Chapter 38 [Pandora Box]
TL : Cnine
ED : MystiKnight
Exactly 18 hours after Souji had earned hatred from both fans of Reika the hunk and the girls of class A who idolized the holy sword user.
At four in the morning, a time when everyone was still sleeping, the siren installed in all 12 of the special force’s buildings let off a『UUU~u！』 to alert everyone about another CE attack.
「They came huh」
Souji who would usually wake up at 5 in the morning to train with his grandfather snapped awake in a moment and jumped out from his futon, heading towards the entranceway.
He was wearing a jersey for sleeping at school which made it easy for him to sortie immediately.
And then, just as he left his room faster than anyone else and was running down the stairs, someone’s voice resounded alongside the siren.
『The student of 1st year class B, C, D, and the students of 2nd class A, please stand by and gather in your classrooms. I repeat, the students of――』
「Standing by in the classroom huh」
This order itself wasn’t unexpected.
The 1st years who just formed their squad and had only started their training to move as a squad.
They weren’t skilled enough to be thrown into real combat yet. If it went poorly, they might become a liability for the 2nd and 3rd years.
That’s why keeping that in mind, they went as far as ordering the 2nd year class A, who already had one year of combat experience, to stand by in their class.
「Ah, so that’s the reason huh」
Souji guessed the reason immediately while running to the classroom.
And then 5 minutes later, everyone had gathered and was told that their predictions were correct after Ooma started his explanation.
「The matter regarding leaving the 2nd year class A with you on standby was a precaution in case of a pincer attack like last time」
The surprise attack from Kurobe mountain involved Class D in their first campaign.
There was no guarantee that this wouldn’t happen again.
Rather, currently, there was no sign of the route the CE took to make that attack. Leaving combat personnel behind under the assumption that there really was a route in that direction meant the main troops who sortied to the Karuizawa area could remain at ease.
「Seeing that there’s a high probability that we’ll have to sortie, there’s no way we can waste our stamina training」
Whether it was their stamina or their Phantom Material Armor, they had to fight with everything in perfect condition.
「So instead, we’ll go with a classroom lesson after this」
The students screamed loudly, forgetting even their current tension to Ooma’s heartless words.
「WHYyy!? We’re still sleepy and should rest properly riight！ 」
「Even in a normal situation, your study time is insufficient due to training and sorties. If your grades drop any further you’ll really feel the pain entering university you know」
「Why are you saying that like a normal teacher！ Is there any relation between that and us of ACE troops！ 」
Almost all male students raised their voices following Eisuke who complained with a loud voice.
Ooma didn’t even rebuke them, and instead spoke with a calm tone.
「College, social circles, drinking parties, women… Don’t you understand what comes next?」
「START THE LESSON IMMEDIATELY, SENSEI！」
Being lured in by promise of a brilliant campus life, the foolish young group dove into their textbooks all at once.
「They really are idiots aren’t they…」
「Want to bet if their eagerness will last for three days~？」
「Well, even three hours might be enough…」
Even while astonished, Hinata obediently faced her textbook.
She didn’t bother ruining their appetite for learn, since they’d just wasting their spirit and soul in unproductive matters like waiting for the appearance of the CE – they didn’t even know if they would appear or not.
Eventually, one hour had passed, then two hours. Even when the battle in Karuizawa district ended, they didn’t attack from direction of Kurobe mountain.
「『We’ll lose when we’re convinced of our victory』 huh」
Recalling the words of his grandfather which he said to Reika yesterday, though Souji kept alert, it seems it was an unnecessary worry.
Once their seniors returned safely, he loosened up and returned to the scenery of a normal lesson.
But, unrest had already spread throughout the special forces in an unexpected way.
They became aware about that matter when the afternoon came.
「…What’s the matter？」
When it was time for enjoying their lunch, just as they stepped foot into the school cafeteria, Souji could sense a different atmosphere than usual.
Wrong, it wasn’t just him. Eisuke, Hinata, everyone of 1st year class D could clearly feel that the atmosphere of the dining room was different.
The strained atmosphere was like a bubble on the verge of bursting.
On the other hand, they felt a muddy-like gloomy atmosphere too.
It was like a mix of negative emotions between resignation and fury, being released by the 2nd and 3rd year students returned earlier.
Only the students of the 1st year’s class A who sat in gorgeous seats prepared beforehand in the best part of the dining room were praising the holy sword user, Tendouji Ayato, with face full of smiles.
「The heck is this, did you all just pull an all-nighter」
「Hey, don’t say such ill-omened words」
Hinata cautioned Eisuke with a low voice while receiving today’s special, mackarel miso.
Perhaps, the reality is that someone had died（though it’s was more accurate to say that they were in a comatose state）, that’s why they might be mourning for the victims.
But, when they had that kind of misunderstanding, the truth of the matter was revealed by the incredibly handsome girl immediately.
「Ya, can I sit beside you？」
「…By all means」
Without even dwelling on the kiss on the cheek yesterday, Souji pulled out the chair next to him with a slightly bewildered expression to Reika, who suddenly appeared with her usual refreshing smile.
Though Hinata cheeks heated up imagining that scene, as expected, she didn’t go as far as exploding this time.
「Senpai, what happened this time？」
「Sorry, it seems this situation made our meals even more unappetizing」
Even though it wasn’t her fauly, after Reika apologized, she told them in a low voice.
「In today’s battle, we, the senior troops, were unable to do anything and then retreated.」
「The senior troops couldn’t take an active role..? Ah」
In the middle of saying that, Itsuki and the other students also realised.
The one who were ordered to stand by in their classrooms in addition to 2nd year class A was, 1st year class B, C and, D.
In other words, 1st year’s class A participated in the battle in Karuizawa district.
And when it comes to 1st year class A, they were the worst jinx for class D.
He’s not the little brother of the hero anymore, the holy sword user Tendouji Ayato had already become a hero.
「T-that person, eve-……….？」
When someone showed their doubt saying “No way”, as expected, Reika nodded with a wry smile to Kanna who asked with a tone full of conviction.
「With a single horizontal sweep of his sword of light, the battle ended quicker than the time it would take to make cup ramen」
Getting closer by flying with Hermes’ Sandals, and then launching a single sweep to destroy the enemy from the sky where the 30 metre-ranged beam attacks wouldn’t reach him.
That was no longer a battle, it’s just trampling, or maybe sweeping away garbage.
The 3rd and 2nd years students who had been struggling up until now felt a deep sense of powerlessness and despair when they saw how quickly those 300 enemies were obliterated.
Everyone silently imagined that kind of feeling.
They’re still 1st year students. They were only dispatched once in real combat, but they knew the threat of the holy sword because of the entrance ceremony.
But, their seniors were different.
They went through severe training while drenched in sweat and came to fight against the CE in a desperate battle despite fearing their own death.
Especially before the countermeasures for CE were established, there were periods where there weren’t even 160 new students. The newcomer students won’t understand the feelings of the current 3rd years.
Because they experienced the loss of their classmates in battle.
With that sadness in their chests, moreover for the sake of everyone, they kept fighting against their fear.
Their effort, friendship, all of it became even more worthless than trash on the streets ready to be swept away ever since then.
They saw that the power of the hero who mowed down a large army of CE by himself was on another level.
「Just what the hell are we doing this for…」
A soft muttering leaked out from someone and was heard throughout the silent dining room.
But, that fleeting lamentation would never reach the hero who was basking under the admiration of beautiful woman, sitting on a gorgeous table with high class meals lined up and waiting for him.