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ALL RIGHTS BELONG TO TAPPEI NAGATSUKI, THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR OF RE:ZERO STARTING A LIFE IN A DIFFERENT WORLD FROM ZERO, THIS IS A TRANSLATION OF THE FREE JAPANESE WEB NOVEL INTO ENGLISH
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ーーAn unknown person, of silver hair.
That, Ram’s unexpected expression created a gap in Subaru’s consciousness.
If it was just, 『Silver Haired Person』 , it would be misleading, and even Subaru had never felt this strange feeling so far.
There was no question that Emilia possessed beautiful silver hair. Her purple-blue eyes were also beautiful. Her face, and all parts of her body were so cute, like she was a piece of art made by God himself.
However, just that undesirable 「unknown」, that one word immensely changed the meaning of her words.
Subaru: 「An unknown person, of silver hair……」
Ram: 「Yes, that’s right. Someone who was never there in this tower before. At the very least, that person did not seem to be an enemy…… Seeing the situation, Ram retreated at once. But.」
Subaru: 「ーーWhosoever may join in as a reinforcement , if the opponent is 『Gluttony』 then it is a totally different issue.」
Nodding at Subaru’s understanding, Ram nodded while facing the direction she came from. Hearing Ram’s words, and holding up an unpleasant expression at the echo of the name 『Gluttony』 , was Julius.
Tightening his lips, he drew out the knight sword attached to his waist.
Julius: 「Though the encounter is unexpected, as long as the enemy’s movements could not be seen, there was no way to avoid them anyway. Our goal for coming here was counteracting the damage done by the Sin Archbishops of 『Gluttony』 and『Lust』originally as well. If they themselves have appeared, then we might as well hear it from their own mouths.」
Ram: 「Agreed. Ram too has no intentions of leaving them alive. They must regret coming here.」
Subaru: 「W-wait! Wait a second! I understand your eagerness! I understand but…… ~hk.」
Not expecting the sheer hostility towards 『Gluttony』 of those two people, Subaru interrupted.
Julius, who had had his own existence erased from the world, and Ram, whose bond with her beloved sister had been rooted outーー it was obvious that they had an immense desire for defeating 『Gluttony』. The truth is, Subaru felt that bad happening and good opportunities had come at the same time.
But, the problem here wasーー,
Subaru: 「In your entire conversation, there was no mention of Emilia. What about that?」
Getting a bad feeling while remembering back to that, Subaru voiced his doubt without any hesitation.
The unnatural happening which Ram had reported, and the lacking response of Julius and Beatrice at her explanation. Following his line of sight, even Beatrice and Echidna did not wear expressions which would come from sensing something odd.
Ram had also made a remark about 『an unknown person of silver hair』.
Ram: 「ーーWho is Emilia?」
As Ram tilted her neck, without hiding her suspicions, Subaru’s throat got parched in surprise.
Looking at it now, Julius and Beatrice, even Echidna looked at him with eyes of confusion. ーーAt that, the damage done could no longer be hidden.
Subaru: 「I mean.」
The truth is, it was only an issue of whether even a minute had passed since then or not.
Just before this level, Subaru had been talking about『Emilia』with Julius and the others. Above all, wasn’t the reason behind them dashing into this balcony was because they were concerned that Emilia and Ram don’t stray away into the tower, and wanted to confirm their safety.
How did that, in just these few secondsーー,
Beatrice: 「Subaru, could it be.」
Suddenly, Beatrice, who was holding Subaru’s hand, made an expression as if she had noticed something about this strange development. The first one to notice was Beatrice, and the others subsequently changed their faces.
And immediately came to realise that the name Subaru had mentioned, the name which did not exist in their memories, was a name that held a deep meaning to them.
Beatrice: 「Emilia…… Is that, the name of that silver haired girl?」
Subaru: 「ーー. That’s right. If you are talking about the silver haired girl, than that is the girl named Emilia, a comrade of ours. That’s why, she told Ram to escape, and stayed there herself. Right now too, she’s fighting.」
Julius: 「I suppose, something like that can happen. If not anyone else, I myself have tasted that feeling.」
Responding to Subaru’s strengthless answer, Julius replied with some words difficult to believe, making him touch his bangs.
Of course, on losing memories, misunderstandings and suspicions rise, the harsh feelings towards Emilia and the others are hard to forget, it is just like a dark patch of history which, is possible, should be simply forgotten or erased.
But, even still, that feeling was minute. It was the uncertain fight, like fishing in a wide ocean on a night with zero visibility.
That’s why, that feeling was minute. But, that was not the case as well.
Forgetting Emilia, the comrade who was fully remembered till just recently, the friend who had overcame hardships alongside, in just a second. ーーIs there anything at all more bizarre than that.
Stealing memories, trampling on memorable moments, eating away bonds, were habitual acts of 『Gluttony』.
At last, witnessing it himself, Subaru came to understand it.
『Gluttony』 was a villain who only cared for their own happiness, and mercilessly damaged others on parts which should never be hurt.
Ram: 「ーー~Ugh, kh.」
And, Subaru grinds his teeth at the somewhat of a surprise. In front of him, among those shocked over the robbing away of their memories of a comrade, Ram knelt down on that very spot.
Beside Patrasche, leaning against the feet of the black dragon, was Ram, exhaling out a rough breath.
Subaru: 「What happened? Are you alright?」
Ram: 「……My head, just hurts a bit. Just when, thinking about that, unknown person.」
Subaru: 「About Emilia……?」
In front of Ram who furrowed her eyebrows and shook her head, Subaru made a stressed expression.
Possibly, if 『Gluttony』 had robbed away the memories of Emilia, Ram must have had watched that happen to her. Whether that was the reason behind it, was what Subaru thought.
However, Beatrice voiced out a 「Subaru…」 as she touched his shoulder,
Beatrice: 「It would be better to stop trying to remind about it, in fact. It’s too absent, I suppose.」
Subaru: 「Too absent, you say……」
Beatrice: 「There is one thing odd about the Authority of 『Gluttony』 , in fact. ーーThat, with too many parts which cannot be explained without the presence of the person whose memory was erased, there will be gaps.」
Hearing Beatrice’s words, at that moment, Subaru went speechless.
However, immediately he swallowed its implication and understood what it meant.
The Authority of 『Gluttony』 was exercised, and Emilia’s memories disappeared from Ram and the others.
Ram’s position was Emilia’s caretakerーー otherwise said, a master-servant relationship. In their bond, though it was difficult to explain, there was certain warmth which both of them felt for each other.
With that being secretly erased, the emptiness in place of 『Emilia』 had been created within Ram.
Memories are like items which have been put into the drawer of memorable things.
Though we are not always conscious about it, but when we open up that drawer to look back into those memorable things inside, what we take out from there are faces. ーーIf that isn’t so, then life is not instituted.
In other words, for Ram, if she searched the name of Emilia within herself, no matter how many drawers she openws, she would not find her, resulting in an endless cycle.
Echidna: 「I can look after her.」
Beside the pain-filled faced Ram, said Echidna with raised hands. Subaru looked at her with surprise, Echidna shrugged her slender shoulders,
Echidna: 「Now, is not the time for discussing that. Especially not when 『Gluttony』 is coming, and one of our comrades have gotten their name eaten and is fighting. You must not stop your feet.」
Julius: 「Echidna, please stay by Miss Ram. Along with Patrasche, stay away from the battle.」
Echidna: 「Yes, I assure you. ーーJulius, just in case but, don’t get hot.」
Julius: 「I know. The fighting spirit is definitely becoming cooler. Just like this sword.」
Without wasting any time, Julius accepted Echidna’s demand, and turned his dignified gaze towards the front. The sheer fighting spirit he had, made Subaru hesitate, as he bit his lips.
Ram: 「Though it’s unfortunate, but, even if Ram goes, she will only get in the way. Leave and go. However, don’t spare 『Gluttony’s』 life. Rest is all in Barusu’s hands.」
Subaru: 「It seems like as if you’re talking to some cow or pig, anyway, don’t worry. We’ll go!」
Ram: 「ーーYes, do it.」
Leaving behind the regretful Ram, Subaru nodded towards Echidna and left them. Then, brushing Patrasche’s neck before sprinting away, he looked back, once again, at the sleeping beauty on it’s back.
Unchanging, silent, sleeping as if she weren’t breathing, Rem’s eyes continued to be closed as she watched an endless dream.
Right now, that’s fine this way. He had already received words from her.
Subaru: 「Just you wait,『Gluttony』……! I’m sick of telling you to stop eating already!」
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ーーIn full honesty, that doubt continued to come up within him limitlessly.
Why, did the effect of the Authority of 『Gluttony』 , not show on Subaru.
Even when Emilia’s name had been robbed away, and she disappeared from the memory of Beatrice or Ram and the others, Emilia’s name, form, and voice were still present clearly within Subaru.
The warm feelings he held for her, without forgetting, were still present within his chest.
Subaru: 「Because I, came from a different world…..?」
Because of that, this world’s rules may not apply to Subaru.
If the memories in this world are a record of life which get stripped away from the soul of the dead in the『Hall of Memories』, the fact that the power of 『Gluttony』 intercepting the same does not affect Subaru means, it may be an exception for Subaru, someone from a different world.
If that is so, would the memories of 『Natsuki Subaru』also etch onto it if he died. Otherwiseーー,
Subaru: 「ーーAm I『Returning by Death』, because I can’t do that?」
That was, the cold conclusion he reached after a lot of tiresome thinking.
If that was the answer to the question why Subaru was『Returning by Death』, then Subaru’s life will follow an endless spiral of life in this world.
To summarise, it means that he will spend decades and decades in this world, unable to die from even ageing.
If he was an exception to this rule, and if Subaru was going to complete his life, in other words Natsuki Subaru, actually was an endless stockpile of memories himselfーー,
???: 「Ice Brand Arts!」
At that moment, a loud voice, like one of a silver bell, chimed through his thought drowned consciousness.
As he raised in face, in front of Subaruーー he felt that the passage to the Green Room had been frozen white, as he was welcomed with an overwhelmingly cold gale.
And, at the starting of that wind was a fairy of snow dancing within the diamond dustーー was what one may have thought, but actually it was Emilia, with her silver hair fluttering.
Emilia: 「ーーYah! Hiyah! Hi! Yah!」
With her sword of ice wielded, Emilia fought with her voice raised. Her voice was somewhat frustrated, but the velocity of the sword slashing through the air was not something so adorable.
Slashes of perfection, striking the opposing enemy, as she struck continuously.
Subaru: 「That is……」
And, around Emilia, who held the sword of ice in her hands, the now battlefield frozen passage of white and blue, stood several pillars of ice, as if other towers stood within the sand.
It was perhaps the result of her magical abilities on the surroundings. Just as when he was wondering whether this level of strength of extraordinary in this world, he saw the awestruck faces of Beatrice and Julius, which cleared his doubts.
But, aside from that wasーー,
???: 「Aha~ha! You’re doing it, you’re quite doing it, aren’t you doing it, you’re really doing it, seems you’re really doing it, because you’re doing it, because you’re really doing it! It’s also so~mething we have eaten!」
In contrast to Emilia, his eyes caught the sight of an odd existence lightly receiving the blows of the sword of ice.
It was, a young boy with long, dark, brown hair, smiling widely with somewhat melancholic insanity.
In mid-teens, a shabby appearance, or could be said that it was even dirty. His filthiness was enough on its own, but there was something even more repulsive about him, that he casted limitless grief over others, with no hesitation for eating, and abnormally mocked the suffering and despair of 」life」.
It could be understood at a single glance. There was no need to say it.
There was nobody else except Louis Arneb with those eyes, and that was a fact.
Subaru: 「ーーSin Archbishop of 『Gluttony』 ! 」
Gluttony: 「Aha~ha! Customer! Nope! It’s the main dish, onii-san! We were also waiting to meet you. Seems like you’ve taken care of little sister!」
Hearing Subaru’s shout, 『Gluttony』 , who was defending away the blows by Emilia’s sword, widened his smile. In front of that memorable horrid smile, Emilia noticed Subaru and the others at that instant, saying 「Eh!」 in a surprised voice.
Emilia: 「Ah, everyone! Um, you may not know about me, but he is the enemy! The villain! Leave this to me…… even though, you may not, know about me!」
Emilia had correctly judged the situation she was in, as she told her comrades behind.
Obviously, with the memories of her being lost, they were supposed to have had received a shock as well. Its impact, unlike those who have forgotten, to Subaru, who had not forgotten, was immense.
However, not only did she rightfully let Ram escape, doing that, she continued fighting 『Gluttony』 , and yet, was worried about Subaru and the others as well.
With boundless emotions building up inside him, Subaru cried out.
Subaru: 「It’s alright, Emilia-chan! I haven’t forgotten!」
Subaru: 「I will never, ever forget! Whatever happens, I will not forget you!」
Pushing his fist up, Subaru said towards Emilia’s back.
Hearing that, Emilia’s eyes widened and then squinted at that moment.
At that moment, Subaru had no idea what feelings rose up in her chest.
However, when the standing girl smiled, it became clear that she did not feel anything negative.
At the same pace, Emilia dashed towards『Gluttony』 , threw her sword of ice, and pulled spears of ice out of the floor, and continued her icy dance performance while striking her opponent.
Julius: 「You are not aware in the slightest, how much those words meant to her at that moment.」
He heard Julius, who was standing right next to him, watching the same with a smile. With his words seemingly holding a deep meaning, Julius did not respond to Subaru, who had turned around.
Julius: 「There surely is no need to say it, but she is sided with us, Subaru.」
Subaru: 「Yeah, that’s right. There is no way she can be our enemy, with that cuteness!」
Julius: 「ーI knew it.」
Julius was visible at the edge of his visibility, responding. ーーNo, that was just an illusion.
The very next moment, the standing Julius dashed ahead with a single step, diving straight into the extraordinary icy battle, colliding with 『Gluttony』 , who crossed his arms and jumped backwards.
Gluttony: 「Uh-oh, onii-san is……」
Julius: 「I was looking forward to this time, 『Gluttony』 ーー!」
Julius’ cutting edge sword slashed strongly into the gruesomely laughing 『Gluttony』. However, 『Gluttony』 killed the impact of the attack by flying backwards, stamping his feet on the ice of the wall and voiced out sadly.
After that, 『Gluttony』 provokingly pulled out his long tongue.
Gluttony: 「Heyhey, don’t come at us using that thing like tha~t. Sorry but, we and us don’t share everything we eat, you see~. We have no recollection of onii-san. Doesn’t that mean that not us, but Roy did it?」
Gluttony: 「Well, we guess the thought process of there not being much difference also exists. But still, Roy aside, we aren’t really too interested in onii-san. Feels like it doesn’t match our eating standards?」
Julius: 「Eating standards, you say?」
Gluttony: 「Ah, yes yes. That is……」
Loosening and lowering both his hands, with knives attached to his wrist was 『Gluttony』. Looking at Julius, he tried to say in a terribly frightening style.
Emilia: 「Take thisーー ~hk!!」
At that, blocking his hand sweep with icicles with no hesitation was Emilia.
Moving first, she mercilessly attacked, filling up all empty space up to the width of the passage, making the battle unsuitable for fighting.
In the middle of their conversation, this was certainly unexpected, and 『Gluttony』 , changing his blood flow sneaked through the bottom of the ice, and barely but successfully managed to dodge and pick up his life.
Gluttony: 「Wa~h ~tsu! We know it because we ate it but, you really aren’t hesitating, Emilia! If you attack like that, what if people start thinking you are a scary person……」
Emilia: 「Just keep quiet! I am already used to being thought of as a scary person, you must also be knowing that! What’s important is what I think of others! And also……」
Kicking strongly, Emilia’s white knee thrusts into 『Gluttony’s』 face, who was dodging the ice, breathing hoarsely. 『Gluttony』 received that with his arm, and flew back, negating the impact.
As that happened, the startled Emilia then turned towards Subaru by the end of her words,
Emilia: 「The one who I wanted to be remembering the most did remember. Right now, I’m feeling re~ally good!」
Gluttony: 「This is why, we’re not good with the type who get moved by feelings. The type that doesn’t go well the most.」
Julius: 「ーーIs that so. But, I also agree with her.」
『Gluttony』 distorted his cheeks, provoked, and Julius’ body slid behind him. He swiftly slashed him down, but 『Gluttony』 received it with his arm that he turned back.
However, his defence was incomplete and was unable to completely deflect the slashes away, and a deep slash ran through his elbow, with his blood bursting out. 『Gluttony』 struggled, and the repeated attacks continuedーー,
Julius: 「ーーOnce I was forgotten by everything, I lost my foothold and felt like my own life had been denied to me but, there is no need for me to lose my foothold again.」
Gluttony: 「Ah ~tsu! Ugh, gh, ga~h!」
With his silent words strengthening his resolve, the intensity of Julius’ nonstop strikes increased.
『Gluttony』 was unable to accept them, with his wounds gradually increasing, and eventually receiving a commendable blow at his chest, screamed.
Subaru: 「I know. I won’t jump into it.」
Beatrice: 「……Good that you know it, in fact.」
Julius, who was continuing fighting, and Emilia, who launched merciless attacks, aimed for 『Gluttony』. And being targeted by both of them was 『Gluttony』 , was the state of this battlefield.
Of course, if it was possible, then Subaru also wanted to join in and further oppress 『Gluttony』 , but him not having the skills to do so was obvious.
Right now, he had no choice but to just watch and have faith that the combination of Emilia and Julius will overcome 『Gluttony』. Howeverーー,
Gluttony: 「You did well with that fast paced combination ~tsu! But, how about this?」
Gluttony: 「Ice Brand Arts.」
His blood was flowing, but 『Gluttony』 did not cease his smile of a surplus, and muttered while facing downwards.
Hearing that whisper, Subaru and Emilia raised their eyebrows in surprise. Ignorant in regards to what it meant, Julius and Beatrice furrowed their eyebrows. However, all four of them were astonished to see what happened next.
The very next instant, a spear of ice erected out from 『Gluttony’s』 feet, making Julius roll his body in order to avoid it, and Emilia prevented the spear’s blow by transforming the one she held in her hands into a hammer of ice and forcefully smashing it.
However, even if they had avoided the attack, it did not mean that they weren’t surprised and fought away.
Gluttony: 「Haha ~tsu! How does it feel to see your own special ability get eaten and then used! How does it, how is it, how will it, how can it, how will it perhaps be, how can it probably be, how is what we’re saying, how does it feel is what we’re saying, gluttonous drinking ~tsu! Gluttony ~tsu!」
Emilia: 「ーー~Hk! Suddenly」
Julius: 「His movement changed!?」
Said Emilia and Julius in sheer astonishment, and in front of them was 『Gluttony』 , pulling out weapons of ice from the floor. Subaru, who was looking at that, was speechless, seeing the form the clear ice was moulded into.
For some reason, that wasーー,
Gluttony: 「Ice Brand Arts itself is Emilia’s ability, but we, who ate onii-san, are the ones who replicated it, you see~! Knowledge is weaponry! We are intelligent Sin Archbishop.」
Saying that, 『Gluttony』 upheld the holy sword he made himself with replicated abilities, and brought down the dazzling slash upon Emilia and Julius, overwhelming them. Of course, just as visible, it was just a weapon of ice, so no actual light energy emitted from it.
However, in that position, 『Gluttony』 , one after another, created weapons that were not supposed to exist in this parallel world, overwhelming and driving Emilia and Julius into a disadvantageous and inferior position in a unique way.
Of course, Emilia’s side also regained their positions within really short periods of time, and avoiding the first attack, they tried to counterattack 『Gluttony』 but, 『Gluttony』 kept switching his fighting style as if people were switching each time, and they were at a disadvantage in the fight again, and were supposed to respond to the situation again.
Looking at 『Gluttony’s』 combat ability, Subaru realised the fearsomeness of the threat of incorporating the memories of several people.
Emilia’s ability of creating weapons of ice one after another was sufficiently strong by itself, but when you add the versatility of imagination to it, it became a completely different ability. Especially, when Subaru’s knowledge from another world entirely was added to that, the weapons then produced can prove to be an immense threat.
Unlike this world, there exists a mountain of practical use for weaponry. That was the taboo-like knowledge Subaru had gained by reading history books of ancient east and west when he was in middle school.
In addition to that,『Gluttony』had perhaps, till now, consumed the lives of several warriors for himself, and thus obtained their unhampered combat ability.
Therefore, by picking out the ideal suitable memory out of his stockpile, he immediately transforms into an expert of that respective weapon, and uses that to fight, and then repeats this again and again.
And, that was not the only bad news for Emilia’s side.
Emilia: 「Julius! Not over there!」
Julius: 「Kh…… ~hk.」
At Emilia’s scream, Julius’ painful footsteps overlap with hers.
That was cooperation, too much cooperation for defeating a single enemy.
Emilia and Julius, both of them were not too compatible with each other.
Emilia, a『Feeler』 who leaves her battling to her feelings and senses, and Julius, with 『craftsmanship』 , who leaves his battling to his training and practice, both of them were being affected by each other.
However, this issue could be reduced if they got an understanding of each other’s strengths, tendencies and habits.
Yes, if they had a relationship close enough, to know each other’s habits.
Gluttony: 「It’s really sad. Did you really think you could work side by side? Knowing the other person and, for the moment, trusting, in terms of results, are in the same direction but are totally different things, no? Don’t know each other’s ideas so can’t adjust, don’t know each other’s habits so can’t fix…… Haha~, won’tdowon’tdo no~, you two people!」
Gluttony: 「Knowledge is power! Memories are bonds! Sacrificing memorable moments, we are higher up! We are stronger! We ca~n fly as far as as far as we want!」
Jumping, 『Gluttony』 landed a karate kick and captured the two at the same time.
As he was still short, his legs were not too long either, but his soles perfectly came in contact and angled themselves, and blew away the two, making an unpleasant noise behind.
In the meantime, 『Gluttony』 flew backwards, somersaulting and landed on his limbs on the floor of ice.
Gluttony: 「Burdening! Impertinence! Immensely close fighting! How is it, the people who will be our skills! The onii-san over there who’s just watching too, are you satisfied with just that feeling of impatience?」
Subaru: 「You bastard……」
Gluttony: 「You said something or the other about not forgetting bu~t, how much can someone of your worth even save? In the end, it all comes down to experiences. The one who manages to get better knowledge is the one who enriches his life and wins over people. In other words, it means that we are the greatest!」
Widening his arms and showing his fangs, said 『Gluttony』. And what 『Gluttony』 had said was indeed, his philosophy. Louis, who was supposed to be his younger sister, had mentioned her『Philosophy to be Happy』which was a bit different, but it was still the utmost horrible level of thinking by trampling on others’ lives just for your own purposes.
Subaru, from the bottom of his heart, despised that ideaーー,
???: 「ーーYou, gettin’ too ahead of yourself, let me tell ya.」
Till that, 『Gluttony』 had been laughing gruesomely with utter ecstasy in his eyes, but now he widened his eyes the moment he heard this voice. And, his surprise was common with Subaru’s.
That figure arrived at the fight scene too suddenly, dignified and acting natural, as if everything was a matter of course.
Slowly and steadily, as he stomped upon the passage of ice, the red haired figure’s height became clear, so tall that barely anyone could come up to even his shoulders. As he displayed his violent smile, on the other side of the aisleーー on 『Gluttony’s』 side, his figure appeared in the direction Subaru and the others were facing.
???: 「The greatest ain’t for a ‘I’ve got passion, so my personality’s crooked’ brat like ya. ‘Cause the greatest or the best, the utmost or the strongest, ‘re all words for me.」
Saying that, Reid Astrea, who was not supposed to, but still descended down from the second floor, stood there with a ridiculing smile.