Azhure: Recent events in my private life made me insensible if I uploaded yesterday as scheduled.
Again, as around half of the citizens of Palras live in its capital, the city itself was vast. By extension, the carriage journey to the Inner District of Palras was a long one.
Naturally, one does not sit idly by silently.
Even after they had entered the inner district, they still had a long trek to their target.
“Rose,” Alicia called. “About the Black Mist… Have the Otherworldly Court ever tried to see beyond it? Like using [Eject] to fly above it?”
“Yes, we did.” Rose put her hand over her cheek. “And there was more mist. Turns out it was an endless slope.”
“You mean like the Black Mist is like a funnel with its wider side up with Beohar at the bottom?”
“Yes, that is the exact analogy.”
“You know.” Alicia looked to her front, where the boys were steering the horses. “I did not know you can drive a horse carriage, Owen, Will.”
They, however, exchanged looks and Owen spoke, “We’ve done this… multiple times before.”
“…Is that so?” However, Alicia did not like the tone Owen used to convey.
“There have been numerous times where we go on a carriage like this,” Rose explained. “And some of those times we could not have a Bell Branch worker to coach it. So… we had to improvise.”
“In other words! You guys are the resident couriers!”
“Yes, that is accurate.” Rose nodded to Voice’s conjecture.
“I-I see…” Alicia smiled wryly. “At least you both have a skill picked up… Albeit an odd one, to say the least.”
From high to low in an inconspicuous spot in the inner district, the transfer circle faded to reveal Hanz and Crea decked out in soldier equipment under their brown robe.
Everyone, I have decided to send Hanz and Crea with you. (Miriel)
Is it about the noble’s soldiers with rifles?
Yes, the visual feed shows at least fifty of them outside, there is bound to be more inside the mansion. (Miriel)
While all of you can deal with them since they must have short training with untested technology, there is still the risk of getting shot and you cannot waste any time if we are to keep it in closed doors. (Miriel)
Besides, if you two were to deal with the riflemen, you might cause the neighbors to notice. (Miriel)
And the ‘you two’ referred to Owen and Will. Considering their actions at the Bell Branch and missions before, Alicia suspected that Miriel might worry that Will and Owen will cause a huge gust of cold air that would reach far beyond in order to defeat all of the noble’s men in one go, as it a logical move.
Incidentally, I have found the record of the authorization for its development two years ago. It includes rifling so they will be accurate. (Miriel)
Hmm, the manager did say it was for fighting Beosts… Why has the record only found out now?
I, er… (Miriel)
I will explain to her, Rose messaged Miriel and turned to Alicia. “You see, we have a lot of worlds to take care of. So it is common for one or two mistakes to occur.”
“Is that speaking from experience?”
“Yes.” Rose nodded solemnly.
Moving on, Hanz and Crea will also bring brown robes to induce fear among the enemy ranks. So once you enter the inner district, go to this location and send a [Telepathy] to signal their transfer. (Miriel)
And in Hanz’s arms, a bunch of brown robes rested upon it. Crea carried the masks.
“Hanz,” Rose rolled her eyes with a sigh. “Why do I only count three robes?”
“Owen secretly sent a [Telepathy] that told me to bring his cloak instead.” Hanz deadpanned.
Looking closer, you can see the light-blue cloak among the stack of robes.
Alicia simply looked at Owen in awe for his distaste for the brown robe, going so far as to conceal his [Telepathy] so Rose wouldn’t know.
By specifically calling out a name in the Order, [Telepathy] can be sent without ‘spilling’ its content to a nearby Court Wizard. This increases maneg consumption, and Court Wizards are supposed to save as much as possible.
“They are not for combat use,” Rose continued. “Its design is inconvenient for it. Also, Master Miriel told us that the brown robe is to cause panic as it is greatly associated with us.”
“And I never remembered Owen needing to break a leg to do his Orders and never have a problem with it when he does. Second, Owen froze the volcano wearing this.” Hanz explained nonchalantly. “Besides, the robes too uncomfortable.”
Even though he wore the brown robe himself, Hanz has a habit of doing an ‘epic taking off the robe to reveal the outfit underneath’ before going to battle as seen in Geron Yor; Crea picked it up after being around him frequently.
Alicia heard this from Rose complaining about it. And thinking of that reminded her of Rin’s outburst, it happened sometime after that mission.
Rose sighed, having long since resigning to their and quietly muttered, “Maybe it is time I design a new uniform…”
Then, the Court Wizards felt the Air Guardian’s Maneg Soul coming to their location.
“I’ve placed the Catalysts,” Will reported. “A bit far out because of the sentry.”
The Air Court Wizard/Guardian had also placed the Air Catalyst on the Bell Branch building. Anybody else in the group would run an extremely small chance to create a D rank Maneg Beast of the size of a small animal. Although it can simply be swiped off, it’s still better to have zero chance of it happening in important missions.
And the phenomena was only known because most cases happened on the second floor of the light chamber in the Otherworldly Court.
“Alright then,” Rose said. “Shall we go?”
Donning the robes and cloak (and masks), the six Court Wizards ventured onward.
“After you have dealt with the Bell Branch manager,” Aqua continued. “You will proceed to the final mission of the First Treaty operation in Beohar.”
“First treaty?” Alicia spoke in wonder.
“As far as we are concerned, it is the very first treaty between human and half-animal nations. Whenever they go to war, it usually ends with both sides pack up and go home with whatever spoils they got.”
“Really? Then it must have been very important.”
“Indeed, your target is the noble who sent the ‘bandits’ to the envoy in the first mission, the one you have dealt with along with Richard, Jill, and James.
“His first name was too complicated to be remembered so we will address him by family name, Wolfram.”
“..!”Alicia shivered upon hearing the name.
‘Aw, come on! Why do we keep hearing ‘wolf’ a lot!?’
Voice: Like, what the hell, Azhure!?
Azhure: I couldn’t think of anything else. Also, the single (‘text’) will indicate thoughts in flashbacks.
It took all of her might to not stutter the noble’s name when explaining the purpose of the visit to those guards at the gate to the inner district.
The Wolfram estate was vast, like any other household in the inner district. However, visuals from Miriel and James stated that it was even more so than others. It would attribute to their wealth, a resource needed to pull off multiple sabotages and an army.
Its wide land shall serve as an inhibitor for anyone outside from noticing the chaos that will ensue inside, on top of the Air Catalyst providing sound absorbent.
Stepping far inside the boundary of the Catalysts, in which two of them was plastered on streetlamps, the Court Wizards could see the gates to the Wolfram estate. Behind it was the huge mansion inside a large garden.
Will was right, the noble has the common sense to have two men, each holding a rifle with a long bayonet affixed to it, probably to pass it off as a spear, at hand and a sword in their belt, to keep watch at the front of the gate.
“The four of you will infiltrate the Wolfram mansion and stop the noble directly.“
While the sudden change of events made the Court Wizard count jump to six, things will go as planned.
Emotion suppression on.
“Halt, you are in the territory of Wolfram! Leave now!”
One of the guards shouted as they trained their rifles onto Hanz and Crea who approached first. However, they pointed the rifles like it would a spear, but their right hands still held the trigger so as to immediately switch to the proper rifle stance and fire.
“I will say again, leave now or-” And then they realized the brown robe and widen their eyes. “I-I-It’s…!”
But with [Eject], Hanz immediately dashed to the guards, his right hand pulled back to materialize a rifle with a bayonet of his own.
And cut opened one guard’s throat, just barely missed the guard’s bayonet.
And before the other guard could react, Hanz put three shots to that guard’s torso. He fell back like a string of a puppet cut loose.
2 noble’s men killed, 50 + ??? left.
Bending down to the unfortunate guard whose neck spurt blood like a fountain, Hanz wrested the rifle from his dead hands with ease.
Alicia and the others went to Hanz. Looking closer, the handle barely bent in conjunction with the barrel. With the absurdly long bayonet, it was not designed similar to any ‘Earth’ rifles. The rifle itself was designed overall to look like a spear. A ‘spear-rifle’.
KETINK KETINK KETINK
And rainbow colored motes of light enveloped the spear-rifle. Markings of all range of the visible spectrum etched itself throughout the handle of the spear-rifle. And that’s it.
One of Hanz’s specialty was the efficiency in which he converts a gun into a Cherished Armament. As Alicia can see, the Cherished Armament before her was barely modified by Hanz’s loyal maneg comparing Jill’s and Rose’s.
Also, Aqua had once told her that the soldier has a rainbow-colored Element though he preferred to use red.
“I will break the gate and we will go in. I’ll deal with the riflemen with Crea and the rest of you will find the noble,” Hanz said to the others in a monotone voice. Seeing as no third party is around, at least alive, he could speak verbally.
The soldier pointed the spear-rifle towards the lock on the gate. The ‘spearhead’ a few centimeters away from the lock.
However, the bullet that flew out of it barely put a dent to it.
“Figures.” Was all Hanz said and dispersed his latest arsenal into his Maneg Soul in kaleidoscopic light.
“They’re here,” he announced.
If the early skirmish didn’t catch their attention, then this certainly did as riflemen began running towards the gate.
Hanz stepped back, urging the others to follow suit. He lifted his arm to point at the gate and…
The gates violently swung backwards to the Court Wizards’ perspective and hit the wall with a CLANG. The riflemen marching in paused in a jolt of surprise witnessing the explosion that destroyed the front gate.
“W-Who the in the Black Mist are you!?” The rifleman in front shouted, pointing his spear-rifle like a spear. Others followed his example.
However, Hanz simply walked forward, slowly.
“Don’t come closer or we’ll-”
However, that rifleman was interrupted with a scream. After all, to the riflemen’s perspective, they saw a figure in brown between their dead comrades. With recent events over the decade, it’s almost taboo to wear a brown robe. Because that could only mean one thing to them.
“I-It’s the Court Wizards!” another rifleman screamed.
“W-What are they here!?”
“T-They must’ve have come to stop us!”
“I shouldn’t have signed up for this!”
And panic consumed their ranks as they began stepping back, preparing to run away.
Seeing as the riflemen realized what they’re up against, and despite under suppression, Hanz couldn’t help but take off his robe in epic fashion, revealing his red uniform. His partner, Crea, did the same almost at the exact time.
“M-Men!” the front rifleman shouted, he’s probably the commander. “If it’s them, there’s no use running away. We have numbers and rifles on our sides! We can defeat them!”
With their commander’s speech, the riflemen somewhat gained their composure.
“On me!” The commander hoisted his spear-rifle to aim at the Court Wizards, his subordinates followed suit in a semi-disciplined manner.
Hanz did nothing.
BANG BANG BANG BANG BANG
DING DING DING DING DING
Because a dome of blue appeared around him, encasing him from the harm of the spear-rifles. It was Crea’s Vague Order, [Shield].
“It… did nothing?” the commander muttered in disbelief.
While they were in confusion, Hanz simply called forth his own firearm and two more floating above his shoulders, just like in Geron Yor.
There was no need to explain the riflemen’s reaction witnessing the inside of the semi-transparent dome of blue.
And the soldier murmured quietly.