If this could be seen outside and a normal person saw it, he would surely doubt his eyes.
Because that historic Japanese-style house was suddenly covered in a “dark” flame even darker than the night.
And then───a blue-white brilliance deflected it.
Hellfire rushed at them like a gale, burning the earth and melting the garden rocks that stood in its path.
For a moment, it seemed as though it had devoured all the people in the garden.
But in fact, there was not a single one of them who failed to react.
Even before anyone saw those flames, the horrifying presence they exuded was enough to give them goosebumps.
The black-clothed men immediately retreated from the line of fire with their fallen comrades on their backs.
Ryou and Tomoe were about to leave as well, only to abruptly look behind them with an astonished face.
There were those that managed to respond but failed to properly dodge or defend themselves.
The three girls that were inside the building had no place to run to and didn’t have the strength to defend themselves.
There was a barrier, and there were shikionis too, but Tomoe and Ryou knew intuitively that they were nothing but paper shields in this situation, and they quickly moved to rescue them.
Tomoe wasn’t used to flying, so her movements were more like a jump than flight.
As though to change places, the two shikionis guarding the two girls stepped forward and took the torrent of flames for the three girls to buy time for them, allowing Ryou and Tomoe to reach them in time.
“Shut up! You’ll bite your tongue!”
Tomoe carried two, while Ryou carried one, and together, they all leaped up.
No longer considering the damage to the mansion, they smashed through the ceiling to get to the roof.
They landed on the roof tiles, but not a wisp of flame followed them through the hole.
Even the great fire that stormed into the room seemed to have vanished.
For a moment, they wondered what was happening, but then a chill suddenly ran up their back.
By the time they followed their spiritual intuition and looked up, it was already too late.
The black hellfire rained on them like a meteor falling from the sky.
Nay, already, that fire was so overwhelming, it might as well have been a wall.
When they saw the monster riding on that, it was evident that they’d been read.
Tomoe erected as much barriers as she could and covered for her unarmored friends despite trembling herself, but…
The black flames that should have hit her never came, then she realized that the only ones with her were the girls.
One person was missing, and at almost the same time she realized that, a war cry resounded.
“Ku, u, ooooo!!!”
When she turned around, she saw Ryou shielding them by confronting the fire with his own body.
He raised up his hands and released his spiritual power throughout his whole body as he tried to deflect the heat, weight, and evil ki of that meteor-like flame.
When Tomoe calmed down and looked around her, she realized that his spiritual power was enveloping the whole surroundings including themselves.
But while the intense-blue light Ryou radiated pushed back the black flames, it was gradually pushing back at him.
“Stop it! No matter how vast your spiritual power reserves are, you haven’t trained your spiritual power at all!”
Tomoe found herself screaming because of how reckless this was.
There’s been no problem until now because the problems Ryou faced were within the acceptable range of his faucet, but now, Ryou was releasing so much spiritual power throughout his whole body that it was threatening to break that very faucet.
“Shut up! If someone is going to play the role of a shield, it’s going to be me! I’ll get beat up again if I don’t do a proper job here!!”
On one corner was a world-destroying fire, on the other was a boy they called their master, but if Ryou had to choose, he would much rather choose to fight the world-destroying.
Besides, if he didn’t do something like this, Tomoe would have no way to defend against it either.
He’s been able to avoid a direct hit so far by recklessly releasing his vast reserves of spiritual power that even Tomoe had underestimated, but at this rate, he won’t last long.
It might have been the heat or the weight or his reckless use of spiritual power, but his feet sank, and the tiles beneath shattered.
The situation around them was even worse.
Ryou’s spiritual power could only protect them and himself, while the shockwaves, heat, and fire spread all over around them.
The roof burned up in black flames, and the tiles melted and lost their shape.
Tomoe panicked. At this rate, the roof would burn up before Ryou could even reach his limits, and they will all come crashing down with it.
However, even if they tried to escape, they would only be following in the footsteps of the roof tiles if they left Ryou’s spiritual shield.
An exasperated, petulant, mocking laugh resounded.
The monster was enjoying their plight.
It also seemed to be getting back at them by slowly increasing the pressure, but regardless, something needed to be done.
Her impatience grew by the minute. Already, their defense wouldn’t hold for more than a few minutes at most, but she was doubtful if she could even deal with that fire that Ryou could just barely endure at full power.
Unfortunately, despite her lack of confidence, she had no choice but to try and extinguish the flames with all of her strength, so she held her Kamunagi tight, but then───
───the monster suddenly screamed, and the flames dispersed.
For some reason, the monster was rolling down the roof helpless.
Just what happened?’
However, the collapsed Ryou took priority, so she put those thought aside and ran to him.
As she picked him up, she realized that both of his arms were hideously burned, but it wasn’t just burns, they have also been eroded and were covered in evil ki.
Tomoe took out a ‘Heal’ talisman from her sleeves and gently placed it on him.
Her spiritual power enveloped him and removed the evil ki and healed his burns.
“Uu, Ku… T-That stuff, of yours, is seriously convenient… But didn’t those girls confiscate them?”
Tomoe’s talisman successfully alleviated most of the pain as could be seen from Ryou returning to his usual frivolous tone. Tomoe was a little annoyed by that but still replied.
“He put some of the talismans I gave him before inside the exoskeleton! Sheesh, just how far into the future did he read?”
“Ahaha, I don’t know if he’s reliable or scary, gu!”
Ryou chuckled, but then his face twisted in pain.
“Ah, sheesh! Make spiritual power flow through your arms! It’s difficult with just my talismans. You girls use your healing jutsus too!”
The three girls helped out too, but they were much worse at it compared to Tomoe, so they worked together to compensate for their flaws and cast a single jutsu.
When most of Ryou’s wounds have been healed with a talisman, Tomoe nodded and stood up. There was still the curse left behind, but the girls’ jutsu should be enough to deal with that.
“Take care of Ryou. When that’s done, use your Skills to heal his burns!”
“I’ll deal with that guy.”
Tomoe didn’t wait for their response before descending to the garden.