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 "MEN! REMEMBER YOU ARE DOING THIS ON YOUR OWN CHOICE! SO YOU HAVE TO DO YOUR BEST SO THAT YOUR LIVES WON'T BE WASTED! AT LEAST TAKE SOME HEADS WITH YOU BEFORE YOU FALL DOWN!"

As the general finished his rallying cry, the dark-elf priests were in range to bombard us with spells. Their black robe with white accents and stripes all over fluttered as they stopped and raised their staff together, while the knights that rode beasts kept coming towards us.

The spells converged with dark energy. It looked like a black ball made of all their dark magic power, the black ball rose at the skies and went coming towards us, made by a huge number of dark-elf priests it expanded larger than our formation,

We were filled with despair and horror, as they slapped us with the reality... that our courageousness was not enough to hold a candle, against a power like this.

How much more will our race suffer, because of our repeated mistakes.

I suddenly remembered what the man named Slaine told us about pride... I guess he's right.

"Ahh... I wished to drink that coffee again"

The huge ball of negative energy then was rammed against us.

Or so we thought it would be.

With a sound of metalworks clanking, along with a bird's screech, chilling, a man in a tattered mantle suddenly showed in front of us. How did he appear in front of us without us even noticing his footsteps? Is it because we were too occupied?

No, I think it's not the case this time.

"Oh, they are... lined-up well"

He murmured, and then took something from his pocket, as we stood there stiff and wide-eyed, what he took from his strange pocket was squeezed between his index finger and middle finger.

It was a transparent ball that has golden color inside.

As I looked at it I noticed that the ball itself has a tremendous amount of mana.

Could this be his actual power? So that's why we couldn't detect any mana from him!

He carried his weapon he called "gun" in two hands, and covered its tube with something like a black powder.

Next he placed the transparent ball inside the hollow.

"Loaded bullet, everyone who hates thunder cover your ears or it will hurt"

[Click!]

He placed his finger at the well-crafted metalwork, just under the wood, and strangely leaned his head atop it.

"Lightning"

[Boom!]

An explosion was heard and a lightning magic circle appeared in the middle of the air.

Just like what I saw when he saved me. The sound of the explosion is hurtful to the ears, but this isn't thunder and is tolerable, also nothing have happened.

The black energy ball was already only a few from us. No matter which way we ran it was too big to outrun, however the man in front of us didn't falter.

He quickly repeated the same process, but this time he used another ball but this time it isn't transparent, and it doesn't have mana at all.

"Metal"

[Boom!]

At that moment, I briefly saw the metal ball colliding with the lightning magic circle, and as it passed through the magic circle, the metal ball sped up and we heard the fierce sound of thunder, it was so loud that we instinctively covered our ears.

But it was already too late.

The sound was just too loud, as if thunder seamed to crack the air, as if the very heavens might split apart. I felt my ears ringing as it disoriented me.

And then we saw it, an immense lightning drove past the battalion ahead of us so fast that we could only see the flash of it accompanied with the crack.

The enemy who were so fierce and were excited to have the ball flatten us was completely fried up with their faces still having the same expressions, including the farthest dark-elf high-priest at the rear.

At the same time the negative energy ball that was about to flatten us disappeared in the air.

"Electromagnetic Bullet"

He muttered under his bandana that covered half his face. No one could say a word. The spell he made annihilated one division in an instant.

...

The division that was chasing us was no more. We all, in relief, dropped to our knees.

A miracle just happened, the enemy division numbering up to ten thousand, has perished in that one strike.

What the hell just happened?

Wide-eyed, we looked at the man who slowly turned around to us as the tube on his weapon was emitting smoke.

Was this man blessed by the spirit of smoke? Is there even a spirit with that element?

"Stand up... "

He offered his hand to me as he looked at the council of ten who was also sitting on the ground relieved.

"Still... not finished"

He pointed to the encirclement.

At that moment we saw that the barrier has disappeared and all the people of the resistance were now under the lady's mobile shield and have made an arrowhead formation.

Could it be that they are trying to break away? And that direction!

They are clearly misunderstanding something! Why would they charge at the horde of dark-elven knights!

And then I noticed that they pointed the arrowhead at two commander level dark-elves.

I see! They have been misled by the slop of the mountain!

They couldn't see the danger waiting for them!

The commander level elves are leading them to a trap! Where an entire division of rare dark-elf knights are waiting to slaughter them!

No! Valeri! Don't go there!

I now knew what he meant by, "it's not finished."

"Does this mean you'll help us?"

I took his hand and stood up.

His hand felt thin for a man, it felt that he never held a bow nor a sword, but still its manly and strong.

"Yes... as long as you follow... what I say"

All of us recognized him, some for his description, the others who saw him directly like the council members and me, as everyone saw him giving me a hand, they didn't feel nervous anymore, as he wasn't an enemy.

Everyone stood up and faced him.

"Everyone... I... give... plan, please... execute"

...

The council members and the commanders formed a circle with him, but the circle was broken as he tried to keep as much distance as he could from us, I didn't notice it before because when we visited him, his seat was already a distance apart from us.

He's keeping people away to seeing his face.

I'm curious about his ears, his hood covered that, could it be that his ears have been cut, and he's afraid to show it?

Or is it just that long that it is embarrassing? Well, in elven society the way ears look like give brilliant points to women.

Or... maybe he doesn't have the same ears as us? Like the dwarves and flame dwellers? It's impossible! Because his body looks like just us! At least from its shape under his mantle.

There he explained the plan to us quickly, he told us in his broken elven, about some unfamiliar maneuvers that uses the woods they have passed through, the camp was already surrounded by them, and behind them was the woods.

We were to be separated into squad-sized units and would run along the trees in intervals. After shooting our magic, we need to change locations as we circle around them, it's a simple strategy but is extraordinary and is worth a try, it's the best way to handle them when they are preoccupied with attacking the headquarters.

"Then what about the dark-elf knights? Our magic and spirits can't handle them"

The elf-priest Ellarian asked, as he scratched his head.

"Leave it to me... and "

He pointed to me.

"I need you... to... direct... the... escapees to a safe place... "

He told me as he made hand gestures that meant transferring from one point to another.

"I got it... but why me?"

I asked him, what's the use of me, who doesn't even have a powerful spirit to begin with.

"Because... you are... courageous"

Don't tell me... he saw that? Where was he watching from in the first place?

"Courageous?"

His words resonated with me.

I never considered myself courageous, I just thought of myself as going with the flow to survive, I had my own ideals, and that was to reclaim the lands of the kingdom I was born from by joining the resistance, more like I didn't have much of a choice, it's either to join or to be hunted.

Time passed when I joined the resistance. I lost those ideals, and I was just satisfied as long as the people I care for are alive.

That's why this time I became selfish and announced that I would fight, even if it's certain that I would die, but that was just me, doing selfish things.

Can you call that courageous? Because of me, all of us stayed and was about to go on a suicide assault.

If you didn't appear we would all have been humiliated and annihilated.

But, regardless, I would take you on that, if you believe that I'm courageous then let it be. You have already saved my life two times, and I will spend it this time serving you.

"Okay, what will you have me do?"

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