Oct 22, 2017

Last Embryo V2 Chapter 9

Chapter 9

───"Sun Thousand" Guest Wagon.

After everyone took refuge, the whole wagon was covered by Scathach's "Dun Scaith".

The attacks of the ox-headed crowd continued for a while, however it seemed that they had enough intelligence to understand that it was useless. After an hour, the surroundings were filled with silence.
The Spirit Train covered by "Dun Scaith" was dim, having no sunlight come from the windows. The swaying state of the candlelamp created an illusion as if stirring up their anxiety.

Inside the wagon where the high alert was temporarily dispelled, they explained the circumstances to Izayoi who joined them midway.

Izayoi who heard the talk folded his arms, his eyes containing light that showed that he somewhat understood it.

".........I see. To think Asterius was about fifteen years old. If that story is true, the proper solution might be to think that Asterius ≠ Minotaur."

"W-Why would that be? I don't understand how it's connected at all!"

Suzuka joined them in the train, but hearing Izayoi's reasoning, she ended up being confused.

Homura raised his right hand and gave a timely help.

"According to the Greek legends, the man-eating of Minotaur was performed once every nine years, and at those times, seven boys and girls were offered up as a sacrifice. ───Do you get it? The ceremony was performed every nine years."

Suzuka and Ayato were taken aback from Homura's reference.

"I-I see.........! If it was repeated many times in nine year's cycle, the age of fifteen year old youth wouldn't add up to it!"

"Certainly. If we follow the legend, then he should be at least eighteen years old. .........However, if that's the case, another problem arises. In the first place, who in the world is he? Is he really Asterius?"

Holding her chin with her hand, Ayato raised a question. Asterius who lied on the bed of the guest room was unconscious and was unable to hear the conversation.

Therefore, it was Izayoi who responded to her question.

"I can think of two theories.

First, "The boy named Asterius doesn't exist and this boy is nothing but a sacrifice."

Second, "Asterius exists. However, he died as a youth by some unknown factor X."

Taking in mind the current incident, the latter should be correct. I'm sure that this brat died by a smallpox or some kind of virus."

The reasoning of Homura and others that "He turned ugly because of some kind of virus resembling a smallpox" was half correct, half wrong.

Infected by an endemic disease, he probably died without making a full recovery.

"The belief towards bulls on Crete is rooted strongly, and even the word "Minotaur" seems to mean "Bull of Minos". With the reasoning based on the "Beauty Determining Disease" from before, the negative implication grew stronger."

His name while alive was "Asterius", signifying stars and lightning.

Having died without reaching adulthood, he underwent the name change to "Minotaur".

And so, the true identity of the legendary man-eating labyrinth inhabiting monster in the unbeatable labyrinth was───

""Minotaur"───True identity of the man-eating monster.

It was the royal tomb of the Prince of Crete, Asterius."

Huh! Suzuka and Ayato exchanged looks.

"Royal tomb.........S-So that's it! The seven sacrifices were for the ritual for the repose of the soul!"

"The selection of the boys and girls might have been for that purpose. Seven sacrifices was perhaps referring to the selected servants who were made to follow their master into death.[1]"

In the monarchy of BC, selecting people to follow the king into the grave was not unusual.

Or perhaps, it might have been the ritual for pacifying the endemic disease.

Homura looked at Asterius sleeping on the bed with a keen expression on his face.

"Or.........it might be that at first, this guy himself was the sacrifice."


"It seems that even the ritual of pacifying the endemic disease had a custom of offering a bull as a sacrifice. Being renamed to "Minotaur(Bull of Minos)" might signify that the Prince who suffered from the endemic disease and didn't have long to live had become a sacrifice."

In other words───it would mean that the Prince of Crete, Asterius didn't meet his end from the disease, but was instead decapitated by his father.

Homura, Suzuka and Ayato lowered their gazes, unable to endure it.

Especially Homura and Suzuka, being people of orphanage, had various thoughts in minds.

"Canaria Family Home" was the orphanage that gathered kids with special circumstances.

They were mostly kids who were born with peculiar characteristics and had feuds with their real parents. There were also kids who were unable to overcomes the scars in their hearts and couldn't face the adults even to this day. These two were the senior group of that kind of orphanage.

Both Suzuka and Homura couldn't help but worry about Asterius' circumstances.

".........So anyway. This Prince-sama himself isn't a bad person, right?"

"That's how it turns out. His horns broke and he stopped being a monster."

"Is that so! Then, we have to talk about his future later!"

Right, Homura and Suzuka nodded at each other. Ayato bent her head, not understanding what the two were thinking, however it seemed that Izayoi understood it. Perhaps it was due to the difference in circumstances.

Izayoi who sharpened his gaze stepped before the two.

"Wait a minute. You aren't seriously going to say something like taking this guy back with you, right?"

"That's what we wanted to say. Right, brother?"

"Yup, that was precisely it, my sister."

"What the heck are you saying!! Just because he lost his horns, it's not like he became completely human, and our previous talk was only a supposition! What will you do if something happened to other chibis!?"

Izayoi rebuked them with unusual seriousness. He was probably anxious about letting a monster with unknown character into his former home.

However, Homura and Suzuka wouldn't be the senior group if they faltered with this level of rebuke.

They quickly prepared a counterattack and glared back.

"But Homura will be involved in this Authority War from now on as well, right? Wouldn't it be better to actively increase the allies?"

"Right, it wouldn't be bad to do so. Him going to school might be difficult, but housework in general really requires more hands."

"Stop messing around you idiot duo. Will you two take the responsibility when something happens, huh!? This is no place to be pointlessly stubborn!!!"

He asked about how they would take responsibility with enough intimidation to tremble the interior of the train.

In the instance where Asterius hadn't lost his man-eating will as a Bull Monster───Just how would anyone take responsibility. The two erased their expressions but still gave an immediate reply.

".........Responsibility? Something like that, isn't it given, we'll take full responsibility."

"It's not a pointless stubbornness. It's our stubbornness as a human being."

The two proclaimed without shaking. Ayato watched over them full of anxiety, but she knew full well about Homura's and Suzuka's nature of not abandoning misfortunate children.

During these five years───those two have lived while taking full responsibility of everything that occurred in the orphanage. It was the same when they lost the investors and it became impossible to go on due to financial difficulties.

If the orphanage stopped operating, children who would lose their place to go to would definitely appear. Even at such times, Homura and Suzuka desperately ran about, and in the end succeeded to earn the support of "Everything Company" that Kudou family owned.

Abandoning Asterius here would also mean throwing away their obstinacy of desperately coming this far for the Canaria home.

The children of Canaria's home──appealed to misfortunate kids with a gaze saying they would never abandon them.

".........Hmm. Stubbornness as a human being, huh."

While Izayoi was surprised that it turned into a quarrel, he sat down on the chair. Even Izayoi didn't think that they would be stubborn to this point. He was told many times, but he once again became self-aware that for him, these two appeared to have remained as a duo of ten year old boy and girl.

In old days, Izayoi stood before the two and took care of their living.

However───Izayoi abandoned his position. Although going to another world was indeed the necessary action from the standpoint of his living, he still abandoned his duty.

So that same person reprimanding these two who were the senior group of the orphanage and  its actual supervisors might have been quite unreasonable.

But even if he was someone who had abandoned his responsibility, he still had to say what he had to say.

"If you are going to say that much, do as you please.........or so I'd like to say, but I have conditions."

"What is it."

"What. Even if the opponent is Iza-nii, this Suzuka-san will accept the challenge, you ruffian!"

"That's not it, and that’s a million years too early for you. ───Well, to put it simply. I want an assurance in case this guy starts acting violent in the orphanage. Will you two be able to provide that?"

Izayoi stood up and tapped at the dark window covered by the shadows.

"Homura. If it was you, how would you solve this labyrinth? Will you be able to fight with those monsters with your own power?"


Homura hesitated to speak. It was clear that the Gift he possessed wasn't battle-oriented.

Regarding the method to suppress it, he more or less already had it in mind. The victory condition, "Erase the lightning, and return the star to its original form" probably meant to change Asterius' name to Minotaur.

To “return the star to its original form” was that method.

First step would be to cure the disease with Particle Bodies.

Second step would be the return him to the labyrinth that is the royal tomb.

And third step───sitting on the throne of King Minos.

In other words, inheriting the crown.

But if they did that, Asterius would most probably fall into a slumber in this royal tomb once again. ‘Returning the original form’ also contained the meaning of returning the prince to the royal tomb.

However, supposing he didn’t take this choice, it would only leave one other method.

"───Defeating the Minotaur, the monster of the labyrinth."

"So then, can you do it?"

"I can, I think. No, if I couldn't, me being invited to the Sun Authority War wouldn’t make sense. That's why, I'm sure that I should be able to use that battleaxe."

Everyone's gazes gathered in one point. At that place was the battleaxe that held most destructive power among the twelve constellations───"Proto Keraunos" that emitted lightning from its edge.

Certainly, if he was able to handle this Divine Weapon, destroying the labyrinth might also be possible.

Holding his chin with hand, Izayoi began to think, calculating the chances of victory.

".........Hmmm? Certainly with your Gift you might be able to handle it."

"Indeed. Compared to the Particle Body research and orphanage accounting, instead it’s a simple thing."

Towards Izayoi's doubt came an immediate reply.

In that case, there was nothing else Izayoi had to ask.

Izayoi who vigorously sat on the chair and crossed his legs announced towards the three with ferocious smile.

"If you say that much, I'll see how you perform. Well then, try your best, chibis."

We aren't chibis! Homura and Suzuka objected on the spot. Ayato looked at the siblings conversation with envy, but she coughed and gathered the attention to herself.

"It appears the discussion has been settled."

The three nodded at each other and threw down the gauntlet to the final battle.


Inside of the labyrinth was dominated by silence.

Now that the previous tumult had quieted down, the place was in a slump.

The Chief God and Demigod parent and child fought since the "Man-eating Labyrinth" awakened until the very end, but their circumstances seemed to have changed and they both disappeared from the labyrinth.

What was left was the gigantic Spirit Train and the Bull Monster displaying his giant body at the open area of the throne.

The crowd of ox heads dealt attacks to the train frame until recently, however ever since the Spirit Train was covered by the gigantic shadows, it repelled every physical attack. It seemed that they planned to hold the fort there.

However, it was impossible to hole up there forever.

The chalk Bull Monster stopped the useless attacks, and the ox-headed group gathered around it and turned into a giant lump of rocks. More the time passed, the denser would the chalk Bull Monster grow, and the battle would lean to his advantage.

Meanwhile the monster enhanced his giant body.

At this point, it would easily repel even that Serpens Scorpius Sword Flash.

Looking at his giant build, it was growing so tall that it could be called a tower, however───

Suddenly, he looked up at the sky.


The sea breeze blowing from the crevice shook his weak ego.

That wind and that sky───they certainly belonged to the land where Asterius was born and raised.

Currently, Asterius whose consciousness was suspended and his horns broken, had understood everything by becoming one with the royal tomb of the labyrinth.

.........The fact that he suffered from an endemic disease.

.........The fact that he was sacrificed by his father.

.........And the fact that he was later mourned along with the spirits of the sacrificed servants.

Now that he had learned everything, there was nothing else that he desired. It was the providence of the world to return dust to dust, ash to ash and dead to the earth. The young boy who was temporarily given life by the Sun Authority had nothing he could desire.


───If he was allowed however.

If he was allowed just one thing, then just once more, he wished to feel the sea breeze blowing from the other side of that crevice on his human skin. Because, while alive, he suffered from the endemic disease, he was isolated for a long time, and in the end, became a sacrifice, his life had curtains fallen without even hearing the sea roar of Crete even in his final moments.

The chalk monster, with a weak ego, had unconsciously extended his hand towards the crevice in the sky.

However no matter how much rocks he piled up, his hand would not reach the crevice.

Because this royal tomb labyrinth was the place he belonged to, this was his country and even the very world itself. No matter how much he longed for it and reached out to it, he would never reach it.

Because, seeing that scenery that he had carved in his heart as a child once more was something that wouldn't come about ever again.

(.........Are they coming?)

Shadows surrounding the Spirit Train were released. It seemed they resolved themselves for the final fight.

As he had mostly expected, the first one to jump out was the blond-haired girl. However there was no sign of anyone following behind her. It seemed that she planned to fight alone.

Her actions were indeed brave, however it was way too reckless. The chalk Monster wasn't  crowded by ox-heads anymore, but instead it merged into one gigantic structure that towered over the surroundings from the center of the labyrinth.

That gigantic build measuring to around 330 ft was so big it could be mistaken for a mountain.

With loose movements, he raised up his right hand, and by using those rocks as a base, he projected the weapons of various shapes.

The chalk swords, spears, bows, double-edged axes were fired one after another.

Their number exceeded seventy, and they were thrown at such speed that it created illusions as if it was a machine gun shooting them. If the tender body of a girl took even one of those hits, it would get split open and scatter the lumps of meat everywhere.

However Ayato had her Linked Sword set up and didn't move.

Her eyes strongly displayed her will to intercept them. She became the shield of the Spirit Train, carrying the firm resolution that, from this point on, she wouldn't let even a single attack pass through.


Fixing her breath, she let out the Serpens Scorpius Sword Flash.

Her alertness was even sharper compared to the one she displayed when she was at the Spirit Train’s deck. As she flicked off the double-edged axe that was flying at the front, it clashed with the spears and axes following behind it and fell down.

Thus, it turned into an attack that hit them together, but not all of them could be deflected with that.

However, Ayato accurately perceived the amount of weapons she wasn't able to repel, grasped the incoming spears in reverse and threw them back.

───Just how much one had to polish their martial arts to reach that domain.

The chalk Monster changed his feelings of fear towards her into that of respect. The rampage of numbers wouldn't become a threat to those who have mastered the sword techniques of divine level.

The number of weapons she intercepted quickly crossed fifty, and in the twinkle of an eye, the mountain of arms were piled up near the Spirit Train.

But it wasn't just Ayato protecting the Spirit Train.

Just where in the world did they come from? As one more shadow swooped down from the sky, they released a strong wind all around at random.

It was inevitable that the chalk Bull Monster missed her. She───Ayazato Suzuka was hanging in the sky by jumping high above with consecutive Teleportations in haste.

"I'm going with a big move! Aya-chan take cover!"


She released the atmosphere gathered in the sky in one go. They mowed down the arms scattered simultaneously at every side.

Accurately manipulating the "Kaitenju" that controlled the fluids was hard, however they weren't as hard to control if they were just fired at random. Moreover, they had the ability to stay in the air as well as had simple destructive power.

They were highly compatible to Suzuka whose strong point was many-sided activity.

The chalk Monster whose every weapon was mowed down had immediately prepared the second wave.

His aim was Ayazato Suzuka floating in the air. He indented to first decrease the number of hands the enemy had but this was obviously a poor plan.

Facing the sky he shot large quantity of weapons towards her.

However Suzuka who saw that coming immediately disappeared with Teleportation.

Damn it! The chalk monster cursed in his mind. Attacking a Teleporter from the front, there was no way they would receive it head on.

In order to oppose the Teleporter, it was necessary to have a different vector Gift rather than weapons or numbers advantage. That's why, fighting would be at a standstill if there was no ability like future sight or a wide area perception ability Gift. That why it was considered to be one of the most difficult to fight abilities even in this Little Garden.

There was a little opening before the next wave of attack. He immediately took a counterattack stance.

Hoverer Suzuka remained disappeared without any signs of attacking. Ayato who protected the Spirit Train to the end didn't seem to be stepping forward.

───Could they be devoted to defense? No, they should immediately realize that that would be meaningless. The other side was the very labyrinth itself. Whether they endure it or surpass it, there would be no end to it.

The dodged weapons would also melt into the ground and simply return to the Bull Monster once more.

Then what was their aim. His perception that was specialized for battle instantly grasped every corner of the labyrinth. Then, he immediately perceived that a huge amount of power was being gathered in the Spirit Train.

And it wasn't half-heated power at that. Based on the situation, the lump of power being gathered was of the highest class even among the warriors gathered in the labyrinth. If something like that was used inside the Spirit Train, it would undoubtedly destroy both the Spirit Train and Ayato who was straight above it. He wasn't able to foresee that they would think of such a risky move.

The chalk Monster who instinctively felt impatience faced the Spirit Train with its full power.

However even that was a bit too late. From within the Spirit Train, Saigou Homura screamed out.

"Now! Send me away, Suzuka!"

"Gotcha! I'll leave the rest to you───!!!"

Kudou Ayato's figure vanished in an instant. It seems they planned that from the start.

Instead of her, a single boy appeared before the chalk Monster's eyes.

It was truly before his eyes, at a distance where he would immediately reach him if he were to reach out his hand.

At that point, the Bull Monster finally saw the full picture of the enemy's plan.

Ayato who held the superior ability would harden the defense, and Homura who raised his Spirit Rank and accumulated the power would be sent directly towards the enemy. It was a surprise attack strategy made possible only because Suzuka could use the unique Teleportation.

This control of the Game had been perfectly calculated from start to finish.


Understanding that counterattack was futile, the Bull Monster instead put his strength to his eyes.

What Saigou Homura held in hands was "Proto Keraunos".

It was a swing that contained the strongest destructive power among the weapons of the Twelve Constellations that governed the sun. It was a battleaxe that could level mountains and split seas with just one swing.

This weapon, being the prototype of thunder, was able to accumulate the Divine Lightning without limit. Even if there was not much time, if it accumulated enough power for its edge to shine red, it would be able to destroy this level of labyrinth without much trouble.

───Resolve yourself, Homura's gaze conveyed to him.

The Bull Monster also accepted everything and looked up at the sky for the final time.

The Mediterranean Sea waves roared far away, even if he reached out for them, his hand was unlikely to ever reach them.

But that was perhaps how it ought to be.

Dust to dust, ash to ash. And dead returning back to earth was but destiny.

The Bull Monster closed his eyes and accepted the Divine Lightning bundled into a thousand.

Only once was the slash swung down, but it already went beyond the concept of a slash. Before even coming in contact with the target, it burned it up, turned it into lava and immediately started to evaporate.

That blow which didn't even leave the chemical elements behind was indeed similar to the genuine lightning of the gods.

The monster of the labyrinth, Minotaur───was reduced to ashes by the lightning brightness which even resembled the stars.

1 殉死者 hard to translate directly, but it’s a term that refers to servants who were killed/committed suicide to follow their masters (usually kings and royalty) to their graves. Royal Tomb is called the place where they are buried with their master.