Three days after that.
Crimson Osprey and the others had infiltrated the residency of Duke Nyrestria. In one corner of the residency that is wide enough to house a small village, Crimson Osprey recalled the mission while looking from afar at the training grounds.
It would be much easier to sneak in during the night rather than doing a bold assassination during the day. In the day, there would be many more escorts, and also their figures will be seen. Just that much would make the difficulty skyrocket.
But it’s different since the requestor wished for it especially. Who knows how much money was put on the table, the plan was formulated knowing the danger even with this many experts member of the organization.
Maybe the requestor only wished the world to know 『There was an assassination attempt on the Duke’s daughter』.
Though, as one of the members of the operation team, Crimson Osprey didn’t have the position nor method to know what the reason is. She only has to do what she was ordered to.
The role of Crimson Osprey was to 『Report』.
No matter the success of the operation, her utmost priority is to record down every detail of the operation and report to the organization. That’s why, Crimson Osprey is not participating in the operation directly.
Her job is to overlook the operation from afar from start to finish, and bring back the report without interacting with friendlies nor enemies.
(It’s almost time)
Just like what was planned prior, her comrades were in position to surround the training grounds.
Crimson Osprey looked at the center of the training grounds. Her gaze found two people.
One of them is a young girl with iris colored hair. It is the target, the duke’s daughter. Opposite of him is a black-haired young man. He’s suspected to be the mercenary with the second name, Countless Swords Sorcerer. And then there’s a golden beast over a meter long beside him.
(What is that? It’s too big to be a pet?)
Crimson Osprey’s frowned at the uncertain element.
There’s only two person and one beast in the center of the training grounds. The servants and aides are probably in a resting spot a little far away from them.
There’re a few escorts put around the training grounds but, in other words, if they can break through them, there’s only one mercenary beside the noble lady.
Originally, there’s no need to purposely aim for the time when the Countless Swords Sorcerer mercenary is right beside the target. But still, that just means that if they can hold down him, it’ll be easy to take down the single defenseless young lady.
As the other escorts are dispersed, they will take time to get to the target. Even if it’s only a few seconds, it’s enough time to stick a blade in the target’s throat. It’s not something difficult for the experts of the organization.
After all, infiltrating into the duke residency is already a hard task. But in this occasion, they had a few insiders and were easily let inside. No matter how loyal they are to the duke family, they can’t say anything when their family is taken hostage.
It wasn’t cruel. Having important people that they would be troubled if taken hostage. That much is already happiness in Crimson Osprey’s opinion.
The time that had been decided beforehand arrived. Even Crimson Osprey that hadn’t approached anywhere near so far creeped up closer while hiding her presence in order to see everything.
The scenery bathed with sunshine. Her comrades started moving in its wake.
Suddenly, two shadows appeared from a corner of the training grounds.
Knocking down the escort that questioned their identity, the nine assassins started dashing for the target along with the Countless Swords Sorcerer without even looking aside.
The escorts nearby immediately took up the irregularity but, the escorts that were opposite of the wide training grounds didn’t seem to realize the situation yet.
As for the two in the middle of the training grounds――.
The Countless Swords Sorcerer directed a gaze towards the direction of the assassins. Did the target get warned by him, she seemed to have taken up a stance with her wooden sword.
But the assassins didn’t stop running. Having hesitation this late into the operation wouldn’t benefit them at all.
The escorts that had noticed the presences of the assassins running towards the target are already too late. The assassins that had now closed the distance in just a mere fifty meters took out some kind of stone from their pocket and threw.
The next moment, an intense red flaming ball was shot out. Without waiting, new flaming spheres appeared one after another. The training grounds is already covered in intense windstorm and dust clouds.
The flames were created using a relic, 『Scorching magic stone』. The magic stones are able to draw out phenomenon like casting a magic spell, but the method to manufacture them are said to be even older than the age of ancients and god, there’s no way to make more.
It is the reason magic stones are valuable items. The magic stones that can have the power of matching upper-grade spells are priceless for any normal person.
And the 『Scorching magic stone』 that can produce an effect matching 『Flames of Purgatory』 can easily feed a family of four in the capital for 2 years. To have them used up in just a moment was too much of a waste.
On top of that, there were thirty. The number of magic stones that were thrown towards the target by the comrades of Crimson Osprey.
That is the reason why they can even attempt to take down the target in broad daylight despite a strong mercenary known as the Countless Swords Sorcerer is around. Although the cost of using the magic stones should be absurd, the requestor must have really been intent of harming the duke’s daughter.
With that many magic stones and each wielding powerful might, even Countless Swords Sorcerer can’t be all fine. And without saying, a defenseless noble lady――, 『Yarn Crank』 had judged so.
Of course, they can’t entirely rely on uncertain methods. Even if it’s really like what 『Dive Swallow』 hypothesized about not letting her attend the banquet in a few days, the organization’s order was to 『Kill her』.
Verifying the burnt corpse of the target, and taking a proof of that from some accessories on her would be the only way for them to say it’s mission accomplished.
The flames subsided, and the dust clouds calmed. And then, the nine shadows moved quickly into it.
As arranged prior, two shadows headed towards the target. It’s to verify her death, and to stab her if she still has any breath.
The remaining seven members are to deal with the Countless Swords Sorcerer. If he is still alive, they must keep his hands full. But in the next moment, what Crimson Osprey witnessed was unbelievable.
The figures of her comrades being blown away.
「Surround them! 」
An order shouted by『Yarn Crank』. Then, the comrades that were blown away in an arc. Next, the figure of a black-haired young man without wounds in the center of the aftermath.
Crimson Osprey almost shouted out.
The 『Scorching magic stone』 that has almost the power of upper-grade spells aren’t normal. And taking on thirty of them at once and living unscathed is even more abnormal.
Then there was the figure of the target still holding a wooden sword without any injuries. He must’ve protected not just himself and the target as well.
A cold sweat trickled down Crimson Osprey’s back. It’s probably what her comrades feel while facing him too.
But they aren’t just going to have a staring showdown. In this situation, time is their enemy.
The escorts spread around the training grounds was already in a dash to the target. In other words, the assassins are getting cornered.
「Get on it! 」
『Yarn Crank』’s short order made all the assassins leap.
Even if a strong sorcerer, he can’t possibly handle that many opponents at once. Although it’s said that the sword magic the black-haired young man use is lethal even in close combat, what he has in his hands is just a wooden sword.
Since a normal mercenary aren’t allowed to hold a sword in the duke residency, it is made sure by all the servants that his swords are put in custody before he can enter.
A magician with a wooden sword can’t possibly handle assassins. That’s also another reason why they had assaulted them in broad daylight despite there being a famed mercenary.
Even though that was the case――.
(Why can a wooden sword cut people!?)
Crimson Osprey’s eyes widened. The same time when Countless Swords Sorcerer swung his wooden sword, one assassin fell on the ground. The assassin that was cut down had fresh blood spewing out.
Even Crimson Osprey could feel the surprise and unrest of the assassins that surrounded him.
Even though the assassins came at him, the sorcerer easily incapacitated them one after another with swordplay. The swordsmanship that showed no gaps isn’t something of a sorcerer’s self-defense measures.
But the assassins are all experts. Just as planned prior, two of them moved in accordance to kill the target. As long as the Countless Swords Sorcerer can be held down for a moment, they can finish off the target and the mission will be accomplished. There’s no reason to take down the hardest opponent at all.
But another unbelievable thing happened in front of Crimson Osprey’s eyes. At the arm of the assassin that tried to stab with a dagger, the golden beast that had been curling up beside the target bit at it. At the same moment, the target that’s supposed to be a young noble lady dished out a sharp slash with her wooden sword.
Crimson Osprey who was looking at the happenings from afar knew the mission has failed.
Nine assassins and four had been done in by the sorcerer, and one had been done in by the golden beast and the target herself. And when the sorcerer brought down the leader that is『Yarn Crank』, the remaining three assassins had decided to retreat.
Hitting the 『Scorching magic stone』 for retreating use left on the assassin incapacitated by the duke daughter, flames spewed out in all directions. Although it’s likely that the escorts that come their way will obstruct them, the assassins aren’t that weak to not break through.
(Failing even with that nine……)
The moment when the remaining three decided to retreat, was when Crimson Osprey turned around and escaped the duke residency as well.