Volume 4 Chapter 4

Volume 4 Chapter 4, “Having Come to Such a Time, Hesitation is Forbidden.”

 

———— Near the Plains of Scilla, in the Forest, Camouflaged Knights Brigade

Mercenary Survivor: “The torch lights are drawing closer. They must think we are still at the fortifications. Distance is four and a half miles.”

Small Mercenary: “We can still draw them in closer.”

Elder Sister Maid: “No, it’s not necessary. Please prepare the fire arrows.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Is that really alright? We can take them all down at one go.”

Disciple Nobleman: “……”

Elder Sister Maid: “I believe that option will lead to high casualties, it’s a very harsh option as well. If you think about it, it doesn’t fulfil our objectives either…… Moreover, the risk involved is quite high. If we attack them, we might only be able to take down 500 or maybe 1,000 of them.”

Mercenary Survivor: “……”

Elder Sister Maid: “I’m counting on you.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Alright, let’s do it. Archers!”

Rustling

Mercenary Archer: “Is this alright?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Sulphur, saltpetre and charcoal. Yes.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Is sulphur and charcoal really okay?”

Elder Sister Maid: “According to my Mistress, the real stuff requires a composition of 50-70% saltpetre, but we don’t actually require that sort of explosive power. To put it extremely, everything will be fine as long as we can exhaust the saltpetre, which is the source of all the trouble.”

Small Mercenary: “But, how slow. Is it burning yet?”

Young Mercenary: “It’s burning, isn’t it?”

Mercenary Archer: “I can confirm that the oil and straw is burning.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Something’s off. I clearly remember the enemy weapons making a tremendous noise.”

Elder Sister Maid: “I think it will.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Eh?”

Elder Sister Maid: “I think it will. Let’s leave quickly.”

Mercenary Survivor: “I suddenly really want to hear this tremendous noise which you’ve been talking about.”

Small Mercenary: “Nah, we should go. We’re about to run into the Holy Crusaders from the Central Continent. With our numbers, we’ll get discovered really quickly if we don’t leave.”

Young Mercenary NODS

Mercenary Archer: “That’s true.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Cheh.”

Disciple Nobleman: “Seems like it’s about time.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yep.” Nod

Mercenary Survivor: “?”

BOOM!!!

Small Mercenary: “!”

Young Mercenary: “!”

Mercenary Archer: “!?”

Resourceful Young Man: “Wh, wh, what the hell!?”

Disciple Nobleman: “Oww. My ears hurt.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yep.”

Resourceful Young Man: “What was that! That really surprised the hell out of me!”

Disciple Nobleman: “What a noisy young man.”

Mercenary Survivor: “There’s no need to be that surprised.”

Small Mercenary: “I can’t hear a thing.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Will you recognise me now?”

Boom……! Bang!

Mercenary Survivor: “……”

Elder Sister Maid: “Will you recognise me as a substitute? There’s a place I have to go with my own two feet. In order to get there, there’s a lot of dangers which we will have to overcome.”

Mercenary Survivor: “……”

Small Mercenary: “…… Yeah.”

Young Mercenary: “I will recognise you.”

Mercenary Archer: “There’s nothing for it.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Hey, hey.”

Mercenary Survivor: “I’m sure you can see the consensus is that we cannot reject such a treasure as a leader like you. In that case, we’ve got no choice. Please continue doing some more good work like you just did.”

Elder Sister Maid: “In that case.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Yeah.”

Small Mercenary: “We’ve got no choice. Alright, let’s go strip those Light bastards of their equipment. Then we’ll infiltrate the Kingdom of White Night. Isn’t that right, Substitute?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yeah. We’ll gather information, and then…… we’ll snatch some ships.” Smile

——— The City of the Gate, Consulate of the Merchant’s Union

Disciple Engineer: “Whoaaaa!”

Creak

Disciple Engineer: “That’s not it. More, over here! Hey! Come over! Hey, hey! That’s more like it!!”

Bam

Fire Dragon Lady: “…… You, what are you doing?”

Disciple Engineer: “I can’t let my teacher see such a sloppy lay out. No way.”

Bam!!

Disciple Engineer: “!?”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Look here, this is the study of the Union. Just who are you?”

Knock knock

Shrewd Accountant: “Ah, Disciple Engineer.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Disciple Engineer?”

Disciple Engineer: “Yeah, I’m sorry. Pleased to meet you, I’m the Disciple Engineer.”

Shrewd Accountant: “This here is the Fire Dragon Lady. She manages the Consulate, and she’s a Lady of the Fire Dragon Tribe. On top of that, she also holds an important position in the Self-Governing Council of the City of the Gate.”

Disciple Engineer: “F, F, Fire Dragon Tribe!?”

Fire Dragon Lady: “What’s up with that?”

Shrewd Accountant: “?”

Disciple Engineer: “You mean the elite among the Dragon Tribe of the Eight Great Tribes…… And on top of that, the purest blood lineage. How terrifying. Whoa.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “It’s quite tragic for you to say such a thing.”

Shrewd Accountant: “Eh?”

Disciple Engineer: “Huh?”

Fire Dragon Lady: “I am already a citizen of the City of the Gate. It doesn’t matter what Tribe we came from, we all work together to govern the City as its Self-Governing Council.”

Shrewd Accountant: “…… Madam.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “What is it?”

Disciple Engineer: “This is a map of the City.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Map……”

Shrewd Accountant: “The Disciple Engineer is an expert on all matters related to construction. Remember the contract orchestrated by the Middle Aged Merchant to build a bridge across the Great Portal? He was the conducting engineer.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “My, my! Thank you for all your good work!” Bows

Disciple Engineer: “Eh. Ah. W, well. Please raise your head.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “No, it is because of that bridge that we are able to enjoy the prosperity brought about by the salt trade.”

Shrewd Accountant: “Indeed.”

Disciple Engineer: “Ahh.”

Shrewd Accountant: “——–? Why have you turned completely red?”

Disciple Engineer: “That’s umm…… The Engineering world is almost completely male, and umm, I’m a Banshee with horns, so…… it’s just the Lady is really beautiful.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Hohohohoho, that makes me very happy.”

Shrewd Accountant: (The Fire Dragon Lady seems to be very popular these days……)

Disciple Engineer: “In any case, I was invited by the Middle Aged Merchant to draw up plans for the renovation of this house. I apologise for the intrusion.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “And you’ve also been working on the plans of the city? This is…… a market?”

Shrewd Accountant: “Mmm.”

Disciple Engineer: “Yeah, that’s right. The Central Wholesale Market. In this city, a large thoroughfare links the Southern Gate directly with the Northern Gate, a large number of caravans pass through the road, and surrounding areas are filled with warehouses. These warehouses form a business district. In the middle of all of that runs the river, the confluence of which forms the first merchant’s quarter.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Mmm, I walk through the area every day.”

Disciple Engineer: “City planning concerns the placement of facilities and the connection of these infrastructure.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Don’t these developments just happen as the city grows?”

Disciple Engineer: “Of course, there are many cities for which such developments occur passively. Rather, you could say that’s the natural state of things. But, well, in cities like this, where we have a specific objective for the development, then we have to come up with a design and a plan for better long-term results.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “?”

Shrewd Accountant: “What do you mean?”

Disciple Engineer: “For example, this Third Business District sits on the river bank and has dense concentrations of warehouses; it’s also close to the residential district and the Western Temple, so it’s very popular, but……”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Yeah.”

Disciple Engineer: “The residential area has been growing towards this direction, and at this point, there isn’t any more room for it to grow. In other words, growth is not an objective. We can try to organise the area as it is better, but this cannot be a long-term solution. For that, we should have set aside a larger area for the market, such that the residential area can be allowed to grow further to the South.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Indeed.”

Disciple Engineer: “And with the Municipal Halls of the Self Governing Council.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “What do the halls have to do with it?”

Disciple Engineer: “These aren’t really halls, they’re actually the location of the Defence High Command.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Defence High Command……?”

Disciple Engineer: “Well, of course it’s fine to use them as Municipal Halls, but this city was originally a fortress, right? In that case, it would be natural for the municipal halls to become the command base. But, right now, with the influx of refugees, there has been haphazard development, with important roads becoming closed, the lines have become muddled up.”

Shrewd Accountant: “W, wait a minute. What are these lines?”

Disciple Engineer: “They’re lines of human movement. They include roads, but they essentially comprise any routes a person with an objective can take. For example, this is the line from the Municipal Halls to the Southern Gate……? It’s quite a long, deviated path. That’s because of the expansion of the First Market.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “I can see that.”

Disciple Engineer: “I talked it over with the Middle Aged Merchant…… We were thinking of rebuilding the city walls, but we don’t have money and the interior is in chaos.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Do you have any complaints about this city?”

Disciple Engineer: “No, no. That’s not what I meant. Well, it’s not, but a city is basically one…… advanced organisation.”

Shrewd Accountant: “?”

Disciple Engineer: “In other words, where humans are doing things, they will search for ways to do these things easier and more conveniently. However, what people do is dependent on their surroundings. If commerce is convenient, then as they start engaging in sales, if imports and exports are also convenient then trade will become prosperous. People go where they want to go, right? And so they will go to where their profession is most convenient, hence city planning is ultimately about what to do in future…… This is why even though engineers are known as the Kings of Technique…… Umm. Hey, are you listening?”

Fire Dragon Lady: “I’m listening, please go on.”

Disciple Engineer: “The City of the Gate is basically a trading city dependent on the confluence of the shipping routes of the large river and the roads. After that, in order to protect the trade and trading point, it developed a secondary purpose as a fortress city. At present, having acquired independence, it is serving another purpose as a city-state. To balance all these three purposes is by no means an easy feat. Repairing the city walls alone is already very difficult, not to mention expensive.”

Fire Dragon Lady nods

Disciple Engineer: “Personally, I would hope for the Southern wall to be constructed along this line.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “For what reasons?”

Disciple Engineer: “Firstly, it serves the purpose of protecting the temple. Secondly, it serves as preparation against excess population.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Interesting.”

Disciple Engineer: “Really?”

Fire Dragon Lady: “You’ve said some very interesting things.”

Disciple Engineer: “For me, these are very troublesome things, though.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “You mean funding?”

Shrewd Accountant: “Exactly. These are massive projects. There doesn’t seem to be a wallet capable of paying for it.”

Disciple Engineer: “These are just empty blueprints.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Since nobody’s wallet is capable of paying for it, then how about we pay with a method apart from wallets?”

———- The Country of White Night, the Port

Elder Maid Sister: “It sure feels like they’ve let their guard down. They don’t even have any security here, with this many soldiers, do they really expect that no one will ever come here?”

Mercenary Survivor: “No matter how you put it, they’re still farmers. They only know how to live their lives of work and sleep. The fear of the enemy hasn’t been put into their bones yet.”

Small Mercenary: “Yeah!”

Trudge, trudge, trudge……

“Ahhhh. Let’s hurry back to the dormitories to sleep.”

“Don’t whine. I’ve brought wine.”

“That’s nice, it’ll warm us up.”

…… Trudge, trudge, trudge

Young Mercenary: “……Seems like they’re gone.”

Mercenary Archer: “Alright.”

Disciple Nobleman: “My heart was beating really fast back there.”

Elder Maid Sister: “Yeah, mine has been beating fast since I left the Grand Cathedral in the Holy Empire.”

Mercenary Survivor: “…… Just what sort of experiences have you had?”

Disciple Nobleman: “More than experiences, I’m sure she’s survived all kinds of dangerous encounters.”

Elder Maid Sister: “No such thing.”

Mercenary Survivor: “So, what should we do?”

Elder Maid Sister: “Right. As arranged, the Disciple Nobleman will command an 80-man squad to take over a ship. If possible, it would be best if the hold was stocked with food. We don’t have the skills required to modify ships, so we should pick a suitable ship capable of carrying all of us.”

Disciple Nobleman: “What a skilled delegator.”

Elder Maid Sister: “Please.”

Disciple Nobleman: “I’ll get it done.”

Elder Maid Sister: “Then, as for our team, we’ll move in stealth. Having monitored the area for a while, I would say that at this time there are only five to eight people sleeping in the customs house. Let’s find a way to disarm them while spilling as little blood as possible.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Yeah.”

Small Mercenary: “Understood.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Shall I handle it?”

Elder Maid Sister: “Yes. Thank you.”

Small Mercenary: “Then, let’s get going.”

Young Mercenary: “Got it.”

——- The Country of White Night, the Customs House

Click, click

Mercenary Survivor: “I really can’t do this.”

Elder Maid Sister: “You’re up next.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Me!?”

Elder Maid Sister: “Yes, please go on.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Why am I doing such a thing……”

Small Mercenary: “Hurry up.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Ugh. What’s wrong with this lock.”

Click

Resourceful Young Man: “Oh. I did it!”

Elder Maid Sister: “Excellent. You did well.”

Resourceful Young Man: “This sort of thing I do before I even start breakfast.”

Click

Mercenary Survivor: “Let’s go in.”

Small Mercenary: “Rear guard acknowledged and ready.”

Young Mercenary: “Point team in position.”

Mercenary Archer: “Backup is ready.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Don’t pretend to be professionals.”

Soldier of Light: “Whoa!”

Mercenary Survivor: “Hmph.”

Small Mercenary: “This room is secure.”

Soldier of Light: “Who, who are you!”

Whack!

Soldier of Light: “Ahh!”

Young Mercenary: “Alright. No problem here as well.”

Mercenary Archer: “This place doesn’t look very different from the buildings surrounding it. What purpose do we have here?”

Young Mercenary: “Let’s get away quickly.”

Elder Maid Sister: “Wait for a while. We’ll borrow a boat later and move out at the arranged time, if they could only make the rendezvous timing……”

Resourceful Young Man: “Understood! Anything to get you from the Holy Empire!”

Elder Maid Sister: “No, no. This is immoral. Well, I am aware that in dangerous times, we may have to use some illegal means, but I can’t do such unscrupulous things. Robbery is bad, after all.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Then, why are we doing this?”

Elder Maid Sister: “We’ll borrow.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Huh?”

Elder Maid Sister: “We’re just borrowing some capital.”

Mercenary Survivor: “……”

Small Mercenary: “……?”

Resourceful Young Man: “How is that any different from robbery?”

Elder Maid Sister: “I’ll write up a notice of debt.”

Scribble, scribble

Mercenary Survivor: “……”

Young Mercenary: “……”

Resourceful Young Man: “Hey, is this girl serious?”

Mercenary Survivor: “Was the Disciple Nobleman serious about this?”

Small Mercenary: “It’s fine. She’s our Substitute after all.”

Young Mercenary: “The ship has already sailed on this, just accept it.”

Scribble, scribble

Elder Maid Sister: “Done. I’ll just leave this notice on the table. Umm, let’s go move out the gold. We don’t have time to count it, so let’s just take these five chests. They’re heavy, but that shouldn’t be an issue. If they’re too light, then they’re probably being used for something else. We wouldn’t want to have to come back.”

Mercenary Survivor: “She seems fairly happy to be doing this.”

Small Mercenary: “Really.”

Elder Maid Sister: “We’ll use this money as a sort of compensation to the crew of the ship. We’ll also buy over their food stocks, to the Polar Continent.”

Mercenary Survivor: “What? Polar……!?”

Elder Maid Sister: “Let’s head to the Demon World without getting into trouble. I’ve got a whole mountain of things we need to do.”

———- The Kingdom of Metal, Craftsman’s Street, in Front of the Guild Office

Flash!

The Demon King: “Ah.”

The Chief Maid: “My legs are numb.”

The Hero: “It’s tough doing this three times in a row, huh.”

The Demon King: “Yeah, my head hurts.”

The Chief Maid: “My vision is really blurry.”

The Hero: “It’s just a matter of conditioning.”

The Demon King: “Sorry. Next time, let’s just walk there.”

The Hero: “Don’t worry about it. Aren’t we in a hurry?”

The Demon King: “Yeah, this time, we’re not after mass production. I fear that up till now, they’ve only been producing blades, for them to produce such prototypes in just a month is probably impossible, but……”

The Hero: “We won’t know for sure until we ask the craftsmen.”

The Demon King: “Yeah. Let’s go. Come, Chief Maid.”

The Chief Maid: “Yes, your Majesty.”

The Hero: “Go!

The Demon King: “Ahh, Hero!”

The Hero: “What is it?”

The Demon King: “Today, we only have an appointment with the metalworks craftsmen. It should be done by evening. I have heard that the bars and eateries in the area are something wonderful; but let’s get back home by today.”

The Hero: “Understood.”

The Chief Maid: “Don’t eat too much, alright? Hero. I’ve put in a lot of effort to make a magnificent feast today. Consider it a reward for your work, and a celebration of your return.”

The Hero: “Got it! Alright!”

The Demon King: “Right then, let’s go. Wait for us!”

Step, step, step

The Hero: “Sigh……”

The Hero: “Even if you say that……”

——– Until the Demon King comes back, I want to share a pillow with you

The Hero: “Don’t tell me…… Tonight?”

The Hero: “I sure am sweating heavily. This is bad. How strange to be sweating so much. Even when I was fighting the Sigiled King, it didn’t feel like this. What should I do? What should I do? —– Calm down? Right. That’s right. I’ve got to calm down first.”

The Mage nods

 

————- The Kingdom of Metal, the Craftsman’s Quarter, an Alleyway

The Hero: “B, behind me!?”

The Mage: “Hehehe.”

The Hero: “Where have you been!?”

The Mage: “……I had some business.”

The Hero: “Where have you been?”

The Mage: “…… I had some business.”

The Hero: “What kind.”

The Mage: “…… Entry.”

The Hero: “I don’t understand.”

The Mage: “…… ……zzz.”

The Hero: “Don’t fall asleep.” Shakes the Mage

The Mage: “…… Ah.”

The Hero: “Are you awake?”

The Mage nods

The Hero: “Somewhat.”

The Mage: “…… Hero.”

The Hero: “Yeah.”

The Mage: “How are you?”

The Hero: “Busy.”

The Mage: “…… Hehe.”

The Hero: “And how are you?”

The Mage: “…… Same.”

The Hero: “Right. It’s good that you are well.”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “?”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “What have you been doing?”

Star Sparrow: “Chirp, chirp! My mistress has been training long and hard! Chirp chirp! What have you been doing, mistress!”

The Mage: “…… Noisy bird.”

The Hero: “Is this your familiar?”

The Mage: “…… My alarm clock.”

The Hero: “Even with an alarm clock, it’s not like you wake up on time.”

The Mage: “…… With an alarm clock I can use the excuse that it didn’t ring.”

The Hero: “That’s irresponsible!”

The Mage nods

The Hero: “……”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “Is something up?”

The Mage nods

The Hero: “Are you troubled?”

The Mage: “…… Somewhat.”

The Hero: “Let’s hear it.”

The Mage: “…… Economic equilibrium, in order to create a state of growth, the economic layer is dependent on the overall effects of layers of governmental and technical expertise. Moreover, for these overall effects to influence economic systems, a certain amount of time is required. On one hand, there could also be undesirable influences on other layers or sectors from economic growth, such as cultural or governmental lapses. But these drawbacks, if they are minor, will dissipate in time; if they are major, they can be responded with using policies, or otherwise by overwhelming military action, to reduce apprehension among the population.”

The Hero: “……?”

The Mage: “Military attacks will leave a large scar on affected laters. The technical layer will suffer less damages. To begin with, knowledge is formless and can suffer no physical damage. It can even be surmised that technology flourishes in times of war, since military technological research becomes necessary, and technology once created, cannot be easily destroyed. However, military attacks definitely damage economic and governmental layers greatly. Moreover, while technical and governmental layers recover quickly, the economic field lags greatly behind. This is because of the needless exhaustion of ‘wealth’, the collection of the economic driving force. On the cultural layer, due to the possible extermination of some ethnicities, entire cultures may be irrevocably obliterated. Because of this, the application of the military layer is a slippery slope. ——- Is what the Demon King said.”

The Hero: “…… What’s this?”

The Mage: ““Exceptional questions require exceptional answers.””

The Hero: “……”

The Mage: ““Why is it that the Hero and the Demon King exists together as individual entities?” For example, what if they were two Demon Kings and no Hero, how would things be different? Or why can’t there be three Heroes and maybe two Demon Kings?”

The Hero: “Eh?”

The Mage: “Such a situation has never been recorded in history.”

The Hero: “Why……?”

The Mage: ““Why do the Hero and the Demon King fight?””

The Hero: “We aren’t fighting.”

The Mage: “…… This development only happened this time, until this time, the normal state has been war. It’s best to think of it as a special exception.”

The Hero: “I don’t understand.”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “Hey, Mage.”

The Mage: “The approximate of the Hero and the Demon King.”

The Hero: “Eh?”

The Mage: “The Hero of the Demon World is the Demon King. The Demon King of the Human World is the Hero. It’s not that either side has been attempting to imitate the other, but the essence is the same. The same, but two. Why two? Why the same? Exactly what is the defining differential factor?”

The Hero: “Is there an answer to such questions?”

The Mage: “There is usually an answer. Even though they may not be unified.”

The Hero: “Then, why?”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “……  No, I feel like I’ll get a bad answer if I ask.”

The Mage: “I’ll tell you.”

The Hero: “Time out.”

The Mage: “I can’t wait.”

The Hero: “That’s why.”

The Mage: “Hero, perhaps at the dual terminals of the Demon King’s existence, there is a split.”

The Hero: “Split……?”

The Mage: “Right. It’s highly unlikely for there to be two points of differentiation. To begin with, the chance of there being two existences in this world is already too low. The present world is the only one I have seen which has the two existences.”

The Hero: “I don’t understand.”

The Mage: “In other words, a thread. On the right end of the thread is the Hero. On the left end, the Demon King. —– That’s the answer. Usually, the two have set existences, they are two, without a third, confrontational in their time periods. From the moment when the two ends come into contact with each other, convergence begins. As the two ends join, they form a circle, and the world is complete. The string which ties the world together, makes the world smaller, and at the same time ‘repairs’ it.”

The Hero: “Huh!?”

The Mage: “Continuing from those ancient days with the Flame, the true endless legend is what we are currently in.”

The Hero: “My head hurts.”

The Mage: “The Demon King of this world has not used this extra power on the war. I don’t understand what kind of miracle this is, but rather than following the example set by the previous Demon Kings, she’s gone independent, and so dreams of a different route. Or perhaps, she’s independent because he has dreamt it…… And this ability will be set aside to enlarge the world. Moreover, whether its coincidence or predestination, the Demon King or the Hero has been killed in every world, except this one.

The enlargement begins technically or economically, but following that, a ripple starts to spread and influence neighbouring layers: the governmental, diplomatic, cultural, even the legendary layers. When the terminals come into contact with each other, the end to the conflict goes into motion. Unrelated to that is the expansionary effect the Demon King and the Hero have on the world. When the speed of expansion or contraction averages out, then the world will be still. The answer put forth by the Demon King is definitely not wrong. However, in order to carry out what needs to be done, the fundamental illnesses of the world must be considered.”

The Hero: “Illness? Still?”

The Mage: “—– Yes. It’s not a sin, but an illness. For this reason, reality will likely continue to act on us. This is one of the distortions of the redundancy system.”

The Hero: “Did something happen?”

The Mage nods

The Hero: “Something terrible?”

The Mage: “…… I fear all will be exterminated.”

The Hero: “……!”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “That’s a joke, right?”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “What should we do? You must have a solution.”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “Hey, Mage.”

The Mage shakes head

The Hero: “Hey.”

The Mage: “Structurally, one of our needs is to change the structure itself. The present situation cannot permit the continuation of the present structure. ——- That has been the answer, but—“

The Hero: “What is it?”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “I’ll do anything, so tell me!”

The Mage: “——- Anything?”

The Hero: “Anything at all.”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “Please, please…… Please.”

The Mage: “…… Sneaky as always.”

The Hero: “Eh?”

The Mage: “……”

The Hero: “Mage……?”

The Mage: “Having come to such a time, hesitation is forbidden.”

———— The Kingdom of Metal, the Craftsmen Quarter, the Guild Headquarters

The Demon King: “Alright. All done!”

The Chief Maid: “How was it? How were the results?”

The Demon King: “I believe I am now able to fulfil the request of the Female Paladin. We can increase the range by three times. In a war, we want to be able to prevent damage before it actually happens, but if we could minimise the damage once it happens, that would be good too.”

The Chief Maid: “Really.”

The Demon King: “Where is the Hero? No, perhaps before searching for the Hero, we should find a place to stay.”

The Mage: “Well, well, my, my.”

The Demon King: “No. There wasn’t a special meaning behind that.”

The Chief Maid: “Let’s do that then.”

The Mage appears

The Demon King: “Whoa…… Oh, if it isn’t the Mage.”

The Mage: “……” Nods

The Chief Maid: “It’s been a while. We haven’t seen each other since our holiday, I suppose.”

The Mage: “…… Tribe of the Library, just where we should be.”

The Chief Maid: “……”

The Demon King: “Where have you been?”

The Mage: “…… The mountains.”

The Chief Maid: “?”

The Demon King: “……”

The Mage nods

The Chief Maid: “What’s happened?”

The Demon King: “As the Tribe of the Library, it’s rare for us to be able to meet like this. To begin with, we are few in number, and most of us don’t get out and see the world very much. We’re all hard at work restoring the research laboratories and the bookshelves. Coming into contact with each other is truly precious. The Chief Maid and I are exceptions…… That’s why”

The Mage: “……”

The Demon King: “What is it?”

The Mage: “…… Two things. Firstly, I want to know about the Sky Pavilion.”

The Chief Maid: “Sky Pavilion?”

The Demon King: “…… That’s—“

The Mage: “As the Demon King, I’m sure you know. I’m not sure if this is an oral transmission or some kind of memory transfer. But all the Demon Kings in history have known about the place. I don’t have proof on this, but the succession implies this. It is the place where you will offer the head of the Hero as sacrifice.”

The Demon King: “And the other thing?”

The Mage: “The Demon King is away on a trip. To save you all. I’ve come to fulfil the task he was set to do for you.”

——– The Demon World, the City of the Gate, a Temporary Worksite

“Hey, ho!”

“Come on!”

Fiend Worker: “Hey! Bring another roller!”

Human Technician: “Alright, roll it!”

Giant Worker: “Haaah……! Let’s go, let’s go!”

Gong!

Middle Aged Merchant: “My, my!”

Disciple Engineer: “Ahh! Merchant!”

Middle Aged Merchant: “What a lot of people!”

Disciple Engineer: “Yep.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “How did you even get this many people? I can’t have sent you enough money to hire all of them, did I?”

Disciple Engineer: “Well, umm.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “I stepped in.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “So it was you, princess.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Please don’t call me that.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “Hahahahahaha. Then, what did you do?”

Disciple Engineer: “The Fire Dragon Lady introduced me to the people of the street.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “No, no. What the Disciple Engineer said was fairly interesting. In order to support the Middle Aged Merchant…… I feel this is what I should do. But for a project of such scale, we will never have enough funds to cover the costs. We will also need the help of the people of the city to renovate the temples.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “Temples?”

Fire Dragon Lady: “From the beginning, this city has had many ancient and nameless gods, hence the many temples in the area. The residents of the city, to different extents, pay homage to the various temples, praying for daily peace or successful business. With the success we are enjoying today, we are accumulating goodwill and the people are more than happy to lend their hand to the work.”

Disciple Engineer: “The temples in this city are built highly durably, and can even be used as fortresses. The road networks cut through the mountainsides, so we should be able to procure quarry materials. Firstly, we will renovate the temples.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “But, shouldn’t our first priority be to repair the walls or to improve the layout of the city?”

Disciple Engineer: “Please look at this map.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Yes.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “Is this of the surroundings?”

Disciple Engineer: “These nine temples and this site form a defensive perimeter, and for it to be connected with the wall, the city needs to expand in this direction. It’s true that the distance is fairly large, and we will have to increase our workload, but if we use the walls of one of the temples as a starting point, we can decrease our workload substantially. ——– The funding you have provided for me has all been spent on food. We want to make sure our workers eat their fill, even more so than today. That’s the way I do things.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “So that our workers look forward to it as well.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “And then you’ll need to start work?”

Disciple Engineer: “Yes, somehow or another. I can’t just rely on the Fire Dragon Lady though.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Without a real overview, I can’t write up a real proposal.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “In other words, the plans are for a structure which includes the temples?”

Disciple Engineer: “Yes, the temples are being used as Tenailles* for the fortress.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “Hmm. And this part?”

Disciple Engineer: “Digging.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “What for?”

Disciple Engineer: “A dry moat. This has the effect of making the fortifications taller to the attackers. We can’t have a real moat because of the lack of water in the area.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “The walls are rather thick, aren’t they?”

Disciple Engineer: “Yeah.”

Middle Aged Merchant: “Do they really need that Thickness*? Whether made by stone or by earth, it’ll take a great deal of effort to create this…… This shape, rather than  a wall, it looks like a sloped wall.”

Disciple Engineer: “That’s. Well. Yeah.”

Fire Dragon Lady: “?”

Disciple Engineer: “It’s necessary. In this age, and in the next age too. The enemy aren’t Demons right? …… Then, these fortifications serve a fundamental purpose. My teacher said this as well. An engineer cannot have a shallow view of creating things only necessary to the present. We must take steps a hundred years in advance…… For the people who call this place their home, we must do our best work.”

———————————————————————————————————————————————————————-————————-

Explanation

Ternaille: A ternaille is the jutting-out part on a star fortification. The placement of the ternailles removes dead zones where defenders can hide and also creates overlapping fields of fire to maximise firepower.

Thickness: The Disciple Engineer is engineering a new generation of fortifications in preparation for cannon warfare. These fortifications tend to be low and thick, in order to take the impact of a cannonball without crumbling.

————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

———- The Village of Wintering, the Manor of the Demon King, the Guest Room

The Female Paladin: “Bathed, hair combed, skincare done too.”

The Female Paladin: “……”

The Female Paladin: “Ah, alright.”

Pat, pat

The Female Paladin: “I’m all fired up!”

The Female Paladin: “…… Am I?”

The Female Paladin: “Mmm…… What’s this? When it comes to crunchtime, I always get uneasy. Once it’s over, completely over, I resent that weakness…… No, when we get the final weapons for the Holy Order of the Lake, what will we do then?”

The Female Paladin: “……”

—– Touches boobs

The Female Paladin: (…… As expected, this is it, huh?)

The Female Paladin sulks

The Female Paladin: “This alone, is…… This is not even a quarter of the Demon King. No, maybe it is. Not necessarily. It’s definitely not true that it’s nothing. In other words, it’s not zero. It’s just small. Right? They say if you rub it, it gets bigger, right? Then I’ve got to work hard!”

The Female Paladin: “……”

The Female Paladin: “It’s ineffective.”

The Female Paladin: “If this is the enemy, then I all I need is a bit more enthusiasm, but……”

The Female Paladin: (No, that’s wrong. —— It’s the same. The enemy isn’t the problem. It’s my own feelings.)

The Female Paladin: (…… That being said, what did my teacher tell me? “Treat him like a horse.”)

The Female Paladin: (Panties, huh…… Well, I never thought of that. Even though my teacher spoke well of it, a perverse thing is still a perverse thing…… Well, it’s a useful perverse thing. Hmm? Silk socks? These must be expensive.)

Puts on stockings

The Female Paladin: (Oh? …… It’s very fitting.)

Puts on stockings

The Female Paladin: “This is weird.”

Shuffles around

The Female Paladin: (…… Is it supposed to be like this? It feels like I’m only wearing it halfway, and it might slip off. This? What’s up with this. It’s comfortable though…… Hahaha……)

Door opens

The Female Paladin: “This is too embarrassing!”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “Ahh!?”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “Oh. Demon King. You scared me, you’re early.”

The Demon King: “…… Yeah.”

The Female Paladin: “What is it?”

The Demon King: “Yeah.”

The Female Paladin: “……?”

The Demon King: “It ends today.”

The Female Paladin: “What is going on?”

The Demon King: “The Hero has left on a mission…… It seems there’s a time limit.”

The Female Paladin: “?”

The Demon King: “We can’t let the chance go by.”

The Female Paladin: “What are you on about?”

The Demon King: “I don’t understand myself. But in order to change the flow, the Hero knows something, and left to act…… That’s what the Mage told me.”

The Female Paladin: “……”

The Demon King: “…… That’s why the Hero isn’t here.”

The Female Paladin: “……”

The Demon King: “He left me here and went away.”

The Female Paladin: “……”

The Demon King: “He left us and went away.”

The Female Paladin: “……”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “Demon King.”

The Demon King: “Female Paladin?”

The Female Paladin: “It’s not good to think of such troublesome things, Demon King.”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “The Hero is going to return home properly. He’s definitely okay. I, well, haha…… Even though I don’t have the patience for this, this is the second time he’s gone and done this? But, he’ll be fine. The Hero will definitely come home safe. And compared to that time, the Hero is even kinder, even stronger.”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “The real issue at hand is how many girls he’s going to have when he comes back this time, but…… he’s going to come back.”

The Demon King: “…… Really?”

The Female Paladin: “Definitely. And the Hero left to protect us right? He left so that he can come back, right? That’s why, it’s different from that day.”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “Above that, we need to save the Hero.”

The Demon King: “Save?”

The Female Paladin: “That’s right…… Something is going on sure, right? With things the way they are, we can’t take the place of the Hero right now. But there are still many things which we need to do even without the Hero. These are things only we can do in his place.”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “The Battle of the Plains of Scilla is over, and there is calm, but…… I’ve always felt it somewhere. That the war has come to an end.”

The Demon King: “……”

The Female Paladin: “With this, our war is over. If the Central Continent invades the Demon World, then it might lead to war with the Demon World, but that is not our problem…… Well, it’s not unimaginable, but that’s not the way it works. The Hero definitely isn’t going to give up like this. If he was the kind of Hero who would give up like that, then I wouldn’t like him the way I do.”

The Demon King: “……” nods

The Female Paladin: “That’s why, the Hero is doing things one way or another, but he’s doing everything he needs to. Now I understand. Actually, I felt it that day as well, but…… The Hero would never leave us alone forever.”

The Demon King: “Is that so……”

The Female Paladin: “Definitely.”

The Demon King: “I still have things I need to do……”

The Female Paladin: “Of course.”

The Demon King: “…… Yes.”

The Female Paladin: “Say it properly!”

The Demon King: “Yes, yes. I understand.”

The Female Paladin: “Right. Then. Let’s go.”

The Demon King: “Ah, Female Paladin.”

The Female Paladin: “What?”

The Demon King: “Well, umm. It’s very fetching, but…… Don’t you find that underwear just a little bit revealing?”

——- On Board the Merchant Vessel, The Wings of the Sea

Waves crashing

“Hey ho!”

“Hey ho!”

Disciple Nobleman: “It’s cold.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yes.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! Amazing! Hey dude, this is my first time on a ship!”

Disciple Nobleman: “Don’t call me dude. You can call me Disciple, or Sir. But well, don’t call me Master. That title’s reserved for some pretty eyed lady somewhere.”

Elder Sister Maid: “…… Eh?”

Resourceful Young Man: “Hey! Dude! What’s that? Birds!? Whoa! Amazing! This is the sea, what are you doing here!”

Mercenary Survivor: “Hey. Change of watch.”

Small Mercenary: “Thanks.”

Young Mercenary: “Good morning.”

Mercenary Archer: “What pleasant weather. Hey, Captain!”

Captain: “What’s up, you fools.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Sorry, sorry.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Well, I hope you can forgive us.”

Captain: “Well, we’re all loaded up I guess. I’ve already resigned myself to it. So shall we head to the Polar Continent?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yes please.”

Captain: “Well, I hope you can understand when I say that’ll be the end of our relationship.”

Resourceful Young Man: “I feel bad about this.”

Mercenary Survivor: “We didn’t have a choice.”

Elder Sister Maid: “That guy was originally just a merchant. He’s not an enemy we have to destroy, unlike the Crusaders. I feel guilty about involving him in this, but at the time we had no other options……”

Resourceful Young Man: “But you almost made his eyes pop out, eh?”

Mercenary Survivor: “It’s no small sum of money after all.”

Small Mercenary: “Indeed.”

Resourceful Young Man: “But isn’t it a bit wasteful?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Is money something you can’t live without?”

Resourceful Young Man: “——“

Mercenary Survivor: “Well. Ahahahahaha. Now that you’re a mercenary, that isn’t something you should be saying, Substitute?”

Young Mercenary: “Yeah.”

Disciple Nobleman: “Well then, now we’ll be headed to the Portal. We’ve bought over the cargo of the ship so we should have enough warm clothes and food to last. We’ve even got the new models of muskets, and those are quite scary.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Indeed.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Muskets? You mean these tubes?”

Mercenary Survivor: “They have terrific firepower.”

Small Mercenary: “I wonder.”

Mercenary Archer: “They are somewhat like crossbows.”

Disciple Nobleman: “More importantly, what are our plans for after this?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yeah.”

Mercenary Survivor: “This guy.”

Young Mercenary nods

Mercenary Archer: “At this time, we want to ask what the objective of making such a long journey is. We may be hired, but at this point, we have already been dragged into the conflict, right? So just tell us.”

Disciple Nobleman: “Yes, that’s right.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yes.”

Mercenary Survivor: “I understand that we will be going into the Demon World from the Polar Continent. But what are our plans there?”

Disciple Nobleman: “Our goals are completely the same.”

Young Mercenary: “I understand now.”

Mercenary Archer: “What?”

Young Mercenary: “How to ask our Substitute out.”

Mercenary Archer: “How?”

Young Mercenary: “You need to think about all sorts of things.”

Disciple Nobleman: “First, we’ll walk around the Demon World a bit, and then we’ll negotiate for a ceasefire between the Holy Crusaders and the Demons.”

Elder Sister Maid nods

Mercenary Survivor: “……”

Small Mercenary: “Huh!?”

Young Mercenary: “Wait. What?”

Mercenary Archer: “Ah, ahh.”

Disciple Nobleman: “What are you saying? There aren’t even a hundred of us.”

Disciple Nobleman: “Yes, well. Listen to me. We don’t intend to actually be able to put a stop to the war. To go up against the Demons, the Holy Crusaders need to be supported with a massive capital investments coming from more than half the countries of the Central Continent. Having departed with such responsibilities, there’s no way they’d be willing to return having achieved anything. But, stay with me. If war is unavoidable, then the question is where will it stop, right?”

Resourceful Young Man: “Where?”

Mercenary Survivor: “Hmm.”

Disciple Nobleman: “Usually, it ends when the enemy has been exterminated.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Doesn’t it? I get that feel from the Crusaders.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Well, yeah.”

Disciple Nobleman: “But even then, there are still limits. For example, the Kingdom of Branches and the Kingdom of Copper have fought wars in the past, but in the end, they were still able to set aside their grievances. After a monetary compensation and the cessation of some lands, they managed to calm down. The Kingdom of Moonsand lost the war and was eliminated, but they were just integrated into the Kingdom of Dunes, their population didn’t get exterminated or anything.”

Mercenary Archer: “That’s true now that you say it.”

Disciple Nobleman: “It’s nonsense to massacre civilians who didn’t even participate in the war. Firstly, from a population perspective, it’s not realistic. Whether the Crusaders were to win or to lose the battle, they would face threats all around. A ceasefire would definitely be useful at this time. Even a ceasefire cannot be established, through this, some sort of communication may at least be achievable.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Of course we earnestly hope for a ceasefire, but, it’s definitely difficult…… What I’m thinking of is somewhat different from the Disciple Nobleman. I want to impress upon the participants the dangers of the war.”

Mercenary Survivor: “What do you mean?”

Elder Sister Maid: “War is a painful and terrible thing, right? People die, or live cold and hungry lives. Men are free organisms and countries should be the same. We are opposed to war as individuals, but it is an undeniable presence in our lives. This is too terrible to even be expressed in words, but…… There are probably things in this world which can only be resolved through war. However, the present war is not one in which every man is fighting for freedom. And so I want to give an opportunity to those who earnestly wish for the war to end.”

Resourceful Young Man: “Umm.”

Small Mercenary: “You said it very smoothly, but you weren’t actually condemning the war right? What you said was closer to, ‘For now, I’m still going to condone it.’”

Young Mercenary: “…… Ah.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yes, you could say that.”

Resourceful Young Man: “H, huh?”

Mercenary Survivor: “Huh!?”

Elder Sister Maid: “No need to be so surprised…… It would be narrow-minded to think that the only kind of negotiations result in complete peace.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Well yes, that may be so, but that’s the kind of thing which is said by people who are trying to suppress the world with violence.”

Elder Sister Maid: “That may be so, but there is that risk that the Crusaders or the Demons will be exterminated, right?”

Disciple Nobleman: “Mmm.”

Elder Sister Maid: “The way I see it, the Crusaders and the Demons are crossing a frozen, and very dangerous bridge…… Every step they take is a danger. There is no way they can tell, but they can only move slowly through it.”

Mercenary Survivor: “What do you mean?”

Elder Sister Maid: “A war of attrition…… If that’s what it comes to, then there may not even be 10 people left in this world.”

Young Mercenary: “Attrition?”

Disciple Nobleman: “In other words, a war based on how many people you can kill each day.”

Mercenary Survivor: “What? Isn’t that normal? For a force of 1,000 soldiers, 20 dead would be considered a grevious injury, 50 would be a tragedy and a hundred would be enough to make the next battle impossible. It’s to the extent that half a year would be insufficient to replenish the numbers.”

Small Mercenary: “Is that so?”

Elder Sister Maid: “That is not a constant.”

Mercenary Survivor: “I don’t understand.”

Elder Sister Maid: “It’s not something set in stone. Well, it’s not like I’ve gone and researched it earnestly, but apparently in a battle between musketeers, a hundred soldiers per thousand could be killed in half a day.”

Disciple Nobleman: “…… Shocking, right?”

Mercenary Survivor: “A hundred!?”

Small Mercenary: “Wait, do you mean to say that what would be lost in a week of war could take place in one day!?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Of course there are reasons.”

Mercenary Survivor: “What reasons?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Lots of reasons. Firstly, the musket is an extremely powerful weapon. From a close enough distance, even a full suit of battle armour will not stop it. However, with a musket, your defensive abilities do not increase. This ship is stocked with large amounts of the new model of musket, the flintlock, but this is an improvement to shot efficiency and reload speed. Even for this new model, the only shield which exists is your own body…… In other words, this is a weapon with no defensive abilities, but great offensive capability.”

Disciple Nobleman: “There are others as well. In a battlefield of muskets, a large number of infantrymen are usually field. You saw it right? That amazing number of Crusaders.”

Mercenary Archer nods

Disciple Nobleman: “Those were serfs trained only to wield muskets. You all have long experiences as mercenaries, so you understand right? On the battlefield, survival is all that matters. As long as you survive, there is something you can still do. Chances only come to those who are alive. But for these guys, survival is less important for them than shooting the enemy. That’s what they were trained to do, not to survive.”

Mercenary Survivor: “…… I understand that much.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Just now you talked about losing in a day more than what we would usually lose in a week, but that’s not even the worst case. If a commander were to go through even a moment of carelessness, that gap could cause the death of most of his troops. Moreover, in just one hour of desperate carnage, even people who shouldn’t have been killed may be slaughtered. For example, if two knights in armour and armed with swords were to duel with each other, the fight would take too much out of them. They would be exhausted as well. In this case, the match may be declared a stalemate and they could find another day to fight, or even repair their relationship in the meantime. Furthermore, the fight would be specific, and you would only engage somebody you want to kill; it’s very difficult to kill indiscriminately. In the age of muskets, the chance of lethal engagements has become much higher. ——– ‘Kill the enemy before we can repair our relations’, this is the new horrific mantra which has taken over the battlefield. And on top of that…… the Demons have muskets too.”

Mercenary Survivor: “Really!?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Even if they don’t actually have it right now, that technology is bound to fall into their hands eventually. No, it’s likely they have weapons even more technologically advanced than that. Even though the Mistress isn’t one for war-like things. That being said—– With people killing each other, this is a tug of war on the borderline of the too dangerous.”

Small Mercenary: “…… This conversation is too heavy for mercenaries like us.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Perhaps the blood demanded by the turn of an era is more than the total combined blood of the Human and Demon Races. If so, then we are looking at the demise of the world.”

Disciple Nobleman: “Huh?”

Elder Sister Maid: “No…… That’s my line.”

Mercenary Survivor: “So will we be able to win over both sides with this talk of attrition rates?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Well, I believe we won’t need to persuade the Demons of this.”

Disciple Nobleman: “Really?”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yeah. They are aware of this.”

Disciple Nobleman: “I am grateful for that. It is most important to understand your opponent in negotiations.”

Young Mercenary: “Well, for the sake of these negotiations, we will hold strong while the Substitute is in the Demon World.”

Elder Sister Maid: “Yeah, we will need many strategies, but…… That being said, a nameless person like me can’t suddenly start holding meetings with the leadership of the Holy Empire.”

Small Mercenary: “That’s common sense, but it doesn’t make it any more difficult.”

Elder Sister Maid: “In any case, we have to go to the Demon World.”

———– The Kingdom of Winter, the Winter Palace, the Office of Accounts

Disciple Merchant: “How is it?”

Assistant: “Warm!”

Disciple Merchant: “Your fingers?”

Assistant: “Comfortable, and not tight! It’s nice, these gloves are really soft, aren’t they? Amazing. They’re waterproof too, right?”

Disciple Merchant: “If you wear it tightly.”

Assistant: “It’s really soft.”

Disciple Merchant: “Hey, hey, stop rubbing them now.”

Assistant: “Ehehehe.” Rub, rub

Door opens

Seneschal: “I’ve been wearing it.”

Disciple Merchant: “And how is it?”

Seneschal: “I don’t understand why, but it’s very warm, warmer than any other glove I have ever worn. Moreover, it’s really light. What is it?”

Disciple Merchant: “The pelt is thin, and there’s a second inner layer of down feathers. It’s definitely significantly more expensive, but how is it?”

Seneschal: “Yes, it’s wonderful.”

Disciple Merchant: “The Kingdom of Winter is really good at making this sort of winter gear.”

Assistant: “Very warm.”

Seneschal: “Why did you suddenly propose an improvement in our winter equipment?”

Disciple Merchant: “It’s nothing sudden. But I suppose it might seem that way. The Demons don’t attack every year, but the winter does, doesn’t it? That’s why winter gear can be considered beneficial to the entire country. It’s a plan that’s been considered for a long time.”

Assistant: “I see—“ Smiles

Disciple Merchant: “It is really becoming very important.”

Assistant: “?”

Seneschal: “……?”

Disciple Merchant: “Moreover, our country is in need of soldiers right now, right? With more soldiers, we will need to provide higher quality outercoats and gloves, right? This is essential to prevent the loss of morale. With the winter coming, there will be an increased need for surveillance patrols as well.”

Seneschal: “Yes, that’s true.”

Disciple Merchant: “With the establishment of the financial bank, we should be able to accomplish things like this.”

Seneschal: “Bank? Apart from borrowing money, what else can you do with a bank?”

Disciple Merchant: “If we could only come up with a prototype, a bank would allow us to borrow money to begin an enterprise. In this case, the enterprises can be joined by merchants with distributive capital and the craftsmen of textile guilds. And hence, we can begin production. There would be a lot of work. Firstly, we have to distribute the gloves and overcoats to the soldiers. After that, in the same manner, we should aim to produce more equipment for sale. Even if it’s a good idea and a good product, the impoverished guild’s priority is still to make money, and a side effect of this is that many jobs will be created as well.”

Seneschal: “But…… If we borrow money from the bank and the job fails, what should we do? The bank would lose money, wouldn’t it?”

Disciple Merchant: “That’s why the prototype is so important. A plan is good enough, though. Based on this information, as well as the personality and history of the workmen involved, the bank decides whether or not to lend money to the entrepreneurs. The borrower is not a government official, and the bank is not a government institution. This means that both parties have interest in the success of the business; they should be comrades…… Well, this is just second-hand information from my teacher. But that would be a win-win scenario for everybody.”

Assistant: “We can also store cheese!”

Seneschal: “How difficult.”

Disciple Merchant: “This country is blessed. The people are simple and hardworking, with powerful smiles. If there is nothing, then they will find a way to develop it…… That’s right, ‘if there is nothing’.”

 

——— The Kingdom of Metal, the Barracks, the Office

Disciple Soldier: “I want the next set of documents.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Yes.” Shuffles paper

Disciple Soldier: “Mmhmm…… This is good.”

Metal Lieutenant: “You’ve already decided.”

Disciple Soldier: “Yes, everyone is working hard to beef up our preparations.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Right. I know the importance of securing our borders from the previous war.”

Disciple Soldier: “Communications methods are also important.”

Metal Lieutenant: “We’ll need to build up signal towers quickly.”

Disciple Soldier: “We should be able to finish building that next year. We’ll finish the bulk of our measurements and preparations by autumn and we should finish work next year.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Yes.”

Disciple Soldier: “Mm……”

Metal Lieutenant: “What is it?”

Disciple Soldier: “This is from one of the released spies from the old Kingdom of White Night.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Hmm.”

Disciple Soldier: “…… As expected, there are domestic issues. It seems they’ve been doing military drills endlessly.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Drills……”

Disciple Soldier: “They don’t have anything else to do, then.”

Disciple Soldier: “Next.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Here.”

Disciple Soldier: “This is from the Coast Guard.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Understood.”

Disciple Soldier: “We’ll carry out parades and military exercises under the command of the first platoon. It’s about time, then?”

Metal Lieutenant: “Yes, I’ll prepare the notice.”

Disciple Soldier: “Then, the reports on the revenues from the settlements.”

Metal Lieutenant: “Here they are.”

Disciple Soldier: “Call the principal clerk and have him double copy this, and send one to the Disciple Merchant in the Kingdom of Winter. I’ll fill out a letter for him. Send the other one as a report to the King.”

Metal Lieutenant: “I’ll have the report ready soon.”

Disciple Soldier: “Thank you.”

Metal Lieutenant: “……”

Disciple Soldier: “Then, what is the status of the training of the Imperial Guards?”

Metal Lieutenant: “I’ve rejected it.”

Disciple Soldier: “Eh?”

Metal Lieutenant: “What were you thinking to propose such a thing?”

Disciple Soldier: “Ah, well, I thought everybody, wanted to……”

Metal Lieutenant: “You thought wrong.”

Disciple Soldier: “……”

Metal Lieutenant: “We work together. What is the point of asking me to do this?”

Disciple Soldier: “Y, yes……”

Metal Lieutenant: “Yes.”

———— The Kingdom of Winter, the Square in front of the Palace, Consulate

Lone Winter King: “Here?”

Assistant: “Right here! I’ve come loads of times.”

Seneschal: “Hoho.”

Master Craftsman: “Hey, boy!”

Assistant: “Hello!”

Lone Winter King: “How have you been?”

Master Craftsman: “If it isn’t the King! Is this alright!? You shouldn’t be here without a guard, should you?”

Seneschal: “How rude. I’m right here.”

Disciple Merchant: “Well it’s good for a King to get around and see his Kingdom every now and then.”

Lone Winter King: “Hahaha! Good. This is my beloved Kingdom of winter. This is its core. I’m the King after all, how could I neglect the security of the land?”

Master Craftsman: “Hahahahaha! What a thing to say!”

Disciple Merchant: “We’re here to inspect the worksite.”

Master Craftsman: “Is that so? Oh look.”

Fairy Maiden flits about

Craftsman: “Wow”

Labourer: “Whoa.”

Master Craftsman: “Don’t tell me……”

Fairy Maiden: “I Am A Fairy, And I Will Be Staying At The Consulate.”

Master Craftsman: “It spoke!”

Fairy Maiden: “Yes, I Like Speaking!”

Craftsman: “Whoa, it floats.”

Labourer: “It’s my first time seeing one, is this a Demon?”

Fairy Maiden: “?”

Master Craftsman: “Ko, ko.”

Disciple Merchant: “You’re cold?”

Master Craftsman: “Konichiwa?”

Fairy Maiden: “I Am The Fairy Maiden, Of The Tribe Of Fairies, Of The Demon Race. Thank You For Building This Consulate For Us. The Queen Extends Her Gratitude To You Once Again.”

Master Craftsman: “Wow, it can really talk!”

Disciple Merchant: “It’s been talking from the start.”

Assistant: “Master Craftsman, this is the Fairy Maiden. She’s an amazing person who can even speak to cats. She will be residing in this Consulate.”

Winter Civilian: “This is a Demon?”

Lone Winter King: “As previously announced, as a result of the ceasefire, we are now at peace with the Demon World. It may be a bit strange, but from now on, there may be more Demon faces. I humbly beg for your understanding.”

Disciple Merchant: (What sort of reaction will that cause……)

Fairy Maiden: “……?”

Master Craftsman: “…… Whoa. It has wings. Why, lady. In that case I can just remove the stairs in this three story building. How impressive…… that surprised me!”

Craftsman: “How small.”

Labourer: “Have we been fighting with such ladylike enemies all this while?”

Seneschal: “Oh no. Demons come in all shapes and sizes. It’s just that the ones who have come to live among us are the sort which are better at communicating and fitting into our streets.”

Labourer: “Is that so?”

Middle Aged Woman: “I see! If he had lost to these girls, my grandfather would be so ashamed! Ahahaha!”

Female Pedestrian: “…… How beautiful.”

Master Craftsman: “I am a craftsman. I am skilled at the finer details. I want to make a home which will make its residents happier.”

Lone Winter King: “Really, thank you.”

Disciple Merchant: “…… They took it better than I expected!”

Assistant: “That’s normal.”

Disciple Merchant: “Really?”

Assistant: “The Order of the Lake has been teaching that the Demons are also children of the Spirit of Light.”

Seneschal: “Now that you say it, they have.”

Fairy Maiden: “Is That So?”

Winter Civilian: “The Templar said so right? That even with this terrible war, in the world, they can also be the friends of us humans.”

Thin Soldier: “But Demons cannot be trusted. We cannot let up our surveillance of them.”

Middle Aged Woman: “There are many types of Demons. Even though Grandpa didn’t come back, we knew he really hated them……”

Teenager: “If it comes to that, we’ll just destroy them like we did at the Isle of Light! Long live the Female Paladin!”

Lone Winter King: “……”

Disciple Merchant: “Hmm……”

Seneschal: “—— The timing is probably good.”

Disciple Merchant: “What do you mean?”

Seneschal: “Taking back the Isle of Light has won the approval of our population. And the Order of the Lake has really expanded regionally.”

Lone Winter King: (…… That’s true. Taking back the island has started us on a new road. What will happen to this world?)

Labourer: “If you think about it, the vaccination against smallpox was discovered in the Demon World, wasn’t it?”

Craftsman: “Yeah. I heard that too.”

Winter Civilian: “I am really grateful for that.”

Female Pedestrian: “Me too!”

Lone Winter King: “Isn’t the vaccination an essential thing? I’ve heard that the discovery is being talked about in neighbouring countries, so that people who are not citizens of our countries are not doing their best to free themselves.”

Assistant: “A medicine for sleepy people!”

Labourer: “You want to be sleepy?”

Assistant: “Just a bit, and you get sleepy real fast.”

Disciple Merchant: “Hahahaha. That’s true. It’s just a side effect, and it means that the medicine is weak enough not to affect you very badly. Even children can receive it.”

Assistant: “My whole family has received it.”

Fairy Maiden: “Really?”

Labourer: “Hahaha, what a beautiful voice.”

Craftsman: “Really a nice voice.”

Fairy Maiden: “Oh Come Now.”

Assistant: “Don’t make her blush.”

Female Pedestrian: “I have a nice voice too!”

Labourer: “You’re small and cute, you are.”

Winter Civilian: “Ahahahaha!”

Master Craftsman: “Alright, in that case, allow me to present to you and his Majesty the King, our plans for the Consulate.”

Lone Winter King: (This is starting to have some mixed results. It’s really not a simple process. But, we can’t expect the bridge the gap in one step. For the next hundred years ahead of us, we have to take this one step. —— That is what I want to believe.)

< Chapter 3                                                                                                                                                                                 Chapter 5 >

Advertisements

14 thoughts on “Volume 4 Chapter 4

  1. Pingback: Chapters Completed in Recent Weeks | NanoDesu Light Novel Translations

  2. Frog san Thank u very much for taking time to translate this. I cannot imagine how tiring it must be to translate and while I cannot properly express my gratitude through typing alone please know that I am so grateful for this that I bow at my computer screen towards u

  3. Pingback: Chapters Completed in Recent Weeks Updated 16 March 2015 | NanoDesu Light Novel Translations

  4. Hey, for the line:

    The Mage: “The Demon King is away on a trip. To save you all. I’ve come to fulfil the task he was set to do for you.”

    Did you mean “The Hero is away on a trip” because it doesn’t make sense to say the Demon King is on a trip. The mage is already talking to the Demon King to her face. It also makes sense that the Hero is away because he left on a mission.

  5. Pingback: Chapters Completed in Recent Weeks Updated 24 March 2015 | NanoDesu Light Novel Translations

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: