Ex Strongest Swordsman 334 (Self Edited) – Intermission: One who Disappeared and Two who Don’t Join Hands

 

 

Intermission: One who Disappeared and Two who Don’t Join Hands

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The throne room in the royal capital of the Veritas Kingdom. Originally, this was the place where the king should be, but the place that hadn’t been used for a long time was full of strange tranquility.

The reason why it seemed to be deteriorating somehow was because no one had been there for more than five years. The king was assassinated here, but the assassin had never been found. Most importantly, no one had succeeded the king’s crown since then.

However, a figure suddenly emerged in the place that no one should visit. It was a woman who appeared as if it exuded into space.

…No, it was actually unknown if the figure was a woman. The face and body were clearly those of a woman, but… there was something on her back that was impossible for a human being.

Certainly, some Youma species have a monster-like appearance, but they certainly have a certain fixed form limited to the species. No Youma was exempted from this… so, there could be no human being with bird-like wings that had the same color as the pure white hair.

And…

“–Oh my, I wonder what happened today? Today is not supposed to be a meeting, but… well, to begin with, you were coming here directly rather than communicating telepathically. Do you have something?” (Woman)

That voice also echoed suddenly on the spot. From the voice, it was like a boy of ten years old, but there was no figure on the spot.

However, immediately after that, as before, a new figure appeared on the spot as if it exuded into space. And it was a boy of ten years old, as it could be guessed from the voice.

On the contrary, the intelligence displayed in his facial expression wasn’t suitable for his age.

“By the way, are you still using that figure? Angel form, was it? To be honest, I don’t think it’s a good fit for us…” (Boy)

There was no response from the woman, but the boy continued to speak unilaterally, as if to say it didn’t matter.

However, when he tried to say more, the woman’s mouth opened.

“…This figure is temporary.” (Woman)

“Even if it’s temporary, would it be alright?” (Boy)

“Since it’s temporary, it’s better to look the way I want to be even if it’s not alright.” (Woman)

“Haah… as always, you’re still serious. Well, that’s fine, but why did you come here? I don’t think you came here to play, yes?” (Boy)

The boy tilted his head when the woman responded with a nod. Then, with a hum, he put his index finger to his chin and squinted his eyes.

“…Did you fail by any chance?” (Boy)

“…Yes. I didn’t see it through to the end, but I probably failed. I can’t feel even the slightest connection to her anymore.” (Woman)

“Is that so? Well, but isn’t it unavoidable? Didn’t you summon the Demon King? Then, it’s natural to fail.” (Boy)

Was he trying to console her or perhaps, it was really his true intention? The true intention of the boy, who had been smiling ever since he appeared, couldn’t be seen by the woman anymore.

White hair, red eyes. Although those were the constituent elements similar to herself with the boy himself, the woman let out a breath while looking at him smiling on the inside. Then…

“…Really?” (Woman)

“Yes, that’s right. Aah, by the way, can I say one thing? Actually, I’ve always wanted to say this, but I couldn’t say it because I didn’t have the opportunity.” (Boy)

“…Yes, go ahead.” (Woman)

“Well, excuse me.” (Boy)

Together with those words, the boy smiled at her even more.

“–You had misunderstood me, but in fact, this area isn’t under my charge.” (Boy)

It was immediately after that the woman received a shock on the chest.

She wasn’t shocked by the words. She was given a shock in the literal sense, and… when the woman reflexively looked down at her chest, something like an arm was growing there.

No… it was a real arm.

Before she noticed it, a young man with white hair and red eyes stood behind the woman. And the arm that stood out on the woman’s chest belonged to the man.

“You’re still taking it easy in many ways. That’s why you’re caught off guard like this and end up unsatisfactorily.” (Man)

“..Wh-why?” (Woman)

“Are you asking why? Speaking of the reason, it is as the guy said. After all, this area is under my charge.” (Man)

The woman’s eyes widened at the young man’s words. She desperately struggled to get away from him, but she couldn’t escape. The way she struggled with her chest piercing was like a bug that had been sewn shut.

“And the reason I can harm you in this way is because I have already manifested.” (Man)

“…Th-the authority… shouldn’t be taken out… isn’t it?” (Woman)

“Well, that God is doing unnecessary imitation. If we only want to manifest, we can do it by just using some of our power before the power is taken out.” (Man)

“Then… the power…” (Woman)

“Yes, I’ll never be at my full strength. But I don’t need it, right? I can just take it from you.” (Man)

“Uh…!? Aah–…” (Woman)

“Sorry, but I’m not free enough to talk about anything anymore. Well then, goodbye.” (Man)

It was at the moment he said it…

The woman’s body seemed to swell up and then, it just popped off. However, not a single drop of blood splashed into the surroundings, but rather, the flesh that was blown away was returned to its original spot as if it were played in reverse. They were all absorbed into the body of the young man as it was.

As if to confirm something, the young man opened and closed his fist several times. Suddenly, he noticed that he was being watched and turned his gaze.

“What is it? Is there something you want to say?” (Man)

“No, I have nothing. I’m the one who set her up, you know. It’s just that I thought you as relentless as ever. Couldn’t you let her talk a bit more?” (Boy)

“It’s not necessary. It’s only useless to listen or hear she mentioned grudges.” (Man)

“Is that so–…” (Boy)

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The boy shut up, as if he was convinced, but then, the young man opened his mouth instead.

“To be honest, I’m more surprised than you are.” (Man)

“Eh, about what?” (Boy)

“In terms of policy, there are some similarities between you and her. I was wondering if you would be more inclined to work with her.” (Man)

“Ooh… that’s a complete misunderstanding. I’m not as idealistic as she is. We do hope that many people will perish, but… I realize that her way takes too much time. That would be the end of the matter.” (Boy)

“I see… Sorry about that.” (Man)

“No, I don’t mind. Rather, I’m more concerned about why she failed. She said it, but she is basically the type to proceed things rather carefully. That’s why I rather be glad she dropped out this early, but I can’t believe that she didn’t only fail, but was driven to the point of running away to a place like this.” (Boy)

“…Certainly, you’re right. Wait a bit, let’s explore the situation.” (Man)

Then, the young man closed his eyes and stood still on the spot. The boy just stared at the young man who didn’t move at all. Eventually, the young man slowly opened his eyes.

And what he saw on the man’s face was the expression of conviction.

“You seem to have figured something out, haven’t you?” (Boy)

“Yes… as I expected, she was still the same person we knew.” (Man)

“So, why did she fail and then lose?

“She was preparing rather carefully. However, the person whom she connected summoned the Demon King.” (Man)

“Yes, I heard that. She seemed to be quite impatient at that time, but… well, she was impatient.” (Boy)

In any case, the Demon King suddenly arrived beside her. If that happened to the boy, he would become impatient as well.

“However, it wasn’t a problem at that point. Thanks to how careful she was. Our existence was never exposed.” (Man)

“That’s expected. Eh…? But then, why did she fail?” (Boy)

“It’s because she cared too much about the Demon King. He is an existence that shouldn’t exist. That made her more impatient than necessary, and it became so messy that I wondered what she was careful about until then.” (Man)

“Aah… that reminds me, she was vulnerable to sudden things. So…?” (Boy)

“Actually, the Demon King was stronger than expected, but… it’s basically her self-destruction.” (Man)

“Is that so? By the way, what would you do if you were in the same situation?” (Boy)

“Hmm… well…” (Man)

Perhaps, the man was imagining the situation, he squinted his eyes while looking at the void. Although he was chilling for a while, he nodded his head and looked at the boy as if he had a convincing imagination.

“I don’t know what would happen in the end, but even if I fail, it would have been much later. In the end, she was too conscious of the Demon king. After all, there’s only one Demon King. If she ignored him and proceeded in a straightforward manner, the result would have been better.” (Man)

“I see… thank you very much. It was helpful.” (Boy)

“What? Don’t mind it. It’s because of you that it’s easier for me to absorb her. And you’re also my collaborator… at least for now…” (Man)

“Well, yeah.” (Boy)

A smiling boy and a non-smiling young man looked at each other.

However, perhaps realizing that it was barren, the young man first removed his gaze and then turned his back on the boy and started walking.

“I’ve done what I had to do here. I’ll leave this place to you.” (Boy)

“Yes, see you later.” (Man)

The young man disappeared as if he melted in the air, and the boy, who was watching such a scene, stretched out his body. Then…

“Now, I also need to go. That guy seems to be working hard here, but… I also have my own things to do. Well. I’ll be–…” (Boy)

‘–the one who wins in the end.’

Leaving such words behind, the boy also disappeared from the scene.

 

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