Well then, since the ceiling of the return corridor is low, Elma-san will just bump her head if I tried to run or jump.
But before that could happen, her head rubbed against the ceiling when we climbed the stairs.
Still, being weakened as she was, walking on her own will just take time, so I shall use that method.
「Onee-san became smaller!? 」
Using Flesh Manipulation, I turned into a child form.
With this, there should be more space and Elma-san won’t suffer damage to her scalp.
「How is it, I can even change my appearance to about Elma-san’s age. 」
「Fue~. It feels like I’m friends with Onee-san. 」
Elma-san let out an impressed noise.
And for some reason, she started to knead my cheeks.
「Waa~! Elastic cheeks~! So cute, Onee-chan. 」
「Ah sorry, Onee-san is Onee-san……」
I would like to avoid getting called with a -chan from a little girl.
『That’s where sisterhood comes in』
『RIO step sister hug please~』
Just like that, the viewers made use of the chance to follow up with their attacks.
「Just call me what you like. I don’t mind anything if that means pampering Elma-san. 」
「Unn. But calling Onee-san feels the calmest, can I? 」
「Hoh. I as well, feel most at home with that, please do so. 」
Elma-san’s mouth loosened.
Interacting without any problems, the relationship that was far apart got closer quickly. It felt like it was happening every time we conversed.
「So that’s a yes. Understood. 」
As for the Enemies that were former humans, since there’re no longer bodies for them to return to, there’s nothing I can do.
Therefore, I opened the cages that trapped them, telling them the truth that returning is impossible, releasing those who don’t want to die to the wild, while finishing off those that thought living is too painful.
『First floor! 』
『Finally some fresh air to breathe』
『Today was so exciting』
『Don’t ever wanna go to ethics-out-the-window facilities』
『Elma-chan’s gestures sure rouse the protecting urge』
『Elma-chan is the flower of the stream』
We returned back to the surface.
Having Elma-san along is the accomplishment.
「Mu. Magic 」
One trouble after another.
The moment I opened the door to outside, various spells like fireballs, water balls started firing towards us.
「What happened!? 」
「It’s the enemies. Since my stream had been ongoing for a while, they must’ve been waiting outside. 」
While avoiding the attacks and running sideways, I let Elma-san down, and took up a stance with the great sword to get ready to take them on.
「RIO came out! Surround her! 」
「The kid is there too! 」
「Alright, fire your magic at the same time again! 」
「Hyuu―! That RIO, acting like a prince saving a princess in captive! 」
Although there’re some that cracked a joke, the adventurers mostly have animosity and started blasting spells again.
This situation isn’t as good as I hope it can be.
Staying here and getting bombarded by spells isn’t a good idea, and even if I went back into the building to fight, having the building collapse from the battle might crush Elma-san to death.
「Outnumbered, but individually, they’re my inferior. 」
From a glance, there’re many adventurers that are using only magic, if I can get closer before they finished casting a spell, I should be able to crush them one by one and get rid of all of them.
So, when I started sprinting towards one of the enemies, at the timing when I managed to dive in their spell range, they started bombarding with their magic again.
「Elma-san is, this is bad. 」
The magic balls that should’ve been aiming at me for a direct hit for some reason curved as if avoiding me and was going for a kill at Elma-san who was crouching down.
「Uwawa! It’s coming for me! 」
Cutting down all of the barrage, nothing much happened but, it was an incomprehensible behavior.
It’s unlikely for all of them to have low accuracy, if so, it’s natural to think that they shifted their aim to Elma-san just before firing……
As I was thinking like that, a man that was holding an eye catching staff revealed the truth.
「Listen y’all! Aim carefully for that kid! RIO will definitely go cover her. Fire like you’re out to kill that kid! 」
「「「Aye aye sir! 」」」
……It’s not strategically wrong to aim for the defended target first but, these adventurers, isn’t better to rename them as strategists instead?
I tried to see whether they will listen to me at all.
「Wait! This girl is only a human, she’s no more or less than a harmless non-combatant! Your opponent should only be me! 」
「Don’t hear her crap! Aim for that kid’s head until RIO dies! 」
To have my complaints kicked all aside, what a ridiculous bunch of adventurers I’ve come across.
Since they determined that I will for sure protect her, the people that normally require protection can keep unleashing long ranged attack.
Looks like as long as the adventurer’s guild is the governor, it’s impossible for Elma-san to return to the human society.
「《Magic ・ Water Ball》」
『《Magic ・ Thunder Ball》』
「《Magic ・ High Fire Ball》」
「Push push! Don’t show her mercy! 」
A myriad of fastballs came in a straight line.
Losing Elma-san is the same as defeat. Changing my running direction, and overtaking the barrage, I protected Elma-san from the danger.
「Fuh, it doesn’t even serve to scratch my itch. 」
Blocking half with my sword, and the other half by using my body, this is not going well.
With each of them having enough power to blow a chunk of flesh away, just one of them hitting Elma-san would be fatal.
「Oi oi, ain’t it as you expected? 」
「Looks like RIO really don’t want that Elma or someone to die」
「Winnable! Us against RIO! 」
「No matter the process, winning against RIO will get us promotion to the upper S ranks! 」
What a bunch of merciless adventurers.
I really want to retreat back into the building and find another exit but, since their magic are guided remotely, I can’t predict their movement if I take my eye off them even for a moment.
「It’s a pinch! Can’t we do something!? 」
「I’m thinking about it currently. There’s nothing else but to wait until then. 」
Despite knowing more reinforcements would come if I took my time to formulate a plan, I sure is still calm, as I laughed at myself.
After that, to expand my area of defense, I changed to the parasol but, the battle is still one-sidedly on my defense.
If I don’t move from here, then the enemies will eventually circle into the building, and pincer us.
Even for the guild master sisters, all they can do in front of this barrage is to keep themselves safe.
Come to think of it, the reason why they are so insistent on aiming at Elma-san is because they want to slowly diminish me and defeat me afterwards.
Therefore, if considering Elma-san’s safety as the number one priority, I should get defeated here.
If the attacks on Elma-san will stop and if she can be treated well even after being brought by the adventurers……, and since there’s Eriko that has a connection with me too…….
To leave Elma-san to an organization that would perform such cold blooded experiment secretly, I will never accept it.
「What can I do, Onee-san……」
It seems like Elma-san has nothing she can do but to rely on me now.
However, the thoughts behind her eyes were obvious that her trust was only on me despite having several other ways to save herself.
To leave her life to a vampire that doesn’t even have the just of justice, how ironic is it?
Irony with irony, the world is filled with irony, that’s why it doesn’t ever get boring.
「There’s nothing for Elma-san to worry. Think of it as riding on a big ship, leave everything to Onee-san. 」
To breakthrough this stalemate, there’s no other choice but to gamble dangerously.
「I will only say it one time. Don’t let go of this parasol no matter what, cover your entire body with it. 」
Telling Elma-san so, I had her grip onto the parasol.
Since they are magic bullets that can be defended with the parasol, with this, Elma-san should be completely safe.
「Y-You can’t! Isn’t this important for Onee-san!? If I hold it, then Onee-san can’t fight! 」
「No worry. To annihilate a whole bunch of weaklings, my bare hands is enough. 」
Saying as if I was full of confidence.
But if I didn’t have this much confidence, then I can’t possibly make Elma-san take the parasol without worry.
In a worthless virtual world that wouldn’t affect the reality no matter how many corpse is piled up, Elma-san is the first person I felt worth protecting.
There was no calculating nor motive behind it, determined to die with the sole reason of wanting to live longer, a fragile and lovable human that can be loved.
Well then, both my hands are now free.
「It’s time for a genocide by a villainous vampire. The fear of an unwanted death, I shall engrave it in your eyes that you won’t ever forget it even after resurrecting. 」
I won’t turn around anymore. Until I finish carving out Elma-san’s path that is blocked by the adventurers.
If hell awaits no matter I advance or retreat, then I can only advance to a more desirable hell.
「She’s got nothing! What a fool, doing that when she’s got no bare hand skills. 」
「Alright, the match’s decided, RIO is going in the bag! 」
「No don’t, continue attacking the kid is better! 」
「Don’t you understand that if RIO comes here, then we’re getting killed instantly! 」
「No, get the kid first! 」
「No, RIO first! 」
Although it was a situation where my winning chances is close to zero, I shall gamble in the chaos between the adventurers.
「No don’t go! Onee-saaaan!! 」
For the sake of returning together with Elma-san, I must defeat all of them no matter what.
A/N: ↓ Scroll and please the point review.
A/N: Sleeping gets me better but it becomes bad again later