Chapter 190 – Further Evolution
The Kingdom Army continued its advance, continuously getting bigger while absorbing more captured soldiers.
They are all originally citizens of the same Kingdom, and this army is one with a great cause because of the King and the Holy Sword that Kakeru acquired.
Most of the soldiers did not show much resistance and quickly joined the Kingdom Army.
There were also some who waved their white flags even before engaging a battle.
Gradually, the military strength of both sides was reversed. The Kingdom Army had exceeded the number of the Duke’s Army’s soldiers.
Reaching this point, with the scale of the battles, the victory was no longer singlehandedly decided by Selene’s troops.
Although Selene continued to show her battle prowess, that was all.
The situation of the war changed quicker than Selene’s growth, increasing its scale as if a snowball falling from a slope, advancing towards the climax.
「Shou, do you have time right now?」
In the encampment, inside my Magic Cottage.
Selene came to visit when I was listening to Helen’s strategy for the next battle.
She entered through the door, butーーshe seems somewhat strange.
She’s wearing a gloomier expression than usual.
「What’s the matter?」
「Don’t hold back if you want to say something. I’ll tell you if it’s something I can’t accept」
「O-Okay. Uhm, you know, Shou. The healing ball that Shou uses for me to heal my wounds」
「You’re talking about the magic ball?」
「Un, that. I wonder if I could have one」
「It’s fine, but……were you injured?」
I looked at Selene. She doesn’t look like she’s injured.
Or rather, I asked Neora to always carry magic balls, so she should’ve used them if Selene was injured.
That was not the case, but she’s asking me directly.
Something must have happened.
「T-There’s a person I want to use it to. A person I want to save!」
『What are you going to do?』
Eleanor asked and I thought.
There’s no problem at all giving Selene something like a magic ball as much as she wants them, but I’m interested about why it turned to a situation that she would ask me like this.
「Alright. Is one enough?」
「Un! Thank you Shou!」
Selene became delightedーーreceived the magic ball with a face of relief, and left the cottage.
While that happened, I asked Helene to wait there, hid myself using my aura and followed Selene.
Selene walked through the encampment where the number of soldiers has increased a lot. She’s holding the magic ball with both hands very carefully.
「Princess! Where are you going? I shall accompany you as a guard」
「Princess, it is cold tonight, please wear this coat」
Selene continued to advance with soldiers calling out to her one next to the other.
All of them seemed very friendly, and clearly calls out to her with respect and admiration.
『She’s quite popular』
「That’s a good thing. Thinking about the future, it is absolutely better that she’s respected by soldiers and the people」
『Don’t you feel jealous?』
「Why would I be jealous by this?」
『Hmm. By the way, a boy who lives near the mansion seems to be giving Hikari feverous gazes』
「……tell me his name and what his face looks like later」
“Kukuku”, Eleanor laughed.
I continued to follow Selene and arrived at a tent.
I entered the tent with Selene.
There are a few injured soldiers inside. Most of them have light injuries, and Selene ignored them, going straight to the back of the room.
There was a heavily injured soldier there.
He’s lying on the ground with his chest moving erratically and breathes roughly.
A military physician came to Selene’s side while she stared at that soldier.
「What will happen to him?」
The military physician shook his head. It looks like his condition was not good.
「He saved Princess. He must be honored risking his life saving you」
『Hmm, it looks like it’s a soldier who got wounded from protecting her』
「Come to think of it, Selene Troops were a little slow on retreating today」
『They was too deep within the enemy lines because of the usual charge attack, so they got isolated as a result』
「This soldier probably got wounded when he protected Selene at that time」
『It’s probably about time to change her actions』
「I guess so」
Selene kneeled towards the injured soldier, and pushed the magic ball that she held as if it’s a world-protecting treasure towards that man’s chest.
「Princess! You will be soiled with bloodーー」
The military physician tried to stop her, but the magic ball activated.
The healing light enveloped the heavily injured soldier, illuminating the whole tent.
While being satisfied with Selene’s expression changing to a good one unlike when I met her earlier.
I turned away from the soldier who was being healed, secretly leaving the tent with my appearance hidden.
The next day, the Kingdom Army sortied after changing its formation.
It was changed to one that would not let Selene Troops isolated within the enemy lines, while allowing both engaging armies to see the “Princess and the Holy Sword” when they met.
After changing the formation to that, the army marched towards the next town.
But suddenly, the reconnaissance that cleared the way ahead flew back to the Selene Troops in a panic.
「This is bad, Princess!」
「Ebal! Ebal is burning!」
Selene was stunned. She quickly took the horse that the reconnaissance used and rushed towards Ebal.
Selene forcefully made the horse run even though she was not good at horse riding.
Although the horse almost changed into a raging one, despite being almost thrown off, Selene desperately clung to the horse and made it advance.
And what she arrived at, was the town of Ebal that was completely changed.
The town was burned.
Neora caught up with her together with the Selene Troops.
Selene did not give them a glance, quickly running around the town.
There was an unbelievably small number of casualties compared to the size of the town.
But without understanding what that indicates, Selene ran around desperately.
And finally, she saw one man.
A dying man with terrible sword and burn wounds.
「Are you okay?! Hold on!」
「What happened? Hey, tell me what happened! What happened to Ebal!」
「T-Te, ri, os……」
「Forcefully……everyone……to, make them, soldiers……」
「Why! Why do such a thing!「」」
The hand reached out towards Selene, but, it failed to do so.
The man lost strength half way, never to raise his hand again.
Selene put the man’s corpse to the ground. She looked at her hand with eyes turning red, seeing it close and open.
And there, Neora caught up to her with the Selene Troops.
「Let’s go. We’re going after them. Someone who, someone who treats this Kingdom like thisーー」
「……please calm down, Selene-sama」
Neora looked at the man, looked at the surroundings, and looked at Selene.
She clearly understands how she feels right now.
However, Neora had received commands from Kakeru, the command to hold Selene’s leash tightly.
「We are sticking out of the formation too much. It is dangerous to chase after them like this. There is the possibility of us being defeated or even wiped out. The possibility of all the soldiers following Selene-sama die」
She wavered, wavered between her anger and Neora’s advice.
The latter won.
After being taken to Kakeru’s side, Selene received various kinds of education, making her underestimate her abilities instead, and started to listen to other people’s advice.
She understands that they were too far ahead of the army, and she also understands that that is dangerous to themselves.
A scene appeared on her mind, a scene of a soldier. A young soldier who was heavily injured for protecting her yesterday.
That scene……might happen to everyone here.
The scene of everyone in here getting heavily injuredーーno, they might even die.
Selene was unable to carry through with her anger.
「I……got it……let’s join up with Shou」
Selene squeezed out her voice, as if she vomited blood.
Neora felt her chest being tightened.
Selene forced herself to be convinced, while she strongly bit her lips, and blood was dripping off her tightly closed first.
But, Neora couldn’t allow her to chase after them.
For her, Kakeru’s command is absolute.
If she let Selene follow them, there is no doubt that she would be put in danger. They would enter a fight where Neora could not guarantee that she can protect Selene.
Neora could not allow her to do such thing.
And just like that, the order of turning back and joining up with the main army was given.
But, the order was not completely obeyed.
「Princess, let’s chase after them!」
The one who called an objection was no other than the soldier who was heavily injured yesterday.
「N-No, didn’t you hear what we talked about? It’ll be dangerousーー」
「If we don’t chase after them now, there’ll be more victims! And for us, if it’s for the ‘current’ Selene-sama, we won’t mind some danger. Right, you guys!」
The soldiers raised their voice.
Their hearts become one, with a roar that shook the ground.
「That’s why, please order us Princess. To protect our Kingdom」
Selene looked at them unbelievably, thinking why they would go that far for her.
The negative way of thinking that she gained after staying at Kakeru’s sideーー.
She stopped it.
Selene looked at Neora, with an apologizing gaze.
And, she quickly rubbed her tearsーーtears from anger and tears from being moved, and told the soldiers.
「Everyone, follow me!」
The morale that was as high as the heavens were as if it celebrated the coming out of the cocoon of the Princess of the Holy Sword.