Arc 8, Chapter 64 – “Parent and Child of the Empire”

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Translated by:

  • Garcar

Proofread by:

  • Cirdan Lunae
  • Sscaide

Art Sources:

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――The person known as Rowan Segmunt, was a man completely unfit to be a father.

Though Cecilus Segmunt thought that so-called common sensibilities were unnecessary for the leading actor, it was apparent that Rowan was a father far removed from the conventional family image.

An ideal father was not someone who would slay his own child because it “didn’t seem” like they would grow up in the way he desired.

A single-minded eccentricity divorced from all notions of paternal love, that was the entirety of the reason why Rowan had killed all of Cecilus’s older brothers while they were still infants.

A swordsman in whom a genuine madness resided, such that he had no qualms with trampling upon anything as long as it was for the sake of reaching the Heavenly Sword―― Rowan Segmunt was nothing more, and nothing less, than precisely that.

In all likelihood, Rowan would be deemed the foremost failure of a father even if one searched far and wide all throughout the world. Born into this world as the son of a father utterly lacking in such respect or familial love, Cecilus truly thought himself fortuitous from the bottom of his heart.

――The desire towards the Heavenly Sword harbored by Rowan, was something that Cecilus also harbored himself.

That was an endeavor that aimed to tread into the far distance, to a region above the clouds unseen by the eye; by no means could it be achieved by somebody who diverted their gaze or took detours.

If he had been raised in a family that was respectable and distinguished throughout history, or in a household of honorable poverty that hesitated to steal for the sake of a meal, Cecilus would not have had any conclusive evidence that his wish to reach the Heavenly Sword was not contaminated with needless impurities.

Therefore, it was Rowan Segmunt.

Cutting down all blood relations that served as obstructive fetters, removing all hindrances without hesitation in his pursuit to master the way of the sword with undaunted resolve, he prepared trial after trial with his son’s life as a secondary concern.

That pure madness staked on the sword, free from any impurity, was unstintingly poured into Cecilus by Rowan.

Hence, Cecilus thought.

――As expected, he, born into this world as the son of Rowan, most definitely had it.

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Drawn from a scabbard of dreams, the Dream Sword flashed as it ran through the sky of reality――.

Cutting the explosion of light, which seemed to invite the destruction of the world, head-on, its tip was delivered to the beautiful girl who housed a blue flame in a single one of her eyes as she shed tears of blood.

Basking in the supernatural stroke of the blade, the girl’s―― Arakiya’s slender body had its very life severed in twain; such a thing did not come to pass.

The reason being, even the outcome from the slash of the Enchanted Sword, forged with reason not of this world, was something that did not adhere to common sense.

――The Stone, Muspel.

As one enrolled among the Four Great, it was the Great Spirit that sustained the vast lands of the Vollachian Empire.

Even if he intuitively understood that what he had exorcized with the Dream Sword Masayume was both Arakiya and not Arakiya, an extreme presence which had been painting over her very existence, Cecilus had no way of discerning its true identity.

But then again, Cecilus’s resolve or actions would not have changed regardless if he had known.

Even if he understood that the vast lands of the Empire would crumble together with the Great Spirit if Muspel were to be destroyed, it was inevitable that Cecilus would draw the Dream Sword.

To prioritize the presence of the heroine over the vast lands of the Empire, was a natural decision for the leading actor.

To begin with, when it came to the script, it was impossible that anything Cecilus carried out with conviction would result in a bad ending.

Therefore――,

Arakiya: [――――]

Unable to endure the power she had taken into herself, Arakiya had been on the verge of bursting apart.

Before Cecilus, having exorcized the gargantuan power that threatened her life with the Dream Sword, the innumerable bands of light encircling Arakiya―― those diamond bands were reduced to dazzling particles, melting into the crimson-tinted Imperial Capital.

As Arakiya slowly fell in the midst of those dancing particles of light, Cecilus sheathed the Dream Sword into the scabbard, which had suddenly appeared on his waist like a dream itself, and reached out his hands.

His body was covered in wounds. Having sustained lacerations all over his figure, his blood-drenched kimono was torn and frayed; the design was far too beaten-up to be called attire for a bout.

However, contrary to that miserable appearance, the light in Cecilus’s eyes as he caught Arakiya had not clouded over in the slightest.

Cecilus: [――――]

Languidly, the unconscious girl had both her eyes closed, and displayed a sleeping face that seemed as if she was dead.

Since he knew that she was not actually dead from how she felt in his hands, he did not panic. Only, he quietly shrugged his shoulders as if to say “Good grief”.

Cecilus: [You really know how to cause a stir, Anya.]

Among his faint memories that had been resuscitated in the midst of battle, the majority were of his evening conversation with the friend who had shrunk Before Cecilus into the form of After Cecilus. However, when excluding that majority, the one who had left the largest footprint on his memories was this girl.

Cecilus had a reputation, both among himself and others, that he was unable to look after others. Since he had made it so difficult to follow himself until here, there was no greater handful than her.

Perhaps, it would have been no exaggeration to say that she was the biggest handful in the whole Empire.

???: […I guess it’s fine to assume you’ve wrapped things up?]

Behind Cecilus as he held Arakiya, a voice with a slight sense of tension called out to him.

Approaching with footsteps that emphasized his caution, and in a state of being equally as battered as Cecilus from the aftermath of the battle, was Al.

Not only had he survived without being reduced to spent charcoal at the edge of the decisive battle of the bastion, but his act of playing supporting role by throwing his weapon at the end for Cecilus’s spotlight, was also something that clearly served as his own spotlight.

Cecilus: [That was quite the masterfully controlled performance, Al-san. I think understanding my intentions back there and throwing your weapon truly merits quite the high amount of points.]

Al: [What kind of points, like favorability with you? In that case, I really don’t give a shit.]

Drooping his shoulders in a fed-up manner, Al looked towards Arakiya and said “More importantly…”. His gaze through his iron helmet was filled with trepidation, giving off a nervous and fearful atmosphere, but.

Al: [Lil’ Miss Arakiya is…]

Cecilus: [Not dead. After all, in order to secure a conclusion where she wouldn’t die, I went through the trouble of tearing through my limits a second and then a third time. It would have been outrageous to stop her by killing her! It’s the way of Cecilus Segmunt to meet expectations, and betray tasteless predictions.]

Al: […If you’re fine with not killing her, then I’m not gonna press you for that conclusion.]

Cecilus puffed out his chest as he responded so, to which Al heaved a sigh as he fiddled with the metal fixtures of his helmet.

Of course, Cecilus understood Al’s concerns. It was a matter of if the risk of letting Arakiya live was worth the trade-off for the sense of security that would have come with killing her.

However――,

Cecilus: [If it’s going to be that kind of complex and unexciting discussion, feel free to have it with some wise person with a frowny face in a place where I’m not around. My answer is just as you see it, Al-san.]

Al: […I already knew from the start that any persuasion or arguing with you would be a three-hit combo of unreasonable, impossible, and thoughtless. You’re gonna need to take responsibility for the lil’ miss.]

Cecilus: [Apparently that was my intention from the beginning. Seems like since the very first time I defeated Anya, my intention was to shoulder that responsibility.]

With a light feeling as if he was speaking of somebody else’s matters when they were in fact his own, Cecilus saw the face of Arakiya from when she was younger overlaid upon her sleeping face currently in his arms.

Just like with the friend he had parted with amidst the evening sun, this was an illusion visible to him only because their acquaintance had been for so long. Perhaps he ought to put a bit more of his back into it, and tackle the memories which he had been far too concerned about pulling out.

Cecilus: [But it seems like before I can delve into that episode, there’s a separate duty that I need to carry out.]

Al: [Ah?]

As Cecilus suddenly muttered, Al raised his voice in surprise. But, Cecilus did not respond with words, and instead left his answer to the act of directing his gaze in another direction.

In the aftermath of his battle with Arakiya, the buildings and streets had all melted, leaving the Imperial Capital in a hellish state, dyed red―― within that scene, the malevolent madness of an appropriate figure had arisen.

Malevolent Figure: [――――]

With an inextinguishable flame flaring about his entire body, a blue-haired man stood.

His skin was scorched black, hiding one of its characteristics, but the blazing radiance of his golden eyes would have made it apparent to everyone that this man was an undead nevertheless.

And to Cecilus, a fact greater than what would have been communicated to everyone else was made apparent.

Cecilus: [――Oya oya oya, I had thought somebody was furiously dashing here, but to think it would be a flaming entrance! My my now if I do say so myself, isn’t this quite the flashy production?]

He had not been running around haphazardly, rather, he had been running with a clear objective in mind.

The fact that his hurried strides had ceased at this place, was because that objective resided here―― nay, that objective resided within none other than Cecilus Segmunt.

――With sights set upon the Heavenly Sword, the swordsman who neglected all else, Rowan Segmunt.

Having finally cast away even his own life, his father had arrived here in a completely altered form, to which Cecilus nodded many times in acknowledgement, and smiled.

Rowan was grinning in the midst of being engulfed in a blaze. Cecilus, too, smiled in his blood-drenched form.

The parent and the child, for whom naught was possible save for living and dying by the sword, grinning and smiling――,

Cecilus: [Just now, you made me think this for the first time, dad. ――I don’t dislike it, rather, I quite like it.]

Saying that, and ironically forgetting about the After Cecilus, he celebrated that the chance to fulfill the promise exchanged by the Before Cecilus had finally come about.

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――Rowan Segmunt longed for the Heavenly Sword.

Why? For what reason? For what purpose?

He was tired of hearing such tedious questions. That whole kit and caboodle was nonsense that had nothing to do with Rowan.

Its impetus went beyond his earliest memories, its genesis was consigned to the riverbed of oblivion.

Since the very first occasion he had laid fingers upon steel in the form of a sword, there no longer remained any other path for Rowan Segmunt but to master the art of swinging it.

Even after being endowed with a commandment as a Stargazer, and gaining a son to serve as a vessel to reach the Heavenly Sword, Rowan continued to do nothing but commit himself to diligent study so that he himself could reach the Heavenly Sword.

Even using the fact that his greatest enemy in reaching the Heavenly Sword had been brought forth into this world by his own hands, he committed himself to diligent study, with diligent study, of diligent study, for diligent study, he diligently studied――,

Rowan: [Ahhh… the time for my grand moment, has arrived at last.]

Soul aflame, life fading to ash, his very destiny was on the cusp of its terminus.

All were engulfed in the blaze, and as Rowan’s self was blurring into the realm after death, he entered into a domain untread by both living or undead―― the interval between life and death, the point that ought to be called the beyond.

That was tantamount to uncovering the very nature, the true essence, of life and the soul.

A few more seconds, real as they might be, the final significance of Rowan Segmunt’s existence would overflow.

Rowan: [――――]

Each time his undead body crumbled, he readied his beloved katana, continuously resurrected alongside himself, and faced forward.

The small figure visible beyond the flickering flames, witnessing it take the exact same stance as himself――,

Rowan: [――Now, let us have ourselves…]

Cecilus: [AN HONORABLE DUEL――!!]

――Challenging the Heavenly Sword, the ephemeral flash of Rowan Segmunt blazed bright.

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Cecilus: [I’m leaving Anya in your care.]

On the remains of the street that could no longer be called a road, answering the request of Rowan, who had appeared there in a blazing form, Cecilus forcibly foisted Arakiya upon Al.

Cecilus could hear Al’s bewildered voice go “Oioi!?” at the suddenness of it all, but he discarded that into the abyssal depths of his consciousness, and focused all of his nerves on a lone man.

Once again, color, sound, and smell vanished from Cecilus’s world, and it became governed solely by the palpitations of steel.

Rowan: [――Now, let us have ourselves…]

Holding his hand over the katana at his waist, it was apparent that Rowan’s lips had moved to spin such words as he readied himself.

Even if he could not hear it in the form of sound, the sentiments between the parent and child who loved extravagant pretenses had allowed him to hear it within his soul.

Hence, Cecilus likewise responded with grandeur.

Cecilus: [AN HONORABLE DUEL――!!]

In an instant, the distance separating the two disappeared.

That was nothing out of the ordinary for a battle involving Cecilus, Blue Lightning as he was, but this moment was not created by just Cecilus alone, and it was evidence that Rowan had stepped past the confines of human capability.

Cecilus: [I’m surprised.]

This was honest admiration.

A few hours prior, when he had parted with the yet-living Rowan, as far as Cecilus’s eyes could see, his father had not reached this domain. However, now that they had been reunited, with him having become an undead, Rowan’s skill with the sword had rapidly developed, and his talents were finally beginning a posthumous bloom.

That was neither something like his speed nor the proficiency of his skills, but it was a transformation brought about by a change in his consciousness.

The effect that mentality could have on performance was nothing to make light of, but having said that, breaking out of one’s mental shell would not dramatically improve their physical abilities. Hence, the transformation within Rowan was not one of extreme physical nature.

――Rowan had become capable of taking himself “one step” further.

That which was not a physical step, was difficult to describe on a level above that of pure feeling. Just as there was a great distance between amateurs and experts, there existed yet another gap between first and second-class experts.

Thus, between first-class and super first-class, and between them and the transcendent beings that were even further above, there existed more gaps.

Invisible to the eye, inexplicable with words, Cecilus had deliberately expressed that here with the phrase “one step”, and had recognized that Rowan had tread over that boundary.

To think that through the experience of death, he had overcome that difference of a single step which he had never been able to cross over in his life.

People would likely speak of how foolish, how incredibly ironic such a thing was. But, none other than Cecilus alone would――,

Cecilus: [I don’t dislike it, rather, I quite like it.]

An unyielding flame upon his body, as his life itself was being scorched, Rowan, plunged into the realm of death as he was, unleashed a stroke of his sword; as the blade flashed across a world bereft of color and light, Cecilus watched in adoration.

Within the glint of the blade there dwelled assiduous training, diligent study in which no corners had been cut; witnessing this, his eyes flickered.

As a father, Rowan would likely be evaluated as the worst of the worst, and though Cecilus would not deny that, he dearly loved Rowan’s mentality of constantly pouring his entire soul into the role he played.

Rowan: [――――]

Igniting the little life he had left as fuel, Rowan unleashed his greatest stroke of the sword in all of his time during both his life and after his death.

That brandish, honed to a razor’s edge, was pregnant with an aura of swordsmanship that caused even Cecilus to envision death. ――That nightmarish ending, born out of a single-minded concentration, was something that the Dream Sword Masayume would not allow.

The Fiend Sword Murasame was an Enchanted Sword that could sever the concept of anything’s “Point”.

In contrast, using dreams as its scabbard, the true value of the Dream Sword Masayume was――,

Cecilus: [――Dreams are devoured, and dreams are granted.]

In exchange for the motivation one possessed for a wish they desired to be granted, the Enchanted Sword would harbor the power to grant that wish.

Hence, the Dream Sword had been granted the name of “A Dream Come True” which made dreams become reality; even if it might have become a useless, dull blade depending on the wielder, it had continued to be extolled as an Enchanted Sword capable of severing the very world in twain. [1]

The blade spent many months and years being transferred from person to person, since as compensation for their wish being fulfilled, they would forget even the reason why they had yearned for it in the first place; as its owner had changed many times, now, the Dream Sword had settled into Cecilus’s hand.

For both Cecilus and the Dream Sword, this was a miraculous happenstance.

That was because――,

Cecilus: [There’s no way that my dreams and motivation are ever going to run out!]

That was the reason why Cecilus Segmunt was the master of the Dream Sword.

An extraordinary yearning towards the dreams one harbored would allow the potential of the Dream Sword Masayume to be displayed to the maximum degree.

――That instant, the unleashed brandish blurred the boundary between dream and reality as it sliced.

Cecilus: [――――]

Compared to the decisive battle of the bastion between Cecilus and Arakiya a moment prior, this bout was far too quiet.

The impact bestowed upon the Imperial Capital, the Empire, and the world was insignificant; something like a one-on-one against an undead that would have disappeared either way, could not be anything but a trivial matter.

However, for the parent and child duo that was Rowan Segmunt and Cecilus Segmunt, there was significance.

Rowan: […Ahhh, good grief, what an unfilial son I’ve got.]

Passing by each other the moment their blades had crossed, the parent and child had their backs turned to each other.

His undead father, whose face he would never be able to see again, unpleasantly spat that out in a long exhale, and then,

Rowan: [If this is how it ends, I shoulda cut ya down right away back when ya were soaking in yer first bath.]

Cecilus: [Hahahahaha! Yes, yes, that’s right! That’s the only time you would’ve been able to win, dad!]

At the sore loser who acted truly dishonorably, Cecilus roared in a great burst of laughter.

Hearing Cecilus’s unreserved laughter, Rowan looked up at the sky. Having lost its form, his katana was reduced to dust, and as his existence began to fray from his burning fingertips, he narrowed his golden eyes.

And then――,

Rowan: [Next time, next. ――I ain’t the kinda person who’d give up on account of dying.]

Until the very end of the end, without leaving behind even a single word befitting a father, his body, his soul, was reduced to ash.

Constantly aiming for the Heavenly Sword, and not relinquishing that desire even in death, those were the final moments of the malevolent swordsman known as Rowan Segmunt.

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Ahhh, how unpleasant, how unpleasant, Rowan thought as he faded away.

Throughout his lifetime, he had continued to walk without halting his step, and ultimately, he had been unable to reach the Heavenly Sword.

The final blaze of his scorched, burning soul had not illuminated the unseen path towards the pinnacle of the sword. How very, how so very tantalizing.

At this rate, Cecilus would probably end up being the one to reach the Heavenly Sword.

To think it would be his son instead of himself, what truly malicious discretion of the Sword God. Chagrin and despair, dejection and lament, if he were to start speaking, he would never be able to clear away the inexhaustible negative thoughts.

Be that as it may――,

Rowan: [Well, guess it’s better than some other person reaching it.]

In that final duel, if Rowan had surpassed Cecilus, would he have reached the Heavenly Sword?

He had not surpassed him. In the end, it was meaningless to think about hypotheticals that had not come to pass. Rowan would not think about meaningless things. Especially when he was on the verge of fading away.

He ought not do what should not be done, so when trying to think of other things, he came to a realization.

Ever since he had been aware of his surroundings, he had aimed for the Heavenly Sword; in every waking moment, in every sleeping moment, he dreamed of nothing but reaching the Heavenly Sword; that was how the existence known as himself had persisted until this day.

Once Rowan concluded that he would not reach the Heavenly Sword, there no longer remained anything for him to think about.

Rowan: [Hm.]

For the first time since he began longing for the Heavenly Sword, he relinquished it.

That sensation made Rowan feel a sense of loss rather than a sense of freedom, as well as a certain kind of discomfort. Amidst the sensation of his soul feeling ill at ease, Rowan thought this for the very first time in his life.

――Was the blaze of my soul that I had spent my whole life to reach, at least able to become a flame for a candle that will illuminate my son’s path? So he thought.

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Leaving behind naught but ash and dust, the figure of Rowan Segmunt faded away.

Within his soul, Cecilus Segmunt understood that this undoubtedly signified the death of his father.

Having already met his end as a mortal, Rowan had still continued to aim for the Heavenly Sword after being reduced to an undead, and as his life was on the cusp of burning out, Cecilus had certainly severed it in twain.

Cecilus: [Al-san, sorry for so suddenly entrusting you with Anya. It must not be easy to carry someone with only one arm so I’ll take her back now.]

Returning Masayume to its sheath after it had completed its duty, Cecilus turned around and called out to Al.

However, Al gave no response to that call. On one knee and supporting Arakiya’s body with one arm, as he shook his head side-to-side in a feeble manner,

Al: [How… are you so calm?]

Cecilus: [And by that you mean?]

Al: [You know what I mean! Just now, that was your own father, wasn’t it! He was still alive when you last saw each other, and yet he died and became a pawn of the enemy, that’s…!]

Cecilus: [Wait wait stop right there, Al-san. You’re a little mistaken so please allow me to correct you. My dad certainly became a dead person, but he hadn’t been made into a pawn. The reason why my dad attacked me wasn’t because he’d lost his sanity.]

Al: [Wha…]

Cecilus: [Ah, by the way, I said sanity with the widely-accepted meaning of the word so perhaps my dad was already quite divorced from that regular type of sanity. On that front, make no mistake, but…]

Waving his hand, Cecilus added that bit regarding Rowan’s mentality.

Either way, Cecilus wanted to clear up Al’s misunderstanding that this was an act of returning the favor for Rowan having attacked Cecilus, which happened because his mind had been destroyed after being turned into an undead.

Cecilus: [Stuff like a child killing their parent was also a major development in the play “Magrizza’s Guillotine”. ――But then again, things between me and my dad turning out like this was something that was appointed by fate quite a long time ago.]

Al: [Appointed, by fate…?]

Cecilus: [So, it’s simply a matter of that time finally having come around.]

This was a conclusion that both Cecilus and Rowan knew would eventually come.

Thus, when Rowan had returned as a dead person, despite having parted when he was still alive, Cecilus was not very surprised. For Rowan, everything outside of reaching the Heavenly Sword was trifle, so it was understandable that if necessary, he would sacrifice his own life as if it was the natural thing to do.

Nobody was capable of understanding Rowan. ――Nobody, except Cecilus.

His father, who was exceedingly the best at being a bad example, was not an incomprehensible monster. That was sufficient proof that the Segmunts had a healthy parent-child relationship, even if it was atypical.

Cecilus: [Most people would probably disapprove of the relationship between me and my dad, but――]

Unlike Rowan, Cecilus did not view all things in the world as trifle. So long as one could properly distinguish between the cheers and the other interference, the world was filled with blessings as far as the eye could see.

The light of the sun, the cool breeze, the trickle of raindrops, the fragrance of grass, and Rowan Segmunt―― all were blessings that had been granted to Cecilus.

Cecilus: [My dad called me an unfilial son, but I don’t think there’s any son as filial as I am. After all, just by being my father, he has achieved the exceedingly meritorious achievement of having brought me into this world.]

Of course, that would not serve as consolation to Rowan, who had failed to realize the wish he had pursued throughout his life.

Being called an unfilial son for such a reason, Cecilus had no room for excuse. Though from the outset, he had no intention whatsoever of leading a life in need of excuses.

Al: [――――]

Walking right up to the speechless Al, Cecilus folded his arms and tilted his head.

After this, there was the worry of what should be done with Arakiya. Even if he tried to bring her somewhere safe, was there anywhere in the current Imperial Capital that actually was safe?

Were there any safe zones aside from Cecilus’s direct vicinity?

Cecilus: [Having said that it’d be a bit strange to carry Anya around the whole time as I run about… if we don’t head back soon then Groovy-san’s sure to loudly yell at us. He went off to go hold back the caster of that curse, and speaking of which, do you think Groovy-san will be okay with us coming back with the Dream Sword instead of the Fiend Sword?]

From the start, the encounter with Arakiya was an unexpected combat.

The reason that Cecilus and Al had come here was to search for the Fiend Sword Murasame, capable of cutting curses, and unfortunately they had not fulfilled that objective. By now, Groovy should have been doing battle with the caster of the troublesome Curse of Thorns.

Cecilus: [For the time being, how about it, Al-san. While you do your best to carry Anya here, I’ll clear the way ahead, by cooperating like that…]

Al: [――Nah, I can’t agree to that.]

Cecilus: [Al-san?]

At Cecilus’s proposition, Al shook his head side-to-side and declined. Standing up from his kneeling position, he foisted Arakiya back upon Cecilus.

Cecilus reflexively took Arakiya into his arms, and then,

Al: [I’ve said it before. I’ve got something that I gotta do. Lil’ Miss Arakiya was an unthinkable detour… Feel bad for Groovy, though.]

Lowering the tone of his voice, Al’s gaze through his steel helmet was directed towards the Dream Sword on Cecilus’s waist.

Al: [Even I can tell that the katana on your waist is an insanely powerful weapon. It may be different from the one Groovy wanted, but do your best with it.]

Cecilus: [So then Al-san is going off on his own. It may not be my place to say this, but will Al-san be alright walking around by himself unarmed? Wouldn’t dying in vain be the most you could do?]

Al: [――. I won’t die in vain. That’s the one thing I’ll never do.]

Cecilus: [Indeed, seems like it. I kinda understand somehow or another.]

As Al spoke with conviction, Cecilus nodded in assent.

Having acted together until here, Cecilus thought that Al possessed a special trait of the same kind as Schwartz’s “True Sight”. With that “True Sight”, capable of seeing excessively ahead, Al surely would not die in vain.

Cecilus: [But that’s not the only reason why Al-san is trying to part ways with me, right?]

Al: [――――]

Cecilus: [It seems like you really weren’t pleased in the slightest with how me and my dad settled things. Perhaps Al-san also has some reservations regarding parent-child relationships?]

Al: […That’s got nothing to do with this.]

Even if it had nothing to do with this, Al’s tone made it clear that a nerve had been struck, so Cecilus slightly shrugged his shoulders, and adjusted his hold on Arakiya.

Personally, Cecilus was reluctant to part with Al and leave him alone.

Part of that was because he judged that it would not be ideal to have his hands full with Arakiya, but more so because of his debt to Al―― in order to finish things without letting Arakiya die, it was a fact that Cecilus had borrowed Al’s power.

Long story short, Cecilus had to repay his debt to Al.

If Al had someone he wanted to save, then it made sense for Cecilus to assist him in that rescue.

Worst case scenario, he could knock out Al and carry him back to Groovy, and then after mowing down the problem entirely with a swing of the Dream Sword, everyone would go to meet Al’s “princess”.

It happened at the same moment he had thought that.

???: [――It was unexpected that you did not take her life. Reconsideration: Required.]

Suddenly, the voice of a third party interrupted Cecilus and Al’s conversation.

Those who heard the voice faced towards it, and Cecilus slightly narrowed his eyes. ――The owner of the voice was in the air, not in the midst of a jump, but in a state of simply floating there.

For a moment, upon hearing the familiar manner of speech, Cecilus recalled the existence of the Witch whom he had once killed, but present there was not the same Witch in question――,

Cecilus: [――No, you’re the same person. You look different on the outside but you’re the same on the inside… hmm? Perhaps you’re a little different on the inside too? Is such a thing even possible?]

Witch: [If the form and nature of a soul changes, the exterior follows suit. The converse is also true, but… by what sort of principle were you able to perceive that with merely a single glance? Answer: Required.]

Cecilus: [Hahahaha, now that you mention it, I too wonder how I figured that out.]

Without any intentions to provoke her with teasing, and truly just not knowing why, Cecilus smiled.

Only, for some reason he harbored confidence that such was the case at a single glance. That the woman floating in the air overhead, her white hair fluttering, was the same existence as that Witch.

Cecilus: [But why are you here? Did you not learn your lesson when you were killed by me the first time, and came to get revenge? I find the appeal of such unyielding tough opponents to be desirable, but…]

Witch: [To put it plainly, it is to carry out my objective. I have fulfilled one of my two overarching objectives. Once I achieve the one that remains, I hypothesize that I will be able to become fully absorbed in my original purpose of creation.]

Cecilus: [Ho ho I see I don’t get it!]

Witch: [I thought I had explained it succinctly, though. Explanation: Required.]

Cecilus: [Well then how about I also give an answer that’s simple, unusually short, and succinct in terms of myself! ――If you came to where I was to fulfill your objective then you probably won’t be able to fulfill it.]

It was plain and simple, exceedingly obvious, a clear answer unmatched in terms of being easy to understand.

Hearing that reponse, the white-haired Witch narrowed her eyes, framed by long lashes, and nodded.

And then――,

Witch: [Ah, is that so? In that case, my answer is simple. You cannot kill me.]

Cecilus: [――――]

Witch: [I have grasped that which is capable of killing me within this Empire. By no means shall I draw near any of them. Henceforth, nobody can kill me.]

The Witch spoke in an indifferent manner, and raised both her hands to the sky.

That instant, Cecilus felt a strange sensation that seemed to distort the air and space surrounding the Witch. Next to Cecilus, Al took a step forward.

Since the Witch had made her entrance, Al had not spoken a single word.

He looked up at the Witch, who continued to produce a strange air of oppression, and suddenly extended his single arm straight out to the side. ――The next moment, the melted ground surged upwards, creating an unshapely stone dao, and Al gripped it in his outstretched hand.

Raising the stone dao overhead, Al’s throat quaked towards the Witch――,

Witch: [I am the Witch of Greed――]

Al: [――ECHIDNAAAAAAAA!!]

With a voice of pure rage, akin to coughing up blood, he seemed to lose himself as he slashed towards her.

Translation Note:

[1] – The text here describes the name of Masayume in its kanji form (正夢), which directly means “true dream” and is equivalent to the meaning  of the phrase “a dream come true”.

29 thoughts on “Arc 8, Chapter 64 – “Parent and Child of the Empire””

  1. who is the best mod of the WCT team?
    and why is it goldkills, that cute little girl

  2. Arc 8 has been a long journey, and we are finally getting to the climax of vollachia. I wonder how the relationship between al and dona plays a role in the future.

  3. This chapter was great. We got the resolution to Rowan, and also now we get Al encountering the witch of greed

  4. I have expectations that Sphinxdona will kill someone on our side, so please don’t let Rowan be the only one to die at the end of the arc.

  5. This arc has been so f*cking peak, can’t wait to see the story between Al and Echidna!

  6. Damn Cecilius’s true power really is to say “Nuh huh” to all the basic laws of this world. I love him for that.

  7. As long as there aren’t any deaths next chapter, I’m happy. I made the rookie mistake of getting attached to every character TuT. You’d think I’d know better by now lol.

    1. How so? The scope is certainly larger than what Re:zero was used to pre Arc 6 but its still doing the same things that Re:zero is known for?

      1. I like it more when there is this big problem, and subaru need to figure out how to solve it, with everthing he learn throughout the tries, like in Arc 3 and 4.

        This arc is more like a battle to battle progression, more so when most subaru tries are being skipped, or are very short.

        Not that I am disliking the current arc, though.

  8. Great chapter! Rowan was an interesting character and it’s so rare for Tappei to perma-death someone but I really likely how he went out in a bittersweet way.

    I’m so curious about Al and Echidna. Like… he treats his life like the IfSubaru who was contracted to echidna. Is there a possible connection?

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