Left gaping and stunned beyond words at the disastrous scene in front of his eyes, Geobalk arrived at the left bank of the Schweiz River on his horse.
The sight of fallen allies could be seen strewn about as he looked down from the riverbank.
There was no doubt that they were the soldiers from the 2nd battalion that tried to cross the river, but their numbers seemed to be less than expected.
Then, as the general looked to the other side of the river to check for the rest, he saw, in the distance, fallen soldiers in numbers he couldn’t count accurately.
If viewed from the riverbank, there seemed to be more than 120 fallen soldiers.
What’s more, nobody was moving.
In this case, Geobalk could think only of the fact that the 2 companies, which had crossed the river, had been completely annihilated after receiving the enemy’s attack. Still, the number of casualties just didn’t add up to the total forces deployed.
Who attacked these soldiers?
How were they assaulted?
Why did all of them die in such place?
What happened to the rest of the soldiers?
Neither Geobalk nor his staff officers could understand it at all.
No, rather, there was one thing they knew.
There was no one else who could do this but the witches.
However, even if they were to speak of the witches’ full force, it would only amount to, at most, 20.
Even if they were to attack with their full strength, wiping out a full battalion was inconceivable.
Shouldn’t the reinforcements have crossed the river if the enemy commenced their attack? Actually, wasn’t the message relayed to Geobalk saying that Sneijder was supposed to cross the river in order to help the ally soldiers?
But, no matter how ardently the general looked out over the battlefield, there was not a single shadow or sign of the remaining soldiers from the 2nd battalion.
Leaving aside the 120 fallen soldiers at the opposite side and the scarce number of those near the river bank, there should be more than 300 of them left. Nevertheless, the numbers still didn’t match up.
It was a situation where one couldn’t deny the possibility that they’d been spirited away.
Having a circumstance that was impossible to comprehend in front of their eyes, Geobalk and his men were unable to speak.
They could only stand there.
“General, there are some people from the 2nd battalion headquarters that we managed to recover. I think you’d want to listen to their stories, but…”
At his subordinate’s voice, the veteran general came back to his senses.
Then he quickly thought about his next actions.
A conclusion was reached quickly.
(Under these incomprehensible circumstances, I guess…. we are unable to continue our plans.)
Geobalk bit his lips hard enough to cause them to bleed and stared at the other side of the bank.
How did this battle play out?
Why did that many soldiers die on the other side of the river?
And where did the rest of the 2nd battalion go?
The General made the apparently correct decision of stopping the river crossing since he didn’t know the circumstances. Nevertheless, he had, in fact, made a terrible error.
Naga couldn’t use the surprise attacks of the flood or the dolls twice.
Apart from those, the witches had no other large-scale means of attack left, but at this stage, it was nearly impossible for the Kasandora Army to see through that.
Such was Naga’s prediction.
And it proved accurate.
Naga’s prediction that the General would be afraid to begin a new assault at the risk of incurring further losses was right on the mark.
At least, if Geobalk didn’t check what kind of methods the witches resorted to, or what happened to the remaining soldiers of the 2nd battalion, he shouldn’t be able to continue his tactic.
The reason why Naga was able to read the army commander’s thoughts and movements was perhaps due to him grasping Geobalk’s and his soldiers’ psychology.
The general decided to withdraw to the encampment and reorganize his troops.
“We will leave 200 units from the 1st battalion to watch over this side. Whereas, we are going to retreat to the encampment for the time being.”
The army headquarters’ officers scattered upon receiving the order from the general.
They were in such a rush that they didn’t even have enough time to fold up their tents.
The light and heavy troops that Raibaha was in charge of were house-sitting and began to bring in provisions; nevertheless, they didn’t notice any abnormal changes in the situation.
The General and the officers assembled inside a big tent in the headquarters and began to question the survivors from the 2nd battalion.
After listening to the accounts of several of them, Geobalk had finally become able to grasp the circumstances that had led them to this.
Once the events were recorded chronologically, the events went as follows:
1. A scouting troop of 10 men crossed the river after dawn and found something suspicious.
2. The 2nd company captain, who received the troop’s report, ordered the 3rd, 4th, and 6th platoons to cross the river.
3. The 3 platoons of 30 people discovered a crowd of dolls that resembled small logs at the other side of the river. In order to check what it was, they approached them.
4. Upon learning that those things were puppets controlled by the witches, the soldiers were suddenly attacked with bows and arrows.
5. A total of 50 people from the 1st, 2nd, 5th, and 7th platoons of the 2nd company, together with their headquarters, tried to cross the river, so as support the other 3 platoons.
6. The reinforcements did not reach them in time; the 3rd, 4th, and 6th platoons were completely annihilated.
7. The wooden puppets, which destroyed the 3 platoons, advanced toward the riverbank.
8. Then they assaulted the 50 people from the 2nd company that crossed the river for the rescue.
9. A group of cavalry, which crossed the river, witnessed the assault.
10. The cavalry ran back and reported the circumstances to the 2nd battalion commander, Sneijder.
11. Sneijder ordered the 2nd battalion to cross the river, so as to save the 2nd company. however, at that point, he was unaware it was an attack laid out by the witches.
12. With the 50 soldiers of the 2nd company receiving the enemy’s blow, they had already fallen into a state of devastation.
13. The 1st company crossed the river.
14. Following them, the 3rd company began to cross.
15. As soon as the 3rd company finished crossing, the 4th company started their crossing as well.
16. The 1st company began their deployment on the other side, and after that, the 3rd company.
17. At the time a part of the 4th company landed on the other side’s bank, a flood moved toward them from upstream.
18. Many of the 4th company’s soldiers who were in the midst of crossing were washed away by the flood.
19. The 2nd battalion was divided between the left bank and right bank.
20. Sneijder, who was stuck on the left bank, made a further attempt of crossing the river.
21. However, being afraid of the attacks coming from the witches, the remaining 4th company and the escaped survivors from the 3rd company wouldn’t move from their place, delaying the river crossing of the headquarters.
22. The 1st company that crossed to the right bank together with the 3rd company were surrounded by the wooden dolls while receiving a fierce attack.
23. Sneijder, who lost his temper, went first and took the lead.
24. Being shot on his way by an enemy troop lying in ambush, Sneijder died on the spot. This was thought to be done by the witches, however, no details are known as to where they were hiding or how he was shot down.
25. Falling into a great turmoil, the remaining officers and men couldn’t respond efficiently. Rather, lots of them escaped in fear after witnessing their commander’s death.
26. A fierce battle unfolded between the enemy’s dolls and the 1st and 3rd companies on the opposite bank. Despite that, the soldiers were, in the end, destroyed. Not to mention, it seemed that the witches entered the battle at that moment, however, the details of that are not known to the few survivors.
27. The 3rd company captain was thought to be killed in action from a melee, whereas, the 1st company captain, who fought til the end, decided to desert together with several of his subordinates.
28. They remained missing afterwards.
29. There appeared to be few who escaped from the battlefield, but the majority of the soldiers went missing.
30. Like that, the 1st and 2nd company were destroyed.
31. A part of the 4th company, which crossed to the right bank, took flight together with the remnants of the 4th and 2nd company at the left bank.
“How reckless. How foolish.”
The general ground his teeth while shaking.
Both the 2nd company captain, Sneijder, and his officers acted rashly.
However, believing that he himself held the most responsibility for being unable to control them, the veteran general blamed himself.
At the same time, Geobalk was astonished at the strange nature of the strategy drawn by the witches.
It was the first time he had been so splendidly set up in his entire life.
Many would probably describe their surprise attacks, ambushes, or various others similar attacks as a fighting method worthy of the cowardly witches, however, Geobalk didn’t feel like he was in a position to criticize the witches.
Rather, he felt some sort of respect for them.
(One cannot make an excuse when losing this magnificently. To begin with, if someone was to oppose 2000 people with a group of barely 20 people, it would only be natural for his opponent to fall into his clever plan. Not being able to realize that was my failure and negligence.)
Geobalk ceased any further combat-related actions.
(Attacking the witches, who planned and executed such a splendid tactic, right now would be the height of foolishness. Especially, after we have already lost.)
The general decided that they could only wait to recover their strength for a renewed attack on the witches.
(I’ll probably be released from my duty, or perhaps, even executed, however, if I lose any more of these soldiers, our country will be assaulted by others.)
At any rate, even now, his country was theoretically vacant.
Yielding any more sacrifices will only weaken the war potential needed to protect the country.
Geobalk ordered the recovery of the soldiers who scattered and a search for those who were washed away downstream. He also told his officers they would fold up their encampments and return to Fort Ein depending on how fast they finished the previous job.
Nobody opposed the decision made by Geobalk.
There was no way that everyone who’d been washed away had drowned.
Soon after, a dozen soldiers were found crawling up near the bank’s vicinity at the downstream. Nevertheless, apart from them, nobody seemed to have survived the flood….
Or perhaps, many of them crawled up the bank and ran after narrowly escaping death?
In any case, the Kasandora Kingdom was the one to sustain the heaviest loss during this invasion.
Among the 3rd battalion, nearly 300 individuals were confirmed dead from drowning.
If one was to add those who went missing after being washed away, the number would further increase.
What’s more, among the war dead, the 2nd battalion commander, Sneijder, was included as well.
Many of the remaining 120 soldiers escaped during the battle, and around 50 of them returned to their original unit.
Where did the other soldiers run away to? Or perhaps, they were killed by the witches during their escape? This however remained unclear.
Summing up those who died and went missing, it would be approximately as many as 450 soldiers.
Since the 450 were those among the 1700 from the fighting troops, their lost ratio would exceed more than a quarter of that number
Even if one was to include the escaped soldiers and the several dozens of those who had returned, the ratio would still be above 1/5.
It would be different if the same number of fellow troops was to clash with the enemy head on and engage in fierce battle, but, neither the 1st nor the 3rd battalion took part in the fight.
Actually, if one was to only limit the casualties to the members of the 2nd battalion who were fighting, rather than just saying that there was an unprecedented 90% that were lost…..it would be more like a nightmarish number.
No matter how powerful the spells the witches could resort to were, it was an unbelievably horrible number from clashing against a mere 20 individuals.
The number of sacrifices was a problem, however, it wasn’t just that.
The more concerning fact was that many of those soldiers would harbor fear against the witches.
What’s more, losing a battalion of 500 during a single fight against an enemy of only 20 witches, despite possessing a large army of 2000 soldiers, and then abandoning their plan of invasion would probably result in Kasandora being looked down on by the other countries.
Just like Naga said so confidently before, the Kasandora Kingdom had suffered a defeat from which they would not recover for quite some time.
Not losing a single member nor having a single injured person, the household of Harrigan gathered again.
After confirming the withdrawal of the Kassandra Army, everyone, except for Selena and Genius, who were in charge of patrolling, returned back to the 1st fort.
It was decided that a victory banquet would be held to celebrate the success of Naga’s plan and the witches’ efforts.
Gathering inside the most spacious residence building, Naga and the witches toasted with their spare wine
“It’s the first time for me to slowly savor wine.”
The first time they held a toast, Naga had only gulped it down, therefore, he had no chance of savouring it.
After enjoying its mellow flavor, he drank the red liquid.
“Oh….. it’s, unexpectedly delicious.”
Naga, who seemed to take quite a liking to it, asked for another cup.
Aside from the alcohol, the banquet was a bit frugal, as the food was mostly preserved goods from storage, but nevertheless, nobody was concerned about that.
That’s because, they won. They were able to repel a big army of almost 2000 with barely 20 people.
Far from achieving victory, they shouldn’t have even been able to lose honorably.
For the witches who had been repeating similar battles, it was their first time experiencing a big victory.
Even though they had only dried bread, dried meat, and pickled vegetables, the taste of victory was sweet.
Chatting and conversations sprang up here and there.
Finally, 1-2 witches began to sing as they got a little tipsy from the alcohol.
There were also those who got caught up in the mood and started to dance.
To begin with, if someone like the witches were to sing and dance with their thin outfits, they would look even more erotic than gypsy dancers.
Naga began lewdly gazing at the witches.
He was glancing as he drank some more wine from his cup when,
“Naga-san, are you still drinking?”
Ais, who was in a half-rising posture, called out to him
“Ah? Yeah, I’m drinking.”
Lifting up the cup in his hand, Naga replied.
“This grape wine is quite tasty, Ais.”
It looked like she drank a considerable amount, as her cheeks were faintly dyed pink.
“Then, how about, one more cup?”
“That’s right. After all, you’ve gone through the trouble.”
Naga didn’t disliked the taste of the alcohol, nevertheless, he wasn’t good at holding his liquor. Rather, he was weak to it.
Because his body somehow remembered the feeling of getting drunk, he thought about paying more attention so as not to overdrink.
Should I take one more? – However, being urged by Ais, he reached out his wine cup.
Once he did so,
Ais grabbed the wine barrel behind her back with both her hands, raised it swiftly, and presented it towards Naga.
“Here, help yourself.”
“No, even if you tell me to help myself….”
Naga stood on his knees and peeked inside the barrel. It was still half full.
(Am I supposed to insert my cup and scoop the wine using it? Is it really fine to do so?
He looked at Ais with a doubtful face.
“Won’t you drink?”
“Eh-em….no, I wonder about that.”
Once he hesitated,
“If Naga-san won’t, I will.”
She carried the barrel in front of and suddenly leaned/tilted it towards herself.
*Gulp, gulp, gulp*
“Drinking directly from the barrel?!”
Naga bent his body backward significantly.
“Ah, hey you, it’s better for you not to try to best Ais in a drinking contest.”
As he turned around to the voice, he saw Yuuki carrying her cup single-handedly with a pink face while standing.
“That’s because her limit for drinking is bottomless/nonexistent.”
Don – Ais put the barrel down on the floor.
Looking inside it, there was nothing remaining.
“It appears to be so……”
(Ais, You’re truly scary!)
Naga trembled in fear.
(Still, nothing can be done if someone with monstrous strength like her goes rampant, I guess)
Thinking so, he decided to pay her more attention at once.
“Oi, Ais. You better be careful with overdrinking.”
Looking around restlessly, she looked back at Naga.
“Who are you saying is overdrinking? I’d rather be more careful in your place.”
“….no, on second thought, please forget it.”
At that time,
“Okay okay, Kay, take off your clotheees.”
“Cu as well.”
“Fine, let’s go, let’s go—-”
Noticing how the drunken witches danced while undressing, Naga tried to leave the place with a cheerful attitude. Once he did so, his shoulders were grabbed from behind.
Turning around him, he saw Ais’ fingers sinking firmly inside his shoulders.
“Wai, you, it hurts!”
Naga tried to object while turning his neck, as he couldn’t move his body.
With a sweet smile on her face, Ais further inserted more power into her hands.
“Aw awa! awawa! awwa! Ais, my shoulders are breakinggg!”
“Ahaha, like that, you won’t be able to run away. At least, I should lecture you.”
As soon as she threw out such a parting threat, Yuuki tried to leave to sneakily leave the place.
(W-What? What do you mean with lecturing? Speaking of which, that girl, Yuuki, why is she trying to sneakily run away…..? Hey.)
Naga, who was unable to endure, screamed out.
“Naga-san, please sit there.”
Grabbing both his shoulders, she forcefully pressed him down.
As he couldn’t resist her strength, Naga bent his legs down.
“Yes, look this way while sitting on your heels .”
Feeling that his shoulder bones were seriously about to snap, Naga sat on his heels just as being told. Once he did so, he turned his body around.
“Naga-san, you get it?”
“You’re way too lecherous. Even if a man is creature that is willing to give in after a hundred attempts, being an honest pervert is bad. Are you saying that it’s fine to oogle at and touch others? If you don’t become more refined, it will be no good, you know?”
(This woman, is she lecturing me despite being a heavy drunker?!)
I see – Naga agreed with what Yuuki had said just now.
(Speaking of which, what does a refined pervert looks like?)
Thinking so, Naga wanted to retort, however, he was too afraid to do so.
Ais continued her lecturing dispassionately and earnestly.
“Naga-san is a person with a clever head, but I think you lack a bit of consideration for others. For example, you eating habit is too unmannered? You should eat more carefully, slower, and chew your food properly.”
(Am I a kid or what?!)
Naga retorted without thinking ahead.
Obviously, he was doing so inside his heart.
At that time,
“Okay, let’s all undressss.”
Together with her voice, sounds of applauses rose up. Naga, who couldn’t put up with that, turned away.
*grab* – his pair of shoulders were grabbed.
His head was turned back with a grinding sound.
“Awawaaw, Ais Awww, my skull is going to spliiiit!”
Ais peeked at his face from a close range.
“Even though I just said so, what’s the meaning of your attitude? You ain’t supposed to be a little boy who doesn’t get turned on at women’s naked bodies.”
“Nonono, that’s because a woman’s nude is of grave importance to a man? And if there is a guy like that, shouldn’t he also doubt in his sanity?”
Did she understand? – Naga thought so while giving out a sigh of relief as Ais released a bit of her grip, but,
“Is that so? In the end, it’s the problem of watching?”
*Haa* – Ais exhaled her sigh.
“Is that so? It can’t be helped then. In that case, I’ll have to gouge out Naga-san’s eyes.”
“By doing that, you won’t be be able to watch women dancing or singing in the nude, right?”
“This woman is saying some absurd things while smilinggg!”
Jumping up and retreating, Naga tried to run away from Ais, but nonetheless, his shoulders were, again, grabbed.
“Ufu, Ufufufufu. I’ll gouge them out. Completely.”
“Uwaah, wait wait waiiiiit!”
Naga extended his hands while trying to push her back.
An amazingly tender and elastic feeling passed through his palms.
The two of them directed their sights toward the front of Naga’s hands.
Before anyone had realised it, his hands sank into Ais’ voluptuous pair of breasts.
The smile disappeared from her face.
Naga hurriedly withdrew his hands.
“Despite me telling you off that much, Naga-san doesn’t intend to stop being a pervert, I guess. Is that so? I’m troubled. Gouging out your eyes seems to be bad idea, so the only option would be to chop and mince you hands….”
“Someone please stop this drunk!!!!”
At the same time as he shouted,
Gonnnnnnnn – the dull sound of a punch reverberated, and Ais lost her strength in her arms.
As her body shook violently and collapsed forward, Naga hurriedly, and clumsily, caught her with his open hands.
“Don’t drop her.”
The touch from Ais curvaceous body and the indescribable sweet fragrance which stirs his nostrils, Naga’s heart skipped a beat at both of these.
“That was close, Naga.”
Looking behind Ais’ back, there was Harrigan standing there.
There is no doubt it was her bluish black hair, which took the shape of a big mallet, that hit Ais’ head from behind.
“Good grief, I was saved.”
Naga breathed out a sigh of relief.
“Still, to think that your hair would maker her faint, they’re, indeed, unreasonably hard.”
“True. That’s why, it’s better for you to be careful…. If you do anything indecent to my daughters, I’ll turn all your bones into powder using this hair, ok? That would then mean that you’d worked yourself to the bone.”
“T-They have totally different meanings!”
Once Naga, who had a pale face, shouted, Harrigan suddenly loosened her face.
“Leaving that aside, I’ve something I need to talk about with you. It’s regarding what we’ll do from now on.”
“Yeah, I also thought about discussing that matter.”
“Well then, that’s right, it will be bad if we interrupt the girls when they’re in high spirits. Come with me for a bit once the banquet finishes.”
“Yeah, got it.”
Naga, who nodded, laid down Ais’ body, which he was carrying.
Since then, one hour has passed.
Choosing a time when the majority of the witches fell asleep after getting drunk, Naga and Harrigan moved from that room to another.
He was led to a simplistic, small room that looked like an attic with a wooden floor and wooden walls with glass instead of a ceiling.
Originally, because all the rooms were similarly constructed, not just this room was simplistic.
Since there were quilts and cloth coverings, could it be that this was a sleeping room?
As soon as a quilt was placed on the floor, Naga and Harrigan sat down while facing each other.
The flame coming from a candle in a stand slightly swayed, making both their long shadows inside the dimly lit room sway as well.
“Won’t you drink?”
Harrigan tapped a bottle she had brought.
“No, I’ve already had enough.”
“Is that so?”
She pushed aside the bottle while bowing forward.
“Let me express my gratitude, Naga. You’ve saved us, thank you.”
“No, I don’t particularly need any. I was just repaying my debt, so it’s fine to accept my deed as an equal prize.”
Lifting her face, Harrigan smiled with a grin.
“You’re unexpectedly humble, ain’t you?”
“Don’t say unexpectedly. I’m a discreet and humble man, you know?”
She stared at him with her scornful eyes.
“I wonder if you should be saying that.”
“Oi, am I not a good person?”
“That’s right. Whether you’re a pervert or not, it doesn’t change the fact that you’re a great strategist.”
“Oi, don’t you mean to say that I’m a pervert either way?”
“Am I wrong?”
“I think….. you’re most likely wrong.”
“That too, I won’t be pondering about who should be the one to say it…… so, guess it’s fine either way.”
Harrigan tightened her expression.
“We were able to gain a great victory.”
“I guess so.”
“With that, what do you plan to do from now on?”
“I was thinking about that as well, still…”
Putting his arms together behind his head, Naga looked up at the sky.
“You still have other comrades, right?”
“Your family alone isn’t enough for us to descend down to the plains.”
“D-Descending to the plains?”
Harrigan opened her eyes in surprise while looking at Naga.
“Why should we take such a risky action?”
“Asking why. For the sake of protecting your household and creating a land where witches can coexist with humans in peace, moving our headquarter to the plains would be more effective.”
As Harrigan blinked her eyes with amazement, Naga, who folded his arms continued to speak with a difficult expression.
“We have gained but a single victory in a small battle this time. It’s just a single battle that has ended, and there will be soon another one. Rather than that, the ending of one battle is the beginning of another one. The final victory has yet to be achieved. I wonder, would be correct to say that the final victory will be the time when the witches will be able to live freely with dignity? In order to grasp that, we can’t stay inside the black forest forever.”
“Increasing our influence, moving our base, raising the number of allies, as well as the population, and extending our control over territories. Those are the required conditions for us to obtain our final victory. Starting from there, we will be able to create a country, a world where the witches can live peacefully.”
Harrigan’s body went numb with shock and she was filled with surprise.
(T-This man, the prospect he has is different from ours. Rather than that, could it be that he sees further ahead than us?
However, Naga’s plan gave an impression of being kind of insane.
“Still, is such a thing possible? Our single family consists of just 30 people, and the most that can participate in a fight is 20.”
“That’s why we need allies. Didn’t you say earlier that there are other clans of witches, whom you’re acquainted with, living inside the forest?”
“Hm? Ah, there are.”
“Won’t you join forces with them?”
Harrigan distorted her face unpleasantly.
“With those guys?”
“What’s the matter? Is there any problem?”
(There are lot of related issues with them, but… well, that’s not important.)
She asked with a suspicious expression.
“It’s not impossible for us to join forces with them, but what do you intend to do?”
“First, I’d like for you to specify a place for a discussion.”
“Discuss? About what?”
“I’m thinking about having them participate in the next battle.”
She opened her eyes widely again.
“Where and with what do you plan to fight?”
“I’d like to capture 1 or 2 forts from somewhere, but before that, let’s go and capture Fort Ein on the other side of the Schweiz River after we form/we’ve formed an alliance with our allies.”
Harrigan leapt up in astonishment.
“A-Are you serious?”
“I may have lost my memory, but I’m always serious.”
“uuuh uuuhn uuug….”
Slightly groaning, she lowered herself.
“Despite saying our fort is small, the walls are strong and the space is plenty, right? Normally, it can pack several dozens of people, or perhaps more than a hundred of soldiers right now. It’s just the scale you’re talking about is different.”
“Well, actually, if I don’t see it myself, I won’t know how strong your fort is, but I can understand, even without being told, that their fort is much stronger.”
“Mu, is, that so?”
Harrigan made a dissatisfied face; nevertheless, Naga continued while ignoring her.
“What’s more, they have just recently suffered a painful defeat, so there’s a chance they will further increase the number of soldiers due to them being afraid of you.”
“I…..In that case, isn’t it more reason not to attack? With just our strength, it doesn’t seem like we will be able to take their fort, so….”
“That’s why, I was saying we need to increase the number of allies. Does the neighboring clan have a similar number of people as yours?”
“Y….Yes, that’s right. They have, more or less, the same number.”
“So adding them together, there would be around 50 people? With that many alone, we should most likely be able to capture one or two forts.”
Harrigan shook her head from side to side with a dumbfounded expression on her face.
“It may still be too early to say that.”
“As long the ally sees our fighting style, I think there’s a chance.”
“You….You mean it? Still…..no….but…”
Was Harrigan still hesitating? She would repeatedly tilt her head in contemplation.
“Also, it probably isn’t a bad idea for the other witches as well. Provided we can capture Fort Ein, the black forest will be at peace for some time.”
“That may be so but….understood. Anyway, let’s call out to them. I think they’ll join the discussion, but I’m not sure as to whether or not they’ll show any interest in fighting by our side.”
“Yeah, that much should do.”
“Saying that, how are you going to persuade them?”
“Something like ‘Won’t you join us together in creating a world where witches and humans can coexist?’, I guess.”
“A…Are you honestly going to say so?”
“I’m alway honest.”
(Good grief, I was filled with awe there. Indeed, that’s a noble and grand ideal worthy of the Dragon King, still….ah, that’s right!)
“I heard from Yuuki and Kay, but, didn’t you give your name back when you took down the enemy’s battalion commander?”
“Were you able to recall your name?”
Making a miserable face, Naga scratched his head.
“No that’s, you see, I’ve already told Yuuki and the rest, but I don’t remember the name I gave.”
“Is that so? Certainly, that girl, Yuuki, said that you introduced yourself as Oda Saburo Noburunaga, or something like that, still….”
“If she heard it like that, then she might be right, however, just as I said, I can’t recall it well.”
Responding to that, Naga suddenly remembered the promise he made with Lela.
The promise….about telling Lela whenever he had retrieved some of his memory.
(No, but I have not recalled anything yet. Even now, I can’t remember the name I gave out at all. Despite that, Lela might learn about that incident from the other witches, so perhaps I should have a light conversation with her afterwards?
Harrigan stared at Naga in front of her with a grave, or rather, with a face pondering about something.
“Do you know the meaning behind ‘Dragon King’?”
“Yes, well, that’s because I was told by you.”
“When it comes to ‘Noburunaga’ part, it would be interpreted as ‘the Saint Dragon King’ or ‘the Noble Dragon King’.”
“Oh? Somehow it feels like my status has been raised.”
Uhahaha – Naga laughed.
“It isn’t a laughing matter!”
“W-What are you angry about?”
“No, sorry. I’m not particularly mad. Still, how should I say it, that’s right….aren’t you really the Dragon King’s messenger who came from the heaven?”
Naga shrugged his shoulders a little.
“Even if I’m asked such a thing with a stern face, I can only feel troubled at replying. I’m already aware about me losing the memory, but I’ve not the slightest idea about where I come from, or who am I.”
“……I guess you’re right, sorry for that.”
“No, it’s not something you should be worrying about, Harrigan. Well, at least we know the name that I gave out.”
Saying so, Naga placed his right hand on his throat.
“Sooner or later, the memory will pop up inside my head. By that time I should probably remember various other things besides my name. It feels like I’m close to that.”
“You think so? Then, shall I patiently wait til you recall them?”
Yeah – nodding down, Naga leant forward his body.
“Speaking of which, when are you going to call out to them?”
“Perhaps, it’s better to do it as soon as possible. In that case, I shall prepare a messenger tomorrow.”
“Whom are you going to appoint?”
“Ais. There’s never too much or too little when it comes to a subordinate like her. What’s more, we have nobody else besides Ais. ”
“….Guess you’re right.”
Naga, who nodded down, added inside his heart:
(If only she didn’t drink alcohol, she would be perfect, but well…)
“There should be nothing wrong in letting Lela tag along with Ais.”
“Is that so? Then, let’s leave that errand to those two. By the way, is there anyone who knows any details about Ein fort?”
“Why is that? Is there something you want to know?”
“To be more accurate, I want to know far its sphere of influence stretches, how many provision they have, or where they store their water, and also, how many soldiers are stationed there right now…. I think something along those lines.”
“Well, let’s see. At least, we don’t possess this sort of internal information. At most, we would have Yuuki observe from above.”
*groan* – Naga slightly groaned while folding his arms.
“The difficulty in capturing the fort will greatly vary depending on that information, but…”
“Nothing can be done about that. If that’s the case, we can only have somebody infiltrate the fort.”
“No….that would be the method of last resort. For the time being, let’s prioritize the discussion with your acquaintance. Speaking of which, what’s the name of that witch?”
“Vita Solskjaer Sraymeyer. The head of the Sraymeyer Clan.