Chapter 45

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Gaya Tortoise
After loading the Treant materials, we continued our journey.
It took over a week to reach our final destination, the habitat of the Gaya Tortoises.
We were currently on a hill that overlooked their habitat, and I couldn’t believe how many Gaya Tortoises there were…
Despite the surrounding desert, the Gaya Tortoises seem to live leisurely, paying no mind to it.

“Alizée, are those Gaya Tortoises over there? How do we hunt them?”

“That’s the problem. Gaya Tortoises are not agile monsters by any means. However, their shells and skin are so tough that they hardly take any damage from most attacks. Moreover, they have a strong sense of camaraderie, so if you attack one, the surrounding Gaya Tortoises will all swarm you together.”

“Ehhh…”

Can we really defeat them?
Worried, I asked Keuko and the others.
It turns out they once participated in a Gaya Tortoise hunt, but it was a joint effort involving about five parties.

“At that time, with around thirty people, we managed to bring down about three of them.”

“Gaya Tortoises are tough. Their defenses are impenetrable when they retract into their shells. They’re basically invulnerable to magic. And they have a strong defense mechanism that counterattacks when you damage their shell.”

“I was still at the Blue Rank back then… but it was really tough.”

Can we really defeat them on our own?
It seems that Alizée had her hopes pinned on me and Talat this time.

“I’ve heard that your spear is quite powerful, Lady Lily. Let’s use that to take them down one by one. Talat will handle separating them with his threads. Gaya Tortoises gain momentum and charge like a boulder. They might be tough, but they’re slow to start moving. If you immobilize them with spider threads beforehand, it should work.”

“Uhh…”

I’m fine with fighting, but I wonder if it will be okay.
I’ll do my best and try.

On the day after we arrived at the habitat, we began our actions before dawn.
Gaya Tortoises become more active during the hot daytime, so it’s essential to hunt them before dawn.
As we approached the habitat, we spotted Gaya Tortoises resembling boulders lying around like hills.
There were three of them nearby, which seemed to be just the right number to hunt.
First, I asked Talat to use his threads to bind them in place, and then I moved towards their heads.
With a strong leap, I thrust my spear at the head of a Gaya Tortoise!

“KUERYUUU!?”

I thought I accurately pierced its forehead… but it seemed my spear wasn’t long enough to reach its brain.
Before I got blown away, I jumped off its head.
As for the Gaya Tortoises… they had torn Talat’s threads and were fixing their aim towards us.

“Oh, we might be in a pinch.”

The freed Gaya Tortoises were targeting us, charging straight towards us.
Their initial movements were slow, but their speed gradually increased.
By the time they passed me, they were moving faster than a carriage.

I skillfully dodged them with Talat’s thread pulling me out of the way, but the Gaya Tortoises rammed into rocks and then came to a stop.

“Mmm, have we perhaps entered a stalemate?”

“It seems so. It might be tough.”

Running away from the Gaya Tortoises might be easy, but it seems we can’t defeat them with my spear alone.
Even Keuko and the others’ slashing attacks were deflected by their skin.
We need to be wary of not only their charges but also their stomps and bites.
And Akumi’s bow wasn’t effective unless the arrow luckily pierced their eyes.
Now, what to do?

“I want to try something for now. If this doesn’t work, let’s retreat for today and try again tomorrow.”

“Okay. Understood.”

What I wanted to try was creating drill-shaped blocks of ice and launching them to crush their heads.
I was using ice because Gaya Tortoises were capable of absorbing Earth attribute magic attacks.
Well, let’s see how effective it is…

“… It worked, didn’t it?”

“You managed to take one down.”

The ice drills, piercing through the wind, successfully penetrated the head of one of the Gaya Tortoises.
We repeated the same process for the remaining two, and today’s hunting session came to an end.

I thought I’d let Tomoa try it to see if it would work for her as well, but she couldn’t pierce the hide of a deceased Gaya Tortoise.
I guess my magic power really is powerful.
Or maybe it’s because of my strong imagery?
Either way, I’ll have Tomoa practice until she can do the same.

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