NBAA Vol. 2 Chapter 4 Part 6
After the battle against Gain, on their way back to the city, Reito was so tired he decided to camp outside on the plains.
There was the risk of monsters finding them, but Ullr would notice any such uninvited guests. Reito let Ullr stand guard and wrapped himself in his partner’s warm fur.
“It’s cold, Ullr, wrap me a bit tighter.”
Ullr sighed and complied, covering Reito’s body with his. Reito let himself go in the warmth of his partner’s body and was reminded of his mother Aira covering him with a blanket, when he was still a baby.
『…Airis, are you still up?』
『Yes, I am. I basically never sleep, actually.』
Reito considered for a moment whether to ask about his mother or not.
He regularly asked Airis about how his mother was doing after he left the residence. He had had fewer chances to do so recently, though.
『Is mother…doing fine?』
『Yes, she is.』
『Is there anything else you want to know?』
Airis seemed to know Reito had something on his mind. All sorts of questions floated in his head, but he ultimately decided not to say anything.
『…no, it’s okay. Not now, at least.』
『Is that so…Reito, please remember this. It is not possible for you to see your mother…or Aria now. So…』
Reito cut off the communication before Airis finished her sentence. He pulled Ullr’s head closer and went to sleep.
The following day, a certain former adventurer arrived at the Ymir coal mine.
She was shaken to see the state the excavation site was in: she then found the corpse of the person she was looking for and quietly gazed down at it.
“Are you…really Gain?”
Bal recognized Gain’s corpse and fell to her knees.
The man she had sought revenge against for 20 years was dead.
The corpse lying before her showed signs of extreme aging, but she would recognize it anywhere.
“What the hell is this…!? Why are you in a place like this, killed by someone other than me!?”
Bal drew the broadsword on her back and swung it down, as to smash it against Gain’s corpse…but stopped before actually doing so.
Despite all the hate she bore towards him, her pride wouldn’t allow her to maim a corpse.
“Damn you…damn it all!! Why…why…!!”
Bal herself did not know who her words were aimed at. Tears flowed from her eyes as she silently looked down at Gain.
She then held up her sword again.
She could not attack the corpse, after all. Bal let go of her broadsword, cursing under her breath.
She then punched a nearby boulder.
Blood trickled from her fist as cracks spread throughout the boulder…eventually causing the boulder to shatter.
Bal’s actions before Gain’s corpse were being observed from a distance.
A man approximately 40 years old, hidden behind a large boulder, was watching Bal with the Far Sight skill, a nasty grin on his lips.
Three Goblins were with him, all lying on the ground in the same way. The man’s name was Bubee: he too belonged to the pro-empire faction.
“Hee hee hee…I saw it all, heard it all, know it all!!”
“Who’d ever thought Lord Gain could be killed…! Things are getting really interesting…now I’m the only survivor…haha!”
He was not worried in the least about the fact that all pro-empire faction Monster Tamers except him had been defeated, On the contrary, he was gloating at the prospect of his rank increasing because of his status as survivor.
Monster Tamers were a precious asset: the pro-empire faction would surely ensure he was treated with the utmost care.
“Too bad about Basil and Lord Gain…I’d never expect them to be defeated, but thanks to that my standing is rock solid now. Hee hee hee…you critters are lucky to be serving me, you’d be dead if you were with the others…!”
Bubee was about to turn towards the Goblins under his command, when he noticed something was off. The smell of blood tickled his nostrils—
“Uh…? Where did my left arm go…?”
Bubee noticed the space once occupied by his left arm was now empty.
The next instant, a sharp pain coursed through his body: he wanted to scream, but his mouth was closed by someone appearing behind him.
“Quiet now…or I can’t kill you easily.”
It was a female voice. Bubee’s body stiffened as a crimson blade emerged from his chest.
Just before his heart was pierced, Bubee recognized the blade: it was Gain’s Crimson Devil Blade.
Bubee’s body slumped down to the ground.
“Mission accomplished…returning to base.”
After killing Bubee, the woman looked down at his corpse, the Crimson Devil Blade in hand. For a single instant, she looked in the direction Reito had headed to.
She opened her mouth, but said nothing and disappeared.
One of her hands held the Crimson Devil Blade, the other a bloody dagger.
The next day, all armed Goblins which had attacked towns and villages in the area were released from the Monster Tamers’ control: they all returned to the wild.
The pro-empire faction’s involvement in the matter became widely known, so the Baltros kingdom officially started moving for a thorough annihilation of the faction.
The Black Tiger adventurers’ guild, which had captured two of the faction’s Monster Tamers, received a substantial reward as its name spread throughout the kingdom. The guild earned the kingdom’s trust, which boosted Bal’s reputation as well.
Bal herself, however, barely even registered such events: the shock of Gain’s death at the hands of someone else was too intense. She attempted to leave her position as guildmaster, but was desperately held back by those around her and eventually gave up.
The great boost in popularity of the Black Tigers guild, however, also disrupted the balance of power between the guilds in the Adventure City.