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This an edited Machine Translation, which has been checked by at least one Japanese-English Human Translator for quality. This may have a quality dip in accuracy, therefore, if you read this chapter you must take into consideration the tradeoffs between speed and quality.
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――Weitz Rogen had never believed he could live or die honestly.
Either way, the thing called society tended to undervalue the word “normal”.
“Normal” was employed to convey the meaning of “average” or “ordinary”, something that did not stand out, but from the viewpoint of those that were less than human in particular, it was an unreachable standard.
The City of Iron and Blood of Glarasia, was the name of Weitz’s hometown, where he had been born and raised.
It was an unhinged city where the weapons and armor used throughout the whole Empire, as well as the numerous tools necessary for battle, were manufactured. Where craftsmen worked diligently to make arms for the sake of wounding others, forging their steel day and night.
About half of the residents were involved in some form of arms manufacturing, and Weitz had been no exception. He’d had no parents around at the time he had been gaining awareness of the things around him, and had been forced to do chores in a craftsman’s workshop, so he had neither interest nor pride in such work.
He would perform his job in order to eat, and perform chores at workshops for no other reason than the fact that the place he had been born in was the City of Iron and Blood.
If their main occupation were horse gear, he would help to make it, if it were agriculture, he would carry a hoe.
Without fixation or interest, Weitz had worked silently under the sidelong glances of the craftsmen forging steel. Unable to know what he had been thinking, there had been those who called the antisocial Weitz a hard worker, but most had probably thought of him as a mysterious and creepy guy.
Weitz had not been concerned about that as well. He had not been thinking of getting along with anyone.
He thought that, since he had been alone since birth, it was natural to be alone upon his death.
Such an ephemeral indifference, that way of life was probably loathed by others.
When suspicions arose that the materials stocked from the workshop he frequented were being sold through illegal channels, Weitz had been the first one to come under suspicion.
Weitz, who had often worked by his lonesome, possessing no partner whatsoever to protect him, had been in possession of absolutely zero means to clear up the suspicions that had been cast on him.
Ultimately, unable to clear up the false accusations, Weitz was tried for a crime he had no memory of committing, and became a criminal. ――The first tattoo inked onto him was evidence of his punishment, in order for him to be recognizable as a criminal at a glance.
There were no people who wore clothes with long sleeves, since the city was constantly enveloped in hot air from the forging of steel; and so, his tattoos had constantly been laid bare upon both his forearms.
Even if he were to wear long-sleeved clothes, it would have been immediately blatant that it was because he had something to be guilty of.
Once the evidence of his crime had been inked onto him, he could no longer live the same life as before.
It may not have been an excellent life until then, but that was when he gave up the idea of being “normal”.
No longer able to work in a workshop run legitimately, Weitz turned to thievery to earn his daily income, starting to steal materials and sell through illegal channels. In the end, he had become a real criminal.
――In short, his supposed sin had now caught up with reality.
When he had been suspected of selling through illegal channels, and no one had been willing to listen to Weitz’s side of the story, Weitz had not been a criminal. But afterwards, Weitz ultimately became a criminal.
Perhaps it was something such as an inevitability.
Weitz: [If I’m a repulsive fuck, then I’m fine with that…]
Inked with tattoos and having become a criminal, in anyone’s eyes, he would appear be detached from the concept of “normal”. Even while committing crimes in order to earn money, it was the same as before; he had been unable to get along with others.
In that case, he should have severed all troublesome relationships and the like from the get-go.
The tattoos which had only been on his forearms, now inking shoulders and chest, had been enlarged by his own hands. Before long, they had covered his upper body, his legs, and had even reached his face and head.
Tattoos on one’s arms was evidence of a criminal, but tattoos across one’s entire body was the sign of someone dangerous, someone who ought not be approached.
Make way, everyone, fear and relent. The once-pitiful man, forsaken by all and fallen to crime, was no more. What remained was merely someone “less than human”, some troublesome, with nothing left to lose.
That was why――,
???: [――Halt, criminal scum! Don’t think you can get off unpunished!]
Encircled by the city guards with their weapons pointed at him, Weitz quickly surrendered.
By his feet, bloodstained and collapsed, had been someone from his former workshop―― from the place where Weitz first became a criminal, it had been a man who worked as an apprentice craftsman.
The man’d had his ear bitten off, crying and shouting as the tears and blood flowed. On that day, he had falsely accused Weitz of being a criminal, and hearing that rumor leak out over a drink, Weitz had retaliated.
Spitting out the ear he had been holding in his mouth, Weitz was seized by the guards and thrown in jail.
Weitz was notoriously known within the City of Iron and Blood. Without anything like a path of salvation granted to him, soon after, it was decided that as a criminal slave, he would be sent to the infamous Gladiator Island.
Without the will to oppose, he accepted it. Without the intent to resist, he crossed the lake.
At the place where he had been sent, having been put together with a group of seedy-looking people in similar circumstances, he had been forced to participate in a ceremony to fight an extremely dreadful Witchbeast.
I don’t care what happens. I ain’t got any intention of dying.
No matter who I must sacrifice, no matter who I must outsmart, I’ll survive, and then, one day.
One day, I’d be treated――.
Subaru: [――Weitz! Grab the sword! I’m counting on you!!]
――I’d be treated as a “normal” human being, that was my wish.
Weitz: [Take cover…!]
The moment he saw the head belonging to the guard flying through the air, having been kicked, whirling around as it sprayed blood, Weitz immediately thrust Schwartz, standing next to him, towards Tanza.
Dressed in a kimono, this girl, contrary to that youthful appearance, possessed great strength.
However, she had not mastered that power. The strength of her body and her mind were misaligned, it was far too risky to rely on her. ――With Schwartz, they made a good combination.
Weak in body, but strong in mind, was Schwartz. If it was him, Tanza would probably be put to good use.
Therefore, at this moment, pushing him towards Tanza, strong in body, but weak in mind, had supposedly been the right choice.
And then, Weitz himself, the performer of such deed――,
Running forward, he swung his arms up and slammed the guard’s head flying towards him into the floor of the passage.
Beheading his ally in an instant, then punting that head to make it fly, that utmost shocking deed was a scheme that had put the thoughts of Weitz and the others to a standstill―― But, it did not seem to be just that.
In reality, the judgment of the four people aside from Weitz had been one beat too slow, but Weitz had made a move.
Schwartz had been so vigilant of that man, so it did not seem like that was all he was aiming for.
And it happened right after Weitz had thought that.
Right beside Weitz, who had been glaring towards the man in front of him, who had taken an axe into his hand, the monstrous black bird―― the Gladiator Beast, had charged in, destroying the wall of the passage.
Smashing the wall half a step behind Weitz, it laid waste to the passage of the Island’s upper stratum right beside him.
Aiming for Weitz and the others, the flying Gladiator Beast approached to slaughter―― no, that was wrong. It was not wrong that it was a Gladiator Beast, but that bird had not been aiming for Weitz and the others.
Gladiator Beast: [――――GYAOO!!]
Having smashed the wall and made its appearance, what had been pierced by the monstrous bird’s beak was the head of the guard that had been decapitated.
Aiming for the head of the decapitated guard, the monstrous bird had crashed into the passage. Neither did he understand what that meant, nor did he have the time to think about it.
While his back was showered with wounds from fragments of the wall bursting open from the tremendous impact that had occured half a step behind him, as well as the sharp wings of the Gladiator Beast, clenching his teeth, Weitz did not take his eyes off the man.
Even having inquired about Schwartz’s lineage, he had not bowed down, but rather enhanced his intent to kill―― he was dangerous.
He was a honest-to-god threat, different from Weitz’s tattoos, which only created a sense of danger.
No matter what, he would stop it.
Seeing Weitz moving forward, the man ruthlessly narrowed his eyes.
Just from the look in those eyes without uttering a word, Weitz could tell his opponent intended on killing him. Without a pause, seeing the man raise the axe overhead with his left arm, Weitz raised his own left arm.
That was the arm that had been the first to become inked with a tattoo, becoming evidence of him being criminal, the impetus for him drifting to this land.
Resolutely channeling all his strength, he would try to receive the blow unleashed by that man――,
Weitz: [Guh, geh… Hk.]
Without mercy, the swinging axe took aim at Weitz’s head from the left.
Forcing his raised arm into its trajectory, Weitz’s arm did not meet the blade of the axe from up high, but rather from the side. At the moment of impact, the bones of his elbow were shattered, and the bones of his upper arm and shoulder were pulverized alongside his flesh.
Through the impact and pain, his vision turned a deep red, and his left arm was dyed with darkness completely different from the color of the tattoo.
Weitz: [I endured it…!]
He had not been waiting for it, rather, by stepping forth, he had been capable of weakening the power behind the axe slightly.
That was the main reason why it had not smashed Weitz’s head in, why it had not ended his life. From the start, he’d had the grit from being called abnormal, but he had not possessed the judgment to match that.
The unification of that grit and judgment, had been the result of encountering a child far more reckless than himself.
Hence, that encounter allowed Weitz’s arm to reach the man――,
Todd: [You haven’t.]
With his left arm destroyed, he tried to seize the man with his remaining right arm; at that moment, the form of the man had vanished.
――No, the form of the man had not vanished, Weitz had just become unable to see it.
Exiting his field of vision, he became unable to see the form of his opponent in the dark, blurred space.
Something akin to that had happened. However, it was strange. It had been strange. Suddenly, on the right side of Weitz’s vision, the portion he could not see expanded in the span of a breath.
Just as if something had suddenly crushed the right side of Weitz’s vision.
Unable to find the vanished form of the man, Weitz harbored physical unease as someone called out to him.
Slowly turning to look behind him, there was the destroyed passage and plumes of smoke. Then, he saw the head of the monstrous bird that had destroyed the passage, sent flying by a downward swing of the axe of the man who had vanished.
Beyond the man who had beheaded the bird monster, he could see four people standing above the crumbling passage.
There were also some who had fallen on their butts while retreating, but it seemed that all of them had avoided the monstrous bird’s intermission. That he himself was relieved about that, Weitz was a little surprised.
While surprised, there was one thing he wanted to tell them, who were watching him in amazement.
His broken left arm ached plenty. For some reason, the right side of his face had also started aching plenty.
While making use of that pain to somehow keep a grip on his consciousness, which had been getting distant,
Weitz: [It was the first time…]
Weitz: [Anyone’s said, they believed in me…]
Muttering, Weitz understood that that had been the thing lodged within his heart.
Understanding that, he lost the strength in his legs, collapsing right then and there.
While hearing his name cried out with such emotion once more, he closed his eyes.
For some reason, it had been an awfully pleasant feeling.
As he tried to rush to the collapsed Weitz, he was stopped by the slender fingers reaching out to him.
Tears in her eyes, shaking her head when Subaru turned to look back at her, the kimono-clad girl did not permit Subaru to take impulsive behavior.
And then, before he could shake those fingers off――,
There was a hideous, ear-splitting screech, and the ceiling of the passageway was crushed from above.
Right overhead of the collapsed Weitz, the passage succumbed to the weight and collapsed with a violent screech; directly under the falling ceiling, Weitz was engulfed, and the floor gave way.
The destroyed passage had opened a hole to the lower strata, and Subaru witnessed Weitz falling headfirst together with the gigantic gray frog which had crushed the ceiling.
To Weitz, who had taken an axe to his left arm, and suffered a blow from a knife to his right eye, he must.
Subaru screamed as he reached his hand out towards the falling passage, towards the crumbling floor and ceiling.
Weitz had fallen. Weitz, who had rushed forward to protect Subaru and the others. Quickly, quickly, they had to jump down there, and save Weitz.
Todd: [It sure is lucky that the second one fell. Witchbeasts are a pain to kill.]
In front of Subaru, whose thoughts had gone astray, Todd muttered, giving a sidelong glance to the collapsed passage.
At his feet lay the corpse of the decapitated giant black bird. The Witchbeast had been killed by Todd with an axe after it had crashed into the passage.
The events that had occurred had done so far too quickly for Subaru to digest.
What Todd had done, what had occurred before his eyes, anything and everything. Until he was finished dealing with them, he would be unable to think about anything else. ――He would be unable to think about Weitz.
What had happened with Weitz, and what had become of him, he would be unable to think.
He would be unable t――,
Todd: [――As for Witchbeasts, they’ll eat the corpse of the guy who broke their horn.]
Suddenly, Todd had said that, resting the axe on his shoulder.
Subaru, much like everyone else, had yet to fully accept the situation before them; their breaths hitched due to Todd’s words, turning to face him.
Receiving the gazes of those four people, Todd pointed to the dead body at his feet.
Todd: [When someone breaks a Witchbeast’s horn, they can make it obey them, but it seems that over the time they give it commands, some resentment will surely accumulate. When that person dies, the Witchbeast’ll eat their corpse in revenge. Disgusting, isn’t it?]
Shrugging his shoulders, Todd spoke about this little-known ecology of Witchbeasts.
Neither did Subaru want to know how Todd had found out about that, nor was the information itself the type he would benefit from knowing in the first place.
However, it did provide an adequate explanation of what had happened there.
The reason the giant bird had crashed into the passage was because the guard who had been beheaded was the one who had broken off its horn, and Todd had known in advance that it would home in on his corpse.
Kicking that head into flight, he had tried to get Subaru and the others engulfed by the large bird as it aimed for that.
But, that had not happened. Because, because, because.
Todd: [He sure looked like a guy who cared for his companions. ――That’s why he died.]
Unbefitting of Todd, it was a thorough explanation of the events that had taken place.
Without listening to anyone, notifying anyone, explaining to anyone, to kill without giving any information whatsoever, that was Todd’s way of doing things. Despite that, why had he spoken incessantly, allowing them to hear all that just now?
Letting them hear, letting them understand, to let Subaru’s mind move on to the next question.
The relationship between the two guards who were killed and the Witchbeast who had charged in.
Once that was settled, Subaru’s thoughts could move to the next. Next, was about Weitz.
About how Weitz had died, and that there was nothing he could do regarding it.
He should not have died. Weitz, should not have died.
While facing the horror that was Todd, he should not have attempted to protect Subaru and the others. This monster who would kill someone for opposing them, should not have been opposed by him.
After all, if he were to die here――.
Todd: [Your expression’s finally started to look like a brat’s.]
The moment he understood that Weitz had died, Subaru’s head was filled with regret and impatience.
Seeing that reaction, Todd smiled as if things had gone according to plan, and raised his axe overhead.
The purpose for Todd’s careful explanation, had been to let Subaru put his thoughts in order.
Forcing Subaru to confront Weitz’s death, which he had unconsciously tried not to think about, had been so that his heart would be crushed, in order to turn an enigmatic enemy into a mere human being of flesh and blood.
Subaru’s legs had come to a halt in shock, and Hiain and Idra’s minds were still unable to recover. The first to move before the three of them could, had been Tanza.
Tanza set her eyes on Todd approaching them; with her arms outstretched, she stood in front of Subaru.
However, Todd frowned at Tanza’s conduct and,
Todd: [Hey you, you’re doing it all wrong.]
Saying that in front of Tanza, who had been standing in the way, Todd dropped to his knees on the spot. While Tanza’s eyes had been captivated by that movement, the crouching Todd extended his arms up to her inner thighs, and hoisted her up.
Just as that happened, Tanza’s small body floated upwards, and was thrown to the side. ――Through the large hole in the wall destroyed by the giant bird, which connected to the outside.
Even though she wielded physical abilities that were unthinkable for a child, she could not defy gravity or the laws of physics. Naturally, her body was not even heavier than an adult’s, as Tanza’s weight was that of a single little girl.
Instantly, Tanza reached her arms out, but her slender fingertips had nowhere to reach, and her body was thrown to the other side of the Island.
Todd: [Have fun.]
Thrown into the air, Tanza’s screams quickly faded as she descended.
Thus, with Tanza who had been standing in the way now gone, there was no one left to protect Subaru and the others from Todd’s axe.
Idra: [He’s His Excellency the Emperor’s…]
Idra: [He’s His Excellency the Emperor’s son! Are you insane!?]
Glaring at Todd, who had turned around, Idra cried that out.
Eyes bloodshot, his friendly facial features burning with anger, he reproached Todd for not being swayed by the “lie” that Subaru was the illegitimate son of the Emperor of Vollachia.
However, Todd’s answer to that complaint was simple.
――Wordlessly, he merely swung his axe to bash Idra’s head in.
Just before his head was smashed in, Idra, his clothes having been yanked, fell on his butt. The axe missed and landed behind Idra, whose eyes widened, while Subaru, who had yanked him down, shook his head hastily.
It was impossible, words would not get through to him. From the start, this threat itself had been a mistake.
Subaru had tried to rely on taking the easy way out.
As punishment for that, he had found him into this situation.
Todd: [You dodge that huh, my bad, my bad. However――]
Readjusting his grip on the axe, Todd turned to the side with a disgusted expression. At the point his gaze had been directed to, near Subaru and Idra, who had fallen on his backside, Hiain camouflaged himself against the surrounding scenery.
Assimilating with the destroyed floor and walls, he would be incapable of telling that Hiain was there.
But, it was not like he had been able to move quickly.
Todd: [Disappearing right in front of me, what’s your plan?]
Meeting eyes with Todd, Hiain flinched, and his camouflage was instantly disrupted.
Until then, his assimilation with the scenery had been perfect; as if part of a painting had been ruined, it then became something exceedingly unsightly, unbearable to look at.
This time, it was red paint that had been applied to the picture, gushing out of Hiain.
Taking the blow from the axe on his shoulder, it cleaved through to his lower chest, and Hiain collapsed. As his blood profusely flowed out of him, the camouflage of his body was undone, and the remains of the gray lizardman fell over with a thud.
Weitz had died, Tanza had been thrown out of there, and Hiain had been killed as well.
One after another, before Subaru’s eyes.
Idra: [I-it’s a duel… Hk.]
His voice trembling, taking his eyes off the slain Hiain’s corpse, Idra stood up.
Pointing his finger at the man who, just a moment prior, had killed his comrade before his eyes, gnashing his teeth, Idra’s face was red with anger, blue with fear, and as if he knew not what to do, his face turned white while glaring at Todd.
At the location Sparka had taken place, he had told a lie to inspire Subaru and the others, and to encourage himself.
Different from Subaru’s cheap lies, the lie about his title carried ideals.
Idra: [If you too, are a warrior――]
Those ideals of Idra’s, ideals that were perhaps too idealistic, were betrayed.
There was no doubt it had been a faint hope, but Idra’s offer had been frantic and earnest.
Shouting in a loud voice to cut him off, Todd had attacked Idra as he tried to be strong, even if it had been merely bravado, while he was unprepared. Thus, he thrust his blade during that unpreparedness.
Todd: [I’m not a warrior, I’m a soldier.]
Idra, fallen to his knees, raised his trembling hands to his neck. Lodged in the middle of his throat was Todd’s knife, its sharp tip protruding from the back of his neck.
Even so, Idra’s hands grabbed the handle of the knife to pull it out. And then, before he could pull it out, the axe smashed through Idra’s head from directly above.
Idra fell forward, and Todd pulled the knife out from his body. Idra’s corpse, having fallen over clumsily, and Hiain’s corpse were lined up, like something out of a nightmare.
Some place far, Weitz’s body was buried in the debris of the collapsed rubble.
Had something happened to Tanza, who had fallen from up high and had not returned? That reminded him, the frog that fell together with Weitz was supposedly down there as well.
If so, Tanza, and the gladiators of this Island as well――.
Todd: [What’s actually happening here?]
Todd: [You, are you really the child of His Excellency the Emperor?]
Todd, carrying the axe on his shoulder, looked down at Subaru, who had slumped down with blank eyes.
Having lost his comrades, lacking the willpower to run away, as the man gazed at his state, Subaru understood why he had been kept alive until he was the last one remaining.
The lie Subaru had told, that he was the Emperor’s illegitimate son, had driven an actual wedge into Todd.
He, too, had been considering the possibility that Subaru really was the Emperor’s illegitimate son.
Subaru: [Why don’t, you just surrender, or something? I’m the Emperor’s…]
If he had considered the possibility that Subaru was his son, then there was supposedly some room to consider the appeal of Subaru and the others.
Subaru had decided to go along with Tanza and the others’ misunderstanding by using this strategy, because he had thought it would be the best way to put his Unit on their feet again, and because it had been a gleam of hope for them.
It was possible that Todd, instead of picking the option to have them kill one another, would choose to raise the white flag in order to survive.
But as a result of that, Subaru had lost all his comrades, while Todd had kept his grasp on his life.
Subaru: [Why, what is it? You’re…]
Todd: [If I did something like surrender, I’d get killed due to some half-minded justification, and there’d be nothing I could do.]
Todd: [I’ve decided that it’s always better to inquire about the authenticity of a matter when the situation’s in my favor. I can devote my thoughts to making a decision, and it’s also harder to make a mistake. ――That and, it gives me peace of mind.]
At the last reason, which seemed to be the most important with the way Todd had put it, Subaru took in a breath.
It felt just as if, all this time, Todd had been strangling his neck.
Todd: [Regardless of whether you’re the Emperor’s illegitimate son or not, it’s your name I’m curious about.]
Subaru: [My, name…?]
Todd: [Natsuki Schwartz, that’s similar to the name of a scary guy I know. And to top it off, the way you smell is really similar to that scary guy as well.]
With a small sniff, Todd looked at Subaru with cold eyes.
Something about his smell―― he had been told the same thing back during the first massacre, when he had first come to know that Todd had arrived at the Gladiator Island.
Having been informed that it was about his smell, an unpleasant hunch emerged within Subaru’s mind.
Subaru: [Do you know about the Miasma?]
Todd: [Miasma? Ah, no, that’s not it, that’s not it, don’t get the wrong idea. It really does smell, your body odor. I have a bit of a good nose. That’s why it’s so strange.]
Todd: [――Hey you, do you have an older brother or something? If so, I’d be happy to keep you alive as a bargaining chip with him.]
Denying Subaru’s question, what had followed was a surprising proposal.
I’d be happy to keep you alive, to think such a thing would come from Todd’s mouth. Furthermore, the older brother Todd had spoken of, was in all likelihood none other than Subaru himself.
He had thought that the Subaru with longer limbs was the older brother of the shrunken Subaru.
Moreover, Subaru seemed to remember introducing himself to Todd while he was dressed as a woman, he might be suspecting that Subaru was related to “Natsumi Schwartz” because of that.
In any case, if “not killing” had become an option in Todd’s mind.
Weitz’s, Hiain’s and Idra’s deaths, had occurred right next to him.
If he closed his eyes, the deaths of Gustav and Old Man Null also came to mind. He could also see the deaths of the many gladiators, see their their remains, which he had witnessed along the way.
Absolutely everyone, had ended up dead. They had ended up dead, thus.
――Thus, because Subaru absolutely must not die.
Subaru: […You know, about Nii-chan?]
Taking advantage of Todd’s misunderstanding, he switched gears to advancing the conversation.
If Todd was somehow cautious of the big Subaru, then by using that caution, the small Subaru could live.
If he could survive this place in that way――.
Subaru opened his mouth and tried to string together some words that would get him through this. Todd outstretched his palm and grabbed Subaru’s face as it made an expression, and Subaru could see his eyes through the gaps between his fingers.
Crouching down while grabbing Subaru’s face, Todd gave him a terribly cold look.
Todd: [――Hey, you tried to manipulate me, didn’t you?]
With a dull thud, a sharp sensation slid into his chest.
Feeling the chill of the blade’s tip inside his body, Subaru widened his eyes. Then, one beat later, a pain so great that his limbs went numb screamed in the back of his head with potency.
And due to that potent scream, Subaru’s own mouth also screamed.
Subaru: [GYAAAA, GEEEEE!!]
Todd: [My bad, my bad, there’s no room for carelessness or weakness.]
An oversized knife had been lodged deeply within Subaru’s chest.
It was not a matter of pulling it out or not pulling it out, it was simply too big. It had pierced him. Having stabbed him, it was probably destroying that which was important within his chest.
Blood frothed at the edges of his mouth, and while spilling red saliva, Subaru’s body trembled.
Coughing violently, a red-stained package fell out of his mouth.
It did not matter. It no longer mattered. He could not use it. It was not like he could use it. Die, he must not die. If he died, it would be terrible. If he died, dying would be, he must not die.
Todd: [Don’t move.]
Lying down, trying to crawl away from that place, Subaru’s abdomen was stepped on by Todd as he spoke. So that he could not move, so that he could not get away, he had been stopped.
Having stopped him, in front of Subaru, Todd raised his axe overhead.
It hurts, it’s scary, and it’s awful, it’s dangerous, at least, at least, this red, this cold pain, this, at least this, I must, stop this.
Subaru: [I must, not, die…]
Todd: [One, two aaand three!]
Weakly, he raised his hands to shield his head. Useless.
The head beneath Subaru’s hands, and his very life, the blade of the falling axe pulverized all of those――.
As his head was smashed in, everything contained inside of it had spilled out.
Feeling as if he had been watching that horrific scene, a scream exploded from the depths of Subaru’s throat. Reaching out both of his trembling hands, he touched his own head.
It had not been smashed. A head that had not been smashed, a chest that did not ache, a life that had not been snuffed out, it was all there.
Upon ascertaining this, as he breathed a sigh of relief, Subaru raised his head to the sky, and――,
There was a man covered in tattoos that, slowly, turned to look back at Subaru.
His left arm mangled by the axe, his right eye stabbed out by the knife, he was shedding a tremendous amount of blood. Weitz.
Weitz: [It was the first time…]
His lips quivering, the bloodied Weitz spilled those words.
Seeing that, Subaru let out an “Ah” along with a truly, truly pathetic breath of air.
Weitz: [Anyone’s said, they believed in me…]
Spilling those feeble words, Weitz’s body collapsed to its side.
Even if he were to extend his hand, no matter what he did, Weitz’s body could not be saved any more, definitely.
He should not have died. Subaru, should not have died.
He should not have let it become absolute.
Subaru’s starting line, restarting at the point of Death, continued to move forward――.
――Once it happened that someone who could not be saved, Natsuki Subaru’s “heart” would be shattered.
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