Chapter 103 – Winds of Light
Oswald was knocked out and lying on the ground, and Hakuto was still out of breath because of Shock’s strike.
There was no afterglow of victory, only a sense of relief at having beaten him.
His concentration was broken, and his vision was blurred by the intense pain and fatigue.
He felt his heart beating abnormally loudly.
The warmth of a sickening hand brought him back to himself, and he pulled it out…
Hakuto was horrified, frozen in fear.
He had witnessed true madness.
His eyes met the wide, bloodshot eyes at close range.
Shock’s eyes, who clearly still had enough power to catch him.
“…Have you ever had your day to day life unreasonably ruined…?”
What drove him to this point?
Was it the influence of a curse or just sheer obsession…?
Father Shock continued to move even after being pierced through the heart.
“Have you ever left your family, your friends, your comrades….to die….?”
Tears of blood and hatred for the Kingdom.
“I have…. turned to curses for those who have….. abandoned us.”
Hakuto couldn’t help but feel that Shock was a much scarier monster than the monstrous orc he had seen earlier.
“If you feel the same way….. you will realize your mistakes….. even if you don’t want to…….. hero!“
He pulled out the arm that was piercing through in sheer fearlessness and madness.
Hakuto felt a completely different…. fear….. from what he had felt so far from the [Black Demon King] and the Black Knight.
The power of Shock’s obsession swallowed up Hakuto’s anger and desire to kill.
“….The origin of the curse…..The ‘King of Curses’ is said to reappear when the root of curses is reached……”
But even as he spewed blood from his pierced chest, he followed step by step as Hakuto backed away in fright.
“I’m going to fill the whole world and the whole kingdom with curses….. Until we unleash him on this kingdom…….”
Perhaps Shock’s feelings were stronger than his, Alto’s, or even Halmar’s.
His obsession and hatred was that strong.
Negative emotions were often very strong.
“…I am….I am….I am….–I am immortal! I am immortal!“
He exclaimed, his voice betraying his insanity.
The Iron Scripture was lowered with a force several times greater than before.
Hakuto, who had been bracing himself with his eyes closed, opened his eyes in horror reflexively at the unchanged situation.
There it was, the steel scripture looming right in front of him.
And there stood the figure of Father Shock, who had stopped moving and was struggling desperately.
“-I’m often told that I don’t care much for other people.”
A voice that made you feel irresistibly comfortable.
A breeze of light blew into the room.
“I don’t know if you’d believe me when I say this, but… I may not be as good as my father or my brother, but I do have a heart for the people of the royal capital. Especially in this case.”
The sound of boots hitting the floor reverberated.
The windows of the spacious room opened all at once, and a breeze of light pushed the dust outside at once.
Not even the slightest speck of dirt was allowed in a room in which this goddess was about to descend.
“Do not call me by my name!”
Shock, caught in a circle of light, turned around with a face stained with madness.
Celestia Light was standing there.
“Excellent, Hakuto-kun. Oswald-kun, you too. You have driven him to this point. The wounds seem to be deep, so leave the rest to me and get some rest.”
She smiled faintly at Hakuto, who had fallen to the ground on his backside.
“Well, it was Father Shock, wasn’t it? He seems…. very indignant, doesn’t he? He must have influenced me… I’m angry now.”
The jet-black ornamental sword in her hand glinted.
Her mysteriously swaying blonde hair and good looks, along with the fantastic dance of light transformed the dingy room into a completely different space.
“In your experiments with curses, you often target single mothers, don’t you? Did you think that they would rely more on you if they were sick because of their lack of time, money and so on? Stupid….. I’ve spent some time studying people who raise their children alone for one reason or another.”
“Oh, you, the bitter enemy of the Angel Cult!”
Winds of brilliance gathered on Celestia.
Even with Father Shock’s mighty arm strength, the restraints of light did not budge an inch.
“Have you ever tried to image how much they are struggling?”
“You are a fool!“ Shock screeched.
“I’m not a fool. Raising a child alone is much harder than I imagined. I will not… allow curses to be placed on them.”
The ring of light that had restrained Shock faded away.
Shock bounced towards the goddess.
“Mankind has poisoned this kingdom and the world!”
“You’ve made a big jump to speak of the world. You can’t even touch me. That’s arrogance.“
The sound of her voice was so icy that Hakuto’s heart contracted.
Particles of light converged on the decorative sword.
She swung lightly from the lower left to the upper right.
As if shaking off an insect, she looked annoyed…..
Hakuto felt his breath caught in his throat.
Shock rushed towards Celestia, spreading his vindictiveness, but he disappeared.
As soon as the ornamental sword was swung, a torrent of light was created and gutted Shock from the center of the…. room.
The remorseless scriptures flew through the wall.
A torrent of light pierced the fourth and fifth floors, blessing Celestia with sunlight.
“Only a king can speak of ‘the world’. And there is only one king….”
Celestia murmured with an inorganic voice, a cold stare taking over her face.
A glimpse of the relic.
With just a little effort, Shock had been destroyed along with his curses.
“Both of you seem to be seriously injured. Let’s have Marie, who is waiting downstairs, carry you out immediately.”
Celestia, riding on the shining wind, fluttered up to the stunned Hakuto.
“Oh, Oswald, not me… Oh, my God, a girl fell downstairs! Through the window! Please get to her first!!“
“Calm down, calm down. Don’t worry about her.“
Hakuto responded in a crazed voice to Celestia who let out a smile.
She woke up to something warm and thick surrounding her, and a steady shaking sensation.
“We’re almost to the casino. You should continue sleeping.“
Gerald told Lana, who was holding her in his arms as they walked toward Arch Qi.
“……..? Oh, brother!“
What is it?”
“This, are you perhaps….. um, marriage?”
“No. I was intrigued by the crowd, so I came to inspect the situation and you just fell on me.”
Lana hugged Gerald as if she didn’t care about the reason why she was in Gerald’s arms, or as if the memory of being kidnapped was still fuzzy.
“Oh, by the way, I think I heard that idiot’s voice…. Did he come back by any chance?”
“Leave him alone. He can only live his life his way. If he needs help, he’ll ask for it.”
His words were supposed to be cold, but they seemed to have some warmth in them.
“…what is it?”
Gerald looked slightly annoyed as Lana hugged him.
“Gerald! What are you going to do with Lana?! You’re not even giving money to the dojo, you bastard!“
“Cheng. You can’t give money to an empty dojo!“
Lana’s father, Cheng, came running up behind Gerald, looking miserable.
After Bernardo died, Gerald ran the casino. Chen had been in charge of the dojo.
“I wonder what Master would say if he saw the dojo now. Do you even understand, do you?”
“Dad, seriously… what the hell?”
He was deeply hurt by his daughter’s tone of disgust. He would have much rather preferred her yelling at him like usual.
The familiar people who saw this scene showed their usual smiles.
They smiled as they did back then.
The people raised by Bernardo lived robustly in the entertainment district today.
Alto and the others, upon returning to the castle, immediately went to the king to report.
In front of King Light, Duke Merton, his assistant George, and Commander of the Kingsguard, Shiro, Alto explained the situation in detail.
“….What a surprise! The Black Knight has done it again…..”
His swordsmanship was at its peak, but his last move may be an ancient magic.
Alto’s report was simple but passionate, and the king sighed deeply in gratitude.
Leaning his back against the backrest, he was relieved to have a reliable hero in the midst of the Black King and Kujaro.
He may be the only stabilizer for King Light, who was constantly worried.
“….Your Majesty. Even though I am a guest general, I still have to consider everything….”
“Yes, I have no objection.”
Merton’s advice was immediately adopted, and it was decided to consider giving a reward to the Black Knight.
“The other thing is…. the magical armor worn by the orcs,” he said.
“It is almost certain.”
Shiro answered with certainty.
“They were able to acquire such a complete set of magical equipment, and also had it newly adjusted to fit the orc’s body. And all this in such a short time. Someone who has a lot of money and collects magical tools.“
–Alto knew this the very first second when he saw the monster orc.
“It could only be….. Madame.”
Inside the chariot-like carriage that had left the royal capital and traveled on for a while.
“–Again, thank you very much for your hospitality.“
Benedict Erkman and other leading figures of the Angel Cult.
“Oh-ho! ….No, no, no, we’re here for each other in times of need. I got a good thing (・・・・) too, so don’t worry about it. Don’t you agree?”
Madame smiled with satisfaction.
“Yes, yes, of course, I gave you the best one. We are…. grateful to you for the information on the case, for the equipment of the orcs, for the help in escaping from the royal capital, and for the…. other things. You deserve our thanks. Thank you very much.“
Benedict, seated opposite her, bowed humbly.
“That’s enough. We’ll be going our separate ways after this, won’t we? I will continue on my way to my destination while keeping the kingdom’s attention.“
“I’m going to Kujaro, where the promised land is. But… I will be accompanied by Amanda and a select group of archbishops.”
“Oh… are you sure?”
Madame looked at Benedict with wonder rather than surprise.
The experienced Madame had a ‘malice behind generosity’ policy.
Especially towards someone like Benedict, whose heart was…. unfathomable yet transparent at the same time.
“Yes, if your long-cherished wish is fulfilled, I’m sure we’ll have an even better relationship.”
“Oh…. you mean that, don’t you?”
She was convinced that that was why he was being accompanied by several archbishops with a Gospel equal to that of the orc that had been laying waste to the royal capital for some time now. He was even accompanied by Amanda, who had a rather vicious magic eye.
Madame’s long-cherished wish.
“When you kill her and…. make her despair, and take back the Chamber of Commerce, I will give you what you deserve. Without something to start with, religious activities will not be possible, will they? Especially since you will have to start all over again from scratch.“
“I couldn’t say it out loud, so…. thank you for being so perceptive.”
Benedict bowed his head once more to Madame, who gracefully and contentedly fanned herself.
Amanda and the others looked at her with disapproval, but she remained unconcerned.
“We’ve already performed enough sabotage that no one will be able to track us down. You can enjoy your journey from the next town with peace of mind. As for you, since they have no proof of your whereabouts, the kingdom will not be able to touch you. There is nothing to worry about.“
“Thank you again for your help…. and you are…?”
Madame opened the curtains with a closed fan and stared at the sky in the distance.
Her eyes were murky and stained with desire.
The new power that Benedict had given her added to it.
“….Let’s destroy Hildegard in her favorite city, that city she feels is auspicious…”
And then, instead of the snacks provided, she gobbled up… mana stones.
Madame’s unusual behavior.
Even the archbishops, who were aware of their superiority, were skeptical of her actions.
Mana stones were usually imbued with mana and were utilized for various magical reactions.
Ignition, freezing, and explosions….. were caused by the reactions of the mana unique to the mana stone.
No one tried experimenting with them, such as taking them into their body to increase mana, for the fear of the risks, because they did not know what kind of reaction or harm it may cause.
In fact, previous research had been given up because of the failed cases such as burning to ashes.
Only Benedict could look on with a smile at the Madame who was going to such lengths with greed to seek power, all for the sake of Hildegard’s despair.
“She will get stronger, she will.”
“…Benedict, is it okay that we did not defeat the hero and the Black Knight ourselves?”
The tall male archbishop asked the happy Benedict.
“Yes, it would be better to strengthen our defenses, like the Son said.“
“Perhaps The [Black Demon King] is that one.”
A strong, indescribable shiver ran through the archbishop.
“The ornamental sword that Princess Celestia was carrying…. is without a doubt the ‘Sword of Dawn’. The only person who would give a relic of that level to a person who wouldn’t even be able to wield a few strikes of such a relic would be that person.“
“His power is so great that even the power of a relic that is said to defy common sense is unnecessary…… I have seen the sword’s ability for the first time myself.”
Benedict’s serious face.
No one had ever seen such a change in his countenance.
“It is not like him, but I hear he is gathering his forces. This proves that he is far from his best shape. If we make the right preparations now…. we should be safe. Hohohoho.”
Benedict chuckled softly, but never before had the Supreme Bishop been so prepared to act. The situation was that serious.
“Oh, what are you talking about so secretively?“
“Oh, I wonder if you would like to join us? How about a story about an interesting town I visited, instead of this not-so-fun topic?”
“You dodged a bullet. Oh well, Sidge.”
The old butler, sitting at the end, near the door, started to prepare two cups of tea.
By the time the rich aroma filled the carriage, their conversation and the sound of mana stones being crushed and chewed were heard even more clearly.
A few weeks later….
A formidable, calamitous castle was steadily being built in the center of the ruins of the Cursed Swamps.
It was not as grand or large as the Light Kingdom’s castle, and instead it was a distorted, unsettling, and frightening building.
Inside, the ‘audience chamber’.
It was a large space decorated with demons and monsters in various places.
A group of people from the Republic of Larman kneeled there.
A group of grim, scrawny men.
And a troop of orcs.
A masked, brown-skinned beauty watched them with an icy glare.
“….I think it’s time to start the audience. Kakka!”
Molly, the famed [Swamp Demon], smiled broadly.
Her bone-crunching body, beautiful loincloth, and overflowing mana…
“Kekekek…. Your Majesty.”
The legendary monster muttered as she approached the throne at the top of the stairs.
There was a sense of awe in her voice.
That mighty [Swamp Devil]…..
A masked man sat on a solitary throne.
With just a single sound from the boyish man in a splendid black military uniform, evil mana filled the vast space.
Those exposed to the aftermath of the black mana trembled and desperately endured the pressure that threatened to crush them.
“…Shall we begin?”
In the audience chamber that has turned into hell, men and demons alike, regardless of race, could only hang their heads in fear in front of the Demon Lord.
This is the end of Episode 4, Chapter 5.
As always, the last part of the story may be completely changed depending on the development of the next chapters.
Especially, you don’t need to remember the conversation between Benedict and Madame.
Thank you very much for your support.
Chapters 6 and 7 are almost ready, but it may take some time to release them.
However, I have already started writing Chapter 6, so I don’t think I will keep you waiting that long.
I will see you in the next chapter.
Thank you very much.
I was able to release a full chapter today~