In A Different World With A Smartphone - Chapter 172
Arc 21: Women’s battle
Chapter 172: The Deity Tree Region and the Start of the Game
「Pruning 《せんてい》 Ceremony」.
All the tribes that live in the Great Forest Sea gather under the sacred tree called the Great Deity Tree. It's said that they compete for bravery under the protection of the spirit of the big tree…… Well, it's definitely something that can be called 「The Great Forest Sea War Games」.
We are participating in this as people from the Rauri tribe and aiming at 「Tribe of Tree King」 by winning in it.
Honestly, I think there is no need to go that far, but otherwise, Pam will continue following me behind. Well, I guess it's alright since 「Pruning Ceremony」 itself seems to last for three days only. Elsie and Hilda are eager to fight as well. They are the types that like to test their skills. Also, there is the self-interest of being able to have ties with 「Tribe of Tree King」controlling the other tribes of Great Forest Sea if things go well.
Ah, and besides that, I have asked the others to excuse myself from cross-dressing for the time being. It should be enough to only change my outer appearance with 「Mirage」 to resemble a woman. I may be noticed if someone touches me, and Lindsey clung on to that. But I don't plan on wearing traditional clothes of Rauri tribe that have a high degree of exposure, to begin with!
I have already sent Pam to the village of the Rauri tribe with 「Gate」.
And since I had thought that the having a conversation would probably be inconvenient, I learned the no-attribute magic 「Translation」. In short, it's a translation magic. It looks like the words the other side say will be audible in our language, and vice-versa.
This magic may be close to the telepathic conversation between me, Kohaku and the rest.
For the time being Pam, Yae, Elsie, Hilda, Rue are the representative members. I have thought that there would have to be a substitution in the cases if someone gets injured or something, but it seems they need to win with only the five of them.
Although it would be good if I was allowed to participate, it was intensely opposed by the people of Rauri tribe including Pam. Apparently, it is impossible for the Rauri tribe to send out a man as representative in the sacred 「Pruning Ceremony」. Even if I would be recognized as a helper, it could apparently be overturned.
I wonder if it goes like "A man should shut up and watch". I somehow want to terrifically run away. I became a little envious of Balum tribe for a moment.
Well, the one month has passed with this and that.
We arrived at the root of Great Deity Tree to carry out 「Pruning Ceremony」.
It is a definitely a huge tree……. My impressions after seeing the Great Deity Tree can be summed up to that one word.
What the heck? Does its diameter reach some dozens of meters? Lush and thick green leaves and branches are growing in all directions from that dramatically thick trunk. Its height may not be that comparable to the size of its trunk. Its shape is like an extremely short part cut from a parasol grip.
Sunlight comes in between branches and leaves, illuminating the ground line in fairy-tale. And various tribes living in the Great Forest Sea assemble within that light.
There are stumps with different sizes at the root of the great tree deity, in which even the smallest ones are 20 meters in diameter. I have heard that they are the parts of the Great Deity Tree and stages for one-on-one battles.
The total number of tribes living in the Great Forest Sea is approximately 240. From among them, the Jaja tribe that is also called the [Referee Tribe] seems to hold this [Pruning Ceremony]. They manage this [Pruning Ceremony] for many ages and are the only tribe allowed by the spirits to live at the root of the great tree deity, [Deity Tree region]. But instead, they are not allowed to participate in [Pruning Ceremony]. Apparently, they are like Shinto priests who convey to the tribes the will of the spirits.
(TL: bad guys discovered!)
「However, there are various tribes…….」
I survey the surrounding tribes restlessly. There are large-built tribes, small-built tribes, tribes with strange decorations on their heads, tribes with jingling bracelets. It feels out of place but there are also tribes that have a mustache that is terribly grown for some reason, and tribes that are wrapped entirely in green robes while wearing hoods.
Though there are some exceptions, the degree of exposure for both men and women is generally high. As expected, there was no one that brought it all out, but there were some tribes that had so little clothing that I was troubled on where to look.
「If that's how it is, we won't stand out, so I feel slightly relieved ~degozaru……」
「Touya-sama? Wouldn't it be better for you not to stare at women that much? It will look strange since your outer appearance is of the same se*」
I felt a little thorn from what Rue had said, so I deliberately forced a cough while straightening my sitting posture.
Everyone around had the appearance of the Rauri tribe. In short, their chests were covered in wraps and they were wearing loincloths. As expected, are they embarrassed by that appearance? They are wearing a short poncho-like clothing on top and a pareo-like clothing coiled around their waists at the bottom.
It's only I who have disguised my appearance as a woman of the Rauri tribe with [Mirage]. To make it difficult to tell it even if I'm touched, I'm wearing a short-sleeved shirt and a short-pants just in case. If ever my arm to be caught, it would feel terrible if there is a feeling of clothes present.
Suu is also wearing Rauri tribe-style clothing. She looks cute that way, but I don't feel any se* appeal from her. However, my heart is pounding very vividly when I look at everyone else's figure making me turn my eyes the other way.
Well, the surrounding tribes are even more extreme, so I can't say anything.
「Is there reason why we have to fight on top of that stump?」
「That's right. The divine protection of the spirits are at work there, and all attacks that can take someone's life are reduced in there. For example. If someone seriously tries to inflict fatal damage at the head, the opponent will be stunned. This is because it's an attack that can cause death」
I don't know what kind of magic it is, but it certainly looks like the power of the spirits. Is it perhaps similar to my「Shield」, I wonder. Though It's probably different since it allows the non-fatal damage to be inflicted. It's perhaps similar to a 1HP stop feature in games.
Basically, the death is unlikely to happen, but I cannot omit that it is not like there are zero cases of dying from some other causes like collapsing from the impact. The stump is approximately 2 meters above the ground. The participants will lose due to being out-of-bounds if they fall from there, and it's possible for them to die if they fall badly on a vital spot.
「The magic is also unusable on it, isn't it?」
「Ah. That's also nullified. And also, it's also better not to use small fire in here. You will be driven from the Deity Tree region and the referee tribe will be keeping their eyes on you」
So the magic is also nullified. That means Elsie's 「Boost」 can't be used up there. Everyone has normal weapons this time since magically enchanted weapons are also being nullified.
But I guess I can understand why fire is prohibited. It may become outrageous if ever it becomes a forest fire. It also looks there is a large clear stream just outside of the Deity Tree region, so the people will prepare meals on there.
The tribe's comrades who have come to cheer for the participants can watch the fights from the audience seats prepared on the tops of other trees.
「When will the match begin?」
「It will start soon. It will be over for today once we win against three other tribes. We can advance to the fight tomorrow with that」
Well, approximately 240 tribes will fight three times…… will this round decrease their number to about 30 tribes? I wonder if today's matches can be called the preliminaries, while tomorrow ones will be the final selection.
(TL: 240/2, 120/2, 60/2;you are out once you lose a game)
The bell echoed from somewhere with a 'sharinn' sound. The hustle and bustle in the vicinity disappeared, and a resonant voice went up.
「It's time. Everyone besides the participants will leave this place. Everything else will be left to the guidance of the spirits」
A man from the [Referee's tribe] wearing a white poncho-like (貫頭衣) traditional costume dignifiedly announces so. At the same time, the people from the other tribes turned towards the audience seats that had become like tree houses, suspension bridges built in between the trees or just on top of the branches of the surrounding trees in groups.
Shall we go as well?
「Then everyone, do your best and make sure not to overdo it」
「I understand~ de gozaru」
「It's all right」
「Please leave it to us!」
「I will do my best」
Yae, Elsie, Hilda, and Rue walk toward the stump that have become the stages of the fight while following Pam.
We also moved to the audience seats established on top of the tree. After climbing the stairs attached to the side of the tree which is some meters in diameter, we arrived at the place with a good view.
「I am somehow getting excited」
Suu bends on the handrail and gazes at the competition site below her. The audience of this huge tree is comprised by everyone from the Rauri tribe.
A cheering squad is about 50 people in total, but I honestly find it difficult to be here since I am the only man here. Even though the people of the Rauri tribe see me as a woman, they also know that I am really a man. Uumu, if I think about it carefully, wouldn't it probably be better if I became transparent with [Invisible]?
But in that case, it will be difficult to intervene if ever an emergency happens. It's better to be called part of the [Rauri tribe] even if it's troublesome.
「…Ah, please look that, Touya-san」
In the location Lindsey points at, rays of sunlight pass through the trees like a spotlight and focus to each of the tribe's representatives. Before long, it slowly begins to move, leading each representative to their own stages.
When I look above to the branches in surprise, both the branches and leaves deform freely to control the sunlight coming in between them. Are you serious……? Does this so-called Great Deity Tree have a will of its own? Will those lights decide who will fight who?
Before I could even think of that, the battles started right away. So, there seems to be no opening ceremony present.
「Do all members fight in a one-on-one format?」
「It is said that should the first three people win, the remnant two people don't have to fight」
In other words, does that mean that even if just one of the warriors is great, if the other four people are no good, the tribe will lose the moment the three of those are defeated? If it was a knockout tournament, it should have been possible for a single person to defeat five people by himself.
It's a loss whether it is due to combat disability or by surrender. Well, it will also be a loss if you fall from the stage. There is no basically foul play, and should a person who considerably defiles the pride of the tribe living in the Great Forest Sea will be disqualified.
While I'm watching a match in a different stage, I see a large man brandishes an ax and cuts open the head of his enemy ……. Though It looked like that, the head was never crushed in reality. His opponent just slowly fell on the spot.
I wonder if this is that divine protection of spirits. It becomes clear to me that not all of the damage is prevented because there are countless wounds and bruises on the body of the defeated opponent. Is it invoked when someone is struck by a fatal blow like it has been said? His opponent seems to have fainted completely.
「Ah, It looks like the match for the Rauri tribe will start soon」
Yumina points at a location that's hard to see from here, so I project a picture of the stage in the air with [Mirage] and [Long Sense].
Voices of admiration leak out from the other people from the Rauri tribe. As expected. Unless you are on the stage, the magic seems to be usable.
I change the projection to a screen with a size big enough to be able to watch the match with everyone. It appears the Rue is the first to fight.
Her opponent is a tall man with an indentured lance in his hand. Is there a height difference of about 40 centimeters between Rue and him? Rue is confronting him with 30 centimeter short swords in each hand.
As the white clothed referee swings down his hand, Rue moves rushing to the bust of the spearman in a straight line. In response to that, the man thrusts his spear in a skewer-like motion, but it is being repelled by Rue's sword and directed the other way.
Rue, who is approaching her opponent as if she's sliding, waved her left hand and landed it on the man's flank.
Doo~! A dull sound is heard and a spearman crumbles on the spot. Not even a minute has passed.
Uooooooooooooo! Cheers of joy from every one of the Rarui tribe raged behind me.
It is not like Rue trained with Yae or me just for show. From her point of view, that level of movement is easy to see through naturally.
In the first place, dual sword users are quick-witted. They confuse their opponent with their movements and unleash attacks from different angles. They don't have the heavy might of axes or long swords, but they have swordsmanship to attack with such handling.
That said, it's not like they can't kill their opponent with a single blow. It's possible if they aim for the vital spots. Naturally, accuracy is nevertheless also required in addition to them being agile.
Rue looks towards here and greatly waves her hand.
In this way, the curtain of our battle came down.