Kumo desu ga, Nani ka? 270

What do you call boot camp when there’s no boots?

270 – Are we going to be okay with only this equipment?

After the second conference with the Divine Word Religion was completed, the days became so hectic that it made one feel dizzy. That’s because the 10th Army that the Demon King forced onto me hadn’t been managed properly. While the name has always been the 10th Army, in essence it was the private army of a regional lord, so naturally there was pretty much nothing there. Thus, it wasn’t any different to a newly established army. While it’s true that the capable people had already been headhunted by the other armies, the members were almost entirely new recruits anyway. A bunch of greenhorn soldiers who had only just graduated from the academy. Furthermore, since all the talented ones had been headhunted by the other armies, what was gathered was just a lackluster bunch. Furthermore, because of the other armies doing headhunting and so on, they had no real achievements either. Basically, I’ve been foisted with just the rejects. Having to turn this lot into a proper army, really seems like some kind of bad joke.

Therefore, I had to take these rotten soldiers, and go to work on raising them up into war-loving combat maniacs. In the reckless early days during camping at a training ground, there was an idiot who tried to sneak a visit to my bedroom, but after my sincere persuasion he had a change of heart. Nowadays he has become a proper and obedient soldier. It’s just your imagination that his eyes look like that of a dead fish.

Eh? There wasn’t anyone who tried to sneak into Felmina-chan’s bedroom, you ask? Take a guess. That girl has a weak presence. As the deputy commander, she should be at least as busy as me, but for some reason the soldiers don’t remember her face. The poor girl. Or rather, how the heck does Felmina-chan have a weaker presence than me when I’m using perception inhibition magic?

In practice, if Felmina-chan hadn’t been here, this army wouldn’t be functional, you know. She is making great efforts in many areas such as office work, training soldiers and replenishing supplies though. Yet despite that, why can’t the soldiers remember her face? It’s one of the Seven Wonders of the 10th Army. Incidentally, another one of those Seven Wonders is the figure of me sleeping for some reason, but I mustn’t mind it.

After about a year of this and that with the army and being so busy here and there, I didn’t have the spare time to be involved with anything else. I’ve left dealing with the elves to Argnar, left dealing with the Divine Word Religion to the Demon King, and so on. Well, it’s not like I need to do anything and everything by myself anyway, and both Argnar and the Demon King are capable so I’m not anxious. Not that the Demon King is actually doing much though. For exchanges with the Divine Word Religion, since the attack on the elf village hasn’t actually started yet there’s not much to do anyway. Before that can begin, the war with the humans has to be completed first.

While the development of my 10th Army is making good progress, there’s various replacements going on in the other armies. Firstly, oni-kun has been inaugurated as a commander. Oni-kun has become the commander of the 8th Army, which is similar to the 10th Army in that it’s mostly an army in name only. However, unlike mine it has proper personnel. The feudal lords who had a relationship with the elves were dealt with, and the soldiers they controlled were pulled together to form the 8th Army. Of course Argnar was involved in the elimination of the feudal lords with relationships with the elves, but so that the elves would not realise this, it was made so that oni-kun was the one who officially did it. Using that great achievement, he became a commander amongst all the fanfare. He got ahead in life faster than Mera.

Regarding Mera, he has officially become the 4th Army commander, taking over the Balto. It seems that Balto himself was cautious about Mera, but since there was nobody else with the ability to handle it, he vacated the position of army commander with an aching heart. Balto who was then free, was pushed into the command and administration of the army under direct control of the Demon King. Do your best Balto. Never give up Balto.

Then, there’s Kuro who was entrusted with the 9th Army. To be blunt though, the 9th Army is Kuro’s private army. Yup. With drakes and dragons. Maybe it was with his Administrator privileges, or maybe I just didn’t know that they could do it originally, but the personnel of the 9th Army are made up of drakes and dragons transformed into people. They’re not even demons. No matter how you look at it they’re stronger than the other armies, or rather, too strong. This is a bunch who must be used carefully. If my 10th Army fought with them, they’d be absolutely crushed. Or rather, even the weakest of them might be stronger than the top brass amongst the other armies.

The 1st to 3rd armies are armies of proper demons. The head of the 4th Army might be a vampire, but apart from him they’re a normal demon army. The 4th to 7th are also normal. The abnormal ones are the 8th and above. Well, I guess with this that’s the general sense of the armies. It’s a bit longer until vampire girl’s generation graduates from the academy, and once those graduates join the army and are properly integrated then the preparations will be complete. The number of personnel won’t increase anymore beyond that.

But, when I see all the personnel together, there’s one problem here. There’s not enough materials. Mainly weapons and armour.

Considering the current situation of the demons, the production of food has to be the highest priority. Although the population has declined, all the able people have been conscripted, so there’s insufficient people working in production activities. If most of them weren’t working in food production, then all the demons would be starving. Which has resulted in weapons and armour being unavoidably deprioritized. With us preparing for war it does make me wonder what’s going on.

So anyway, my army is the 10th Army. The 10th Army amongst the 10 armies. In short, the last one. We’re also last for the provisions of goods. Thus, we have nothing decent!

While Argnar is able to deploy his 1st Army with fine armours and swords, we’re getting nothing but secondhand goods or inferior goods. While Felmina-chan has been trying to arrange supply of something decent, no matter how excellent she is she’s still just an inexperienced young girl. She’s no match against the top brass. Even when I went to Balto personally to object, I was refused with him saying that they can’t provide what doesn’t exist. Since Balto is running around with heavy bags under his eyes, that likely indicates that it’s impossible.

I guess it can’t be helped that I’m asking for too much. Nonetheless, you can’t wage war without equipment. Since being born I’ve never actually used weapons though, but it would be far too cruel to tell the soldiers to fight barehanded. Which is why I’ve come to make a request of someone who can make what I need.

「So then, make them.」
「No no no. I’m too busy as well you know?」

To refuse my request, oni-kun, you’ve become considerably self-important haven’t you? As you might have guessed, the one I’m making a request to is oni-kun. With his unique skill, oni-kun is able to refine magic swords. Because it consumes MP it’s not like he can create them limitlessly, but it’s wonderful to be able to create without raw materials. I don’t need him to create anything fancy, I just want him to at least create some proper swords.

It would be great if I could even just headhunt the 8th Army personnel for the 10th Army, you know. In exchange I could even give my carefully made underwear (increased defence) to the 8th Army, you know. If you don’t do it I have no idea what I would do next, you know. So, as a result of persistent negotiations, oni-kun eventually accepted. With this we finally have some weapons.

I gave up on getting plate armour, so using my threads I created clothes for all the soldiers. To put it bluntly they have better defensive than full body armour anyway. Having them wear uniformly white clothes that cover the whole body, when the soldiers stand in line, they look like a gathering of some kind of dubious secret organisation. I’m not cutting corners by having them be white. It’s got nothing to do with adding colouring being a pain or anything like that. It’s not, okay?

Thus, the 10th Army’s preparations were almost completed.


Translation notes:

“sneak a visit to my bedroom” – the word used here is more of a euphemism, but basically refers to the act of sneaking into someone’s bedroom at night for sex.

Kumo desu ga, Nani ka? 269
Kumo desu ga, Nani ka? 271