Chapter 159 – Entry of the Fools
I was so angry at the guard station that I forgot to ask where the inn was located, but there was only one inn open for business in the first place.
Dingy, cracked walls and warped, creaking doors. The room reeked of dust, mold, and rotting food. I regretted my decision to enter, but I had no other choice. At the counter at the back of the entrance, there is a single, dying old hag who stares at us with a mousy, uncomfortable look on her face.
Louis heads to the counter as a representative, but it already looks like a gunfight.
“Ten silver coins apiece. Food, water, and oil for the lamps are extra!”
“Oh! That’s no way in this shabby inn!”
“If you don’t like it, get out. There are no other places to stay anyway. You should be grateful that I’m letting a stranger like you stay here.”
“…I’ll kill you if you keep on screwing around, you old hag.”
Louis’ comment was too honest, but Myrril suppressed it with a gentle smile.
“Don’t worry, Louis. I hope the old lady will live a peaceful life until the end of her days.”
“Eh? O…oh, yes.”
Hey, Mir-neesan, your eyes are scary, your eyes!
“You’ve only got a few hours to live anyway” is written all over her face!
The killing intent is so dense that you can almost touch it, and even Louis, who was in a state of fury, is so scared that her eyes are swimming… or rather, all of the Battlecry members are trembling. The Calmon family is so exhausted that they don’t even have time to react.
It was getting tiresome, so I took over in the hypocritical mode I had cultivated during my days as a corporate employee.
“Yes, that’s fine. I’d like to borrow the stables for our two horses and my familiar.
“Ten silver coins for each animal. Feed and water are extra. Cleaning up feces and urine is also extra.”
The sheer shitiness of it all was starting to make me enjoy going around in circles. This old hag with the hard-on is amazing.
I’m converting it to 65,000 yen… but in this world’s monetary value, it’s about a month’s worth of living expenses for a family like Calmon’s.
The whole town has been ripping us off. And they are probably working for the bandit guild. Maybe they are just trying to survive, but they can’t be saved, can they?
“Well, here are 100 silver coins. Please count them.”
I take out a jute bag. There are plenty of silver coins, so it’s fine. I’ll pay for the 30 silver coins with copper coins.
“Oh, wait a minute.”
“Count them here, you old hag.”
When she tried to take it to the back, I almost lost my temper. I guess she was going to do the same thing as that fucking guard, but this time I made her count them in front of me so I didn’t have to deal with her nonsense.
“Two rooms on the far side of the second floor. If you break anything in the rooms, you’ll have to pay for it.”
“There’s nothing to break, you shitty old hag.”
That was my honest impression when we entered the room.
The two rooms, facing each other at the end of a creaking corridor, were both about ten tatami in size, with only two windows with wooden shutters and a hanging lamp. There’s a limit to simplicity.
The beds are nothing more than wooden planks placed on top of a wooden box, and there are no sheets or bedding.
A pile of what appeared to be blankets, which could only be thought of as a pile of garbage, lay in the corner of the room.
Moreover, the fact that there are only two beds in a room that sleeps five people is a sign that the staff is completely taking people for fools.
“What’s this stinky smell? Is this really a blanket?”
“Louis, don’t touch those things. We’re going to be attacked at night anyway. We can take turns sleeping in this room until then.”
“Sleep right here in this bed?”
“No way. They don’t have bedding.”
I didn’t want to touch it, so I kicked the blankets out into the hallway with my foot, took out the wooden boxes and boards, and set up a simple barricade in the hallway.
If that old hag complains about anything, I’ll just kill her then. It’s just that our schedule is a little accelerated.
“Move over there. I’ll put this down.”
I set up a folding military bed in the middle of the room. It was a simple aluminum frame covered with cloth, but I had enough for the number of people in the room. I also prepared military blankets and sleeping bags.
“Is this a portable bed? It’s an interesting construction.”
“The round ones are filled with cotton. It’s very soft.”
“Yes, it’s called a sleeping bag. It’s just rolled up, so when you open it up, you can use it as a thermal blanket.”
“Heh, it looks really warm.”
First, let’s have Calmon, his daughter Nora-chan and his wife Rufia-san rest in one of the rooms. Louis and Eino will be escorting them, and they will take turns sleeping in the other room.
Both doors are left open for safety.
The men, except for Calmon, will sleep in the room across the hall. They will also sleep in shifts. Before going to bed, I returned the weapons that had been entrusted to me to each of them.
“Oh, thank you very much.”
“I was really worried when I was unarmed.”
Eino-san and Colon are overtly relieved.
I agreed with their muscle-brained call, “We’ll be fine without weapons,” but I guess they were forcing themselves to go along with it.
“I’m almost certain they’re going to attack, but the question is on what scale. How many people in this town are with the bandit guild?”
“No idea. The way I see it, it doesn’t make any difference if the guild is involved or not; they are the enemy, you know?”
Everyone agrees with Louis’ opinion, including me.
“How many people live in Roses?”
“I think it’s about three hundred.”
“That’s a lot of people to kill.”
“You’re crazy if you think that way, Takifu.”
I looked in the direction Louis was pointing and understood.
Everyone seemed to have calmed down by being armed, but Myrril was so happy that she was rubbing her cheeks as if she was anxious about being without her UZI.
“Oh, “Wuji,” you’ve come back well… I was worried about your absence, as well as my M1911 copy and my polar revolver. Now you have nothing to be afraid of, okay?”
Oh, yes. We’re a little scared of you.
“Well, then, the guards should eat. I’ll bring out the bread and stew. Here are the drinks. Each of you takes this as your personal baggage.”
“What’s this silver thing?”
“The small folded-up sheet is a thermal sheet. When you wrap it around your body, it blocks the wind and keeps your body heat in. The wrappings are food for sailors. I heard you can survive for two days with one of those.”
I handed out an aluminum vapor-deposited film called an emergency blanket to keep them warm and a high nutritional value block. Even in the worst-case scenario, if we were separated from the group, these two items would keep us alive until morning.
Finally, we need to share a common understanding to unify the group.
We will kill anyone who attacks us. And then, after getting information from the attackers, Myrril and I will take out the headquarters of the bandit guild.
“And if we don’t?”
“Then we’ll ask the guards.”
Myrril and I will take the two end bunks in the military beds.
“We’ll take turns every hour or so. If you see anything strange, even before the hour is up, wake me up.”
I wake up to a shaking sensation. Colon was standing there, looking a little tired. McCain was waking Tig, who was sleeping in the bed next to him, as well.
“It’s about time. Can you switch over?”
“Thank you, good night.”
“Fuwaahh… nothing unusual so far?”
“No, just one thing. I noticed that it was strangely quiet downstairs, so I checked and found that the old hag was gone. She seems to have escaped.”
“Any sign of the door opening?”
McCain shook his head at my question.
“There wasn’t. Maybe she let us in and left right away.”
In case of an attack, huh? Now we don’t have to worry about it. I went downstairs and set up my new traps, one at the front door and one at the back door.
The old hag must have turned off the lamp and left. There was no fire, and it was pitch black. It was a perfect setting.
“Don’t go downstairs from now on. There is a trap, and if you go through the front and back doors, you will die. If it is necessary to escape, do it through the window. Understood?”
Colon, McCain, and Eino, who switched places, climbed into their sleeping bags and immediately began to sleep.
“Mir, how are you feeling?”
“I’m fine. I’m ready to go.”
I took out my Ithaca shotgun as my main weapon. As a sidearm, I had my MAC 10 with a silencer hanging from my shoulder to my chest by a leather strap.
I’m not a good shot, and in the dark, I’m not sure I can do it. Since I was not a good shot, I had no choice but to hit the target by scattering it all over the place.
Myrril and I put on our helmets and flip our night vision scopes up to our foreheads.
Louis wakes up after a shift on watch and looks at our gear with suspicion.
“It’s a magic tool to see through the dark of night.”
“You guys really come up with a lot of stuff one after the other, don’t you…?”
About an hour after the shift, the color of Louis’ face changed as she waited with a cup of tea.
At the same time, Myrril, who seemed to have sensed something, approached the window and opened the wooden door a little.
“Something is coming.”
“Louis, do you know the number?”
“It’s no less than ten, but… it’s troublesome. I hear the sound of armor.”
“Oh, so the guards are in on it, too, huh? Good, we won’t have to kill them later.”
“I, too, will not have to waste the new weapon I just bought.”
Louis looked at me and Myrril, who smiled and nodded at each other and shook her head with dismay.
“You guys, why do you look so happy? We only have swords and hand spears. We can only wound an armored opponent with those things, you know?”
“Well, you’ll see.”
I feel sorry that they slept only half as long as they were supposed to, but I woke the others who had been sleeping and asked them to settle down in the corner of the room. I put out the spare bulletproof board I had procured for Humvee and prepared for an attack from the outside.
“Go around the back.”
The voice from outside came through the walls of the cheaply furnished inn. It sounded familiar. It was probably that miserable guard captain.
“Don’t damage the building!”
“Shhh, shut up!”
The old hag’s squeaky voice complained, and the guard captain’s abusive voice controlled her. I was surprised to hear that old hag came along. The top names on the kill list are all here.
“Everyone, cover your ears and get behind the shields. It’s probably going to be a little bumpy.”
Apparently, having learned their lesson from the gunfire along the way, everyone quickly covers their ears and bows their heads.
The front and back doors are kicked open at the signal of the guard captain, and the sound of a large group of people stepping in is heard. There is a slight pause, and when they almost suspect a misfire…
The building shook violently with a thunderous roar.