Now, after the moron had left, this is what we did .
Right about then, Souei had returned from his scouting mission .
Just in time .
Gathering everyone, I decided to hold a conference .
From the Hobgoblins: Rigurdo, Rigur, Rugurdo, Regurdo, Rogurdo, and Ririna .
Kaijin representing the dwarfs .
Benimaru, Hakurou, Shion, and Souei representing the Oni .
And, myself .
All together, 12 “people” . The current core members . Kaijin also speaking on behalf the Construction and Manufacturing departments .
Department of Production is supervised by Ririna .
Department of Governance has Rigurdo at the top, and three chiefs making up the judicial, legislative, and executive branches .
However, this particular department is not completely established yet…
But that’s a problem for the future .
Department of War by Benimaru and Hakurou .
Department of Intelligence by Souei .
Department of Defense by Rigur .
At present, we have only six departments active in our city .
Well, though I say “active”, they are so in name only; however, it’s probably a good idea to slowly develop them .
Currently, everyone is living with little worry about food .
The department of defense is also regulating hunting, so that sector should be fine .
If I think about it, Rigur is handling things well . He’s one of those unsung heroes, isn’t he .
Frankly, about the department of war, Benimaru knows nothing except numbers of soldiers when it comes to the art of war .
So it’s an appointment in name only . It was something that I had to do .
Ririna shows promise . After obtaining a potato-like plant, she succeeded in its cultivation .
With short harvest cycles, and high nutritional value, it will improve our food supply .
In the future, when we trade with the humans, we should obtain many different vegetable seeds .
The construction and manufacturing departments are completely left to Kaijin .
He normally specializes in smithing, but after Kurobee joined, he ended up in a managerial position .
Seems like Kaijin has been completely separated from his field of expertise . However, he had entrusted it all to Kurobee .
According to Kaijin, they are still busy with establishing the smithy, but once things calm down, he’ll devote himself fully to production . That’s how it is .
He probably wants to come back soon .
Shion is in charge of my care? I kind of want to rethink that post, but right now, no matter where we put her, it’ll be bad for my heart .
For now, let’s wait and see .
And, about Souei .
He’s strange .
I know I appointed him as a ninja… but he’s taking it too seriously .
He can make clones appear from any direction .
While their abilities drop, they have no movement restrictions . Furthermore, he can deploy six clones without any restrictions .
And even if I say their abilities decrease, that’s only about their vigor (HP) and magical energy (MP)–it becomes 1/10th of original . Their movement abilities and attack power are completely unchanged .
An ability superior to mine .
Actually, all the Oni are strange .
Souei, as I had just described .
Shuna had specialized in my Analysis Ability, and awakened to the unique skill [Analytic] .
Our abilities are basically identical, with the exception that she doesn’t need to eat the target . She can analyze with eyesight alone .
Kurobee had awakened to the unique skill [Researcher] . This skill also bears great semblance to my own .
As someone who specializes in production, it is a very useful skill .
Hakurou has had his perception ability accelerated by a a thousand times . So I basically can’t see him losing in a battle .
Shion, as you’d expect, obtained [Herculean Strength EX] and [Physical Strength EX] .
Moreover, she also awakened to a special skill [Battle Craze] that she should absolutely never use .
Last up, Benimaru . This bastard learned [Black Lightning] of all things . Seriously! Of all the dangerous skills I did not want circulating!
I think I’ll need to come up with some countermeasures .
Anyhow, they seem to have inherited my skills and completed their evolution .
Now then, let’s start the conference .
「First, let’s hear the report . 」
Upon my order, Souei began conveying the state of affairs .
Everyone silently listened .
He sent out six clones to gather intel
1 . Goblin Villages
2 . State of the marshes
3 . State of the Orc army
He seems to have sent two clones to each location .
First, the Goblin villages have decided to join the Lizardmen’s raid leader Gabil as his warriors .
Probably that lizard from some time ago .
To have decided to serve that moron, what weird tastes they have . Those that decided against joining him, have ran away in various direction .
There were also a few that ran in the direction of human countries, but they’ll probably end up as subjugation targets .
As long as goblins establish their communities in the forest, the humans would stay away, but if you invade their territory, they would surely bare their fangs .
And while I don’t know the humans’ strength, they will surely order a subjugation quickly .
When they do, the goblins could only continue living in hiding . Their future looks grim .
While on this topic, I also listened to the report about Gabil .
Somehow, the goblins he had gathered numbered 7,000 warriors .
A decent army .
As we had gathered, they once appealed to the orcs, but were rejected . At least they can use their head a bit .
However, they were also forced to take along with them all their food, so even if they survive against the orcs, there will surely be people dying afterwards .
But we won’t be doing anything about that .
That was the unanimous decision of their clan chiefs who decided that such a fate was better than being murdered by the orcs .
And besides, we are not an NPO .
We have only begun establishing this city, but abandoning it would not be fun .
If we allow the orcs to invade this far, the forest ecosystem would probably collapse>
Which is why we must stop them at the marshes .
Now about the marshes .
Here, the Lizardmen’s Head had begun assembling troops, and prepared an army of ten thousand .
Living off the lake’s fish, they have an abundance of food .
Furthermore, they are barricading themselves in their natural labyrinth in preparation of any attack .
But are the orcs an enemy that they should so fear?
So let’s hear about the orcs .
The orc army, numbering 200,000 .
I thoughtlessly let out my voice .
The orcs who attacked the ogres numbered only ten thousand…
「So the ones who attacked our village was but a single division?」
「Right . After investigating, that much became clear . Their army consists of 200,000 warriors! Coming from the south, they took a relatively wide route and are aiming for the marshes . 」
Hmm . I don’t really know the geography yet .
「Souei, do you have a map or something?」
「What would a map be?」
What did he say?
For there to be so few people who know about maps…
Kaijin had known . He knew of them, but none in circulation .
Seems like this world is treating maps as a military secret .
Hakurou’s grandfather had drawn the map of the village’s surrounding on a block of wood .
Having no paper hurts .
Anyways, holding a wood block, we’ll carve the map of our city’s vicinity .
Using the map in my head, and Rigur’s knowledge, we have Hakurou record the information .
This way, using all our knowledge, we created a half-way decent map .
Before even getting to the main issue of the conference, we had wasted two hours on map creation .
And here we took a short break .
I don’t need it, but the goblins probably do .
Shuna brought in a tray of food .
Following her, a group of girls followed with more trays .
I changed into my child form .
Maybe rest is unnecessary, but meals are important . Since I have this human form, I might as well eat while tasting .
…, as long as it’s not made by Shion, that is .
Since getting used to human transformation, I managed to transform already wearing clothing . Seems like practice really does wonders .
A feast was laid before me .
And for some reason, Shuna had sat right by me . Just in case, I have to check…
The appearance is normal, but what about the inside? Clearly lacking spices, seems like a bunch of ingredients were stir-fried together…
Who cooked this? I felt a sharp glance from my side .
Gulp . Somehow, I’m getting very nervous .
Until I had said it, nobody moved .
Seems like if I don’t eat first, nobody will begin . I had been hoping that someone would finally eat, but seems like I need to steel myself .
It’s fine . Shion did not make this!
However, I kind of regret changing into a form that has a sense of taste .
With those thought, I reached for the food . But not with chopsticks, since we only had spoons .
Bringing some soup to my mouth, I take a sip… it was delicious .
The moment I said so, everyone moved .
But hey… you guys, how can you just watch your lord drink poison! Though it’s not poison per se…
And I also have a resistance to most poisons…
However, I want to be a bit more considerate .
Chances are, Shuna had pulled some strings ahead of time…
Upon hearing my praise, Shuna’s face lit up in a full smile .
Grabbing my plate, she insisted to feed me .
Seeming a bit happy, and a bit embarrassed .
Though I’m an adult, I’m a child at heart . Appearance that of a little girl . Even if I let her feed me, there shouldn’t be any problems .
*Fufun* A victory laugh escaped from Shuna while she glanced at Shion .
Tears seem to have started to form in Shion’s eyes, but her expression quickly turned to that of surprise after she had tasted the dish .
Right, Shuna . If you polish your cooking skills a bit more, they’ll really shine .
You’d never consider putting strange things into people food!
Even without seasoning, to be able to bring out the taste of the ingredients this well .
But was Benimaru a test subject for the many dishes before this? That I could not have known about .
Well, Shuna was probably a cooking prodigy . She could probably perfect the taste using her [Analytic] skill .
That isn’t a waste of ability, that’s the proper way to use it .
It’s been a long time since I last enjoyed a meal this much .
With the end of the meal comes the end of our break .
We have a pretty good time .
But now we need to get down to business .
「The object that clearly explains the nearby geography is called a map . Looking at this map, let’s continue the report . 」
Having said so, everyone crowded around the map .
Well, I can also transmit the image to everyone using [Telepathic Communication] .
Souei marked the orcs army with a wooden chip .
I was in the middle of teaching goblins basic arithmetic, so I don’t know if they’ll understand all of this .
But there’s nothing we can do about that, we need to continue the discussion .
The orcs’ invasion route .
There are three routes leading to the center of the Jura forest that the orcs could use .
One runs from the Canaat Mountain range . The other along Ameld river . These connect north forest and south forest .
But this is not a straight path, as the river runs east along the way .
They could probably have the soldiers cross at the place where Ameld river meets the Eastern Empire’s river .
However, there is no route that could support a large army from the orcs’ current position .
Therefore, they probably decided to invade the marsh from the west .
However, the forest will hamper their attempts to move beyond the river .
According to Hakurou, there is a community of Treants in this forest, so avoiding them would leave the orcs’ army less exhausted .
The western route had the Ogre’s village, but its fate is common knowledge now .
They were a high class race, but too few in number . Thus, the orcs decided to avoid the route with the Treants, who were similarly high classed but many .
And, after eliminating the ogres, they opened the invasion route to the marshes and were now planning their formation .
「However, with 200,000 soldiers, how are they keeping them fed? What are they doing about food?」
To my question,
「I looked into it . A group of common foot soldiers escorts caravans of food . However, there is clearly not enough…」
With some hesitation, he quickly added
「This is but my opinion, but I think they’ve had deaths from starvation and resorted to cannibalism of the dead…」
What an unpleasant thing he had said .
Uee… were orcs such a race?
「No matter how omni…」
「They do indeed eat anything, but isn’t this much expected?」
To that question,
「No, I am not certain about this . However, there are no bodies after they leave . And our village has also been wiped clean, without anything remaining .
There is a skill that comes to mind, but…」
Having realized the truth, Souei said .
「Could it be… Orc Lord?」
Without waiting for Souei’s response, Benimaru concluded .
「Exactly . This is not certain, but there’s a good chance the Orc Lord had appeared .
At the very least, a high class Orc Knight is leading them .
Probably that thing that had attacked our village . 」
To summarize the conversation, the Orc Lord is a unique monster that hold powerful ruling abilities over the orcs .
Appears once every few hundred years . Causing violence across the world, a horrible monster .
And he seems to possess the unique skill [Starving Ones] .
This skill, bestowed upon his subordinates as well, allows them to eat anything and everything in sight . A truly terrible skills .
In the first place, not enough time had passed since the last one…
But now, he’s already grown and prepared an army . If he lacks some intelligence, then there’s a high chance that the demon lord had forcefully accelerated his growth .
In any case, the orc lord is a troubling existence .
Such an annoying guy should’ve been put down long ago…
But I will not complain .
While keeping the existence of the orc lord in mind, we continue the conference .
Arranging wooden pieces on the map in place of pawns, we mark the Lizardmen army of 10 . 000 .
Behind them, Gabil’s army of 7,000 goblins .
Having done so, we clearly see what is abnormal about the orc army…
But more importantly .
「This way, that stupid lizard’s headquarters would fall from a single attack, wouldn’t it?」
Right . The lizardmen’s envoy called Gabil .
That guy is planning on attacking the lizardmen’s fortress while they are preoccupied fighting with the orcs . The exhausted and few lizardmen there would surely fall quickly .
That is how wonderfully the goblins are positioned .
However, there is no reason to attack his own lizard .
It could be just suspicion born out of the strange place he had halted his troops .
「Hmm . So that’s how it is . 」
Hakurou nodded . A strange fire burned in his eyes .
However, even if they bring down the headquarters then, they would be trampled down by the orcs .
I am thinking too much, aren’t I .
「I’m just thinking too much . Sorry, I’m an amateur after all . 」
I had planned to continue the discussion after those words, but…
「No, what you said is likely . I can think of no other reason to assume that position . 」
「That guy is an idiot after all . He’s probably intending to replace the current head . 」
Such was the opinion from both members of the Department of War .
I mean, I know he’s an idiot… but was he that much of an idiot?
「However, in this case, stopping that guy is probably the best idea . 」
That was the conclusion we had reached .
Now then, how should we stop Gabil?
「I would want to establish a proper alliance with the Lizardmen . We are few in numbers . However, I feel we shouldn’t abandon them . 」
Hakurou so added, and everyone accepted .
I also agreed .
「But, forming an alliance is good and all, but we’re far too outnumbered here . Won’t we just be used in the end?」
I tried expressing my worries .
The Oni exchanged glances .
「Rimuru-sama, calm your fears! Each one of us is capable of decimating ten thousand foes, this much is of no concern!」
Hakurou answered as their representative .
“They read too much manga… no way they can take on ten thousand each!” Is what I thought, but
「Rimuru-sama, I plan to go an negotiate . To have a discussion directly with the Lizardmen’s head .
Would you permit me?」
Souei had so asked, and waited for my response .
How confident! Should I try leaving it to him?
Using the map, we had made some predictions . That allowed us some temporary mental respite .
I decided to send out Souei .
「Alright! In that case, I order you to talk with the Lizardmen’s Head . Demand equal treatment!」
With those words, I sent out Souei .
「Ay! I live to serve!」
With that response, he immediately disappeared into the shadows .
He’s quick on his feet . Seems to have left already .
「The rest, with these things in mind, continue preparations!」
Those words ended the conference .
In some sense, we have decided next course of action .
If we can form an alliance that would be great, and if we can’t, we’ll cross that bridge then .
There’s no use thinking about those things . Rather, we must do what can now be done .
And thus we continued our preparations while waiting for the next piece to move on the board .
But an orc lord, huh . If he truly had appeared, that’ll probably be an annoying fight .
Thinking about the future made me fall slightly into melancholy .