Story 4-4『Claria’s Religion』
The search for the Forest of the Demonic Dragon, day two.
In the end, there were no qualifying locations found yesterday. We exchanged opinions of what we realized—for instance, how we should react if we encountered an adventurer intruding the forest—and things like that.
Last time, Yuina’s group seemed to have encountered adventurers. Because the members were not a problem, they pretended to be like adventurers of the same guild, but that excuse couldn’t be used many times.
Therefore, I feel regretful but to conclude, when we encounter a group of adventurers… they will have to die.
I don’t know where information could leak from. Given that, it was necessary to plug every source… according to Miare’s speech. The group of demons—Lily and Leadred—were in favor of it.
Although Sajima expressed her disapproval until the end, she had to accept the requirements. If she wants to be together with us, she’ll have to get used to things like this.
Reluctantly, Sajima consented.
Therefore Shuri and I were walking around a different region today as well. The teams weren’t changed.
“I hope we get a clue today.” (Daichi)
“We’re past halfway, there haven’t been places that looked like it so it’s only a faint hope.” (Shuri)
“Don’t… say negative things.” (Daichi)
“… That’s right. Let’s work hard.” (Shuri)
It’s good to think positively. Now that we’ve finished half, the rest has a higher probability. That is, there’s only half to go.
… Huh? Of course it’s like that… I can’t seem to get my head around it.
That’s a strange thought.
We advanced towards the interior like this, with decreasing amounts of peaceful conversation. The amount of light gradually decreased and it became dark.
This is a suitable location for people who doesn’t want to be seen to hide.
“I wonder if such a place…?” (Shuri)
“Be vigilant. Pay attention and advance.” (Daichi)
Shuri saluted with a snap. Such a childish scene. So cute.
That’s probably why she was the class mascot.
While reconfirming her charm, we walked for another thirty minutes.
My body feels a bit off here. I can’t calm down. I don’t feel bad. I’ve experienced something like this feeling before; and yet not quite.
“… Shuri.” (Daichi)
“Would you say… it’s a little cold?” (Daichi)
“Ah, you too?” (Shuri)
Her answer told me she felt the same sense of discomfort as me. We know this feeling. The reason is, it was useful in the last dungeon.
Magic that lowers the surrounding’s temperature by releasing cold air. This feels too similar to Shield’s favorite magic to use at that time. Shuri wouldn’t go out of her way to do something like that.
Since it’s already good in the forest to begin with.
It’s hard to think that the dungeon’s guardian, Garfunkel, did this.
… Which leaves the possibility of it being a third party.
“… Shuri. Take out your dagger. In the worst case, there might be a battle.” (Daichi)
“Y-yeah. I wonder if it is an assassin from Claria…?” (Shuri)
“It’s probably a ninety-nine percent chance. Let’s bring ‘em to light first. I’ll start it from here. Shuri, the flare!” (Daichi)
I pulled out the sword from its sheath at my waist, thrusted it into the ground and chanted a spell.
“Ground Wave!” (Daichi)
The tip of the sword submerged into the ground and produced a big wave that shook the ground at its epicenter. The sudden isolated attack should probably lure them.
Verifying that the『Icy Wind』had dispersed, Shuri used the signal to gather their comrades.
They might be in a similar situation. If so we’ll crush them all in one place.
Or if the opposition noticed and took advantage of this, I wouldn’t mind it.
“White Blizzard!” (—)
Ice arrows that froze whoever they pierced came flying in after the magic’s name was shouted.
Shuri struggled to repulse it by using the magic Lily had used before, melting everything. I returned the gift two times over towards the direction the arrows came from.
“Berserk Tempest!” (Daichi)
I shot off the Emperor-class magic, mowing the trees down. Several screams were heard mixed in with the sounds of the wind. I ran over to the collapsed people.
The bodies all around had died. Strangely, every one of them had identical white hooded robes. It had a silhouette of a woman praying embroidered on to the chest. They had crosses hanging from their necks, too.
They had books in their hands that were bulky like dictionaries, probably to recite the spell from. Definitely Claria’s minions.
“Looks like they came to obstruct us.” (Shuri)
“Yeah. It’s as Shuri said.” (Daichi)
Picking the book up, I turned its pages. The words in it were devoted to the adoration of the goddess Claria.
With this the evidence was all here. Our opposition got involved.
Probably… from their clothes, they were people that believed in Claria.
Although I don’t know by what process they were manipulated, the fact is that the end result were those men and women were being cooked by us.
That f*cking goddess needs to study up and understand that ordinary people won’t be able to defeat us. Stalling. They were probably sacrificial pawns.
“What do we do, Katsuragi-kun? Go to help everyone? Or wait here?” (Shuri)
“… That’s right. Judging by these guys’ ability it seems there’s no problem but… just in case, let’s. I’ll go to Yuina, you go to Leadred.” (Daichi)
“What do we do afterwards? … Since they found us here they’ve probably also attacked our home…” (Shuri)
“We’ll think about that when the time comes. For now, the sign to group up will be when I use the flare. Okay?” (Daichi)
“Yeah, then, be careful!” (Shuri)
After briefly making the arrangements, ran to our jobs in a hurry.
“Hmmm… I feel something out of place… There’s a great magic coming from that way.” (Lily)
Change of location; searching area of Team Lily-Yuuma-Selen. This relatively open space was left in charge of these girls who mostly conformed a member roster of people with good eyesight who, in the case of an emergency situation, are experts in clashes of power against power.
Standing in those three’s way, in the center of the clearing, there was a single man wrapped about in unblemished pure white robes. The first thing he said was the line from before.
“Those guys from the Claria Religion…? This will be an annoying encounter.” (Lily)
Lily spat out her bothered thoughts, glaring at the man’s face.
She said that the Claria Religion that worshiped the goddess Claria was the most popular religious sect in the world. They had even participated in the past war.
This man was probably at the bishop level judging by the Claria Religion scripture in his hand.
“Those words. I return them to you in their entirety. Nevertheless, we who heed Claria-sama’s wonderful voice, shall consign monsters like you to hell!” (—)
The bishop proudly pushed the scriptures high towards the sky.
That scripture is a nuisance as it allows Claria to assist him with sufficient magic for up to the King-class. Lily remembered dreadful items like that from the past war. She immediately entered attack mode as well.
“Your motivation is good, but you are no match for me—Woam—Bishop of the Claria Church’s Gandarosu Branch! You are a monster, after all! You are unsightly! By my faith in the goddess, I will win!” (Woam) [TL: The lettering used for Woam can be read as the word for Worm.]
The bishop raised his voice in a guffaw and smiled.
The one to get angry from seeing him wasn’t Lily… but another.
Right now, the angry person was the man who loved the insulted woman.
“… Lily. Could you leave this to me? I want to confirm that my skills haven’t dulled.” (Yuuma)
Yuuma put his hand on Lily’s shoulder and asked. Lily accepted the request with a sarcastic laugh at the easy to understand lie and stepped back.
Her fighting spirit had already went away. Since she already knew the outcome.
“… With this, I am your opponent.” (Yuuma)
“Hmph… it’s just the likes of a betrayer that hangs out with a monster. Do you think you can defeat me, who has receives Claria-sama’s favor!?” (Woam)
“That’s right. I wonder about that.” (Yuuma)
Yuuma, calmly dealing with Woam’s speech and conduct, each of which got on his nerves, conversely stirred him up. If one speaks of inner beauty, it would be the demons rather than Woam. Such a filthy heart.
“… Making a fool of me here… don’t you understand that you’re going to get hurt!? Execution! Execute the heretic!!” (Woam)
“Those are the words. I’m also a little angry. You’re treating Lily as a monster. You don’t know anything about her. Humans and Demons. Do you even know which is evil?” (Yuuma)
Yuuma put on a black open fingered-glove from his inside pocket onto his hand, thrusting a finger towards Bishop Woam.
“I am not husband to a Six Demon General just for show.” (Yuuma)
Saying so, he faced Woam with a smiling face and eyes that contained a great amount of fury.