“Stay behind me at all times!” Karen instilled into Iris as previously, she had wandered off on her own and the worse had befallen her. However, this time, both Karen and Sakaki are there to look after her. The more the merrier, isn’t it?

Iris is giddy as she can finally see how Karmas take down demons, though the previous time, she was too busy crying to notice her surroundings and back in Temp Pines, she was away from the action entirely keeping the rest of the kids safe. This time, her curious nature will be sated, not just from her wanting to learn more, but her need to know how Karmic individuals do their part in dispatching demons.

Seeing an innocent grin and an up-spirited nod from her adopted daughter, she could not understand what the four-year-old girl could be thinking. Is she excited? That can’t be, her first experience with it should have traumatized her, Karen thought.

“Haha, looks like she is an eager chick! Much less afraid than you when you were seven! You were crying your eyes out!” Sakaki said before receiving a painful snap on the forehead for revealing too much of her childhood embarrassments.

Little do both of them know, Iris’ enthusiasm was born from a more childish and innocent reason. I can finally get to see mommy fight!

When the trio finally caught up to Elizabeth, she was on the roof of one of the buildings providing support to the Karma further up front.

Sakaki’s first thought upon seeing that was, wow, how did she manage to climb up there? In a dress too!

He retracted that thought when Elizabeth told them that Howard will be running a little late and Arthur is fighting against the chimeras alone.

“Rrahh!” Arthur bellowed as he sliced a creature that looked like a split between a fox and a wolf in half. Behind him is a boy holding a metal case who had been caught up in between the fighting - and they are surrounded by chimeras.

“Do not stray from my back, or I won’t be able to help you,” Arthur demanded of the boy who is about to piss his pants and his legs could not hold up his weight for long. The metal case he is holding has a paper seal on it and inside of it is the Will of the recent casualty of the chimera attacks on the town.

Damn, he has become a bit of a burden. I did tell him to help me carry the case when the chimeras attacked, but this isn’t helping at all If the chimeras keep coming. Elizabeth can’t do much for the risk of hitting me or the kid. This will be a battle of attrition which I’m not sure I can win, he analysed in his mind.

Fighting six-against-one, especially against mindless demons should not be a problem for a seasoned karma like himself, but with an added baggage this time to defend, he was not sure if could pull it off as he had sensed an extra being nearby besides the chimeras that were surrounding them.

His perseverance had paid off as good news arrived when he heard running footsteps coming closer. It is Karen, Iris and Sakaki. He is happy to see reinforcements arrive but was not expecting to see a child who is younger than the boy he is defending in the mix.

“Sakaki!” Karen called out to him as she had understood the situation that had befallen on Arthur. Sakaki drew his Will, a katana with a red-tinted blade and charged into the fray whilst she made sure that Iris is close behind her before preparing her two twenty-four-fold-fans.

Now that she’s gonna stick with us, I need to do preparations to pass my haori onto her. It will give me peace of mind knowing that she will be better protected, she thought.

“You take the one on the left, I’ll take the one on the right!” Sakaki called out. He dashed faster than the eye can see and plunged his sword into the abdomen of the chimera. The demon shrieked and shrieked before having its life drained away like its blood from its body.

Karen, on the other hand, whipped her fan in one direction to trigger a rush of wind that carried the chimera up into the air, she moved the fan downwards, slammed it onto the ground and stabbed its head with a wind blade that she had made with one of her fans.

Checking up on Iris, she thought that she would be disgusted and afraid, but to her disappointment, those adorable actions that befit a young maiden are nowhere to be seen. Iris’ eyes are glistening with amazement.

Ehhhh?

With the rear route towards Elizabeth cleared, the boy rendezvoused with the trio. Karen tasked Iris with taking the boy to Elizabeth – to a safer location that is further away.

Arthur held his Will up, which is a two-handed longsword similar to a German Zweihänder and said, “I Know you’re here somewhere. I can feel your presence. The one who brought the chimeras here.”

“Well look at that, looks like I underestimated a conceptual weapons user,” a voice familiar voice echoed in the air.

Not expecting it, a full plated metal armor slams into the ground behind the chimeras, kicking up dirt and dust into the surroundings. It was Howard’s puppet Will.

“Looks like I was right, he really was there,” Arthur spoke to himself.

The dust slowly settled and it revealed a figure holding its own against the attack that Howard’s Will had thrusted upon.