The Forsaken Hero — Chapter 25

He Who Revived From Death

『死より甦りし者』

Part 3

 

There was a hole where I stabbed. However, there was none of the red liquid that should have been seeping out of it.

So I guess him being an undead includes that stuff?

“You’ve still got a long way to go. Leadred, even if he can’t give it his all because you are in the room, this hero here was only able to land a single wound on me after working with you. I can only say that that is disappointing.”

Even that single wound was removed through the crystal’s light.

“Are you finally coming to understand your predicament?”

“In your territory, you are where you’ve laid your traps. So what. We’re prepared.”

The crystals around us were being destroyed. There were barely any around us left.

Shuri and Tamaki were doing their best, around half of the room’s crystals were gone.

I still don’t understand how he’s omitting his incantations, but while predicting him using magic was difficult, it wasn’t impossible.

The longer we drag this out, the more of a disadvantage we put him at.

The battle should tip in our favor.

So long as there’s the four of us, we can fight. We can kill him.

Taking in a deep breath, I sighed.

“Get ready for me to kill and enslave you.”

Saying that, I refocused myself. I took position at a location without any crystal.

The present conditions were perfect.

—Nevertheless, seeing us look so confident, Fantra laughed out loud.

“Enslave me? Impossible! You still haven’t understood anything!”

Snap!

Fantra snapped his fingers, the sound ringing in my ears.

“—When did I ever say that I couldn’t use magic without the crystals?”

The moment I realized the meaning behind his words was the same moment I realized an ice spear had pierced my chest.

“… Goho!?”

I spat out a glob of blood that made its way to my mouth. Keeping myself from collapsing to the ground, I fell to my knee.

But this is bad. I know, because I’ve experienced this pain many times now.

The pain of dying.

My head was filled with an intense pain. No blood streamed out of the wound. The spear was emanating cold air, freezing my body.

“… Aaah!”

Ignoring the pain, I gritted my teeth and forced myself to pull out the ice speer. It was fortunate that the wound was frozen solid, it had numbed most of the pain.

“Hero—geh!?”

Leadred had tried to move over to me, but her legs were caught by ice chains that sprouted up from the ground. Unable to kill her momentum, she fell over, the chain then entangling her and robbing her ability to move.

“Dammit, what’s with this ice!”

Freeze.”

“——!?”

He froze Leadred’s mouth so that she wouldn’t be able to cast magic.

“Leadred. You should stay there for a while. I don’t with to kill a comrade of mine, either… Now then.”

The sound of his footsteps ringing in my ears, Fantra approached me. He then suddenly kicked my face up.

“Gah—…!”

“I cannot forgive you, hero.”

He then pulled me up by my hair and punched me. Over, and over, and over again.

My nose broke. My teeth broke. My cheeks caved in. The consecutive beatings numbed my ability to feel anything. I could barely even open my right eye.

Seeing the distorted smile on Fantra’s face, I could tell that he was a sadist. His face was just like Samejima’s. He was a criminal who enjoyed torturing people.

“… Because… I am, weak?”

“That too, of course. However, the main reason I cannot forgive you… is that Messiah fell in love with you!”

His anger surging again, he threw me down and trampled on my wounds.

“Uwaaaaaah!?”

The ice that was blocking my wound cracked, causing pain to course through me. Even hearing my screams, his anger hadn’t abated at all.

“Receiving Messiah’s favor to this extent with your level of strength, compared to the greatness that is myself, one who has been graced by the goddess’ favor… I cannot forgive you!”

Stop, it hurts… stop it…!

“You stole it! I have been here, always, always thinking of her, and you… you stole her heart!”

I got my power from Claria. Not the demon goddess!

“By defeating you here, I will prove that I am stronger than you! And when I do, she’ll notice too! She will be disillusioned about you, who can’t defeat me. She will give me her love!!”

I had neither the words nor the energy to answer him. Preferably, he’d hurry up and kill me. I’ll be able to get stronger and kill him when he does.

Seemingly satisfied after stamping down onto me for so long, Fantra kicked me away with his foot, his breathing rough.

“Don’t worry. I’ll let you taste how I’m feeling before I kill you.”

I had a bad feeling about what he meant.

That feeling was becoming a reality.

“First, I will kill the girl you hold dear.”

Fantra turned away from me, pointing his bloodied hand to Shuri.

“… How dare you do that to Katsuragi!!”

She pressed both her hands out before her.

“Ah, don’t—Shuri!”

“Hoh. You intend to challenge me with magic? Amusing.”

Shaking off Tamaki’s grip on her after losing her cool, Shuri began reciting an incantation. I’m not sure when she learned it, but it was the magic I was most proud of.

“O’ Emperor of Wind! Cut down those who would hinder my right to rule!”

“O’ Emperor of Ice! Freeze those who would hinder my right to rule!”

Stop, Shuri. Run away! Don’t fight him head on, run! You can’t win against him!

However, I couldn’t even use Absolute Command. My thoughts couldn’t reach her.

“Exert the might of your storms! Revert all to dust and return them to the earth!”

“Bestow eternal sleep. Take from them their pain, their fear. Give but a peaceful, eternal dream.”

Move, move! I tried to gather all the strength I had left. I just have to move a little, that’s all. So please, move! Please, listen to me!

Berserk Tempest!!

Blizzard Prison!!

The imperial rank wind-type magic manifested simultaneously with the ice-type magic, colliding.

What decided which would prevail between two equal-ranked magics colliding?

The answer was simple. One’s own ability.

“Kuh—!”

Accordingly to that principle, Shuri was pushed back. The way things were going, she would soon fall prey to that ice.

Wiiiiiind!!

Finally able to force the words out of my mouth, I supported my body with wind so that I wouldn’t collapse back down. I also road it out, moving towards her faster and faster.

However, I still wouldn’t make it in time.

Shuri would be killed.

I invoked a second usage of Wind.

Make it in time, make it in time, make it in time!

My thoughts were racing. I’d only just activated the magic, but it felt like hours.

Shuri was losing, and fast.

—I’d forgotten something.

“Shuri!!”

There was someone else that thought of her as important to them.

Tamaki jumped into Shuri, pushing her out of the way.

Tamaki was now in the same position she had been in.

Shuri was out of the range of that guy’s magic. With that, her safety was guaranteed.

I had no need to move there anymore.

… However.

“Move.”

“Kyah—”

Not releasing the magic, I pushed Tamaki away over next to Shuri.

“K-Katsuragi…!?”

Tamaki looked at me with eyes that bespoke how unbelieving she was of my actions.

“Don’t get the wrong idea. Saving Shuri is my job.”

Saying what I wanted to say, I was satisfied.

His magic rained down on me.

Triple Guard!”

I heard someone reciting magic, but my sight had already gone pure white.

 

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