Gotta luv Linkin’ Park
On the excessively spacious practise field of the soldiers, located in the outskirts of the capital, the knights, with exception of those on public order duty, gathered. The figures of Royal Knight Order Captain Sabnak, Knight Order Captain Lotomago and Knight Order Vice-Captain Midas are there as well.
All members number 60, including one part being newcomers. It’s no more than a third or less of the numbers from their golden age, but although the veterans feel lonely, the gathering of this many knights all at once is rare as well.
In front of them, not knowing when it was built, a simple hut, that was only the frame of an one-story house with walls and door installed, was standing.
Coming out from that hut is the Earl, whose name and face is now known by anyone from the knight orders, Hifumi.
“Good morning.” (Hifumi)
“”Good morning, sir!””
Once Hifumi nodded due to completing the greetings, staff members from the royal castle distributed the weapons they brought along.
Those are wooden short spears that have a length of reaching up to the chest of an adult man.
“Those were made out of wood in order to practise using short spears during the patrolling within the castle. They have no weight, however it will probably be fine if you only learn the style for starters. Each of you will take the one you’re holding home and bring it back for the next time we train.” (Hifumi)
Once everyone got a weapon, Hifumi pointed at the frame-only building.
“For now we haven’t been able to make more than one house, but the plan is to build two more of them.” (Hifumi)
“For what the heck will those be used?” (Sabnak)
Due to Sabnak’s question, Hifumi said “It will be faster if I show you” and had three people enter into a room of the frame-only house.
And then he enters holding a short spear himself as well.
“For the time being, the three inside, attack me at the same time. No worries, I will go easy on you.” (Hifumi)
Thanks to that line, the knights, who were pride of being the elite, although they were assembled at random, angrily set up their spears.
“Thank you. I judged that your experience of fighting indoors is small. It’s faster to show you the way to answer your question.” (Hifumi)
Lightly gripping the spear in his right hand, Hifumi is waiting for the three to come attacking.
As on of them stabs with his spear, he lightly avoids that by taking a distance in order to push it away with his foot and then says,
“There are three of you for a reason. Synchronize your breathing.” (Hifumi)
While saying this, he leisurely moves to the centre of the room.
“First off, at this point they fail. Do you know why?” (Hifumi)
The singled-out knight, who was observing from the outside, let a nervous voice escape.
“Umm… is it about the situation of Earl Tohno moving to the centre of the room?” (Knight)
“Since it looks like you didn’t understand the entire reason, your answer is only half right.” (Hifumi)
While he is explaining, the three are surrounding Hifumi.
They come stabbing at the same time at the place they estimated they would be able to encircle him, but they can’t seize Hifumi.
As he passes through a gap between the knights, he lightly brushes one’s flanks with the edge of the wooden spear.
“Look, with this, one of you was done in.” (Hifumi)
“As expected, if it’s only three knights…”
“What are you saying! If there were 5 or 6 of them in the confined space, they would lose the ability to move about.” (Hifumi)
After that Hifumi instructed them in stuff such as defence and clearing an encirclement by using all the furnishings like shelves, the building’s walls and the pillars.
At the beginning especially the knights formerly affiliated with the Second Knight Order were complaining about his sneaky and wait-and-see movements, however after repeatedly doing battles against him in groups of three their dissatisfaction naturally vanished as they saw its distinct effectiveness.
Their honesty about this seems to also be due to the Second Knight Order having actually experienced real combat to some degree.
“For a while you will use this hut for training in turns. The remaining groups will fix their training on how to use a spear.” (Hifumi)
There are several of the many techniques, shown by Hifumi, the knights already knew. In addition to the thrusting techniques of the knight’s spearmanship, they are furthermore training technical strikes by using the spear’s pummel to entangle an opponent and lastly there are even references how to use the spear for throwing it.
As all of that was crammed into them within just the morning, the most the knights could do was to learn the things without being able to say whether they would able to apply it or not.
“These are the basics. You have to leverage your indoor combat by memorizing these movements within three days.” (Hifumi)
The knights sat down and started to discuss as Hifumi said this much and quickly left towards the castle. The enthusiastic Lotomago is lying on the ground with his head facing up as his body can’t follow up on the movement. He has an extremely relieved facial expression.
“… If we don’t do it, it will be bad, right?” (Lotomago)
Sabnak shakes his head due the words of his colleague.
“You can’t say it’s fine to not do it. At least, I believe it to be necessary for the sake of finishing the upcoming coronation ceremony without problems as person in charge. Also, if you want to take care of your subordinates’ lives, there’s likely no other way but go through with it.” (Sabnak)
“For that reason we have no other choice but to take the lead”, Sabnak said as he put strength into his knees and stood up.
Starting from Horant’s capital Adolamelk, the country fell into a temporary, great chaos.
On top of having an enemy invade the royal castle and significant damage to the military forces occurring, troops from a foreign country have been stationed in the capital. Moreover, the situation is that they are essentially training the soldiers from Horant.
Furthermore, even the magic tool research institution, which was run by the state, has been damaged. The amount of money they had to pay to the Tohno territory, located within Orsongrande, as reparation isn’t a low amount by no means either.
Naturally this caused dissatisfaction among the nobles dedicated to their country. Movements of opposition against the quite weakened royalty started to emerge, but for some reason just at that timing … the reports of ferocious monsters increased. Together with the appearance of people, who didn’t seem to feel any pain, the nobles had their hands full just dealing with the territories in this confusing state.
And while the nobles had to accept their confinement to indoors, Horant’s national army, whose core units were stationed in Adolamelk, were trained and taught about technologies by the territorial soldiers of Fokalore, led by Alyssa, in order to improve their strength to a certain degree to compensate for the decreased number of soldiers.
Even if some noble somewhere revolted right now, they wouldn’t be able to rival the capital to make it surrender at all.
“… I guess it’s fine to say that we completely lost.” (Suprangel)
While looking at those reports, Suprangel sighed deeply.
Although he himself is the king, his way of inviting soldiers of an enemy nation will give birth to a considerably backlash. Although he had prepared himself for the case of protest coming from someone skilled, the authority of the king was strengthened, the power of the nobles was weakened and the capital was flourishing, if you looked at the results.
In order to increase the distribution channels for magic tools, the number of merchants coming and going from Orsongrande have increased and thus the tax yields grew as well. To some degree they are even able to recover the part, they had to pay as reparation.
“What about the guests from Fokalore?” (Suprangel)
“Haa! The soldiers from Orsongrande haven’t caused any particular problems. … Rather, since they are distributing the edible parts of monsters, they caught, every day on the market and as they are strangely fine to pay money, they seem to be accepted by the citizens around the castle.”
The young man, who reported this slightly unpleasantly, is a distant relative of the king and calls himself Nelgal (T/N: >> Nerugaru <<).
As consequence of uncovering many royals cooperating with the royal grandson Veldore, quite a few of them had been exiled or disposed of. Although I summoned this able young man close-by to install him as heir even if his blood is thin, he still has some time of training ahead, Suprangel is thinking.
“There aren’t only bad things about this situation either. If the population is delighted and prospers, it will become the country’s wealth. Rather, what we should be worried about is the soldiers from Fokalore leaving from here.” (Suprangel)
“What do you mean?” (Nelgal)
“If a shadow is cast on the state and public order of the capital after they are gone, the people and nobles will likely consider us royals to be incompetent. Even if it became as it had been before, once they learn about a good state, anything below that won’t be permitted anymore.” (Suprangel)
After Nelgal nodded as he seemed to have understood, he started to ponder about something dropping his line of sight a bit.
The king leisurely waits for him.
“My king, there is a single thing I want to request from you, but…” (Nelgal)
“I shall allow it. Let’s have you try saying it.” (Suprangel)
“I would like you to dispatch me to Fokalore. I have heard in many places of things such as many people gathering in the territory of Fokalore in order to study including the administration of a territory. If you deem it acceptable to approve, my humble opinion is that I’d like to study those subjects as soon as it possible.” (Nelgal)
Due to his suggestion Suprangel unintentionally showed a smile.
“I see. I heard that the land, governed by that man, is growing rapidly. I guess it wouldn’t be pointless by no means.” (Suprangel)
He thinks about the circumstances of the man called Hifumi.
The man who came to an unknown world. What will he destroy in this world? What will he create? Where will he go to?
Suprangel unsealed the letter that had been placed next to him. Its contents are information about the enthronement of a new king in Orsongrande.
“Very well. I will dispatch you to Fokalore, Nelgal.” (Suprangel)
“Thank you very much!” (Nelgal)
“I will also accompany you up until the capital of Orsongrande. There I will directly meet with the new king and ask them for your sake.” (Suprangel)
“G-Going this far for me…” (Nelgal)
Something like the king leaving his country is unprecedented in Horant. Even in foreign countries it’s something that almost never happens.
Nelgal started to fluster as it became quite a serious matter.
“It’s fine. Now that I recall, you could say I took lessons from my predecessor as well.” (Suprangel)
He swings the letter from before causing a fluttering sound.
“Also, if I only look at this scrap of paper, I won’t understand anything. It is necessary to actually check things with my own eyes to comprehend them. If I had a wider outlook and discernment, things might not have led to Veldore dying either…” (Suprangel)
“My king…” (Nelgal)
“The troops of that man were accompanied by a considerably high-ranking officer. Let’s ask for their cooperation in entering Orsongrande.” (Suprangel)
“Let’s learn a lot of things by looking together at this vast world”, Suprangel laughed.
Around the time the knight orders spilled sweat and other things due to Hifumi’s gruelling training in the practise area of the capital, Vaiya, who was in the testing ground inside the dwarves’ workshop within Fokalore, was tumbling about on the ground while being smeared with dirt.
“There is such kind of motion…” (Vaiya)
“As it is the first time for me to handle this weapon-like arm, I’m not able to explain the difference.” (Caim)
While panting lightly, Caim answered expressionlessly as usual.
“First time… eh?” (Vaiya)
“Yes. After I received guidance by the Lord, I’ve been training on a daily routine.” (Caim)
The kusarigama is clasped in Caim’s hands. Holding the counterweight attentively, he has taken a stance of holding out the sickle in front of him.
“… Is it also the instruction of Earl Tohno to not lower your weapon even if your opponent has fallen?” (Vaiya)
“Yes. Even if the opponent seems to be helpless, I was told that it’s the basic to confront them without being negligent.” (Caim)
“I’m no match for you”, Vaiya stands up while dusting off the dirt. He grabbed the sword which was lying nearby.
“You have splendidly broken my pride as a knight.” (Vaiya)
Sheathing the sword, Vaiya took the kusarigama, he had received for his own use, into his hands.
“It’s a strange weapon. However, on top of entangling my sword with the chains, you knocked my body down by pulling my feet away.” (Vaiya)
Although it was the first time the other party used this weapon, Vaiya didn’t think he would be this helpless.
To make matters worse, his opponent, far from being a soldier, is a civil official. It doesn’t even seem like Caim has been training that much either.
“Once again, please, I want you to teach me how to use this weapon. I did understand that this is something extremely helpful for us.” (Vaiya)
“… May I also ask for the reason?” (Caim)
“There is no other way to maintain order within the castle but to “kill” an enemy by using swords or spears. However, if we are able to efficiently use this kusarigama and the shuriken, we will be able to capture the enemy without having them get away or having to kill them. That will allow us to obtain information from the enemy as well.” (Vaiya)
“If we are able to do that, it won’t be impossible to deal with a situation before it becomes dangerous”, Vaiya talked about his own thoughts.
He ended up blushing as he uncontentiously became passionate talking about it, but he still wanted to convey his enthusiasm.
Caim’s expression, which he saw incidentally, was still arrogant but he moved his head vertically.
“I understand. I will teach you the technique as far as I know.” (Caim)
“W-Well, then after this…” (Vaiya)
Caim slightly squinted due to Vaiya being impatient.
“That’s right, for the sake of your goal, I heard from you, it probably won’t be sufficient to only do one-on one training, and moreover with no one but only me.” (Caim)
No sooner than he said that, more than 30 soldiers in groups showed up on the testing ground.
“Yes, good morning.” (Caim)
The soldiers, quickly forming a line, are each carrying their own kusarigama in their hands. They have straightened their backs facing towards Caim.
Caim stands in front of them in a natural manner.
Caim talks in his usual flat voice to Vaiya, who doesn’t understand what is happening.
“These are the people who received instructions from Lord-sama together with me. For starters, we will drive the techniques, we know of, into Vaiya-sama.” (Caim)
“Eh? Drive into me means…” (Vaiya)
To Vaiya it looked like Caim’s eyes sparkled.
“From today onwards we will drive all of the “guidance”, we received from Lord-sama, into you with all our power. … Please be somehow careful to not die.” (Caim)
“Haha… please don’t be too hard on me…” (Vaiya)
I might have made a slight mistake in my choice of whom to ask for help, Vaiya considered.