Countless Swords Sorcerer ―― Chapter 299PhantasmalMira 191
Jelia has only recollections of being bored since she was a child. After all, the village where she was born and nurtured lacked everything.
The only things there were fruitless fields, the terror of animals striking without warning, and the defeated people’ faces.
Occasionally, new villagers arrived, but most of them vanished after a half-year period, most likely becoming food for the beasts.
The never-changing way of existence that repeats itself. She wasn’t happy with it. Jelia, the astute observer, ultimately learns.
The fact that the village where she was born and raised is a penal colony for sinners. That’s probably the reason why most of the people there had a stench of blood. Though, people like them would meet an early death, so it wasn’t particularly a problem for her.
Even just this month, fresh criminals who got here boldly went out to kill creatures and never returned. As a result, only those who were fearful and capable of caring for themselves survived.
Currently, the villagers were all descendants of such people. In fear of the beasts, they can only prolong their life by living in secrecy and hiding.
That’s the reality of the village. The villagers continued their lifestyles like that and gave birth to their next generation.
「So, criminals aren’t actually that skillful at all. 」
Jelia was afraid of the violent looking criminals when she first met them, but by the tenth time, she already realized that they weren’t significant people worth her attention.
「After all, they lose to the beasts that even I can defeat. 」
Jelia was a child that was quite different from others. Facing a beast that would take 10 muscular men to defeat, she was irregularly strong that she could defeat it with a thin sword without any troubles.
However, no one in the village liked fighting beasts in the first place. That’s why Jelia assumed that what she could accomplish was something that others could do as well and didn’t give it any attention.
When she became 15, she decided to leave the boring village. For 5 years before that, Jelia had been curing her boredom by going out of the village and hunting beasts.
Jelia found enjoyment in seeing the terrible beasts weaken as they lost blood, which gave her goosebumps and a sense of accomplishment when she destroyed it.
That, too, grew boring after a while. Because of her early age in the tens, the need to satisfy her curiosity did not enable her to spend her entire existence in the village.
As soon as she reached the age of 15, Jelia notified her father of her intentions to leave one-sidedly.
「You want to leave the village? 」
「Yes. I mean, this village is really boring. 」
Although the sinners that were exiled to the village were not allowed to leave, the story would change if they were talking about their third generation.
Said to have atoned enough for their crimes, the great-grandchildren of the sinners could leave the village.
Since her father was of the grandchildren generation, he couldn’t leave the village, but being his daughter, Jelia could escape from that restraint.
「…………Do as you see fit. 」
The curt father thought for a while and then gave his approval without any hint of holding her back.
It may be because she was an oddball that was difficult to handle unlike the two elder sisters she had. And just like that, Jelia left the village full of excitement.
Normally, it would be a reckless journey. Her village was a remote place where beasts were active, a place where wild beasts would attack as soon as one were to step out of the village.
Even while transporting the sinners here, there would be a gathering of soldiers on the scale of an army.
It was a dangerous place to say the least. However, Jelia continued her journey despite knowing that, and after repeatedly camping outside and defeating beasts every day, she arrived at the first town protected by outer walls.
From there on, her encounter with beasts drastically decreased, and the towns she arrived to later, continued to increase in size.
Eventually, she arrived at the center of the country, the capital. Jelia sought a position as a soldier in the military enlistment. As a girl that had no other talent than fighting in the first place, being a soldier was like her calling.
She quickly became the focus of the new recruits’ attention, demonstrating her power while subduing beasts. Though, not only did she subjugate beasts, but she also managed to contribute to a small-scale battle between two neighboring countries.
And so Jelia noticed.
「Every one of them is weak. 」
It’s not that the criminals that arrived at her hometown were weak. From Jelia’s standpoint, even her soldier colleagues were insignificant people.
After beating down the senior soldiers that discriminated against her as a criminal’s descendant, everyone became silent. Even when she got into trouble with a mercenary that was said to be strong, she easily cut off both of his arms, and no one came to find trouble with her after that.
「What, I guess myself is just stronger. 」
It didn’t take long before she concluded like that.
「So boring. 」
Jelia was unsatisfied with the popular operas in the city, the bright and stylish outfits, and even the expensive dinners prepared with no money saved.
Never meeting any strong enemies that would make her feel excited, there was only the appearance of suffering and writhing enemies that kept her boredom at bay.
The moments where she would overpower the enemies, scatter them, and trample them were the only moments that gave her satisfaction. It was truly exhilarating when an arrogant person would get crushed thoroughly.
Flaunting their empty strength, and misunderstanding their own power, she felt incredible the moment she crushed all of them.
Unlike beasts that all show similar reactions, humans show various kinds of reactions when they fall into a predicament.
Those that completely changed their attitude and begged her to spare their lives, those that continued to bluff their strength, those that suddenly became docile and tried to talk pretty to get out, or those that tried to escape from reality…….
Jelia found satisfaction seeing the various kinds of reactions. Although she was clearly dysfunctional as a human being, there weren’t many people that raised it against her.
This was since everyone who raised it against her were forced to back down by her power, and those who were righteous were all eliminated in the end.
Jelia’s desire for pleasure was directed to the armies of other countries. The soldiers praised Jelia as she brought home victory every battle.
Despite her apparent problematic behaviors, she was relied on heavily by the upper echelons of the army because of her strength. Thanks to having been acknowledged by the king of that period as well, she was able to become a general having not been in the army for more than 10 years.
It was because of her nature of utilizing any methods for the sake of victory, that she became known as the general feared, and known as the『Catastrophic Butterfly』by her enemies―― such was the current Jelia.
「This is a boring development……」
No matter how much contribution she had, no matter how luxurious her life is, it was only a victory in a battle that brought satisfaction to Jelia. Or rather, it would be when she steps all over the enemies on the battlefield.
From such a person’s point of view, this battle may be uninteresting, even when her side was looking favorable.
Inside the tent built at the center of the headquarters, Jelia was sitting on a makeshift chair with her feet crossed while she yawned.
「Overall, our army is pushing through the enemies at a steady pace. Shall we move the headquarters? 」
「Nnn――, yeah……. The enemy feels a little too fragile this time though……」
The outcome is currently favorable. Just as her subordinate said, the kingdom army is currently pushing the enemies back steadily but, Jelia felt that the enemy’s resistance is weaker than expected.
Since they had formed an alliance between multiple countries to go against herself, she felt that it would be too much of a downer if they are so easy to take down.
They should have intelligent people commanding their army too. They must have one or two plans in the working.
「The timing is right. 」
Suddenly, her unsatisfied expression suddenly changed to a smile, as Jelia gave an instruction to her subordinate.
「Go ahead and bring out Sir Edin’s troops. Also, pass this message along, 『Our army has the upper hand. The enemies are already escaping, go out for a pursuit. Don’t let the chance to seize an achievement slip away』. Also, get the other units to slow down their momentum. 」
「Yessir, right away. 」
Jelia felt the enemies were moving unnaturally for some reason. Judging there was a high possibility of a trap, she decided to let one unit take the front.
They are people that aren’t valuable enough to worry about even if there was a trap and they fall in it. The troops that Sir Edin led was in other words, a gathering full of nobles and bureaucrats.
As someone who has the king’s expectations, in her eyes, they are the so called 『Internal enemies』 that should be removed.
Since the king had hinted at something similar as well, she thought there was a need for consideration if the opportunity presents itself.
「Politics are really troublesome. 」
While seeing the cavalry that is on the way to deliver the message, Jelia muttered with what she was thinking showing on her expression.
「But I wonder if His Majesty will be happy. 」
As she said so to change her mood, a messenger came into the tent with a new report.
「One of the enemy’s unit has circled to the left! They are taking a detour and approaching here! 」
As there are soldiers standing by in the sky, it’s impossible for a surprise attack to work on a grassland with high visibility.
The opponent would immediately find out just like this if there was any suspicious movement. On top of that, splitting their force like that is usually detrimental to the remaining units because they can be defeated individually.
「……What could they be planning? 」
In place of Jelia who was tilting her head at the enemy’s intention, her subordinates started preparation to face the enemy.
「Prepare to intercept! 」
「Well, that’s fine. Their timing is good too, I suppose being their opponent wouldn’t hurt. 」
Jelia stood up with a smile, prioritizing to enjoy the prey that delivered itself rather than thinking.
「Incoming attack! 」
「Deploying barrier! 」
「Each unit, counterattack! 」
Eventually, the enemies’ arts started landing here, and naturally, a counterattack was launched. Jelia who stood up with her own sword in hand asked her subordinates.
「How many of them? 」
「Not more than 1000 I presume. 」
「Just that much? 」
There were too few enemies that Jelia frowned. She was disappointed that there might not be a chance for her to fight at all, but her concerns soon disappeared.
「What’s this? 」
As she left the tent, it was a scene covered with smoke and sand. On top of that, there were arts used to block light and distort the shapes of shadows.
There’s no doubt they are trying to cause chaos here.
「Hmm. Is that it? 」
Realizing the enemy’s aim by limiting the visibility to a mere ten feet range, Jelia shouted her orders.
「There’s another enemy unit coming! Be careful to not hit our own people! Prioritize on neutralizing their vision-impeding arts! 」
The enemy unit that circled around to the left is probably a diversion. The real aim is the other unit that will assault in the chaos.
「This is getting interesting. 」
Like her words, Jelia drew her sword with a face full of smile.
「A surprise attack that is effective in this scenario would be…… 」
Jelia looked upwards to the sky despite being covered in dense smoke. At the same time, some soldier yelled a warning.
「They are coming from above! 」
「Thought so. 」
Just as she thought, human shadows started jumping down from above towards where Jelia is.
「Sorry, looks like you jumped to the wrong place! 」
Jelia judged that the people that jumped down are enemies and decided to slice them apart with no questions asked.
Immediately, she released her gigantic wind arts towards the sky. The transparent blades raged over the clouds of smoke.
The normally transparent blades could be seen flying upwards in the clouds of sand and smoke. Several red splatters could be seen in the air, along with loud thuds as bloody objects fell on the ground.
「Now, entertain me! 」
In the chaotic headquarters, the red hair fluttered as the Catastrophic Butterfly’s voice reverberated.