The Villainess Blooms – 25

The Eastern City

The eastern city of Beirut was very different from other cities in the Kingdom.

The waves of people walking up and down its streets are never-ending, and people are constantly coming and going from the high rise buildings that have sprung up everywhere like mushrooms, sometimes accompanied by autonomous robotic dolls with blank looks.

These automatons are a type of magical tool, a technology unique to Beirut that uses magical energy as its power source.

These things don’t lay hidden in the dark corners of the city, but walk the streets with the rest of the people, it truly is a unique place.

In one corner of such a city. “They” were in the topmost floor of an expensive high rise.

“Oi, Misha. You need to head to the frontlines.”

“Eh… What a pain.”

They were the survivors of the rebel attack on the Lafalis royal family that ended the Queen’s life.

A one-eyed woman with a uniquely large sword, and a woman with red hair who goes by the name of ‘Misha’.

“It should be fine if Eyepatch goes. I’ll wait here.”

Eyepatch was her nickname the one-eyed woman.

She had been born in Hell slum and grew up without knowing her parents, she had never had a name in the first place. For that reason, everyone just refers to her by that defining characteristic.

“Well, of course, I’ll be going to the frontline. It’s my duty as a commander. But, what about you? Recently you haven’t been fighting at all.”

“Having me get involved won’t change anything, you know? Besides, after taking over this city, my job was done. I want to get ready for the next real battle.”

“I feel the same way, but it’s out of our hands. Morale will drop if we aren’t present. That’s why I’m telling you to get out there. Let me take a break for once.”

“Then take that break. The town our guys are attacking right now will fall even if they have ten magicians defending it. Morale doesn’t matter at all.”

Virtually all members of the rebel army can use a basic form of magic. Of course, it pales in comparison to the magic of nobles, but by the time they become full fledged members of the army they can at least use elementary spells. Simply put, every member of the rebel army is a mage.

“It’s already been decided. It’s our role to reinforce morale as much as possible, keep the soldier’s keen and prepare for the next real battle. Right now you’re just lazing around here all day. Earn your keep, will you?”

“Don’t wanna. It may not seem it, but I’m very delicate. If I don’t rest, I’ll break, you know?”

Misha pouts and turns her face up. As Eyepatch is amazed by just how selfish one woman can be, that’s when it suddenly happened.

A brilliant white light erupted and swelled in the centre of the room, and a girl stepped out of it.

A pure white girl. Hair, skin, clothes, all of it white. That girl looked towards the two and bobs her head quickly. Probably intended to be a bow. But, since her face is expressionless, it’s hard to tell.

“Hakurei, huh? What’s up?”

The expressionless girl is called Hakurei.

Without answering Misha, she spread the documents in her hand across the desk. She seems to be wanting them to look.

This girl has never talked. She acts almost as mechanically the automatons on the street below, with no emotion at all.

Those two, who understand that reluctantly begin to look through the documents she’s placed on the desk.

It’s a report on the current state of the war between the rebels and the Kingdom of Lafalis. As they looked, the two of them reacted the same way.

“What… Aha, ahahaha! What is this!”

Misha started laughing uncontrollably, and the one-eyed woman simply blew air out her nose.

Because the content in the report was completely absurd.

“Hey hey, Eyepatch! Maybe we can buddy up with her now, whaddya reckon?”

The report detailed the breaking of the engagement between Veena and Arnight. And just how un-mutual the break off was.

This might be old information to some, but it was the first time that these two were hearing about it.

And the contents very much appealed to them. The nation had abandoned Veena.

In other words, they saw an opportunity to recruit Veena into the rebel army.

It was a real possibility. Both of them smiled at each other.

“Not a bad idea at all. If we managed to pull her into our camp, we could start the ‘plan’ ahead of schedule. She would be just that much of an asset.”

They know first hand just how strong Veena is, having barely escaped death at her hands all those years ago.

“Yep yep, that’s right. Hey, Hakurei, do you have any clue where Veena is now?”

Hakurei shook her head and spelt out letters in the air with one of her pale fingers.

“I N V E S T I G A T I N G”, it spelt.

“Hmm, I got it. Then, when you know, report it to us right away will ya?”

Even as she was saying this, Misha was surprised by another piece of paper she picked up.

“What the… The dragon was unsealed? What are we gonna do if it comes here?”

A unique and legendary monster. An immortal whose physical body could be slain through herculean effort, but whose soul would always survive. Such a beast was unleashed. This was something the rebel army had to be wary of as well. Of course, they do not know yet that it has been vanquished.

Only members of the Cocytris family can sense the presence of an unsealed dragon. The women wouldn’t have had any way of knowing the information about a dragon being unleashed, and the news of its demise is still very new.

“I see. We should be ready for a dragon to appear at any time, then.”

The one-eyed woman was still looking at the report as she answered.

The city of Rings was being invaded. They were locked in a bitter struggle with the local feudal lord, Lord Victoria. There were currently 38 injured in the rebel army, and 18 dead.

The town of Dauphine had been completely occupied. 26 rebels were injured, and six dead.

Cradle Garden had been infiltrated. Preparations were complete.

Aquatoth had been infiltrated. Preparations were complete.

The town of Takrath had been infiltrated. Preparations were complete.

The city of Ringlacocco had been infiltrated. Preparations were complete.

There were reports about various other cities and towns that had been infiltrated. All was proceeding according to plan. Although, the situation at the city of Rings was looking somewhat unstable.

“Oi, Misha. I want you to go to Rings after all. It looks like the situation has changed.”

“Ah, what a pain. I just want to kick my feet up back here!”

The one-eyed woman glared at Misha who had begun to whine again.

“If we lose there, it will get even busier for you, are you fine with that?”

“Uuu… That’d be even more of a pain…”

“Then get going. Once you occupy Rings, I’ll let you relax some more.”

“…I’ll be going, then.”

Misha reluctantly gets out of her seat.

“I guess I can’t get out of this one. Ha…”

Five red lines form under Misha’s feated, connecting the points of a sigil. It’s the magic required for transmission.

“For the time being, killing all the nobles should do the trick, right?”

“Yes, that will do it. Kill every last aristocrat in the city of Rings.”

“Roger. That’s an easy order, for once.”

Misha disappeared with a laugh.

As she left, the points of the sigil disappeared one after the other like dominoes.

“Alright, then I’ll get back to work myself. Hakurei, I’ll leave the city and the ‘doctor’ in your care.”

Hakurei nodded.

“Then, I’m off.”

Saying so, the one-eyed woman left the room. Unlike Misha, she doesn’t have the ability to use transmission magic, so for her travel is always by foot or by horseback.

After descending to the bottom floor of the high rise building, the woman got onto her steed and began to ride out of the city.

◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆◆

The dragon had been defeated. She had received the news this morning.

After Mina Yukishiro had spent her morning bathing, eating a luxurious breakfast, combing her hair, brushing her teeth, fixing and applying her makeup and arranging her hair, she had heard the news from her fiancée Arnight.

(No way, that woman couldn’t have…)

No no, that’s impossible. She quickly banished the thought from her head.

She knows just how powerful a dragon is herself.

The most fearsome monster amongst the S-ranks, one that had to be specifically sealed.

It’s not something Veena could have defeated alone. There’s no reason to believe that Veena was involved.

This is becoming a bad habit. Mina shook her head to try and dispel the idea.

Every time something happens, she’s struck with the suspicion of ‘Was Veena involved in this’?

(Ah, jeez, this is becoming really annoying! Can’t they hurry up and kill Veena already? There’s no way I can feel relaxed until that happens…)

Mina sighed.

(Maybe I shouldn’t have killed that Sylph girl? No, that idiot attacked me first, and besides, if she had been brought in for questioning she might have accused me… Killing her was the right move.)

Well, in the end, Sylph was the only one she had to kill directly.

If Sylph hadn’t lost her mind and killed the other girls, she might have had to do it herself.

It really did save her a lot of trouble. Maybe that luck is part of the “Heroine Status” granted to her by the “Angelic Author”?

(…That’s right. Maybe it’s time I make a move as well?)

A legacy of heroes exists in this world. It is said that when heroes of sufficient calibre step up, they will be assisted by the state whilst slaying the most monstrous of foes. There are strict rules in place governing just who can be a hero, but if she abused her current position she should easily be able to achieve the title.

(It would be tough for one person, but I’m sure if I could get four heroes together even Veena wouldn’t be able to withstand us… That being said…)

The idea sounds less appealing as she thinks it over.

She had become rather accustomed to her current luxurious lifestyle and was a bit apprehensive about leaving it behind.

(…Let’s hold off for now. There should be a way to do this that doesn’t involve me going out personally.)

Mina continued to think long and hard as she lay on her canopy bed.

 


 

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