More than a week has passed since he enrolled in Magic Academy.
At first he continued to feel discomfort, he was confused by this unbelievable place called Magic Academy, but Takeru was steadily getting used to it.
Although he still didn't understand the lessons, still, life in this place wasn't all that bad for Takeru. At least, people of East Side were kind to Takeru who did not have magic power in him. Although he was spoken of sarcastically, but it was more an issue of pride thinking they are right, they still came in contact with anyone equally.
It was clear that the environment was better in here than anywhere else.
"Kusanagi〜, wanna come with us to the newly-opened store with Magical Heritage?"
After school, one of two male students called out to Takeru in a good mood.
Takeru raised his face in the middle of stuffing the notes in his bag.
"Eh... they're selling Magical Heritages?!"
"Oh, so you can't get 'em in the outside? Well, just come, they are dealing only with mass-produced ones without personality, but there's tons of ones with strange usages, so it's interesting."
"Is that so... outside you can get imprisoned for many years just by having one..."
As Takeru responded in surprise, the other, stiff student laughed through his nose.
"Hmph, the bunch on the outside can't comprehend how wonderful magic is. Nikaido-san being the exception. Hey, Kusanagi, even if you come, there's nothing interesting. Rather, it won't be interesting for me so don't come."
With thorns in his words, he spoke frankly and raised both his hand appalled.
"Don't think badly of him. He's difficult, but not a bad guy. In fact, he fell for Nikaido-san who came from outside at first sight, and when you, her boyfriend appeared he has been swallowed by the wave of jealousy."
"Y-yy-you! I've told you not to——don't misunderstand Kusanagi! I haven't given up on Nikaido-san yet! That lovely girl holding the noble "Aurora" attribute is not suitable for a thick-headed guy like you!"
Seeing tears appear in the blushing stiff student's eyes, Takeru smiled wryly.
"No... I'm not really her boyfriend though."
"This pure idiot aside... how about it, you coming? On top of wands, they are dealing with sharp swords too."
As he heard that, the color in Takeru's eyes changed.
"Y-yeah. What's with that passion, unexpected... in the inner side world there are many Magical Heritage sword-smiths. Even now there's a masterpiece with an inscription being born."
"Are there any katanas?! Japanese swords!"
"? Yeah, they're quite popular. Manufacturing process of Japanese swords puts a large emphasis on water, so they seem to take in magic well. They are highly regarded in the modern times."
"...Nice! I'm going!"
Takeru gripped his fist and tried to say "I'm definitely going!".
However, suddenly the cloth on his left elbow was pulled and he looked to the side,
Despite having no expression on her face, Lapis was surrounded by a black aura.
A voice intimidating enough to give him a chill has resonated inside of his head.
With a spasm on his face Takeru politely refused the two's invitation. Of course, the two students also noticed Lapis aura and left with a "Next time then.".
After trying to keep distance from Takeru the entire time, Lapis was now completely glued to him. The chair was put right next to his, and clinging, she wouldn't let go of his arm even for a second.
"I've told you to stay together with me... but isn't this too close?"
"You don't want me to?"
"It's not that I don't want you to..."
"Then, it's fine isn't it."
Although he was happy about it, there was a little problem with appearances.
The students around went "Isn't there a pink aura coming from there?" or "They made up overnight together.", and guesses that were hard to classify as either serious or ironic were flying around.
He didn't feel bad, but the comfort might have been.
Smiling wryly while scratching his cheek with a finger, a simple question has come to his head.
"...Reminds me, why did you choose me?"
"I mean, why did you choose me as your contractor at the very beginning. There's something a contract procedure with high level Magical Heritages... there's a need to increase your likeability or something, I've heard that when I came to this place."
"So that's what you mean. The reason is simple. First, your physique, your muscles and unique corns on the palms of your hands allowed me to discern your considerable prowess with swordsmanship. In addition, I was told in advance that you were a boy coming from the Kusanagi household by Ootori Sougetsu-sama."
"Oh, I see. So you had the material to judge whether I'm suitable right from the beginning."
"Of course, that's only one of the reasons. So to say, the wavelength of our souls matches... if I were to express it in an easy to understand for humans way——"
After Lapis said up to there, Takeru tilted his head puzzled. She looked up at his face and said.
"——Love at first sight, is what it would be called."
Her face was as usual. She had no intonation in her voice nor expressions. However, Takeru's face turned bright red immediately.
It was a very embarrassing line when said face-to-face. Why were the thoughts of Magical Heritages sounding so dangerous when represented in a human way. Suspicious gazes wandered towards him attracted by his suspicious behavior.
"You have a fever. Are you unwell?"
Feeling bashful he wanted to turn to the side, but Lapis suddenly leaned towards him and stuck her forehead against his. Her cool forehead was pleasant, and from the soft lips in front of him a smell similar to lavender was coming.
"You do have a fever. You need to take care and rest——let's sleep together. Since I can adjust the temperature of my body, it's possible for me to warm or cool you down. Please make use of me."
"〜〜〜〜......youu, since we are contracted you can tell my condition even without doing that right?! I'm healthy here, healthy!"
"Oh, I've been found out. What a shame."
"Did you turn into Suginami somehow?!"
"I don't understand what Host means. I just spoke out the error my personality has produced."
What kind of error is that. Can it be, that the entire time she always kept what she felt and thought inside never letting it outside, and that's all?
Although Takeru was able to imagine many difficulties, he didn't bother about them and laughed. The life in Magic Academy was comfortable, and after reconciling with Lapis, there were no more problems.
However, his heart didn't change.
Certainly, it was a nice place, but it was also a fact that West Side was running rampant. If a war were to happen once again, either Valhalla or Inquisition will perish completely.
If that happens, there will be a tremendous amount of sacrifices. Surely there would be no more safe places in the world.
Whether it's AntiMagic Academy or Magic Academy, there was no difference.
But, the place where he should use his power was not here, but outside. The place he belongs to wasn't in here.
First thing he had to do, was to save the person he needs to save.
Takeru overlapped his hands with hands of Lapis who clung to him.
For Takeru——Mistilteinn, Lapis was there.
He already decided in his heart.
"...why are you lovey-dovey...?"
Hearing a voice from behind Takeru turned around.
There, was Mari with a despair on her face as she looked at Lapis and Takeru flirting.
"...while I'm doing my best to fulfill the mission entrusted to me by you, why did you two turn lovey-dovey...?"
"Lovey-dovey you say... don't misunderstand, she's not really——"
"What 'misunderstanddd'! Get away from Takeruu!!"
Furious, Mari tried to pull Lapis away.
However, Lapis moved her body even closer to Takeru and tilted her head.
"We are lovey-dovey, so?"
Speechless, Mari wound her hands around Takeru's neck.
"I h-have properly reconciled with her why do I have to be blamed for that...?!"
"I'm asking why do you look like a loving couple! "Lovey-dovey" she said, "lovey-dovey"! How did you make a Magical Heritage so drunk with love!"
"I just spoke with her, told her that that for me and you she is very important...!"
"Then what's this newlywed aura?! This girl's expression has completely turned into that of a woman, or rather, into that of a bitch in heat!"
"Don't call a girl "bitch"! I don't get it, but isn't she expressionless!"
"I'm in heat too so I can tellll!!"
When Takeru reached the verge of falling down as his neck was swung around, he summoned strength and grasped Mari's shoulders.
"Calm down. For now, with this we have the components needed to successfully finish negotiations with Mother and Orochi obtaining method to save Kiseki...! Also we really weren't flirting...!"
Probably, Takeru muttered inside of his mind. And Mari on whom it had temporary effect,
"Nh...! For now I'll withdraw, but I'll pursue this matter later on...!"
"By what authority you... well, fine. Are there any results from your side...?"
When he asked her, Mari sat down on the chair next to Takeru with a sullen expression. Moreover, she snuggled up to Takeru just like Lapis did
He was in the maiden sandwich state.
"...really, what's up with you two."
"For now, there is. As for transfer magic devices, there's several of them available to public."
While hugging onto Takeru, Mari reported the results of her work.
On the second or third day in here, Takeru entrusted a single mission to Mari.
The mission content was to find a way to leave Magic Academy were an emergency to happen, to gather information about the transfer magic. He was told by Mari that they transferred here using an instant charm, in that case a method to transfer from inside to outside is supposed to exist.
Since Takeru was unable to walk around in the town on his own, he asked Mari to do it this time.
As Mari once ran an information store in the border, her abilities could be trusted.
"But those for general public are meant for moving between shelters. They are massive pieces of equipment and it takes seven hours to recharge their magic after a transfer. I know how valuable the transfer charms are... it's because the materials needed to absorb such an amount of magic are invaluable."
"So you were unable to find the coordinates of the outside?"
"Coordinates for all shelters are publicly available. Charms are stored in both East and West, but they probably have a considerably tight security."
"...so by saying there was a result, you meant there was another way?"
As Takeru asked, Mari meekly nodded.
After making sure the last student had left the classroom, she whispered in Takeru's ear.
"I'm talking about a prototype of a miniaturized transfer magic device that's formally in development and not yet adopted... their prototypes are said to circulate among several executives."
"For private use, huh...?"
"Rather, it seems like certain factions have it. In here several of the higher-ups have their private armies. They probably use it to send their troops for their personal matters."
"...rather than stepping into the academy's central, it's better to to aim where guard is thin."
"Yeah. I know roughly where to get it but... all the guys I can guess that have it are fishy. Although the transfer magic device is supposed to be prepared by the academy's development department... the one those guys are using is Alchemist-made."
Alchemist. It has been pretty obvious that they were working with Valhalla, but he didn't know that it went this deep.
"Without doubt the inner world has evolved thanks to the benefits from Alchemist's alchemy and science, but their name isn't circulating around in this world. Since they're scum, Valhalla hides their relation to them. But there's someone who doesn't try to save their face, a single person that has strong relations to Alchemist exists... on the West Side."
"West Side huh... troublesome."
"An Ancient Wizard called Elizabeth. It seems like she's literally a witch from the ancient times. They say she's acting as the Chairman of the West Side."
"...then, the school is inside of West Side's school?"
"No. Since East and West carry out inspections on each other regularly, there's no way it's there. If anything, then it would be in her home."
Takeru fell silent, placed a hand over his mouth, thinking.
Using the device was a plan to use only in an emergency. He didn't think Orochi and others would be as nice as to just send them to outside world, so there was a need to prepare themselves properly.
He knew he was being an ingrate, but aside from the fact that they wouldn't tell him of the situation outside, Takeru has decided to return in order to protect the place he belongs to. He didn't really think of betraying Orochi and others from East Side.
He just wanted to speak with them, and learn.
And if he isn't told, he will enforce this plan.
"There's no other way to escape... if an emergency happens, don't hesitate."
"Yeah... by the way, Mari, are you really fine with your choice to cooperate with me?"
"It's fine. My aim is to atone. For the many lives I have robbed, I'm going to save many. If a war were to occur right now, a lot of people on the outside will die first."
"...staying here is okay you know? You have already made many friends in here."
As Takeru said that, Mari looked up at Takeru's face with a bit lonely expression.
"Don't make me repeat myself. I'm glad that you are worried about me, but the place I want to be in the most is over there."
".........sorry. And, thanks. I'm glad that you say so."
"Also, if I achieve my goal, I'll be able to come meet Ananda and Inia any time. That's the kind of world I am aiming to create."
Mari said while staring into the distance.
There was a mountain of problems ahead, but it had to be done.
When Takeru got a grasp on the sense of mission, the classroom's door was opened with abandon.
A bit startled, Mari and Takeru faced towards the door.
It was Kanaria. She glared at Takeru seriously.
Since she felt different from usual, Takeru tensed up.
Kanaria called his name.
In her hands, there were two sheathed swords.
"Come with me for a bit."
She said so, and turned around.
Kanaria brought Takeru all the way to a construction site devoid of people.
It was a building that was supposed to become a colosseum and float afterwards. Until now, both sides have been using separate training grounds, but because in the future they are planning to do combination training, this building was built.
"Calling me to a place like this, what do you want."
Kanaria didn't answer, she just stood there turned with her back towards Takeru.
Mari and Lapis were left behind. He didn't want them to be involved in the problems of Double-Edged style.
When he saw Kanaria hold two swords, he could tell to an extent what's happening.
From the two she carried, Kanaria threw one to Takeru.
He caught it with his right hand and tensed up.
Kanaria took a deep breath, then while letting it out she slowly pulled out the sword. She directed its point at Takeru.
"——Kusanagi Double-Edged style certified, Kanaria. Right now, applies for a duel with senior pupil Kusanagi Takeru."
The wind has blown dust between the two, and tension has gradually spread.
Takeru gripped the sword in his hand and didn't move.
"...dueling of two fellow students is prohibited."
"I'm prepared for excommunication."
"Personal reasons. Also, personal interest."
"Let's find out who's stronger, Takeru."
Wind stroked their cheeks.
Takeru took a single breath, and looked up at the sky surrounded by steel frames.
As he breathed out he moved his left leg backwards, dropped his waist lower and held the sword's handle.
Then, the blade sounded loudly as he slowly pulled it out from the sheath.
His sword pointed——at Kanaria.
"Kusanagi Double-Edged style initiate, Kusanagi Takeru. This duel——I accept it."
There were 10 meters between them. Kanaria stood higher, and Takeru made a stance in the shadow.
As if symbolizing their own way of doing things, the two demons squared off.
And the moment the wind ceased to blow, two storms kicked off the ground heading towards each other.
As for speed——Kanaria was faster.
Kanaria poised her sword above and putting strength into her attack, she swung it straight down.
Predicting that Takeru interrupted his thrust, and kicked off the ground moving in the opposite direction.
The ground split open.
The destructive power released was something unthinkable to be released by a katana. It was as if a dynamite exploded.
Takeru who successfully avoided at the brink of getting hit calmly analyzed Kanaria's movements among the flying debris.
Neither of them used Soumatou. The moment Kanaria pulled out the sword from the ground, Takeru kicked off the ground and assaulted her.
His blow, was easily blocked by Kanaria's blade.
No matter how he pushed forward, Kanaria's sword wouldn't budge. With this big difference of strength, it was impossible to parry it. Kanaria wouldn't allow him to slide his sword against hers and escape.
Pressing against each other, the two froze as they were.
"Takeru, why do you fight."
"......ngh, do you have so much time in middle of duel to ask...!"
"............why do you fight."
"To protect everything I want to protect! In other words, for myself...!"
At Takeru's answer, Kanaria downcast her eyes.
"I see... Kana is doing it for her mother."
With a mournful voice, she explained her reason for holding the sword.
However, the next moment Kanaria easily pushed back Takeru's sword, flames of hatred dwelled inside of her pupils.
"Mother was killed by Alchemist and Inquisition... they need to pay for that...!"
"Nh...so she was killed, your mother that is...!"
"That's right! She was given birth to, used by them, and after using her up they killed her off... even though Mama was so gentle to Kana, Alchemist made her continue to do horrible things!"
As she attempted to push back the blade, Takeru pressed his left hand to on the sword's blade to withstand it.
Kanaria with misty eyes, madness dwelling within put even more strength in.
"Mama protected Kana...! She protected Kana risking her life...! Maybe she wasn't a good person... it might not be weird that she was killed... but she was Kana's only gentle Mama!"
"Kana will do anything for Mama who died never given any reward...! That's the reason I learned Double-Edged style! Kana will kill anyone for Mama's sake! Even if they are unrelated humans... or you, Takeru!"
Takeru's defense has finally reached its limit.
He triggered it instantly, and read the flow of the blade Kanaria has pushed down.
Instead of resisting the flow, he rode on it.
Riding on the flow released by Kanaria's powerful attack, Takeru jumped back ten meters at once.
Surprised, Kanaria stared at Takeru.
He landed on the ground after being blown away, and once again he took up the sword in cloud of dust.
However, he didn't start attacking immediately.
In response to Kanaria's puzzlement, Takeru opened his mouth.
"...so that's how it was after all."
"I thought that might be... half-wood elf, Alchemist... everything fits. I know about you, Kanaria."
In front of confused Kanaria, Takeru spat out a small breath.
And, asked her sadly.
"You——do you know Suginami Ikaruga?"
Light disappeared from Kanaria's eyes.
It was as if the source of her anger was thrust in, she lost her expression exhausted.
"...wh-y...Takeru knows...that name...?"
"A few months ago, we engaged ourselves in preventing Alchemist from an experiment to restore elves. In meanwhile, I've heard from Ikaruga about you."
"About a wood elf called Kanaria she created together with another Suginami..."
"I think her name was... Isuka. Suginami Isuka, Ikaruga's——"
Immediately after that.
Kanaria who showed her weakness, lowered her body down to the ground and momentarily charged at Takeru. In nick of time he blocked Kanaria's desperate blow. Although there was no need to block it, Takeru received her attack.
In order to speak with Kanaria.
"Wwhy——why do you know her nameeeEEE!"
"Nh, Ikaruga is my comrade! A comrade from the same platoon!"
"It's herrrrrr!!! She left Mama and me running away ALONE! TRAITOR!! And you're HER comrade!!"
"Wrong!! That's a misunderstanding! She tried to save you and Isuka——"
"Spare me this bullshit!! Then why did Mama die alone?! Why didn't she take Mama together with her! Mama always continued to call her name! While suffering and weeping she called her name! We were together only for a short while, but Kana knows! Just how much Mama was suffering!"
"She tried to...! To save both you and Isuka...!"
"Nh, IT's A LIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!"
She pressed on Takeru even further in rage.
His legs were sliding back scraping the ground.
So telling her that won't work! ——Then!
Takeru activated Soumatou at full throttle only for an instant.
"Kusanagi Double-Edged style——Ghost Light Firefly!"
And released a technique he just learned.
He stopped blocking Kanaria's attacks and rode on the flow.
Riding on the flow he moved backwards and parried a blow at the last moment. He rotated changing the flow's direction, and riding on that strong flow he swung it down on Kanaria's head.
Kanaria blocked it with a horizontal slash. Takeru's blade was parried away, but he didn't resist the flow. Without stopping the blade he rode on the flow rotating his body and slashed from the opposite direction.
He didn't give her time to attack. He activated the Soumatou only at the starting point changing the flow explosively. With no time to rest. With no time to think. He rode on the flow and accelerated with the flow.
Before long, Takeru's slashes were rotating with a momentum like that of mowing machine's blades and continued to hit Kanaria.
In front of the technique which seemed like a sword dance, Kanaria was clearly upset.
The difference between physical ability of a human and a wood elf was immeasurable. Even against an enemy in Witch Hunter form, Kanaria was able to stand her own with just her flesh and blood. But now, she was clearly being suppressed. The demon called Kusanagi Takeru who should have had a body of a human, overpowered her.
"Nh, Double-Edged style——Gyuuki!!"
As her last resort Kanaria turned her blade around and released an upwards slash with force similar to that of a dragon raising into the sky, attacking Takeru's body with tremendous momentum.
Although it was blocked by Takeru, his body was blown far into the sky. He continued to raise up to between the steel frame while rotating.
Kanaria once again held the sword aiming for the place where Takeru was supposed to drop down.
However, even at that moment Takeru did not stop riding on the flow.
Riding on Kanaria's Gyuuki strike, he raised vertically up and accelerated rotating in the sky.
"Kusanagi Double-Edged style——"
At the same time as he began his fall, Takeru's voice echoed.
Kanaria admonished herself with 'damn it!' in her mind. High altitude, rotation, fall velocity. The technique activated when those three are brought together.
The conditions for triggering it were the best. This blow, even if it's Kanaria she won't get unscathed.
However, since there's a limit to how one can change trajectory in the air, it was a difficult technique to land a hit with.
It was a technique which would not hit if the recipient realized it.
Kanaria jumped away from the spot she anticipated Takeru would fall to.
However, the next moment——she saw something unbelievable.
In the middle of rotation fall, Takeru kicked off one of many convoluted steel frames.
"H-he changed trajectory by kicking off steel fra——!"
Takeru fell straight at Kanaria assaulting her.
She tried to escape further, but Takeru already predicted that and was ahead. And,
It clashed into her, the demon slaying blow.
Although Kanaria tried to block it, she was unable to do so completely with an awkward posture.
Her sword broke, and was blown away by the impact.
Of course, Takeru fell down diagonally and hit the ground, but he released strength from his entire body and activated Soumatou. He put both of his legs together on the ground, folded both of his hands together behind his head as if trying to protect it, and bent his knees in く shape, touched the ground with lower legs, thighs, back, and rotated forward over his shoulders.
Unable to stop the momentum, Takeru's body was blown away.
However, he was able to disperse majority of damage through various parts of his body.
After being blown away by the momentum for the second time, he normally landed on the ground.
His muscles screamed, but he was somehow able to decrease the falling damage.
Takeru confirmed the state of his own sword, and walked to where Kanaria was.
Kanaria was lying on the ground where she fell, and convulsions were running through her body. It wasn't that she was slashed, she was unable to block the all-too-powerful blow and the recoil has spread out throughout her body.
Yet still, her pupils with hatred dwelling in them were directed towards Takeru.
Takeru closed his eyes and sheathed his sword.
"It's over. I will no longer fight with you."
"I don't know what happened between Ikaruga and Isuka, and what was the outcome. Isuka might have really died alone, maybe Ikaruga killed Isuka... Ikaruga is the only one who knows the truth. It's not a burden I should be carrying."
"That's why, go and make sure yourself."
"Go and meet Ikaruga, Kanaria."
Not listening to Takeru's words, Kanaria pulled out a knife from her waist and stood up trembling. Takeru didn't withdraw nor attack.
Kanaria set up the knife to the side and confronted him.
"...Kana won't believe it...! She abandoned Mama...that doesn't change...!"
"Pull out your sword...Takeru!"
"Pull it outt!"
Even though Kanaria shouted at him, Takeru didn't pull out his sword.
He stared straight at her, unmoving.
Kanaria's teeth let out a rattling sound. She lost herself in anger, fear, and grief.
She closed her eyes, and started running towards Takeru aiming the blade at his abdomen.
But before the blade could reach him, someone stepped between the two of them.
A dull sound of blade piercing something echoed.
When Kanaria opened her eyes... an azure-colored girl stood in front of her.
Takeru was speechless, he held Lapis' shoulder.
However, Lapis looked towards Takeru with a blank look on her face.
"No need to worry. This kind of wound wouldn't even kill a human, a laceration like this cannot destroy me."
"...dumbass...even so, you..."
"Please don't give me that crap. Who is the dumbass here. You are my host. What kind of irresponsible actions are you taking here?"
"Was the promise to stay together with me a lie?"
Lapis turned her back on Takeru and seriously asked him. He swallowed the explanation he was supposed to say, and "Sorry." he apologized.
"I won't forgive you."
"I will not forgive you."
"I'm not going to forgive you."
"I said I'm sorry..."
"I definitely won't forgive you."
He looked at her with confusion in his eyes, but Lapis was adamant.
Takeru stared at her, and while scratching his cheek he looked for words Lapis wanted to hear from him.
"I will stay with you forever. I won't break the promise ever again."
".........very well. I will forgive you."
She turned around with a twirl, pulled out the knife from her abdomen and faced towards him.
She didn't smile. She didn't seem happy. However, satisfaction could be felt from her. Takeru took the knife from Lapis.
Behind Lapis, Kanaria has collapsed.
"...Kanaria, you should come with us. We are going to AntiMagic Academy... we're returning to the outside."
"Come with us. Go and meet Ikaruga."
Takeru got on his knees and reached out towards Kanaria.
Confused, she stared at Takeru's hand. Although she hesitated for a moment, she reached to Takeru timidly.
However, the moment their hands were about to touch,
"——Ara, Kanaria? I wonder if you intend to betray us?"
Hearing a voice from the sky above, Takeru turned towards it in a hurry.
But then suddenly something had blown into him, breaking his posture.
Lapis pushed Takeru's body. The moment he tried to understand what happened, something like an electric current has wrapped around Lapis' body.
Although he tried to stretch out his hand to her, Lapis sent her voice directly into his head.
If he touches the current, Takeru's flesh and blood body won't be able to withstand it. It was frustrating, but he was unable to do anything.
He clenched his teeth and glared into the sky.
A purplish-red woman was looking down at Takeru while sitting on the throne that floated in mid-air.
"You... who the fuck are you...!"
"Ara ara, a mere empty asking for my name, what an ignorant brat."
While fanning her face with a western fan the woman identified herself.
"My name is Elizabeth... a leader of Valhalla and Chairman of Magic Academy's West Side. People call me "Almighty Witch"...nice to meet you."
Eliza slowly raised the fan up.
And as she did so, the electric current restraining Lapis' body has slowly rose up.
"Sorry, but I'm taking this Sacred Treasure. It's too heavy for a lower organism like you to hold... only a pure-blooded witch like me is appropriate for it."
She raised Lapis right beside her, then stroked Lapis' cheek with her long nails.
At the same time Kanaria got up on her knees and shouted to Eliza.
"Eliza, you were tailing me! It's different from what was decided! My mission isn't over yet! Don't get in my way!"
"Ara? It's because a dirty wood elf like you was sluggish that I had to go all this way by myself right? Moreover, for you to reconcile with the enemy... that's why you can't trust those mixed demi-human races."
"...I didn't betray you or anything, Kana's enemy is Inquisition and Alchemist!"
Kanaria tried to desperately justify herself to Eliza, but Eliza just spat out a sigh while fanning herself.
"What a simple naïve child... once a demi-human loses our trust they can't live in West Side again. No matter how many excuses you repeat, okay?"
"Unfortunately, I have no intention of listening. Off with your head."
When Eliza folded her fan, magical circle appeared below Kanaria's feet.
Before Kanaria could jump away, the magic activated.
Along with the magic name, a wall has appeared around Kanaria with countless holes in it gradually covering her.
When Kanaria's figure turned no longer visible, deafening screams resounded. High temperature and steam have raged from the red holes in the walls.
"That's quite nice voice. It's hot right? It's a magic I made referencing to the original torture instrument."
"Don't worry. The next destination you will be transferred to is already determined. Be glad, there are people with a wonderful hobby of tormenting demihumans... becoming a plaything of pure-blooded high ranks will be your next job."
Eliza's cackling laughter echoed.
When Takeru ran to help Kanaria, preventing him were countless people in red robes emerging from the ground.
"An energetic empty aren't you... if you were chosen by the Sacred Treasure your abilities must be quite high right? It's good entertainment, show me your proficiency. I'll see how far can you go with pureblood adversaries as your opponents."
When Eliza swung her fan while looking down at him, Lapis and Kanaria disappeared swallowed by distortion in space.
Takeru held the sword unmoving, and shook with chagrin on his face.
"Now everyone, it's time for a practical! There's no such thing as failures for our best students! The ones who crush this cockroach will have greater status and prestige bestowed upon!"
Along with the voice of Eliza who sat on the throne, the group of people in red robes surrounded Takeru. Their faces were all young. Probably, they were West Side's students.
When he looked around, he saw several dozens of them. There were also few standing on the steel frames who aimed their wands towards him.
Kanaria was definitely reporting to the West Side and was used as a decoy to lure out Takeru so that they could obtain Mistilteinn. In other words, Takeru was lured into a trap.
"You guys, aren't you supposed to be Kanaria's comrades..."
When he spoke to the enemy army, a mocking laughter has responded him.
"Our only brethren are members of Pureblood Party."
"Impure beastmen should be destroyed."
"Only those who tasted sorrowful history are our comrades."
Hearing their heavy voices, Takeru refuted.
"The worth of a human doesn't lie in their blood or magic power... if anything, people like you who abandon your comrades are simply scum...! Aren't you the humans just like she is!"
"She deserves death. She will serve to dispel the eternal curse on the humanity."
"Don't just pick out the targets to hate so conveniently...! That's why all you have in your head is war!"
Takeru roared. But the Pureblood Party just laughed. They laughed at him.
"Dirty-blooded Empty." "Don't talk as if you know anything." "Our determination continues since the human race was created." "Pain." "Suffering." "Dying." "Cries." "Loss." "Our blood remembers everything." "Blood remembers." "Our hatred!" "Our resentment!" "Know our grief!"
Pureblood's wands were tinged with magic and emitted light.
Takeru held his sword, his eyes shone with red.
"Our bliss is destruction of empties alone." "Our hatred will become one." "Our ambition will become one." We are Pureblood Party." "We are crystallization of witch's grief."
" " " " " " " " " " "Revenge will be ours!" " " " " " " " " " "
"——Fine by me! Bring it on! I'll cut through that determination of yours!!!"
For the first time in a very long time blood really rushed to Takeru's head.
Try not to kill if possible. But only if possible.
If the enemy comes at him with intention to kill——there won't be any complaints if they die!
Along with an explosion of anger, Takeru kicked off the ground at full strength.
One of the Pureblood Party who released a powerful magic bullet was defeated in an instant.
However, the enemy's attack didn't let him rest.
Immediately after the front row shot, the back row released their bullets predicting Takeru's destination.
They were like bayonet corps with no gaps in defense, they were incredibly disciplined.
After taking down three people, Takeru hid behind a pile of wood.
Immediately after he spat out a breath, magic bullets approached moving around the pile.
He cut through the bullets with the sword, but the amount of bullets looming increased.
"Don't look down on me just because all I have is my flesh and blood!"
Takeru bent his knees and jumped with abandon.
He rose up to the magician who tried to snipe him from the steel frames above, he cut through the wand and hit him with the back of his sword.
Takeru landed on the steel frame, and made his advent in front of the cowards who aimed at him from above.
"This guy... he's a monster!"
"Just now, it was the same swordsmanship Kusanagi Orochi uses... don't underestimate him, he's skilled!"
A sorcerer warned everyone openly, however,
"It's too late to notice that!"
Takeru's speed was beyond the sorcerers' recognition.
The steel frames with only one way to escape were overwhelmingly advantageous to Takeru.
He cut down five people grouped together and immediately looked below.
"——Start the salvo!"
Along with a single person's command, several dozens of magic bullets swooped upon Takeru.
Takeru kicked off the steel frame jumping in the air.
"He's flying! Aim at where he's falling!"
Although Pureblood Party used a very reasonable tactics, but there was no way Takeru wouldn't predict that much. In middle of his flight he placed a foot the steel frame on the opposite side and kicked off.
While the enemy was astonished, Takeru kicked off another steel frame and continued to head to the bottom like a pinball. Like that, even if they predicted where he will fall they wouldn't be able to hit him.
And the moment he kicked the lowest steel frame,
"Double-Edged style——Single Wheel!"
After kicking off the steel frame and landing on the ground, Takeru triggered the omnidirectional drawing technique while still maintaining the momentum.
The blow released from a state where he twisted his waist and body to the limit slaughtered five enemies.
Maintaining the momentum after landing he successively took down one enemy after another as if he was gliding.
"Too fast...! For an empty without any benefit from a Magical Heritage——guahh!"
Takeru entered under his bosom, and hit him with the back of the sword in the chin.
He cut down a dozen of people at once, disrupting enemy ranks.
Then he noticed there were only ten left.
After finally stopping his flow, Takeru exhaled. Even though he learned from Orochi how to use the flow, with this many opponents the burden on the body was still tremendous.
He wasn't immobilized yet, but he had to hurry and go to where Lapis was.
Right now, Takeru was able to faintly feel Lapis' whereabouts, but he was unable to tell what was done to her in the location she was transferred to, so he had to hurry and chase after her.
Takeru held the sword and cut an enemy nearby.
One of the enemies used a protective barrier, stopping the sword for a moment. The enemies weren't stupid, although it was difficult to perform defensive and offensive actions simultaneously, with a number like that cooperation was their forte. They intended to shoot him the moment his attack is blocked.
"Don't think you can stop me with something like this!!"
However, Takeru's sword was fortunately made with anti-magic material. He was able to destroy a barrier with a single powerful blow. When the shattered magical power scattered, Takeru cut down the caster.
The Pureblood Party recognized Takeru as a threat, and stopped using simple combat tactics.
Three of them have teamed up making up an operative procedure together.
"Don't underestimate pureblood sorcerers...!"
Air started rustling, and a magical circle flashed under Takeru's feet.
It was too late to avoid, feeling five times his body weight pressing on him he fell to his knees.
"Weight increasing magic! The range is narrow but... he won't move for a moment!"
One of the enemy laughed fearlessly confident of their victory.
Takeru rebuilt the posture immediately and forced his body that was creaking under the weight.
While hearing the sound of muscles rupturing, he jumped.
Outside of the range——above the enemies.
"He jumped under that pressure!"
Not even giving the three time to scream, he sent the magicians casting the spell to oblivion.
Takeru stood on top of the three corpses, pierced the ground with his sword and spat out a deep breath.
Hot breath leaking from his mouth and shining red eyes made him look like a beast.
The remaining six members of enemy forces lost the will to fight seeing Takeru's onslaught.
One of the six directed his line of sight at Eliza who was in the sky and asking her for help.
Bored, Eliza looked at the sorcerers' battle with Takeru with frosty gaze.
"He's like a grasshopper."
She likened Takeru who destroyed the Pureblood Party.
"Pathetic. Being at mercy of enemy speed and only shooting basic magic bullets... you went impatient and forgot the operative procedures. Even though I taught you that the sorcerer's weak point is the slow attack you still did that... it seems like bringing you young ones to get some experience was a mistake."
Eliza lamented disappointed by her students as their magic teacher.
"Ahh, fine already. Let's hurry up and pluck the bad buds while it's still early."
She folded the fan and lightly raised it up slightly.
And with a rotation of the fan she released magic power from her body outside.
Magical circles expanded in the air.
Abnormalities appeared immediately. Although only one magical circle was needed to use magic, Eliza deployed ten of them. All of them were huge and their colors were different.
Everyone of the Pureblood Party looked up at Eliza pleadingly.
"Eliza-sama...! Please grant us postponement!"
Hearing consternation in enemy's voice, Takeru also looked up.
He understood what was she trying to do at a glance.
She was going to wipe out her allies with magic.
"Chairman's order. You guys, hold down this Empty at risk of your lives. If you do that, on your tombstones it will be engraved that you were honorable pure-blooded heroes."
Eliza looked down on the sorcerers below with a ridiculing smile and focused her magic. Multiple magical circles overlapped in one place, and where they have intermingled the color changed to purplish-red.
Takeru felt a chill on his skin, and goose bumps appeared on his body.
That thing is dangerous. Takeru's survival instinct sounded a warning.
Seeing the multi-colored magic solidify, Takeru tried to retreat from the spot, but when he tried to move weight increasing magic has assaulted him again.
"We won't let you... escape!"
Moreover, the rest of the enemies tied up Takeru with magic chains.
"She's going to kill you together with me! Why would you go this far?!"
When Takeru shouted, the Pureblood Party didn't hesitate, only directed their hatred at him.
"There's no way someone like you who lived and came from outside will understand... our hatred!"
"Our parents were killed by Inquisition... and my little sister is rotting away treated as experimental material...!
"And my best friend!"
"We were all born on the outside... we had no choice but to live in the border, insulted by empties, suffering humiliations! My long cherished wish is to kill as many empties as possible...!"
Tears appeared in their eyes as they accepted their deaths.
For kids to carry such resolution, it was madness. In his head floated an image of vengeful Kyouya. He didn't deny anyone revenge, but directing unjustified resentment at those who weren't at fault was pointless. It was all wrong.
And the leader who incited such incorrect way to exact revenge was...!
Takeru turned gaze full of anger towards Eliza.
Eliza giggled and swung down the fan.
The geometric patterns on her magical circles wriggled in accordance to her movements. With a heavy bass sound, the deployed magical circles shattered.
And in front of the fan, a small light which was a mass of magical attribute has solidified.
"My attribute, "Almighty" covers all attributes other than ancient properties. And if the properties that normally repel each other mix together... did you know what will it turn into?"
Eliza's mouth distorted.
The surroundings lost their sounds. Sand under his feet vibrated and suspended in the air against gravity.
All Takeru could do is receive the destruction with his body.
The mass of magic previously in front of the fan fell in front of Takeru's eyes.
The purplish-red wicked condensation of magic had been clad in electricity momentarily——
——And was crushed to pieces.
Destruction filled Takeru's field of vision. He was unable to see or feel anything.
The magic intermingled as the explosion similar to pollution mowed everything.
The massive disaster called explosion has covered the entire coliseum's construction site.
"Ahhahahahahahaha! Beautiful right?! An ancient vampire devised this to destroy the hateful sun! How beautiful are those fireworks that bring destruction!"
While Eliza let out loud laughter, the destruction on the ground continued.
There was no need for Pureblood Party to hold down Takeru in the first place. That's how vast range Eliza's magic covered. He didn't have enough time to escape right from the beginning.
The explosion subsided a minute after it started.
He could tell even with his vision hampered by dust. The construction site had a huge crater as if a meteorite has crashed into it.
All living beings have died out and inorganic have turned into sand. At this sight, Eliza tried to laugh satisfied,
"...what's this...I wonder...?"
Eliza's face twitched and she turned towards the ground.
At the deepest part of the formed crater there was a space wrapped by a oval rainbow-colored barrier.
In the center of it was Takeru and four Pureblood Party members who fainted.
The girl brushed away the muffler from her shoulder and pushed up the edge of the hat with her finger.
"If it isn't quite a flashy move... that rotten character of yours where you dispose of your allies makes me relieved."
The Witch of Aurora——Nikaido Mari dispelled the protective magic and glared at Eliza in the sky.
Ignoring Eliza on whose face cracks appeared because of anger, Mari immediately looked at Takeru's body worried.
"Takeru, are you okay?"
He wanted to ask her why did she come, but Mari looked down hiding her face behind the hat.
"I'm not apologizing. It's Takeru's fault, leaving me behind..."
"...I was... worried..."
Hearing Mari's crumbling voice, Takeru felt apologetic.
There was no way he could predict it would turn like this, but the fact that he made her worried was an inexcusable fact. It was also a fact that he would have died if she didn't come.
"I'm sorry. Thanks to you coming I'm saved, Mari."
He honestly apologized and thanked her.
Mari raised her face, and looked at Takeru with a blushing, happy expression on her face.
"A-as long as you understand, a-all right."
Embarrassed she turned her back to Takeru and looked up to the sky again.
In response to the hateful glare from Eliza, Mari also returned a glare.
"Certainly, you are the outside's Witch of Aurora... weren't you called the 'Non-Killing Witch' were you... so you are that bonus that came here by sticking to Mistilteinn?"
Being called a 'bonus', blood vessels appeared on Mari's temple.
"Thanks for bringing up my nickname. So you are the chairman of West Side? What is an old woman like you doing here?"
As she was called 'old', this time blood vessels appeared on Eliza's temple.
It was an exchange of insults specific to quarrels between women.
"After using that kind of large magic neither Senate nor East Side will stay silent."
"As long as Mistilteinn becomes mine the power struggle in inner world will be a trivial problem. Also, it's hardly a problem anyway... majority of the Senate are our allies."
"Mistilteinn...? What's your goal?"
"Even if I look like this, I'm the leader of purebloods you know? I have one goal... annihilation of empties. Cleaning this world up. That's what I need that sword for."
"...Hmph, simple. Easy to understand, that helps."
Hearing Eliza's purpose, anger inside of Mari rose.
"It's because there are witches like you that outside won't accept us."
"What a coincidence. I can't let a cowardly witch who's called 'Non-Killing' breathe or exist in this world."
Mari and Eliza realized in an instant that their presence and beliefs are perfectly inverse.
Takeru realized that their clash is unavoidable, and tried to clench the sword.
"Takeru, chase after Lapis-chan."
"...I can't do that can I."
"She's your precious sword right. Then go to her."
Mari took a step forward and turned with her back to Takeru.
"...a message from the Orochi guy. He said that your collar had no explosive function right from the beginning."
"?! Master said that?"
"Yup. Also, 'I ain't coming to help ya' he said."
Takeru touched the collar with his finger, thinking.
He didn't know what Orochi's goal is. But if he said that there were no explosives in the collar, it must have been because Orochi trusts him.
He strongly grasped the sword's hilt.
"I get it. But you can't afford to fight against that woman alone. She's strong... I can at least act as a decoy if I stay right."
Standing next to Mari, Takeru poised his sword.
Having an ally called Mari was incredibly reassuring. Even if he can't do it alone, they could fight together.
"Let's defeat her together, Mari!"
"Takeru, can I be honest here?"
"Yeah, what is it."
"In short, you're a hindrance."
Takeru almost dropped his sword from shock.
"Sorry. But you really are a hindrance. If you are here, I can't fight seriously."
It wasn't a joke, Mari's expression was serious.
Thinking of it, Takeru has never seen Mari when she was serious. He didn't know too well what kind of power the girl called Witch of Aurora held.
However, once before during the mock battle tournament he witnessed Mari's magic. It boasted of incredible power. He agreed that she might not be able to fight with him being there with only his flesh-and-blood.
"I'll take care of this here, quickly finish this and follow you immediately."
Mari closed one eye and smiled to Takeru.
Despite feeling a bit worthless, Takeru accepted Mari's proposal and was about to chase after Lapis.
"Ah, Takeru wait a sec."
"——Should I help after all?!"
A bit happy, Takeru looked back.
"No, stand here and jump."
"Jump here, jump. Pyon. I'm not going to check how your wallet sounds so hurry up."
Although he didn't understand her request, confused he stood next to Mari and jumped.
When a magic name suddenly left Mari's mouth, a magical circle appeared under Takeru's feet.
Inevitably, Takeru landed on the magical circle.
When he looked below, the magical circle emitted light to its limit.
He had a ridiculously bad feeling.
"Hey, it can't be that you——"
"Have a nice trip——make sure not to die!"
Immediately after Mari encouraged him, the magic activated. For a moment Takeru thought his body was lifted, but then he was blown far away with a momentum of a rocket.
Mari stared at Takeru who was blown away until he was no longer visible.
After confirming that Takeru landed on a department store floating far away, Mari turned to the front.
In the air, Eliza sat on the floating throne and elegantly fanned herself with a western fan.
"...is the farce over?"
"For you to wait until we finish talking, isn't that quite gentlemanly of you?"
Eliza's mouth distorted, and laughed showing a glimpse of her fangs.
"Entertainment you say? I think that for a granny like you, going against me would be overworking yourself though〜?"
Mari showed an evil smile that won't lose to Eliza's and triggered flight magic.
Rainbow-colored rings appeared on both of her legs, and her body floated.
When she rose up to the same height, Mari and Eliza faced each other.
"It is entertainment you know? A little exercise. Since there's no sorcerers in this shelter who can be my opponents, I thought I'd warm myself up a little."
"Hee, it's been a while since I fought with all my strength. If you say so, then I won't hold myself back okay?"
"Show me how far can the "Aurora" property go against my "Almighty"."
"As you wish, I'll show you what the utmost limits of light can do."
Both of them glared at each other, and painted the air with magical circles.
Eliza's "Almighty" which held properties of many colors.
Mari's rainbow-colored "Aurora" which was the most powerful of the light properties.
Both of theirs magical circles of countless colors filled the sky.
"Let's go, girlie——!"
"——Prepare yourself, you shitty old hag!"
The two of them clashed their way of magic against each other.
Quietus (クワイタス) - It's written as (属性崩壊クワイタス) meaning "Property Collapse" .
White Rabbit (ホワイトラビツト) - Written as (大跳躍) which means "Large Leap".