706 – Former Knight Commander VS Dragon Hunter (side: Adofu)
With the priest’s yell, the soldiers charge towards Adofu.
Adofu trips one of the incoming soldiers, then uses him to block those coming from behind.
A soldier behind Adofu cries out in alarm as the first soldier is thrown at him, and they collapse int a crumpled heap.
“It’s too cramped in here for you to fight as a group in here… Fight one by one! He’s unarmed, it’ll be easy if you calm down!”
The priest yells.
Adofu dodges the third soldier’s blade, then knocks him off balance with a hit to the body before ripping the sword out of his hand. Then, he punches his jaw, causing the soldier to fall down.
“You guys have grown dull. Your training must have become soft.”
Adofu says, holding his newly-gained sword in one hand.
The soldier whose sword was taken stumbles to his feet and runs out of the tavern, clutching his chin. Adofu glares after him, then returns his gaze to the priest.
“If it’s too cramped in here, then do you want to take it outside? We’re causing trouble here as it is.”
The priest glances over at the soldiers. Two are on the floor, while another has fled the building entirely. All that remain are three demoralised soldiers.
“F-fight together after all! If all three of you work together, you should win! Don’t falter! Fight like you mean to kill! It’s not like he’d die that easily!”
With the priest’s command, the three jump into action.
As half of their number are defeated already, they show no sign of negligence. Taking advantage of their numbers, they swing their swords without getting in each other’s way, pressuring Adofu from his blind spots.
Adofu parries each of their swords, but is unable to launch a counterattack.
“I’d rather not make such a commotion here, but…”
The priest suddenly levels his staff at Adofu as a magic circle appears around it.
“Die, Adofu! Fireba-…”
A slash flies out of Adofu’s blade, knocking the priest’s staff out of his hands. The priest himself is sent flying from the impact, and he crashes into the wall.
With his sword still extended from the [Shockwave], Adofu flows into disarming one of the soldiers’ swords with a powerful swing. Then, as one of the soldiers steps back in surprise, Adofu runs at him and kicks him in the chest.
Adofu points his sword at the last remaining soldier.
“Seriously, to consider using magic in someone’s shop like that. This enough for you?”
The remaining soldier twitches, then lowers his sword to the ground. He could tell that even if he fought, winning was impossible. The soldiers had thought they could win if they surrounded him as three, but they were mistaken. Adofu was able to suppress them all by himself, all without taking any injuries. It almost looked like it was too easy for him.
“Sorry for getting in your way, miss.”
Adofu says to the proprietress, then leaves the tavern.
“…Made it in time! Sensei, that’s him!”
Upon leaving the tavern, Adofu hears a shout. Looking up, he sees the soldier who fled earlier.
“Didn’t you run away?”
“Sucks to be you, Adofu-san! In Harenae right now, as a guest of the church, is the strongest swordsman… Dragon Hunter Volk!”
From behind the soldier, a tall man approaches.
“That’s the traitor Adofu?”
“Yes! Please beat him up, Volk-sensei!”
Hearing their conversation, Adofu’s hand becomes slick with sweat.
Volk is rumoured to be the strongest swordsman on the continent. Although Adofu could not believe most of the rumours, he knows at least that Volk is far stronger than he is.
Adofu was considered to be the strongest swordsman in Harenae, before the rise of the Hero. But, Harenae is ultimately no more than a minor desert country. Adofu knows all too well how limited his perspective is. Even if his right arm were functional, Volk would probably still be out of his reach.
(Dragon Hunter Volk… If the rumours are to be believed, he’s insanely strong. With the level difference between us, this won’t even be a fight.)
Adofu bites his lower lip.
“Hey there, Adofu. I’m that Dragon Hunter Volk guy. I’m not great at holding back in a fight. So you should surrender now while you can.”
Volk steps forward.
Volk is a giant of over two metres tall, with a prominent and striking chin.
“…You look quite different from what I’d heard.”
According to the rumours, Volk is said to be muscled, and to have a wild, handsome figure. He’s also said to wield a huge sword that overshadows his already impressive height… But the sword that the man in front of Adofu is wielding looks much more modest.
Distorted images often accompany legends, but the difference still seems too large. The appearance and behaviour of the man in front of Adofu don’t seem like they belong to someone strong.
“What’s that about? Are you making fun of me?”
Adofu unconsciously lowers his head in apology. After all, it’s rude to impose a distorted image from rumours on the real person.
“Ooh! You’ve come, Volk-dono! Adofu, this is the end for you!”
Propped up by soldiers, the priest appears in the doorway. He shouts joyously upon seeing Volk.
“What’re you going to do, Adofu? Once I draw my sword, I can’t hold back. If you don’t want to become a lump of meat, then hurry up and surrender.”
“I’ve always wanted to cross swords with you. It’s unfortunate that it should happen like this, but I shall taste the sword of the continent’s strongest, Volk-dono!”
Adofu readies the sword in his left hand, pointing it at Volk.
“You’re seriously going to fight me with one arm? Surrender already. If you don’t…”
“Hah, you fool! Volk-dono is the strongest in all the continent… No, even across the ocean his name is renown as a legendary swordsman! The former strongest of Harenae who’s lost his arm is no more than a baby to him!” The priest sneers, interrupting Volk. “Volk-dono! Please reduce Adofu to minced meat!”
“N-no, you should surrender…”
All of a sudden, a thunderous crash sweeps through the area. The ground shakes violently, sending Adofu into the air as a cloud of dust obstructs his vision.
For a moment, he thinks Volk must have done something… But he quickly stops that line of thought.
That is because, inside the dust cloud, Adofu could see Volk’s huge body curled up protectively.
Covering his ears, Adofu rises to his feet.
“What was that…”
As the cloud of dust fades, an outrageous sight is revealed.
“What is this!?”
A huge fissure has been carved through the city of Harenae. Around the edge of it, collapsed buildings and overturned houses can be seen. The fissure stretches from the centre of the city far into the distant desert.
Adofu is unable to understand what he’s seeing.
The fissure ends at Harenae’s cathedral. Atop the cathedral, a large armoured man can be seen.
The distance makes it difficult to get an accurate estimation, but the man’s size is clearly abnormal. He’s tall enough to make Adofu doubt his memory of the cathedral’s size. In the hand of the man who is at least three metres tall, is a sword even longer than he is tall.
“No way, is that…?”
Adofu quickly denies the idea that pops into his head.
There’s no way it could be possible. The giant’s slash has divided the country of Harenae in two.