Kanon groans as we watch the live stream of the hero’s party.
“Toilet? It’ll be our turn soon――” (Shion)
“You’re wrooong!” (Kanon)
My kindness is disregarded by my subordinate Kanon.
“What’s wrong then?” (Shion)
“I just thought that it’s really strange.” (Kanon)
“What is?” (Shion)
“The current situation.” (Kanon)
I cocked my head in puzzlement at Kanon’s reply that lacked any explanation.
“Umm, that is, Shion-san, your strategy is proving to be right. The heroes are desperately struggling in a hard fight, aren’t they?” (Kanon)
“That’s right.” (Shion)
“Since I was almost killed by them, it’s not something I should be saying, but…aren’t they too weak? I mean, they are Kanezawa’s strongest humans who liberated four domains, right?” (Kanon)
The hero party that was displayed on the smartphone is – as Kanon said – struggling. Three of their comrades have already fallen.
“I guess that’s just how it is.” (Shion)
“What’s with the I guess that’s just how it is! I was really afraid of today!” (Kanon)
As I snort with laughter, Kanon gets angry.
“The reason why they’re having so much trouble is simple.” (Shion)
“Simple, you say?” (Kanon)
“Yeah, they willingly relinquished their greatest advantage. That’s all there is to it.” (Shion)
“And what would that advantage be?” (Kanon)
“What do you think it is?” (Shion)
I started to enjoy these conversations with Kanon. Having been freed from isolation, I developed the ability to have fun speaking with others.
“Umm…they level up quickly? There are many of them? …They are normies!? Sorry, I give up.” (Kanon)
“Oh well, since we don’t have much time, I will tell you the correct answer. Their, ― humanity’s greatest advantage lies in their multitude of options, I think.” (Shion)
“Options…you say?” (Kanon)
Kanon tilted her head in contemplation upon hearing my words.
“They have many alternatives. For example, it would have been possible for them to decide to withdraw from my Domain. Even if I held them back with “Don’t go back!”, they would retreat, right? After all, the option of retreat doesn’t exist for us.” (Shion)
“Yes, it doesn’t.” (Kanon)
“Furthermore, they get to choose the Domain which they will invade, and they can do so whenever they like. In contrast, we…” (Shion)
“…can’t choose the humans that are going to invade.” (Kanon)
Once I shift my eyes towards her while telling her the correct answer, Kanon completes the words I wanted to say.
“Correct. In other words, we can’t do anything but wait for humans to invade. When? How? Who? How many? We don’t even know whether they’ll come. We can only wait. Moreover, the source of our combat assets, CP, is limited.” (Shion)
“Now that you mention it, this world is unfair, isn’t it?” (Kanon)
“Indeed, it is.” (Shion)
I agree with the lamenting Kanon.
“However, this time it’s different. Kanezawa’s officially recognized hero party was so kind as to announce their invasion. They abandoned their biggest advantage of being able to invade whenever they like. In addition, since they are celebrities, information about them, from their combat power to their prided spoils was easy to research on the net.” (Shion)
I wonder, wouldn’t it have been better for the humans to confiscate all net devices from Yay lol, who diligently updated his SNS? But, as long as there are companies ― or put another way, 『Sponsors』 that support the other members as well, an exposure beyond necessary would be demanded.
“In short, as long as you can grasp their combat power along with the date and time of their invasion, it’s just about preparing countermeasures, right?” (Shion)
As a matter of fact, had the hero party come invading without warning, I think many of my subordinates would’ve become their experience points, and I would have suffered serious losses.
“I see.” (Kanon)
“Oh! The hero party will be arriving at the third floor any time now. Kanon, begin the preparations.” (Shion)
There’s around 500 m left until they arrive at the stairs leading to the third floor. I think it will take them approximately one hour?
I start the preparations to greet the hero party.
Alongside the deployed subordinates, I’m silently laying in wait for the hero party that will appear in a little bit.
The concept of the third floor is ― surprise attack.
What awaits the hero party that will proceed into the third floor is a long passage wrapped in silence. At the end of the passage lies a small room which uses a floor material that’s obviously different from the other places. A rest area ― a taboo place for those of us belonging to 【Chaos】. A place that we can’t enter had been set up there.
The echoing voices of people reach my ears.
“Yay lol, look at that! Hey! That’s a rest area, isn’t it!?” (Masakado)
I can hear the voice of Yay lol who kicks up a fuss with an excited tone.
“So we can take a break at long last…?”
“Let’s reorganize our plans at the rest area.” (Hideya)
“I’m bummed out…”
What’s audible afterwards are the mixed and tired voices of men and women.
Their delighted voices get closer together with their running footsteps.
Alongside a careful selection of subordinates I hide in a side passage extending to the left and right, which I created slightly in front of the passage continuing to the rest area.
――Teams A, K and X get ready!
Team A ― a range assault unit composed of only goblin archers.
Team K ― a range assault unit composed of dark elves, who specialize in magic, led by Kanon.
Team X ― the priceless unit composed of dark elves, who specialize in archery, led by Chloe.
I have instructed teams A and K to randomly shoot at the hero party without discrimination.
Yay lol, let me reward your achievements so far with my strongest combat asset.
Ten dark elves belong to team X. All of them made an effort to practice archery every day. The name of the arrow, which all of them hold in their dominant hand is ― Lunatic Arrow.
The order I gave team X is to snipe Yay lol.
While countless arrows fired by team A pour down and countless spells unleashed by team K sweep over the hero party ― the ten arrows filled with bloodthirst pierced into Yay lol who’s running at the front.
It’s very likely an overkill. The 10 released A rank arrows easily snatched away the life of the hero ― Yay lol that held a Silver Spear which threatens my existence.
“What!? What happened!?”
The hero party falls into panic after being struck by despair, right in front of hope ― the rest area.
――Teams B and S, assault!
Team B ― elite subordinates equipped with high grade items and led by Blue, and team S ― kobold knights equipped with high grade items and led by Silver assault the hero party.
Team H ― a group of ghouls led by Hope has been instructed to defend the rest area to the last.
The panic of the hero party gets worse upon being attacked by a group of monsters who wore higher ranked equipment than themselves.
Only I conceal myself with 【Darkness Veil】and slip through the hero party that had been forced into a melee.
【Darkness Veil】 doesn’t have a stealth ability that completely erases my presence. At most its effect was to make my presence exceedingly thin. However, because they’d succumbed to panic, they never noticed my existence. I easily made my way to the back of the hero party.
I put strength into my dominant hand that’s grasping the Mithril Spear, and stab it into the heart of my target ― the female intruder casting fire magic from behind.
With a line of blood flowing down from her mouth, the woman slowly looked over her shoulder and then collapsed on the spot.
The female invader specialized in healing magic notices her fallen comrade and the being that defeated her, and screams.
A man, who had readied his bow, falls onto his backside while trembling once he meets my gaze. The last two supporters attempt to escape in panic.
I focus my attention on the man who had fallen down, and snap my fingers.
Once the man’s head is covered by a black fog, he stands up with vacant eyes and shoots an arrow, piercing the right leg of the woman resolutely wielding her Black Iron Sword ― the 『Hero of the Black Sword』.
“Huh? W-Why…?” (Rina)
With her right leg shot, the 『Hero of the Black Sword』 looks at the shooter as if she’d seen something unbelievable.
“Eh!? J-Just what did I…”
That man who’d recovered his sanity, throws away the bow in his hands while trembling all over his body.
Hmm~. It looks like dark induction takes effect easily if the target is ruled by fear, but its duration is short if the other party is a human, I guess.
While disappointed at the effectiveness of dark induction that came to an end quicker than imagined, I stabbed the man, who threw his bow away while screaming as if he was broken, with my Mithril Spear.
The battle has been decided.
The hopes of humanity referred to as heroes ― escape towards the stairs returning to the second floor, all striving to be first.
The 『Hero of the Black Sword』, who was delayed in her escape because of the leg injury, stretches out a hand, asking for help from her comrades.
“Shut up! All of it is your fault!”
“Don’t get me involved in Rina’s selfishness!” (Saori)
Jeers were hurled at the 『Hero of the Black Sword』 in response.
My subordinates are scrambling forward to deliver the finishing blow.
While keeping my eyes on the 『Hero of the Black Sword』, who had resolved herself for death, I pondered how I should deal with the hero party that escaped.
The 『Hero of the Black Sword』, who’s looking into my eyes, has accepted her death, but she hasn’t broken.
“――Stop the attack!”
I make my subordinates suspend the attack and approach the 『Hero of the Black Sword』.
The humans so far couldn’t become my bloodkin as their hearts had been broken due to fear, even if I handed them the 【Blood Chalice】. Humans in a normal state couldn’t become my bloodkin as they instinctively felt hate towards me, a member of 【Chaos】.
Will it work out if it’s a human who was attacked, betrayed and abandoned by her friends yet hasn’t broken?
“Now then, all your friends ran away, but what are you going to do? ――Hero of the Black Sword-sama?”
I smiled while looking down at her.