Translator: Silver Editor: Namorax
「The Giants Attack」
Preparations were completed rather quickly and the warriors were gathered in the center of the village in less than an hour.
The other clan leaders that had been visiting the village were accompanied by their own attendants, just like Ein, and those warriors had been added to this “Great Hunt”.
There were a hundred and fifty warriors total.
Almost everyone rode a dragon mount as we headed towards the village attacked by the giants, the resulting charge making the earth shake in our wake.
Since I had no idea where we were going, I just followed at the rear of the crowd.
The horizon laid before us, there were gentle hills and rolling plains all around us.
An hour had passed since we left the village.
Ariane would sometimes complain about her butt hurting and would occasionally stand up as we rode, an action that caused me a great deal of unease even before the battle began.
“Ariane-dono, you do know you could fall off like that, don’t you?”
When I looked back and said that Ariane raised a snow-white eyebrow before she spoke up.
“Arc, why don’t we take a break? My butt is at its limit……”
Even though the dragon mount’s movements caused a lot of bouncing in Ariane’s chest area, the person herself didn’t seem like she would fall anytime soon.
When I realized where my eyes had wandered off to, I started to groan.
If we were the only ones to stop for a rest, we would be stranded in the middle of nowhere.
We weren’t in a situation where I could casually say “let’s take a short break.”.
Those around us were driven by the desire to avenge their fallen brethren and were accustomed to long rides, so none of them were worn out like Ariane was.
Chiome, unlike Ariane, showed no sign of discomfort as if she were used to extended riding sessions. Either that or she was so light that she simply wasn’t affected as badly.
While I was preoccupied with my debate on what to do, Ponta started to rapidly shake her tail.
When Ponta started hitting the top of my head and cry, I focused on what was in front of me.
The tiger tribe village sat atop a gentle hill in front of us.
At the same time, a gigantic humanoid figure slowly came into view.
The giant was shoving a crushed corpse, which it had been holding in its hands, into its gaping chest mouth.
The bloodlust of the warriors rose as they watched the gruesome scene take place.
However, the giants finally noticed our loud approach and signaled the others.
While it was impossible to understand the black giant, it grabbed hold of its stone hammer and let out a beast-like roar as it started charging towards us.
In response, the some of the other giants that had apparently been gathering inside the village came running with their weapons in hand.
However, including the one we saw first, there were only 5 giants altogether. I could see another five giants inside the village, but it looked like they were too busy looking for something.
The young man had said that at least thirty giants had attacked the village.
The leaders noticed this immediately and started to look around for the missing giants.
There weren’t many obstacles in the middle of the plains so there weren’t a lot of places you could hide twenty giants.
Hou, the acting leader of this expedition, was aware of this and decided to focus on the enemies in front of him.
He raised his weapon in the air and pointed it at the approaching giants.
The surrounding warriors let out a booming battle cry and brandished their weapon.
The cry of the tiger tribesmen combined with the rumbling of the dragon mounts to create an intimidating spectacle.
As they ran past the leading giant, the warriors would attack the creature’s legs.
The dull sounds of a collision and of breaking bones overlapped with one another as the giant smashed the ground with their weapons.
The warriors that were in range of the attack were blown away while suffering critical injuries. However, I caught sight of one giant falling to the ground, which meant they managed to do significant damage to it.
The warriors swarmed the fallen giant and unleashed a flurry of attacks until it died.
The were enough warriors here to cope with the five giants.
Before the remaining giants can enter the battle, I’ll settle this instantaneously with a magic spell.
When I brought our dragon mount to a stop in order to cast my spell, Ariane sighed and leaped from the saddle.
Once she was out of the saddle she began to frown and massage her butt.
The pain in her backside must’ve been extensive.
Handing the reins to Chiome, I climbed down and scanned the area.
I intended to use a summon beast like I did against the hydra a while back.
While I could have used an area of effect spell, people could still be alive and hiding in the village.
I’d learned in Leibnitz that a summoned beast automatically attacked the enemy, regardless of the surroundings.
There was no way to tell what would happen if a combat-oriented beast was summoned, but one that acted as support should be fine…… probably.
“Ariane-dono, I’m going to kill the giants close to the village, wait here a minute.”
I told them what I was about to do before taking my summoning stance.
A large glowing magic formation appeared on the ground in front of me as I began to envision the beast I wanted to summon.
What I was trying to summon was a creature I rarely used in the game and I was having trouble remembering it.
“……It’s on the tip of my tongue……”
If I’m not mistaken, it was a low-level summon with debuff skills.
I kept the magic formation on standby as I searched my memory. However, the only thing that came to my mind were high-level summons as my thoughts began to wonder.
Ariane called out to me while I was in this state.
“What a second Arc. That the same magic that sends out rampaging giants, isn’t it?”
She must have remembered when my summon collapsed that church and was worried the same thing would happen to the village here.
Just because I tend to forget inconvenient things, it doesn’t mean I’d forget that.
Well, I was struggling with this spell so it might have been better to use a different summon here.
Just as I was about to tell her that, a shadowy figure appeared behind Ariane and rushed towards us with incredible speed.
Ariane noticed the bloodlust the figure was emitting and started to look back, but the figure was faster and it managed to pull a dagger from its sleeve and throw it before she could react, so I pushed her aside.
The next thing I realized, the blade of the dagger managed to slip between one of my helmet’s visor gaps. The surprise attack broke my concentration and caused to summoning formation to vanish.
Ponta would have normally wrapped herself around my neck in a fight, but she had still been atop my helmet when the enemy attacked, so she fled instead.
Ponta created a miniature cyclone with her magic and flew well over my head to escape the surprise attack.
The wind kicked up by the cyclone managed to rustle my assailant’s hood and cloak.
Recognizing the opportunity, I prepared to launch a full strength punch at my assailant as he brandished a sword. However, the enemy noticed this and retreated.
Ariane had been surprised when I suddenly pushed her and shouted my name when she saw me pulling the dagger out.
I gestured with my hand to let her know I was alright.
Ariane was momentarily dumbfounded by my gesture, before here lilac cheeks turned a slight shade of red when she remembered the contents of my armor.
She was probably embarrassed because she forgot that.
However, that would have been a fatal blow had I not been in my skeletal form.
My skull’s cavities were totally empty, and the assailant immediately noticed my nonexistent reaction to the attack.
By the time I’d clutched my fist he had already started to fall back.
Red eyes peeked out from beneath the enemy’s hood as they pulled two more daggers from their sleeves.
Ariane grasped the situation instantly but she started frowning when she tried to stand.
It might have been a mistake to push her down. Her backside had already suffered through that riding session.
It would be inconvenient if she couldn’t move properly. Out of all of us, Ariane would be in the most danger if her movements were impaired.
Even an amateur like myself could understand that much.
To top it off, I was barehanded in front of an armed opponent.
Leaving my sword and shield attached to the dragon mount while I evoked the summoning spell had backfired on me.
The tiger tribesmen were still fighting a good distance away, and all I could do was realise how careless I’d been.
Metallic sounds repeatedly echoed through the area as the enemy slashed at my armor. While their movements were quick, their attacks had no effect.
Since I was covered in full body armor, the enemy couldn’t determine what was beneath it and they were avoiding lethal strikes because of what had happened before.
In other words, it was my prime opportunity to attack.
I put my entire weight behind a straight punch. The air itself vibrated as the enemy dodged my fist by a hair’s breadth, but was dragged back by the vacuum effect that followed the punch.
When I tried to capitalize on the opening and deliver the finishing blow, the enemy kicked the air to regain their posture and managed to circle around me.
I didn’t expect to fight the straw hat’s cook here.
His two blades closed in on my neck like a pair of sheers.
Even if I was only a skeleton, there was no way to tell what would happen if my head was cut off. It came down to whether or not the enemy’s attack could overcome my bones’ durability.
The moment I felt the edge of the enemies daggers on my neck, a I heard the sound of metal colliding behind me as the enemy kicked the air to dodge something.
“Arc-dono, are you alright!?”
Chiome rushed to my side as she spoke.
“Yes, you managed to save me Chiome-dono. Thank you.”
Even though my skeleton body was unable to break out in cold sweat, I heaved a relieved breath while patting my neck to confirm it was still properly attached.
The enemy took the opportunity to check their daggers.
Chiome’s attack had managed to put a large hole in the hood of our attacker.
We finally got a look at the enemy’s face when a gust of wind blew the remains of the hood away.
Black cat ears sat atop their head and his red eyes were contrasted by his pale skin…… he was obviously a beastman.
I couldn’t tell because his tail was still hidden under his cloak, but he appeared to be from the same cat tribe as Chiome.
Chiome, who normally never showed her emotions, let out a haggard cry as she caught sight of the enemy’s face.
Her shaking voice and the shocked expression said it all.
The name she spoke belong to a senior member of the Blade Heart Clan’s six great ninjas.
If the enemy was one of the six great ninjas, why was he on this continent and what was he doing here? There were too many unknown factors in this situation.
The emotion on Chiome’s face as she called out that name…… there was no doubt that the enemy was the real deal and not some kind of imposter.
“……Sasuke! What’s going on!? Why…… what here you doing here!?”
Sasuke narrowed his red eyes and raised his daggers when Chiome cried out to him.
There was no hesitation in his actions, as if Chiome’s voice hadn’t even reached him at all.
However, the fight with Sasuke did not continue.
The remaining giants that had been roaming through the village brandished their stone weapons and were heading straight for us.
The tiger tribesmen that had been charging towards the village scattered when the giants suddenly ran towards my group, completely ignored by the giants.
Sasuke glanced at the eccentric behavior of the giants before he ran in the opposite direction of the giants.
Chiome immediate chased after Sasuke while calling out to him.
“Wait!! Sasuke-oniisan!! Why are you doing this!?”
Unfortunately, Sasuke was faster than Chiome and the distance between them only grow wider.
The upheaval in her heart was so great that the normally graceful Chiome tripped over her own feet and fell over.
Ariane rushed over to Chiome to help her up.
Chiome’s face had gone pale with worry as Ariane tried to speak to her.
“……Chiome-chan that Sasuke person is……”
However, Chiome fiercely shook her head as if she were trying to prevent the words from reaching her.
Their behavior indicated that something was definitely wrong.
The ground began to rumble as I looked at them and I realized that this place was about to become a battlefield.
I caught sight of the giants suddenly changing directions.
The giants were heading in the direction Sasuke had run off to. They followed after Sasuke as if it were the natural thing to do.
Despite there having been so many tiger tribesmen near them they made a sudden shift and chased after Sasuke……
It was as if the giant had been searching the village for Sasuke since the very beginning.
“…… What in the world is going on?”
My doubts were overshadowed by the noise of the approaching tiger tribesmen.
With a battle cry, they chased after the giants.