Translator: Silver Editor: Namorax
「Collaborative Scheming」Part 1
Few people would actually visit this room, so I opened the door and invited the person dressed in the familiar gray cloak in.
Even with the cloak, it was easy to identify the person in question thanks to her well endowed chest while she stared down at Chiome feeding Ponta the dried berries.
There was a brief moment of silence between the two before Ariane pulled down her hood and Chiome took off the hat she had been wearing.
Ariane had exposed her dark elven lilac skin and pointy ears, while Chiome had revealed the twitching black cat ears atop her head.
“Chiome-dono, allow me to introduce you to my elven partner Ariane-dono.”
Ariane offered a slight nod before narrowing her eyes and giving me a questioning gaze.
“Ariane-dono this is Chiome from the Blade Heart Clan and she is the informant from Diento that I mentioned before.
“A pleasure to meet you Ariane-dono. I am Chiome of the Blade Heart Clan.”
Chiome lowered Ponta to the floor before standing up and offering Ariane her right hand.
Meanwhile, her black cat ears continued to twitch.
Ariane took the extended hand and gave her own introduction.
“I’m Ariane Glenys Maple. Thank you for providing that information.”
“A warrior from Maple…… I hear that they are the elites of the Canada Forest.”
While shaking hands, Chiome’s blue eyes looked at Ariane in admiration.
The ninjas appear to have attained some information on the elves.
Ariane stared back at the petite ninja girl in surprise.
“Chiome-chan, why are you here? Is there something you’d like to discuss?”
As Ariane placed her hand on her hip, I couldn’t help but compare her well-endured figure to Chiome’s small stature.
Although Chiome looked rather young, her tone and behavior were that of an adult, yet she showed no signs of discomfort after being called “Chiome-chan”.
“Ariane-dono can we hear what you found out before explaining that?”
Although Ariane called for an explanation, the situation with Chiome may change depending on what Ariane found out.
Ariane seemed rather displeased as her brow started to furrow.
“It was no good…… Although I was wearing my cloak downtown, strange men incessantly approached me as I tried to gather information── I couldn’t find anything.”
She looked tired as she let out a loud sigh.
The shrug of her shoulders caused her large chest to instantly become more noticeable.
The conforming cloak over her chest probably attracted the attention of the men like moths to the flame.
When I walked together with Ariane my presence probably acted as an insect repellent since I can’t remember anything like that happenings before.
As I man I couldn’t understand her feelings, so I gave an ambiguous answer.
“I was able to find information on Lanbaltic. As for Barishimon……”
Chiome stepped in front of me and continued the explanation.
“I’ll take it from here……”
Chiome gave the indifferent-looking Ariane a brief summary of what we previously talked about.
Ariane simply closed her eyes and calmly listened.
“I don’t particularly mind.”
Once Chiome was finished, Ariane agreed to take part in the emancipation of the slaves, seemingly without giving it much thought.
Even Chioma was surprised by the quick agreement to the request.
Personally, I wouldn’t have been able to make such a decision without thinking it over a few times.
The People of the Mountains and Plains didn’t even have a treaty with the humans like the elves did, so it wasn’t illegal for human nations to use them as slaves.
Without human rights, they were treated as little more than animals. And it’s pretty much impossible for there to be animal protection laws in this world.
“This is no need to consider Arc separate in this matter. This is what I decided……”
While I had been lost in thought, Ariane spoke in that statement in a calm tone.
She brushed aside a lock of her silver hair and fluttered her long eyelashes as her golden eyes were fixated on me. Her expression was painfully sorrowful.
In response to that statement, Chiome’s ears subtly twitched.
“You should know that I intend to hunt down all those who enslaved my brethren……”
Ariane’s voice quietly resounded in the room, yet it was fraught with anger.
“We are not unwilling to help you. I ask that you just refrain from any overly conspicuous behavior.”
She herself was probably the reason for that last bit, since things would become difficult for the elves if her involvement in this affair became publicly known.
In fact, the high security we faced in Hoban might be even tighter in other territories after what recently had occurred there.
Ariane raised her eyebrow a bit as she thought about something.
“By the way, what kind of operation will we be taking part in any way?”
Groaning now won’t accomplish anything.
She agreed to work with Chiome and the Blade Heart Clan without considering the content of the mission.
Chiome and I looked back and forth between Ariane and each other before I let out a sigh.
“We plan to launch a raid against the largest slave dealer in the capital as a decoy, thus we need a group to act as the bait……”
The overall strategy was rather outstanding.
After all, the raid against the largest slave dealer was a decoy…… however I’m not ready to risk my life on this collaboration……
“Chiome-dono, why the decoy?”
I asked her for more details about the operation in a solemn tone.
Ariane must have been worried about it as well because she simply waited for a response.
“There is a reason for that. The Etsuato company is the largest slave dealership in the capital and has strong connections with the nobility. If the company is raided there’s no doubt that the guards would immediately respond. Worst case scenario, the King’s personal army may get involved.”
“How did you plan to escape with your enslaved brethren under these conditions?”
I nodded along with Ariane’s question.
“It is true that it’ll be difficult. To escape from the Etsuato company with my brethren is no easy feat, but the plan is for my comrades to simultaneously attack four other locations. During the ensuing chaos, we will make our escape.”
“Wouldn’t that mean that some of your brethren would become part of the decoy?”
All of a sudden Ariane’s words carried a shape edge to them
“It’s impossible to save them all. If you told me that I had to sacrifice ten people to save a hundred I’d do just that.”
What I saw in the depths of her blue eyes caused me to tumble a bit.
Even if she was a ninja, she appeared to be a thirteen or fourteen-year-old girl. Yet she thought nothing of carrying out an operation at the expense of her own people.
Even when she faced such a desperate situation, she fought against her circumstances without grieving.
I unintentional placed my hand on her head and began to pat her with enough force to cause her small body to hunch over.
Ponta also rubbed the scruff of her neck against Chiome’s leg in an attempt to cheer her up.
A self-mocking smile slipped from Chiome.
You could say that I was stepping out of bounds── but seeing her smiling face was a sufficient enough reason to do it.
There was no way I could ridicule a group that took what little power they had and became criminals in every human country.
If things with the elves don’t go well, then staying with the People of the Mountains and Plains might not be so bad. Besides, staying with a race of animal-eared people would be Shangri-la for members of a certain subculture.
While I was in the middle of contemplation, Ariane looked at me with a wistful glance.
I somehow know the meaning of that look.
I gave a small nod as I tried to burn the impression of this inn room into my memory.
The pale magic formation appeared at the feet of the everyone currently in the room.
Chiome was surprised at the suddenly appearing magic formation, but in the next moment, our surroundings changed to that of a forest.
We were in the open field that had the large tree in the center of it.
The only thing out of place in this forest was the bed and chair that came along with us.
【Transfer Gate】 had brought along every piece of furniture that was within the formation.
Chiome restlessly looked around and her ear contently twitched about as if she trying to make sense of the situation.
Ariane probably didn’t expect me to invoke the transfer so suddenly because she looked shocked for a moment before letting out a sigh.
Demonstrating 【Transfer Gate】 seemed to be the most effective way of getting her to incorporate it into the strategy.
“Chiome-domo, we’re willing to use this power in the operation.”
“Where……… Where in the world are we?”
Chiome’s mouth was agape after she asked that question.
“We are currently at the base of the Annette mountain range.”
I answered her question while looking around.
“The Annette Mountains…… I thought so. …… Arc-done is able to use spatial-temporal ninjutsu……”
She started to mutter to herself once I answered her.
“Yes, the first clan head was able to instantly cross long distances due to him mastering spatial-temporal ninjutsu. It appears that you too are capable of it Arc-dono.”
What I use was simple transfer magic, not ninjutsu……
I don’t think that the high-level ninja class had spatial-temporal ninjutsu, but I believe that people that came to this world like I did should have a similar transfer skill.
It’s possible that the first head simply called the skill spatial-temporal ninjutsu.
Was that first head guy a ninja otaku?
“Is Chiome your real name?”
I asked Chiome about something that had been on my mind.
“No, the name is one of the six titles handed down throughout the generations to the most skilled members of the clan.”
Chiome proudly puffed out her chest as she answered.
I was right when I thought that her name sounded like the famous kunoichi Mochizuki Chiyome from my former world. It wouldn’t surprise me if references to Sarutobi Sasuke and Kirigakure Saizo were among those six titles.
As I thought about such things, Ariane spoke up.
“Perhaps we should continue this conversation back at the inn?”
I can’t forget that monsters prowled this forest.
While everyone here seemed capable of dealing with the monsters in the area, this wasn’t a place where battle strategies could be calmly thought out.
Bringing the image of the room to the front of my mind I once again invoked the spell.
The magic formation appeared and in an instant everyone and the furniture was returned to the room.
Ponta even knocked on the floor with her forepaw to verify that we had returned.
Chiome looked around the room before nodding in confirmation of the magic’s effect.
“If Arc agrees helping you this time around, you’ll have access to the transfer mag──”
When I cut her off, Ariane gave me a look that said: “What?”.
I simply nudged my head in Chiome’s direction as a response.
After all, she had yet to divulge the date and time for the raid.
“That was magic that Arc-dono used…… If that could be used──”
I was about to turn away from Chiome, who was already in the middle of quietly muttering ways she can incorporate the transfer magic into the raid, when she suddenly raised her head and asked me a question about the magic.
“Arc-dono, what is the limit of the transfer magic that you just used?”
“I can transfer just about anywhere as long as I have the location memorized.”
Thanks to 【Transfer Gate】 I could instantly travel anywhere without worrying about the distance, as long as I could visualize the location that is.
For example, if I found myself in a city under siege, I could easily escape to a far off location using it.
Chiome began to ask questions about how many times the magic could be used and the maximum number of people that could be transferred at once. Since there was still things I didn’t know, I could only answer with my best guess.
In the game, even if I used 【Transfer Gate】 a hundred times in a row it wouldn’t cause any problems. And I wasn’t all that worried since 【Resurrection】had a higher mana consumption then 【Transfer Gate】so it should be fine.
When Chiome heard the general characteristics of the transfer magic her expression brighten up a little.
The three of us then revised the raid on the slave dealership. It was mostly the same, the only difference being that the released slaves wouldn’t be used as decoys.
“Arc-dono, I’ll inform my colleagues of the modifications to tonight’s operation. Please prepare for the raid until then.”
After saying that, Chiome opened the window and climbed to the roof before she started to run along the rooftops.
While watching her form shrink in the distance, what she said repeated in my mind over and over again.
“Ariane-dono…… did I hear that the raid would be tonight……?”
“I heard that too.”
Looking back out the window, I saw that Chiome had already disappeared.