Ch. 87: Investigation after Predation
At a glance, it looked similar to Shayna.
A palm sized girl with shoulder length flaxen hair, a white dress, and a pair of transparent wings on its back.
But the definitive difference was that everything was covered in blood, and its somewhat cute looking face made it seem even stranger.
“What the hell…”
The girl’s head rose at Loren’s voice.
The girl who had been biting into the dead elf’s body stared at Loren’s face, and as Loren started wondering if he should fake a smile, the girl opened its bloody mouth wide and suddenly pounced towards Loren.
Unintentionally, without thinking, Loren moved his body backwards and knocked the small girl down with his hand.
With the full strength of Loren’s arm, which allowed him to swing around his great sword skillfully, there was no way a being the size of a palm would stand a chance.
A small dense sound and the feeling of something small hitting his hand.
The thing that jumped towards Loren was slammed onto the ground face first, splattered something red around it, and stopped moving.
Feuille pointed at it with a trembling voice.
“But why…This hasn’t happened before…”
As Feuille muttered, confused at what he was seeing, but Loren didn’t know what was happening either.
As he bent down to pick up the fairy that he had knocked down, thinking that they needed more information, he realized that the body of the elf boy, which the fairy had been eating, was still twitching.
“You’ve got to be kidding me…”
As if waiting for Loren to say that, lumps started forming all over the boy’s body.
Loren immediately understood what was happening and shouted to Lapis and Feuille.
“Get back! There’s more of them inside!”
What showed up from the body, ripping through skin and clothes, were small beings the size of a palm.
There all looked different and had different hairstyles, some looking like girls while some looked like boys, but all of them wore simple clothing, and were blackish red, as if they had been bathing in blood.
Although the question of how all of them were inside the poor elf boy’s body occurred in his mind, Loren had a bigger problem to take care of.
As if they were tired of the taste of elf, the small beings flapped their wings and started attacking Loren, who was the nearest.
If it were a normal monster, Loren wouldn’t have hesitated to drive it back with his great sword.
But the innumerable amount of fairies flying at him were too small to use his sword against.
He could’ve killed a few of them using the atmospheric turbulence created by the blade and mass of the sword, but there were way too many of them.
He considered dropping his great sword and batting them down with his hands, but it didn’t seem like he could do that in time, and the time that he spent thinking shortened the time for retaliation even further.
By the time he thought it was bad, the fairies with open mouths and bloodshot eyes were almost at his face.
Bracing himself for a few places being torn off and eaten, Loren raised his arm and gritted his teeth, but the pain he had expected didn’t follow, and instead, all he felt was a few light impacts on his arm.
During battle, closing your eyes was the same as suicide.
Because Loren had been taught that, he was able to keep his eyes open, and from across his arm, he could see things dropping to the floor, and when he lowered his arm, the sight of the fairies dropping to the ground like bugs being hit with repellant.
‘Onii-san, please praise Shayna.’
Hearing Shayna’s voice filled with joy from being able to take care of the situation, Loren had a good idea of what happened.
It seemed that Shayna, seeing that it was impossible to stop the fairies physically, strengthened the energy drain she had been using as insect repellant, and took the lives of the fairies.
Being so small, fairies had a smaller life force than humans.
Shayna seemed to have acted off the calculation that although there were many of them, the energy drain would do its job, and as she had expected, the power had protected Loren’s body from them.
(Thanks, you saved me there.)
Even if he got attacked, he didn’t think that he would become like the elf boy, but he knew that he would’ve been quite injured.
Which is why he thanked Shayna in his mind, then started investigating the dead fairies around him.
But as if Shayna couldn’t adjust her strength at the sudden attack, the fairies on the ground were all shriveled up like mummies.
Picking up one of them, Loren started examining its wrinkled body.
“Fairies aren’t a race to do such bloody things…but why did these?”
“No idea. The only thing I know for sure is that things that don’t do this are doing it.”
“So why no one’s in the village…It can’t be…”
After saying so, Feuille looked towards the village, terrified at what he had just imagined.
They had caused quite a ruckus, but there was no sign of anyone coming out of the village to see what was going on.
“In any case, it doesn’t look like they’ll become undead.”
After examining the dead fairy, Loren handed it to Lapis, who was walking towards him.
Although handing over a dead body was quite an abnormal thing to do, Lapis took the body, not seeming to care, took off its clothes and started examining it front and back.
“No signs of drugs…parasites, and magic. Other than the fact that it’s shriveled up, it looks normal.”
“You just took of its clothes without a second thought, didn’t you?”
“It was a boy.”
“I didn’t ask you that.”
Unhappy that Loren’s attitude towards her turned cold, she threw the body behind her back.
It arced across the trees, and as soon as it landed, they could hear something fighting, and realizing that something was fighting over it, Feuille went pale.
“For the time being, I’ll put a spell of protection over Feuille.”
Lapis put her hands on Feuille’s shoulder as he stood in place, frozen.
“Go ahead. Something biting me from the side gives me shivers.”
“Loren…should be fine, I think? You have that as well.”
Lapis pointed towards the great sword that Loren held.
When Loren raised it up, wondering what the matter with it was, Lapis touched its blade and said proudly.
“This had a mechanism that protects its wielder. It won’t let any bad things such as curses near you.”
“How do you know the functions of this when you randomly found it in the weapon shop?”
In fact, the weapon was something Lapis had procured from somewhere for Loren, who had lost his weapon during a job, and had schemed with the weapon shop owner to sell to him.
Of course, Loren hadn’t bothered confirming with Lapis, and Lapis hadn’t said a thing about it to Loren, but Loren knew it was something like that when he bought it.
“I’m a priestess of the Knowledge god, after all.”
“Stop being so unreasonable to other priests of the Knowledge god.”
Loren started feeling even sorrier for the priests of the Knowledge god other than Lapis.
Although the only ones there were him and Feuille, it was a problem if Feuille got an inflated image of them.
“Enough about that. How about we go inside the village? We need to investigate, right?”
“It’s really not, but I guess we should.”
There was a chance there could be survivors.
Even if there weren’t, Loren guessed they could find clues to what happened, and started walking towards the village with his great sword in hand.
Lapis, with Feuille in tow, followed him.
They entered from a torn part of the fence surrounding the area, the sight that waited for them was a terrible one that he couldn’t imagine seeing for Feuille, but for Loren and Lapis, it was what they had expected to see.
The attack seemed to have been a sudden one.
Within the houses they entered, although they were ransacked, they found signs of preparing food, and in some houses they saw remains of meals on the table.
Although, all of them were devoured by something.
They found a few bodies as well.
They couldn’t tell if they tried to fight or run away, but there were bodies of dead elves leaning against the side of the road or against walls everywhere.
Those were destroyed horribly by something as well, and was impossible to tell how the cause of death.
“It doesn’t seem like it was just the fairies.”
Lapis muttered as she looked at the destroyed wall of the building, and a dead body that was leaning onto the remains.
“There are buildings with destroyed walls all over the place, so it seems like it was attacked by medium sized to large monsters as well.”
“Searching for the culprit won’t mean anything in this forest, I guess.”
Loren shook his head at the large number of possibilities.
Even if they did identify who did it, it didn’t seem to matter to them in their current situation.
After all, the village had already been destroyed, and there were no signs of survivors.
“There were traces of attempts to hide children as well.”
There were bodies of dead children in basements and large chests.
The parents must have put them in there, praying that they would survive the attack, but it seemed that they couldn’t escape the clutches of the attackers, and none of the prayers were answered.
“No, there was the child from before.”
“You mean that he had managed to survive until today…I don’t know what to say.”
Lapis closed her eyes and folded her hands, and said a short prayer.
Seeing her, Loren thought for a moment that she looked like a priestess, but when he thought about it, her job was a priestess, and thinking that she looked like one was kind of rude.
“What do you think…happened to everyone in the village?”
Feuille, who had seen the horrible state of the village, being pulled around by Loren and Lapis, asked them in a hollow voice.
It was possible to imagine based on what the village looked like, but Loren, not having a definitive answer, looked towards Lapis, as if asking her what they should tell him.
“I think it’s not fair that you turn things like this to me.”
“That’s true, but still.”
When it came to words, Loren couldn’t even compete against Lapis.
He could’ve just told Feuille what he thought, but if he did that, there was no way to tell if he could endure the shock.
“Well, my guess is probably a bit different than yours though.”
After letting out a sigh, Lapis turned towards Feuille, who was looking towards them with clinging eyes.
“I’m not sure how many people lived here, but I think that there are too few bodies for the scale of the village.”
“Yes, there’s always the line of the bodies being eaten completely, but it’s unnatural to think that no one was able to escape an uncoordinated attack.”
A small light returned to Feuille’s eyes.
When Loren heard those words, he was convinced that she might be right.
Putting aside what attacked the village, what most of those who won’t fight would do was either run or hide.
Then it wouldn’t be strange for there to be residents that chose to run, and it was hard to say that none were able to escape.
“If it were as well planned and coordinated as the attack on the post town, it would be a different story…So Feuille, do you have any idea of a place where the people of the village would run away to?”
There could be survivors.
Being presented with such a possibility, Feuille told Loren and Lapis the only place he knew of that could be used as refuge.
Hey guys Kaoto here.
I know that I said that I’ll be posting less, but I guess I got another chapter done.
Well, what’s done is done, I guess.
Hope you enjoy and I’ll see you guys in the next chapter!