Oct 22, 2017

Last Embryo V2 Chapter 5

Chapter 5

Saigou Homura, guided by one of the Colony Spirits, the earth spirit Merul, arrived at the room for noble visitors.

As this tiny spirit that was no bigger than a palm rode on his head, the feeling that he had come to another world doubled at once. It was not certain where the body function existed in this palm-sized body, but surely there must be a function that Saigou Homura didn't need to know of.
"Here! Queen's room, here!"

"Thanks. I'm fine with being guided up to this point, so you can return back to the engine room."

"Got it~! Say hello to Asuka's family~!"

With a Pyon! Merul jumped down from Homura's head and walked away with adorable footsteps. "Who is 'Asuka's family' supposed to be?", Homura tilted his head as question marks floated above his head, but he wa probably mistaken with someone.

(Tiny child spirits, huh? .........I bet the children would be delighted if I showed them the fairies, but I can't really take them back with me.)

Even if he wanted to tell them about his travels, it was just too absurd, as expected.

Just traveling to another world was unbelievable on it's own, so even if he talked about the palm sized spirits or the gigantic Spirit Train that traveled on the water, it was certain that no one would believe him. Although it could be said that the children of "Canaria Family Home" were a bit special, they were still modern kids on the inside. If he were to talk about such things, they would instead think that he was treating them as kids and get angry.

Alright, Homura faced towards the door. When he raised his hand to knock, Ayato came running from the next wagon towards him.

".........Senpai? Have you been summoned by Queen again?"

"No, I came for my own business. What about you?"

"I'm.........Yes, I'm same as Senpai as well. I was thinking of retrieving the things I entrusted to her."

Ayato said that in an exceedingly natural manner. Homura also wasn't surprised by it anymore.

Because, from the very start of this matter, there were hints that she already knew about this unusual phenomenon.

Even regarding the mail that became the reason for being summoned to Little Garden, she knew everything. It wasn't definite for what reason or circumstances was she related to Little Garden───but, be that as it may, it was not like it would change their standings as Senpai and Kouhai in school or the client and the hired researcher.

He deliberately didn't ask questions and nodded with a serious expression.

"Is that so? You already know that she isn't your average someone, right?"

"Yes. I know about that more than Senpai."

"Seriously? I want to hear more regarding that, but that comes after we return back."

Homura and Ayato mutually nodded. As long as they understood that each of them had their own circumstances, they should wait for the right time to talk.

With a tensed expression, Homura knocked on the visitor room, requesting for the permission to enter.

For a while, there was no reaction, but as he lightly knocked once more, the voice was heard from the inside.

"Come in. I permit you to enter."

Queen's voice resounded. It seems she was inside after all.

Straightening themselves once more, the two stepped inside the special guest room. Homura put himself on guard wondering just what kind of threats would he get this time, however, no traps were set in particular this time.

Instead there appeared shapes of a woman dressed like a employee and a walking candlelamp.

The employee woman had long plaited hair hanging on her back, and looked towards them with gentle eyes.

The employee who carried a feelings of a perfection as an adult woman, looked at Ayato with a smile and waved her hand. Ayado meekly nodded with a stiff smile and straightened herself.

The interior of the room was furnished with gaudy equipment appropriate for a room for special guests, and the flame of the candles of the chandelier made of cut glass illuminated the room with flickering lights.

The walking candle lamp with a blue flame banner engraved on it was running around noisily and laying out the tea preparations. It was probably being brewed beyond the door that was was located inside the room and was only around 50 cm in size, but it was very questionable as to how exactly was it being brewed.

However, the other party wasn't someone who he could ask something so trivial.

The Queen, "Queen Halloween" was courteously sitting at the round table made of Oak. Her golden hair and looks were arranged gorgeously as always, worthy of her other name of "Golden Queen"───however...

For some reason, at this moment, she, despite being expressionless, was looking at Homura and Ayato with a slightly annoyed gaze.

Homura planned to quickly announce his business, however seeing her clearly displeased state, it was difficult for him to break the ice first.

.........Did I show some kind of impolite behavior?

Homura asked Ayato with just his gaze. Surprisingly, however, Ayato too looked at Homura with a sour expression on her face. It seems that even from her perspective, Homura did something impolite.

Homura who had no idea what to even apologize for had no choice but to awkwardly stare at Queen.

However within the uneasy atmosphere───the attendant woman pointed out his mistake with a faint smile.

"Listen, young man. You made a mistake with the amount of knocks, you know?"


"Senpai. As the international manners, you knock three times with those you already know, and four times if it's someone you meet for the first time or a person of upper class. Knocking only twice is.........umm, err. Usually it's something used in places like restrooms.........it is by no means something to be used when visiting a room of someone of high social status.”

Oh shit! Homura felt chills run down his spine.

It was manners omitted in Japan, however the other party now was a God from Western European culture. It was inevitable that she would take offense that her room was treated as a restroom. Moreover, Homura was also impolite in his last audience with her by being late. She forgave him last time, but continuously doing it would worsen her impression of him.

Likewise, Queen sharpened her lips in a blaming manner and frankly drew her conclusion.

"Saigou Homura. Since you are our representative candidate, I'll forgive you for being impolite for the second time. I'll overlook that much with tolerance. ───However, there's no next time. I was wondering whether to kill you on the spot right this moment."

Be careful from now on, Queen gave her warning and sipped her black tea.

But to be tolerated twice for his impoliteness, the Queen was quite generous compared to what he heard.

There was also him being lucky, but from now on, he did not want to commit such foolishness as to cross over the death line before he noticed it. Homura etched it in his heart to memorize the British manners when he returned back, gave a bow and took a step back.

It would be better for Ayato to go forward first instead of Homura announcing his business.

Ayato quickly read the atmosphere and stepped forward.

She hesitated on how to begin to talk before Homura───However, she can also take quick action once she made up her mind. Realizing that her first words should be this, Ayato elegantly bowed.

"It has been a while, Queen. Scathach-sensei. Queen's Knight, "Faceless" has now returned."

"I see. It's been a while. According to your body time, it must be fourteen years, right, Scathach?"

The woman referred to as Scathach agreed while pouring the black tea that the walking candlelamp brought.

"It is as you say, Queen. ───Fufu, Ayato looks lively above all. That knight title is a thing from before reincarnation, so if you are introducing yourself, you should use your surname Kudou or your British surname."

"I'm feeling obliged. I will do so from now on. .........It seems that Sensei hasn't changed as well. Are you assuming a position of Lord Butler now?"

"That's right. Does it suit me?"

The Lord Butler Scathach put her hands on her back and took a pose. Ayato agreed with a bitter smile without thinking, but it certainly suited her. Since the tight clothes of the butler's suit made the body line clearly visible, just by wearing it and standing, she who boasted of height and extraordinary proportions was like a painting. Regardless if they were the opposite or the same sex, she would undoubtedly appear attractive to them.

While displaying a forced smile as if troubled, Ayato continued with harmless words.

"Makes me think that Sensei would look good in anything she wears. ───Have the other masters not come?"

"They haven't come, but they all have been informed. Without a doubt, they all must be angry at heart now from your current shameful sight. Actually, I'm the same."

Although she displayed a gentle smile, her eyes boiled and conveyed her anger.

Ayato hung her head with a bitter expression while Queen smiled from pure enjoyment as she sipped her black tea.

However Homura who listened from the side was thinking about something else.

Judging from odds and ends of the speech, it sounded like Queen's and Ayato's relationship was that of a master and servant.

Moreover, what did the word "Reincarnation" mean exactly? As expected, Homura wanted an explanation. As there were also other things on his mind, Homura wanted to immediately ask about them from the side, but Queen seemed to be enjoying even that reaction of Homura. Considering Ayato's standpoint, it would be safer to stay silent for now.

".........I'm ashamed of myself. I am resolved to lose even my knight title."

"Right. If Queen didn't stand for you, I certainly planned to do just that."

Ayato and Homura got surprised and looked at Queen. Queen leisurely drank her black tea, but she knit her brows a bit from this manner of speech.

".........Scathach. It's not like I particularly stood for her."

"Oh, you are right. It was a merciful judgment of Queen."

"It wasn't merciful either. But it's wasteful right? I like the bloodline of this child quite a bit. It is easy to ruin it, but isn't it a pity to let her go?"

As she announced that, Queen raised her right hand and faced her palm upward.

With a flick of her wrist, a silver-colored card appeared from the empty space. The sun and gold emblem engraved in the center perhaps symbolized "Queen Halloween".

Seeing that emblem, Homura inclined his head in doubt.

(Eh.........That symbol, if I'm not mistaken, is from "Everything Company".........?)

Homura lowered his line of sight and confirmed the logo of his phone. The trademark on the phone made by "Everything Company" resembled the banner of Queen.

Homura pondered on what this meant.

Guessing Queen's intentions, Scathach covered her mouth with a hand and smiled questionably.

"I see. Return love sword and reevaluate, is it?"

"It's like that. She was defeated while her familiar arms were taken away. It should be fine to overlook her one loss, right?"

Queen flipped the card with her fingertip and ferried it to Ayato with rotation.

Scathach folded her arms behind her and informed while erasing her smile.

"───That's how it is, Kudou Ayato. Queen is saying that she will pardon your defeat. Next time, show the Greek Monster and self-centered snobs the way of Ulster."

Take the front! She ordered with a sharp glint in her eyes. Ayato glanced at the card with the "Queen Halloween" symbol engraved on it and respectfully bowed.

"I humbly receive the imperial command. ───Well then, Senpai. I'll excuse myself first."

"S-Sure. But is it alright?"

"There's no problem. From now on, I won't let anyone harm even a finger───nay, even a single hair of Senpai and Suzuka."

Smiling gently, Ayato left the special guest room. Before long, from the other side of the door, the sound of her running towards the last wagon was heard. She probably went to attack the enemy who was coming to attack now.

As that sound completely disappeared, they directed their gaze at Saigou Homura.

Homura, not knowing where to start from, stiffened his face.

Unable to just watch him, Scathach took one step forth and bowed while suppressing her laugh.

"Should I say, nice to meet you? Lord butler-cum-head maid-cum-Queen's overseer───I am called Scathach. I don't think you will be unreasonably killed within the reach of my eyes, so you do not have to be so nervous, you know?"

"............No, that's not really the case."

Even if it was pointed out with a smile, the problem didn't lie there. At any rate, the things to hear and to tell were too much. Just from that conversation now, the amount of questions he had became tenfold.

However, he couldn't afford to stay silent like this and let the other party take the initiative.

Putting aside the matter regarding Ayato, now is the time to give the answer of the other day.

"Queen. First, about the matter from few days ago, I have brought my answer."

"Is that so. Let us hear it then."

Queen released her hand from the teacup full of black tea and stared into Homura's eyes.

She was someone whose emotions could be felt somewhat, but it was fundamentally difficult to understand what she was thinking. Moreover, it was difficult to negotiate when her words came back with a bite.

Homura was hesitating on the starting words, however, making up his mind that it was no use to hide it, he said.

"Queen. You want me to appear in Sun Authority War and fight together, right?"

"It's not entirely correct, but that's right."

"I can agree with that. If there are people who are trying to abuse the Star Particle Bodies, I'm also fine with fighting with them. ───However, I want to believe that the reason of fighting is for mutual benefit."

For mutual benefit───The moment he uttered those words, Queen raised her eyebrows a bit. It probably wasn't something to the point of unexpected, but she probably also thought it was a boring decision.

With the other party like her, it was an established tactic to throw 70% of your hand at them and observe their reaction.

Sure enough, the Queen also didn't make immediate judgment. However, with that, she probably lost all interest. She lowered her gaze and turned her consciousness to black tea, and asked him mechanically while leaving her consciousness elsewhere.

"I see. ───And so?"

"Since we’re are fighting, I want to hear the details regarding the enemy. About the true identity of the "Bull of Heaven" and the enemy that is currently attacking the "Spirit Train", I want to know everything you know about them."

"Now, that's quite an assertive demand."

Scathach who was listening the talk from the side raised an exaggerated voice. She was probably amazed by what Homura said, however these conditions that could even be called reckless have instead attracted Queen's attention.

Given that he said "Mutual Benefit", it would be out of the question unless some kind of information was presented from Homura's side. All the information regarding the enemy naturally also included handing over the information that touches the answer of the Gift Game.

It meant that, while requesting that much information, he could present information of equal value. It was an opportunity to guess the degree of Saigo Homura's hand, and it was also possible to judge whether to dismiss him or not at the same time.

Queen once again faced Homura with a smile, and asked a question that might have been the last.

"I don't mind telling you.........But in exchange for that information, what do you present?"

"Remaining Sovereigns of the Sun and the details regarding them."

As expected, from Homura's words, even Queen slightly widened her eyes. She planned to immediately replace him if he said something uninteresting, however his words from right now couldn't be overlooked, as expected. Just what did he, who was just recently summoned to Little Garden, know regarding Sun Authorities?

Homura who took out his phone pointed at the logo attached on it.

"This Sun trademark.........It came to me when I looked at this symbolic logo of "Everything Company". You people or the gods of Little Garden, unless some kind of legend or an organization that has been bestowed a banner acts as intermediary, I think that you can't intervene with our world."

Moon Rabbit, Shirayuki-hime, Minotaur, Bull of Heaven.

Even though all of them are legends of outer world, they are accepted in Little Garden as if natural. This is a proof that Little Garden and the Outer World mutually interfere with each other, and also a proof that they interfered with the outer world's past.

"I should have noticed when I, who was living in the 21st Century was summoned here. The Gods of Little Garden are interfering with not just the past, but every era including the modern era from our point of view. No, rather, it's possible to interfere with the past, so there's no reason not to interfere with the present."

While he said so, honestly, it was a blind spot. But if you think about it, it was only natural.

Between the past and present, the only difference is whether it can be observed or not, and fundamentally they are the same.

Queen crossed her legs with a little interest and answered Homura's question.

"That's right. When we Divine Spirits interfere with the outer world, we make sure to do it through human organizations in some kind of form. Religious organizations are typical examples, but there are also deep relationships with the countries and organizations that lend the banners."

"For example, like the Union Flag of Great Britain?"

To Homura's question, it was Scathach who replied with a nod.

"That's how it is. The Red Dragon Flag of Wales is the same, and so is the staff of two serpents of the World Health Organization. The Crest of Ayato's "Everything Company" is also modeled after the Sun, right? That is a symbol given in exchange for our support during the dawn of Zaibatsu. As for the era, it was sometime soon after the war, I believe."

Suddenly, Homura searched his memories. If I recall correctly, the staff of two serpents of World Health Organization was a symbol related to Greek Mythology.

"Still.........It's quite startling that you interfere even with the international organizations."

"Of course, there are several hurdles in order to focus and fix the interfered reality. I think that this Gift Game is also part of that."

".........Even the fact that the "Bull of Heaven" raged in the world?"

"No. The fact that Star Particle Bodies would rescue the world."

That, in other words, also meant that the result of Saigou Homura saving the world was arranged beforehand. Homura who deepened his conviction after listening to that, emphasized the ending and continued.

"Now, let's get back to the topic. Queen wants to make me fight the one who produced the "Bull of Heaven". So in other words───this is because the competitor who is participating in the Sun Authority Game and the one who abused the Particle Bodies is the same person, right?"

Queen nodded in silence, and urged him to continue with gesture.

"And paradoxically, those who aim at the Star Particle Bodies is highly likely to be party involved in the Sun Authority War. I have few clues regarding that. If you like, I can present you the banner that party is using as their symbol right at this moment."

As expected, with this, even Scathach and Queen exchanged glances. there was a few seconds gap, but neither of them raised an objection. They probably judged that it wasn't bad as the point of compromise of the story.

It's not like the girls wanted to needlessly decrease the researchers of Star Particle Bodies.

Homura took out his phone, opened the image folder and prepared so that he could immediately present it.

"If it's just showing you a picture, I can do it right at this moment. However, if you want detailed data, it would be impossible unless I got to my laboratory.........So, how is it? Is it still weak as a hand?"

"Let's see. It's still weak for me to tell you the answer to the Gift Game."

"But Queen. We can't afford to reject him and let the Buddhism take all the good parts. Neither the Star Particle Bodies, or this raw ore."

Lord Butler looked at Homura with an amused grin on her face. At that moment, Homura was assaulted by freezing chills down his spine. This gaze that was just like when a child discovered an interesting toy, Homura had experienced it before. Even this woman who looked diligent at first glance was fundamentally the same kind of person as Queen.

Queen rested her arms on the table and suspiciously looked at Homura.

".........It doesn't seem like he can be polished into a brilliant warrior. Are you saying you can polish him?"

"I'm not confident, but I think I want to take the challenge. Fortunately, I've been blessed with the disciples until now. I had Sétanta[1] for armed might, Ayato for ability.........But I was thinking it was about time to have about one disciple who was powerless but excelled in wisdom and courage."

Is that so, Queen answered frankly. Since there were no objections, it seems the conversation had been settled between them.

While Scathach swung her long plait to the right, she walked up to Homura and announced while showing the same gentle smile as before.

"Homura-kun. Let's accept some of your opinion. Until this Sun Authority Game ends, I will be training you. How about that?"

"Ah, No............Sorry, but how do I say it, Slashing and striking isn't my strong point, or should I say, I'm poor at it."

"Oh, haven't you heard from Kuro Usagi? That Gift Games are things that test three things that are power, wisdom and courage, so as long as you have courage and wisdom, you would have enough chances to aim for the win, you know?"

".......... So, teaching the beginner the ways to fight in Games?"

"That's how it is. If you have questions, I will answer them, and if you have something to say, I would listen. Also the participation with might.........Well just a bit would be fine."

How about it? The Lord Butler announced proudly while putting her hands on her waist.

Just for an instant, Homura hesitated towards Scathach's proposal. He was thankful for getting the backing in this fight, however he couldn't help that this woman smelled of danger. She looked normal at a glance, but Homura instinctively felt that she was undoubtedly the same kind of person as Queen. And above all, that awkward smile that Ayato who was sociable towards anyone showed, seemed like it was indicating the hidden true nature of this woman.

(I want information, but I want to have low risks. .........But I'm asking for something too good to be true, huh.)

Nothing ventured, nothing gained, is what they say. More than anything, first thing to do now is to remove the threat.

"More than this is luxury, huh? ───Understood. From now, I will study under you regarding Gift Games."

"Oh, suddenly the polite speech? Being more frank would be fine, you know?"

"It's a issue of preparedness. What is necessary to receive the teachings is obedience and respect. In order to show respect towards who you are studying under, it's best to start from superficial parts."

Saigou Homura straightened up and gave a bow.

Scathach with swaying plait and wide eyes, her voice trembled as if moved.

"O-Ohh............! D-Did you hear that, Queen! This was the first time in my life that I have been told such admirable words from my disciple! No, really, it's a phrase I want to make the other stupid disciples hear a million times............!!!"

Scathach looked up at the heavens with emotion and sadness. Apparently she seems to have quite a lot of disciples. After expressionlessly watching her state, Queen gave a small mutter.

".........Hmm. It's good that you are diligent, but be careful as much as you can. Her training policy is that of a Spartan, but on the other hand, she is very lax on caring after someone."


"Yes, lax. Also, I'll just say this beforehand, but there's no point in asking questions about Ayato."


"I don't mean anything bad. That girl is special to Japanese people, even with parts that are not related to Zaibatsu. It would be better for both if you didn't know until the appropriate time comes."

From Queen's words, Homura became even more puzzled. As expected, he couldn't find any kind of explanation to her current words. What did she mean by her being special to Japanese people rather than just Saigou Homura himself?

Queen elegantly brushed the hair on the back of her head and brought the tea to her mouth and said in slightly good mood.

"But, that's right. You can teach him to a harmless degree. Explain it to him."

"Understood. ───By the way, Homura-kun, how far do you know regarding "Halloween"?"

"Just the surface. In short, Queen is the personification of the Autumn Obon, right?"

───The moment he said that, Queen's face instantly became sullen. Her state as she glared at Homura with knitted brows was just like a warm spring changing into a freezing winter.

Homura had his expression frozen as he didn't know what served as a landmine. Looking at the situation, he was under the delusion that this moment became his death. Regarding his speech, he should have been allowed to speak freely last time, so the landmine he stepped on was something else.

Carefully, Homura asked in order to defuse the landmine.

".........Errr. Could it be that you dislike it being called Obon?"

"I hate it. After all, it doesn't have a nice ring to it. It's not a big mistake, but don't say it from now on."

Queen turned her face away with a pout.

Homura didn't really understand her sensitiveness, but it is not good to force what she dislikes. Homura kept in mind once more that there might be landmines somewhere, and started once again.

"I got it, then I'll put it differently. To explain it simply, it's the Festival of Celts that overlaps the view of life and death with the changing of the seasons.........is that right, Scathach-san?"

"Call me Sensei. Because everyone calls me that. But for someone from 21st Century, you are quite well-informed. .........Could it be that you know my legend as well?"

"Umm, sorry. I don't know. It's just that as a custom of the orphanage, it was a rule to magnificently enjoy Halloween. Because Halloween was the number one favorite festival for the founder."

Homura spoke those words full of deep respect and affection.

Founder of the "Canaria Family Home" orphanage───was a girl whose background beyond her name, Canaria, was unknown, and the festival that someone like her passionately loved was Halloween.

In present day Japan, there was no other festival as widely favored as Halloween where both adults and kids could participate to their hearts content. Of course, there were large-scale festivals like Nebuta, Tenjin and Gion that were performed in regions, but only three festivals, Halloween, Christmas and New Year were well-favored in Japan as a whole.

In a sense, those words of Homura were loaded with respect towards Queen───but for some reason, the two averted their gaze with sad looks in their eyes.

".........Is that so? So that girl was always appreciating Halloween even in the outer world."


"Nevermind. But, right. There is no doubt that the modern Halloween festival has been arranged for public festivals. In reality, Governing life and death, stars and their boundaries is the spirit rank of Queen. From the spirits of the dead Queen came across, Ayato───would be a bit different. In a word, "Soul of a baby who couldn't be born" was given a body and made to reincarnate. In order to come in contact with the one engaged with Star Particle Bodies───In other words, Homura-kun, as the member of "Everything Company"."

"Then Ayato's previous existence......was she a miscarried child?"

"That's not it. If it was that, I would say that, wouldn't I? Since I intentionally made it vague, make an adequate judgment."

Scathach momentarily directed a severe gaze at him. It appeared that he shouldn't touch that part. From the vagueness of the topic, there seems to be a reason why it could considerably hurt feelings.

But it is enough to hear that much. Homura sighed out of relief.

"I see.........But, I'm glad. I was wondering whether she was forced, but given the current reason, I can understand why Ayato obeyed Queen. So, Queen is something like a benefactor for her?"

That was constantly weighing on his mind. Scathach who became aware of the basis of Homura's worries, widened her eyes from increasing surprise, and then showed a heartfelt gentle smile.

"I'm surprised. Instead of acting, you are really diligent, huh. You have to cherish that sincerity of yours, okay? It would become an opportunity for villains to take advantage of, however it would become the strongest weapon against the Devils and monsters."

"I-Is that so?"

"Yes, that is so. Ayato lacks in that aspect, so compensate for it. That girl is talented and honest.........But she's too pure, and easily gets caught up in silly traps."

She's someone who makes a blunder at last second, Lord Butler gave an advice with a raised index finger. He certainly felt like he could understand it. She had strong and honest sense of justice, however she had a weak point of living a life of a sheltered girl. That's probably what she wanted to say by 'too pure'.

"However I wouldn't have met Ayato if not for Queen, and the continuance of the orphanage would also be at risk. I think that just for the fact that I discovered such connection, I'm glad to have met Queen."

"That's right. Everything is thanks to me. Aren't I generous?"

"Yes, you are. .........However, was it fine to let Ayato go alone?"

"There's no problem. She was lenient because of too much peace, so her head cooled down after experiencing some pain, right? If that girl becomes serious and goes for the victory, even the warriors of Celtic Pantheon who could oppose her are limited in number. Speaking of just her natural abilities, she has an outstanding talent comparable to Sétanta."

Fufun, Scathach showed her good mood. Probably her true character leaked out because Ayato, who was both her subordinate and disciple, wasn't present.

Homura released a bit of his tension, sat down as if the power left him and leaned his back on the chair.

Suddenly, Homura raised his face as if he remembered something.

"That reminds me, Queen. Leaving aside participation in the Sun Authority War, would there be some kind of reward?"

Queen suddenly stopped the hand she was drinking tea with and looked at Homura.

Her narrowed gaze fixed at Homura contained extraordinary sharpness. He wiped his sweat wondering if this was a landmine, but Queen once again sipped her black tea without showing signs of harm.

Was that some kind of a sign? Scathach revealed a wry smile and stepped forth.

"Homura-kun. I'm not sure what reward is it that you seek.........But you should naturally be able to understand what the reward is if you win and advance to the next round of this Sun Authority War."

".........So you are saying to win this first match without thinking about anything for now?"

"That's how it is. It's good that you understand quick. Well, at the moment of clearing this preliminary Game, Some kind of big change should happen around you. Look forward to that for now."

Putting her hand on her lips, Scathach winked playfully at him. That kind of maiden-like behavior was unexpectedly suitable for her, perhaps she was still young mentally.

More than anything, first comes the victory.

Queen and Scathach told him that it was the number one prerequisite.

It was at that moment when the Spirit Train violently shook due to attack from the outside.


The deck of the train turned into a battlefield where iron arrows rained incessantly. It was Asterius who knocked down ballista arrowheads that were flying from every direction all at once, and the warriors from "Six Scars" who indomitably responded with rapid fire.

It was an equal fight, but neither side was allowed to make even a single blunder. If he began to destroy the ballista raised on the deck, "Six Scars" would be quickly disadvantaged.

The preparations to cut the last wagon in order to increase the rotation rate even by a bit was still under preparations.

"Archers who finished reloading raise the flag!"

"Release all the spare ballista arrowheads!"

"Just a little more before we enter the Ley Line! We'll get away without fail!"

The Beastmen raised brave voices to motivate themselves. The enemy was skilled enough to endure this fierce attack. If they got inside the wagon, they would split it in one go. If that happens, it would be the end.

Suzuka wiped the raindrops and sweat that overflowed from tension, and continued to think.

(We've been had. I thought they would stop even for an instant, but they don't stop at all. When I thought they stopped, they were outside of range.)

Mmmm, Suzuka crossed her hands with a troubled expression. She didn't talk to Ayato about it, there was one more spectacular move hiding in her Gift. If all went well, it was possible to completely overturn this rivaling battle.

However, there's also part that the enemy already became aware of her range. The poor plan of recklessly leaping and coming back can't be done anymore.

(~.........So, we're in a deadlock, huh? It was for the future, but it can't be helped!)

Alright! She abandoned the new tactics and fired herself to continue with the current one. Being able to easily maintain good attitude even though the Game progress didn't go as she planned was her good point. Because if she messed up here, it could become an opening.

Asterius on the other hand was having a hard fight against several opponents due to the bad maneuverability of the great battleaxe. If he had a trident or a longsword in hand, he would've cut through it long time ago.

White Tiger bared his fangs in irritation and dug his claws in the atmosphere.

『Just because we can't move forward too much, they are sure doing as they please. There's also the alternative of just destroying all of the participants, Bull Monster.』

"There's no such choice. If I do that, everything would stay as a mystery."

Asterius had a reason to meet Homura at any cost.

If he won without clearing up the meaning behind salvation, it would be an unsatisfying win like small bones getting stuck in the throat. Something like that can't be allowed.

While setting up his great battleaxe, he overlooked from the sky wondering if there was no way to capture it.

"Now that things come to this, the enemy's hand is also exposed. It's clear that enemy's side has someone with the Gift of transfer in them. It seems the range is around 120m, however it seems they can "transfer the fired ballista arrowheads". If we stop our feet within the range, it's inevitable that our heads would be shot."

Since he understood that much, the capture strategy was clear. In short, the number of people wasn't enough. If there was one more strong person, raiding that iron fortress was an easy job.

"Tiger Deity. Is that comrade of yours still not coming? How long are they going to make us wait?"

『Yes, they kept you waiting. It seems the rumored partner has arrived.』

As Tiger Deity revealed his fangs and smiled, the wind direction of the storm changed.

The eastern wind that was blowing to hold back the Spirit Train, started to blow from the west. Asterius was surprised from the sudden change, but there was no change to the cumulonimbus cloud of the "Bull of Heaven". Nevertheless, just the direction of the wind brought a dramatic change.

Asterius quickly noticed that there was another practitioner there.

Asterius overlooked the surface trying to search for them───However, their presence appeared from the sky far above. Moreover, it didn't simply appear. The moment that person who looked to be the practitioner spread their hands, they gathered all the rain and wind from around under them, and started changing it into spherical shape.

".........Hey, Tiger Deity. Is that your partner, what are they doing?"

Asterius knit his brows from unpleasant premonition.

White Tiger who perceived what was going to happen after this, raised a flustered voice.

『This is bad.........! That foolish girl, does she plan to destroy the iron fortress!?』

"What!? Wait a minute, what about my situation!?"

『If that girl could worry about such things, my stomach would always be at peace!』

It appears that this Tiger Deity was suffering from the stomach-ache. There was quite serious feelings loaded in his shout. However, the practitioner didn't appear to be stopping her hands at all.

She who already collected hundreds of tons of rainwater, drew thousands of tons of water current from the great river, and accumulated enough wind power to warp the space, laughed while revealing fangs appearing as if she would release all of that any moment.

『Aah.........! We won't make it if we stop her now! Let's take a distance for the moment!!』

Asterius call to wait vanished within the windstorm. Asterius was flustered.

His objective was to meet the man called Saigou Homura, not to destroy the Spirit Train. She had to be stopped by all means, but the only one who could stop that practitioner at this place, was him who possessed the "Pseudo Divinity - Celestial Beast Thunder". The lightning attack with released Divinity would most likely swallow up even that user, but the circumstances didn't allow otherwise.

The problem was the White Tiger after bringing down that practitioner.

If this Celestial beast who still hasn't showed his hand becomes serious, then even Asterius who holds Divinity Arms might be at disadvantage.

(But there's no other way! .........Do I have no other choice!?)

The lightning dwelled in the battleaxe. Since it become like this, there was no other choice but to kill both the White Tiger and the practitioner in one go. He was still hiding his power now, but he had no spare energy to make enemies out of a Celestial Beast.

He put feet on White Tiger's back planning to part from him.

───It happened at that moment.

From the deck of the Spirit Train "Sun Thousand", a single beam of flash traveled as if to pierce the sky. The polished arrow that seemed like it could pierce the opponent even a thousand miles away, plunged forward as if making its way through the gaps of raging water currents and the windstorm, and splendidly sent the head of the practitioner flying.


Asterius became speechless. It was a pierce suitable enough to be called a special move.

If this was simply a technique to fly through the distance, there were numerous of them in this Little Garden.

However, to see through this raging storm, and to take the enemy's head in the midst of them being protected by the constantly changing fluid with just a single arrow was a bow skill that couldn't be called anything but divine.

Should he be raising praises, or should he be astonished by the enemy's threat. While holding down his excitement, Asterius directed his line of sight towards the deck.

There was just a single warrior standing above the deck of the Spirit Train.

It was a girl with swaying golden hair that didn't lose its shine even in this storm, directing an angry glare towards them.

Casting aside her usual mask and exposing her expression of a warrior, Queen's Knight───Kudou Ayato, stood before one person and one beast.

1 The given name of Cú Chulainn.