This chapter is so hard to translate, thank God for my editors *sobs* enjoy! Also, at most this vampire is a tutorial-how-to-defeat-vampires for Erica and Chloe. But enjoy the chapter!
ED: eristol (will be edited by xtostos)
I immediately launched the boots by stomping the ground with my soles and put some distance between me and Lièvre.
I hopped around using Leap so as to secure Tirnanog as a shield.
It’s quite impossible for me to keep up with that speed.
“Aah, jeez. This is troublesome. I’m in a hurry……but I need two more people no matter what, so I guess in a sense this is convenient for me.”
The monstro in the form of Lièvre propped her right cheek with her hand, her eyebrows were furrowed.
Missing two more people.
The number of the missing girls is ten.
Adding Chloe and I, it will be exactly twelve.
That means, the kidnapping case that Palug has been following was also the work of this vampire.
“Are you the culprit of the recent case of girl abduction?”
“Yes, that’s right. I was doing my best, but I’m having some trouble during work lately. That’s why I think it’s best to use you. But—haah.”
After a loud sigh, Lièvre looked at us with troubled scarlet eyes.
I felt shivers running down my spine.
“Isn’t this such a difficult service? I’m worried about whether I can capture you both without killing.”
Lièvre spoke of such disturbing topic with a tone as if having a small chat.
“Even though, if possible, I wanted to strike at the timing when both of you were off guard……”
Instead of replying, I took the wand of Crystal Cluster out of the glove of storing and instantly created and shot a huge crystal spear.
However, by the time it landed, Lièvre had already disappeared into the darkness.
After losing its target, the crystal spear only ended up gouging the surface of the wall at the back.
Something dispersed—something like a black mist squirmed and turned into dozens, no, hundreds of animals.
Those were bats.
Lots of bats gathered near the ceiling and took the form of a person again.
“As expected, I can’t use ordinary method, huh.”
While throwing such words carelessly, Lièvre pushed the ceiling lightly and on the next moment, she suddenly appeared in front of me.
Facing that unavoidable speed, blood drained from my face quickly.
『I won’t let you!』
Tirnanog swung his log-like forelimb with a speed that doesn’t match his large body.
He easily sent Lièvre flying.
The woman’s slender body was thrown into the air.
“See, even if I aim for you who seems fragile, that golem is an obstacle……this is truly troublesome.”
Lièvre corrected her posture mid-air, kicked the wall on the other side to absorb the shock and landed on the stone floor.
Although her left arm, which was hit by Tirnanog’s attack, was broken, Lièvre seemed to be unaware of that fact.
Her broken left arm swelled out from the area around her elbow as if boiling and deformed into something warped.
It looked just like the head of a black beast without ears or eyes.
It is said that the vampires in this world use human souls that have been incorporated into the physical mutation.
Those, are those the souls of the killed and captured victims?
“The One who covets death.”
At that time, Chloe’s voice resounded in the ruins.
At some point, she had come forward between me and Lièvre unnoticed.
She lowered her sword languidly, without putting herself on guard.
She approached Lièvre in a relaxed manner.
“Year 1091, in the northern part of Lucanrant. The inhabitants of seventy-two villages in the mountainous area separated by snow had disappeared. This was the first confirmed case.”
Chloe continued as if she was reading the material.
“In the south-east part of Lucanrant 1292. Out of the fifteen ships that departed from a port town, fourteen vessels had disappeared along with crew and cargo. One crew member, who remained in the last ship which arrived at the destination, escaped by attacking the four swordsmen who had been interrogating them and went missing. In 1466, the magic tower near the Lucanrant-Hafan border disappeared. In 1649, all residents of the Fort City in the northern part of Hafan disappeared overnight.”
I realized now.
Perhaps this is the information that was written in that red-leather diary.
“In 1789, twelve girls in a village in the vicinity of Lindis disappeared. Around that time, one nun who was in charge of the village disappeared. At midnight, the figure of a nun who was bathed in blood all over her body was seen wandering about, and became one of the Seven Wonders transmitted in the academy, she was the prototype of the Bloody Saint.”
The distance between Chloe and Lièvre shrank.
Lièvre did not change her posture in particular against the approaching Chloe.
“There is a record of those who had survived fighting against the nun who had become a vampire. It is said that there is an infinitely-expanded space inside her body, and that there is no limit on the amount that she can prey on. It is presumed that it is the same individual as the executor of the past large-scale disappearance cases from the point of being good at tactics that seeks asylum by concealing their true nature and making-use of their predatory ability. However, the survivor who gave the report disappeared after two months—the vampire in these cases, was it you……?”
At the same time as asking the question, Chloe slashed Lièvre diagonally.
Pitch black liquid flowed from the slashed part.
“Fufu, how embarrassing. The one who was lurking as a nun ninety-seven years ago, that was me.”
Lièvre’s cheeks turned red as she laughed.
When Chloe slashed her again, the black beast in Lièvre’s left hand received the sword with its maw.
With a crunching noise, the stone floor under Lièvre’s foot broke.
“And, the decree that was given by the Lunatic King to the One who covets death, is it really to recapture the Cursed Wolf?”
“My, my, so I got exposed, huh.”
“That’s because you’ve attacked all the travel routes. Well then—seven years ago, you, were you the one who caused Claude Lucanrant to become obsessed with the Golden Wolf and drove him mad?”
“Oh my, who is this Claude you’re talking about?”
More weight was put on Lièvre’s broken shoulder as the snowsilver blade bit into her neck.
But she still maintained the smile on her face.
“I’m just kidding. I know exactly who that is. That’s the name of the boy who caused the violence case.”
Something squirming began to appear in the darkness behind Lièvre.
It looked like Lièvre’s back was melting into the darkness.
“But, I’m sorry. I wasn’t the culprit. I’m also truly inconvenienced by what my fellow brethren did of their own accord. Above all, it seems that the wolf is being confined by that Harlan of all people……the one who wants to ask you various things should be me, you know?”
“The Margrave of Urs……what do you mean by that……!?”
Chloe squeezed out her voice.
The names of two unexpected men leaked from Chloe and the vampire.
Chloe’s older brother, Claude Lucanrant.
The insatiable man with bloody rumors, the Margrave of Urs, Harlan Lucanrant.
Why are their names coming out during such a situation?
“Haah, I don’t care what problems you have with him, but I’m not kind enough to tell you that. I do have complaints though.”
When Lièvre said so, her back crumbled into black mist.
The mist reformed into the shape of tentacle-like figures with uneven sets of teeth at the tips, and struck at Chloe.
When Chloe eased up her power to avoid it, Lièvre jumped backwards.
“Nowadays there are monastic knights in all remote villages and it’s difficult for me to work. I don’t know why, but it seems that the church’s funds are abundant, and it has been growing in the last few years. And because of the alchemist who is working for the royal family, even though I have secured the sacrifices after a lot of troubles, I failed many times because I have no means of transportation.”
Perhaps, the money that I had earned from subjugating the beasts and donated to the church resulted in this effect.
About the monastic knights’ increased activities, that is also an unexpected harvest for me.
But, about the alchemist who is working for the royal family, no way, is that my brother……?
No, no, what does this mean? My brother is pursuing a vampire?
“The worst thing is that the phantom beast of the flames, which should have been out of action a long time ago, is coming back again recently! I thought they would not step out of the Island of Messenger!? Thanks to this, the magic supply network was cut down rapidly and is gradually becoming worse!”
The phantom beast of the flames she is talking about should be Palug.
Hooray! As expected of Palug, you’re doing a great job!
The clean-up of the corrupted altars definitely seems to have dealt damage to the vampires.
“But, finally, tonight, the ten sacrifices have been arranged to be delivered to this place. So, seriously, were you trying to leave so soon? Nevertheless, you will have to stay here for a long time until the staircase is connected, and will have to defeat the monstro that have been mutated with great pains, so that must be truly annoying.”
Lièvre laughed with upturned eyes as if gauging our reaction.
Even while showing such a natural gesture, the attack using the tentacles that emerged behind her didn’t stop.
No, rather, she’s expanding the range of the attack.
“If I don’t return soon, I will be in big trouble in the morning!”
Chloe approached the main body again while cutting off the tentacles as if nothing happened.
I also covered for her by shooting out crystal clusters towards each of the tentacles attacking Chloe.
“So, why don’t you just think that your luck and deeds are bad and give up?”
When Lièvre said that, a dark tentacle appeared right next to me.
A bright red mouth of the size which can swallow a person whole spread out before my eyes.
It was a desperate situation with no escape.
However, the black tentacle was torn at the moment I was about to be swallowed.
『It is only natural. As long as I’m here, I will not let that thing touch even a strand of your hair!』
Tirnanog cut, pulled, and tore the tentacles attacking me one after another which were aiming for me from all directions.
However, just as the tip was cut, the cut off part turned into a dog-like shape.
The distorted four-legged mass with no eyes or ears, even when it was separated from the main body, aimed at me blindly.
Perhaps this is the vampires’ 〈Hound〉.
A mass of will containing the soul of a human being taken in by a vampire.
It is one of their pitiful underlings.
(I heard from Palug what the vampires of this world are like, but it’s much more grotesque than I thought……)
Tirnanog mowed down and trampled the four-legged beasts similar to dogs but not dogs.
However, no matter how much he destroys it, those Hounds will continue to regenerate.
Tirnanog asked me while holding back the Hounds that surrounded us in no time.
『Erica, what should we do? Can we just leave it to that woman?』
Chloe and Lièvre are attacking each other.
The snowsilver sword can invalidate the regeneration of the Hounds, but that may not be the case for Lièvre’s main body.
Lièvre overwhelmed us by the amount of material resources, but the constraint where she needs to capture us without killing seems to be holding her back.
(It’s a fragile balance that will break once Lièvre gives up on capturing us.)
If Tirnanog joins the battle against Lièvre, he will likely be able to come out on top, but my defense will be thin.
Besides, it’s concerning that the opponent is a monstro with an infinitely-expanded space.
Even if Tirnanog is a super huge phantom beast, it will be bad if he gets into a fight with her.
Speaking of which, didn’t Klaus say something about some serious danger when exploring the Infinite Corridor?
(No, rather this is……)
According to Chloe’s information, that thing was born a very long time ago.
If so, it might be possible to use the spatial collapse by superposition of infinitely-expanded space which I heard from Klaus.
I cannot say for sure if it will really work, but it’s worth trying.
“Tir, buy me some time.”
『Hou, do you have a plan?』
I thought about it a little and replied to Tirnanog.
“Yes, leave it to me. But if it works, I’ll finish her with a single shot.”
The Hound in this novel seems to be inspired from the game Angband’s Hound. In that game, the Hound is made of many elements; there are Time Hound, Gravity Hound, Plasma Hound, etc. except that in this novel the Hound is made of vampire chunks and souls lol.
Also…can the creature (Lièvre) even still be called a vampire? Well, at least it doesn’t sparkle xD
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