The Heroic Tale Of A Villainous Prince Chapter 36

Chapter 36: The Shadow Begins to Move
 

 
“Groooooaaaarrrrrrr!!!”
 
The roar of the lizard-shaped Fragment reverberated, and the air vibrated like a piercing sensation on the skin. The wicked aura of the Sixth Attribute emanating from its entire body flickered like flames.
 
I managed to move my legs somehow and dodged by leaping sideways. The claws, swung haphazardly, pierced and crushed the arena floor.
 
“Haa… haa… haa… Damn it. Just when I’m already exhausted, a big shot shows up. That woman…!”
 
Lucille was already gone. While everyone in the arena was distracted by this massive lizard-like creature, she must have escaped unnoticed.
 
“Groooooaaaarrrrrrr!!!”
 
“Shut up!”
 
Dodging the approaching massive arm, I used Arsene’s leg strength to close the distance with the lizard giant. Swinging the double-edged blade with all my might, I slashed at its lizard scales. The giant body staggered, and as it landed, it immediately raised its sword again.
 
“…………!?”
 
Contrary to my will, my legs wouldn’t move. Some kind of magic, no, it wasn’t that.
 
Perhaps, due to the exhaustion from the fight with Leo, my body gave in before my mind.
 
“Ooooooooooooooooooooo —-hhhhhh!!!”
 
The lizard giant seemed to have recognized me as its prey. With bloodshot eyes, it glared at me, and a fiery light leaked from its scaled jaw. Probably a breath attack with flames. I couldn’t dodge it. No, I couldn’t dodge it. Leo was lying next to me. It would be difficult to avoid it while carrying him.
 
Breath attacks with flames are classified as magic. Shall I try stealing the breath magic itself with Arsene, risking it all? But at the current state of my body, it’s questionable if I can generate enough speed. However, defending against it is also challenging. Normally, I wouldn’t rely on direct defense like this. Arsene’s style is to evade the opponent’s attacks with natural agility.
 
Using defensive magic won’t cut it. The output is insufficient. It would be breached immediately. In that case…
 
“Damn it! Can’t afford to be picky!”
 
The malevolent flames spewed forth. I positioned the sword in front of me, but…
 
(It’s too late…!)
 
Too slow. Heavy as if my entire body was wrapped in lead due to pain and fatigue, my arm wouldn’t lift.
 
Switch to defensive magic now? With my current condition, I can’t defend against it completely. Even protecting only Leo is…
 
“—- [Earth Magic Wall]!”
 
In an instant, a wall of soil rose from the ground.
 
Despite the explosive flames, thanks to the massive infusion of magical power, the wall successfully blocked the explosion.
 
This magical power, the Fifth Attribute. Not Father’s. This is…
 
“Al-kun! Are you okay!?”
 
“Charl!?”

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Rushing in from the player’s gate was Charl. It seems she instinctively activated defensive magic from her magic ring to save us.
 
“I’m not alone.”
 
A shadow rushes through the players’ gate as well and leaps.
 
Floating in the air and holding a mechanical sword is a girl, dressed in a —- maid outfit.
 
“[Mechanical Slashing Type].”
 
Like an arrow, Makina that jumped out wielded a sword with a mechanically enhanced arm covered in magical equipment.
 
The sound of the blade striking against steel resonated, shaking the atmosphere, and the giant lizard-type creature collapsed to the ground.
 
“Ah, no damage, huh? Well, without the magic power of the Fifth Attribute, even a fake King’s Attire Ring is tough.”
 
“Even Makina… Sorry, and thanks for helping.”
 
“Don’t worry about it. It’s kind of like my job.”
 
“—!!!!”
 
Turning my gaze to the source of the furious roar, Makina raised her mechanized sword.
 
“Al-sama, please heal your wounds first. In the meantime, we’ll handle this big guy.”
 
As if responding to her words, the figures in black attire—[Shadows]—began to enter the arena one after another.
 
“You guys… Why?”
 
“It’s the duty of subordinates to rush to their master’s aid in times of trouble. Well, everyone seems to have come voluntarily… Charl-sama, I’m counting on you for healing.”
 
“Yes. Leave it to me.”
 
Makina leaps and returns to the battle with the [Shadow] members.
 
Recovery…… I remember that Charl can use recovery magic.
 
“Charl, please take care of Leo before me…”
 
“I understand. [Healing Boost]!”
 
The healing radiance released from Charl’s magic ring enveloped Leo’s right arm, which had been cruelly severed. The flow of blood from the severed arm was quickly staunched. This healing speed… must be a magic ring made by Elinne.
 
“…Hemostasis has been completed somehow. Now it’s your turn, Al-kun.”
 
“Yeah… I appreciate it.”
 
Even though healing magic is versatile, it has its limitations. Charl’s magic won’t be able to handle further treatment, and just stopping the bleeding from the severed arm in an instant is more than enough.
 
“While Makina and the others are buying time… what’s Father doing?”
 
“It seems that some manipulation was done to the barrier in advance, and everyone, including His Majesty, is trapped.”
 
A protective barrier is applied to the audience seats to prevent magic projectiles from hitting during the match.
 
Lucille took advantage of this to manipulate it so that no one inside could get out.
 
“The barrier in the audience seats is quite sturdy… If Father were to seriously try to break it, the aftermath might cause harm to the surroundings. That woman is quite crafty.”
 
“We’re currently working on lifting the barrier… but it seems to take time. Makina-san and I were originally watching the match from outside the barrier, so we managed to escape… “
 
“Is there anyone else who can move?”
 
“The members of [Shadows], the soldiers and knights who were guarding the outside of the arena, should be able to. Those guarding His Majesty might not be able to move, though.”
 
“What about Elinne?”
 
“…After finishing adjustments to the magic ring, she said she would come to the arena, but… I don’t know if she’s here now. Oh, and… Dold-san and Filga-san, I believe they were outside the barrier as well.”
 
“They’re no use. They left Leo and ran away, so don’t count on them.”
 
Makina is somehow managing to restrain the [Lizard Giant]. However, it won’t last long. There’s another giant outside. We can’t concentrate all our forces here.
 
Father can’t move. We can’t wait for the barrier to be lifted. Leo is also down. Giants are rampaging outside. Currently, among the people who can move freely outside the barrier and possess magical power to counter the [Fragment], only Charl and I…
 
“I don’t have time to hesitate. Dammit…”
 
” ………… “
 
Those people done nothing but scorning me. But it’s something my brother Leo tried to take on and it’s part of what I dreamed of.
 
The time spent hesitating could mean the damage is spreading. Closing my eyes, the things I’ve decided to carry, protect, and the dreams I’ve set out for resurface one after another.
 
“……I will bear what Leo-niisama carried.”
 
I don’t want to turn those words into lies.
 
“…Charl, I have something to ask.”
 
“Please tell me anything. If there’s anything I can do… No. Even if it’s something I can’t do, I’ll find a way to do it.”
 
Even in this situation, her dependability is reassuring. It’s not for nothing that Duke Mersenne instilled in her both spirit and determination.
 
“After the healing is done, I will deal with that [Lizard Giant] in the arena. Meanwhile, I want you and the others, along with Makina and the [Shadows], to hold off the [Lizard Giants] outside… cooperate with the knights.”
 
“The knights? That’s fine, but… will they fight alongside us?”
 
“Knight Commander Grashian should cooperate, but I honestly don’t know about the others. However, the enemy is that giant. Moreover, if it rampages in the city, [Shadows] alone won’t be enough. Cooperation from the knights is essential.”
 
In the city, the situation is different from usual. To contain that large creature while minimizing the surrounding damage, both numbers and strength are needed. For that…
 
“…So, you will lead both [Shadows] and [Light], fight together.”
 
“That’s…?”
 
“In this situation where even a makeshift solution is impossible, directly involving [Shadows] and the knights in the middle of a fight could lead to unnecessary trouble. That’s why a mediator between both sides is necessary. Grashian may not understand the ways of [Shadows], but if anyone can coordinate with Makina, it’s you. Above all, among us, only you possess the power of the Fifth Attribute…”
 
” …… I’m the only one, right?”
 
“That’s right. To stop that giant, Charl needs to take the lead. In reality, Makina and Grashian will probably take command of their respective subordinates, but the focal point will be you.”
 
“…………”
 
In this dire situation, the pressure on Charl must be considerable.
 
“…Understood. I’ll make sure to succeed.”
 
Doubt and fear were momentary. They didn’t disappear.
 
Surely, she overcame what surged up, suppressed it all, and pushed it down.
 
“I’ll take full responsibility. You can use the name of Alfred-Burg-Leuville, the Third Prince.”
 
Thanks to the effect of Elinne’s [Healing Boost], the wounds healed quickly.
 
“Charl can do it. I believe that.”
 
Standing up, gripping the sword.
 
“…I also believe in you, Al-kun.”
 
“Yeah. I’ll definitely come running.”
 
No more words are needed. Simultaneously, we both set off on opposite paths, each fulfilling what we must do.
 
“—-Makina!”
 
“Al-sama, are you okay?”
 
“As you can see, I’m in perfect shape! Withdraw, and follow Charl’s instructions from here!”
 
“Understood!”
 
[Shadows] that were moving around the giant began to pull back.
 
While each headed towards Charl’s position, Makina gracefully descended towards me.
 
“I’ll recover Lord Leo over here. …The rest is up to you, Al-sama.”
 
“I don’t need to be told. I’m counting on you all.”
 
“Hehe, you don’t have to say that. We’ll do our best.”
 
Strength naturally wells up. It’s so reassuring to be believed.
 
“Gwooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooohhhhh!!!!”
 
In front of the roaring lizard giant, my heart is surprisingly calm.
 
With the blade in my heart, filled with the heat of fighting spirit, the blade within quietly sharpens.
 

“Gyaaaaa, shut up, you giant!”
 
The claws swinging at me seem too slow. Utilizing the fully recovered leg strength to its fullest,
 
I accelerate. Jumping against the backdrop of the delayed strike piercing the ground, I consecutively slam the twin blades into the giant’s massive body.
 
“—!!!!??”
 
“…Shut up. I don’t have time to play with you.”


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