Chapter 145 – Invasion into Suzu’s City Hall ③
“How are you going to precisely determine the enemy forceees?” (Kanon)
“――! Oh, I get it!”
After I promptly answer Kanon’s question, I call the subordinates, who will be essential for the upcoming operation, with my smartphone.
『Hmm? Shion? Whazzup?』
The curt voice of the subordinate, who will play a key role, answers from the other side of the phone, after it rings several times.
“Takaharu, get ready to depart.”
『Hah? What’s da lineup?』
“You and me…that’s it. Prepare your bike, I’ll wait for you at the entrance of the 203rd sector.”
『S-Sure… Ya wanna feel da wind――』
Having stated my business, I hang up without waiting for Takaharu to finish.
I give Kanon those short parting words, and transfer to the entrance of the 203rd sector. After waiting for around five minutes, I see Takaharu pull up on a big American motorbike.
“So, where we goin’? My recommendation would be Chirihama. It’s a little far, but――” (Takaharu)
“We’re headed to Suzu’s City Hall.”
“Hah? Dat place’s a human stronghold, no? Ya dun think it’ll be kinda tough for us two?”
“It’s not like we’re going to fight, you know? Our precise destination will be an area around 2 km away from Suzu’s City Hall.”
“Well, something like that, I suppose.”
After leaving the Domain, I get on the back seat of Takaharu’s bike.
“Any place in particular?”
When Takaharu looks back at me and asks that, I merely point in an ambiguous direction, saying, “That way.”
After flashing a light smile at me…the big bike noisily takes off in the direction I pointed ― Suzu’s City Hall.
――Can you hear me?
Having judged that my voice won’t reach him due to the howling wind, I contact Takaharu through telepathy.
――If you can hear me, nod once.
Takaharu lightly nods his head.
――This conversation won’t distract you from driving, right?
Takaharu nods once more.
――I’ll give you one important order. Make sure to remember the route we take from now on.
Takaharu stops the bike on the spot without nodding at my order.
“Hmm? What’s the matter?”
“What’s da matter…what’s da matter wit you! There ain’t no way I can just start memrizin’ the route just cuz you say so outta da blue!?”
Hearing Takaharu’s remark, I ponder. I take out my smartphone, booting up the map app.
“You remember the way up to here, right?”
“Easy peasy at this distance.”
“Then, keep going straight…and turn right at the next big crossing. After that, follow the road straight.”
While looking at the map app, I tell him the route in the most concise way, without any times or distances.
“You can memorize that much, right?”
“If it’s at dat level…”
Takaharu scratches his cheek with his index finger, looking awkward.
“Anyway, off we go!”
“Uh-oh, wait a moment please.”
“Huh? I memorized da way.”
“No, it’s not the directions…there’s something I want to test.”
Ignoring Takaharu who tilts his head, I look at an imposing house, surrounded by a wall, I happened to spot nearby.
“Mmh? Gonna play burglar?”
“Stop with the slander…”
“It’s vacated, ain’t it?”
Takaharu objects to my sighs, while laughing. I ignore him, and focus on the approximately 1.5 meter tall wall in front of my eyes.
The darkness lance crashes into the wall.
It has the power to kill a weak human with one blow, but ― not a single scratch is to be found on the wall where it was hit by the lance.
Is it coincidentally a very sturdy wall…? Or――
“Hey! Where ya goin’?”
Disregarding Takaharu’s yell, I run up to another house.
The one I’m targeting this time is a common house wall…much lower than the previous wall.
The dark lance drives into the wall. The outcome after it directly hits is the same as before.
The common wall stands without a single scratch.
Several fire arrows strike the wall. The outcome after they directly hit is the same as before.
A Demon King’s power won’t work with its special abilities…?
What I’m currently doing is an experiment ― not a diversion, or venting of anger.
A tall wall hides Suzu’s City Hall. Can you destroy that wall with magic? And if it’s possible, what kind of magic and how much of it is needed? It’s an experiment to find that out.
The result is…magic doesn’t show any effect on man-made objects? Or, special abilities won’t work against man-made objects? Or maybe it’s the power of those belonging to Chaos…?
“Destroy that wall with a special ability!”
“――? It’s cool for me to crush it?”
Takaharu gives a curt reply, and slowly walks over to the wall I designated.
“Okay, here I go. ――《Demolition Fist》!”
Takaharu steps in around a half step, and thrusts his right fist at the wall.
“――? Hah? Da fuq! Why ain’t it broken!? ――《Swallow Kick》!”
Making his right leg bend like a whip, Takaharu drives a kick against the wall.
However, the result remains the same.
I guess I can assume that special abilities don’t work on man-made objects. In that case…
――Takaharu! Destroy the wall without using special abilities!
“Hah!? Piece of shit!”
Giving his anger free reign, Takaharu hits the wall.
The wall crumbles into small pieces alongside a fierce impact sound.
Does everything besides special abilities work…?
I take Gáelbolg, which I’ve been carrying on my back, into my hands, and thrust it at a wall, after putting strength into my arms.
A numbing recoil is transmitted to my right hand, which holds Gáelbolg.
The wall, which got struck by Gáelbolg, has a hole the same size as Gáelbolg’s spearhead.
Usually Gáelbolg’s thrust easily penetrates an enemy, along their armor. As long as the enemy doesn’t wear fairly high-leveled armor, such a strong recoil won’t affect my dominant hand.
Even the strength of a weapon has no meaning?
The wall being punctured probably isn’t owed to Gáelbolg’s abilities, rather, it’s due to my【Body】 stat, which I raised to B rank. Very likely I would get the same result even if I tried it again with a low-ranked weapon.
It’s a saving grace that it doesn’t completely fail at destruction, but…this will be a hassle.
As a result of running several experiments afterwards, I learned that only man-made architectural structures are immune to the powers I gained due to the principles of this broken world.
I guess it’s necessary to rethink my strategy from scratch…
The experiment that I conducted on a whim taught me a sobering reality.
Chapter 146 – Invasion into Suzu’s City Hall ④
I get on Takaharu’s big bike, and we drive in the direction of Suzu’s City Hall.
――Can you go at full throttle?
It’s possible that the trip back will turn into a contest of speed. I give Takaharu my order so that I can experience the bike’s top speed in advance.
Uoohh… My upper body bends back due to the acceleration being higher than I imagined. Since it’d be embarrassing to hug Takaharu, I grab the belt-like object installed on the seat, but…
I’ve got to swallow down my shame here…no, not yet! I can still hold out! Don’t look down on 【Body】 B!
I make free use of my trained torso, and get through this by tightly grasping the belt with all my strength.
If it had been daytime now…with my 【Body】 being weakened…
Imagining that possibility makes my body shiver.
40 minutes after leaving my Domain.
We arrive at our destination, a park around 2 km away from Suzu’s City Hall.
Civilization is wonderful. It’d take even longer to get around without modern modes of transportation.
Should I also learn to drive a motorbike…? A car would be fine as well, but if you consider tight turns, then bikes are the way to go, right?
“Takaharu, is riding a bike difficult?”
“Can ya ride a bicycle?”
“Then it’s easy, I’d say. If ya train with a medium-sized bike first, ya’ll be able to drive it in no time.”
A bike is easy if you can ride a bicycle…? Takaharu keeps things rather sketchy. It’s hard to fully believe his words just now, but I guess there’s merit in finding some time and practicing it in the future.
Oops, let’s leave the idle talk at that…I think it’s time to get down to business.
“Takaharu, make sure that we can leave at any moment.”
I close my eyes, hold my right hand above the ground, and silently activate 《Reign》. The ground trembles, and a black vortex with a diameter of roughly 30 centimeters, which seems to swallow up the space around it, materializes at the tip of my right hand.
Sentences I’m used to seeing are shown on the smartphone’s display.
『You have started 《Reign》』
『《Reign》 has been announced to the hostile entities within its effective range』
『Please remove all hostile entities in range within 180 minutes』
『Alert! Hostile forces confirmed within the effective range. Please eliminate them at once.』
『Display map of effective range? 【ＹＥＳ】 【ＮＯ】』
I tap on 【ＹＥＳ】.
A simple map with a radius of 5 km is displayed on the smartphone.
I had assumed it, but…for real!?
The countless dots on the map are all red.
0 white ones, eh…? In the areas where I had used 《Reign》 so far, it also happened often that red dots turned yellow (submissive) as soon as I activated 《Reign》…
It’s almost praiseworthy how all dots are red this time.
There are two places where the dots gather.
“Takaharu, are there any big buildings right next to Suzu’s City Hall?”
“I think dere’s a place called da Exchange Center or somethin’. Dere’s also a buncha smaller buildings.”
Takaharu tells me the information he looked up with his smartphone.
That means, the stupidly tall wall doesn’t hide only the city hall, but other buildings as well. It looks like the people of Suzu’s have a much bigger base than I had imagined.
It’s a pain to count all these dots… I skilfully expand the area where the dots gather, by zooming in on the smartphone’s screen with one hand.
Counting this will be impossible…
I shrink back from the task after seeing the many red dots filling the screen. I guess I’ll take a screenshot and count them after getting back to the Domain.
I instinctively click my tongue.
Why doesn’t the screenshot function work unless you press two buttons at the same time!?
Currently my right hand maintains 《Reign》, so I can’t use it.
Oops, I’ve got no time to take it easy. Many red dots have started to move around in a hurry.
I somehow succeeded in taking a screenshot with one hand. Afterwards I take more screenshots of the areas with red dots, while scrolling around the map.
Since it’s not like I can get the red dots to stay still, there will be a certain level of measurement error, but I succeed in taking screenshots of all the relevant areas.
What I should do next is…
I take out my 『Megaphone』.
『My name is Shion. I’m the Demon King ruling over all lands from Kanezawa to Wajima. This is an announcement to the humans using Suzu’s City Hall as a base. I won’t take your lives if you surrender. I shall guarantee your basic necessities and dignity as humans if you surrender.』
I recommend that the people hiding in the city hall surrender.
『Those harboring the intent to fall under my rule, concentrate on that wish. If you resist, my subordinates ― the monsters numbering more than 10,000 will deal with you using brute force. You have three minutes to think it over. Choose wisely.』
Finishing my speech, I look at the smartphone’s display, checking the number of humans who have submitted.
…You gotta be kidding.
The color of all the dots displayed on the smartphone’s screen remain red. All the humans secluded in Suzu’s City Hall are willing to fight.
“Uh-oh, that’s really dangerous… Takaharu, we’re withdrawing.”
“Hah? Is it okay to not even wait for three minutes?”
“We could wait, but then we’d end up fighting several thousand humans, okay?”
“…Dat sounds kinda rough.”
Takaharu seems to wince a bit, I get on his big motorbike, and we start to retreat in a hurry.
30 minutes after the retreat.
We have to push it to full throttle several times, but Takaharu and I succeed in safely returning to my Domain.
Once back in my Domain, I return to my own quarters, it’s time to start analyzing the fruits of my labor ― the screenshots. Since there’s too many dots for me to count by myself, I forward the screenshots to Kanon. Kanon passes them on to the humans who have become my bloodkin. With the annoying work delegated out, I get a general grasp on the enemies’ numbers one hour later.
The number of people secluding themselves in Suzu’s City hall amounts to ―― 28,000.
That’s all of the information I could gain from this reconnaissance.
This information is worth a lot, but it cost me a lot to get it.
First, my CP. Due to 《Reign》 failing, all my CP was exhausted.
You could call it a high price, but this was within my estimation.
The price outside my estimation is ― a boost to my enemies’ morale.
The news was picked up by the net on a grand scale――
『《News Flash》 – Heroes of Suzu succeed in repelling the supreme ruler of Kanezawa.
Kanezawa’s supreme ruler ― Demon King Shion has been vigorously expanding his Domain in the north of the Ishikawa Prefecture. By joining their forces, the heroes of Suzu succeeded in repelling Demon King Shion, who had been continuously expanding his territory, for the first time.』
And a picture of people looking overjoyed was published together with the article.
My recent retreat was a strategic move. However, that retreat during a reconnaissance mission led to a boost of the humans’ morale…as there was no reason for the humans to know of these circumstances.