TL Note: Name change from Greihs to Greyth
Ardis muttered a name that he hasn’t called for ten years. A tall man looking down from above while flying.
A little too old to be called a young man, but a little too young to be called middle-aged.
The wheat-colored hair blew in the wind, and the grey pupils were looking at Ardis as he spoke.
「That face…… is Ardis? No other explanations than you getting smaller but. Seriously, what the heck is this world? 」
Ardis’s name came out from his mouth. In other words, he is the same person that Ardis knew.
「You…… recognize me? 」
Victor slowly landed on the ground.
「Fuh. Of course I would.」
He approached Ardis and laughed a little.
「Who do you think taught a young Ardis that didn’t even know how to use flying swords properly. 」
The gentle tone is warming his chest. There’s no doubt that he’s the person that Ardis knows well.
He’s one of the members of the same mercenary band that Ardis used to be in.
A person that can only be a 『Genius』 with his capabilities. When Ardis was still in the band, he’s the person that had saved Ardis and trained him for many times.
「……In the end, it wasn’t even a reference. 」
「You see, I’m not actually responsible for a student’s excellency. 」
Although a genius, Victor can do better in teaching. Majority of his lessons were just about feeling, and even Ardis himself quitted along the way.
「Isn’t it the instructor’s job to make sure even a bad student can perform well? 」
「I’m different from the Captain who takes interest in raising people. I only show a thing or two when I feel like it after all. 」
While talking about their benefactors, Ardis finally had the chance to ask about what he wanted to ask the most when he meets someone he knows.
「The Captain……, is everyone alright? What happened to Sark and Elion? 」
In an instant, Victor’s expression turned for the worse.
「You don’t know? 」
He didn’t know. No way he could’ve known. If he knew, he wouldn’t have asked a friend that he now meet after ten years.
「It’s been ten years. After losing to that woman without even able to do anything, ten years had passed since I’ve landed in this world finding a way back. I managed to regroup with Rona but, it’s stagnated after that. Victor, what have you been doing until now? Since when you have come here? 」
「It’s already two years since I’ve come here. No, is it two days? This inconsistency is so troublesome. 」
For Ardis, it’s been ten years but, in the incident with Minerva, he found out that there’s a large disconnection between the time flow of the two worlds.
One day over there would be one year here, for Ardis, the fight had been ten years ago, or in another sense, only ten days ago.
Victor as well seemed to understand. Two years in this world, in other words, Victor had come here about eight days after the fight.
Victor would’ve experienced two years and six days in total.
「If you’re alive, then the band is still there right? What about the Captain? Those that survived? 」
Ardis had been gathering information from all around the world for the sake of confirming that.
However, no matter where he went, not just any surviving allies, there weren’t even any signs of them.
It’s natural, after all, the world itself is different. On the other hand, the captain’s name is told as the Evil God, and the hateful nemesis is regarded as the Goddess.
Ardis who couldn’t give up because of that connection finally had a chance of grasping the situation after meeting with Rona.
Albeit temporary, he was able to return to the other world, Ardis finally had a glimpse of hope. The hope of able to get revenge.
「……What are you going to do knowing that? 」
「It’s obvious, regroup. To fight that woman, don’t we need more people even if it’s few? 」
He can’t leave the twins and Minerva and the others and go on a journey yet. However, the flow of time is on Ardis’s side.
Even if not immediately, he thought there would be no problems to depart after a few years. After all, the other world would’ve only passed several days, he won’t be too late.
「……Just give up, she’s not a person you can stand against now. Also, the band is no longer there. It’s already annihilated back then. 」
「Annihilated……. I see……. 」
However, Victor only had the harsh truth for Ardis. Although he expected it, having told all of it suddenly, his regrets still nonetheless swelled up.
Victor, who is full of talent and has a good brain may have been able to escape from that hostile land alone.
Thinking that he could no longer meet with his benefactors and allies, Ardis bit on his lips.
It was at that time.
「Woah, don’t simply move. 」
Victor suddenly wielded his sword. It was so fast that even Ardis couldn’t react to.
The Thoria army’s commanding general’s legs were severed, and blood spurted out. He was probably trying to escape while Ardis was talking with Victor but, there’s no way he could escape from people that can sense positions with mana.
Victor burned the stumps on the general’s legs. Falling on the ground and not able to move, to not let him die from bleeding, the stumps were charred.
It is a common restraining method that he often saw when he was still in the band, Victor’s execution was smooth as expected.
「So you’re not the Thoria army’s ally huh. 」
Victor was the one who blocked Ardis but, seeing how he cut off the general’s legs so easily, it’s obvious that they aren’t allies.
「Thoria? Aah, the eastern city that declared independence a while back huh. 」
It seems like Victor didn’t even know what army this was. Victor said so towards Ardis who looked surprised.
「I’m ordered by my current superior, to gather information of the eastern country. And I’ve been hearing your name quite often now that I’m here. I thought it was another person as the age didn’t match but, to think that you rejuvenated huh. Aah, 『Here』 means the eastern country. My current place is at very far west from here. 」
Superior? Ardis felt something was clicking from Victor’s words, as he tried to be understanding.
「So you’re just here coincidentally?」
「Yeah. While flying here and there to gather information, I saw you fighting. And since it’s about to finish, I thought to catch some people for interrogation was suitable. Even if one or two of them never returned, with no witnesses, they would be concluded dead in the war right? 」
Kidnapping people just because he thought it was suitable, Ardis smiled bitterly at the values appropriate for the other side.
The fact that people who can’t fight should never set foot outside a town, Ardis learnt that it’s an absurd story in this world in the past years.
「And he’s the commanding general after all. He should know a few more things than the average soldier. I thought to bring one from that side too but…… well, fighting you would be a pain so, I will spare you on our past ties. For today, this general is enough. 」
Was it because that he started working for his new employer, his tone felt foreign for Ardis. Speaking as if everything is in the past, Ardis condemned him.
「Victor, have you too…… forgotten your hatred to that woman? 」
Hate, anger, resentment. The emotions against an enemy was still lively in Ardis.
Is he different. Was it only Ardis who thought they were all bound by a strong family bond.
Did he not hate that crazy woman for playing with their family as she liked. Ardis’s expression was taken over by anger.
「What that woman did to us, have you forgotten already! Do you not think to take revenge for those that died like that!? 」
Staring at Ardis who has the glares to kill someone, Victor said so firmly.
「……You can’t win against her. 」
Ardis was irritated with the answer that didn’t answer his question.
「I didn’t ask ―――」
Suddenly, his words cut off. A slight discomfort. That discomfort was pouring cold water onto Ardis’s anger.
Victor has called that woman as 『Her』. It’s never how anyone of the band would.
After all, for everyone, she is the culprit that has been playing them like toys.
Finally, Ardis looked at Victor’s equipment closely. His eyes widened when he did so.
The displeasure as if his heart getting grasped and dirt getting poured into his stomach.
The reason was behind the design of the equipment Victor wore.
Leather armor partially reinforced with metal plates, greaves with protrusions on the toes, and long arm guards with plant patterns.
It is the equipment of the enemies that Ardis had seen many times before ten years ago.
He could never forget. Everyone of that woman’s subordinates wore the same thing.
The reason Ardis couldn’t immediately tell it apart was not because he was excited over the reunion with Victor.
The current Victor wore equipment with the color of red. Until ten years of that day, Ardis had never seen an enemy with that color.
Was it because he had never encountered them, or is it another group that was formed within the last ten years, he didn’t know.
However, one thing was certain. The fact that with a different battlefield, an ally could be an enemy, it is the most common knowledge for any mercenaries.
「What, have you only noticed it now? What a narrow-visioned child as usual.」
It was obvious if he thought about it. How did Victor arrive in this world? He’s unlike Ardis who arrived accidentally, or Rona who was always able to.
There was someone else that certainly had the knowledge to cross the two worlds. If not, this world would not be regarding that woman as the Goddess, and the Captain, Greyth as the Evil God.
It’s not strange to think there is someone that can tell the two worlds apart and can actually travel between the two.
It can be that woman herself, or someone under her ranks, at the very least, they are not Ardis’s ally.
The sole conclusion that he can make after seeing Victor’s equipment.
「……You betrayed us? 」
Ardis’s eyes became filled with hostility. On the other hand, Victor was void of emotions, replying coldly.
「Hey, Ardis. Don’t be so naive. A mercenary aren’t like knights, they don’t have to follow the same person forever. Throwing a ruckus just because their positions has changed is――」
Victor was talking like he’s educating an ignorant junior.
「――very unsightly, so stop it. 」
It was only a moment that Ardis was stunned. Again, Victor didn’t answer Ardis properly, only increasing his anger.
「Is that…… is that your answer!? 」
Closing in an instant, Ardis swung Skies of Myriad Colors. However, Victor easily deflected it away.
「So what if it is? 」
Victor was provoking him. The emotions in Ardis ran wild.
Calling over twenty flying swords over the gate, they cut at Victor from all directions.
「Hou, that looks quite interesting. 」
Although intrigued by Ardis who manifested swords across the world for a moment, he quickly regained his cool.
「But Ardis. Haven’t you been too spoiled by the peace? 」
The next moment, the control over his flying swords were taken away. The twenty flying swords changed target from Victor to Ardis, and slashed at their owner.