Arifureta - Chapter 241
Arifureta After II King's Understanding Middle Part
AN: Butler = The strongest warrior class. When I was writing this common sense, it became long again......
The sight that unfolded ahead after passing through the solemn door was a calm blue sky.
It was Roze who whispered that. Roze who returned on board the airship Rozeria passed through the sky door Hajime created along with airship Averia and mother ship Avenst. They had made their resolve for their battlefield that was waiting ahead.
Even so, when she thought back of the battlefield in between the sea of lighting flame and the whirling sea of clouds that should be called as a scene of myth, she fell into a doubt whether they were dreaming now that she saw this calm sky.
「Roze-sama-. Be, below, it's Qwailent! The distance is 1000!」
The report from the person in charge of observation caused Roze to let out a dumbfounded voice. The sky that could be seen from the bridge was very transparent blue, the morning sun was rising slightly higher than the sea of clouds. Thinking what was this person saying in the middle of this peaceful sight, Roze turned her gaze toward the monitor that projected the image below the ship......
「I don't really understand what are you saying.」
She unconsciously muttered such thing. While making twitching face &dripping with cold sweats that looked like waterfall.
Of course she would be like that. Because below where airships Rozeria and Averia, and mother ship Avenst were floating, was the land of their birthplace that they couldn't even approach until now――sky divine country Qwailent, no, dragon kingdom Avenst's floating land was right there.
『Your majesty! Look sharp! Avenst is also coming here remember!』
A scolding came from Bovid who was boarding his sky battlecraft in the dock while standing by.
Roze who got taken aback and recovered herself from that gritted her teeth hard. At the same time inside her heart「Hajime-sama you idioo~~~~t. I'm the one who asked for guidance but-, to suddenly toss us out right above the target like this-, idiottt! Stupid-. You bruteee!」she was hurling abuse at Hajime grandly.
『Avenst, can you hear!? Evacuate right awa――』
Roze was about to command the commanding captain to evacuate mother ship Avenst that not only was unable to fire its main cannon, it couldn't even lay out barrier or perform battle maneuver. But, before she finished,
A loud alarm sound rang in the early morning sky. The alarm that could even make people indulging in laziness to jump awake in one go caused Roze's body to jump and trembled.
Inside her head, 'what to do, what to do, Hajime-sama you idiottt, what to do!' the same words and insult were repeating. Roze was about to fall into panic, but there, a scolding「Get a hold of yourself!」reached her from her partner.
Kuwaibel that was hugged tightly by Roze from an instinctive habit slapped his tail on Roze's cheek *pechi-*. When Roze dropped her gaze toward the partner that she was hugging, there Kuwaibel who if it had to be said had a pampered child trait was staring fixedly at her.
The unshakeable dragon eyes that were surprisingly deep were staring straight at Roze.
――Aa, that's right. If it's resolve, then I finished it already together with everyone.
Roze let out a long exhale 'fuu~~', then at the next moment she opened her eyes in a flash. And then, she firmly surveyed her comrades inside the bridge whose face was turning pale, and her comrades in Averia and Avenst through the monitors.
Those words were calm, yet they possessed definite dignity and strength.
『In order to stand equal with our old friends who are fighting even now at that sky.』
Those were the words of the queen of the dragon kingdom.
『In order to save our imprisoned friends and brethrens.』
Those were the words of a person who even while her status fell into being air pirate and she lost her important comrades on countless occasions, by no meant she had abandoned the feeling of the halcyon days.
『In order to change the world.』
There weren't just combatants here. There were also civilians. Rather, the civilians were a lot more than the combatants. Normally this wasn't a place they should be taken to. But, surely the old and young, the men and women in mother ship Avenst wouldn't listen to that.
If Roze and others were lost, then they would have no future. Here was the turning point. A future where they would be welcoming a slow ruin while simply running away and getting toyed with, not a single descendant of the dragon kingdom wished that.
If not, then they wouldn't pass through that sky door.
That was why,
There was one reply to that call of the queen. Only words of answer『By your will-』and resolute gazes.
A smile emerged on Roze's lips. That smile was the same fearless smile like that man who she thoroughly hurled abuse at until just now.
『We will take back everything! The battle of revolution is right here! Let's bet our body and soul! Sky battlecraft force, all planes take off-. Deal damage as much as you can to the defense fleet before they can move completely! Averia, concentrated fire at the defense fleet's flagship! Avenst, support fire using physical weapon from above!』
Orders came like a storm.
Like a butterfly that came out of its cocoon flying out all at once, sky battlecrafts were flying out from all ships. Their main force received severe damage from the previous attack and their number was decreased, but their number was a force that reached two hundred.
It was genuinely the greatest battle strength that the nation on ship Avenst possessed. There were also youngsters who hadn't finished their training among them, there were also old men who retired already. The planes used also didn't consist from just plane of good condition. There were also many planes with old armament.
But, the height of their fighting spirit was the real thing.
『All force, aim at the flagship of the defense fleet! Don't get left behind and fly into their bosom before they could lay out the defensive barrier! The barrier of the defense fleet is a tough one-. Consider yourself useless if you are outside the barrier once it's formed!』
The leader of first squad of air battle force and the overall commander Bovid gave his instruction. It was an extremely dangerous tactic where if the pilot was inexperience they would die right away from crashing. But, the barrier of the defense fleet here was even more powerful than the defense fleet before this. The barrier would be deployed about fifty meter from the ship. It wasn't something that could be destroyed by sky battlecraft's armament at all, they wouldn't even be able to approach then.
But conversely speaking, if they could approach within that fifty meter before the barrier was deployed, their attack would go through.
It was that kind of reckless tactic, however, there wasn't a single plane that was faltering. Rather, they were approaching with a momentum that would make anyone thinking they would even launch kamikaze attack without stopping toward the twenty ships of the defense fleet that were finally starting to from their anchored state.
「Roze-sama. Our preparation is finished.」
A voice came from Sabas who was standing by behind Roze. Roze nodded briskly. She showed a resolved fearless smile toward Sabas who could read her feeling. Sabas too also nodded with a gentle smile that was hiding beastly ferocity inside.
Roze surveyed inside the bridge.
「Everyone, I'll leave Rozeria in your hand. Please endure somehow until Kuwaibel come back.」
The man who took charge of Rozeria in Roze's place――Carter Gilton nodded deeply accompanied with the strong nod of the other crews.
Behind Roze who turned on her heel, Sabas and the Crow siblings, and then ten of the most elite imperial guard members followed.
Their strategy was simple. The spring at the deepest part of the palace that could grant power to monarch dragon――【Spring of True Dragon's Tear】, they would take Kuwaibel there. And then with the strength of Kuwaibel who would temporarily awaken as a grown dragon they would crush the defense fleet.
If they could just destroy the fleet, then there wouldn't be any existence in the divine country that could defeat Kuwaibel that could wield the power as monarch dragon. This was a country that was built from the rule of fear and violence of the king named Gregor. They shouldn't be able to maintain their fighting spirit by the time the defense fleet fell.
The problem was how much time Avenst could buy with the defense fleet as the opponent. There wasn't any guarantee that Avenst wouldn't be annihilated during the time they infiltrated the palace with few elites until Kuwaibel returned to the battlefield.
Explosive sounds roared outside. Bovid and others, the air battle force was starting a super close range battle that should even be called as the dance of death. How much damage they could inflict on the defense fleet with this surprise attack would become the key of this battle.
Because Bovid understood that, surely he would be reckless. Just like how Bovid made himself into shield to accept the enemy bullet in order to save Roze and others, there was no doubt he would put his life at stake here.
「Please, everyone......be safe.」
Roze whispered that while equipping herself with firearms in Rozeria's bottom. Even though she was determined, even though she had resolve, but there was no way her heart wouldn't be pained thinking that the people she loved might die. Roze's lips that were strongly biting showed that pressure on her heart more eloquently than anything.
Kuwaibel's strong eyes.
Sabas's unshakable smile.
Crow siblings' fearless smile.
The accompanying imperial guards also smiled similarly.
Seeing that, surely everyone in Averia, and also everyone in Rozeria, and then also the people she loved in Avenst, they were undoubtedly making the same powerful and fearless smile. Roze was convinced of that.
There wasn't even a single complain toward Roze who decided to head to this hell.
The hatch below the ship opened. Rozeria was evading the surface-to-air attacks that were starting sporadically while flying toward the palace. The scenery below that was flowing through was the townscape of the birthplace that she was seeing for the first time.
'Aa', inside her heart Roze leaked out an admiring sigh. Roze who were taken away when she was a baby didn't have any memory of the dragon kingdom, the feeling of ’’coming home' overflowed inside.
And then, surely such feeling was much stronger for the senior people who knew about this country compared to herself who didn't know of her birthplace.
Those people riding the sky battlecraft, those people who were looking down from the airships and mother ship, what kind of feeling they were having?
Were they holding flood of emotions? Surely the scenery wasn't exactly the same compared with in the past, so were they enraged seeing their changed motherland? Perhaps they would die in the next moment while still holding such feeling. In this battlefield where the chance of survival was remarkably low, their feeling would rain down along with the flame blast.
But, surely, not even a single one would stop flying until their last moment without a doubt.
For what sake? That was decided already.
Like that, Roze let out her deep feeling one more time.
With an automatic rifle in one hand, she touched the barrel on her forehead and she closed her eyes as though praying.
Right now, she understood. Just what a king was, what she was. What her existence ought to accomplish.
「Thinking of the future, in order to seize the day――I make my decision. I place my important things at the two sides of the scale.」
Gregor was a king of pillage that embodied the truth of power. Control to those who obey, death to those who defy. Surely that was also one way of living.
Even Roze might be similar.
She couldn't choose everything. She had to make her choice. With her body that wasn't a god, she couldn't grasp at the ideal. Even if as the result of her choice someone would be cast away, in order to not lose everything, Roze had to make her choice.
Just like how she made herself and the soldiers who had went through joys and sorrows together with her to leap into hell, for the sake of the future, and for the sake of the people who were living for the moment.
But, she didn't think that it was mistaken. The reason was because that would be an insult toward the soldiers who answered at her will.
That was why, she would change.
「I'll change. Become a warring queen. The queen of the soldiers.」
'Someone else after me could become the kind king. In order to connect our future toward that someone, I'll become a warring king.' The powerful words of Roze that contained such feeling made Sabas's expression turned a bit lonely, the Crow siblings shut their eyes, and the imperial guards displayed a tensed expression.
Roze turned toward them and,
「Let's go. To our battlefield.」
Saying that, she leaped down without hesitation.
Sabas and others nodded at each other and they similarly leaped down following the beloved person they decided as their master by themselves.
Roze and others who jumped outside to the air naturally obeyed the planet's truth and began freefalling. The roaring sound of wind entered their ears while they spread both their arms to balance themselves.
Their distance until the ground was gone instantly and the palace was below them.
「Ku-chan-. To that terrace-」
When Roze spoke with a volume that didn't lose to the wind, Kuwaibel responded immediately. When Kuwaibel who was clad in silver light raised his cry, the same light immediately enveloped Roze and others too.
Lightly the body of Roze and others were liberated from the wedge of gravity. They rotated midair and took the landing stance. Kuwaibel adjusted their falling position and guided them toward the terrace nearby the highest floor of the palace.
But, at that time, dry bursting sounds resounded at the same time with the sharp sound that cut through wind. Fortunately the bullets didn't hit them, they rushed between the group toward the sky.
When they looked, there were several soldiers at the palace's garden. They were pointing at Roze and co while aiming their rifle.
「Leave this to me.」
Right after that, silver glints rained down on those soldiers. Those things that were launched cutting through the air pierced the face of the soldiers peremptorily, and then they went limp like a marionette with its strings severed.
When Roze turned her eyes at the perpetrator, he――Sabas was running his gaze vigilantly at the garden while between his fingers there were three――knife for eating held in between.
It seemed, this pseudo butler was dealing with multiple targets on the ground a hundred meter away using tableware.
But even while that was going on, soldiers who heard the gunshot showed up from the terrace and the garden ahead――but,
Tableware was flying. Polished silver knifes that were usually stored in the kitchen of mother ship Avenst!
*suta-* Roze and co got down safely on the terrace. And then, with an unknown principle, *shakon-* Sabas stowed away the tableware knifes into the cuff while making such small sound. Roze asked him as the representative of the imperial guards who were making an expression that was loss for words.
「Because I'm a butler.」
The history of Sabas who was the former captain of the imperial guard, who then became Roze's butler after picking out Crow siblings and turned his position to them was known by everyone there. They also knew his true strength. But, not one of them knew that he owned the inhuman skill that allowed him to snipe enemy on the ground from a hundred meter above using tableware.
They more or less knew that in his active duty period he specialized in quick draw using revolver that should be reduced to a relic of the old era, but they never imagined that after he retired he would acquire a new ability――an outrageous ability of quick snipe using knife for eating of all thing.
「What are you all doing getting absent-minded like that. Now, quickly mov――shi-」
Even while he was talking, the meal knife that manifested like a sleight of hand pierced the eyeball of a soldier that rushed out from the neighboring terrace.
Furthermore, Sabas unhesitatingly threw a meal knife at a completely wrong direction toward another soldier who drew back his face in panic. The meal knife rebounded from the ornament nearby the terrace's ceiling before it flew into the entrance while rotating fast――
A single groan could be heard. Next *thud* the sound of something heavy collapsing also resounded.
「What's wrong Roze-sama? Quickly go inside.」
Roze-chan who decided to become the queen of soldier. Seeing the superhuman skill of a true (?) soldier (butler), her heart very quickly cracked.
Roze and others stepped inside the room while taking grip of their mind.
「Gramps, you are the vanguard. We should be able to go straight to the underground from the hidden passage of the royalty right?」
「Yes. That's if the passage isn't blocked though. It's unthinkable that Gregor would seal his own escape route. I dare say there won't be any problem.」
Sabas slightly opened the room's door and he quickly took stock of the corridor. And then, he nodded once and moved at the front as the person who thoroughly knew the inside of the royal palace.
After him was six imperial guards following with ordered movement without the slightest bit of disorder, behind them was Roze with the Crow siblings at both her sides, their back were secured by four imperial guards.
Suddenly Sabas let out an aler voice. Right at the next moment, he suddenly accelerated!
The soldier that leaped out from the corridor's corner ahead was hit with a body blow that gave out *zudon-* impact voice as though he was hit with a large cannon. Without any voice or free time to writhe, the soldier collapsed with his eyeballs rolling and the white of his eyes got exposed――
Yet he wasn't allowed to fall, his collar was grasped and he was made to stand.
And then, several gunshots rang at that time. The soldier who got hoisted up by Sabas danced like a badly made marionette. At the same time, Sabas's palm heel struck at the abdomen of the soldier he turned as shield as though he was beating up the dead.
Even though he and the corpse was in posture where they were mostly glued to each other, the pitiful soldier A was sent flying like a cannon ball.
The soldiers behind who were firing lost their cool seeing their comrade's corpse suddenly flying horizontally at them and they dodged. Their firing stopped.
The pseudo-cannon body blow once more burst at the soldier B. He was holding down his stomach while his body was leaning forward and he fell on his knees. His mouth vomited out froth mixed with blood and he convulsed in twitches.
Soldier C aimed his rifle, but what was reflected in his sight was only the flapping end of the butler uniform. The elbow strike of Sabas who slipped into his bosom struck the center of his sternum, *bogyu* a wretched sound that had never been heard before rang.
Without even paying attention to soldier C who was limply collapsing behind, Sabas pulled out a handgun from the holster on the waist of soldier C who was falling.
......Surely, soldier D and E who were behind soldier C were witnessing an unrealistic scene of an old man in butler uniform appearing from the shadow of their slowly falling comrade, pointing a gun at their way.
Two gunshots. The headshot was also two.
*thud-* Soldier D and E collapsed.
「Ah, over there-」
「Shit-, Fritz and others got done in! That butler uniformed man there-」
More soldiers who heard the gunshots appeared from the corridor's corner bustlingly. The corridor was a straight line. There was around ten meter until the corner where the soldiers were appearing.
「Gramps-, come ba――」
Roze was about to yell「come back」. But, before she could, Sabas had moved.
With a low stance as though crawling on the ground, he sprinted like a fired bullet.
The flapping fringe of the butler uniform was beautiful.
Gun muzzles flashed grandly. Bullet storm was fired.
However, that didn't even graze the old butler.
「How the hell!?」
One soldier reflexively acted the straight-man. The old butler who was moving with small sways to left and right without even slowing down for a bit and couldn't be touched even by rifle bullet was already in horror territory.
The truth was he only calculated the firing line from the direction of the muzzle and before he was shot he evaded to a place where bullets wouldn't hit, but seen from the side it was a really incomprehensible situation.
Soldier F was unable to put up with it any longer and he jumped out from the corridor's corner, he held his rifle to shoot from the hip and unleashed it in full-auto.
So that it couldn't be dodged, he must be intending to scatter bullets from left to right uniformly.
Butler-san said something.
Right after that, the rifle bullets that were mowing down in fan shape were passing down right below Sabas in vain. Yes, Sabas kicked on the corridor's wall and with a triangle jump he took refuge midair.
At the same time, he was firing bullets at the soldiers hiding at the corner to stop them from moving while his fingers caught the ornamental part of the ceiling's light, and like a pendulum he increased his leaping range while accelerating further.
While showing a midair twist that would make even the famous move Shi○i of a certain gymnastic athlete who twisted too much to go pale, Sabas's posture became upside down just right above soldier F. Like that, he threw the handgun that ran out of bullet to another soldier, grasped the chin of soldier F, and using the momentum of the twist the neck snapped. (TN: I don't know which athlete and move it referred to here)
Sabas performed a beautiful landing at the shadow of soldier F that was spinning and spinning as though in a dance while his body was collapsing down, when a bullet approached him.
Such light sound rang out.
「How is that possible!?」
「How can that be possible!?」
The straight-man act of soldier G and queen-sama overlapped. If it was said that it couldn't be helped then it couldn't be helped. After all, Sabas-san had just deflected a rifle bullet.
――Using a polished shiny silver tray that he took out from somewhere.
「A butler has to be able to deflect something like a bullet using a tray at the very least-」
「No, that's stran――gueh」
To be specific, the silver tray that Sabas took out was specially made to be tough enough to deflect bullet, furthermore rather than calling it deflecting he was putting angle on the tray when the bullet impacted so it was more correct to call it ’’averting’’ though......
In any case, normally nine out of ten the tray would get sent flying and the target would still get hit, so it didn't change how uncommon what happened was.
Anyway, soldier G who acted the straight-man had his throat crushed by the silver tray that flew at him like a Frisbee and he fell while raising a groaning voice that sounded like a frog's croak.
The other soldiers returned to their senses and they re-aimed their rifle. Soldier H's rifle muzzle locked-on at the forehead of Sabas who had approached until right in front of him.
But, when he was on the verge of pulling the trigger,
「He, he vani――」
Unable to follow the figure of Sabas that sank down deeply, it looked like he vanished and the soldier was shaken. And then, without even any time to shudder from hearing the voice from below, the butler kick that sprang up pulverized the jaw &snapped the neck and soldier H ascended.
「Die, old maann-」
「You bastarddd, I'll kill――」
Soldier I, J, K surrounded Sabas. Three rifle muzzles were aimed from three directions at him in a really close range. Instantly the three of them each raised a short scream. It happened at the same time when Sabas made a rotation from riding the centrifugal force of the kick that drew an artistic circular orbit.
Looking closer, there was a sewing needle in soldier I's eye, a knife stabbed on J's arm, and blood spurting out from soldier K's wrist.
The three who were flinching back from the pain exposed a fatal opening. Naturally, there was no way the old butler who was letting out sharp eye glint that could even be mistaken as dragon eyes would overlook that opening.
Butler-sama performed a beautiful break dance in a world with up and down reversed.
Let's say it, one more time. The flapping butler uniform was beautiful.
Sabas's long legs were swung circularly. A sharp knife sprang out from the tip of the glossy butler shoes. It caressed the throat of the soldiers as though they were sucked into its orbit.
*pisha-* Matching Sabas's legs orbit, a line of blood was drawn on the wall.
Sabas was on one knee when he recovered from the extremely dangerous break dance. He stood up and dusted off his hem before taking out a folding umbrella from out of nowhere as expected.
At the same time when he opened it with a smooth motion, *pusha――* rain of blood showered down. Of course, it didn't touch Sabas who was under an umbrella.
*Thud* The soldiers whose carotid artery was tore open crumbled down.
「Fumu. I tried to create it to kill time, but unexpectedly it was a bit useful.」
Sabas-san muttered such thing while he twisted the folding umbrella. Its frame came off and only its center pole remained, at the same time *shakin-* a sharp double-edged blade sprang out from its tip.
And then, he readied it, and like an athlete of javelin throw, he threw it deeper inside the corridor.
In a superb timing, the last soldier who seemed to be in hiding leaped out. And then, in the right timing his throat received the umbrella attack and he blankly collapsed backward.
「Now, Roze-sama. For the time being I have removed the danger ahead. It will be unfavorable if they approach in force. Let's hurry on ahead.」
Heaps of corpses all around. The faces of Roze, the Crow siblings, and the imperial guards were twitching at such disastrous scene of the corridor while rushing toward Sabas's position.
「He, hey, gramps. Just now, when you were surrounded by the soldiers, what did you do?」
Roze must be referring to the time when soldier I, J, K suddenly received damage. She knew that Sabas had done something, but it was too fast that she didn't know what he actually did.
It seemed that it wasn't just Roze who had that question, the Crow siblings and the imperial guards were also the same, rather it was them who looked more curious, so Roze unconsciously questioned while understanding that this wasn't the time.
Sabas who was rushing htrough the corridor with sure footsteps even while putting his guard up sent a sharp gaze at the Crow siblings and the imperial guards「Even all of you couldn't see it?」. Seeing them twitched, Sabas shook his head as though lamenting their inadequacy very much while answering.
「It's nothing significant. I was shooting the sewing needle inside my mouth while hurling knife from the launcher inside my sleeve, at the same time I swung a bit sturdy thread that can also be used for sewing to cut the wrist. That's all.」
「Is, is that so? But, gramps. Why sewing tool?」
「Because I'm a butler.」
Hearing the words of their teacher Sabas, his personal pupils the Crow siblings thought,「This person, he become stronger since retiring and becoming a butler」. Sabas sent an even sharper gaze at such Crow siblings.
「Of course, even Olga and Jean can also do just this much. ......Isn't that right, you two?」
「I, it will be easy victoryy-」
Of course, they couldn't. The two could also crush enemy of the same number in the same situation like just now if they used gun. But, something like facing multiple fully armed soldiers in only close-quarter combat almost without using gun and taking care of all of them in less than a minute was......
The imperial guards were sending sympathizing gaze at their captain and vice captain.
By any chance, the vocation butler was endowed with strongest as the default might be the same in any world.
「Perhaps, it will be fine with just gramps alone......」
Roze unconsciously muttered in small volume. The imperial guards got faraway look hearing that.
Roze and others who were traveling for some time while the engagement against the enemy was dealt with Sabas who was fighting like a fierce god, they finally reached a private room of the royalty that was in the center of the palace.
「Roze-sama. This room, is the private room of Roze-sama's mother――Averia-sama. Averia-sama was cuddling Roze-sama who was just born in this room.」
「This room, is Okaa-sama's......」
Inside the room was simple. There was almost no furniture or implements, in exchange there was a lot miscellaneous luggage put in there. It seemed it was used not as someone's private room, but as a storage room.
Even so, Roze could somehow imagine it. Her mother that she had only even seen in photo was here, yes, surely she was near that window there, comforting her baby self inside her embrace.
「Roze-sama. Soldiers are coming.」
One imperial guard who stood watch at the corridor called with a small voice.
Roze put a lid on her overflowing feeling and she looked at Sabas. Sabas nodded and he stepped strongly on a spot at the floor. And then, he moved to left and right as though to confirm his step while stepping with the same strength at another five places.
The result, a part of the wall made a small mechanical sound *kiin*, and a lid the size of a palm slid. There, they saw a letter board of this world.
「――Roze-sama, it's ’’the one who walk together proudly(Roze Phi Erute)’’.」
That was the password to open the hidden passage. The nuance of those words resembled her first and second name. Holding the feeling that was inserted into her name inside her heart, Roze typed in the letters.
Mechanical operation sound was coming from inside the wall.
What resounded was Sabas's voice, and consecutive gunshots.
「Kuh-. A trap-」
Olga bit her lips while firing bullets at the automatic interception mechanical gun that looked like a sentry gun which sprang out from behind an implement.
「-, I let my guard down. So they put a trap that operated together with the authentication device......」
Perhaps Gregor had assumed that the driven out royalty would come back here. The people who knew about the procedure to open the hidden passage in this room even before the kingdom got usurped were only the royalty and Sabas who was the imperial guard captain.
And then, the royalty, Roze's family would never leak out that information to the enemy, therefore, Sabas thought that the enemy couldn't open the hidden passage here but......
If there were a few decades since that day of tragedy, then certainly it was possible to at least installed a trick at the authentication device. Perhaps this was revenge for being able to reach until the authentication device, yet they weren't able to advance further ahead than that.
Sabas spat out「I'm growing dull」at himself who didn't notice that this place was noticed already and he stood up. The instant he did that, bloods were dripping down. The flank of the butler uniform could be seen changing color despite the black color that made it not standing out.
「Gramps-, your wound!? Me, medical treatment quickly-」
Roze reached out her hand at Sabas's flank, but that hand was stopped by Sabas himself. At the same time, gunshots rang out from the corridor. Their position became known from the gunshot just now and the soldiers were rushing here.
The imperial guards guarding the entrance raised an angry voice「Their number is more than twenty! We won't hold out for long! Hurry-」while returning fire.
Sabas nodded and he turned a sharp gaze at Crow siblings.
「Olga, Jean. Fulfill the duty of the imperial guard. Roze-sama and Kuwaibel-sama, take them to the Spring of True Dragon's Tear even at the cost of your life.」
「......Yes-. Without fail.」
Seeing Sabas gave such order while emitting a dominating aura that was really unthinkable to come from an injured person, his personal pupils the Crow siblings held their breath. They felt Sabas's resolve.
「Gramps, what are you saying――」
「Please go, Roze-sama. Gramps, will hold back the enemy here.」
「Why!? We only need to all enter the passage and then close the door!」
Sabas shook his head. And then, he fired toward the painting that decorated the room.
「I was careless. That's a hidden camera. Most likely they know the password already. Through there is a small passage that continue until underground. We will be helpless if we are attacked from above. This is my failure. It's my wish to be given the chance to redeem myself.」
「Such thing-. It's fine already, everyone quickly enter the passage!」
Roze grasped Sabas's arm and she walked toward the passage. Right after that,「-, grenade! Get down-」A warning resounded. Sabas covered for Roze, at the same time a flame blast enveloped the area near the door, the four imperial guards who were returning fire were blown away.
It seemed he avoided fainting with his trained body, but seeing the blood flowing from everywhere and also the bloody cough, there was no doubt that the internal organs were harmed. It was obviously a heavy injury.
Countless footsteps resounded. The rushing soldiers showed up their face from the door.
Like that, knife pierced their eyeball or throat. Furthermore, the thrown black object――a hand grenade rolled into the corridor and exploded.
After the explosive sound that resounded once more, groaning voices leaked out from the corridor.
「Olga, Jean-. Take Roze-sama away from here!」
Sabas's voice resounded.
Sabas rushed toward the corridor and he stole the rifles of two soldiers who were killed by knife. He spread both his hands and fired to the left and right of the corridor. Anguished voices「Gyah」「Gaah」rose once more.
「Gramps, come back! This is an ord――」
「Haven't you resolved yourself-」
Roze who was about to order him to come back was pierced by Sabas's angry voice that she had never heard until now. Roze turned speechless against Sabas who was hiding with the door's cover while continuously pulling his rifles' trigger at the corridor. For Roze, Sabas was a good natured old man. He had never raised his voice like this at her.
「You decided to fight aren't you! You swore to weigh your important things aren't you! For the sake of the future, you will seize the day, you determined to do that aren't you!」
「Show that you are going to choose! Or else, are you going to abandon the future for the sake of this old bone!?」
That's right. The path that she determined was this kind of path. A king, had to make a choice.
She had made her resolve. Even so, for Roze who didn't know her parents, Sabas was, her real......
「......-. Olga-, Jean-. Choose the members who will stop the enemy along with Sabas! The rest is with me!」
「By your will-」
Roze who roughly rubbed her eyes that were almost spilling over adroitly turned her body toward the hidden passage.
The four imperial guards who were blown away were injured all over their body, yet they took up rifle by themselves and stood up to return fire along with Sabas. And then, Roze looked back across her soldier toward Sabas.
Sabas also turned her gaze at Roze while reloading.
「Sabas, defend this place, to the last.」
「Fuh. By your will. Roze-sama.」
She thought of him as her real grandfather. Or perhaps, even as a father. The unexpressed feeling was put into the order that was said brokenly.
That feeling, it certainly reached Sabas who had been at her side all this time since she was born.
Roze vanished deep inside the hidden passage. Olga and Jean, and other imperial guards, they nodded deeply at Sabas and their comrades before following behind. The door closed.
Sabas shot out the letter board after they passed through. With the technology of the divine country, even with the letter board destroyed there was still a high possibility of opening the path with the password known, but it could buy more time.
「Advance forward, my beloved child. I also thought of you like my real grandson.」
The remaining imperial guards showed a wry smile hearing Sabas's monologue, thinking that he should just say it directly. Sabas who noticed them cleared his throat looking a bit embarrassed.
「What's with those eyes, you guys. From here onward will be hell. Put your back into it.」
「Kukuh, you're right. We will accompany you until the end you know, Sabas-sama.」
「The demonic imperial guard captain is revived huh.」
「It has been an honor.」
「Let's show them the reserve strength of us, Avenst's imperial guard.」
While fully wounded all over the body, the imperial guards replied fearlessly. Sabas smiled「fuh」and nodded.
Something like a rocket warhead like before peeked out from ahead at the corridor. Sabas's rifle muzzle pierced the warhead with pinpoint accuracy and it exploded. The imperial guards sent in storm of bullets toward the corridor that was enveloped in flame.
「You guys, hold down the left corridor. I'll return in three minutes.」
Saying that, Sabas leaped out to the corridor. Bullets were flying from the right corridor, but they were avoided by kicking on the wall and ceiling using unrestricted movement and he pounced at the corner where the enemies were hiding.
The soldiers didn't think that someone would break through amidst those rifle bullets even in their wildest imagination and they were taken aback,
「Now then, I received the command from her majesty the queen to defend to the last――to ’’defend by slaughtering all the enemy’’. Can I have every single one of you depart to the next world?」
*shakin-* Three meal knives each sprang out from both sleeves. Each knife was held between fingers, as though they were shining silver claws.
An angry yell resounded from a person who seemed to be the captain.
The next moment, there were also agonizing cries that resounded.