~ Chapter 87: The fire in Silvertooth Forest (Part 1) ~
[Seryanna's point of view]
As the night grew closer, and the sun was about to set over the horizon, I spotted something shining in the distance. If I had blinked, I would have missed it.
My wings spread wide, and I stopped in midair. Squinting my eyes at those feeble scattered rays of light, I spotted some sort of tower. For a moment, I wondered if it was a relliar outpost or maybe a small village, but I highly doubted it to be so. This could only be the hideout of the humans, but even if by some far off chance I was wrong about this, I could ask those living there for directions.
Thus, I flew towards it at my usual speed.
When I reached the building that cast of the guiding light, I identified it as a human temple dedicated to the Pantheon of Zeus. Then, right there on the ground were humans soldiers who were walking about, patrolling the area. A bit closer to the temple, I recognized the knights who were guarding the bishop. They were in the middle of their meal.
This must be the place, and it doesn't look like they have noticed me yet. I thought and then unsheathed Drachenkrieg.
Before I began my attack, I looked around to see if I could spot any of the slaves they may have brought with them, but I found no trace of them. What I did notice, however, were large quantities of construction materials like planks, logs, boxes of nails, and crafting tools.
Just like the humans in Mashat told me, they were going to build here a settlement and have it grow over the years. By successfully smuggling humans inside this place, they could then demand independence from the relliar kingdom once it had a high enough population.
So far, I don't think they brought any civilians here, yet... I thought.
Unfortunately, I didn't know what they were hiding within the temple, but from what I could see, the bishop and the human hero were most likely inside. It was highly unlikely that they would leave for the port without their knights to guard them. Then again, the individuals stationed here could have been given the mission to protect and support the establishment of the new human settlement here.
Least to be said that this foolish dream of human conquering won't ever come to be. At least not if I had something to say about this matter.
Right when I was about to set my sword on fire and rush at them to take their lives, a single thought crossed my mind What if the humans decide to kill the fluffy ones in an act of retaliation before I manage to find them?
I stopped myself from pouring Magic Energy in Drachenkrieg and setting it ablaze.
I can't take that chance... I thought, and so I landed somewhere around their compound before any of them spotted me.
Observing them from afar, I tried to see what they were doing or maybe hear what they were planning. As I did just that, I spotted the carriages used by the bishop and his knight guards, which confirmed his presence here.
Is he inside? I wondered and sneaked up behind the church.
There were three windows opened at the second floor, which I could use to enter unnoticed. I first made sure that no one was around and then I walked under the one on the far right. Although I could scale the wall with ease, a single jump was enough for me to reach the frame of the window.
Inside, I found a luxurious room with one big bed and two bookcases filled with documents rather than books. There was a desk to my right and on it were several documents and blank papers.
I approached the desk and looked at one of the documents.
Are these written in the Akutan Empire's language? I can't tell... I thought and decided that for now it was best for me to store them inside my [Purse] ring.
As far as I knew, they could be used as evidence of a planned invasion or a very complicated cooking recipe.
After I cleaned up the room of anything with so much a word written on it, I made my way outside. The only ones present here were a couple of servants who were cleaning up the place. There were no women here, only men.
Just in case I found similar documents in the other rooms, I made my way there and after making sure there was no one inside, I looked around for a bit.
The first one was an unused empty room, but the second one had only a backpack on the table. I walked up to it and checked the contents. Besides some typical adventuring gear, I found what looked like a diary of sorts. I took this one and then walked.
“Who are you?” the servant who saw me asked surprised.
Before he managed to scream, I grabbed him by the throat and squeezed until his air was cut off. After he lost consciousness, I tossed him in the empty room and then made my way to the lower floor.
This church had the living quarters for the important people at the second floor, while the servants and the rest lived in the rooms on the right side. In the back, of the church, to the left of the altar, was a confession room made for those who wished to be forgiven of their sins. Even dragon temples had those, but they were mostly used to catch criminals struck by remorse, guilt, or fear of our gods. Their other purpose was to seek life counseling from a priest.
Since I had no need to go to the servant quarters, I made my way to the basement. Until I found the fluffy fellows, I couldn't go wild. But just as I was about to open the door, I heard a voice coming from the other side.
Although I didn't understand what they were saying, I recognized their voices. It was the bishop and the hero.
Not wanting to find me here, I ran inside the confession room and hid there.
The door to the basement opened and those two walked out together. They said something and after they left, I made my way to the basement.
There... I saw a scene that made my heart twist with pain and anger boil the blood in my veins. What I saw made me bare my teeth and clench my fists until blood came out. What I saw was something that I could never forgive!
“P-Pwease... n-no more... it... it hurts...” Shelly begged with tears in her swollen eyes.
The little relliar girl had been strapped naked to a torture table. Her fur had been shaved off completely. There were countless cuts on her body that appeared to have been made by a sharp knife. She had three broken fingers and bruises all over her body. There was blood coming from her mouth and her ears had been cut and left to bleed.
As I looked at the poor child, my emotions twisted and turned until what I was feeling inside could not even be described as rage and anger anymore. There was nothing there or rather, it was a void that swallowed up everything else around it. I felt the desire to destroy, to hunt, and to kill, but at the same time, I felt that giving them the pleasure of seeing my anger was a bit too much.
No, these monsters were going to see a Seryanna Draketerus who didn't listen to their words or acknowledged their pathetic existence. I was going to kill them in the most brutal way, especially that bishop and hero!
Right then, I heard steps coming from behind me.
Unsheathing Drachenkrieg, I turned around and stopped it at a hair's length away from that person's throat.
It was Tanarotte.
“Wait! Wait! I come in peace! And I would appreciate it if you allowed me to return to mistress Kataryna in one piece!” she said with cold sweat on her forehead and raising her hands up.
“What are you doing here?” I asked her with cold eyes and a lifeless tone of voice Did I always sound so distant and empty? I wondered.
“It's my first assignment! Track down Seryanna Draketerus and make sure she doesn't burn the country to the ground!” she said with a smile and a thumbs up.
“Is that so?” I said and lowered my sword.
I turned around and walked up to the table where Shelly was. I couldn't bare to let her stay like this any longer.
“But, you know, it was quite difficult to track you down. You move fast for someone wearing heavy armor!” she said after she let out a sigh of relief.
I didn't answer her.
“Mew... S-Seryanna? Is that you?” the kitten asked.
“Yes, little one. I've come to save you.” I said as I took off my gauntlet and gently touched her cheek.
She flinched at first, but then she realized it was me.
“Pwease... save me. The bad man hurt me. He was laughing... I don't want to feel pain anymore...” she begged me.
Tears gathered in my eyes and flowed down on my cheeks as I saw what became of her.
“Uwa~ Poor Shelly, the King won't be happy.” Tanarotte commented.
“The King is the last thing these humans will have to worry about.” I said as I unstrapped her from the table and then picked her up in my arms.
The poor child couldn't even stand on her own. She was so weak, frightened, and in pain that I found it hard to believe she was the same Shelly who played hide and seek with me the other day.
“Shelly, it's going to be alright. I'm going to avenge you.” I said and kissed her forehead.
“Seryanna...” she whimpered.
“Tanarotte Narnyessal, this is an order. Protect princess Eshantiel Ruvus until I have killed all the humans here.” I ordered her in a firm tone of voice.
“W-Where are y-you going? P-Pwease d-don't leave m-me.” Shelly asked in a trembling tone of voice.
“I'm not going anywhere little one. The dragoness here will just hold you in her arms until I have finished business with the bad man who dared to hurt you. Don't worry, he won't ever be able to hurt you or anyone else again.” I said and gave her a kiss on the forehead.
“Understood!” Tanarotte nodded.
I handed over Shelly to her and then we made our way out. While the two of them sneaked out through the back window and took some distance from the church, I unsheathed my sword, set it ablaze and approached the front door.
At this point, I had tuned out all the noise and screams the humans made. During this battle of mine, I felt as though I was in a trance. What I cut and what I burned mattered not to me, and no ammount of begging and tears could cause me to show mercy.
My spells hunted down their targets, crippling and grinding their bodies until their hearts stopped. Whomever I touched was engulfed in flames and burned slowly until he died of suffocation or the unbearable pain.
Because these humans dared to torture Shelly in that gruesome way, I did the same.
When it came to the bishop and the hero, the way I killed them could have been considered rather brutal, but the latter had the swiftest death of the two. I grabbed a nearby knight's sword and infused it with Magic Energy past its limit and then tossed it at him. The sword that was burning hot and already showing cracks in it was impaled in his chest and then exploded, sending the human's remains all over the place.
They were the last among the humans to die, and once I had cleaned up these bugs, I cast my most powerful explosion spells at the church.
Tanarotte was already outside of its range, so she and Shelly were safe from my wrath.
The detonation was set with a timer, to let me move away as well.
When it exploded, everything within a 100 meters radius had turned into a smoldering crater. No trace of the humans was left behind, not even the stones that made up the church.
All around this crater, a massive fire had started, threatening to engulf the whole forest if no one did anything.
“Remind me never to make you angry.” said Tanarotte with a wry smile as she let me hold Shelly again.
“How is she?” I asked.
“She's asleep. She's been through some terrible things. For now, I gave her a healing potion, to make sure her life isn't in any danger, but we should take her to a healer to see to her wounds. Those brutes... it's horrible what they did to her!” she clenched her fist and then tossed a couple of curses at the Akutan Empire.
Looking at the sleeping kitten, it pained my heart to see her in this state.
My gaze then fell on the massive fire I had started. I let it burn for a bit, watching it from the sky and wondering if what I had done was enough?
No... I should destroy their ships as well. I thought.
After I stopped the fire that was eating the innocent forest, I flew back to the capital of the Sarakus Kingdom.
Just like dragons, so too the humans are capable of some terrible things. I thought at one point.
Note from the author: Thank you for reading this chapter, I hope you enjoyed it! Oh, and be sure to check out my other stories too!
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