"What was that just now?"
Hearing Lyna's question, Emily-san looked at the PK's body turning into particles of light and answered.
"If I'm not wrong, it should have been magic of darkness element. I don't remember the details, but 《Sacrifice Counter》 shouldn't have been a self-destructing skill."
Emily-san muttered in low voice.
As she pondered about it alone, Lyna and Al raised their voices.
"W-what is it?"
"It's not 'what is it'! Those clothes! Your navel is in full view!"
"Yun-san, does your body feel strange? Are you all right?"
"My belly? Ah, damn..."
After receiving a number of attacks from the PK, in the end the last thrust I received had cut my armour vertically damaging it. Normally I wouldn't mind it because of the 【Auto Repair】 additional effect, but a big enough hole has been opened not even the effect was capable of recovering.
"Haa, let's go back for now. You two, it'd be better if you logged out for today and rested."
"Worry about yourself before others."
"Belly button, peeking out."
Lyna heaved a sigh and for some reason, Letia gave a thumbs up.
Still, excited Lyna and Al without logging out have started reluctantly walking towards the town. Meanwhile, the PKs who were in the forest seemed to have retreated, unconcerned by the parties looking for PKs in the forest we successfully returned to the town.
"Emily-san and I have somewhere to go for a bit, when you calm down you should log out."
"Yun-san, it's all right. I'll look after them and calm them down."
Letia volunteered to take care of the two. Sorry and thank you. I told her my thanks.
"Um... Yun-san, Emily-san. I'm sorry for today."
"Don't mind it. We decided to do it ourselves."
"But, for our sake you used a lot of valuable items like Revival Medicine... I'm sorry."
Good grief, Lyna and Al just continued to apologize and faced downwards.
As they lowered their heads to a perfect height, I pat them to calm them down.
The two who acted panicked at first have gradually looked more and more embarrassed, Emily-san chuckled seeing them like that, which caused Lyna to glare with a blush on her face.
"Yun-kun, it's about time we go."
"Yeah, got it. Well then, see you tomorrow."
The event lasted 2 days. Even if today was the worst, possibly it'll end nicely.
For that sake, I had to visit the meeting room in the guild hall and report.
"Yun-kun! You're back! Are you okay? Weren't you too reckless?"
"Uwahh?! M-Magi-san?! What all of a sudden?!"
When we came back to the meeting room, at the same time the door was opened Magi-san had come to embrace me worried.
"That's how much you made us worry. Also, Magi let her go, we can't proceed."
At Cloude's voice Magi-san reluctantly released me. Since she cooperated in sending me off and worried about me, I had to be grateful to her.
"I'm back. Cheers for the good work here too."
Cloude and Magi, as well as Lyly looked at us who came back together all making harsh expressions.
"There's a lot I want to retort to, but beside you that's 【Material Merchant】, isn't it."
"Hello. Well, I guess Emilio state's image is quite strong. Wait a moment, I'll take the disguise off."
Her mask broke, but Emily-san's character name impersonation and voice changer were still remaining, she took them off and spoke again.
"I'm Emily, the 【Material Merchant】 dealing with Alchemy and Synthesis. Well, you've bought materials from me before and met me as Emilio."
"Here I was wondering what did Yun do when she was hiding, but here she appears with 【Material Merchant】, what's the meaning of this."
Cloude stared intently at me, but well, I've had lots to hide.
Since the conversation wouldn't proceed if that continued, Cloude recommended Emily-san and me to sit, then begun speaking the prelude to conversation.
"Hmm. The uproar this time seemed to be centred on the PK guilds 【Fosch Hound】 and 【Flame Prison Corps】, as well as medium-sized guilds 【Green Fall】 and 【Mutual Aid Army】. Other than that there were some independent solo players. I don't know their numbers in detail, but there was at least two hundred of them this time."
"That's quite a number."
Agreeing with my words, Magi-san took over explanation after Cloude.
"There seem to be several reasons for that, but one of them is that the backlash of us crafters opposing their malicious solicitation had finally exploded. Probably. The medium-sized guilds must have joined the activities to protest that. But, there must be a real goal too."
"Real goal? Speaking of which, when we came back the PKs disappeared without trace."
"Let's see. Then... a decoy?"
In response to my words Emily-san muttered.
"Correct. In order to monopolize a certain area, the PKs have taken a noticeable action in order to blind us. With that said though, the only ones who executed it were the two PK guilds while others were just used."
After Cloude answered indifferently, Lyly continued after him.
"The monopolized area is apparently guarded by PKs rotating every certain amount of time. There's quite a number of them and since they're strong in PvP we could lose to them if we rush in poorly."
"Also, while its an area unreachable for new players, it hurts quite a bit since it's a highly important place."
Judging by the fact Magi-san had an annoyed expression, I could tell it was an important area.
"And where is that area?"
Emily-san asked what I wanted to know before me.
"The occupied area is——the surroundings of the Wisteria Peach Tree. Not just the place where the Revival Medicine materials are collected but also the starting point of raid quest. Since it hasn't been completed yet, it's very important."
Since as of now there was no alternative materials or alternative recipes for Revival Medicine, new Revival Medicine couldn't be made.
Moreover, if they occupy the area for a long time and monopolize the raid quest, they'll be able to bite into various parts of the game economy, affecting it badly.
"If it goes too far, there are measures like having their accounts deleted by the management, which would be a passive method of countering it. The most ideal, would be eliminating the reason for them to stick to that area."
Cloude had finished reporting for the time being and it was our turn to make a report.
A lot happened in the forest that could be spoken about, but we mainly focused on the objective things that were the skill the male PK had used, the 《Killing Edge》 and the magic called 《Sacrifice Counter》.
"A sure-kill skill with limited number of uses, huh."
"One time, it was blocked by Substitute Gem's Ring. Also, I was able to return by using 【Revival Medicine】. Is all I can say."
"Still, 《Sacrifice Counter》 huh."
"You know of it Cloude?"
"Well, I am a mage using darkness element. That magic, so to speak, is using HP as a cost and depending on the amount dedicated, it reflects equal amount of damage to the opponent."
"And, what does that mean?"
As Lyly and I who weren't too familiar with magic tilted our heads, Cloude explained what was the main use of 《Sacrifice Counter》.
"Let's see. For example, were this magic put on a player, the attack from his opponent would reflect the damage back to the attacker."
"Does that block damage?"
"It doesn't block damage like defensive magic, but damages the enemy. Well, it's like eye for an eye. It's a magic for simple parties."
The rare drop from the Blade Lizard's, Stone Bladescales had a similar additional effect. Reflecting damage when hit could be used in various ways.
"Used in PvP, it consumes users HP when he rushes at the enemy, making the enemy hesitate. A method like that."
For example, if you use 《Sacrifice Counter》 when the opponent has more HP, in long term combat it'll gradually make you disadvantageous. That's why it was mainly used for psychological tactics in PvP...
"Well, in this case it was used as a self-destruction technique for avoiding the disadvantages that come with PK sense. Also, to use 《Sacrifice Counter》 when the opponent has an upper hand to safely self-destruct, the opponent was a PvP specialist."
Cloude muttered seeming impressed, I also agreed with him. We managed to remove him somehow, but I can't remember dealing any proper damage to him.
"Still, Yuncchi was way too reckless. Also, your armour is broken. We were really worried."
"That's right, Yun-kun, Emily-chan. Onee-san was worried."
At Magi-san's and Lyly's words, I'm sorry, we honestly apologized and asked the three to perform a check on our weapons and armour. As a result, including Emily-san's the equipment have been diagnosed to require a maintenance.
"I'll ask an acquaintance crafter. What about you, Yun-kun?"
"It seems busy so I don't mind the repairs being later."
There's an event tomorrow, they'll be busy. I muttered in my mind.
"So, will today's happenings have any effect on tomorrow's events?"
"Well, PKs won't move immediately and it's hasn't gone far enough to abort the event. However, the ingredient procurement for food stalls didn't proceed. Some events will be shrunk, we'll be considering prioritizing the success of the PvP event."
At Cloude's words, I heaved a sigh of relief. Emily-san and I intended to leisurely sit among the audience.
"Oh right. The talk about PvP reminds me, we need to give Yun a punishment for being reckless. For the time being, let's have you perform tomorrow's PvP event's opening show."
It seemed like something flashed through Cloude's mind as he made a scheming expression, making me want to immediately argue, but nobody backed me up.
"Unfortunately, I have to agree with Cloude this time. If you're reflecting on the fact you made us worry, show it with your actions. Oh right! Adorn tomorrow's PvP opening in a cute outfit! You know, like a race queen!"
"In that case, how about something that suits Yun's personality better? Something with modest exposure."
As Magi-san mercilessly took Cloude's side, I looked towards Lyly but...
"Yuncchi, do your best!"
While thinking on how to refuse, I also thought of under what conditions should I ask Cloude to repair my armour.
"Well then, let's add Lyly's participation. He needs to make amends for failure of this time's highlight plan."
And, my thoughts were directed towards standing on the stage.
"Well, as long as I'm not alone."
"No way, I'm forced to participate too?! Kurocchi! That wasn't my fault!"
Although Lyly appealed with tears in his eyes, I didn't back him up. I feel bad for Lyly, but I'll have him accompany me.
"What to say. Yun-kun, you're pretty easy aren't you."
"Emily-san?! I-I'm not easy!"
I raised my voice in protest, but my hand was grasped by Cloude and together with Lyly we were taken away to the room in the back.
Emily-san seemed to have logged out ahead to prepare for tomorrow, but Lyly and I were made to change into various clothes by Cloude before logging out exhausted.
The second day of the event's highlight, the PvP tournament wasn't carried out in town, but in an arena temporarily placed outside the town .
The arena was assembled near the west gate where normally PvP training is being carried out. From the stage, I looked as the spectating players have slowly gathered to watch PvP.
"Yuncchi, calm down."
"Uuu... there's still quite some time until the start, and yet... I'm so nervous..."
Lyly and I who were suddenly have been made to acts as the hosts for the PvP tournament's opening show changed into costumes in the space behind the stage, as we waited Emily-san had come to check up on us before the start.
"Emily-san, you came."
"Hello there, Emilicchi!"
By talking with an acquaintance before the opening show loosened my nervousness slightly, but with Emily-san's next words it was blown away completely.
"As I thought Yun-kun, your desire for transforming..."
"No, I've none. And what's up with "as I thought". This is a costume for the stage show."
Emily-san who had a mask on her face said something misleading, so I strongly denied.
"Emilicchi, have fun today!"
"Yes, I look forward to it. That costume of yours is cute as well."
As Emily-san praised Lyly's costume, he blushed and laughed shyly.
"Yuncchi, what happened?"
"Nothing, I was just thinking about the costumes."
Back then, the costumes chosen by Cloude had a design completely ignoring our fighting styles.
"Now, equip this inste..."I refuse!" then this!"
The first protruded costume was a pink-coloured sailor uniform. The next one that was taken out were light blue robes with a bold slit, then a pure white long and loose dress with pure white feathers attached, an angel costume. In addition to that, there were body suit-type costumes that revealed the body line.
Lyly rejected another one presented to him, in the end Lyly and I have chosen costumes that looked like a good compromise.
The costume I chose was a remodelled clerical robe.
The simple pure black robe had a turtle-neck that didn't expose my nape or collarbone.
There were detailed decorations all over the clothes, a cross embroidered with silver thread on the chest and it was quite loose making it comfortable as it raised up and down. However, since the waist was tied with a string, my body line stood out making it hard to wear comfortably.
While the body exposure was small, since the robe was sleeveless, to hide my skin I was wearing long gloves going over my elbows. The amount exposed was extremely low and no matter how one looked at it, I looked just like a girl.
"And so, I chose it as a last resort but..."
"So, what Yun-kun is wearing seems just like a nun's clothing. It's somewhat erotic."
"How did it come to that."
"It can't be helped. A nice outfit has to be worn on the stage."
Although Lyly tried to encourage me as I was discouraged, you too have a modest costume, I thought and clenched an improvised mace close in front of my body.
"It's the same for you Lyly! No, rather, you're getting too much along it! You're a man!"
"Well, it can be done only at times like these."
The brown hood with white and green plants on it made in the image of a village girl. Pants and a see-through fluttering round skirt with pumpkin design.
Rather than a girly boy's costume, it was more like a Halloween-type magical girl's one. Above all, the long stick with a decorative pumpkin spoke for itself.
Emily stared at it with a complex expression.
"Yun-kun's slender waist and flowing hip line as well as curves are well expressed by the low exposure. As for Lyly-kun, there's an androgynous cuteness since your secondary sexual characteristics still haven't developed. Both of your figures are tinged with overall roundness. And so, this is my simple analysis."
"Khh, even though I'm a man."
"Well well, after coming this far, give up. Also, the stage has already begun."
"Eh?!! No way!"
"Well then, I'll go look from the audience seats."
Emily-san shook her hand in a fluttery manner and left. Left behind, I thought it can't be helped and resolved myself.
"It can't be helped. Prepared?"
"Perfectly! Let's go, Yuncchi."
Taken by hand by Lyly, we ran up from the side of the stage.
There were players who faced towards the stage prepared on the PvP arena, waiting for the opening show.
『"Everyoone, feelin' good today?"』
"Hey, it's a witch girl. No, a trap?" "And Nanny too." "No, it's a sister!" "Then, a holy mother? A female saint?" "Make it holy nanny." "That's ittt!"
Despite smiling wryly, I waved my hand appealing to the surroundings.
Lyly winked at me to proceed, and I raised my voice. I spoke loudly with chat opened to a wide area.
『"The second day's planned highlight. The battle of the strongest you were waiting for! PvP tournament's opening!"』
『"This PvP will be carried out in two stages of qualifiers and the finals, in the battle royale mode."』
『"The rules for the qualifiers is prohibition of recovery magic and recovery items. The usage of MP potions and MP recovery is limited to ten times. Consumable items useful for battle are all banned. Fight believing in your wisdom and courage, weapons and Senses!"』
『"The first stage has been organized in order to filter out participants, you'll be fighting until the amount of participants is equal or lower than a certain number."』
『"The players who win and advance to the next round will have the restriction on recovery items usage released. That's where we'll determine the true champion!"』
This is where Lyly and I spoke together giving a signal to start.
『" "——Now, strong ones who have gathered to fight! Respond to everyone's expectations and fight with all you have!" "』
We made the pose Cloude thought of and I have have practised overnight with Lyly.
As to intersect the wand and the mace, we have stood back to back bumping out legs and shoulders protruding the weapons forward.
『" "——Well then, raise the curtain of the battle!" "』
After coming this far, it had started to become fun, Lyly and I vigorously swung up our crossed weapons and with the same timing, pre-arranged, numerous magic has been launched over their heads.
As magic rose up, cheers rose up the venue towards me and Lyly who were raising the weapons.
At that time my robe had fluttered up and down due to the wind pressure of the magic's aftermath and the wind pressure from the swung up weapons, or to be precise, from the wind produced by Lyly's large pumpkin stick.
Under the robe I was wearing spats, still, it didn't mean I wasn't embarrassed being seen.
My legs in full view, my stomach and waist were revealed, the black fabric had come down softly.
My face burned up from embarrassment, after it was already over I held down my clothes with the hand I was holding the mace in.
The entire arena started listening as I tried to say something. My voice resounded in the wide-chat mode.
And just like that, I escaped to the side of the stage.
『"Ah, Yuncchi wait!"』
Lyly had come chasing after me in a hurry, but during the fuss Cloude took over after the curtains were pulled and continued the explanation with a confused tone of voice.
『"The battle royale will be held soon after this. You're free to jump in to participate. Join the players who have signed up for participation. In each case a penalty will be decided. Of course, for the winner we have prepared prizes."』
Cloude's words have wrapped it up and as the preparations have started on the first round's stage, I went behind it then called Ryui and Zakuro then sank my face into Ryui's fur.
"...I've had enough."
"It's fine. It didn't roll up during the practice, there's a different cause of all this."
I wiped the tears that pooled in the corners of my eyes and made a complex smile towards Lyly. His usual bright expression will be riddled with guilt, I can't continue with low spirits. That's kind of feelings that welled up in me.
"Ah, damn! I'll stop thinking, completely!"
"This time, it's all Cloude's fault! Making me stand on the opening show's stage, yup! It's Cloude's fault."
"That's right, Cloude's fault."
"You're right. It's Kurocchi's fault!"
We repeated that several times, for some strange reason I didn't understand myself, Lyly and I have started laughing.
"Haa, well then, I'll be going towards the audience."
"Ah, I'll go as well. I want to recruit some people from the audience to jump in."
When I entered the audience together with Lyly, the nearby players looked in our direction.
"Earlier, that was divine wind." "Yeah, it's a pity they were spats, but I'm fine just seeing that innocent reaction." "A small-breasted sister's shyness is more than enough." "Conversely, not seeing any charm in perverted women makes us perverted gentlemen." """I totally agree."""
When I stared at them intently, they have looked away pretending nothing happened or used classical theatrical methods to cover it up like whistling. As if I'd be deceived by that, while thinking so I headed towards where Emily-san was in the audience.
"Cheers for good work Yun-kun. Also... that sure was unfortunate."
"Yeah, indeed. So, what about Lyna and Al?"
"It doesn't seem like they came yet."
I sat next to Emily-san, Zakuro sat down on top of my knees and Ryui behind me. We took quite a lot space, but for some reason there were very few people around us.
"Well then Yuncchi, I'll go look for unofficial participants."
While saying so, Lyly took out a picket sign from the inventory and started parading among the audience.
Passing beside him was Lyna and Al. Also, behind them there was Letia who held a bucket popcorn.
Last night we have left the twins to Letia, said goodbyes and separated but it seems like the two managed to properly calm down.
"Were you all right yesterday?"
"We're okay. Come on, Lyn-chan too."
"Umm, uhh. Once again, thank you very much for yesterday."
Although she was still acting stiff, pressed onto by Al she spoke.
"As not to get involved with something like that, together with Al we'll become stronger!"
"No, I don't think there's a need to worry about it."
"Also! I'll aim to become a cool and cute woman like Yun-san and Emily-san!"
*crackle*, the air inside me froze.
——I, am a man.
In the strange silence Lyna got confused and the sound of Letia chewing popcorn echoed.
With Myu suddenly hugging me from behind I bent over forward.
When I turned around, I saw Myu's party members Lucato, Toutobi, Hino, Kohaku and Rirei.
In addition to that, there was Minute and Mami who were Taku's party members.
"You all, why are you here..."
"No, everyone's either looking for seats at the audience or nourish their spirits before fight——"
"That's why you came jumping at me?"
Ehehehe, Myu laughed as to deceive me. Good grief, I peeled her off me.
"Ryui and Zakuro cheer for me too!"
Myu attracted the two animals' necks towards her and hugged them tightly, behind her stood Lucato with a troubled expression.
"Yun-san, it's about to start. I'm sorry for making so much noise."
"I don't mind, but others are..."
When I looked towards Emily-san, she said she doesn't mind.
"It will be more enjoyable together, right? Also, it's a waste to take so much space."
"Thank you, Emily-san."
One after another nearly half of the seats behind and in front of us that were vacant have filled.
"So, Myu and others are participating in PvP? How about Kei and Gantz?"
When I asked Myu who started exchanging sweets with Letia in the back, she answered me while munching on a stick candy.
"The ones participating is just me, Luka-chan and Tobi-chan. Also, since Taku-san, Kei-san and Gantz-san are also participating we invited Minute-san and Mami-san. Also, from the acquaintances Sei-oneechan and Mikadzuchi-san also plan to participate."
Do your best Lucato, Toutobi. When I cheered for them, that moment the site started to get filled with participating players.
"Ah, it's Sei-oneechan! Onee-chan!"
"Heyy! Don't jump from the audience seats!"
Alone, throwing her feet behind the handrail Myu jumped in the competition field. Lucato and Toutobi ran to the regular entrance in a hurry, chasing after Myu.
"Oneeee-chaaan! I'll do my beest!"
Unsheathing her sword Myu waved it around. That's dangerous, stop, you're a nuisance to your surroundings.
"Good grief, what a noisy little sister."
The people who remained lowered their heads, so I heart-warmingly told them not to mind it.
The person in question had clung to Sei-nee.
When I cheered on Lucato and Toutobi who appeared late from the audience seats, they waved a hand in return.
As for us who remained in the audience, the people who met for the first time did a light self-introduction, then we searched for acquaintances among the participant.
"I wonder where are the others."
"Ah, there's Kei."
"You're right, Taku and Gantz are there too."
Sharply sighting them, Mami-san and Minute pointed at the acquaintances. Silent lead-coloured warrior Kei, martial artist Gantz and my best friend, Taku. The three did a pre-match meeting and started taking distance from each other.
"Come on, if you don't cheer now the game's gonna start."
Mami-san was too shy to cheer, but encouraged by Minute and strongly squeezing the Wind Gel synthetic mob she cheered.
"Kei! D-do your best——!"
Seems like her voice reached him as Kei waved towards Mami in the audience. Mami-san happily smiled at that, seeing that fluffy sight made me smile.
"Keh, this guy's a riajuu." "Yeah, he's our enemy." "Let's crush him first." "I won't allow a popular bastard like that to stand out. I'll definitely crush him." "ERADICATEEE!!"
Kei's surroundings have momentarily become frenzied and despite the combat hasn't started, it had turned into a quite savage atmosphere.
『"The countdown starts. 3, 2, 1——battle start!"』
Tilting her head cutely, Mami-san seemed puzzled, but the heartless battle had begun.
" " "Riajuus shall be purged with death!" " "
Letting out a voice that seemed as if it had come from the bottom of hell the male players clenched their weapons so hard it seemed like they'll claw and bite, then all at once assaulted Kei, beating him up.
Seeing that Minute went "oops, I might have failed the timing for the cheer". She put a hand on her forehead and shook solidified Mami, returning her to sanity.
Just like that, the PvP tournament's battle had started.
"Aaa?!! Kei was swallowed by a group of men?!"
"He couldn't withstand the wave of jealousy. Other than him, a guy rumoured to have found a lover in the game was also done in."
"The world is heartless, isn't it."
Minute and Letia have commented like that, Mami-san ran out to comfort Kei who had retired early at the start and was no longer here.
The intensive attacks fuelled by jealousy have gradually calmed down and the show had turned into a decent battle royale.
『"The qualifiers are a battle royale that'll last until participants are reduced to a certain number, leaving the winners! There's a limit on the recovery items, if you can survive you'll make it to battle royale finals where the champion will be decided!"』
While listening to Cloude's commentary, my eyes followed acquaintances.
"Woahh, amazing. That person's way of using magic is really skilful."
"The one stretching out that barrage o' magic is 【Still Water's Witch】——a player called Sei-san. She's Yun-kun's olda sister and embodie' the perfect mage damage dealer's fightin' style."
"No, dealing with that is impossible. Stalling for time with continuous magic and casting more advanced magic——"
Al said it's impossible for him to exceed or do something like that by himself in response to seeing the barrage of water magic. However, there was one that had passed through the barrage diving in and approaching Sei-nee.
At the tip of the staff held towards the player a water blade was projected and a slash was released.
"——Like you just saw, even if someone passes through her stick-fightin' skills ar' quite good, they be thrust at with the staff and frozen wit' magic."
Speaking towards Al who carefully observed Sei-nee, Kohaku took the commentary role. Rirei who was beside her continuously sidled up to me with excited movements from the seat behind.
"That round butt and modest chest. Inside that sisterly clothing the faith called entire world's delusions has gathered. A maiden having both such a cute and dignified aspects to her sitting defenceless——"Rirei! Yer to concentrate on cheerin' now!"——Well, at next opportunity. Do your best!"
Without even looking at her Kohaku in charge of Rirei has grasped the nape of her neck, I've already started to get used to it.
"Ah, it's Mikadzuchi-san."
Next, Hino had described Mikadzuchi to Lyna.
Hino and Lyna were no different in age and history as a player, regardless of levels they have easily befriended each other.
"Mikadzuchi-san's main is stick-fighting, but since her weapon is long there's a lot I can use as a reference. Since a stick and a spear are different I need to pay attention as she PvP's."
Hino was a power type using large hammers and a long spear. Lyna was quite different since she used a short spear and a shield, but there were things she could learn from looking.
Despite the fact it was a battle royale, Mikadzuchi was surrounded by three players. To raise their chances to win even a little, people improvised cooperation with eye contact to take down the strong ones.
"Amazin'. So there are things like that too."
Even with an improvised cooperation, the players have released attacks an average player wouldn't be able to avoid. As Mikadzuchi parried and counter-attacked against that, a voice of admiration for Mikadzuchi's skills had leaked out.
Her body didn't waver and she accurately aimed her sharp thrusts at the armour's seams.
Just, compared to the time where she duelled with Flein it was slightly slower, so it was clear she was holding back.
"Look, Yun-kun. Your little sister is doing her best."
"Oh, you're right. Or rather, how did it turn into such situation?"
Although they have started scattered, imperceptibly Myu and Lucato rejoined each other and held a sword back to back.
Surrounding her were players fighting in united front.
They wanted to take down strong players first, but were they swing their swords at the two they would receive a counter-attack, so they stood stiff.
"That's incredible. As expected of people who normally form a party together. Their breathing's perfectly matched."
"You're right. But, I don't think fighting together as acquaintances is too welcome."
I thought of that too.
In the battle royale PvP elements like improvised cooperation is also one of the elements to enjoy. That's why players who don't know each other team up and with their numbers they attack stronger opponents, proceeding through battle advantageously.
But among that, if two people who normally cooperate in a party partner up with each other, there's a possibility of the battle turning one-sided. That, for the event was pretty bad.
However, the two raised their hands stopping people in their surroundings, slowly took distance from each other——
"Yes, Myu-san. No holding back."
After such a short exchange, the two with backs against each other have suddenly faced each other and clashed swords.
They showed a great cooperation so far, why do that all of a sudden, the audience was greatly surprised.
In addition to that, there were people who saw an opportunity in that and narrowed the siege that had loosened, but when they slashed at the two, both have started cooperating as to cover each other's blind spots.
"A bait?" "Or acting." "But that slashing at each other looks serious."
In the middle of such mutters I could hear from the participants, beside me Hino and Kohaku said "as I thought" and both sighed.
"What is it? Hino, Kohaku."
"No... from the start, the two must have looked forward to that happening. I thought."
"Because we're always in a party together, in a place like this they feel like going at each other seriously, I guess?"
As I listened to Hino's and Kohaku's interpretation, the two's fight had grown more intense.
After clashing together for ten, twenty times Myu's and Lucato's speed increased.
A fierce battle in which both exerted their skills against each other. Myu's diversified combination of magic and slashing was seen through by Lucato who projected her sword spoiling Myu's enthusiasm.
Lucato didn't use the bastard sword that was unsuitable for a sword fight with Myu, instead she held a long sword in both her hands. She prevented the opponent to step in and released a blow where Myu was disturbed.
Myu too attacked violently. She cancelled her actions and did feints, taking initiative of the battle instead.
Perceiving Myu's triggering of magic, Lucato prevented it. However, using the magic as a decoy Myu retaliated with a sword.
Behind the intense slashes the two have waged a short yet dense mind battle. And, the end result of it was——
"There! ——《Fifth Brea..."
Myu's long sword had caught Lucato's long sword and parrying, blown it away leaving Lucato empty-handed. She had raised her sword above her to deliver a decisive blow with her entire body.
"Not yet! ——《Grand Slash》!"
Pulling the bastard sword out from her back, Lucato matched Myu's art. Confident of her victory Myu tried to push on with force, aiming for the time where she triggered art and was unmoving, Lucato pushed onto Myu blowing her away.
For just an instant Myu was upset and too late to lower her sword again, the last blow was aimed for that chance. Being cut Myu lost her HP and was forced out of the field to the outside.
Seeing the two's fight go back and forth was enough to make spectators' hands sweat. The passionate gazes focused on the two until the end have changed into cheers with the conclusion of the match.
The PvP was still continuing, but Lucato somehow already had a satisfied expression.
As her breathing turned longer, retired Myu had jumped out to the front row of the audience.
In the audience, just by the entrance stood Myu with whom Lucato was fighting just a moment ago.
"You won against me! Keep on winning!"
"Yes! Please watch me!"
While saying so, Lucato raised he sword towards Myu. To that, Myu responded with a smile.
After a series of exchanges with the discouraged, uncouth bunch in surroundings she crushed them as if they never been there and the battle continued to change.
Gantz did put up a good fight alone, but he struggled quite a lot because of a martial artist's low reach.
Toutobi took advantage of her speed and aimed for vital points, getting close and cutting the enemy soundlessly, she ran past. The slashed opponent mistook it for an attack by the player next to him and caused a confused fight which continued to evolve into carnage.
"Toutobi's doing really good. In a battle royale she preserved quite a lot of HP."
As many players cut down each other's HP, Toutobi's way of fighting where she retains a margin of HP was efficient. In addition to causing confusion, she aggressively aimed at players with low HP remaining.
"And compared to that, Taku-kun."
Ahead of Emily-san's sight, who sat next to me, was Taku.
Directed towards Taku was an attack of a group like the one that assaulted Kei at first... and currently, he was on the run.
"Heeey! Yun! Myu-chan!"
"That guy, is he taunting them on purpose? Or is he seriously running away?"
"Taku-saaan! Do your beeest!"
While brilliantly avoiding attacks and magic coming from people with menacing expressions behind him, Taku waved towards us.
That had further fuelled the flames of jealousy with which the unpopular players have gone mad, enraging them even more.
"Definitely gonna crushh youuu!!" "Having three beautiful sisters as childhood friends, just disappearrrrrrr!!" "Lose unsightly! Lose hideously! Beg for your lifeeeee!!" "I won't forgive you even if you beg! I'll give you overwhelming defeat!"
I don't care about winning, but, I just can't forgive that guy. As crisis had approached him from players thinking that, Taku continued to escape like the wind. Occasionally, he pressed the players chasing against him onto groups of fighting players, depleting them.
"T-that's stingy! His avoiding and parrying skills are high, but his overall combat strategy is stingy..."
"Well, it looks like it would be a fruitless fight."
Kei was already suffocated by people driven crazy with jealousy and Gantz was about to lose normally. Ah, he lost.
The battle had slowly changed from the mid-stage into the second half, a lot of players continued to fight despite the consumption.
From acquaintances, the ones still inside were Taku, Sei-nee, Lucato, Toutobi and Mikadzuchi.
Such veterans have remained qualifying. Suddenly the part of the audience had stirred, a single player in the centre stood still, calmly, smiling fiercely towards the PvP's participants.
"——It's 【Flame Prison Corps'】 Flein."
The moment someone said that, Flein who had looked down at the battlefield from the audience until now had put his foot on the handrail and jumped off to the field.
Spreading bustle inside like ripples on the surface of water, the person himself had unsheathed his weapon, a long black and thin sword, then approached the PvP players.
Knowing just the image of him as of a villainous leader of a PK guild which had preceded him, fear had spread in the arena.
"I want to enter and participate!"
I looked for the audience seats to Cloude who sat on the seat for moderator.
『"Interesting, we'll allow participation as a special case. PK is also PvP in a broad sense. However! For the penalty you'll have stats cut to 70%, consumable items are banned and HP is limited to 50%!"』
"Ha, 50% is more than enough."
Muttering just that, Flein tried to cut the nearest player. Despite the fact he had a penalty on him, unable to respond to his speed the player was taken down by continous attacks of the thin sword.
"Hurry yerself up and come at me! If not, ya can put on more handicap!"
In response to his provocation, the anger in the players roused. In addition, the audience who harboured hard feelings towards the PKs for the yesterday's uproar have started jeering at him.
"Yeah! I'm a PK. Doing whatever I please is my way of playing!"
The person himself swung his sword looking pleased, repeatedly provoking. No matter how you look at him, a villain.
However, I felt discomfort in that attitude of his.
Flein was without a doubt a battle-crazed villain, but I didn't think he himself had a bad personality.
Meanwhile, a single player had appeared heading towards Flein.
Lyna's and Al's eyes sparkled as they watched Taku confront Flein. Until now he only continued to escape from the players behind him, no, even now he continued to pull players behind him as he headed towards Flein.
"To think there's someone who'd come at me! Nice! I'll take you on!"
"Well then, I'll take you up on your words——"
The moment Taku had entered the range of Flein's thin black sword, he pulled out a long sword and parried the thin sword to the right, then Taku ran past Flein's side.
"——And let you take care of handling the guys behind me!"
"Uwahh, that guy's downright rude."
Lyna and Al who watched Taku's videos and looked up to him made shocked expressions. Moreover, the ones sitting beside them, Hino, Kohaku and Rirei looked at it with pity.
Flein who had people pushed down on him had directed his killing intent to the group chasing Taku rather than Taku himself, cutting them down as if welcoming them with open arms.
The gazes concentrated on a player who shouted loudly while heading towards the centre of the confused battle Flein was in.
With a roar, it was Mikadzuchi heading towards Flein.
She ignored the players who opened her a path, smacked down the players who stood in her way and even when she was hurt by a counter-attack she continued to rush in.
And when she arrived in front of Flein, there was a wall of players surrounding him, standing in her way but——
Mikadzuchi pierced the ground with her stick, then used it to do a pole jump twice as high as a person's stature, then poised the stick to swing it down.
"HA! Bring it on!"
Flein received the blow that had the momentum of Mikadzuchi's fall and body weight added on top of it by using his thin sword, his feet sank few centimetres into the ground along with the impact and cracks ran in his surroundings.
"It's the second time isn't it. Mikadzuchi! Before, it was a draw, but this time I'll win overwhelmingly in your own playing field!"
"Ha! You specially came to get done in! Also, last one wasn't a draw, Flein. It wasn't settled since you ran away! This time we'll decide it!"
Pressing their weapons against one another, the two glared at each other from close range.
"You bunch! Flein is my prey! Don't interfere!"
"Nee-san!" "Anego!" "Leave Anego alone then!"
It must have been players who admired Mikadzuchi. They looked at her with worry as she confronted Flein, but they didn't interfere.
"Damn it! Don't let anyone interfere with Nee-san's duel! Eliminate everyone in the surroundings!"
" "Yeah!!" "
"That's amazin', in more way than one."
Moreover, as not to let anyone interfere with Mikadzuchi, the players she was acquainted with started to eliminate the surrounding players, the situation heated up by the end of battle royale.
In Flein's and Mikadzuchi's battle both of them were handicapped, but they haven't directly clash again like Mikadzuchi's first blow using her body weight.
In silence they exchanged blows, feints and avoided. As their attacks loudly cut through the air, Flein's sword grazed Mikadzuchi's bangs and Mikadzuchi's stick caught Flein's clothes.
Knowing each other's skills, they fought aware of the fact its over the moment they receive a hit because of how few HP they had left.
As the two fought without crossing their weapons the audience had gradually heated up.
"Flein, hurry up and lose!" "Go lose! Hurry up and lose!"
They jeered at Flein, it wasn't very pleasant for those listening, but the person himself took it as natural, like a breeze.
On the other hand, Mikadzuchi reacted. For just an instant she stopped moving in response to the voices. Flein didn't miss it, in that moment he released the fastest thrust at Mikadzuchi.
The quiet battle had quietly headed for the end.
『"——Qualifications are over! The number of the players has decreased to the set number! The PvP Finals will start in an hour!"』
The voice of the host, Cloude had echoed.
As the thin black sword stopped right before Mikadzuchi's forehead, anyone could tell it was Mikadzuchi's defeat.
"Tch, you narrowly escaped death."
"Shut up. This is a draw."
Seeing Mikadzuchi frustrated Flein shrugged, then he moved to the centre of the field with a determined step.
『"All of you listen! I'm 【Flame Prison Corps'】 Flein! I know well you bastards are frustrated losers!"』
At these words that sounded right after the PvP qualifiers ended, many players opened their eyes wide.
『"We have occupied the surroundings of the 【Wisteria Peach Tree】. No matter how much you deny you lost to us PKs, it's a fact you lost! If you want to win against me, come there and dare try it! Coming alone is fine! Coming in a group is fine! If you kill a PK, his level drops! On the other hand, if you're killed by us PKs, we get stronger! Now, if you got any complaints come at us and let's settle this! Well, that is if you reach us... of course."
Just once Flein paused in middle of sentence. Then, acting provocatively he left the place.
To Flein victory in PvP didn't seem to have any worth and he came just for the sake of publicity.
As he was leaving he found me at the audience seats and made a fearless smile in my direction, I'd like to think it was just my imagination.