“Hey, Makoto, is there a need to listen to the request for assistance from the Pope?” (Lucy)
“That’s right! It is the guy that tried to do something terrible to Fu-chan! Like in ero doujins!” (Aya)
“…What are ero doujins?” (Furiae)
“Ah! I know! It is the ones that go ‘Kuh! Kill me!’.” (Lucy)
“Lu-chan…where did you get that knowledge? By the way, the one who would fit the ‘Kuh! Kill me!’ bill would be Saki-chan, I guess.” (Aya)
“I don’t understand what you two are talking about at all.” (Furiae)
Lucy, Sa-san, and Furiae-san were talking noisily.
Right now we are at a place a little further away from the capital of Highland, at the ghost town.
It is apparently a town that fell from a monster stampede several decades ago.
It was uninhabited for some time, but there’s rumours that it is being used as a hideout for the Snake Church.
We came here in order to confirm the authenticity of those rumors.
The objective is to investigate the remnants of the Snake Church by the request of the Pope.
“It can’t be helped. Princess Sofia was troubled.” (Makoto)
I answered the question of Lucy.
Rozes doesn’t have many templars.
In this world, templars serve as policemen.
An existence that one can’t be without in order to maintain public order.
Templars are affiliated with the Goddess Church, and Rozes is compensating for its lack of personnel with the knights that the Sun Country dispatches.
In other words, if the Pope were to say ‘we will be withdrawing the templars from Rozes in order to prepare for the battle against the Great Demon Lord’, it would be incredibly problematic.
Of course, it normally wouldn’t end up that way, but they might use our refusal as an excuse to demand Furiae-san.
We decided to listen to them.
“So, is the Snake Church here?” (Furiae)
Furiae-san was looking around restlessly while grabbing the sleeve of Sa-san.
That’s normally my role as her Guardian Knight, but I decided to have her be close to Sa-san who is the safest to be with.
I walk around the ghost town and search for the presence of enemies.
But there’s no reaction at all.
My Detection has a radius of around 100 meters…
But I have a party member that is better than me in searching for enemies.
“Lucy, how’s it?” (Makoto)
“Hmm, nothing. Don’t hear anything.” (Lucy)
The senses of Lucy have a wider range and higher accuracy than my Detection.
That even she doesn’t hear anything must mean that…
“Fake information?” (Makoto)
“What do we do, Takatsuki-kun? Go back?” (Aya)
If there’s no one, we have nothing to do.
Or maybe they have just left temporarily.
Let’s try persisting for a bit more.
“Let’s wait for a bit, and if they still don’t show up, we leave.” (Makoto)
“Hmph, even though we went through the trouble of coming all the way here.” (Furiae)
“There’s nothing bad in it being safe, Furi.” (Lucy)
The tension lessened slightly, and we decided to stay on standby in the shadows.
There’s no reaction from Detection.
Lucy is on alert.
Don’t think we will be caught by a surprise attack with this.
Around 30 minutes after arriving at the ghost town…
A voice resonated in my head.
Hm? Her voice sounds far away.
Noah-sama, what’s the matter?
What was that?
At that moment…
Someone landed on the ground making a light sound.
They must have come using flying magic.
I didn’t notice their approach at all.
They approached us with fearsome silence and speed.
My hair stood on end.
The one standing in front of us is a man with white armor and the crest of the Goddess.
And yet…why didn’t Detection react?
The one there is the Sun Hero Alexander that we met not that long ago.
“Hey there, what a coincidence.” (Alex)
The man said shamelessly.
His face was showing a slight grin.
Who is going to believe that when we meet at a ghost town?
I silently take stance with my dagger.
Lucy held her staff up, and Sa-san stood in front of Furiae-san.
Furiae-san was glaring at the Sun Hero with suspicion.
The man in front of us said this with a wide grin on his face.
“I will have you hand over the Moon Oracle there.” (Alex)
“I refuse.” (Makoto)
I responded without hesitation.
That answer must have been what he expected, he didn’t show much surprise.
“No no, you have no right to refuse.” (Alex)
The Sun Hero Alexander shrugged his shoulders.
“Pope’s orders?” (Makoto)
“No, I am doing this on my own volition. It will be taken as the Pope not being involved in this.” (Alex)
The Sun Hero speaks out even what he doesn’t need to say with a carefree smile.
Looks like it was the trap of the Pope.
…It was a mistake to have come.
“Yeah, I will protect Fu-chan!” (Aya)
I decided to leave Furiae-san to Sa-san.
I call the Spirits and have Lucy prepare her mana in order to be able to use magic at any moment.
But the Sun Hero in front of us was just grinning and didn’t do anything.
“Oi oi, there’s no point in resisting. It is for your sake to give her up before you get hurt.” (Alex)
Looks like for him, Furiae-san getting kidnapped is already a settled thing.
He plans on proceeding even if it is by using forceful means.
“Haah…I don’t really take pride in bullying the weak though… Hm?” (Alex)
The Sun Hero was about to say something, but he cut off his words in the middle, and looked up.
I do the same, and there was something falling at astounding speed.
The ones who showed up were Yokoyama-san and Sakurai-kun on a pegasus.
Sakurai-kun jumped off the pegasus and stood in front of us.
That’s a relief.
With Sakurai-kun here, there’s nothing to worry about.
“Princess Noel told me that the Pope was making plans to kidnap Furiae.” (Sakurai)
“Aah, even the Light Hero-kun is here, huh… I was told that you shouldn’t be hurt.” (Alex)
Even when Sakurai-kun arrived, the Sun Hero wasn’t erasing his carefree smile.
I glance at the sky, and I see that even though it is slightly cloudy, the sky is clear.
It is different from the time against the Demon Lord.
It is the Light Hero Sakurai-kun in perfect form.
And yet, why is he looking so carefree…?
“Move aside, Light Hero-kun.” (Alex)
The Sun Hero demands arrogantly.
“I refuse.” (Sakurai)
Sakurai-kun unsheathes his sword and takes a stance.
Lucy, Yokoyama-san, and I prepare ourselves to assist him.
Compared to us, the Sun Hero was showing no signs of being worked up.
“Haah…what a pain.” (Alex)
The Sun Hero sighed heavily.
The next instant…
A squall blew.
A massive aura rages around the Sun Hero.
A warm light covers the area as if protecting us from that violent aura.
Sakurai-kun had his magic sword in hand and his body and blade were shining lightly.
It is a gentle light, but it is a massive aura that doesn’t fall short to the Sun Hero’s one.
“Sun Hero Alex, this is not the time for us to be fighting each other. Withdraw.” (Sakurai)
“Of course, I also have no intentions of fighting you.” (Alex)
“As long as I get that Moon Oracle there.” (Alex)
“I can’t allow that.” (Sakurai)
“Negotiation failed then.” (Alex)
That was no negotiation!
After his one-sided demand, the Sun Hero slowly walks over here.
“Don’t get any closer.” (Sakurai)
Sakurai-kun’s voice was firm.
Furiae-san mutters uneasy.
The Light Hero should be the strongest.
It should be okay…right?
The Sun Hero isn’t stopping his steps and isn’t erasing his smile.
With a grin still on his face, he continues approaching us.
“I will hold back. Nothing personal.” (Sakurai)
Sakurai-kun says this and hits the Sun Hero with the back of the sword.
The blunt side.
The Sun Hero grabbed the magic sword of Sakurai-kun with his hand.
“No way!” (Saki)
Yokoyama-san let out her voice in shock.
“Oi oi, what were you trying to achieve with such a soft swing?” (Alex)
He makes a fist with the hand that’s not holding the sword.
A punch that was like a flash brushed close to the face of Sakurai-kun.
Sakurai-kun takes distance.
“Ooh, you managed to avoid that. Looks like the great me held back too much as well. Just give up the pointless struggle and hand over the Moon Oracle.” (Alex)
The Sun Hero still had a bold smile.
“Got it, I will be serious on the next one.” (Sakurai)
Sakurai-kun’s body and magic sword were showing the same light as the time when he defeated the Beast King.
Sakurai-kun blurred out.
“Light Sword: [Flash].” (Sakurai)
I heard that voice.
A small explosion and flash.
After that, a violent wind raged, and dust flew.
I saw something flying away.
It seemed like a person.
I heard someone mutter that in blank disbelief.
The one who was sent flying away was Sakurai-kun who was now knocked out.