Author: Kaburagi Haruka
Translator: ShiroiKaze/Soyokaze Translations
5th Act, Chapter 107: Trump Card
Translated by Soyokaze Translations: soyokazetranslation . com
Author’s Note: Continuation of chapter 104. The whole story is in Levy’s perspective.
A [Light Arrow] is launched by the lich.
The flamin’ shot flew in a direct course toward its target… Which was, in fact, the very one who activated the spell.
The spell, filled with enough power for certain death, was just barely dodged by the lich.
Seein’ that, all I could do was grin happily. Well, there was just a smidge of resentment in the grin too, I suppose.
Takin’ that moment, I searched my pouch and pulled out a pill.
Even while doubts were creepin’ up in his head, he tried to inflict attacks on my defenseless self. [Flame Bolts] and [Light Arrows] were deployed continuously.
Those spells were decoded by “Peerless” one by one for me.
And in dealin’ with those, I also activated a spell—success.
All the spells deployed by the lich either vanished, or were sent clear toward the day after tomorrow.
Success again. Gotta thank Yuuri for helpin’ me with my trainin’.
“This… This is your doing!”
“Impossible… Interfering with spell formulas while they are being deployed… It’s inconceivable!”
“Well, ya would think so normally.”
Without takin’ my “sight” off him, I toss the pill from my hand into my mouth.
This “technique” ain’t forgiving for even the slightest blink.
“But ya see, “Peerless”1 makes it possible.”
A gift to understand any kind of spell formula, hold aptitude for any kind of spell, and even optimize growth an’ magic methods.
Used normally, it’d be more powerful to put it to work in the orthodox way, like Yuuri.
Sure would be, but there was the possibility I was gonna have to turn someone raised on that gift into an enemy.
Which is why I thought up this “specialization against magicians” fightin’ style.
“Didn’t think I’d actually get a chance to use it until after ya’ll beat us black n’ blue though, y’know?”
“”Peerless” you say… Such crude spell formulas while holding that gift… Are you saying I’ve been tricked?”
It’s a skeleton face, so I can’t really tell, but I think he’s lookin’ all surprised?
“Naw, naw, my spells really are crude, y’see? It’s just that I ain’t really usin’ the gift all proper-like at all.”
A magic circle has to be deployed before any kinda spell is activated. That thing’s basically the spell’s blueprint.
The amount of magic power, the spell’s attributes, purpose of it, target, number, distance, shape, range… All of the effects n’ specifications are set in there.
So what if it were interfered with by addin’ a little somethin’ to the spell?
Just by changin’ the target from the opponent to the caster we get the change of trajectory from earlier.
If the magnification number were changed to zero, then nothin’ would appear.
Assumin’ I wanted the spell rendered invalid in the first place, then just by destroyin’ the circle, nothin’ would even activate.
Magic circles are the kinda thing that can be customized normally anyway.
If it were a caster without any strength in application, then they’d be compinsatin’ by lookin’ over all kinds of modified circles.
I ain’t particularly skillful myself, but “Peerless” compensates that part for me.
All’s I gotta do is rewrite the deployed spell before it activates.
Where should I be tamperin’ with it?
Where should I rewrite to break it?
Naturally it don’t take even a second for the deployment, so normally ya wouldn’t be able to get a good look at it.
But if ya got “Peerless Magic,” then that becomes possible.
“Impossible… Impossible! Impossible! Impossible! Something like that?! It is “Peerless Magic”! A coveted gift pertaining to of all types of magic aptitudes! It is truly a gift from god! And you would use it only for fighting against magicians?!”
“Yeah, I’m sure a magician like you would be pretty mad about me usin’ it like this, huh. Gotta say I feel the same way…”
The pill I crunched on—the “Elixer”—showed its effects, an’ my cut-off right arm regenerated.
In the time it takes to blink, as if a clip was playin’ in reverse, the bones, muscle, and skin grew and got restored.
“Uhwaa, my skin’s all super smooth-like…”
“Pretty mad? That would make sense… Among magicians, any would feel envious, jealous, and fall into insanity over that gift after all.”
“Naw, wait, that ain’t what I’m tryin’ to say. It’s about this “technique”… I was thinkin’ I’d be usin’ it on Yuuri.”
As my trump card against her.
I already knew ’bout the Demon Lord before this. Knew that any normal magic wouldn’t do a dang thing.
I knew ’bout Yuuri too. That she went through somethin’ terrible, but still stood back up to become a master magician.
Some o’ the responsibility for that unmistakably belongs to me.
Spells ain’t gonna pass against the Demon Lord. And I might’a had to face off against a master magician.
That’s why this here “technique” was created.
“This technique’s for usin’ against Yuuri. What I’m sayin’ is, me havin’ to use this against you is like admittin’ you’re a caster on the same level as she is.”
That’s why I was hesitant to use it.
An outstandin’ girl who faced somethin’ like that, and still didn’t waiver.
Comparin’ her to this worst-o-the-worst bastard… That complement… To say this garbage…
“Stands at the same level…? That’s damn absurd.”
Sayin’ that, I pick up Hydra.
One of my favorite swords in hand, I grinned… Naw, smirked, with a fierce smile.
Like a beast huntin’ its prey.
“Shit… Damn you… What a thing to do… What an utter waste… If I had that gift… This is inexcusable!”
“—Yer real colors are showin’!”
I charge in elliptically.
Reason I didn’t run straight in was so I could pick up “Cthugha” ‘long the way.
Skimmin’ across the ground with [Flight], without takin’ my eyes off him, I recovered the magic sword.
With both swords again in hand, I plunged in next to the lich in a single breath.
Losin’ his head and his composure in anger, the lich’s response was late.
The extreme acceleration from [Flight] and [Telekinesis] greatly increased the force o’ the weapons.
Cthugha’s flamin’ blade is a huge weak point for an undead lich.
I drove that blade into the joint of his left arm!
Surprisin’ly, while the lich’s left arm was flyin’, he swung his right arm ’round and hit me.
“—That ain’t how a magician attacks!”
Well, Yuuri does a lot of un-magician-ly things too though.
My light body couldn’t ward off the blow, an’ a lot of distance opened up between us.
“Inexcusable… Why has god granted such talent to a fool like you? … No… Of course… As far as gods go, I will…”
The lich grumbled and muttered all incoherently.
“Uwah, total creep-out…”
“Silence! As I thought, the current god cannot be left alone! Now that it’s come to this, I will have his majesty climb to the rank of “god” by any means possible!”
“That moron, a god? Now that’s impossible!”
The slashin’ and magic continued.
Take distance, close the distance, swing the blades, defend, activate, interfere.
All kinds o’ tactics are tried, and magic used, and it gets blocked.
“And why are ya’ll takin’ orders from that numb-skull anyhow?!”
“You know nothing of it. In our barbaric region, power is everything! Following that simple truth to its conclusion, it is precisely because there are none stronger than his highness!”
“He ain’t nothin’ but hollow inside though!”
“As I said, that is the extent of our truth!”
While tradin’ swords and magic, I hit him with basically disparagin’ questions.
I wanted to know… Why a caster this powerful would follow that shallow idiot.
“Any god that would grant a fool like you… The talent of “Peerless”… Is not worth my belief!”
He must’a decided magic wouldn’t work; the lich started blindly swingin’ his left arm around to attack me.
I was late in dealin’ with the sudden change in attack method, and got pushed away to magic distance again.
That’s when the World Tree faintly started to glow.
Translated by Soyokaze Translations: soyokazetranslation . com
“Ku, hahahahaha! FUHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Finally! Finally his majesty has become “Immortal”!”
“… Ya don’t know that. Could be my companions that picked it.”
“Now that is impossible. How would they stop his majesty? Could they possibly stop that avatar of tyranny?!”
Did we not make it in time?
If that’s the case… It’s all too quiet.
“Now that it has happened, we shall defeat god. We will topple the god tree known as the World Tree, and steal that source of faith away by its roots!”
“Well I ain’t particularly opposed to that part, but y’know—“
“After that, his now “Unaging,” and “Immortal” majesty will be uplifted to the position of god, and correct this misguided world…”
“That’s the part that ain’t gonna fly!”
“That god who did not grant me “Talent” should perish for all I care!”
He’s gone completely nuts… Probably got some kinda past as a caster where he hit a wall that he just couldn’t get beyond.
By nature, the stupidly huge tree known as the World Tree gathers faith from its splendor and healin’ powers. Even now it’s enshrined as this world’s god.
The World Tree itself didn’t actually actively do anythin’.
Can it be worshiped as a god, and just how much faith can it gather up? Those could be called the very first steps for a god.
“Where ya gonna find morons who’d believe in that moron!”
“There are more than enough rotting away in the barbaric region.”
“Only thing rottin’ is yer head!”
—There ain’t actually any rotten flesh on him though.
I closed the distance again. I broke the [Flame Bolt] spell keepin’ me in check.
Dropped in close, and used Hydra to mow down his body. He held that attack back with his right hand.
While too close to even have breathin’ room… The lich opened his mouth wide, and tried to bite at me.
“I’m tellin’ ya that ain’t how a magician attacks!”
With how magic don’t work on me, I know he’s gotta use physical attacks like this, but that just ain’t right!
I twisted my body and dodged the bite. The forced change in posture made my left shoulder squeal, but… This here’s the battle.
I circled to the lich’s right side, and, with Hydra bein’ held back, I brought Cthugha over to the lich’s body and struck Hydra with it.
The ice wrapped around Hydra, met with the heat of Cthugha, evaporated in an instant—
And exploded all at once.
A steam explosion.
Accordin’ to Yuuri that’s what this is called.
Cold air and ice surroundin’ the ice sword, Hydra. When that’s suddenly evaporated by the flame sword, Cthugha, that’s the phenomenon it produces.
It ain’t a normal ability of the magic swords, just an incidentally produced physical phenomenon I was told.
Gettin’ caught up in it with the lich, we were both blown away.
‘Course, the lich took the brunt of the explosion, so he was way more damaged, but I didn’t exactly get off scott-free either.
The mist and haze surroundin’ my vision eventually cleared up.
My whole body was throbbin’ with pain, and I had scalds all over.
“How’d that lich guy end up…?”
At the end of my view, a worn out dust cloth-like dark silhouette was there.
Its arms and legs had gone flyin’, and half the body was burnt and crumblin’. It don’t even hold a human shape no more.
I dragged my hurtin’ body up, and headed over to deliver the finishin’ blow.
“Yo, how ya feelin’…?”
“—You’ve outdone me. I extend my apologies for calling you second-rate.”
The left half of the skeleton’s face was burnt and crumblin’ too.
“Glad to see ya cooled yer top.”
“However, victory for this battle is ours. His majesty has already become “Immortal”. With who he is, he will one day take the position of god.”
“Yer overestimatin’ him.”
“Am I? Incredible power, an unstoppable body, and eternal life. If that is not what you would call a god, then what is? If he next gathers faith, then he will be able to perform a number of miracles too. Just like this World Tree.”
“… Guess so. This here battle is lost. But we’ll be winnin’ the war. Yuuri will… As long as she’s goin’ strong, there ain’t no tellin’ what’ll happen.”
I might just be strugglin’ in vain.
Sure, but she should be able to do somethin’.
For some reason, I can believe that.
“That “hope” nonsense? How disgusting.”
“Ya don’t know that girl, after all…”
“Say what you like. In any case, you have no future. I am sure you will be twisted and crushed by his majesty’s own hands. Or perhaps Claudia’s I suppose…”
“Not knowin’ when to give up is one of our redeemin’ qualities.”
“Struggle as much as you like. I shall… Be waiting… In… Nirvana…”
Sayin’ that, the rare magic user, lich, turned to dust.
Translated by Soyokaze Translations: soyokazetranslation . com
With the battle done, I took a seat on the floor.
Then I looked straight up an’ laid down on my back. Holdin’ my body up any more is tough.
“Already went and used the elixer…”
Did I make a mistake on when to use it? But if I hadn’t used it right then, there ain’t no way I woulda won.
Wonder how they’re doin’ up above? What about Haster left below?
Gotta go help ’em out… Which first? But I can’t hardly move my body anymore.
Unable to stop my gradually closin’ eyelids, I kept layin’ there, and lost consciousness.
- Peerless: Quick fun note here, the “Peerless” part of the “Peerless Magic” gift is written using the characters “god” and “talent”. This isn’t an actual single word as far as any Japanese dictionary (that I know of) is concerned. So “Peerless” is just the particular translation that was chosen for it way back in chapter 2. In more literal terms it could be thought of as “Godly Talent”, “Talent of a God”, “Divine Talent”, etc. ↩