Chapter 3: The Art of Surviving a World of War
Nobunaga ordered Katsuie and Nagahide to train her in order to learn self-defense.
Among the ongoing uneasy days where she wondered if she would return to her original world, one day…
The man who had abruptly appeared swung his sword down at me.
[MITSUHIDE]: “Watch out!”
Pushed by Mitsuhide-san, the sword that should have swung down on me came down and–
[MITSUHIDE]: “Please run away!”
Mitsuhide-san drew out his sword, while pressing down against his shoulder, and clashed swords with the man who attacked him even more.
I was keenly aware from Mitsuhide-san’s pained expression that the wound was definitely not a light injury.
As I hesitated over what I should do, four more men came out of the bushes.
They looked like thieves and all of them carried swords.
[THIEF]: “Oi. Kill that girl over there before she makes noise. I’ll take this man.”
[THIEF]: “Aa. We came all this way to steal treasure from the Demon King’s castle, it wouldn’t be funny if we were discovered before getting in.”
Saying that, the remaining thieves drew out their swords and walked towards me.
[MITSUHIDE]: “–kgh! Please hurry and run!”
[YUZUKI]: (Even if I stay here, I’ll just be a burden…! I have to go call for help!)
Turning my back to Mitsuhide-san, who was fighting, I ran into the dark mountain.
[THIEF]: “Ah! Oi, the woman’s running!”
I immediately heard the footsteps of the thieves chasing me. But I was scared to look back and so I continued to run.
[THIEF]: “Che. She’s fast for a woman!”
I never thought I’d use Katsuie-san’s marathons in this shape. Furthermore–
[YUZUKI]: (It’d be more certain to go to the castle and call for help than search for Katsuie-san, whose whereabouts I don’t know……!)
Thanks to being taught guidelines on how to respond during emergencies by Nagahide-san, what I should be doing came into my mind immediately.
[YUZUKI]: (It’ll be okay! I’ll definitely reach the castle and call for help!)
In any case, I cheered myself on and continued running.
But, whether it was because my surroundings were dark or whether I was in a hurry, my foot caught on a tree root–
A sharp pain ran through my hands and knees right away. Still, I tried to get up somehow, but one of the thieves caught up.
[THIEF]: “Geez, this took some time.”
He climbed on top of me and straddled me, while I was on the ground, and held my body down.
[YUZUKI]: “N-No! –Let me go!”
[YUZUKI]: (I-I’m going to be killed……! Someone… someone, help!)
The thief went to stab me with a sword. In that moment–
[MITSUHIDE]: “–Please remove that filthy hand.”
Mitsuhide-san, who leapt in from the side, cut down the thief.
[MITSUHIDE]: “…… ngh, haa… haa……! I’m glad… you’re safe…… It looks like… Katsuie-san’s training kept you alive.”
He smiled to reassure me but his breathing was rough and his shoulder wound looked painful.
[MITSUHIDE]: “Your knees are scraped but do you think you can still run?”
[MITSUHIDE]: “Then, please head to the castle immediately. I will hold back the rest of the thieves here.”
[YUZUKI]: “With that injury!?”
[MITSUHIDE]: “…… I will be fine. If you go to the castle and bring back soldiers, these thieves will not be a problem.”
[YUZUKI]: (…… But that means Mitsuhide-san can’t win alone without help.)
Mitsuhide-san’s wound was deeper than I thought and it looked like it took all his strength to remain standing, and so my worry grew stronger.
[YUZUKI]: “…… Mitsuhide-san, please drink my blood.”
[YUZUKI]: “If you drink my blood, that shoulder injury will heal, right? Also, like Nobunaga-san, you’ll regain your true strength as a vampire–“
[MITSUHIDE]: “No…… without Nobunaga-san’s permission, I cannot drink your blood.”
[MITSUHIDE]: “I beg of you, please hurry and go.”
Mitsuhide-san then turned his back to me, as if he saying he wouldn’t listen to anything more.
But just that small movement made his body stagger greatly, I simply couldn’t bear to see that.
[YUZUKI]: “………… No. I won’t run.”
[MITSUHIDE]: “…!? W-What are you–“
[YUZUKI]: “It’s taking all you have just to stand, right?”
[MITSUHIDE]: “–gh. That is……”
[YUZUKI]: “Mitsuhide-san, please drink my blood. If you don’t, then I won’t go anywhere!”
[THREE THIEVES]: “Oi, over there!”
In the darkness, three human shapes ran towards us.
[MITSUHIDE]: “Kgh! Hurry and run–“
[YUZUKI]: “Until you drink my blood, I’m not moving from here!”
The thieves were already here. Finally, Mitsuhide-san broke down to me, who wouldn’t agree.
[MITSUHIDE]: “………… Understood. Can you please hold out your hand?”
[YUZUKI]: “Huh… isn’t the neck–“
[MITSUHIDE]: “No, I also have a line I will not concede on.”
It seemed like he didn’t want to drink from the neck because he hadn’t received Nobunaga-san’s permission.
Mitsuhide-san took my hand, which had been scraped in the fall, and licked at the oozing blood.
My body seemed to twitch and shiver at his hot breath and the slight pain that I felt. But, as expected, that blood alone wasn’t enough–
[MITSUHIDE]: “Kindly bear with me a little while more–“
Saying that, Mitsuhide-san lightly bit my hand. As if being considerate to me, he was extremely gentle– thanks to that, I felt little to no pain.
[MITSUHIDE]: “Thank you very much. Please leave the rest to me.”
There the thieves came rushing in at last–
[THIEF]: “W-What’s with this guy! Could he be a vampire–“
[MITSUHIDE]: “–For disorder to be committed in this land that Nobunaga-sama governs. I, Akechi Mitsuhide, will not forgive that.”
The three thieves were cut down by Mitsuhide-san.