Trials of the Valiant Chapter 19
By The RPGenius
Duegran could not believe that this was happening. Alma was free, and her friends soon would be, too. Duegran was sure that his troops would win the battle, but he would suffer losses in the process. Syldreth would be extremely displeased at that.
Duegran watched the battle unfold. A fast Squire reached Alma ahead of the other soldiers. The Squire brought his axe down in a sweeping chop at Alma, but she quickly and expertly swung up her staff, catching the Squire's arm and knocking the axe out of his hand. Before the surprised Squire could react, Alma swung her staff upwards, connecting with his head. The Squire went head-over-heels and landed on his back, unconscious.
Duegran gritted his teeth. Still, most of what had happened there was luck, and she wouldn't stay lucky for long.
His spirits lifted as he saw two Geomancers moving in on Alma. The annoying girl would have no chance against them.
There was a sudden yellow blur that came from over a hill. It raced towards a Geomancer, knocking the man down. Instantly, the yellow blur was on top of him, thrashing. It was a chocobo pecking, clawing, and warking angrily.
Duegran looked over at the other Geomancer, who was at that moment knocked down by Byblos, who had been riding on Boco's back. The Byblos ripped and tore at the Geomancer savagely.
Duegran would have begun worrying, but he then saw that the rest of his soldiers, Knights, Lancers, Samurai, and a Squire, had reached Alma and were about to take care of her once and for all.
Duegran suddenly heard several voices call out at once.
Duegran's troops were suddenly hit by a blast of fire, bolts of lightning, and a large spike. At the same time, two gunshots sounded off. Ramza's allies had been freed.
When the dust cleared from the attacks, Duegran could see that only four of his men remained alive. Those four were easily accounted for as Ramza's friends arrived to aid Alma, Boco, and Byblos.
Duegran shook with fear as he watched the grim-faced fighters turn his way. He turned and ran about five paces before he realized that he had stepped into a quicksand pit...
* * *
Alma turned to Vantan. "Thanks, Vantan. I suppose you really are on our side?"
Vantan smiled. "All of you saved my life. How could I ever betray the noble people who saved me from those thieves--"
He was suddenly bowled over as Boco attacked him. Vantan struggled to get up from under the furious chocobo attacking him.
Alma ran to stop him. "Boco, please stop! He's not really an enemy!"
Boco stopped in mid-peck and looked at her inquisitively, cocking his head to one side. "Wark?"
Vantan got to his feet, brushing himself off.
Alma turned to Vantan. "Now, what were you saying?"
Vantan resumed his explanation. "As I was saying, before being knocked down by some demented bird--" Boco warked indignantly--"I didn't act as if I was with you because they would have captured me, too. Since nobody has seen me working with Ramza before, they wouldn't suspect me. I couldn't set you free until we had a chance of winning. Duegran had only brought along fifteen of his soldiers, so I believed this to be the best time to spring to action. I hope you can find it within you to forgive me."
"There's no need to ask for forgiveness, Vantan. You had a good reason for your actions," Alma reassured the White Knight.
She turned to the rest of the group. "All right, everyone, let's get back to the cave. We need to get in and save Ramza, Agrias, and Worker 8. If we have to, we'll fight our enemies, but for now, we should approach the cave carefully and quietly. We don't need unnecessary conflicts. Let's go," she ordered them.
As they got ready to go, and Alma got on Choco, she realized that that had felt good. It wasn't that she enjoyed bossing them around. No, it was more that giving orders, having people pay attention to her and respect her...it felt as though someone was finally seeing that she was an individual.
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