“We, too, ran into the Big Ogre. Goff. He was an interesting Ogre.”
As anticipated, they were also delayed by the Big Ogre. It wasn’t too long ago that they were calling Goff an ungrateful bastard, but they seemed to have changed their attitude toward him after learning that Goff came through the jungle. By now, I became very curious as to what the story about Goff, which they told us at that time, was all about.
‘He is a very ill mannered bastard! Never trust Goff! Being betrayed by him will be in an instant…’
The idiot, who would still welcome someone knowing that that very same person would betray him, was certainly that Big Ogre, I thought.
“Krrrr. At any rate, I slipped out quietly, thinking that I could no longer afford to spend even a minute more of my time there. When I arrived at the village of Storm Shadow, a human lad, and Nicole, a small goblin told me that you’ve gone to the human city… So, I was able to come here.”
Looking at his smiling face, I felt that Goff had enjoyed his journey in his own way.
“Come to think of it, the guy that was drawing is not around.”
As I was remembering the goblin that was banging the drums, Goff, too, seemed to be remembering najin. Seeing that I was hesitant, Goff scratched the back of his head, indicating that he has made a mistake.
Black Spear, Goff and I began a slow conversation even after that. As the work has gone longer than expected, the Orc that was banging the drum brought a large tray of food, and there, even a feast with wine ensued, although for a short time. It seemed certain that it was due to the after-effects of the Big Ogre.
After a short time has passed, Ragia walked over to me and began to talk. Perhaps, it was because she was mindful of Black Spear and Goff, she was more courteous than her usual self.
“We’ve located the humans who were hiding. Those humans, in leadership, have been captured alive and are in our custody while all the other humans were killed. The tribesmen’s and the brother tribes’ corpses have already been taken care of. Please issue your command.”
She seemed to be waiting for my instructions. However, it wasn’t something that I could decide alone. It certainly wasn’t only my own doing, and as I was on the receiving end of assistance, it was appropriate to ask for their opinion. I stealthily looked toward Black Spear and Goff. They were also in the midst of nodding their heads. Seeing them, I slowly turned to the tribe and began to speak.
“For Blood Dagger!”
Goff and Black Spear also minding their own tribesmen.
“Sound the drum!”
Their departure was loud, as was their arrival. With Goff’s orders, the Orc rushed to begin to bang the drums and the mass began their march toward Storm Shadow Village. I asked Goff to lead the march and like him, he did not turn it down. It was decided that his tribe was best equipped to respond should an unexpected situation was to develop, and our clan, which was holding the humans, was better to stay in the rear.
Finally, waving a large flag, Goff’s clan began to part the way forward, followed immediately by me, and lastly by Black Spear.
Then Ragia, who was walking silently next to me, struck a conversation. She sounded as if she had some complaints.
“Are you OK to be not at the head of the march?”
It was an unexpected question, but it didn’t strike me as unusual, coming from Ragia. It wasn’t that I couldn’t understand her position either. After all, it was a battle that our Blood Dagger Clan has planned and led. Her curiosity, from her position, was warranted with respect to why our clan was not leading the march.
Based on her curiosity filled expression, I realized the thoughts behind her actions when she came forward to provide a report, and requested me to issue an order. Ragia was hoping to see Blood Dagger Clan to be leading the group. I spoke as I watched such expressions on Ragia’s face.
“Who leads at the front is not the important thing.”
I wasn’t sure if she was expressing her loyalty or her own ambition, but it didn’t feel bad to see that she was, first of all, thinking about the clan.
“They are brothers who we will be with us going forward. It isn’t that I do not recognize your thoughts, but look around.”
Ragia subtly scanned the surroundings when she heard me. The three goblin sisters and Mev were cheerfully laughing, and Mev seemed to be in especially in good mood. Hayeon Jung was also smiling, maybe because she had an opportunity to release her stress for the first time in a long while. Rather than the fact that they were victorious in a battle, they were happier to be meeting and being among their brothers.
Orbo was walking while tightly holding a child in his arms, Black Spear or Goff clans’ men were also walking without being mindful of who were next to or behind them. Ragia’s such a way of thinking may have been necessary for self survivor, but it did not seem that important at this point in time.
Ragia nodded and I lightly touched her head.
“I know that you are dedicated to the Blood Dagger’s cause. I still do not regret, putting you in charge of the tribe. You do not need to overdo it.”
That was the truth. She appeared to be confident and capable, yet always seemed to be chased by something. If what she looked after until now was herself, right now, it was in fact the clan. Ragia appeared to be drowned in thoughts as she stared far in the distance.
Ragia smiled subtly upon hearing me. As I looked at her smile, which seemed to be different than her usual way of smiling, I thought that it was, perhaps, the first time that I was seeing her genuine smile.
“For Blood Dagger…”