Arc 8, Chapter 68 – “The Man I Fell For”

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Human Translated By:

  • Garcar (Section 3, 4, 5)

Machine Translated By:

  • Beloved

Proofread By:

  • Cirdan Lunae
  • Shadow
  • Grimx_
  • Sscaide

Japanese to English Checking By:

  • Garcar
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――Upon being called the “Witch of Envy”, Emilia widened her eyes in surprise.

The cause of her surprise had been twofold: one reason was how long it had been since she was treated like the Witch of Envy, the other was that being called the Witch of Envy had not hurt her.

It had been more than a year since the Royal Selection began, and in the Kingdom of Lugunica, those unaware that one of the candidates was a silver-haired half-elf with amethyst eyes were few.

To put it Subaru-style, Emilia, as Emilia, had become a household name.

As a result, even occasions when Emilia needed to wear her usual cognitive disruption robe had become sparse. And the reason she had donned it so diligently in the Empire for the first time in a long while, was to prevent people from recognizing her as Emilia.

For that reason, it had been a while since she had been called the Witch of Envy. And even when called so, she had remained unperturbed. ――For she had the conviction to confidently say, “You’re mistaken”.

The conviction that there was a person, who acknowledged Emilia as Emilia, and had said “I love you”.

Emilia: [I’m Emilia, just Emilia. Not the Witch of Envy.]

Supported by that conviction, Emilia was able to respond with her back unbent.

After replying so, Emilia gazed intently at the familiar white-haired woman before her,

Emilia: [Although you look reaaally similar… you don’t seem to be Echidna? Perhaps, you’re Echidna’s twin, like Ram and Rem? Echidna’s older sister? Younger sister?]

???: [――. It seems you possess a vivid imagination. However, I am a creation of my creator, and not a blood relative. Correction: Required.]

Emilia: [Kreashon, Kreeated…]

Emilia frowned upon hearing the not-so-familiar words, but could understand that the other party had denied being Echidna’s sister.

Thinking about it calmly, given that Echidna was from four hundred years ago, meeting the person herself or her sister here would be very strange. Of course, since it was a situation where those who had died were rising up again, there was a chance the same could have happened with Echidna and her sister.

Emilia: [But, you seem hale and hearty, and not like you’ve died.]

She, who looked like Echidna, did not have a sickly complexion like the undead, and her eyes were also normal. But when compared to Echidna, her expressions might be slightly stiffer.

The Echidna Emilia knew, usually had a mean look on her face. ――The crying face she had shown at the end, still remained strongly within Emilia’s heart.

Emilia: [Umm, I understand that you’re not Echidna, so may I ask your name?]

???: [Yes, I too am uncomfortable with being called by the name of my creator. By all means, please call me the Witch of Greed.]

Emilia: […Do you perhaps have a name that’s easier to call you with?]

???: [――. Respondence: Required. If not that, then Sphinx.]

Emilia: [Ahh yes… wait! Sphinx!?]

As soon as she finally heard what sounded like a name, Emilia realized it was the same as the name of the central figure that had brought about the Great Disaster.

As far as Emilia was aware, Sphinx should have looked exactly like Ryuzu.

Emilia: [Aren’t Ryuzu-san and Echidna, both people closely associated with the Sanctuary? Then, I wonder if you’ll turn into Garfiel or Frederica next…]

Sphinx: [Are you also aware of the Sanctuary? It seems you and I have a deeper connection than I had presumed… by Emilia, do you refer to the Royal Selection Candidate, like Priscilla Barielle?]

Emilia: [Eh? Yes, that’s right. We need to quickly find Priscilla as well and take her back home or――]

Sphinx: [――Elimination: Required.]

At that moment, towards the woman who had slightly tilted her head―― a white light shot from Sphinx’s finger, and with an “Eh”, Emilia deflected it obliquely using a mirror of ice she conjured on reflex.

If Emilia’s specialty had been the Earth attribute instead of the Fire attribute, the earthen or stone wall would have been pierced through in a single shot, and possibly resulted in a fatal injury.

It was an attack brimming with murderous intent, to the extent that it would make one shudder.

Nevertheless――,

Emilia: [Jeez! What a reaaally abrupt start!]

The white light had not been released as a singular shot; rather, chasing after Emilia, as her silver hair danced, was a hot beam of light that sliced through the world, and with it the battle had begun.

Her opponent looked exactly like Echidna, and also like Echidna, seemed to be good at magic.

But, the same was true of Emilia.

Emilia: [If that’s what you want to do, then I’m going to give it my all too! After making sure you can’t move, I’m taking you to Subaru and the others!]

Sphinx: [I do not wish to meet them ever again. Hence, I shall take your life here, and ascertain the type of expression Pricilla Barielle would have.]

Emilia: [――! Do you know where Priscilla is?]

As she sliced away the attacks of light released from all directions with a sword of ice that shone like a mirror, Emilia’s amethyst eyes sparkled in response to Sphinx’s words.

She had a feeling that Priscilla would have wanted to head for the Crystal Palace for some reason and would thus be found there, but getting Sphinx to reveal her exact location would be the best.

All the more, Emilia was determined not to lose. Sphinx, who had the same face as Echidna, narrowed her eyes at Emilia’s enthusiasm, and with slight irritation,

Sphinx: [It would be problematic if I failed to secure this area. ――Repulsion: Required.]

That, was what she had quietly muttered.

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The battery of the Magic Crystal Cannon installed on the highest floor of the Crystal Palace, within the spire where it was operated, a battle had broken out.

The space was far too wide when considering its intended purpose, but since there were walls and ceilings, the enclosed environment was an advantageous battleground for the shinobi, Olbart.

The strength of the techniques employed by the shinobi lay in their variety and applicability. Although developed to enable the fulfillment of the mission in any environment, all the various techniques had the ultimate goal of reaping the life of the opponent.

As a battleground where that could be achieved, this space was ideal.

Olbart: [When it comes ta cramped spaces, don’t magicians tend ta buckle under the constraints?]

A battle, in essence, was about imposing one’s strengths upon the weaknesses of the other.

This was the basis of Olbart’s fighting style as a shinobi. Rather, in order to respond to the weaknesses of all sorts of opponents, he had purposely avoided forming his own specialty.

Prior to Olbart becoming the head honcho, the shinobi were generally encouraged to specialize in a singular technique.

However, the idealized conception of single-skill specialization was only for the privileged few like Cecilus and Arakiya, who possessed a single technique that could be effective against anyone, while those with ordinary abilities must be adaptable or they would simply die.

Although Olbart did not particularly care how many people died other than himself, he did feel pity for the shinobi who were dying merely because they had been taught wrong.

Thus, when Olbart became the head honcho, he immediately abandoned the doctrine of single-technique specialization.

Rather than blindly honing one’s own special skill, thoroughly training in strategies to thwart the strong points of the opponent, and learning techniques of guiding the battle so as to bring about that situation. But then again, this change did not readily bear fruit. Those who had been properly shaped by it were few, with the last being a genius girl who had appeared in the village four or five years ago.

It seemed like that genius girl had also died, so the cultivation of talented individuals was nothing more than a lost cause.

――Truly, his life was filled with nothing but regret.

Olbart: [That’s why, at least, gimme a reason ta have lived ta my dotage.]

Having kicked off the floor, he sent off shards of broken stone to smash into the Witch’s head.

Simultaneously swinging his right arm that lacked a hand and his left arm that had a hand back and forth, Olbart threw spinning kunai that would reach the target with a time delay, then he exploded off the ground with his legs.

Be it evading the flying debris, avoiding the chop from Olbart’s hand, or shooting down the kunai approaching from both sides, all of these actions were chipping away at the Witch’s ability to take the initiative, and gnawing at her life.

At that assault from the shinobi――,

Witch: [――Perspective Shift: Required.]

The white-haired Witch who had slightly narrowed her eyes, received it in its entirety without any show of resistance.

Olbart: [――――]

The flying debris had split her forehead, kunai had been thrust into her neck and femur, and her chest had been pierced through the middle by Olbart’s hand. Even then, the Witch had not moved an inch.

The Witch had been unable to react to Olbart’s movements. ――No, the Witch’s gaze had been following his movements. She was not as sluggish as her appearance seemed to suggest, that was what Olbart concluded.

In other words, the Witch could have done something but had gotten hit without doing anything. ――No, she would do so from now.

The next moment, surrounding Olbart and the Witch now in close proximity to each other, countless fist-sized orbs of light had begun to float in the air.

???: [Olbart!]

Moguro, who had realized the same thing, shouted, and Olbart, with a single long eyebrow raised, looked at the Witch.

The Witch, her beautiful countenance not having wavered in the slightest, had been observing Olbart for his subsequent decision. That gaze, which felt like it was peering into the ninety years of his life, made him feel nauseous.

Based on that, Olbart had gotten his priorities in order. Rather than aiming for the Witch’s life, he would thwart her objectives.

Bearing fatal injuries all over her body, even after being pierced through her chest, her hand remained on the pedestal―― he would aim to sever the flow of Mana that the Witch had been pouring into the Magic Core of the Crystal Palace.

Olbart: [Ya know, they say harassment’s what we shinobi are made of.]

That instant, the Witch’s wrist making contact with the pedestal was blown away by the toes that had shot up―― and the countless orbs of light surged forward to annihilate the small-statured Olbart, together with the entirety of the Witch who had cast them.

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Vincent: [――Yorna Mishigure!]

Upon sensing that something was off, Vincent took a step back from the battlefield and shouted out down towards Yorna.

Overhead, the voice of Olbart that had come down from the half-destroyed battery of the Magic Crystal Cannon was one of urgency, one that did not maintain the usual easygoing attitude of the Vicious Old Man.

Sharply turning his gaze to the side, Vincent swung his Yang Sword adjacent to himself, and locked eyes with Eugard, who was restraining the undead in the vicinity.

Eugard: [Thou must proceed.]

Entrusting this location to Eugard, who had guessed his intentions with a brief comment, Vincent hastened to Yorna. Receiving Vincent’s gaze, and after displaying a face of befuddlement for but a moment, Yorna tensed her lips and let go of the hand of the deergirl next to her―― of Tanza,

Yorna: [Tanza, please support His Excellency Vincent!]

Tanza: [――! Yes, understood.]

Drawing her chin in assent at Yorna’s call, Tanza made a cup with her hands and slightly bent down. Surmising the intention behind Tanza’s movements, Vincent made an agile hop, landing with his feet in the small hands of the girl.

The next moment, with a vigorous upheaval of those slender arms, Tanza launched Vincent towards the sky―― straight upwards, aiming for the uppermost floor of the Crystal Palace.

Vincent: [――Hk.]

The vigor was lacking, so, kicking off of the wall of the palace in order to make up for the unreached distance, Vincent arrived at the uppermost floor that was over five meters above him. The thought that he was doing something similar to Cecilus, who would side-step staircases when going up and down, grazed his mind, but such ideas immediately vanished.

After all, this was the first time Vincent had seen Olbart in such a state.

Olbart: [Kakakakka…! Did’ya think I was dead when ya saw me, ain’t that hilarious?]

Alongside the half-destroyed wall of the battery, Olbart sat with a knee up as he laughed in a low voice. However, the monstrous old man was drenched in blood, and his characteristically overly-long eyebrows were sagging. Among all his wounds, the gravest by far was that of his left arm having been blown off in the wake of his right one.

For Olbart to have engaged in such a close bout of combat, just how powerful an individual had been present here?

――No, what mattered now was.

Vincent: [Before you die, speak. What was the Witch plotting?]

Olbart: [Kaka, this really is some harsh treatment of the elderly… If ya look at Moguro you’ll be able ta tell.]

Vincent: [Moguro Hagane…]

As Olbart quite literally coughed up blood while speaking, Vincent turned around at his words, and looked at the pedestal installed within the ruinous battery, and the green orb slotted therein―― the Magic Core.

The Crystal Palace, constructed with an unsparing amount of magic crystals, was an unfathomable condensation of Mana, and thus was tantamount to a tremendously enormous bomb. The reason why that was enshrined in the Imperial Capital, the center of the Empire, was due to the existence of the Magic Core governing over it.

The Magic Core was that which served as the very heart of the Crystal Palace. ――The green glimmer of that heart, the Magic Core, could see the rising abnormality in Vincent’s sable eyes.

That meant――,

Vincent: [――Overloading the Magic Core, they intend to blow up the Crystal Palace along with the entire Imperial Capital!]

Magic Core: [Olbart, impeded it. Stopped, the Witch, midway through.]

The Witch’s gambit, which Olbart had spoken of, as Vincent shuddered upon surmising its true intent, the Magic Core―― Moguro Hagane’s voice substantiated it.

As mentioned previously, it was the distinguished achievement of the Magic Core that miraculously kept the magic crystals of the Crystal Palace steady. By pouring a vast amount of Mana into the Magic Core, the Witch had placed a large burden on its processing power. By doing that, she had plotted to have the Magic Core lose its function of control, destroying the equilibrium of the magic crystals, and blowing away the city.

Having comprehended that much, a momentary unease was birthed in Vincent’s mind.

Vincent: [The Witch was present here? Before she went up in flames?]

Moguro: [Incorrect. The Witch, was not burning. Olbart and myself, fought her together.]

Vincent: [――――]

From the way Moguro had put it, Vincent’s misgivings were not cleared up.

The one known as the Witch on this battlefield, Sphinx, was supposed to have perished with her soul scorched to naught, ensnared by the stratagems of Chisha and Natsuki Subaru.

In that case, did that mean there were two Witches? Or perhaps――.

Vincent: [The matter at hand is what ought to take priority.]

Discontinuing the thought that had veered off course, Vincent looked down at the Magic Core.

By way of Olbart’s hard-fought battle, the annihilation of the Imperial Capital by means of the Magic Core’s loss of control had been averted―― no, it had merely been delayed. Looking at the state of the Magic Core, it was apparent that its equilibrium had already been lost.

The fuse of the Magic Core had already been set off. No longer could a detonation be avoided.

Vincent: [――Moguro Hagane, you have done a great service until now.]

When he gained conviction of that reality, Vincent called out to Moguro as such.

As the Steelman Moguro Hagane, the Meteor that was this Crystal Palace itself had served the Vollachian Emperor Vincent well. To put it clearly, among the Nine Divine Generals, who had experienced nothing but problems in matters outside of pure strength, Moguro and Groovy had been unfathomably useful.

In order to repay Moguro, who had been such a loyal retainer, Vincent had but one method.

Vincent: [In accordance with your wishes, I shall ensure the tranquility of the Vollachian Empire, no matter what.]

Moguro: [――. Your Excellency, thank you. Your Excellency, tells no lie.]

Vincent: [Fool, I do not hesitate to dupe others if necessary.]

Moguro: [People, you deceive. Me, you do not.]

At Moguro’s words of stout belief, Vincent gave a slight exhale, and loosened his lips.

This Meteor was supposed to be a stone puppet in whom no blood flowed, and yet in the world of the Empire, fervent with tricks and plots, they were a valuable existence that seemed almost too good to be true.

Olbart: […So what’dya intend on doing, Yer Excellency.]

Vincent: [Even were the Magic Core to be removed from the pedestal, we have no means of removing it from the premises. In that case, the ruination of the Magic Core and of the Crystal Palace itself, there is no option save burning both to naught. ――Yang Sword Vollachia.]

Questioned by Olbart, Vincent displayed the Yang Sword within his grip.

If he called for Eugard to come here, then with two Yang Swords―― there would be no meaning in doing such a thing. What would be required in the current predicament, was not a matter of manpower, but of output.

To scorch the Magic Core, and the power concealed within, to ash by the flame of the Yang Sword. Before the power overflowing from the Magic Core could engulf the Crystal Palace and Imperial Capital, and blow them away.

In all likelihood, everything would end up being settled in a mere moment.

Vincent: [Or perhaps, do you have any other ideas?]

Olbart: [Hm? I ain’t got a plan, ain’t even got two arms ta raise if I wanted ta surrender. If Yer Excellency can’t think of anything, then nobody else in the whole world, let alone the Empire, would be able ta think of anything either, right?]

Vincent: [――Hmph.]

As the monstrous old man shrugged his armless shoulders, Vincent slightly snorted his nose.

The notion that nobody in the world other than Vincent would be able to come up with a countermeasure, was an overestimation. If it were not Vincent present here, but instead Subaru, Chisha, or Priscilla――.

Vincent: [Think not of such fruitless things, O foolish Vincent Vollachia.]

Indeed, deriding his own self as foolish, Vincent readied the Yang Sword with a two-handed grip.

Stood before the growing radiance of the Magic Core upon the pedestal, before the radiance of the Yang Sword, before the treasured sword of crimson that served as the greatest treasure of the Vollachian Empire, the Vollachian Empire of the present day implored the display of its power.

The next instant, the area surrounding Vincent―― nay, the area surrounding the Yang Sword began to harbor heat in its air, distorting the world akin to a wavering mirage. Setting rubbish alight, roasting the atmosphere, forcibly painting over the Mana in the air with the fire attribute, the scintillation of the Yang Sword was emboldened.

The heat radiated by the brilliant red blade began to gleam white at the signs of the rising flame.

Olbart: [Geez, now this sure is somethin’.]

Present in the same vicinity, Olbart received the full influence of the heat brought about by the Yang Sword, and he was silently surprised at the swell of the treasured sword’s power.

To begin with, the Yang Sword was something that was sparsely drawn. Even for Olbart, who had lived through three generations of Emperors, this was the first time he had witnessed this much of the Yang Sword’s power on display.

For Vincent himself, this was his first time unleashing this much of the Yang Sword’s power.

However――,

Vincent: [――It is insufficient.]

While feeling the unprecedented upsurge of power, Vincent ascertained that the output was lacking.

Calculating the ratio of the ever-increasing pressure of the Magic Core and the magic crystals used in the construction of the Crystal Palace, the current output of the Yang Sword would not be able to burn away the might of the explosion. It was not a matter of reducing it as much as possible. What was required, was a complete eradication.

And with Vincent’s incomplete Yang Sword, that would be impossible.

The Yang Sword of Vincent Vollachia, was not capable of displaying its true value.

The reason was plain and simple―― Vincent had allowed his biological sister, Prisca Benedict, to live, and thus the Imperial Selection Ceremony had yet to come to an end in its truest form. Deceiving all citizens of the Empire, he was a transient Emperor who had ascended the Imperial Throne without having gained the right to do so.

Ergo, Vincent could not draw out the true power of the Yang Sword Vollachia.

In regards to the true value of the Yang Sword, the same went for Eugard, one of the historic Emperors.

After all, although the Yang Sword lent its power to the undead Eugard by way of his imperial lineage, its true power would dwell in naught but the true Emperor of the current generation.

Was his only option to make the attempt with the incomplete Yang Sword? Or perhaps――,

Vincent: [――In exchange for my own life…]

Offering something of equal value, he would seek to invoke the true flame of the Yang Sword.

It was a choice that was quite likely to reduce the promise he had just exchanged with Moguro to dreck, but if that was what it took, Vincent would enact it.

All things, were the results of the path Vincent had chosen to walk. Atop the extremity of all the results of choices he had piled up, currently, Vincent was standing.

Therefore――,

Vincent: [The duty I must fulfill――]

???: [――I don’t think so, Abel-chin.]

Imploring the Yang Sword in his grip, Vincent was about to draw out value equivalent to setting his own life aflame. That hand of Vincent’s, was held down by the white hand of the one who stood next to him.

Lost in concentration, the tall woman had gotten close to him through the opening in his undelivered attention. At the blue eyes staring into his side-profile, Vincent widened his eyes.

Vincent: [Medium O’Connell…]

Medium: [Ehehe, I’m here.]

Vincent: [――――]

As Medium smiled with her answer, Vincent was at a loss for words.

This place where the heat of the Yang Sword only continued to swell, was no longer suitable for ordinary individuals to breathe. She had suddenly appeared in such a place; however, she was smiling.

With a smile on her face, and her hand holding down Vincent’s,

Medium: [I know that Abel-chin is carrying a huge responsibility. But, you can’t let yourself die. After all, that’s the kind of thing I hate the most.]

Vincent: [Think about the magnitude of the matter at hand. To begin with, you have no qualifications to divulge your opinion to me.]

Medium: [Ehh~! Yes I do! I’m becoming Abel-chin’s wife, aren’t I!?]

Vincent: [That is…]

Medium: [You said that it was okay!]

Vincent: [――――]

Medium: [You said so!]

Held down by her vigorousness, Vincent was overwhelmed by Medium’s fierce spirit. That was different from the pressure of someone aiming for Vincent’s life, or that of a potential political opponent.

It was the kind of thing for which Vincent had not made preparations to combat.

Vincent: [Take a look at reality. No matter how much you value the seat of Empress Consort, the most vital thing is that the Empire――]

It was at the moment he had attempted to brush her aside.

A sudden impact having struck his cheek, Vincent stared in shock that his face had been flicked. Turning around with that stare, he looked at Medium. ――Medium, who had struck the Emperor’s cheek.

Medium: [Never speak about my reason for worrying about Abel-chin like that again.]

Vincent: [You…]

Tensing her cheeks, Medium’s declaration made Vincent unconsciously blink his eyes. And, witnessing that, Medium spoke “Ah” in surprise,

Medium: [Abel-chin closing both his eyes, this is the first time I’m seeing it~.]

As she gave a broad smile and spoke, Vincent did not utter a word.

His eyes ought to be kept open. If he closed both his eyes at the same time, the Emperor’s life would be in danger. That was an ironclad rule of Vollachia, one that Vincent abided by even in his sleep.

That, had been violated. Not to deprive him of his life, but by a woman who was worried about Vincent, flicking his cheek.

Olbart: [Kakakakka! Oioi, even tho’ this isn’t the time for that, isn’t it just a masterpiece?]

Perceiving the turmoil within Vincent, the elderly man on the verge of death loudly butted in. Regaining his ability to think and make decisions, Vincent gritted his teeth.

Even if it were true that he was taken aback for a second, nothing about the situation had changed.

All the same, the Imperial Capital, the Empire, and the world were heading to meet their demise. That――,

Medium: [It’ll be okay, Abel-chin, it’ll be okay.]

As Vincent bit down on his molars, Medium still continued to smile at him.

It was a baseless, emotional argument that merely spoke of hope. In a place of discussion, that was something Vincent loathed from the bottom of his heart, for it harbored the least potential.

――Such loathed arguments of emotion; since he had been ousted from the throne, just how many times had he been tormented by them, and rescued by them?

???: [――How ‘bout that, Your Excellency? Ain’t my lil’ sis quite the big deal?]

It was at that instant.

The reason for Vincent’s silence, the one speaking as if it were his own personal matter, as if perceiving that he had also gone through the same thing, was…

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Ultimately, no matter what he did, Balleroy Temeglyph had always been half-hearted; he derided himself so.

When he was alive, he had served the Empire, and then opposed the Empire.

Then after he died, he opposed the Empire yet again, and in the end――,

Balleroy: [Serving the Empire, though I ain’t really built for it.]

As Balleroy grumbled this, the hole in his chest―― having been pierced and opened up by the Magical Bullet of the most horrible magician, was proof of the decision that had caused his defeat.

――The battle on which Balleroy’s wish had been staked, had ended with his utter defeat against the enemy who had been willing to use all means at his disposal.

The magician in question had said something along the lines of “It was a paper-thin difference, so it wouuuldn’t~ have been particularly odd for either one of us to come out victorious.”, but that was nothing more than a lie designed to soothe his ears.

In all likelihood, if he were to fight against that man one hundred times, Balleroy would lose all one hundred times. It was that sort of affinity.

For the sake of a single objective, just how ruthless could that man become?

At the end of the day, by the point in time in which he could not carry out the things he had left undone and his lingering regrets, which had been the reason for his resurrection, Balleroy was no match for the opponent whose blood ran colder than that of the undead.

With Medium having been cast away, there was no way he could have overlooked it, knowing that doing so would have resulted in the death of his little sister. That was Balleroy’s weakness, and the entire reason for his defeat.

Medium: [That’s wrong. It’s ‘cause Ballebro is kind.]

Balleroy had accepted that as the reason for his defeat; however, Medium would not accept that.

Evaluating his weakness and naivete as kindness, Medium’s upright personality and beaming smile had not withered in the slightest despite having grown taller; she was his prized little sister.

Indeed, she was his little sister. Balleroy was truly blessed to have met her.

Serena, Flop, Medium, Madelyn, and everyone else, he was truly blessed to have met them all.

His partner Carillon went without saying, but that also held true for the many Imperial Soldiers who had stood alongside Balleroy as he climbed the ranks as General, and it also held true for the Nine Divine Generals.

However, although he was grateful for all of those meetings, he had not relinquished it.

That was――,

Medium: [Even so, Ballebro couldn’t stop himself, right?]

Tears in her eyes, yet still smiling nonetheless, Medium’s appearance took him aback.

He had thought she had not changed at all since the time they had first met, yet she had verily grown up; having gone from girl to woman, she had become capable of smiling in this different manner.

He alone had gone without changing, merely taking steps while stuck in place.

Balleroy: […Seems like the people who get resurrected by the Witch are limited to just the people who died in the Empire. The only way to get rid of that restriction, is by destroying the Empire, and expanding the range further beyond to the Kingdom and the City-States. If we do that, then finally, by doing that, I’ll finally be able to…]

Medium: [――Meet Big Bro Miles again?]

Balleroy: [――――]

Medium: [I understand. After all, I’ve been watching Ballebro all this time.]

At Medium’s words, Balleroy keenly gained two emotions.

The first was self-scorn regarding the fact that his inner feelings had been exposed, and the other was a slight jealousy. This smile that he was seeing Medium display for the first time, he knew the meaning behind it.

Balleroy: [Medi, is there a man you’ve fallen for?]

Medium: [Huh!? N-no…? Maybe.]

Balleroy: [Close your eyes, and it’s gotta be the first face that comes to mind with a smile.]

Medium: [That kinda thing can only be big bro! Besides, it’s not like Abel-chin ever smiles… ah.]

Placing her hand over her mouth, a red hue ascended into Medium’s cheeks. Seeing such a reaction from his little sister for the first time, Balleroy chuckled. Smiling, he slowly raised himself up.

Truly, Balleroy was half-hearted to the bitter end.

If, in hating that, he started to break things down like the magician who had defeated him, then perhaps he would no longer be himself.

Balleroy: [That sorta cold-bloodedness, I think I’ll pass.]

He could never become like that. He would never become like that.

He, who had been half-hearted since the time he was alive, was half-hearted all the same even in death.

Since he was a person of hazy wishes and regrets in both life and death, he could also say this.

Balleroy: [Well then, how ‘bout we go save the man who Medi fell for?]

Medium: [I said I’m still not sure!]

Her complexion bright red, with a face different to that of her early life and days as a young girl, her words had no persuasive power whatsoever despite asserting them in such a manner.

If someone could make Medium have such an expression, yet still end up causing her sorrow, then Balleroy would kill that person with his very hands. Belittling himself, he thought so.

Carillon: [――Kiryararahhh.]

At Balleroy’s selfish brotherly feelings, Carillon, with whom he shared in heart and soul, neighed in high spirits.

△▼△▼△▼△

――At that moment, all those present in the Imperial Capital, be they living or dead, gazed up at the sky.

For what reason that had been, none could easily explain.

If the question was regarding the reason why they had individually looked up at the sky, there were likely many who could explain themselves. Those with keen senses may have perceived a strong undulation of Mana, and those with good hearing would have heard the loud neigh of a flying dragon. Likewise were those with a focus on the origin of the Magic Crystal Cannon, having been fired a moment prior, and those moving with the palace as their destination.

But, even if they could all provide explanations for themselves, they could not explain the reason for everybody having done so.

If it could be done, then it was only by the leading actor who decided the logic of the world within himself, and if he were to be asked, then his answer would be plain and simple――,

Cecilus: [――Of course, it’s because it’s somebody’s climax!]

He likely would have declared so in a grandiose manner, with a loud voice and a bright smile.

And, there existed not a single soul in this Vollachian Empire who would have been able to deny him.

The reason for that lay in pure strength, and, since the sole person capable of objecting to the leading actor regardless of pure strength, was currently seeing off their own reason for gazing at the sky right before their eyes.

――By leaps and bounds, leaps and bounds, a dazzlingly radiant streak of green light drew a line towards the sky directly above the Crystal Palace.

Pulling inwards, pulling inwards, before anyone could realize it, all the clouds present in the sky above the Imperial Capital had been congregated into an enormous sea of clouds, and plunging right into the midst of it――.

???: [――――]

――That instant, as if the sky itself was aglow, a flicker of light suddenly illuminated the world in dazzling scintillation.

39 thoughts on “Arc 8, Chapter 68 – “The Man I Fell For””

  1. Medium is Premium. Same goes for Balleroy who saved his little sister. Vincent finally found someone so he can close his eyes in front of them.

    >The notion that nobody in the world other than Vincent would be able to come up with a countermeasure, was an >overestimation. If it were not Vincent present here, but instead Subaru, Chisha, or Priscilla――.

    That was awesome thought from Vincent.

    1. yeah, I never would’ve expected him to admit that about Subaru even in his own thoughts xd

      1. To be fair he knows that Subaru is vaguely aware of the future (just not the how he is) someone who can just change what’s gonna happen to avoid a event would be well suited for this

    1. in arc 7, when Roswaal fought against Albart, he mentioned that he had already fought against talented killers, this gave Albart the idea that it could be that talented girl. Maybe this is how they tease her and she will appear in a future arc

    2. Most likely she is the one that Al killed who was trying to kill Priscilla. It was during the side story that had to do with zombies. It was called Pride and Prejudice and Zombies if you want to read it.

      1. Did he kill her? I kinda just thought she went crazy trying to kill him like happened to Leip Barielle.

  2. How come Emilia isn’t familiar with the word “creation?” Or did Sphinx say it in another language?

  3. Thanks for the translation!

    Great chapter. Even though it could feel pretty fast I think the relationship between Vincent and Medium is being done well and she is exactly the kind of person he needs as a wife to let him tap into his more emotional side

    1. Nah either cecilus will use his sword to break it or he will somehow force break himself out of it like it was implied cecilus did his own

  4. I’m going to be honest, i’m actually starting to feel tired from where the story is going.
    It was interesting to follow, and will probably continue to do so, but this Vollachia thing is going for 2 arcs already, and also, I’m starting to notice that the longer it goes, the less author sticks to his “core mechanic” of Return by Death.

    And I wouldn’t complain if that was replaced by characters growth, showing that now they can handle without RbD, but it’s actually more Deus ex Machina plottwists:
    “Hey, look, Balleroy sirvived the fight, and now helped Vincent, despite still being undead, yohooo!”
    “Hey look, Garfiel was getting his ass kicked and now he suddenly can toss the entire dragon body, yohoo!”
    “Hey, look, Hailbel cut through all the curses of Eugard, and now he is not even undead and helps everyone, yohoo!”
    (btw we were saying that undead are alive because of a tiny bugs, but let’s forget it and say you can kill them without killing the host)

    Everything despite chapters with Subaru, Abel, Al and Cecilus, just felt absurd, cause they are the only ones acting within their known character

    1. Even before Balleroy’s fight he was already planning to betray Sphinx.

      Garfiel’s fight literally started with him punching Mezoreia in the face.

      And Eugard is still a zombie, he’s helping them because he’s free from Sphinx’s mind control and he cares about Yorna.

    2. Subaru specifically sent hallibel to get rid of Eugard’s curses, that was the point of that fight, they couldn’t get close to the crystal palace because of curse of thorns.

      Also what do you mean “Balleroy survived the fight”? There’s nothing Roswaal can do to kill him permanently, and he literally lost because he cares about Medium, she’s the main reason he’s helping Vincent.

    3. No way Balleroy became good again, next thing you’ll tell me is that roswall is a genius magician who was able to sever the witch’s mindcontrol.
      No way Garfield beat that mentally unstable child who is barely able to use her just as unstable power.
      No way Halibel cut through, oh wait no he didn’t it was the Cursetools User and the cursed sword but still no way it can happen.
      No way the bugs are just one of multiple necessary conditions for the creations of an undead. Damn those deus ex machina that the characters brought forth by their own power.

      1. You are an idiot
        barloy never was bad but beacuse of being an undead he have that felling of wanting to destroy the empire
        garfiel is the funcking gold tiger dont underestime my boy
        he have experience as fighter, the earth heal his and the girl who was fighting is not exaclty in the right mint to fight
        Lecture comprenhension you idiot

  5. Sphinx: If not that, then Sphinx

    Emilia: ah yes. *upon realization* wait what ?

    Sphinx: elimination: required

    Emilia: Shit just went from 0 to 100 real fucking quick

  6. Interested to see how Emilia’s fight with Sphinx goes.

    Was nice seeing Able humiliated, but man the able x Medium ship is completely forced and disgusting. Able is a genocidal tyrant still burning alive every wolf/moleman child he can get his hands on plus a long list of evil things he has done. Medium is an Emilia like angel who hates and rebels against the evil and cruelty of the Empire, Able is literally the leader and embodiment of said cruelty. This is character assassination for Medium.

    The ReZero versions of hitler and Mother Teresa (Eugard and Yorna) is somehow worse. 300 years of being cursed and watching countless innocents burned alive in her name and Yorna is still madly in love with that evil bastard?

    Thanks for the Translations!

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