“What will happen? What will happen to the people in Troy City?”
“I’m not sure, either. Didn’t I tell you? Humans have never come into contact with mana. Putting aside how humans that have consumed a large volume of mana will react, I’ve never seen the mana the elf created. That’s why I don’t have any clue how human bodies will react after consuming a large volume of it. If you want to know, you have to enter the city immediately.”
“But I’ve sent out an envoy. I can’t do anything to Troy City until tomorrow morning. If I barge in without prior notice, the people will misunderstand that I’m attacking them.”
While I did say that, I already reached the bottom of the city walls. The red uniform army’s transportation unit behind me transported ladders over to await my commands. I didn’t tell them what my goal was. They probably thought I wanted to take advantage of the night’s cover to climb the walls.
It was the first time I climbed the walls of Troy City in that fashion. The red uniform army and I silently landed on the walls. There wasn’t a single light in Troy City, including at the Imperial Place. The city was dead silent. The only light was the silver blades in the soldiers’ hands. Nothing was out of the ordinary. It was as though the entire city was asleep, or maybe it was dead.
A Valkyrie came up to my side and quietly asked, “Your Majesty, what should we do? There are four soldiers in the watchtowers to our right. Shall we kill them off?”
Surprised, I asked, “There’s someone? I’ll personally go over.”
I looked in the direction of the watchtowers, which were located by the wall on the right hand side. They didn’t have the fire torch in there lit up, but I could see their silhouettes. The Valkyries drew their long swords and carefully followed behind me as we approached the tower. The closer we got, the more distinct the footsteps sounded. It sounded as though the four in the tower continuously paced back and forth.
“The four of them should be looking in four different directions. What are they doing going back and forth? Are they trying to switch views with each other?” I pondered.
Below the watchtower was a ladder. The benefit of ladders made from stone is that we wouldn’t make too much noise. Two Valkyries accompanied me up. For every rung we went up, the clearer the view of the tower above was. The first thing we saw was four pairs of staggering feet. The next thing we saw was them dragging their hips along as they walked. The last thing we saw was them swinging their arms in a random fashion. When we got onto the tower, we saw four staggering, lifeless-looking, wandering… people?
Judging from the way they looked, they were no different zombies out of a video game. They had no pupils or conscious, and they waddled as they involuntarily shouted in muffled voices. The four of them weren’t pacing back and force; they were zombies without a semblance of a conscious.
It wasn’t just me who was shocked; the Valkyries behind me were also shocked. Nevertheless, despite the shock, two Valkyries charged up to the “zombies” that charged at us. The scene was the exact same as what you’d see in movies. There was no formation or strategy. They had only one goal and that was to kill us. An attack lacking in strategy was totally useless against Valkyries. The Valkyries dispatched the four zombies without breaking a sweat. I didn’t expect the zombies to spray blood identical to human blood.
“What in the world are these things?!” I asked the woman in my head.
I crouched down to look at the four corpses. For safety’s sake, the Valkyries beheaded them.
“I don’t know what they’re called, either. They’re a new breed of creatures. They’re not good news, though. You’re a dark elf, so you should be aware of what dark elves do on full-moon nights, right? They suck blood. They suck blood for mana. These humans have been contaminated with mana. As a result, they’ve become muddle-headed creatures searching for mana. In reality, the mana won’t do anything for them. It’s just an instinct of magical creatures. Now, as for mana, even if it’s not for mana – since part of it is from the aggression of a wild beast – these people will have a desire to kill. By the way, due to mana being spread through mana and blood, if you’re bitten or carelessly consume their blood, th-”
“Ah! What are you doing?! What are y-, Argh!!”
I spun around to see two white robes stacked on each other. One Valkyrie cried out in pain as her comrade pressed down on her. The Valkyrie roared as she tore into her neck as a bloodthirsty wild animal would. I sprinted over and put a bullet in the head of the infected Valkyrie.
I apologised: “I’m sorry…”
I didn’t give the bitten Valkyrie any chances. I picked up one of the long swords on the ground and thrust it through her head, skewering her on the ground.
The voice in my head wasn’t as relaxed as usual. To the contrary, she was very tense as she informed me, “Those who are hurt will basically turn into that state. It seems that it’s due to the mana. This must be the so-called holy water, the water that can heal wounds. Those who have touched it, those who drank the river water here, have already turned into these creatures. In other words, unfortunately, the people of this city can no longer be saved.”
“Can they be healed?”
“No. After the full-moon night, they will remain in that state. Furthermore, these creatures will follow the river to the elven lands as well as Hilles City. Do you understand now? If I were you, I’d destroy this entire city, and kill everyone inside it. You can’t let a single one leave the city. They are a plague to the entire continent, get it? How many people reside in this city? Thousands? Tens of thousands? Can you imagine tens of thousands of them spreading this plague across the continent? Can you imagine hundreds of thousands of humans being infected with the plague? Troy City is no longer the city that you know of. It’s now a den of monsters.”
Before she finished, I had blitzed out. I ignored the red uniform army behind me that was desperately calling out to me. I knocked away the zombie-looking things as they charged at me. Their arms clanged on my dragon scales as I kicked, punched and wrestled my way through the city. They could never infect me thanks to my scales. I fixed my gaze the grandest structure in the centre of the city and fought my way toward it.
Meanwhile, in the imperial palace of Troy City…
“Tanya, what happened outside? Tanya? Tanya!! Tanya! What are you doing?!! Tanya!!”