“Ku, uu, I-I didn’t train to do something like this! But I won’t let anyone deny them— No, stop it!!”
As she cried out, an arrow of light was released, and like the faint light of a firefly, it shot fiercely through the sky as though meaning to tear it apart.
With the power imbued driving it, it flew faster than any normal arrow, but now that the trick has been exposed, not to mention the fact that it could be seen with the naked eye, it was no longer any threat to Shinichi, and he easily grabbed it.
“You’re the real thing, aren’t you? Moreover, to be this accomplished at your age, you’re pretty good. Those fake old shinto priests can’t even copy this.”
The ability of that arrow to interfere with reality wasn’t something to scoff at, neither that invisible slash from earlier nor that other attack of the same sort.
The feeling in his left hand was yet to return completely, and would probably take some more time to recover, but even then, who would’ve thought that a girl still in her teens would be able to control the power of the soul to this extent? It was really amazing.
“That’s really scary… I should have noticed it earlier.”
As he broke the arrow, he looked straight into her, finally able to see her.
Illuminated by the pillar of flames that burned yet and amidst its hot winds, surprise could be seen all over her beautiful face and blue eyes, while her chestnut-colored hair tied into a ponytail swung behind her.
Her appearance alone spoke volumes of which world she belonged to.
It was just that the Japanese katana she wielded and the charms hidden by the chest part of her garment didn’t match her appearance.
“The power to see souls, also known as the power to sense souls or psychic power. And that thing that’s covering you, I suppose that must be a concealment spell.”
“What? If you know that much, then must mean!”
“Bull’s eye, huh. I guess reading all those light novels do come in handy, after all.”
“You’re related to the main branch of the Tsuchimikado— Wait, light novel!?”
When he thought back to those onmyouji that were popular before he was drifted, he wryly smiled.
His unexpected source of information had once again dyed the girl’s face in shock, however, but compared to her, Shinichi looked miserable and depressed, as though he should have realized this matter sooner.
“I just transferred, but it looks like I really won’t be getting any rest, now, will I?”
How did Teacher Frank put it when he explained the matter about raybeasts?
Among the various theories, one theory suggested that the raybeasts have taken shape based off of the legends and folktales of the monsters, demons, and UMAs found in Earth. This was widely accepted to be the correct explanation for the appearances they have taken.
Of course, not all raybeasts were actually based off of those creatures, but the odds of raybeasts taking such form were high.
But if that was the case, then what about the
Exorcists, onmyoujis, mikos, psychics, magicians, witches, shamans.
People claiming to be such indeed existed, and they ranged from being actual living people to pure works of fiction.
Of the people that claimed to be such, most of them were fake.
But since the raybeasts ‘based’ themselves off of the fictitious monsters, then while the odds might be low, perhaps such ‘power’ really did exist.
It was one thing for the people of this world, who lived in ignorance of such matters, to fail to notice their existence, but for someone like Shinichi who came from
The fact that he couldn’t realize that until it was right in front of him was laughable.
“What are you talking about— Ugh, I’ll make everyone acknowledge! —Ahh, again you want to use Kamunagi to, ahh shut up! Mother’s katana wasn’t meant to be used like this— No!!”
Amidst angry yells and screams, the girl took a step and swung her katana.
It was like a one-person show, but Shinichi knew that she wasn’t putting on an act.
“Ah, yes, our favorite culprit for the night.”
It was that head ring that he’s seen all too much of tonight.
But the one on her head was a lot duller compared to the others.
Every time it would shine brightly, she would scream desperately.
Shinichi didn’t ignore her screams, but he had a matter he had to decide on urgently.
“…This isn’t good.”
Since he could see her now, there was nothing to fear.
The way she held the naked blade and took a step was quick and reeked of experience. There was a sharpness and technique to it one wouldn’t expect from a beginner.
It was a brilliant skill that could have only been diligently cultivated somewhere.
But it was precisely because of that beautiful form that made it easy to read and unsuited for actual combat.
That’s why her attacks were no longer a threat.
The problem was something else altogether.
“No, no, that’s just— I’ll kill everyone! All of them!”
Although he was dodging her simple attacks easily, all color had left his face.
It was curious if it was because of the power of the soul or because she had a way to deal with the mental interference attack, but either way it was
It might’ve been because of her incompetence or maybe simply because the skill she used wasn’t meant for the mind skill she was afflicted with, but regardless, the end result was that she retained her sanity in a half-baked manner, while being pressured mentally to a greater extent than any of the victims so far.
That was also the reason why she moved so well compared to the students who’ve completely lost their sanity.
She retained her consciousness in a half-baked manner, and the end result of that was that she ended up being controlled in a half-baked manner too.
“Ugh, this is seriously a pain… For the mean time, maybe I should just wait it out, and let her self-destruct?”
“I’m not doing this on my own— Uu, ku, I’ll show you my power and make you acknowledge me!!”
With her body being commanded to go on a rampage, each time she swung her spirit blade, a faint light would flash, and the ground and trees around her would easily be cut up, but Shinichi easily dodged all of her attacks, while leisurely thinking what to do with her.
Even when he started thinking about completely unrelated things, he never found himself in a pinch.
Now that he could see her, dodging her attacks was a trivial matter.
Unfortunately, trying to slip through that to reach her head where the ring was attached would still result in his bones being broken.
The method he knew to dispel the mind skill required direct contact.
If he were to dodge the katana once and attempt the dispel, the katana would surely cut him down on its way back.
Even if his body was able to endure the blow, if he were to stop feeling his body, he wouldn’t be able to move anymore.
Of course, there were many other ways he could use if only he weren’t concerned about her safety, but if he were such a man, he would’ve never involved himself with this mess in the first place.
“You’re wrong, u, uu, haa, haa, haa —Stop wasting you’re time here, and go somewhere else already! This is an important katana. I don’t want it to be dirtied by your blood!”
While Shinichi was at a loss what to do, the girl suddenly yelled those words at him.
She was desperately trying to stop her body from going wild, but the way she yelled made it seem as if she didn’t care at all.
Shinichi was surprised to find that people like her whose words didn’t match her actions actually existed.
At the same time, her words triggered complicated emotions to well up from within him.
“…Sigh, despite your situation, you’re still telling me to run away, huh. It’s because there are people like you that the me that day will always be miserable.”
Although her words were harsh, they were full of concern.
As long as people like her existed – people who could say such things despite being helpless – the sight of him that day that could only beg for help and call upon a tragedy would forever be a joke.
“What are you laughing for!? Didn’t you hear me— GU, I can’t!?”
The expression on her face didn’t match her words at all.
It’s precisely because of stuff like this that Shinichi’s luck with people was terrible.
The warm emotions that filled him made him want to
“Hmph, do it if you can. You think that blunt thing can cut me? Please. Keep your dreams for when you’re asleep.”
“What have you been looking at all this time? KU, unforgivable, shut up, shut up!”
Because he insulted something precious to her, anger filled her eyes.
When Shinichi saw that, he made fun of her martial arts.
“An amateur playing sword with a blunt stick? You’re going to fight like that? You’re going to prove your strength? Are you stupid?”
“What, you, gu, ah… What do you know!!?”
“I just feel sorry for the parents who had a daughter as stupid as you.”
“Don’t insult my parents!! So you’re laughing at them too!? Just like everyone else!!”
It didn’t matter whether she was really angry or was just losing control because of the mind skill.
He just had to ignore the pain he was feeling in his chest. After all, whatever pain he felt couldn’t possible be compared to hers.
“Of course, I’d laugh. You’ve been swinging your katana all this time, but you haven’t hit me once. Those fake spirit techniques of yours haven’t been effective either, and I’m just a kid. If that’s not a waste of effort, then what is?”
“Ah, gu, it wasn’t a, waste! They’re not fake either! I’ll prove it! My parents aren’t an embarrassment! All they did was love each other! How is that a mistake!? Whoever it is, whatever it is, I won’t let anyone deny them!!”
As she said that, she took the strongest and messiest step she’s taken so far and swung her katana.
These were the feelings she has been keeping locked deep within her.
Just what kind of trash could make a child feel such emotions?
But Shinichi didn’t really have the right to say that given he was saying some terrible things right now.
“But, the fact that you can’t do anything, is in and of itself, a failure, a mistake, right?”
And yet he was able to easily spit out such terrible words one after another. It was actually quite impressive, although in the wrong sense.
But if he didn’t run away from reality by thinking stuff like that to himself, he wouldn’t have been able to look her in the eye.
As those beautiful blue eyes opened wide, they began to crack.
“Ah, u, ah, ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!”
As the ring glowed the brightest it has so far, all hints of sanity finally left her.
When her katana descended along with her scream, the resulting stroke was too big and too shoddy.
It was a sword that didn’t consider the future, a sword that didn’t follow a clean trajectory, such a sword was simply too full of openings.
Shinichi easily dodged that terrible sword by a hair’s breadth and then took a step that brought him right in front of her.
By the time the sword had caused the ground to crack, he had already seized the girl’s face.
The sword that had lost all sanity couldn’t react at all, and her eyes didn’t even notice him.
“Sorry about that.”
As Shinichi gave that self-serving apology, he flicked her forehead and drove his mana into her.
As her head shook from the impact, the ring dispersed, and she fell down like a puppet whose strings have been cut.
Before her knees could hit the ground, he tried to catch her and lift her up, but before he could—
“D-Don’t touch me!”
—His hand was slapped away.
What stood before him now was an angry young girl brimming with killing intent.