Naga predicted that the Kasandora Kingdom’s army would advance towards Fort Ein in around 10 days.
If you were thinking optimistically, the fastest they could depart was 7-8 days, and at latest they would begin their march in 12-13 days.
Speaking of the time Naga and Harrigan had to prepare for battle, you could honestly say that they had absolutely no time to waste.
In order to carry out Naga’s strategy,they needed to gather a large number of items. All the witches began preparations for the battle. They would immerse themselves in their work, even to the extent that they spared no time for dinner. For the sake of preparations for the battle, Harrigan assembled most of the witches she was in charge of. Originally, there was no blood relations among the witches, so it would be much more suitable to call them clan or clique, rather than a family. Nevertheless, following their customs, they named themselves as family.
These were the witches who were led by Harrigan as head of the family.
Ais Aishuria Haindora
Yuki Yuumi Heindler
Lela Laylah Haindora
Nonoeru Norris Haindora
Rinne Ririka Haindora & Rinna Riruka Haindora (twins)
Cu Cunerias Haindora
Kay Canesh Haindora
Selena Serendity Haindora
Eleonortha Elleuch Haindora
Mimone Memoriiru Haindora
Ikushiinu Ereno Haindora
Jiiniasu Jioretto Haindora
Sahha Zekusesu Haindora
Neneru Memena Haindora
Arurukan Nya Haindora
Narcissus Sussa Haindora
The full force, including Harrigan, was a grand total of 18.
“So it’s 18 against an enemy of 2000. Including me, it would be 19 people. Hahaha, I hate to say it, but this makes me want to laugh.”
Harrigan narrowed her eyes as she watched his self-mocking laughter.
“There are still several witches left in the fortification inside the forest, but there’s no way to leave it completely empty. With that, I think we can count on these numbers being our battle potential.”
Naga suppressed his laughter and nodded as his expression turned serious.
“Well, it can’t be helped, no use wishing for things we don’t have. If we only have this many, you can say the only thing remaining is to do it and to think about a way to win. In any case, I still have to grasp each person’s ability, you see.”
“Got it. I’ll begin explaining my daughters’ magic.”
Once Naga said that, Harrigan began introducing the witches to Naga while explaining the abilities of each of them.
Just to make sure, Lela wrote down the contents in her notebook.
Despite her efforts, Naga, who had a charm attached to his body, couldn’t read the letters
In the end, the role of the charm was to translate the other party’s words by repeating them within the person’s mind.
Naga was in the midst of desperately trying to learn the writing of this world; nevertheless, he couldn’t make it in time. Lela put down in her notes the content of Harrigan’s explanation for the future.
Once Harrigan’s explanation ended, while thinking about the magic and special abilities of each of the witches that he’d just heard, Naga added some amendments to his tactics. However, there was no need for any big changes.
This tactic was created with him already having grasped some of their abilities to a certain degree, like Harrigan, Nonoeru, Ais, and Yuki, and implemented them as the main aspect of the tactic.
As he confirmed that fact, Naga decided on their jobs, assignments, and arrangements.
Naga addressed the witches lined up before him.
“As you are all aware, there’s no time remaining. I’d like to have you increase the speed of your work to the limit. At the same time, I want you to strive to understand your roles.”
Naga looked around at the witches and saw Yuki turn her face away as usual, but this time, it made him wonder whether she was paying attention.
Yuki, whose body twitched, turned her head with her eyebrows raised.
“Haa? Why are you calling me by name? It feels gross, so won’t you please stop?”
(It seems that she was listening to me. If she was shouldn’t I give her a little attention?)
Thinking so, Naga raised his hand and tried to catch her attention.
“No no, your role is certainly big. If I were to express it in different words, even saying that ‘the success and failure of this battle will fall on your shoulders’ wouldn’t be an exaggeration.”
“I…I know of that. Even without you telling me to do my job properly. Don’t call me by name. It somehow feels like I’m a kid who doesn’t know what they’re doing.”
”Yes, my bad my bad.”
While apologizing pathetically inside his heart, Naga stuck out his tongue.
Harrigan took over Naga’s speech.
“Yuki too, depending on your work, the future of our household will be at stake. The outcome of this battle will settle the future of the witches. If we win, the future will remain open to us. However, if we lose, there will be no hope. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that this will concern not only our group, but also the future of the other witches who live in the forest. Everyone, work with desperation like you’ve gone mad.”
Hearing Harrigan’s words, the young witches nodded with grave expressions.
Like this, it was decided that both Naga and Harrigan’s family would work vigorously, in order to repel the attack of the Kasandora Kingdom’s army, which was about to close in.
The actual job of two of the witches was tree lumbering.
First, they completely lumbered the the area near the fortification.
Ais stood in front of the trunk of a big tree, which was a little over half a meter thick, and raised her hands
Gathering at a distance, Naga and the other witches raised their hands to give a signal while watching.
With a yell, Ais crouched and delivered a single round-house kick. *Hyuun* – The sound pierced through the air and reached Naga’s ears.
Her thin clothes flipped lightly when the back of her leg sank into the tree trunk. At the same time, the sound of crashing echoed.
(Oi oi, will she honestly be fine?)
Even though he knew that her body became very tough thanks to it being enhanced with magic, it was a view that still made him want to cringe.
Were it a regular person, their leg would probably break in half, instead of the tree trunk. Nevertheless, Ais lowered her leg calmly and regained her balance.
Immediately after that, the big tree which received her kick slowly toppled. *Zuun* – The tree fell, making the surrounding earth tremble.
Naga who witnessed the might of Ais’ kick muttered without thinking.
“As expected she’s a human battering ram, that Ais.”
It was the moment when Naga arrived to watch Ais’ work.
Naga was wearing the clothes he arrived in again today.
He was careful not to damage them needlessly, as they could easily get dirty and worn out. Since there were no dry-goods stores here, he could only continue like this for the time being.
(Hm? Dry-goods store…the store…dry-goods…the clothes from the world which I came from…)
Pondering about that, he heard Yuki’s voice which distracted his thoughts.
“Yes, step back, step back.”
As Naga raised his head, Yuki, who was waiting near him, rushed over to the fallen tree while her charming clothes fluttered.
(Harrigan said that my clothes are strange, but, If I were to say, theirs are many times stranger than mine. No, rather than saying strange, wouldn’t it be better to say they have more sexual appeal?)
Among the witches, there were many who had their arms, buttocks, and abdomens exposed.
(I already got used to seeing them, but as expected, it’s still stimulating for me. Is it stimulating? Charming? Perhaps, alluring?)
While thinking about things like that, Naga looked at Yuki, who was about to swing her magic made wind blade.
The wind around the girl danced and the sound of the cutting wind was heard.
Without any effort, the branches were cut and the fallen tree quickly changed into a log.
Once Yuki stepped back, Cu, who was waiting, began.
The tips of the many leather belts that she wore squirmed and rose into the air. At a glance it looked as though a number of snakes were twisting and twining about her body.
Because many of those leather belts left, much of her skin became exposed.
Looking erotic is one thing, however, when her belts squirming in the air are looked at, they give off an impression of snakes.
(I greatly welcome the fact that the skin exposure increased, but her appearance is kind of eerie, and it makes it difficult to appreciate the view. It would be nice if she could undress without giving off that feeling.)
Naga assumed an impression, which one couldn’t tell whether it was due to his convenience or his rudeness.
As Cu stood in front of the log, the multiple leather belts wriggled and arranged themselves in the air all at once, just like snakes would crook their necks.
Then they swiftly spread.
Should one say they spread? Since the belts came apart, wouldn’t it be better to say they became longer?
Once the part of her belts that twined around her body came apart, the other parts which floated in the sky would automatically stretch.
Nearly 10 leather, belts that were more than 3 meters long, extended out into space and squirmed around her body.
(This is a…somewhat sinister view.)
Is what Naga thought while his body shook a little.
If people, who didn’t know what was happening, were to see this, they would certainly be unable to stand due to fear.
Cu manipulated the numerous leather belts squirming in mid-air easily and coiled them around the logs while raising them. The logs were floating in the air.
The logs, which were 189-216 meters in length and half a meter thick, were floating in the air while being supported by leather belts.
She carried them to the gathering spot, which was a short distance away, and put them down on the ground. The leather belts were released from the logs.
Til now, not even a quarter of an hour has passed since Ais stood in front of the trees.
Without thinking Naga said:
“Hey Hey, amazing, you’re amazing. Ain’t you doing the same amount of work as 20 lumberjacks?”
He raised his surprised voice in admiration.
Then, Yuki flared at him as usual.
“Don’t be stupid!”
“What are you angry about? I was praising you?”
“I, together with Ais and Cu aren’t doing the same amount as 20 lumberjacks. We work with the speed of around 50 lumberjacks! At least know how to evaluate properly, will you!?”
“Aa… so that was the problem?”
“Hmph, it should be fine as long you understand. Well then, Ais, let’s move to the next one.”
While brandishing her arm, Yuki stepped up to Ais.
Having a small wry smile, Ais slightly bowed towards Naga. He lightly raised his arm as if trying to convey ‘I don’t mind, so Ais, you shouldn’t as well’
“Naga-san, you seem to be quite troubled there.”
Cu, who moved near Naga’s side, chuckled while sending him a voice.
Because the leather belts returned to their original form, twining around her body, Naga was thankful to be able to survive without having to be surrounded by those squirming snakes.
“W…Well, you could say so, but until now there was not a single man in your group. Because I joined up with you, it can’t be helped that Yuki hates me. It seems that girl holds a heavy grudge against men. Rather than that, are you fine with this? For a man, with unknown origin, to join you.”
“Hari-nee seems to know about humans, but, as for us, we still don’t know much. Therefore, I’ve no reason to hate you.”
Because Cu’s words are always curt, Naga needed to supply the rest of her sentences by himself.
(In the end, this girl can probably says things, like not liking nor hating, because she doesn’t know much about humans…. still…)
Naga, who stood next to her, bent the upper part of his body as if peeking at Cu’s face.
“But the humans are trying to annihilate you, right?”
“Of course, I hate those humans who try to utterly destroy us. Nevertheless, I’ve no reason to hate those who don’t try to do that. Humans who try to help us, I like them. That’s why, I like Naga-san.”
Naga opened his mouth widely.
“O, Oh is that so?”
“And if you are able to repel the army of the Kasandora Kingdom, I’ll like you even more.”
“Yay, is that so, is that so? Well, I better do my best to make you take an even greater interest in me.”
Cu directed her eyes at him as if looking for an answer.
“Can you win?”
As expected, there was probably still some anxiety in some corners of her heart.
(Well, that’s true. No matter what you say, we only have 20 people to face an enemy of 2000 units.)
(Well, I wonder about that) – Naga tilted his head deliberately as if saying that.
“Certainly, in this battle it’s quantity rather than quality. However, there’s no way to say that the smaller force will definitely lose. In the end, it’s about preparations and tactics. That will decide the outcome of the battle. What’s more, there’s no need for us to face the enemy head on with everything we have, is there?”
Cu tilted her head.
“Depending on how we do it, if we take down a single part of the enemy’s force, we can stop them from advancing. Assuming we can take down the enemy’s general, it’s possible for us to make them incur a defeat.”
Cu, who didn’t seem to understand the meaning behind Naga’s words, only looked at him fixedly with her upturned yes
“Well, I cannot guarantee that we will win, but, it’s not like we are giving up from the beginning, thinking that we will lose. In the first place, until now, haven’t you fought with the human army while being outnumbered?”
Thinking about how to take Naga’s words, Cu nodded while saying ‘that’s right’.
The moment she tried to say something
“Hey Cu! What are you doing, stop messing around!”
From the opposite site, Yuki’s voice was heard, which made Cu turn her head.
“If you skip out on your duty, despite me and Ais desperately working, I’ll not forgive you!”
“Look, more logs are done, so transport them quickly.”
Cu, who turned her head back, ran away from Naga’s side.
Watching her retreating back, he turned his head, his eyes met with Yuki who had a fierce and angry expression.
“You too! Don’t just start conversations with other girls with that perverted, lecherous face.”
(This girl, why is she angry about something which isn’t related to her?)
Naga shrugged his shoulders while raising his hands perfunctory.
“Yeah, got it.”
“Hmph!” – Yuki turned her face away and returned to her work while stomping.
“Good grief” – Once he turned back around, he saw the gallant figure of Cu lifting the long, thick logs.
(That girl sure can do amazing things. Even though that log is much heavier than she is, how does she maintain her balance? Is it because of the magic that such things don’t matter to her?)
Naga, who was constantly surprised by their magic until now, thought of suitable fighting methods for the witches.
Were they to be used in the same way as the people who couldn’t use magic, it would be the same as throwing pearls before swine; in other words, it would be the same as not making use of the magic’s effectiveness.
“What this situation needs is something like this: ‘if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss’, right?…What the, again it’s Sun Tzu? Sun Tzu, Sun Tzu, who was that again?”
Even though Naga was about to clearly remember some things, in the end, he couldn’t.
Feeling vexed, Naga cursed himself a little.
“Un, I wonder if it’s supposed to be like this?”
Naga turned his face toward Yuki’s voice
At the gathering point, where the part of the forest opened up, ten-odd logs were lined up.
Cu was about to bring the last two.
Within a short time, Ais and Yuki managed to lumber this amount of trees and cut off the branches.
(Hahaha, indeed they are working at the speed of 50 lumberjacks.)
Naga, who was trying to suppress his laughter, drew near their side.
“Excellent, next, we’re going to cut these!”
Yuki announced with a loud voice.
Once Ais and Cu moved back, Yuki faced towards Naga.
“You too. It’s dangerous, so step back. If you get injured, I won’t care, you know?”
“Oh? Are you actually worried about me? I feel thankful.”
“Don’t be s-stu-stupid. It’s not like I’m worried about or anything. Because you will become an obstacle to my work, I’m telling you to go over there!”
On the other side, Ais smiled bitterly while putting her hands together as if begging.
“Yeah, I got it. I’ll distance myself, so as not to become a hindrance.”
“You should have done that much from the beginning!”
Shoo shoo – Yuki, who drove away Naga while shooing with her hand, quickly assumed a serious expression. She closed her eyes and concentrated her magic
“Cut through evil, cut through space, cut through eye, cut through the truth. Search for the enemy’s weakness and cut them. Omit their forte! Use the standing enemy as your shield and cut them. Release the seal from the Wind God and entertain his blade of wind!”
the wind revolved around Yuki, making a whistling sound.
A gust of wind ran through, hitting the logs.
The logs, which were close to a meter in thickness, were severed into two perfect halves near the center of the log.
Next, she increased the number of the wind blades to 2, and released them each toward the two severed pieces of the log.
Again, the logs were cut.
With that, a single log was divided into 4 parts.
Yuki controlled her wind blade and continued to cut even further.
Eventually, the log, which were about a meter in the length, was divided into 24 individual parts.
they were of irregular sizes due to measuring by eye, nevertheless, Naga didn’t care about that.
Cu, who was skillfully manipulating her leather belts, quickly collected the divided logs.
She lifted all 24 parts at once.
A single leather belt wrapped around 1,2,3 logs and raised them up at the same time.
The parts of the belts that were stretching into the air were more than 3 meters long.
This caused the belts around her body to become short, therefore, inevitably exposing much of her skin.
Naga’s eyes were stolen away by the gallant figure- and the exposed skin – of Cu, who was carrying many small logs at once. Nevertheless, the actual person would continue transporting the logs to the opposite site of the gathering area as usual, and put them down on the ground.
She placed the short logs in a cross-like manner.
When the small logs, which only reached the height of a person’s lower back, were lined up. The 5 witches that were waiting gathered near the logs.
The girls were holding Natas and small swords.
Despite Yuki having cut off the branches, due to her prioritizing speed, the work was only done roughly, so there were still some branch nubs remaining.
The girls shaved them off with natas and short swords and smoothed the surfaces. So as to increase the flow of magic, it’s better for its target to have a smooth surface.
For that reason, this was necessary work. But because it was a type of job that could only be done by hand, it was basically just manual labor.
Even the witches wouldn’t use their magic here.
Therefore, they used thick cloth to cover their arms and legs, so as to protect their skin.
Once the five of them adjusted the shapes of the logs, Ais and Yuki, who finished lumbering trees and making logs, joined them, as well as Cu, who finished transporting them.
Holding a nata, Naga, too, joined the work.
With only one hour having passed, hundreds of small logs were made.
“Please, someone go call Harrigan” – As Naga said so, Ais answered with ‘alright’ and dashed towards the fort.
Several of the witches took some of the small logs and lined them up in a vacant space. Next, they put some wooden sticks shaved from the fallen branches next to them. From now on, it was Harrigan’s turn.
She arranged the small logs with some of her hair, at the same time combining some of her hair with the sticks and the log.
Then, once she inserted her magic, the finely made wooden sticks attached to the log, creating a mini-sized wooden puppet
the log was the body, while the attached sticks were arms and legs.
At the bottom side of a 0.9-1 meter-long log, there were 2 short, thick rods (legs) growing out and supporting its main trunk.
Two thin wooden rods that corresponded to a pair of arms protruded from the upper part of the log. From there, parts that resembled forearms and elbows branched off into tips.
The elbow joints were connected using her hair, and from the elbow, the forearms moved separately.
At the ends of the arms, if one were to look closer, three long and finely made branches were attached. In other words, those were the fingers.
If one was to say it honestly, its appearance was ugly.
It was an awkward shape, which made even the witches doubt whether they could fight with something like this.
However, Naga was in a good mood.
“Whatever the shape it has, it’s fine. However ugly it is, as long it can follow our orders effectively, I couldn’t care less about its looks. Speaking of which, Harrigan, won’t you try to move it? I want to confirm whether or not you can move well enough, otherwise, we won’t be able to throw them into battle.”
“Ueah, I got it. Lela bring that thing.”
Because Harrigan and Lela didn’t participate in making the logs, nor in making the wooden puppet, they wore clothes, which, as usual, had lots of exposure. Nevertheless, Naga didn’t move his sight toward that, instead, he stared at the wooden puppet.
If that wooden puppet didn’t move as Harrigan instructed, Naga’s plan would collapse.
Will that thing move according to their wishes? Will it possess the offensive power he needed? Naga focused all his thoughts on that.
As soon as Lela held out the bow they had prepared beforehand, Harrigan took it and brought it to the puppet.
“Well then, shall we try it out? Make some room!”
At Harrigan’s command, the witches all took a step back.
While imagining the puppet’s movements inside her head, she continued to circulate the magic inside her body.
After circulating a sufficient amount of magic, Harrigan whispered her commands for the doll’s movement. The small puppet moved its legs to and fro as it began to advance unsteadily while shaking its torso.
Seeing its funny movements, Kei snorted without realizing it. Harrigan glared at her and she hurriedly turned away.
The other witches’ expressions weren’t as obvious as Kei’s, but nevertheless, they watched attentively as the wooden puppet staggered, with eyes filled with anxiety as if saying – ‘Will it be really fine?’.
Once it moved a certain distance, Harrigan sent a new order.
As the wooden puppet ceased to move, it skillfully drew the bow and notched an arrow.
Immediately after Harrigan sharply commanded it, the sound of the arrow cutting through the air was heard.
The other witches gave out voices of joy and surprise.
Naga, who was watching the front, waved his hand and called with a loud voice.
“How was that, Ais?”
Ais, who was standing 30 yards away on the other side, waved her hand back.
“It doesn’t seem like there’s any problem with its power, and there’s no doubt it’s enough to deal a life-threatening injury.”
As Ais answered, the witches who were listening erupted into joyous chattering.
Today, Naga once again wore his colorful sword, with its handle wrapped in crimson cloth, and its blade sheathed inside a vermillion scabbard, on the left side of his hip. While holding its pommel, Naga rushed to Harrigan’s side.
Because the sword was loosely attached, if he runs or jumps, it would shake and become a nuisance.
Unlike the witches, Naga’s body didn’t bounce while he ran.
He ran without raising his feet, as if he was sliding.
Once he stood in front of Harrigan he said:
“It seems that it went well, doesn’t it?”
Harrigan nodded as if in agreement.
“If it’s about shooting, then I can somehow manage it, but, I think it might be impossible for me to aim accurately…”
“That’s fine. Either way, the enemy will be glued to each other. The important thing is not to hit a target with a single shot, rather, it’s shooting in great number. Even if a clumsily operated gun….will kill if many shots reach its target…..hm?”
“Eh…no…a gun….what was that again??”
While frowning his eyebrows, he pondered.
“No, it seemed for a moment that I could recall something, but, it seems that I was only able recall some kind of feeling in my hands. It was profoundly heavy and certain, I learned about it…”
In front of his chest, Naga mimed holding something in both of his hands while tilting his head.
“Damn, it won’t work?”
Breathing out a single sigh, Naga put down both his hands listlessly.
“It seemed like I would recall just a little bit, but, well… that’s fine. If I pose one more time, I might be able to do it. It seems to be something like squatting when you take a dump, doesn’t it?”
“That’s quite a dirty example.”
Harrigan frowned her eyebrows, but nevertheless, Naga kept his calm face.
“Is that so? I get frustrated whenever there’s something, which I start to remember, and then it escapes me, even in moments like this, despite saying that I was about to recall something.”
“If you say a dirty thing like that..”
Haha – Naga laughed with an easygoing attitude.
“More importantly, my point is that the number of shots is what is important. There’s no need for an accurate aim, so you should only focus on that.”
On the other hand, Harrigan still had a serious face.
“That’s right. We were able to pick up the weapons that the soldiers left while fleeing. The amount doesn’t seem to be a problem, but there’s still the question of how many puppets I can control.”
“Regarding that, it should be fine if we check it out now. If it’s unstable or uncertain, we just need to practice.”
“Don’t make it sound so easy. The only one practicing would be me.”
Naga nodded with a very stern face.
“It will be fine, Harrigan. If it’s you, then you can do it. I have faith in you.”
(Is he saying it honestly, or mocking me?)
Harrigan gave a weak, wry smile.
“I’m thankful for your belief in me.”
“If you can’t do it, continue to practice until you can.”
Harrigan eyebrows shot up and she snapped while pointing at Naga
“Do you believe in me or not!? You’re making me nervous!”
“No no, because it’s the vital part of our strategy, I need to have you do whatever it takes for it to succeed.”
“Ahh, I got it.”
After answering, Harrigan looked at the big group of miniature puppets, which were lined up on the ground.
“Anyway, shouldn’t you first try it with ten of them?”
The total amount of wooden puppets in the end increased to 300.
Once they confirmed it, it turned out that Harrigan was capable of controlling 60 or 70 wooden puppets of this size, and if she tried her hardest she could even manage 80.
Despite that, it was not possible for her to make them do complicated tasks while also commanding each separately. Commanding them to repeat simple actions alone was something that required all her energy. Nevertheless, It was reassuring for her to be able to move 60 or 70 of them.
Assuming she failed to precisely command 60-70 puppets, as long as there were a large amount of attacks and targets, it would be a success anyways.
Even though the puppets were small and didn’t seem fearsome in appearance, they were quite a threat.
Among the witches, there were still some who doubted whether they could obtain victory because of how shabby the puppets looked. However, Naga didn’t care.
(I could care less about their appearance, rather, if the enemy makes light of them because of their appearance, it would be welcome.)
If they thought ‘such a thing can’t hurt us’ the chances that the enemy will be taken in by this misconception would be high.
This is what Naga predicted.
“Well then” – Naga said as he raised his head, looking around.
“There seems to be a future in making the wooden puppets and Harrigan controlling them with magic. With that, the next thing would be to check the other witches’ work. Shall I go take a look?”
Currently, Harrigan was occupied with practice.
Leaving her at the fort, Naga decided to go and see the progress of everyone else’s work.
This is where the horses that the enemy left behind came in handy.
Witches who had fast legs, for instance Ais, would run by themselves.
Yuki, who is a wind magic user, could operate the wind and ride on board, which she would call her Air Board, to travel between the fort and the base.
However, Naga didn’t have any confidence that he could run to the base.
Saying so, if he were to go there and return, it would probably take him half a day. Therefore, it was very inefficient.
Nevertheless, since there were the horses left by the enemy, he could arrive at the place in a short time. There’s no way he wouldn’t use them.
Since it is necessary to move swiftly during battle, Naga thought it would be better to ride a horse.
He picked out several mounts, from the group of horses, that seemed fast, and took his time practicing horse riding.
Rather than practice, it was more like remembering the feeling of riding, or better to say recalling his skills?
Riding on the horse, Naga rode around the fort’s walls, in the forest, and the moor.
Seeing how he looked while riding, Harrigan was filled with admiration.
“Fumu, as expected of what you said, aren’t your horse riding skills quite splendid? With that, you would probably be fine while riding on the paths inside the forest. Should we try to domesticate horses once again?”
Great amounts of money was required to get horses.
It would be possible to obtain them through an exchange of goods; nevertheless, there were other precious items which they needed more.
But, because the enemy left the horses, there was no need to prepare money.
It should be fine to look for someone who would be in charge of raising them.
“Doing it immediately won’t be possible, but, If we win this battle, shall we once again try to raise horses? Ikushina and Mimone seem to have taken a liking to the horses.”
Just as Harrigan said, among the witches, there were those who showed an interest in the horses.
Even the two witches – Ikushina and Mimone, who were enthusiastic, requested that Naga teach them while trying their best to ride the horses.
Since the two of them had good comprehension, they learned it quickly.
Despite not being able to ride as fast as Naga, if it was a plain, they would keep pace without falling behind.
At that time, Harrigan too felt a little more enthusiastic from watching those two.
“Should I try practicing a little bit of horse riding?”
Such a feeling welled up inside of her.
Primarily, one had to have a suitable cloths for riding a horse .
Were she to mount the horse in her usual outfit, her thighs and buttock’s skin would be immediately rubbed raw.
Mimone and Ikushina would wear hakama with voluminous sleeves that were unlike the witches’ usual clothing while delightfully galloping on the horses. Nevertheless, Harrigan had no interest in their clothes. (?)
Naga, who was assisted by Mimone and Ikushina, ran through the moor and reached the upper stream of the schwein river.
The source of the river was located deep inside the black forest.
The schweiz river which was amassed from rains and subterranean stream would flow through the forest and reach the edge of a plateau. Once it reaches that point, a head of water in form of a 120-130 yards long waterfall will appear, from which the river will fall at once into a plain.
Because there is a great distance between the cliff and the basin, when a strong wind blows at the time there’s a scarce amount of water, the falling water would be blown away, unable to reach the waterfall lake.
Whenever such days continue, the schweiz river would dry up; nevertheless, recently, the quantity of water upstream became abundant thanks to the heavy rainfall.
After it falls from the plateau to the moore, the river would freely flow to the northeast while meandering.
The unique features of that river would become the second stage of his two-stage preparations for the battle.
This part as well was a difficult task to be done by Ais and Yuki.
Similarly to the time when Harrigan controlled the small puppet, the two of them cut down the forest trees in the vicinity of in which the river was flowing down from the plateau.
However, unlike before, this time, they didn’t segment the logs.
The would only have Yuki cut off the branches with her wind magic.
The logs that had its branches removed would float on the river, go with its stream, and fall from the waterfall.
Because the waterfall lake was big and deep, the logs wouldn’t split and break when falling from such a great height. As long there was no strong wind, the logs would crash and sink into the lake without getting split, then float on the water.
After that, The floating logs would be carried to the bottom part of the river while being carried by the current flowing out from the lake.
One after another, the floating logs were collected by Nonoeru, who was waiting several Ligas away from the waterfall lake.
Nonoeru, whose main domain was water magic, controlled the flow of the river and stopped the logs.
The stream was narrow there, so the current was faster and the waters deeper than usual.
The fast flow of the river eroded both of its banks, creating a somewhat small canyon in that vicinity.
What Nonoeru was doing was piling up and connecting the floated logs, as well as trying to dam up the flow of the river.
Because it was natural for the piled logs to have some gaps remaining, it was not possible to completely dam up the river.
At the time when Naga revealed his tactic, Nonoeru was able to identify that problem, but still, he replied with:
“It’s fine, rather, it will be much better that way.”
“The soldiers from Kasandora’s army will probably suspect something if the water stream is completely blocked and dried up. Still, if the water level is lower than usual, they will just consider it lower than usual. To begin with- was it called Shweiz?- there’s no way for them to observe it on a daily routine, so they shouldn’t be able to tell if there’s little or much water with just a glance? Or am I wrong?”
Saying so, he looked at Harrigan, who nodded with ‘Hm, I see’.
“Indeed, if the river dries up, they will no doubt be thinking ‘what is the matter’, but probably they won’t suspect much of anything, as long there are no downpours in the previous days, they’ll probably think that this much of a reduced stream water is normal.”
At the same time, Nonoeru, who was focusing, was piling up the logs while creating a dam.
Still, no matter how good she was at controlling the water, there was no way for her to accurately place the logs.
When it comes to positioning them delicately and finely, it can be only done by manual labor. Even joining them together and reinforcing could only be done by hand.
The one who had the power to do that, was again Ais, with her monstrous power.
Using her magic to enhance her body, Ais dove inside the river and grabbed the log placed by Nonoeru while raising, moving, and joining them as she adjusted the dam.
Did her lung capacity also increase thanks to the magic enhancement? Ais could dive without problems for a short time.
Because a dam, which was made from just joining the logs together, wasn’t able to maintain its strength, Ais would sometimes bring big rocks from nearby, and use them as a reinforcement material to put around the logs.
Her figure, which raised the logs that were thicker than her own body, singlehandedly, was incredible. Not just that, she also lifted up rocks, which were far heavier and larger than herself above her head with little effort.
Despite that, what was more beautiful was Ais’ outfit.
Due to her displaying the maximum effect of her magic, she became much more slender than normal, and her clothes, which, from the start, covered little of her skin, covered even less because of the water soaking them.
Her soaked clothing was glued to her skin, furthermore, they seemed to be semi-transparent. It somehow gave her figure more charm.
The reason why Naga came here everyday was half due to checking the progress of the dam making, and half due to him wanting to admire Ais’s alluring body. Such were the circumstances.
The appearance of Ais, who was moving the logs inside the cold water while ignoring Naga’s gaze, became the target of other witches silent encouragement and admonishment.
Even if there were witches who didn’t wholly trusted Naga or his tactics, seeing how Ais took the initiative while working hard couldn’t help but make them think ‘Ais is doing her best with that, so we have to work properly too.’
Ais thought this might happen, which Naga took notice of and understood.
(That girl, she seems to be gentle, but actually is quite scary. Despite that, she’s rather intelligent, isn’t she? On top of that, she can look after others. Truly, she’s one capable girl.)
Naga was deeply admiring her alluring body as Ais was working with all her might inside the river.
Today, because the dam was almost complete, the river upstream was gathering quite a large amount of water.
Right now, in the last stage of the operation, the other witches were reinforcing the logs by tying them up with ropes while diving together with Ais.
The river upstream continued to swell with water, while the water downstream of the dam continued to decrease.
Naturally, there were small gaps in the dam and drainage holes made at the top of it, so even if the water reaches too high, it will flow down from them. Therefore, there was no need to worry about the river drying up.
The accumulated river water changed its color to a bluish-green from the nearly transparent blue as the water depth kept increasing.
Naga looked down at that view and nodded with satisfaction while standing on the edge of the river bank, which had became one level higher.
However, was he satisfied because the dam was finished faster than he thought? Or was it because he could feast his eyes on the sight of all the witches with their thin soaked clothing? One could not tell.
(It’s probably both)
Standing next to him, Lela was peeking at the side of his face while thinking so.
That aside – Thought Lela as she looked at the dam being completed before her eyes.
(Where has the idea of a damming a river for the sake of a battle come from?
Was it his original idea? or was it a precedent used in the history of wars in his world?
Perhaps this is a precedent, isn’t, it. How-ever.)
The plan of making those miniature-sized puppets was probably what he came up with on his own.
Since he said magic doesn’t exist in his world, a tactic based on the use of magic shouldn’t be something he could learn from his past military history.
And then of course, this way of fighting wasn’t something he could have experienced before.
Despite that, if it’s this method, one could use it to defeat an enemy with superior numbers.
(Hm, I wonder about, this. We won’t know unless we see it in practice, still, wouldn’t considering that especially after the outcome of a battle be more thrilling, I won-der.)
Was Naga’s strategy which in this case used the small wooden puppets operated by magic, and was more akin to “deceit”, something that was commonly used in his world?
In this world, where the concept of facing each other directly was common, it was unheard for the outnumbered side to counter with a clever plan.
At least not to this extent.
Just as he said: ‘In battle, quantity is more important than quality’ this meant that usually the outcome of a battle would be settled by the greater number of soldiers.
It was more common for the outnumbered forces to avoid open battle and turn it into a siege.
So as to make up for their lack of numbers, the witches would make free use of their specialty, which was magic, to fight against their opponents. Even so, they would still be taking their enemies attacks head on.
(To think that such a method of making up for our lack of numbers exist-ed.)
Because even Lela, who was a bookworm among the other witches, thought so, the other witches would be completely shocked.
No, even Lela was shocked.
Rather, she was probably the one to receive the greatest shock.
(I’m becoming more and more interested in that per-son, as well as in this person’s world.)
Lela again glanced at the side of his face but, he was no longer watching the river.
Naga, who raised his face, was looking upwards.
Lela followed his sight, but, there was nothing there.
What she saw was a blue sky stretching outwards, with clouds floating here and there.
What could he possibly be looking at? Or was he just looking at the sky?
Being concerned about that, Lela asked him.
“What are you looking for Naga-sa~n?”
Naga slowly turned to face her.
Once he looked at her, his stern expression was replaced with a faint smile.
Regardless of that smile, it appeared to Lela as though a little trace of loneliness was lingering on his face.
(Could it be that what he was looking for wasn’t the view of this world, but the one from his previous wo-rld? Is he missing the world where he came from?)
Naga, who had lost his memory of his previous world, should probably be having some vague reminiscence.
Nevertheless, Naga, who had a faint smile on his face, shook his head while saying ‘Nothin in particular’.
“I just thought that the blue sky was pretty.”
(Is he trying to deceive me? Well that’s fine. I’ll have you show what you see sooner or la-ter)
“More importantly, Lela.”
“You’re not helping with the construction of the dam, are you?”
“Because I’m bad at dealing with manual wo-rk, I can later make thing-s.
Burning and destroying is my main forte, bu-t.”
Naga’s smiling face clearly seemed to be more pleasant than what it was before.
“You are just like the other guys.”
Saying so, he faced toward the river, where the witches were diving and working.
“I am glad that you guys are wearing such tight, thin clothing while diving in the water, but well….”
“Ah…was that s-o?”
(Being told such things, I’m getting concerned about this person’s si-gt-h.)
Despite not entering the water, they would wear thin clothing, which exposed lots of skin.
Not just Lela, but everyone was like that as well. Nevertheless, being told that, made her become self conscious.
Lela, who had a bit of a red face, turned away so as not to be noticed.
“Rather than tha-t”
“Were you able to recollect some-thing?”
“That’s right, I wonder.”
Putting both of his hands behind his head, he again looked up at the sky.
“If my memory is faint……..I can somehow recall this and that, but were to describe them in detail, I wouldn’t be sure about that.”
“Is that s-o?”
“Once I manage to recollect something, I’ll tell you. I promise.”
“I’m looking forward to tha-t”
Turning his face back again, he slowly faced Lela.
As if bantering something, a shallow smile appeared on his face.
“That’s interesting indeed. My world shouldn’t be that fun…..despite that”
Hearing Naga that way, Lela answered with a serious expression.
“I think it’s more fun for Naga-san to learn about things you don’t know, rather than the world where Naga-san was in.”
His expression turned into a mysterious one.
“You, really are a strange girl, ain’t you?”
“Being told that by you, makes me feel like ‘I wonder’, bu-t.”
“Kuhaha. You’re saying some interesting things.”
Lela puffed up her cheeks in dissatisfaction.
“Well, let’s put aside my previous world. Because I’m here, I will only do what I ought to. I will only fulfill my bestowed duty.”
“Your bestowed du-ty?”
“I believe in neither gods nor buddhas, but… hm? Buddhas… Buddhas, what was that?”
“No, even If I’m aske-d.”
Folding his arms while bending his neck, Naga pondered.
Ga -he raised a little bit his face.
A relieved expression appeared on his face.
“Did you recollect some-thing?”
Lela braced herself as she asked.
“No, not at all.”
Lela staggered and lost her balance.
“The fact that I can say these words is proof that the inside of my head is packed with the things of the other world. Despite saying that I lost my memories, it’s just that I can’t recollect, rather than them vanishing. If so, I’ll probably remember sooner or later.”
(As expected of him. He has a positive attitude… doesn’t he?)
“Well, whatever the situation with my memories is, If we don’t win this battle, there will be no future for you. If you disappear then I’ll disappear with you.”
Naga was talking about sharing one’s lots with another.
At these words, Lela felt deeply impressed.
“Yes, I want to wi-n.”
While saying so, her face became radiant.
But despite that, his facial expression unexpectedly turned serious.
“Regarding winning, there will be many more battles waiting ahead of us. The war won’t just end with 1 or2 victories. We will probably end up doing nothing but continuing to fight. Perhaps, it would be more pleasant to lose that way. Still, you want to win?”
Lela gulped her saliva with a sound, then:
“I want to wi-n. I want to see the future and the world, which lies ahead of victo-rie-s.”
“Yeah, me too. Therefore, let’s win. Once you win, grasp the future using your own hands.”
Both Lela and Naga were fired up with pleasant feelings.
“Arara, the two of you look like you’re having lots of fun, aren’t you?”
Hearing Ais’ voice from behind them, the two of them froze while gulping.
As Naga and Lela turned back shyly, Ais, whose body was completely wet, stared at them with her usual smiling face,
Ais’ thin, wet clothing was transparent and sticking to her skin, giving off a nice feeling. Somehow, it looked more erotic than her naked form…. Nevertheless, the cramping and twitching veins, which appeared on her forehead repeatedly, made her looks scary.
Even for Naga, there was no time to admire her voluptuous figure.
Lela, who knew about how fearsome Ais is, to the extent where she was terrified, tottered while having her legs shaking.
“While we were doing our best, While we were doing our best! While we were doing our best!! Because it is important I said it 3 times, but, Naga-san and Lela, don’t you seem to be chatting enjoyably? That’s nice, isn’t it? For you to to be having this much of fun.”
“No no no no no”
“No no no no no”
Naga and Lela trembled as they shook with their heads and palms in front of their faces.
“Obviously, you’re fired up to help, right, Lela?”
“Is that so? In that case, please help us with the finishing touches.”
As Ais reached out both of her arms, she lightly shoved Naga’s shoulders.
Within a blink of an eye, she also pushed Lela’s shoulders
The 2 of them fell upside down in the direction of a few yards-wide dam lake, not as big as a real lake though, and immediately fell in the water with a gaudy sound, creating a splash.
Naga, who emerged his face from the water, reached the river bank while desperately swimming. He faced toward Ais, who was peeking in his direction, and shouted:
“Hey, Ais, just what are young doing?!”
Because Naga’s clothes consisted of a hakama and full sleeves, it couldn’t be helped that his clothing became heavy while soaked, which was difficult for him. Despite that, the fact that he could stay afloat without trouble was proof that he had quite a lot of experience in swimming.
Ais, who was looking down, suddenly jumped into the air.
Next to to Naga, who looked up with surprise, Ais fell while making a big splash of water.
Having his face splashed with the water, Naga unintentionally leaned backwards.
The wave created due to the shock soaked his body from top to bottom.
(That’s an amazing splash. Speaking of which, that girl, could it be she’s heavier than…)
“Is there anything you want to say Naga-san?”
Immediately emerging through the water surface, Ais treaded water as she asked him with a smile.
(That’s why, your face is scary)
“No, it’s nothing. By the way, should I help with something?”
“There’s not much to do, so it should be fine with you helping me get out from the water.”
Naga once again leaned backwards.
“Despite saying help, it was you who pushed me down!”
“I thought about it, but, once I considered it thoroughly, I noticed that you wouldn’t help me with the work.”
Being under the surface of the water, Naga clenched his fist unconsciously.
“To be honest, despite us working with all our might inside the water, you and Lela were just chatting with each other enjoyably, which made me feel just a bit annoyed.”
“Thank you for your honest opinion!”
“Because Lela has already gotten out of the water, Naga-san too, please get out.”
As he turned around to look, he noticed that Lela went up the bank in no time.
“Is it fine to not help you?”
“Yes. Rather, Naga-san will become a hindrance, so please get out quickly, will you?”
“This girl… I’ve had enough”
(Still, to think that this girl, who gives off a big sister vibe, would pull such a prank.)
Being able to see her unexpected(?) side, Naga’s mood notably improved.
Nevertheless, Naga had the feeling he would be scolded and considered as a nuisance, were he to stay in the water any longer.
Using his overarm strokes, Naga swam near the bank.
His clothes, which were damp with water, coiled around his body, making it hard for him to move.
The main cause of his hindered movements, was him being soaked which made his clothes weigh down his body.
Despite that, Naga swam and got out from the river bank as if they didn’t affect him at all.
“Good grief, I’ve gone through a bitter experience. What should I do? At this rate, I won’t be able to ride a horse.”
As he looked down with a pathetic face at his soaked clothes
“I’ll start a fire, so wai-t.”
Lela called out to him.
As he turned his head around, Lela, who was completely wet, collected the wooden fragments that were lying around.
In order to pile and join the logs together, Ais punched and crushed the ones which didn’t match in length and thickness, so as to adjust them, resulting in these fragments.
Lela, whose body was slightly trembling being damp and cold, gave out a small sneeze.
Naga smiled unintentionally as he associated her soaked appearance with that of a small puppy.
(somehow she looks cute. No, her soaked clothes look alluring, indeed, but…w, wait!)
“Your charms might be wet, but are they fine? Can you set up a fire using them?”
“They should be fine even if they’re w-et, but, it will be hard to write on them, so it might become a bit of a probl-em”