En Route (3)
Leading along our escort target and his four wagons, we made our way out of the River Town of Donsama and set off for Corky. We found a wagon with a broken axel stuck in the middle of a meadow next to some large rocks.
It was still somewhere around a kilometer ahead of us… but it was positioned in such a way that we wouldn’t be able to pass along its side, nor could we take a detour. Also, there was a man standing next to it with crossed arms looking troubled.
Seeing that, Gozoh immediately went to checking that his equipment was all in place.
“Kehma, that’ll be the thieves. Be ready fer a fight.”
“Ah, so I guess they popped up after all?”
” ‘Course they did.”
Gozoh popped his neck in preparation.
Yeah… the wagon’s just too suspicious.
“Alright, so it’s at least eighty percent suspicious that they’d get stuck right in the middle of the road like that. The proper etiquette is to either dismantle the wagon or at least move your luggage off it. So someone just standing there like that man is either an idiot or a thief.”
“There aren’t any horses either. Just an obviously broken wagon’s a bit… eh, we just gotta deal with them, it’s a profit for us~”
Hearing Ichika’s supplement, Meat also stood up in the wagon.
“We borrowed this wagon an’ I don’t be feeling like riskin’ the crest to them. Let’s stop here and walk the rest… who’s up fer lookin’ after the wagons?”
Gozoh gestured toward the wagon’s crest as he spoke.
“Ah, we’ll stay back then. All you in Team Bacchus should be enough to deal with the thieves. Take Shikina along, she’s a nuisance.”
“I—I am a nuisance!?”
Yep, for my beauty sleep.
“It’s a good chance for you to fight some thieves, hopefully it doesn’t turn out like it did with that orc.”
“I-I’ll be fine!”
“Hmm. Alright then, guess Kehma’s party’s gonna be lookin’ after the wagons. We’ll not be needin’ te worry about that then. Oi Wataru, hear that?”
“Yep. Loud and clear.”
Sitting next to the merchant in the furthest back wagon in the coachman’s seat, Wataru responded.
“Good, let’s go.”
“Rokuko-chan and everyone, be careful.”
“I’ll put up an [Air Barricade], so you should be safe from arrows… but please be careful.”
Stopping the leading wagon around four hundred meters from the thief’s position, Gozoh, Roppu, and Wataru got off the carriage. Then, doing their best to look defenseless, they called out to ask what happened and if they needed help.
They were probably going for a surprise attack.
Guess I’ll just leisurely see what happens while I watch over the wagons.
Just as I started to lay down, Ichika unsheathed her kitchen knife—her weapon.
“Man am I ready, Goshujin-sama!”
“Huh? What’re you doing, Ichika? We’re just watching over the wagons, we don’t really need to do anything?”
“What’re ya talkin’ about? It’s our job to defend the horses, coachmen, and wagons from the thieves layin’ in wait? A chance to show off. Right, Meat-senpai?”
“Yeah. Goshujin-sama, I will show you, my good points.”
“There’re four wagons, so we got lots to defend. I never thought ya’d actually volunteer us for the harder job, Goshujin-sama?”
Seeing Meat also pull out her knife golem and prepare to fight, I started to ask if she was sure—but just as I was about to, Gozoh and the others’ fight began.
Simultaneously with that, arrows flew toward the wagon, but Wataru’s [Air Barricade] caused them to miss their mark.
“… Oh, so watching the wagons was the more involved choice?”
“One of those arrows just now was aimin’ straight for the coachman~. They’ve got an archer with a pretty great aim. Alright, guess it’s our turn?”
“Leave the support role to me!”
Rokuko, you sit down. And if you have a bow gun, isn’t the rapier at your waist not needed?
Seeing that arrows were ineffective, the thieves that had been hiding came shuffling out. There was a handful of them—no, more than ten. This is bad. How could three of us hold off against that!?
“Oh, we’re pretty outnumbered.”
However, my prided magic can make up for our lack of manpower… it’d be troublesome to get the materials and magic stones for using [Create Golem] ready, so let’s go with [Summon Gargoyle].
“… … [Summon Gargoyle]—[Summon Gargoyle]—[Summon Gargoyle]… geh that’s annoying, come here times ten, [Summon Gargoyle x10].”
Reciting the magic’s name each time was annoying, so I skipped over them and caused magic formations to appear around the wagons one after another. A gargoyle burst forth out of each one of them.
“Gargoyles, defend the wagons!”
Although the merchant and coachmen were surprised at suddenly seeing so many monsters, they looked like they realized they were support after hearing me tell them to protect the wagons.
However, it seems like that also caused the thieves to put their marks on me.
“They’re summons, they disappear if that Summoner-dono dies! He’s in the first wagon!”
Looks like they know how to deal with summons. I don’t know if that meant they’re knowledgeable or not since it could be common knowledge… but I guess it’d be bad to just stay here?
“Leave it to me.”
“I’m gonna head out too~”
Meat and Ichika stood in the way of the thieves that had started making a move toward where I was.
“It’s a woman! Her body’s great, she’ll make a great pet slave, let’s grab her!”
“Refused! My chastity’s Goshujin-sama’s!”
The two of them easily cut down the thieves. Oi, Meat was even having an easy time beheading human opponents… what a scary girl.
“Underlings, rush them! We’ll overwhelm them with our numbers!”
With that, the underlings… the ones with slave collars on them rushed toward Meat and Ichika who were defending me.
“Hey, don’t forget about me! Teei!”
Rokuko shot her bow gun… and shot a gargoyle in the head.
Yeah, friendly fire. Sit down.
“The girl’s an aristocrat! She’ll sell for a ton, don’t hurt her too much and capture her alive!”
“We’ll make back our losses even if all the slaves die!”
Whoops, looks like more and more of the thieves are concentrating on our wagon. I won’t let them, though.
“Chase them, [Summon Gargoyle]—”
I mean, I had enough gargoyles to make a small fighting unit. I just had to have them stop the thieves…
“Tch! You f*cking slaves, rush in and—”
“Alright, that’s enough.”
Wataru pinned down the thieves’ boss. Checkmate. That was pretty quick.
By the way, Shikina was on the ground and twitching, so I guess she was bad against thieves too.
With the fight over, we decided to restrain each of the thieves. I left that to Team Bacchus and Shikina.
They’d turn into a decent amount of pocket change since we could sell them as slaves if we kept them alive. If we sold them at a good place, we could expect around five silver each since none of them had physical defects. Even if we sold them at an inn town, we could expect three silver each… crime slaves are cheap. But it’s a principle of mine to pick up whatever change I see, so long as I have the time to.
“Good work, Goshujin-sama.”
“You too, Meat. Not many of them died, huh.”
“Yeah, thanks to you, Goshujin-sama. I would have had to slice through all of their necks if it weren’t for the gargoyles.”
Ah, so she would have been able to handle it. I mean seriously, this girl’s way of thinking is dangerous. She is reliable, though.
“That was an awesome strategy. But are ya fine showing it off? The gargoyles, I mean.”
“Don’t worry about it. I mean, now that I’ve shown them off I can just say this is my limit from here on.”
“Okay, I guess. Usin’ summons as decoys or things to do things for ya is super convenient… but the amount ya used was stupid… no, super stupid.”
The thieves called me Summoner-dono earlier, but did I end up using too many?
“Haah, I wanted to at least kill one of them.”
“Rokuko, you’re pretty disturbed. I mean, you’ve been like that for a long time now, but still…”
“No, it’s that. I wanted to see if I would get DP if I killed someone outside of the dungeon. I wasn’t wanting to do it for the sake of killing someone, you know?”
… I see. I hadn’t thought about that. There isn’t a disadvantage for us in finding out if we can obtain more DP even outside of the dungeon. Let’s see if the one Meat killed gave anything… nope. Alright.
But it’d be weird for her to kill one of them now that we’ve got them restrained, so let’s give that a shot next chance we get.
Just then, Wataru walked up.
“Good job. Did any of the thieves escape?”
“I have gargoyles holding them all down. Should I have let some escape?”
“Nah, it’s fine. They’ll tell us what we want with a bit of force.”
Wataru answered with that when I asked him the question with the nuance of [Should we use that to find their hideout?].
“But man, Kehma-san, you’re amazing. You can control that many gargoyle summons…? You’re like a one man army.”
“There’s a trick to it. I give them a simple order and leave them with some autonomy.”
“Still though, there’s so many of them. Ordinary summoners would have trouble with three, ones at the level of court mages would have trouble getting to double digits.”
… Yeeeeeeah, I summoned somewhere around twenty.
Ummm, let’s unsummon the ones that aren’t doing anything. Go back, go back—good job.
By the way, we went with Wataru to the thieves’ hideout afterward.
I thought that their hideout might’ve been a dungeon, but it was nothing like that. Just an abandoned village.
Guess bandits and the like don’t usually take dungeons as their bases.
Their remnants were easily dealt with by Wataru. I’d expect nothing less.