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Rupegia

"You may now kiss the bride." But no kiss ever came. I'm ripped from my wedding and thrown into a medieval fantasy world with game-like elements. It may seem like a game, but that doesn't matter to me, because this is my reality. The pain, the hunger, the cold, the fear, it's all real to me. Alone, without knowing why I'm here, in a world where I know nothing and nobody, I decide to buy a Blood Slave to have someone I can trust. She brings me comfort and so much more. She helps me raise my head high again and bravely move forward. Together, we'll grow stronger. Together, we're unbreakable. But she won't be the only one by my side. We need more than just each other, for I know that my purpose in this world can't be accomplished with only her help. Monsters and dungeons plague the land, forcing civilization to protect themselves from the hordes with tall walls and fierce determination. Killing monsters is a daily need, but they aren't the only enemy here. I have a powerful "Gift" that allows me to change my "skill points" at will, but if others were to know about it, there would be many that would try to use me by any means possible. Step by step, moment by moment, day by day, we keep moving forward, always aiming to improve our strength. One day, we'll meet our Fate, and we'll be ready for it. Swords held high, shields tightly strapped to our arms, wings spread apart, spells at the tip of our tongues, minds focused like blades, and our hearts hardened like steel. We'll take on whatever comes our way! --------------------------------------------- *Additional Tags*: Psychological, Romance, Magic, Male Lead, Portal Fantasy/Isekai/Transmigration, Polygamy, Slaves *Content Warning*: gore, profanity, sexual content (male/female, female/female, and human/non-human (*not for the faint of heart*)), traumatizing content *What to expect*: Slow story focused on the day-to-day life of a transmigrated man rather than on the plot. The plot exists but it *very slowly* becomes relevant. Also, *slow* character progress. It's a long journey, so don't expect a hero to grow in just a few chapters. Detailed environments and extensive world-building. Realistic and tactical combat instead of flashy. Protagonist with a cheat but far from overpowered. Lots of descriptive sex scenes, it is treated as just another part of life instead of merely fan-service. A harem where the members actually enjoy living with each other. Occasional weird wording and grammar, English isn't my first language. New chapters Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 8PM US East. This story is also on Royal Road (*most sexual content censored*), Scribble Hub, Novel Updates, Hentai Foundry, MoonQuill, Archive of Our Own, and Literotica. 

Manasong · Fantasy
Not enough ratings
535 Chs

Stand Beside Me

"I-is it alright for me to eat with you?" Asks Lina.

"Did you do any different with your last master?" I ask.

"No… but Miss Hilde was special, As her personal attendant, it would be very inconvenient to keep eating away from her.

"Then see it the same way, it's inconvenient to treat you worse, it's just easier to treat you like everyone else."

"Thank you, master..." She bows.

"You chose the right person, little Lina, Wolfy is a really kind master. Just get prepared for the night, he's a sadistic sex beast," Teases Roxanne.

Lina freezes, Ciel looks away.

"Roxanne! Stop that, she's gonna get scared. I didn't accept you because I want your body, I already have enough women around me."

"I see..." Lina says, did I notice a hint of disappointment?

"Besides, Roxanne and Hana are the predators you should be scared of."

"No thank you, the only ones I want inside of me are Roxanne and Wolfy," Hana says shaking her head.

"Same, but inverted… I think..." Roxanne says and pulls out her tongue.

Ciel is massaging her eyes. I cough.

"Lina, do you like books?" I ask, changing the topic. Her eyes shine at my words.

"Yes! Whenever Miss Hilde would take on a peddlers job she would bring some books and let me read them during the trip. She would bring about every kind of book possible so I always had a wide variety to read."

"Well then, you know I'm studying at the magic university, right? I wanna let you use the library and research some things for me. Do you like reading about the legends and history of the world?"

"Oh, the magic library… yes! I want to! But, is it okay to let a slave inside? If I ever damage a book, the price for it might be even higher than the price to buy me..." Her voice trails off.

If that happens most masters would sell the slave, some might even go as far as executing the person.

"That's alright, if something happens I might revoke your right to use the library but I'm not unreasonable, just don't be careless."

"Yes!"

I feel like patting her head, she's so cute. When she's working she kept a firm expressionless face, but now she seems earnest and happy.

"Why do you want to research legends?" Asks Ciel.

"You know I'm from a faraway land, I just wanna know more about the life around here, perhaps there might even be similarities in the myths from my land and the local's."

Ciel seems interested, the other girls know where I'm from so they know why exactly I'm doing this. I have no information about the history of this world so using Lina to collect it for me might be the best way to go about it, I still have so much magic and training to do I can't spend time reading fairy-tales.

"So your job is maintenance of our equipment and research. I think we can carry you with Alissa so we might as well go to the university together," I say. She's so small I don't think Alissa will mind the extra weight with her increased level in transformation.

"I can also help with housework," she says raising her hand.

"Not really necessary, the other girls already help a lot and my clay golems keep the house clean from dust. Ciel and I also have a strong [Clean] so we can just use magic whenever the clay golems aren't enough."

Her hand falls down.

"Ah yes, you are a summoner, the golems sure seem convenient," Lina says in a pensive tone.

We start eating our meal. It's white sauce pasta with grated cheese and roasted Dragolite, we eat lemon pudding for dessert. This is a good restaurant, not too expensive and they didn't mind letting Aoi eat with us too, her intelligence and cleanliness are higher than some people. Lina melts when she eats her pudding, as a slave she didn't have many opportunities to eat sweets, even if Hilde was kind she was a bit spartan on her way of life.

­

When we get home the griffin nature spirit is sleeping on a column of the gate of our house. I put points into [Animal Tongue] and approach it.

"Helloo! Missed me?"

The little griffin opens his eyes and quickly gets up, he lets out a happy chirp. I pull out a piece of raw meat and leave it near the gate. The girls wave to it but no one has the courage to touch it yet. It happily eats while his cute ass shakes. Aoi is very interested in the spirit.

When we enter I summon 3 clay golems and get them to work on the dusty house, I don't let anyone else help, today is time for us all to rest.

­

"So Lina, where are you from?" Asks Ciel.

We are in the living room, the fireplace is crackling, the tea is hot, the cookies are delicious, Ciel is chatting with Lina, Alissa is reading, Hana is massaging my brain and Roxanne is brushing her mane.

"I was born on a surface village at the foot of the Mountainhome. Before Aremut fell to the undead the road around Mountainhome wasn't as popular and our village was only a small hub for adventurers. I was being trained as an enchanter like my father but all our tools got stolen, father had to sell me so he could buy new tools. Hilde bought me and we traveled as peddlers for a long way until we came here."

"Wow, Mountainhome is on the other side of the continent, that's quite the distance. Where does the Roth family live?" Hana says.

"The Roth family didn't have a home, it was only 2 years ago that we settled around the Shore of Leaves and the High Forest for hunting dragons. They bought a house in Goldcross but Miss Hildegard has a brother staying here so we should get a response from them soon," Lina continues.

"What about you Ciel, born here?" I ask.

"Yes, I never knew my parents but I believe they came from Sommerland since I have this skin color. I joined a Templar unit that was moving there when… the battle happened and I quit being a warrior priestess."

"What about you Hana?" I say, trying to distract her from that memory.

"I was born in Sommerland, I used to make escort caravans from there to Ryutake on the far south but unfortunately I never went into Gnomeria, the pixies at Betoverd Bos weren't allowing many people at the forest. If we ever get the chance, let's go to Gnomeria, the gnomes are just so huggable," Hana loses her composure a bit and her eyes go wild, then she coughs, "Once dad screwed up I decided to sell myself at Rabanara because there's a wide variety of strong adventurers here."

The other 2 retold their stories. Alissa was born at the Misty Low Forest but never left until she came into Rabanara. Roxanne traveled a lot on the Maoka continent then she came through Goldport, she went as far as Goloria then she went back and moved to Rabanara so she never traveled much on this continent.

"Do you wanna visit your home, Lina?" I say.

"I… do. Even though my parents sold me I know they had no alternative or we would starve, I know my body is rather childish so at least I'm thankful I wasn't sold to a perverted noble."

"Sorry to ask but how old are you?" I ask.

Ciel and Roxanne glare at me.

"I am your slave, master, there's no need to worry about such things. I am fifteen."

"What… that's just a year younger than me," I say. She looks younger.

"Dwarven women are like that," Lina shrugs, "Where do you come from, master?"

"My homeland is a secret, just like how I know [Gate] I have many other secrets we have to keep," I smile.

Ciel smiles bitterly.

"O-oh, I see, forgive me for prying," Lina bows her head in respect.

"No need for forgiveness, ask anything and I will judge if I can answer."

"Now that we are talking about it, how did you learn [Gate]?" Ciel asks.

"That's another secret, but you should know that I have a talent for [Space Magic]. Just like how my [Item Box] is huge I can easily learn spells from that school."

"Yet another secret..." Ciel mutters and even Lina looks pensive.

I think I will tell the truth to them soon, but I think I want to propose to Ciel before that. First I need to create a romantic situation with her, I don't wanna a repeat of the last proposals I had. Even though Alissa's was heart-wrenching I still feel embarrassed at the suddenness of it all, I appreciate Hana's help but I want to do it right this time.

"Considering his talent with using [Telekinesis] in combat I can see why this is true," Hana helps me.

I haven't had the opportunity to fight using [Telekinesis] but Hana assures me it's gonna be a powerful strike.

­

After a while Hana spars with Lina to test her combat capability, luckily Hana has a wooden warhammer for sparring. The dwarves use a long hammer, almost as long as a halberd, it has the traditional flat part of a hammer, a hook on the back and a spear at the tip, quite versatile but it lacks in slashing power.

"She has a bit of skill, around level 5 I would guess. She can kill most normal goblins around here but will struggle against orcs, her agility is not enough to face a Young Ogre yet and her [Stonebody] is average for her age," Hana says. Lina is dropped down on the ground, completely exhausted. Her white shirt is sticking to her body.

[Stonebody] is a spell all dwarves have, it works similar to the dragonkin skin that hardens their bodies and even gives them physical strength. While the dragonkin is something innate and physical, the dwarven [Stonebody] is purely magical.

"The wyvern attack is all but confirmed to come in one or two days," Ciel says, "That dragon was far too smart and strong, it will easily command the wyverns. With that I think it's best to leave her out of the fight, keep her protecting Roxanne and Aoi, she doesn't have the power to face a wyvern yet."

"Even so I would rather not let her use her body as a shield," I say.

She seems very submissive so I have a feeling she would needlessly sacrifice herself to protect Roxanne since she's a slave and Roxanne is my fiancee.

"Lina, I will bring you to fight but your first order is to not die, understand that? I don't want heroic sacrifices I want us to put all our effort into avoiding a situation where a sacrifice is necessary, to begin with."

"Y-yes! Understood, master!" Lina says in high spirits.

Alissa and Hana share a warm smile.

"You say that but you are the one who has a tendency to do put yourself in danger, right? The Symbol, the Orc Chief and this dragon where all you jumping in danger, literally," Roxanne says with her hands on her hip.

"Well, uh..." I'm at a loss for words.

­

Today is strength training, now that we are back home Hana pushes me hard, in both meanings.

"Lina, Ciel, do you mind taking a bath together?" Alissa says with a suspicious glint in her eyes.

"Not really, the bath is large for this reason, right?" Ciel says.

"I'm a slave, you shouldn't be concerned with my embarrassment. But shouldn't I wash master?"

"It's best you not, the bath is… a place for, uh, bonding," I say.

Ciel sighs and Lina stares blankly for a few seconds and then her cheeks reddens.

­

Today is the 15th.

Roxanne wakes me up, she doesn't have the skill but she's mastering sensual expressions with my dick in her mouth. After she's done I have to cast [Heal] on my lower back, Hana didn't unglue from me during the entire bath and then Roxanne wanted her share. Alissa, the pervert, masturbated in the corner all the time so she's happy by herself.

My [Blessing Magic] and my [Summoning Magic] increased by 1 (now 0+11 and 11+9). It seems skills increase much faster when you are purposely training them.

I spend my morning playing with Aoi in the sofa like you play with cats and a blade of wheat. Alissa had an idea and collected a few blades from the nearest farm yesterday, she lived with a few animal foxes and they have similar instincts to Aoi, it seems. Though I will need something stronger than the blades since Aoi completely destroys a blade with a simple swipe of her incredibly fast claws.

At 9AM Alissa appears in the living room, she's smiling.

"You have a visitor, his name is Nour Asaf."

Ooooh. I go out to meet him. Nour is by the front door, he's observing the house with curiosity. It's the first time I saw him using casual clothes but there's no doubt he's rich, he's wearing red woolen clothes with a shining velvet waistcoat and a green cloak.

Behind him is a tall dragonkin woman, she has pale white skin, shining emerald hair and ruby scales. Her nose is small, her chin is pointy and her eyes look sharp, a very feminine face. She has a chilling smirk that reminds me of my own man-eating woman. She's using a revealing red dress below a brown fur coat.

Besides the dragonkin woman is another woman. She's short, a bit shorter than me, she has long brown hair with a few drills, freckles and a cute round face. She shyly looks at me and then turns away. She's wearing similar clothes to Nour's but with frills and a more feminine look.

"It's been a long time Mr. Nour, I see you changed your companions."

"Yes, well, a lot happened back home, but you changed more, Mr. Ryder."

I stretch my hand for a handshake.

"Just call me Wolf."

"Then just call me Nour."

I'm a bit glad to meet Nour. I'm not really a person that spends much time with friends, especially since now I have 5 women around me, but I'm still happy.

I invite him over and we sit at the living room with Aoi at my lap, Alissa calls the others and soon the room is full and smelling of tea and cookies. Only Lina didn't know about Nour since I told them all in passing about my journey here, they all seem curious about who is the person that managed to befriend me.

"This is Midori, my first wife and this is Safiya, my second wife," Nour says, embarrassed.

Midori and Hana share a grin, Safiya blushes, bows and keeps looking down towards the cookies.

"Uh, wait what," I say.

"Well then," Nour immediately starts blushing, his voice is fast paces as if he just wants to get this over with, "I was sent home for an arranged marriage. My father got a deal with a mercenary company and they will provide escorts exclusively for our products so we can branch out of the Principality, Father is aiming to enter the market of the capital. The condition was to marry Midori, the captain's daughter, together we will train here in Rabanara for a few years and get stronger then we will inherit the mercenary company. During the ceremony Safiya interrupted, she's my friend from back home, one thing led to another and I married her too…"

Nour averts his eyes in embarrassment while I blink blankly for a few seconds. Well then, it's my turn.

"A-anyway, this is Alissa, my fiancee. She's the Blood Slave I got thanks to your gift and I'm really, really grateful for it. This is Hana, my second Blood Slave, she's also my fiancee. This is Roxanne, we met on a request, she's another fiancee. This is Ciel, she was a priest at the temple and now she's part of our fellowship. This is Lina, she was a slave for my employer during my last request but she died and I decided to buy Lina, we will negotiate for her soon. And this is Aoi a small dragon I tamed on my last request," I failed in being different from Nour, talking about things like this I realize having so many women around me is a little excessive. Though I made sure I didn't put "first" or "second" on the fiancee order.

At my words, Nour opens his eyes wide and even Safiya looks at us. Nour chuckles.

"I guess you win, your 'troubles' are much more than mine."

I cough.

"W-well, uh, what happened to your sister?"

"Ah. When we got back home she eloped with Liam and married him," I knew it, "I broke the contract with him and Rania swore she's gonna repay me someday. Dad was furious, he wanted her to inherit the business and marry a craftsman, but then he got an idea and managed to rope the lord into marrying his son to her, when eventually she came back to talk she got interested in the idea and accepted. Unlike me she's strong enough to fight alongside the lord's son and clear dungeons, perhaps in a year or so she might even turn into a True Noble. Liam is quite happy too, he was thinking about retiring but he enjoys fighting alongside her more."

"I understand the sentiment," Hana comments.

So she actually has 2 husbands, what an interesting world. I know Raina is a powerful mage, she was tired and still managed to cast [Ice Lance], which is a level 30 [Water Magic] spell. This spell is basically a one-hit kill for anything that doesn't have disgusting agility like the Orc Headhunter had.

"Here's something I brought from home," Nour pulls something out of his [Item Box], it's a small basket and inside…

"Chocolate!"

"W-what?" Nour looks confused.

"He's addicted to chocolate," Alissa says.

I immediately grab a black cube and eat. It's semi-sweet chocolate, not my favorite and not the best taste but it's the first chocolate I ate in a long time. It melts into my mouth and I feel bliss.

"Huh, where did you eat such a thing?" Nour raises an eyebrow, "It's quite a new find that's popular on the Principality. When I left the emperor had requested an urgent caravan with chocolate for the capital so it's going to take some time for it to spread."

"I uh, ate it once beyond the Maoka continent," I lie.

Just saying "my homeland" and keeping quiet about it might not cut it. Ciel raises an eyebrow.

"Well that's quite the journey, the Maoka continent itself exports a good amount of interesting products so I'm not that surprised."

He should know I'm a bit reserved about my past.

The girls eat and even Hana and Midori look pleased. Chocolate is love, chocolate is life.

"You brought more chocolate with you?" I ask, "The last of chocolate in the town has been for a long time."

"Yeah, I came with a small caravan. I will tell you where they are selling the cocoa, the chocolate they make there will sell fast."

"Say, Nour, what exactly your family works on?" I ask.

"We are dealing with the new version of magic tools for flight. We have a few craftsmen that achieved a breakthrough in copying the tools of the chimeras. Dad has been working with the empire in building an airship fleet."

Everyone is wide-eyed.

"That's... your family must be quite powerful," I say.

Nour cringes.

"Yeaaah. Kind of... well you know how it goes, when people get too much money the others start to covet. I came here to get away from all that nonsense, in Rabanara nobody really cares where you are from."

Boy, am I thankful for that.

"So, are you two from the same family or something?" I ask Hana and Midori.

"I think so, the color of our scales says we are related somehow but your skin color is rare over at Ryutake," says Midori.

"I was born at Sommerland but mom is from Ryutake. Did you know the Yokubo family?" Says Hana.

"Hm, I think I heard this name before…"

"Well the last Yokubo at Ryutake was my grandmother so it's no surprise you don't remember much."

With that, we talk freely. Nour is planning on hiring an archer or tracker and another vanguard and delving into dungeons, he's never going to set foot into Royd's Kerfuffle again, though. Hana is older so Midori has some things to learn from her, Hana's route passed through Faium so they had some stories to share.

Safiya is quite shy but she did well with Roxanne and Ciel, she's a fire and wind mage. She started training when Nour left for the first time, then learned she has quite a magical aptitude, so she entered the magic university there for a basic course.

At 10 AM a letter came to me, Dietgard Roth, Hilde's younger brother, will like to meet me to receive Hilde's remains, her belongings and to negotiate Lina. He asks to meet in the afternoon. At 11 AM Alissa, Ciel and Safiya go prepare lunch and we eat with Nour, good thing we have spare chairs as the table is getting crowded. I notice Nour is a bit uncomfortable around Midori, or rather, he's scared of her, in a cute way.

­

"Thanks for the lunch Wolf, or should I say, Mr. 'Good Luck'," Nour laughs, "Stay out of trouble, I didn't think someone as careful as you would be involved in so much fighting."

"Maybe it's because I'm careful that I can fight so much."

"Certainly seems so."

"One thing," I get closer to Nour and whisper, "The dragon is a wild animal, you have to grab it and make it submit by force if you want to tame it. A dragon answers to power and if you don't tame it and ride it, it will tame you and ride you."

Nour squirms and I smirk. We shake hands and he leaves. It's interesting how the act of shaking hands is present in this world.

­

At 2 PM we leave house and go towards the inn that Dietgard is at, it's on the nobles quarters so it's close by. To enter the quarters you have to show your ID and I suspect that if your clothes are too low quality the guards won't let you pass.

The houses here are all mansions or inns that look more like mansions, the shops even show their products behind glass panes allowing the beginnings of window-shopping to appear. Ciel and Roxanne show the most interest while Lina and Alissa hide their curiosity but I can still notice it. Hana only shows interest in the weapons shops but she scoffs at the weapons on display, they are all fashionable but of low quality.

"Damn pompous nobles," she mutters.

We reach a pretty building made of pale yellow concrete and salmon-colored roof tiles. With the small flower garden in the front, this inn looks so sweet I puke in my mouth. Bright colors seem to be the style of choice around the Quarters. The receptionist wears a matching pink and pale yellow uniform.

"I'm looking for Dietgard Roth, my name is Wolf Ryder, he's expecting me," I tell the woman.

With a fake smile, she looks at the register and then goes out to call for him, in a minute Dietgard comes downstairs.

Dietgard is a medium-sized man who looks like Hildegard but with bob hair, quite the androgynous face. His clothes are a similar qipao and pants that Hilde used in the first meeting. Oh, wait… he's a "trap".

"Ah, Mr. Ryder, good meeting you, I'm Dietgard Roth," he says with a somber tone.

"Good meeting you too, I'm sorry for your loss," I say and shake his hand.

"I read the reports, it's such an unfortunate encounter. My sister was such a good person, I'm thankful you risked yourself to bring her remains. Please come with me, I prepared a room to receive her," he lowers his head while speaking.

We go upstairs and enter a room, there's nothing besides a table with a thick cloth. A simple man with plain black clothes is standing at the corner.

"Please put her here," Dietgard points to the table.

I put her corpse in the table, it's wrapped in cloth but there's still blood dripping so the table cloth immediately gets bloody. I leave the sack with her belongings beside the table. Dietgard pulls the cloth in her face and grimaces.

"Take her and prepare the ceremony," he says. The man in the corner wraps her corpse in the table cloth and stores it in his [Item Box] and then leaves.

He grabs the sack and investigates its contents.

"Thank you for bringing her belongings too. Ask me anything and I will reward you if it's on my capabilities."

"Thank you for your consideration but I don't need rewards for this, I only did what was right."

His lips curl in a small and painful smile

"You are a good man, Mr. Ryder, pity we meet under such circumstances."

"Indeed."

He sighs.

"Let us go downstairs and talk about Lina's future."

We sit by a table at the restaurant. It seems that even though the outside is completely different the design of inns is all the same.

"Now then, you wish to buy Lina?" His somber expression disappears and the sharp gaze of a serious merchant covers his face.

"Yes."

"50 gold coins," he answers immediately.

I'm so dumbfounded I lose my voice, Lina's expressionless face turns into one of disbelief. The rest of the girls frown. Lina was bought first by 5 gold coins, this is not a reasonable amount.

"Why do you think she's this valuable?" I ask.

"She's a hard-working slave with a keen business sense and much experience, she will bring a lot of value to any merchant that gets her," he says. His stare is so strong it's as if he wants to stare into my soul.

I look at Lina, she pinches my thigh, this is a signal he's lying. During negotiations she used this kind of signal a lot with Hilde.

"She's merely 15 and most of the credit goes to Miss Hildegard's business sense. Lina was merely a dedicated assistant, you can find such slave in the market for 1 or 2 gold coins," I say. Lina was more expensive because she's young and cute.

It's mostly the poor that sells their family to temporary slavery. A few gold coins can change the life of a commoner.

"Acquiring the experience of living with such a talented merchant like my sister is the most valuable aspect," I can feel his poker face straining.

"Oh please, do not inflate Miss Hildegard's talent so much. She was capable but far from being such a genius that just by staying near her you could acquire talent by osmosis."

"Os-osmosis?

"Oh oops, expression from my homeland. I mean, acquire talent by just rubbing on it."

"Still, her talents are more than just in business, she's quite capable of combat and crafting."

"She's below average for combat and her crafting apprenticeship barely started," Hana says, "I sparred with her personally and appraised her crafting using our equipment."

"Oh if she's so average then why do you wish for her?" He pushes in a mocking tone.

"If she's so average why are you asking so much for her?" I push back.

"Because I see talent in her!" He's losing his temper, good.

"And so do I. But I have plenty of other experienced individuals and the capabilities to help her. Hana is experienced in combat, Roxanne is experienced in magic and alchemy, Ciel is experienced in combat and healing, Alissa is experienced in tracking and archery, I'm experienced in magic and combat. Not only that but I have a blessing of the Goddess of Knowledge and I will let her use the library of the magic university that I'm currently enrolled in. What kind of future can you give her that's better than what I'm giving?"

He bites his lip in frustration, it would be sensual if he was a woman. He inhales and exhales, trying to calm himself.

"Lina… please marry me..." He says.

I choke on my spit and Lina sighs. She looks at me while I recover.

"Uh… you wanna speak? Please do," I say.

"I'm sorry Grand Dietgard, I do not wish to marry you," she says and bows.

I don't want to ask why.

"Please, I can give you anything, you will be my first wife and we will inherit the house name. Ever since I first saw you when Hilde bought you I have been in love, I will treat you nicely and never marry another, we will be happy together, just the 2 of us," he says, his voice increasing in pitch, I'm not sure if it's a man or a woman talking anymore.

"Please understand, I do not wish to marry you, I'm sorry," she says and bows again, this time her head keeps down for a long time.

Dietgard sighs. He massages his eyes with his hands.

"Name your price Mr. Ryder," he says in a defeated tone.

"Fifteen gold coins."

He opens his eyes in surprise.

"I told you she's valuable, but not that much," I say.

"Fine…"

I give him the money and he takes it without looking. I pass him a thick piece of paper, it has the name, description, date, and place that Lina was bought, this is the proof of purchase. It's in the name of Hildegard Roth but since she's dead the closest family member, Dietgard, has authority over her sale. Lina was sold for 40 years, by the time she finished her contract she would be 50, by then it would be unlikely she would ever find someone to marry.

In a small space Dietgard writes his signature and the words "Sold to Wolf Ryder", now I have to go to a Slavers Guild to register her in my name. We share a weak handshake and we leave immediately, he didn't even look at Lina again. Having a slave decline marrying him must have hurt his pride.

Once we are some distance from the inn Lina stops and grabs my arm.

"Thank you, thank you. I won't disappoint you, I will work hard and make myself useful. I don't think Grand Dietgard was a bad person but I do not wish to be with him, thank you again for keeping me."

With teary eyes she hugs me, her head barely reaches my chest. I pat her head, she's so cute, so cute. Wait, no, put that phone away, please.

Ciel looks at her with warm eyes as one looks at a puppy. When Lina releases her hug she's blushing like a tomato.

"Don't need to overdo it, it's no good to be all work and no fun."

"Well… I think going to the library might be more fun than work..." She says bashfully.

­

On the way back we pass by some stores to buy a high-quality set of clothes for Lina. Walking around with Aoi on Hana's neck is rather eye-catching.

We end up passing by the Slavers Guild, it looks the same as the Golden Necklace, but less well decorated. Registering Lina is quite simple, with the paper, my name, and a small fee I get a new paper that proves her purchase. Then the tag in her metal collar gets changed to a new one with my name. On my "Affiliations" the entry "Lina (slave)" appeared.

After that we enter a luxurious store outside of the noble's quarters and Lina freezes inside, it takes Alissa to whisper something to her that she accepts to buy something from it. I see the store's owner is a middle-aged man holding back a smirk, I get an idea and approach him.

"Excuse me, I know this might not be the best place to ask but do you know of a romantic place where I could spend an evening with my women?" I ask, holding back my embarrassment.

His face lights up.

"I know just the place. Here's my favorite restaurant, I take my wife there every few day-cycles, what's special is the siren that sings there, there's also a lamia and a scylla that play instruments. If you are not going there for the singing at least go there for the view, these race's charms affect even the women so they are marvelous to looks at," his voice lowers to a whisper and he gives me a small paper.

"The theater has a new play every day-cycle, most of them are aimed at women so perhaps you should go there. Coming next is 'Roberto and Judea', I greatly recommend that one, my wife cried the first time she saw it.

Sounds familiar.

Well I gotta treat them better, I have been a bit too absorbed in working and not given them that much attention besides sex and cuddling.

When Lina gets out of the fitting room she's blushing. I massage my forehead and pray Alissa isn't going overboard. In the end, I see they chose a cute short white and black dress with a silver lining, some stockings, a pair of low wedge black shoes and a cloak with bunny ears. I tap Alissa in the shoulder and kiss her cheek, that cloak is something special, such cuteness needs to be rewarded.

­

The merchant stores are not something I had paid much attention to but now I'm starting to enjoy them. Most are a bit cramped and with their odd architecture it seems every single one tries to appeal with charm. There are wind chimes that play sounds that resemble the chirp of birds. Perfumes filling the store with a pleasant scent seem to be common among women's stores, the glands of monsters help a lot in creating perfumes. Every shop related to food seems to have a specialty, they probably hire a specialized hunter to catch a specific monster. The Smirk has so many different dungeons with so many different monsters that I didn't even read about them all, I had just chosen the closest one because it fit what we wanted.

On a store I found a set of not-chess called Noblesse Oblige, one side has humans and the other has goblins and orcs. Instead of king and queen it's lord and lady, the bishop is warrior-priest, the tower is a mage, the pawn is soldier, the horse is a knight. Mage and knight have inverted move types and some other rule changes. There's a more advanced version that's humanoids versus humanoids, it uses more mages and weird, complex rules, it's called Civil War. I bought it and a set of not-backgammon.

Alissa explained to me about the Lord and Lady titles. The title Lord is a little weird, it's given to any noble that holds land and it can be given to a man or woman. Lady is given to the wife of the noble regardless whether she fights alongside the noble or not. The title Gentleman is the Lady counterpart that's used only for when the man does not fight but even so it's rarely used aside for addressing amorphous groups of people. Even though this society does not put women down there are still some weird things in regard to gender differences.

Before we go home I sneak out and make a reservation at the restaurant for the 19th. They certainly know where I went since the party radar is still working but hopefully they didn't pay much attention. I told them to wait for a surprise for the 19th.

­

When we get home Lina tries to help with the kitchen but Alissa and Ciel get her out, seeing her dejected I give her a random book we have and her eyes sparkle. She can use our small library anytime but she seems reluctant, she must not have had much free time and is too used to having a lot of work to do.

I'm actually quite content today so I reward Alissa and receive my love marks on my back.

­

Today is the 16th.

Every day I have been awaking by a small piece of heaven, today I woke up to hell falling on earth. Waking up by air raid siren is bound to give an old man a heart attack.

"W-where's the bunker!?" I ask.

"The what?" Questions Alissa.

"It's the wyvern attack, get up," Hana says. She's already putting on her clothes and armor.

It's not even dawn yet, it's 5 AM. Ciel explained to me how it's going to work so I just go to the hunters guild with Alissa while the girls prepare and wait at the house. We run through the town, the magical lights give an eerie atmosphere, the cloudy skies block the colorful moons, and the light rain is the cherry on the gloomy cake of today.

When it's starting to feel chilly we reach the guild, there are adventurers coming from everywhere. The guild extended a large tent outside the building and everyone is huddling inside of it.

"Silence! Speak only when necessary!" Yells an attendant with a magically enhanced voice.

She repeats this every so often and the incessant talking dies down to murmurs. I can see Silas is at the middle of the tent on a table while one of his attendant is searching both on a map and a list. A line forms and I get on it.

"Fellowship name?" The attendant asks.

"Helios," I answer.

"Farm protection. Number 3, east side."

"We have great expectations upon you, Mr. Ryder, don't disappoint us on this time of need," Silas says, rubbing his magnificent beard

The murmuring dies down completely and all eyes are on me. I expected a dangerous position but number 3 is worse than even Ciel imagined. Anyway, it's time to look cool.

"Helios will not disappoint, we are ready and willing to fight for this town," I say, with a clenched fist over my heart.

We will fight but we will not die, I will use [Gate] the moment any of us gets too close to danger. But my words seem to have the intended effect causing Silas to smile, then the murmuring exploded again making the attendant yell for silence.

There's not much else to do, we return home.

­

"By the gods, Wolf, you owe that guildmaster some favors or something?" Ciel asks.

No good deed goes unpunished.

"I think he owes me, actually, after this I expect some good rewards. We did bring quite a lot of proof of subjugation of strong monsters so I guess he really thinks we are strong," I say.

"Zinotue and Burkanolf are stronger than the average wyvern, the problem here will be the number," Roxanne says.

"Well, you don't seem too worried about this fight," Ciel says.

"I will keep [Gate] ready for us, any sign of real danger and we are leaving. I don't care if we have to escape the continent to avoid shame I won't let any of you die."

"Awn..." Roxanne hugs me and sniffs, "When we marry we can just live inside the succubus sacred territory, no one will question you there."

"I hardly think we will have to go that far," Hana says, "With Roxanne's elixir and a defensive position we will last a long time, we even have a good window to ask for assistance."

We review our strategy. Ciel, Hana and me at the front, 3 water elementals behind for support, Lina for any stragglers, and Roxanne and Alissa on top of the chest-high wall beside the road. Aoi will stay besides Roxanne, I have no confidence in ever leaving Aoi alone, a tamable dragon is valuable.

"I am sorry for not being useful," Lina says and bows.

That was uncalled for. I throw a hand chop on her head.

"Gueh!"

"Don't be silly, we will train you and you will certainly get strong enough to be a vanguard," I say. I hate such submissive behavior.

"Yes, I will work hard!"

"Now, give me your hand, it's time for the party."

She extends her pale, frail hand. Such delicate hands, hard to believe she can wield such a large war hammer. Once I release her hand her pale face is as red as Hana's hair.

­

We move towards the east gate, it's fully raining now. Above us, a huge wooden platform floats towards the southern wall.

"On top of that is the Lord's heavy ballista, the Dragon's Bane. We won't be able to see it but at position 3 perhaps we can see when the bolt fires," says Ciel.

We reach the gate and there's a long line of soldiers marching through it. Groups of adventurers are also leaving but in much smaller numbers. Once we cross we see the soldiers going south, they will be positioned to defend the wall. The soldiers are all holding rectangular scuta shields and long pikes.

Any attack by monsters who are not breeders or led by a monster of the type of the Orc Chief will be just a horde attacking the biggest concentrations of humanoids, whether these humanoids are combatants or not. On Rabanara this means that hiding behind the walls will only cause the wyverns to fly over and enter the town, creating chaos.

To counter that the lord brings out his army outside the south wall as bait and starts massacring any monster that gets close. They use mages to create ditches and moats, they put palisades to funnel them, traps at choke points and random spikes and rocks. The way they modify the terrain to maximize extermination efficiency could almost be considered art.

There's also the main weapons, the ballista array, they are magic tools that fire giant arrow upon arrow that almost seem like a machine gun from Earth, these terrifying weapons have a kill count that makes a hunter blush. And then there's the final weapon, the Dragon's Bane, a huge ballista that killed any dragon it met with a single shot. This strategy and organization is what gave the title Enemy of Wyverns to the Anara family and to the Lord Alaraste. No one alive in this continent killed more wyverns than him.

While the army butchers the main force of wyverns, we, the adventurers, either patrol the town for any invaders or protect the farming fields behind Rabanara. Without the farms Rabanara will surely wither and fall. Protecting the farms is a rather dangerous job because there's an unknown number of wyverns that will detach from the main force and come towards the farms. The hunters are arranged on a line along the road, starting from 1 being the closest to the gate and 2 further away and so forth. Since we are number 3 we are rather close to the main force of wyverns, meaning we will certainly deal with a considerable number of them.

­

Our position is marked with a banner, far away we can see the number 2 and number 4 fellowships, they are too far to help in a timely manner if we screw up. The number of competent and reliable fellowships is not large, every wyvern attack the adventurers are spread thin, but the prestige from success won't be small. Being called here means we are considered a very strong fellowship, which will net us a good reward in the future, if we survive.

We stay at our positions trying to concentrate while shivering in the cold rain. Ciel casts [Inspire], I manipulate Roxanne's extra skill points so she gives us each a cup of [Filling Waters]. I give us all area blessings, summon 3 water elementals, drink an MP potion, and sit down to recover mana. Before I close my eyes I see Roxanne smirking, my water elementals are women that have a distinctive ponytail, side bangs and wear oval glasses and high heel boots.

Hello again, gods. I'm not directing this prayer to anyone in particular right now since I'm not sure who I should ask for help so please listen to me a little. This will be a dangerous fight, we don't know how many are coming so it's hard to prepare. I ask for a bit of mercy on this fight, I want to grow and get stronger but it seems every time I fight, something dangerous is thrown at me. I don't want these women to suffer but I realize it's useless to protect them up to this degree, they are all warriors who made their decisions. So I ask that you at least give them enough power for them to stand beside me, I want us all to fight and go back home together.

­

Another air raid siren is sounded, two tones, the monsters are coming. I stand up, dawn is here, 70% of my mana is recovered. We all drink Roxanne's elixir. I put the 2 extra points I had into [Battlefield Perception], I don't gain eyes on my back but I always get an "intuition" about the state of the others. The ground shakes and we hear the noise of a large number of footsteps.

"GUAAAAH!" We hear the cry of a wyvern. Multiple cries follow it.

"Two Hooknoses approaching from the sky!" Alissa yells. In the distance, I see 2 black dots above the treetops.

Hooknose is a type of 2-meters tall brown wyvern that has no claws but it has a curved sharp horn at the tip of its face, it uses it to launch its prey in the air and kill it by gravity. Its jaw is wide and flat, good for crushing if the nose is not enough.

A wyvern appears from the middle of the trees, it's a Deathclaw, a 1 and a half meter tall black wyvern. It has bat-like wings with 3 half-meter long claws at the wing bone, it uses these claws to rip the meat of its prey.

"COME HERE YOU LITTLE CHICK, MAMA WILL GIVE YOU A SPANKING," Hana taunts.

None of us have a shield, there are no projectiles coming so no need for that. Hana is going to be one of the main killers of this battle, without a shield her [Sword Use] and [Two-Handed Sword Use] add to each other, allowing her to show the true strength of the dragonkin.

The Deathclaw is going to arrive first, he's charging straight to Hana. To conserve mana only the elemental behind her starts charging a spell.

100 meters.

80 meters.

60 meters.

40 meters.

20 meters.

[Water Blade]! I hear the elemental cast in my mind. Through Hana's side a large, thin blade rushes towards the frenzied wyvern and hits it on the shoulder. A deep gash appears, blood pours and mixes with the rainwater. Its charge is disrupted and it tumbles forward.

Hana jumps forward and her spear lands into the already open wound, it goes halfway in and she releases the spear.

"GUAAH!" The wyvern cries in pain. Its head slowly moves in a dramatic way, a perfect target.

Alissa wastes no time, with [Perfect Arrows] and her slightly enchanted bow she has no problem in the rain. Her first arrow is a hit and goes through the eyes of the wyvern, it goes limp and dies.

"Holy shit Alissa, you are awesome as always," Hana says. I "feel" Alissa fidget.

I'm a bit amused that "holy shit" is also a swear here.

Hana goes back to her spear and pulls it out. I store the corpse in my "Items". We can hear sounds of battle at the distance.

The two Hooknoses land 60 meters in front of us and charge towards Hana.

"ALL THREE!" I scream. The elementals all charge a spell.

Like they are in sync, the 2 Hooknoses try to skewer Hana from each side at the same time. Hana summons her wings and jumps up, the Hooknoses collide with each other and the 3 Water Blades wound both, the left one loses his horn.

Me, Hana, and Ciel strike at the same time after the [Water Blades] do their job. I make a downward strike with all my strength and increase my sword's weight with [Telekinesis], I cut the neck of the wyvern deeply and blood spurts on my arms. I jump backwards.

Ciel's thrust penetrated the side of the neck of the wyvern, she pushes down and keeps his head in place. Hana falls down with all her strength and her spear lodges inside the skull of the left wyvern, it's dead.

The wyvern I cut lashes out and tries to bite me, my [Dodge] skill makes itself useful until an arrow pierces the roof of the mouth.

"GUYEH!" It screams in surprise and retreats.

"HAH!" Hana yells and slashes downwards with her sword. It receives another deep cut on the other side of its neck.

The wyvern writhes in pain and tries to run but collapses midway, it will die soon due to blood loss. I store the closest wyvern in "Items" after I help Hana recover her spear with [Telekinesis].

"You are now level 18."

I put all my points into [Sword Use] (now 13+6).

"The way I'm using this spear it will break soon," Hana says.

"It's low quality anyway, we should have gotten you a high quality one," I say.

"Look forward! Three Coming!" Alissa yells and our short break ends.

2 Hooknoses appear with a Deathclaw in the middle of both.

"Ciel! Together!" Roxanne yells. I feel them both charging a spell.

"Remember that you are light, don't let the Hooknose lift you!" Hana yells to me.

Actually… I have an idea. I charge [Lightning Bolt].

When in range, Ciel lets out [Wind Blade] and Roxanne [Water Blade]. The Hooknose loses the right wing to it and rolls around in the ground in pain, Ciel rushes to skewer it. Hana throws her spear into her Deathclaw, it pierces its chest, making it stagger and lose the speed of charge. I cast [Lightning Bolt] but mine barely slows down, I cast another and it reduces speed to a walk, 2 arrows pierce its flank, but not deeply.

My wyvern bites 3 times, I swing my sword to keep it from trampling me, I land a few cuts. It swings its tail and I dodge, once its back is turned it receives a painful arrow in the back that sinks deep. Hana is having a sword fight with her Deathclaw and she cut off 2 claws already, Ciel is stabbing the Hooknose and slowly pushing it back, filling it with wounds.

My wyvern growls and bites at me again, I have to make sure my sword doesn't get caught or I'm screwed. This time Alissa hits the tongue of the wyvern, it gets angrier and decides to try to skewer me. It lowers its head and pushes forward. I jump, slash downwards, and increase the weight of my sword as much as I can. The sword pierces the wyvern through the head and buries itself up until the hilt, it falls limp on the floor. With a little effort, I manage to dislodge my bloodied sword.

I go help Hana and slice off the foot of the Deathclaw, it falls down on the ground and Hana pierces its heart with her sword.

Roxanne casts [Water Blade] towards the chest and finishes off the suppressed wyvern Ciel was fighting.

We quickly collect the proof of subjugation of each monster.

"Hana! Taunt them!" Alissa yells and points.

There's 2 Jazars trying to sneak through our left side. The Jazar is a 2 and a half meter tall bright red wyvern, it has no wings but it has long and thin freaky arms, at its fingers are 10cm long claws with an edge. Hunters harvest those claws to use as knives.

"OVER HERE, SHITTY GECKOS, I NEED NEW TOOTHPICKS!" Hana taunts.

The running monsters make an emergency stop and immediately change course towards Hana.

"ALL THREE! GIRLS, WAIT FOR THE SPELL!" I scream, the elementals obey.

We gather near Hana and wait. The wyverns run with their arms raised high, it's really creepy.

When they reach 20 meters three [Water Blades] fly through us. The right arm of the left wyvern gets cut off, the other wyvern receives one long cut through its flank and dodges the last blade.

Hana charges with her spear and skewers the left wyvern, it gets stopped in place and her spear breaks, following the break Ciel stabs the wyvern and it tries to escape. My wyvern ignores me and I run my sword through its flank, due to [Telekinesis] the wound is much deeper than I could ever cut. The wyvern screams and tumbles down past me. When it raises its head it receives an arrow through the eye and dies.

Hana moves past her wyvern and blocks its escape. This wyvern got desperate and it's swinging its remaining arm wildly, blocking any of us from getting close.

"Four more are coming!" Alissa yells. She can't do anything, the scales of this one are too tough for her arrows.

"Roxanne! Finish it!" I yell, she starts gathering mana.

"[Water Blade]!" She yells.

The wyvern gets hit in the back and staggers, it was a really deep wound. Hana and Ciel waste no time, they both slash towards its neck and blood gushes out. We retreat, it wobbles a bit and collapses a few meters away from us.

"EVERYONE…! BARRAGE!" I scream, trying to catch my breath. Everyone gathers mana, I charge [Lightning Bolt].

The wyverns land 80 meters from us and pick up speed, they are all Hooknoses.

"FIRE!" I yell.

I let out my charged [Lightning Bolt], the one I hit falls down and eats dirt. Before he even stops moving an arrow goes through his eye and he dies. The others get multiple wounds, one is wobbling and can only walk towards us, the last 2 keep their charge.

Hana and Ciel get ready to receive the charge.

"[Wind Wall]!" Ciel yells.

An area in front of her gets blurred and the wyvern slows down, it struggles but passes through. This delay was enough and Ciel thrusts at its chest, the attack misses the heart but it goes deep. Ciel follows it with a slash, the already wounded wyvern gets cautious and stops moving just to receive an arrow at the flank. It enrages again and charges, receiving Roxanne's [Water Blade] on the skull, making it wince. Ciel then slashes downward with her glaive and the blade buries itself on the already wounded part of the head, the wyvern goes limp.

Hana summons her wings and receives the charge by thrusting her sword at the chest of the wyvern and holding it in place. The monster tries to bite at her but she kicks it off her sword and pushes it to the side. It falls near me and I slash at its neck aided by [Telekinesis], blood spurts out again and reaches my face. The monster whips back and tries to skewer me. Hana dashes forward and buries her sword into its skull through its eye, it's dead.

The last wyvern limps forward and receives an arrow in the last leg, it falls down and pitifully tries to crawl towards us, its eyes glare at us with hate and evil intent. Then the shine on its eyes goes away as an arrow pierces one eye and kills it.

We get a small breather. Hana pulls out a spare shitty spear we have.

­

Lina collects the proof of extermination for us, she's quite anxious about not being able to do anything so she insisted on doing this. I'm sitting down trying to meditate but the cold from the rain is making it difficult.

"Lina! Five coming!" Alissa yells.

Lina cutely scurries back towards us and we get ready again.

From multiple places 5 wyverns appear, 2 Hooknoses, 2 Deathclaws and a Jazar.

"EVERYONE! FOCUS JAZAR! FIRE AT WILL!" I scream.

Alissa lets out multiple arrows, the Jazar slows down. The elementals finish casting and multiple wounds cover its body, it stubbornly keeps moving. Ciel unleashes her [Wind Blade] and it barely dodges, opening a long cut on its flank. Alissa fires another arrow and it stumbles, Roxanne takes the opportunity and unleashes her [Water Blade], it goes through the skull and it dies on the spot.

"DEATHCLAWS? MORE LIKE KNIFECLAWS, YOUR CLAWS CAN'T EVEN SCRATCH ME!" Hana taunts.

The Deathclaws aim at her and the Hooknoses aim at me and Ciel, one for each of us. Mine seems a bit big though, I'm just slightly scared.

"CIEL! JAZAR COMING!" Alissa screams. I "feel" that Roxanne is capable of assisting her, she will be fine.

The Hooknose is coming too fast for me to face it head-on. I don't wanna waste more mana on him and Alissa is busy covering Ciel, I will just avoid him until I get an opening.

The wyvern comes with such a force the ground trembles. I dodge towards the side, I slash as I dodge and I manage to give a shallow wound, then my view goes dark…

­

I blink, I see the sky and rainwater goes into my eyes. My head hurts. I immediately cast [Heal], the pain goes away and I lift my body, I see the Sea of Trees in front of me. I feel a chill on my back so powerful I almost piss myself, "death" is coming. Fucker had spread its wings and hit me in the head as I moved past it.

I roll sideways and I hear a pound, I roll again and I hear a clack, I get into a crouch position and jump, I feel the wind on my back as a tail swipes at were I was. I turn around and a pointy horn is thrusting towards me. I use [Telekinesis] on myself, reducing my weight, I put my foot on the nose besides the horn and I'm lifted upwards like a feather.

I'm flying, kinda. I don't have a lot of control over [Telekinesis] when I use it on myself so I'm still kinda screwed when I fall down. I look at my hand and luckily I'm still holding my sword, convenient.

I don't want to fall slowly into the open mouth of that monster so I increase the gravity of my sword as much as I can, it pulls me down fast.

The monster opens its mouth and ignores my sword, fucking retard. I cut through its mouth like butter, its flesh, bone, and fangs were nothing to stop me. The sword was angled in such a way the lower jaw is left hanging by a small piece of bone. I fall down heavily on the ground, couldn't manipulate my gravity skillfully enough, my legs and spine hurt. I "feel" Hana is hurt, but I hear her laugh so I guess she's fine.

The monster roars and shakes its head, spewing blood all over, its tongue falls down on the floor. For his temper tantrum, he receives an arrow down his throat. The monster chokes and retches dramatically.

I rush forward and slash at its leg, it falls down on one knee and tries to swipe at me with its tail. I block with my sword and I'm thrown back a few meters ass down into the mud. My muscles ache, I'm getting tired.

I "feel" Ciel get hurt, my heart aches but I have to finish this one first, I believe Roxanne won't let her die.

I dash forward and the monster tries to skewer me but it lacks power. I dodge and slash at its nose, a shallow wound. It tries to sweep me again but I'm too far, a small step back and I'm fine. Once its back is turned I slash at the other leg, it cries in pain again and nearly falls.

It tries to squash me with its head but I dodge sideways and slash again, this time I make a deep wound at the neck with [Telekinesis].

The girls are fine, the wounds are just like mine, acceptable. The monster tries to spread its wings again and hit me but I just duck and stab it. The monster tries to retract the wings and I pull my sword causing a large and painful tear on its wing. It gets cautious and glares at me, trying to retreat.

An arrow on its back and it gets desperate, trying to trample over me. I crouch and use [Telekinesis] on the sword and thrust it upwards, the wyvern steps on me but it screams and retreats its huge foot, now bleeding.

The monster stops for a second, perfect, I raise my free hand with a clenched fist and the elemental casts a [Water Blade] on the back of the monster. It roars and falls, I dash and slash at its already wounded throat.

"GUAaaaah~," The wyvern cries weakly.

It tries to wobble away and collapses, I thrust my sword down its skull, it's dead.

"You are now level 19."

Damn, that's a lot of experience. I put all my points into [Mana Recovery] (now 10+0).

Hana and Ciel are fighting one Deathclaw each, the Jazar is already dead from the elementals and Roxanne. I rush towards Hana and cast [Lightning Bolt], the wyvern freezes, it's stunned.

Hana's elemental unleashes a [Water Blade] and a wing is cut off. The monster roars and Hana takes the chance, she inflicts multiple deep cuts on the wyvern, her spare spear is already broken and half embedded into its chest. It flails its wings in vain, I slash at its leg and it falls on one knee.

"HAAAH!" Hana yells.

She slashes downward and the wyvern tries to defend but it's not strong enough. Its wings bend before Hana's slash and her sword gets embedded into the skull of the wyvern, it's dead.

Ciel pierces the jaw of Deathclaw and holds it in place, Alissa unleashes her arrow and it pierces the eye, killing it. She frees her glaive and crouches down, I rush towards her. She has 3 slashes across her chest, some blood and a little bit of chocolate cleavage can be seen.

I hear Ciel murmuring.

"How are you?" I ask, and touch her shoulder.

"… [Heal]. Ugh, I'm okay, just a flesh wound," she says and looks at her bloodied clothes.

I cast [Clean].

"Still bleeding?"

"Hm, nope, I'm fine," she says while feeling her clothes and armor," Don't look at me like that, I have been worse.

I sigh. I get too anxious when I see them bloodied.

"Heal Hana too please, I'm using too much of my mana already."

Hana is also fine just a scratch and bruises. She has 3 slashes on her flank and one on her shoulder, cutting the padding of the brigandine and exposing the metal plates. Her only flesh wound is a slash on her cheek, though it won't scar, dragonkin skin is just that good.

­

Wagons and horsemen rush around the road, wounded, news, replacement requests. This is a city-wide effort and their experience shows, for hundreds of years they have been doing this every year or so.

The rain is thinning but I'm still shivering with cold.

"SEVEN COMING!" Alissa yells.

Fuck me, they keep increasing.

"BATTERY!" I yell.

150 meters. They are not out of the woods yet.

Hana brings out her bow and arrows. We all charge mana.

"FIRE!"

Hana actually hits her arrow even in the rain with an average bow. No kills.

"AIM!"

120 meters.

"FIRE!"

No kills.

"AIM!"

90 meters.

"FIRE!"

1 down. 6 to go.

"AIM!"

70 meters.

"FIRE!"

1 down. 5 to go.

"FIRE AT WILL!"

My mana is low, I have to save my spells.

"YOU ARE JUST EXPERIENCE FOR MY SOUL! COME TO ME!" Hana taunts, she fires one last arrow and throws her bow.

A Deathclaw comes to me, it has 2 arrows on its chest, it's bleeding from the lower body and it has a long tear on a wing. I draw my knife on my back and throw it. I'm actually bad at throwing so I use a bit of [Telekinesis] and turn it into an arrow. It sinks heavily into the shoulder of the wyvern and slows it down. I charge forward.

I slash upwards and the wyvern parries with a claw, the other wing comes and I dodge back, the wyverns are awkward at fighting close range, they rely on overwhelming strength instead of skill. I lift my hand with a clenched fist and a weak [Water Blade] slashes the wyvern at the neck, it's a shallow wound.

I gotta buy time for the elemental to charge a blade strong enough. Alissa is busy trying to support Hana, the 2 Jazars she's fighting are being tough, Roxanne is also busy helping Ciel fight 2 Hooknoses.

The wyvern coughs blood, good, it's weakened so I can parry its attacks more easily. I say that but when I parried its claws it's still stupid strong like an orc. I use my skills and deflect the attack allowing me a quick slice on its wing. The wyvern is not enraging, perhaps it's smarter than the others.

We trade a few blows and I dodge back to catch my breath, it coughs blood again. It charges forward, I dodge sideways and it slashes at me at an odd angle, weak. I push back and jump forward to slash, I put weight into my sword and start to cut over its chest. Something hits my flank and I see the sky again.

I fall down on something hard and the air escapes my lungs. Holy shit it hurts.

"ALISSA! HELP MASTER!" Lina screams.

I try to stand up and fall down in pain, I use nearly all my mana on [Heal], something is definitely broken. I had fallen on a rock, my ribs still hurt even after healing. If I use any more overuse symptoms will start.

A shadow covers me and I look forward, the wyvern is going to bite me. A large orange fox tackles the wyvern and bites it on the wing. The wyvern struggles and shakes around, the fox suddenly flies away and lands on its feet, it has a bloody mouth and spits a lump of wyvern muscle.

"Master, are you alright?" Lina asks, she brings a red potion to my mouth and I drink it.

"I'm out, I can barely fight."

The wyvern suddenly turns to me. Oh fuck, did it hear me? Can it understand me?

It moves towards me. Alissa charges after it and bites the leg, the wyvern tumbles but doesn't fall.

"HAAAH!" Lina screams.

She immediately jumps forward and her long war hammer hits the head of the wyvern, it slashes back at the same time and Lina flies away. The wyvern struggles to keep moving, its head is wobbling. Thanks, Lina.

I lift my hand in a clenched fist. The elemental lets out a blade, it buries deeply inside the neck of the wyvern. It falters and Alissa incredibly manages to throw it backward, it twitches and doesn't get up.

"You are now level 20."

There must be some bonus for killing monsters the first few times.

Hana is hurt again, I'm worried now.

"Help Hana!" I yell to Alissa and regret it since pain strikes me again.

She turns around and transforms back. With incredible speed she fires two shots and moves sideways to flank the wyverns.

I look at Lina, she's getting up, she's just bruised and dirty with mud. With the help of Roxanne, Ciel finishes her last Hooknose, she immediately jumps forward and slashes at Hana's Jazar. It's too weak to dodge and defends itself with its arm, which gets cut off.

Alissa circles around the last wyvern and puts 2 more arrows on its back, it struggles to move due to pain. Hana summons her wings and jumps, she lets gravity act and slashes downwards, she splits the head of the wyvern in two.

Hana falls on her knees, Ciel rushes to heal her. Hana's armor is ruined, she must have plenty of bruises now. I wonder what would have happened if we didn't have [Wind Armor] or Roxanne's elixir.

Roxanne is tired, her mana is nearly gone, the elementals regenerate fast on this rain but they are still not that strong against these wyverns. They are the most stable to use in the rain, electric elementals are the most dangerous and fire elementals are useless, even earth elementals get weaker in the rain. We need to ask for a replacement.

I feel mana gathering far away, it's a lot of mana.

5 wyverns appear on the forest line, it's a group of Jazars. They are rushing towards us but they slow down and stop.

The mana gathering is so high the monsters are feeling it, even Hana who has the weakest [Sense Mana] stopped to look at the mana gathering. It's coming from the wall of the town, something is happening there.

I feel chills down on my bone, it's like I'm being pressured by the mana, it's the fear of what kind of spell requires so much mana. I feel like I could be dragged into a hole if I went there, I feel an instinctive urge to run away. The wyverns freeze and Alissa kills one with an arrow through the eye, hah. The other wyverns retreat.

I look back at the town and see black clouds gathering, our cloudy day turns into a frightening night as a thunderstorm starts. I don't feel much strength in my legs so I sit down.

I hear something resonate into my mind… [THUNDER STRIKE]!

The world turns white, day has come for a split second, the ground shakes and my ears hurt at the sound of a thunder so strong I wonder if it wasn't just a bomb instead. The cloudy day comes back after a few seconds.

A black dot on the sky starts to become bigger, it's falling down. I see the familiar blue shine of dragon scales. The falling dragon gets so large there's no doubt about it, it was the ancient dragon that killed Hilde.

Suddenly a thick black rod appears from the town and pierces the helpless falling dragon. As if it was nothing, the rod pushes away the dragon and it falls down far deep into the Sea of Trees.

"GUEEE!"

"GUOOO!"

"GAAAAA!"

The wyverns cry. The ground shakes and we hear again the beat of a large number of footsteps. The sound grows faint and distant until the only thing we can hear is the rain, no more sounds of battle.

"We won!?" I ask.

"YES!" Ciel cries and jumps.

"WE WON!"

We hear cheers in the distance.

"KWEEH!" Aoi yells.

"WE WON!" Alissa jumps at me.

"AH! My ribs!"

"Sorry! Sorry! Ciel, heal him please!"

After my ribs get put back into place we do a group hug. It's 9:00AM, we won the battle against the wyverns.