Svetlana, who had been turned back into an Eternal Slave, furtively glanced at me as she kept talking.
「I was entrusted with our Queen’s letter…and headed to your Majesty’s place. But on the way, I was attacked by monsters…I resisted but…..」
「You got done in huh?」
「After losing consciousness from wounds….the next time I woke up your Majesty’s face was in front of me.」
「I see. It’s the same story as the others.」
I looked at Risha and she nodded.
Her story was the same as others who had turned into slave beasts.
They were killed by monsters, then became like this.
「You’ve heard about the past from Mira right?」
My second slave Mira.
She had once been a slave beast that I defeated and turned back into a person.
Just like Svetlana now.
「I heard. She was an Eternal Slave even before she was attacked by monsters.」
「So we can’t use her as a reference.」
I looked at Svetlana once more.
「Do you remember anything? It can be a memory or a feeling…」
She knit her eyebrows and looked gloomy as she groaned. But eventually she answered with that one word.
It couldn’t be helped…but in that case it’s a bit troubling.
Not knowing this was like poison for my mind. I wanted to know so badly.
After a while Svetlana seemed to think of something and spoke up.
「There was another who came with me to go to Ribek.」
「Were they……another Regret?」
「That’s right. She was killed trying to help me escape. It was by the same monster.」
「Meaning…..the chances of her turning into a monkey is high.」
I looked at Risha and we nodded.
There were cases where people who were killed together and became monkeys together, would stick together and work together.
There were also cases where they were killed together and worked separately…but we were still able to turn them back at different times.
Either way, the chances that Svetlana’s friend had turned into a slave beast was high.
Slave Battleship Risha. I was standing on the bridge.
Maya and several of the women were there. Maya was sitting in the Captain’s seat looking at me.
「Is this really ok? I think it’d be better for you to sit here.」
「Risha is your ship. Remember your dignity as Captain.」
「…….I got it, I will.」
She closed her eyes and reset her face.
She returned to the disciplined appearance of the Captain of the ship and leader of the Elite Guards.
「And so, what will we be doing? I moved the ship to somewhere where people won’t come as requested.」
「I will be calling monsters. Defeat them with the ship.」
「All of them?」
「No, let the monkeys through. Then we’ll defeat them hand-to-hand. If we don’t——-」
「Then the ones who turn back will die from the Battleship’s bombardment.」
I nodded. It was nice that she was quick to understand.
「Can you do it?」
「I’ll show you that we can.」
Maya said with a grin. Then she spoke to a girl who looked like an operator.
「You heard, convey it to everyone. Akito 『expects greatness』」
She nodded and jumped up to spread the message.
I spoke to Maya.
「I never said that though?」
「It’ll raise morale…that’s fine right?」
「I don’t really mind…but will it re——-」
I was about to ask, when I heard a cheer.
We could hear it even from the bridge.
Maya smirked a bit.
「If you tell the girls that they’ll get a reward if they do well…it’ll have even more of an effect you know?」
「Do as you please—–wait, make it the one who does the most.」
「You really get it.」
That was further communicated to the ship…and an even bigger cheer came up.
I could clearly tell that their spirits were burning bright.
I have to think of what they’d want for a reward.
「Let’s move out…we need to find the monkeys.」
「No, I’ll do that.」
「What are you going to do?」
I took out my new card and used the magic.
I used one magic and activated Encounter Up.
「What is that? It looked a bit different from normal.」
「Captain! Enemies in the distance! There are monsters!」
「They’re already here…」
「You did this?」
「Yeah. It’s a magic to gather monsters.」
「You can do that too?」
「It’s thanks to you guys.」
Maya seemed dumbfounded.
「I-is that true?」
Maya and the girls on the bridge were speechless.
Then their faces all blushed.
「Look, monsters are coming girls…」
「Huh!?…uh, i-intercept them.」
Maya came to her senses as she gave the order in a bit of a panic.
Immediately after I heard the sounds of the battery firing, mowing down monsters.
It was Battleship Risha’s first battle, but there was a pleasant feeling in the air.
The attacks all avoided the slave beasts allowing them through.
The hand-to-hand combatants were lying in wait and attacked after drawing them in.
In the middle 「Encounter Up」 ended so I recast it.
「Captain! Dragon at 9 o’clock!」
A flustered cry resounded through the bridge.
Looking to the left we could see the lumbering appearance of a dragon approaching, shaking the ground.
「Wh-what should we do?」
「We can’t defeat it like this. We should retreat and——-」
I said to Maya who had lost her nerve.
「Turn the ship. Arm the main cannon.」
I gave the order in her stead.
「Main cannon? We’re going to shoot it at that thing?」
「But…if it doesn’t work———」
「then I’ll do it.」
I said indicating True Eternal Slave.
She had been preparing to flee, but now Maya’s face changed.
「Understood. Aim the auxiliary cannons at the dragon.」
The operator girl was surprised.
I was surprised as well…why the auxiliary?
「Akito is protecting us. Right now the ship is completely safe.」
「It’s a chance to try various things. I wanted to try the auxiliary cannons before relying on the main one to see if it would work.」
Maya said and the operator girl seemed taken aback.
The girls on the bridge looked at me with burning gazes.
Maya looked at me as well. It was an expression I’d seen before.
It was how she looked when I said that the girl who was most proactive would get a reward.
——This is good.
I nodded to show my approval…there was no problem.
The bombardment of the dragon began.
The dragon took some damage, but it wasn’t enough to stop it.
「No good huh…」
「Looks like it.」
「Then next…ready the main cannons.」
「Main cannons ready.」
The battleship Risha shook and swayed as I giant shell flew out.
The giant cannonball hit the dragon right in the head and sent it flying.
The dragon collapsed and struggled, convulsing.
It tried to stand…but couldn’t and collapsed to the ground dead.
「It works if we hit it with the main cannons.」
「So it appears.」
「Thanks for letting us test that Akito.」
「Don’t worry about it. Ok, there’ll be more coming.」
The monsters continued to attack.
It might have been my imagination, but after defeating the dragon the battleship’s movements had changed.
It was still bombarding the monsters and defeating them…but it seemed like the power of the ship had fallen.
No, that wasn’t quite accurate.
It felt like the firepower had lowered to the minimum needed to defeat them.
I was protecting them, so they were using the opportunity to test things.
They tried, not only with the dragon, but other monsters as well.
It was a good thing.
It continued for a while.
After receiving a message from the messenger girl, Maya nodded.
「A message from among the hand-to-hand combatants. Among the people turned back from monkeys, there’s a strange one.」
I was excited expectant.
「It seems to be………a dark slave.」
It felt like I’d been tripped.
A dark slave………