Chapter 47.2 : Ariadya For Those Who Becoming Rich
「Well, the thing is…」
Clasus began explaining the situation that happened on the same night we fought Shirone’s childhood friend.
It was the fifth day of the coliseum battles, three weeks after the founding festival of Ariadya.
Unlike our homeworld, the gladiators in the Ariadya Coliseum weren’t only human. Most of them were demons, the coliseum being the main reason so many of them were captured and transported to Ariadya.
The majority of the captured demons were Orcs, but there were also some creatures from the more beastly races, such as Lizardmen, Werewolves, Centaurs, and the half-human-half-fish Merlows. There were even Lamias, snake demons with the upper body of a woman.
The captured demons were all gathered in a training facility on the outskirts of the Republic.
The problem Clasus needed help with was recapturing the demons that escaped the facility. Whether the prison break had been planned by the prisoners themselves or they had external help was up in the air. It was still under investigation.
On top of having some extremely dangerous demons accompanying them, as they left the facility, the escapees had snatched some weapons from the institution’s watchmen.
The Republic couldn’t leave such a grave matter unattended.
As the General responsible for public order, Clasus reached out to Ariadya’s allies, seeking help. From there, Vice President Tarabos asked us for help.
Being a country that conducted most of the continent’s trade, Ariadya’s destruction meant the circulation of money in the human territories would come to a halt. It was supporting the demonkind’s plan to defeat humanity.
Due to the aforementioned reason, the price of food had practically doubled, heavily affecting the citizens. Worst-case scenario, the food shortage could lead to a rebellion from the populace.
Although Ariadya’s food stocks were nowhere near that dangerous level, the matter needed to be resolved as soon as possible. That’s where we came in.
I snuck a glance at Reiji.
「I understand. I suppose we should go now.」
Reiji spoke with the same arrogant attitude.
Just like that, our mission in the region was decided.
Clasus smiled at us with gratitude.
「Thank you very much.」
「By the way, General Clasus. Of course, we’ll do everything we can to help, but I’m curious. This country should have its own soldiers. Why aren’t you using them, instead?」
Since it was an internal problem, they should’ve been trying to solve it by themselves, and not just relying on outsiders.
Once I pointed it out, Clasus became very uncomfortable.
「As expected of the Black-Haired Sage, nothing escapes you… Truthfully, we’ve already dispatched out knight order, but…」
He seemed almost embarrassed to continue.
「What happened? 」
「The truth is… Well… The knights we sent after those demons that escaped… They were annihilated.」
I was speechless.
According to Clasus, on the second day after the prison break, every nation in the Ariad Alliance sent their knights to help subjugate the escaped demons.
The escaped Centaurs were found by the knights on the Minon Plain. There were 23 centaurs against 300 knights.
The knights charged ahead without a care, intending to capture them. They acted as if it was just another subjugation effort.
As a result of underestimating their enemy, more than half of the knight contingent perished, while the Centaurs had zero losses.
I was perplexed. How stupid those knights were, picking a fight against Centaurs on a plain, their home ground.
The Centaur race as a whole was a cavalry army composed of archery masters. No normal human would be capable of winning against them while fighting on a plain or a prairie.
They were omnivorous creatures, with bodies many times more powerful than humans. The arrows fired by their powerful vows flew farther and faster than any arrow fired by a human.
Also, a Centaur’s arrow pierced through unenchanted shields and armor as if they were made of paper.
Their horse half endowed them with great mobility. They could easily outrun the knights who chased after them with their clunky, heavy metal armor.
Perhaps the knights of the Ariad Alliance were defeated without landing a single hit on the Centaurs.
Originally, there weren’t any Centaurs on the Minon Plain. Hence why those knights were unaware of their devastating power on flatlands.
Nevertheless, the knights that managed to survive chased the Centaurs until it became too dark to see. Once night fell, they stopped their chase and started building camping grounds to rest.
Although it would’ve been impossible, theoretically they should’ve taken refuge somewhere else.
The whole region seemed quite lax toward the danger demons represented. Almost all of the knights who survived the battle lost their lives in a night raid orchestrated by the Orcs.
Something bugged me about that.
「Did those orcs attack in a group? 」
「Yes… According to the few knights that managed to escape, they were following a chain of command.」
「Then… Are there any superior species among them? Did any superior Orc escape the training facility?」
Common Orcs were unable to establish a village. However, there was a time when a superior species of Orc created a village in collaboration with the lesser species.
Orcs who could command an army were an extremely dangerous existence since such an army would be able to destroy one or two human nations with ease.
Compared to other demons, the superior Orc species was a priority. We had to defeat them as soon as possible.
But, Clasus shook his head.
「I did hear about that from the magician association, but there were no superior Orc species amongst the demons in the facility. Moreover, from what I’ve heard, escaped demons aren’t our only concern.」
「Yeah… Looks like someone is orchestrating it all from the shadows.」
Superior Orcs were, well, superior to their lesser cousins in every way. With their bigger bodies, nothing but an enchanted weapon could pierce their steel-like muscles. A normal human stood no chance against them.
Fortunately, those species only lived in Nargol. They rarely left the Demon Country. Of course, that didn’t mean it never happened before.
According to the records, a superior Orc called Grandel once appeared in northern Ariadya. Grandel built its own army and destroyed the surrounding human countries. Every human citizen that survived was turned into a slave.
Humanity was saved by the Hero Beowulf, a Demigod who defeated Grandel and destroyed the superior Orc’s empire.
The opponent that humans could not defeat was, at last, felled by a Hero, a Demigod. That was why, as Clasus said, there weren’t any superior Orcs amongst the escapees.
「If that’s the case, then the night assault might not be a mere coincidence. There’s surely a mastermind behind the incident.」
Clasus nodded in agreement.
「Wizard-dono said the same things, too.」
「Quite a troublesome situation we got involved in, huh…」
I sighed, tired.
We had no clue who the mastermind was.
Judging by how they controlled superior species with ease, the mastermind was probably a superior demon species.
Moreover, that person had yet to show themselves. I suppose that we should start looking into the mastermind’s identity.
Really. Such a troublesome situation.
「Yeah… It has reached a point where we can’t handle it by ourselves anymore…」
From what Clasus was telling us, the Ariadya forces weren’t the only ones to suffer losses. The combined forces of the nations had also suffered devastating losses from the escaped demons.
The situation couldn’t be handled by only the combined knight forces. Thus, the neighboring countries contacted the Magician Association, the Oudith Faith and, lastly, private armies like the Freedom Fighters.
When the news arrived, I was in Magic City Saris. It seemed that they gave similar offers to other famous warriors, too.
Anyone who was hailed as a Hero — except for Reiji — made their way to Ariadya. Clasus told us that among those new arrivals were the Hero of Wind and the Hero of Fire.
I was a bit surprised at how many people were called ‘Heroes’. To my surprise, anyone who exhibited abilities slightly above the strength of powerful humans could be considered a Hero.
Clasus also let it slip that those people had arrogant attitudes just like Reiji. Perhaps that was why he didn’t even bat an eyelash to Reiji’s rude attitude.
For some reason, Reiji was displeased to know about other Heroes. Maybe knowing he wasn’t the only one just didn’t sit well with him.
Clasus bowed his head toward Reiji.
「Please, Reiji-dono. Please save Ariadya! 」
◆ Hero of Fire, Novis
As soon as I woke up, I stretched my muscles. I quietly got out of bed and left the room, being careful not to wake the woman still lying in bed.
She was a widow who had asked for my favor. Left with a sizable inheritance from her late husband and no children to raise, she had asked me to become her new husband. But I’m sorry, that’s impossible.
Why, you ask? Well, because I’m a Hero. I couldn’t settle down and be tied to just one place, the world needed my power.
I put on my clothes in silence and left the house. Heading straight toward the entertainment district, I went in search of a bathhouse.
On my way there, I passed by the arena.
It had been a while since I last arrived at the Republic of Ariadya. The region was so peaceful, it practically didn’t need my strength.
If there was a place where I could show my power, it was the gigantic coliseum in the city. Although it was normally an arena used for pitting demons against one another, sometimes there were humans pitted against demons.
The arena also served as a space for those who wanted to test their abilities. But the event that attracted me here was unavailable for the moment, hence why the arena was so quiet.
Aside from the arena, the entertainment district also had an amphitheater, a racetrack and a huge public bathhouse, my destination. Even with the arena closed, the country didn’t lack entertainment.
To get to the bathhouse I needed to walk for a while until I arrived at the Central Plaza.
I wondered what I should do since my original plans weren’t available anymore. There was the Demon extermination, which I received an invitation for but I had no intention of going there unprepared.
It had been a while since I last came to Ariadya, so I was going to take my sweet time while I was in the city.
Suddenly, I heard a girl’s voice.
「Please, please let go of me…」
I ran to where I heard the voice coming from and found a girl surrounded by several thugs. One of them held her arm.
「Oioi, didn’t you say your friend was lost? We just want to help you find her.」
Despite his harmless sounding words, his face betrayed the impure thoughts he harbored. He definitely didn’t have any good intentions towards that girl.
I looked at the girl and immediately got stunned by her beauty.
From where I stood, I could see a bit of her face in between the strands of her slightly curly, yellowish-gray hair. Her skin was porcelain white and the teary look her eyes held tickled the protective instincts of a man.
But the most noticeable parts of her body were her bulging twin peaks. She wore baggy clothes, but they didn’t help hide the size of her chest at all.