Chapter 4: Part 10
Viewing platform, first floor. Viewing platform, second floor. I couldn’t see anybody like the King of the Night. Maybe my instincts had been wrong?
But when I reached the special viewing platform, I found a silver-haired girl there. No one else. There was only a single, small girl. It was Yuu, surrounded by slanting anti-glare glass; she stood in a daze next to the lit-up floor, eyes turned towards the window.
“So you came.”
When I heard a voice from behind me, I immediately opened my traveler’s bag and grabbed my chainsaw.
“You know, I didn’t actually think I would find you here.”
I gripped my chainsaw and glared at him.
“Feast your eyes on this. It’s finally time.”
“You going to use a weapon?”
“No, the weapons have already been confiscated. Look, that’s the last one over there.”
He pointed somewhere, but all I could see down there were buildings.
“So what happens no-“
Boom. My head turned toward the sound of an explosion.
It was a weapon… No, it wasn’t. That explosion was too small. But I could definitely see flames.
Tokyo was burning.
“Faster than I expected. The masou shoujo are as hotheaded as always.”
“What do you mean? What are you trying to say?”
“The war has begun. The Megalo, the masou shoujo, the guardians of this world… Each side is strong in its own way. You could say that we have three men here, all holding each other at gunpoint. And what do you think will happen once someone opens fire?”
Something… like this mess.
“By the way, Eucliwood was the one who called the Megalo. I made her do it.”
“Why would you do something like-“
“Just take a look.”
With a gentlemanly motion, the King of the Night pointed his palm towards Yuu.
Yuu was crying. The throbbing in my chest pushed my unhappiness meter to the max.
“Look at that face. I wanted to see that sorrow on her face. What do you think? Beautiful, isn’t it?”
Yuu looked scared, and her face was filled with sorrow. The King of the Night must have thought that was more beautiful than anything else. He looked like he was just a moment away from bursting into song.
“This world is beautiful, so beautiful that cannot be described by mere words… That’s what Eucliwood has always said.”
The King of the Night spread his arms with an expression of ecstasy on his face.
“And now that world is burning! All because of the ‘war’ you hate so much! Come, Eucliwood! Kill me! Are you not pained?! Are you not sorrowful?! Do you not hate me?!”
But Yuu just absentmindedly stared down at the black smoke that billowed up from the city.
“Still not enough? Well, that’s fine. This city will now fall to ruin. And then even you will want to kill me.”
“What the hell are you saying… What the hell are you saying?! Are you doing all this just so you can get killed by Yuu?”
“You will someday understand. To die is painful, but it’s still better to die than live.”
The King of the Night stroked Yuu’s white chin with a sad look on his face. Yuu just looked back at him with her emotionless blue eyes.
“Listen. When I received this immortality, I rejoiced; I thought that I could do anything in the world. But soon the world around me grew stale. I realized then how sad it was to be able to do anything in the world.”
And that’s why he wanted Yuu to kill him? Well, I guess Yuu was the only person who could kill zombies.
“You still don’t hate me enough? Just take a look.”
The King of the Night pointed outside. Flames rose from a place different from the one before… No, flames were everywhere.
“There are still some of my Megalo left. This city still has a ways to burn.”
I hate you. So much that I want to kill you.
The King of the Night sounded very happy.
But I cannot. I do not want to kill friends anymore.
“I… see. Just like usual. So your scythe will hurt me, and yet you will not kill me. What a hypocrite. Well then, until you change your mind, I’ll just stay here and enjoy your anguish.”
The King of the Night turned towards me. I was enraged.
“For such an absurd reason-“
“Someday, you will also come to know the sadness of living forever. At that time, you will also begin to hate Eucliwood.”
Yeah, right. We were different.
And I didn’t mean our strengths were different. It was a difference in how much we cared about Yuu.
Yuu was cute when she cowered. She was cute when she looked sad. That we agreed on.
But I would never actually wish her to feel that way.
“Have you never seen Yuu’s smile?! That’s when she’s the cutest!”
I held my chainsaw up. It was time to show off everything I head learned from Dai-sensei.
The King of the Night was probably readying himself for an attack from up high.
And then, I… threw my chainsaw at him!
As I ran, I gathered strength in my right arm. I would hit him while he was distracted!
200%… 300%… Eat this! Get blown away! Cry out in agony!
My fist caught the smiling King of the Night in the face. He didn’t try to dodge.
So even if I charged him, he wouldn’t move at all. It was just as I had expected. I would use this; I’d punch him over and ov-
“Gah!” A stream of saliva flew out of my mouth as my body was lifted straight upwards.
The King of the Night stood in front of me, shaking his fist. To think that he could hit me with an uppercut so easily… He was much faster than I had thought.
A shadow covered my face. A fist-shaped shadow. Before I could do anything, that fist hit me cleanly right in my forehead.
I spun through the air like a badminton shuttlecock, and I couldn’t brace myself before the back of my head scraped along the floor.
I couldn’t do anything at all. Less than a second after I had punched him, I was already down. The force of his punch… was around my 100%.
“Eucliwood, you just reacted, didn’t you?”
The King of the Night laughed gleefully.
“Your expression just now was quite sublime. It seems that if I hurt this person, Eucliwood becomes sadder.”
“I’m going to pulverize you.”
414… 506… I’ll show you exactly what I can do.
I stood right back up and ran up to him once again.
“Sounds like something a scrub would say.”
The King of the Night smiled as his fist flew forward. A cross counter, huh? He was deliberately sending me attacks slow enough for me to see. That was pretty ballsy of him.
I sent my fist into his cheek, and his fist gouged into mine.
And then I was sent flying once more. Maybe I had subconsciously realized the danger of my head being ripped off–I had clutched a hand to my neck without really knowing why.
“Looks like you’re getting serious. How about I go to 800 next?”
I see. He had been a zombie longer than I had, so he probably could exceed human limits by even more. What should I do…? I had hit him with all my strength. And if he could brush that attack off like it was nothing, then my only option was… to show him my power as a masou shoujo.
I charged him one more time, launching a dropkick at him. The King of the Night just slid to the side and dodged.
Boom. I heard an explosive sound and a fist pierced through my abdomen. Then a shock ran through my entire body. I slammed into the window behind me and cracks spiraled out along the glass. When I looked beneath me, a sense of vertigo attacked me. It felt like I was going to fall at any moment.
I slid down to the floor, leaving behind a trail of blood. I spat out blood from my mouth and put a hand on my chainsaw, which had fallen to the floor.
“Nomobuyo, woshi, hashitawa, dokeda, gunmiicha, dei, ribura.”
My clothes flew off and were replaced by the usual costume. However, that didn’t mean my wounds had healed. My stomach was soon dyed in red.
But… I would beat him this time! I continued to attack. Even if he dodged, even if I couldn’t feel my attacks connect, I would continue to attack. When he attacked me, I counterattacked. This was something I had done time and time again with Dai-sensei.
All right! The King of the Night was swinging his fist. I would take the opportunity to-
“Kyah!” Another damn uppercut?!
The King of the Night glanced at Yuu. Yuu’s expression hadn’t changed, but her eyes were filled with sadness.
Even if I was no match for him, I wouldn’t give up.
No matter how many times he beat me back, no matter how many times I was hit on my jaw and off my feet, I would continue attacking.
It felt like I was a person who had never fought in his life going against a boxer.
“That masou shoujo power is quite impressive. All my attacks right now are being fired at 300%, just so you know.”
I didn’t need the commentary. At that time, I saw him throw a right straight punch at me.
My heartbeat throbbed once, with great strength.
What was happening? It almost felt as if the world was slowing down…
I grit my teeth and let his punch connect with my cheek. But while my cheek was being gouged out… I grabbed his arm.
I got him.
I raised my right hand high. The King of the Night covered my hand in mist. I tried to bring my fist down on him, but with a shhmp, it just disappeared into the mist. He teleported my fist? That power was just unfair!
The King of the Night gave me a bold smile. I had seen that expression time and time again, and that expression pissed me off the most.
Bam. A dull sound echoed through the room.
Blood streamed down from my forehead.
But the same went for the King of the Night.
“You didn’t expect a headbutt, did you?”
This time, it was my turn to give him a bold smile.
Maybe he was really angry now, but he kicked my stomach with all his might.
I was sent flying and crashed into a pillar so hard that cracks formed on it. I coughed up blood.
My right hand was… in one piece. He could teleport parts of things, but that didn’t mean he could cut them off. I really didn’t understand his ability, but it was a huge nuisance.
“Eucliwood… should not have seen that.”
The King of the Night almost groaned, and the look in his eyes changed.
A chill ran down my spine. It was the same chill I had felt multiple times when facing him.
He was getting serious. The minute I thought that, the viewing platform was filled with mist.
Dai-sensei had said something.
“If enough of that mist is around that man, Ayumu-san’s chances of winning drop to zero~~.”
This mist didn’t just cover the King of the Night… It covered the entire room.
I didn’t know what to do. I could only barely make out the shape of the King of the Night. The lights on the floor let me piece together where the windows were, but that was all. For now, I stood up and readied my chainsaw.
Something suddenly appeared from out of that dark blue mist.
It was a finger. The King of the Night had probably only teleported his finger.
There was no way I could dodge something that had just appeared so close and so suddenly.
I felt like a bullet had just pierced me; my body arched backwards.
He had poked out one of my eyes.
In the next moment, my other eye was also poked out. Then my knees were smashed and I collapsed onto the floor.
What happened after that… Well, how should I put it… It was just a never-ending rain of blows.
If I could actually feel pain… I shuddered at the thought. It didn’t seem like he would be satisfied until he broke every bone in my body, almost as if I was made of bubble wrap.
I couldn’t even move.
Bam bam bam bam. I was being made into minced meat. Was this impossible…? Could I not beat him…?
Someone was calling me. It was the voice of a girl I had heard time and time again.
Someone shouted out. It was the name of a skill I had heard time and time again.
I couldn’t see my hands in front of my face. Maybe my eyes were recovering too slowly, or maybe the mist was too thick…
Or both, probably. Ahh, my brain just wasn’t working right.
“Ayumu! You’re here, right?! Ayumu!”
“Hellscythe-dono has been secured! Ayumu, we’re escaping!”
The sound of their voices brought me back to reality, even though my mind was on the verge of short-circuiting.
But all I could see in front of me was mist. Where were they…?
I heard a small shriek and the sound of something hitting the floor.
I stood up, but a hard fist slammed into my body.
“Haruna! Sera! Where are you?!”
I wanted to grab and crush his arms with my hands, but his arm was no longer there. If he only teleported his fist, then there was no way I could stop his attacks.
“I’ll reunite you all.”
I heard the King of the Night’s voice from somewhere, and something came flying at me. Two pretty girls.
It was Haruna and Sera. Sera spun in the air and managed to land on her feet, but Haruna slid across the floor and crashed heavily into the wall.
He punched them without mercy… I wouldn’t forgive him for that. The King of the Night’s loud laughter echoed through the mist-filled room, almost as if he could see me glaring at him. His laughs almost seemed to circle around the donut-shaped room.
“Ahahahahaha! How hilarious!”
I stood in front of Haruna and Sera with my arms open, trying to protect them. I saw a ruby light shining on the wall in front of me. But, yet again, my body was punched over and over.
“What…? It’s getting through the barrier.”
So the mist could penetrate into the barrier. It seemed like it was pointless to hide behind a wall.
“Ayumu, I’ll buy time. Run away with Hellscythe-dono.”
Sera whispered to me. Run away? Because he was too strong? Or because I was too weak?
I wasn’t able to do anything; I just kept taking punches. Sera seemed unable to watch that any longer, stepping forward with a green sword, but I stopped her.
“Stay back. I… won’t let you interfere.”
“You have quite a lot of endurance. All right, then… Once you lose consciousness, I’lll kill the two behind you. Please try your best, okay?”
Good idea. Because I would never let you beat me down!
Even if my arms were crushed, even if my throat was stabbed through, even if my knees felt like they were smashed…
I would never run away!
I had to protect Yuu! If I didn’t beat him, Yuu would never have faith in me! …But what should I do?
I crumpled, dropping to my knees, and managed to sit instead. At this rate, Haruna and Sera would… I grit my teeth, and then the mist suddenly lifted. Yuu was shielding me with her body.
“Can’t bear to watch anymore? Good, good. It seems that I really will have to kill your friends if I’m to throw you into despair.”
Clad in his mist, the King of the Night looked down at me and Yuu with his hands in his pockets.
My body began the regeneration process. But even if I healed, it would just end the same way.
My entire body was beaten to a pulp. That must be what it would feel like if you were run over by the bullet train.
It seemed like my training with Dai-sensei had also gone to waste. Even attacking with all my strength didn’t yield any results.
I had exhausted all my options. What should I do? Not just to get a hit in, but to beat him…
“Ayumu…” Haruna’s sad-looking ahoge watched me.
Haruna… Wait… I see. That was it.
I still wasn’t done. I still had some left in me.
I stood up one more time. A strong flame of determination burned within me.
“You don’t learn, do you? Haven’t you seen that it’s pointless no matter what you do?”
I dragged my leg forwards. My leg trembled and I collapsed, but even then I dragged myself along the floor by my hands. If I tried to stand up, I would just stagger and fall down again, but even then I kept moving forward.
“How is it, Eucliwood? Don’t you find this situation sorrowful?”
Sera threw her sword from the side. The King of the Night covered his head with mist, and the sword disappeared off to somewhere.
He looked to his side confidently, and I saw an opening I couldn’t let pass.
“Ayumu, don’t overdo it! But… don’t hold backkkkkkkkkkk~~!!!!!!”
I opened my right fist and reached out for the King of the Night’s face.
“Hah.” The King of the Night laughed derisively and guarded his face with mist.
I quickly chanted the spell that I had practiced over and over and over. And then… It was time for the final line!
A dazzling light flared up and illuminated the room. Kenchinjiru wasn’t the only thing I could make now!
I could also shoot sunlight from my palm!
How do you like that?! Even if you could move physical objects with that mist, you can’t move light, can you?! And if you’re not a masou shoujo, just a zombie, then you won’t be able to defend against this light!
The mist surrounding the King of the Night dispersed. Right. He couldn’t use his ability when there was sunlight!
I dragged my left leg along and launched a body blow from the left. I pierced through his abdomen and immediately pulled back out.
I punched him right in the face with my fist. The impact bent his body so far back that it almost went horizontal.
After that… I would hit him with 800% every time!
Right, left, right, left. I wasn’t aiming for anywhere in particular; I just put my complete heart and soul into my attacks.
His chest was torn into shreds and a sea of blood gushed out, but I didn’t stop my fists.
Again, and again, and again, and again…
I only managed to stop when Yuu embraced me.
I saw my hands drenched in blood and felt a chill run across my back.
What… What were these dark urges…?
“It’s all right… Yuu, I’m calm now.”
I mumbled those words; it was almost as if I just wanted myself to hear that. Yuu went over to the King of the Night, who had been reduced to a pitiful state, and took his crushed hand into hers.
“Eu… cli… wood…”
The King of the Night called Yuu’s name even as he lay there, coughing up blood. Yuu answered with something, but the King of the Night interrupted her with a plea.
“Please… let me die.”
Even when he was reduced to that pitiful state, he still couldn’t die.
Yuu closed her eyes, seeming a bit troubled, before looking towards me. Her large blue eyes were filled with determination. And then Yuu looked back to the King of the Night and gave him a firm nod.
…What? What was that? Why did I feel like that? I had defeated my archenemy, but I didn’t feel happy at all.
A feeling of exhaustion filled my body, and I fell to the floor.
“Eucliwood, if I die, could you make me into a penguin Megalo?”
He spoke in a faint, weak voice.
“Ayumu, great job!”
Haruna came over and hugged me.
“I really didn’t think you would be able to win.”
Sera held out her hand. I took it and slowly stood up. The bloodied masou shoujo outfit I was wearing felt very unpleasant.
“I… like penguins.”
I heard the King of the Night laughing. And then… at that time, I heard it. Well, Haruna and Sera probably heard it too.
A voice that seemed to echo directly through my head… Yuu’s kind, beautiful voice.
“Yes, I know.”
And then, I suddenly realized just what it was that I was feeling.
For some reason… I was jealous.
The moment I saw Yuu take the King of the Night’s hand, I felt an indescribable bitterness. And now that Yuu was doing exactly what he wished, I also felt jealousy.
What a terrible person I was.
Dammit… Here it comes again. This fuzzy feeling in my chest. It was… I see.
I had the heart of a treasure hunter. Yuu was my treasure and I wanted her, no matter what. Just thinking of Yuu, just thinking about anything that had to do with Yuu, made me frustrated that I couldn’t reach her, filled me with childish impatience.
“Ayumu! Are you listening?!”
“Ah, sorry. How did you guys know I was here?”
“Haruna said she felt Ayumu would be here. I was quite skeptical though.”
“I told you! I can see through everything Ayumu does!”
“As expected from Haruna-sensei.”
Hahahaha. I pushed down my feelings for a moment and laughed, but Sera just scowled.
I guess I couldn’t hide anything from that girl…
“But still, you did really good!”
“It was all because of you… Haruna.”
“Hueh? A-Ahh… U-uh, hueh? …R-really?”
Haruna seemed completely at a loss, but in the end, she seemingly decided to accept my showered praise.
When I glanced at the King of the Night, I saw that, like the Megalo, he was turning into white particles.
I guess Yuu really had decided… to kill the King of the Night.
Those white particles… sparkled like stars.
The King of the Night lifted his hand, the hand enveloped by Yuu’s gauntlets, and tried to grab some of those glittering stars, but his hand slowly dropped. And then Yuu came over to us with her usual emotionless expression, handing me something that looked like a big, round alarm clock.
So that remote controlled the bombs from afar. It really looked like an alarm clock, though…
“Gimme that for a bit.”
Haruna snatched the clock from Yuu and nodded.
“This makes them explode, and this disarms them!”
She could tell all that by a brief look. She was seriously a genius.
Click. Haruna pushed a button.
“Huh? What?” I didn’t know what was going on, so I couldn’t help but speak up.
“Even if you push the detonate button like this, if you push this thing here…”
You could disarm it? Ah, great.
“The disarm button is broken.”
“…Ah, this might be bad.”
“Don’t give me that! Of course it’s bad!”
“I-it’s alright! I know where the bombs are!”
Haruna pointed out the window as she said that.
“Around… Where, exactly?”
“Ugh, shut it! I’ll know when we get there!”
“Over there… That’s where we conservative faction vampire ninjas are fighting with the demons, isn’t it?”
That was pretty far…
Even if I flew there with Haruna in tow, it might take more than five minutes. And it would also take her some time to disarm the bombs.
“Dammit! Sera! Carry Haruna and go on ahead!”
“I understand. Here I go.”
I hit the glass with all my strength and broke it to pieces. Then Sera spread her green wings and flew away.
“Come on, Yuu!”
I reached out for Yuu, the last person left behind.
Yuu shook her head, but I just continued to hold my hand out to her.
“Are we just going to leave Haruna and Sera by themselves?”
No, we will not.
Yuu gave one last glance at the place where the King of the Night was, and then she grabbed onto me.
I leapt out the window and flew up into the air. Sera was already just a speck in the distance. She was way too fast.
At this rate, everything might already be finished by the time I got there.
How was it?
Yuu showed me a memo. As always, she held a ballpoint pen, but I never saw her write anything.
“How was what?”
Not having me around made everything more peaceful, didn’t it?
I see. That was what she meant. We searched high and low for the Megalo and fake Megalo but never found them, and that was probably because Yuu had left us. Our destinies became those of normal people.
Normal, charming destinies. Lives where you might bump into a friend at the department store, see them in an unexpected light, and call that the most exciting thing that had happened to you.
“Yeah, it was peaceful. But there was something missing.”
“It’s not a lie. I mean… You weren’t there, right? That’s when I realized that Eucliwood Hellscythe is a girl who’s as stubborn as the masou shoujo, that she gives off the impression that she can do anything and yet acts like a normal person, that she can’t show emotions and yet gets depressed really easily, And that she’s a glutton and a hopeless idiot.”
“No matter where I am, I won’t ever find anybody else like you.”
Yuu looked lonely, dropping her gaze.
“That’s why… it has to be you. I have to have you by my side.”