Read at Watashi wa Sugoi Desu!
Chapter 011 – Ssulal’s Command
—Meanwhile, at the same time.
There was a group in the wilderness.
Demon soldiers lined up and advanced forward. They numbered three armies worth, which was about 60,000 soldiers.
These demon soldiers somehow seemed roused, and they happily advanced on the dry and hot land.
In the center of the group were demon generals and demon captains who commanded over the troops. Also—
“—It sure feels hot. Are we there yet?”
“Hah, we’ll arrive at the Southern Command Post soon.”
“…And how long is that soon to be exact?”
“…Should be about 30 minutes later?”
The one who looked exhausted after he asked a demon general about the exact arrival time was a blond majin carrying a blue sword.
He was also the reason why demon soldiers seemed roused, the Four Elite Majin and Demon Army Officer, Leonhart.
He had already left the Maou castle with the army for a few days.
While he could handle the movement to the eastern part of the continent at the speed of a forced march even when he was human, Leonhart got swayed by high temperatures.
…Even though my body is supposed to be a sturdy one, damn it.
Needless to say, Leonhart was a majin. His resistance was greater than before as a species, and this level of heat shouldn’t harm his health whatsoever.
But his mood was a different story. Leonhart once lived on the northern side of the continent when he was human, where it was cooler. He wasn’t accustomed to this heat and sweated a lot.
That Ssulal… she actually forced this job on me. See what I do to you once I get home.
Ssulal, Leonhart’s master, wasn’t here right at the moment.
Considering the fact that Ssulal rarely left Maou Castle in the first place, she should be having a comfortable time in her room right then. He got a little irritated as he thought that. That was how much the heat was currently affecting Leonhart.
He might have a little more composure if it was a little cooler though. As he thought that, he tried to put it into action.
“… I will cool myself inside Ushi Guruma1 for a bit.”
“Hah, I understand. Please call if you need anything.”
The demon general kindly responded to this AWOL declaration. He had thought his dignity would be gone if he showed them what he did, but that seemingly was not the case.
Leonhart went toward the backline where the Transport Corps moved with their Ushi Gurumas.
Then, the demon captain who was in charge of commanding that noticed and approached him.
“Oh, Leonhart-sama. Did you need anything here?”
“I’ll rest for a bit inside the Ushi Guruma.”
As he said that, Leonhart approached one of the Ushi Gurumas.
“Pl, please wait a moment!”
As he touched the entrance of the carriage, the demon captain stopped him. Leonhart’s voice that was filled with irritation due to the heat and it made the demon captain scared, but he still called out, asking him to stop.
“Th, that Ushi Guruma is a little… no, I should say it was quite bad, err…”
“Ah, err… Ri, right! That Ushi Guruma is carrying a dangerous thing, so it is not right to be used by Leonhart-sama for rest!”
“What is this dangerous thing?”
“That’s… ah, it is feces!”
“Feces? Do you intend to throw it at enemies?”
“That’s right! Since it will be smelly, it wouldn’t be right to be used for resting! Now, how about another carriage instead…”
“…It didn’t smell, though, despite your claim that it contained feces.”
Leonhart looked toward the demon captain in suspicion. It was totally suspicious. It was as if he was lying.
Also, the things he had mentioned were things he came up with on the spot…
Was there a reason why he shouldn’t rest inside this Ushi Guruma?
…Won’t I find out why if I look inside?
“…Let me check for a moment.”
“Ah! Please wait!!”
The demon captain desperately tried to stop him, but he was unable to resist Majin Leonhart. As he opened the carriage entrance and looked inside—
Leonhart’s eyes met with the girl’s inside the carriage.
He was temporarily stunned as looked at the girl who was not supposed to be there.
However, as his brain caught up with the situation—
“…Why are you here?”
The girl looked away and panicked as Leonhart gazed at her, either because she was trying to fix the situation or because she was trying to disperse the awkward atmosphere since she was caught—
“—I…I just came…”
She just said so for some reason.
On top of that, her appearance as she looked upward and tried to hide her mischief strangely looked suitable to her. That was why it made Leonhart irritated.
Leonhart no longer tried to rein in his irritation; he reached out with his hand and pulled on the girl’s cheek.
“I, id hurd! It—hey, that hurt! What are you doing?!”
“What are YOU doing here—!!”
Leonhart yelled toward the girl—to Maou Ssulal.
Since I found Ssulal hiding, I no longer felt like resting inside Ushi Guruma, so I just brought Ssulal along to the center of the formation.
“Oh, Maou-sama is present—Why are you here…?”
The demon general folded his knee reverently, and asked as he genuflected.
The demon soldiers got noisy as they saw Maou was there, but they shut their mouths as soon as a demon captain looked at them.
“Hm, Let’s see…”
As Ssulal muttered that, she looked at me beside her. She clearly had trouble responding.
I’d like you to clean up for your own deed, but… I sighed inwardly as I stepped forward.
“—Maou-sama is here to witness how we will fight.”
“! What does that mean…”
Questions started to spread from the demon general.
“It doesn’t mean anything bad. It’s just… Maou-sama is convinced that we will end this battle with our hands.”
“…With our hands?”
“That’s right. Maou-sama knew the fight here has been protracted for a long time. That’s why she prepared a large-scale reinforcement to end this battle. And now, she came along to share our victory together.”
Ooh…! Voices of admiration leaked out from demon soldiers’ mouths, perhaps thinking we had tactics that would ensure our victory.
As the demons were pumped up by the atmosphere, I looked toward Ssulal’s face. It was a performance that sought her agreement.
“Ha, hah… so that’s the case. We understand.”
The demon general didn’t seem to be convinced, but he didn’t pry further.
There was no problem for the top of the Demon Army, Maou, to come to observe army movement to begin with. Even soldiers would be happy instead of scared about it—maybe. It was another thing if it was a scary superior, but it was Ssulal after all. There shouldn’t be much pressure by her presence.
Anyway, it was enough to say a random excuse on the surface. It’s not like she would say her real intention after all.
“Then, Maou-sama. Do you mind if we continue our march?”
“…Yes, I don’t mind.”
“…Then, we will do as we are told. Demon general.”
“Hah… Resume the march—!“
The demon soldiers resumed their movement with the demon general’s signal.
“…I’ll have you tell me why later.”
“hm… hah, it can’t be helped, I guess.”
After a brief exchange with Ssulal through whispers, the Demon Army went toward the Southern Command Post once again.
As we kept marching—we finally arrived at the Demon Army encampment.
“…We have been waiting for you. Maou-sama, Leonhart-sama.”
Immediately after I and Ssulal entered the Command Post, the demon general reverently genuflected.
I immediately called out after I nodded.
“Are you the person in charge here?”
“Yes, this humble one is honored to be in charge of this place.”
“Well then, tell me the battle situation immediately.”
“Very well, please come over.”
The demon general then pointed at chairs for me to sit down. Then he looked toward Ssulal.
“Maou-sama too, if you are willing.”
“Hm, thank you… also I had no intention to interfere, so please go ahead.”
“Understood… it might be difficult, but we’ll do our best2.”
Maou commanded that it was okay to ignore her being there. The demon general replied with a nod, then they placed a large map on top of the table and explained the current battle situation.
“Currently, we are right here, and we will invade south toward the settlement of mushi users.”
The demon general used his big hands to point at both locations.
“We will be engaging the enemy in this location between these two points right here. It is a wilderness with good viewing range, and we confirmed the enemy numbers are at around ten thousand.”
“…I did hear about it, but the advance sure is slow.”
“That’s right. Our forces are more than double of the enemy’s numbers… but unfortunately, we continue losing against them.”
I did hear about it before I came here, but it seemed that the Demon Army was at disadvantage here.
The demon general also sounded less enthusiastic.
“Are those mushi users strong after all?”
“Yes, their abilities are very annoying. They can breathe fire and harden themselves, to the point where the Demon Army is losing in versatility compared to them.”
“…That sure sounds troublesome.”
“And amongst those abilities, the venom is the most annoying one.”
“I heard they are immune to poison?”
“You know it well. They can act normally in an environment filled with venom that could very much kill anything else within it. And they also make use of that fact…”
“Make use of it?”
“They spread venom all around the battlefield. Since they are immune to venom, they could just shoot venom at random since their allies won’t be affected by it during the melee, and it makes it hard to launch a proper attack against them.”
“…That sounds tough. It really didn’t affect them in the slightest?”
“Yes. When we still didn’t know about this skill of theirs, we tried to throw deadly venom toward them, but… they just drank it happily.”
They were a race of humans who were big eaters and housed mushi inside their bodies to make use of their abilities.
I did think they were strong, but I didn’t think they were strong enough to give the Demon Army a hard fight.
Since they used various abilities, it was hard to adapt against them. It was easy to imagine how troubled the demon general was.
But speaking about venom…
“…Ssulal’s cooking could be considered venom. Should we try to throw it?”
“Th, that’s rude!! I don’t think it is that bad!!”
Ssulal stood up indignantly as she responded to my words while the eyes of the Demon General who witnessed this widened and his body froze.
The demon general didn’t expect that the Maou would respond. Ssulal’s cheeks turned red for a bit as she noticed that.
“…No, nothing. Continue.”
“Ha, hah…? …Well then, moving on.”
She sat down again as if nothing had happened.
The demon general who came back to his senses glanced between me and Ssulal, but it seemed he convinced himself that he just mistakenly heard it and continued on as if nothing had happened.
“…Gh, I’ll remember this for later.”
When I laughed and looked at Ssulal, her face turned red in shame and glared at me. I see, this sure was interesting.
I would tease her like this if something happened next time. It would affect my dignity if I did it too much, though, so it was a double edged sword.
As I saved this method of teasing Ssulal in a corner of my brain, I listened to the demon general’s explanation once again.
“The most dangerous amongst them all was—“
“Ah, is it Galtia? The one who is said to have defeated a majin.”
“…That’s right. The damage that the mushi user’s leader had done toward us was unable to be treated lightly. He also hunted down another demon general earlier and escaped successfully after that.”
“He sure sounds absurd for a human—hey, you said you just fought him?”
I remembered about myself when I was human, but I asked to confirm the demon general’s word that I just heard.
“Yes. We had a battle in the southern wilderness just two hours ago.”
I closed my eyes, folded my arms together and settled my back deep into the chair.
I thought. How to come out on top against my opponent? How could I respond to my opponent’s tactics?
…No, I doubted that I could come up with a method soon. It wasn’t like I was a great tactician anyway.
But it wasn’t like I had no confidence, either. Using the settlement’s army when I was not yet a majin, I commanded, nay, used ungrounded tactics. Because of that, I could understand enemy strategy a little bit. Basically, it was what I was doing before, the head-cutting strategy.
Demon generals were the cornerstone of the Demon Army. The order of the Demon Army would collapse once they got defeated.
They might include many things like venom and such, but that was all but a tactic to spread confusion. Regardless how many demon soldiers were defeated, the Demon Army would continue to fight as long as the demon general didn’t fall. It might be possible otherwise if all demon soldiers were killed, but there were major differences in the number of soldiers who were capable of fighting. If there were a human army who could actually kill all the demon soldiers, I’d like to see if they exist.
In the end, one needed to defeat big shots like demon general or majin to force the Demon Army to retreat. Other parties also understood that fact.
…Then, that was what they would aim for.
I opened my eyes and said.
“—Alright, I’m going now.”
I explained to the demon general who made a stupid voice.
“You just fought two hours ago, right? If we use the army I’m bringing, they will still be exhausted, and we might produce a proper result.”
“! Indeed… it could become an ambush, and also—“
“Ah, you don’t need to explain. Just discuss it with your fellow demon generals. You guys must be better at it compared to me. I’ll wait for it, so do it as soon as possible.”
“Ha… Hah! Immediately!”
Realizing the advantage of my words, the demon general quickly rushed out from headquarters. As expected, demon generals had a quick mind, at least compared to myself. While I wanted to boast about how useful my statement was, it should be a normal suggestion said whenever reinforcement came after the demon generals were losing their battle. They might’ve eventually come up with such a tactic as they talked amongst themselves anyway. I doubt a Demon Army Officer was necessary at all.
…Well then, all that was left now was Ssulal’s command.
“…Leonhart, you understand, right?”
Ssulal reminded me about it as we were left alone when the demon general left.
I had a bitter expression as I responded.
“Yes, I understand. It’s totally troublesome, though. If it were not for your command, this battle would have ended sooner.”
“Yes, I know. But… please. I don’t mind, even if it ends up failing.”
I couldn’t say anything toward Ssulal’s pleading voice.
…Jeez, I hoped she didn’t have such an expression when she ordered other majins.
I stood up as I scratched my head, and let out a bitter laugh as I looked toward my master who was looking up at me.
“I don’t know if it is the right thing to do. But—since you asked for it, I will try to fulfill it.”
“I thought to ask about why you came along while hiding, but just forget about it. I will end it soon, so look at how I settle it. If it goes well, I will withdraw within an hour, just like during my time.”
“Uh, Uhn! Please…!”
I left the headquarters, as I was satisfied after seeing Ssulal’s smile.
Well then, for the sake of my master, let’s play for a bit—Galtia.
Ushi Guruma: https://i.ibb.co/zQVTL7t/Cows-VI.png
The thing that pulled the carriage is ushi.