Chapter 1: Part 7
The graveyard was quiet today as well. It was still too soon for people to have fallen asleep, but not even delinquents would want to hang around a graveyard at night.
Because this was a place where zombies came out.
The crater that had formed when I had met Haruna and Kumacchi had magically disappeared, and the gravestone that had been pulverized was also right there, sparkling.
I passed by the lined-up gravestones and headed for the area beneath the huge tree. Here, there was nothing around except that tree, so there was nothing to hinder our movements during our fight.
While listening to the rustling sounds of the leaves in the tree, we glared at each other.
Sera was pretty much the same height as I was, and her long hair, styled into that ponytail, fluttered in the wind. That expression that overflowed with majesty didn’t lessen in beauty even now, when we were on the verge of attempting to kill each other.
“Could I just ask you one thing?”
“These vampire ninjas or whatever… do they attack humans?”
“Of course. Although, they do not kill them. They just take some of their blood.”
“Even the more forceful ones?”
“I cannot say ‘definitely’ with absolute certainty, but they definitely do not kill humans.”
Which was it?!
“But, right now, you’re trying to kill me, aren’t you?”
“It is for the sake of my objectives, so there’s no choice in the matter, is there? And also, you aren’t human.”
Quite right, she is. Her eyes bled red and a black cloak that seemed to cover her entire body appeared. This was her getting into battle stance, I suppose.
Sera spread her arms out, and green leaves appeared to fall out of nowhere. There was that big tree there, so a few leaves might have fallen off, but never this many.
With just that one word, Sera disappeared. At pretty much the same time, I felt something slice diagonally through my chest. If I hadn’t quickly taken a step backwards, that would have been dangerous.
In front of me, I saw her pretty, long hair and commanding red eyes. Beautiful. It was so beautiful it almost made me shiver.
At that time, her self-introduction earlier echoed through my mind.
“My likes: Hiken, Tsubame Gaeshi. My special skills: Hiken, Tsubame Gaeshi. My hobbies: Hiken, Tsubame Gaeshi.”
Tsubame Gaeshi… making lots of shallow cuts to make your opponent falter, and then finishing him off with one true attack… something like that? But in any case, she was sending a barrage of attacks my way. I kicked off the ground and fell back.
As I had thought, her follow-up attack came at me and cut me deep.
Large amounts of blood fell onto the graveled floor. I was expecting it and tried to dodge, and it still ended like this. As expected from a ninja.
“Impressive. To think you could evade my Tsubame Gaeshi twice.”
Yes, in reality, after her initial counterattack, she had repeated the same movements. It was something like four consecutive cuts.
After that, I ran and she gave chase, and multiple sword flashes cut into my body. I couldn’t evade a single one. But none of the wounds were fatal.
Should I have brought the chainsaw?
No, it’s too late to have regrets at this point. Instead, I should be taking advantage of my immortal body.
I dared to meet with one of Sera’s slashes and moved through it. In exchange for her cutting me almost to my core, I punched Sera with all my might. At my attack, one leaf sprung up and stopped my fist. That single, fluttering leaf had stopped the attack I had put my all into.
But it only stopped that attack for a moment, and when I put more power into the attack I felt the resistance of the leaf vanish. Like that, I struck Sera and sent her flying. Aren’t people who punch girls the worst? Yes, that’s true. But I would never let myself be killed without fighting back ever again.
Sera quickly got up and closed the distance between us. I guess she wasn’t the type of person to keep her distance and calmly assess the situation. I preferred a slower, more calculated type of fight though.
In both her hands there was something that looked like a sword… I guess you could call it a sword.
But it was really a leaf. A single, huge leaf that had been made thin and long.
That extremely long and thin leaf definitely resembled a sword. Wait, does that mean she’s made all of these fluttering leaves into swords? As I thought about that, I was once again cut.
This time she had aimed for my neck, and as I wasn’t able to keep up with her movements, fresh blood scattered out of the newly opened wound. I tried to get some distance between us, but I couldn’t run away.
Now that I look at it, there are thin grass-like leaves piercing into my legs. As I thought, all of these had been made into blades.
Right in front of me, this imposing girl waved her sword horizontally. She had cut through around half my neck, and blood erupted from the wound. Normally, this would be fatal, wouldn’t it?
“It’s not over yet!”
I grabbed onto the hand of the shocked Sera.
I pulled her close and struck her head with mine. Her head jolted back violently and I followed it up with a body blow. One leaf jumped up to block me, but I didn’t pay it heed and followed through. Then, I struck her with my knee, and punched her with my right hand. With 230% of the power a normal human could muster.
Kicking up gravel, Sera noisily tumbled along the ground.
As I watched her, something came flying at me and I blocked it.
It was what appeared to be an autumn leaf. It had been changed into something like a shruiken. I pulled it out after it had lodged itself into my arm, and even with 230% of my strength I couldn’t bend it… to think she could counterattack while in that condition…
… I mean, I had punched her with the intent to kill.
As expected from a vampire… no, a vampire ninja. As another member of the undead, I found myself respecting her.
“I underestimated you…”
Her cloak waving, Sera opened her arms wide. A pair of green colored wings appeared behind her. I couldn’t say that those many small leaves didn’t resemble detached feathers. She had gathered those leaves together and formed wings of blades.
“Here I come.”
She came at me even faster than before. And it was an attack that came from above. Her wings flapped, and numerous tree leaves fluttered down, looking quite like detached feathers.
“Hiken, Tsubamegaeshi… Hachiren!” (1)
At those words, I was cut in eight directions all at once. It wasn’t just by the sword she was holding. The leaves around me had all been made into swords as well… not good. Here comes the follow-up strike.
In an instant, my body had been torn to pieces.
I twisted my body, but my right arm had flown off, and not only my legs, but my entire lower half was gone. There was no more strength left in my body as it lay on the ground like that.
I mean, she had attacked me from all angles, right? There’s no way I could have avoided it all. Absolutely no way.
The angel with the black cloak landed in front of me, and she turned those red eyes my way.
Those green swords she held in both hands and that long hair. I feel like I’ve seen something similar before. Ah, yes… someone holding a long thin object in both hands with long hair. The person who had killed me.
But really, to be able to use two swords like that was difficult even for a master.
Also, Haruna had said that ninjas were able to disappear and reappear. If it were a vampire ninja, it would be an easy task to infiltrate anywhere.
As I thought, Haruna was somehow connected to these events. I’ll have to ask her about it next time.
So the criminal… was a vampire ninja?
“… 300.” I rolled my way to my lower half and reattached it.
Like a magnet, my body was drawn in and I could soon move it, allowing me to run to collect the hand that had fallen on the floor. Perhaps she was shocked at my sudden motions, but Sera flew up into the sky.
“He can still move?!”
I heard a rustling sound from behind me. It was the sound of those green wings flapping.
“502.” Reattaching my right hand, I kicked off the ground and flew upwards.
Gritting my teeth, I hit her with all my might. Her wings tried to cover her body, but my full power attack was almost at 600% strength and easily penetrated her defenses, hitting her.
But, unfortunately, what I hit was not a person, but a log.
In the span of a second, Sera had transported herself atop the biggest branch in the tree.
What I had hit was the black cloak and the log. A body switching technique? Ninjas are cowards, aren’t they?
“Pretty strong, aren’t you?”
Sera came down from the tree, and we once again fell into a staring contest. Maybe she had used all the leaves to make those wings, but there weren’t any leaves flying around anymore. All that was left were the two swords she had in her hands.
“Could I just ask you one thing?” I spat out the same question that I had at the start of the fight.
“What?” And she gave the same response.
“Do you really not kill humans?”
“Yes. So what?”
She kept her eyes fixed on me. As beautifully and as directly as always… it was gorgeous.
“Well, then everything’s fine.”
I still had my doubts on whether I could completely believe her… but I decided to trust these eyes. This girl, Sera, didn’t seem to be the type that would lie. So she wasn’t the one who had killed me. I’ll believe that. If I do say so myself, girls were a huge weak point of mine. And it’s not like I can just keep on saying that until I fix that weak point… I should just live alone…
For some reason, Sera let go of her swords. Her swords transformed back to small leaves, and gently fell to the floor. Her red eyes returned to their normal shade of jade. She let out one breath, and showed me a slightly satisfied expression.
“Well, I’m stumped. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like I can defeat you. Even with my secret sword technique. I see that I need to train more. And I’m also not inclined to bring out my ultimate technique. I’ll have to think of some new moves…”
Somehow, it seemed that the battle had ended. Although, if she continued to use that body switching technique, it’s not like I would have been able to do much against her.
“Yes. Please allow me to return home.”
As if she had guessed what I had wanted to say, Sera turned her back to me with her ponytail swish-swishing behind her and quickly left.
The masou shoujo Haruna and the Megalo.
The necromancer Yuu and vampire ninjas.
Lately, way too many strange things have been happening. Was this also because I had become a zombie?
I left the graveyard and slowly walked home. At any rate, that was quite a flashy way to chop me into pieces, wasn’t it? This is the first time I’ve found it so difficult to move.
When I arrived home, I took my shoes off in the entranceway.
I know that was a pretty banal statement, but this was strange. I mean, apart from Yuu’s shoes, there was one other pair. Of course, they weren’t mine. And I hadn’t bought shoes for Haruna yet. Right now, it seemed that Haruna was using the underwear I had bought for Yuu to use.
It couldn’t be… as I thought that, I turned towards the living room.
And in there was the form of that imposing vampire ninja.
Why is she still here?
Didn’t she say she was going home?
… Hm? Ah, I see. She meant my home.
Give me a break. Was she planning on staying here too?
Tap tap. As always, Yuu called to me in her usual way.
What’s the meaning of this? = “Oniichan. Why is this person here?”
Hmph. That’s what I want to ask!
Somehow or other, it seemed that like how I was Yuu’s servant, Sera had become my servant. And I consented to that arrangement.
Call it giving up if you must. If I were just living with Yuu, I could still find some alone time, but now with Haruna in the picture my dreams had vanished… so whatever, she can do what she wants.
By the way, if she’s my servant, she’ll listen to anything I want, right?
I can make her call me oniichan, right?
Well, isn’t that great? And so, I suggested it to her.
“No. That’s disgusting.” She clearly and resolutely refused. She seemed to be the type that would have no problem pointing it out when she didn’t like something. It seemed like she had an imposing personality no matter where it was applied.
“Well, at least call me master or something.”
“No. You shitty insect.”
Her eyes, pretty as always, pierced into me as if they were looking at the lowliest creature on earth, and her words shattered my dreams.
It seems that she was even able to make “words” into blades. (2)
(1) Hachiren translates roughly to “continuous eight” or “connected eight” something.
(2) A pun is going on here. “Words” in Japanese is “kotoba” or “koto no ha,” which translates literally into “statements of leaves.” Hence the pun.