To Protect the Village
I landed a short distance away from the entrance of the village. Then I put Felz down onto the snowy ground and raised my index finger to my mouth. He looked at me with a puzzled expression.
“You bloody idiot…”
I frantically covered his mouth and we hid behind some bushes that were covered in snow.
“Be quiet…! There are goblins…”
I finally managed to calm him down. Yes, goblins had entered the village. No one had remained here to protect it. Still, I hadn’t detected any in the area on my way to the Imperial Capital, so I thought it would be fine. But now there were more than a few goblins in the area surrounding the village.
That being said, I could still take care of them in a few minutes. However, Felz was here as well. I couldn’t exactly carry him and fight. That’s why I had wanted to put him down here and go in to fight alone…
“I’m going to go take care of this. You stay right here. Got it?”
“I can protect the village…”
His eyes were fixed on the village up ahead. Something was strange…
“I can do it!”
Before I knew it, he had suddenly run ahead He unsheathed his sword as he ran, and I could see that he was unstable. I frantically used Legs of the God Wolf to launch myself into the air and come up to him from behind. Then I tackled him into the snow. He struggled wildly in the snow, and so I threw the Snow Arachne cape over him. I pulled down my own hood and ducked low.
I could tell through using Presence Detection that the goblins had noticed us.
There were about ten in all. Still, things could get bad if they managed to surround us.
They were now close enough to see, and so I slowly raised my head. There was a goblin holding a sword, a goblin holding an axe, and a goblin holding a bow. They were all wearing armor, but aside from the first three, the others were wielding thick tree branches or other makeshift weapons. They looked pretty pathetic, and judging by their armor, they appeared to have come from the abandoned city. They must have gone through one of the other exits then. Adlus’s men would have known if they had come out of the tree hollow.
“Hey, Felz. What are you trying to do…?”
I whispered to him. He was still trying to make a run for it.
“You can’t even swing a sword properly. You’ll just die if you charge into them. I understand that you want to protect your village, but to do that, you need power. Understand?”
“Ggg… But, I’m my father’s…I’m the chief’s son… So it’s my duty…”
Now that was a surprise. Felz was the chief’s son.
“He died protecting the villagers… Now my brother is protecting them in the Imperial Capital. That’s why I have to go and protect the village…”
The chief had been quite young. I see. So he was Felz’s older brother.
“I’m very sorry about your father. There are some things that you can’t do anything about.”
“And if there are people around you who are offering help during such times, you should accept it. Do you understand?”
“My father…there was no one to help him. Everyone was desperate. My brother…we’re all helping each other now. And the military is helping us.”
“Exactly. Now, what about you? Who will help you?”
He slowly raised his head. There were tears in his eyes.
“Help me… Mister Asagi…!”
“Leave it to me!”
Before the tears fell, I wiped them away and turned them into ice. He looked at me in surprise, and I smiled.
“Wait here. I’ll clean this up in a minute.”
The goblins had lost interest and were turning away. Perfect. And so I got up and covered Felz with the Snow Arachne cape.
Then I ran. Once I was sure that there was enough distance between me and Felz, I activated Legs of the God Wolf. Then I stepped on air with my stretched out left foot and boosted the speed of the wind while charging into the group of goblins.
The Velnoir slammed into the archer, severing him in half. Then I pulled back and caught the closest goblin’s sword with the sword breaker.
The axe-wielder swung down at me, and so I pulled back, dodging the attack and then kicked him dead with a foot that was boosted by Legs of the God Wolf. At the same time, platinum wind blades were launched into the air and shredded up the group of goblins.
Without pausing for a second, I turned back to the goblin whose sword I had broken, and took off his head.
It was a good thing I had prioritized those who were armed. The goblins that were cut by the wind blades were now moaning on the ground. I walked forward and killed them one by one.
And when the last one was finally pierced by my sword, I sighed in relief.
I wiped the blood off of the blade and sheathed it before turning to Felz with a hand wave. Something white started to move. I knew what it was, because it was mine. Still, the camouflaging was pretty impressive… It was like the cape was made of snow.
“Thank you, Mister Asagi.”
“Don’t mention it. Cold isn’t it? Let’s go to the chief’s house.”
As we walked to the village, I told Felz that we had used the houses during the last time we were there. It was a blizzard, so we had no choice… Adlus said they would compensate them for it later.
“It’s because of all of you that our village is safe. No one would dare complain about that.”
“All the same. We’re grateful for it.”
We soon arrived at the chief’s house. The door was frozen shut and covered in snow, so I had to push it away with my foot.
When I opened it, I saw that it was the same as how we left it. A lot of things had been used, but we cleaned up after ourselves, and no one had gotten in since.
Felz took one step in and started to sob. Perhaps this place had reawakened memories of his father’s death. This kind of thing always made me feel awkward.
Not sure of what to do, I tried patting him on the head. This was because it was what I would have wanted when I was in pain.
Then Felz clutched my leg and started to howl loudly. I really didn’t know what to do. All I could to do was pat him gently.
□ □ □ □
Once Felz had calmed down, we moved to the table where Adlus had studied his map, and we sat down facing each other. Then I took out two containers of soup from the hollow bag, that I had bought yesterday.
“Here. Drink this. It’ll warm you up.”
He accepted the soup with a sniffle and slowly brought it to his mouth.
“…I know things are really hard for you now, and I almost feel wrong for saying this, but I have to go. My comrades are camped near the home of the goblins.”
“I have to return to them. This is so we can kill all of the goblins that attacked this village. If we don’t do it now, the Imperial City might be in danger next. Do you understand?”
“I understand. And I’ll be fine on my own.”
He nodded courageously. But he wouldn’t be alone.
“Didn’t I tell you? I’m going to send some Adventurers to come and protect this place.”
“But don’t you need them?”
“I’ll make up for their absence. Don’t worry. After all, I’m an A-Rank Adventurer!”
“I see! That’s amazing!”
He finally understood my greatness. Asagi is pleased.
“I thought you were just the errand boy for the real fighters!”
“Uh, did you not see me laying waste to all those goblins?”
“I didn’t see that.”