Ex Strongest Swordsman 346 (Self Edited) – Ex Strongest, Laying Down Plans

 

 

Ex Strongest, Laying Down Plans

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“–As expected, this place too…” (Cecil)

While listening to Cecil’s words with a sigh, Soma looked around the place lightly.

Destroyed houses and corpses on the verge of turning white. So, it was. Again.

“Would it be alright to think that this place was attacked at the same time?” (Aina)

“It seems so. Well, it may be a bit early or later, but basically, it’s probably the same time.” (Soma)

“…This is the third… Actually, there weren’t too many attackers, weren’t there?” (Sheila)

“It’s possible.” (Soma)

He didn’t know how many bases there were in total, but if all of them were attacked at the same time, a considerable number of people would be required even if they used bandits. If and inevitably, the number of people headed to each and every one of these bases would be small.

“By the way, was there anyone at each of the bases who could fight?” (Soma)

“There were some people, but… only one or two. Perhaps, the enemies knew about it too.” (Cecil)

“But they didn’t know at the time. Whatever it is, they would have to retreat anyway.” (Aina)

“…Hmm, even if they had been able to fight them off, there’s a good chance that the next wave was coming.” (Sheila)

“Certainly, more troops would have been sent then. They would do it more thoroughly at that time. …Goodness, it’s hard to be popular.” (Cecil)

“…Are you alright?” (Soma)

“Of course, I am! I’m sure everyone else is battling with anxiety right now, so I can’t just sit here and wallow in it!” (Cecil)

It was obvious that she was putting on a brave front, but that didn’t mean that she could do anything about it. When Soma looked around the place again, he sighed.

As Sheila mentioned, this was the third time Soma and his group had come to Cecil and other’s bases. The result was a stunning annihilation, and they should assume that the same would be true for the other bases. It would be overly optimistic to think that there was some place that hadn’t been found and was safe.

Incidentally, the second base they went to had also been wiped, as it should have been. However, unlike here and the first base they went to, it was a place where there was a strong  barrier that had originally existed. It seemed that they weren’t invaded, and the houses were safe, but… given that everyone was starving to death, it was hard to say which was the better end result.

However, it was clearly the best place to rest. At the very least, they didn’t have to worry about the possibility of being attached.

Of course, they couldn’t deny the possibility that the people would follow the same result as those who lived there, but it could minimize the anxiety. That should be enough for now.

And because of that, they left it there. The beginning base had been nearly attacked, and two more bases were under attack. It was almost enough to be sure that the other locations were going to be the same, so it didn’t make much sense to take them any further.

Most importantly, the people who were with them were already exhausted. Since they needed enough rest, they were left at that base.

Meanwhile, Soma and others came straight to the third base. It was more like a confirmation than a hope. They were almost certain that they were going to be convinced, or… perhaps, to give up.

Not by Soma and others, but Cecil.

“Well… what are you going to do now? If you’re back, we will send you there, alright?” (Cecil)

“That would be a joke. It’s true that the winner has already been decided. For a person to be this thorough… it could be the first prince. However, no matter which one it is, what I will do remains the same.” (Cecil)

“Even if there’s nothing you can do anymore?” (Aina)

“If I wanted to give up, I would have done things from the beginning. Besides, I don’t think they will let me give up if I have gone this far. If I can’t do anything and will get killed, I will resist to the end, regardless how bad it would be!” (Cecil)

“…Hmm, so?” (Sheila)

“For now, I’m going to try to head to the royal capital. It’s very likely that I will be in the middle of the enemy territory, but I will definitely be able to get some information.I think that there’s nothing else I can do without doing that much. Whether or not I can do anything about it is a different matter, though.” (Cecil)

“Hmm… is that so? I understand. Are you two having problems with that?” (Soma)

“…No, I don’t.” (Sheila)

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“Well, it’s certainly the best thing to do at this point. So, I have no problem.” (Aina)

“…Eh?” (Cecil)

When Soma confirmed, Aina and Sheila nodded as if it was obvious, but Cecil’s expression was in contrast to the two of them, as if she didn’t know what they were talking about. She made a surprised voice and blinked repeatedly. Then, she opened his mouth in a terrifying manner.

“Uhmm… are you three still following me, by any chance?” (Cecil)

“I thought we were saying that, right?” (Soma)

“Eh… don’t you mind?” (Cecil)

“We still don’t know anything about that light. We came here originally to find out about it, and if we go to the royal capital, we would know it, right? It might be more correct to say that our destination is the same by chance.” (Aina)

“…I’m half and half, I think? Helping Soma and Aina… also, helping Cecil.” (Sheila)

“Well, it feels bad to just abandon you here. I can’t say we will be able to help you until the end, but we will do what we can.” (Soma)

“W-wait…!? What’s with that!? If you talk like that, it makes me sound like a cold person, you know!” (Aina)

“…Aina, ruthless?” (Sheila)

“We’ve been with Cecil for about a month, but to say only for our own convenience… Aina is a cruel one.” (Soma)

“Hey, both of you…?” (Aina)

Well, while she said that, it was also true that in reality, it was probably their own convenience. There was a possibility that there were Devils here, and the most likely place to be still the royal capital.

If they were sure that they were going to get into a fight sooner or later anyway, it was better to preemptively go for the punch while they still could. That was what Soma was thinking.

And for that, it would be convenient to have Cecil, who knew Veritas well, with them together. The convenience was higher than the disadvantage caused by being with Cecil… or rather, Soma and Aina were originally from an enemy country from Veritas’ point of view.

Recently, they had been going to the Holy City and the Empire, but they were originally from Radeus. Given that they were originally on the enemy’s side, it wouldn’t be surprising if they were attacked or something, and if they thought about it that way, they might even say that there was no disadvantage to being with Cecil.

In fact, it would normally be a challenge just to enter the royal capital. If that hardship was no longer necessary, or may even be reduced, then, there are only advantages–…

“Well, what Aina said is also true. You don’t have to worry because it’s our convenience rather than yours.” (Soma)

“It’s fine. If you can help me, that’s enough. Therefore… thank you very much.” (Cecil)

When Cecil bowed down, Soma, Aina and Sheila looked at each other with a bitter smile. There was really no need to thank them, but… if Cecil wanted to do that, that was alright.

However, even if they head to the royal capital, they must first mourn the bodies here. To accomplish that, they made Cecil raise her head, and they began to move.

 

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