[33] Of course you do
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"Hmm?"

Had they not heard her or were they simply stunned? Claire Hill looked at the silent group with a tilt of her head. She knew she came in with a rather abrupt landing, but that shouldn't have made them lose their voices. After all, she had been careful to only hurt the beasts. No humans were harmed in the making of this novel save for the author.

A horse neighed as it moved closer to her, she thought it cute, but the person atop it looked down at her with furrowed brows. The impression he immediately gave was of a valiant veteran of war.

'A commander and his men,' Claire thought, piecing his appearance with the rest. There was no question about it. He was the only one who rode a horse, and the tide of soldiers parted at his behest.

"Excuse my asking, Ice Queen, but, perhaps. . ." The man began, staring intently at her, "Are you the one who mitigated the mass of hordes we've seen coming from the forest ahead?"

Claire's azure eyes glanced over him and Evan Macron felt as if a a calm beast watched its prey, silently. He couldn't help but grip the reins of his horse tighter.

"So this world has truly decided to term me that," Claire muttered absentmindedly. As the commander tilted his head, she nodded. "Indeed I was, but it wasn't me alone. One of my comrades smelled the shedding of blood in this direction, so I left them to finish the area as I flew here. Well, I suppose its more apt to say I stood upon ice, and it took me here."

The situation that the village of Cron encountered had not been faced by it alone. Though it took the brunt of the beast stampede, as it was located right outside the mouth of the ravine, Claire found that creatures had run wildly. Since a river crossed half of the forest, keeping them from heading in that direction, many had run instead towards Tress's southern border. In the end, the girls had picked off any unusually sized group of beasts they met along their way here within the morning.

Though, she had to admit, it was usually Asta doing most of the work as Via badgered him, then Alicia would step in, half-part annoyed, and finish things off. Leaving a perturbed Lara at their tail.

"Oh?" Claire turned her head. "There they are now."

"Hmm?"

The man she had termed the leader of the soldier stared off into the distance.

". . ."

Evan Macron and his men blinked their eyes into the distance as a group of girls and an ice-golem walked into view. The forest behind them, they trekked while blood covered their forms, and it seemed as if they were arguing amongst themselves.

"Why is your arm missing? All you were doing was fighting damn orges. It should be easy for you with your stats! Even I could take care of them!" Dressed in a jacket that showed off her midsection, and an oddly place fluffy skirt, the beast-girl of the bunny race berated in disbelief.

The ice golem jumped in place. ". . .huh, miss. . .I wanted to try some new moves. . ."

Via glanced at Asta's chipped form and scoffed. "You might be strong, but you're still a beginner. New moves won't do a single thing for you without mastering the basics."

"I think he tried his best?" A cheerier voice tried her best to slash in. Though, the blonde-headed girl seemed far too weak willed for the effort.

"You shut up. And change back to the other girl dang it, I still haven't kicked her for her mess and you're too damn nice to kick."

". . .she hasn't logged on yet. . .but thank you?"

"Ugh," Via groaned.

The man, oddly, ignored the trio as they turned to the strangest of them all. A girl with golden hair that flapped behind her, a dress of black, and an half-mask of white that showed a slit of red parallel to her singular eye of crimson. She walked leisurely forward, the fresh mark of blood on her person as a fang poked from the corner of her lips.

The men turned to Claire, staring silently as if they were judging her.

"What?" She asked

They merely continued their glance.

"Fine." Claire found herself forced to somewhat shrug. "I, admittedly, do understand this is an odd sight."

No kidding? The men looked too fazed to reply. After all, someone there was making light of ogres, something they had only been able to struggle against.

Hearing footsteps behind her, Claire smiled as a wave of water flapped back and devoured her group. It froze into ice, then shed and broke off into crimson snow, leaving behind a team that was rid of blood.

"Thank you," Via said, boots pacing to stand behind her, "You sure are convenient to have around."

Claire raised a brow, nodded, and turned towards Alicia. "How was the battle? Did you take care of them all?"

"Easy," The vampire said, "They are all dead."

Claire licked her lips and held her lover's chin as they stared into each other's eyes.

"Alice. . ." She spoke softly. "Is there something you want as a reward. Something only I could give?"

"Ugh," A certain bunny groaned.

"Umm. . ." A certain hero who lost her powers tried to look away.

"Reward? What about me miss?" A certain ice-golem jumped up at the word.

". . ." A certain group of soldiers were bewildered.

"Claire. . ." Alicia spoke. Her nose twitched and she smiled. An enchanting, but mischievous, smile half a mask couldn't hide. "I want to suck your blood."

". . ."

Was she only a blood donor?

Wasn't the girl supposed to choose a kiss?

Yes yes. Been awhile. But I've been busy with my main series, 'R. A. T. H'. I'm 9 chapters away from 100 chapters on that.

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