Enjoy it’s a great song!
“… What the hell is this?” (Hifumi)
Hifumi, facing the exit towards Horant, saw the figures of the soldiers from Horant, who were dazed and standing stock still.
Holding their weapons in their hands while being expressionless, their gazes are somewhat unfocused. It has a strangeness as if mannequins have been lined up side-by-side.
Since they were given the instruction “Invade Münster” by the magician from Horant, who had the authority to command them, they apparently were in a deadlock of waiting for the next instruction after having finished entering the city.
“Did the guy just now control them by any chance? There are really puppets.” (Hifumi)
He is heading towards the exit circumventing the soldiers from Horant while contemplating about such matters. A single knight asks him from the back of his horse to identify himself.
“Stop! Who are you!?” (Knight)
“A survivor of the Second Knight Order, eh? I’m Hifumi.” (Hifumi)
“Hifumi… i-it was Earl-sama? Please forgive my discourtesy!” (Knight)
The knight, dismounting his horse in panic, straightened up his back and apologized.
He fought on the side of the encirclement leading the soldiers from Orsongrande as member of the Second Knight Order. Since the soldiers of Horant ended up stopping just after the gate suddenly opened and the enemy invaded the city, he apparently went around checking the situation stopping his attacks temporarily.
Hifumi inclines his head to the side as his reaction is different from the lot of the Second Knight Order he encountered not long ago.
“Oh, you know about my current peerage? Also, the captain and his followers of the Second Knight Order, I ran into just now, held a lot more hostility towards me.” (Hifumi)
“But then again that might be because of being in a different faction”, although Hifumi said this, the knight replied with a earnest face.
“Since there was an opportunity to have a talk with the knights of the First Knight Order, I know about the matter of you climbing in peerage… And, did you meet with Captain’s group?” (Knight)
“Ah, I killed them.” (Hifumi)
With an unpleasant feeling, the knight’s skin gets goosebumps.
He tried to put his hand on the hilt of his sword but gave up on it.
“Oh? You don’t plan to kill me?” (Hifumi)
As Hifumi says “What? How boring”, the knight shook his head.
“I’m well aware of Earl Tohno’s skill. I won’t even last several seconds. Besides, it was only because captain announced you as enemy. I had a hunch that it would turn out like this sooner or later…” (Knight)
“Besides, there is something I’d like to request from you.” (Knight)
“What is it?” (Hifumi)
Going by the knight’s words, there are currently a few dozen soldiers from Orsongrande and several survivors of the Second Knight Order remaining.
“And, because it is a situation where we don’t even have a commanding officer, please, we will be saved if you can introduce us to Earl Biron.” (Knight)
It’s probably a difficult request as Earl Biron’ relationship with Stiffels was a bad one too.
“Our knight order is still alright, but most of the soldiers have become exhausted. They want to have a break soon.” (Knight)
“I see… Well, it’s fine, I guess.” (Hifumi)
“Thank you very much.” (Knight)
“However, there’s something I need your help with.” (Hifumi)
“Ha! Anything you desire.” (Knight)
Hifumi pointed at the soldiers from Horant.
“Bind those guys hands and move them to the lord’s mansion here.” (Hifumi)
“Are you taking them as prisoners?” (Knight)
“Hmm, you might say that’s it’s a variety of that.” (Hifumi)
As Hifumi evaded the core of the matter, the knight didn’t poke his nose any further in and separated to go bringing some soldiers.
“Well, I want to have the privilege to thank you regarding the issue this time.” (Biron)
The next morning, Hifumi, who allowed the city of Münster to return quickly to its daily life in a beat, came to the lord’s mansion being called by Biron.
Sabnak and Origa have also come to the office, besides Biron.
“Thanks to you, it finished without significant damage to the city of Münster. You even saved my life. You can expect me to help you to my utmost effort if it is something I can assist you with.” (Biron)
Is it alright to promise such a thing? Sabnak was nervous while listening. But as expected, he would feel awkward to to force his way into the discussion between fellow feudal lords.
“If that’s the case, I shall accept your offer.” (Hifumi)
Hifumi entrusting his body into the sofa and tasting a sip of black tea, turned his line of sight towards the ceiling.
“First I want to receive your help in the experiment of returning the consciousness of the imprisoned soldiers from Horant.” (Hifumi)
“Experiment… is it?” (Biron)
“That’s right. It will become a just cause if I were to take them under my protection after returning their sanity. Besides, it isn’t just a plain benevolent act. If I, treated as hero by the masses, increase the population of Fokalore, it will be easier to earn funds thereafter.” (Hifumi)
As usual Origa is admiring him with something like 「What a magnificent plan」, but Biron and Sabnak are turning pale as Hifumi’s manner of speaking is far too frank.
The soldiers from Horant are crammed into a hall within the lord’s mansion. It’s jam packed, but of course there aren’t any kinds of complaints from them either. Incidentally, the Second Knight Order and the soldiers from Orsongrande, under the supervision of Biron, are cooperating with the Third Knight Order in the reconstruction work in the city.
“However, is there some method to return them to their previous state?” (Sabnak)
Towards Sabnak’s question Hifumi answers without even changing his expression.
“Who knows. If you adhere to water, there are the ways of having them drink large quantities of water… or soak them in hot water?” (Hifumi)
This is probably torture, almost left Biron’t mouth, but he endured it without having his smile falter.
“Well, there are that many of them. It isn’t a problem if we waste a few either. It’s fine if you consider that at least some will profit by returning to their original state. Leaving that aside, I have another request.” (Hifumi)
“Let’s hear it.” (Biron)
“Soon the soldiers from Fokalore will arrive here. I intend to have them rest in this city temporarily, but… once they took a rest for about two days, they are scheduled to depart right away.” (Hifumi)
“Isn’t it also fine if they take it a bit slower? We will welcome them warmly.” (Biron)
Biron, with his whole face smiling, talked about the provision of a lodging place and meals, however with a “Let’s not do this” Hifumi shook his head.
“They will invade Horant. Since they are resupplying at this city for that reason, I want you to have the goods arranged.” (Hifumi)
“You will do an invasion in reverse? With only the territorial soldiers?” (Sabnak)
Even as the surprised Sabnak opposes it due to the lacking numbers, Hifumi laughs scornfully.
“First, it will be only me entering. The soldiers will advance in the rear, but to the bitter end they will be the opponents of the dolls. I will kill to my heart’s desire.” (Hifumi)
Although Biron also thought it would be impossible, he ended up considering there might be a possibility of them accomplishing it. But that might also be one of the scary parts of Hifumi, he judged.
The abuse of the soldiers from Horant, in the name of salvation, began with pouring water on them, having them drink massive amounts of water. Advancing alongside Hifumi’s ideas, they tried changing it to lukewarm water and then to hot water.
The knights of the Second and Third Knight Order are dragged into assisting.
In order to not be attacked by those becoming panicked due to suddenly regaining their consciousness, they are doing their job while wearing their armor and even going as far having a bamboo sword equipped. Those will be used to beat up thieves!
Then, as Hifumi proposed “Isn’t it fine if they sweat in a steam bath?”, it became hell for the knights as well.
Carrying in pots filled with boiling hot water into the closed up hall, they are rapidly heating up even more.
With the heat and humidity, the hall has completely entered the state of a sauna. The temperature in the other rooms of the mansion has risen as well.
Even Sabnak, mixed among the other knights, was working on the task.
Watching the hot water boiling with bubbles in the cauldrons and monitoring the fire so that it doesn’t go out, his consciousness has become dizzy due to the excessive heat.
Already having thrown off the armor, he only wore a plain cloth beneath it.
As he is thinking someone quickly switch places with me, he saw a single soldier from Horant collapsing.
“Ah~ Once again someone’s limit has… huh?” (Sabnak)
Once he looked properly, he saw the collapsed soldier moving his hands and feet as if struggling slightly. Sabnak rushed over in a hurry and gave him lukewarm water, he put into a leather bag beforehand.
“Oi, get a hold of yourself!” (Sabnak)
“U-Uh… h-here is…” (Soldier)
Apparently his consciousness isn’t clear yet. Although it is with a fragile voice as if groaning, he definitely speaks by himself.
“S-Someone, come here! One person recovered his consciousness!” (Sabnak)
Due to Sabnak’s shout, the other knights also revived and their souls escaped from the rising discomfort of the heat. Noisily gathering, they took out the soldiers from Horant, who regained their consciousness, to another room.
Seeing off the soldiers from Horant being carried out placed on a stretcher, Sabnak sat down on the floor.
“Recovery… it was possible.” (Sabnak)
While looking up at the ceiling, Sabnak smiled bitterly as with this it had once again worked out according to Hifumi’s plan.
Currently Origa was heading to the room, where Hifumi stayed, within the inn of Münster.
By no means it is for the sake of creeping in without permission. She has been called by Hifumi.
After the audience with Biron she was told by Hifumi to come to the room in the evening without taking anyone along. She put her personal appearance in order until the very last minute.
“This is… is it at last time?” (Origa)
While blushing in embarrassment and anticipation, she finally arrives in front of the door at a quick pace. With a deep breath she knocks.
“It’s open.” (Hifumi)
As she hears Hifumi’s voice, she feels her heartbeat quickening.
“Excuse me.” (Origa)
When she entered the room, Hifumi was sitting on top of the bed in the simple room. He was about to examine his katana.
The figure of him staring at the katana with serious eyes fascinated Origa for a short while.
“It’s alright to sit somewhere fitting.” (Hifumi)
“Yes. Excuse me.” (Origa)
Without hesitation she sits down next to Hifumi.
Although Hifumi grimaced slightly, he put away the katana with a “Well, it’s fine, I guess?”
“I called you because there is something I want request from you, but…” (Hifumi)
“Yes, please give me any kind of order.” (Origa)
As Origa replied with a rough nasal breathing, showing her resolution to take off her clothes right away, Hifumi drew back a little.
“Calm down. I want you to to do some condemning work for the sake of my goal.” (Hifumi)
“… Yes. Whatever you…” (Origa)
Disregarding the obviously disappointed Origa, Hifumi continues.
“Listen. This is something I entrust to you because I believe in you.” (Hifumi)
Hifumi makes sure to not look at Origa, whose eyes now began to sparkle, to the best of his ability.
“After this I will invade Horant. I plan to take all the aforementioned magic tools from there. Although I don’t know how many they possess, they have at least used the magic potion on that number of people. I guess there will also be a number of magic tools that turn people ferocious. I will take them all without leaving anything behind.” (Hifumi)
“And then? What will you use those magic tools for?” (Origa)
After having listened well to Origa’s question, Hifumi stands up. He draws his katana and beheads a thief trying to steal the translation sneakily
“I thought that there isn’t enough seriousness towards battles in this world. Therefore I planned to spread the fighting, but… it’s just me killing them one-sidedly. There doesn’t seem to be any fellow, that can kill me, appearing either. Although there might be some people like that by chance, when will they appear in front of me?” (Hifumi)
He drinks a single sip of water from the water jug placed on the writing desk in the room.
“And that’s the point. I pondered about a method to have everyone learn by heart about fighting desperately even if I’m not there anymore. And then I asked myself, why don’t you attach that magic tool, causing ferocity, from Horant on powerful monsters that are roaming all over the area?” (Hifumi)
“If it’s powerful monsters, the people will have to think about their weapons and tactics to oppose them. It will also cause that adventurers and soldiers will train even more. What wonderful craftiness.” (Origa)
“Accordingly, I want you to do a job for me.” (Hifumi)
Hifumi, sitting down on the bed once again, looks straight into the eyes of Origa.
“This is an underworld job. By all rights, now that you’ve accomplished your revenge, there isn’t even any necessity to stay at my side, much less to listen to my orders, but…” (Hifumi)
“What are you talking about!? I’m already together with Hifumi-sama. I intend to perish at the same time as you.” (Origa)
“… Well, whatever. After I entered Horant, please take some soldiers. for holding all of the magic tools, and secretly slip out from Horant. Afterwards, I want you to test the magic tools on suitable monsters within both countries, Vichy and Orsongrande.” (Hifumi)
“Be focused as much as possible on those monster which are troublesome to deal with for ordinary people. On top of that, it would be good if you lead them to a place close to human habitation”, he said with a snicker.
“On that occasion it will also become training for the territorial soldiers, I suppose. I’m relying on you.” (Hifumi)
“Certainly! I will show you that I can live up to your expectation without fail.” (Origa)
Origa, who stood up, bows very deeply.
“Gotcha, I’m looking forward to it.” (Hifumi)
Within Hifumi’s mind the scene of soldiers and adventurers frantically fighting against monsters as their opponents was rising to the surface.