Chapter 23:

Decisive Battle Against the Woruvens (Part 2)

White Nightmare

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Back in Ringo’s safe house, everyone had gone flat on their beds except Ringo and Ruru, who were observing their surrounding area. Ringo has incredible eyes, which allows her to perceive any moving object in a long range. Ruru, on the other hand, was simply watching around her while caressing her head in a strange way.Bookmark here

“Uwah... I doubt my garden would be the same look as before with Roro rampaging like that...”Bookmark here

“Miss Ringo... I’m starting to feel dizzy,” said Ruru.Bookmark here

“My, are you sleepy? Please hang on for a bit longer, okay?” Ringo replied.Bookmark here

“Uuu...”Bookmark here

Ruru was experiencing a headache that slowly expanded into tremendous pain as if her brain was being devoured. But Ringo did not notice it. She thought she was just sleepy.Bookmark here

But Ruru wasn’t acting all childish. She tried to ward off the aching pain by shoving her focus elsewhere.Bookmark here

“Good thing I contacted Roro. If it wasn’t him, I doubt anyone could beat these monsters. These monsters are growing stronger, aren’t they? Yesterday they were easily killed, but looking now... Even Rodan had some difficulties...”Bookmark here

“Miss Ringo... will Roro be alright?” Ruru asked as she tried to forget the pain engulfing her.Bookmark here

“Huh? Oh, of course he’s going to be alright. He’s the strongest man I’ve ever met in my life. Don’t worry, he’ll come back soon!” Ringo smiled.Bookmark here

“H-Huh...” Ruru responded while sitting in the corner of the wall, trying to press the pain in her head. The pain felt like spikes piercing her head from the inside. Soon, the pain that boiled inside of her expanded to most of her body parts.Bookmark here

“My, you’re really sleepy aren’t you?” said Ringo noticing her.Bookmark here

“I guess she’s still young after all. I feel bad for making her doing this, but Roro told me that she’s our last resort... if he could say that, it can only mean that Ruru was actually quite powerful. Bookmark here

Once he said that as well... it made me curious. Was Ruru really his apprentice?Bookmark here

Gah... I felt bad for forcing her this way.Bookmark here

Maybe it’s okay for her to rest a bit.”Bookmark here

Ringo herself still didn’t notice what Ruru was experiencing now because she managed to hide her emotions.Bookmark here

“Ruru... you can go back to my room. Rest easy, I’m sure everything will be okay,” Ringo stated smilingly.Bookmark here

“Thank you. I... I will go now,” Ruru slowly walked back into the safe house and went downstairs to Ringo’s room.Bookmark here

“Now, then...Bookmark here

Roro, you’ve been working us out to our last drop of sweat just to make those traps. I’m surprised it could actually fend them off, but still...Bookmark here

Can we really survive this night?”Bookmark here

Ringo herself was greatly concerned. Can she and the rest witness the sunrise next morning?Bookmark here

Being bombarded by that question and the anxiety that crawled over her body caused her to stress out. But for a moment, she glanced over the plateau and saw metal shines in the distance.Bookmark here

“Those are...?”Bookmark here

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More of the monsters approached the garden. They approached in herds like before, pouring down from the high grounds down to the apple garden. Though the land was dark, their shining chaotic red eyes were enough to reveal their presence.Bookmark here

“Let’s deal with them again, Roro. After that, we’ll investigate Ringo’s garden,” Nono stated as he stood back up. His left arm was fully bandaged now, but even so, he could still swing weapons freely. He picked another stiletto from beneath his robe and readied himself.Bookmark here

But surprisingly, Rodan refused.Bookmark here

“No, we don’t have to fight them again. I’ve had enough for tonight,” he said boldly.Bookmark here

Nono was shocked to hear him saying something like that despite him readying his sword. Meanwhile, the buffed woruvens approached relentlessly. They looked as if they’re hungering for human meat.Bookmark here

“W-What are you talking about, Roro? We’re going to be overrun if we don’t stop them now! The garden will completely be in shambles if we don’t stop them here!” Nono ranted.Bookmark here

“...Sheesh, Nono. That’s one of many things that made you easily defeated,” said Roro frowningly as he calmly turned around at him. He crossed his arms while exposing his back vulnerable to those ferocious woruvens.Bookmark here

“H-Huh...? What are you talking about?”Bookmark here

“Didn’t get it yet? Geez, how dense can you be, Nono? I haven’t finished talking before, Nono. Bookmark here

I said that we don’t have to fight them...Bookmark here

...because they have come to fight for us.”Bookmark here

Suddenly, the wolves that nearly crushed Rodan from behind got impaled by lances coming from above. In almost a split second, two fully-armored knights appeared behind Rodan, protecting him from getting damaged.Bookmark here

When the woruvens charged again with their numerous numbers, a platoon of knights ambushed them. When more monsters approached, more knights appeared on scene. Arrows were shot, swords were swung, and lances were thrust. All of them were crushing the incoming attacks with their fancy arsenal.Bookmark here

“Asturian Knights at your disposal, Lord Rodan Rouge!” one of them stated.Bookmark here

“Much obliged, mate,” said Rodan while turning at them. “I thought you guys left me to rot here.”Bookmark here

“Asturian... Knights...?” Nono muttered in confusion.Bookmark here

“Quite a hell you’ve been through, Sir Rodan Rouge... I can’t believe you’ve made it through the main course of the party without inviting us in.”Bookmark here

A man’s voice was heard. Shortly, from above, a fully armored knight with wings flown down and landed just before Rodan. He wore a crown-like armored helmet and equipped a massive lance in his hand.Bookmark here

“That voice...” Nono recognized.Bookmark here

“I was expecting you guys to arrive soon. I now question your liability as a baron, Sir John Falconet,” Rodan stated his name.Bookmark here

The knight opened his helmet and revealed his face a bit. “We’re punctual, Sir Rodan. We arrived in the exact time you wanted us to come.”Bookmark here

“Well, that’s quite true, ha-ha. Well, then, I’m counting on you.”Bookmark here

“Sure do. My four hundred best men shall make short work of these beasts. I’ve divided them into two groups. One group personally led by me will defend this sector and the other one on that part of this garden.Bookmark here

Just exactly as what you’ve instructed us, Sir Rodan...”Bookmark here

Shortly, one of the knights alerted of an incoming wave of monsters. This time, they were strangely lining up in a row. Sir John Falconet, the knight leader commanded his boys to step aside.Bookmark here

“Move aside! Prepare the Scorpion and shoot on my command!”Bookmark here

Within seconds, his men already stepped away from the line of firing. From the darkness, emerged a ballista pulled by some knights. It was equipped with a large bolt ready to be launched. It was precisely aimed at the line of monsters and angled correctly for maximum effect.Bookmark here

“Shoot now!”Bookmark here

The ballista launched its missile. In its trajectory, most of the wolf monsters got pierced and killed in the process.Bookmark here

“Whew, as expected of a fine baron,” said Rodan complimenting.Bookmark here

Meanwhile, Nono just realized. “So THAT’S what he’s discussing about yesterday!”Bookmark here

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In the past time, Rodan and Nono had visited the city. The former led the latter to one of their most unwanted place to visit of all times: a noble’s mansion.Bookmark here

Nono was anxious on what Rodan was up to in that time, but when Rodan showed the guild badge to the gatekeeper, he realized he wasn’t messing around. And what’s more surprising was that the gatekeepers let him enter the mansion. The two were told to wait in the front yard while the noble was being summoned.Bookmark here

“...Hey, Roro... what are we up to in here...? I thought we’re going to do something super-duper important regarding the monsters out there...”Bookmark here

“Patience, Nono. I personally don’t really want to meet this guy. He’s too straightforward. But by meeting this guy will be one of the most effective ways.”Bookmark here

Not long afterwards they were summoned into the mansion. In the royal looking structure, Rodan was greeted by the maids who worked there. He and Nono were escorted to the meeting room where the noble was waiting.Bookmark here

In the meeting room, they met the ruler of the city: Baron John Falconet.Bookmark here

At first, Nono was anxious of what’s going to happen, since he knew Rodan disliked nobles, especially not so long ago Rodan indirectly killed one. But what’s surprising was that the baron was greeting him as if he and Rodan were old friends.Bookmark here

“Good to see you, Sir Rodan Rouge. How long has it been?” The baron greeted politely.Bookmark here

“S-Sir Falconet, good to see you too! It sure has been awhile,” Rodan responded while quickly adapting to the noble’s way of speaking.Bookmark here

After a short moment of introduction that felt like a reunion, the baron eventually asked of his business of visiting him.Bookmark here

“So, what brings you here?” he asked, but this time in a far heavier voice. He was emanating seriousness from that point on.Bookmark here

“I need your assistance, Sir Falconet.”Bookmark here

“It sounded strange when you call me by my surname, Sir Rodan. Please call me by my first name. I prefer that way.”Bookmark here

“Oh, okay, then,” said Rodan casually. He already destroyed his polite attitude. Eventually, he told the baron of the situation he’s facing.Bookmark here

The baron slammed the table with both of his palms in shock.Bookmark here

“What did you say? Wild Woruvens are massing up outside the city? I am not informed of this, Sir Rodan! This city is in danger!”Bookmark here

“Sheesh, calm down, tough guy,” Rodan retorted offhandedly. “It’s not like this city is the one being targeted.”Bookmark here

The baron immediately sat back and retained his composure. Bookmark here

“A-Ahem... pardon me, sir. Can you tell me the exact details?”Bookmark here

Once again, Rodan explained most of the situation in the apple garden.Bookmark here

“I see...” said the baron understanding. Meanwhile, Nono was zoning out for a bit amidst of their conversation.Bookmark here

“It sure sounds dangerous to anyone living outside the city walls. Small fry monsters got stronger? That’s just straight up insane.Bookmark here

Oh wait, hang on for a moment.”Bookmark here

The noble then picked up a bunch of envelopes and shoved it onto the table. “In these past few weeks, adventurers were sending me hundreds of messages. I haven’t read them yet since I was too busy at that time... Bookmark here

Could it be...?” said the baron while opening some envelopes. He handed over some envelopes for Rodan and Nono to read as well. Shockingly, the content of the messages overall told that low level adventurers were failing their job since the weakest monster around was growing stronger day after day.Bookmark here

The first messages from the adventurers came about two weeks ago. The baron felt guilty for not reading them sooner.Bookmark here

“That’s why, little man. Better read some aspiration papers next time, even if you had at least ten seconds of free time, just take a look at them,” said Rodan lecturing the baron.Bookmark here

“I wasn’t aware... Sir Rodan! If you are kindly telling me this information, then I will gladly help you out.”Bookmark here

“That’s what I’m here for.”Bookmark here

A few hours later, the baron had contacted his military experts and officers to the meeting room to discuss the matter. Rodan had to retell everything from scratch. But this time, he was supported with a large map that showed the region around Astur.Bookmark here

“Here are the places where the woruvens are piling up, gentlemen,” said Rodan while marking the map. Bookmark here

“They oddly come from two directions. One from the north, while the other from the east. I’ve told you before, but these monsters were not regular monsters that weak adventurers could kill. They had evolved. I’ve gone through one day trying to withstand their rampage, and it’s true.Bookmark here

Not only that. I witnessed how they could mass up in just a short amount of time. It’s like they re-spawned almost instantly. Because of that, I was forced to activate a barrier enough to hold them from attacking this garden, albeit temporary.Bookmark here

It’s a mystery that we all must solve, or else these lands would become barren as time progresses. One man army shall never be enough to handle hundreds of thousands of monsters if they kept on spawning. That’s why I need you gentlemen to kindly assist me in these trying times.Bookmark here

It’s not for me alone, but for the sake of everyone in this city and around it. We don’t want our children and grandchildren suffer because of our recklessness of ignoring this danger.”Bookmark here

Everyone whispered to each other. Some had already shown the face of concern, some shown distress and fear, while the rest were all blazing their anger for the visible threat that they ignored.Bookmark here

“We will gladly assist, Sir Rodan.”Bookmark here

A man from the military stated: “I shall lead the army myself. This is a matter of everyone’s lives. This is when the knights are needed! To protect everyone!”Bookmark here

“Our stupidity caused some lives to die, but we shall make sure their death was not in vain. We will avenge their deaths and slay those wretched monsters.”Bookmark here

“Very well, then!” Rodan stated highly. “I will tell you gentlemen the exact time when the battle shall begin. If I tell you that tonight’s the time, can you make quick preparations to fortify our position?”Bookmark here

Three people from the military stood up and saluted Rodan. Bookmark here

“We will assure that we shall arrive punctually. I swear that in the name of Asturian Knights!”Bookmark here

Rodan “Well, then... this will surely work. Then I ask you to come right in the middle of the night. Bring everything you got to destroy those monsters.Bookmark here

Don’t be late.”Bookmark here

Meanwhile, Nono who was beside Roro wasn’t actually paying attention. “Eh, what?”Bookmark here

He only saw Rodan gave a pouch of coins to the baron a few minutes later.Bookmark here

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“I get it now! That’s what they’re discussing! When we were at the city, Roro was discussing something with Baron John Falconet in some sort of a mansion. He showed a map and marked some points on it and told something to the noble. I thought Roro was trying to ask for supplies since he handed over some coins to him.Bookmark here

But who could’ve thought he was actually asking an army to reinforce the apple garden?”Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.