Slave merchant and slave merchant – Part 2
Takumi said he was chasing after Gaitsu, but even though he was irritated, his pace was slow.
He followed footprints, stomped and snapped leaves and branches, and entered the forest.
At the end of those tracks was an open space, where Gaitsu was panting heavily while bent on his knees.
“So? Can’t you run any further?”
Gaitsu let out a high-pitched sound while he jolted to face his chaser.
His expression was warped in fear.
“P-Please… I’ll give you all my money! I’ll give you everything I have, but spare my life…!”
“Aaah, I can’t hear you! Don’t beg for your life with those cheap words.”
Takumi’s gaze sharpened. He was in a bad mood.
“I won’t gain anything from killing you… So you will give me information, otherwise I won’t forgive you for the slaves you let die.”
To support Amberg, Gaitsu had to sacrifice many slaves in those illegal gambles.
Not only in crude battles, but even in worthless, wasteful, unproductive ways. That was unforgivable.
As Takumi glared daggers at him, the man was trembling in fear, but as time passed, hatred filled his gaze.
“You are a bastard… you’ve always been since your childhood. You’re so prideful and arrogant. No matter what happens, you step on others and look down on them…”
“That’s what superior people must do. If you don’t have pride, you can’t rise above others, and if you’re not arrogant, you can’t find people of your level… I know that better than anyone.”
The young man remembered his old world.
People, teams, organizations, companies, countries… he spoke as he stood above all of them.
Gaitsu couldn’t grasp the real meaning of those words.
He could only understand that Takumi was born a step above him, with better status and capacities.
Still, he couldn’t accept that easily.
“Then… If I can fucking kill you, I’ll prove my worth!”
The moment he screamed that, the silent forest instantly became noisy.
So many demi-humans appeared that they outnumbered easily those who were on the wagon before.
“I thought you were underestimating me by bringing only those few men with you, but now I understand… You might manage to kill me with this many people.”
“I thought some casters from different countries would be able to seize the Hound… But well, since you followed me, it doesn’t matter anymore.”
Gaitsu stood up again and not a trace of fear could be seen on his face.
“Someone who manipulates others while looking down on them… you bastard are indeed frightening. You might have me, the big companies, and maybe even the whole country in your hands…”
His lips thinned and curved into a toothy smile.
“But in the end, you’re just a human like everyone else. It doesn’t matter the number of slaves you own or how strong that werebeast is.”
The killing intent that surrounded them was growing thicker.
“I’ll smash your head and gouge your heart out… your time has come.”
Gaitsu glared at him with bloodshot eyes, and then raised his hand.
The moment he would have lowered it, the young man in front of him would have died.
His body would have turned into a pulp of meat and crushed bones.
Still, even in this hopeless situation, Takumi didn’t lose his composure.
“You’re superior because you can predict what comes next, huh…? I see you as a threat, and as everyone I saw like that, I’ll destroy you… This is what being superior means.”
“Hah… is this how you beg for your life? How arrogant.”
“Begging for my life? Stop spitting nonsense.”
A smile brimming with self-confidence formed on Takumi’s face.
“Yeah, you’re begging for your life… just like the scum you are, filthy pig.”
Gaitsu nodded meekly.
“They’re gonna slit your throat.”
As he started to lower his hand, a thunderous sound pierced his ear.
Everyone who heard that froze in shock.
“You’re good, but… you missed something from the start.”
The smell of gunpowder hung in the air.
“Do you really think anyone can handle me?”
The man started to tremble slightly and pointed at Takumi’s hand.
“W-What is… that…?”
“C’mon, piggie, can’t you recognize a gun when you see one?”
Guns were well known in that world.
That’s why Gaitsu stiffened the moment he heard that bang.
What Takumi held in his hand was still unknown to the world.
“A wheel gun, commonly known as revolver, but I strongly doubt you can understand what it is.”
Since magic displayed higher efficiency at long range, guns were acknowledged as mere hunting playthings for nobles.
“A… A gun that doesn’t need a flint and can be carried that easily can’t…”
“It’s right in front of you. I can’t explain how triggers and cartridges are made because it might cause a lot of trouble, though.”
In a world where knowledge about firearms didn’t surpass muskets, the existence of handguns might have started a revolution.
Anyone would have brought along one, and anyone would have used it.
After that, sniper rifles, assault rifles, machine guns, grenade launchers would have been next… they were all developed in Takumi’s former world due to the absence of magic, and their firepower could rival magic’s.
They would have created conflicts, and the blood of a lot of lives would have stained the earth.
Takumi didn’t want to turn this already cruel world into an even bloodier one.
But exactly because he now lived in a merciless world, he had to protect himself as much as he could.
“Humans are weak… but I wonder if it’s the same when they hold a gun.”
Gaitsu panicked for an instant, but then regained his composure.
“What… did you say? That’s just a small gun! As if you’ll be able to deal with this many people!”
“If you think so, bring it on. You guys are not enough to kill me now.”
A mocking smile appeared on his lips.
It was the fiendish, cruel grin of someone who stood above everyone else.
“C’mon, coward, let’s see if you can do that.”
Gaitsu’s expression stiffened, but in the end, he lowered his arm.
The demi-humans, who were loyal to him thanks to drugs, rushed toward their target, but the moment they leaped into the air to assault it, an invisible force knocked them on the ground.
The smell of blood filled the air, and Gaitsu looked at his opponent’s weapon only to see that he wasn’t pointing at them, and no smoke was coming out the gun’s barrel.
“So, who’s next? If no one steps forward, I’ll come get your leader.”
Said Takumi as he started to walk toward his prey.
Other demi-humans reacted to those words and started their assault, but it was like an invisible wall prevented them to get too close to him, and after leaving trails of blood behind, they all fell at his feet.
“You’re good, but you’re also an incredible coward. The moment you saw a gun you were so scared that you couldn’t do the right move. Let me be clear… I never said this is the only gun or type of gun I created, and neither I said I’m the only one who holds one.”
Bullet holes pierced through the bodies of those who laid on the ground, but none of those wounds was fatal.
“That’s not…! I didn’t hear any other gunshot!”
“That just means they were too distant to be heard. Don’t make me say obvious things.”
“It’s impossible! How can someone aim only at demi-humans from such a distance and while we’re in a forest!”
Another assaulter fell in front of the baffled man.
“Actually, that’s totally possible. Here’s the difference between you and me.”
The young man got closer while maintaining his smile.
“Dwarfs aren’t the only useful demi-humans, you know. Werebeasts can see in the dark, bird-men can read the wind currents, dragon-men can measure the temperature with their body… and even elves can be more than playthings. Each one of them has its own special traits, and you should use them properly to see noteworthy results. But you only waste them and run away from reality, calling all of this impossible.”
Gaitsu didn’t even have the chance to run now.
Takumi’s invisible army would have blown away his head if their leader ordered them to.
He understood the difference in strength, tactics and abilities between them.
All of that was done by a powerless human.
By someone who let his subordinates be his strength.
Someone who, standing above the others, had an overwhelming aura.
The dread he was feeling reminded him of the one-sided battle with Kunon.
As he couldn’t stand that pressure anymore, something inside him shattered.
“You think that a slave merchant is simply a slave trader…”
Takumi stood now in front of Gaitsu, who had lost the will to run.
A smile crawled on his face as he decided where to aim.
“But a real slave merchant is someone who can use their articles.”
The gun let out a mechanical sound as the wheel rotated.
“Now, you still have some value.”
The devil’s grin replaced Takumi’s smile.
“I will crush you like a slave every time I get the chance.”
Another thunderous sound resounded in the woods.