Since they said that the request only came in last night, the herd shouldn’t have made it close to the town yet.
And according to the map, between the mountains they have come down from and Oxter, there is a marshland called the Indera marshlands.
It’s apparently not a huge marshland or anything but Orcs were in the end, a race of bipedal humanoid monsters.
It should take quite a bit of time for them to get through it.
And so we’ll wait right where they’ll get out of the marshlands, and will exterminate them there and then, or that was the plan at least for now.
“Say, we sure took this cockily but are you sure we’ll be fine?”
“I wouldn’t know that would I? But, it’s something we have to do, that’s all I know.”
“What a vague answer is that? If it’s a full herd that means there’ll be Orc knights and Orc soldiers as well no? Sounds scary.”
“It’ll be fine if it’s just that. If they had a proper leader ordering them around, now that’s when things will really get scary.”
If my memory is correct, their ranks go as far as an Orc emperor.
Orc Emperor was labelled as a Demon Lord class monster, so I highly doubt something like that would show up here but…….
If a big herd came down a mountain together, then it could be due to the appearance of an Orc General.
Or perhaps, a monster so powerful it made these Orcs come down from the mountain appeared. There is that possibility as well.
Well, the reason was irrelevant right now and I focused solely on the Orcs for now.
“Chris-san, what’s the plan?”
“For now, let’s set up formation right at the exit of the marshlands and have you, Esta, eradicate them with your magic, that’s it. Those who get out of the marsh will be dealt by me and Ralf.”
“So I should just focus on attacking the Orcs still in the marsh then?”
“yes, don’t get distracted by the ones that get out. I look forward to your magic barrage allowed by your [mana regen].”
“Well, both me and Chris are here so don’t get nervous and go full crazy with it! You’re the protagonist for today Esta!”
Ralf made some light jokes to loosen Esta’s nerves before the battle.
She looked the same as always to me but these two have been together for many years, he must be more sensitive to even the littlest of changes.
“That said, this is just the preliminary plan. Since the guild put the emergency request out with no other info other than ‘the ORcs have come down from the mountain’, we don’t know how big the herd is, and we don’t just how strong their force is either. If the herd was bigger than imagined or if we notice the presence of dangerous monster, we’ll instantly retreat.”
“……..Retreat? we won’t even try fighting?”
“Rather than die for a meaningless death, getting that info to Oxter would be far more important. If it was a force that could make us retreat, then that means that the level of threat is so high that we’ll have no choice but to ask for help from other towns, and we should focus on buying time instead.”
“Understood! We’ll follow Chris-san’s instructions!”
And so we finally made it to Indera marshlands and began preparing fast since we don’t know when the Orcs might appear.
They were still not in sight, and the unusually quiet marsh made the atmosphere even more eerie.
About a couple hours later—-
At the ends of my vision, I could finally see small grain sized Orcs walking towards us.
“You two, they’re here.”
“Eh? ReallY?…….I can’t see shit from here though.”
“How big is the herd?”
“I can only see the front row, about seven of them.”
They weren’t exactly walking like a proper army but I could see them slowly walking alongside each other approaching us.
If you are wondering how many similar rows of this behind them would make us decide to run instead? That would be three rows……..if it’s twenty or less, I plan to exterminate them here and now.
I continued staring and observing at the Orcs and tried to quickly confirm their full numbers.
“is it 2 rows…….? No, there are a couple more behind them but——this much is still alright.”
“I still can’t see shit though man! How good are your eyes!? So how many total are there?”
“18……maybe 19. 12 normal ones. 4 Orc soldiers and 2 orc knights and………fuck, there is a Orc general after all.”
“An Orc general was it……..? If I recall, that’s usually a gold rank subjugation. Depending on the kind, it could even be a Platinum rank!”
“Oi, Are we really gonna fight that! That alone is a gold rank subjugation isn’t it?”
It’s really hard to decide whether to retreat or not.
If I was alone it’d be impossible without a doubt but with these two with me, I really think we could beat them together.
If we wanted to play it safe, we should obviously retreat but it’s not always silver ranks like us get to take on a request of this level.
……..I kept on thinking and thinking to the point smoke started rising from my head but, finally I came to the conclusion that we should stay and fight.
“We fight. If we don’t panic and stick to our roles we will be fine. They don’t have anyone that can use long range attacks. If we play it well, we should be able to one-sidedly blast them with attacks.”
“If that’s the decision Chris has come to then I have no objections. You and me will protect Esta alright!”
“I have been preparing training in magic for a day like this. Leave it to me!!”
“fuh, you two sure have become reliable. Also remember, if the Orc general gets out, I’ll be the one that’ll take it on. Ralf, you will deal with the rest of the Orcs.”
With our plan set, all of us raised our concentration.
The grain sized Orcs had now become much bigger as they came closer and closer.
The atmosphere was tense enough that no one spoke but, we were all equally excited as well.
Our first request as a Party, and our opponents were this group of Orcs who were releasing a lot of pressure.
The first monster I ever killed was an Orc. Looks like I have some sort of weird fate with them.
While thinking of such things, the Orcs who were walking through the marsh approached close enough and noticed us and raised a war cry. And then increased their speed with which they approached.
“Here they come! Esta, the moment they are in range, start blasting!”
“They already are! Take this—–[Fire Arrow]!”
From the tip of the longstaff in Esta’s hand, a fire arrow burst forth and signaled the start of our battle.