Edited by: Kanaa-senpai
The spider moves silently at high speed in the dark.
It’s amazing. Maybe it’s because it has eight legs, but its center of gravity doesn’t waver at all, even when it’s moving at high speed. There was almost no vibration at all. And――
” I see something that looks like a green layer. ……
I felt a sense of unease at the physical wind pressure and activated my ability to check it out. Then, I saw a translucent green layer around the spider as if it were a barrier.
Is this membrane suppressing the wind pressure?
It’s probably just a bug, but it’s convenient. With this, there’s no problem even if we’ re running at speeds that “humans” can’t withstand.
Now that I’ll met up with Tamamushi and the others later, what should I do? I’ll have to rethink my plan.
――I hope there is a way to keep in touch with Tamamushi and the others even after they enter the barrier.
Marina’s voice echoed in my brain.
That’s it, isn’t it? Even if we join up, there’s a high possibility that we’ll lose communication with Marina once we’re inside the barrier. But even if we, the later group, wait without entering the ward, it’s useless if we can’t communicate with Tamamushi and the others.
――We don’t have much time. Suzuhara-san, as usual, do you have any cowardly, devilish, or wonderful ideas?
I heard Marina’s voice, and her eyes turned grim.
I don’t know whether she’s praising or disparaging me for my cowardly, devilish and wonderful ideas.
I’ll leave it at that.
――Do you have any ideas?
I can’t say for sure without trying, but there might be a way to keep in touch without using Denshin.
――Other than Denshin?
Yeah. There’s a good chance that the barrier is something that disables the communication ability system, right?
There was a barrier that Tamamushi used once that prevented her voice from leaking out. Tamamushi said it only kept the voices out, no physical protection.
Physical and non-physical. If there was a barrier that could block out all things, she must use it. But such a universal thing is either difficult to use or difficult to create. Either way, things don’t work that well.
――Well, that’s true. If you want to get a great benefit, you have to pay for it. If you want to put up a universal barrier that blocks out everything, you’ll need a certain amount of technology and preparation time, or it may be impossible to create such a universal thing.
――Wait a minute. I’ll ask Tamamushi-chan.
Ooh, Denshin is really useful, isn’t it?
――I got a reply. As Suzuhara-san guessed, it’s very difficult to set up a universal barrier. It’s possible to put up a universal type, but the performance is not worth the effort, she said. In short, it seems that the all-purpose type has low performance overall, while the one-point specialization type can only be used for the intended purpose, but has high performance.
I knew it. If that’s the case, this ward might leak things other than “communication abilities” to the outside. For example, the unique power of a certain race.
――The unique power of a certain race? What’s that?
It’s the insect energy of Tamamushi. Nanafushi operate by using the insect energy of Tamamushi. For example, if only Tamamushi enter the barrier and send insect energy to Nanaefushi without any abnormalities, it means that the barrier cannot block the insect energy. Then, we can make the insect energy that Tamamushi send to Nanafushi stronger or weaker. It’s like Morse code. If we can do that, it will be possible to keep simple communication between inside and outside of the barrier.
――I see! That’s great! I think I can use that!
I won’t know until I try it, though.
――That’s great! You’re the best in the world at cheating!
Marina raised her voice in admiration, but her words were clearly poisonous.
If you’re going to praise me, praise me honestly.
――But then, does that mean that only Tamamushi-chan will be inside the barrier? I’m sorry to say this, but I think Nanafushi-chan is the right person for the job, in the sense that there’s little danger to her life if something goes wrong, but it’s Tamamushi-chan who’s being summoned.
Yeah, you’re right. I can’t leave Tamamushi out of this role. But if Tamamushi gets hurt or killed, we’ll lose Tamamushi and Nanafushi, two of our major assets. That’s why I can’t just let Tamamushi inside the barrier. After all, she’s capable but stupid.
――Then, who’s going to go inside the barrier with her? Don’t tell me you’re going to put Rikka-chan as her escort? I’ll admit that Rikka-chan is strong, but to put it bluntly, I don’t think Rikka-chan is capable of doing anything alone. Her sister, Kazehana-chan, has a high ability of application, but Rikka-chan lacks in that area. The only time Rikka-chan can use her power to the fullest is when she’s trying to protect you, Suzuhara-san.
I know, I know. I understand that.
――Then, by process of elimination, …… no way.
Yeah, I’ll go inside the barrier with Tamamushi. But first, I have to make sure that Tamamushi can get inside the barrier and send the insect energy to Nanafushi.
――Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait! I’m afraid what are you going to do at the front line if you’re only capable of providing support! Tamamushi-chan, Nanafushi-chan, and Rikka-chan can survive even with fatal injuries! But you’re different! Once you’re fatally wounded, that’s the end of the line!
Your voice is too loud. Calm down.
――How can I be so calm! Don’t tell me you’re just desperate because you’re about to die!? If that’s the case, I strongly disagree! Abort the mission! Since Tamamushi-chan has been summoned, if we boycott this case, we’ll sooner or later come into conflict with the organization! Then this time, we’ll throw all our forces into it and hit the enemy at once!
Marina screams in my brain.
Oh no, Marina has lost her temper.
Please calm down. I’m not getting desperate.
To tell you the truth, I think the old me would have thrown my life away at the drop of a hat. But I’m different now. I want to live, if I can. But the fact is that I don’t have time. That’s why I want to make the best use of this life. I have no intention of dying in vain.
As I replied to Marina in my mind, I heard her rough breathing in my brain.
Don’t get upset, idiot. You have Yuka by your side, don’t you?
Yuka is weak, but she hates her weakness.
If she finds out that something happened to me, she’ll go berserk for sure.
――I hate it when you treat your own life as a thing, you know.
In between her ragged breaths, Marina raises her voice in a hateful manner.
Has she calmed down to the point where she can spit poison?
It’s not that bad of a plan to throw in all our forces and hit the enemy at once.
However, if we can’t destroy the barrier that interferes with communication, you and Yuka will have to go to the front lines.
Even if we can destroy the barrier, it will be difficult to predict the situation if the enemy is aware of it.
We don’t know what kind of abilities they have out there.
Besides, we need information about the enemy. And this time, there are spies from the protection organization.
If we can get around them well, we might be able to get inside information on both Kudan’s organization and the Protection Organization.
To do this, I want to capture some of them alive.
In order to do so, Tamamushi and I will enter the barrier first. Once Tamamushi and Nanafushi are able to contact each other, they’ll pass the information on to you.
If Tamamushi and I can handle it, that’s fine. If not, I’ll have Rikka and Nanafushi go in immediately.
If we can destroy the barrier, you can immediately check our surroundings through my “eyes”. Once you know the enemy after using Denshin, you can use Yuka’s ability to brainwash the enemy.
So, what do you think?
I explained my plan and asked Marina.
――Can’t you at least have …… Rikka accompany you?
After a short pause, Marina asked back.
I’d like to do the same if I could.
――Why can’t you do that?
Nanafushi was the best choice, though. It looks human, but inside it’s an artificially created insect. There’s nothing strange about a wizard accompanying a worm. If they get suspicious, Nanafushi can transform into an insect form. But it was no longer possible for Nanafushi to accompany me.
I’m just a human. “Because I’m a weak human, I can make any excuse I want to accompany Tamamushi, and the enemy won’t be alarmed. But Rikka is different. She is a beastman. If the enemy were to find out that Rikka was a beastman, they would certainly be wary of her. Once the enemy was alerted, there was nothing left but to fight. In order to avoid that, and to get as much information as possible, we have to take some risks.
――It would be nice if the risk was only a little.
Absolutely. I wish I could take the easy way out.
――I’m a little relieved. You’ve really thought this through. If that’s the case, I’ll allow your plan.
Marina seems to be convinced, so the first thing Tamamushi and I will do is to infiltrate the barrier.
It’s a good thing I brought a lot of tools. They may not be useful in battle, but they’ll be good if they help us escape.
If there’s a problem, it’s Rikka. She’ll probably insist on coming with me.
――You’ll have to deal with that yourself, Rikka-chan’s brother.
Marina’s voice echoed in my brain, making me stare at her.
As I was letting out a sigh, the spider’s movement slowed down.
It seems that the place where Tamamushi and the others are waiting is close by.
Now, I have to convince Rikka.
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Edited by Kanaa-senpai.
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