94 – MONSTER a.s.sISTANCE
The war between the Unseelie Lord, the Evil G.o.d that had manifested itself from another world, and the Dark Army, led by the Dark Lady Whitehare, had intensified.
Or to be more precise, the war was between the Unseelie Lord and the Dark Lady alone while the Dark Army, being less an organized army and more a ragtag band of demihumans and monsters who were fighting for the same reason as the Dark Lady’s, attacked cities to liberate Saplings. The battle had gone far beyond the capability of humans, and both the battleship fleets of the Western Continent and the militant faction of the Central Continent deployed to defeat the Unseelie Lord had been annihilated.
The demihuman resistance force had further swelled in number, and with the dragons now partic.i.p.ating in the conflict, the three countries of Cirquesant, Mersept, and Garbandeux, located in the central region of the Eastern Continent, had now fallen. On the northern side of the Western Continent, the remnants of the orc army had a.s.saulted and brought down two small countries.
This had helped the Sapling-abandonment faction consisting of the Academy City Cinqres, Free City Seis, and Marine City Vingteun to gain further traction, with the City of Medicine Lantoure now joining them. This had resulted in some countries beginning to seek peace with the demihumans, at long last, who were willing to accept releasing their Saplings as a condition in order to secure their citizens’ safety.
All the same, there were countries who still hadn’t given up — in other words, leaders who hadn’t been able to stand against the public voice. They wished to continue the war to the bitter end, but as the final Dark General, the Ogre Lord, still remained as a threat, not many among them could spare the military force.
I spun and twirled in the air, barely dodging the lasers as they tore apart the ocean, boiling the seawater and creating a huge cloud of steam.
“Hahh!!” I shouted in effort, freezing the steam with my mist, and I threw the hail of ice spears toward Fiorfata.
Fiorfata again used its black miasma to evaporate them all in an instant. The very next moment, a meteor shower fell from the sky, its range covering everywhere I could see. Countless enormous pillars of water erupted from the sea as the projectiles slammed into the ocean surface.
I formed limited areas of extreme cold, creating regions of disconnected s.p.a.ces to reduce the damage to me. It was reckless, equivalent to blowing myself up to reduce the force of an external explosion, but it was still far better than getting hit by Fiorfata’s attacks directly.
I had been crossing the ocean for the last twelve hours on my way to the Central Continent, all the while trading blows with Fiorfata.
Although it wasn’t exactly an equal fight. The power gap still existed between us, so it was really more like an attack helicopter chasing around an infantry soldier with a gun. At least now I could dodge Fiorfata’s attacks, and my own were affecting it a little bit.
I continued flying, the ocean behind us raging as the water boiled and froze in rapid succession. After some time, a black line far away on the horizon appeared in my sight.
“…there it is!”
I could finally see the Central Continent.
I turned away from the island country closest to me, the Marine City Vingteun, to avoid bringing danger to the World Tree. Instead, I moved to enter the continent from the north.
As I approached the Central Continent, I was greeted by another airship fleet from some country somewhere from the landma.s.s. The difference, however, was that this fleet was a lot smaller than the previous ones. Looked like the humans were finally running out of ships.
Three battleships approached. They shot their magical artillery at me, as I was flying in front.
And I felt a surge of powerful magic from behind me at the same time. Fiorfata was creating an enormous ball of magic power.
I was being fired on, both from ahead and behind me.
I let the battleships’ bombardment hit me, absorbing the mana from them, and at the same time setting off the magic power I’d been charging up to match the timing of Fiorfata’s own attack in a clap of my hands.
Fiorfata’s magical blast came at me like a relentless, enormous wall. My own projectile of absolute zero pierced through it, reducing its power.
As our magic came in contact, the impact formed a ma.s.sive tornado, bending the ocean surface downward for hundreds of meters within a range of several kilometers around us. The three battleships were battered around by the shockwave as though rowboats in a storm, and they met their final fates under the sea.
…I could only reduce the power of Fiorfata’s attack by thirty percent. On the other hand, it was a whole thirty percent.
I wouldn’t give up. There were people all over the world fighting together with me. Gold, the demihumans — they were liberating the Saplings, standing against Fiorfata in their own way.
The World Tree once more sent white magic stones to me.
As I absorbed them, I released a wide-ranging mist to freeze the raging ocean, covering Fiorfata within the ice.[Shedy] [Race: Bunny Girl] [Archdemon Lv. 56] [Magic Points: 156,000/190,000] 18,000↑ [Total Combat Power: 175,000/209,000] 19,800↑ [Unseelie Lord・Fiorfata] [Race: Dark Pixie] [Demon Lord] [Magic Points: 495,400/600,000] [Total Combat Power: 555,000/670,000]
Still a long way away… but the gap was surely closing.
Now that it’d gotten serious, Fiorfata was consuming more magic than it recovered.
I left the frozen sea behind me and headed for the Central Continent, the land visible in the far distance. Not even seconds later, hundreds of beams of light shot out from within the ice, shattering the frozen ocean in an instant. As glittering fragments of ice fell to the sea, Fiorfata appeared, swiping at me with several lasers.
I rolled, looping in the air to dodge them. I could probably block a few lasers, but I didn’t have the guts nor the skill to parry them like Calimero had with his sword.
Upon entering the Central Continent, I headed right for the small country of Dansix.
There were less people than I expected. They must have evacuated. The only people walking the streets were soldiers, and there wasn’t a single soul on the road leading toward the palace. I entered the city’s center with zero opposition.
Just as I unleashed the ball of cold air to freeze half of the palace, Fiorfata’s magical blast blew away the other half. The World Tree sent me another white magic stone.
So that was one country down without much fanfare. My next target, however, was going to be Varringt: a large country of the Central Continent.
Unlike the large countries I’d done the same to until now, I was probably going to have problems using brute force to deal with the large countries of the Central Continent. I expected their population and their military to be vastly superior to the other continents, and so I readied my resolve to once more take the lives of so many.
But just as I got close enough to Varringt for the capital city to be visible, what awaited me hadn’t been the orderly rows of soldiers that I’d expected. Instead, it was a ruined city.
…what happened? As I entered the city’s airs.p.a.ce, I saw a lot of dead soldiers filling the urban area. Mixing among the human bodies were corpses of some kind of savage-looking monster.
Had these monsters attacked the city? Both armies were similarly annihilated, the battle seemingly ending in a draw. As I headed for the center district, however, I saw one of the monsters, one that was much larger than the rest, standing on top of a fallen palace.
Is that… an ogre?[Ogre Lord] [Dark General] [Magic Points: 1215/1250] [Hit Points: 3640/3700] [Total Combat Power: 38800]
A Dark General… the Ogre Lord.
His combat power was pretty much equal to being a Dark Lord himself. I slowed down my flight, reflexively raising my guard in front of the Ogre Lord that I a.s.sumed to be the one to have brought down Varringt. But I soon found out I didn’t need to.
He stood, a greatsword at rest on his shoulder, and he gave me a silent flick of his head. He was telling me to go ahead.
My eyes met the sincere gaze of the Ogre Lord, and I flew forward, leaving the palace behind me.
As a living being of this world, he, too, was going to help me, putting his life on the line to bring down as much of Fiorfata’s power as possible, just as Calimero had.
I squeezed tight my eyes in prayer for the Ogre Lord and moved onward. It was up to him now.
Several minutes later… I sensed Varringt’s capital disintegrating in an explosion far behind me.
Once more, I closed my eyes for a few moments of mourning for the Ogre Lord. I received the World Tree’s gifts.
There were three of the white magic stones this time.
From the reaction of the stones, I knew they had been Saplings of the Central Continent. If one had been Varringt, the country I’d just pa.s.sed by, then where were the other two…?
At the same time, two small countries to the west of the Central Continent were being attacked by weak monsters. They had been so weak that the barrier was likely to dissolve them upon contact, but the monsters had been a veritable flood. The small countries had been overwhelmed by their sheer number, and in the end, their Saplings were destroyed.