Chapter 2

(Mysterious Woman P.O.V.)

I don’t have the time to sit here wondering about this strange human. The remaining Kobolds had rushed through the trees and came towards us and my battle sense had become heightened as I prepared for the oncoming enemies.

I made a swift decision and dashed forward to meet them at the forefront. I quickly parried the first enemy’s attack and dodged the thrust of a secon. I deftly jumped backwards to gain some distance from the group of monsters. I didn’t want to give them an opportunity to surround me. Even though they would not pose much of a problem for me individually, if all six of them surrounded me, it would be a difficult battle. In addition, I had to keep the Kobolds’ focus on me and resist their group attacks, or else they might swarm the human. If that happened, he would be finished.

I need to quickly go on the offensive and trim their numbers down a bit. I swiftly chanted a spell and  I swung my left hand like a whip causing blades of air to fly forth from my blade. Two Kobolds were instantly cut down. The ‘Wind blades’ that were flung from my sword sliced their bodies in several places and their blood splattered all over the forest bed. They wore no armor and my ‘Wind blades’ met very little resistance. Their bodies were simply not hardy enough to resist the strength of my spell.

With only four of them remaining, the battle became a one-sided slaughter. The distraction, of having two of their number cut down so suddenly, left them in momentary disarray. This provided enough time for me to quickly approach another one and cut it down with a downward slash. Two of the other Kobolds shook away their confusion and ran at me as one. Two spears were thrust at me from different directions, but I hit them away and followed up with a thrust of my own, impaling one of them on my sword.

The sword became stuck in the body of the monster and I was forced to kick the body away, while drawing two daggers from my vest. I held both daggers with the blades facing downwards and prepared for the next attack that would definitely come soon. I had lost sight of one of the Kobolds as I became distracted trying to defend against the thrusts of the enemy’s spear with my daggers. It would be difficult for me to get in close with the small reach of the daggers, so I decided to use another spell to quickly finish the monster off.

I jumped back to get some distance and began to chant quickly, I could see out of the corner of my eye that one of my opponents had gotten away from me and was running towards the Human. I needed to finish this spell quickly and run to his aid. When my chant was done I stopped moving, planting my feet into the ground, and faced the Kobold I was engaged with.

With the daggers still held in my hands, I thrust my hands forward and shards of ice spewed forth. The shards of ice moved too rapidly for the monster to respond and it was impaled by the shards of ice. The Kobold fell slowly to the ground, dead. Impaled by dozens of shards of ice, yet with no blood pouring out of the wounds, it looked as if it was a sleeping porcupine.

Without hesitation, I looked towards the last of the Kobolds who was swiftly approaching the Human. He was still on his knees, grasping at his head in pain. Those ominous black flames continued to pulse and circulate around his arms. I won’t make it time! I ran as fast as I could but I knew that it would only be moments before the Human would be impaled by a spear.

Just as the spear was thrust forward, I winced knowing that the Human was about to be run through. The Human’s head suddenly snapped up and even from this distance I could see that his eyes were black as midnight. I could feel a surge of power and the flames that had been circulating around his arms suddenly burst forth as the Human reached towards the Kobold. The black flames surged forward as if alive, instantly burning a hole through its chest causing it to drop to the floor dead.

I slowed to a stop and stood there as shivers ran down my spine. What is this human? I thought to myself in shock. Whatever magic he had used was far too unfamiliar and powerful. Maybe my father would know something about this. If only I could communicate with this human.

All of the monsters had finally died and I could breathe a sigh of relief. I thought the human was as good as dead but he surprised me. I was breathing heavily, due to the intense physical activity of the battle, but I wasn’t especially tired. My body was well trained and something like this wouldn’t wear me out. Less than ten minutes had passed from start to finish, nothing I couldn’t handle. I could feel a light sweat on my body and there was some splattered blood on my vest and in my hair. It made for quite the fearsome appearance.

I walked cautiously over to the human and carefully looked down at him. The flames that had circulated around his arms had finally dissipated but he still seemed to be in pain. He was quite strange, I had never seen anyone like him before. He doesn’t physically look much different from any other human you can find in the kingdoms around here, but he had strange clothing and was surprisingly very clean. I looked him over as best I could without getting too close to see if he had any injuries on him.

He smelled nice, unlike the smell of other humans that I was accustomed to. They often reeked of musk and sweat but this Human smelled of flowers and fruit. His hair appeared very clean and his facial hair was well maintained from what I had seen. The material in his clothing was unfamiliar and his shoes were of high quality. He had some strange jewelry on his wrist and there was also a carrying bag made of a strange material near him.

Is this man a noble of some kind? If he were a peasant, there is no way he could be so clean that there was not even a speck of dirt on him, other than the dirt he had gotten on his clothing when fumbling around on the ground.

I hadn’t planned to stay in this forest so long and now I had this Human to deal with so I was uncertain what I should do. I was cautious because I had seen his power but he didn’t look particularly strong. I needed to determine whether he was a threat.

I suppose in his case, looks can be deceiving. As I thought this, his arms fell to his sides and he looked up at me. His eyes were no longer black and he was no longer in pain.

(Peter P.O.V.)

I felt like I had been having a long nightmare, that had now finally ended. I felt excruciating pain as a strange dark mist entered my body.

I could feel it moving around inside me and I heard a disembodied voice call out to me saying, “The essence of the Void fills you with power. You may now use the flames of the Void, ‘Void flames’.”

I couldn’t control the power swelling within me and it burst forth from my arms and eyes. Please tell me it was all just a dream. I looked up and my eyes met the Demihuman’s eyes, Not a dream, ugh.

I was still in the forest and I could still see that strange sky I didn’t recognize. The Demihuman woman continued to observe me cautiously. She must have been wary of the strange power I had exhibited earlier. I guess I did get a cheat skill after all! I will have to figure out how to use my power but for now let me try to show this girl I am no danger to her.

I stood up slowly and held my hands out to show her I meant no harm. She continued to watch me and took a step back, her hand was gripping the pommel of her blade but she didn’t attack.

“I mean you no harm” I did my best to use hand gestures to show her that I didn’t want to hurt her. She seemed to get my intention because she visibly relaxed but didn’t entirely let down her guard.

“!@#$%^&*%$#@#!&*^%^^%*!#@!##!#!@$#$^%&” She spoke in her strange language and pointed towards the monsters that were dead on the floor.

The sight was gruesome and I could feel bile rising again but I kept it under control. This was the first time I experienced such a sight but I did my best not to appear pathetic in front of this girl. I couldn’t understand what she was saying and she threw up her hands in frustration.

Putting down the pack she had been carrying, she walked over to one of the monsters. I was impressed she had been able to fight the monsters while wearing that pack. She must be pretty capable, her movements were quick despite the added weight.

I soon realized what she had been saying as she started dragging the corpses and lined the bodies up side by side. I couldn’t believe such a young woman had no issue with dragging corpses, and death in general. I guess it’s not so strange, I mean in light novels this is pretty normal. Hmm, is she going to harvest them? Do they have magic crystals or something? I continued to watch as I thought these things. It never occurred to me that I should help her.

She got to work cutting up the bodies. It looked like the young woman was searching for something and seemed perplexed when she didn’t find whatever it was she was looking for. After several minutes and a few cut up bodies, she gave up and glared at me as she walked past.

‘What?” I just shrugged. I had no experience with these kinds of things, what did she expect me to do? No way was I about to help cut up some dead bodies. I doubted I could hold whatever was in my stomach if I got any closer.

What is she doing now? I followed her as she looked for dry twigs and such. I helped gather some as I assumed she was going to build a fire. Night was fast approaching, is she really thinking of camping out here? Can’t we find another location, one without dead bodies? Please? I sighed knowing I wouldn’t be able to communicate my discomfort to her.

After we found enough material to burn, she started a fire with some flint and a rock. She gestured towards me and I understood it as her asking me to wait there. I was completely relying on her so all I could do was comply. I was really hoping she didn’t plan to leave me here and run. If she did, I would most certainly die. I had no idea where I was or how I would leave the forest and the forest felt dangerous.

She was gone for a while and I was getting increasingly worried. Just when I was beginning to feel like she wasn’t coming back, she returned. Thankfully she had only gone hunting as she returned with some skinned animals I didn’t recognize. At least I hoped they were skinned animals and not monsters.

She put the meat on some sticks and started cooking them over the fire. My mouth watered at the smell and my stomach started grumbling at me. While I was hungry, I was a little concerned with the mystery meat she was cooking. While she cooked, she watched me silently. We couldn’t communicate so we just watched each other.

I couldn’t believe I was drooling over some mystery meat being cooked by a Demihuman, while a bunch of dead bodies were rotting across the meadow from me. Life sure is strange, never would have thought I would actually end up in a Parallel world!

Even more interesting was this woman. The woman was even filthier than before, with swathes of blood now joining the dirt in staining her body. She looked like an insane serial killer. A creepy serial killer, who just kept staring at me…

I wondered at how she could remain so calm given the circumstances.

“@%$#$$^@%&@$&@&^@,” She made some hand gestures and spoke in that strange language of hers and then handed me a stick with some meat on it.

I am just going to go with the flow here and ignore my surroundings. The idea of eating some strange meat on a stick that was cooked over a fire in the forest, greatly concerned me. I knew it probably wasn’t a smart thing to do, but if I refused, I had no idea when my next meal would be. Also, I wasn’t sure how stable this woman was and preferred to keep my life intact. It would be best not to insult her, she did save my life after all.

The meat wasn’t anything special, it tasted like what I would imagine game animal tastes like without any sauce or seasonings. I wasn’t really into gamey meat, I was more of a chicken fanatic.

Well, the food was bland, but I guess I should say thank you, “I know you don’t understand me, but thank you.” I made some sort of half prayer gesture with my hands and bowed my head, I guess she got it because she nodded. We both ate quietly.

She is surprisingly beautiful. Her hair is unique, never saw platinum hair before. She has gorgeous emerald green eyes, and a soft, bushy platinum tail. Difficult to see much else since she is wearing a tight leather vest, or is it chest armor? Well, I shouldn’t stare too much.

As I looked her over I chuckled at her filthy, ragged appearance. Even her hair had leaves sticking out of it. She looked at me strangely when I did that, but merely observed me in turn. She didn’t look impressed by what she saw…

She was not dignified in the least, she seemed to lack any semblance of table manners. I guess I shouldn’t expect too much, sitting here around a fire eating mystery meat in the middle of a forest filled with monsters. She was crouched over eating almost like a man might, if he was in prison and didn’t want another prisoner to steal his food. It was almost cute in a way, like a squirrel anxiously eating a nut. She finally patted her chest and said, “Reia.” Must be her name.

She then pointed at me, “#@$%#%@%#%#@?”  

It wasn’t hard to figure out that she wanted to know my name. I wasn’t familiar with the naming sense of this world so I wasn’t sure if I should give her my real name or an alias. Should I tell her my name is Conan? I chuckled to myself again. She growled at me. I think I might have made her mad. I patted my chest the same way she had and said, “Peter.”

She looked at me curiously and attempted to say my name “Peetyr” Ha! Adorable! “Peter,” I corrected her and this time she said my name correctly. That was the extent of our conversation, though.

After finishing her meal she stood up and began kicking dirt onto the fire with her leather boots. She walked over to her pack and there were some furs that had been rolled up and attached to it. She grabbed them and laid them out on the floor, oh gosh, does she expect me to sleep here? Wait, isn’t it too dangerous to sleep in this forest with the monster corpses nearby?

I glanced over at the corpses and realized that they were already decomposing into nothing, soon the bodies would be completely gone. Woah, guess that’s a world with magic for ya! Looks like that won’t be an issue then, but who is going to take first watch? I wasn’t exactly relishing the thought of having to do so but that was how these things normally went in the stories I read.

I tried to communicate with the Demihuman using hand gestures, “Who will take first watch?” I put my hand to my forehead to give the impression as if I were looking far away and pointed at her. She nodded her head and pointed at me and then at the fur. Guess she wants me to go to sleep first. I was happy about that but I also felt a little guilty towards her.

I shrugged and then laid down on the fur and did my best to fall asleep. Please, no bugs… I don’t even want to imagine what kind of bugs might exist in this world. That was my last thought before falling into a dream.

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