Strife in Alfyro
Editor(s): Sebas Tian, Joker
“Ugh…” Alfyro’s governor groaned as he awoke to the sound of someone banging on his door. “What’s with all this noise?”
“Governor Raylow! Are you awake?! We have a dire situation on our hands!” A familiar voice called to Raylow from beyond his door. It belonged to one of his subordinates, a magistrate under his employ.
“What is it this time? Are we under attack? Is it a group of monsters?” The feudal lord pressed a hand against his face as he slowly sat up.
“That’s exactly it! A flock of one hundred has been spotted flying towards us. They seem to be coming from the Wicked Forest!”
The magistrate’s words caused Raylow’s eyes to shoot open; all his drowsiness was instantly blown away.
“Tsk.” The governor clicked his tongue in annoyance. “So it is finally happening. You said that the monsters were airborne? Are they wyverns?”
“No, sir.” The magistrate hesitated and took a deep breath before continuing his report. “The men have used the Crystal of Observation to confirm our assailants’ identities. They were Full Dragons.”
“What!?” Raylow was so shocked by the revelation that his jaw dropped as far as it would go.
The term Full Dragon referred to a member of the Dragon Race that had reached adulthood. In other words, it was a general descriptor for the world’s most powerful creatures. Each Full Dragon was so powerful that it would need a whole party of adamantite ranked adventurers, literal one man armies, to take it down. And there were a whole hundred approaching the city.
It was literally the worst possible scenario Raylow could fathom, one that would lead to the destruction of not just his city, but his entire country should he fail to resolve it.
“Rouse the guards and all the adventurers we have standing by. Have them gather and prepare for combat immediately. Inform the public of the emergency and have the citizens evacuate immediately!”
The magistrate dashed out of the governor’s room and began executing his instructions as quickly as he could. It didn’t take long for the whole manor to follow suit.
Like the rest of his staff members, the governor got straight to work. He got off his bed, put on a simple, baggy garment, and headed straight to his office.
Raylow had known that something was bound to happen. He had received reports telling him of the abnormalities within the Wicked Forest. And so, he had increased the number of combatants under his employ. But, even with his forces bolstered, he doubted they would prove to be of any use at all against a hundred dragons.
But still, he hoped. He hoped that they would at least be able to hold until he evacuated his people.
He knew very well that this night would likely be his last. And yet, he hurried to his office. To take command. And to play the role of the tragic hero if need be.
The draconic brood soared through the moonlit sky. Contrary to my expectations, their ranks were orderly. Their coordination was so perfect that I was tempted to think they were all working under a single consciousness, that they were all parts of the same whole.
The dragons followed Lefi’s orders to the letter. I was impressed at how tight a grasp she had on them, even if it happened to be because they were disproportionately terrified of her. While each and every creature present was powerful in its own right, they were nothing before the strongest member of their species. The disparity between her and them was so high that she could end any of them in an instant. And for that reason, none dared to defy her. The thought likely didn’t even cross their minds. That was just the sort of world this was. Strength was everything; it made little sense for the weak to disobey the obscenely powerful.
Below us was Rir. The wolf’s speed was ungodly. He had no trouble keeping up with the dragons despite having to traverse the terrain.
“There it is!” I shouted as I spotted the human settlement, the city, off in the distance. It was still quite a ways away. I would never have been able to see it from so far had my eyes been as they were while I was still human.
Encompassing the city was a solid, outer wall. A bulwark. The settlement itself was quite large. It was way bigger than the tiny town I’d expected to see. And though it was the middle of the night, it was still bustling with activity. Much of the city was lit, and people seemed to be moving through its streets in a hurry. Outside its walls stood a division of fully armed guards. We were still a fair distance away, but they’d already seen us coming. They probably have some sort of item that lets them see or detect us.
Either way, I found myself face to face with a city in another world. Man, I really would’ve liked to visit this place in some other capacity. Like, you know, without an army of dragons in tow.
“Yuki.” Lefi, who’d been at the front of the formation, dropped out of it in order to align herself beside me. She was still in her humanoid form, albeit the variation in which she had wings.
“I have little choice but to admit that it would not be wise for me to unleash my power upon this settlement. Illuna would likely perish should I raze it to the ground. You will need to retrieve the little lady yourself.”
“Got it. But you better make sure you keep the dragons under control while I’m down there, ‘kay?”
“Those were precisely my intentions all along.”
We passed over the city’s walls as Lefi answered, so, after nodding to her, I promptly folded my wings and descended upon the city, dodging any arrows and spells haphazardly fired in my direction as I did.
There was a loud thud accompanied by a cloud of dust as I landed. The force of the impact coursed through my entire body, but I didn’t mind it. Rir soon followed. He cleared the city’s walls with ease and dashed along the rooftops until finally arriving at my side.
“Can you smell her, Rir!?”
The wolf growled in affirmation as he turned his head to face away from the wall that we’d just breached.
“Perfect. Lead the way!” I wrapped my arm around his neck and hopped onto his back in a single, fluid motion. After ensuring that I was secure, the wolf burst into a full on sprint. Armed men, the city’s guards, passed us by as we moved, but we paid them no mind.
Their goal was to investigate the spot in which I’d landed.
And ours was to save Illuna.
That was all.
There was no point to eliminating or contesting them.
It only took Rir a few minutes worth of bounding across rooftops to trace Illuna’s scent to its source.
The two of us found ourselves in front of an estate that was significantly larger than those around it. It was clear that whoever owned it had more than their fair share of influence.
We’re finally here. I closed my eyes in an attempt to suppress my rage. This… is where those child trafficking shitlords run their operations.
But I couldn’t.
A feral scream escaped my lips as I leapt off Rir’s back. I drew my greatsword in midair and smashed it into the building’s entrance. The flimsy front door was blown away by the force of the attack, completely destroyed.
“Shit! What the hell was that, and who the hell are you!?”
Two of the crude looking men shouted in surprise at my sudden entrance, but I ignored them and looked around. The venue I had entered looked to be the interior of some sort of store. Man, whoever did the interior design around here has got a serious case of having shit taste.
The walls, furnishings, and decorations all looked like utter crap. But worst of all was the stupid, gaudy chandelier situated right beside the grand staircase leading to the second floor. It was the kind of thing you’d only ever see in a building owned by a member of the nouveau riche.
Apparently, I had caught the men in the middle of their escape—or at least their preparations for it. They were obviously ruffians. If their appearances weren’t enough to give that away, then their actions were. They were dragging around a series of chains, each connected to a young maiden with an uncomfortable looking metallic collar around her neck.
And although Illuna wasn’t amongst them, the scene was one that pissed me off to no end. It was so infuriating, in fact, that it prompted me to gnash my teeth together in frustration. First, you kidnap Illuna. And now, you show me this. Fuck you. Fuck all of you. Just how much do you fucking dick sucking shitwads plan to piss me off?
“Do it! Now!” One of the men, a supposed leader, gave his lackies a vague order. And though I didn’t know the way their business operated, I understood just as well as anyone else that he’d told them to attack because he’d judged me a threat to the operation.
A few of the underlings violently pushed the enslaved girls into another room while the rest drew their weapons and attacked me all at once. Well, I suppose there isn’t much harm in ending a lowlife or two.
The closest man raised his mace above his head and leapt straight at me. He was a good bit ahead of his companions, and sure to be credited for the kill if his attack landed. Keyword: if. I retaliated before he could so much as lower his arms. I casually lifted my greatsword with one arm and gave it a nonchalant sweep.
I felt both the sensation of tearing through meat and the sensation of rending bone as I severed the pitiful piece of flesh that connected his skull to his shoulders.
His blood splattered all over everything nearby. And of course, I was no exception. A bit of red ended up dirtying my cheek as the man’s head rolled onto the floor.
Although the men continued to angrily scream at me, seeing one of their allies immediately fall caused them to falter. They only remained intimidated for an instant, but that was more than enough to create the opening I needed. I dashed straight into their ranks while swinging my weapon with all the strength I could muster.
A fair number of the slave traders managed to raise their weapons in time to catch my blade. But it didn’t matter. Both those that guarded and those that didn’t ended up falling prey to the attack, with the only difference being that the former of the two groups ended up getting smashed against the room’s walls, while the latter had their torsos separated from their legs.
The greatsword’s ability to perform the exact feat that I had just demonstrated was the reason I had chosen it over its alternatives. My monstrous brute strength allowed me to dominate my foes regardless of whether or not I had mastered the corresponding techniques.
One of the men, the only one near me that had reacted by stepping out of my range, dashed at me and attempted to split me in two. His timing was good. But I wasn’t alone. The Fenrir I had entrusted my back to dashed up to the man and batted him in the chest with one of his front paws. So fast was the wolf that he disallowed the man a chance to react.
Unable to withstand the attack, the lowlife’s chest caved. His ribs stabbed through the organs in his chest and instantly ended his life.
“Fuck!” The man that looked to be in charge cursed. “This asshole’s a tamer! Get the thing! Now!”
A group of grunts responded to the orders by quickly running into the building and returning with what looked like a crystal. They activated the magically enhanced item and caused it to begin emitting light.
Rir seemed to suffer from a sudden moment of disorientation. His legs wobbled unsteadily, but he brushed it off and steadied himself immediately afterwards. The wolf’s expression, however, belayed that he was still feeling a sense of discomfort.
“You okay?” I asked.
The monster nodded in affirmation, but I highly doubted that he was telling the truth. I could tell that he wasn’t back to his best.
I turned my eyes upon the item and analyzed it.
Crystal of Obstruction: This magically enhanced tool disorients monsters by disrupting the flow of magical energy within their bodies, thereby dulling their movements. The range of this effect is proportional to the strength of the monster it is affecting. Quality: B+
Oh. So that’s why these weak ass retards were able to make it so deep inside the forest. Learning of what happened to Illuna had left me with many doubts and unanswered questions. I knew that the humans considered the forest uncharted territory. Entering it was no different from gambling one’s life away. Yet, there’d been a pair brave enough to chase Illuna all the way into its depths.
There was no way a single young girl was worth that much to the likes of a slaver. That was why I’d assumed that the humans were ridiculously powerful, which had never seemed quite right. And it turned out that my suspicions were correct. The humans weren’t powerful. They’d only made it as far as they had because of the tools they wielded. Which means I’ll have no problem butchering the rest.
My emotions must’ve shown on my face, as the man in charge only grew more irritated as he gazed upon me. He didn’t bother hiding his annoyance as he continued spitting out his orders.
“Ignore the fucking smirk on that asshole’s face! He’s just bluffin’! We all know tamers ain’t worth shit when their monsters are down, and we got way more men than he can handle! Surround him and take ‘im out!”
What fucking retards. Did they not just see me tear through a whole bunch of them by myself? Or are their brains just so dysfunctional that they’ve still yet to process it?
“I’ll be fine, Rir. Sit tight and let me handle this.” Rir tried to step in front of me even though he clearly wasn’t doing too well, so I spoke to him before turning to the slavers and casting a spell.
“What!?” The boss screamed in shock as he witnessed the magical assault. The precise attack I chose was the usual, the one that created dragons out of jets of water.
The psuedodragons almost seemed to let loose joyful roars as they arced through the air, opened their maws, and swallowed the ruffians whole. Though they tried to struggle, the humans were incapable of escaping. There was nothing they could do but drown as the high speed currents shredded them to bits of blood and flesh.
By the time the dragons were gone, so were they.
The grunt-filled room had been reduced to a veritable hellscape. Corpses were lying around in piles, and entrails were splattered all over. Everything from the floor to the ceiling to all the furniture that lay about was dyed a deep shade of crimson.
And I felt nothing. Looking at the wanton destruction I had caused didn’t fill me with guilt. The fact that I had killed not just one, but a whole group of human beings felt like exactly that: just a fact. I couldn’t bring myself to care for the moral ramifications of my actions. It was precisely this lack of a reaction that led me to understand that I truly had lost my humanity.
“Well…” I sighed as I smashed the enchanted crystal with my greatsword. “That’s convenient, I guess.”
It seemed I wouldn’t have to worry about hesitating while handing these lowlives their one way tickets to hell.
“Hey Rir, where’s Illuna?”
The wolf growled apologetically. The smell of blood was too strong for him to discern her exact location. Oh well. That’s fine too, I guess. All that means is I gotta go around killing everyone I run into until they spill the beans. I’m sure I’ll run into someone that knows where she is eventually.
Editor’s note: Yes. YES. Kill them all Yuki. Leave none alive. Murder and burn the scum until naught remains but ashes and urine as I piss on their charred corpses! Muhahaha! Oh, what? We’re on? What do you mean we’re-? Oh. Uh… Ahem. Hey guys! Joker here. Another chapter to close the gap, and we see that you do not fuck around with people Yuki cares about. Of course, you can really only fuck around with Illuna and Shii at this point. Lefi would probably turn you into a smear on the ground, and Rir would use you as his new fire hydrant. Of course, those would probably be preferable to what they’d do to you should you choose to mess with Illuna or Shii, as is being shown now. It’s a shame he was a bit slow. Illuna already got out though. Wonder if they’re going to be able to meet up see. Guess we’ll find out. See y’all in the next chapter!