Chapter 42:

Flipside: The Negotiator Fights - Part 2


At first, it was silent, but it changed very fast a few moments after the first shot.

Crushing metal and shouts had already filled the air, but Karim was still unengaged. It was only because the guards closer to her were stunned for now though. And she wouldn’t let this chance slip, even if the chances of her.

“Hands where I can see them and stand down! I’ll have to keep you all here until I can understand the situation.” The cop shouted with her obsidian blade forming itself in her hand. She didn’t believe in the least that anyone would cooperate, but she could at least rule out any possible civilians being around.

This worry was unneeded though since all her warning did was make everyone in the area changed their stances from surprise to aggression.

Half a dozen of them were there and Karim knew of another ten or so around, none seem to be fleeing or surrendering anytime soon too. Most were half-bloods, and some humans even, so they weren't that dangerous at least, even if the numbers were a problem.

“Well… That’s not ideal in the least.”

In a second, the closest animal-like person took a tubular object from his robes and pulled its string trigger. The sudden attack was useless though as, by the time the stream of metallic balls reached where the cop was, she was already in cover.

The enemies were moving faster than she had expected and attacks with holy magic took a lot more time than any other weapon, so she needed time first.

At least, it didn't take much effort to dodge in this situation. A mix of prayers for physical strength and a little communion with the spirits of acrobat masters were enough for that. She could even slot the first few verses of smite in there too.

A new cover only meant changing targets still. Karim was kind of surrounded anyway. Two other guards were approaching from the side, both mages ready to spellsling at her, even if she was unsure of what.

The small cop wouldn’t wait to be sure of it though. She charged forward while changing her posture and keeping her voice up, startling her foes only to jump away from them.

Karim then kept going, propelling herself on the nearby cargo and rolling in the air until she was away from the two mages. The landing after this maneuver was less than gracious though and there were already more enemies in sight.

Still, the sudden appearance of a flying girl made the closest enemies surprised. It wasn't perfect but was a window still. A window Karim used to recover and sweep the guard’s legs before he could react.

And with him down, she tried to put all her weight into a kick to his head, one that she expected would be enough to knock the guard down. She even called a different spirit for communion, something more inclined toward martial arts, to raise the chances of it working.

There was no time to be sure though, more steps were approaching already. More than that, she could hear the noises of guards climbing up the containers and crates around the area.

It was a problem, but it made her next moves very easy to decide.

Going back to the acrobatics-focused prayer set, Karim ran towards the approaching guards trying to block her exit, letting them do so, and then jumping right at their faces.

Her kicks weren’t that useful due to how light the blondie was, but it was never the goal there. The goal was to keep moving and buy time, and the opening she got by falling to the ground behind the two new guards and rolling away was enough.

Leaving two unharmed enemies right at her back wasn’t the best plan still and a counter soon came from there. Flying rocks and some small air blades came at high speeds, but they were weak low-class spells fired in a hurry, so Karim could still manage.

Still, the need to keep moving and the fact that the attack was on her back made the dodge not as flawless as before. Worse even, she had even failed to fully dodge this time.

They were minor wounds though, likely due to luck, so it wasn’t very hard to keep moving and turn on the next cover. Having to weave another prayer, a healing one, on her chant was a problem, but it was still doable.

She was starting to consider having to use her blade now though. It was unsure if her skills were good enough, but it could become a necessity now that the enemies were grouping up.

As long as she could avoid killing and still manage to buy enough time, it would be good enough.

For now, she continued with her moves. Dodging all-around the area while hitting enemies with the flat of her blade or with kicks and other smaller strikes, keeping up with her work.

The number of enemies wasn’t getting down at all though. In fact, this whole area seemed more and more active in its hunt for the jumping cop.

On the bright side, she managed to gather attention, that was for sure. On the bad one, she was pretty much getting closer and closer to being overwhelmed.

At least there wasn't that much noise on her side. Where Colette was should be in much more chaos than this place, that was for sure. And that was without even noting the explosions and gunshots inside the warehouse.

It was obvious that both inquisitors were going all-out while Karim was just running around.

That much was good enough for her.

She wasn’t that much of a fighter like her two other companions even if she tried to pretend otherwise. Running around and avoiding damage was the best she could manage against these numbers…

That was, of course, if things stood as they were at the moment.

It wasn’t the perfect way to do it, Karim would prefer the peaceful path if she could, but she wasn’t an idiot who wouldn’t fight when justified. And, obviously, she had a plan prepared if she was cornered.

A plan that had bought enough time to fire now.

“…save this lowly servant of thee and bring thou wrath upon those who deserve judgment.” The blonde mage ended her chant just as the guards around the battered containers and crates closed their siege. It was exactly what she wanted right now though.

From the corridors of stored goods, from the top of said goods, and even from vantage points away from her location, everyone was aiming at Karim.

More than a dozen guards could be seen approaching, and more of them should be nearby too. Small pipe guns, low-class spells, and even some blades were all ready to strike now.

Before any of them could though, all the bottled energy the petite girl was holding went off. A lightning bolt stronger than everyone in the area had ever seen boomed in the area and covered Karim's body.

Being hit by a smite was irrelevant to the petite cop. As the caster, she wouldn't be affected by it anyway.

The distance was too big to not cause any damage though, but that was never the goal here. What really mattered was the blinding and deafening effect of such a massive blow this close by.

It was finally time to start her counterattack, even if barely in time for the whole skirmish to end.