Fourth Outer World Story Series: Basilisk of Ice Sculpture - Chapter 54
- Fourth Outer World Story Series: Basilisk of Ice Sculpture
- Chapter 54 - Overall Squad Leaders' Gathering
Translator: MadHatter Editor: MadHatter
Toki-san sustained severe wounds that were estimated to take two weeks to heal entirely, even if she fully committed herself to medical care, the day after we, the Special Operations Squad, conquered the “Maze.”
I have been summoned to the Director General’s office of the Security Organization.
The reason why… I am called to is probably about yesterday’s incident.
“Yeah. Come in.”
With authorization, I enter the room, where I am met by the room’s owner, Director General Nihyo, as well as three others: Otachi Yuzuru-san of the Intelligence Unit, Karagasa Yakarasu-san, head of the Patrol Unit, and Kotonashi Shiyu-san, head of the Eradication Squad.
“Now, everyone is here. First of all, Akira Whiteice, commander of the Special Operations Squad. I would like to hear your report on the ‘Maze’.”
Without even knowing why I have been summoned, I am expected to deliver a report on the “Maze.”
“That’s all I have to share regarding this ‘Maze’.”
“It was a rather tricky ‘Maze,’ wasn’t it?”
“Looks like it. Indeed…”
Each of the four people who have heard my report exhibits a different reaction.
Director General Nihyo seems to have accepted the information with an open mind, whereas Yuzuru-san appears to be confirming the veracity of each piece of information, Karagasa-san is impressed, and Kotonashi-san is glad that the responsibility did not fall on him.
However, as for me… although I was able to overcome the “Maze” itself, not only did I nearly let Toki-san die but I could have been annihilated if she had not reacted at that time.
In that light, reluctance is present in me, and some sort of punishment is warranted.
“Now, considering that you conquered the ‘Maze’ without any deaths, I’ll have to come up with a corresponding reward.”
But what Director General Nihyo utters is vastly contrary to what I would have surmised.
“What are you shocked about?”
“Oh, she may not realize how remarkable it is to conquer the ‘Maze’ with zero dead and only one critically wounded.”
“Akira-kun was originally a rookie in the Patrol Unit, you know. It’s no wonder she is unaware of the circumstances.”
Before responding to each other, the other three likewise exchange inquiring glances at me.
Circumstances? What are they talking about?
“Yeah. You have an expression that says you don’t get it. Let me start by explaining that to you. Akira-kun.”
“Do you understand what 80% to 10% means?”
When asked abruptly about a subject, I answer plainly that it escapes my comprehension.
“It’s the proportion of fatalities that would ensue before a unit that had unexpectedly approached the master of the ‘Maze’ within range of it range of it without notice flees or defeats it.”
“And let me add, even if you gather all the information you can on the master of the ‘Maze,’ organize a specialized unit, and fight with minimal damage, 20 to 30 percent of the unit members will perish in a battle against the master of the ‘Maze’.”
Director General Nihyo informs me that the overall team leaders are the only ones who should be divulged with this information. And the piece of information that follows is enough to send me into a tailspin.
Did the members of the ordinary members of the eradication squad know about this news? No, they couldn’t have been aware of it.
Had they known about this, even if they were in the top ranks, they would never have joined the eradication squad if they thought their lives were at risk.
This information is so inconceivable that it is unbelievable.
“Given that, the Special Operations Squad was practically flawless this time around. There were zero fatalities, and although one person was gravely injured, that girl will be able to return to work safely.”
“Even if I were to command the squad after proper planning, five to six of the squad’s thirty members would perish in the event that the eradication squad faced the giant.
“So, you can be commended, yet cannot be condemned this time around.”
The words of Director Nihyo and the other leaders are nothing but complimentary words for a job well done.
Indeed, compared to the past cases, we may have done something praiseworthy… but!
“But that doesn’t mean I should be praised for it! The fact remains that I almost caused her to die because I was careless…!?”
Right at the moment my words come out of my heart, something like a cane is thrown at my head by Karagasa-san.
“What are you…”
“Who the hell do you think you are!!”
Before I can say anything about his action, Karagasa-san’s furious voice bursts out at me, forcing me involuntarily to cower.
“When did anyone tell you not to reflect on it! Reflection and regret are two distinct things! No, even before that, do you regard all the wounds inflicted on your comrades as your own fault! You fool! Your way of seeing things dishonors the pride of the young lady who protected you all as your defender! Do you understand that!!”
“If you feel so guilty about this, why don’t you just accept the reward and work yourself up to it! Next time, why don’t you figure out a way to deter the enemy from attacking you in the first place! What you should be doing is not whining about what’s been done and seeking punishment for it, but focusing on what you can do to ensure the survival of everyone in the team!!”
Karagasa-san rises to his feet and attempts to close in on me, which is halted by two people other than Director General Nihyo, but even so, the excessive fury and intimidation of his voice are enough to frighten the very daylights out of me.
But I soon realize that Karagasa-san is on the mark.
In her capacity as a protector, Toki-san takes pride in the fact that she shielded us from harm.
And yet, I wonder how Toki-san would feel if I took punishment for that, and it goes without saying that she would be hurt even more than I would be.
She would probably say that I was being punished because she wasn’t competent enough.
“Hmm? What are you doing?”
As I slowly straighten my posture, I give a bow to Karagasa-san.
“Excuse me. I may have been conceited about my own power. Thank you for correcting that conceit.”
“Hmph. I have no idea what you’re talking about… I’m leaving.”
“Yes, yes. It seems we’ve come to an agreement. Well, let’s just call it a day and leave it at that.”
Director General Nihyo declares the meeting to be ended and Karagasa-san departs the room past me with my head still bowing.
Check out other Outer World Story series in order: First Outer World Story Series: The Black Mist that Devours, Third Outer World Story Series: Pumpkin Sorcerer, Fourth Outer World Story Series: Basilisk of Ice Sculpture
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