It’s Ko-Fi’s Supporters’ chapter (6/32), enjoy~
Chapter 52 – Each Role
“Oh, those bombs were amazing.”
Some time after the second attack by the Harpy bombing squad was over, many refugees ― or rather, liberated people ― and Liberation Army troops returned. Many of them were covered in blood and mud, making for a pretty impressive sight. However, judging from the expressions on their faces, morale seemed to be high.
Fronte and the rest of the standby group, the Harpies, are tracking down the enemy troops that have escaped, while Pirna and the others who came back earlier are resting their wings. Sir Leonard and Shumer were covered in blood, but it was all blood, and they didn’t seem to have a scratch on them.
“This time, I was saved many times by these twin fangs that Kosuke-dono made for me.”
Sir Leonard grinned, still looking bloody and fierce. Yeah, you look like a bloodthirsty lion when you smile like that; it’s super scary.
The two swords that Sir Leonard carries at his waist are the excellent mithril swords that I made at his request. Sir Leonard had a hard time deciding what kind of sword to use, but he chose a simple straight sword. The pair of swords were named “Twin Fang,” the same as his alias, and he has been carrying them around with him ever since I gave them to him.
“I’m glad to hear that. You should go and cleanse yourselves first.”
“Yes, I suppose so. It would be rude to stand in front of Her Highness with blood on my hands.”
“It can’t be helped. Kosuke, prepare a nice meal for us, okay?”
The two bloodied people walked towards the watering hole, nodding obediently to my words. As I watched them walk away, Qubi and the others came up.
“Thanks for the good work. Are you guys hurt?”
“I’m fine. The potions you gave us have healed us.”
“If it weren’t for the crossbow and the hand grenade, we would have been in danger.”
“Thanks to the weapons and tools that Kosuke made for us, we made it out alive.”
Indy, a former adventurer of the Blue Demon race, repeatedly nodded at the words of Worg, a wolf-beast man and former guard. The three of them don’t seem to be as dirty with blood and mud as Sir Leonard and Shumer. I asked them why that was.
“Those two attacked with hand grenades and then ran into the cavalry…”
“If you do the same as them, you’ll never live long enough.”
“As a warrior, I admire them…”
Qubi, Indy, and Worg each smiled bitterly. They plunged themselves into it… Are they the main characters in a warriors game or something?
“So, what was the battlefield like?”
I took the table and chairs out of my inventory and handed the three of them water, hand towels, and burgers as I asked them what the actual battlefield was like. It’s important to get some good information.
“Nggh… ah! That’s right, where should I start?”
“Should we start with the part where the Holy Kingdom army tracked us?”
“No, I think it’s better to start with how we ended up attacking the mine.”
“Right. It all started when the first and second units liberated a settlement village.”
The first and second units liberated a settlement village near the rock salt mine in question, and it seems that the timing was just right for the arrival of a replacement for the mine guards. There were many soldiers from the Holy Kingdom army.
They waited until nightfall to quietly eliminate the patrol with crossbows and then attacked the Holy Kingdom troops who were resting. Sir Leonard and Shumer did a great job on all sides and quickly overpowered the Holy Kingdom army.
“The replacements were also transporting supplies for the security forces stationed in the rock salt mine. We saw this as an opportunity.”
Sir Leonard thought that with a wagon and a large number of supplies, they could somehow bring the Merinard citizens who were being forced to work in the rock salt mine to the Great Omit Wilderness, so they contacted the people of the settlement village and confirmed the situation of the rock salt mine.
They heard that some people from the village had already been sent to the rock salt mine and that the soldiers of the Holy Kingdom had told the villagers that the working environment was very harsh, and that several workers were dying every week, and that if they were sent there, it would be the end, and that they should follow obediently if they didn’t want to be sent there.
The surviving members of the Holy Kingdom’s army were also interrogated to confirm the truth, and it was confirmed that what the villagers were saying was true. What happened to the surviving soldiers of the Holy Kingdom after the interrogation? Their punishment was left to the villagers. Yes.
I don’t have to tell you what happened to them, do I? That’s what I experienced right after I arrived at the elf village. They didn’t seem to have a Master to stop them, though.
After this liberation mission, there is no telling when the next one will be carried out. Since they couldn’t leave the rock salt mine workers, on which many died in just a week unattended, Sir Leonard hurriedly called up other units to carry out the liberation operation of the rock salt mine.
This was the best chance to do so, as the liberation army’s methods were not yet known to the Holy Kingdom’s army. The summoned units marched into the rock salt mine and waited for night to strike. Divided into two groups, they climbed over the crude but sturdy log walls and advanced from both sides of the walls to quietly overwhelm the enemy. Next, they disposed of the patrol inside the rock salt mine using the same tactics and then attacked the barracks.
The raid itself was completed quickly and smoothly, but the problem began there. Among the people working in the rock salt mine, there were quite a few injured and sick people who were too weak to walk properly.
They were left unattended without proper treatment, and it was difficult to move them. But that’s where my potions, which I had given to the liberation unit, came in handy. I had given them all kinds of potions, one for each person, just in case. This was not well received by the liberation unit at first. The potions in glass bottles were heavy and required a rather bulky potion bag to prevent them from breaking during transport.
However, Isla and I overcame the opposition of the liberation unit and made everyone carry a potion bag. I don’t know what Isla was thinking, but from my perspective as a survivalist, I thought that the presence or absence of the potion would significantly improve the survival of each individual.
As it turned out, the potion saved not the members of the liberation unit but the weakened workers of the rock salt mine. Not exactly what I had in mind, but it turned out okay.
With the recovered miners and more than 800 of their families, Sir Leonard and the liberation unit returned to the village they had liberated before the rock salt mine and began to retreat with the supplies and harvested crops of the Holy Kingdom’s army.
The liberated people included a certain number of former adventurers and soldiers of the Merinard Kingdom’s army, so they armed themselves with captured equipment from the Holy Kingdom’s army and took on the role of guarding the liberated people while liberating villages along the way and returning to the Great Omit Wilderness.
“We managed to make it back with the village’s harvest and the supplies we captured.”
“It was a bit of a burnout for such a large group.”
“Thanks to Pirna’s message, we knew we could make it this far, so we managed to keep our morale up. The problem was the liberated people.”
In the past twenty years, no one has ever returned to the Black Forest beyond the Great Omit Wilderness. They seemed to have some hope when they saw our equipment, but there was a gloomy atmosphere in the air.
If I were in the same position as the liberated people, I would have been anxious… Suddenly, I was liberated from the people of the Holy Kingdom, and some strong-looking people were leading me, but the destination was a dead land where no one has come back for 20 years, and besides, I couldn’t eat enough food, I didn’t have a place to sleep, and I had to stay in the field… Yeah, it’s hard.
Even in such a situation, the patience of the liberated people who managed to reach this fort without exploding is amazing.
“And when we saw the Great Omit Wilderness, we were finally spotted by the Holy Kingdom’s army.”
“One of the Harpies on a reconnaissance mission spotted the Holy Kingdom army. There were about one thousand infantrymen and cavalrymen combined, so at first, I thought we were in trouble, but the cavalry was so few that we were saved.”
“If there had been two hundred more cavalry, we wouldn’t have been able to do anything.”
The rest of the battle went exactly as Pirna had told me. Harpies’ aerial bombardment came after the cavalry had been crushed by crossbow fire and grenades, and the rest fled helplessly.
“Qubi, you managed to capture the Holy Kingdom’s warhorse, didn’t you?”
“It was just luck. The horse had lost its rider and was charging at me, but I jumped on its back and managed to calm it down.”
I heard that the warhorse was now resting with the horse that had led the wagon.
“But… I was prepared for this, and now I feel like I’ve been let down.”
“I knew that the Holy Kingdom would attack here. I was ready to fight too. I’ve never been able to point a weapon at anyone before. I’ve never even gotten into a fistfight.”
At my confession, Qubi and the others looked at each other with strange looks on their faces and then began to laugh while holding their stomachs.
“Oh, come on, it’s not funny.”
“No, sorry, sorry. Well, you were prepared for that, weren’t you? No, you’re serious, Kosuke.”
“There’s no need for you to be so prepared. Kosuke can make a lot of amazing weapons, tools, and potions. You should just leave that stuff to people like us.”
“That’s right. If there’s no one else who can fight, you might have to muster up the courage to fight, but as long as people like us who can fight are alive and well, leave it to us.”
Worg, Qubi, and Indy each said that and slapped me on the shoulder, back, and head. It hurts, you idiots!
“In the first place, there’s no one in the Liberation Army who doesn’t give Kosuke a second glance. Standing right in front of Gizma and taking its charge is some fucking nerve.”
“Not only that, Kosuke has amazing abilities, and you’re using them correctly for the good of everyone without being conceited, yet you’re not asking for much”
“You should know how much we owe you for that. If you fight in the front line, we’ll have no place to go.”
The straightforward praise and recognition made me feel like I was about to cry. Ah, this is not good. It might be because the Holy Kingdom’s army retreated and the thread of tension was broken, but I’m starting to feel the tears.
“Hey, hey, what’s wrong? Is it something to cry about?”
“No, I’m just happy to be recognized, you know. It was worth all the hard work.”
“Haha, you’re a little more sensitive than I thought… Nggh.”
As Worg bites into his hamburger, his eyes widen, and the wolf ears on his head stand up. I followed his gaze and saw Pirna and the other Harpies smiling at us. What is it? They were supposed to be smiling, but I felt a chill.
Qubi and Indy were gone before I knew it. That was quick!
“You better have a good explanation for that! I swear! I’m begging you!”
Worg, who had been left behind, ran like a rabbit. He’s a wolf, but how can he run like a rabbit?”
“What’s wrong with you, Kosuke-san? Did they bully you?”
“Shall I go and bring them back here?”
Pirna and the others, who had driven the three men away with just a glance, gathered around me and called out to me in concern. What do you mean you’re going to bring them back? I’m a little scared.
“No, it’s not like that. I was just touched when I heard that everyone recognized me. They didn’t do anything wrong.”
“Oh, really? I thought they were bullying our benefactor, Kosuke-san.”
“Well, I guess I’ll stop to bring them back here.”
“Kosuke-sama, I’ll wipe your tears.”
In the blink of an eye, Pirna and the others surrounded me, stroking my head with their soft, warm feathers and wiping my eyes. I’m starting to feel embarrassed about being so pampered.
“Ah, um, thank you. I’m fine now.”
“Well, well, don’t say that.”
“By the way, Kosuke-san, I heard you got a feather from Fronte and the others, and you’re taking good care of it.”
“Please take our feathers, too.”
Perhaps they had prepared them in advance, but all five of the liberation unit members handed me one of their feathers. The blue feather, the red feather, the yellow feather, the white feather, and the gray feather. The blue feather, by the way, belongs to Pirna.
“O-oh. Thank you. By the way, does Harpy have any special meaning in handing over their feathers to others?”
“No, not really. It’s a part of our own body, and we don’t give it to others without permission. You know, it’s the same with other races, right?”
“I don’t know much about this world, but according to the common sense of my world, that’s true.”
It’s not every day you get to cut off your own hair and give it to someone else. I’ve never seen or heard of such a custom in detail, although it may have been given as a talisman to a lover going off to war.
“So, it has no special meaning, but Fronte and the others said that Kosuke-san was happy to receive it, so we wanted to show our gratitude.”
“Well, thank you.”
I checked the texture of each of the five feathers and placed them in my inventory. As I thought, each feather has a unique name. The blue one is Pirna’s feather, the red one is Shou’s feather, the yellow one is Orio’s feather, the white one is Aegis’s feather, and the gray one is Dicle’s feather. I wonder if there’s a reason why the list doesn’t show them all as “Harpy’s feathers.”
I spent a while chatting with Pirna and the others, with lots of skinship, asking them about each other’s experiences during the expedition.
I wondered what would happen when I heard that nearly one thousand liberated people were heading this way, but it was fortuitous that we were able to get them into the fort more easily than I expected.
No, I guess the hard part is yet to come. We’ll have to send most of these people back to the main base, train the people who can fight, and do a lot of other things. There’s going to be a lot more trouble, and this is where it all starts.