Arifureta - Volume 7 - Chapter 1
Chapter 1 : Goddess Advent?
Ul town. The mountain range area in the North and Uldeia lake in the West brought abundant resources to the town. Currently, the town was encircled by an ’’outer wall’’ that didn't exist last night as the town was wrapped in a strange atmosphere.
This ’’outer wall’’ was something Hajime instantly built. Using the magic-driven two-wheeler, he ran around the town's outer circumference and transmuted the ’’outer wall’’ without leveling the land. First of all, the wall's height was only four meters tall because it was the range limit of Hajime's transmutation, it was not a really tall one. If it was a big-sized demonic beast, it would easily be able to climb over the wall. Tentatively, there's no problem because it made the people feel better in such an emergency. To begin with, Hajime wouldn't depend on such a wall.
The thing about the approaching army of tens of thousands of demonic beasts was already known to the townspeople. Considering the demonic beasts' movement speed, the vanguard would arrive right before evening. Naturally, the townspeople panicked. People began to insult the town leaders including the mayor;others cried and collapsed on where they were, people closely embraced the person next to them, some scrambled to escape even among companions, and there were those who started to blame each other. Tomorrow, this town would be destroyed and they knew they'd lose their lives if they stayed here, so they didn't have the luxury to remain calm. The way they were acting couldn't be helped.
But there was someone who made them regain their composure. It was Aiko. Finally arriving at the town, the guard Knights received the briefing and they shouted ’’Goddess of Good Harvest.’’ With her dignified appearance showing she didn't fear anything, coupled with her originally high popularity made the people regain their composure for now. Hatayama Aiko, in a certain way, was more hero-like than a hero.
The people who regained their composure divided into two groups. Those who wouldn't throw away their hometown and would share the same fate as this town;the stay-behind group. The other one was as planned in the beginning, escaping to safety until rescue came;the shelter group. Even among the stay-behind group, a lot of women and children were put into the shelter. They believed Aiko's words that the demonic beasts would be repulsed, and they wondered if they could help somehow and the stay-behind men decided to help while the wives and children would stay inside the shelter in case of an emergency. Although it passed midnight, the appearance of people embracing each others for separation in tears could be seen everywhere.
The shelter group went out of the town while carrying their luggages before dawn. The sun had raised high now, the people were divided between those who prepared for the battle and those who took a nap. Most of the stay-behind group believed in the ’’Goddess of Good Harvest’’'s party, even so, we will protect our town ourselves!, we'll do what we can!, they were filled with such strong spirits.
Even if the people had decreased, there was more liveliness than usual so Hajime sat on the instant rampart behind the town, it was unknown where he was looking as he looked at the distance. Naturally, by his sides were Yue and Shia. They sat beside Hajime, they thought of something, then the two quietly drew closer to him.
Them, Aiko, the students, Tio, Will, David, and several guard Knights arrived there. Even though he noticed Aiko and the others approaching, he didn't turn around and made David and the Knights frown, but Aiko called on him earlier than them.
’’Nagumo-kun, how are your preparations? Did you need something else?’’
’’No, there's no problem, sensei.’’
Of course Hajime simply answered so without turning around. Unable to endure his attitude, David snapped on him.
’’Oi, you. What's with your attitude towards Aiko... towards your honored teacher. Normally, I wouldn't overlook the details about the artifact you carry and the details about your method of repulsing the army of demonic beasts, but I didn't do that because Aiko had asked me earnestly, you know? At least...’’
’’David-san. Can you keep quiet for now?’’
However, when Aiko told him to ’’shut up’’ he dejectedly shut his mouth. His appearance was just like a dog. Even though he wasn't a demi-human, one could see dog-ears and a tail. Now, those things seemed to hang down dejectedly because the owner was angry.
’’Nagumo-kun. About the black-robed man...’’
Apparently, that's the subject. Anguish oozed out from Aiko's words.
’’Are you going to confirm his identity? Even if I find him, you're telling me to not kill him, right?’’
’’... Yes. It's necessary to confirm his identity. That's... if it's an unreasonable thing for Nagumo-kun...’’
’’For the time being, I'll just bring him here.’’
’’I'll bring the black robe to sensei. Sensei is thinking as a teacher... so I'll do just that.’’
’’Nagumo-kun... thank you very much.’’
Aiko was a little surprised because of the unexpected cooperation from Hajime. Hajime didn't even turn around even now, and thinking Hajime had a lot to think about, she decided to receive his goodwill. She muttered I am powerless as she sighed secretly, then Aiko said her gratitude with a bitter smile.
It looked like Aiko's talk was over, and this time Tio moved forward and called Hajime.
’’Fumu, I wonder if it's okay. This one mas-... gohonh! matter to talk... is a request, will you hear it?’’
’’? ... Tio huh’’
’’Th-Thou, don't tell me that this one's existence was forgotten... haa haa, there's also something like this...’’
Because it was an unfamiliar voice, Hajime inadvertently looked over his shoulder, and there was black clothes with golden embroidery which resembled a kimono and splendidly slipped down, white and smooth shoulders together with an enchanting valley, followed by the beautiful leg which peeped from the cut from the knee;a black-haired, golden-eyed beautiful woman. For a moment, his eyes seemed dubious and he remembered with ’’Aa, now that you mention’’ then called her name. Obviously, Tio whose existence was forgotten was far from getting angry, she was blushing and her breathing became rough. Her ’’something like this’’ was unknown, but it'd be better to not asked her about it.
’’Nnh, nnh! That's, after this battle end and thou sent Will back, art thou going to continue to travel?’’
’’Aa, that's so.’’
’’Fumu, this one's request is that... this one want to accompany thou...’’
’’... Haa haa. I-Immediate answer just as expected. As expected of mas-...kohonh! Of course it's not for free! I'll call thou ’’Master’’ from now own, and dedicated all of this one to thee! Body and mind, all of them! How is it?’’
’’Just return, rather just return into the ground.’’
While spreading her arms, Tio declared to become Hajime slave with an expression of ecstasy, and Hajime, who looked at her as if looking at a filth, immediately casted her away. Tio's body shook again. Her cheek became rose-colored. No matter who saw her, they'd thought of her as a pervert. Even the surrounding people were taken aback. Especially Yue who had strong yearning and respect towards Ryuujin tribe, her noh mask-like expression crumbled with all of her feelings.
’’That's... cruel... Master was the one who turned this one's body into this... this one want thou to take the responsibility!’’
Everyone became ’’Eh!?’’ as they looked at Hajime. As expected, he couldn't just leave that ridiculous and false accusation alone, Hajime immediately looked at Tio's direction and he glared at her with veins popped. His glare asked what she meant by that.
’’Au, to be seen as filth by those eyes again... haa haa... gulp... that's, look, isn't this one strong?’’
Her body shuddered again because of Hajime's glare, then Tio began to explain her thought process that reached extraordinary conception to declared herself as Hajime's slave.
’’Even in my hometown, this one only have one, two fights, and this one's particular endurance surpassed them. That's why, to be held down by other and even to felt pain-like pain never happened until now and only until now.’’
Because the guard Knights nearby didn't know Tio came from Ryuujin tribe, Tio's words trickle down with some omission.
’’That's why, when this one fought Master, it's the first time this one was knocked down, being held down, and tasted the pain and defeat for the first time. That's right, that fist which resonated with this body's core! The impacts that always aimed at unpleasant points! The pain that could felt throughout this one's body... haa haa’’
Although Tio said that herself, the Knights who didn't know she was from Ryuujin race turned their gaze towards Hajime as if they looked at a criminal. If ones heard it objectively, it was a completely like a woman assaulting case. ’’How could you assaulted such beautiful woman!,’’ was the noise raised by the Knights. They didn't plainly blamed him because they felt pity on the victim;Tio. Rather, the Knights with strong sense of justice were perplexed because she look so happy.
’’... In other words, Hajime opened a new door for you?’’
’’That's it! This one's body is already useless without Master!’’
Yue's expression was distorted as if she saw something unpleasant, her tone no longer carried respect when Tio said her agreement. Spontantly, Hajime revealed his feeling. He was completely taken aback.
Tio's perverted look suddenly changed as she began fidgeting while she held her hip with her hands in embarrassment.
’’... This one's first time was stolen already.’’
With those words, everyone's faces showed their surprise as they looked at Hajime. Hajime said ’’There's no such thing,’’ as he shook his neck while his cheeks were convulsing.
’’This one had decided to only admit stronger man than this one as companion... but, there's no such person in this one's hometown... To be defeated, and to be held down like that... was the first time... to suddenly used this one's ass... Moreover, such intensity... that's why thou art this one's Master. This one want thou to take responsibility.’’
Tio's eyes were moistened as she looked at Hajime while holding her butt. The Knights' eyes said, ’’This guy just a criminal after all!,’’ and continued with ’’To suddenly attacked the ass-,’’ as they talked and floated shuddering expressions. Even Aiko and the others who knew the truth glared at Hajime with blaming eyes. Even Yue and Shia's expressions by his side said, ’’That's a little-,’’ as they averted their gazes. Even before the approaching of the army, Hajime was dragged into a situation where he was surrounded by enemies on all sides.
’’Y-You, didn't you have things to do? That's why you went out from your hometown.’’
Because Yue and the others averted their gazes, Hajime replied desperately about ’’Ryuujin race's investigation.’’
’’Umu. There's no problem. It absolutely will become more efficient if this one is beside Master. It's just like hitting two birds with one stone... look, aren't there various things happened in travel? It's okay to let out the frustration on this one, okay? It's also okay to do it stronger. Isn't that a good thing for Master?’’
’’There's only demerit with a pervert by my side.’’
Tio clung to him, but Hajime just cast her away. It followed by the guard Knights' resentment, female students who saw Hajime as a maggot, male students who felt a complex about women from different world as they looked at Hajime with envy, Aiko who started to preach about illicit se*ual relationship, and Will who somehow looked at Hajime with eyes of respect. Inside such chaotic situation, the army kept approaching them, and when Hajime started to became tired of it, they finally came.
’’ ! ... They've arrive huh.’’
Hajime suddenly turned his gaze towards the mountain range area in the north. He displayed his narrowed eyes as he looked at the distance. Even though they weren't in location that could be seen by naked eyes, Hajime could clearly saw it from the image from Unmanned Reconnaissance Planes which displayed on his ’’Magic Eye Crystal.’’
There was a crowd of demonic beasts who completely wrapped the ground. Beside human-type demonic beasts like Brutal, there were three-four meter big and black wolf-like demonic beasts, and there were also lizard-like demonic beasts with six legs, phyton-like demonic beasts with needles protruded from their backs, mantis-like demonic beasts with four scythes, huge spider-like demonic beasts with numerous tentacles grown all over their bodies, and there were pure white, two headed snakes. It truly a rich variation of demonic beasts and their march made the ground trembled as cloud of dust was scattered by their tremendous force. Their number seemed to have increased further since the time he confirmed it at the mountain. It was a large army of around 50,000-60,000.
In addition, there were also flying-type demonic beasts above the large crowd. They could be compared to the Pteranodon. One of the tens of pteranodon-fakers was especially big, and a person shadow could slightly be seen on it. It was probably the black robed man. Although Aiko's manner showed she didn't want to believe it, it was Shimizu Yukitoshi 8 or 9 out of ten cases.
Yue and Shia noticed something approached them from the change in Hajime's atmosphere. They called out to Hajime. Hajime turned his gaze towards the two and he nodded once, following that he turned his glance towards Aiko and the others whose faces filled with tension behind him.
’’They've come. Although it's considerably earlier than the schedule, it'll be 30 minutes until their arrival. The number are more than 50,000. They are mix of more than two kind of demonic beasts.’’
Hearing the number of demonic beasts had increased further, Aiko and the others turned paler. Towards Aiko and the others who looked uneasy, Hajime jumped above the wall and he displayed a fearless smile over his shoulder.
’’Don't make that face, sensei. There'll be no problem because there's only addition of several tens of thousand. Just as planned, those who can fight should stand by the ’’wall side’’ in case of emergency. Well, there'll be no turn for them though.’’
Without any fighting mood, Hajime told them to leave it to him, and Aiko narrowed her eyes as they slightly sparkling.
’’I understand... though I don't know what I can do just by standing here just as you've said... somehow please be safe...’’
As Aiko said that, the guard Knights said, ’’I wonder if it's okay to leave it to Hajime’’ and ’’Even though it's too late, we should go to the shelter,’’ as they ran while carrying the information towards the town. Even the students looked at Hajime with complexed eyes once, then ran after Aiko. Beside Hajime and his party, the remaining were only Will and Tio.
Will was talking about something to Tio, then he ran after Aiko and the others after he bowed to Hajime. Tio answered Hajime's questioning face with a wry smile.
’’Because this one will use all of this one's power to overcome this incident, then at the very least this ones wanted Will-boy to forgive this one about the adventurers, that kind of talk... that's why this one will help thee. What, even if this one's magic power isn't recovered enough for Dragon Form, this one's flame and wind are quite the real deal, kay?’’
Ryuujin race was called odd existence by the church, and although they could be considered as demi-human race, they could directly manipulated magic power just like demonic beasts. Therefore, even though she wasn't an all attribute, chantless, no magic circle genius like Yue, there were attributes she excelled at, and she seemed to be capable to do it chantless just like Yue.
Tio self-claimed that as she vehemently stuck out her chest to deliberately emphasized it, but Hajime just silently throw a ring made of magic-crystallization stone. Although Tio showed a questioning look, she opened her eyes wide when she understood it was a magic power tank made of God Crystal, then she looked at Hajime with moistened eyes and speak with a shaking voice.
’’Master... to propose right before a fight... this one, of course, this one's answer is...’’
’’As if. I am only lending it to you because you have the duty as the battery, no more, no less. Rather, did you just tried to be the fool like a certain someone just now?’’
’’... I see, that black history.’’
Yue dropped her shoulders with unpleasant expression because her thought pattern was somewhat similar to this pervert. Hajime's objection was completely ignored as Tio put the ring on her finger and gazed at it with a grin while she was also being ignored by him, and finally the large group of demonic beasts could be seen by naked eyes. People with bows and magic arrays in their hands gathered on the ’’outer wall.’’ The ground began to tremor, and demonic beasts' roars could be heard together with dust storm in the distance. Some people started to pray to the god and some people wore expressions as if they'd be dead at any time.
Having seen that, Hajime came forward. Using transmutation, he created the speech stand by piling up the ground. He didn't thought of easing people's anxiety because it'd simply turned into panic if friendly fire happened.
Something suddenly climbed on the foundation outside the wall, and the people who thought it was one of the approaching demonic beasts were glaring at it, but they were bewildered because where their gazes gathered was a white-haired, eye-patched boy.
After he confirmed everyone's gazes were turned to him, Hajime inhaled then speak with a voice that could reached the heaven.
’’Listen! O brave people of Ul town! Our victory is nothing but confirmed!’’
Wondering what was suddenly said, the townspeople looked at each other. Hajime looked at their confusion with narrowed eyes and continued his words.
’’If you ask for the reason, it is because the Goddess has taken side with us! That's right, it's the ’’Goddess of Good Harvest’’ everyone know;Aiko-sama!’’
Hearing those words, everyone began to raised noises with, Aiko-sama? Goddess of Good Harvest?. Aiko whose accompanied by the guard Knights behind and had been helped guiding the people became stupefied.
’’As long as Aiko-sama is beside us, we are unbeatable! Aiko-sama is the living god send by the heaven as an ally to humanity, and brought to us ’’Good Harvest’’ and ’’Victory’’! I am Aiko-sama's sword and also her shield, I am here to answer her desire to protect everyone! Look! This is my power which guided by Aiko-sama!’’
As he said that, Hajime pull out Schlagen from the void and anchors from its barrel pierced the ground to fixed its position. Following that, he crouched and the townspeople observed him as he aligned his sight towards the vanguard of demonic beasts, the pteranodon-fakers... and he pulled the trigger.
A bright red spark released from Schlagen and accompanied with killing intent, a blinding light ran through the sky in an instant. It crushed one of the pteranodon-fakes which was several kilometers away, and several others on the surrounding descended into the ground because their wings were pulverized by the after-effect. As is, Hajime continued to fired for the second and third times, and the demonic beasts in the sky were exterminated. Then, he purposely altered his aim and the rather huge pteranodon-fake started to fall as it was confused by what happened, moreover the black robed man who rode on it was blown by the after-effect. The black robe blown into the air and he tried to resist the fall.
He didn't have the time to bring the black robe to Aiko until all of the demonic beasts were dealt with, so he choose to defeat the fastest ones to escape for now. Although Aiko would be angry if she heard he shot him down, he didn't care at the least if that person was hurt after all. At least Aiko might not noticed it because he shot it down while they were still far away.
Hajime finished exterminating the demonic beasts in the sky and he calmly turned around. There were the appearances of the townspeople who became dumbfounded and slack-jawed.
’’All hail Aiko-sama!’’
Hajime raised words of praise for Aiko as his last duty. Then, in the next moment...
’’’’’’’’’’’’All hail Aiko-sama! Long live Aiko-sama! Cheers for Aiko-sama! All hail Aiko-sama!’’’’’’’’’’’’
’’’’’’’’’’’’All hail Goddess! Long live Goddess! Cheers for Goddess! All hail Goddess!’’’’’’’’’’’’
Inside Ul town, it was no longer just her nickname, a true goddess was bornt. Apparently, their anxiety had blown away as everyone in the town raise shouts of praise as their shining eyes looked towards Aiko, the goddess;their hope. In the distance, Aiko's face turned crimson as she trembled. Her eyes immediately turned towards Hajime and her small mouth moved as it said, ’’What.Do.You.Mean.By.This!’’.
Hajime turned towards the large crowd of demonic beasts again. Hajime pushed such façade to Aiko because he had his own reason. First, Hajime's activity would surely make the Church and the Kingdom move in the future, and because Aiko would confronted them if they tried to harm Hajime, it'd be better for her words as ’’Goddess of Good Harvest’’ carried power at that time. If they could overcome the town's emergency with Aiko-sama(...)'s power, then the townspeople would started their own rumour and the name ’’Goddess of Good Harvest’’ would surely grabbed people's hearts further. At that time, she wasn't only a useful talent for the kingdom but also the goddess that people supported, so the Church and the Kingdom couldn't easily put their hands on her as her words carried more power.
The second reason was simply because the townspeople would only become frightened and hostile if they were shown a big power. That's why even if they showed their power, the townspeople's wonder and fear would be relieved when they remembered it came from the goddess who supported them, and the hostility could be changed to goodwill. Even if they were chased by the Church, there'd be people who cooperated with them... and that's a good thing.
The third reason was simply to declare that he'd took the full brunt of everything aimed towards ’’Nagumo Hajime's teacher.’’
His number one reason was so that the townspeople would not panicked and did something wrong, and he immediately thought to do that. Afterwards Aiko would told him various things, but there were also merits for Aiko and she should overlook it because it was the result of her decision... it'd be okay to just escape once everything's over.
With townspeople's shouts that they wouldn't be defeated by demonic beasts because of Aiko on his back, along with Aiko's piercing glance, and the guard Knights floated smiles as they muttered ’’Just what, that guys understood well what we meant’’ and looked at him, Hajime took out two Metherai's ammunition belt from ’’Treasure Box’’ and put them on his shoulders as he advanced ahead.
On her right was Yue as always, on his left was Shia with Orkan on her shoulder which Hajime loaned to her, and beside him was also Tio who absent-mindedly staring at the ring of magic crystallization stone. On the horizon, the pteranodon-fakers who fell to the ground as if they weren't related to all of this and demonic beasts who marched single-mindedly filled their view.
Hajime looked at Yue. Yue returned Hajime's gaze and silently nodded. Hajime looked at Shia. Shia with her rabbit ears stood straight nodded full of confidence. Tio on his side... he just put her aside.
Hajime returned his gaze towards the large crowd and floated a smile, and he mutter without any eagerness.
’’Then, let's do it.’’