Monstrous Compendium Ch7 bit – History

Asuna paled. “If Aincrad is real, if the history and lore is true, then – Stheno, she-!”

“She’s killed thousands of humans.” Kirito nodded, holding Asuna’s gaze so she’d look at him, not a game story turned horribly real. “Karrnathi wizards wiped out the medusas in Swiftwater Pass so Breland could invade Aincrad. And they did. They poured right through the pass, and hit the villages on the other side.” He had to take a breath. Knowing what he knew now, no wonder Tae called Vincent a hero. And loved Tetsutora like her own grandmother. “One of those villages was Snow Springs.”

Asuna shivered. “But it’s just a village! They’re farmers!”

“Farmers. Fishers. Hunters and crafters,” Kirito agreed. “And a clan of draconic horse-breeders. Villagers. Civilians.” He had to look away, nightmare scenarios playing out in his head. “But they’re youkai. Even the children.”

Asuna looked as sick as he felt. “No….”

“I’ve talked to someone who was a child here when it happened,” Kirito said carefully. “That person had never seen Shaman Tetsutora in full tigress war-form before. That person didn’t see much, the clan threw village children onto mounts and told them to ride, but… they saw what the village looked like, days later. Blood and bodies everywhere.” Kirito shuddered. “Some of those bodies were family.”

Poor Tae. He could understand why she’d volunteered for what was supposed to be just mystical training-

His gut knotted, as he realized his fellow party member had stopped looking sad. Blue brows were drawn down instead, in a frown of pure concentration.

Uh-oh.

“So she hit them from the rear,” Asuna said, half to herself. “Take out the magic-users. Take away the buffs. Make sure the soldiers knew all they had to keep them going was their own sword skills and any healing potions they happened to have. Galifar armies are used to clerics and adepts coming with them. Regular soldiers don’t carry potions. They’re expensive.” She smirked then, amused and just a touch bitter. “They’d have to solo monsters. Ouch.”

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14 thoughts on “Monstrous Compendium Ch7 bit – History

  1. Oh dear. Is Asuna’s battle mode/tactical and strategic analysis because she’s grasped what was going on…or is dropping into that mindset how she deals (or rather doesn’t) with the kind of emotional upheavals that SAO has dumped on her?

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Yep Asuna is look at it clinically, as a tactical problem or how a boss raid can go wrong. To both distance herself from the horror of talking about an army getting effectively trapped and slaughtered, and the slaughter that army was up to when Stheno slammed shut the trap.

        I wonder if a certain scaly asshole is planning on trying the same trick, probably saving it for one of the ‘quarter’ (25, 50, 75, 100) boss raids.

        Oh, and not to freak out at finding that nice potential older sister role model is a semi-retired General Badass. Think how everyone in Ba Sing Se flipped out at finding the kindly teashop worker/owner ‘Uncle’ Iroh, was also ‘Dragon of the West’ General Iroh, the man who nearly conquered the city.

        Liked by 3 people

      1. Kirito isn’t the only individual that has various coping methods to deal with the Death game.

        We do have to remember that these are mostly teenagers from a First world country that have had no previous experience with real combat. And they got tossed headlong into a world where they have to fight and kill to survive.

        It’s amazing that more of the clearers haven’t simply broken down.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. >
        Historically, that tends to lead to a high body count.
        >
        You know what they say about omelets and eggs. And here the dragon has a couple more aspects supporting his mentality of ‘acceptable losses’ to see this through.

        A: They’re just mortals.
        and
        B: All this is very likely related to the Draconic Prophecy.

        Liked by 3 people

      3. “The only ‘acceptable losses’ are ‘you first!'”
        May I say how refreshing that is? There are far, far too many people these days spouting off about the Greater Good and ‘necessary sacrifices’ for my taste. I’ve noticed since I was a small child that the sorts of people that say those things almost never expect to be doing any real ‘sacrificing’ themselves, and it’s always put my hackles up, but lately… ugh. RL
        is overrated.

        Liked by 3 people

      4. That’s one of the things I like about Kurusu in Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress, BTW. He may be a hard-nosed by-the-book samurai (at first, he loosens up a little later), but when it comes to sacrifices “for the greater good” he’s the one who plans to go out there.

        Say what you like about his attitude, he’s got courage.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Looking at tactically might be better in some ways for her sanity than looking at it another way.

    And yeah, slaughtering an army in a trap is pretty ugly . . . but so is slaughtering every member of a village(s) full of civilians down the last man, woman, and child unless they managed to run far enough and fast enough away from you.

    War is ugly. Doesn’t really matter why the conflict starts or why you decided to join it, at the end of the day, the war itself is ugly and it seems like everyone ends up doing something they aren’t proud of and that will haunt their dreams . . .

    Liked by 1 person

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