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“Come on, let’s run away!  Take off as fast as you can!  Mechanical archers, replenish the arrows!”

A loud voice responded to my command.
They are full of energy.
Run, run, run.

“Cavalry’s coming!”

“Let’s leave it to Dee and the others.”

“Oh, they took him down in an instant.”

“I’m sure they did.”

Till and Camsin were giving us live reports of the situation, but the Dees and adventurers surrounding us were too ironclad.

In the meantime, the mechanical archers had finished their preparations, and in no time at all, the situation was reversed.

“Arte, can you cut down the tree on the left side toward the street?”

“I’ll try!”

Arte quickly responds to my instruction and manipulates the puppet.
The doll, which had been fighting the enemy soldiers far in the rear, came back next to the carriage at the speed of wind.

After confirming the puppet’s appearance, Arte points his palm to the side of the street.

Then, the doll is played and dives into the woods that spread out just beside the street.

The trees are cut down spasmodically as if cutting bamboo with a machete.

The enemy soldiers were impeded in their pursuit by the trees that had fallen on the road.

After that, some of the enemies who had once pulled away came at us again, but we managed to escape thanks to Arte’s puppets, ballistas, and mechanical bow troops.

After a day of forced marching along the city roads, we rested for about five hours and ran again toward the village.
After that, it was a twelve-hour day of travel, with twelve hours of rest and night work in between.

Finally, the view of our second home, Seat Village, spread out before our eyes.

“…We made it.
I’m back…”

I heard someone mutter, and I nodded with the corner of my mouth raised.

I moved to the coach’s governor’s stand, stood up, and thrust one hand up into the air.

“We’re home!  We’re going to have a party!  We’re going to have a barbecue party!”

As he announced this, a loud, earth-shaking cheer went up.

Perhaps noticing the shouts, the figures on the walls of Seat Village also raised their hands and shouted something, and the gates of the village opened with cheers.

The remaining people in the village came out of the gate and waved their hands.
Espada was in the front row.

“I’m home!”

I say as I reach the front of the castle gate, and everyone comes up to me at once.
Surrounded by smiling faces, I began by saying the most important thing.

“Everyone is safe!  No one is dead or seriously injured!”

I told them, and with a breath of relief, I was greeted with shouts of joy and applause.

“Welcome back.
I am glad you are safe.”

Espada bows deeply in greeting, to which I reply with a laugh, “Thank you, Espada.

“Thank you, Espada, for all your hard work.
Did anything happen while I was gone?”

“Yes, I did.
This time, people from the village in the Marquis’s domain have been pouring in.
So the population has increased by another 300 people.

“Really? So Seat Village finally has a population of 1,000?  What about housing?

“Right now, we are staying in the soldiers’ dormitory.
We are still in the process of getting them to learn the work, but we would be happy if Van-sama could take a look at them.

“Yes, that’s right.
Then, for now, let’s have a barbecue party, including a welcome party.”

As we were laughing and having such a conversation, Espada’s subordinate and protégée-like sister opened her mouth.

“Oh, um, the war…”

Asked so fearfully, I nodded with a troubled laugh.

“We lost.
Well, it hurts that they took the citadel, but we returned unharmed, so let’s be happy about that.”

When I said this with a chuckle, everyone present raised their eyebrows in concern.

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