Chapter 155 – Soldier


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Although there were some people coming and going for business and politics after Pyursang became independent from Vichy, it dropped sharply in comparison to the time when they were the same nation.
There was export of goods such as salt and a part of the processed marine products, but the scale wasn’t that large because of the distance to other countries besides Vichy.
Because there’s almost no people coming for sightseeing to begin with except for a part of the nobility, merchants not coming means basically people not coming.
Hence the unusual phenomenon inside Pyursang wasn’t noticed until its influence spread to outside the country.

◆◇◆◇◆

The messenger, who received a magic tool from the person who called himself a spy of the messenger’s country, looked through the documents which had the way how to use it written in it along the way back home.
Originally it’s logical to hand it to Minoson who’s the country’s leader and the one in charge, but judging it as extremely unlikely for himself being able to explain why he went to the capital of Orsongrande, the messenger intends to sell this magic tool as “item gifted by Fokalore at the end of the negotiations” and thus thought that he should know about what kind of item it is in order to explain it.
Even while feeling uneasy due to piling up lies for the sake of deception, there was apparently no other way but to do it like this.

“This is… there is such a thing…”

The effect of the magic tool explained in the documents was enough to make him tremble in fear. And, it was overflowing with a charm making him hold onto ambitions that are beyond his abilities. Moreover the circumstances were in order.

“You are doing something unusual.”

“That’s not how it is. I had you come along with me this far. I will do at least this much.”

Along the way, with the distance between cities being far, there are several places where they have to sleep outdoors no matter what. Accordingly the messenger took over the preparation of the soup which is one of the dishes. Usually it was something the soldiers would do, but at that time he explained it with 「It’s my way of thanking and rewarding you」.
And then, while the soldiers are sleeping like logs after they drank the soup with sleeping medication in it, he prepares the magic tool. Even the sleeping pills were explained in the documents as “for the sake of medical treatment during sleep.”
Stripping off the tunic of one man first, he smeared his own blood on the soldier’s chest while feeling jealous about its trained condition which is different from his own skinny self, and then put the small magic tool against the soldier’s chest.
While the magic tool buried itself towards the heart with a *zubo zubo*, the soldier didn’t stir even once. A few seconds after the magic tool embedded itself completely,

“Uwah!”

Due to the soldier suddenly rising his body, the messenger fell on his backside while screaming.
The soldier, who breathes roughly while his body is convulsing all over, has his muscles swell gradually from head to foot, and, after he literally grew to twice his size, he shrinks back to the size close to his original figure.
What remained was the figure of a robust reinforced soldiers who was clad in muscles which were stiff like a rock.

“A-Amazing…”

Once the messenger orders the soldier, who is sitting absent-mindedly with blank eyes, 「Stand up」, the soldier gets up swiftly, and straightens up his back while extending both hands.
The excited messenger embeds magic tools into the sleeping soldiers one after the other.

“If I have this, I’m…”

◆◇◆◇◆

The messenger, who brought back home the soldiers who turned into puppets, approached the sovereign Minoson pretending to make his report, and forcibly embedded the magic tool by using his reinforced soldiers.
Ordering Minoson, who became the yes-man of the messenger, he made him write his own abdication declaration after setting himself as the heir, had him hand it over to a doubtful close aide, and had him make an official announcement to the people.
The male messenger, who became the king, remodelled the soldiers into reinforced soldiers successively, and moreover succeeded in creating 10 giant soldiers as well.
If there was someone who criticized or opposed him, he executed them without hesitation. As the reinforced soldiers, who don’t know fatigue, were able to serve as constant guards, they guaranteed the safety of his body.
Reorganizing the army, he remodels the low-ranking soldiers into reinforced soldiers, sets himself as sole commander and dismisses all the other commanders. Those, who were unhappy with it, were killed after finding a suitable reason for doing it.

“Isn’t this amazing? People, who possess power, can feel this good?”

The mouth of the former messenger, who was drunk on sake as he sat on top of the throne he got used to, got slack.

“I wonder whether Earl Tohno, who walks merrily in Fokalore’s territory or such, feels like this as well? No, no, that person is satisfied being the feudal lord of a single area in the end. …After all that means that he has no more than the strength of an individual?”

Pyursang’s king raised his voice unable to stop the laughter welling up from the bottom of his abdomen as he wondered why the hell he was so afraid of Earl Tohno.

“That’s right. My soldiers aren’t an army of mere humans anymore. Vichy’s central committee members seem to be excessively scared of Earl Tohno, but in the end he has the strength of one individual. Isn’t he a mere human that tries to be a soldier!?”

Standing up from the throne, the king does a strange dance with his drunken feet.

“There’s no need to finish with being the king of such small country! Orsongrande depends on Earl Tohno. Horant has been ruined due to the fight with Orsongrande…”

He held down his voice as he felt nausea, but he changed his mind with “there’s nothing I have to be shy of.” Summoning a maid, he vomited into the washbasin, he had her hold, with all his might.
Rinsing his sticky mouth with sake, he vomits once again.

“Let’s take Vichy for starters. And, crushing Orsongrande’s Fokalore, it will be great to make that queen, whom I will see soon, into my possession…”

Pointing at the reinforced soldiers lining up in the corner of the room, he raised a yell mixed with saliva.

“Reinforced soldiers! Using you guys, I will seize the world! First we will attack Vichy! Assault the villages and cities nearby, and show them your strength!”

Without replying, the soldiers leave the room in groups according to the king’s decree. The king’s words continued in their back.

“Convey it to the other reinforced soldiers and giant soldiers as well! It’s fine for you to steal supplies locally on site! Kill them without minding their appearance! Kill all of them, those who resist and those who don’t!”

Hearing those words, the reinforced soldiers suddenly stopped moving.

“What’s wrong? Do it quickly!”

The reinforced soldiers were faithful to orders.
Drawing their swords, they started by slaying a nearby maid without minding her appearance and then killed every single person who was inside the room.
Of course the soldiers also get close to the king.

“W-What is it? What’s wrong?”

If he wasn’t dead drunk, he might have been able to utter the single word 「Stop」.
However, with the maids who have been suddenly killed in front of his eyes, the drunken, foolish king was unable to do anything but being panicked.

“Ah.”

A short scream. Those were the last words of the king.
Without looking at the fallen corpse of the king, the reinforced soldiers leave the room.

“… All of the reinforced soldiers. The giant soldiers as well.”

“Kill everyone. Steal food.”

They mutter the orders of the king severally. Their thinking is concentrating on accomplishing their instructions, but their movements aren’t dull at all.
Devilish cut-throats who were released by careless words.
They massacred the people inside the building within the blink of an eye, conveyed the orders to their colleagues who were on standby, and released the giant soldiers within their cages by killing their guards.
Pulling the chains which are controlling the giant soldiers, the reinforced soldiers scatter into the city.
The city gets almost completely destroyed by 200 reinforced soldiers. Chasing those who ran away, they further spread out in order to scatter in all directions outside the country.

◆◇◆◇◆

Like this, a calamity spread into Vichy alongside the downfall of the small country called Pyursang.
There’s no one left who remembers that a former messenger was the cause for all this. Although he became a phantom king, there’s generally no doubt that he was a foolish king, who took along extremely many lives with him, in this world.
Escaping the attacks of the reinforced soldiers, the people, who somehow got away, informed Vichy about those news as well, but extreme damage spread until a report, which has authenticity causing the central committee to get its heavy body moving, came in.
And finally from there on the information was circulated to Orsongrande and Horant as well.

☺☻☺

Hifumi, who took several soldiers for the sake of steering a platform wagon from Fokalore’s army, sat in front of Origa and Viine on top of the shaking load-carrying platform.

“Nevertheless, it was wonderful swordsmanship. As expected of Hifumi-sama.” (Origa)

Next to Origa who is piling up one word of praise after the other towards Hifumi, Viine agreed while making her head go up and down like a toy. Her sole rabbit hear above her head is swaying while being one beat late in comparison to her head.
However, Hifumi discarded it completely with 「Such stuff doesn’t matter at all」.

“The part you should pay attention to isn’t that.” (Hifumi)

First he tells them to remember the time when they were attacked by Levi. And then Hifumi says that they have to think about the problematic issue Levi did there.

“Umm… her holding a weapon was easy to understand, is it about that?” (Viine)

“Greeting and then being unprepared at the time of the attack is the problem, isn’t it?” (Origa)

Hifumi nodded and said “there’s that as well” towards their answers.

“You should consider the difference in reach between me and Levi, too, you know? If she reduced the distance to a range more favourable for a dagger or if she made sure that I can’t use a weapon by slashing my arm, she could have fought me directly for a bit longer.” (Hifumi)

Even so, since there existed a fundamental difference in technique and physical strength, it was hopeless either way.

“Besides, if one thinks I will kill you, I will kill you with all their might, the hostility can be immediately read by the opponent.” (Hifumi)

The only capable of such thing is you, the attending soldiers of Fokalore thought simultaneously the same thing, but of course they didn’t voice it out.

“It’s that. If you always think about killing people, the air around you will stagnate and the expression of your eyes will become weird as well.” (Hifumi)

Due to his statement which seems to be completely blind to his own shortcomings, Viine was dumbfounded, but Origa nodded obediently.

“There’s no need to ponder about things that seriously while killing people. Of course it’s indispensable to prepare and refine your techniques in order to be capable of killing, but it’s unnecessary to mind it too much.” (Hifumi)

Taking out a flask, he gulps down a mouthful of the water inside.

“Drink water if you are thirsty and have a meal if you become hungry. Sleep when you become sleepy. Sign documents when necessary… it’s the same as that. Kill since you want to kill. Kill since it’s no good if you don’t kill.” (Hifumi)

“What’s necessary isn’t fighting spirit or resolution”, Hifumi says.

“Umm… master, what will happen if I kill? Don’t you think about such things as well?” (Viine)

Hifumi returned a smile due to Viine’s question.

“I’m not really a homicidal maniac? Not considering the consequences while killing is the deed of a mere fool. Having the necessity to kill, it’s only natural to accept the outcome from that, I think.” (Hifumi)

“T-Then, the readiness to accept that outcome is…” (Viine)

Hifumi lightly puts his hand in Viine’s direction.

“Why are you living while being so nervous?” (Hifumi)

“What an odd fellow”, Hifumi smiles and the soldiers’ faces are filled with tension.

“You don’t know when you will have a meal, right? There are still three days remaining until the next salary. It’s the same with the hesitation whether to eat a meal at a cart for 5 copper coins or at the dining hall for 20 copper coins at the time when you can’t use more than 30 copper coins. if you choose to eat in the dining hall, it will be wrong if you don’t decrease the number of meals for the remaining two days. How many hours will you be troubled because of that?” (Hifumi)

Origa answers 「It’s just as you say, Hifumi-sama」 while smiling. Viine answered that she agreed even while being confused.
The soldiers send pitying looks towards Viine.

“If you think that you should kill, then kill. It’s necessary to think about the result of that, but there’s no need to hold back regarding the matter of killing itself. It’s no more than a means. … In that sense, Imeraria might be ((ready)) soon as well.” (Hifumi)

Drawing the katana in order to maintain it, Hifumi muttered delightfully while lining up the tools.

“What about Her Majesty the Queen?” (Origa)

Even while her face is smiling, Origa’s eyes aren’t.

“That person will probably soon reach the stage where she can prepare by pondering “how to kill him?” since she has no other goal but killing me. She has felt the atmosphere of battle, and furthermore she even experienced herself giving the order to kill others on-site. Her emotional, evasive sense against killing has faded, and she has reached the point where she can consider murder as one of the possible means.” (Hifumi)

Viine is captivated by the complex structure of the katana, but Origa looked seriously at Hifumi.

“Her feeling of wanting to remove me, to kill me, probably isn’t weird. But it’s about removing me more calmly. She is able to think about the consequences of that. In that case, her thinking will likely revolve about a method to kill me with a further cooled down brain in reverse.” (Hifumi)

Confirming the condition of the tang, he carefully wipes it.

“Hifumi-sama…” (Origa)

Origa started to say something but stopped.
Hifumi doesn’t ask Origa either.

“This part is beautiful, master.” (Viine)

“Ah, it’s called guard and is originally for the sake of protecting the hand. I have an obsession regarding this. The design is simple for the sake of strength. With the holes being as small as possible as well, it’s to make sure that the point of of a sword never enters.” (Hifumi)

The guard, which was presented by holding it aloft in front of Viine, had six tiny, open holes in the vicinity of the hole for the sword blade to go through. The character of “一” has been carved into the open space, but Viine can’t see it as anything but a simple horizontal line having been drawn. (T/N: The character means “hitotsu” (one/single) and is also part of Hifumi’s name (一二三))

“I don’t know its value, but… I see that it was created thoroughly.” (Viine)

“Isn’t that fine then? If you think that it’s nice by the scope of what you know, that means it has value for you. If I consider that it received praise with such meaning, I’m happy as well.” (Hifumi)

“Fufu”, while spilling a laughter, he spreads oil on the wiped blade.

“Shall we create a new weapon while listening to the news about the battle after we return to Fokalore? I wonder what happened to Vichy. There’s probably no way that they were crushed in the blink of an eye, but I’m looking forward… no, no, after I meddled with that Horant, having too much expectations is rash, isn’t it?” (Hifumi)

After he finished maintenance, Hifumi tossed the katana into his storage and lied down.

“Let’s look forward to it just a bit. Origa, I leave the assistance to you once we return to Fokalore, though it will increase your troubles. Since it’s obvious that Caim will push the work on us anyway.” (Hifumi)

“I don’t consider it to be trouble.” (Origa)

Quietly approaching Hifumi who is facing upwards, Origa gave him a kiss.

“I’m your wife, Hifumi-sama. Until the day we perish together… no, even after we perished, my soul will be together with you, dear.” (Origa)

“I see.” (Hifumi)

Origa moves quietly and places the head of Hifumi, who replied her briefly, on her lap.
Viine, who intently glanced at their exchange while blushing, gently mutters 「I’m jealous」.
Origa, who heard that, revealed a composed smile and wasn’t able to say 「Me too」 until the end while Viine moves her lips with a *monyu monyu* having an expression mixed with jealousy and embarrassment.

 


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