it came to fighting against human opponents.
Not only that, but he did more damage the larger the number of enemies.
“Don’t think that you can avoid my ‘Thunder Chain.’”
A single long staff was in Luknos’s hand.
And with just one swing, numerous bolts of lightning crashed.
They hit the wave of oncoming soldiers and then spread to the next person.
It was as if they were connected by a chain. One after another, the soldiers were electrocuted and fell to the ground.
White fumes could be seen rising from the cracks in their armor.
“Let’s keep going.”
The soldiers were still breathing.
But Lukros could not waste time dealing the final blow. And they continued onward.
“You put detection barriers over all of the queen’s escape routes, didn’t you? Have any been activated?”
“Not yet. As they are quite elaborate, I expect them to just go through without disarming them.”
“In that case, she is still in the palace. I don’t know if the queen of this country is courageous or just stupid.”
“Perhaps she is confident. We are few in number. She might have hope… Please leave them to me.”
More soldiers started to storm down the passage.
Imelda pulled out a large cloth from her back and threw it at the soldiers.
The cloth started to move as if it was alive, and then it enveloped the soldiers.
And then, the once soft fabric suddenly turned hard.
“There. They are done.”
“‘Big Cloth’ sure is useful in narrow passages.”
Imelda was a woman in her late twenties.
She was one of the youngest of the Thirteen Steps, and had no previous experience in invading enemy territory.
She didn’t even have that much experience in combat. However, Imelda’s magic was deemed an advantage for this attack, and she had been chosen as Luknos’s partner.
Imelda was desperate to meet their expectations and would do anything to ensure that the mission was a success.