The heavy indomitable approach of the Treant drained the colour from the face of an adventurer thrown asunder by its swing, and screaming, he began to run away from it. His adventurer tag showed the dull lustre of iron, and it didn’t look like he was with a party either. Weren’t Rank-E adventurers barred from taking requests that would place them in the front line? The personnel shortage, at least, seems to be real, but something smells.
Seeing swords, fragments of armour, and sometimes adventurers, sent flying, I donned my Aura. It should protect me from most injuries. Well then… When I saved Ruby from a Treant, I used the flame sword to burn it. But that was a half-baked plan at best, I had burnt both my hands and the heat had almost killed me. With me being able to use the fire attribute, I could shoot Fire Blades at it, but I was sure that it wouldn’t deal a decisive blow. It would probably only burn for the short while it was stabbed with the Fire Blade and then go out soon after. It wouldn’t be enough to burn the Treant in its entirety.
The reason it would be inadequate was because the Treant was still a living tree, and its wood still had a lot of water incorporated in it. Looking closely, you could even spot moss growing on it. Even when I burnt the one from before, clouds of water vapour billowed out from it. That’s why I thought, Couldn’t I just freeze it then?
The Treant swept aside the last adventurer holding out against it, clearing its surroundings of people. I stretched my hands out and focused on creating a ball of water, as big as I could make it. I floated it over the Treant and dropped the whole thing on it. While it drenched the Treant, it didn’t cause any damage or slow its steady progress towards me.
Freeze, I chanted to myself. The water attribute mana I was channelling suddenly sublimated into ice and the Treant began to freeze over. *Crack Crack* I could hear the cracks opening in the Treant. Its movement slowed, and soon, it couldn’t move at all.
Part of the ice covering the Treant crumbled causing a loud cascading noise. A large fissure showed through the hole in the ice. It was a Frost Crack, the sound you could hear in a forest on cold winter nights. So this is what happens when you try to freeze a Treant.
As I was indulging my curiosity, an adventurer who was fighting nearby called out to me, “Excuse me! If you’re done with that one, could you help me out here!?” It was the guy who was fighting using Wind Arrows. It seemed like he was running low on mana. His bow looked a lot weaker than before.
Truth be told, I had little idea about the effectiveness of the wind attribute. However, the Treant’s body showed signs of extensive damage, and it looked a lot smaller than the one I just froze. There wasn’t any other adventurers taking on the Treant, this guy was doing it all on his own. He must be really skilled. The Treant seemed to be on its last legs, it just needed one more push.
Trial number 2, I wanted to see how much mana it would take to burn this Treant. However, it wouldn’t serve as a good reference with how pared down it was. I drew my sword and shot a Fire Blade towards the Treant. A blade far larger than the one that burnt the Green Wolf assailed the Treant.
The fire blazed through its cracks and spread to its entire body. Light as bright as the evening sun pierced my eyes, making me squint. It burned so easily that it was anticlimactic. I felt silly that I’d burnt myself the last time I tried it.
The Treant tilted forward and fell dead with a crash. “””Oh!””” I could hear the knights and adventurers exclaiming in admiration around me. Is the crisis resolved with this?, I wondered to myself.
“Hey, you sure saved us.”, called the Guild Master who’d foisted this job on me. The wind attribute adventurer was sitting right there on the ground, exhausted. Though, he still managed a grin when he noticed my look.
“That was amazing, you can actually use two attributes. To think that you defeated a Treant by freezing it.”
“I don’t know if it’s actually dead, it’s probably best that you make sure later.”
“Yeah, got it. Hey…, this is just a request, but do you think you can join the investigation team? It would really help us out if you were there.”
I gave the guild master a flat stare and said, “I have my own business to take care of. Besides, I told you before right? I just happened to pass by. If it’s just an investigation, I think yo倒したゴブリンやらグリーンウルフやらの処理を冒険者がする間をぬけて歩いていくu have more than enough people already.”
“I understand that you have your own business, but still, could you somehow please do it? Another Treant might come swinging! We might have the numbers, but we can’t exactly put the Lords and Sirs to work. And most of the gathered adventurers are low-ranked.”
Lords? Sirs? No, more importantly… “Why are most of these adventurers Rank-E? They don’t seem to have formed parties either.”
“Ah that…well, you see…”, stretched the Guild Master, making a complicated expression.
“Huh? It’s already over? Come on you guys, you should have left some for me.”, complained a woman as she walked up to us. With short black hair, she was definitely beautiful, but I frowned because she somehow reminded me of Katrina. Her necklace gleamed gold, claiming her Rank-B status.
“Susanna, you just came huh…”
“Ah? Do you have a problem with that?”
“Uh… I wouldn’t put it so…”, the Guild Master mumbled under his breath.
I felt an instinctive dislike for this woman. Her Servant, the guy barely standing behind her, looked very frail. Soon she left saying, “If the job’s done, I’m outta here.”
“She’s the reason we don’t have more high-ranked adventurers. She poaches most of the high ranked requests, and then would show up late, handle materials carelessly, thus, eroding the trust placed in the guild. As a result, the number of high ranked quests received by our guild dropped to the ground and that caused most of the high ranked adventurers to move.”
He spoke as if it was all Susanna’s fault, but that wasn’t true. You’re at fault too, you know?
“And? Why didn’t you stop her?”
“That…it’s because Susanna is the Governor’s daughter. I wouldn’t call her a skilled adventurer, but her combat ability is the real deal. That’s why…if push comes to shove…”
“When push came to shove she wasn’t here. I mean, for just that, you let skilled adventurers leave and allowed her to get off scot-free?”
“For just that? That’s more than enough. Who knows what would happen to our guild if I antagonize that girl. Besides, I owe a great debt to the Governor…”, said the Guild Master, frowning.
Even though this guy can be so pushy with the people below him, forcing unreasonable requests on them, looks like he’s a coward when it comes to people with greater status than him. It surprised me that he’d become a Guild Master with such a disposition. But you never know, it seemed like he owed the Governor some kind of debt, he might have got the position by sucking up to the Governor.
I didn’t like the sound of this place at all. I wanted to get to Voldory as soon as possible, but it would be too dangerous to cross the forest without knowing the cause of this chaos. If, say, ten Treants surrounded me, I doubted I’d be able to escape.
In any case, “I don’t plan on joining the investigation team. You can go ahead with the people you have now.”
“I see…is that so…”, stammered the Guild Master with a pained expression, like he was really counting on me. It didn’t bother me though. Just the thought of working for a guy like him annoyed me.
Over hearing some talk, I learnt that he was the Guild Master of a town nearby called Larva. It would take a while to reach there by walk, but I should make it in no time if I ran. It’s a lot closer than Voldory after all. He informed me that he would give the day’s reward there. No other choice, I’ll rest there for the day.
I walked past the adventurers gathering materials from the Goblins and Green Wolves they’d defeated. Riley and company were nowhere to be found. They might have run scared or finished what they came to do, I had no idea.
Ah, who cares. I prayed that I didn’t have to meet them ever again. But my prayer wasn’t answered.
One thought on “Chapter 29 – I defeat the Treant”
Thanks for the new chapter!