Campione! / Campione! Vol 15 Chapter 2


Chapter 2 – Journey to Colonia Agrippina
Part 1
Madame Aisha was the godslayer who had traveled from the twenty-first
century to this era.
Today, she was still dressed in the usual attire she had worn ever since
arriving in ancient Gaul — the white overcoat with the long robe that
resembled a one-piece dress.
The bright and sunny weather of spring was quite comfortable, sending
Aisha’s spirits to a crescendo.
Blowing across the water, the favorable wind was smooth and gentle.
Driven by this wind, the merchant’s ship that Aisha had boarded was
sailing downstream along the Rhine, towards the north of the Roman
province of Gaul.
Judging by modern sensibilities, the ship would be roughly “twice the size
of a yacht or thereabouts.”
“The people of this ship are so friendly and helpful.”
Whether the ship’s owner or the wheat traders on board, everyone treated
Aisha very nicely.
Four days earlier, at the pier of Augusta Raurica, Aisha had asked them if
she could hitch a ride. They agreed readily.
During the daytime, the ship would sail along the river, blown downstream
by the wind.
At night, she would wrap herself in a blanket and sleep on the ship while it
was moored along towns by the shore.
Then on the fourth day of the journey, during the daytime, the ship arrived
at the Roman colonial city of Mogontiacum.
The ship was only supposed to unload merchandise here and then return
upstream to the city of Raurica.
There was still far to go before reaching her destination of Colonia
Agrippina, which lay much further north.
Madame Aisha disembarked amidst the merchants’ smiling farewells.
Everyone saw her off with warm words and smiles.
Finding the world full of benevolence, Aisha felt “warmth” in her heart.
(In actual fact, this was all due to Aisha’s slight invocation of her charisma
authority when she first made her request with a smile. Perhaps their
friendly behavior did not stem from pure benevolence, nevertheless,
Madame Aisha had no wish of being a pessimist who refuted these
people’s kindness. She believed that humans must live by supporting one
another.)
After disembarking, Aisha first went to find a meal.
Her special skills included being able to sleep soundly no matter where she
slept and finding all food delicious no matter what she ate. These two
special skills were probably what allowed her to live her life completely
stress free regardless of location.
On this occasion, she chose a cheap restaurant nearby. Her order
consisted of some slightly hard bread and vegetable soup flavored with
pepper. Aisha thoroughly enjoyed these trivial and ordinary pleasures.
“Next, I should find my next ship.”
Leaving the restaurant, Aisha made her way to the pier again. The Rhine
had been used extensively for water transport since antiquity and many
ships were moored at Mogontiacum’s pier.
“Who should I ask…?”
She murmured to herself as she looked around the pier. Instead of
searching for friendly-looking sailors, she was doing the opposite. Since
people always said yes no matter whom she asked, Aisha found these
situations quite troubling instead. In actual fact, there was no one nearby
who would reject her requests —
“Come to think of it, I wonder if Ena-san and the others are okay?”
Perhaps due to arriving at the pier, she recalled what had happened back
when she first set off.
Even at the city of Augusta Raurica, she had selected an suitable ship to
board in the same manner. Seizing the opportunity when the caring but
slightly nagging Kusanagi Godou was away, she had departed on her
journey alone.
At that time, Ena was apparently following Aisha.
Not long after the ship left the city of Raurica, a second ship following
behind suddenly suffered from a fallen mast and the misfortune of a
breached hull. The passengers instantly set themselves to throwing water
out of the ship and seemed to be in quite a state of panic.
Aisha had clearly witnessed Ena’s speechless appearance at the time.
“Putting me under surveillance and not letting me travel, seriously, that
Kusanagi-san. Is he really that worried about me? That’s a bit excessively
protective of him…”
Last time at Raurica, a battle had taken place between Uldin and him.
At the time, Kusanagi Godou had come forward to fight in Aisha’s defense,
risking his life and exhibiting benevolence and courage. He was definitely
quite a kindhearted youth.
Nevertheless, whether surveillance or caring, it was still too excessive.
The charisma power did not affect Kusanagi Godou who was likewise a
godslayer. The chivalry and spirit of self-sacrifice in protecting Aisha all
came from the youth’s own free will.
Suddenly, Aisha was taken aback with surprise.
“Could it be, no way, is he actually… in love with me!?”
Aisha wondered while wandering aimlessly at the pier.
Like a strike of lightning, the shock caused her heart to waver, making her
body sway unsteadily. Leaning against the railing by the river, she finally
managed to stabilize herself.
“Is protecting me a means to hide his shyness? Or is he unable to face his
own feelings honestly…? It should be one or the other, right…?”
In that case, everything made logical sense. Aisha seemed to have
glimpsed the light of truth.
“B-But Kusanagi-san has two lovers already. Despite clearly making
righteous speeches, he turns out to be no better than Uldin-san. Quite an
unfaithful womanizer… Without mincing words, he would be human scum
of a slightly silly variety…”
Shocked by the truth she had divined, Aisha felt her body temperature
rising as though she had a fever. She kept murmuring:
“But he risked his life for me… Also, despite putting up such a serious front
all the time, who knows what scandals are secretly circulating about him
and any number of ladies. This is attractive in itself, a bit of a bad boy
feel — Oh no! This is no good at all!”
Aisha’s mind was instantly plunged into all sorts of thoughts. Disapproval
and affirmation clashed intensely, erupting sparks in a battle of light and
darkness.
“This won’t do, Aisha. If I allow myself to be carried away by these
emotions and accept him, surely I’ll be the one crying in the end, at an
older age to boot… Of course, I can still pass as his younger sister
perfectly plausibly, yes, a very lively and energetic younger sister…”
“Excuse me, Aisha-san?”
“Oh no, I feel like I’m seeing Kusanagi-san’s face before me when my
thoughts are with him… If I don’t calm myself down a bit more…”
“No actually, I am right in front of you, in the flesh — Can you hear me?”
“Yes, I hear you— Wah!?”
Aisha was so shocked she fell backwards.
Standing before her and watching in surprise were Kusanagi Godou, Erica
Blandelli and Seishuuin Ena. Unbeknownst to Aisha, they had somehow
gathered here already.
“K-Kusanagi-san, did you overhear what I was saying just now!?”
“Just the last sentence. After going through all the trouble and finding you
murmuring to yourself by the river, I was originally thinking of capturing
you… Were you trying to say something?”
“Pay no mind to it! They were simply murmurs, a maiden’s private
thoughts!”
In an effort to conceal the heavy pulsation in her heart, Aisha yelled loudly.
“B-But anyway, how did you catch up to me, Kusanagi-san?”
“Like you, Aisha-san, we came by ship.”
Having traveled downstream on the Rhine by ship, Godou answered
Madame Aisha’s question.
It was the only small-size sailing ship that was about to depart, similar to a
yacht in size and appearance. Given a favorable wind, it was capable of
moving rapidly across water.
With an estimated speed of twenty knots, it was comparable to the legal
speed limit of automobiles.
However, having grown accustomed to walking and riding horses, Godou
found it quite fast. Currently on board were Godou, Madame Aisha, Erica
and Ena.
“I was near that Uldin guy’s forest when I heard about Aisha-san going
missing, so I went and asked that guy to borrow a ship.”
“Then through various means, we managed to catch up to you, Madame.”
Godou replied, followed by Erica who reported in a courteous tone of
voice.
Not too long ago, Godou had also borrowed a ship from Ruska and
Clotilde to sail downstream along the Rhine.
Like last time, Clotilde had bestowed a water protection spell at their
departure. This allowed them to travel much faster than an ordinary ship.
Furthermore, Godou and Erica both had excellent night vision.
This allowed them to take turns watching over the ship as they advanced
during nighttime, proceeding to pick up Ena at Raurica and chase after
Madame Aisha who had set off first. As an extra precaution, Erica had
taken a hair from Madame Aisha to use for search magic, thereby allowing
them to close in substantially and avoid having to check ships one by one.
“No other way, I suppose…”
Madame Aisha apparently gave up. She sighed and said:
“I was originally thinking of leaving you behind, Kusanagi-san who is
slightly too naggy, so that I may negotiate with Doni-san first. I’ll give up on
that now. So let the four of us do our best together from now on!”
“Agreed. But I don’t really nag that much.”
Still getting slightly strung along by Aisha’s pace, Godou objected
indifferently.
“I just speak a bit of common sense, that’s all.”
“You’re saying annoying things again… But I understand. Kusanagi-san,
you feel so concerned about me that you can’t help yourself… Isn’t that
right?”
“Well, that’s because like that idiot Doni, you’re someone I really need to
pay attention to.”
In a careless moment, Godou said something he should not have
disclosed in front of this centenarian-plus woman.
Unlike her godslayer peer, Godou’s sworn sister Luo Cuilian, Madame
Aisha was quite cheerful and candid in behavior and personality alike.
Even worse, she was quite prone to gossiping as a result of this
personality.
Meanwhile, for some reason Godou could not fathom, Madame Aisha was
going “I knew it…” and nodding to herself.
Then looking up, she secretly glanced at Godou’s face.
“But Aisha-san, there’s something Ena doesn’t understand.”
While Madame Aisha was acting suspiciously, Ena asked incredulously.
“In order to chase after your ship, Aisha-san, Ena also hitched a ride on
another ship that was setting sail, but gave up when a hole opened up in
the ship’s hull.”
“Ah, so it really happened.”
“The next ship taken was suddenly beached. Then the one after that was
unable to set sail because of the commotion from an old man’s stomach
ache. If they’re all coincidence, Ena thinks that’s a bit excessive…”
Using Ama no Murakumo no Tsurugi as a medium, Ena had contacted
Godou.
After picking up the raven-haired Hime-Miko who was stranded and waiting
at the riverside near Augusta Raurica, Godou had heard about this matter.
Due to three inexplicable instances of trouble, she had been unable to tail
Aisha.
One could not help but suspect an element of human intervention in three
successive instances of misfortune.
Presumably, Madame Aisha must have done something? For example,
little tricks of magic…
“Indeed, it cannot be said to be pure coincidence. I am truly sorry.”
As expected, Madame Aisha answered in an apologetic tone of voice.
She clasped her hands together before her chest, making a pose like a
pious nun in prayer.
“Actually, I was praying before boarding the ship: Please protect me during
this period when I am heading over to visit Doni-san and guide him
towards the path of benevolence so as to prevent more people from
suffering.”
“Praying… Do you believe in some kind of religion, Madame?”
Feeling surprised, Erica interjected. Presumably she found it quite
shocking for a godslayer to use the word “praying.”
“Or perhaps, you believe in a deity of some place?”
“Oh no. Actually, there was one time over in China when I had no choice
but to defeat a benevolent guardian of the populace.”
Confronted with this sudden confession, Godou, Erica and Ena exchanged
glances with one another.
In other words, it was nothing as half-baked as “little tricks of magic.”
“As a result, I obtained an authority of fortune’s blessing. It is quite an
insignificant power, only taking effect to help me accomplish my task
whenever I vow to do good…”
“F-Fortune’s blessing huh…”
Normally fazed by nothing, Ena could only mutter “I surrender” in
response.
Most likely, she never would have imagined that such occurrences were
actually the result of a godslayer’s authority.
“So in trying to hinder Aisha-san, Ena encountered weird events…”
“Yes. I pray not to any god but towards my own authority. — When time is
not ripe yet for good to result, even the benevolent shall encounter
misfortune, when time is ripe for good to result, fortune shall come to pass,
let the good be rewarded with fortune and evil shall reap what they sow…”
At this moment, the sound of rumbling thunder could be heard.
“It was sunny up until just now…”
Godou looked up into the air. Before he knew it, the thunderclouds had
already spread far and wide, completely darkening the sky.
“Madame Aisha, is this caused by that authority?”
Erica suddenly realized something and asked the terrifying female
Campione.
“Taking effect over the duration it takes to bring a good deed to fruition — In
other words, right now, while making her way towards Sir Salvatore, the
power of fortune is still protecting the Madame!?”
“…Oh, now that you mention it, that’s true indeed.”
/p
The Madame answered readily in the affirmative. Godou and his friends
were shocked.
Within the mere time span of the earlier exchange, a great rainstorm had
already started its downpour. Striking the people and the Rhine’s surface
alike, the raindrops actually hurt. In modern parlance, it would be a
guerrilla rainstorm.
Finally, a strong gale began to blow in transverse while lightning struck
down incessantly from the sky.
In merely four or five minutes, a storm had descended. Naturally, faced
with a great rainstorm, the Rhine shook Godou’s small sailing ship
violently. The intensity of the ship’s rocking was undoubtedly beyond what
amusement park rides could offer.
“Hurry and get ashore, we must get back onto solid ground!”
“Th-This storm is on a totally different level compared to the accidents that
hindered Ena!”
“Indeed, it must be because of Kusanagi-san. As expected, when a
godslayer caught up to me, ordinary trials and misfortunes are not
enough.”
“So, because I’m getting in your way, Aisha-san, that’s what’s causing this
storm!?”
“When clearly Aisha-san is getting swept up in it as well?”
“This sometimes happens when I use this power. Someone’s fortune
becomes another’s misfortune. Fortune adhered to misfortune, misfortune
lurking amidst fortune. Fortune and misfortune would summon each other.
Perhaps this is the truth that this world conveys…”
On the river’s surface, scoured by wind and waves, the water was billowing
turbulently. As a result of the heavy rain, everyone became completely
soaked.
Only Madame Aisha was calmly explaining away.
As the price(?) for using the authority of fortune, she was probably
well-accustomed to getting swept into sudden misfortune and calamities.
In contrast, Erica, Ena and Godou were showing signs of anxiety. In any
case, they started taking action to counter their desperate situation.
But it was already too late.
Produced by the strong gale, giant waves made the ship’s body turn a
hundred and eighty degrees — They capsized.
Naturally, all four of them were tossed into the raging winds and turbulent
waters in the middle of the Rhine.
Part 2
Liliana Kranjcar was a witch with outstanding talent.
Being only a teenager, she had yet to reach the level of top experts.
But in this age, she undoubtedly held outstanding promise, a rare prodigy
whom everyone expected to eventually reach the pinnacle along this path.
Furthermore, currently in front of Liliana was the “top expert” who could
serve as her role model.
Princess Alice — the princess who stood at the pinnacle of the
heaven-oriented system of witchcraft.
As Europe’s most powerful miko and highest-ranking witch, she had
brought Liliana and Mariya Yuri to meet “a certain person who wanted to
see them.”
The trip was a bit different from expected.
Their current location was a hotel that had been converted from an ancient
medieval Italian castle.
Climbing a long and spiral staircase, Alice led Liliana and Yuri to an
observation room at the highest and fifth floor. One of the walls was made
of glass, providing a view of the “outside” scenery.
This ancient castle was situated in the Casentino area, a region of forest
designated as a national park.
With trees extending all the way to the horizon, the land was covered white
in snow that had fallen a few days prior. Meanwhile, the bright light of the
crescent moon illuminated the greenery and silver-white snow down below.
Such scenery of fantasy was visible from this observation room.
“Come to think of it, aren’t you also my junior, Liliana?”
“Yes, although I am still in training.”
Standing under the moonlight streaming in through the window, the
princess asked. Liliana answered concisely.
This was not because she was unused to interacting with fellow witches,
for Liliana would often address her master or seniors as “auntie” or “sister.”
Nevertheless, Liliana was also a knight at the same time and did not intend
to address a noble princess with too much familiarity.
On the other hand, Alice smiled and accepted Liliana’s stubborn
adherence to etiquette, then spoke:
“Wonderful, then there’s no issue even if I verbally pass along the words of
witches. Liliana and Yuri, please note that you must carefully keep what
you hear here a secret, okay?”
Alice brought her index finger to her lips to make a gesture of
confidentiality.
Then Yuri, the Japanese Hime-Miko, bowed apologetically.
“Excuse me, Princess… In that case, would it be better if I took my leave?”
“Nothing to worry about, Yuri, so please remain present. You can be
considered the cousin of us witches. Furthermore, apart from the witches,
a select few people are privy to this secret as well.”
The witch, who stood at the pinnacle of the heaven-oriented system,
smiled mischievously.
“Even the Witenagemot’s Diogenes Club is also a part of the select few in
the know. There’s also North America’s premier fairy doctor — the elderly
gentleman who assists a certain Devil King.”
Indeed as expected. Liliana nodded silently. Princess Alice intended to
share secret knowledge that was only passed verbally even between
high-ranking witches.
Right now, Alice was using summoning magic to call forth a perfume bottle
into her right hand.
She swiftly waved this tiny bottle towards Liliana and Yuri. A refreshing
floral scent entered their nostrils.
Having smelled this fragrance before, Liliana and Yuri were shocked. They
remembered the aroma from an incident concerning a certain divine sword
that counted as part of Japan’s national treasure.
“O skylark, take me to the furthest reaches of the clouds, your song
resounding in the heavens between the clouds, leading me together in
flight—”
As Liliana watched in shock, Princess Alice chanted spell words.
Considering this in conjunction with the magical presence that exuded
accordingly, Liliana remembered.
Unmistakable. The princess was using “that witchcraft.” Liliana was
certain. Before her eyes, the observation room’s glass glowed brightly from
the moonlight. In the following instant, her entire view was taken over by
white light…
Once the white light dissipated, Liliana found herself standing on a cliff by
the sea. Looking down at the foot of the cliff, she could see raging waves
crashing against the rocks. Also, the sky was purple.
Mariya Yuri and the princess were next to her.
Yuri gulped. From the sight of the purple sky alone, it was already obvious
that this was no ordinary place.
“Sure enough, the Netherworld… Princess, you used a spell to cross over
to the Netherworld, yes?”
“Yes, that’s right, although we tend to call this realm the ‘Astral Plane.'”
Yuri confirmed with the princess who answered with a wink.
The Netherworld, a domain outside of the mortal realm.
An alternate dimension where the mind and ectoplasm ranked higher than
material substance. It was said that Japanese wizards called it the
Netherworld while Chinese Daoists referred to it as Youmingjie or Youjie in
short. Known to Persian wizardry as the Menog, Greek mysticism called it
the Idea Realm, etc.
Heretic Gods seemed to call it the [Boundary of Life and Immortality].
The perfume the princess had released just now was a secret elixir
concocted to help human bodies adjust to the Netherworld’s air. During the
Ama no Murakumo no Tsurugi incident, Liliana had also prepared the
same elixir to send Yuri to the Netherworld.
The princess did not use it on herself, most likely because there was no
need to.
Instead of using her physical body, the frail Princess Alice apparently went
outdoors by sending her spirit body “outside.” Essentially, the princess in
front of Liliana and Yuri’s eyes was nothing more than a projection,
something akin to a ghost. There was no issue of spirit bodies needing to
adjust to the Astral Plane.
“The person who wants to see us turns out to be in the Netherworld huh…”
“Not exactly? You’ll understand quicker if you see with your own eyes.
Let’s hurry over to the meeting place.”
After answering Yuri’s query, the princess closed her eyes. The
surrounding environment instantly changed.
A Buddha statue stood upright in the middle of a cave, a sight reminiscent
of cave monasteries in India.
Unlike in the earthly realm, traveling in the Astral Plane relied on the mind
rather than walking. Once accustomed to this realm, magi could transfer
instantaneously simply by imagining their desired destination.
“Very regrettably, it’s not a place we can fly directly to, because it’s a
secret location that cannot be reached except by transferring according to
prescribed rules. As a result, we need to make various stops.”
Then the scenery changed again.
A chalk palace built next to a lake. An endless desert of hot sand with only
an oasis offering respite. A vast plain where a giant bird design was carved
on the ground. Dense forest where all sorts of poisonous insectivorous
plants flourished. Streets evoking imagery from 1920s America in the
Prohibition Era, etc…
The final destination was at the foot of a bare mountain.
Before their eyes was an ancient Greek temple. Stout marble columns
stood upright in a rectangular arrangement with a roof on top. A small
building.
“The appointment was clearly decided here, but the other party is absent.”
No one else could be seen in the surroundings. As their guide, Alice,
frowned, Yuri asked.
“Someone who does not reside here?”
“Exactly. Seriously, how could that person be tardy even at a time like
this…”
” — Princess. Just as you say, I have only ‘just arrived.’ A minute or two’s
delay shouldn’t count as being late, right? What do you say?”
A voice Liliana had heard before. Then came the clinking sounds of
iron-studded boots striking the stone floor surrounding the temple.
Although Liliana had been in continuous state of shock all night, this was
the greatest shock of all. The same went for Yuri. In a rare moment, the
prudent Yamato Nadeshiko raised her voice:
“You are the person who set up this appointment to meet us!?”
“Hoho, how honored I am to know that you are so moved to see me.”
The new arrival was wearing an elegant blue suit with a black cape.
Covering the face was a masked helmet with a visor whose design
resembled an insect’s compound eyes. Worn on the feet were iron-studded
boots.
The one who had made the appointment to meet them at the Astral Plane
temple was none other than John Pluto Smith.
The Campione renowned as Los Angeles’ guardian saint.
“The whereabouts and exploits of Kusanagi Godou and Italy’s handsome
king are not precisely the reasons why I’m here.”
Coming through the mask, the tenor voice sounded as lively as that of a
theatrical performer.
“I heard that they’ve gone missing due to a certain Madame using an
authority that serves as a ‘passport.’ As a result, a certain old acquaintance
approached me to cry and beg, asking for my help no matter what.”
“Requiring your personal presence as a Campione, Smith-sama…”
“That’s very normal. The only ones capable of opposing godslayers are
their peers — other godslayers — and the gods. This is universal truth.”
Reacting to Liliana’s murmurs, Smith shrugged.
“Then I got in touch with the princess, hoping she could relay news to me
regarding this incident. In addition, I heard that there were two miko who
were able to ‘see’ the era where Kusanagi Godou had flown to. That said, I
still haven’t decided if I’m going to accept my old acquaintance’s request
yet.”
The visor’s compound eyes looked towards Yuri and Liliana.
“In any case, I troubled you two to make a visit, hoping you could assist
me.”
“Excuse me… May I ask who this ‘old acquaintance’ of yours might be,
Smith-sama?”
In response to Yuri’s question, Smith quickly raised his right hand and
pointed a gloved index finger towards the interior of the temple.
“The one who lives inside. Well, this individual is not only difficult to please
but also very neurotic and pessimistic… A most troublesome personality, at
any rate. Let me just add that he is also a man who is troubled to no end
by the commotion raised by my friend, Madame Aisha.”
“Troubled to no end…?”
Liliana frowned, unable to understand what Smith meant.
Yuri’s expression suddenly went blank. Her eyes also became
glass-colored while she began to murmur on her own.
“The sanctuary belonging to the one who carves time… Recording
everything in the world, the library keeping the records of the void…”
“You saw it. Impressive indeed.”
Hearing the oracle Yuri spoke due to spirit vision, Smith nodded. On the
other hand, Liliana was worried about her companion’s hypnotized state.
Furthermore, this only served to raise even more questions.
“To my tentative understanding, I take it that this place is not simply a
sanctuary steeped in history. If possible, please answer another of my
questions. Smith-sama, how are you related to the one who lives here?”
“A truly pertinent question, Liliana Kranjcar.”
Liliana was shocked that the black-clad godslayer knew her name.
She had always thought that Smith was only aware of her as nothing more
than Kusanagi Godou’s follower. Seeing her reaction, Smith laughed and
used his left hand to push his cape open.
Revealed beneath was still the blue costume. Carried in the holster on his
hip was that gun.
“I have a number of important connections to the Astral Plane. This is one
of them.”
Smith drew the handgun from his hip.
“This was something forged by the dark elves living in this realm. To me, it
would be something like the magic sword Excalibur.”
The six-shot large-caliber revolver. The magic gun the color of gray steel.
It was the legendary handgun quite well-known as John Pluto Smith’s
weapon, a tool for firing the “magic bullet authority” usurped from the
goddess Artemis. It was said that the vast area of the entire California state
would be incinerated utterly if the authority’s full power were to be
unleashed…
This magic gun was an otherworldly weapon forged in the Astral Plane —
The Witenagemot’s report had mentioned it. But hearing it directly from the
man himself, Liliana felt an indescribable sense of emotion, possibly due to
John Pluto Smith’s “masked hero charisma.”
“Come to think of it, I have heard that you are able to travel freely between
the earth and the Astral Plane, Smith-sama.”
“Ah yes, that is one of my insignificant privileges.”
Smith replied to Liliana and returned the magic gun to its holster.
“That’s the power I usurped by killing one of the fairy kings who rule the
Astral Plane. Furthermore, I also inherited a king’s duties and obligations
from him.”
“Duties and obligations…?”
“Including the Plutarch’s Residence here, this entire level is part of the
territory I rule over. Oh well, despite being king, I’m actually nothing more
than an absentee figurehead. But upon receiving a definite request like this
one, I still can’t leave things unattended after all.”
Fairy king. Plutarch’s Residence.
Hearing unexpected terms, Liliana was overcome with astonishment.
“I came back to this place because I received a desperate plea regarding
Kusanagi Godou, Salvatore Doni and Madame Aisha… To exterminate the
three of them. So, what should I do?”
Straight from John Pluto Smith’s mouth came a shocking statement.
Part 3
Kusanagi Godou: godslayer, Devil King, Campione.
Despite having no desire for them, he possessed numerous abilities
beyond that of ordinary humans. Nevertheless, flying in the air or breathing
underwater were not among them.
Hence, even someone like him would still be plunged into a desperate
crisis once thrown into the Rhine that was almost about to overflow due to
a sudden storm.
To escape this crisis, Godou made use of his greatest weapon.
His physical stamina. After being thrown overboard, he struggled
desperately in the raging and turbid waters, swimming while trying to
search for the capsized ship.
Especially shocking was Madame Aisha who was facing the same situation
as him.
Despite her non-athletic appearance, she was looking for the capsized
ship just like Godou. Meanwhile, the remaining companions —
“Anchor me, Cuore di Leone!”
First of all, Erica Blandelli started summoning the magic sword of the lion
while falling into the river.
Manifesting in her hand, the slender longsword immediately transformed
and turned into an anchor with a chain attached. Erica threw the anchor,
causing it to fly at high speed towards the Rhine’s shore.
She was roughly thirty meters from the shore.
Nevertheless, the anchor’s flight and the chain’s length both allowed it to
reach the shore effortlessly.
The anchor hooked the ground with a clang, forming a lifeline connecting
Erica to dry land.
Meanwhile, the other person, Seishuuin Ena —
“O Great God of Arms! I beseech you to grant me protection from
drowning!”
This incantation to ward off drowning was magic that had been used
previously on the goddess Circe’s island.
While praying for protection, Ena desperately reached out.
The chain connecting Erica to the magic sword on the shore happened to
be nearby. No, the clever blonde most likely threw the chain in
consideration of the Hime-Miko’s position. Ena gripped Cuore di Leone’s
chain with her right hand tightly.
Watching this scene, Godou was relieved. He turned to the woman beside
him and said:
“Are you okay, Aisha-san!?”
“Y-Yes. I’m okay for now!”
But just at this moment, descending lightning struck Godou’s ship directly.
“Uwaaaah!”
“Kyaaaaaaaah!”
Falling from the sky, the thunderclap completely destroyed the small sailing
ship that Godou and the Madame had finally managed to climb aboard.
“Godou, Madame Aisha!”
“Are you okay? Respond if you’re still alive!”
Erica and Ena kept screaming in desperation but Godou was too occupied
to answer then.
Swallowing the turbid water again, Godou could feel the impending threat
of drowning. Nevertheless, he did not give up, refusing to let his life be
tarnished by such a shameful demise. Desperately, he looked for an
opening.
Drifting along the Rhine under the storm, Godou and Madame Aisha were
alone. The timber and bits of wood from the ship’s wreckage became their
allies.
Godou immediately searched for large planks of wood. Although they
could not guarantee his survival, at least he would be able to float above
the surface.
“Aisha-san, hurry over here!”
“Okay!”
Godou reached out to Madame Aisha who was drifting beside him. In turn,
she desperately tried to grab Godou’s outstretched hand — She managed
to succeed. Holding hands, Godou pulled her slender and feminine body to
his side.
Then the two of them drifted, holding onto a plank of wood.
But the situation was still quite terrible.
The heavy rain continued to fall nonstop while raging winds roared.
The Rhine was already a large river to begin with. The sudden increase in
water volume could easily cause a flood any time.
Amidst the roaring water currents, Godou and Madame Aisha were
submerged many times and relied on the wooden plank’s buoyancy to float
back up. It was difficult to predict how long a single wooden plank could
continue to keep them safe. Moreover, rocks, trees and boats from other
unknown shores had been swept into the turbulent flow, resulting in the
threat of colliding with them.
The way it looked, death seemed to be looming near —
This shipwreck incident was even more hazardous than last time’s
impromptu Whitewater rafting on the “goddess’ island” in Malaysian waters.
Consequently, Godou was slightly preparing himself mentally for the worst.
Roughly dozens of minutes later…
“How surprising, we’re saved at last…”
“It’s probably because the power of fortune protected us!”
Without a watch, Godou could not tell exactly how much time had passed.
But currently, the Rhine’s surface had calmed down completely. The storm
had quieted down as suddenly as it had arrived. Drifting while hugging the
wooden plank, Godou and Madame Aisha were both unharmed.
However, having soaked in water for so long, the cold was an issue.
Noticing that the wooden plank had already drifted near the shore, Godou
kicked his legs in the water, shifting course towards the shore. Thanks to
Madame Aisha helping out with her own kicking, they soon arrived ashore.
“A blessing in disguise, is that how it goes…?”
“Yes, between the misfortune encountered due to your pursuit,
Kusanagi-san, and the fortune that saved us, it’s fortune’s victory this
time.”
For some reason, Madame Aisha was smiling leisurely.
Probably accustomed to tumultuous experiences, what horrifying survival
ability. Nevertheless, Godou did not have the composure to smile, for he
was confronted with new worries.
“I don’t think I’ll make it if another incident similar to that storm appears. If
only there were countermeasures…”
“Yes, in any case, let me dispel fortune’s protection.”
“…What, that can actually be switched on or off at will?”
Godou had thought it was an uncontrollable ability like the corridor
authority.
Stared at by Godou, the Madame smiled deceptively.
“Oh, please allow me to explain. Once begun, acts of fortune or misfortune
cannot be stopped, so I had to wait until the storm subsided first!”
“Well, that’s actually fine, I guess…”
By this point, Godou could not bring himself to say: Shouldn’t you have
switched it off the moment we met again? Looking at his right arm, Godou
called upon the divine sword residing there, Ama no Murakumo no Tsurugi.
“By the way, Seishuuin and Erica are safe, right!?”
‘Yes… They apparently left the water before us…’
The divine sword answered irritably.
Godou nodded. Due to drifting in the river with Madame Aisha, he was
worried about his companions’ safety and ordered Ama no Murakumo no
Tsurugi to relay confirmation of each other’s situation between him and
Ena.
True to the names of the Hime-Miko of the Sword and Erica Blandelli, they
had apparently escaped the desperate crisis unharmed as well.
“Pass a message along to tell them we’re fine. Then since neither side
knows where they are, let’s meet up at Colonia Agrippina.”
Ama no Murakumo’s response felt something like a person nodding their
head silently.
After arriving in ancient Gaul, Godou had found out he could use the Ama
no Murakumo no Tsurugi as a cellphone substitute. But since the divine
sword was clearly unenthusiastic about communications unrelated to
battle, relying on this unmotivated communicator for a way to meet up with
his companions would be quite inefficient.
Coming up with a slightly better solution, Godou finally slumped his
shoulders. Much more time seemed to have passed than expected, seeing
as the setting sun had dyed the western sky red. Godou decided to halt
their travels for today and prepare for rest.
“Anyway, something needs to be done about these wet clothes…”
The place where Godou and Madame Aisha went ashore was a deserted
grassland.
Let alone a town, a single home could not be found. Due to the violent
storm, there were no boats passing by on the Rhine. Godou and Madame
Aisha were thoroughly drenched. Naturally, they had no change of clothes
since their luggage had sunk to the bottom of the river along with the ship,
but at least they escaped with their lives.
Looking at his optimistic travel companion, Godou was stunned for an
instant.
Heavy from moisture, Madame Aisha’s overcoat had been taken off and
discarded in the water already. Currently, she was only wearing the white
robe that resembled a one-piece dress.
Due to being thoroughly wet, her clothing was clinging tightly to her skin.
Thanks to that, this excessively senior woman’s perfect figure was readily
apparent from a single glance.
Despite a very slender physique, her voluptuous breasts were like ripened
fruit whose weight would bend branches whereas her posterior displayed
mesmerizing curves.
Furthermore, she was not wearing a brassiere, an article of clothing yet to
be invented in ancient times. Drenched white fabric became see-through,
offering faint glimpses of the skin beneath.
Then there was her long black hair, thoroughly drenched, exuding an
incredible air of seductiveness…
Finding his gaze suddenly glued to her, Godou frantically averted his eyes.
Then Madame Aisha noticed her current appearance and instantly covered
her bosom with her arms.
“U-U-U-Umm, let us s-start a fire!”
“Th-That’s a great idea!”
Erica was able to start fires with magic, but she was currently absent.
Like Godou, Madame Aisha did not seem motivated to learn magic either.
On the other hand, she was carrying flint ready for use. Together with
high-valued coins, it was kept in a small and bulging bag tied to her waist.
“Carrying this sort of thing with me has proved unexpectedly handy.”
The graceful female Campione remarked readily.
Godou was quite impressed by how she was so accustomed to these
terrible situations that she had acquired such insight. On the other hand,
Godou had also secured a bag of the Roman Empire’s gold and silver
coins to himself, not unlike Aisha. Hence, all they had lost was their heavy
luggage and there was no need to worry about money for their travels.
Using the flint, Madame Aisha started a fire on the dry grass and twigs that
Godou had gathered. Once the small cracking fire was lit, Godou said:
‘Til head over there for now to see if anyone’s coming. Just in case, I’m
drying my wet clothing first.”
“What is going on— Kyah!?”
Godou was taking off his shirt in front of Madame Aisha, causing her to
question. Seeing Godou’s exposed upper torso, Madame Aisha stared
wide-eyed.
Completely unconcerned, Godou hung his wet shirt on a branch.
“See you later.”
Having said that, Godou left the fire, knowing that Madame Aisha would
probably remove her wet clothing to dry by the fire if he gave her some
privacy.
Godou made his move in consideration of that. After all, this would dry their
clothes faster and prevent catching a cold from wearing wet clothes.
Godou’s pants were also completely wet, but that could not be helped.
As a side note, by the time the fire was started, the sun had already set
and night had fallen.
His skin growing cold, Godou was thankful that the current season was
spring. Ignoring his shivering body, Godou endured while wandering along
the riverside.
Although this area was grassland, there were many flowering plants above
knee-height.
This provided cover resulting in poor visibility. The area illuminated by the
fire should probably be out of view.
“Huhyaaaaaah!?”
Madame Aisha’s scream was heard. Did someone do something? Godou
frantically ran back to the fire. At the same time, the Madame also ran
towards him.
“What happened!?”
“I-I-I-I feel something strange on my back!?”
When Godou reached her, Madame Aisha threw herself into his chest.
Back? Puzzled, Godou looked at her — And was rendered speechless.
Taking another good look,
First of all, Madame Aisha was essentially nude, in a completely undressed
state.
The rosy tips of her sensational and bulging breasts were exposed. Of
course, her lower body was covered by nothing but a piece of thin cloth
with only sandals worn on her feet.
Also, presumably intending to put it on immediately…
She had Godou’s shirt on her shoulder, the one that he had hung on a
branch to dry.
In this beautifully salacious manner, with her rushing and throwing herself
at him, Godou not only felt the sensation of her soft but very supple bosom
but also her smooth, pristine and olive skin pressing tightly against his
upper body (that was nude as well).
Godou felt himself taking a massive gulp, trying to mobilize the entirety of
his rational thought.
Grabbing the Madame’s smooth shoulders, he pushed the olive-skinned
and naked body away from him and tried to ask in as calm a voice as
possible.
“Is something sticking on your back?”
“Please, h-h-h-hurry and get it off me!”
Aisha pleaded tearfully, so Godou peered at her back in head-tilted
puzzlement. Due to Godou’s shirt on hanging on her shoulder, he could not
see what was under the white fabric.
“A-A-A-A weird squirming sensation, s-s-s-so terrifying, please hurry and
get rid of it!”
“E-Easy for you to say…”
Face red, Godou wanted to refuse but Madame Aisha looked up tearfully
at him in a pleading manner, making it truly impossible to refuse.
Godou had no choice but to brush aside the shirt on the Madame’s
shoulder and discovered a gecko on her shoulder blade.
Picking it up casually and throwing it away, the ridiculous affair finally
concluded.
“Umm… It’s fine now.”
“Th-Thank you very much.”
Thinking about it after the fact, this gecko incident really was a tempest in a
teapot.
Before Godou’s eyes was Madame Aisha’s naked body, wearing nothing
except sandals, meaning he was staring straight ahead at her.
Furthermore, there was not a single cloud in the night sky with a clear
moon shining brightly above.
Bathed beneath the moonlight, the Madame’s body was in no way inferior
to a goddess’.
A sight of fantasy. In addition, the perfectly unblemished olive skin was
gradually turning red, as though finally feeling a sense of embarrassment…
“Kyaaaaaaaah!”
She screamed at last. Then the Madame began to yell in awkward
embarrassment.
“Honestly, Kusanagi-san, you’re discarding your usual serious-minded
front to ogle me with this male gaze…! 1-1 knew it, you’re so captivated by
me that you can’t help yourself, right!?”
“Please stop talking incomprehensibly. Hurry up and put on some clothes!”
Part 4
After taking turns to watch over the fire throughout the night, Godou and
Madame Aisha were greeted by the arrival of morning.
Without extra clothing to use as blankets, they lasted through the night,
relying on nothing but the fire. Not catching a cold was probably thanks to
luck or the resilience of Campiones.
As soon as it grew light, the two of them went along the Rhine and
returned to the road.
After walking several hours downstream, they reached a small village.
There, they bought things like food and travel equipment. Inquiring from
the villagers, they learned that Colonia Agrippina was two and half days’
journey away.
“The city where we caught up to you, Aisha-san… That was Mogontiacum,
wasn’t it? I remember that it takes a week to get to Colonia Aggripina from
there, right?”
“Well, because we drifted here, it ended up being a shortcut!”
Indeed, a blessing in disguise.
The protection of fortune conferred by Madame Aisha’s authority was
definitely quite useful in terms of possible benefits. However, getting swept
up in the disasters caused by misfortune was a bit much…
After the Madame bought a new overcoat at the village, the two of them
resumed their journey.
Whether in ancient or modern times, horses for riding were expensive
livestock. Furthermore, this village did not have horses for sale. In the end,
the two Campiones decided to move on foot.
Godou prided in his athleticism and did not find walking hard at all.
Despite her delicate and graceful appearance, Madame Aisha turned out
to be surprisingly adept at walking long distances. Although the two of
them got along well enough as they advanced along their journey, there
were minor disputes on occasion.
At sunset, Madame Aisha spoke up uncomfortably:
“E-Excuse me, boys and girls should not share beds after the age of
seven. Let’s sleep in separate rooms when we find shelter for tonight!”
“You’re very right. I understand.”
Naturally, Godou agreed readily to this perfectly reasonable request.
For some reason, Madame Aisha was shocked by his response, staring
into Godou’s face.
“K-Kusanagi-san is fine with that!?”
“Of course. No problem.”
“U-Umm. Like when traveling together as a pair, finding an opportunity to
make a suitable excuse to sleep in the same room… Are you sure you’re
not harboring those kinds of indecent intentions, Kusanagi-san!?”
“Of course not. Please rest without worry.”
Godou replied indifferently in response to Madame Aisha’s strange
worries. Did having her naked body seen last night put these redundant
fears into her mind?
“Umm, I think that last night’s incident was the result of carelessness on
our part. Proportionately speaking, I think you’re 60% responsible,
Aisha-san…”
“Ooh… Well, even though I can’t deny that I was screaming quite loudly…”
However, they only realized after walking further. This area did not seem to
have any homes for them to seek shelter. Hence, the pair camped
outdoors again.
Still, things went a lot smoother than the previous night.
Not only did they have newly bought travel equipment to replace what they
had lost, but also delicious and portable food. Of course, the risk of bandits
still existed but given Madame Aisha’s authorities, human traps could be
easily escaped, by and large. Hence, that night…
In a clearing far away from the road, the two of them started to camp.
Facing Godou who was sitting beside the fire, Madame Aisha murmured
uneasily:
“U-Umm, Kusanagi-san, since there’s no wall to separate us, you’re not
going to do anything indecent, are you?”
“Of course not.”
“Because I’m a girl after all. If you were to embrace me passionately,
Kusanagi-san, whispering sweet nothings into my ear in your habitual
manner, intending to steal my lips, although I might end up a little excited,
that’s completely unacceptable, got that!?”
“I never had a habit of doing any of that in the first place.”
“Really, despite spending your honeymoon-like days with Erica-san and
Ena-san?”
“That’s not what our relationships are like!”
Finding the odds quite stacked against him in this conversation, Godou
changed the subject.
“Besides, aren’t you over a hundred and fifty years older than me,
Aisha-san? Normally, whispering sweet nothings to someone like that isn’t
possible, right?”
“Y- You’re supposed to say ‘love knows no boundaries in age’ in a situation
like this, Kusanagi-san!”
“No… I think there’ll be a generation gap.”
“Seriously! Making me out to be an old hag or something… Allow me to
make myself clear. Let alone a century and a half, I haven’t even reached
half that age yet!”
Madame Aisha indignantly raised unexpected objections.
“When returning to the present age, there were many occasions when I
skipped over decades.”
“…Skipped over?”
“One time, after spending three months in the past, I returned to the
present using the corridor to find that roughly thirty years had elapsed
already.”
“!?”
“Conversely, there was one time when not even two days went by in the
present despite spending two years in the past.”
Urashima Tarou, Rip Van Winkle, that Chinese parable of a transient
dream. .}*
Madame Aisha’s journeys through time were as unbelievable as the places
visited in those stories. Then Godou was shocked. What if a century had
passed when he returned to the modern world, then he would be having a
surreal experience like Urashima Tarou’s…
Concluded lifespans of everyone he knew, all passed away…
Nevertheless, Madame Aisha simply said to Godou:
“Well, so long as a large amount of magic power is injected into the
corridor during the return, it’s possible to control the passage of time to
‘several decades’ or ‘a few days’ later, to a certain extent.”
Hearing that, Godou breathed a sigh of relief.
“…If it’s possible to adjust, why did you return to thirty years later?”
“B-Because if I didn’t do that, I’d end up with the actual age of an old lady
despite being thirty years old in official records!”
“Deliberately becoming Urashima Tarou by your own free will…”
That would be like a time traveler setting off in the year 1999 then
intentionally “returning” ten years later in 2009 to prevent other people from
calling him prematurely aged. What kind of epic science fiction story was
this…?
Furthermore, Madame Aisha was a Campione.
Given that superhuman constitution, her body was most likely very youthful
indeed. Apparently, the bodies of female magi aged much slower than that
of male magi.
Even more so for Campiones. The sworn elder sister, Luo Cuilian, was a
prime example.
“If that’s the case, I’m curious about something.”
“What is it?”
“If you had to say it, Aisha-san, how old are you? Not your age according
to official records, but the actual time you’ve lived.”
This was a slightly impolite question, so Godou tried asking without much
expectation.
“Umm, I’ve never tried calculating it properly…”
“An estimate is fine. Are you roughly forty or fifty?”
“Oh, of course, I won’t force you to answer.”
“…Seventeen.”
“Eh?”
“My physical and mental age is seventeen years old.”
“Hold on a sec, that’s an impossible number no matter what.”
“Knowing nothing of my life, Kusanagi-san, you are in no position to reject
it. If I say I’m seventeen years old, then that’s final!”
“Then that would make you my contemporary…”
“A-Any objections to that!?”
In any case, there was no other pastime during their journey apart from
chatting. Before they knew it, the two of them were deeply engaged in
conversation. But then they suddenly stopped talking at the same time. A
distinctive and unusual stench was drifting over, carried by the night
breeze. Compared to the foul odors of animals in zoos, this was even more
intense.
“Is there a ranch nearby? Raising pigs or cattle.”
“Maybe, I guess…”
Madame Aisha’s response was very simple.
But in fact, even Godou did not believe his own speculation. Although
there was no evidence, if anything, all he had was a feeling that this
unusual stench was a ominous sign of something inauspicious to come.
For some reason, that was what he thought.
Godou stood up silently and went upwind.
Madame Aisha followed quietly as well.
They had been sitting in a grassy plain. Climbing a small hill in front of
them, Godou and Madame Aisha were rendered speechless. On the other
side of the hill, sixty bears were moving.
All the bears were moving in one direction.
Like sheep following a shepherd, the bears were coming to Godou and
Aisha’s campsite as though riding upon the wind.
There was also something else surprising. Without exception, every bear
was massive, roughly two meters in body length.
Occasionally, there were even larger bears, four to five meters long and as
big as small hills.
“Aisha-san, umm, these aren’t normal bears in this era, right?”
“I doubt it, no matter how you look at it…”
All the bears seem quite excited and displaying vicious eyes. Nevertheless,
not a single bear got into a fight with any of their surrounding kin.
They were like gangsters heading off to a group fight.
A human contingent appeared in front of the bears’ advance, roughly
numbering eighty. All members were armed with swords, spears, axes and
shields or the like, all fired up and ready to kill.
“Oh dear, who could these people be?”
“The way I see it, they look like gangsters before starting a fight.”
After muttering that, Godou realized that his impression was correct.
The armed men suddenly drew their weapons, started charging at the bear
army with a great battle cry.
“Ehhh!?”
Too reckless. Godou was shocked.
The human side consisted of Caucasians with big and tall physiques. Their
equipment rattled. They all had light-colored hair and almost everyone had
strange hairstyles. On the top of their heads, their hair was tied into
“topknots.”
“They’re probably the Franks.”
“Really!?”
“Yes, that hairstyle should be part of Frankish customs.”
Madame Aisha pointed to the armed group that was beginning a battle on
the hill.
First of all, they threw hand axes at nearby bears. Then when the beasts
dodged, they used weapons like spears and swords to attack. Many of the
Frankish warriors first threw axes then switched to close quarters combat.
Their customs were probably just as strange as their hairstyles.
Overall, rather than reckless, the Frankish warriors were better described
as courageous.
Confronted with an army of bears that surpassed them in strength and
size, they still fought valiantly.
Some of the bears stood on their hind legs and used their front limbs to
pummel the Frankish warriors. Using sharp claws to tear enemies apart,
other bears swatted nearby Franks away and easily bit them.
Suffering from the savage beasts’ attacks, the battlefield was soon filled
with blood and screams.
However, there were quite a few Franks who managed to dodge attacks
and use their shields to defend fellow warriors who were going on offense.
Using battle axes and swords to cut through the bear army, the survivors
started to counterattack. Also, there were others who pierced bears with
spears and shot arrows from a distance.
When the battle first started, Godou had expected the Franks to lose
miserably.
But unexpectedly, the tide had shifted to a battle on equal footing.
Although the Franks did not have martial arts experts like Erica or Ena,
these ancient warriors wielded ancient weapons superbly to engage the
vicious beasts in battle.
“Speaking of which, Roman amphitheaters did have gladiators defeating
ferocious beasts…”
Godou recalled what he had heard from Erica.
Martial artists fighting bears unarmed would probably be suicidal, but given
spears, shields, throwing nets and other equipment, humans had pretty
good odds even against lions as opponents. Ancient gladiators stood as
evidence for that.
But in this case, the bear army included massive giants beyond normal
parameters.
These were the four to five-meter-long bears that were as big as small
hills, a total of six. As expected, the Franks were unable to hold their
ground against these beasts. As the battle grew desperate, more and more
casualties resulted. Godou frowned. Whether saving human lives or
protecting animals, he could not actively commit to either.
“Kusanagi-san, I will go stop this battle!”
“Then I’ll come as well — ”
Just as he nodded in response to Aisha, Godou saw it.
Among the Franks, there were several men who were guarding
horse-drawn carts in the back instead of taking part in battle. One of the
men was walking leisurely towards the most intense spot in the battle.
Along the way, he was attacked by a number of giant bears.
Every time, he sliced off the giant bears’ attacking claws and teeth then
continued advancing. Like the gentle descent of flower petals, his agile
body made simple movements to evade the ferocious beasts. Just by
looking, these were clearly motions that were not possible without
advanced mastery of martial arts.
There was an especially enormous bear at the place he was heading
towards.
The vigorously fighting Franks retreated as soon as they noticed his arrival.
They probably intended to stay out of the [King]’s battle.
Casually drawing the longsword at his waist, the man approached one of
the bigger bears.
It was a giant bear with a body length of four to five meters. If it stood on its
hind legs, the bear would be one story high. Taking leisurely footsteps, the
man walked up to this ferocious beast.
Indeed, he was walking as naturally as if he were visiting a friend’s house.
Then came a flash of the sword.
Even Godou’s dynamic vision combined with a godslayer’s focus could not
capture the swing of his sword clearly. On the other hand, that one swing
of the sword ended up chopping the bear’s giant body into two.
Sliced from head to rump in a vertical line, the bear was definitely split in
half by a single strike.
As a side note, the massive bear did not shed a single drop of blood.
Presumably not a creature of this world, it was a being more akin to a
divine beast. Next, the young man used the same technique to make five
swings of his sword.
The remaining giant bears were all split into halves, instantly annihilated.
.. — ,9..
By Godou’s side, Madame Aisha gasped.
She must have felt shocked by the scene and realized the man’s true
identity.
“That guy Doni’s over there. Let me go over to have a look first.”
Saying that, Godou went down the hill. Although he knew that Madame
Aisha was following behind him, he did not take his gaze off the man at all.
The one displaying such swordsmanship and the essence of the magic
sword was a blond young man.
Salvatore Doni, of course. He had arrived in this ancient era a couple
months ago. His attire also belonged to this era. Wearing clothing similar to
a t-shirt, his simple attire included a belt and narrow pants on the bottom
with a brown overcoat on top.
Only his boots were still the leather shoes he liked wearing in the present.
As one would expect, this manner of dress facilitated movement best. A
longsword hung at his waist.
Swords in ancient Gaul were mostly one-handed with short hilts. However,
Doni’s sword had a long hilt and looked like it could be wielded either with
one hand or two. This was probably an item he had brought along from the
present.
Noticing Godou approaching, Doni smiled cheerfully.
“Ah, it’s you, Godou. I feel like it’s been a while.”
“Of course, you’ve been here three months already, right?”
Sighing, Godou answered.
Moreover, although the giant bears were all eliminated, dozens of normal
bears still remained.
However, these bears suddenly stopped fighting the Franks and quieted
down. They looked like they had lost interest and hostility towards humans,
as though demonic possession had been dispelled.
Walking away independently, the bears casually dispersed.
It was as though they were moving back to the forest having finished their
task. Seeing the enemies retreat, the surviving Frankish warriors cheered
victoriously.
OHHHHHHHHHHH! OHHHHHHHHHHH! OHHHHHHHHHHH!
Under the night sky, the plain resounded with the warrior’s manly voices.
“I’ve heard quite a lot about you. Becoming the chieftain of the Franks and
challenging that Uldin of the Huns to a future fight and all that.”
“Oh, so you’ve also met this era’s godslayer.”
“Not only that, I’ve even met someone from our era…”
Madame Aisha was not near Doni and Godou. Instead, she was shuttling
around between the wounded Franks who were lying on the ground. In
order to heal them, she was rushing about all over the place.
Apart from imminent death, all injuries could be healed rapidly no matter
how severe. This was the effect of the Madame’s authority.
Watching this scene, Doni went “I see” and smiled. He was quite sharp in
these matters.
“As expected of my dear friend, my Godou. When did you find Madame
Aisha? She really is quite strong, right?”
“Totally not strong in the sense you’re talking about. Also, stop adding
those descriptions on top of my name.”
Things would go out of hand if Doni’s appetite for battle were to be fired up.
Hence, Godou refuted him firmly.
Nevertheless, Godou did not consider the Madame “weak.” Madame
Aisha’s scariness was probably on a completely different dimension
compared to fighting with swords.
Did Doni realize what Godou was thinking? In a rare display, he was
staring at this woman with eyes filled with curiosity.
But he suddenly laughed and turned towards Godou.
“Right, Godou, although there’s much I want to talk about, could you first
accompany me to do some trivial chores?”
Then Doni shifted his gaze towards the hill, the place where Godou was
just now.
Godou looked in that direction and was met with surprise. Without him
noticing, new opponents had gathered on the hill. Like the ones Doni
massacred earlier, there was an army of giant bears as big as houses.
This time, there were thirty or so of them.
These animals were arranged in a row on the hill, moving this way — More
accurately, they were viciously gazing down at Salvatore Doni.
However, standing behind the massive bears was an even bigger monster.

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