Arifureta - Chapter 160
At Nostalgic Orcus (Beginning)
Inside the darkness, there was a silhouette standing quietly.
The place was a large space made from stone that felt smooth like marble with several thick pillars inside. It had a solemn atmosphere like a shrine somewhere. For a light source, there was only the faint glimmer from the green light stone that shone through the door of the room before this place.
That light cut through the dark and stretched into the room like a single path, illuminating the back of the standing silhouette.
Suddenly, a new shadow piled up on that back. The slender silhouette came from a female, a voice that was clear and beautiful even while it sounded hesitant it called to the back.
The standing silhouette――Hajime turned around just a little toward that voice which called his name.
’’Kaori. The harvesting is over already?’’
’’Yes. It's quick thanks to the compass, see. The monsters too...as expected, it's cheating with the spec of the apostle, isn't it?’’
Kaori showed a wry smile, perhaps from recalling the time of hardship when she was exploring the surface level of the Orcus Great Labyrinth with her classmates. And then, in consideration so that she wouldn't break the atmosphere, she entered into the hall quietly.
’’...This place is, where you met with Yue, isn't it?’’
Kaori whispered that while standing beside Hajime. The place Hajime's gaze was fixed at was――a half melted broken lump of mineral.
Hajime quietly nodded. His eyes were clear like a spring deep inside a forest filled to the brim with tranquility. It was the exact opposite of the empty eyes saturated with negative emotions of fury and hatred before. His gaze now was saturated with affection and pain.
’’When I saw her for the first time, I thought it was a horror scene. Inside pitch black darkness, crimson eyes were peeking out from behind a weeping willow made of gold threads...something like that. Even when Yue called with a voice asking for help, I tried to close the door, you know? This fellow is absolutely a no-good person. That was what I thought.’’
’’Fufu. Certainly, it's unthinkable that in the depth of the abyss like this place there would be something like a normal girl.’’
’’Right? Especially at that time. My mental state held no interest for anything other than survival. Now, when I recall that time, I'm thinking, really, why did I help her, huh?’’
Kaori let out a chuckle at the way Hajime talked. Hajime too squinted nostalgically while making a fond smile.
’’And now that girl is someone special that can make me go mad. Really, this thoroughly teaches me that we won't know how life will it turned out in the future.’’
’’No truer words than that.’’
Their words cut off, both of them closed their eyes for a bit. Hajime thought about his beloved lover. Kaori thought about her love rival (close friend). And then, almost at the same time, their eyes opened quietly. A flame of resolve was dwelling there.
’’We will surely take her back, won't we?’’
’’Yeah. We will take her back for sure.’’
Hajime and Kaori looked at each other's face and both of them made fearless smiles.
But right after that, as though there was something he forgot to say, Hajime's face went 'hah' and he opened his mouth.
’’Ah, but Kaori, you will remain behind with the surface group at the fight, okay?’’
’’Eh? Why...aa, by any chance, is it about this body stopped functioning?’’
’’Yeah. For the time being, I prepared an artifact for countermeasure, but as expected in front of Ehito, I don't know how much effect it will have. After all, originally that body is that guy's creation.’’
Kaori's expression turned bitter.
Indeed, the apostle body was something created by Ehito's side. At the devil king castle, Ehito stopped Kaori's body from functioning. It was doubtful whether they could completely defend against that. On the other hand, if Kaori returned to her original body, it would be a great decrease in her battle strength.
And so, the role of dealing with the apostles that would come invading the surface was best for Kaori.
However, even Kaori wanted to go to save Yue. Even though she understood that logically she should stay behind, emotionally she was unable to really accept it. ’’Muu’’ Kaori pouted her lips, to that Hajime shrugged while giving her words to persuade her.
’’Don't make that face. Even if we take back Yue, if the others ended up dead, putting me aside, it will be hard to endure for Kaori and others, right? Also about Myuu and Remia, the plan is for them to remain here in the surface hiding at the deepest part of Orcus. It had been proved once that they are effective as a hostage, so it is necessary for someone to protect them here just in case.’’
’’...Haa, it can't be helped, isn't it? It's vexing, but I don't want to become a burden. Besides, there are also a lot of people I don't want to die so...yep, I understand. I will protect the place where Hajime-kun and the others will go home too. I also won't let anyone lay their hand on Myuu-chan and Remia-san. Also, Ai-chan-sensei and Lily too, right!? Right-!?’’
’’Why are you emphasizing those two...’’
Hajime smiled wryly at Kaori who was staring fixedly with puffed up cheeks. To such a Hajime, Kaori turned her face aside with a huff and let out a sulking voice.
’’'Aiko, Lily, please' Even though you said something like that. Hajime-kun is a womanizer.’’
’’No, that's because I read the mood...’’
’’The other classmates too, several of them were sending you feverish gazes, you know? Saying something like Don Juan or Casanova, I think that even if Hajime-kun is called that, you really cannot deny it, I'll tattle at Yue when she returns. Even though, I too am still stopping at an 'important' stage, but other girls one after another...uu, Yue whose position is immovable is enviable.’’
Kaori was acting with timidity that seemed forced. Hajime scratched his cheek seeing that. That wasn't because he was exasperated with Kaori's attitude, it was because a feeling that denied a part of her words was naturally welling up in him.
Hajime crouched down in front of the mineral that sealed Yue before, the mineral which had the property where it was difficult for magic power to flow in it. He lifted his hand while addressing Kaori.
’’The punch at that time. That was quite effective you know. That attack really opened my eyes.’’
’’He? ...Ah, that's, err, it hurt, wasn't it? I did that quite with my full power...’’
Kaori's eyes turned round for a moment from the sudden change of topic, but when she noticed that Hajime was talking about her punch when he was running wild in the audience hall, her expression turned awkward and she averted her gaze.
Hajime used his refined magic power which shined vividly incomparable with the time when he undid the seal of Yue with difficulty. This time the sealing stone was permeated by his magic power unexpectedly easily.
This mineral left behind in this place was because of its abnormally bad rate of magic power permeation. On top of that, it even repelled back magic power. It caused him to be uneasy whether it could be put inside the 'Treasure Warehouse'. At that time, the treasure warehouse was a super important item without replacement and he didn't know the way to manufacture it, so Hajime had apprehension that the 'Treasure Warehouse' might break because it used magic power when taking in and out items. That was why Hajime wanted to avoid actually storing this mineral into the treasure warehouse. There was also how Yue seemed to detest this mineral stone even though she didn't say it out loud.
While transforming that sealing stone into blocks, Hajime continued his words towards Kaori who kept sending him glances.
’’Yeah, that punch, it literally reverberated until my core. Even what you said that I'm the worst and uncool, those words stabbed deeply.’’
’’Aa, uuu. E, err...that...’’
Kaori raised a strange moan and looked all shook up.
’’If it was another person doing that, then it wouldn't affect me like that at all though.’’
’’Those who can do the same thing like Kaori and make it reverberate until deep inside me, well, I guess there are only Shia and Tio left.’’
’’...Perhaps I cannot say anymore that you are just 'merely important' for me I guess.’’
The sealing stone that was carved apart into blocks was stored into the new 'Treasure Warehouse' that Hajime recreated after coming to Orcus. While doing that, Hajime was murmuring as though talking to himself, causing Kaori's eyes to open wide.
Hajime suddenly stood up and his gaze met with Kaori. Those eyes lacked sharpness, instead they were clad in a gentle atmosphere. Kaori's heart leaped from looking at herself who was reflected there.
’’Thank you, Kaori. For continuing to think about me. ...I wanted to say just that before killing that guy.’’
’’...Stop it. Something like that, it sounded like last will for some reason, that's ominous.’’
’’Haha, I guess. My bad, that's not like me.’’
Kaori shook her head left and right toward Hajime who was smiling wryly.
’’No, me too, thank you. I'm happy. ...Fufu, I have to say this to Yue when she comes back. Hajime-kun is going dere. Anyway, I finally got Shia's position, I'll say that to her.’’
’’Kuku, if you do that you will get bullied again, you know? After all, for some reason Yue likes to be playful with Kaori.’’
’’Uu, that's, she absolutely enjoyed my reaction to that, didn't she? It feels irritating when I remember it. While Hajime-kun and the others ride into the other side, I must think of a payback present.’’
’’Now I can imagine the outcome where you get paid back twice for that.’’
’’Geez-, Hajime-kun is also enjoying it!’’
Hajime chuckled while shrugging at Kaori who bared her teeth in irritation. And then, both of them closed their mouths at the same time. They sympathized with each other over their feelings that wanted to meet Yue very much.
Hajime once again smiled with Kaori and lifted his hand at the last sealing stone. And then, he turned the stone into block shape one after another stored them inside the 'Treasure Warehouse'.
And at that time, they noticed that on the floor where the sealing stone was left there was some kind of pattern carved there.
’’What's the matter Hajime-kun? ...Pattern? Isn't this Vandour Shune's crest...’’
Kaori peeked from behind Hajime who was crouching and traced the pattern carved on the floor below the sealing stone with his finger, she then tilted her head at the familiar pattern and murmured.
Hajime nodded wordlessly and then took out from the 'Treasure Warehouse' the tear shaped pendant that was the proof of having conquered the Ice and Snow Cavern.
Right after that
Such shrill voice sounded out, in resonance the pendant and the pattern on the floor shook.
The pendant that was put on Hajime's palm moved bit by bit as though it was dragged toward the pattern on the floor. It was hard to see because it was dark, but looking carefully at the center of the pattern on the floor, there was a small hole open where it seemed the pendant could be fit there.
Hajime and Kaori looked at each other and nodded at the same time. Hajime inserted the pendant into that cavity.
Immediately after, light ran through the pattern on the floor, then a sound of metals scraping against each other rose and the surrounding pattern rose up. It was a round stone pillar with a diameter around thirty centimeters. When the pillar rose until the height about Hajime's eye, it stopped still. And then, before Hajime's eyes, its side opened up.
’’...So there is this kind of mechanism. A mechanism that can be opened only by someone who has conquered Ice and Snow Cavern huh.’’
’’That, what is it? It was under the block that sealed Yue, I have the feeling that it's related to Yue somehow but...’’
At the center of the stone pillar there was a mineral stone as big as a pinball with high transparency, in a glance it looked like a diamond. Hajime put it on his palm and stared it fixedly, from his side Kaori murmured her conjecture.
And then, it was soon proved that her conjecture was correct.
’’...Looks like this is the same type of image recording artifact that was used by Oscar and others.’’
’’That's...someone who left behind that kind of thing in this kind of place, I can only think of one person.’’
’’Anyway, let's try activating it.’’
Hajime poured magic power into the white crystal.
Right after that, the dark sealing room was filled with golden light mixed with white. And then, in front of Hajime and Kaori who narrowed their eyes, the talk of the person who left behind the image recording began.
That talk, was filled with very deep love and affection, and then also tremendous resolve and repentance. And then, in it was an earnest wish, so warm and gentle that it would shake the soul of the person hearing it no matter what.
The white golden light settled, the recording of about ten minutes vanished with a whiff, then a lingering emotion that was hard to express, yet by no mean it was something unpleasant, filled Hajime and Kaori. Kaori was shedding beautiful tears that trickled smoothly which she forgot to even wipe.
’’...We have to show it to Yue.’’
’’Yeah. This is something that Yue has to see no matter what...Kaori, I'll entrust this to you. We don't know what's going to happen on the other side, after all.’’
’’...Yes. I got it.’’
The mineral with the radiance of a diamond that Hajime's hand handed over was accepted by Kaori as though she was handling a treasure.
’’Nevertheless, it's lucky that I understood the detail regarding the special trait of the sealing stone. Indeed, with just 'Mineral Appraisal' there is no way I will be able to grasp its true character. Well, though if I was told that I should notice it while facing that scorpion imitation, that much is...’’
’’In a sense, it's cyborg? Something like that, isn't it?’’
’’Yeah. Thanks to that, an urge to create various things is welling up in me. Myuu and Remia are also waiting right now. Let's quickly return and mass produces the artifacts.’’
’’Mass producing artifact...what amazing words.’’
Shrugging at Kaori whose face was somewhat convulsing, Hajime once more ran his gaze through the place that was his beginning with Yue. And then, after closing his eyes for a beat, he turned on his heel with resolve on his back once more.
After that, Kaori quietly followed after him.
Without looking back, the two of them exited the room, then the sealing room was shut in darkness. However, inside there wasn't just cold darkness that swallowed everything, it felt like there was kindness drifting there too.
’’Ah, papa! Kaori-oneechan. Welcome back nano!’’
’’We are home, Myuu.’’
’’Myuu-chan, we are home.’’
Hajime and Kaori who returned to Oscar's residence were welcomed by Myuu's energetic voice and fully bloomed smile. The entrance of the lime colored building made from digging into the rock wall was crossed through by the beloved daughter with rapid footsteps *sutetetete―* to which Hajime lightly embraced her with his artificial arm that he created in an emergency.
Myuu instantly circled her hands on Hajime's neck happily and hugged tightly.
There, from the dining room a clapping sound of footwear approached, and then wearing a pure white and frilly apron with the frills fluttering and ladle on hand, the perfectly equipped Remia appeared to welcome them.
’’Dear, Kaori-san, welcome home. Will you have dinner? Or will you take a bath? Or else...will you have mother and daughter?’’
’’Wai-, Remia-san! That kind of clichéis unnecessary-! Or rather, just now didn't you say mother and daughter!? Just what are you planning to make your daughter do-!’’
’’My my, sheesh Kaori-san, what about doing a happy family get together? That's what I meant you know? Ufufu, I wonder what are you imagining?’’
’’-!? Re, Remia-san!’’
’’Dear, or else will you have Kaori-san?’’
’’Fue!? M, me? Wait that's not it! Please don't make fun of me!’’
Kaori went 'mukii!' with her hair standing on end like a cat while Remia was only watching her with a gaze as though she was looking at something cute while going ’’My my, ufufu’’. Before it was Yue, now it was Remia. It appeared that Kaori had the quality where she would be teased by older females.
Hajime patted Kaori's shoulder to soothe her while directing his gaze at Remia.
’’Stop it with that much. Watching it is fun, but right now there is not really much time. I'll enter the workshop soon. My bad but I'll take my meal over there.’’
’’Understood. Then I'll bring it over there. Ah, also, there were contacts from her highness and Shizuku-san. It seems they will be able to manage it somehow. The speech of Aiko-san...the 'Goddess of Harvest' was quite effective. The number of people are increasing rapidly, so they said that they want the artifact's production to hurry.’’
’’I see. Roger. Sorry to make you do something you are not used to.’’
’’Such a thing...if I can be useful for you even just for a bit, then there is nothing happier for me. Whether it's for returning your kindness, and also as a wife supporting her husband...’’
’’No, you aren't a wife, okay?’’
’’No, don't go 'my my' here.’’
’’No, hm, well, doesn't matter.’’
Hajime folded against Remia who enveloped everything with a matchless warm smile. Hajime caressed the head of Myuu who was reluctant to part while entrusting her to Remia, then he walked out toward the workshop.
Currently, the place where Hajime and others were at――the depth of the Orcus Great Labyrinth, in the hideout of Oscar Orcus, there were only Hajime and Kaori, and then Myuu and Remia there.
After the conversation at the audience hall in the devil king castle, first of all Hajime and others went to retrieve the valuables that Hajime transferred underground before they went to the devil king castle, then they used the gate key that they safely retrieved and everyone scattered to all over the world.
Of course, they had to directly go toward the place that didn't have a gate hole installed, so transportation artifacts would be needed. Even Tio, if she was going to the village of dragon race, when it was time to come back from there she could just use a gate, but just going there would certainly take a few days so there was a necessity for an artifact that could fly at high speed.
And so, using the proof of conquest, Hajime entered Oscar's hideout from the shortcut in Raisen Grand Canyon, and with the material left in the workshop he prioritized creating mini version flight artifact 'Mic Fernir'.
In a manner of speaking this artifact was a skyboard. With a shape like a surfing board, it reduced things like air resistance with space magic and flew in the sky using gravity magic. The control was of course using sympathy stone. With the air resistance equal to nothing, the burden to the user's body was extremely small, so it could easily give out a speed of five hundred kilometers per hour.
It was an improvised item so there was a flaw that the magic power consumption was large but, even leaving out Tio, all the classmates possessed magic power amount in the level that largely deviated from the standard so if it was just for the departing trip then they would be able to manage it somehow.
With that, the classmates whose soul was lit in fire by Hajime's incitement scattered all over the world, and then through the gate hole, the world was rapidly beginning to be connected.
At the outskirt of the kingdom capital, quite a battle force had already begun to gather, with Nomura Kentarou in the lead, the people and workers with earth element aptitude were rapidly constructing simple defensive encampment. Hajime prioritized to create artifact for this aspect too that raised up their strength several times over, super optimizing their work.
It took about one day until that point. Two days remaining until the end of the world began.
Hajime who finished producing the prioritized artifacts then created an emergency artificial arm and treasure warehouse, and also simple weapons, accompanied by Kaori he then stepped his foot once more into the nostalgic abyss to gather material.
There was also the event where the moment they got out of the hideout's door, a hydra manifested in reaction to Kaori, but the two who were there was a tag of a grown monster and god apostle, so they had quite a leeway.
After that, Hajime got Kaori to carry the 'Compass of Guidance' because she didn't know anything about the abyss and had her help him in the gathering of necessary material, he too also went to the place for material that he remembered and ran around while trampling the monsters as though stepping over ants.
And then, Hajime who had gathered enough material somehow carried his feet toward the place where Yue was once sealed. His feeling that wanted to meet Yue naturally directed his feet there even while understanding that there was no time.
Kaori who similarly finished gathering material ascertained Hajime's whereabouts using the compass, and then there they reached that recording artifact and the feeling that was put into it.
By the way, Hajime also asked Kaori to search for 'God Crystal' using the compass but...unfortunately, she was unable to discover one that had been compressed through many years and months until it could trickle 'God Water'. It was a substance that was left only in legend, so it really couldn't be helped. Perhaps just by being able to discover several small crystals should be thought as fortunate.
’’Now then, well Kaori, I'll rely on your cooperation.’’
’’Yep, leave it to me.’’
Hajime who arrived in the workshop transmuted a round crystal pillar in the center of the room while calling Kaori. What they would perform from here was a method to resolve to a certain degree of their problem with the lack of time even if they couldn't fully resolve it.
It was for this that Hajime chose Kaori as a helper because she was the one most skilled with regeneration magic.
’’Here I go! ――'Temple Rend'.’’
Together with a voice of fighting spirit, Kaori's whitely violet magic power surged. In addition, Hajime roared his crimson magic power while enchanting the technique that Kaori used into the crystal pillar using creation magic.
Regeneration magic 'Temple Rend'――it was a magic to stretch the time. The essence of regeneration magic was in the point that it was a magic that could interfere with time. However, from the viewpoint of the throughput and magic power amount, the extent human could handle this magic was only 'regeneration'――to return the state of the target into the healthy state where they didn't bore any wound, because such way of using it essentially only stopped at an act of projecting a moment of the past, it was named as 'regeneration' magic.
Saying it in reverse, if someone could surpass the limit of human, furthermore if they increased their proficiency in this magic and approached that essence, it would be theoretically possibly to not be limited with 'regeneration' and became able to interfere with time.
And then, if it was the current Kaori who had aptitude with regeneration magic, who had continuously used this magic all this time and became skilled, and in possession of a body that surpassed human body, it was possible for her to lay her hand on that area.
Kaori's magic power began to interfere with the time of the surrounding, her long silver hair that was dancing gently was gradually changing into gentle motion. Somehow, it looked like the whole workshop was growing dull in color.
’’It's all ok Kaori. You did well.’’
Immediately the whitish violet magic power filling the room dispersed as though melting into the air. Kaori put her hands on her knees while breathing hard. It appeared that she consumed quite a lot of magic power in just a short time.
’’Haa, haa, ho, how is it?’’
’’...As expected. It's about ten times increment. With this, I'll have some leeway.’’
’’Haaaa. I'm glaad’’
Hajime who was staring with a serious gaze at the crystal pillar which was emitting faint light loosened up his face and gave Kaori words mixed with praise. Kaori too also showed a smile while caressing her chest in relieve.
’’It's quite hard making this so how about naming it...as expected the name should be the 'hyperbolic xxxx chamber' I guess?’’ (TN: Hajime is making a reference to the hyperbolic time chamber in Dragon Ball here.)
’’...I have the feeling that it's better to stop that. Isn't it fine to simply name it 'Hour Crystal'?’’
’’...You have no romance.’’
’’Geez-, something like that doesn't matter. Now, quickly go to work, work! We will take care of the chores so work hard!’’
’’...I got it okay.’’
Hajime activated the hour crystal (temp) with a dissatisfied expression.
Immediately, the same like before inside the workshop grew slightly dull in color. With this, the time was stretched ten times longer though it was limited inside the workshop. An hour inside the workshop was just six minutes outside.
During that time, matters like contacting Liliana and others who were working on the surface ground and the sending of the artifacts were done by Remia (similar like with Hauria, Hajime had installed a gate with magic power storage that Remia could operate), while Kaori was carrying out the collection of material that ran out.
Hajime left all the chores to them and he just needed to continue to spit out the created artifacts from the workshop to outside. Hajime who was preparing weapons in the unit of tens of thousands really could be said as a human armory.
Hajime took out a large amount of material from the 'Treasure Warehouse II'. Every kind of mineral, monster fang, claw, bone, etc. was instantly filling to the brim inside the spacious workshop.
’’Now then, let's do this.’’
Hajime lifted his hand at the same time with that murmur. Right after that, inside the workshop was dyed with crimson. It was as though the vivid crimson color that permeated everywhere was changing the workshop itself into a gem that was like a red spinel. In a sense, the scenery pressured on the heart miraculously as though they were being lost inside a gem.
As the proof of that, Kaori, Myuu, and Remia who were inside the workshop were staring at the light that was emitted with Hajime in the center with an expression as though their heart was stolen.
Even while Kaori and others were in a daze, Hajime's 'Mineral Separation' sifted through only the needed material and created pure ore, then 'Creation Magic' enchanted the ore with necessary magic, 'Precise Transmutation' realized elaborate transformation that would make any craftsman go blue in face. Moreover, 'High-Speed Transmutation' did mass production that produced flawless and complete components regardless of how complicated it was.
And then those components were personally assembled by Hajime and a completed product was finished in just a few seconds which then was put on the floor.
Next Hajime held his hand over that completed product, no, more accurately he held his hand over the floor where the completed product was put, with that he engraved a detailed magic circle on the floor with the completed product on the center.
As the result, the materials scattered on the surrounding automatically moved and mass produced things that were exactly the same with the completed product. Not just that, the components themselves were mass produced with the mountain of material automatically extracting themselves and repeated the fusion.
Hajime confirmed the process and then he entered the creation of the next artifacts. He was already ignoring the magic circle that continued to emit crimson light and the mountain of Gatling gun that was completed automatically and moved to produce the bullets.
Those bullets too, Hajime personally created the first one and then he put it on the magic circle he engraved on the floor and the bullet was automatically mass produced, and then Hajime entered the creation of the next artifact again. His gaze was already not looking at the Gatling gun and bullet anymore.
Derivative skill of transmutation――as long as the material was available then it was possible to create exactly the same thing without the magic circle or image supplementation, this was the 'Duplication Transmutation', and then the 'Automatic Transmutation', until the magic power filled into the engraved magic circle ran out, even when the caster went away it would automatically continue to create.
The stream of crimson magic power filling the room and the crimson radiance of the magic circle deployed at Hajime's surrounding...while being surrounded by those, Hajime narrowed his eyes as though he was meditating and waved his hands like a conductor, his figure that created powerful artifacts easily like a joke was exactly like the magician inside a fairy tale. If it had to be said in a realistic way then it could be said that it was a solitary production factory.
While Kaori and others were in a daze, artifacts began to overflow from the engraved magic circle. Remia's cheeks were cramped from being convinced that she would be slower in carrying out the artifacts than the speed of the production like this. The amount was obviously something that couldn't be handled with just Myuu and Remia.
Although such thing was already known from the beginning.
Therefore, Hajime entered the transmutation of the transport method. He projected the image he drew inside his head into the empty air before his eyes, and then he further hardened the image while his hand crawled there. The result, a humanoid figure appeared pushing through the mountain of material with crimson jewel buried on its chest.
Its lower body was multi-legged like a spider, the upper body had six arms attached like an Ashura statue. Further, the lower body that was connected to the spider legs were box shaped, at a glance it could be understood that it was a transport golem.
And then after creating one more of the golem, Hajime opened his mouth.
’’Remia, Myuu. I'll ask you to control this golem and transport the artifacts. Send it from the gate to the kingdom.’’
Saying that, Hajime handed the two of them two rings. The rings had sympathy stone attached to control the golem. So that even the two who didn't have magic power can use it, Hajime put a function to store magic power and also an ability for the golem to further evolve.
’’These two golems are created from the fusion of magic stone that I refined and monster material, they are a half monster. That's why, it's possible to force them to move with that sympathy stone, but it can also move by receiving a vocal order. I made them so they will listen to the command of the person holding that ring.’’
Yes, so to speak these golems were something like a living weapon that was the fusion of machine and living thing, the ring was something to control them and also to show the authority to command. Having said that, they didn't have a clear ego of self so as long as there was no clear order, they wouldn't make their own judgment and moved by themselves. Perhaps it would be easier to imagine if it was said that they were like monster Living Knight or Living Sword that often appeared in RPG.
It was a combination skill of creation magic and metamorphosis magic. As always, Hajime didn't have that high of an aptitude in metamorphosis magic, but by using a method where he used the creation magic as the main and enchanted metamorphosis magic using his skill, then he could use it well enough. Or rather, even living thing had metal element inside their body, so if metamorphosis magic was used with creation magic as fusion magic, then the transmutation technique could advance drastically using the side effect of the metamorphosis magic. Using this Hajime hit upon an idea of a trump card.
The sealing stone that sealed Yue and the scorpion imitation were basically also created by the same technique. Although because of the aptitude of the caster, the component of metamorphosis magic had greater weight in those two. The sealing stone was also created from special ore that deflected magic, but the reason it was hard for Hajime's transmutation to affect it was because the majority of the stone was living thing.
Myuu was tilting her head ’’Nnyu?’’ at Hajime's difficult explanation, so Remia explained, ’’Papa is giving a present of pet to Myuu.’’ Although that explanation was a little bit problematic.
Anyway, Myuu who comprehended everything that was said to mean that she was presented with a pet, embraced Hajime in great joy, and then ’’Myuu will help papa nano!’’ Myuu manipulated the living golem 'Bel-chan' in high spirit.
It seemed the formal name was 'Belfegor' which was shortened as 'Bel-chan'. The one naming it was Myuu. It was a naming sense that was unthinkable coming from a four-year-old. Hajime wanted to think that it was a coincidence that the name was similar to the name of a famous devil of the seven deadly sins. (TN: The name should be Belphegor, but here the name is turned cuter somewhat.)
By the way, Remia also asked Myuu for the naming of her golem, and then with a smiling face that was too lovely Myuu named it ’’Asmodeusu!’’ It was an immediate reply without any pondering whatsoever. Hajime could only pray that the golem wasn't being possessed by something strange.
After that, Hajime mass produced every kind of weapon, Remia and Myuu transported those and sent them through the gate to Liliana and others in the kingdom, if the material became insufficient Kaori would dive into the labyrinth and gathered it up with her cheat ability and the compass...such process was continuing for a while.
A lot of outrageous artifacts that were sent to them one after another caused the people at the kingdom capital who didn't know about the hour crystal to have a cramped face. Hajime and others enjoyed a happy family get together (meal) for a short time with the 'Automatic Transmutation' buzzing on the side with Kaori getting teary eyed from Remia's teasing, although various things happened but in general the production progressed favorably.
Hajime himself also created new artifacts, he further strengthened his weapons even more than before, completing his equipment with certainty. And then, the trump card against Ehito too...
While those were happening, finally contacts from Shia and others who scattered to many places were also coming. It appeared they too were advancing the matters favorably. With artifacts that he would send to Shia and others in hand, Hajime prepared to welcome them in the hideout of Oscar.
In the luxurious bathroom where he was once forcefully made to climb the stair of adulthood by Yue, there was the figure of Hajime between the steams.
Even while relaxing his body properly in the pleasant bathtub, it was impossible for him to relax like before. That was because of his effort to recover the magic power that he consumed and also the preparation for the decisive battle, and most of all, it was because his dear lover wasn't there.
His gaze that was looking at far away pierced the abyss, passed even the sky, and stared at Yue who he shouldn't be able to see.
Those eyes, when they were narrowed painfully, suddenly, a young voice resounded in the bathroom.
Looking at Myuu who energetically rushed at him stark naked with her usual cute footsteps, Hajime floated a small smile.
And then, *pyon* he safely caught Myuu's body that leaped at him.
’’Oy. That's dangerous Myuu.’’
’’Ehehee, sorry papa.’’
Although he lightly scolded her for the moment, Myuu was busily hugging Hajime and no sign of repentance could really be seen from her. Hajime looked fondly at her thinking 'what a hopeless girl' while slowly submerging her into the bathtub so that Myuu wouldn't feel too hot.
Myuu leaked out ’’funyuu’’ voice while her eyes drooped pleasantly. That excessively cute figure stimulated Hajime's fatherhood strongly. He slowly combed Myuu's beautiful emerald green hair. Myuu melted even further. Now she was a droopy Myuu.
That figure of Myuu made Hajime felt healed a bit from the loneliness that he felt just now. Even so his gaze naturally looked up to the sky
’’...She is fine nano.’’
Suddenly, Myuu said out calm yet powerfully certain words. To Hajime who tilted his head and returned his gaze to her, Myuu with a conviction that was the same like the time at the devil king castle formed her words with a voice filled with strength.
’’...Yue-oneechan is fine nano.’’
’’Because, papa will go to meet her. It's the same like what happened with Myuu before nano. That's why, Yue-oneechan will be able to come back too nano.’’
Those words, rather than conviction Myuu talked like it was something decided already. For a little girl, if the big sister that she idolized was gone then usually she would be a bit more down but...it seemed Myuu overlapped what happened right now with the time when she was kidnapped and through that obtained an even stronger conviction. Namely, that Hajime would surely take back Yue.
At the same time, Myuu also obtained the conviction that Yue was absolutely fine which surely came from her enormous faith to Yue. That, Yue-oneechan will surely come home.
That was why, in this kind of time she couldn't feel down or anything. For Myuu who had watched Hajime and others until now, she had the awareness that she was a powerless existence that couldn't do anything. But, on the other hand, she also had cultivated a spirit twice of that awareness that could let her say 'so what' and blew it away. Therefore, she carried out 'thing that her current self could do'.
If she was unable to do anything, then at the very least she had to be able to cheer up the people who could do it, so first she herself would spread out liveliness. Her conviction and faith, she brought it to those people with all she had.
Looking at such Myuu, who was smiling wide in front of his eyes conveying to him ’’It's fine!’’, Hajime loosened up his face.
At the devil king castle, Hajime claimed that Myuu who was standing in the way of the rampaging him was ’’Stronger than himself’’, but now once again he thought that those words were actually correct. More than himself, she was believing in Yue's strength, and in the future that she wished for.
’’...You're right. I'll bring her back soon. After that, next time, let's enter the bath together with Yue, the three of us.’’
Myuu let out her playfulness and imitated Yue's reply. That was cute and lovely, making Hajime caressed Myuu's head even more.
Like that, the painful thing in his chest from thinking of Yue who was not here melted out into the bathtub together with his sigh, now his body really relaxed in the true meaning.
But, there Hajime suddenly noticed.
Wasn't Myuu planned to enter with Remia and Kaori?
For that Myuu to be here, in other words...
’’My my, dear, you are really sweet to Myuu, aren't you? Ufufu.’’
’’Ha, Hajime-kun. E, excuse me for disturbing.’’
’’As expected, so it turns out like this...’’
Remia and Kaori who only hid their body with small towels apologetically revealed themselves from the other side of the steam. Remia was acting brazenly while Kaori was blushing in shame.
Remia's body that looked voluminous somehow despite its slenderness was clad in indescribable se* appeal, perhaps because she was a widow. While Kaori's body that was like white porcelain and had the beauty of a work of art which was molded in the golden ratio. Both of them were giving off tremendous charm.
Remia was at the right, and Kaori was at the left, each of them glued their body to him while soaking in the bathtub.
'What are you two doing while Yue is not here', as expected Hajime was going to complain like that, but Remia returned an affectionate gaze at him before he could say it.
’’I was thinking that if you calmed down by yourself, won't you recall the pain instead...if we are a nuisance, then we will get out immediately.’’
’’Pain you say...’’
’’The pain of the heart has no relation with the strength of body or will after all. 'She is not here right now', doesn't it feel painful just from that?’’
It seemed he was seen through that he would feel pain from thinking of Yue. Hajime reflexively blinked, and then Kaori talked to him from the opposite side with a gentle tone.
’’In this kind of time, someone should be there with you. When it was me who felt like that, there was Shizuku-chan who stayed with me...I won't be able to become Yue's replacement but, I want to become your support even for just a little. If I cannot do that, then when Yue comes back she will make fun of me.’’
Kaori merely conveyed that she was at his side while chuckling. The words that came from her personal experience were heavy. During the days when Hajime was gone, Kaori didn't break even then was because her best friend nestled close at her side through all that time for her. That was why, the feeling of 'I too know what you feel' was naturally conveyed to Hajime from her.
Hajime sensed that he was given consideration by the two, no, by the three including Myuu too, he leaked out a small smile.
’’...Thanks. If I don't get myself in shape, then it will be me who will get made fun by her, huh.’’
’’I don't think that will happen when it's Yue though.’’
’’Ufufu. Yue-san is really engrossed with Hajime-san, isn't she.’’
The three remembered Yue who clung closely at Hajime and chuckled at each other.
Hajime dropped his gaze at Myuu on his chest who began to go ’’munya munya’’. It seemed she felt too pleasant and became sleepy. Before she fell asleep, she should wash her body first.
Remia and Kaori accurately guessed that thinking of Hajime. Beating Kaori to the punch whose mouth was opening, Remia told Hajime with a smile.
’’Then, Hajime-san. I'll wash your front now.’’
’’No, I don't need my back wa-...right now, you didn't just say the front, right?’’
Hajime asked while his cheeks were cramping from noticing the words that were bizarrely different from the standard, and as expected there, Remia was answering with a smile.
’’Yes, I thought that surely Kaori-san will wish to wash your back, so I wonder if I can wash your front instead.’’
’’Wai-, Remia-san!? What are you saying!? The, the front is...that's...no, no good!’’
’’My my, then, Kaori-san will be the one to wash the front?’’
’’M, me!? I, Hajime-kun's front, the front...’’
Kaori's gaze was absorbed onto Hajime's crotch that was not visible below Myuu's shadow. And then, her face blushed crimson explosively.
’’Are you two idiots. There is no way I'll let you two do that.’’
’’My, if the two of us are no good then.....so, Myuu will be the one...’’
’’Hajime-kun!? That's no good, something like that! What are you planning to make Myuu-chan do!’’
’’However, that place is delicate...I will need to be at her side here to give her a lecture. Mother and daughter will work hard to give service here.’’
’’I won't let that happen! I won't let that happen no matter what! Remia-san! I won't let Hajime-kun progress through that kind of abnormal path!’’
’’My. Then, who will be the one to wash Hajime-san's front?’’
’’Kaori-san, then let's do it like this. The three of us together.’’
’’Hah, that way is...wait, that's wrong!’’
Hajime thought. 'Kaori...how pitiful', like that. And then, whether it was Yue or Remia, Kaori who was played by older female as long as there was a chance caused Hajime to make a really complicated face from the gap of Kaori of now and of before when they were still on earth.
At the same time...
’’When Yue comes back...Kaori's hardship will be doubled, huh.’’
Leaving aside the two, Hajime rose from the bathtub and he whispered while washing Myuu's hair. When they took back Yue, he would be a little gentler to Kaori. Hajime sent glances at Kaori who was still being teased by Remia with a gaze filled with such pity.
Looking at such a Hajime, Myuu tilted her head in puzzlement.