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Character Introductions

Adlet
A young boy who calls himself the strongest man in the world. He fights with a
mastery of various secret weapons.

Character Introductions

Nashetania
Though she is the princess of the large kingdom Piena, she is a wild and free girl,
full of mischief. She is the Saint of Blades.

Character Introductions

Fremy
A girl whose cool indifference wont allow others to get close. As the Saint of
Gunpowder she uses guns and bullets in battle.

Character Introductions

Goldof
A young knight completely devoted to Nashetania, he wields a giant spear.

Character Introductions

Chamo
A proud girl who is called the most powerful warrior of the current age. She is the
Saint of Swamps.

Character Introductions

Hans
A strange man who mimics a cat as he talks. He fences with an unworldly and
peculiar skill.

Character Introductions

Mora
An extremely serious and intellectual woman. She serves as the leader of the
Saints and is the Saint of Mountains.

Character Introductions

Rolonia
A newly arrived Hero of the Six Flowers who is a timid, but good-natured girl. She
is the Saint of Fresh Blood.

Character Introductions
The Commanders

Tgurneu
One of the Kyoma commanders. He excels in ingenuity and has set up various
traps.
(Pronounced Teguneu)

Character Introductions

Cargikk
???

Character Introductions

Dozzu
???

Summary

TheSeventhFlowerhasleft,butagirlnamedRoloniaappeared,onceagain
addingaseventhpersontotheHeroesoftheSixFlowers.
MeanwhilethedeadlineforTheMajinsrevivalapproaches,andunabletogetrid
oftheirsuspicions,theheroesadvanceintoTheWailingDemonTerritory.
ThereaKyomaappearsandgivesMorathewarning,Youhavenotime.
Andontopofthat,oneoftheKyomacommandersnamedTgurneusuddenly
appearsbeforetheheroes.
Doesthishavetodowiththeseventhsplot!?
Withintheirconfusionafiercebattlebegins.Challengedbydestiny,battlinga
mystery,volumetwoofthisexplosivefantasybegins!

Prologue

Prologue

Prologue

Adlethadbeenrunningacrossthedry,craggyearth,withrocksspreadalloverit.
Infact,hewasdevotingallofhisenergyintotherunashetrampledoverthe
wiltingweedsthatweresparselystickingoutoftheground.

Hewasonthepeninsulajuttingoutofthewesternedgeofthecontinentcalled
TheWailingDemonTerritory.ItwaswhereTheMajinandtheKyomaresided.
AndatthemomentAdletwasintheeasternsection,inalandcalledTheValleyof
theBleedingLung.

Thoughitwasnight,Adletcontinuedunderthemoonlight.Theonlythinghehad
toilluminatethewaywasthelightgivenoffbythejewelmountedintohis
armor'schestplate.

"Hurry!"Adletshoutedasheran.

Therewerethreelightsbehindhim,belongingtoFremy,Chamo,andGoldof,who
wereallfollowinghim.Hewasoutofbreath,hisheartwasthrobbingviolently,his
lipsweretrembling,andhewasn'tabletocontrolhislegsproperly.Butputtingall
hisenergyintotherunwasntthecause.Itwasthefactthattheywereonthe
vergeofconfrontinganightmare.

"Hans!Rolonia!Whereareyou?!"Adletcalledout,butnoresponsecameback
fromthedeepdarkness.

Prologue

"Areyoudead?!Hans!Rolonia!Answerme!"AsAdletshoutedhejumpedontoa
cliffinfrontofhim.Bothhishandsandfeetfoundtheirwayintotheindentations
ofthecliffandintheblinkofaneyehestartedtoscaleuptherock.

Asheclimbed,heunintentionallylookedatthebackofhishand.Onitlaidthe
proofhewasoneoftheheroesfatedtosavetheworld,thecrestoftheSix
Flowers,whichalwaysgaveoffafaintlight.

However,oneofthepetalswasmissingonthecrest.Andthatmeantoneofthe
heroeshadlosttheirlife.

"Hans!"

Adletkickedupthecliffsideandleapedthroughtheair.Asheflewhedrewhis
sword,thenlandedatopthecliffandassumedabattlestance.Butthesighthe
sawtheinstanthisjewel'slightilluminatedtheclifftopputhimatalossfor
words.

HansHumpty.Theunusualassassinwhofoughtwhileimitatingacat.Aman
possessingthecrestoftheSixFlowerswasontheground,hisfacelookingupto
thesky.Oneofthearteriesinhisneckhadbeenrippedopenandhisbloodwas
spilledallovertheparchedearthcreatingarepulsivesight.Andasforhisface,all
thebloodhadcompletelydrainedfromit.

"...Hans."Adletdroppedhissword.Hecouldn'tbelievewhathewasseeing.He
hadplacedabsolutetrustinHans'overwhelmingstrengthandquickwit.

Prologue

"...YouweretoolateAdlet,"awomanstandingslightlyapartfromHanssaid
quietly.ShewasstandingwithherbackfacingAdlet;thewomanwentbythe
nameofMoraChester.

"Hans,itcan'tbe."

FremyfollowedAdletupthecliff,withGoldofappearingafter.Uponseeingthe
situation,theyimmediatelypointedtheirweaponstowardsMora.

"Thissituationprobablydoesn'tevenneedanexplanation.IjustkilledHans,"
Moraconfessedassheturnedaround.

Herface,chest,andbothofherunarmoredhandswereallcoveredinblood.Even
herarmorwasbrokenallover.Itseemedlikeanordinarypersonwouldhavedied
alongtimeagofromthesameinjuries.

"Mora,itwasyou..."

"That'sright...I'mtheseventh."Hervoicewasdispirited,asifshewere
exhausted.Shethenraisedherhands,quietlykneeleddown,andhungherhead
powerlessly.

Noonecouldmakeasoundafterthat.Therewasonlysilence.

Prologue

AdletstaredatthekneelingMora,completelyatalossforwords.Itwasastate
sharedbyFremy,Chamo,andGoldofbehindhim.Buttherewasanotherperson
therebearingthecrestoftheSixFlowers,andshewassittingatHansside.

"...Rolonia,"Adletcalledout.

HernamewasRoloniaManchetta.Withtheabilitytomanipulateblood,shewas
theSaintofFreshBlood.Andshewasalsotheeighthpersontoappearwiththe
crestoftheSixFlowers.

Shehadaroundface,glasses,andoftenworeatimidexpression.Ontopofthat
shewasshortandsmallandinnowaycouldshebeseenasanexcellentwarrior.
Infact,ifshewasn'tcladinheavyarmor,ordidn'thavealongwhipattachedto
herhip,shewouldlookjustlikeavillagegirl.

AtthemomentherhandsweretouchingHanschestandthroat,herpalms
glowingslightly.

"HowdidHanslose?"Adletaskedher,butRoloniadidn'tanswer.Shejuststared
atHansbody.

"Roloniaanswer!WhyisHansdead?!Whathappened?!"

Prologue

AdletthennoticedthatRoloniawasmutteringsomething.Hedrewclosetoher
faceandlistenedtobothherbreathingandthewordsspillingoutfromher
mouth.

"Pleasedon'tdie...pleasedon'tdie...Iwilldefinitelyhelp...you..."

RoloniawastheSaintofFreshBloodsoshecouldcontrolaperson'sbloodtoheal
wounds.So,notwantingtodisturbher,AdlettouchedHans'wrist.Hehadno
pulseandhewascold.

Itsimpossible,Rolonia,Adletthought.TherewasalmostnobloodleftinHans
body,plushishearthadstopped.Hanswasalreadydead.

"Whatsthemeaningofthis?WhyisHansdead,butyou'reunharmed?"Adlet
asked.

HewantedtoknowwhyRoloniadidntfighttheseventh,Mora.Andwhatsmore,
hewonderedwhyMoradidntattackthedefenselessgirl.

However,RoloniawasfocusingsolelyontryingtohelpHans.Itwasasifshe
completelycouldn'tseewhatwashappeningaroundher.

"Rolonia,youmusthavebeentravelingtogetherwithHans.Whatintheworld
happened?"Fremyaskedher.Yetevenherwordsdidn'tseemtoreachRolonia's
ears.

Prologue

"Iwillhelp...I'llhelp,youllsee.IfIcan't..."

ChamothenstrolledtowardsMorawhilewearingherusualcarefreesmile.Itwas
asifsheweren'tpayinganyattentiontothefactthatHanshaddied.

"Ah...Catsandied?That'stoobad."ChamolookeddownatthekneelingMora.
"ChamoquitelikedCatsan.Hewascute,strong,andhetalkedamusingly.Though
atfirstChamohatedhimafterhehitChamoveryhard,overtimetravelingwith
himbecamealittlefun."

ChamomadeafistandstruckMoraintheface.Herfistwassmallthoughso
Mora'sfaceonlymovedslightly.

"Iwillneverforgiveyou.Iwillkillyou.Iwontletyouhaveanormaldeath!"

Moraavertedhergazefromtheangrygirlinfrontofher."Idon'tcareifyoukill
me.Imready."

"Really?Obachanspreparedtodie?Well,Chamosextremelydisappointed.

Chamoraisedherfistagain,butFremygrabbeditandstoppedher.

Beforethat,giveussometimetohearherout,"FremysaidtoChamo,then
turnedtoMora.Hereyewasfullofsilentanger."TalkMoraandmakeitasbrief
aspossible.Whenyou'refinished,we'llkillyou."

Prologue

Lookingdowntotheground,Moraspoke."Ididn'thopeforthistohappen.I
didn'twanttokillhim.Ididn'twanttokillHansoranyone."

"Whatareyoutalkingabout?"

"ButIcouldn'tthinkofwhattodootherthankillhim.Allpathsotherthankilling
Hanshadbeenclosed."AsingletearfellfromMora'seye."Iwantedtoprotect
theworld.IwantedtodefeattheKyomaalongsideallofyouandpreventThe
Majin'srevival."

"Chamodoesn'tbelieveyou,"Chamosaid,butAdletdisagreed.Morawasn'tlying,
shewasspeakingfromhertruefeelings.

"Andonlyuntilyesterday,no,onlyuntilanhourago,Ihadintendedtodojust
that."

Chapter 11

Chapter 11

ChapterOne:PartOne

MoraChester.TheSaintofMountainsandthecurrentheadofallthevenerable
templesinworld.

ShewasextremelypopularamongtheSaintsandnoonequestionedher
competency.Whilemanyconsideredhergoverningfairshewasalsostrictand
haddemonstratedexcellentskillinleadingherjuniors.AsthetimeofTheMajin's
awakeningneared,peopletalkedabouthowherbeingselectedastheleaderof
thetempleswasextremelyfortunateformankind.

SowhydidMorakillHansHumpty?Apartofthatanswerliesinherhistory.

Morawasbestowedwithablessedlife.Borninthecountryofsnowcapped
mountains,shewastheyoungestofninechildren.Shewasbornintoawealthy
villagetreebusinessandhadbeenraisedwithlovebyherparents,brothers,and
thecompany'semployees.

Mora'sfatherhaddeeptieswiththetempleoftheMountainwherethebusiness'
bodyguardscamefrom,andthroughthatconnectionMoraenteredthetempleas
anacolyte.Shewas13atthetime.

10

Chapter 11

Livingatthetemplewasbusyandstrict,butitwasn'thardforMora.Shewasa
seriousgirlandsheexcelledeveninschool.Shewasevenmorecapableof
regulatingherownbehaviorandhabitscomparedtoothergirlsinhergeneration.

WhenMorawas19thepreviousSaintofMountainsretiredandMorawaschosen
asthenextSaintfromthegroupofacolytes.Shewasthegreatestfromthe
multitudesofacolytesanditwassaidthatshewasthebestcandidate.

AfterthatMora'suniquequalitiesstartedtoblossom,andwithinthreeyearsshe
gainedthefightingabilitiesandstrengthtobeconsideredamongthetopfive
mostpowerfulSaints.Herhighlevelabilitieswereshowntothemanaged
territoriesunderthetemple'scontrolandwhenMorawas26shewasappointed
theheadofallthetemplesintheworld.ReceivinganominationfromLeura,the
previousTempleHead,Morawasrecommendedbythreefourthsofthe78
Saints.

Morabasicallyhadeverythingapersonwouldwanttoacquireorwishfor.
Popularity,fame,status,authority,andwealth.Andinhavingthoseshealsohad
genuinepower.

However,forMoraallofthosewereoflittleimportance.Sincetherewereno
othersuitablepeople,theheadofthetemple'sseatwasnothingmorethana
positionMorahadnochoicebuttotakeover.Popularityandfamewerealsonot
thatimportant.Wealthwasonlygoodforensuringthatonedidn'tliveadifficult
life.Andifitbecameunnecessary,shecouldthrowawayeventheimmense
poweroftheSaintofMountainsatanytime.

11

Chapter 11

No,forMoratherewassomethingelsethatwasmoreimportant.

ThreeyearsbeforeTheMajin'sawakening,MorawasatPiena'sgoddessarena.
ThesameplacewherelaterAdletwouldcauseamassiveuproar.

"Princess!HowmanytimesdoIhavetotellyou!Itdoesn'tmatterhowmany
bladesyouconjureiftheydon'thitthetarget."

MorawastherewiththreeyoungSaints.Thegirlswerethenextgenerationof
thoseaimingtobetheHeroesoftheSixFlowersandwerebeinginstructedby
Mora.Atthattime,trainingthemwasMora'smostimportantjob.

"Whatdoyouthinkaboutthis?"TheSaintofBlades,Nashetania,conjuredblades
fromthegroundoneafteranother,andthenlaunchedthemallatMorawithout
mercy.

However,eventhoughthebladeswereindeedflashy,theywereslow.Andthey
alsoweren'taccurateenough,soMorawasabletocasuallydeflecteachblade
withherarmoredfist.

"You'renotcontrollingyourenergy.Andthoughthatmightworkonweaker
enemies,itwillfailagainststrongeropponents.Next!"

12

Chapter 11

"Alrightboss!TodayI'mgoingtobeatyoutoapulp.1"

ThenexttochallengeMorawasWelynn2,theSaintofSalt.Shepossessedthe
powertochangeanythingshestruckintoclumpsofsalt.

Buteventhoughjustonestrikefromherfistwouldmeancertaindeath,itwas
meaninglessifherfistscouldn'thittheirmark.Asshewasabitonthetallside,
Morawasabletododgethesimpleattackjustbymovingherupperbody.Thenin
thatopeningMoratrippedupWelynn.AndastheyoungSaintstumbled,Mora
kickedherandsentherflying.

"Yourattacksaretoosimplistic.Andifyoudon'tlearnhowtoattackfromfar
awayyou'llneverdevelop.Next!"

"Huh?Noway.You'retheleaderofthetemples.You'rewaytoostrong."

TheSaintofFire,Lenelle,usedthefireshecreatedtoattackMora.However,
Morajustwavedbothofherhands,scatteringtheflamesandknockingLenelle
backfromtherecoil.

"Wasthatallyourpower?!OfferyourprayerstotheGodofFire.Itwillincrease
yourstrength."

1

2
The Japanese name reads Ueron, but like the other names in this series I tried to Romanize them in a
way that would seem less Japanese and also be more pronounceable in line with the authors English
translations of the main characters names.

13

Chapter 11

Morawasabouttocallforthenextwarrior,butthensherealizedthattherewas
nooneelse.NashetaniatheSaintofBlades,WelynntheSaintofSalt,andLenelle
theSaintofFirehadallbeenbeaten.

"Weaklings,bandtogetherandcomeatme."

ThethreethenstoodandlaunchedtheirattacksatMora.Theirintensivetraining
continueduntilthethreeyoungSaintscouldn'tmoveanymore.

Itwaseveningbythetimetheinstructionhadended.Morawalkeddownthe
hallsofthegoddessarenaalone,whileNashetaniaandtheotherSaintsheaded
overtothedoctors.

Nashetaniapossessedformidabletalentandinthreeyearsshewouldprobably
surpassMorainstrength.Welynnontheotherhandstillhadroomtogrow.But
MorafeltthatLenelle'sdevelopmentmaybereachingaplateau,whichmadeher
wonderwhethersheshouldorderhertoretiresothatshecouldraiseanewSaint
ofFireorifitwasbettertowaitforLenelletoshedherweakexterior.3

Whileshewalked,Moracontinuedtoconsiderhowtoraiseasuperiorwarrior
andhowtohelpthemdeveloptothepointwheretheycoulddefeatTheMajin.

14

Chapter 11

However,aftersheexitedthearenaandstartedtowalkthroughPiena's
extravagantroyalfamilytempleherthoughtsofbattlegraduallybeganto
disappear.SheevenstartedtoforgettheimpendingbattlewithTheMajin.

"Sheniera.I'mback.Wereyouagoodgirltoday?"

WhenMoraopenedthedoortoaguestroom,located,contrarytoher
expectations,inacorneroftheroyalresidence,agirltotteredintoherchest.And
atthatmomentMorachangedfromawarriorwhoborethefateofprotectingthe
worldonhershoulderstojustamother.

"Sheniera,whatdidyoudoforfuntoday?"

"Iplayedsugoroku4withdaddy."

"Sugorokuhuh?Iwanttoplaywithyoutoo.Oohthere'sacutegirl."

Morapickedupandhuggedheronlybeloveddaughter.Feelingherdaughterhad
gottenabitheavier,Mora'sexpressionsoftened.

"Oh,you'reheavy,you'reheavy."

4
Adicegame.However,inEnglishtoPlayDiceusuallyhasagamblingconnotation.

15

Chapter 11

"Sheniera'snotapamperedchild,"amansaidasMoracuddledherdaughter.He
thenwalkedintotheroom,amanintheprimeofhislifewithsilverhairsblended
intohishair.

"Whenyou'rehereShenierabecomesacompletelydifferentperson."

HisnamewasGunnerChesterandhewasMora'shusband,olderthanherby12
years.

TheSaintsweren'tobligatedtoremainsingleandclosetohalfofthe78Saints
hadfamilies.Plus,itwasn'trareforeventheacolytesthatwereSaintcandidates
tohaveloversorhusbands.EvenMora'smarriagetoGunnerhadhappened
beforeshehadinheritedthepoweroftheSaintofMountains.

"Sheniera,yourmotheristired.Comehere."Gunnerembracedhisdaughterand
liftedheroutofhermother'sarms.

"Idon'tmind,Idon'tmindthis.WellSheniera,playwithyourmother,"Morasaid
asshetookbackShenierafromGunner.

SeeingShenieralaughasMoraliftedherplayfullyhighupintotheair,Gunner
shrugged."Alright,butit'syourfaultShenieraisbeingraisedasapampered
child."

16

Chapter 11

"Whatareyousaying?Istheresomethingwrongwithbeing
pampered?HeySheniera,swing!"

MoradangledShenierathengentlyshookherleftandright.Shewassorrythat
shewasignoringherhusband'scriticism,butatthemomentshedidn'tfeellike
partingfromherdaughter.ShenierawastheonlyonewhocouldmakeMora
forgettheweightofherdutyastheleaderofthetemples.

Aftertenyearshadpassedsincetheyhadgottenmarried,Morahadfinallygiven
upandresignedherselftothefactthatitmayhavebeenimpossibleforherto
havechildrenanymore.SotofinallyreceiveShenierawasatreasure.Shewasin
goodhealth,shewasn'tdevelopingslowly,andshewasgrowinguphealthily.

Herdaughterwasfulloflife;someonewithoutchildrenprobablycouldn't
understandjusthowmuchthatsimplefactencouragedMoraandgaveherthe
strengthtofight.

Gunnerwasagoodhusband.Hedidn'thaveanyspecialpower,andbothhis
intelligenceandcouragewereordinary.However,hewasanhonestpersonwho
displayedalotoftenderaffection.HeprotectedtheirhouseinMora'splaceand
onoccasionevenassistedherwithherdutyasleaderofthetemples.Ifhe
weren'twithhertherewasprobablynowayshecouldtolerateherexhausting
work.

"Mother,swingmemore,swingmemore."

17

Chapter 11

MoraswungherdaughterinalargecircleandShenierareleasedahighpitched
screaminjoy.AtthatmomenttheapproachingbattlewithTheMajincompletely
vanishedfromhermind.

TherewasonlyonethingthatwasirreplaceabletoMora.Itwasn'therpositionor
herpower.Itwasherloveforherdaughterandherhusband.Otherthanthem,
therewasnothingimportanttoher.

Thatwasthreeyearsago,duringthedayswhentheworldwasstillatpeace.

InfrontofthesmalltemplethatcontrolledtheIllusionFogBarrier,AdletMaia
wasatalossforwords.Hiscompanionswerenodifferent,onceagainsilentand
unabletospeak.Theywereallstaringatthegirlinfrontofthembythenameof
RoloniaManchetta.

"Um,whyaretheresevenpeoplehere?"

Unawareofthesituation,Rolonialookedaroundatthecompanionsandcraned
hernecktotheside.

"Thiscan'tbehappening.Ineverthoughttheywouldcomelikethis,"Fremy
muttered.

18

Chapter 11

"It'simpossible.Whatdoesitmean?Whydiditincreaseagain?"Moraasked,
clutchingherheadinfrustration.

"Uh,umm...What'sincreased?"RoloniahesitantlylookedtoAdletandMora's
faces.ThenthenextmomentshefinallynoticedAdlet'sinjuries.

"Adkun,whathappenedtoyou?Didyouhavetofightafterall?Wait,I'llheal
you."

RoloniatriedtoplaceherhandsontoAdlet'sbody,butAdletstoppedher.This
wasnotthetimetoreceivetreatment.

Helookedoverathiscompanions.Therewereavarietyofreactions:fromsome
atalossforwordsduetoshockandothersstaringatRoloniawithalookof
impatienceandfrustration.SoAdletwasunabletofigureoutwhowasthe
seventhjustfromtheirfaces.

"Whatdoyouthinkeveryone?"Adletasked.

"There'sonlyonewaytothinkaboutit.We'rebackwherewestarted,"Fremy
answeredinanirritatedtone.

"Arewetrappedagain?Whenwillwebeabletogetoutofthisforest?"

19

Chapter 11

Unabletounderstandwhatwasgoingon,Roloniawascompletelyflustered.She
exchangedglanceswithAdletandMora,andthensuddenlyloweredherhead.

"...Um...I'm,I'msorry!"

"Rolonia,whatareyouapologizingfor?"Moraasked.

"Um...IfIhadn'tbeenlate...Iwouldn'thavecausedsomuchtroublefor
everyone...I'msorry,I'msosorry."

Overandoveragain,Roloniabowedherhead.

Shehasn'tchangedatall,Adletthoughtashelookedather.

"Thisisn'tyourfault.Probably.Liftupyourhead,"Adletsaidandstillshrunkenin
fearRolonialookedaroundattheothers.

"Wellthen,whoisthisperson,meow?"Hansasked.

However,insteadofRolonia,Morareplied."She'sexactlywhoshesaidshewas
earlier.ThisisRoloniaManchetta,TheSaintofFreshBlood.Shelivedatthehead
templewithmefortwoandahalfyears.Andthoughshedoesn'tlookreliable,
herabilitiesareunquestioned."

20

Chapter 11

"Tha...thankyouverymuch,"Roloniasaid,honestlygratefulforthepraise.

"Sheseemsweak,"Hanssaidwhilescratchinghishead.

"Herabilitiesareunquestioned?That'sunlikely.Roloniawasinfamousforbeinga
dimwittedfool,"Chamosaid,makingRoloniashrinkdownintoherselfevenmore.

"Whethershe'sstrongornotisn'timportant.Theissueisifsheisanenemyoran
ally."Fremy'sfingerwasalreadyonherrifle'strigger.Andlookingathereye,it
seemedlikeshewasstaringatanenemy.

"Um...I'm...I'msorry.IwasatfaultandIregretit.Soplease,pleaseforgiveme."

Roloniacontinuedtobowherheadprofusely.Sighing,Adletspoketohisagitated
companions,whoseemedreadytomurderher.

"...Fornow,let'sallintroduceourselves!"

AdletandtheotherseachintroducedthemselvestoRoloniaandshowedhertheir
crests.

Adlet,Mora,andChamowerealreadyacquaintedwithRolonia.Andthough
GoldofandRoloniahadnevermetbefore,theybothseemedtoknoweach
other'snames.Fremy,however,didn'ttalkabouthowshewasthedaughterofa

21

Chapter 11

KyomaortheSixFlowerkiller,shejuststatedhernameandthatshewasthe
SaintofGunpowder.AndHanscalledhimselfanassassin,whichshockedRolonia
alot.

Afterhearingeveryone'snamesandseeingtheircrests,Roloniafinallygrasped
theirpredicament.

"Therearesevenheroes?Whatdoesthismean?"

Astounded,Fremyasked."Areyoureallysayingyoucan'tunderstandifwedon't
explainit?"

"...Sorry."

"Oneofusisanimpostor.AndI'mthinkingthatpersonmustbeyou,"Fremy
stated,herintenttokillRoloniaemanatingfromherbody.

Inresponse,Roloniashriekedlikeasmallanimalandshrankaway.However,
Adletsteppedinbetweenthetwoofthembeforethingscouldescalate.

"WaitFremy.Thathasn'tbeendeterminedyet."

"Sureithasn'tbeendetermined,butIcan'tthinkofanyotherpossibility.Ifsheis
notthesevenththenwhoisshe?"

22

Chapter 11

AdlethesitatedandasheprotectedRolonia,herecalledthefightwith
Nashetania.

ItwasunlikelythatitwasFremy.Ifshehadn'tbeenthere,Adletwouldbedead.
AndbothHansandChamowerealsounlikelysincetheyhadchasedafter
Nashetania.ThoughitwastrueMoraincitedtheotherstokillhim,itwashardto
imaginethatshehadn'tbeentrickedbyNashetaniaaswell.AndthoughGoldof
wasNashetania'ssubordinateanditwasexpectedthathewouldbesuspicious,as
farasAdletcouldtellfromthesituation,itseemedlikehetoohadbeendeceived
byher.

"Thereisn'tanyoneelsewhocouldbetheseventh,"FremydeclaredandHans
andChamoseemedtoagree

"Wait,somethingdoesn'tmakesense.IfRoloniaisthesevenththenwhydidn't
shecomewithNashetania?What'sthepointinmakingNashetaniacomealone?"

"Nashetania...itcan'tbe,didsomethinghappenwiththeprincesssama?"Rolonia
asked.

Unfortunatelytheyweren'tabletoexplain.

"Maybetheyhadactuallyplannedtocometogether,meow.Maybetherewas
somesituationthatpreventedthemfrommeetingup."

23

Chapter 11

"Whatkindofsituation?"

"Idon'tknowanythingaboutenemymatters."Hanssmiledandshrugged.

"...Adlet,standaside.You'reindanger."FremyaimedhergunatRolonia.
However,AdletshieldedRoloniawithhisback.

"Fremyloweryourgun.Roloniaisnottheseventh,"Morasaid,causingFremyto
lookoverinherdirection."Isaiditbefore,butIwasattheHeadTempleforalong
timewithRolonia.Sheisapersonwhocouldn'tdeceiveanyone."

"Didn'tyouthinkNashetaniawasthesamekindofperson?"

"Roloniahasn'tdisplayedanysuspiciousbehavioratall.It'sunlikelyshehad
contactwiththeKyomaortheirunderlings."

MorasteppedforwardandplacedherbodyinfrontofFremy'smuzzle.Itwasasif
sheweresaying,"Ifyou'regoingtoshoot,thenshoot."

"Meow.Don'tyouunderstandMora'sposition?Sheisthenextmostsuspicious
personafterRolonia."MorawincedatHans'words.

"Mybeingsuspectedcan'tbehelped.ButRoloniaisabsolutelygenuine."

24

Chapter 11

AsAdletgroundhisteethhecontinuedtoshieldRoloniawithhisback."Enough
already.Isn'tthisjustarepeatofthesituationbefore?"

"Thereisanenemyamongus.Untilwefindthemwecan'tmoveforward,"Fremy
repliedandthetwoofthemglaredatoneanother.

ThenChamoturnedawayandlookedoffinanotherdirection."Someone's
coming."

Fromthedirectionofthecontinenttheycouldhearthesoundsofhorsehooves.A
groupofcavalrycladinmagnificentblackarmorwererushingtowardsthe
temple.

"Iwonderifthey'reenemies."Fremypointedherrifleintheirdirection.

"No,that'sGwinvale'sking,meow,"Hansreplied.Gwinvalewasthecountry
borderingtheWailingDemonTerritory.

"Roloniadono!5Gravenews!AretheHeroesoftheSixFlowersstill
there?!"Shoutedanelderlymanattheheadofthegroup.Perhapshewasthe
kingofGwinvaleandthemanbehindtheIllusionFogBarrier.Gwinvale'skingand
agroupofknightssoonarrivedinfrontofthetemple.Theythendismounted,
tookofftheirhelmetsandrespectfullybowed.

5
Dono can be thought of as a polite honorific similar to -sama/master/milord. It is only used in written
Japanese nowadays.

25

Chapter 11

"IamthekingofGwinvale,Doltonthethird.Andalsopresentaretheroyalguard.
WeheardabouttheunusualeventwiththeIllusionFogBarrieranditisour
intentiontodevoteallofourenergytohelpingyou.6

Themanpreservedhismajesticdemeanorwithoutdroppingdecorum.Surelyhe
wasadignifiedruler,Adletthought.

Astherepresentativeoftheseven,Moradealtwiththekingandhisguards."Iam
oneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers,MoraChester,theSaintofMountains.We'd
begreatlyobligedtoreceivetheking'sassistance.Incidentally,didsomething
seriousoccur?"

"IcametoreportthattheKyomascatteredaboutmykingdomareassembling
theirforcesandfacingthisforest.Ifearitseemsliketheywillcomeheretoattack
inseveralhours."

Attheking'sdeclaration,awaveoftensionrushedthroughtheheroes.They
didn'tknowhowmanyKyomawereinthecontinent,butitshouldn'tbelessthan
2,000ataminimum.Andifthatforcecametoattackthemitwaspossiblethat
theywouldallbewipedout.

Wehadbeencareless,Adletthoughtashegrittedhisteeth.OriginallyTheIllusion
FogBarrierwasmeanttotraptheKyomainthemaincontinent.Butnowthatthe
barrierhadbeendissolvedtheKyomawouldsurgeintotheWailingDemon
Territory.

26

Chapter 11

"Maybeitwouldbebettertowithdrawtemporarily."

"Runningisnogood.Chamoisn'tafraidoftheseventhorwhatever,"Chamo
retortedtoFremy.

"But,but...wedon'tknowwhotheenemyis.SoifwefighttheKyoma..."

"Rolonia,it'sjustlikeChamosaid.Wearenotabletoretreat,"Morasaid,
admonishingthefrightenedRolonia.

"IfIhadtosay,itseemsmorefuntoadvancethisway,meow."

"Whatdoyoumeanbyfun?"Moraasked.

"Isn'titmorefunwhenthere'salotofdanger?"Hansaskedwithabroadgrin.

ThekingofGwinvaleandhissubordinatesstaredinbewildermentastheheroes
battedideasbackandforth.Theytoowereperplexedbytheexistenceofthe
seventh.

"It'sdangeroustocontinue.Theseventhiswithoutadoubtpreparingtheirnext
trap."

27

Chapter 11

Thesevencontinuedtheirdebatewithoutpayinganyattentiontothekingof
Gwinvaleandhissubordinates.

"Whatshouldwedo,meow?Perhapsretreatingmaybemoredangerous,meow."

"Whatdoyoumean?"

"MaybeRoloniaanticipatedthatwewouldretreatandisluringusintoatrap,
meow?However,thatwouldbemorefunforme,meow."

MorainterjectedintoHansandFremy'sargument."IsaidearlierthatRolonia
absolutelyisn'ttheenemy."

"BequietMora.Wereallycan'ttrustyoueither."

"Waitaminute.Chamocan'ttrustFremyeither.SheisaKyomaafterall."
Chamo'soutingofFremy'sidentityseemedtomakeherslightlyangry.

"Enoughalready!"Adletshouted."Arguingwillgetusnowhere!"

Everyone'seyeswenttoAdlet."Noonetrustsanyone,sonomatterwhatwetalk
aboutweprobablywon'tbeabletosettleanything."

28

Chapter 11

"...Wellthen,whatshouldwedoAdlet?"

"Iwilldecideeverything.AndyouallwilldoasIsaywithoutanyobjections."

Itwasanarrogantproposalandundernormalcircumstancesthatstatement
wouldinvitebacklash.ButatthemomentAdletthoughtthatwastheonlything
hecoulddo.

"Rightnowtheonlyonewhocandefinitivelysaythattheyarenottheseventhis
me.SodoingwhatIsayisprobablythemostlogicalcourseofaction."

Hans,Chamo,andthenFremymadefacesclearlyshowingtheirdissatisfaction.

"Thatmaybethemostlogical,butI'mreallyuncomfortablewithit,meow."

"Haveyouforgotten?I'mthestrongestmanintheworld.Doyouthinkthereare
mistakeswiththedecisionsoftheworldsstrongest?"

"Ithinkso."

"Yup."

FremyandChamobothrepliedimmediately.

29

Chapter 11

"However,atthemomentIthinkthatistheonlythingwecando.JustasAdlet
said,wewon'tbeabletosettleanythinglikethis,"Morasaid.

AsforRolonia,thoughshedidn'tvoiceanopinion,sheseemedtoobjecttothe
idea.

"Well,Iguessitcan'tbehelped.Thisguyisafool,buthe'snotahopelessone,"
Hansconceded.

"Putabitmoretrustinme.Iamthestrongestmanintheworld."

"Meow,yeah,yeah,"Hanssaid,nottakingAdlet'sstatementseriously.

Inanycase,Adlethadtodecidewhethertoadvanceortoretreat.

"Mora.Iwanttoaskyousomethingfirst.IstheresomeoneamongtheSaintswho
hasthepowertofindtheseventh?"

Thepersonwhorepliedwasn'tMora,butFremy."I'veheardofMarmannathe
SaintofWords.Shecanseepastliesandhasthepowertomakepeopletellthe
truth."

Certainlywiththatpowertheycouldfigureoutwhotheseventhwas.ButMora
shookherhead.

30

Chapter 11

"That'snogood.MarmannaisattheHeadTemple.Nomatterhowhardyourush,
itwouldtakesevendaystogetthere."

Inthatcaseitwasnogood.Eveniftheywereabletomaketheroundtripinten
days,theywouldstillrunoutoftimetodefeattheMajin.Plustherewasno
guaranteethatthepersonwhowastheSaintofWordswasevensafeatthe
moment.

"IamAdletMaia,thestrongestmanintheworld.KingofGwinvale,Idon'tthink
youunderstandthecircumstances,butIaskthatyougoalongwithwhatI'm
goingtosay.Fromnow,howmuchtimewouldittaketoreactivatetheIllusion
FogBarrier?"

"We'vepreparedfoodandwatersothatwecouldholdthisposition,soitmaybe
possibletodoitsoon."

"Wellthen,pleaseactivatethebarrier30minutesfromnow.Anduntilwedefeat
TheMajin,I'dlikeyoutokeepthebarrierup.Canyoudothat?"

"ThebarrierisdesignedtoautomaticallylowerwhenyoudefeatTheMajin.Until
then,nomatterwhathappensthebarrierwon'tdeactivate."

Adletnoddedandlookedathiscompanions."WewillbreakintotheWailing
DemonTerritory.Isthatalrightwitheveryone?"

31

Chapter 11

ThoughFremyhadindicateditwouldbedifficulttoproceed,itdidn'tseemlike
shewouldvoiceanobjectiontohisidea.Roloniaseemedthesameway.

"There'sachancetheenemyisassemblingitsmilitarymightattheentranceto
TheWailingDemonTerritory.Don'tgetcareless.Let'sgo!"

Theseventhenstartedtorun.WhichwaswhenRoloniadrewclosetoAdlet'sside
andsaid,"Adkun,grabmyshoulder."

"I'mfine.Ifit'sjustrunning,Icandoit."

Afterhisresponse,Roloniaplacedherhandonhisshoulder.Thenherhand
startedtoglowfaintlyandatthesametimeAdlet'sbodybegantowarm.

"IcantreatyouwhileI'mrunning.IamtheSaintofFreshBlood.Healingwounds
ismyspecialty."

"Gotit.Well,I'llleaveittoyou."

"Adkun,whatintheworldhappened?Ihaveabsolutelynoidea."

Samehere,Adletthought.

32

Chapter 11

Thesevenrushedintotheforestandranalongthecoastline.Thentheystartedto
smellafaintstrangescentcomingfromtheground,signalingtheirarrivalinthe
WailingDemonTerritory.Andafterawhiletheysawagiantmassoffogappear
behindthem.

ThefogmeantthattheirpathofretreatwasgoneanduntiltheydefeatedThe
Majintheywouldn'tbeabletoleavetheterritory.Butthat'sgood,Adletthought.
Thebattlewasonetheyweren'tallowedtolose.Itwasbettertorejectanyideas
ofescape.

33

Chapter 12

ChapterOne:PartTwo

ApeninsulaextendedoutfromapartoftheeasternedgeofTheWailingDemon
Territorytowardsthenortheast.Asforitssize,anordinarypersonwould
probablytakeaboutfivedaystocrossitonfoot.Theterrainwasextremely
complex,andevennowthefulldetailsweren'tclear.Theonlyinformationthat
hadeverbeenpassedoncamefromtheSaintoftheSingleFlower'smemories
andtheincompletemapsdrawnbypastHeroesoftheSixFlowers.

Rumorssaythatitwascurrentlyimpossibletobringaboatashoretheterritory.
Theentirelongcoastwassurroundedbyshallowsandifoneweretoapproach,
theirboatwouldbeattackedbystoneblades.TheKyomahadspentalotoftime
changingthepeninsulaintoagiantstronghold,sootherthanapproachingbyland
orflyingthroughtheair,therewasnowaytoentertheWailingDemonTerritory.

TheintendeddestinationoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowerswastheplacewhere
TheMajinslept,atthenorthwestpointoftheterritory.TheSaintoftheSingle
FlowerhadnamedthatareatheHomeofSpilledTears.

AfterTheMajinawoketherewereabout30daysuntilitsrevivalcouldbefully
carriedout.Andiftheheroescouldn'tmanagetoreachthatpointbythattime
thentheworldwouldend.

Halfadayhadpassedsincetheycrossedoverintothepeninsula.Adletwas
leaningonRolonia'sshouldertohelphimstand.ThewoundwhereNashetania
hadstabbedhimstartedtohurtagainandhecouldtellthatbloodwasoozingout
ofhisstomach.

34

Chapter 12

"Adkun.I'lltreatyourstomach.Relaxforabit,"Roloniasaid,thentouched
Adlet'sstomach.ThepowerofbloodRoloniausedamplifiedthenaturalhealing
propertieswithinhisbloodandsoonhisbleedingstopped.

TheHeroeswereintheeasternareaoftheterritorycalledtheFallingBlood
Valley.ThevalleywascalledFallingBloodbecausewhentheSaintoftheSingle
FlowerfoughtTheMajinbefore,shehadbeensofatiguedthatshehadvomited
bloodinthevalley.

Theyhaventencounteredanyfightsfromtheforestupuntiltheyhadsetfootin
thevalley.Theydidn'tseeanyKyomawaitingtoambushthemalongthecoast
liketheyhadthought,andtheymanagedtoreachthevalleyfarquickerthanthey
hadimagined.

Thesevenwereonguardandcautiouslyadvancedthroughthecomplicated
terrainofthevalleystretchingoutinfrontofthem.Althoughtheywereprepared
foranattackfromtheKyomafromtheoutside,thecompanionswerealso
searchingforanyindicationofbetrayaloratrapwithinthevalley.Andsothey
walkedslowly.

Thevalleywaseerilyquiet.FremysnipeddownseveralKyomathatseemedtobe
onthelookout,butotherthanthosetheyhaventseenanyenemiessince.Fremy
andMorahadgoneaheadtoscoutthecurrentsituation,andtheremainingfive
werewaitingfortheirreturn.

"AreyoualrightRolonia?You'recompletelypale."

35

Chapter 12

"...I'm..al...al...alright."

AwhileagowhiletheywereprogressingthroughtheterritoryAdlethadtold
RoloniaabouttheirbattlewithNashetania.ForawhileRoloniacouldntbelieve
thatshehadbetrayedthem.AfterthatAdletalsotoldherhowFremywasthe
daughterofaKyomaandthatshewastheSixFlowerkiller.Thatwaswhen
Roloniahadgonepale.ShesaidshehadknownAsleytheSaintofIce,oneofthe
HerocandidateskilledbyFremy.

"IunderstandthatfightingalongsideFremyiscomplicated.Butfornowletitbe.
WereallcompanionsandIreallydontwantustofightamongourselves
anymore."

"...Ri,right."

"Adlet."Atthatmoment,Fremyreturned.

"Hie!"RoloniascreamedtheinstantFremyspoke.ButFremyseemedevenmore
shockedthanRoloniawas.

"...What'sthematterRolonia?"

"...Nothing,nothingatall.I'mfine."Roloniawasscared.Butitwasn'tjustof
Fremy,shewasalsoafraidoftheassassinHans,theviolentChamo,and

36

Chapter 12

Nashetania'sfollower.Theonlypeopleshecouldspeakhonestlywithwereher
oldfriendsAdletandMora.

Oneofthemwastheenemy.Andthoughitwasunderstandabletohavefear,to
betooafraidwasaproblem.

"...Ican'tseeanyKyoma.Sowe'refineatthemoment.SinceMoraisgoingahead,
let'sfollowandmeetupwithher."AfterthatFremyturnedherbackonAdletand
walkedaway,andthefivehadtoincreasetheirpacetofollowafterher.

SuddenlyacryechoedabovethevalleymakingRoloniatremblewithastart.But
whenAdletlookedupheonlysawadeercrossingthevalley.

TheWailingDemonTerritorysurprisinglyhadalotofanimals.Thepoisonthe
Majinemitteddidn'taffectanylivingcreaturesotherthanhumans,meaningthat
otherthantoeat,eventheKyomadidn'tattacktheanimals.

"It'sadeer.Ah,it'scute.ThoughChamo'spetsarecuter."Chamosmiled,butthe
onlyoneshockedwasRolonia.AndherbeingshockedbyadeermadeAdlet
worrywhethershecouldhandlewhatwasaheadofthem.

"Heycowgirl.AreyoureallyoneoftheSixFlowers,despitebeingsoweak?"
Chamoasked,idlytwirlingherfoxtailgrassinherhands.

"Um,well..."

37

Chapter 12

"Chamoknows.TheGoddessofFatemadesomekindofmistakeselectinga
dunceofaSaint.ChamocantbelieveyouwouldbechosenasaFlowerifthat
werentthecase.

"Um..."Roloniajuststareddownattheground."...Ivealsobeenthinking
that...per...perhapsI'mnotreallyoneoftheFlowers."

Whatareyousaying?Adletthought.

"Chamothinksyou'reirritating.Soifyou'retheseventhChamowantsyouto
confessrightaway.Ifyouapologizenow,Chamowon'tdoanythingbadtoyou."

"Hey,cutitout!"Adletshouted.

"...WhenthecrestappearedIdidn'tbelieveIwasoneoftheFlowers.Perhaps
selectingmewassomekindofmistake..."

"Wellthatsettlesit,huh?"

AdletwasabouttoshoutatChamowhenavoiceinfrontofthemspoke.

"IthinkRoloniaisstrong."ItwasFremy."IheardMorawascharmedbyherability
andgaveherspecialtrainingherself.WhenRoloniawasattheHeadTempleI
couldn'tmakeamoveagainstMora."

38

Chapter 12

"Well,perhapsshe'salittlestrong."

"Tha,thankyouverymuchFremysan."

"Youdon'thavetothankme.I'mstillsuspiciousofyou."

"...Um..."Roloniashrunkbackabit.

"MoreimportantlyIwanttohearmoreaboutyou.AllIknowfromyouisyour
identityastheSaintofFreshBloodandthatyouseemtobeaconsiderablystrong
person."

"That'sright.TalkRolonia,"Adleturged.

"IbecameaSainttwoandahalfyearsago.BeforethatIwasworkingasaservant.
Really,Ishouldhavequitthepositionsoon,butbyMorasan'scommandI
pursuedbecomingaHerooftheSixFlowers.AndsoattheHeadTempleMora
sanandWelynntheSaintofSaltinstructedmeonhowtofight."

"...TellusthedetailsofwhathappenedtoyouaftertheMajinwokeupuntilyou
metupwithus."

39

Chapter 12

"Oh,okay.Umm,whentheMajinawokeandIreceivedthecrest,Iwasatthe
TempleofFireinthekingdomoftheYellowFruit.Lenellesanand...ahLenellesan
theSaintofFireandIhadbeenstudyingtogether."

"Andthen?"

"Really,Ishouldhavearrivedmuchfaster,butonthewaysomeKyomaattacked
andtherewereinjuredpeopleaskingmetotreatthem.Iwonderedwhetherit
wouldbealrightifIwerelate,butIcouldn'trefuse...AndsoIwasdelayed.I'm
sorry."Roloniabowedherhead.

"HowaboutwhenyouarrivedattheIllusionFogBarrier?"Adletasked.

"Iarrivedattheforestyesterdayinthemiddleofthenight.Atthattimethe
barrierhadalreadybeenactivated.ThekingofGwinvalewasatatowerandhe
wastheonewhotoldmeaboutthebarrier.Healsosaidthathehadbeen
capturedbyunknownsoldiersandhadnoideaaboutthecurrentsituationorwhy
thebarrierhadbeenactivated."

"Andthenmorningcame,thefogclearedandyoumetupwithus?"

Rolonianoddedinagreement.

"Isthereanyonewhothinksthereissomethingoddaboutherstory?"Adlet
asked.

40

Chapter 12

"WereyoureallyattheTempleofFire?"Hansaskedinresponse.

"Let'sconfirmthatwithMoralater.Youdon'tthinkthereisanythingstrange
aboutwhatshesaidthough,right?"

"That'sright,meow."

AfterquietlylisteningtoRolonia'sexplanation,Chamoasked,"Hey,whydoyou
knowAdlet?"

RolonialookedatAdlet'swayandtheireyesmet.Thenhenodded,givinghera
signthatitwasokayforhertotalk.

"AdkunandImetabouttwoyearsago.DoyouknowAtroSpykersan?"

AsRoloniaspoke,Adletrecalledhispast.

Backthenhehadn'tevendreamedthathewouldseeRoloniaagain.Thefirsttime
theyhadmetshedidn'tseemanythinglikeagirlwhocouldbebroughtupasa
warriorthatwouldendupbeingselectedasoneoftheSixFlowers.

WhenAdletwasaroundtenhebecamethepupilofAtroSpyker,amanlivingin
isolationdeepinthemountains.

41

Chapter 12

AndforthenexteightyearsAdletabsorbedallthefightingtechniques,
knowledge,andmethodstocreatesecretweaponsthatAtrohadfiguredout.

ButAdletwasn'tAtro'sonlypupil.Manyyoungpeopleseekingtobeoneofthe
Flowersapprenticedunderhim.However,noneofthemcouldfollowAtro's
unusualtrainingandultimatelyleftthemountain,withonlyAdletremaining.

Otherthanpupils,Atrohadalsoreceivedrequestsfromeachcountry'selites,
renownedmercenaries,andSaintstoteachthemhisfightingskills.Theyappeared
bearinglettersofintroductionsfromnoblemenandmercenaryleaders,andthey
apprenticedunderAtroforashorttime,acquiringnewbattleskillsand
knowledge.ThoughAtrolivedhislifeasahermit,bynomeansdidthatmeanhe
hadseveredhistiestotheworld.

ItwasperhapsalittleovertwoyearsagowhenRoloniaManchestervisitedAtro's
home,holdingoneofthoselettersofintroduction.Shewasn'tanydifferentthan
howshewasnow.No,nowshewasevenmoretimid.

"Adlet."

Deepinthemountains,AdletwasfocusingsolelyonhisdartthrowingwhenAtro
suddenlyspoketohim.ButAdletcontinuedhistraining;itdidn'tmatterifhis
masterwerestandingbesidehimornot.Withrupturedblisters,tornflesh,and
blooddrippingdownhisfingers,hethrewthedarts.

42

Chapter 12

"ThisgirlisRoloniaManchester.SheistheSaintofFreshBlood.Forthenexttwo
monthsIwillbeteachingherabouttheKyoma'swayoflifeandhowtodealwith
them.Don'tbotherher."

AsAtrospokehepointedtoagirlstandingnearby.ButAdletdidn'tgreethernor
reply.Hispersonalityatthattimewasdifferentthanitwasnow.Hehadbeenfar
morebitterandstarvedforvengeance.Hecursedeverythingintheworldand
morethananythinghehatedhisownweakness.

"Justsayyourname,"Atrosaid.

WhilehidinginAtro'sshadow,RolonialookedatAdletwithafearfulgaze.

"I'mAdletMaia.EventuallyIwillbethestrongestmanintheworld,butrightnow
I'mnot.Don'ttalktome."

"Su...sure.I'msorry."

"MoveRolonia,"AtrosaidjustasAdletmoved.

HethrewadartatAtroandatthesametimedrewaknifeandslashedathim.To
thesideRoloniascreamedandsankdowntotheground.Atrodeflectedthedart
withasinglefinger,grabbedAdlet'swristandthrewhimdown.Butwithouta
moment'srest,thefallenAdletswunghisknifeatAtro'sankles.

43

Chapter 12

Yetjustbeforetheblademadecontact,Atromovedoutofthewayandkicked
Adletintheface,causingbloodtorushouthisnose.

"Are...areyoualrightAdletsan?"

"Didn'tIsaynottotalktome?"

Adletthentriedtostand,buthislegsgottangledunderhimself,preventinghim
fromgettingup.

"Don'tworrySaintofFreshBlood.He'llbegoneshortly."

"...Ah,umm..."

"Igavehiminstructions.Hecanusewhatevertactichewants,itdoesntmatter.
Butifhecan'tkillmebythetimehe's16thenhe'llbekickedoutfromthisplace.
He'sgotonemonthleft."

"...Ugh..."

AtrokickedAdletinthefaceandsaid,"Laugh."

44

Chapter 12

Adlettriedtomovehislips,buthecouldnolongersmile.Hunger,asenseof
powerlessness,anddespairhadevenstolenhissmilefromhim.

AtrofacedthefallenAdletandspatathim.

"Garbage."

AtrothenleftAdletontheground,takingRoloniawithhim.AndthenAdlet
poundedhisfiststothegroundandscreamed.

RoloniastayedatacottageAtrobuiltforvisitinggueststouse.Itwasaplace
whereonecouldseeminglylivealoneinthemountains.AtroandAdletonthe
otherhandlivedinacavelikebeasts.AtrowasconstantlyatRoloniasside,
teachingheraboutwhatheknewregardingtheKyoma,eatingwithher,and
takingpersonalcareofher.AndduringthosetimesAdletdidn'tinterfere.

ItseemedlikeeverydayAdletchallengedAtroatsomepointandthenlost.And
thoughhewasinjuredeachtime,throughsheerwillheforcedhimselfthrough
thepainandstoodbackup.

HeunderstoodthatAtrowouldnotgosoftonhim.Soifhecouldnotdefeathim
inonemonthhereallywouldbekickedout.

45

Chapter 12

Ontopofthat,Adletstillhadn'tlearnedeverythingfromAtro.Andifhewere
forcedtoleave,thepathtobecomingaHerooftheSixFlowerswouldbeclosed
tohim.

AsingleKyomaclungtoAdlet'smind.TheKyomawiththreewingssproutingout
fromitsbackandwalkedontwolegs.TheKyomawiththenarrowlizardfaceand
hadappearedwithagentlesmile.TheKyomawhodestroyedhisvillageandstole
hissisterandbestfriend.Hecouldn'tforgetabouthimforevenamoment.

TheonlythingrulingAdlet'smindwashatred.Hecouldn'tevenliveaslongashe
couldn'tkillthatKyomaorwatchitdie.

Rolonia'sexistencedidn'tevenoccupyacornerofhisheart.

Thenonenight,likealwaysAdletwasbeatenbyAtroandwassleepinginthecave
likealog.HefeltsomethingtouchhisbackandjumpedupjusttoseeRolonia
sittingbesidehimholdingalamp.

"Whatdidyoucomeherefor?!"Adletyelled,causingRoloniatofleetothecorner
ofthecave,trembling.

"A,A,A,MasterAtrotoldmetotreatyou..."

"Atrodid?"

46

Chapter 12

"I'm...theSaintofFreshBlood...SoIcanhealpeople'sinjuries."

"...Please."Adletsaidashelaydownontheground.

RoloniathenofferedaprayertotheGodofFreshBloodandborrowedtheir
power.AndwhensheplacedherhandstoAdlet'swoundstheyclosedupina
blinkofaneye.

"Humanbloodcontainsthepowertonaturallyhealwounds.Byamplifyingthat
powerIcanhealinjurieslikethis."

"ThepowersoftheSaintsareincredible,"Adletsaid.

Rolonia'scheeksreddenedhappily,justabit.

"...AreyoutryingtobecomeaHerooftheSixFlowers?"Adletasked.

"Huh?"

"DoIevenhavetoask?Thatistheobjectiveofallwarriors."

TohisclaimRoloniashookherhead."Um,thismightseemstrange,but..."

47

Chapter 12

"Whatisit?"

"I'mthinkingofgoingbackdownthemountain."

"DidsomethinghappenwithAtro?"

"No,that'snotit.Umm,I'vebeenthinkingIshouldgiveupontryingtobecome
oneoftheFlowers.Infact,IthinkitwouldbebetterifIquitbeingaSainttoo."

Adletwasshocked.Hehadlivedhislifeuntilnowinordertogetstronger.In
ordertogainpowerhehadthrownawayeverything.Toletgoofthepowerhe'd
gainedwassomethinghecouldn'teventhinkabout.

"But...butIcan'tbecomeaHerooftheSixFlowers.AndifbysomemistakeIwas
chosen,itwouldcausetroubleforeveryone.Sowouldn'titbebetterfortheSaint
ofFreshBloodtoquit..."

"Whyareyouhere?Don'tyouwanttogetstrong?"

"Ummwell..."

"Explain!"Adlet'svoicewasfullofanger.

48

Chapter 12

Nervously,Roloniatriedtoexplain.

Inthebeginning,Roloniawasn'tanacolyteseekingtobecomeaSaint.Actually,
shewasaservantattheTempleofFreshBloodwhowashedtheclothesofthe
acolytes.

FivemonthsagothepreviousSaintofFreshBloodretired,andaceremonywas
heldtoselectthenewSaint.Butthepersonchosenwasn'toneoftheacolytes
thatattendedtheceremony,butRoloniawhowasdryinglaundryinthegarden.

"Issuchathingpossible?"Adlethadaskedherwhilesherecountedherstory.

"TheSaintischosenbythegods...andnobodyknowswhatthegodsarethinking."

RoloniasoontriedtoquitbeingaSaint.ThepreviousSaintandacolytesthought
thatwastobeexpected.However,shewasthenorderedbytheHeadofthe
TempleswhosupervisedtheSaints.SoRoloniacontinuedtobetheSaintofFresh
Blood.AndwiththegoalofbecomingoneoftheSixFlowers,sheunderwent
battletraining.ShemovedtotheHeadTempleandthereshereceivedintensive
traininginordertobecomeagreatSaint.

"TheTempleHeadsaidIwouldbecomeanextremelypowerfulSaint,butthatis
impossible...andnomatterhowmanyyearsItrain,itlljustbeabignuisance
whensherealizesthatIveremainedthesameweakgirlIvealwaysbeen.

49

Chapter 12

AsAdletlistenedtoRolonia,hatredbubbledoutfromhisheart.

"...I...IwishIhadbeenbornfemale...IfIhadbeenbornagirlthenIcouldbecome
aSaint."

"Huh?"

"IfIbecameaSaint,Iwouldgetstronger.Iwouldacquirethepowertokillhim.
ButIwasbornaboy."Adletsmashedhisfistintotheground."Stopscrewing
around!"

"Ah,uhh..."

"Whydidsomeonelikeyoureceivepower?Whynotme?Whywasityou?"Adlet
grabbedRoloniabythecollarandshookher."Iwantpower.Iwantpower!Iwant
thepowertokillhim!Idon'tcarewhatIhavetoexchangetogetit,Ijustwantthe
powertokillhim."

Everydayashethrewupblood,herealizedtherealitythathedidn'thavepower.
Andeverynightashecursedhisownweaknessandsleptlikealog,herepeated
overandoveragainwithinhisheart,Iwantpower,Iwantpower.

AndnowRoloniawastryingtothrowawaysomethingwhichAdletcouldnever
receive,nomatterhowmuchhewishedforit.Andthatwassomethinghecould
notforgive.

50

Chapter 12

"Handoverthepower!Giveittome!"

"...I...Ican't.Itisanextremelydifficultskilltogivepowertoanotherperson."

"Shutup!Giveittome!Givemethatpower!"

"Ican't!ItwouldbeimpossibleforeventheHeadoftheTemples,orevenLeura
sama.Someonelikemecouldn't..."

"Whycan'tyoudoit!?Giveittome!Someonegivemepower!Ijustwantto
becomestrong!"

AdletreleasedRolonia,threwhimselfflatdownontothegroundandstartedto
cry.

"...I'm...I'msorry.Ididn'tmean..."

EvenRoloniastartedtocrybesidethesobbingAdlet.

Inthecavethetwoofthemcontinuedtocrythroughoutthenight;thegirlwho
hadreceivedpowerandtheboywhocouldn't.

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Chapter 12

ArounddawnAdletapologizedtoRolonia.Hewasn'ttheonlypersoninpain,but
itwasanobvioustruthwhichhehadforgottenforalongtime.

RoloniaalsoapologizedtoAdlet.Shehadsaidsomecruelthingswithout
understandinghowAdletfelt.

Andafterthatthetwoofthembecamefriends.Forjusttwomonthstheyonly
hadanephemeralrelationship.Itwasarelationshipthatshouldhavebeen
forgottenastimepassed.However,RoloniawasoneofthefewfriendsAdlethad
beenabletomake.

"...Andthat'swhathappened."

RoloniaomittedalargeamountofAdlet'spastandinhisheart,Adletthanked
Rolonia.Hefeltbothashamedanddepressedwhenhethoughtbacktothattime.

"Wasn'tMorathepersonwhomadeyouapprenticeunderAtro?Ididn'tknow
sheknewAtro,"Adletsaid.

"Itdoesn'tseemliketheyknewoneanother.Atrowasjustveryfamous."

Somethingseemsstrangeaboutthat.Iwonderifthereisaconnectionbetween
them,Adletthought.

52

Chapter 12

"Meohihihi,itseemslikeyoutwogotawfullycloseintwomonths,meow.Adlet,
youdidn'tpretendtobeanunsociablepersonthenhavesexwithher?"

"Shutup!"AdletpushedHansaway,whileFremywatchedthetwoofthemwitha
coldstare.ItwasatthatmomentthatMorareturned.

"What'sup,Mora?"

"Icouldn'tseeanyKyoma.Thevalleyiscompletelydeserted."

Adletdidn'tentertainanydoubtsaboutherwords.Itwasclearthattherewereno
Kyomainthevalley.Adletwasn'tawareofanythinghiddenbeneathherwords.

Abouttenminutespriortoherreturn,Morasurveyedhersurroundingswhile
walkingthroughthevalley.ThoughitwastruethatalotofKyomacouldn'tlurkin
thevalley'scomplicatedterrain,theareawasidealforambushes.SoMora
watchedherbackandtheskyaboveherassheadvanced.

AtthatmomentMorasawasingleKyomaatopacliff.Itwasarelativelysmall
one,intheshapeofamonkey.

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Chapter 12

ButthemomentMoramadeafistandpreparedtoattack,theKyomathrewits
bodyacrosstheairandlandeddirectlyinfrontofher.Thenitlowereditsheadin
submissionandstartedtoapproachheronallfours.

"Whatthe...?"MoramutteredasshelookeddownattheKyoma'sback.
Charactershadbeenwritteninblackinkonitsflesh

[Thisisawarning,Mora.Youareoutoftime.]

ForawhileMorajuststaredatthemonkeyKyoma,bowinginsubmissiontoher.
ThenMoraresolutelystompedontheKyoma'sback.Itdiedwithasinglestrike.It
hadbeenalowlevelKyomaandwascompletelyinconsequential.

ButMorastompedontheKyoma'sbackagainandagainuntilshecouldnolonger
readthecharactersthathadbeenwrittenthere.

"Youareoutoftime...thatmustmean...,"Moramuttered.

ThenleavingthesingleKyomacorpse,Moraleftthearea.

"Youdidn'tencounterasingleKyoma?....Thatisactuallyscary,"Adletsaid.

54

Chapter 12

"Theseventhhasn'tdoneanything.Thatskindofaletdown,"Chamoreplied.

Thatwasexactlyright.Adlethadthoughtthatthenexttrapwouldbewaitingfor
themassoonastheyenteredtheWailingDemonTerritory,orthattheseventh
mightseizetheopportunityandcometoattackthem.Butthecurrentsituation
wastoopeaceful.

"Maybeit'snotthattheyhaven'tcometodoanything,butthattheycouldn'tdo
anything,meow."Hanssuggested.

"Whatdoyoumean?"

"Wellsinceweenteredtheterritory,Fremyhasbeenstaringatuslikeshewants
tokillus.Sheintendstoimmediatelyshootusdeadifwedosomethingevena
littlebitstrange."

AdletlookedoveratFremy,butshedidn'tdenyHans'claim.

"I'vebeenafraidforawhilenow.She'safrighteningwoman."Thenasifenjoying
himself,Hanslaughed.

"Mora,what'supahead?"

55

Chapter 12

"Aboutfifteenminutesaheadyoucanseeaknoll.1Thereisamountainbeyond
that.Withoutadoubt,itlookslikethemountaincalled,TheEternalFlower"

AfterhearingthatAdletcheckedhismentalmapofthearea.Itseemedlikethey
weren'tlostandwereadvancingpreciselyalongtheroutetheyhadplannedout.

IfAdlet'smentalmapwerecorrect,theninthemountainwasarelicleftbehind
bytheSaintoftheSingleFlower.TheregioncalledTheEternalFlowerwasa
valuablesafezone.Atnoontheywouldrestthereforamoment,thenthey
intendedtocontinuedeeperintotheterritory.

"Ihaveasuggestion.Afterwegetoutoftheopen,let'srest,"Fremysaid.

"It'sstillnotnecessary.I'dliketocontinuetothemountain...toTheEternal
Flower,whileit'sstillearly.ButassoonasAdletsaidthat,Fremyshookherhead.

"IhavesomethingIwanttotalktoyouabout.Assoonaspossible.Itwillbealong
conversationandit'sserious,soIwantustosettledownandtalkitthrough
thoroughly."

"Aboutwhat?"

1
asmall,roundedhill

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Chapter 12

"AbouttheinnerworkingsoftheKyoma,"Fremysaid,causingeveryonetotense
up.

"SurelyshewantstotalkaboutthethreeKyomaleadersthatcommandallthe
Kyoma,"Morasaid.

ShehadforgottenaboutthefightwithNashetaniaorRolonia'sappearance.As
Fremysaid,talkingabouttheKyomaleaderswasoftheutmostimportance.

"Wouldn'titbegoodtotalkatTheEternalFlower?It'snotsofarfromtheknoll."

"IfIweretheenemyIwouldpositionmymilitaryforcearoundthatarea.It
doesn'tlooklikewewillbeabletotalkfreelythere,"Fremysaid.

"Thatmightbeso.Andsincethereisnoindicationthattheywilllaunchan
ambushinanopenarea,let'shearyououtattheKnoll."

"Ifthatistheplan,thenlet'sgoquickly."

Hanswalkedfirst,followedbyChamoandMora.ThenGoldofcameafterthem
withapowerlessgait.

ButwhenAdletstartedtowalk,Fremygrabbedhissleeve.

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Chapter 12

"What'swrong?"

"...Doyoufeelit?"

"What?"

"He'shere.TheKyoma,"Fremysaidandlookeduptothesky.

AtthatmomentthesilhouetteoftheKyomahewouldneverforgetappearedin
hismind.

TheKyomathatdestroyedhishometownwhiletalkinggentlytothevillagersand
showingabewitchingsmile.TheKyomathathadtakenhissister,hisbestfriend,
andeverythingfromhim.

Adlet'sheartwasracingandarushoftensionranuphisback.Itwasn'tthathe
feltdeathintheair,northathesenseddanger.Neverthelesssweatstartedto
appearonhisforehead.Hecouldn'texplainthefeelingwithreason,butwhatever
itwasitgothimextremelyworkedup.

"Isensehispresence.Idon'tknowwhereitis,butheissurelyhere.Iwouldnever
forgetit.Thefeelingofthatexistencecoilsaboutmyskin."

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Chapter 12

AdletrecalledwhatFremyhadtalkedaboutthenightbeforeyesterday.She
talkedabouttheonewhohadorderedotherKyomatohurtherinthepast.One
ofthethreeleadersoftheKyomaandthesameKyomathathaddestroyedAdlet's
hometown.
Adlet'ssoulwastellinghimthattheonehewassensingwasthatKyoma.

"Let'sgo.Isaidearlierthatthiswouldbealongconversation."

"CanIaskyouonethingfornow?WhatisthatKyoma'sname?"

Fremylookeduptotheskyandansweredquietly,"Tgurneu..."2

2
TheJapanesepronouncesthenameTeguneu

59

Chapter 13

ChapterOne:PartThree

"Hey,whatdoyouthinkisthestrongestpowerthatexistsinthisworld?"
SomeonewhisperedataboutthesametimeAdletheardTgurneusname."Ifyou
completely,completely,completelythinkitthroughyoullrealizethatitslove
afterall,"saidaKyoma.

TheKyomahadtwoarmsandtwolegs,anditsheightwasalittleovertwo
meters.Comparatively,itcouldprobablybeclassifiedasasmallKyoma.

Thegreenscalesandcolorofitstrunkweremadeofamottledpattern.Itsarms
andlegshadwhitefeathersonthem.However,onjustitspalmsithadthedamp
skinofanamphibian.Italsohadthreegiantbirdwingsextendingfromitsback.
Butstrangely,betweentwoblackwingswasasinglewhite,swanlikeone.Andin
itschestithadalargeamphibianlikemouth.

TheKyomasstrangefigurewaslikeadisorderlyjumbleofvariousanimals.Andits
headwasextremelylongandnarrow,resemblingalizard.

AtthemomenttheKyomawassittingonasmallwoodenchair.

"...Ireallydontgetit."

"Isee."

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Chapter 13

TheKyomawasholdingasinglebookinitshand.Itwasaplainbook,clothbound
anddecoratedwithgoldenthread.Insidewasacollectionofscriptswrittenby
wellknowndramaplaywrights.Withitsfinger,theKyomaturnedthepage.

"OhPrinceVeezell!Ivebeencursedbyyou!Ohthebeautyandbluenessofyour
eyes!Boththemotherandfatherthatgaveyouthoseeyesandmyownselfwho
appearsreflectedinthoseeyeshavebeencursed."

TheKyomawasreadingthescriptofaplaywhereinordertopoisonthekingof
anenemykingdom,asecretagenthadtosneakintothekingdombutinthe
processfellinlovewiththatkingdomsprince.

"Whydoyouthinktheprotagonistshoutedthis,whenalittlewhileagoher
mouthhadbeenspeakingaboutlove?Iknowit'snothingmorethanalistingof
words,butithaspresentedmewithaneternalmystery.Thepowerofloveistruly
frightening."

"...Withallduerespect,youshouldstopplayingaround.TheHeroesoftheSix
Flowersaredrawingcloser."

"Hahaha,thatisright.Weshouldpartfromtheillusionsofloveforthetimebeing
andfacetheloveofreality."

TheKyomasetdownthebookthenpickedupabigfigfromonthetable.

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Chapter 13

"Before,TheMajinlostduetotheloveoftheSaintoftheSingleFlower."

TheKyomabitthefig,chewedit,andthenswallowed.

"WehavelosttotheHeroesoftheSixFlowerstwice.Bothtimestheirpowerhad
beensupportedbylove.Butthethirdbattlewillbedifferentfrombefore."

TheKyomastood.

"Thistimelovewillbethecauseoftheirdefeat."

Lookingup,theKyoma...Tgurneulaughedsilently.

15minuteslaterAdletandtheothersmanagedtoreachthesummitoftheknoll.

AsMorahadsaid,therewasnoindicationthattheywouldbeambushedthere.
Andevenifanenemyappeared,theheroeswouldbeabletoprepareforany
ambusheswhiletheywereclimbinguptheknoll.Butfromtheirpositiontheysaw
nosignsofanyKyomainthesurroundingvalleyorthesky.

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Chapter 13

Exhalinginrelief,Adletloweredtheironboxfromhisback.Hethentookoffhis
leatherarmorandlookedathiswound.WithMorasmedicineandRolonias
treatment,thewoundwasnearlyclosedup.Itwouldprobablybecompletely
healedbynightfall.

"What,youreexhaustedeventhoughyouhaven'tdoneanything,meow?"Hans
asked.

AdletagreedwithHans'sentiment.Hewasn'tjustbeingcautiousaboutasurprise
attack;variousotherconcernsalsoweigheddownonhismind.
TheKyomathatstillhaventshownthemselves.
Theexistenceoftheseventhwhomtheycouldn'tdetermine.
Andthoseweren'ttheonlythings.
Fremylookedlikeshewasabouttokillsomeone.
Hedidn'tknowwhenChamomightbecomeviolent.
AndRoloniawasalwaysconfusedandfrightened.

Thereweremanyelementsabouthiscompanionsthatmadehimuneasy.But
aboveall,hisbiggestconcernwastheknight.

"...Areyoualright,Goldof?"Adletasked,butGoldofsimplysatdownwithout
answeringatall.Hiseyeslookedvacant,hislipshadbeendrawntight,andhis
expressionwasblank.

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Chapter 13

EversinceRoloniasappearanceandtheiradvancethroughtheWailingDemon
Territory,hehasntspokenasingleword.Heonlylookeduptotheskyasifhis
heartwerentinhim.

Itwasunderstandable.Ontopofbeingbetrayedandsneeredatbytheprincess
heloved,hehadbeenabandoned.ItwasafeelingAdletsympathizedwithalltoo
well.Andsosincenotevenadayhadpassed,iftheytoldhimtopullhimself
togetheritwouldlikelybeimpossible.

Thoughhewascelebratedasaprodigyoftheknights,hewasstillsixteen.

"Goldof,itmightbeaskingtoomuch,buttrytoputherbehindyou,"Adletsaidto
Goldof,buthedidntrespond.Itwasasifhisvoicedidntevenreachhisears.

"Youllquicklyforgetaboutthatkindofwoman,meow.Youhavegoodlooksso
womenwillcometoyouevenifyousaynothing."

GoldofdidntsayawordbacktoHans.

"HaveyoubeeninlovewithNashetaniaallthistime?"

"Wellapartfromwhatsheslikeontheinside,shedoeshaveaniceface,meow.
AndasfarasIcouldsee,shealsohadconsiderablebreasts."

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Chapter 13

"...Thatsnotthepoint."Adletsighed.Thensilentlyhetookoutadartfroma
pouchonhiswaistandwithoutmakingasoundhethrewitatGoldofsface.

Withoutlookinguporseeingthedartatall,Goldofcaughttheprojectilewithtwo
fingers,andthenthrewitbacktoAdlet.

"Eventhoughhisheartisbroken,itdoesntseemlikehehaslosthisfighting
ability.Hesquitethewarrior,"Adletsaidwithasmile,butGoldofsfaceremained
completelyblank.

MorathenbeckonedAdletoverwithherhandandAdletwalkedovertohear
whatshehadtosay.

"Adlet,IfearthattheseventhmightbeGoldof.Shouldntwetakesomekindof
measuresagainsthim?"

"...Ithinkheissuspicious,buthisbeingtheseventhhasntbeenconfirmed."

"Inolongerthinkitcanbeanyoneexceptforhim.Itsnotme.ItsnotRolonia.Its
notyou.HansandChamobothtookdownNashetaniasoitsnotthemeither.And
ifFremywerethesevenththenshewouldhavenoreasontohelpyou.Soitcant
beanyonebutGoldof."

65

Chapter 13

"Mora,stop,"Adletsaidinaquietbutfirmvoice."Themostfrighteningthing
rightnowisnottheexistenceoftheseventh.Itstheframingofoneofour
innocentcompanions.Arentyoujustspeculating?"

"But"

"Isnowalright?Iwanttotalk,"Fremysaid,interruptingMoraandAdlets
conversation.

"Dontworry,Illfindtheseventh.Justrelaxandwait.Iamthestrongestmanin
theworld,"AdletsaidtoMora,andthensmiled.

"Istillfeeluneasy...butIunderstand.Ivedecidedtotrustyou."

"Good.Thenbequietandfollowme."

ThecompanionssatinacirclearoundFremy,keepingtheirweaponsintheir
handssothattheywerepreparedforanambushatanymoment.

Itwouldprobablybethefirsttimeinhistorythatinformationabouttheinner
workingsoftheKyomawouldbeheardbyhumans.Foralongtimenooneknew
aboutthisinformation,nottomentionthefactthatnoonewasevenabletofind
outaboutit.

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Chapter 13

SoperhapsFremysexistencewastheHeroesoftheSixFlowersgreatest
advantage.Knowingabouttheenemycouldlargelychangethetideoftheir
battle.

"Ivesaiditmultipletimes,buttheKyomaarecommandedbythreeKyoma
leaders.TheirnamesareCargikk,Tgurneu,andDozzu,"Fremysaidquietly.Her
wordswereconciseandstraightforward.

"70%oftheKyomabelongtothelowerorderofcreaturesthatonlyhavethe
intelligenceofanimals.Eventheremaining30%,thoughtheyhaveintelligence,
dontpossesscomplexemotions.Otherthankillinghumanstheyareunableto
thinkaboutanythingelse.

"ButthosethreeKyomaaredifferent.Theyhavetheirownwill,emotions,
philosophy,andasenseofbeauty.Theyalsohavesufficientpowertocommand
theKyoma.Excludingme,alltheKyomahaveunconditionallypledgedtheir
loyaltytothesethree.Andwithjustanordertheirloyaltywouldcompelthemto
easilythrowawayeventheirlives."

"Howstrongarethey?"

"Idontknowexactly.ButIbelieveitsbetterifwethinkthatthosethreeare
peoplewhowellhavenochanceofdefeatingoneonone."

Thethreewereopponentsthattheycouldneverwinagainstoneonone.The
Heroesnowknewjusthowunfavorableasituationtheywerein.

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Chapter 13

"Butifwecandefeatthosethree,itwillbethesameasusdefeatingtheKyoma.
NoneoftheotherKyomaarecapableofleadingtheKyoma.AndiftheKyomalose
theirchainofcommandtheywouldbecomeadisorderlymob.Sothenwewould
beabletofreelychoosewhethertocrusheachoneofthemorjustignorethem
andproceedtotheHomeofFallenTears."

"Isee."

"Butthisistheimportantpoint.Farfromnotjustgettingalong,itssafetosay
thatthosethreefiercelyopposeoneanother.

Itwasanastonishinginformation,butFremycontinuedtospeakwithoutgiving
themanytimetoindicateiftheywerefollowingwhatshewassaying.

"Ofthethree,thestrongestseemstobeCargikk.HeisaKyomaintheformofa
lionwhocanbreathefirehotenoughtoincineratehumans.Inaddition,the
smokegivenoffbyhisflameisextremelypoisonous.Heisaterrifyingenemy."

"Whoisstronger,Chamoorhim?"

"Idontknow.ButthefactthatImnomatchforeitherofyouhasntchanged.

Anyway,Cargikkcommandsabout60%oftheKyoma.Halfofthemhave
assembledinthevicinityaroundwheretheMajinsleepsin,TheHomeofFallen
Tears,andarepositionedtointerceptanyattacks.

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Chapter 13

IfearCargikkwillnotmovefromthatplaceandIbelieveheintendstodevoteall
ofhisenergyincompletelyguardingthatplace."

"Thatsthemosttroublesometypeofenemy,Adletsaid.Itwasasimple
strategy,butthemosteffectivesincefromthemilitarilyweakerHeroes
standpoint,itwouldbebesttoseparatetheenemysforces.

"Nextis...Tgurneu.Itsabitdifficulttotalkabouthim."UpuntilthenFremyhad
beenspeakingindifferently,butnowshewasunexpectedlyhesitating.Andthe
momentAdletheardthatnamehisheartonceagainstartedtorace.

"Untiljustalittleoverhalfayearago,Tgurneuwasthemostimportantpersonin
theworldtome."

"Andnow?"Moraasked.

"...NowheisthepersonIdespisethemost.BacktowhatIwassaying,Tgurneu
commandsabout40%oftheKyoma.Hewasthemastermindbehindmycreation
andhewastheKyomawhoorderedmetobetheSixFlowerKiller."

ThereweresomepointsthatshedbroughtupthatAdletwasintriguedby,butfor
nowhedidntsayanythingandleftthetalkingtoFremy.

"TgurneuisaKyomacomposedofamixtureofparts.Hepossessesthepowerto
arrangehisbodyfromthepartsofcountlessKyomas.

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Chapter 13

Asforhisfightingabilities,simplyspeakinghehastheoverwhelmingphysical
strength,speed,anddurabilitytocrushhisenemies.Ithinkitssafetoassume
thatthereisntanythingthatcantbedestroyedbyhishands.Butfarmore
terrifyingthanthatishisingenuity."

"Hisingenuity?"

"Creatingmewasnothingmorethanapartofhisplan.AndthoughIhonestly
dontknowthefulldetailsofwhathehadintended,IdobelieveTgurneuwasthe
onewhosentNashetaniaandtheseventh,whoiswithusnow,intoourranks."

"ThattheprincessofthewholecountrycouldfallintoaKyomasclutches...Istill
cantbelieveit,"Moramuttered.

"Thatisquitepossible.LongbeforeIwasborn,Tgurneuhadextendedhishands
intothehumanworld.HeusedshapeshiftingKyoma,Kyomaskilledinespionage,
andKyomathatutilizedhypnotismtogatherinformation,andfromthosehelaid
outhisplan.Idontknowhowfarhisreachhasextendedacrosstheworld,buthe
calmlygatheredinformationthatsdifficulttoacquirewithouthavingto
personallycometothecenterofthekingdom."

"..."

"IwasmadeandraisedbyTgurneu.UnderhisinstructionIgotstrongerand
continuedtokillSixFlowercandidates.IdeeplyrespectedTgurneu,andattimesI
evenfearedhim.

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Chapter 13

Heseemedverywarm,andattimeshealsoletmefeelhiscoldness.Itwasa
coldnessthatIdidntknowthedepthsof,acoldnessIcouldntunderstand."

AdletnoticedthattherewasstillanairofrespectwithinFremyswords.1

"No,hewassomeoneIcouldntunderstand,"shequicklycorrectedherself.

"Ohdear,"Tgurneumutteredsomewhere.ItwasattheexacttimethatFremy
wastalkingabouthim.

"YouthoughtthatwayaboutmeFremy?Itsabitsadthatyousayyoucant
understandme."Tgurneuthenchuckled."EvenafterIhadlovedyouso."

Fremycontinuedherstory.

"CargikkandTgurneuopposeoneanother.AndalltheKyomathatobeythemare
primarilysplitintotwogroups.IfTgurneusfactionofKyomaandCargikksKyoma
weretomeettheywouldntspeaktooneanother.Andeventhelowerorderof

1
The Japanese reads that Fremy had used Honorific Language to speak about Tgurneu, but there is no
real way to convey this nuance of the Japanese language without twisting the English.

71

Chapter 13

Kyomawhocouldntspeakwouldbaretheirteethandwouldthreatenthe
others."

"Why?"

"Therearemanyreasons.Tgurneuplacesagreatdealofimportanceontacticsso
hiswayofthinkingisatoddswithCargikkwhotriestoattackthingsheadon.But
thebiggestreasonishowtheyinteractwithhumans.

"Tgurneubelievesthathumansaretoolshecanusetoachievehisends.But
Cargikkfiercelydespiseshumansandhasadeepdisdainforthem.Heeven
considersassociatingwithhumanstobedirty.

"ItseemsliketheycamewithinastepofkillingoneanotherwhenTgurneuhad
devisedtheplantohavemeborn.Cargikkhadbelievedthattheproudbloodof
Kyomamustnotmixwiththebloodofhumans,"

"Couldyouwaitaminute?"Rolonia,whohadbeensilentlylisteningtoFremy
untilthatpoint,raisedherhand."Umm,didntyousaytherewerethreeleaders
thatcommandedtheKyoma?"

Adlethadalsobeencuriousaboutthat.Fremyhadcompletelynottalkedabout
theotherKyoma.AndifCargikkcommanded60%oftheKyomaandTgurneuthe
other40%,hewonderedwhatthethirdwasdoing.

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Chapter 13

"Idontreallyknowanythingaboutthethird...Dozzu.Otherthanthefactthathe
exists,Ihaveheardnothingabouthim."

"Whatkindofpersonishe?"

"Dozzuisatraitor.ItissaidthathepossessesapoweronparwithTgurneuand
Cargikk.ButIheardthattwohundredyearsagohebetrayedTheMajinand
disappearedfromTheWailingDemonTerritory.Ihaveabsolutelynoideawhathe
isdoingnow.Tgurneumayknow,buthenevertoldme."

"Isheourenemyoranally?"

"Idontknowthateither.ItseemsliketherearesomeKyomawithinTgurneus
factionandCargikksfactionwhohavesecretlypledgedtheirloyaltytoDozzu.But
IonlyknowoftwoKyomathatwerepurgedafterbeingsuspectedofthat."

"...Meow,meow.Thingslikefactionsandpurgesaredirtyaffairsmeow,"Hans
grumbled.

"Fremy,ifyousawthemcouldyoutellwhetherornotaKyomabelongsto
TgurneussideorCargikksside?"Adletasked.

"Toanextent.IthinkthattheKyomaweencounteredatthevillagewherewefirst
metwereonCargikksside.However,theKyomathattrickedyouwithinthe

73

Chapter 13

IllusionFogBarrierandtheonethatateTheSaintoftheSunLeurawereon
Tgurneusside."

"SothePrincesswasbeingusedbyTgurneuafterall,"Morasaid.

"Thereisahighpossibilitythatisthecase."

Andwiththattheyhadcompletedthefirstpartoftheirconversation.

"Butisnttheproblemhowweshouldattacktheirpositions?Andinparticular
shouldntweconsiderTgurneutobemoredangerous?"Morawasthefirstto
speak.

"CargikkwilldefendtheMajin,butIthinkTgurneuwillattackus.Whathewilldo
orhowhewilldoitthough,Idontknow."

"IthinkitisveryunlikelythatTgurneuwillattackushimself,"Adletsaid.

"Iagree.IfTgurneuisdefeatedthen40%oftheKyomawouldlosetheircommand
structure.IthinksomewouldsubmitthemselvestoCargikkscommand,butthe
numberwouldbesmall.ItwouldbeamassiveblowfortheKyoma.Anditdoesnt
seemlikeTgurneuwouldriskthatchance."

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Chapter 13

"Ihaveonequestion.Regardingwhatwouldhappeniftheirchainofcommandis
lost,ifTgurneuweretodiewhatexactlywouldhappentotheKyoma?"Mora
asked.

"TheKyomaaremainlyconnectedbysomekindofinvisiblebond.IfTgurneuwere
todie,instantlyalltheKyomashouldsenseit.Itwouldonlytakeamoment,I
think,tocausemassiveconfusionwhichleadstoastateofpanic."

"Wouldyoufeelittoo,Fremy?"

"...Probably,"Fremysaidassheavertedhergaze.

"Isee....Hmm,soTgurneuhuh?"Adletsaidashethoughtaboutthesituation.
MorawascuriouslyinterestedinTgurneu,eventhoughunlikehimandFremyshe
didnthaveanypersonalconnectiontohim.

"Hewillusetheseventhandprobablysetatrapforus,meow."

TheconversationsoonmovedontothenexttopicandAdletforgotabouthis
minorsuspicions.

"Perhaps.Thequestioniswhatwillhedo?"

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Chapter 13

Chamothenraisedherhand."Hey,heyChamohascomeupwithsomethingthat
mightbegood."

"Idontthinkitwillbe,butatanyrate,"Fremycoldlyresponded.

ButChamoignoredher."WithoutthecrestoftheSixFlowersahumancant
breatheinTheWailingDemonTerritory."

ItwascommonknowledgethatthecrestoftheSixFlowersrenderedthetoxinin
theairattheWailingDemonTerritoryineffectivetothosewhopossessedit.

"Therearesixhumanshere.Andallofuscanbreathewell.Soinotherwords
dontweallhavegenuinecrests?AndsotheseventhistheKyomaFremy."

"Itwasntgoodafterall,"Fremysaidwithasigh."Evenhumanswhodonthave
thecrestcansurviveinTheWailingDemonterritory.OnTgurneussidethereare
Kyomathatspawnspecialparasites,whichiftheyenterthebodytheywould
makehumansimmunetothetoxinsinTheWailingDemonTerritory."

"Doyouhaveproofofthat?"

"AtthecenteroftheWailingDemonterritoryisaplacecalledtheEarCropping
Plainwheretherearemanyhumanslaves."Asshesaidthat,Fremyshotafleeting
lookatAdlet."Tgurneuhasgatheredhumanslaves,butforwhatpurposeIdont
know.Adlet,thepeoplefromyourhometownareprobablythere."

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Chapter 13

Withoutthinking,Adletstoodup.Bothhishometownthathadbeendestroyed
andthepeoplethathadbeentakenawayappearedinhismind.

"Thoseslaves...howarethey?"

"Idontknow.Iveneverbeenthere."

"Youdontknowanything?Anythingyoucouldtellmewouldbefine,"Adlet
houndedher,butMorasteppedinwithareproachfullookonherface.

"Iknowyouareanxiousaboutthosepeople,butweshouldprobablyfocuson
defeatingTheMajin.Savingthosepeopleandreturningthemtotheworldof
humanswillbeimpossibleifwedontdefeatTheMajin."

Shewasright,Adletthought,justasallthefinehairsonhisbodystoodup.

Chamocranedhernecktotheside."Adlet,whathappened?"

ButwithoutansweringAdletpushedChamoaway.Fremyrolledbackwardsand
stoodbackupwithherrifledrawn.AndHansplacedbothhishandsandhisfeet
ontheground,roundedhisbackandassumedacatlikeposture.

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ThenattheplacewhereChamohadbeenjustamomentago,theground
massivelyswelledupthenexplodedintoacloudofdirt.Fromthatcloudasingle
Kyomajumpedout.

"Hello,"itwasastrange,highpitchedandhoarsevoice.Butthemomenthe
heardit,Adletsheart,whichhadcalmeddownearlier,onceagainstartedto
poundinhischest.

"Whatareyoutalkingabout?Youmustntgothere.Imean,arenttheslaves
inconsequential?"

"Tgurneu!"Adletshouted.Hisbloodboiledandhisheartfilledwithrage.
Tgurneu,thebeingthathadstuckinthebackofhismind,theonethathad
causedhimsomanynightmare..RightnowhewasstandingrightbeforeAdlets
eyes.

"Youshouldbemoreconcernedaboutme."TgurneufacedAdletandspreadhis
armswide.Itwasasifheweresayingcomeatme.

Thenfasterthantheeyecouldsee,Adletdrewfourdarts.Hethenleaped
towardsTgurneu,throwingtwopaininducingdartsatbothofTgurneuseyesand
twoparalysisdartsathiselbows.
Itwillbesettledinaninstant,Adletthought.ThenightmareIvehadforeight
yearswillendinamoment.

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Chapter 13

However,thefourdartsdidntworkonTgurneu.Hethenextendedthelengthof
hisarmseveraltimesandlashedoutatAdlet.SinceAdletwasstillintheairhe
hadnowaytoevadetheattack.Hejustbarelymanagedtogethisswordoutand
blocktheblowwithit,buttheforcestillsenthimflyingbackwardsandcrashing
intotheground.

"Watchout!"

MorawenttoattackTgurneufromtheside.AtthesametimeHansranalongthe
groundandaimedforTgurneuslegs.FremyshotatTgurneusfaceandfrom
behindGoldofchargedathimwithhisspearheldfirmlyunderneathhisarmpit.

"Takethismeow!"Hansshouted.

AndasAdletfelltothegroundhewatchedthebattleunfold.OneofTgurneus
armsfoldedaroundMorasarmoredfistandabsorbedthestrike.Thenhelifted
oneofhisfeet,dodgedHanssswordandwithoutamomentsrest,kickedhimin
theface.Hethenextendedhisotherarm,whichhitGoldofandendedhischarge.
AndwithhisteethhecaughtFremysbullet.

"Asexpected,thatwasclose,"Tgurneussaid.

EveryoneimmediatelydistancedthemselvesfromTgurneu.Itcantbe,Adlet
thought.Hehadbeenabletoblocktheattacksofallfourofthematonce.

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Chapter 13

"Didyounotanticipatethisbeforehand?NomatterwhichtacticIuseIcankillyou
all.Icanusetheseventhtoassassinateyou,orhavetheseventhleadyouintoa
trap.Well,atanyratethatsthesituationyouarein."

Tgurneuspreadhisarmswide,buttherewasnobreakinhisdefenses.Adlet
stoodbackupandreadiedhissword,buthecouldntmove.

"Sohowdoyoufeelaboutthissituation?Withoutsomekindofstrategyorplan
youllbeannihilatedifyouattackmeheadon."Tgurneuthenlaughedandrushed
towardsAdlet.

80

Chapter 21

81

Chapter 21

ChapterTwo:PartOne

Onedaythreeyearsagosomethinghappenedattheheadtemple.Itwasthe
eventthatledMoratothemomentwhenshewouldkillHans.

TherewasasmallannexinthecorneroftheheadtemplewhereMora,her
husband,andtheirdaughterShenieralivedinameagernestoflove.Thebuilding
hadbeenwellusedwithanoldinteriorandoldstylefurnishings,whichhadbeen
appropriatedtoMorainthesameconditionaswhentheprevioustemplehead
hadusedthem.Asbefittingsomeonewhoservedthegods,itwasahomeof
simpleconstruction.

Morawassittingonasofaintheparlor,holdingherfacewithtremblinghands.It
wasonemonthaftershehadbeguninstructingNashetaniaandtheothers.

"TempleHead...areyoulistening?"

Therewerethreepeopleintheparlor.OnewasMora,andanotherwasher
husband,Gunner.However,theonecallingtoMorawasanelderlywoman
dressedinasimplewhitedress.

HernamewasTouloMaynesandshewastheSaintofMedicine.

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Chapter 21

Heronlypowerwasthatshecouldcureinjuriesandillnesses,whichwasthesame
assayingshehadnofightingskills.Sheandhermedicalfollowerswentaround
theworldextendingahelpinghandtothoseseekingtobesaved.Shewasagreat
SaintandsomeoneMoradeeplyrespected.

"TempleHead...trytostaycalm,"Toulosaid,butasshetrembled,Morawas
unabletorespond.Itwasdifficulttobreatheandhervisionwasshaking.Shewas
usingallofherpowerjusttomaintainhercomposure.

"ForgiveusSaintToulo.Mywifeisnotinatalkingstate.Illhearwhatyouhaveto
say."GunnerthenpulledonMorashandandtriedtoleadherintotheresidence,
butMoraslippedoutofhishandandonceagainsatdownonthesofa.

"Sorry.Tellmeagain."

"YesTempleHead.Shenierasillness.thereisnothingIcando."

TwoweekspriorShenierahadcomplainedaboutaterriblepaininherchest.It
wasslightlytotheleftofthecenterofherchestandonherskinastrangebruise
appeared,whichlookedlikeacentipede.Itwasasicknesstheyhadneverseen
before.

Thepaingotworsedaybydayandsoonitwassobadthatitmadehercryoutin
pain.Therehadbeenabsolutelynowaytocurethesicknessandaftertendaysit
wassobadthatshewasclawingatherchest,tothepointwherehernailswere
diggingintoherskin.

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Chapter 21

Moraexhaustedalloptions.Shesawtheresidentdoctoratthetemple,calledto
thetopdoctorinthekingdom,andthentriedtohealherwiththepowerofthe
mountains.AfterthatshewrotealettertoToulowhohadbeeninaremoteland
andrequestedthatshecometotheheadtempleonherfastesthorse.

"..Whats...Whatshappening?TellmeToulo."

However,assoonasToulofinallymanagedtoarriveatthetemplethreedaysago,
Shenieraspainhadsuddenlydisappeared.Therewerescarsonherchestfrom
herdigginghernailsintoherskin,plusthecentipedelikebruisewasstillthere,
butotherthanthatsheseemedfine.

Leaningherheadtotheside,ToulocheckedShenierascondition.

Morafiguredthatsincethepainhadbeencuredtherewasprobablynothingto
worryabout.Unfortunately,herexpectationswerecrushedbywhatToulosaid
next.

"Thereissomekindofmysteriousinsectnestinginsideherheart,butitcannotbe
seennorheard.IvetriedallthemedicinesIcanthinkof,butIhavenoideawhy
noneofthemhaveworked.Evenadministeringthemedicinedirectlyintothe
insectwithaneedletoherchestdidnotwork."

"Whatwillhappen?WhatwillhappentoSheniera?"

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Chapter 21

"...Idontknow."

"Please.Tellmeitsnottrue."

Touloshookherheadandheldherfaceastearsspilleddownfromhereyes."Ah,
poorMora.Imsosorry,pleaseforgiveme."

NowordsofblameappearedinMorasmind.Toulohaddoneeverythinginher
power.Andifevenafterusingallofherenergytheillnessremained,then
Sheniera...

"...Mom.Dad."TherewasaknockontheparlordooraccompanyingShenieras
voicefromtheotherside.

"Gunner,please.Donttellher."

"Ah,alright."Itwasntthathewasntsadeither.No,hemusthavereceiveda
largershockthanher.Butoutofsomesenseofobligationhewasfeelingto
supportMora,hebarelymanagedtomaintainhiscalm.

"Sheniera,yourmomishavinganimportantconversationrightnow.Itsatopic
fortheSaintssoyoucanthearit."Gunnersaidtotheirdaughterontheother
sideofthedoor.

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Chapter 21

"Dad,amInogood?"MoracouldheartheanxietyinShenierasvoice.

"Whatareyoutalkingabout?Yourenotinpainanymoreright?Touloobasan
saidthatyoullbealrightnow."

"Imbetter?Theresnothingwrongwithmychest?"

"Yes,andinalittlewhileeventhebruiseonyourchestwillfade.Yougotbetter
becauseyoutougheditout.Youreagoodkid."

ShenieraandGunnerthenwalkedawayfromthedoor,downthehall.Andasthey
did,theyleftbehindMora,whosilentlysobbedwhilelookingonwordlessly.

AfterthatTouloleftanumberofmedicinesbehindandlefttheheadtemple.
Moratriedtokeepherfromleaving,butGunnerstoppedher.Therewasnothing
shecoulddoevenifshestayed.Besides,astheSaintofMedicineshehadan
obligationtosavethesufferingpeoplearoundtheworld.

Morathenleftherdutiesasthetempleheadtoherhusbandandclosedherself
offinherroom.AnditseemedlikeShenierawasworriedthatthistimeitwasher
motherwhohadgottensick.

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Chapter 21

However,threedaysafterToulosdeparturetheyreceivedaletterfromher.
"Urgent"waswrittenonthecoveroftheletter,withaprovisothatnooneother
thanMorashouldbeallowedtoseetheletterscontents.

Inherroomdevoidofotherpeople,Morareadtheletter.Firstheremotions
turnedintofear,butthentheychangedintoanger.

"Whatintheworldhappened,Mora?"

Itwasinthemiddleofthenight,fivedaysafterMorahadreceivedtheletterfrom
Toulo.ASaintwasstandinginfrontofMora,buttheywerentinthehead
templesparlor.Theirlocationwasasmall,oldcastletwodaysawayfromthe
templeifahorsecarriagerushedthere.

Therewasnooneinsidetheoldcastleorthesurroundingarea.Eventhe
coachmanwaskeepinghisdistance.Itwasacoldplaceandasstillasdeath.

"Ahthisistiresome.Iwanttodrink.Ifyouhavebusinessletshurryandgetit
overwith."

Aftersayingthatthewomancombedahandthroughherdyedredhair.Shewas
wearingagorgeousdressandflashymakeupwhichwerentverySaintlike.

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Chapter 21

ThealcoholicstenchofahangoverdriftedovertoMora.Shewasabeautiful
woman,butsheappearedtobeasloth.

HernamewasMarmannaKeynes.ShewastheSaintofWords.

"Itwasterribleofmetocallonyousuddenly.Iapologizeformyrudeness."Mora
bowedherhead.

"TheressomethingIvewantedtoaskyouforalongtime.CanI?"

"Whatisit?"

"Whydontyouage?Howdoyoupreserveyouryouth?"

"Byeatingvegetablesandnotstayinguplate."

"...Wellyourenohope."

Itdoesntmatteranyway,Morathought.

MarmannawasaSaintbestowedwithpowerfromtheGodofWords.

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Chapter 21

Itwasprobablysafetosaythatevenamongthe78saintsthereweresomewho
consideredthatpowerheresy.Yetthoughithadabsolutelynoutilitywithin
battle,itwasextremelyuseful.

ThepoweroftheSaintofWordscouldstoppeoplefromlyingandmakepeople
keeppromises.OnewasnotallowedtobreakapromisemadewithMarmanna
becauseiftheydidtherewouldbesuitablereparationstopay.Itwasafateno
onecouldrunawayfrom.Infact,evenifMarmannadiedthepersonwouldstill
havetopaythereparation.NomatterwhatkindofabilityaSaintpossessed,or
whatkindofabilityaKyomahad,theycouldnotnullifytheSaintofWords
power.

Thepowerhadbeenusedforgenerations,andinthepastthepreviouswomen
whoheldthetitleofSaintofWordshadbeenpresentattransactionsinvolving
royalty,aristocrats,andimportantbusinessmen.

"Well,amatterwhereyoucallmeisprobablynotagoodone.Isitabackroom
deal?Ordoyouwantmetosealthelipsofanadulterouslover."

"...Itsasecretnegotiation.Iwanttorequestyourguaranteethatthesedealings
areasuccess.Itwouldbeabigproblemformeifthepromiseswerebrokenlater
on."

Marmannagrinned.

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Chapter 21

"Really?AbackroomdealfromthehighlymoralMorasama?Whateveritis,this
isgoingtobefun."

"Mydaughterhasbeentakenhostage.Imheadingofftonegotiatewiththeone
responsible."

TheletterhadbeendeliveredtoMorasresidencewithToulosname,butthe
contentsrevealedthatithadbeensentbythepersonwhohadplantedthe
parasitewithinSheniera.Theyhadindicatedadateandtimeanddemandedthat
Moracometothisoldcastle.AndifMoradidntcomplytheletteraddedthat
Shenieraslifewouldend.

"What?Shenierachanwaskidnapped?Hahahah,"Marmannalaughed
maliciously.

Moraglaredather,butMarmannawasnotperturbedintheslightest.Soshethen
urgedtheSaintofWordstowalkwithherintotheoldcastle.Theother
negotiationpartywastherewaiting.

"Isntthatbratjustsomethingyougavebirthto?1ImustsayIwonderwhatthe
bigdealis."

"Ifyouhaveachildyoullunderstand.Andifyoudont,thenfortherestofyour
lifeyoullneverknow."

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Chapter 21

"Buttherearealotofparentswhodontknowthatevenaftergivingbirth."

Moradidntsayanythingtoherresponseandinsteadchangedthesubject."Ialso
calledWelynn,butshecouldntmakeit."

"Welynn?Whatdoyouintendtodobycallingthatidiot?"

TheSaintofSaltwasoneoftheSaintsthatMorahadinstructedamonthago.She
wasskilledincloserangecombat,andshecoulduseherpowertodriveawayand
purifypoisonsandevilpresences.

Icandependonherasawarrior.Andasaperson."

"...Hey,byanychancewilltheotherpartybedangerous?"Marmannasfacewent
stiff.

"Wearenearingthemeetingplace.Iunderstandthatyoucantsenseit,butthe
presencebeforeusseemstobeapowerfulenemy.

Inthecentermostpartofthecastletheyfinallyreachedaplacethatlookedlike
thekingsthroneroom.Astrangesound,likesomethingwaschewingwas
echoingoutfromtheroom.Butitdidntsoundlikeahumaneating.Rather,it
seemedtobecomingfromabeastorsomethingfarmorerepulsive.

91

Chapter 21

Someonewashavingameal,witharoughnessofaglutton.

Eventuallythetwoofthemfoundthesourceofthesoundsittingintheruined
throne.Therewastrashscatteredallaroundthethrone,suchasthefeetand
feathersofasmallbird,halfeatenfigs,rawoats,andfroglegs.Intheseatwasa
singlelargeKyomabitingintoafreshlyseveredboarhead.Andrightbeforetheir
eyestheKyomaplacedtheentireheadintoitsmouthinaninstant.

Ithadtheheadofalizard,butthebodyofabeast.Andthreewingsstretchedout
fromitsback.ThroughherintuitionMoraguessedhewasthewriteroftheletter,
Tgurneu.

"Hello."

"Tgurneu,Ipresume.Youreanextremelyvilebeing,"Morasaidasshelookedup
atTgurneuandwatchedhimsuckonhispalms.

"Thatsrude.Itsinmynaturetobeaheavyeater.Illdieofstarvationinnotime
atallifIdroponeofmymeals.ButwaitamomentwhileIcleanup."

Whetheritwasoutofgoodmannersornot,Tgurneustartedtopickupallthe
scrapsonthegroundandputthemintoabaghewascarrying.Thenwhenhewas
finishedheapproachedthetwowomen.

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Chapter 21

"Itsnicetomeetyou,Mora.MynameisTgurneu.Iamthetopfollowerofthe
greatMajin."

Hetouchedhishandtohischestinarespectfulsalute.Thoughhisbodywasvery
differentfromahumans,hecarriedhimselfandmovedaboutinavery
humanlikeway.Itwasanunbearablyeeriesight.

"....Aha,ahaha,Morathisisabitsurprising,"Marmannasaid,thoughhervoice
wasshaking.

"Excuseme,butwhoisthisbeautifulperson?"Tgurneuasked.

"SheisMarmannatheSaintofWords.Imentrustingthebusinessdealingsto
her."

"DidntIsayyouhadtocomealone?"

"Yourletterdidntsaythat."

Tgurneushrugged.ThenhebowedtoMarmannainthesamewayhehadbowed
toMora.

"Wellthatsfine.Itsneveraproblemtobeclosetoabeautifulwoman,nomatter
howmanytimesithappens.

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Chapter 21

"...Aha,ImadmiredbyaKyoma."

TgurneuapproachedMarmannaandextendedhishand.ThoughMarmanna
seemedtobewonderingwhathewasthinking,shestilltookhishandandbowed
asmannersdictated.

"Fromnowwewillbeginthenegotiations,butMarmannapromisemeonething.
Youwillnottellanyoneelseaboutwhatwetalkaboutheretoday."

"Naturally.Ifthiskindofstoryweretobeleakedtoothersitwouldcauseabig
uproar,"Marmannasaid,andthensheactivatedherabilityastheSaintofWords.

Asmallballoflightemergedfromthetipofherindexfinger.Shethenpointedit
toherselfandbegantospeak."IpledgetotheGodofWords.Iwillnotspeakof
whathappensinthisplacetodaytoanyone.IfIbreakthispledge,itwillbeokay
formetodie."

TheballoflightthenflewintoMarmannaschest,completingthepledge.Now,
notevenMarmannaherselfcouldundoit.

"Tgurneu,willyoumakethepledgeaswell?Youwontspeakofwhathappened
heretohumans,Kyoma,orTheMajin.Youdontmindright?"

Ifwhathappenedinthatplacewereexposedtotheworlditwouldbetheendof
Mora.

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Chapter 21

Shewouldbebanishedfromtheheadtempleandthenprobablyloseher
qualificationastheSaintofMountains.Andasforthefamilyofacriminalwho
dealtwiththeKyoma,herhusbandanddaughterwouldprobablyalsobe
persecuted.

"Thatsfine,"unexpectedlyTgurneuquicklyagreed.

"IfIdontpledge,Iprobablywontgetyoutomakeadealwithme.Andyou
wouldhavevisitedfornoreason."

MarmannaproducedaballoflightandTgurneumadehiscontract.Thelightthen
wentintohischestandthecontractwascompleted.ThepoweroftheSaintof
WordsalsoworkedonKyoma.Itwasafactprovenbyanexperimentconducted
abouttwoyearsagoonacapturedKyoma.

"WellMora,arentyougoingtomakethepledgetoo?"

"Isthatnecessary?"

"...Well,Iguessthatsfine."Tgurneushrugged."Sothen,shallwebeginthe
negotiations?Asyouknow,oneofmyunderlingshasproducedaparasitewhichis
nownestingintheheartofyourdaughter.Thereisnowaytoremoveitother
thanbymyordertodestroyitself.

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Chapter 21

"Withasnapofmyfingersyourdaughterwouldexperiencethesufferingofhell,
whichwouldthenbringaboutherdeath.Sofarsheonlyknowsthetipofthat
suffering."

ThetendaysofhellShenierahadsuffered.Tgurneuwasdanglingthatmemoryin
frontofMoraasathreat,causingadizzyingangertoboilupinsideher.

"However,relaxMora.IdonotwishtokilltheadorableSheniera.Ifyoulistento
myrequestthenShenierawillabsolutelybereleased.AndassoonasIgivethe
orderforittodestroyitself,theparasitewillvanish."

"Whatsyourdemand?"

"Doesntitgowithoutsaying?Weonlyhaveonedesire."

Tgurneuspreadhisarmsoutwideandstartedtousebodylanguageandgestures
likeabadactorashecontinued."WhentheMajinawakensthehumansandthe
Kyomawillbattleforthethirdtimeinourhistory.Andthetimeofthatdecisive
battleisalreadycloseathand."

"Stateyourdemands."

"Mora.IwantyoutokilltheHeroesoftheSixFlowers."

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Chapter 21

"Irefuse,"Moraansweredinaninstant.

ForamomentTgurneujuststaredathersilently.

"...Oh?"

"IftheHeroesoftheSixFlowersaredefeatedtheworldwillend.AndifTheMajin
isfullyrevivedbothmydaughterandmyhusbandwillbekilled,whichwould
makeanydealImadewithyoumeaningless."

MarmannalookedatMorawideeyed.

"Waitasec,areyouserious?DidntyoucomeheretosaveShenierachan?"

Moradidntrespond.Shejustfoldedherarmstohidehertremblinghands.

InrealityshewantedtoclingtoTgurneusfeetatonceandbeghimforhismercy.
Shewantedtoshouttohimthatshewoulddoanythingifitwouldsaveher
daughterslife.Butifshecouldntprotecttheworldthenshewouldntbeableto
protectthedaughtershelovedeither.

Tgurneuthoughtforamomentinsilence.Thenforsomereasonhebegantoclap.
Whenhestopped,hesmiledandsaid,"Goodanswer,Mora.Ihadthoughtyou
wouldrespondlikethat."

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Chapter 21

"Soletscontinuethenegotiations.Thenightisstilllong.Andwehaveplentyof
timetotalk."Tgurneubroughtovertwochairsfromthesideofthethrone.He
thenrecommendedthemtoMoraandMarmannaandhehimselfsatdown
amongthecastlerubble.

"Mora,Iunderstandthatyoucamehereinordertosaveyourdaughter.This
meansthatyoucameheretonegotiateadeal.Soitisnecessaryforustotalk."

Afterhesitatingforawhile,Morasatdownonthechair.Andeventhough
Marmannawasalsoconfused,shetoosatdown.

"IfyouhaveanotherrequestIintendtocomply.AndifitismylifeyouwishIwill
presentitatonce.However,takingthelivesoftheHeroesissomethingI
absolutelywillnotdo."

"Isee.ButIdontneedyourlife."Tgurneueerilylaughed."IdeclaretoyouMora.I
willabsolutelymakeyoukilltheHeroesoftheSixFlowers."

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Chapter 22

ChapterTwo:PartTwo

Ineverimaginedthiswouldhappen,AdletthoughtasTgurneuchargedstraightat
him.

HisinitialexplosiveattackfrombeneaththegroundhadtakenAdletbysurprise.
Butwhatsurprisedhimevenmorewastheideathatoneoftheenemy
commanderswouldlaunchasurpriseattackagainsttheminperson.

"Oops,Idforgotten."Tgurneusuddenlystopped.

TheotherswhohadhadtheirattacksdodgedbyTgurneuencircledtheKyoma
andreadiedtheirweapons.ButTgurneuwasnotperturbedatallandwitha
smile,hebegantospeak.

"Well,youshouldntbesoimpatientHeroesoftheSixFlowers.Isntthere
somethingyoushoulddobeforewefight?"

"Whatareyoutalkingabout?"

"Greetingsofcourse.Whenyoumeetapersonyousay,hello.Whenyoudepart
yousay,goodbye.Arentgreetingsthefirststeptoabrightlife?"

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Chapter 22

AdletdidntunderstandwhatTgurneuwassaying.Sure,heunderstoodthe
meaningofthewords,buthecouldntgrasptheKyomasintent.However,at
AdletssideHansnoddedquickly.

"Hello,meow."

"ThatsrightHans.Hellotoyoutoo.Wellthen,shallwebegin?"

Tgurneuopenedhismouthandlookeduptothesky.Theycouldnthearhisvoice,
buthewasshoutingsomething.HewassendingacommandtotheKyomaby
usingaparticularfrequencywhichnooneexceptKyomacouldhear.

"Reinforcementswerecalled,"Fremysaid.

Frombeyondtheknollandthenorthwesttheycouldfaintlyhearthevoicesofthe
Kyomaechoingtheirway.ItwasatthatmomentwhenAdletfinallyrealizedthe
reasonfortheabsenceoftheKyomainthevalley:itwassotheycouldassemble
theirmilitarystrengthforanambush.

"Thisisbad,Adlet.Whatshouldwedo?"Fremyasked.

"Isntitobvious?Shoothimnow!Attackallatonce!"Morashoutedasshebegan
todashatTgurneu,whoatthemomentseemedcalmandperfectlycomposed.
However,noneoftheothersfollowedMorascharge.

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Chapter 22

"Whyareyouhesitating?"Moraasked,suddenlystoppingandjumpingback.

"ComeAdlet.Whatswrong?Shallwenotenjoykillingoneanother?"Grinning,
TgurneutookastepclosertoAdlet.

Adletdidntknowwhattodo.Theareawouldsoonbesurrounded,Tgurneu
mightbesettingsomekindoftrap,andontopofthatAdletdidntknowhowthe
seventhwouldact.

NormallyAdletwouldhavedecidedtorunwithouthesitation.Atrohadtaught
himthathemustnotfightontheenemysturf.

ButatthemomentAdletwasnotthinkingrationally.

"Chamo!Hans!Goldof!Holdoffthereinforcementscomingfromthenorthwest!"
Adletshouted,grippinghisswordinhisrighthand.

"Fremy,backthemupfromafar!Mora,Rolonia,andI..."Adletdrewasmoke
bombfromabeltathiswaist,smasheditatTgurneusfeetandthenrushed
forwardthroughthesmoke.

"IwillgoafterTgurneu."

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Chapter 22

Everyonemovedsimultaneously.Chamostuckthefoxtailgrassdownherthroat
andvomitedoutthesocalledJyuma1withinherstomach.ThenHansandGoldof
ranalongsidetheJyumatothenorthwest.

Fremyleapedbackwards,readiedherrifleandaimeditatTgurneu.Herrolewas
tokeephimfrommovingwithsupportingattacks.Meanwhile,Moracircled
aroundbehindTgurneuasAdletchargedathimfromtheoppositedirection.

"Right,right,"Tgurneusaid."Ihadthoughtyouwouldtrythat."

TgurneusarmextendedthroughthesmokeandtriedtohitAdlet,buthedropped
tothegroundandavoidedtheattack.Adletthenblockedthefollowupstrikewith
hisswordandtheshockfromtheimpactmadethebonesinhisarmnumb.There
wasanoverwhelminggapinboththeirpowerandtheirspeeds.AndevenAdlets
smokehadbeenineffective.

MorathentriedtobringdownherarmoredfistontoTgurneusshoulder.
However,theKyomadodgedtheattackjustbymovinghisupperbody.His
flexible,effortlessdodgeswereclearlythemovementsofsomeonethathad
studiedmartialarts.OneafteranotherMoratriedtostrikehimwithherfists,but
noneoftheblowsevencameremotelyclosetohittingTgurneu.

"Adletstepback!Youarenomatchforhim!"Morashouted.

1
Jyuma,literallysubordinateorslavedemons.ItismeanttocontrastwithKyoma ,which
meansevildemons.

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Chapter 22

ButAdlethadknownthatfromthebeginning.Ifheconfrontedhimdirectly,no
matterhowmuchhestruggledhewouldntbeabletostandachance.However,it
wasthatkindofopponentthatAdlethadcomesofartofight.

Whilehisnextattackdidhavethepowertokillhim,Adletstoppedtheblowwith
hisarmoredshoulder.Hisbreathcaughtinhischestandhisbonescreaked.But
theninthatmomentAdletslammedthesecretweaponhehadbeenconcealingin
hislefthandontoTgurneusarm.

Itwasamanacleconnectedtoalongchain.Thebarbedattheedgeofthemetal
fittingdugintoTgurneusfleshandatthesametimeasturdywirewrappedtight
aroundTgurneusarm.

"Muu,"Tgurneugroaned.

Adletthensheathedhisswordandgrabbedthechainwithbothhands.Hepulled
onTgurneuscapturedleftarmwithallhismight,topplinghisbalanceandcausing
hisfacetobarrelrightintoMoraspunch.

"Isee.Soyouintendtorestrictmymovements,"Tgurneusaidashepulledonthe
chainwithunbelievablestrength.Realizingthathecouldntholdhisground,Adlet
promptlyjumpedforward.AndasTgurneuliftedhisleftarm,Adletsbodywas
raisedupintotheairlikeafishonahook.

"Watchout!"Fremyshouted.

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Chapter 22

TgurneuthrewafollowupstrikeathisairbornetargetandAdletbarelymanaged
tostoptheblowwiththeironslabfashionedintotheheelofhisshoe.Afierce
painrushedthroughhisankleandtherewasaslightlyunpleasantsound,but
Adletdidnotletgoofthechain.

AlthoughTgurneusleftarmhadbeencapturedbythechain,Adletstoolhad
beenlargelyineffectiveatrestrictingTgurneu.Nevertheless,Tgurneus
movementswereindeedslightlyslower.

Takingadvantageoftheslightopeninginhisdefenses,Moraswungherfistatthe
KyomaandFremyshotherrifle.ButsinceAdletwaspreoccupiedwiththetugof
war,hisevasivemovementswereslow,resultinginMorasfistgrazinghisface
andFremysbulletpiercinghisshoulder.

"DontletgoAdlet!"Fremyshoutedassheloadedanotherbulletintoherrifle.

"ImputtingeverythingIhaveintoholdinghim.Youtwofinishhimoff!"

"GoodAdlet!Holdhimlikethat!"MorablockedTgurneusfistwithherarmored
hand,andtriedtocounterwithapunchofherown.Butthenaninhumanshriek
resoundedacrossthebattlefield.

"DontspeakyourenothingmorethanafilthyKyomapieceofshitDanicaswill
notlethimgetawayAdlet!"2

2
Roloniaisspeakingwithoutanypausesinherspeech,asifshewerepossessed.Ihaveremovedthe
punctuationtopreservethefeelingintheoriginalJapanese.

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Chapter 22

AsAdletpulledonthechain,helookedaroundthearea,readyinghimselffora
newenemy.HecouldseethatFremyhadautomaticallyrepointedherrifleinthe
directionofthevoice.AndevenTgurneuseyeshadgrownwide.

"IwillshowyouhisentrailsIwilltearouttheentrailsofthisfilthyKyomaand
showthemtoyou.ItwasRolonia,speakingunbelievablyfastwithouttakinga
breath;herwordsmaliciousandmurderous.

Rolonia,whohadbeenwatchingthebattlefromafar,wasnowgrabbingthewhip
atherside.Shethenraisedithighintotheairwithbothhandsandwhenshe
swungit,the30metermetalwhiptwistedaboutlikealivingcreature.Thetipof
thewhipalmostcouldntevenbeseenbythenakedeye.

Tgurneubenthisupperbodyandavoidedthewhip,butthetipslightlygrazedhis
chest.

Thenextmomentalargeamountofbloodgushedoutofhischest.Itwasthe
sameredashumanblood.

"Guu."ThegruntwasthefirstsoundofpainthathadslippedoutfromTgurneus
mouth

2
Also,ImunsurewhatexactlyDanicasrefersto.Myguessisthatitmightbethenameofheralterego
asIhavenotbeenabletofindthephraseinanydictionary.

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Chapter 22

AdletknewaboutRoloniaspower.Thecoreofthewhiphadbeensoakedwith
herbloodandranthroughtheentireweapon.Andbyusingthatbloodshecould
makethewhipmoveinawaythatanormalwhipcouldnt.

Andontopofthat,thatwhipforcedoutthebloodofanyopponentittouched.

"Noway,"Adletmuttered.Roloniahadmaturedinawaythatwasfarfromwhat
Adlethadexpected.

"Thebloodwillnotstop.Showmeyourinsides.Showmeyourentrails.Iwillchew
themapart."Roloniacontinuedtoswingherwhipwithalookonherfacethat
seemedtosuggestthatshewasnolongerthecompaniontheyhadtraveledwith
andthatshedidnotwanttorun.

MeanwhileAdletdesperatelyheldontoTgurneu.Thestrengthinhisarmswas
overwhelmingandAdletsimplycouldntcompare.However,Adletknewhowto
pullonthechainattherightmoment.IfTgurneupulledonthechainheloosened
hishold,andifTgurneureleasedhisenergyAdletpulledintheoppositedirection.
HowtocapturesomeonewithachainwasanotheroneoftheskillsAtrohad
taughthim.

Tgurneutriedtoremovetheshacklediggingintohisleftarm,butFremyshotat
himandpreventedhimfromsucceeding.AndinthatopeningMoralandedaswift
blowthatsentTgurneuflyingbackwards.

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Chapter 22

AdletgruntedasRoloniaswhipscrapedhisear,buthecouldntletgoofthe
chain.Astheytwirledaboutintheairandthentumbledacrosstheground,Adlet
continuedtohang.HeonlyhopedRoloniastillhadenoughsensetoavoid
accidentallykillingherownally.

ThegroundwasredwithallthebloodgushingoutofTgurneu.Canwereally
defeathimlikethis?Adletthought.

ThenasingleshotrangacrossthebattlefieldandRoloniastoppedswingingher
whip.FremyhadshotatRolonia.Thebullethadnthither,butitdidpassbyher
eyes.

"WhatareyoudoingFremy?!Adletshoutedwithoutthinking.

"Youwereindanger,"Fremysaidassheloadedanotherbulletintoherrifle.

Grippingherwhipwithbothhands,RoloniaglaredatFremy.Andforamomentit
lookedliketherewasariskthatRoloniawouldattackher,butthensheturned
hermurderousgazebacktoTgurneu.

"Ohmy,disagreementsamongfriendsareharsh.Whatintheworldcouldbe
goingonwithallofyou?"Tgurneusaid,pretendingtoplaydumb.Usingthepause
intheirattacks,hetriedtoremovetheshacklefromhisleftarm,butFremyfired
abulletintohisrighthand.

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Chapter 22

"Adlet,dontloweryourguard.Wedontknowwhotheenemyis,"Fremysaidas
shereadiedherrifle.Adletcouldtelljustbylookingatherthatthoughshewas
aimingatTgurneu,shewasalsocarefullywatchingbothMoraandRolonias
movements.

"Imthestrongestmanintheworld.Idontneedprotection.Concentrateon
killingTgurneu."

"ThatsrightFremy.Refrainfromcarelessmovements,"Moraadded,yether
wordsalsoseemedtosuggestthatshewaswatchingFremyaswell.

Adletgroundhisteeth.WatchingFremywouldonlygetintheirway.Ontheother
hand,iftheywereoffguardthentheywouldntknowwhattheseventhwas
doing.AndthefactofthematterwasthatAdletstilldidntknowwhotheseventh
was,andhewasonceagainfeelingthedifficultyofthatpredicament.

Forthetimebeingthebattleconsistedofeachoneofthemglaringatone
anotherandlookingforanopeningtostrike.Adletwasstandinginfrontofthe
boundTgurneu,MoraandRoloniawereclosinginfrombothsides,andFremy
wasbehindthemall,waitingtoseewhatwouldhappen.

"Kill,Kill,Kill,Kill,Kill,"RoloniarepeatedasshegraduallynearedtheKyoma.

ButthenTgurneusuddenlysaid,"Igiveup.Imadeamistake.Itwasntmyintent
toattackyouallbysurprise."

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Chapter 22

Noonerespondedtohim.

"IcameoutofthegroundandIrealizedyouwereallsurprised,butIhadnt
thoughtthatyouwouldallthenganguponme."Tgurneuthenbegantolaugh.
"Whatdoyouthink?Wasmyjokejustnowfunny?"

"...Itwasawful,"Morasaid.

"Hmm.Soitwasdull.Humanjokesaredifficult."

TgurneuthenplacedhishandonhischinandatthatexactmomentRolonia
shoutedandstartedtoswingherwhipagain.Simultaneously,Fremyfiredabullet
intoTgurneusback.
ThetwoofthemandMoraattackedTgurneuallatonce,whileAdlet,attheriskof
hisownlife,continuedtoclingontothechain.

Itwasprobablysafetosaythattheywerewinningthefight.However,Tgurneu
neverdroppedhiscarefreeattitude.

Adletlookedovertothehillstothenorthwest.ThereChamosJyumahad
assumedbattleformationsandweremeetingtheKyomascharge.FlyingKyoma
werealsoapproaching,butHanswashurlinghisswordsupintotheairand
cuttingthemdown.AndGoldofhadjumpedintothecenteroftheenemies,
cuttingtheKyomacomingfromeachdirectiontoshreds.Therewasnosignthat
theirdefensewouldcrumble.

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Chapter 22

WhiledodgingRoloniaswhipTgurneusaid,"YoumustnotactlikethisRolonia.
Vulgarwordswilllowerthevalueofyourheart."Hethenpulledonthechainand
spoketoAdlet."Thisshacklewasmadewell.Afterallyourhardwork,willyou
giveittome?"

Alargeamountofbloodhadspilledoutofhimandhisbodywasbeingtornto
pieces.NeverthelessTgurneudidntstophisfrivoloustalk.

Adletcouldntfigureoutwhathisintentionswere.Itseemedlikehehadjust
cometobekilled.

FremythenmovedbehindAdletandquietlysaid,"...Evenifwefightlikethiswe
wontbeabletowin."

StaringatTgurneu,Adletdidntrespond.

"DefeatingTgurneuwillneed,ataminimum,fivetimesthepowerofthisattack."

Adletwasshocked.Hehadthoughttheywerewinning,butinrealitytheywere
nothingmorethanatastandstill.

"Ifwecontinuetofightlikethiswemaybeabletowin.Butrightbeforethat
happenstheseventhwilldefinitelyattack.Theymaylaunchasurpriseattackthat
willendupkillingyou,ortheymayattackyouandpretendithadbeenfriendly
fire."

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Chapter 22

Fremylookedtothenorthwest.

"OrtheymayaimforHansorChamoand..."

MoraandRoloniaweregraduallyclosingthedistancebetweenthemselvesand
Tgurneu.However,Tgurneuwasalwayspreparedfortheirattackswithoutever
losinghissmile.

"Itsnotaproblem.Wellcarryonthefight."

"..."

"Relax.Icanseeawayforustowin."

Adlethadasecretplan,andhewasntjustconcealingitfromTgurneu,butalso
fromFremy,Mora,andRoloniatoo.

Hehadadeadlyweaponbuiltintotheleftshoulderofhisarmor.Itwashismaster
Atroslastsecretweaponwhichhedpasseddowntohimabouthalfayearago.
Atrohadcalledithisgreatestmasterpiece,aweaponwhichcouldkillanyKyoma
inasingleblow.

PuttingallofhisenergyintorestrainingTgurneuwasnothingmorethanthe
groundworkforthatfinalweapon.

111

Chapter 22

HewouldmakeFremy,MoraandRoloniafocusonwatchingoutforTgurneus
attacks.Thenwhentherewasanopportunityhewouldperformhisfinalstrike.

AdletwouldnotmissthemomentwhenTgurneusmovementswouldslowand
hisattentionwouldturnawayfromAdlet.SoforthemomentAdletwaswaiting
forthatopportunity.

MoraandRoloniaweregettingcloser.Andevenashegrippedthechain,Adlet
waswaitingforachancetojumponTgurneu.

Buttheninthatmoment,Tgurneusaid,"Ishalltellyouonegoodthing."

Ithadtakenthembysurprise.Andthethreeofthemstoppedwithoutthinking
aboutit.

"Adlet,youbelievethatfightingyoualonelikethismaybesomekindoftrap.
However,youremistaken.Icamestraightouttokillyouall."

"...Dontlistentohim,"Fremysaid.

"AnytimenowIwillstarttomakeaseriouseffort.AndthenIwillusemytrump
card."

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Chapter 22

Whatisheplanning,Adletthought.Ifhereallyintendedtouseatrumpcardthen
hewouldntneedtoannounceit.Didhehavesomekindofobjective,orwashe
justbluffing?

ThenastrangetransformationhappenedonTgurneuschest.Hisfleshbeganto
wrigglelikeithadapulsethenformedagiantamphibianmouth.

Tgurneuthrusthisrighthandintothemouthinhischest.Andatthatmoment
Adletandtheothersmoved.Roloniaswhipswungdownwardsforhisneck,and
Fremyaimedherbulletsatthenewmouth.Buteventhoughhisleftarmwasstill
connectedtothechain,Tgurneudodgedtheattackslikehewasdancing.

"Pleasepaycloseattention.Thisismytrumpcard."

Tgurneupulledouthisrighthandfromthemouthinhischest.Itwasholdinga
giantfigfruit.Hethenchewedthefruitandsaid,"Ichosethewrongthing."

FremyfiredabulletintoTgurneushead,causinghimtolurchbackwhilestill
holdingontothefig.Morathenleapedathimandrepeatedlypunchedhiminthe
sides.AndRoloniaswhiphithisshoulderandbloodgushedout.YetTgurneu
simplylaughedandfoughtback.

"Wait,Waitforme.Letmeusemysecretweapon."

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Chapter 22

AlthoughTgurneuwasrestrictedbythechain,Adlethadaneeriehunchthatthey
mustnotlethimusehissocalledtrumpcard.Iftheycouldntstophimbefore
thatthenthingswouldgetverybad.Hesearchedforamomentwherehecould
usehisownsecretweaponinhisshouldersarmor.

Buthisimpatiencecreatedanopening.SeeingAdletreleasethepowerinhisleft
arm,Tgurneupulledonthechainashardashecouldonthechainintheopposite
direction.AndthemomentAdletstaggered,Tgurneubitthroughthechain.His
powerwasdifferentthanitwasbefore.Untilnowhehadntshownhistrue
strength.

"Shit!"

Tgurneumadeagiantleapandescapedtheircirclearoundhim.Whenhelanded
hestartedtodashtowardsthereinforcementstothenorthwest.

Itwasfrighteninglyfast;eitheronparwithHansorevenfaster.Adlettriedtostop
Tgurneuwithhisthrowingknives,buthisattemptsdidntslowhimdowneven
onesecond.

"Nowisthetimetouseit."

Tgurneuagainthrusthishandintothemouthinhischestandtookoutanumber
ofexplosivesthesizeofgrapes.Andasheranhetossedthemupintothesky.

114

Chapter 22

AttheedgeoftheknollHans,Goldof,andChamowereholdingoffthe
reinforcements.ThenumberofKyomathathadappearedwasntverylarge.In
fact,itwasabout300whichwaslessthanathirtiethoftheentireKyomaforces.

Thebattlewaseven.Despitethedifferenceinnumbers,the70Jyumawere
holdingbacktheKyoma.IfTgurneujoinedthebattlehewouldbreakthe
equilibriumofthefightatonce.

"Hans!Goldof!MeetTgurneusattack!"Adletshouted.

Butbeforetheycouldrespond,thebombsTgurneuthrewexplodedinfrontof
theirfaces.Throughthesmoketheycouldseeaglitteringsilverpowderraindown
ontheJyuma.Thenextmomenttheycouldhearaburningsound,whichwas
followedbywhitesmokethatstartedtorisefromtheJyumasbodies.

"...Huh?"Chamomuttered.ButthentheJyumabegantoscreamandwrithein
painontheground.

"Meow,whatisthis?Ahh."

Hanspressedhishandstohiseyes.He,theKyomaandtheJyumawereall
coveredinthesameamountofthesilverpowder.However,theKyomawerent
displayinganysignsofsuffering.

"Whatisthis?!Everyone!Whathappened?!Getaholdofyourselves!"

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Chapter 22

ChamowasinapanicandembracedoneoftheJyumanearher.Atthesame
time,theKyomaintheareapreparedforanalloutattack.Andontopofthat,
Tgurneuwasrushingrighttowardsher.

"Hans!Goldof!ProtectChamo!"Adletshoutedandthetwoimmediatelyrushed
overtohersideandattackedtheKyomacomingtoattackher.AndFremyfired
frombehindhim,hittingTgurneuinthelegsandstoppinghissprint.

MoraandRoloniathenpursuedandattackedTgurneuinordertoprotectChamo.

Inaninstantthebattleturnedintoabrawl.AndnowthatChamosJyumacould
nolongerattack,theKyomastartedtoattacktheHeroesfromallsides.Andwhile
theFlowersdesperatelyavoidedtheirattacks,theyalsohadtodefendagainst
Tgurneusstrikes.

Chamo,however,wastheonlyonenotmoving.Shewassimplyfrozentothespot
asshestaredattheJyumathrashingontheground.

"Chamo!Pullyourselftogether!"Adletshoutedasheprotectedherfromthe
approachingKyoma.ButChamodidntseemtohaveheardwhathedsaid.She
didntseemtobeabletoseethesituationaroundher.Shejustclungtoagiant
slugJyumaandstartedtowipeoffthesilverpowerthatclungtoitsskin.

"Whatisthis?!Itshot!Itssohot!"

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Chapter 22

AsChamowipeddowntheJyumasbodysmokealsobegantorisefromherbody.
InaflashAdletunderstoodwhatwasgoingon.Thesilverpowderwascausinga
heatreactiontooccur.

HehadlearnedfromAtrothattherewerechemicals,whentouched,wouldcause
extremeheat.PerhapsthebombsTgurneuhadthrownabouthadscatteredthat
chemicalpowder.AndsinceallofChamosJyumawereamphibiantypecreatures,
theheatwouldbefatal.Tgurneustrumpcardwasanextremelypowerful
crushingblow.

AdletlookedaroundandsawRoloniasurroundedbyTgurneuandtheKyoma.She
wasreceivingthebruntoftheirattack,whileMoraandFremytriedtoprotecther
asbesttheycould.

"Chamo!MaketheJyumafightforus!Wellbewipedoutiftheydont."

"Chamocant!Everyoneisinjured.Iftheyarenttreatedquicklytheywillalldie!"

Chamothenstartedtosoblikeachild.Sheopenedhermouthwideand
screamed,"Uuuh!Everyone!Comeback!Comeback!"

AndonebyonetheJyumacoveredinsilverpowderweresuckedintoChamos
mouth.Eachtimesheswallowedone,Chamogruntedinpain.Thenshevomited
outaboilingwhitemucus.TheJyumawerebeingcleansedofthesilverpowder
clingingtothemwithintheswampinherstomach.

117

Chapter 22

"Everyonecomeback!Youllbewornoutanddestroyedifyoustaylikethis!
ChamoshoutedandgraduallytheJyumafadedfromthebattlefield.

Chamo!Dontpullthemback!Adletshoutedunconsciously.

"Shutup!"ChamoagainsuckedinanumberofJyumaandvomitedoutthewhite
mucus.

"Thinkaboutthesituation!Wellbewipedoutwithoutthem."

"Shutup!Shutup!Shutup!Chamodoesntcareaboutthat!

AsChamoscreamedandstompedherfeetinfrustration,theKyomawererushing
towardsher.Adletstrainedhimselftoholdthemoff.

"Chamospetsareinpain!Theyarecutechildrenandtheyaresayingtheyarein
painandthatithurts!Whatdoyouknow?!Chamospetsareinpain!"

AlloftheJyumahadleftthebattlefieldandnowthreehundredKyomawere
bearingdownontheHeroesoftheSixFlowers.

Theheroeshadcompletelylostcontrol.TheKyomasurroundingthemwere
attackingwithalltheirmight.AndTgurneuhadstoppedfightingandwasnowjust
watchingthebattlefromadistance.

118

Chapter 22

"Youmessedup,isntthatrightAdlet?"Tgurneuasked."Youallshouldhaverun.
Youshouldhaveatleastknownthatyouwerentpreparedforthisfight."

"...Shit!"

CuttingdowntheKyomacomingtowardshim,Adletpointedhisswordat
Tgurneu.

"StopAdlet!Youllbekilled,"Fremyshouted,butshetoohadherhandsfull
fightingtheKyomaandcouldntassisthim.

"Getback!Yourenomatchforhim!"Morasaid,butherwarningdidntmake
AdletlowertheswordhehadaimedatTgurneu.

"Itdbebetterifyougaveupthisrashbehavior.Irecommendyoutorun,"
Tgurneusaidandthenlaughed.

"...U,uaahhh!"AdletscreamedandchargedatTgurneu.Fromanoutsiders
perspective,itwouldprobablylooklikeAdletwererushingtowardsTgurneuto
attackhiminablindrage.ItwasclearthatnomatterhowhardAdletstruggledhe
wouldnotbeabletolandasolidhitonTgurneu.

However,Adlethadaplan.Hisseeminglyrecklessattackwasjustanactinorder
tomakeTgurneudrophisguard.Anditwoulddefinitelycreateanopeningin

119

Chapter 22

Tgurneusdefense.Andasifrealizinghissuperiority,theKyomarelaxedhisguard.
TohimitwouldlooklikeAdlethadlostallrationalsense.

"...Youvesuccumbedtodespair,"Tgurneusaidasheextendedhisarmandswung
itdownwardslikeasword.

Adletrolledalongtheground,easilyavoidingtheattack.Thenimmediatelyhegot
backonhisfeetandcontinuedhisadvance.

"Meow!Whatareyoudoing?!"HansrushedovertoAdletinordertoprotecthim.
Andforjustamomentthetwoofthemexchangedglances.

SomeonelikeHansshouldrealizethatAdletwastryingtodrawawayTgurneus
attentionbyactingasadecoy.HeshouldbeabletodowhatAdletwished.

TgurneushovedAdletawayandhecrashedtotheground.ThreeKyoma
approachedfrombehindhim,twoofwhichwerebarringhimfromescapingto
theleftorright.ButAdletgotbackonhisfeet,ignoredthethreeKyoma
surroundinghimandpointedhisswordatTgurneu.

"Watchout!"

AtthatmomentHansmadeagiantleapintothecircleofKyoma.

120

Chapter 22

EveryoneprobablythoughtthatAdlethadlostcontrolofhimselfandthatHans
wastryingtohelphim.ButAdletcaughtHanswithhisarms,whothenusedthem
asasteppingstooltolaunchhimselfatTgurneu.

Tgurneuwascaughtbysurprise.Hetookadefensiveposturetotryandblock
Hanssword.ButHanswasnttryingtoattackhim.

HanswasaimingfortheshacklebitingintoTgurneusleftarmandthetipofthe
tornoffchainextendingfromit.Stillintheair,Hanssheathedhisswordand
grabbedthechain.Thenwithallthestrengthinhisbodyheyankedonthemetal,
restrainingTgurneusleftarm.

AtthesametimeAdlethadthrownasmokepelletathisfeet.TheKyoma
surroundinghimstoppedmovingandinaninstantAdlethadescapedtheircircle.

TgurneutriedtotearHansawaywithhisrightarm,butMorarushedoverand
seizeditinherarms.

AndasAdletranatTgurneu,whohadbothofhishandsrestrained,hepulledout
thesecretweaponbuiltintothearmorofhisleftshoulder.

Itwasanailabout20centimeterslong.Fromtheoutsideitlookedlikesome
ordinarynail.However,thetipofthenailhousedthebloodofaSaint.

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Chapter 22

ItwascommonknowledgethatthebloodofSaintswaspoisonfortheKyoma.But
otherthantheSaintofFreshBloodtherewasnoonewhohaduseditasa
weaponuptillnow.ThatwasbecauseinordertokillanupperlevelKyomalike
Tgurneu,onewouldrequiretouseaboutacupofblood.Atrohadsucceededin
extractingthepoisonfromtheSaintsbloodandcrystalizingit.Andthetipofthe
nailwasmadefromthatpoisoncrystal.

IfaKyomawerestabbedwiththatnail,thepoisonwouldinstantaneouslyrun
throughtheirbody.Curingitwithsomekindofantidotenorextractingitfromthe
bodywithsomeabilitywerecompletelyimpossible.

AtrohadnamedittheNailoftheSaintsandhadcalledithisgreatest
masterpiece.

Sensingdanger,TgurneutriedtokickAdlet,butAdletbentdown,dodgedthe
attack,andthentookastepforward.GraspingtheNailoftheSaintstightly,he
stabbeditintoTgurneusside.

EightyearsagothatKyomahadstolenhishometown.Hissisterhadbeenkilled,
hedlosthisbestfriendandhispeacefullifehadbeenlost.

TokillthatKyoma.Thatwasthesolereasonhehadgottenstronger.

AdletthrusttheNailoftheSaintsdeeperintoTgurneusstomach.

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Chapter 22

"Ididit!"

"SpotonAdlet!"BothMoraandHansshoutedastheyjumpedawayfrom
Tgurneu.

ThenasoundcamefromTgurneuashisbodystartedtoconvulseviolently,asign
ofthepoisonflowingthroughhim3.

Theinitialsymptomswerethatthebodysnervoussystemwouldfallintomassive
disorderandseverepainwouldattackthebody.AfterthattheKyomawouldlose
allsenseofequilibrium.Andontopofthattheywouldhavehallucinations,hear
voices,andexperiencealossofmemory.Whatwaswaitingforthemattheendof
theirfiveortendaysofsufferingwascertaindeath.

Standingrightwherehewas,AdletjuststaredattheconvulsingTgurneu.Hefelta
terriblesenseofcalm.Itwasapeacefulfeeling.

Wasitenough,Adletthought.

"Lookout!"Morashouted,justasAdletwasviciouslyhitintheface.Andright
awayhestartedtoloseconsciousnesswithoutanytimetoevenconsiderwhat
hadhappened.

3
IntheJapanesethereisanonomatopoeiasound Howeveritmayhavebeencreatedbythe
authorasIcantfindanydefinitionsforthesound.

123

Chapter 22

"Adlet,areyoureallytryingtokillme?"

Ashisvisionfadedtoblack,thelastthinghesawwasTgurneuwiththeNailofthe
Saintsstillinhisside,calmlyshakinghisfist.

124

Chapter 23

ChapterTwo:PartThree

MorahadthoughtthatTgurneuwasfinished.WhenAdlethadstabbedthenail
likeweaponintoTgurneusside,shethoughttheyhadfinallygraspedvictoryinto
theirhands.TgurneuwasviolentlyconvulsingandAdlettriedtocheckwhetherhe
hadwon,staringsimplyatTgurneuasifhewereenjoyingthespectacle.

ButthenTgurneuswunghisarmatAdletasifnothinghadhappened.

"Lookout!"Fremyshouted,butitwastoolate.Adletsbodytwirledthroughthe
air,crashedtotheground,andtumbledabout20metersbeforecomingtoa
completestop.

"Adlet!"Fremyscreamedinadespairingvoice.

"...What?Adkun?"Roloniaasked,whohadbeenspewingvulgaritiesatthe
Kyomawhilekickingthemaround.

Thenhereyeswidened.Asifthewhipswingingwarriorhadbeenadifferent
personentirely,shereturnedtothetimidgirlshehadbeenbefore.

TheKyomastartedtorushovertowardsAdlet'sfallenbodytofinishhimoff,but
beforetheycouldreachhimMorajumpedtohissideandliftedhimontoher
shoulder.Feelinghisneck,sheverifiedthathisbonesweren'tbrokenandthathe
wasstillbreathing.

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Chapter 23

"Hey,areyoualive?"Tgurneuasked,withthenailstillstabbedinhisside.He
calmlyapproachedMoraasKyomaassembledaroundhimtoprotecthim.

Thebattlewashopeless.ChamowasnolongerfightingandtheyhadlostAdlet.
FarfrombeingabletokillTgurneu,itwaslikelythattheywouldallbeannihilated.

Wehavenochoicebuttousethetrumpcard,MorathoughtasshecarriedAdlet.

"Mora,doyoustillintendtofight?Well,thatstobeexpectedIsuppose."

GlaringatTgurneu,Morapreparedherselfforwhatwastocome.Retreatwasnot
anoptionandtheycouldn'trunawayfromanopportunitytokillTgurneu.

MorahadareasonwhyshehadtokillTgurneu,butthemomentshemadeupher
mindtotakeactionHansappearedinfrontofherandstoodinherway.Hetook
Adlet'sunconsciousbodyfromMoraandsaid,"Mora.Let'sgetoutofhere.You
stilldon'thavetouseit."

Hansmostlikelydidn'tknowaboutthetrumpcard.However,justbylookingat
Morasexpressionheunderstoodthatshewasabouttodosomething.

MorastrumpcardinvolvedblowingherselfupalongwithTgurneu.

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Chapter 23

"Mora,holdTgurneu,meow!Goldofwillbringeveryone'spossessions!Other
thanthat,everyonerun!"Hansshouted.

Hethenran,weavinghiswaythroughtheKyomarushingtowardshim.Hepicked
upChamowhowascrouchingandspittingoutsomemucuslikesubstance.Then
whilecarryingbothherandAdlethedashedfasterthantheeyecouldsee.

"Letgoofmeidiot!Idiot,idiot,idiot!Chamocanstillfight!"ChamohitHansback
overandover,buthedidn'tpayheranymind.

"WhatmakesyouthinkI'llletyougo?"Tgurneuaskedashestartedtopursue
Hans,butMoranoticedandattackedhimfromhisside.

Hans'wordshadhelpedMoraregainhercomposure.Thiswouldn'tbetheonly
chancetheywouldhavetokillTgurneu.Theyshouldescapeandregaintheir
strength.

"Mora,I'llbackyouup."Fremysaid,throwingabombthatscatteredtheKyoma
aroundTgurneu.

"Run...run....how..."Shakenup,RoloniablockedtheKyoma'sattackswhilelooking
aroundhersurroundings.

"Rolonia!Getoutofheretoo!FollowHans!"Morashouted.

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Finallycomingtohersenses,RoloniafollowedinHans'direction.However,the
knollwascompletelysurrounded.RoloniaswungherwhipandHansfoughtback
againsttheKyomawithhisfeet,butthetwoofthemcouldn'tfindawayout.

"Everyonegetdown!"Fremyshoutedandchuckedbombsallovertheplace
indiscriminately.AnumberofKyomawereblowntopieces,andevenRoloniaand
Hanswereinjured.Neverthelessitmanagedtoopenasmallwayout.

"Mora!Let'sgetoutofheretoo!"FremyfiredherrifleatTgurneu,andtakingthat
opportunityMoraandFremyturnedtheirbacksonhimandran.

"Headtothemountains!RununtilyoureachTheEternalFlower!"

MoraandtheothersslippedoutfromtheKyomasurroundingthemandrushed
downtheknoll.Goldofjoinedthemcarryingalloftheirbelongings,andtheyall
headedtothemountain,whichatthemomentwassofarawaythatitlookedlike
alump.

"Fremy,youandIwillbringuptherear,"Morasaidastheyran.

Tgurneuwasapproachingthemwithunbelievablespeed.AnditwasFremyand
Mora'sjobtokeephimatbay.

"Theresnoneedtoworry.I'mmoreskilledatrunningawayfrombattles."Fremy
said,andthenreadiedherrifle.

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Moraandtheotherscontinuedtorun,distancingthemselvesfromtheknolland
leavingthevalley.However,theirescapewastakingthemawayfromthe
continenttotheeastanddeeperintotheWailingDemonTerritorytothewest.

Escapingthebattleprovedtobefiercerthantheactualbattle.Andtheperson
takingonthemostdangerousrolewasMora,whowasrunningatthegroup'stail.
ShehadtodefendagainstTgurneu'sattackswhilecontinuingtoescapeaswell.

"Guu!"

Tgurneuwaschasingafterthemonceagain.Andwhenhecameinrange,Mora
hadtojumptothesidetododgehisfist.Thenoneafteranothersheblockedhis
attackswithherownarmoredfists.

Helpingherfrombehind,FremyfiredherbulletsatTgurneuwhichgrazedby
Mora'sface.WhenTgurneubentbackwardstododgethebullets,Morakicked
himinthegutandran.FremythenthrewabombatTgurneu,stoppinghiminhis
tracks.

Fremywasntbluffingwhenshesaidshewasskilledatescapingfrombattles.It
waspreciselybecauseofFremy'sassistancethatMorawassomehowmanaging
togetaway.

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TheHeroestravelingaheadofthemwerenthavinganeasytimeeither.Overand
overagainHansandtheotherswereattackedbytheKyomaambushingand
surroundingthem.However,Roloniamanagedtoblocktheirattacks.

Whentheygotoutofthevalleytheycouldseeamidsizedmountaininthe
distancewithHansandGoldofalreadyrushingupit.Beyondthatwas"TheBudof
Eternity"andiftheycouldmanagetoreachthatpointtheywouldbesafeforthe
timebeing.

ThenumberofKyomapursuingthemwasgraduallydecreasing.Thoughthey
haventdistancedthemselvesfromTgurneu,theotherKyomathathehad
broughtwithhimwerebeingcutdownonebyone.

"Lookout!"

Tgurneuleapedtowardsthemandwhenhelandedhebegantograpplewith
Mora.Sherestrainedhiswristswithbothofherhandsandthetwoofthem
enteredintoapowerstruggle.Tgurneu'sstrengthwasoverwhelmingandeven
withthepowerofthegodofmountainsittookallhermightjusttoholdhimfor
severalseconds.

"Mora!"FremyshoutedasshecametoMora'srescue.

ShethrewsomebombsbehindTgurneuandtheirexplosionsstunnedhimfora
second.Quicklytakingadvantageoftheopportunity,MoraflungTgurneuaside
andresumedherescape.

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Tgurneugotbackup,butwincing,hestaggeredslightlyandwasunabletofully
stand.Lookingclosely,itwasclearthatTgurneuwasalsoinjured.Hehad
withstoodmultipleattacksfromMora,Fremy,andRolonia.Andthoughitdidn't
seemlikeithadbeeneffective,Adlet'snaillikeweaponwasstillstabbedintohis
stomach.

"...IthinkTgurneuwillwithdrawsoon,"Fremysaidwhileaimingherrifleathim.
TheEternalFlowerwasprobablyjustseveralminutesaway.However,theKyoma
werescatteredaboutandalmostnonewerefollowingafterthem.

Tgurneugaveabroadsmileandtookagiantstepback.

"Ithasbeenabouthalfayearsinceyouleft,anditseemslikeyouhavematured
considerably.I'mhappy."

Fremydidn'trespond.

"Itmustbelonely,huhFremy?AndI'msurethatyoumusthaveabunchofthings
youdliketotalkabout.Hey,whydon'tyoureturntous?Betrayingyouwas
unavoidable.EvennowI...."

Fremyfiredabulletathisface,cuttinghimoff.However,hecaughttheprojectile
withhisteeththenspatittothegroundandshrugged.

"Getlost."

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"IunderstandhowyoufeelFremy.Youreafraidthatyourresolvemightfalter.
Andyourethinkingthatifwecontinuetotalklikethisyoullbepersuaded.
Naturallyyouresuchasweetchild.

MorawatchedinsilenceasFremygroundherteeth.Herpositionwas
complicated.AndprobablythefeelingssheharboredtowardsTgurneuwerealso
complicated.

Asshelookedonatthetwoofthemglaringatoneanother,Morarecalledthe
eventsfromanhourearlier.ItwasbeforetheyhadbeenambushedbyTgurneu's
surpriseattack,whenshehadencounteredthestrangeKyomaintheValleyof
SpilledBlood.

Themessagewrittenonitsbackhadsaidthatshewasoutoftime.Itwaswithout
adoubtamessagefromTgurneu.

"..."

Morawantedtoaskwhathehadmeantbythat.Butshewouldn'tbeabletohave
thatdiscussionwhileFremywaswatching.Hercompanionsmustnotfind
outaboutthesecretdealshe'dmadewithTgurneuthreeyearsago.

Theyshouldntevensuspectthatsuchadealhadoccurred.

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"Mora,weshouldgoalready.I'mworriedaboutAdlet,"Fremysaid,then
graduallysteppedback.Tgurneudidn'tlooklikehewouldfollowthem.Hejust
idlystoodtherewithoutanyindicationthathe'dmakeamove.

"IsitreallyalrightifIletyouallendthisfight?"Tgurneuasked.

Fremyignoredhim,butMorastopped.

"Thismightbeyourlastchancetokillme.Andsinceyoureoutoftime,perhapsit
isyouronlyone."

"Whatdoyoumeanbythat?"Moraaskedwithoutthinking.

"Youhavetwodaysremaining.Thingswillbecomeverybadforyouifyouarenot
abletokillmebythen.Verybadindeed."

"Twodaysleft?"Moraasked,asFremypulledonhershoulder.

"Don'tworryabouthim.It'sabluff.Hewouldn'thonestlytellusthatifsomething
werereallygoingtohappenintwodays."

"...But."

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MorawashesitatingandFremywasurginghertorun.Andlookingatthetwoof
them,Tgurneulaughedandwavedatthem.

"JustasFremyadvised,let'sletthisgofortoday.GoodbyeHeroesoftheSix
Flowers.Untilnexttime,"Tgurneusaid.

Hethenturnedaroundandleft.Hewassomuchfasterthanshewasthatthere
wasnowayMoracouldfollowhim.

Therewerenosignsofanyenemiesinthevicinity.Somehowitseemedlikethe
battlehadreallyended.Takingraggedbreaths,Morastaredoninthedirection
Tgurneuhaddeparted.

"Hedidalotofplayingaround.WassuchapersononeoftheKyoma
commanders?"

"Asalways,hemakesmesicktomystomach,"Fremysaid,andthenshepointed
herrifleatMora.

Morawasn'tsosurprised.Shedidn'tthinkFremywasanenemy.Ifshewere,she
wouldhaveattackedherwhileTgurneuwasstillthere.

"WhatareyoudoingFremy?!"

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"IhavesomethingIwanttoaskyouMora,"Fremysaid,butmurderousintent
wasnotpresentinhereyes.Ratheritwassuspicion.Fremywasquestioning
whethershereallywasn'ttheseventh.

"WhathappenedbetweenyouandTgurneu?"

"...Whydoyouthinksomethinghappened?"

"Somethingaboutyourexpressionseemedstrangewhenhesaid,'you'reoutof
time.'"

Mora'sheartracedinherchest,butshedesperatelytriedtopretendshewas
calm.Andtosupportthatshecreatedanexpressionofconfusioninresponseto
theunfoundedsuspicion.

"Strange?IfIhadagunpointedatmeforeachreasontherewaslikethat,then
evenifIhadamillionlivesIwouldntbeabletohandlethemall.

"Don'tevadethequestion.Answermedirectly."

"IfIweretosaythere'snothingwouldyoubesatisfied?"Moradrewcloserto
Fremyandgrabbedthemuzzleofherrifle.Shethenforceditdownward."Fremy,

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it'sgoodthatyouaretryingtoseethroughtotheseventh'strueidentity.Butyou
shouldn'tbroadcast1yourmurderousfeelings."

Fremydidn'trespond;shejuststaredintoMora'seyes.

"Actuallyyourethesuspiciousone.Youcouldbepretendingtosearchforthe
seventhbutreallybelookingforanopportunitytokillourcompanions.Andwhat
doyouthinktheotherswoulddoifIclaimedthatafteryouaccusedmeyoutried
tokillme?"

"...Iunderstand."Fremyputawayherrifle.Thenshestartedtoruntowards'The
EverlastingBud'.

Morafollowedbehindher.She'dsomehowbeenabletosidestepthepointin
question.ButhadIbeenabletodoitwell?Morawondered.

Bynatureshewasn'tskilledatlyingandrarelyconcealedanything.Moramadeit
aprincipletodothingsupfront,andupuntilnowshe'dlivedherlifethatway.She
hadlivedherlifebelievingthattolivehonestlywithoutbeingtwofacedwasthe
bestwaytoachievehappiness.

"IhadthoughtTgurneuwasjustbluffing,butthenhedeclaredaspecifictime
whichcaughtmyinterest.Iwonderwhathemeantbythereweretwodaysleft."

1
Checked and this phrase has been used before TV/ radio to refer to spreading information/seeds since
early 1800s

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"...Idon'tknow."

Moradidn'tthinkthatTgurneu'swordswereabluff.Onthecontrary,shewas
surehewastellingthetruth,sincetherewasnowaythatTgurneucouldlieto
her.

Morathenrecalledtheeventsthathadtranspiredthreeyearsago.Thetime
whenshehadtoputupwithmakingadealwithTgurneu.

Intheoldcastledevoidofanysignsofhumanlife,MorastaredatTgurneusitting
atopamountainofrubble.BesideherwasMarmanna,lookingatMoraanxiously.

ItwassafetosayMorawaslostabouteverything.However,shecouldn'tkillthe
HeroesoftheSixFlowers.Ifshedidthatshewouldbetrayallthehumanslivingin
theworld.

Whatshouldshedotosaveherdaughter?Tgurneuwasofferingthetroubled
Moravariousproposalstoaccomplishthatfeat.

"Whydon'twecompromise?Itsokayifyouonlykilloneperson.Justoneperson
amongthesix.Thatwouldbesomethingyoucouldaccept,wouldn'tit?"

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Moradidn'trespond.

"Igiveup.Evensomethinglikethatisnogood...?You'reacruelmother."Tgurneu
saidasMora'sbodytrembledinanger.

"Forstarters,itdoesn'tseemlikelythatyouwillreturnmydaughterifIcarryout
thispromise."

"Hmm..."

"YouKyomabreakyourpromiseswithhumanslikeitsnothing.SoaslongasI
don'thaveproofyouwillcarryoutyourpromisethesenegotiationscan'tgo
forward,"Morasaid,andTgurneugrinned.

"You'reright."

"...Aboutwhat?"

"SurelyifIwouldliketobevictoriousthenIwouldliewithoutgivingitasecond
thought.IshouldhavenointentionofkeepingthepromisesImakewith
humans."

Washesayingthatfromthebeginninghehadnointentionoffreeingher
daughter?Morathought.

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"However,thistimethecircumstancesaredifferent.YoumustbelievethatIwill
unquestionablykeepmypromisetoyou.Kidnappingisacrimeoftrust.Ifthereis
noseedofatrustingrelationshipbetweenthevictimsandtheassailantthenthe
criminalactwillnotsucceed."

"Youwantmetotrustyou?"

TgurneuthenglancedatMarmannasittingnexttoMora.

"IthelpsthattheSaintofWordsishere.Intheeventthatanegotiationis
achieved,IshallpledgetotheSaintofWords,promisingthatifIbreakthe
contractwithyouIwouldgiveupmylife."

Mora'sheartquivered.Shethoughtabouthisproposalforamoment,andthen
answered.

"Ican'tdothat."

"...Why?"

"TheKyomasexistenceisonethattheywillthrowawaywithoutanyhesitationif
itisinordertoachievevictory.ButwhatassurancedoIhavethatyoursinglelife
wouldmakeadifference?"

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"Isee.Iexpectedsuchaquestion."

Tgurneuclosedhiseyesandthoughtforawhile."Whatyouarepointingoutis
quiteright.However,therearenoKyomathatcouldbeconsideredmyequals.Of
themultitudesofKyomaIamamongthemostpowerfulandIamoneofthe
commandersthatleadsfortypercentoftheKyoma.IfIweretodietheKyoma
wouldlosetheirchainofcommandanditwouldbeasevereblowthatthey
wouldn'trecoverfrom.InordertowinagainsttheHeroesoftheSixFlowersmy
existenceisessential."

"...AKyomacommander?"

Itwasaphrasetheycouldbelievein.Theywereonlylookingathim,butMora
couldtellthathepossessedfearsomepower.Andtheinformationthathe
commandedfortypercentoftheKyomadidn'tseemlikealie.

"Ithinkofferingalifesuchasminemakesthisaproposalworthtrusting."

"Marmanna.Canyouconfirmthathiswordsaregenuine?"

MarmannaextendedherfingerandborrowingthepoweroftheGodofWords,a
smallballoflightwasproducedatthetip.ItthenflewintoTgurneu'smouth.

"Tryrepeatingwhatyousaidbefore."

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"IamaKyomacommander.IcommandfortypercentoftheKyomaforces.IfI
weretodietheKyomawouldlosetheirchainofcommandanditwouldinflict
adevastatingblow.IfIamnotheretheKyomaprobablycannotdefeattheHeroes
oftheSixFlowers."

Ifhehadbeenlyingtheballoflightwouldhavebeenexpelledfromhismouth
andreturnedtoMarmanna.Buttheballremainedwithinhim.

"...It'sthetruth.Tgurneuisspeakingthetruth,"Marmannasaid.Nevertheless,
nowMoracouldn'ttrusthimevenmore.

"Areyoustillunabletotrustme?Wellthenlet'sdothis.IwillpledgetotheSaint
ofWordsthatIwillneverlietoyou.IfIdo,thenitwouldbeokayformyinsidesto
betornandscatteredabout.Whilewe'reatit,IwillpromisethatIwillrelease
yourdaughteraswell,"Tgurneusaidthenpointedtotheplacewherehisheart
wouldbeifhewereahuman.

ThecorefortheKyomawasequivalenttoabrain.AndthoughhewasaKyoma
thatboastedanoverwhelmingvitality,ifhiscoreweredestroyedhewouldsurely
die.AKyomaabsolutelyhadjustonecore.Theyweresphereswithametallic
shinethatrangedfromasbigas50centimetersindiametertososmallthatthey
weresmallerthanthetipofapinky.

"Letmeactuallyshowyou."Tgurneupressedhishandtohischest.Then
hecreatedatearinthefleshofhischestandexposedhisorgans.Buthoweverhis
bodymayhavebeencomposed,notasingledropofbloodcameout.He
wascertainlypointingtotheplacewherehiscorewaslocated.

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"Well,doyoutrustme?"

"SetupacontractwiththeSaintofWords.IfyoudothatIwilltrustyou."

MarmannanoddedandborrowedthepoweroftheSaintofWords.Aballoflight
wasformedanditwasabsorbedintoTgurneusbody.

"Ipledge.IwillnotlietoMora.IfIlie,thenitwouldbeokayforthecoreinmy
chesttobesmashedtopieces.AndatthesametimeIwouldkilltheparasite
withinShenieraschestwithoutanyhesitation."

Tgurneu'sbodylitup,signalingthecompletionofthecontract.

"Isthisalright?Finallywecanbeginthenegotiation,"Tgurneusaidwithasighand
ashrug."WellthenIshallmakemydemandsagain.Iwantyoutokilloneofthe
HeroesoftheSixFlowers."

"Ican'tacceptthatdemand.I'llgiveyoumylifeinstead.Willthatbeenoughto
satisfyyou?"

Tgurneushookhisheadfromsidetoside."Irefuse.Anotherpersonwilljustbe
chosentobecomeaFlowerifyouarekilled."

"Asley,Weylynn,orNashetania.InadditiontomylifeIwillgiveyouthelifeofone
oftheSaintsthatwillonedaybechosenasaHero.Wouldthatbeacceptable?"

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"Hey!"thepersonwhoshoutedwasMarmannalisteningtotheside."Whatare
youthinking?Youplanonmurderingthem?"

"Weren'tyoulistening?Thatistheplan."

"...You'reoutofyourmind!"

Youreright,Morathought.Theresnowaythemotherofadaughterwhohad
beentakenhostagewouldntbeoutofhermind.

"Thatwon'twork.IonlywantthelifeofaHerooftheSixFlowers.Nomatterhow
manycandidatesyoukillIwillnotreturnyoudaughter.Mydemandistokillone
oftheFlowers.Thatisall."

Tgurneurejectedherproposal.Thinkingthatshehadnochoice,Moraconceded.

"IwillbechosenasoneoftheHeroes.ThenafterIamchosen,atthattimeIwill
endmylife.Howdoyoufeelaboutthat?"

"...That'snogood."

"Why?!"

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"IfyouarenotchosenasoneoftheFlowers,thentakingahostagewouldbe
meaningless.AnddoyouthinkthattheGoddessofFatewouldchoosepeople
whoarebrimmingwiththedesiretokillthemselves?Ihavenointentionof
changingmydemand.KilloneoftheHeroes.Thatisit."

ForalongtimeMoraandTgurneustaredatoneanother.Buttherewasno
indicationthatTgurneuwouldgivein.

"Youunderstand,don'tyou?Ifwearenotabletoreachadealthentherewillbe
noreasonformetoletyourdaughtertokeeponliving."

"..."

"That'sunfortunate,"Tgurneusaidandstartedtostand.

"Wait.Ihaveacondition."IfshebrokeoffthenegotiationsthenShenierawould
die,soshehadnochoicebuttorespondthatway."Ifyoudie,immediately
releasemydaughter.EvenifIdon'tkilloneoftheHeroes."

"...I'msorry,butIcan'tacceptthat.IfIdidthenyouwouldjustsetaboutkilling
mewithallyourmight."Tgurneushookhishead.

"Let'sestablishadeadline.IpromisetokilloneoftheFlowersbythattime.Butif
youaretodiebeforethenthecontractwillbecomeinvalid.Iabsolutelywillnot
concedethiscondition."

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"Hmm..."Tgurneuplacedahandonhisnarrowchinandthoughtsilentlyfora
moment."Whenwillthisdeadlinebe?"

"TwentytwodaysaftertheMajinawakens.Ifyouarestillalivebythen,Ipromise
tokilloneoftheHeroesonthatday."

Keepinghishandonhischin,Tgurneuthoughtforawhile."...That'sappropriate,"
hesaid."Iunderstand.Ishallacceptthatcondition."

TheyhadfinallysettledononeconditionandnowMoracouldseeapathto
savingSheniera.

"Bythe22nddayafterTheMajinawakens,youwillkilloneoftheHeroesofthe
SixFlowers.ButifIdiebeforethatthenthecontractwillbecomeinvalidandyour
daughterwillalsobereleased.Isthatokay?"

Moranodded.

"Iwanttoaddanotherrequest.Untilthepromiseddeadlinecomesdon'ttouch
mydaughter."

"Ofcourse.Ipromise.Untilthe22nddayaftertheMajinawakenspassesthe
Kyomaundermewillnottouchyourdaughter.AndtheKyomathatIdonot
commandwillalsoabsolutelynottouchher."

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Theyhadsomehowmanagedtomakeadeal.Yet,thoughshewouldbeableto
saveSheniera,apathhadbeencreatedthatwouldleadhertoendupkillingone
oftheFlowers.SoitwouldbegoodforhertokillTgurneuwithinthetwentytwo
daysaftertheMajin'srevival.

"Iwouldliketoaddtwoconditionsontopofthis.Ifyoubecomeunabletofulfill
yourpromise,Iwillgetyourdaughter'slife.Inotherwords,ifyoudiebeforeyou
killoneoftheHeroes.Also,ifyoukillyourselfafteryouarechosenasoneofthe
Heroesthatwillnotbeconsideredfulfillingyourpromise."

Thefirsthalfwasademandshecouldconsentto.ButtheotheroneMora
thoughtwasastrangeproposal.IfhisobjectiveweretokilloneoftheHeroesof
theSixFlowersthenshouldn'ttherenotbeanyproblemswithMorakilling
herself?

MorahadplannedtokillTgurneubythedeadlineoftheircontract.Andifshe
couldn'tkillhimbythenshehadintendedtoendherownlifetosaveSheniera.
Butnowshewaspreventedfromusingthatsolution.

Shecouldremainfirmonthatpoint,butifthenegotiationsbrokeoffShenieras
lifewouldbelost.

"Ishallacceptthatcondition."

"...Havewereachedanagreement?"

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"ThereisonemorethingIwanttocheck.IfyouandIendupkillingeachother,
whatwillhappen?"

"Atthattimeyouwouldbevictoriousandyourdaughterwillbereleased."

"Ifthat'sso,thengood."

MorabeckonedMarmannatouseherpower.Ifshedidn'treceivetheSaintof
Wordsguaranteeonthecontractthenthenegotiationscouldnotbefinalized.

TheballoflightMarmannaproducedwentintoTgurneu'sbody.

"TgurneupledgesthatwhenmylifeendstheparasitewithinShenierasbodywill
alsobemadetodieatthesametime.EvenwhenMoraandIendupkillingone
anothertheparasitewillbemadetodie.IfthiscontractisbrokenthenIwouldnt
careifmysubordinateKyomaalldie."

"Tgurneuifyouaregoingtoofferlivesotherthanyourownasreparationthenwe
musthavetheirconsent."

"Isthatso?Wellthen,whatshouldwedo?"

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"ThroughthepoweroftheGodofWordsIwillconfirmtheintentionsofyour
underlings.I'lltryaskingthemwhetherornottheywillthrowawaytheirlivesif
youcommandit."

Marmannaclosedhereyesandfellsilent.Thenafterawhilesheopenedthem
againandsaid,"Tgurneu'sunderlingshavealldeclaredthatitwouldn'tmatterif
theydiedifTgurneucommandedit.Thecontractisvalid."

Tgurneu'sbodyglimmered,markingthecompletionofthefirstcontract.

"I,TgurneupledgethatwhenMorakillsoneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers,Iwill
maketheparasitewithinSheniera'schestdie.Ifthiscontractisbrokenitisokay
formetodie.However,ifMoracommitssuicidethecontractwillbeconsidered
invalid."

"Moradoyouagreetotheseterms?"

"Iagreetothoseterms,"Morasaid,completinganothercontract.

"I,Tgurneupledgethatuntilthe22nddayaftertheMajin'sawakeningpassesno
KyomawillinflictharmuponSheniera.Ifthispledgeisbrokenthenitwouldbe
okayformetodie.

ButinthecasethatMoradiesbeforethe22nddayaftertheMajin'sawakening
passesthenthiscontractwillbecomeinvalid."

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"...Iagree."

Tgurneu'sbodyilluminated,signifyingthefinalizationofalltheircontracts.

Andwiththattheirtalkswerefinished.MorahadtokillTgurneubeforethe22nd
dayaftertheMajin'sawakeningpassed.Ifshedidn'tthenshewouldhavetokill
oneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers.Ifshecouldn'tdoeitherthenSheniera
woulddie.

"Well,ImgoingtoheadbacktotheWailingDemonTerritory.Farewell.Weshall
meetagain."

Tgurneustoodandwalkedtowardstheentranceoftheoldcastle.Inthatmoment
MorakickedawayherchairasshestoodupandthenlashedoutatTgurneuwith
herfists.

"Whoa!"TgurneusaidashestoppedMoraslethalblow.

Morathentriedafollowupattack,butTgurneuturnedaroundandflewoutfrom
thewindow.Shewasgoingtofollowhim,buthesoonslippedintotheblackof
nightandshecouldnolongerseehim.

"...Mora.Thisisunthinkable.DoyoureallyintendonkillingoneoftheFlowers?"

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"Never.IfIkillthatKyomaIwillsavemydaughter.Thatisall."

Moracontinuedtostareintothedeadofnight.Itwasprobablysafetosaythe
negotiationshadendedwithagoodresult.Shehadbeenabletoguarantee
Shenierassafety.AndifshecouldkillTgurneushewouldn'thavetoendupkilling
oneoftheHeroes.AndasabonusherdealnowpreventedTgurneufromlyingto
her.

Butarethingsreallyokay?Morawondered.ShegotthefeelingTgurneuwas
layingoutevenmoretraps.

TherewasprobablynomistakingthatthemeaningofwhatTgurneuhadsaidto
beanythingotherthanshehadtwodayslefttosaveSheniera.Butwhatdidthat
mean?

MoraponderedtheanswerassheclimbedthemountainwithFremy.

WhenImadethecontractwithTgurneuwehadsetthedeadlineto22daysafter
TheMajin'sawakening.Todaywasjustthe13thday.Thereshouldstillbenine
daysleft.

WordsthatwerepledgedtotheSaintofWords,nomatterwhat,couldnotbe
overturned.

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EvenifMarmannahadbeencolludingwithTgurneuthecontentsofthecontract
couldnotchange.Therewereninedaysleftuntilthedeadline.Thatwasan
unmistakablefact.

"...Tgurneu."

However,TgurneuhadpledgedtoMorathatifheliedtoherhewouldlosehis
life.Tgurneuabsolutelyshouldn'tbeabletolietoher.

Whatcouldhepossiblyhavemeantthattherewereonlytwodaysleft?

AndhowcanIpossiblykillhim?

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152

Chaper 31

ChapterThree:PartOne

LocatedwithintheeasternpartoftheWailingDemonTerritory,therewasasmall
mountainatthewesternedgeoftheValleyofSpilledBlood.Ithadrugged,
dangerousterrainandmanycavesandcliffs.However,itdidn'thaveany
particularname.

Attheentranceofacavehalfwayupthemountainasinglestrangeflower
bloomed.Itwasaflowersmallenoughtofitinthepalmofone'shandandithad
sixpetals.Ataglanceitlookedlikeanordinaryflower,buttherewasnowhere
elseintheworldofnaturewherethesamekindofflowerbloomed.Fora
thousandyearsithadremainedinahalfcompletedstate,whereitlookedlikeit
wasgoingtofullyopenup,butneverdid,andlikewiseitseemedlikeitwould
closeup,butneverchanged.

ItwastheflowerthattheSaintoftheSingleFlowerhadusedasaweaponinthe
past.

AthousandyearsagotheSaintoftheSingleFlowerunderwentastruggletothe
deathwithTheMajin,exhaustingallofherenergyonthemountain.She'd
sufferedinjuriesalloverherbodyandgrewmoreandmorefatigueduntilfinally
shereachedherlimitandcollapsed.TheSaintoftheSingleFlowerwasbyno
meansomnipotentorinvincible.Shewasahumanthatifinjuredwouldfeelpain,
andiftiredwouldcollapse.

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Chaper 31

Beforeshefell,theSaintoftheSingleFlowerplantedthesingleflowerintothe
ground.TheplantsubsequentlyerectedabarrierthatkepttheMajinandthe
Kyomaoutforthreedayswhilesherecoveredfromherinjuries.

AndevenafterthebattleendedthebarrieroftheSaintoftheSingleFlower
remained.TothisdaytheKyomawerepreventedfromgettingnearit.

Andthatwasthehistoryofthebarrierof"TheEternalFlower."

Moraandtheothersweremakingtheirwayto"TheEternalFlowerBarrier".The
flowerwaslocatedwithinacavehalfwayupthemountainwithitsbarrier
concentratedthere.Thebarrierwasacirclewithadiameterofabout50meters.
Andtheinsideofthebarrieremittedarepulsiveforcethatwouldrepelthe
KyomaortheMajiniftheydrewnear.

"CanyouenteritFremy?"Moraaskedwhentheywereabouttostepintothe
barrier.

Butasifitwerenobigdealatall,Fremywasabletopassthrough.

"Iseemtobealright.Ithinkit'sthankstothefactthatIpossessthecrestofthe
SixFlowers,sinceinthepastIwasn'tabletogetclose."

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Chaper 31

"That'sgood.Iwouldfeelbadifeveryoneexceptforonepersoncouldenter."

Moracontinuedtowardsthecaveentrance,movingclosertoherother
companions.ThefirstpersontocomeintoviewwasChamo.Shewasleaningona
boulderattheedgeofthebarrier,groaninginpain.

Morawalkedovertoherandasked,"AreyouokayChamo?"

Chamohadbeenvomiting,hernosewasrunning,andtearswerefallingfromher
eyes.Herturbidvomitwasmixedwiththesilvercoloredpowderfromearlier.The
Jyumawithinherstomachwereprobablybeingrinsedofthesilverpowder
clingingtothem.

"Theirwounds...Chamocan'thealalltheirwounds....WhatshouldChamodo?This
isthefirsttimethiskindofthinghashappened,"Chamosaidthenvomitedagain.

Itwasunfortunate,buttherewasnothingMoracoulddotohelpher.Healingthe
woundsoftheJyumawassomethingthatnooneexceptforChamoherselfcould
do.

"EventhecurrentmostpowerfulSaintwaslessreliablethanIthought,"Fremy
saidfrombehindMora.

"...What?!"Chamosaidasshewipedhertears.

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Chaper 31

"It'safact,isntit?Untilyoufigureoutwhattodoaboutthatsilverpowderyou
arenomatchforTgurneu."

"...Guu!"Crying,Chamohitthebouldershewasrestingon."Shutup,shutup!
Chamoisthestrongest!WhenChamo'swoundedpetsarehealedthatguywon'
beabletodoanything!Chamowillbeathimintoabloodymess,riphimup,and
eathim!ThenChamowilllethimcontinuetolivewithinChamo'sstomach
withoutanyhandsorfeet!"

Thisisterrifying,Morathought.Chamo'spowerwastremendous.However,
inverselyproportionaltoherpowerwasherimmaturemind.Shewasselfish,
arrogant,anduncooperative.Whenshewasinasuperiorpositionshewas
careless,andwhenshewasinaninferioroneshebecameflustered.

Mora'sresponsibilitywastoteachChamothevigilanceofamaturewarrior.Itwas
Mora'sfaultthatshehadn'tbeenabletodothat.Butitwastoolatetoregretit
now.

"Ifyoucanmanagetodealwiththatsilverpowder."

"Uuu!"

"Fremy!You'rebeingalittlecruel."

156

Chaper 31

Goldofwasstandingafewdistanceawayfromtheirposition.Hehadhisbackto
Chamoandwasjuststandingandstaringoutblanklyintothedistance.Itseemed
likehestillhaventgottenoverwhathadhappenedwithNashetania.

ForalongtimeMorabelievedthatGoldofwastheseventh.Shehadeventhought
hisdumbfoundedexpressionwasmostlikelyanact.

However,duringtheirfightwithTgurneuGoldofhadn'tdoneanything.Heheld
theKyomareinforcementsbackalongsideChamoandHans.Andwhentheywere
escapingherantothecavecarryingeveryone'sbags.

MorawasnolongersureifGoldofreallywastheseventh.

"Goldof,how'sAdlet?"Fremyasked.

Goldofsilentlypointedtothecave.MoraandFremythenlinedupandheaded
towardstheentrance.

"Fremy,youdon'tsuspectGoldof,doyou?"Moraaskedquietly.

"OfcourseIsuspecthim.Thesameasyou,Rolonia,Hans,andChamo."

"HansandChamo..."

157

Chaper 31

"Idon'ttrustanyoneotherthanAdlet."Shedeclaredquietly,butdecisively.

"IsAdletalright?"Moracalledoutintothecave.

AdletwaslyingdownonthegroundwithHansandRoloniabesidehim.Adamp
clothhadbeenplacedonAdlet'sforeheadandRoloniawasusingthepowerof
freshbloodtotreathiswounds.

Therewasaboulderaboutwaisthighwithinthecave.Andontopofitasmall
flowerwasblooming.Thatwasthecenterofthebarrier,TheEternalFlower.

Thankfullytherewasalsoaspringgushingforthinthecave,soitseemedlike
waterwouldnotbeaproblemforthem.

"Yourealive?Iwasplanningongoingtomeetupwithyoutwo,"Hanssaid.

"Wearefine.Now,how'sAdlet?"

"He'sokay.However,hisskulliscracked,heisn'twakingupandIcan'thealhim
withmypower,"Roloniasaid.Shewieldedthepoweroffreshbloodandsoshe
hadtheabilitytohealgashesandinternalbleeding,butherpowersdidn'textend
tobones.

"I'lltakeoverfromhere.I'llusethehealingpowerofthemountains."

158

Chaper 31

MorasatdownatAdlet'sside.Afterabsorbingthespiritofthemountainshesent
itintoAdlet'sskull.Shestimulatedthenaturalhumanhealingabilitywithinhim
andthefractureinhisskullstartedtoheal.

"Youcanhealhim?"

"Yeah,it'snoproblem."

Standingbehindher,FremywatchedMorasilently.Sheprobablysuspectedthat
MorawasonlypretendingtotreatAdletandwasactuallytryingtokillhim.She
mostlikelyintendedtomoveherhandfasterthantheeyecouldseeandshoot
herrifleifMoradisplayedanysuspiciousbehavior.

"He'sbeenseriouslyinjured,"Morasaid,andherwordsmadetheairinthecave
growheavy.TheyhadbeenbeatentryingtoattackTgurneuheadon.Andto
makemattersworse,theenemywasntcommandinghisentireforce.Undersuch
circumstances,didtheypossiblyhaveanychanceofsuccess?

"...Ifithadbeensix,perhapswecouldhavewon,"Hanssaid.Morathenlooked
overtohimashecontinued."We'dfoughtwhilebeingcautiousofeachotherthe
wholetime.Wedidn'tknowwhensomeonemightbetrayus,orwhatkindof
attackwouldcomeflyingtowardsusfromsomeunknowndirection.There'sno
waywecanfightatourfullpotentiallikethat.

"Perhapsinourcurrentconditionweweren'tabletodisplaynomorethansixty
percentofourtruestrength,meow."

159

Chaper 31

"...You'recertainlyrightaboutthat,"Fremysaid.

MorawantedtosaythatapartofthereasonwhytheylostwasduetoFremy,but
thenHanssuddenlylaughed.

"Meowhihi,we'reinagiantpinch.It'sfun,meow.IcametoTheWailingDemon
territoryjusttoexperiencesomethinglikethis."

NaturallyMoragotangry."Whatissoamusing,Hans?"sheaskedinacutting
tone.

"Meow?You'renothavingfun?Isntthisapreciouslittlefixwevegotten
ourselvesinto?Well,ifyou'renothavingfun,that'syourloss."

Morawantedtograbherhead.Shejustcouldn'tunderstandhim.

"Anyway,whatdidyoutrytodowithAdlet?Thinkingbackonit,yourseemingly
recklesschargesuddenlycreatedmanyopeningsinTgurneu'sdefense,andthen
youwereabletohithim.Whatwasthepointofthat?"

"Yeah...Adkunlookedlikehewassomehowcertainofhisvictory."Roloniasaid.

"ButTgurneuwasstillverymuchaliveaftertheattack,"Morarepliedwhile
leaningherheadtotheside.

160

Chaper 31

Hansthenbegantoexplain."ItseemedlikeAdletwasaimingforsomethingbig.
SoIbackedhimupandrestrainedTgurneu.ButIcertainlyneveranticipatedthat
thingswouldenduplikethis,meow."

"Inanycase,afterAdletawakenslet'shearthestoryfromhim."

"Whenwillhewakeup?"FremyaskedMora.

ImbuedwiththespiritoftheMountains,MoracheckedAdlet'scondition.

"It'slikelyhe'llawakeninseveralhours.Histoughnessisunworldly."

"...He'stedious,"Fremysuddenlysaid,buttheothersdidn'tknowwhatshe
meantandjustlookedather.

"Thisisalreadythethirdtimehehasbeenclosetodeath.Iwonderhowmuch
we'llhavetoworrybeforehe'llbesatisfied,"Fremysaid,andthensighed.

"Ifyoudon'tsayit,meow,thenhewon'tknowthatyou'reworryingabouthim,
meow."

"Anidiotlikehimwouldn'tunderstandevenifIdidtellhim.PlusIdon'treally
wanttotalkrightnow."

161

Chaper 31

AsshetreatedAdlet,Morarecalledhowonlyyesterdayshehadbeenreadytokill
him.

AtthattimeshehadtrulybelievedthatAdlethadbeentheseventh.Inretrospect
thatideanowseemeddoubtful.Nevertheless,atthattimeshecouldn'tthinkof
himasbeinganythingotherthantheenemy.

AllbecausewhenAdletranhehadtakenFremyashostage.

UsingahostageasashieldwassomethingMoracouldn'tforgive.Itwasn'twrong
thatshewouldtakeanyapproachinordertowin.ButMorathoughttherewere
somethingsthatmustnotbedone.AndwhenAdlethadpiercedFremy'sthroat
withhissword,itlookedlikehisbodyhadbeensuperimposedoverTgurneus
image.

However,thingsweredifferentnow.MorawassurethatAdletwasmorereliable
thananyoneelse.

"Let'swaitforAdlettowakeup.We'lltalkafterthat.Ibelievethisguy
willundoubtedlycomeupwithaplantobreakthroughthisdeadlockofours."

TothosewordsRoloniagaveapowerfulnod.Hansshrugged,andFremy,though
Moracouldn'ttellwhatshewasthinkingaboutfromherface,juststaredatAdlet.

162

Chaper 31

Why?WithinAdlet'sslumberingconsciousnessthatwastheonlythinghecould
thinkabout.

Inaplaceneitherconnectedtodreamsnorreality,Adletwasfightingwith
Tgurneu.

Helaunchedsmokebombstryingtocreateanopening,butTgurneudidn'tcare
aboutthesmoke.Adletthenthrewpoisondarts,butnoneofthemwere
effective.NexthethrewbombsatTgurneu'sface,buteventhosewerenogood.
AfterthatAdletleapedhighupintotheairandbroughtdownhisswordwithall
hismight.However,Tgurneueasilyknockedhisbodyoutoftheair.LastlyAdlet
stabbedhimwiththeNailoftheSaints.YetAdlet'sfinaltrumpcardalsohadno
effect.

Why?Adletthought.NoKyomacouldwithstandtheNailoftheSaints.There
shouldn'tbe,atleast.Andifthenailwasn'teffectivethenAdletwasoutof
weaponsandhadnowayofdefeatingTgurneu.

"HeyAdlet,"Tgurneusaid,speakingtohimasiftheywerefriends.Areyou
seriouslytryingtokillme?

Shouting,Adletjumpedup.

Hewasinacaveandtohissideaflowerwasglowingfaintly.Itdidn'ttakelongfor
himtorealizethatitwastheEternalFlowerandthathisbodywaswrappedin
bandages.

163

Chaper 31

FromthatinformationAdletwasabletosurmisethathewaswithinthemountain
oftheEternalFlowerandthathiscompanionshadtakenhimalongasthey
escapedfromthebattle.

"Adkun,areyouawake?"

Roloniawasalsointhecave,holdingadampcloth.

"Iseveryonesafe?"

"We'realright.Allsevenofusarehere."

Afterhearingthat,Adletgrabbedhisswordfromthegroundandstoodup.He
didn'tknowwhohadbroughtit,buthismetalboxwithhissecretweaponsstored
insidewasinthecaveaswell.Hethentooktoolsfromtheboxandreplenished
thepouchesonhiswaist.

"What'swrong?"

"I'mgoingtogofightTgurneuagain."

"Wait!You'reinjured."

164

Chaper 31

"Isn'tthatthesameasusual?"

ThedreamAdlethadhadearlierwasburnedintohishead.IfIcan'tfight,thenI
can'twin.Thatthoughtburnedthroughhisbody,preventinghimfromjustsitting
still.SoAdletmovedtoexitthecave,butbeforehecouldFremystoodinhisway.

"WhereareyougoingAdlet?"FremylookedatAdletwithacalmgaze.Looking
intohereyefinallymadehimreturntohissenses.

"Ifyouwerethekindoffoolthatwouldgotofightnow,thenitwouldbebetterif
youdied."

"That'sright.Itwasabadidea.I'msorry,"Adletsaidandsheathedhissword.
Roloniareleasedasighofrelief.

Adletsmiled;intimesofpain,hehadtosmile.

"Everyoneistakingiteasybyeating,treatingtheirwounds,orrepairingtheir
weaponsandarmor.It'dbegoodforyoutodothesame."

Thenasifshewerefedupwiththesituation,Fremysighed."Youshouldalso
leavethethinkinguntillater.Yourestillnotinasoundstateofmind,soitdoesn't
seemlikeyou'llbeabletocomeupwithanygoodideas."

165

Chaper 31

"...Ugh."Adletfounditdifficulttorespond.

"You'requitethebothersomeworld'sstrongest."

FremymovedpastAdletandwalkedintothecave.Shethenremovedhercloak
andtookoffherupperlayerofclothes.

"Fremywhatareyoudoing?!"

"I'mgoingtowashupwiththewater.Ihaven'tbathedindays."Fremysaid,and
thenwithonehandstillholdingherriflesheproceededtoskillfullyremovethe
restofherclothing.

Adletimmediatelyrushedoutofthecave.

ThefirstthinghesawwhenheexitedwasHanseatingatthesideofthecave
entrance.Hischeekswerestuffedwithfoodashedippedsmokedmeatanddried
breadintosomewater.

"Soyou'reawake,meow.Howdoyoufeel?"

"I'malright.WellenoughtowanttogoandkillTgurneurightnow."

"Stopwiththestupidjokesandeatsomething,meow."

166

Chaper 31

HanssharedhissmokedmeatwithAdlet.Themeatfeltstrangelysoft,witha
goodfattylookandnostrongsmell.Thewrappingwasalsoabrandhe
rememberedseeingoncebefore.

"Hans,thisisn'tthefoodNashetaniahadbeencarrying,right?"

"Meow.ThatNashetaniagirlleftherthingswhensheran.Sheategoodstuff,
meow."

"..Youshouldbeworriedabouteatingthefoodoftheenemy."

"Therearen'tanyidiotswhowouldmixpoisonintomyfood."Hanssaidashe
heartilydevouredhisfood.

WhileAdletstoodpuzzled,Roloniaexitedthecave.

"Ifit'spoison,thenthere'snoneedtoworry.Icamewithallpurposeantidotes
fromToulosan...Imean,TheSaintofMedicine.AndIcanalsocounteractpoisons
alittlebit."

"...Sorry,butIhavenointerestinthat.Thestrongestmanintheworldiscareful."
Afterhesaidthat,Adlettookoutasmallportionoffoodfromoneofthepouches
onhisbelts.Itwasasmallcubewithfourcentimetersides.

167

Chaper 31

"Meow,whatisthat?Isitgood?"

"IcallthistheFoodoftheWorld'sStrongest."

"Asusual,yoursenseofwhatscoolisridiculous,meow."

"It'srefinedwheatflour,theextractfromtheorgansofsomeanimals,andthe
finepowderoftwelvemedicinalherbsallmixedtogetherandsolidifiedwithbeef
fat.SinceI'mthestrongestmanintheworld,Itakeoneoftheseeachday."

"ButIdon'tthinkbeingtheworld'sstrongesthasanythingtodowithfood...."
Roloniasaid,craninghernecktotheside.

"...Isitgood?"

Adletstaredatthesmallfoodinhishandforawhile.Thenhetookseveraldeep
breathstocalmhisheart.

"Whatareyoudoing?"

"There'satricktoeatingthis.Firstyouexpelallthememoriesofallthedelicious
foodsyou'vehadinyourlifefromyourmind."

168

Chaper 31

Heplacedafingertohisforeheadandfollowedhisinstructions.

"Thenimaginethatthisisthemostdeliciousfoodintheworld.Andifyousucceed
indeceivingyourselfwiththatgoodfeeling..."

Heclosedhiseyesandstuffedthecubeintohismouth.Inarushhecheweditup
intofinerpiecesandthenswalloweditinonegulp.

"Helliswaitingforyouifyouloseyourstrengthforevenamoment.Itsdownright
themostintenseoffoods."

"...There'snootherwaytoeatit,meow?"Hanswasdumbfounded.

"Cometothinkofit,haseveryoneelseeaten?"Adletasked,nowdoneeatingand
shiftingthetopicfromthecube.TheonlypeoplewhohadeatenwereHansand
Adlet.Fremywasbathinginthespring,GoldofandMorawerekeepingalookout
attheedgeofthebarrier,andChamowasleaningonarockwithhereyesclosed.

"Goldofatesomethingbyhimself.Butallthegirlshaven'teatenyet.Idon'tknow
why."

"Theydon'teat?"

169

Chaper 31

Roloniathenexplainedtothetwoofthem."Foodisn'tnecessaryforme.Icanuse
thenutrientswithinmyblood.Moracanexchangetheenergyofmountainsfor
nourishment,soshedoesn'tneedfoodeither."

That'sconvenient,Adletthought.

"WhataboutChamo?"

"Chamosan...sheprobablydoesn'tneeditforsomereason.Sorry,Idon'treally
know."

"YouthinkChamoneedsordinaryfood?"Chamosaidfromtherockshewas
leaningon

"...Idon'tknowforsure,butthat'smyunderstanding."

"Chamoistakingcareofherpetsinjuries.Chamodoesn'twanttotalk,"she
replied,thenonceagainclosedhereyes.

FromherstomachtheycouldfaintlyhearthegroanscomingfromherJyuma.The
soundmadeAdletrecalltheJyumawrithinginpainonthegroundafterbeing
showeredwiththesilverpowder.Justasshesaid,itwasprobablybetterifthey
didn'tdisturbherfornow.

170

Chaper 31

"AndFremy...that'sright.FremyishalfKyoma,right?"

AdlethadlearnedabouttheKyoma'smanneroflifefromAtro.TheKyomadidn't
needtoeateverydaylikehumans.Itwouldbeenoughforthemtoeatjustonce
everytendays.

"...?"

Adletsensedsomethingoutofplaceandtwistedhisnecktolookawayintothe
distance.

"What'swrong?"

Kyomaateaboutonceeverytendays.SothenwhyhadTgurneubeenholdingafig
fruit?

Butwithouthissuspicionsleadingtoanyconclusionthethoughtvanishedfrom
hismind.

Morawasstandingattheedgeofthebarrier.ShewatchedasAdletexitedthe
caveandleisurelybegantoeat.Itrelievedhertoknowthattherewasnoneedfor
hertoworry.

171

Chaper 31

MoralookedovertheentiremountainasshesurveyedtheKyoma'smovements.
Aslongasshewasonamountainshecoulduseatypeofsecondsightability.It
allowedhertooverlooknotjustthemiddleofthemountainshewason,butits
entiresurface.

Atthemomenttherewereabout200KyomaintheareaaroundtheEternal
Flower.TheKyomathathadpursuedthemhadarrangedthemselvesintogroups
offiveandwerescatteredalloverthemountain.Amongthemthereseemedto
beamultitudeofhighclass,intelligentKyoma.

We'relikeratscaughtinatrap,Morathought.ItwaslikelythatTgurneuintended
toconfinetheHeroesoftheSixFlowersonthemountain.

NextMoracheckedwhetheranytrapshadbeenlaidoutforthem.TheEternal
FlowerwaswithoutadoubtaplacethattheHeroeswouldvisit.Sothechance
thatthereweretrapslaidnearitwerehigh.Besidesthefaceofthemountain,she
evensearchedwithintheground,tryingtofindanythingstrange.Butasfaras
Moracouldseetherewerenotrapsonthemountain.

Tgurneuwasnotinthevicinityanditdidn'tseemliketheKyomalurkingonthe
mountainweretakingordersfromhim.Ontopofthat,shestilldidn'tknowwhat
Tgurneuhadmeantbyherhavingonlytwodaysleft.

"..."

172

Chaper 31

Morawaslost.Shewonderedifrunninghadreallybeenthecorrectchoice,orif
theyshouldhavekilledTgurneubyallpossiblemeans,evenifMorahadtotrade
herlifetodoso.

No,that'dbeamistake,Moracorrectedherself.Wrappingherselfaround
Tgurneuandblowingherselfupwasalastresort,sinceifshefailedSheniera'slife
wouldalsoendatthesametime.

"Mora,howarethings?"Adletasked,nowfinishedeating.

"Thisplaceiscompletelysurrounded,butwe'renotinanydangeratthe
moment."Morathensuspendedhersurveillanceandexplainedhersecondsight
toAdlet.

"Areyougoingtorestforawhile?Itseemslikeyou'vegonewithoutrestfora
longtime,meow,"Hanssaid.

"You'reright.I'llrestforabitthen.Iwanttowashuptoo,"Morarepliedthen
madeherwaytothecave.However,sheneverstoppedhersecondsightand
continuedtovigilantlylookoverthesurroundingarea.

Whensheenteredthecave,anakedFremywasremovingthesootclungtoher
hair.ButwhenFremyrealizedthatMorahadenteredshepromptlygrabbedher
riflewhichhadbeensetdowntotheside.

173

Chaper 31

"Calmdown.I'mnotgoingtodoanything,"Morasaid.

Shethentookoffherarmorandrobeandimmersedherselfinthecool
spring.Dirtsuddenlyfloatedinthemiddleofthespring,butitwasnoproblem
sincetheydalreadysecuredtheirdrinkingwater.Thepleasantcoolnessofthe
waterpermeatedherentirebody.Andbeforeshefrozetothecore,shegotout
andbegantocleanoffthedirtfromherbodywithhernailsandpalms.

"I'mgratefulthere'splentyofwater.Atleastwedon'thavetoworryabouthow
welook."

Moraexhaledalongbreath.Nomatterwhatkindofsituationshewasin,thetime
shespentcleansingherbodywaspleasant.Still,evenwhenshethoughtabout
resting,Shenierawouldnotleavehermind.

"...Um,isitalrightifIjoinyou?"Roloniaaskedassheenteredthecave.Shethen
startedtotakeoffherarmorslowly.

"...Thethreeofusbathingatonceiscareless.Whatwillwedoifsomething
happens?"Fremyasked.

"It'snoproblem.Youcanfightnaked,right?Beingseennakedwon'tbetheend
oftheworld."Morasaidasshescoopedsomewaterintoherhandandrinsedthe
dirtfromherbody."Rolonia,itwasshockingtoseeyoubecomelikethatso
suddenly."

174

Chaper 31

"Ye...yes.Really...Ididn'tknowwhatIshoulddo.EvennowIcan'tbelievethat
thereisanimposteramongtheHeroes."

"Ifeelthesameway.WhenyouarrivedIthoughtmyhearthadstopped,"Mora
saidandthenshelaughed.

"Idon'tunderstandyoueitherRolonia,"Fremysaidsuddenly.

Rolonia,stilltakingoffherarmor,jumpedupinshock.

"Oh!Whatdoyoumean?"

"Eventhoughatfirstyouwereevenscaredofadeer,whenyouencounteredthe
enemyyoustartedscreamingandrampagingabout.Sowhichoneofthose
personalitiesistherealyou?"

MoraansweredinsteadofRolonia."Thetimidandindecisivegirlisthereal
Rolonia.Theshoutingandwhatnot...thatslikearitualforher."

Fremyleanedherheadtotheside,asifshedidn'tunderstand.

"Iwanttoaskonething.Rolonia,whodoyoususpect?"

175

Chaper 31

Roloniafalteredatthosewords."Idon'tknow.Nooneseemslikeanenemy."

FremystaredatRolonia."IfIwereinyourposition,Iwouldprobablydoubtmyself
first.IamthedaughterofaKyomaandIamtheSixFlowerKiller.I'mtheperson
whokilledyouracquaintanceAsley.AndIamawarriorthathadbeenraisedby
Tgurneu.SoIwonderwhydespiteallofthatyouaren'tsuspiciousofme."

"Well,umm..."

"Whattrickareyouplaying,Rolonia?"

"StopitFremy,"Morainterjected,unabletoputupwiththeinterrogation
anymore."Roloniaisn'tuptoanything.Andshehasneverbeengoodatdoubting
peopleinthefirstplace."

"Iwonderaboutthat."

"Can'tyoubealittlebitgentler?Ordoyouonlywanttobealone?"Moraasked.

Fremylookedaway,pausingforamomentbeforesaying,"ThisistheonlywayI
knowhowtointeractwithpeople."

176

Chaper 31

"Fremysan.I...,"Roloniabegan."TherewasatimeIhadwonderedwhetheryou
weretheseventh.ButsinceAdkunandMorasanbothtrustyou,Istopped
doubtingyou."

"...Isee."

"YouandAdkunarecloseright?"

WithoutansweringRolonia'squestion,Fremybeganputtingonherclothes.Her
slenderbodywaswrappedindarkleatherinaninstant.

"Adkun,huh?Youandhimmustbequiteclose,"Fremyfinallyrepliedbefore
grabbingherrifleandleavingthecave.

She'slikeahedgehog,Morathought.Shewaswaryofanythingthatgotcloseand
soshewasalwaysafraidofsomething.Ifallshedidwaschangeherfeeling
ofweaknessintohostilitythenshewouldneverbeabletoconnectwith
others.Maybeshewasreallythetimidone,notRolonia.

Roloniaexhaledinrelief,lettingthetensionleaveherbody.Shethenwentback
toremovingherarmor.

"Itmustbedifficultforyoutoo,Rolonia.Itseemslikeyou'refairlydisliked."

177

Chaper 31

"Yes.Itseemsthatway."Rolonialaughed,thoughherfacelookedtroubled.

"But,I'malsorelieved.SheseemstobeafarnicerpersonthatIhadthought."

Iwonderhowshewasabletodrawthatconclusionfromtheirconversation.

"Whichremindsme,Ididn'tknowyouandAdletknewoneanother.It'sasmall
world."

"Yes.ForsomereasonInevergotthechancetotalkaboutAdkun."

"Hmm.Doyoulikehim?"

Rolonia'shandsstoppedmovingmidwaythroughtakingoffherarmor."Well,
umm,Idon'tknow."

HerresponsewasamusingandwithoutthinkingMoralaughed.

"Idon'tthinkso.No,Iprobablydon't.Idon'tthinkIlikehimoranythinglikethat."

"Ithinkthat'sforthebest.Adletisareliableperson,buthe'sanunbelievablefool.
Therewouldprobablybenoendtoyourhardshipsifyouweretofallinlovewith
him."

178

Chaper 31

"Isthatright?Butitdoesn'tseemthatwaytome..."

Youngpeoplesurearecarefree.Eveninasituationlikethistheyarefreetobe
preoccupiedwithloveaffairs,Morathoughtpleasantly.

ButevennowasMorawasgossipingwithRolonia,herdaughterneverlefther
mindforasecond.

179

Chapter 32

ChapterThree:PartTwo

Itwasgettingclosetoevening.Everyonehadfinishedbathingandrepairingtheir
weaponsandarmor.Nowthesevenweresittinginacircleinfrontofthecave
entrance,discussingtheirplanofaction.

"Adlet,areyouokay?"Moraasked.Sittingatthecenter,Adletnodded.Shehad
beenquitesurprisedbyhisresilience.Hedidn'tseemlikeahumanoffleshand
blood.

"Moreimportantly,whathasbecomeofthesituation?IsTgurneucloseby?"

Morausedhersecondsight,butcouldn'tseeanychangesonthemountain.

"Tgurneuisn'there,"Morareplied,makingAdletpausetothinkforamoment.

"TherearetwohundredKyoma,huh?That'sodd.That'sonlyhalfoftheirforces.
It'stoofewtotrapushere."

"IfeartheremustalsobeKyomaoutsidethemountain.Soitsgoingtobedifficult
towinifwefightthemheadon."

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"Evenifwecan'twin,we'llstillbeabletorun.AslongasTgurneuisn'therethe
amountofKyomaonthemountainisn'tsomethingtobescaredabout,"Adlet
said.

"AslongasTgurneuisn'there,huh."Fremystressed.

"FirstofallIwanttoaskonething.Doesanyonehaveanyclueaboutthe
seventh'strueidentity?Idon'tneedtohearwhoyouaresuspecting,orifthere
hasbeenanysuspiciousbehavior.WhatIwanttoknowis,arethereanydefinitive
clues?"

Moradidn'thaveany.Nooneelseansweredeither.

"Canyouexplainhowyouallgotawayfromthebattle?IwasunconscioussoI
don'tknow."

MoraandHanstookturnsexplainingaboutthefighttheyhadupuntilthey
reachedthebarrier.Whentheywerefinished,Adletplacedahandonhis
forehead;asullenlookonhisface.

"...Idon'tknow.AsfarasIcantell,everyoneexceptmehadachancetostop
someone."

Moranodded.IfFremyweretheenemythenshewouldbedead.

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"IfGoldoforRoloniahadbetrayedusitwouldhavebeenintense,evenforme,
meow.EvenifIhadbeenabletosuccessfullyescape,Idon'tknowifIwouldhave
beenabletohelpAdletandChamo.AndifChamoweretheenemyIwouldhave
beenkilled,meow."

"No,ifCatsanweretheenemythenChamowouldbedead,"Chamosaidin
return.

"Whyisn'ttheseventhdoinganything?Whataretheyaimingfor?"

AdletwasworryingaboutthesamethingsMorahadbeenthinkingabout.Butno
matterhowshethoughtaboutit,therewasnodenyingthattheseventhhad
missedmultiplegoodopportunities.

"IhadintendedonkillingtheseventhevenifIhadtotrademylifetodoso,thatis
ifIknewwhotheywere,"Fremysaid.

"Huh?"

"I'vebeenpreparedtodothatforalongtime.AndIhaven'tstoppedtryingto
figureoutwhotheseventhis.Maybetheseventhknowsthis.Sothere'sa
possibilitythattheseventhisn'tmoving,notbecauseit'sapartoftheirplan,but
becausetheyareafraidofmeandcan'tmakeamove."

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"Butmeow,Istillthinkit'sunnaturalthattheywouldoverlookthatopportunity.
Wewouldallbewipedoutiftheseventhhadskillfullymadetheirmove,"Hans
saidtowhichMoraagreed.

"Thereisanotherpossibility,"Fremyproposed."MaybeTgurneuorderedthem
nottomove."

"Why?"Adletasked.

"Becausehe'stoyingwithus."

"Huh?"

"Tgurneuplaysaroundalot.Formyentirelifehe'salwaysbeensayingthingsthat
Icouldn'tunderstand.Andhedidn'tcarethathisactionswouldputhimata
disadvantage.SoIdon'tknowwhatheisthinking.Perhapshe'snotthinkingof
anythingatall."

Thatiscertainlytrue,Morathought.Tgurneuspokeinanoverlyfriendlymanner
andhadtheattitudeofabuffoon.Hisfightingtacticswerealsoillogical.Clowning
aroundwastheonlywayonecoulddescribeit.

"Inotherwords,areyousayingheissimplyjustmessingaround?Orthathesnot
reallytryingtokillus?"

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"...Idon'tknow.Maybeheispretendingtoplayaroundinordertosetsomekind
oftrap.Ormaybeheistrulyjustplayingaround."

IfthatwerethecasethenwastherenomeaningintryingtoguessTgurneu's
thoughts?Heisareallydifficultopponenttodefeat,Morathought.

"Wewereambushedonthathill.Perhapstheseventhleadusthere?"Morathen
asked.

Adletfoldedhisarmsacrosshischestandponderedherquestion.

"ButMora,youweretheonewhofoundthathill,"Hanssaid.

"ButIwastheonewhoproposedthatwetalkthere,"Fremyadded.

ThenRoloniatimidlyraisedherhand."Umm...I'msorry,isitokayifIsay
something?"AdleturgedheronandRoloniacontinued."Theseventh...theydont
wanttheirtrueidentitytobeexposed."

"Whatdoyoumean?"

"Welltheseventhdoesntwantotherstoknowtheirtrueidentity.Andifthats
thecasethentheywontdoanythinginorderfortheiridentitytoremainasecret.
Sosurelytheydontwanttobesuspected."

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"Ifyourerightthenwhydidtheseventhcomehere?There'snopointinthem
sneakinginamongusiftheirintentwasjusttonotdoanythinginordertokeep
theiridentityasecret,"Fremycountered,discardingRolonia'stheory.

"No,IthinkRoloniamayberightonpoint,"Adletsaidandeveryone'sgazeturned
hisway."Thisispurelyaguessbut...perhapstheseventhreallyisn'tdoing
anything.Theydidn'tleadustothathill,andtheyaren'ttellingTgurneuour
movements."

"Whydoyouthinkthat?"

"Ifwehadcontinuedalongasaferoutethatprotectedusfromsurpriseattacks
thenwewouldhavealmostcertainlypassedbythathill.Tgurneuhadrecognized
thatfact.SoitwasprobablyjustbychancethatTgurneuappearedwhenwewere
restingonthathill.Sincehecouldhaveattackedusevenifwewerentresting,he
wasprobablyjusthopingthathewouldappearbehindusafterwehadpassed.

"Whydidn'ttheseventhdoanything?"

"Iguesstheseventhhadneverintendedtomakeamoveduringthebattle.They
justdecidedtostayatoursideasourcompanion."

"Whatdoesthatmean?"

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"Itmeanstheseventhislookingforachancetodestroyusall.Eveniftheyhad
attackedinthemiddleoftheescape,anumberofuswouldhaveprobablyslipped
throughtheirfingers.Killingjustoneortwoofusmostlikelywouldn'tbeableto
satisfytheseventh."

Everyonefellsilent.

"Theseventhprobablywillnotmakeamoveuntiltheperfectopportunityarrives.
Andaslongastheydon'tmakeamove,theiridentitywillnotbeexposed.Butlike
Isaidthisisnothingmorethanaguess."

"...Ifthat'sthecase,howshouldweexposetheseventh'strueidentity?"Mora
asked."Aslongastheseventhdoesn'tmakeamovewewon'tbeabletogetany
cluesaboutwhotheyare.Butwhentheseventhdoesdosomethingitwillbe
whenwe'reallinsomedesperatesituation.Whatintheworldshouldwedo?"

Hansclappedhishandsinwhatseemedtobeexcitement."Meow,meow?Thisis
terrible.Byanychancehavewebeenbeaten,meow?"

"It'snotjustTgurneu,thisguyisscrewingaroundtoo,"Morasaidunhappily.

Hansmadeafaceasiftosayhehadnoideawhyshewouldsaythat."No,Im
serious.Butatthesametime,isn'titboringtohavetobeseriouswhenyou're
havingfun,meow?"

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Yeah,yeah,Morathought.

Adletcontinued,"AsfarasI'veheardfromFremy'sstory,Ithinkit'simpossiblefor
ustoreadTgurneu'sbehaviorsincehedoesn'tusethebeststrategiestowin.In
thesamewaywealsocannotpredictwhattheseventhwilldo."

"Aren'tyouthestrongestmanintheworld?You'regoingtogiveupthatquickly?"

"We'recompletelysurrounded.Adlet,howarewegoingtofindourwayoutof
this?"Moraasked.

"Assoonaswerunthesituationwillonlygetworse.Weneedathoroughplan,"
Fremysaid.

Asthecompanionsallvoicedtheirownideasatthesametime,Adletquietlysaid,
"Thereisonlyonewaytogetoutofthissituation."

"What'sthat?"

"TounravelthemysteryofTgurneu."Adlet'ssuggestionmadeeveryonefall
silent.

ThemysteryofTgurneu?MorahadnoideawhatAdletmeantbythat.

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"Everyonelookatthis."Adlettookoutanail,about22incheslong,fromoneof
hispouches.Itwasthesameasthenailthathe'dstabbedintoTgurneu.

"Meow,what'sthat?"

AdletexplainedaboutthesocalledNailoftheSaints.Hetoldthemabouthow
thetipofthenailhadbeenfashionedwiththecrystallizedpoisondistilledfrom
thebloodofSaints.AndheexplainedhowifaKyomawerestabbedbyit,the
poisonwouldcoursethroughouttheirbodyinaninstant.

AsshelistenedtoAdlet'sexplanation,Moraponderedhowupuntilthenshehad
recognizedthesocalledAtroSpykerasawarriorwhowas
veryknowledgeableabouttheKyoma.Butthatseemedlikeagross
misunderstanding.Shehadneverheardofanyoneevenconsiderconvertingthe
bloodofaSaintintoaweapon,muchlessextractingthepoisonfromtheirblood.

"You...stabbedthatintoTgurneu?Wereyoureallyabletodoit?"Moraaskedand
Adletnoddeddefinitively.

"IdefinitelystabbedthenailintoTgurneu'sside.AndIalsoconfirmedthatthe
poisonhadcirculatedthroughhisentirebody.Andyet,Tgurneuisstillalive."

Ican'tbelievethat,Morathought.RoloniaandFremytoobothturnedpale.

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"Whydidn'titwork?IfIunderstandwhatyousaidcorrectly,itshouldhavebeen
thebreakthroughweneededtodefeatTgurneu."

"Meow.That'saseriousproblem,meow,"Hanssaid.

Chamotoohadafacethatseemedtoindicatethatshedidntquiteunderstand
theimportanceofwhatwasbeingsaid.Itwasasifshecouldn'tunderstandjust
howimpossibleaphenomenonitwasforthebloodofaSaintnottoworkona
Kyoma.

"I'mnoexpert,buttherearevariouskindsofKyoma,andeachkindhasa
differentabilityright?Ifso,thenTgurneuisaKyomathatisstrongagainst
poison."

"...Soyoudon'tgetit.Well,letmeexplainabitmoreclearly,"Adletsaidwitha
sigh.

"TheKyomaarelifeformsthatevolvefreelythroughtheirownvolition.I'm
thinkingyouhaveseenalotofKyoma,butregardlessofwhattypetheyarethere
isonethingthattheyallhave."

"Meow."

"Iftheywishtogrowahornthentheywillgrowone.Iftheywishtogrowbigger
thantheycanbecomeso.Theirevolutioncantakeseveraldozenyearsorseveral
hundredyears.

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Andoccasionallythereareeventimeswhentheirevolutionhasfailed.But
fundamentally,aslongastheKyomahasawillthentheycanacquireanykindof
ability."

"Really,meow?Thenisitpossibleforthemtoacquiretheabilitytorendera
Saint'spoisonineffective?"

FremycontinuedtheexplanationwhereAdletleftoff."Butthereareexceptions.
Therearestillthingsthatareimpossible,nomatterhowmuchtheywishit.And
oneofthoseistomaketheircoreevolve."

"Core?"

FremyexplainedthatthecorewasthepartoftheKyomathatcontaineditsbrain.
ItwassomewherewithineachKyoma'sbodyanditwastheirweakestpoint.

"ThecoreisthetrueformoftheKyoma.YoucouldcalltherestofaKyomasbody
amereappendage.SoevenifaKyomacouldmaketheirphysicalbodyevolve,
theycouldnotevolvetheircore.AndthebloodofaSaintwoulddestroyit.

HansandChamobothlookedliketheyhadntquitefollowedwhatFremyhad
said.

"ThepoisoncontainedinthebloodoftheSaintsisderivedfromthepowerofthe
gods,acharacteristicthatisdifferentfromotherpoisons.

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AndoncethepoisonfromtheSaint'sbloodentersaKyoma,itstoxinswillreach
thatKyoma'scoreinstantaneously.Nomatterhowthephysicalbodywas
evolved,theKyomacannotprotectitselfagainstthat.Andafterthecorehasbeen
invadedbythepoisonitwouldbeabsolutelyimpossibletocounteract."

"So..."

"ThebloodofSaintsisapoisonthatiseffectiveagainstallKyomawithout
exception."

"...Meow?It'sthatincredible?"Hansasked,finallyrealizingtheblood'spower.

"EvenIusetechniquesthatcaninsertaSaintsbloodintoaKyoma'sbody,
Roloniasaid.Atrosantoldmethatthoseskillswouldabsolutelyworkonthe
Kyoma."

"Adlet.WhoisthisAtroSpyker?Howdidhecometoacquirethesetechniques?"
Moraasked.

Adletleanedhisheadtotheside."I'msorry,butIdon'tknow.Mymasterwasthe
typeofpersonwhoalmostnevertalkedaboutthepast."

"Chamocouldn'tcarelessaboutsuchastrangeweapon.Chamodoesn'teven
knowthisAtro,"Chamosaidinaboredtone."Chamomoreorlessgetsthatitis
incredible.Butitdidn'tworkonTgurneuright?

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Wellthenit'snotneededanymore.ChamowillkillTgurneu.Chamowillriphis
entirebodytoshredsandeathim.Chamowillthenmakehimintoasnackforthe
petsinChamo'sstomach."

"Don'tyougetitChamo?Anattackthatshouldhavedefinitelyworkeddidn't,"
Adletsaid.

"Andwhatofit?"

"IfyourJyumariphimapart,willTgurneudie?Willhedie,ifRoloniaforcesoutall
hisblood?HowaboutifGoldoforHansslicehimapart,orifMorapummelshim
overandover,orifFremyshootshimfullofholes,willTgurneudie?Wehaveno
proofthatanyofthatwillwork."

"Chamodoesn'tknow.Chamo'sjustgoingtobeathimtoapulp."

"WehavetodefinitivelyfinishTgurneuoff.Andinordertofindawaytodothat
weneedtosolvethemysteryregardinghisbody."

AsAdlethoundedChamoforanswers,Morathought,Thisisbad.Chamosmood
isgettingworseandshemightgetviolent.

"...Well,whatshouldwedothen?"

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However,contrarytoMora'sexpectationsChamoreluctantlybackeddown.

"IwillunravelthemysterysurroundingTgurneuandfindawaytokillhim.Asfor
you,thinkaboutawaytobeathim.Inparticular,amethodtodefendagainstthat
silverpowder."

"Gotit.Forthetimebeing,Chamowilltrytoactafterthinking."

Chamo'sobedientattitudesurprisedMoraquiteabit.EvenChamowasmaturing.
Sureitwasonlyalittle,butshewasdefinitelymaturing.

"Butthatstillwontsettleanything.EvenifyousolveTgurneu'smystery,westill
don'tknowtheidentityoftheseventh,"Fremysaid.

"IthinkifwedriveTgurneuintoacorner,theseventhwillalsogivethemselves
away."

"Whatdoyoumean?"

"MostlikelytheseventhandTgurneuareconnected.Attheveryleastthere
doesn'tseemtobeanydoubtthattheyareourenemyandallieswiththeKyoma.
SoitshouldbeamajorblowfortheseventhifwekillTgurneu.WhichiswhyI
thinkthatifitlookslikeTgurneuwilllosethentheseventhwillmovetoprotect
him."

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"Isee.Soinsteadofwaitingfortheseventhtomakeamovewearegoingto
createasituationwheretheyhavenochoicebuttotakeaction,"Morasaid.

"WhatshouldwedoifwecornerTgurneubuttheseventhdoesn'tmakeamove?"

"ThenwewillkillTgurneu.I'dratherdefeathiminsteadofdiscoveringwhothe
seventhis,asitwouldbeafargreatervictory."

"Itwouldbeevenbetterifwecoulddoboth,meow,"Hanssaidwithanod.

"Allofthesefeelsodangerous.IwishweknewwhatTgurneuortheseventhwas
goingtodo,"Roloniasaid.

"Iwastaughtbymymasterthattheworstthingonecoulddowastoplayitsafe
andtodothingshalfhalfheartedly.Hetoldmethatoccasionallyhewould
encountersituationslikethat.Andfromhisexperiencejumpingdirectlyinto
dangerisactuallylessdangerous.SowewilldefeatTgurneuwitheverything
we'vegot.Thatisthebestcourseofactionforusatthemoment."

Rolonialookedevenmoreunsettledafterhearingthat.

"Relax.Iamthestrongestmanintheworld."

"You'resayingthatagain,meow?"Hanssaid,asifsickofhearingthephrase.

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"IunderstandwhathemeansandIbelieveit.Adkunisthestrongestmaninthe
world."Roloniaagreedwithanod.

ItlookedlikeeveryoneagreedwithAdlet'splanandMorawasgratefulthatAdlet
haddecidedtodefeatTgurneuatanycost.DefeatingTgurneuwastheonlyway
shecouldhelpherdaughter.

Tgurneuabsolutelyhadtobekilled.

"Ihaveonesuggestion,"Morasaid,raisingherhand.

"Whatisit?"

"Ihaveasecretplan.ItisatechniqueIpreparedforyearsspecificallyforthedayI
wouldkillTgurneu.AndIthinknowisthetimetouseit.Whatdoyouthink?"

"Whatkindoftechniqueisit?"

"IwillcovertheentiremountainwithaninstantbarrieranditwilltrapTgurneu
withinthemountainarea.Besidescuttinghimofffromreinforcements,itwillalso
preventhimfromescaping.Icanonlydoitonce,butitshouldbeworthtrying.

Rolonia'seyeswidenedassheheardMora'splan.

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"Pleasewaitamoment,Morasan.Thatbarrierisdangerous."

"Imwillingtotaketherisk.Adletwouldprobablyhavesaidthesamething."

Unabletorebukeherstatement,Roloniafellsilent.

"Isthisbarriersomethingyoucanholdforalongtime?"

"No,justsixhoursatthemost.However,itshouldbeenoughtimetokill
Tgurneu."

"Iunderstand.Doit,"Adletsaidwithouthesitation.

"ThenexttimeTgurneushowshimselfIcansetitupimmediately.SoAdlet,you
shoulddecidewhenthebarrierwillbeactivated."

Adletnodded.

"Alright,wevedecidedonaplanofaction.IwillsolveTgurneu'smystery.And
whenIhavefoundoutwhytheNailoftheSaintsdidntwork,Illbeableto
discoverawaytokillhim.Fremywillhelpme."

"...Understood."

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"HansandGoldof,youtwowillgetridoftheKyomaonthemountain.Weneed
youtoreducetheirnumbersabitforus.Canyoudothat?"

"Ofcourse,meow.Justmewouldbeplentyforthis."Hanslaughedandthough
Goldofdidn'trespond,itseemedlikehehadagreedtotherequest.

"Mora,useyoursecondsightabilitytokeepalookoutoverthewholemountain.
Ifthereisanythingstrangetellusimmediately.Also,assistHansandGoldof."

"Iunderstand."

"Chamo,youwillworkonawaytocounteractthesilverpowder.IfIamnotable
tosolveTgurneu'smysterythenyouandyourJyumawillbecomeourmainforces.
Dontscrewup."

"Ofcourse.Andthesamegoesforyou."

"Umm...whataboutme?"RoloniaraisedherhandbutAdlethesitatedabouthow
torespond.

"RoloniaistheSaintofFreshBlood.Sheshouldbeaspecialistwhenitcomesto
blood.Ithinkshewillbeuseful,"MorasaidandAdletnodded.

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Sinceitseemedlikehisinstructionswereover,hiscompanionsstartedtomove.
However,Adletcalledforthemtostop.

"There'sonelastthingIwanttosaybeforehand.It'stotheseventhamongus."
Adletthenlookedoverhiscompanionsandcontinued,"Ifyouwanttodefeatus,
thenfirstthinkofawaytokillme.Therellbenoturningbackifyoucantkillme
quickly."

Nooneresponded;theentireareaseemedtobesilent.

"Ifyourethinkingaboutsayingyoursignaturephrase,dont.Itssonotcool."
Chamowasquiterightinherprediction.

ThenunconsciouslyMoraandHansburstoutlaughing.Rolonialookeddownto
thegroundandcoveredhermouthandFremyturnedaway.EvenGoldofseemed
tobesmilingabit.

Thisisthefirsttimewevealllaughedtogether,Morathought.Andforashort
timeshefeltthatmaybeaunionhadformedbetweenthem.

Adletwasquitetheperson.Heallowedhimselftobemadeaclownjustsothathe
couldcalmdownhisanxiouscompanions.

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Aftereveryonesplitup,Adletwentbackintothecave.Hepressedhisback
againstthewallandsliddowntothefloor.Chamohadhumiliatedhimandhe
couldfeelthathisfacewasredwithembarrassment.

Shit,Iamthestrongestmanintheworld,hesworetohimself.

FremyandRoloniathenenteredthecaveandsatapartfromoneanother,their
eyesnevermeeting.FremyhadablankexpressiononherfacewhileRolonia
lookedterriblyuneasy.

"Itcan'tbehelpedthatthetwoofyouarecautiousofeachanother,butplease
getalong.Ifwedon'tcooperatewewon'tbeabletosolveTgurneu'smystery."

"Right,you'reright.Fremysan,let'sworkwelltogether.[1]

"Right.Forthetimebeinglet'scooperate,"Fremyreplied,butitdidntseemlike
thedistancebetweenthemhadshrunkatall.

"I'llmakesomelight.Fremymovedtothecenterofthedarkcaveandplaceda
gemontheground.Sherecitedanincantationandthestonebegantoemitlight.

"Whatisthat?Isthatyourpower,Fremy?"

1
A Japanese idea that doesnt quite exist in English. A literal translation would
be Please treat me well, however the meaning is more along the lines of I look forward to working/
learning with you.

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"No,it'ssomethingMorabroughtwithher.ShesaiditwasmadebytheSaintof
Light,Pippy.Ihavealotmore,soI'llhandyousome."

AdletreceivedthegemandFremytoldhimtheincantation.After,thethreethen
madeacirclearoundthesmallilluminatedstone.

"...I'msorry,butAdlet..."Fremystarted."Ithonestlydoesn'tseemlikewe'llbe
abletosolvethismystery.WeknowtoolittleaboutTgurneu.Wemerelyfought
himforaboutthirtyminutes."

"Whyareyousayingthat?YoushouldknowTgurneumuchmorethanwedo."

"Sorry,butdon'texpectmuchfromme,"Fremysaidassheshookherhead."I
don'tknowTgurneu'sweakpoint.AndI'venevercomeacrossareasonwhythe
NailoftheSaintswouldn'tworkonhim.FromthebeginningTgurneuhad
intendedtokillme,sotherewasnoreasontotellmeanyimportantinformation."

Idon'tgetit,Adletthought."Didn'tyoufeelthatTgurneuwashidingsomething?"

"...No."

"That'scrucial.Tgurneuintendedonkillingyousohedidn'ttellyouanyimportant
information.Thatishowwecancrackthispuzzle."

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"Whatdoyoumean?"

"Tohidesomethingfromthosenearyouisquitealotofwork.Andtokeepitfrom
beingexposedatallisevenmoredifficult.Lying,avertingyoureyeswhenyou
hearthetruth,andpretendingtoactnaturalwouldallbethingshe'dhaveto
do.Withoutadoubthemusthaveleftsomekindoftracebehind,"Adletsaid,as
hestaredrightintoFremy'seye.

"Ifweareabletofindoutwhateverlieshehastoldthenitwon'tbedifficultforus
toarriveatthetruth."

"Evenso,wedon'thaveenoughinformation,"Fremycountered,justbefore
Roloniatimidlycutintotheirconversation.

"Umm,wellAdkun,canyoulendmeyoursword?"

Adletdidn'tknowwhyshewantedit,buthehandedoverhisscabbardanyway.
Roloniathendrewtheswordandlookedattheblade.

"Ah,didyourepairit?Well,doyoustillhavetheclothyouusedtowipeitwith?"

Adletretrievedanoldragfromthetrashhehaddiscardedattheentranceofthe
cave.Roloniatookthecloththenstuffeditintohermouth.

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"Hey!"

"...That'sdisgusting."

FremyandAdletscruncheduptheirfacesindisgust,whileRolonia,looking
embarrassed,continuedtosuckonthebloodsoakedcloth.

"ThisswordcutsixKyoma."Roloniapulledouttheclothandtookoutherown
whip.Inthesamewayasthecloth,shelickedit."Andthiswhiphitnineteen
Kyoma.Thereisonlyonekindamongthemthattastesthesameasoneofthe
bloodsonAdlet'ssword.SofromthisIhavedeterminedTgurneu'sblood.Now
pleasewaitamoment.I'mgoingtoanalyzeitinmoredetail."

Roloniaalternatelylickedtheclothandherwhip.Somehowitseemedshewas
examiningTgurneu'sbloodthatwasclingingtoeach.

"So,whathaveyoulearned?"Fremyasked.

"Thebloodcantellmealotofthings,fromwhatheate,thecharacteristicsofhis
body,tohishistoryuptillnow.SoifIlickhisbloodIcangetageneral
understandingofthosethings."

Roloniacontinuedtolickthetwoobjectsforawhile,andwhenshefinishedwith
thatsheclosedhereyesinthought.

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"...Igotit."

"What?"

"FirstofallTgurneuisaKyomacomposedofamixofothers.Hetookthepartsof
otherKyomatomakehimselfstronger.HisbaseformisalizardKyoma.However,
thelizardformisjusthisbaseanditseemslikehisstrengthcomesfromallthe
otherKyomaparts.

"Thatissignificantinformation...butIalreadyknewthat,"Fremysaid.

"HehasblendedhisbodywitheightKyoma.Firstofallhecombinedwithagiant
apeKyomatogainhisphysicalstrength.Hethencombinedwithanoctopus
Kyomatoacquiretheabilitytoelongateandshortenhisarms.Hegothiseyesight
fromacrowKyomaandhissharphearingandsenseofsmellfrommixingwitha
dogKyoma.AndaswanKyomabroughtabouthisagility..."

RoloniaclosedhereyesagainforamomentandcontinuedtostudyTgurneu's
blood."...Thisisincredible.Heabsorbedaprimitive,hermaphroditicKyomaand
acquiredunthinkableregenerativepower.Andanincreaseinhisstaminaandthe
strengtheningofhisbody'srestorationabilitiescamefromasnakeKyoma.

AdletandFremysatwideeyedastheywereshoweredwithallthedetailsof
Rolonia'sexplanation.

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"Ididn'tknowthatmuch.IjustknewhewasthekindofKyomacomposedof
otherKyoma."

"Howdidyoulearnthisskill?"Adletasked.

Bashfully,Rolonialookeddowntotheground."Well...Ireceivedtraininginhowto
analyzebloodthroughlickingitfromMorasan.Shetaughtmevarioususeful
thingslikehealingandantidotes.AndafterIwastaughtbyAtrosanaboutthe
ecologyandlivinghabitsoftheKyomaIwonderedifIcouldputallthat
knowledgetopracticaluse..."

FremythenlookedAdlet'swayandsaid,"Adlet,didyouknowaboutthisabilityof
hers?"

"No,thisisthefirstIveheardofit.Roloniaisfullofnothingbutsurprisingthings,"
AdletsaidandRoloniahappilysmiled.

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ChapterThree:PartThree

AfterAdlet,Fremy,andRoloniawentintothecave,HansandGoldofleftthe
EternalFlowertokillabandofKyoma.Stillatthecave,Morawasobservingthe
twoofthemwithhersecondsightandwatchedasthegroupofKyomaquickly
reactedtoHansandGoldofastheycommencedtheirattack.

"Meomeow.Goldof,youtakecareofthesmallones.I'llfinishoffthebiggest
one."MoracouldhearHans'voice.Hersecondsightwasn'tlimitedtosightbut
couldpickupsoundsaswell.

Thesunhadalreadyfinishedsettingandthefaintredlightthathadbeenonthe
edgeofthemountainhaddisappeared.Thelightfromthestarsandmoon
illuminatedMoraandtheothersastheyenteredtheirfirstnightwithinthe
WailingDemonTerritory.

It'sanoisynight,Morathought.Shelookedoverthemountainwithhersecond
sightandsawagreatnumberofKyoma.TheyhadheardHansandGoldof'sbattle
andwereheadingovertotheirpositiononeafteranother.

"Hans,fivearenearingfromtheeastandtenfromthesouth,"Morasaid,using
thepowerofmountainechoes,butadjustingitsothatitwouldresonateonlyin
theairwhereHanswas.ThatwaytheKyomacouldn'thearhervoice.

"Goldof,afteryoudealwiththose,runnorthatonce.It'llbebadifyou're
surrounded."

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IntheblinkofaneyethegroupofKyomawasdeadandHansandGoldofwere
alreadyonthemove.Ifthingsremainlikethisthenitdoesn'tseemlikeI'llhaveto
worry,Morathoughtasshecontinuedtolookoverthemountain.

Suddenlyhereyesmovedtotheside.Chamothrustherfoxtailgrassdownher
throatandvomitedoutseveralJyuma.

"Whatareyouplanningtodo,Chamo?"

"Chamodoesn'tneedObachan'shelp.Chamocandothisalone."

MorawatchedastheJyumaleftthebarrieroftheEternalFlower.Butassoonas
shethoughttheJyumaintendedtofightwiththeKyoma,theJyumadraggedout
acaverabbitfromitsnestinghole.Onebyonetheycapturedsquirrelsandwild
micethencarriedthemintheirmouthsbacktoChamo.

"Alright!Youreallsuchgoodchildren,"Chamosaidasshepettedtheheadsof
thereturningJyuma.Thenshebitintothewildanimals.Withtheareaaroundher
mouthdyedadeepred,sheswallowedeachanimalandaddedthemtothe
contentsofherstomach.

"...Idon'tgetit."

Whateversheintendedtodo,Moradidn'tknow.Butitwasprobablyalineof
thinkingonlyChamowouldunderstand,soMoradecidedtoleaveheralone.

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MeanwhilethenewsthatHansandGoldofhadbegunfightingseemedtobe
spreadingtotheotherKyoma.Themountainbecamebusywithactivityandshe
couldhearthevoicesoftheKyomathatcouldspeak.

"Theystartedtomove."

"...Dotheyplanonescaping?"

"No,onlytwoaremoving."

TherewasachancethatMoracouldunderstandtheenemy'sstrategyfrom
hearingthemspeak,sosheremainedalertandstrainedtohearwhattheywere
saying.Manythingscouldhappen,soshecouldn'taffordtobecarelessevenonce
throughthecourseofthenight.

"Evenso,whataboutTgurneu?"Morasaidtoherself.

Overandoveragainshelookedoverthemountainwithhersecondsight.
However,Tgurneuwasnowheretobefound.Therewereevennosignswhich
showedthattheKyomawererelyingonhiscommands.

Whereintheworldareyou?Andwhatareyoudoing?

"Don'tletthemescape."

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"Thereareonlytwoenemies.JustHansandGoldof."

Tgurneu'snamenevercameoutoftheKyoma'smouths.

Itwasunthinkablethatunderthesecircumstancesthereweren'tanytrapslaid
outforthem.Tgurneuwasdefinitelygoingtotakeaction.Perhapshewasjust
finishingthepreparationsforhisattack.

ThenRoloniacameuptoMora'sside.

"Morasan.Excusemeforamoment,"Roloniasaid,thenshegrabbedMora's
armoredfistandlickeditmultipletimes.

HersuddenarrivalshockedMora,butafterawhileRoloniastoppedandsaid,"I
gotit!"Thenshereturnedtothecave.

Whataretheydoingoverthere?Morathoughtassheleanedherheadtothe
side.

"What'sup?"AdletaskedasRoloniamadeitbacktothecave.

"Morasan'sarmoredglovealsohasabitofTgurneu'sbloodsmearedtoit."

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"Whathaveyoulearned?"Fremyasked.

"Tgurneu'sbloodcontainsthebloodofaSaint.That'sasclearasIcould
determinefromjustlickingit."

"Isee..."

Sothepoisonhadcirculatedthroughhisbodyafterall.Thepossibilitythatthe
NailoftheSaintswasflawedhadfinallyvanished.

"Rolonia.CanyoualsodetectthecompositionofTgurneu'sbodyfromthetasteof
hisblood?"

"Yes,forthemostpart."

"Isthereacorewithinhisbody?"

"Yes.AfteranalyzinghisbloodI'msureofthatfact."

"Howmany?"

"Justone."

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Adletfrowned.

"Unfortunately,Idon'tknowwhythebloodoftheSaintsdidn'twork...Adkun,I'm
sorry.Itriedtoworkharder,but..."

Rolonia'sshouldersdropped.

"Whatareyousaying?There'sonlyabitmoreleftuntilwesolvethismystery.
There'snoreasonthestrongestmanintheworldcan'tsolvethiswithonlythe
informationwe'vemanagedtogather."

Ofcourseitwasjustabluff.Inactuality,Adletwasworried.Hewasgratefulfor
Rolonia'sanalysis,buthestillcouldn'tfindananswer.

Adlethadcomeupwithabunchoftheories.Forexample,therewasakindof
Kyomacalledthedivisiontype.Theycouldseparatetheirbodiesandcreate
anotherself.IfTgurneuweresuchaKyomahecoulddividehisbodyintotwoor
moreparts.Thenhecouldhidehismainbodythathousedhiscoresomewhere
andattackwiththebodythatdidn'thavethecore.Suchatheorywouldexplain
whythebloodoftheSaintshadn'tworkedonhim.Iftherewasnocorewithinhis
bodythenobviouslythepoisonoftheSaint'sbloodcouldnotaffectit.

However,Rolonia'sanalysishadnegatedthatpossibility.Tgurneu'sbodyhada
core.AndontopofthatTgurneuwasnotadivisionKyoma.

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Fromthebeginningithadbeenanunreasonabletheory.Theotherbodiescreated
bythedivisionKyomawereonlycreaturesontheleveloflowerorderanimalsor
parasites.Itwashighlyunlikelythattherewouldbeanotherbodythatpossessed
strengthlikeTgurneu's.

Ortherewasanothertheory:Tgurneuwascomposedofmultiple,livingKyoma
andhadbeenpretendingtobejustone.Hishead,core,arms,legseachpart
wasadifferent,independentKyoma.AndsoonlyoneofthoseKyomahadbeen
killedbytheNailoftheSaints.Theheadandtheotherpartscontinuedtolive.

ButthattheoryalsocontradictedwithRolonia'sanalysis.Tgurneuwasa
compositiontypeKyomaandtherewasonlyonecorewithinhisbody.SoAdlet
hadnochoicebuttodiscardthattheoryaswell.

Healsohadanotheridea,whichwasthatRolonia'sanalysishadbeenwrong.But
itdidn'tseemlikethetimidandmeticulousgirlwouldsaysomethingshewasn't
sureabout,sohecouldtrustheranalysis.

"BothhimbeingadivisionKyomaandhimbeingcomposedofseparateKyoma
havebeendisprovedAdlet.Haveyouthoughtofanythingelse?"Fremyasked.It
seemedlikeshehadalsobeenthinkingaboutthesametheories.

Adletshookhishead.

"I'munderstandingthislessandless.SupposingRolonia'sanalysisiscorrect,then
thatmeansTgurneudoesnothavetheabilitytohidethings,"Fremyadded.

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"I'm...I'msorry,"Roloniasaid.

Youdon'treallyneedtoapologize,Adletthought.

"Rolonia,Idlikeyoutostepoutsideforabit."

"Huh?"

Fremy'ssuddenrequestconfusedRoloniaandAdlet.

"Quickly."

"Oh,okay.I'mleavingnow.I'msorry,"Roloniasaidandswiftlyexitedthecave.

Fremywatchedherleaveandcontinuedtolookoutthecavetoconfirmthatshe
couldn'thearheranymore.

"What'swithyouallofasudden,Fremy?"

"DoyoubelievewhatRoloniaissaying?"FremywasstaringatAdlet.

"Ofcourse.SheisthekeytoinvestigatingTgurneu."

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"TheseventhwillacttoprotectTgurneu.Youweretheonewhoguessedthat.
MaybeRoloniaistryingtoleadyouinthewrongdirection."

"There'snoreasontothinkthat'sthecase."

"I'mjusttalkingaboutthepossibility."

"Iwillconsiderthepossibility.However,untilitisclearthatRoloniaistheenemy
youwilltrusther."

"You'resocareless,"Fremyshouted.ShethensawRoloniapeekingintothecave
fromtheoutsidesoFremygesturedforhertogoaway."Beabitmorecautious.
Andbewaryoftheothersaswell.Soonerorlateryou'llbetrickedandkilledif
youstaylikethis."

"Iftheseventhiscomingaftermethenthatisexactlywhattheywouldwantme
todo.Iamthestrongestmanintheworld."

AngerandabitofsadnessspreadacrossFremy'sface.ButAdlethadnoideawhat
shewasthinkingabout.

Youarenottheworld'sstrongest."

"...Whatdidyousay?"

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"You'reevenweakerthanme.No,youaretheweakestamongtheseven.Throw
awayyourhighopinionofyourselfandknowyourplace."

Hehimselfhadtobelievehewastheworld'sstrongest.ThatwasAdlet's
conviction.IfhestoppedbelievinginhimselfthenhewouldnolongerbeAdlet.

"Iamthestrongestmanintheworld.IwillabsolutelydefeattheMajin.Iamnot
scaredoftheseventh.You,theothers,everyone.Iwillprotectyouall."

Fremydidn'tsayanything.Shejustshookherheadsadly.

"IalsohavesomethingIwanttosaytoyou.Believeinyourcompanionsabit
more.It'slikeotherthanmeyouthinkofeveryoneastheenemy,"Adlet
continued.

"...That'sright.Ithinkourcompanionsaretheenemy.Shouldn'tIthinkthatway
sinceIdon'tknowwhotheenemyis?"

"Youarewrong.Wemusttrustoneanother.Ifwedon'tcooperate,wewon'tbe
abletodefeatTheMajin.Ifweloseourunitythatwillonlygivetheseventhan
advantage."

Fremydidn'tnod;shejustcontinuedtostareathim.

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"...Irefuse.Ihavehadenoughoftrust."

"You..."

"Iwanttokilleveryoneexceptforyou,ifyou'llpermitit.IfIcandothatthenI'll
stopthinkingabouttheseventh."

"Fremy!"

WhentheyhadfinishedfightingwithNashetania,Adlethadthoughttheirhearts
hadbeenabletoconnect.But,maybethathadbeenanillusion.Atthemoment
Adletcouldfeelagiantgapbetweenthetwoofthem.

Iftheyunderstoodoneanothertheywouldtrustoneanother.Butthatwasthe
onethingthatcouldn'tbedone,nomatterwhat.Anditseemedlikethatwould
alwaysbethecase.WheneverFremywasthereAdlet'schestbegantohurt.

"Rolonia,it'salrightforyoutocomebacknow.Let'sthinkmoreaboutTgurneu,"
AdletcalledouttoRoloniainanirritatedtone.

"What'swrong?Youseemlikeyou'reinareallybadmood."

"...Itwasn'tanimportantconversation.Itwasanunproductiveandmeaningless
wasteoftime."

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Fremy'sfacedidn'treacttothosewords.Sheonlylookedawayandsilentlystared
attheground.

Thethreethenresumedtheirconversation.

"Rolonia,doesTgurneureallynothaveahidingabilityorsomethinglikethat?"
Adletasked.

"...Yes,I'mverysureaboutthat.Tgurneudoesn'thaveahidingability.IfhedidI
shouldbeabletodetectitthroughlickinghisblood."

"Inotherwords,theabilitiesTgurneuhasare..."

"Hisincrediblestrength,vitality,regeneration,andhisflexibleandresilientbody.
That'sall."

IfthatwerethecasethenTgurneudidn'thaveanabilitythatcouldrenderthe
bloodofaSaintineffective.

"Iwonderifwhatmadethepoisonineffectivewasn'tTgurneu'sownpower.
MaybesomeotherpersonusedsomekindofpowertoprotectTgurneu.Should
weconsiderthat?"Adletasked.

"ButtheonlypersonpresenttherewasTgurneu."

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"That'snotnecessarilythecase.Theremayhavebeensomeonehiddenwithinthe
ground.AnotherKyoma...oraSaint."

"ASaint?"Roloniasaid,shocked.

"Ofcourseweshouldconsiderthat.Nashetaniahadbetrayedus.Thereisenough
ofapossibilitythatthereareothertraitorousSaints."

"Thatmaybeso,but..."

Fremysighed."Isn'tgoverningtheSaintsMora'sjob?Iwonderwhathappenedto
hersupervision."

"It...It'snotMorasan'sfault..."

"I'mnottryingtoblameher.It'sjustacomplaint."

Fremy'scoldwordsmadeRoloniaslumphershoulders.

"Itmightbemyfault."

"Why?"

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"Morasanhadbeenseeingtomyinstructionforsolong.EvenMorasanhad
beenmakinggreateffortstobecomestronger...Whileshewastrainingmeshe
hadtoleavethegoverningoftheSaintstootherpeople.IfIhadbeenmore
capable..."

"Youalwayswanttosaythatanythingandeverythingisyourfault.Iwantyouto
stop;it'stiresome."

"I'm...I'msorry."Roloniashrankdownevenfurther.

Afterthattheycontinuedtotalkforawhile.Thethreeputforwardvariousideas
concerningwhatkindofabilitycouldmakethepoisonoftheSaintsineffective.
AdletputtousealltheknowledgeabouttheKyomahehadlearnedfromAtro.
FremyalsosaidthenamesandabilitiesoftheKyomasheknew.AndRoloniaused
herlimitedknowledgeonthematterandthoughtabouttheabilitiesoftheSaints.

Yettheycouldn'tcomeupwithanysolutions.Eachpossibilitywasdisprovedone
afteranother.Theysimplycouldn'tseeananswerastowhythepoisonofthe
Saintshadn'tworkedonTgurneu.

ThebattlebetweenHans,Goldof,andtheKyomacontinued.Morawaswatching
theirfightwithhersecondsightandfromwhatshecouldtellHansandGoldof
hadprobablymanagedtoreducetheKyomabytwenty.

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"Goldofheadedoverthere!"

"Hans,die,die,wewilleatyou,"theKyomasaidastheytriedtosurroundHans.

AsshelistenedtotheKyoma,MoraissueddirectionstoHanswiththepowerof
mountainechoes.

"Hans,you'llbesurroundedifyoustaythere.Onceyouheadtothesummitofthe
mountain,turntothewest."

"Umeomeow!Goldofwe'regettingoutofhere!Followme,meow!"

ThetwocutdowntheKyomaintheirpathastheymadetheirescape.

LookingatHans'strengthwasfascinating.ExcludingChamo,heseemedtobethe
oneinthegroupmostlikelymissingsomethinginthehead.Butwhatwasmore
surprisingthanhisstrengthwastheaccuracyofhisanalysisofsituations.
AlthoughhehadMora'ssupport,itshouldhavebeenalmostimpossibleforthem
tocontinuethefightwithoutbeingsurrounded.Yetdespitethefactthatitwas
thedeadofnightandtheycouldn'tmakeanylight,hewashavingnotrouble.

Goldofwasalsostrong.HefollowedHans'instructionsandwasfighting
comfortably.Aslongasitwasrelatedtobattletheredidn'tseemtobeanyreason
toworryabouthim.

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"Goldof,tellmeifyou'retired,meow.Canyoustillfight?"

Goldofdidn'tevenshakehishead.Hewasgloomyanddepressedasexpected.

"Hans,afterthesituationtheresettlesdowncanyoucheckoutsidethemountain
forme?Mysecondsightonlyextendstothemountain."

"Meow."

HansandGoldofheadedtowardsthesummitandfromtheretheylookedover
thebaseofthemountain.

"Ican'tseeanylights,meow.There'snosignofalargegroupapproaching."

"Isthatright?WellIunderstand.Continuethebattlethen."

Morawaspanicking.Shestillcouldn'tseeTgurneuandasaresultcouldn'tusethe
barriershe'ddesignedtotraphim.

Whatinthehellareyoudoing,MoracursedatTgurneuwithinhermind.

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Chapter 33

Tgurneu,theseventh,whyaren'ttheymakingamove?AndwhatdidTgurneu
meanbyhavingonlytwodaysleft?Herquestionsfloatedwithinherheadoneby
one,butnoteventheslightestanswercametomind.

"..."

Moradidhaveonefear.Itwasafearthathadbeendwellingwithinhermindever
sincetheyweretrappedwithintheIllusionFogBarrier.

DidtheseventhknowaboutthesecretpactbetweenmeandTgurneu?Surely
Tgurneuhadsaidthathewouldn'tspeakaboutthepacttoanyoneelse.Butif
therewassomeonewhohadoverheardourconversation,thatwouldbeanother
matteraltogether.

Althoughtherewereconditionstotheagreement,Morahadindeedpromisedto
killoneofhercompanions.Ifthatweretobeexposedhercompanionswould
probablydirecttheirsuspicionather.Fremymighttrytokillheronthespot.And
evenifshewasn'tkilledimmediatelynoonewouldtrustheranymore.

Ontopofthat,MoraalreadymessedupduringtheirtimeintheIllusionFog
Barrier.Shealreadylostaconsiderableamountofhercompanions'trust.Forthe
seventhherpredicamentmustbeanopportunesituation.

However,therewasnoindicationthathersecretpactwithTgurneuhadbeen
revealed.ExcludingFremy,therewasnoonewhostronglysuspectedher.

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TheseventhandTgurneu,whatareyouaimingat?

"Mora,whichwayshouldwego?Areyousleeping?"Hanssaidfromthesummit
ofthemountain.

Morahurriedlystoppinghercurrentlineofthinking.Thenafterusinghersecond
sighttosurveytheareashegaveoutdirections.

"Onceyoudescendthemountain,goaroundthesouthside.Thereareonlyafew
Kyomaaroundthere."

"Alright,meow."

Atthatmomenttherewasasmallflashofanideawithinthebackofhermind.
However,Moraimmediatelydeniedit.

Itcan'tbe.There'snowayIamtheseventh.

Theytalkedformaybetwohours,butthewordsthethreeofthemweresaying
weregettingfewerandfewer.

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Chapter 33

Theyhadthoroughlydiscussedeverylikelypossibilityastowhatkindofability
couldhavebeenusedtoblockthepoisonoftheSaintscoursingthroughout
Tgurneu'sentirebody

TheythoughtforalongtimeaboutwhatTgurneumighthavebeenhidingfrom
Fremy.ButeventheinformationFremysuppliedthemwithwasnotenoughto
helpthempindownwhatexactlyTgurneuwasconcealing.

Adlet,Fremy,andRoloniastaredatoneanotherastheycontemplatedthegloom
oftheirsituation.

"...Maybeweshouldchangeuphowwethink,"Adletsaid,fedupwith
theconversationgoingaroundincirclesandleadingnowhere.

"Howshouldwechangeit?"

"Weshouldn'tthinkaboutwhatkindofabilityblockedtheSaint'spoison.Instead
weshoulddiscussiftherehasbeenanythingunusualaboutTgurneu'sbehavior."

FremyandRoloniabarelyreactedtohissuggestion.

"Therehasbeennothingbutunusualbehavior.Hecameupfromoutofthe
ground,hesaidthatgreetingsweresomekindoffirststep,hehadan
underhandedwayofspeaking..."

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Chapter 33

Thatwasallcertainlytrue.

"Fremy,hasTgurneualwaysbeenthatway?"

"Yes.Greetingsarethefirststeptoabrightliving.He'sbeensayingthatforalong
time.IfTgurneu'sKyomadon'tgreet,hewillgetangry."

What'sthedealwithhim,Adletthought.

"Whatwasthemouthinhischest?Isthatacompartmentorsomething?"

"That'sright.Heplacesvariousthingsinthere."

"Likewhat?"

"Whatheputsintherethemostarememopadsandwritingutensils,compasses
andmaps...Hehasevenputinhumanmadetoysandsweets,"Fremyanswered.

"Forsomereasonheisonlyputtingordinarythingsthere,"Roloniasaid.

ThatwaswhenAdletrecalledaparticularlystrangethingamongTgurneu's
unnaturalbehavior.

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"Tgurneu...whydidhehaveafigfruit?"

"Huh?"

"Isn'titalrightfortheKyomatoalmostnevereat?Whythenishewalkingaround
withfood?"

"TgurneuisaKyomathatstrangelyeatsfrequently.Hehassaidthatheismore
predisposedthanordinaryKyomatogettinghungry."

"Isthatright,Rolonia?"

"...Predisposedtoeatfrequently?Idon'tknowmuchaboutthat..."

Adletrecalledsomethingelse.Thistimeitwasfromeightyearsagowhen
Tgurneuappearedathisvillage.Tgurneuhadbeentalkingwiththevillagersata
table.Andatthattimeaswelltherewasalargeamountoffoodinfrontof
him.Butwhy?

"Theremightbesomesecrettothatfig."

"Thefig?"

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Chapter 33

"WhatdoesTgurneunormallyeat?"

"Heeatsanything.Humansandanimals,vegetablesandfruit.Heeatsfruitalotin
particular.Hemakeshiscapturedhumansgrowthemandheputstheminthe
mouthinhischestandwalksaroundwiththem.

"...Didheeatthefruit?"

"FromwhatIcouldgraspfromlickinghisblood,Tgurneutrulyeatsanything,"
Roloniaanswered.

"Hehaseatenfigfruit,andthemeatofanimals,andweeds.And..."Rolonia
hesitatedinthemiddleofhersentence."HehaseatenKyomatoo."

Adletwasshocked,butFremyremainedcalm.

"That'sright.TgurneueatsKyoma.Hehaseatenuselessinsignificantonesand
KyomathataresuspectedtobeDozzu'sfollowers.Hesaiditwasgoodforgaining
strength."

"HeevenateKyomafromhisowngroup...that'ssickening."

AKyomathatatealot.Thatwasinteresting.Butwhatdiditmean?Adletdidn't
evenhavetheslightestcluehowtobegintoanalyzethatpieceofinformation.

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ButTgurneuhadtakenoutafigfromthemouthinhischestandeatenitduring
theirbattle.Andthatdidn'tseemlikeacompletelyinconsequentialaction.

"...TherewasnodescriptionofTgurneubeingagianteaterinthepastliterature,"
Adletsaidcasually.

"Thepastliterature?"Fremyasked,craninghernecktotheside.

"Haven'tyoureadByrne'sWarRecord?It'sthewrittenaccountofthefirstHeroes
oftheSixFlowerswrittenbythesurvivors."

"I'veneverheardofit.IsTgurneurecordedinit?"

Adletnodded.Byrne'sWarRecordwassomethinganyonewhosoughttobecome
aHerooftheSixFlowersread.

"I'vealsoreadByrne'sWarRecord."Roloniasaid,raisingherhand.

"Fulmer,theherokingwascool.Particularlywhenhefoughtoneononewith
Zophrair,"Adletsaid.

"MyfavoritewasPerukesan,theSaintofFire.Eventhoughshewasthefirstto
dieamongthesix..."

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Chapter 33

AdletandRoloniathenstartedtochataboutthestorybeforeFremycutthemoff.

"There'ssomethingIwanttoknow.InwhatwaywasTgurneudepictedinthe
record?"

"Tgurneu'snamedoesn'tdirectlyappear.ButamongtheDemon
KingZophrair'ssubordinatestherewasaKyomathathadalmosttheexactsame
appearanceasTgurneu."

"DemonKingZophrair?"

Adletwassurprisedshedidn'tknowaboutthateither.

"ZophrairwastheKyomathatplayedanactiveroleinthefirstgreatwaroftheSix
Flowers.ItseemedlikehewastheonewhocommandedtheKyomaatthattime.
SecondtotheMajin,theauthorByrnegavehimthetitleofDemonKing."

"ThereusedtobeaKyomalikethat?Ididn'tknow."

"Well,asyouknowtheSixHeroesapproachedthewestsideoftheWailing
DemonTerritorybyboat.TheyledtheKyomaawayfromtheirpostsandwhen
theirrankswerethin,theylanded.Andthentheylaunchedasurpriseattackallat
onceontheLandofSpilledBlood.ThatwaswheretheyconfrontedtheDemon
KingZophrairand22ofhissubordinates.

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"Zophrairhadthewingsofapeacockandamysteriousappearancethatwasn't
quiteabirdnoracat.Byrne,thepersonwhowrotethewarrecord,saidthathe
wasthemostbeautifulexistencehehadeverseen."

"Youknowtheaccountwell."

"IthoroughlyreadByrne'swaraccounttothepointwhereImemorizedit.SoasI
wassaying,ZophrairwasaKyomathatpossessedauniqueability.Byrnehad
calledhimaControllingKyoma."

"Whatkindofabilitywasit?"

"ThepowertocontrolotherKyomaandplacethemunderhiscommand.

"Zophrair'sfollowersfoughttheSixFlowersinperfectsync.Theydidn'thaveto
speaktooneanother,nordidtheyhavetotradeglances,theyjustcooperated
perfectly.Anditwaswrittenthatnomatterhowmanytimesthetwentytwo
followerswerekilled,theycamebacktolife,aslongasZophrairlivedtheir
numberswouldnotdecrease."

"...Acontrollingtype."

"Zophrairdidn'tissuecommandstohissubordinates.Itappearedthathehad
completecontroloverthem.Hissubordinateshadlosttheirfreewillandhad
becomeapartofZophrair.

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"TherecordsaidthatZophrairhadcertainlygivenapartofhisbodytohisKyoma
subordinates.AndbygivingapartofhisbodyhecouldcontrolotherKyoma.That
isthepowerofthecontrollingtype.Well,allofthisissuppositionfromByrne's
writtenaccount."

"PlusitseemedthatZophrairalsohadtheabilitytomakeotherKyomastronger.
ItiswrittenthattheinstantZophrairwasgonetheKyomaunderhimwould
abruptlyweaken,"Roloniaaddedtotheexplanation.

"So,whathappened?"

"ThreeoftheSixFlowersrestrainedZophrairwhiletheremainingFlowersrushed
intotheLandofSpilledBlood.TheythendefeatedtheMajin.AftertheMajinhad
beenbeaten,ZophrairchallengedtheherokingFulmertoaoneononebattle,
whichFulmeraccepted.Theendoftheirdesperatestruggleresultedinthemboth
strikingtheotherdead."

"..."

"IntherecordsleftbythesecondgroupofHeroes,Zophrairdoesn'tmakean
appearance.NorwasthereaKyomathatpossessedthesameabilities.Therewas
onlyonecontrollingtypeKyoma.It'sappropriatethentocallhimtheDemon
King."

"WheredoesTgurneumakeanappearance?"

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"TherewasaKyomathatresembledTgurneuamongZophrair'sfollowers.Though
thereareanumberofotherrecordsleftbehindbyotherHeroes,Tgurneuonly
appearsinByrne's."

"WhatdidTgurneudointhataccount?"

"Hedidn'tdoanythingsignificant.HefoughtwiththeSixFlowers,wasbeatenand
killed.That'sall."

"...Ididn'tknowanyofthat.WhatI'dheardaboutthepastgreatwarswiththeSix
Flowerswascompletelydifferent.AndI'dneverevenheardofthesocalled
DemonKingZophrair."

That'sodd,Adletthought.ZophrairwaswithoutadoubtthestrongestKyomain
history.Andasfaraspreviousbattleswereconcerned,Adletdidn'tthinkTgurneu
evenreachedthesamelevel.Hewonderediftheexistenceofsuchapowerful
Kyomawouldevenbetoldtofuturegenerationsofmankind.

"Youdidn'tknowaboutthepastbattles?"Adletasked.

"I'veheardofthem.ButitwascompletelydifferentfromwhatI'mhearingnow.
Tgurneuhadtoldmethattherewasn'tanyonewhocommandedtheKyoma
duringthefirstwarwiththeSixFlowers.TheKyomahadchallengedtheheroesin
adisorderlyfashionandwerethendefeated."

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"...That'sstrange,"Adletsaid.Tgurneuhadclearlyhiddentheexistence
ofZophrairfromFremy.Butforwhatreason?

TherewereanumberofelementsthatwereunnaturalaboutTgurneu.Hismeals,
thegreetings,andthefactthathehadhidZophrair'sexistence.However,howdid
anyofthemrelatetoTgurneu'smystery?

ItwasalltoovagueandAdletstillcouldn'tseeasolution.

"...Soitseemsthatwehavetoreturntothatplaceonemoretimeafterall."The
placeAdletwasreferringtowasthehillwheretheyhadbeenambushed.Itwould
takethemaboutthirtyminutestoreachthehilliftheyhurried.

"That'sgoingtobedifficult,"Fremyreplied."ThisareaissurroundedbyKyoma.
BesidesiftherewasacluetherethenTgurneuwouldcometostopusfrom
findingit."

HewantedtoavoidfightingwithTgurneuagainwhilethemysteryremained
unsolvedespeciallysincethenexttimetheyencounteredhimtheymightnotbe
abletogetaway.However,theyhadtoconsiderhowtheywouldreturntothat
hillbecauseiftherereallywereanycluesthenthatwastheonlyplacetheycould
be.

"I'llgoandcheck.Youtwostayhere,"Fremysaidandstoodup.

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"Youregoingbyyourself?"

"ItwillbeeasiertodothisalonesinceIwon'tneedtopayattentionto
superfluousthings."

"Youcan't.I'mgoingtoo.Rolonia'salsotaggingalong."

"Youhaven'tfinishedhealingfromyourinjuries.AndRoloniaisjustoutofthe
question.Icannottakesomeonewhomightbeanenemy."

ThatwaswhentheyheardMora'svoicefromoutside."Tgurneuhascome!"

Afterherannouncementthethreerushedoutofthecaveatthesametime.

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ChapterFour:PartOne

ThedaywasthreeyearsbeforetheMajin'sawakening.ItwasthedayafterMora
hadfinishedhernegotiationswithTgurneu.

"Thisisbullshit!"

AnangryvoiceechoedinsideMora'spersonalroomattheHeadTemple.The
speakerwasawomansittingacrossfromMoraatatable.Shethenstoodtoher
feetandsmashedherfistintothetable,breakingthefurnitureintwolikea
teacupofvaseandscatteringfragmentsacrossthefloor.Thosebrokenchunksof
woodthenturnedintoclumpsofsaltbeforecrumblingontothecarpet.

"Weylynn,don'tbreakmyfurniture,"MorasaidtoWeylynnCoteau,theSaintof
Salt.

AtthattimeWeylynnwas25yearsold.Shehadlightbrownskinandlongjet
blackhair.Herbodywasleanwithtonedmuscles.Shewascladinarobewiththe
sleevesrippedoffandherhandswereinleathergloves.

Hersalthadthepowertopurifyanddriveawayevil.SoforgenerationstheSaints
ofSalthadbeeninchargeofcreatingbarrierstowardoffKyoma.Andtheyeven
hadthepowertotemporarilyrenderthetoxinintheWailingDemonTerritory
ineffective.

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Chapter 41

OntopofthatWeylynnhadmasteredtheabilityofchangingenemiesintoclumps
ofsalt.Shewasalsoconsiderablyskilledatfighting,whichwasrareforSaintsof
Salt.

MorahadtoldhereverythingabouthersecretpactwithTgurneu.AsWeylynn
listenedherfirstemotionwasshock,butthenthatshockturnedintorage.It
wasn'ttowardsMorawhohadmadeanunforgiveablepactwithaKyoma,but
withTgurneuwhohadtakenherdaughterhostage.

"Boss1!Howcanyoubesocalm?!Whydidn'tyoubeatthatfoolishKyomato
death?"

"Becausehegotaway.AndheisnotanopponentIcandefeatonmyown."

"...Bastard."

Themaidscameandcleanedupthegiantpilesofsalt,afterwhichtheybroughtin
areplacementtable.Whentheyweredone,Moraconfirmedthattheyhadleft
beforecontinuingherstory.However,whenshestartedtospeakWeylynn
suddenlytriedtoleavetheroom.

"Whereareyougoing?"

1
In Japanese the term translates to general, but the connotation is of a person in an authoritative position
who is also close to the speaker. In English, phrases like Boss and Chief are used in the same manner.

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"Isn'titobvious?!I'mgoingtogobeatthatbastardKyomatoapulp!Youshould
cometoo,Boss!"

"Calmdown.Wheredoyouthinkhemightbe?"

"He'sobviouslyintheWailingDemonterritory.Icanenterwithmypower.We
willtakesomeonelikeChamoandAsley,plustheprincessandLeurabasan2.Itll
beapreludetothebattlesoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers."

"You'redelusional.YourpowerwouldonlyallowyoutoremainintheWailing
Demonterritoryfortwodaysatthemost.Andthatwouldbenowherenear
enoughtime."

"...Shit."

Weylynnreluctantlyconcededandsatdownonthesofa.

MoraheldaspecialtrustinWeylynn.Shewasagoodwomanwhowasn'ttwo
faced.Shewassincere,abletokeepasecret,andonceshemadeapromiseshe
wouldn'tbreakitbyanymeans.Itwastrueshecouldbesimplisticandimpulsive,
yetevenso,amongtheSaintstherewasnooneotherthanherwhoMoracould
openherheartto.

2
WeylynnspeakverycasuallysoshedropstheOinObasan.OisapolitemarkerinJapanese.

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Chapter 41

"So,isShenierachanwell?"

"Yousawherrecentlydidn'tyou?Shesasgoodasnew."

"Themaidstaughtherhowtowrite.She'sagoodkid.Doessheknow?"

"Shedoesn'tknowanything.Sheshouldjustbethinkingthatshe'srecovered
fromherillnessalready."

BothWeylynnandMoraletoutamiserablesighatthesametime.

"IsthereanythingIcandoforthatgirl?Anythingatall,Boss?Tellme,"Weylynn
pleadedencouragingly.Thatwasoneofhergoodpoints.

"...FromnowonI'llbedevotingmyselftotraining.Ican'tpossiblydefeatTgurneu
atmycurrentstrength.SoduringthistimepleaseprotecttheHeadTemple."

"Leaveittome.ButIdidn'thavetobeaskedtodosomethinglikethat."Weylynn
flexedherbicepsandhititwithherfist.

"TgurneumayalsobethreateningotherSaints,somakearrangementstomake
thisplacemoresecure.AlsocooperatewithMarmannaandlookintowhether
thereisanyonelikemewhohashadsomeonetakenhostage.Therearealotof
thingstodo."

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"Noproblem.RelaxBossandfocusonyourtraining."

MorahadalsoaskedGunnertoassistWeylynn,sosheprobablydidntneedto
worry.ButatthatmomentWeylynnsaidsomethinginadispiritedvoice.

"Hey,Boss.CanIaskyousomething?"

"Whatisit?"

"Idon'twanttosaythisbut...

Weylynnwasbeingunusuallyhesitant.Itwasasifsheweretryingtofigureout
howtophrasesomethingthatwasdifficulttosay.

"IfyouarenotabletodefeatTgurneubythedeadline,anditcomestoyouhaving
tokilloneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers,whatwillyoudo?"

"...Don'tthinkaboutthat.IwilldefinitelykillTgurneu."

"That...That'sright.Sorryforthestrangequestion."

"Stopevadingandspeakclearly.Iwon'tgetmadatwhateveryouaretryingto
say,"Morasaid.

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Readyingherself,Weylynnopenedhermouthtospeak."Boss,ifyouarentable
todefeatTgurneuwithintheallottedtime...willyoukilloneoftheHeroesofthe
SixFlowersinordertosaveShenierachan?"WeylynnlookedatMorawitha
sharpgaze."BecauseifthatisyourintentthenIwillhavenochoicebuttokillyou
inordertoprotectthisworld.AlthoughShenierachanisimportant,Icannottrade
herfortheworld."

"...Restassured.Idontintendtodothat."

"Sorry.Ishouldn'thaveaskedsomethinglikethat."

"Don'tworryaboutit.Itwasanaturalquestion."

"PleaseBoss;you'retheonlyoneIcanrelyon.Youabsolutelymustdefeat
TgurneuandsaveShenierachan,"Weylynnsaidandthenshesmiled."Icare
aboutthatgirltoo.AsIdoforyoutoo,Boss."

Morasmiledaswellandgaveaslightnod.

AboutthreehourshadpassedsinceGoldofandHanshadheadedtobattle.Ithad
grownlateandthesunhadalreadyrisenhighintothesky.

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"Hanscomebacktothebarrierforamoment.Youmaynothavenoticedit,but
yourequitetiredandyourmovementsaregettingsluggish."Moraissuedthe
orderusingthepowerofmountainechoessothattheKyomawouldnotnotice.

"Meow.Itseemsthatyou'reright.I'vealsobeenthinkingitwasabouttimetofall
back."

Hans'positionwasprettyfarawayfromtheEternalFlower.SoMorausedher
secondsighttofindapathforhimtoreturnsafely.

"Climbtothesummit,thenfromthereimmediatelyrushdownward.Thereare
Kyomahalfwaydown,butI'llhaveChamoassistyou."

"Meow,meow,Igotit.Goldof,thisway."

HansandGoldofthenbegantomove.Meanwhile,Morashiftedherattentionto
Chamowhowasbusystuffingherfacewithwildanimals.

"CanyoumoveyourJyuma?Ifyoucan,takecareoftheKyomaaboveyour
position."

"Alright,"Chamoreplied.ShethenvomitedoutfiveJyumaandmadethemhead
upthemountain.Moranoticedthattheyhadastrangenewlusteronthem
differentfrombefore.

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TheareaaroundChamowaslitteredwithbones.Shehadaddedalmostallofthe
animalsonthemountaintothecontentsinherstomach.

"...Ugh,asexpectedthatwasntsofun,"Chamosaidwithagiantburp.

"Whatintheworldhaveyoubeendoing?"

"Chamo'sbeengatheringanimaloils."

"Oil?"Moraleanedherheadtotheside.

"Itseemslikethisstrangepowderwillgrowhotifittoucheswater.SoChamo
thinksthatifChamo'spetsarecoveredinoilperhapsthepowder'seffectwillbe
diminishedconsiderably.

Isee.Thatwasdefinitelysomethingonlyshewouldthinkof.

"Chamodoesn'tknowhoweffectiveitwillbe.Andthereisn'tenoughoil.
Nevertheless,ChamothinksChamowillbeabletomanagesomehow."

"AreyougoingtofightTgurneu?"

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"Uhuh,Chamo'sgoingtowaitforeveryone,sinceChamoisnotachild.Chamo
canwaitproperly.

Morasmiled.Chamowasmaturinglittlebylittleafterall.

"That'sright.Youvealwaysbeenagoodkid.Youvejustmadesomemistakes."

MorapattedChamoshead,butthegirlswattedherhandawayunhappily.
"ChamosaidChamo'snotachild."

EvenwhileshewastalkingwithChamo,Morawasvigilantlyobservingthestateof
themountain.HansandGoldofhadreceivedtheJyuma'sassistanceandwere
headingbacktotheEternalFlower.AndthoughthenumberofKyomahad
decreased,therewasnoindicationthattheyhadcalledforreinforcements.

Morasearchedifanythingelsewashappeninginthearea.Andthatwaswhen
Moraspottedsomethingabnormal.Unconsciously,herentirebodygrewstiff.

Tgurneuwaswalkingcasuallyonthewesternsideofthemountain.Hisgaitlacked
motivation,asifhewerejusttakingaleisurelystroll.

HewastakingfourKyomawithhim.TwoofthemwerelargeKyomaoverten
meterstall.Oneofthepairhadtheformofareptilewithagiantmouth.The
otherofthepairlookedlikeamonsterintheformofahugejellyfish.

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InadditiontherewasamonkeyKyomawithrainbowcoloredfur,andaKyoma
thatlookedlikeahumanmadeoutofstone.

"ThatChamoRossowasunbelievable.Shelookscompletelydifferentfromwhat
Iveheard."

"Definitely.Iwonderwhattheinsideofherstomachlookslike..."

JustlookingatheronceIalmostburstoutlaughing.Iwaslike,comeon,youre
reallyhuman?"

TgurneuwaschattinghappilywiththemonkeyKyoma.Hehadanattitudethat
seemedtosuggestasifhewerentconcernedatallaboutthestateoftheEternal
FlowerortheKyomaonthemountain.

"IfwekillChamowilltheKyomashecontrolsalsobefreed?"

"Iwonder.Wellit'snothingtoworryabout.TheyrejustCargikk'sKyomaafter
all."Tgurneuthenadded,"IwonderifMorawillkillsomeonesoon."

"TherehasbeennomessagesayingthatanythinghasoccurredatTheEternal
Flower.They'reprobablystillconfused,"themonkeyKyomasaid.

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Tgurneushrugged."Nomatterhowmuchofafoolsheis,Ithinkattheveryleast
shecanunderstandwhatthereisnotimemeans.Howlongdoessheintendto
keepmewaiting?"

Eavesdroppingontheirconversation,Mora'sskinrosewithgoosebumpsoutof
anger.JusthowmuchisTgurneugoingtomakeafooloutofme?

"WillMorareallykilloneofthem?"

"Oneortwomorepushesmightbeneeded.Well,atanyrateitsjustamatterof
time.Let'swaitabitlonger."

AfterthatTgurneucontinuedhisleisurelystroll.

"What'sthematter,Obachan?"Chamoaskedfromherside.

"...Sohe'sfinallycome."Moratookoutastakefromherbags.Itwasaboutas
thickasherthumbandonlyabout30centimeterslong.Itwassosmallthatone
couldntseeitwithoutsquinting.Andaseriesoffinesacredwordshadbeen
engravedintoapatternontoit.

ForthethreeyearsaftershehadmadeasecretpactwithTgurneu,Moradidalot
ofpreparationtobeabletokillhim.ShehadsummonedmanySaintsandwith
theircooperationshehadbeenabletocreatevariousweapons.

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Chapter 41

Thestakeinherhandswasonesuchweapon.She'dmadeittogetherwith
Weylynn,theSaintofSaltwhowasadeptatcreatingbarriers.Weylynnhadcalled
thisparticularbarriertheSaltCrown.

"Tgurneuiscoming!"MorashoutedandsoonafterAdletjumpedoutofthecave.

"...Andthat'sthesituation."

HansandGoldofhadreturnedtotheEternalFlowerandMorajustfinished
informingeveryoneofTgurneu'sarrival.WhenshetoldthemabouthowTgurneu
hadbeenchattingalongashewalkedcasually,Adlet'seyesfilledwithanger.He
boreagrudgetowardsTgurneujustlikeMoradid.

"ItispossibleforustotrapTgurneuatonce.Wereyouabletomakethe
preparationsneededtodefeathim?"Moraasked.

Adlet,Rolonia,andFremytradedglancesbeforeregretfullyshakingtheirheads.

"Youstillhaven'tthoughtofanything?Butyouhadallthattime.AndChamois
ready,"Chamosaidwithafrown.

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Chapter 41

ShewasjustasdisappointedasMorawas.Morahadunderstoodthatthepossible
clueswouldbescarce,butshehadthoughtAdletwouldbeabletofindthem.

Well,there'snothingwecandoaboutthatnow.We'llhavetochargeathim
together."

MorawasabouttothrustherstakeintothegroundbutHansstoppedher.

"Meow,whatwillhappenifweattacknow?Thebattlewouldbejustlikebefore.
Nothinghaschanged."

MoratriedtoshakeoffHans'hand."Wedon'thavethatmanychancestokill
Tgurneu.Doyouintendtooverlookthisopportunity?"

"Ilovebeinginabind,butIhaterashnessandrecklessness.Iforonethinkthatto
fightnowwouldsimplybeilladvised."

"Haveyoulostyournerve,Hans?!"Morashouted,nolongerhidingherirritation.

"What'swrong,Morasan?"Roloniaasked.

RightafterFremyadded,"Whyareyouinsuchahurry?"

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Chapter 41

Mora'scompanionswerestaringatherwithoddlooks.Ifsheweretocontinueto
rushthem,theywouldgrowmoreandmoresuspiciousofher.

"Sorry,butthisiswithoutadoubtthetimetoact.There'snowaywecan
overlookthischance."

"Don'ttalksostrangelyoryou'llmakemewanttokillyou,"Fremysaidwithacold
stare.RoloniathenlookedoveratFremywithafrightenedlook.

"Mora.Howlongwillthebarrierholdafteritgoesup?"Adletasked.

"Itwasmadetoremainactiveforsixhours.Butit'sjustaninstantbarrier.Idon't
knowwhetherithasthepowertostayupforthewholetime."

"Givemethreehours.IwillsolveTgurneu'smysterywithinthattime.AndifI
can't,thenI'llgiveupandwewillallcommenceourattack."

"Whatareyougoingtodo?"

"I'mgoingtoleavethismountainandreturntothehillwherewewereambushed.
ThatisprobablytheonlyplacewherewecanfindanycluesregardingTgurneus
weaknesses."

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ActuallyMorawantedtogokillTgurneuimmediately.Tgurneuhadsaidthatshe
onlyhadtwodaysleft.However,shecouldn'tobjecttoAdlet'sproposal.

"Alright,Adlet.Youhavetofindsomecluewecanuse.Inthemeantime,wewill
makesureTgurneudoesn'tescape."

Morashowedthestakeinherhandstohercompanions.

"ThisbarrieronlyrestrictsKyomafromleavingandentering.You'llallbeableto
passthroughitwithoutanyproblems.AfterIactivateit,headtothehillright
away."

"Wait.DoesthatmeanthatIwon'tbeabletoleavethebarrier?"Fremyasked.

"I'msorryFremy.Ididn'tknowaboutyouwhenImadethisbarrier.Canyou
remainhere?"

"That'sabitunwise.Theremightbecluesthatwecan'tfindwithoutFremy,"
Adletsaid.

"Wouldn'titbealrighttoactivatethebarrierafterFremysanhasleft?"Rolonia
asked.

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"IfwedothatthenFremywon'tbeabletocomebackintothebarrier.Wellthen,
Iguesstheresnothingwecandoaboutit.We'llhavetoleaveFremybehind,"
Adletconceded.

AsRoloniaandAdletdiscussedwithoneanother,Morawasusinghersecond
sighttosurveyTgurneu'smovements.Hewasstillchattingcarelessly.

"I'mgoingtoraisethebarrier,alright?"MoraaskedandAdletnodded.

ButforsomereasonHansseemedtohaveapuzzledlookonhisface.AndFremy
wasthesameway,asifthetwoofthemwereconfusedaboutsomething.

"What'swrong?"

"Meow,Idon'treallyhavegoodmemorieswhenitcomestobarriers,meow."

Indeed,Morathought.However,thiswasnotthetimetoworryaboutthat
now.WiththehelpoftheGodofMountainspowerthestakeinherhandbegan
toemitlight.

Normallytherecouldn'tbetwobarriersinthesameplace.ButtheEternalFlower
barrierthattheSaintoftheSingleFlowerhadcreatedpossessedqualitiesthat
weredifferentfromnormalbarriers.IthadalreadybeenconfirmedbypastSaints
thattheEternalFlowerbarrierwouldnotclashwithanotherbarrier.

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RightbeforethrustingthestakeintothegroundMorausedhersecondsightto
lookatTgurneuonemoretime.Justlikebeforehewasstillstrollingalongand
chattingwithhissubordinates.

"Cargikkstillhasn'tmadeamove?"

"Itseemsthatway.Doeshewanttowin?"

"Ohwell.Wecanmakefunofhimforsecludinghimselfaway."

Itseemedlikenothingmorethanachat.Theywerecompletelyunawareofthe
approachingthreat.Couldthisguypossiblybejustanidiot?Morawasstartingto
wonder.

"...Hu!"

Morastabbedthestakeintotheground.Thewordsengravedintothestake
startedtoilluminate,thenthegroundbegantoshakeviolently.

"Mountains!SetfreeyourhiddenpowerandbestowituponMoraChester!"
Moracalledtothemountain.

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ThemountainrespondedtoMora'svoice.Sheabsorbedpowerfromthenature
onthemountainandaddedittoherstrength.Itwasahighlevelskillthatfew
people,evenamongtheSaints,couldutilize.

Mora'scallwasdirectedatthesaltwithinthegroundofthemountain.She
absorbedthepurifyingpowerthesaltcontainedandreformeditintoabarrier
thatwouldpreventtheKyomafromgettinginorout.

Alargeamountofpowerwasflowingtowardsherfromthemountain,causing
extremeheattoemanatefromherbodyalongwithsparksthatwereflyingoutall
aroundher.Shepouredallthepowershegatheredintothestake.Andthrough
theincantationofthesacredwordsengravedontothestake,thepower
transformedintotheformofabarrier.

"SaltCrown,rise!"

Athunderousroarreverberatedthroughtheair.Thenaninvisiblewavewas
releasedfromthestake.Andinthenextinstanttheentiremountainwascovered
inaveiloflight.

"Diditwork?"Adletshouted.Buttherewasnopointinreplying.Itwassafetosay
thebarrierhadworkedperfectly.

Thebarriercouldn'thavebeenmadewithoutthecooperationofTheSaintofSalt
andtheSaintofMountains.

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Ifthetwoofthemdidntpossessextraordinarypowersitwouldhavebeen
somethingtheywouldnthavebeenabletoaccomplish.IfMorahadfailedand
shewasn'tabletocontrolthevastpowerflowingintoher,therewasthe
possibilitythatherbodywoulddisintegratefromthepower.

"....Oh?"

MorawasonceagainobservingTgurneuwithherpower.TheKyomalookedat
theveiloflightthatcoveredtheairabovehisheadwithasmile.Thoughhewas
pretendingitwasnotaproblem,Moracouldseethathewasclearlyunsettled.

"Itsabarrier!BringallourforcestoTgurneusama'slocation.ProtectTgurneu
sama!"ThemonkeyKyomashouted.

Hissubordinatesimmediatelystartedtospreadacrossthemountain,callingfor
theotherKyomatoassemble.

"WemighthavetofacetheSixFlower'sattackifwestayhere.Let'sleavethis
mountainimmediately."

"You'reright.AndIhopewecan,butIwonderifitspossible."

Withasmilestretchedacrosshisface,Tgurneustartedtodescendthemountain.

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"Tgurneuhasbeentrapped.Adlet,headtothehillnow,"Moracommandedand
Adletnodded."Rolonia,yougotoo.AndHans,youaccompanythemaswell,
alright?"

"Meow,ofcourseit'salright.AndGoldof,youcometoo,meow.Afterall,you
wouldbeuselessifyoujuststayedhere,"HanssaidandthenslappedGoldof's
back.Goldofshowednoresponse,butitseemedlikeheunderstood.

"Sofourofusaregoing.Everyone,hurryandgetready,"Adletsaid,thenhe
rushedintothecave.

Meanwhile,Tgurneuandhissubordinateshadfinallymanagedtoreachtheedge
oftheSaltbarrieratthefootofthemountain.

AKyomahitthelightveilwiththeirbody,butassoonastheirbodytouchedit
theyeruptedintoflamessendingsparksandsmokeflying.Stillalive,theKyoma
smasheditsbodyintothebarrieragainandagain,buttheveilwouldnotbreak.
SoontheKyoma'sentirebodywascharredblackanditstoppedbreathing.

"Soitcan'tbebrokenafterall?"TgurneutouchedtheKyoma'scorpse."Itwas
probablyMora.However,itdoesn'tseemlikeabarrierthatshecouldmakeby
herself.IwonderifWeylynnworkedwithher."

TheKyomascatteredalloverthemountainwereassemblingaroundTgurneu.
Tgurneuthenbegantoissuecommandstohisunderlings.

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"Itsabitofaproblemthatwevebeentrappedhere.Breakthebarrier."

AgiantreptileKyomahititsheadagainstthebarrier.ThenalizardKyomaspat
acidatit.Afterthat,alargeamountofKyomatriedattackingthebarrierallat
once.

Kneelingontheground,Morawasstillgrippingthestake.EachtimetheKyoma
collidedwiththebarrieritsentavibrationthroughthestakeandupintoher
arm.SosheaddedpowerfromtheGodofMountainstoreinforcethebarrier.

TgurneujuststoodthereandwatchedashisKyomakilledthemselvesoneby
one.Hesanutterfool,Morathought.

ShejusthadtowaitforAdlettocomebackwithwhathewaslookingfor.Butuntil
thensheneededtocontinuetoprotectthebarrier.

PleaseAdlet,I'mentrustingthelifeofmybeloveddaughtertoyou.

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ChapterFour:PartTwo

Adletopenedhisironboxandbegantofullyreplenishthepouchesonhiswaist
withthesecretweaponshefeltwouldbeusefulforthesearch.

"Adkun,I'mready,"Roloniasaid.

Hehadtoldthemtohurry,butAdlethadbeentheonlyonewhoneededto
prepare.Heswiftlyfilledhispouches.

"Adlet,takethesewithyou."

Fremyhandedhimtwosmallfirecrackers.Theywerethesignalfirecrackersthat
hehadusedwithintheIllusionFogBarrier.IfheweretobreakoneofthemFremy
wouldinstantlyknowhislocation.

"I'veinscribednumbersontothem.Numberonesignalsarequesttobesaved.If
yousmashthatonethenwewilllowerthebarrierimmediatelyandheadoffto
helpyou.Numbertwoisforcontact.Breakthatoneafteryouhavefound
something."

"Gotit.Idon'tthinkI'llneedtousethefirstone."

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Chapter 42

Adletstoodandexitedthecave.Goldofwaswaitingoutsideandasusualhe
seemedtobeinlowspirits.

"What'sthesituationwiththeKyoma?"heaskedMora.Shewasstillgrippingon
tothestaketomaintainthebarrier.

"HalfoftheKyomaarewithTgurneu...they'regatheringtothesouthwest.There
aresomeonthelookout,buttheirnumbersarefew.Theyaremoreshorthanded
tothenorth."

"Ifpossible,Iwanttoleavewithoutthemnoticingus.Isthereapathwecantake
wherewewon'tbediscovered?"Adletasked.

"It'ssimple,"Chamorepliedfrombehind."YoucanleavewhileChamo'spetsdraw
theenemy'sattention."

Adletwasalittlesurprised.Hedidn'tthinkthatChamowouldvoluntarilyofferher
cooperation.

Fremythentookouthergunandlookedoverthearea."I'lltakecareofany
enemieslookingthisway.It'snotaproblem."

"Then,let'sgo.Ourtimeislimited.WehavetocompleteourtaskbeforeTgurneu
makesamove,"Adletsaidandthegroupmovedout.

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UnderMora'sinstruction,FremyandChamotookoutthesurveillanceKyoma.
Andestimatingwhentherewouldbenoenemiesinthearea,Adletandthethree
withhimrannorthwithoutmakingasound.Astheyslippedthroughthe
darkness,thegroupstayedlowtothegroundtominimizetheirexposure.

"TherearethreeKyomainfrontofyou,"Morasaidtothemwithhermountain
echoes."Youmostlikelywon'tbeabletoproceedwithoutthemnoticingyou.
Takecareofthem."

TheycouldfaintlyseetheKyomainthenight.Adletthrewthreeparalysisdartsat
thestillunawaregroupofKyoma,andtheinstanttheHeroesheardthemgroan
HansandGoldofrushedoverandfinishedthemoffquietly.

"Nowwhat'sleftisforustorunallthewayuntilwegetoutofthebarrier.Stayon
yourtoes."

"Understood."

Ican'tletmyguarddown,Adletthoughtasheran.Theseventhwasgoingto
makeamovetoprotectTgurneuifAdletgotnearthetruth.Hans,Rolonia,and
Goldof.Ifanyofthemwerethesevenththentheywouldwithoutadoubttryto
killhim.

Whentheyhadfinisheddescendingthemountaintheyarrivedatthegiantveilof
lightblockingtheirpath.Adletandtheothersexchangedafinallookbefore
passingthroughthebarrierandmakingtheirwaytotheeast.

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Morausedhersecondsighttoconfirmthedirectionthefourweremovinginto.
Thatwasthemostshecoulddobecauseoncetheyleavethebarriertheywould
nolongerbewithintheeffectivescopeofherabilities.

"Thefourdescendedthemountainandarenowheadingtothehillwithoutany
problems."

"That'sgreat.WellChamoexpectedthattheywouldbeabletoachievethat
much,"Chamosaid.

Yettheproblemwaswhatcameafter.Iftheywereabletofindsomethingof
importancebutcouldntreturnsafelythenitwouldhaveallbeenmeaningless.

TherewerenoKyomainthevicinityandsilencehadwrappeditselfaroundthe
area.AndwithinthatsilenceFremyhadbeenstaringsilentlyinthedirectionthat
Adlethadleft.

"What'swrongFremy?"Moraasked,butFremydidn'trespond.Shejustaverted
hergazeandstartedtodistanceherselffromMoraandChamo.

StillgrippingthestakeMoraasked,"AreyouthatworriedaboutAdlet,Fremy?"

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Afterbeingsilentforawhile,Fremywhispered,"...Ican'tunderstandthatidiotat
all."

"Whatareyoutalkingabout?He'sareliableguy."

"AtthemomentAdletistheonlyonewhoisdefinitelyagenuineFlower.Andit's
evidentthattheseventhisseekingtoattacksomeone.Sothenwhyisheleaving
himselfsovulnerable?

"ThatmightbeAdlet'sintent.Don'tyouthinkhe'sdaringtheseventhtoattack
him?"

"Ifthat'struethenIwanttopunchhim."Fremywasclearlyshowingheranger,
butMorafoundittobeabitcharming.

"DoyoulikeAdlet?"

"..."

Fremyonceagainwentsilent,butMoradidn'tpressherforananswer.
Meanwhile,Chamosighedindisinterest.

"Ihatehim.Ican'thelpbutgetangrywithhim."

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Chapter 42

"Why?"

Staringattheground,Fremysaid,"IfIworryaboutAdlethewouldjustkeepme
atarmslengthandtrytoavoidme.HewouldnteventrytounderstandhowI
feel."

"...Isee."

"WhenI'mwithAdletIhavenothingbutunpleasantfeelings.Itpainsmyheart
whenheisinjured.Andhemakesmeangrywheneverwetalk.Hesmademe
irritated,sad,andevenfeelpityforhim...therehasn'tbeenonefeelingsince
wevemet."

"Sofromthebeginningofallofthis,thingshaventgoneverywellforyoutwo."

"Iwanttogetridofthesefeelings.Iwanttoforgetabouthim.Ifhecouldjustgo
aheadanddomeafavorbydyingIactuallythinkthatwouldputmeatease."

FremyraisedhergazeandlookedouttotheeasternskywhereAdletwasheaded.

"ImsureRoloniahasneverexperiencedfeelingslikethesebefore."

That'scertainlytrue.Roloniawasagentlegirl.ShewasdifferentfromFremy.

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"Iwonderwhatloveis.YouknowsometimesTgurneuwouldtalktomeabout
love."

"Tgurneu?"

"Loveisaverymysteriouspowerthathumanspossess.Anditisthemost
importantthingintheirminds.Soinordertodefeathumans,firstonehasto
knowabouthumanlove."

"Hesaidsuchathing?"

"Ididn'tknowwhathemeantbackthen.AndevennowIdon'tknow."Fremy
pressedherhandtoherchest."IfwhatImfeelingislovethenIabsolutelycan't
understandhumans.Idon'tunderstandwhysomeonewouldcherishanyperson
thatmakesthemfeelthisway.

"...Thatsnotaneasyquestiontoanswer."

"WhatshouldIdo?WhatdoIwanttohappentoAdlet?"AfterthatFremywent
quietforalongtimewhileMoraremainedsilent,unabletosayanything.

"...I'vetalkedtoomuch,"Fremyfinallysaidandwentbackintothecave.

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DuringhertalkwithFremyMorahadstoppedusinghersecondsight.Theyjust
hadalongbattleandshewastiredtoo.Soshewantedtorestupabit.

That'swhyshedidn'tnoticewhatTgurneuhadsaidattheedgeofthebarrier.

"Oy,goodevening,"Tgurneusaidquietlywithhishandcoveringhismouth."Good
evening,Mora.Goodevening!"Afterrepeatingthegreetingseveraltimes,
Tgurneuleanedhisheadtotheside."That'sstrange.Youcan'tbesleeping,right?
Illfeelabitlonelyifyoudon'tanswerme.EspeciallysinceIdliketohelpyoukill
oneoftheFlowers.

OnceagainTgurneucalledtoMora."Youhavetohurryupandkilloneofthe
Heroes.IfyoudontdoitsoonthentheSaintofSaltWeylynnisgoingtokill
Shenierachan."

Therewasnoanswer,soTgurneucockedhisheadtotheothersideinconfusion
andstoppedcallingforMora.

"Howareyourlegsfeelingeveryone?"Adletaskedhiscompanionsbehindhimas
theyadvancedacrosstheWailingDemonterritoryatnight.Hewasholdingthe
gemthatFremyhadgivenhim,whichwasgivingoffafaintlight.

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"OfcourseI'mfine,meow.Thereisacliffafterthisinthatdirection,sobe
careful."

"Umm,whichwayarewegoing?"Roloniaaskedasshewalked.

Adletandtheothershadn'tbeenmovingtowardstheeastinastraightline.They
hadfirstheadedsouth.Whentheycametoaplacewithaslightlygoodview,
Adletlaidfacedownonthegroundandlookedouttowardsthemountain.

Thelightgivenoffbythesaltbarrier'sveililluminatedthemountainandhecould
seetheKyomaslightly.Thewindwasalsocarryingtheirvoicesandhecouldhear
thattheywereshoutingatoneanother.

"Whatdoyouthink,Hans?"

"WhatMorasaiddoesn'tseemtobealie.Ithinkit'sokaytotrustherfornow."

TheyhadheardabouttheKyoma'smovementsfromMora.However,therewas
nowaytheycouldcompletelytrustwhatshehadsaidwithoutconfirmingitwith
theirowneyesfirst.

"Whataretheydoing?"

"They'reprobablytryingtodestroythebarrier."

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TheKyomawererushingatthebarrier.Whentheytoucheditsparksflewupinto
theairandAdletcouldhearthemscreaminagony.Hewonderedjusthowmany
hadlosttheirlivesintheattempt.

"Wecan'tlingerhere.Let'sgo."

Thefourofthemthencontinuedontotheeast.ItseemedliketheKyomainthe
areaweremostlygatheredonthemountain,sotherewasnothingobstructing
theirpath.

Attopspeedthehillwaslessthanthirtyminutesaway.Andsoontheymanaged
toreachtheirobjective,returningtothehillwhereabout12hoursagotheyhad
engagedinafighttothedeathwithTgurneu.

"Wasithere?"Adletusedhislightgemtolightupanemptyholeintheground.

Freshbloodwasstillpresentonthegroundandthesmellofcorpseshunginthe
air.ThedeadKyomawerescatteredallabouttheareaandHansandGoldof
carefullycheckedeachoneofthem,butnoneofthemwerestillalive.

TherewerenosignsofanylivingKyomaanywherenearthehill.Ithadbeenleft
completelydefenseless.Adletwonderedifitwasoutofcarelessness,orbecause
therewasnothingofimportant,orbecauseitwasn'tnecessarytoplacethearea
onguard.

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"Ifoundit.Overhere."

Rolonialiftedherhandintotheair.AtherfeetwastheholeTgurneuhadmade
whenhe'djumpedoutatthem.Thefourofthemassembledaroundtheholeand
peeredinside.

Evenwiththegemshininglightdownintothehole,theystillcouldn'ttellwhat
wasdownthere.

"It'sprettydeep."

"Letmetrysearchinginside."Roloniaunraveledherwhipandlowereditintothe
hole.Forawhilethegrouplistenedasthewhiphitagainstthewallsofthehole.

"There'snooneinside."

"I'mgoingtotrygoingin."AdletgrabbedRolonia'swhipandentereddowninto
thehole.Whenhelandedatthebottomheshinedthelightgemaroundhim.

Thebottomoftheholewassomekindofundergroundroom.Itwasfivemetersin
eachdirectionandthedirtofthewallswasbarewithoutanydecoration.There
waswoodstrengtheningtheceilingtoprotectagainstacavein.Itwasa
completelyplainroom.

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Atthecenterofthatspacewasasimpletableandchair.Therewasaclothbound
bookatopthetableandAdlettimidlypickedupthebookandtriedreadingit.

"Whatisthis?Tgurneureadsstufflikethis?"Adletsaidunconsciously.Thebook
wasacollectionofplays,butsinceAdletwasutterlyunfamiliarwithanythingart
related,hereallydidn'tunderstanditsvalue.

Heputdownthebookandlookedaround.Therewereawfullynarrowtunnels
thatextendedtothenorthandtothesouth.Probablysomeoneaslargeas
Tgurneuwouldn'tbeabletopassthroughwithoutcurlinguphisbody.

Adlettriedshiningthelightgemintothetunnels,buttheyweredeepandhe
couldn'tseeveryfarinside.

"...Wellthen,IguessIshouldsearcharound."

Tgurneuhadbeentheremerely20hoursearlierandperhapswhoeverhadmade
theSaint'spoisonineffectivehadalsobeenthere.Whoeverthatpersonwas,he
hadtoexposetheirtrueidentity.However,contrarytoAdletsexpectationsthere
hadntbeenanythingintheundergroundroom.Therewasjustthebook,the
table,andthechair.

"WoulditbebetterifIcamedowntoo?"Hansaskedfromaboveatthetopofthe
hole.

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"No,Imokay.Guardtheoutside,"Adletreplied.

Itwaspossiblethatthetunnelitselfwasatrap,anditmighthavebeenequipped
withdevicesthatwouldcausethetunnelstocaveinandburythemalive.Ifthe
otherthreeremainedoutsidetheywouldprobablybeabletocometoAdlet's
rescue.So,wishingthatChamowastheretohelphimwithherabilitytosearch
withintheground,Adletproceededtoinvestigatethenortherntunnel.

Hewalkedstraightforabouttenminutes.Thetunnelhadmanybranchesand
eventhepathhewasonsplitintotwoaheadofhim.Sohedidn'thavethe
slightestideahowfarhewouldhavetotravelbeforehecouldfinallyreachthe
exit.

"...Ah,Iseenow."

Adletfinallyunderstood.ForquitealongtimetheKyomaseemedtohavebeen
makingpreparationstolaunchsurpriseattacksfromtheground.Theyhaddug
holesundertheentirehillandprobablyTgurneuhadbeenmovingthroughthem.
AndhehadplannedtoattackwhentheHeroesoftheSixFlowersrevealedan
openingintheirdefenses.

"What'sup?"AdletheardHansaskwhenhereturnedtothefirstunderground
room.

"Thetunnelsareextensive.It'lltakemetillmorningtocheckthemall.Howare
thingsonthesurface?"

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"Thingsarepeaceful,"Hanssaid,justasagiantbodysuddenlydroppeddown
fromthetopofthehole.Goldofhadskillfullybenthisgiantframeashejumped
downandthenlandedintotheopenundergroundroom.

OninstinctAdletreadiedhimself,expectingGoldoftoattack.ButGoldofdidn't
makeamoveandjuststaredintoAdlet'seyes.

"What...What'swrong?"

"Adkun!Areyoualright?"Roloniashoutedasshepeereddownintothehole.

Afteralongsilence,Goldofbegantospeak,"...It'sdangeroustogoalone."

"What!Hetalked!"Roloniashoutedoverhead.Adletwasalsoquitesurprised.

"What'sthisallabout?You'reabletospeakagain?Areyouworriedaboutme?"

"...I'msorry."Goldofstillhadn'treturnedtohisusualstate,soittookhimalong
timetocontinue."...AllthistimeI'vebeenthinking.YetIstillhaven'tbeenableto
comeupwithananswer...IthinkI'llfinallyunderstandifIthinkaboutabitmore."

"Understandwhat?Whathaveyoubeenthinkingabout?"

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"I'lltellyousoon."Goldofstartedwalkingtowardsthesouthtunnelentranceon
theotherside."I'mgoingtogoandtakealook.IfIfindanythingI'llletyouknow.
Leaveittome."

AndwiththatGoldofdisappearedintothetunnel,sooneventhefaintlightofhis
gemfadingaway.

Adletplacedhishandtohischest.Hesuredoescausealotofconcern,Adlet
thought.

"Whathappened,Adkun?"

"...Let'sleaveitalonefornow,"Adletreplied.

Goldofwasstrong.Evenifheencounteredanenemy,unlesssomethingextremely
unusualoccurredhecouldprobablysettleitwithhisownstrength.Rightnow
AdlethadtofocussolelyonsolvingTgurneu'smystery.

"Rolonia,Hans,don'tmovefromthere.I'llneedyourhelpifsomethinghappens
tome,"Adletsaidandtookoutachemicalfromhisbreastpocketthatcouldfind
tracesoftheKyoma.ItwasthetoolhehadusedintheIllusionFogBarrier.Once
sprayedwiththechemical,anyitemthathadbeentouchedbyaKyomawould
changecolor.

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OnebyoneAdletsprayedthechemicalontothetable,thechairandthenthe
groundofthetunnel.Hehadtohurry.Mora'sbarrierwouldn'tholdforever.

MorawasstandingattheEternalFlowerwithhereyesclosedandherarms
foldedacrossherchest.Theveiloflightcoveringthemountainshook
continuouslyandMorawasdevotingallherattentiontofunnelingpowerintothe
barrier.TheKyomaweretryingtobreakthebarrierwithalltheirstrengthand
maintainingthebarrierwasmuchmoredifficultthanshehadanticipated.
However,shecouldn'tcomplain.IfthebarrierfellthentheHeroeswouldlosethe
perfectchancetodefeatTgurneu.

"...Adletstillhasn'treturned?"Moraasked.

"Ihaven'treceivedanycontactthathehasfoundanything.Keepthebarrierup
fortwomorehours,"Fremyreplied.

"I'monit.Icankeepthisupforawhile,"Morasaidandthensentmorepower
intothebarrier.

Morahadstoppedusinghersecondsightabilitysothatshecouldpourallher
energyintomaintainingthebarrier.However,onceeveryfiveminutesMora
activateditagainjusttocheckonTgurneuforashortwhile.

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TherewerealargeamountofKyomadrawingclosetothebarrierbothwithinand
outsideit.Inacollectiveefforttheywereallattackingthebarrier.

ChamohadorderedherJyumatotryandstopthem.ButnotalloftheJyumahad
recovered,sotheirattacksweresporadic.

ProtectedbyhisKyoma,Tgurneuwassittingatopaboulderstaringblanklyatthe
barrier.Heissuedordersbuthedidn'tseemtohaveanykindoffutureplan.Mora
couldseethathewaswaitingforsomething.

SuddenlyTgurneuraisedoneofhishandsintotheair.WhenhedidalltheKyoma
workingonattackingthebarrierstopped.

"Alright.We'veconfirmedhowstrongitis."

Thelightveilstoppedshaking.Whatareyouplanning?Morawonderedasshe
lookedonathimwithhersecondsight.

Tgurneuthenabruptlylookedupthemountain,staringinabouttheright
directionoftheEternalFlower.

"Mora,aren'tyougoingtoanswermesoon?I'vebeencallingyouoverandover
againforawhile."

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Moragulped.

"Canyouhearmyvoice?Youshouldhavetheabilitytotalktome,sowhyaren't
yousayinganything?Areyouscaredtotalkwithme,eventhoughIpledgedtotell
thetruth?"

"Mora,what'shappening?"Fremyaskedatherside.

Mora'sheartwasracing."Idon'tknow.Theysuddenlystoppedattackingthe
barrier.Pleasedon'ttalktomerightnow.Iwanttoconcentrateoncheckingon
Tgurneu."

FremystaredatMorawithasharpgaze.Morawassurethatifshedisplayedany
suspiciousbehaviorFremywouldkillher.Butshecouldn'tignoreTgurneu'scall.

"...Tgurneu.Whatdoyouwant?"Morarepliedusingthepowerofmountain
echoes.Andsothatshewouldn'tseemsuspicioustoFremy,Moracreatedthe
echoeswithoutusingherownvoice.

"Youfinallyreplied.Wellthen,I'vesaiditmultipletimes,butyouhavenotime.I
fearShenierachanwilldieifyoudonotkilloneoftheFlowerswithintwodays."

GoosebumpsappearedalloverMora'sentirebody.

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"ByanychancehaveyoualreadykilledoneoftheHeroes?WasitAdletafterall?
OrRolonia?Theyseemlikethey'dbeeasytodealwith.However,Iwouldbe
jumpingupforjoyifyoukilledHansorChamo.Thosetwoarescary."

"...Ihaven'tkilledanyone."

"Ithoughtthatwasprobablythecase."Tgurneushrugged."Youtrulyareacruel
mother.Isn'tamother'slovesupposedtobeabletosurmountanychallenge?Do
yourealizethatyouhavemissedmanyopportunitiestosaveShenierachan?"

"Shutup.WhatdoesaKyomaknow?You'reamonsterthatknowsnothingabout
loveorhonesty,"Morasaid.AndforthefirsttimeTgurneu'sexpressionchanged
andMoracouldfaintlyseewhatlookedlikeanger.

"...Iwillignorethatinsult,becauseIamagenerousKyoma."

"There'ssomethingIwanttoaskyou.WhatdoyoumeanbyIhavenotime?"

"Whatdoesitmeanindeed?Hmm,Iwonderifitsnecessaryformetotellyou.
Well,whatyououghttoknowisthatyouonlyhavetwodaysleft.That's
all,"Tgurneuthenmadeamalicioussmile.

"Iwassurprisedbythisbarrier,butitwasawasteofeffort.Ican'tbekilledbyany
ofyou.

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AndassoonasIleavethisbarrierIwillnotshowmyselfagainfortheremainder
ofthenexttwodays.Sothisismywarning;ifyouintendtosaveyourdaughter
thenquicklykilloneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers."

Moracouldn'tsayanything.

"Perhapsifallofyouattackatoncerightnowyoumightbeabletokillme.ButI
figureyouallstillaren'tpreparedtokillme,right?Sinceifyouwereyoushouldbe
cominghererightnow."

Asiftiredofwaiting,Fremystoodupandsaid,"What'shappeningMora?
Explain."

"Idon'tknow.Andsincenothingishappeningthere'snoreasonformetotalk."

"...Thataccomplishesnothing.I'mgoingtocheckonTgurneu."

Fremygrippedherrifleanddashedawayfromthecave,withChamofollowing
behindhersoonafter.However,Morastayedwhereshewasandspoketo
Tgurneuonceagain.

"...Whoistheseventh?IfyoutellmethatthenIcankilloneoftheHeroesright
now."

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Chapter 42

"Doyouintendtobargainwithme?Sorry,Icannotrevealthat."Tgurneushook
hishead."HansHumpty,ChamoRosso,FremySpeeddraw,RoloniaManchetta,
GoldofAurora,AdletMaia.IfyoukillanyoneofthemIwillreleaseyourdaughter.
Itdoesn'tmatterifthatpersonistheseventh."

"...Didyousayitdoesn'tmatterifIkilltheseventh?"Moramuttered.

ItseemedlikeTgurneuwasthinkingaboutsomething,soMorausedhersecond
sighttolookatthemiddleofthemountain.FremyandChamohadbeenstopped
bytenorsoKyoma.

"LookMora,thereissomeonefightingoverthere.Ifyougoandkillthemfrom
behindyouwouldbeabletosavethedaughteryoulove.Youdoloveyour
daughter,don'tyou?"

"Why?Whyarethereonlytwodaysleft?Thedeadlineshouldbethe22ndday
afterTheMajinawakens!"Morashoutedwithoutthinking.IthelpedthatFremy
wasn'tthere.

HearingMora'swords,Tgurneupressedhishandtohismouthandbeganto
laugh.

"What'ssofunny?"

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"Ah,excuseme.Iwasjustreminiscingaboutsomething.Ican'tstoplaughing
whenIthinkabouthowyouwerewhenwemadethepactthreeyearsago."

Tgurneu'smoutheerilytwistedintoawidegrin.PreviouslyMorahadthoughtthat
evenwithinhiseerinessthereweresometraitsthatwerequitehuman.However,
hissmilenowwascompletelythatofamonster.

"The22nddayaftertheMajinawakens?Youreallyareanidiot.Althoughweset
thatdeadline,it'smeaningless."

"What?"

"Youmadeamistake.Yetevenifyouhadn'titwouldhaveonlygivenyouaseven
dayextension."

"Whatdoyoumean?"

"YouinvolvedWeylynntheSaintofSalt.Thatwasyourmistake."

Mora'slegswereshakingviolently.Weylynn'sfacewithherbigheartedsmile
appearedinhermind.

Itcouldn'tbe.Itwasimpossible.Shewouldneverbetrayme.

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Weylynnnevergottiredofhelpingpeopleandshewouldneverallowevil
orunreasonableactionstogounchecked.Also,notonlyhadshebeenMora's
friendforalongtime,butsheevenlovedShenieratoo.OutofalltheSaints,Mora
wouldchooseherastheoneshecouldtrustthemost.

"Weylynnisinnocent.Sheisatrulyincredibleperson,eventhoughshe'sabit
slow."

Tgurneusuddenlytookoutacharcoalpenandapieceofwoodfromthemouthin
hischest.

"Didn'tIshowyouthisbefore?Icancopyaperson'shandwritingevenifIonly
glanceatitonce.Youshouldgivemeacompliment.Istudiedtirelesslyeveryday
for50years."

MorarecalledhowthreeyearsagoTgurneuhadforgedTheSaintofMedicine,
Toulo'shandwriting,andsentheraletter.

"IcopiedyourhandwritingandsentalettertoWeylynn.Itshouldbearrivingany
timenow.Andtoputitsimplythesewereitscontents:

"Weylynn.Don'tletanyonereadthisletter.Andafteryoureadit,burnit
immediately.Gunnerisfaintofheartandifyouweretoshowhimthisletter,he
mightgoinsane."

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Ashespoke,Tgurneuwrotethesamelettersontothepieceofwood.Nomatter
howMoralookedatit,thatwasherhandwriting.ProbablyMoraherselfwouldn't
beabletotellitapartfromherownhandwriting.

"IwastrickedbyTgurneu.WhichmeansImaynolongerbeabletosaveSheniera.

"FifteendaysaftertheMajinawakestheparasitenestingwithinShenierawill
releaseaspecialtoxin.Aftershehasbeenaffectedbythepoisonshewillremain
alive,butshewillbetransformedintoaKyoma.Ifthathappens,thenevenifItry
tokillheritwontmakeadifference.Herbodywouldhavebecomeunabletobe
killed.Andfromthenonshewouldsufferthroughthepainofhellforaslongas
shelived.

"ImadeapactwithTgurneusothatShenierawouldn'tbeharmed.ButTgurneu
doesn'tviewwhatheisdoingasanattack.HeseesitasgivingShenierathegiftof
beingbornanewasamagnificentKyoma.Tohimitisjustasplendidactof
benevolence."

Tgurneutossedasidethepieceofwoodandcontinued."Toulocan'tevensave
her.Ifearsheprobablydoesn'tevenknowhowtoremovethetoxin.Iwillprove
toyouthatIcandefinitelykillTgurneubythetimethefifteenthdayafterthe
Majinawakespasses.Butifthatdoesn'thappen..."

"...Youbastard."Mora'slegsweretrembling.

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"Ifwhenmidnightpassesonthe15thdaythebruiseonhercheststillhasn't
disappeared,thenforme,killSheniera."

Tgurneuspreadhisarmsupexaggeratedlylikeathirdrateactor.

"Howdidyoulikeit?It'sawonderfulthingisn'tit?AfterthatIwrotesentences
sayinghowmuchyouweresorryandhowmuchyoulovedSheniera,butfornowI
omittedthem."

Tgurneushowedacruelsmileashecontinued."Ifyourhusbandreadsthishe
mightrealizethatitisaforgery.But,wouldWeylynnignoretheinitial
instructions?

"I'msorry,butWeylynnCouteauissimple.She'salsoloyalandhonest.Itdoesn't
seemlikeshe'llrealizeit'safakeletterandIthinkshewilldefinitelyfollowyour
commands.

"OfcourseWeylynnoryourhusbandmaybeonthelookoutforfakeletters.And
theymighthesitatetokillShenieraeveniftheydon'trealizethatthisisafake.
Andmaybetherewasperhapssomemistakeandtheletterwasn'tdelivered.
Nevertheless,thisshouldserveasasufficientthreat,don'tyouthink?"

He'dpromised.He'dpromisedthathewouldn'tlietoMora.Sowhathesaidwas
true.Hereallydidsendaletter.

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"IpromisedthatIwouldneverlietoyou.However,IcanlietoWeylynn.And
thoughIpromisedthattheKyomawouldnottouchSheniera,ahumankilling
Shenierawouldnotnegatethatpromise."

Morawasatalossforwords.Herimaginationwasgrowingrampantwithinher
mind.ShesawanimageofWeylynnreadingherletter,thengrabbingherheadin
distress.ThenshesawanimageofShenieraenergeticallyclaspingherhands
togetherasshewaitedforMora'sreturn.

"Bytheway,I'lltellyouthis.Thetranscribingclerkyouhademployedfiveyears
agobythenameofCannanwastheonewhohadbetrayedyou.Sheeasilyturned
onyouformoneyandshepassedonvariousinformationtome.Sheevenhelped
meplanttheparasiteintoSheniera.Shefinallyrealizedthatheremployerwasa
KyomajustbeforeIateher.Well,itdoesn'tmatternowanyway."

Nothingthathe'dsaidhadreachedMora'sears.

"Evenasimpletonlikeyoushouldalreadyprettymuchunderstand,right?You
haveonlytwodaysleft.Andinordertosaveyourdaughteryouhavenochoice
buttokilloneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers."

"...Tgurneu."

"Iwillsayitagainforyou.Evenifyoukillme,itwillmakenodifference.Ihavea
plantoescapefromthisbarrier.Andrightnowitisunfoldingnicely."

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MorastaredtowardstheeastandspottedAdlet.Hurry,shecalledtohiminher
mind.Pleasehurryandcomeback.

Adkun,whatsgoingon?Roloniacalledtohim.ButAdletdidn'tanswer.Hewas
juststaringatthegroundandthewalls.

Thespacebeneaththegroundwasdyedred.Adlethadsprayedthechemicalthat
reactedtoKyomasecretionsallovertheundergroundroom.

WhenthechemicalwasappliedtheplacesthataKyomahadtouchedwould
changecolor.AndeverysingleKyomawouldcauseadifferentcolortoappear.He
sprayedthechemicalontohisarmortoconfirmandtheplacesthatTgurneuhad
touchedturnedareddishbrown.

IntheroomtherewerecountlessplacestheKyomahadtouched.However,they
hadallchangedthesamecolor;areddishbrown.

Therehadn'tbeenanyKyomaotherthanTgurneuintheundergroundroom.And
whenAdletsearchedthetunnelshefoundthesameresult.

"Tgurneuwas....theonlyKyomahere."

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"Well,didn'tyousaythatsomeSainthadbeencooperatingwithTgurneu?"
Roloniaasked.

Thattooseemedunlikely.Adlethadthoroughlyinvestigatedthetunnelsandthe
groundandtherewerenotracesthatahumanhadbeenthere.Therehadn't
beenonehumanfootprintleftinthesoftearth,norwasthereanyevidencethat
thefootprintshadbeensweptaway.

WhereintheworldweretheKyomaorSaintthathadprotectedTgurneufromthe
poison?

"..."

Therewasnolongeranyotherwaytolookatit.Theirproposalshadbeenwrong.
BothRolonia'sanalysisandthesuggestionthatthebloodofaSaintwouldwork
onanykindofKyomahadtobeincorrect.

"No...that'snotright."

Hehadoverlookedsomething.Adletlookedovertheundergroundroomonce
again.

Thistimehiseyesrestedonthetable.Hewaslookingatjustonepartofthetable
thathadbeenchangedtoareddishbrown.Itwasonlyapointassmallasthetip
ofhisfinger,butthatsectionhadactuallychangedorange.

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Adletimmediatelysprayedmoreofthechemicalonthatspotandconfirmedthe
orangecolor.Itwasacirclenomorethanthreecentimetersindiameter,sosmall
thathehadfirstoverlookedit.

PerhapsitbelongedtotheKyomathatbroughtthetablethere.No,thatcouldn't
beit.Thechangeincolorhappenedatopthetable,aroundthecenter.

TherehadbeenanotherKyomaotherthanTgurneuintheroom.Yetitmusthave
beenterriblytiny,sosmallthatitcouldbeheldonone'sfinger.He'dneverheard
oftherebeingaKyomaofthatsize.

WhoisthissmallKyoma?Andwherehavetheybeen?Whathavetheybeen
doing?Andwheredidtheygo?AdletthoughtbacktothebattlewithTgurneuand
hecametooneanswer.

Theresnoway.IftherereallyisaKyomaofthissizethenwhatinthehellare
they?

"...Adkun.Adkun."

Lostinthought,Adlethadn'tnoticedRoloniacallinghim.

"What'sthematter?"

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"WheredidGoldofsango?"

Adletcheckedtheareaaroundhim.Thenafterthinkingforawhile,herushed
downthetunnelthatGoldofhaddisappearedinto.

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ChapterFour:PartThree

Aminute,anhour,aday;Moracouldn'tfeelanyofit.Otherthanpouringher
energyintothebarrier,shecoulddonothingelsebutwaitforAdletandthe
otherstoreturn.

Shedid,however,usehersecondsighttowatchTgurneu.Hewassittingcalmly
atopaboulder,staringintothedirectionoftheEternalFlower.Asfortherestof
theKyoma,theyhadalreadystoppedtheirattacksonthebarrier.

MoranolongerknewhowlongshewouldbeabletokeepTgurneutrapped
withinthebarrier.Thebarrierstillhadpower,butshecouldn'tpredictwhat
Tgurneusnextmovewouldbe.Notonlythat,Tgurneualreadyconfirmedthathe
hadpreparedaplanforbreakingthroughthebarrier.

Moratouchedhersolarplexus.Therelayherfinaltrumpcard,aredjewelthat
hadbeensurgicallyembeddedintoherbody.MoraandtheSaintofFireLenelle
hadcombinedtheirpowerstomakeit.Anditwashermostpowerfulweapon.

Thejewelcontainedthepowerofavolcaniceruption.Whenthesacredwordsare
incited,thejewelwouldabsorbtheenormouspowerofthemagmafromwithin
theground.Andtherewasnocontrollingthatpower.Itwouldsimplycausea
giganticexplosionandobliteratebothMoraandeverythingaroundher.

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ThefirsttimeshehadfoughtwithTgurneu,Morahesitatedtousetheweapon,
sinceatthattimeshestillhadthoughtthattherewasachanceshecouldkillhim.
Butnowshewasstartingtoregretthatdecision.

SoonFremyandChamo,whohadheadedoutonreconnaissance,returnedtothe
EternalFlower.

"It'sjustasyousaid.Tgurneuisn'tdoinganything.Iwonderwhatitcouldmean,"
Fremysaid.

"...Fremy,hasAdletstillnotreturned?"

FremylookedatMora'sunusualdemeanorwithasuspiciouslook.

"Notyet.Hehasn'tcontactedmeyetsayinghehasfoundanything."

ThatmadeMoradespair.HowmuchlongercanIwaitforhimtomeetmy
expectations?Especiallynow,sinceI'moutoftime.

Morapickeduphermetalgauntletsfromthegroundandslippedherarmsinto
them.ThenshestartedtowalkawayfromtheEternalFlower.

"Whereareyougoing?"

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"I'mgoingtofightTgurneu.Ican'twaitforAdletanylonger."

"Obachan,what'swithyou?Calmdown.Isn'tTgurneutrappedinthebarrier?"
Chamoasked.

"GiveyourundividedattentiontopreservingthebarrierwhileyouwaitforAdlet."

"No.Ifyoucan'tbeatTgurneu..."

"There'snoneedtorush.InthecasethatTgurneuescapesitwouldnotbea
considerableloss.Thisisnttheonlychancewewillhavetokillhim.Therewillbe
otherfightslaterwhenwearedefinitelyreadytodefeathim."

"Fremy'sright.WhatareyousayingObachan?"Chamoadded.

Surelyfromtheirstandpointitmightnotseemlikesomethingtheyshoulddo.
However,Moranolongerhadanytime.Sheignoredthetwoofthemand
continuedwalking.

"...Mora,I'maskingyoutostop."ThistimeFremytookoutherrifle,asoundthat
finallygotthroughtoMora'sears."Ibarelytrustedyou.Sotellme,whatareyou
hiding?Whyareyouinsucharush?Iwillnotlowermyrifleuntilyouexplain."

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"Whatareyoudoing,Fremy!"Chamoshoutedinanger.SeveraloftheJyumashe
hadspatoutthensurroundedFremy.

"Chamo,thinkaboutthiscalmly.Moraisn'tbeingupfrontwithus."

"You'rethesamewayFremy.Youhaven'tbeenentirelyhonestwithusatall."

ChamoandFremyglaredatoneanother.AlthoughMorahadherbackturnedand
couldntseethemwithherowneyes,shewasabletowatchthemwithher
secondsight.AndthemomentFremyaimedherrifleawayfromMoraand
pointeditatChamo,Morarushedaway.

"Mora!"Fremyshouted.

MoracouldnolongerdependonAdlet.Andshecouldn'texpectFremyorChamo
tohelphereither.Intheend,shehadnochoicebuttokillTgurneuwithherown
hands.Shewouldusethefinalweaponfashionedintoherchest,andwhenshe
stoppedTgurneuherdaughterwouldbesaved.Thatwastheonlyoptionshehad
left.Tgurneuhadsaidthathehadaplanforescapingfromthebarrier.She
couldntgivehimthetimetorealizethatplan.

ShelefttheEternalFlower,andafterwalkingforaminutetheKyomaattacked
her.Moradidn'tstopforamomentandjustrammedthroughthem.Shehadno
timetobeworryingabouttheinsignificantpawns.

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WhenTgurneunoticedthefarawaysoundshecalledout,"Whoa,what
happened?HeyMora,what'sthematter?"

Shedidntanswer.ShejustcontinuedtostrikedowntheKyomablockingherpath
andtrampledthemunderherfeet.Tgurneushouldn'tbeawareoftheeruption
gem.Soifshegotcloseshewouldbeabletofinishhimoff.Tgurneuwas
expectinghertokilloneoftheHeroes,sohemostlikelywouldntkillherthat
easily.Andthatdefinitelycreatedtheopportunitysheneededtogetclosetohim.

No,Ihavetomakethatopportunity.

"Mora,stop!"FremyshoutedasshechasedafterMora.

"Ifyou'regoingtoshoot,thenshoot,"Morareplied.

Butinthatmomentshedidntpayenoughattentiontohersurroundingsandwas
grabbedbyaKyoma.FiretheneruptedfromthemuzzleofFremy'srifleandthe
bulletgrazedMora'sarm,sendingscrapsofhersleeveflyingupintotheair.

"Fremy!IfyoukillObachan,Chamowillkillyoutoo!"Chamoscreamedfrom
behind.ShehadbroughtalongherJyumaandwasalsopursuingbothFremyand
Mora.

"ItseemsliketheHeroesoftheSixFlowersaremakingtheircharge.Halfofyou
stopthem."

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MorawatchedwithhersecondsightastheKyomawithinthebarrierfollowed
Tgurneu'sordersandbegantomove.

ChamosJyumafinishedofftheenemiesMorahadtossedtotheside.Butthe
Kyomastandinginherwaywereincreasing.Shebeatdownagiant,dogtype
Kyoma,thenwrappedherselfaroundalionKyomaandsnappeditsneck.

Onwardandonward,Moraadvanced.

"Mora!ReturntotheEternalFlower!"

OneofFremy'sbulletsgrazedMora'sshoulder.Butstill,Moradidn'tpayitany
mindandcontinuedtorun.AslongasChamowasthereFremywouldn'tkillMora.
PlusFremywasalsobeingattackedbytheKyoma.

"Obachan,whathappenedallofasudden?IfyoudontexplainChamowon't
understand!"

TheKyomawerealsoincreasingtheirattacksagainstChamo.Shecommandedher
JyumatofightthemoffasshefranticallyranafterMora.Thesituationwas
transformingintoanextremelyconfusingmess.Morawasjustdrivingforward,
Fremywastryingtostopherfrombehind,andwhileChamowastryingtoprevent
FremyfromkillingMorashewasalsotryingtostopMora'srecklessdash.

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TheKyomawereattackingthethreeHeroesequally.Andfromanoutsider's
perspectiveitwasprobablyafunnysight.

Asshefought,MorausedhersecondsighttocheckonTgurneu.Hehadformed
hisKyomaintoranksandthemonkeyKyoma,whoevenamongTgurneu's
subordinatesseemedtohaveahighposition,wasissuingorders.Meanwhile
TgurneuwassittingonthetailofoneofthereptileKyoma,staringintheHeroes'
directionwithhishandonhischin.

ThereweremorethaneightyKyomablockingherpath,andMoraknewthatit
wasfartoomanyforhertotakeoutbyherself.However,therewasnowayshe
wouldstop.Shecouldn'tallowTgurneutogetaway.

"ComebackMora!Whatdoyouintendondoing?"Fremymadeagiantleapand
landedsquareinfrontofMora,rightinherway.

"It'sobvious.I'mgoingtokillTgurneu!"Morashouted.

Fremyhesitated.IfshehadbelievedthatMorawasthesevenththenshe
wouldntcareaboutChamoandwouldbeshooting.YetMorawasn'tfightingher
companions.ShewasfightingtheKyomawithhersightsonTgurneu.

"Areyoutheenemy?Orareyoujustahopelessfool?"

"You'reinmyway.Stepaside!"MorasaidandthenslippedpastFremy.

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Fremyshotather,butMorablockeditwithhergauntlet.NextFremythrew
bombsather,butMoradidntevenflinchattheexplosions.

"Chamo,whatisMoratryingtodo?"

"Youdon'tknow?!Chamodoesntknoweither!"

"Helpmefight,youtwo!Morashoutedatthem.Createapathforme!"

Thetwoofthemareconfused,butitdoesntmatter,Morathought.Icantcount
onanyoneelseanymore.Fromthebeginningtheonlypersonwhocouldsave
Shenierahasbeenme.

AttheedgeofthebarrierTgurneuwasfacingthebattlefieldwithawidegrin.

"Mora,Icanhearyouallthewayoverhere.Youshouldntgetsoangry."

TheFlowerswereonlyfightinghalfoftheKyoma.TheremainingKyomaremained
linedupinranks,waitingmotionlesslyforsomething.AndeventhoughMorawas
gettingcloser,Tgurneudidn'tseemworriedatall.

"Obachan!Howareyougoingtogetthroughonyourown?!Doyouwantto
die?!"Chamoshouted.

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Morahadthatexactthoughtinhermind,anditrepeatedincessantly.Butifshe
couldsaveherdaughter'slifethenshedidn'tcareifshedied.

Moradidhaveregretsthough.Ifshehadworkedwithhercompanionsand
combinedtheirstrengthsearlieronthentheywouldhavebeenabletokill
Tgurneu.ButMorahadthoughtthatshehadtimeuntilShenierawasgoingtodie.
Anditwasthatkindofsoftthinkingthathadbroughtaboutthecurrentsituation.

Butshewouldn'thesitateanymore.Shewasfinewithdyingifitwastosaveher
daughter.

Iwonderhowmuchtimehaspassed,MorathoughtasagiantreptileKyomastood
inherpath.ItwasoneofthehighrankingKyomaTgurneuhadbroughtalong.
Morahadbeenfightingwithitforalongtime,butnomatterhowmanytimesshe
hitit,itwouldnotdie.

"Getoutoftheway!"

IwillkillTgurneu.Thatwastheonlythingshethoughtaboutitforthepastthree
years.Shehadtrained,polishedherskills,andfoughtwithstrongwarriorsallover
theworldtomakeupforherlackofactualbattleexperience.AlongwiththeSaint
ofSaltWeylynnshehadcreatedabarrierthatcouldtrapTgurneu.Andwith
Lenelle,theSaintofFire'shelpshehadmadethegemthatwouldkillTgurneu.
Neverthelesstheuneaseneverfadedfromhermind.

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ShehadtoldWeylynnthatshedidn'tintendtokillanyoftheHeroessothatshe
couldsaveherdaughter'slife.However,allalongshehadknowndeepdownthat
nomatterwhathappenedtoher,shecouldneverabandonherdaughter.

SoifTgurneuescapedfromthebarrier,MorawouldkilloneoftheSixFlowers.

"Chamoretreat.WeshouldletMorago!"Fremyshoutedasherbombsblewaway
theapproachingKyoma.Shewastossingoutbombsassheescapedfromthe
Kyoma'sattack.

"Moraintendstodie!Soifshewantstodiethenletherdieasshepleases!"

"Noway!ChamowillbringObachanback!Youcanrunbyyourself!"

FremyhadalreadygivenuponhittingMorawithherbullets.Herhandswerefull
justdealingwiththeKyomathatwereattackingher.

"Youareinmyway!Shutupandmoveaside!"MorashoutedeithertotheKyoma
ortoChamo.

MorathrustherhandintothemouthofthereptileKyomastandinginherpath.
Shethengrabbedholdofitstongueanddugherfeetintotheground.Andwitha
screamthatshooktheearth,sheliftedtheKyomaandhurleditoverher
shoulder.

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Chapter 43

TherewereonehundredmeterslefttillTgurneu.Hewassoclosethatifitwere
duringthedayshewouldhavebeenabletoseehimwithhernakedeyes.Hewas
beingprotectedbyhisKyomathatwerearrangedinlinesandstaringherway.

ThereptileKyomashehadthrownstoodbackupandleapedatMora.Mora
reactedtotheattackjustintime,barelymanagingtododgetothesidebeforethe
Kyomacrushedher.TheKyomastoodbackupimmediatelyandrushedtowards
herinattack.

"It'salrighttoleaveFremyandChamoalone.Justdon'tletMoragetclosetome!"
Tgurneushouted.Therewasnoneedforhertousethepowerofhersecond
sight;shecouldhearhimdirectly.

AnduponhearinghimMorainstantlyrealizedthatTgurneuwasawareofMora's
objective.Heprobablydidn'tknowabouttheeruptiongem,buthecouldsense
thatMorawasattemptingtolaydownherlife.

"Tgurneu!Areyouacoward?Comeatme!"Morashoutedasshefoughtwiththe
reptileKyoma.

"Ican'tdothat.Icanclearlyseethatyouarecomingtodosomething."

"...Isaidcomeatme!"

However,Tgurneudidn'tmove.

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AndAdletstillhadn'treturned.

Adletcouldhearsomethingstrangeashewasrunningdownthetunnel.Someone
wasscreaminginthedistance.Thesoundwasechoedagainandagainthroughout
thevasttunnelstothepointthathedidn'tknowfromwherethesoundhad
originated.

"Whatisthatidiotdoing?"

Adletfranticallyrandownthelabyrinthinetunnels.Onthewayhestoppedand
carvedmarkssothathewouldn'tforgettheway.Itwouldn'tbealaughingmatter
ifoneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowersweretogetlost.

"ThisguyGoldofhasbeencausingusnothingbuttrouble,"Adletsaid,
unconsciouslyvoicinghisinnerthoughts.

TherewasnoguaranteeofhowlongMorawouldbeabletokeepTgurneu
trapped.AndifTgurneumoveditmightputFremyandtheothersindanger.
Therewasn'tanytimetowaste.Perhapstwohourshadalreadypassed.Andat
theratetheyweregoingtheywouldhavetoreturnwithoutanyresults.

"Butwhosevoiceisthat?"

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Chapter 43

Fromdeepwithinthetunnelshecouldhearsomethingscreaminginagony.It
wasn'tGoldof'svoice,butaKyoma's.However,soonthevoicegrewweakeruntil
hecouldnolongerhearit.Andafterthathefaintlyheardwhatsoundedlike
somethingbreaking.

"What'soverthere....?"

Hewasfinallyclosetothesound.Whenheroundedthecornerofwherethe
soundwaslocatedhereadiedhissword.Hedidn'tknowwhatwouldjumpoutat
him.

"...Wha..."

WhenheturnedthecornerhesawGoldofandthecorpseofahumantypeKyoma
coveredinsteelskin.Adletcouldfeelthebilerisingupinhisstomach.Nomatter
howmanytimeshelookedattheKyoma'scorpsehecouldonlydescribethe
sceneasextremelycoldblooded.

"Whatareyoudoing?"

BothoftheKyoma'shandshadbeensnappedandbothofitslegshadbeentorn
offfromthekneesdown.ThepartoftheKyomathatseemedtobeitsheadwas
stainedthecolorofrust.AndatthemomentGoldofhadhishandsontheKyoma's
throatanditlookedlikehehadbeenstranglingit.

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GoldofcheckedthatitwasAdletbeforesayingquietly,"I'm...fightingwitha
Kyoma."

"Icanseethat."

Goldof'sspearwasstillsheathedonhisbackwithoutasingledropofbloodonit.
CouldhehavepossiblyrippedaparttheKyomawithhisbarehands?

"Itriedtointerrogateit,but....Iwasntverysuccessful.SinceitwasmyfirsttimeI
didn'tknowhow."

"...You..."

"Cometothinkofit,someonehadsaidthatinterrogatingaKyomawouldnt
work,"GoldofmutteredashecrushedtheKyoma'sfaceinhishands.Thestrength
ofhishandsmadeAdletcatchhisbreath.HewasneckandneckwithHans,and
thecatlikewarriorwasalsosuperhuman.

"Areyouanidiot?DoyouthinkaKyomawouldspitoutinformation?Let'shead
back."AdletthenbegantorunandGoldofobedientlyfollowedbehindhim.

"TheKyomatalkedalotmorethanIhadthought."

"Isthatso?"

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"Theywilleasilygototheirdeathsiftheyareordered,butatthesametimethey
alsoclingtolife.ThatKyomahadsaidoverandoveragainthatitwouldntdieand
thatitwouldabsolutelykillme.Itwasstrange."

"Isee.I'mgladyouwereabletolearnsomething.Nowhurryandrun."Adlets
tonewasroughoutofirritation.

"ItseemedliketheKyomawasonTgurneu'sside.Butitwouldn'tsaywhyhewas
here.Norwouldittellmetheseventh'strueidentityorwheretheprincesswent.
Itdidn'ttellmeanything."

AsGoldofwasmuttering,Adlet'smindfocusedonTgurneu'smystery.Whowas
thatsmallKyoma?Andwhyhadn'tthebloodoftheSaintsaffectedTgurneu?

"ThatKyomaresentedthefactthatitcouldntkillme.Overandoveragainitsaid
thatitwantedtokillme."

Idbeokaywithyounottalking,Adletwasabouttosay,whenGoldofadded."He
hadsaidthatIwouldntbeaproblemifhehadhisMasterTgurneu'spower."

HearingthatAdletstoppedmoving.Goldofthenbumpedintohimfrombehind
sendingAdletflyingforward.Hisfacesmashedintotheground.

"...Areyoualright?"

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Chapter 43

GoldoftriedtohelpAdletup.Butwithouttakinghishand,Adletcontinuedtolie
ontheground.Hisintuitionwasspeakingtohim.Anditwassayingthattherehad
beensomethingimportantaboutwhatGoldofhadjustsaid.

Stillontheground,AdletthoughtaboutGoldofscuriouswords.

"Saythatonemoretime,exactlyastheKyomahad."

"IfIhadmyMasterTgurneu'spoweryouwouldntbeaproblem."

"Isthatexactlywhathesaid,wordforword?Didhedefinitelysaythat?"

"That'sright.Hesaiditlikethat.IfIhadmyMasterTgurneuspower.Hurryon
andgetup."

Adletwasabletoderiveasingletheoryfromthosewords.Tgurneuhadtheability
togivestrengthtootherKyoma.ButRoloniahadsaidthatTgurneushouldn't
haveanyspecialpower.

AllofAdlet'smemoriesupuntilthatpointrushedabouthishead.Theirfirstbattle
withTgurneu.Rolonia'sanalysisandtheirsubsequentconversationwithFremy.
TheDemonKingZophrairsexistence.ThefactthatTgurneuwasthesubordinate
ofZophrairinthepast.Theundergroundroom.Thestrangetunnels.TheKyoma's
strangewords.

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AndthefactthatthebloodoftheSaintsdidnotworkonTgurneu.

Allofthefactspointedtooneanswer.

"Goldof,youmayhavejustdoneusthegreatestservice,"Adletsaidashestood.

Inabighurrytheyreturnedtotheiroriginallocation.Rolonialowereddownher
whipwhichtheygrabbedandusedtoclamberupthehole.

"Soyou'vefinallyreturned?Iwastiredofwaiting,meow,"HanssaidtoAdlet
whenhereachedthetop.

BesidehimRoloniaasked,"Whatdidyoufindout?Whatshouldwedonow?"

"Iwasabletoglimpseapossibility.However,Ihavenoproof."

"Shouldwegoback?ImalsoworriedaboutMora."

Adletshookhishead.Thenhelookedoverthedarkhillandsaid,"No,wewilllook
fortheproof.Ifmymemoryiscorrect,theproofshouldbeonthishill."

"Proof?"

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Chapter 43

RoloniaandHanslookedathimwidemouthedasiftosay,whatarewegoingto
besearchingfor?Adletunderstoodhowtheyfelt.Itwasanextremelywild
theory.Butifhisthinkingwascorrectthenthesolutiontoallofthemysteries
wouldcomesoon.

ThereptileKyomafinallydied.AndTgurneustillhadnotescaped.Therewasno
morethan50metersleftbetweenhimandMora.Andonceshehadclosedthat
distanceandmadeherwaytohissideshewouldexplodetheeruptiongem.

Theneverythingwouldcometoanend.

"Thisisn'tgoodpeople,"TgurneusaidtohisKyomaashelookedatthe
approachingMora."Moracannotgetclosetome.Wasntthatmyonlyorder?Are
younotevenabletodosomethinglikethat?"

15KyomaofvariousappearancesheadedtowardsMora.Morastruckoneof
theminanattempttoclearapath.Butevenwithitsbrokenface,theKyoma
managedtowrapitselfaroundMoraandhelddownoneofherarms.

"So,youreallprettypersistentwhenyouputyourmindtoit."

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Chapter 43

OneafteranothertheKyomagrabbedMora.Theytradedtheirlivesjustto
restrainMoraforseveralseconds.AllthistimeTgurneusimplylookedonwithan
expressionofsatisfaction.

"Obachan!Chamocan'tseeyouanymore.Getreadytoloseanarmortwoifyou
keeptryingtorun!1"AsChamoshoutedherJyumarushedatboththeKyomaand
Mora.

Butwithabattlecry,MorapushedasidetheJyuma.AsshekilledtheKyoma
comingather,theJyumawereatthesametimetryingtorestrainMora.She
pushedthemasideandinafrenzytriedtomakeherwayforwardthroughtheir
charge.

MeanwhileFremyaimedherrifleatTgurneuwithabombalsoreadyinherhands.

Inthemiddleoftheconfusionthathadalreadygrownoutofcontrol,Tgurneu
wastheonlyonelaughing.

"Ahahah,thisissomuchfun.You'requiteasight."

NomatterhowmanytimessheforcedthroughtheJyumatheyweresoonbearing
downonheragain.EventuallyagroupofslugJyumasurroundedher.They
immobilizedherfeetwithastickyliquidandbegantodragherbackwards.

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Chapter 43

"Letgo!Chamo,letgoofme!"

Moratriedtoshakethemoff,butshecouldn'tbreakfreeoftheslugJyuma's
strength.Morathencollapsedtotheground.Andwhenshedesperatelytriedto
pullherbodyforwardwithherarmsadifferenttypeofJyumapresseddownon
herback.

Therewasonlyaslightdistanceleftbetweenthem,andMorawasstaringdirectly
atTgurneu.ButwiththatfinalJyumasstrength,shecouldnolongermove.

WhydidntTgurneurunawayyet?Morawondered.Hesaidthathehadaplanto
breakthebarrier.Whyisn'theusingit?

"That'sgood,Chamo.HoldMorathereforme,"Tgurneusaidashestood.The
nextinstantthebattlefieldwentquiet.ThesurvivingKyomastoppedtheirattacks
andassembledaroundTgurneu.

AndthatwaswhenMorarealizedwhatTgurneu'splanwas,andhowshehad
completelyplayedrightintoit.

Tgurneudidn'thavethepowertodestroythebarrier.Hejustwantedtoexhaust
Morasothatshewouldrunoutofenergyandbecomeunabletomaintainthe
barrier.

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Chapter 43

TgurneuhadmadeMoraloseherpatience,whichcausedhertochargeblindlyat
himinarecklessattack.

HowmuchpowerdoIhaveleft?Isitenoughtomaintainthebarrier?

"Mora.Iacquiredtheseventh'screstjustover200yearsago,"Tgurneusaid."But
inasense,theseventh'screstisnotafake.TheSaintoftheSingleFlower
produceditherself.Shehadcreateditforadifferentpurposethantheonesthe
Heroespossessed.

"Hurryup...whatareyougettingat?"Fremyasked,herriflepointedatTgurneu
andreadytofire.

"Isearchedforalongtimeforthepersonwhowouldbesuitabletopossessthe
seventhcrest,whenthetimecame.ForalongtimeIvewonderedjustwhatkind
ofpersonshouldbegiventhecrestwhenthetimecomes.AndwhenImademy
choice,thecrestappearedonthatpersonsbody."

AsMoralistenedtoTgurneu,sheclawedattheground,tryingtoinchtowards
himwithallhermight.

"Obachan!Didn'tChamosaynottomove,"Chamoshouted.

However,Tgurneukeptontalkingasifhewasntconcernedatall."Mora,you
trulyareincredible.Youareagenuinedemon.

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Chapter 43

Youingeniouslypretendthatyouareagoodpersonandyetatthesametimeyou
areundertheimpressionthatyouarenotabadperson.Butnooneotherthan
meknowsthetruthwithinyourheart.

IamgratefulthatIwasfortunateenoughtobeallowedtomeetahumanlike
you.Yourloveisdefinitelysomethingthatwillbringtheworldtoruin."

ThenextmomentmorethanahundredsurvivingKyomachargedtowardsthe
barrierallatonce.Atthesametimethe50orsoKyomaontheothersidealso
threwtheirbodiesatthebarrier.

Whentheycollidedwiththebarriertheirbodiesburnedupinflamesandchanged
toadirtymud.NeverthelesstheKyomaoneafteranotherchargedintothe
barrier,layingdowntheirliveswithouthesitation.Theywereallpreparedtodie.

WhenshehadmadethebarrierMorahadn'timaginedthat150Kyomawouldbe
chosentodiejusttobringdownthebarrier.

Theveiloflightshookviolently.Morachanneledalltheenergyshehadleftinto
thebarrier.Yettheshakingwouldntstopandactuallyincreased.

"Wait.....Wait,Tgurneu."

IntheendtherewasonlyonegiantjellyfishKyomaleft.Tgurneuwasleaninghis
bodyagainstit.Andhisbodywasbeingswallowedintothecenterofit.

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Chapter 43

"NowthatweareattheendIshalltellyou.Mora,youaretheseventh!"

Tgurneu'sentirebodywasswallowedupbythejellyfishKyomawhichthen
launcheditselfatthebarrier.Itscreamedinagonyasitsbodyeruptedinflames.
However,althoughitsbodywasonfire,thejellyfishKyomahadmanagedtopass
throughthebarrier.Itthendraggeditscharredbodytowardsthewest,asticky
trailofdischargefollowinginitswake.

"Tgurneu!Wait!Isaidwait!"Morashouted,again,andagain,andagain.

Tgurneudidn'trespond.InsideofthejellyfishKyoma,hedisappearedintothe
darkness.

ThefewremainingKyomafollowedafterhimandintheblinkofaneyethearea
grewquiet.Andwithallofherpowerspent,Moraslowlyfellunconscious.

"...Obachan!Obachan!!"

Moradidn'tknowhowlongithadbeen,butwhenshestartedtocometoChamo
washoldingherinherarms.Thegirlhadbeenshoutinghernameoverandover
again.

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"...Tgurneu..."wasthefirstthingoutofMora'smouthwhenshefullyawoke.

"Heescaped.It'sregrettable,buttherewasnothingwecoulddo.Besidesthere
willbeotheropportunitiestodefeatTgurneu,"Fremysaid.Shewaspointingher
rifleinMorasdirection,butMorahadnointentionofrunningaway.

"...ThoughIwanttokillyourightnow,forthetimebeingwe'dlikeyouto
explain."Fremyhadherfingeronthetrigger,butChamo'sJyumawerestanding
infrontofMora,blockingFremyslineoffire.

"Chamowon'tletyoukillher."

"Stepaside."

Obachanisnottheseventh.Chamodoesn'tknowherreason,butObachan
wasn'tattackingus.Rightnowyou'retheonewho'sactingstrange."

Asthetwoofthemglaredatoneanother,Morawhispered,"TgurneusaidthatI
wastheseventh."

"ChamoissmartsoChamounderstandsthatTgurneuobviouslyliedtotrickus.
ButFremyisanidiotsoshe'sbeingtrickedbyTgurneu."

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Chapter 43

"It'sobviousthatTgurneuwaslying.AndthatsanotherreasonMorais
suspicious."

Thoughtheywereunsureofthevalidityofhisclaims,Moraknewthatwhat
Tgurneusaidwasindeedthetruth.Tgurneucouldnotlietoher.

Isee,soIwastheseventh?Wellthatexplainsalotofthingsthatdidntmakeany
sensebefore.ItexplainswhynoonehadcooperatedwithNashetaniawithinthe
IllusionFogBarrier.Andwhytheseventhhadn'tdoneanythingwhenwehadall
beenrunningawayfromTgurneu.

"StepasideChamo."

"LoweryourgunFremy!"Morasaid."Let'sleavewhetherornotIshouldbekilled
inAdlet'shands.Iwillfollowwhateverhedecides."

"...Isthatalright,Obachan?Adletisanidiot."

"ItrustAdlet.Hedoesn'tmisreadthetruth.HaveAdletandtheothersstillnot
returned?"

"Notyet.Ihaven'treceivedanycontactfromthemindicatingtheyhavefound
something."

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Chapter 43

"Isee..."

FremythenlookedtoChamo."GomeetupwithAdlet.Tgurneumightbeheading
rightforthem.Backthemup."

"YourenotgoingtokillObachan?"

"ForthetimebeingIwillwaitandlistentowhatAdlethastosay.Iwon'tkillher
untilthen.Ofcoursethat'sonlyifMoradoesn'tmove."

"Becareful,Obachan,"Chamosaid,andthenstartedtowalkofftotheeast.It
didn'tseemlikeshewasinarush,juststrollingalongathernormalpace.

FremycircledaroundMoraandplacedaboutfivepacesbetweenthem.The
entiretimethesightsofherrifleneverstrayedfromMora'shead.

WithoutlookingbehindherMorasaid,"Fremy,willyouallowmetopatchupmy
wounds?"

"Don'tmove.Usetheenergyofthemountaintohealyourself."

"Theenergyofthemountainisnotacureall.IfIdon'tapplysomemedicineor
stitchupthewoundstheywon'theal."

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"...Iguessitcan'tbehelped,"Fremysaid,keepingherrifletrainedonMora.

TherewasafastactingmedicinewithinMorasboot.Adletwasn'ttheonlyone
whohadstockedtoolsontheirbody.

AsFremystaredather,Moraremovedheroutergarbandarmor,andthenused
themedicinetosealupherwounds.

"..."

ForthreeyearsMorahadbeentormentedbyanightmare.Whatifsheweren't
abletokillTgurneuandwhatifsheweren'tabletosaveSheniera?Seeingthe
sightofthatfutureinherdreamsmadeherjumpupoutofhersleep,andwhen
Gunnerwasn'tathersidetherewereevennightswhereshecouldn'tsleepatall.

EachtimeMorathoughtofthatnightmareshewishedshehadn'tbecomeaSaint
andshewishedshehadn'tbecomesostrong.Becauseitwaspreciselyduetoher
havingthestrengthtobechosenasoneoftheSixFlowersthathadledtoher
dearShenierabeingtargeted.

Andnowthatnightmarewasbecomingmoreandmoreofareality.

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Asshetreatedherwounds,Morasuddenlyrecalledthepast.

Itwasprobablyabouttwoyearsago.Shewasinherbedroom,facingher
husband.ShehadaskedthemaidstotakecareofShenierasothatjustthetwoof
themcouldtalk.Theytalkedabouthowshewasgoingtoentrustthetaskof
managingthetemplestoGunner,howshewasalsoentrustingWeylynnwiththe
instructionoftheSaints,andthentheydiscussedtheapproachingbattle.

Whenshewasdonetalking,Gunnersuddenlysaid,"Mora.Ifyoucan'tsave
Sheniera..."

Morawasshocked.Ithadbeentaboobetweenthetwoofthemtoevenmention
thatpossibility.ShewouldsaveSheniera,savetheworld,andcomeback.That's
whattheyhadpromised.

"Stopthatkindoftalk.Didn'tIsayIwoulddefinitelysaveSheniera?"

"Idon'twanttotalkaboutiteither.Idon'tevenwanttothinkaboutit.But,we
havetodiscussitjustincase."

Moradidn'twanttolisten.

"...Dontyoubelieveinme?"

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"It'sexactlybecauseIbelieveinyouthatwehavetotalkaboutthis."Gunner
lookedintoMora'seyes."IfyouarenotabletodefeatTgurneubythe
deadline...andthesituationbecomesonewhereyou'llhavetoweighSheniera's
lifeagainstoneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers..."Gunnerhesitated,a
heartbrokenexpressiononhisface."Ifthathappens,giveuponSheniera.You
mustnotkilloneoftheSixFlowers."

Moradidn'trespond.

"IunderstandhowmuchyouloveSheniera.That'swhyIamafraid.Won'tyouend
upbringingabouttheworstcasescenariojusttosaveSheniera?"

"Iwon'tlose.TheHeroesoftheSixFlowerswillabsolutelynotlose."

MorathenavertedhereyesandGunnerwrappedherinasoftembrace."Youstill
mightbeabletodefeattheMajinevenifyoukilloneoftheFlowers.However,
whatwillbecomeofShenieraafterthat?Shewillhavetoliveherlifebearingthe
burdenofbeingthedaughteroftheHerokiller."

"..."

"Shenieraisagoodgirl.Andshewillgrowuptobeawonderfulwomanlikeyou.
Butifsheweretoknowthatsomestrangerwaskilledsothatshecouldlive,she
wouldgrowupinsadness.Shewouldsufferawoundinherheartthatcouldnot
behealed.AndIdon'twanttohavetofacetheeyesshewouldhave.

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"...StopitGunner.Ican'ttakeit."MorapushedGunnerasideandburiedherhead
inherpillow.

"Sorry.Iknowyou'resufferingevenmorethanme...Forgiveme."Gunnergently
placedhishandonMora'sshoulder."I'macruelfather."

"Noyou'renot.Notbyanymeans...,"Morareplied.Thenwithherheadstill
buriedinherpillow,shebegantosob.

Thenextmemorywasaboutonemonthago.ItwasjustafterMorahad
undergonethesurgerytoinserttheeruptiongemintoherbody.

Withoutwaitingforhersurgicalwoundtoheal,Morawentanddidbattletraining
withWeylynn.Afterthetrainingshewentstraighttoherroomwithouteating
anythingandcollapsedontoherbed,completelyexhausted.Andwhenshehad
resignedherselftogoingtosleeprightthenandthere,MoranoticedSheniera
standingbesideherbed.

"What'swrong,Sheniera?"

Herexpressionwasdifferentthanusual.Thebright,babylikeShenierahadpulled
herlipstightandwasfightingbacktears.

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"Mother.Mother...areyougoingtodie?"Shenieraasked.Withouthesitation
Moragrabbedherdaughter,whowasclingingtoastuffedtoyintoahug.Even
ShenieraalreadyknewabouttheMajin.SheprobablyalsoknewthatMorawould
bechosenasoneoftheSixFlowers.

"There'snoneedtoworry.Yourmotherwilldefinitelywin.TheMajinisn'tenough
toscareme."

Morastrokedherdaughter'sbackinordertoputheratease.ButthenSheniera
saidsomethingthatshehadn'texpected.

"Areyougoingtodiebecauseofme?"

"What?"

"Areyougoingtodiebecauseofmyillness?I....Idon'twantthat..."

MorahadexplicitlymadesurethatneitherGunnernorWeylynnwouldtell
Shenieraanything.SoShenierashouldhavebeenundertheimpressionthather
sicknesshadbeencured.

ButperhapsShenierahadbeenawareofthetruthallthistime.Childrenfrom
timetotimehadamysteriousintuitionthatcouldtellwhenadultswerelying.

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ForalongtimeShenieracontinuedtocry.AndnomatterhowmuchMora
soothedandcuddledher,shecouldntstop.SheonlystoppedwhenGunnerlifted
herupintoanembraceandsanghertosleep.

LaterMorafoundoutthatforseveralmonthsShenierahadbeengoingtothe
GoddessofFatesstatueintheheadtempleeverydaytoofferprayers.Idont
wantanything,justpleasesavemymom,andShehasntdoneanythingbadher
wholelife,sopleasesavemymom,werethekindsofthingsshewouldsay.

Andthenherprayerschangedandshestartedtosay,ItsokayifIdie,justplease
savemymom.

MorahadknownforquiteawhilethatshecouldnotabandonSheniera,no
matterhowmuchshehadtostruggleintheprocess.Butthatconvictiondidnt
comefromherloveforSheniera.Itcamefromweakness.

"Fremy,"Morasaidasshetreatedherwounds.Herhandwasgrippingametal
tubeaboutthesizeofherindexfinger.Morasqueezeditandsprinkledthe
medicinewithinontoherbody.

"WouldyouknowifTgurneudied?"

"...Whatisthepointofthatquestion?"

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"ImworriedthatevenifwekillTgurneu,areplacementmightjustassume
command."

KeepingherwatchoverMora,Fremythoughtsilentlyforamoment."IfTgurneu
diedthatinformationwouldbeimmediatelyconveyedtotheKyoma.TheKyoma
wouldgrieveandmournandthentheywouldfallintoapanic."

"Isee...""

IfthatweresothenTgurneuwasstillalive.Everythinghe'dsaidtoherhadbeen
thetruth.Morawastheseventhafterall;therewasnolongeranydoubtabout
that.

Yetstrangely,knowingthatshewastheseventhactuallymadeMorafeel
relieved.Themysteryhadbeenresolvedandnowshedidn'tneedtobeafraidof
theseventhanymore.

"WhatkindofrelationshipdotheKyomahavewithTgurneu?"

"...TheKyoma'sloyaltytowardsTgurneuisabsolute.Itisequaltotheirdevotion
toTheMajin."

ItseemedlikeFremywasstartingtogrowsuspiciousofthemeaningless
conversation.

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"Mora,whatareyouhiding?Andwhatareyouplotting?"

"Iamindeedhidingsomething,butI'mnotplottinganything."

"Talk.Whatareyouplanning?Ifyoudon'ttellme,I'llshoot."

"I'lltellyoueverythingafterChamobringsAdletback."

"You..."Fremyslightlyhesitatedastohowtocontinue.AndinthatmomentMora
twistedaroundandrushedFremy.

Itwasn'tanattackthatFremycouldn'tdefendherselfagainst.Andnormally
FremyprobablywouldhaveinstantaneouslyshotMorainthehead.Butthebullet
shefiredonlygrazedMora'sear.

Moradidntdodgethebullet.Fremyhadsimplymissed.Shewasntabletoshoot
anopponentwhowasamerefivepacesaway.

Moradidn'tgivehertimetojumpoutoftheway.Shegrabbedtheedgeof
Fremy'scloakandyankeditwithallherstrength.ThenshegrabbedFremy'sthin
bodyandwrappedherhandsaroundherthroat.

"Mo..."

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MoracontinuedtosqueezethearteryinherneckuntilFremylostconsciousness.
MorathenreleasedherneckandFremysbodycollapsedtotheground.

TgurneuhadsaidthatIwasthelowestofdevils.Perhapshewasright.There
probablyisntanyoneinthewholeworldthatisasmuchofademonasme.

ShehadpromisedherhusbandthatshewouldnotkilloneoftheHeroesoftheSix
Flowers.Shehadpromisedherdaughterthatshewouldabsolutelysavethe
world.However,secretlyMorahadmadepreparationstokilloneoftheHeroes.
She'ddoneitcarefullyandskillfullywithoutanyonenoticing.

Morapickeduphergauntlets,slungFremyoverhershoulderandthenstartedto
runtowardstheEternalFlower.

"I'msorry,Sheniera."Morawasn'tspeakingtoFremy'sunconsciousbody,butto
herbeloveddaughterfaraway."I'msorrythatyouhaveamotherlikeme."

Fremy'sunconsciousbodywasbreathingquietlyatopMora'sshoulder.Andit
wouldn'tbeveryhardforMoratosnapherneck.Butatthemomentshecouldn't
killFremy.Shehadspentalotoftimeandeffortdevisingherplan,butshewasnt
quitereadyyet.

Mora'splanneededsomeoneelseshelp.RoloniaManchetta,theSaintofFresh
Blood.Morahadkeptthechildprodigycloseby,becameherteacher,andraised
her.AllsothatshecouldhelpMorasucceedinkillingoneoftheSixFlowers.

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ChapterFive:PartOne

ThefirsttimeMoramether,Roloniawasagirlwhodidn'thaveanything.

HalfayearafterMoramadethecontractwithTgurneu,shereceivedtroubling
news.AtthetempleofFreshBloodanunsuitablepersonhadbeenchosentobea
SaintbytheGodofFreshBlood.

ItappearedthatthenewSaintwasanorphangirlwhohadbeenaservantatthe
temple.Shewasaslowchildwithoutanyredeemingfeatures,anditreallydidn't
seemlikeshewasfittobeaSaint.Evenherpredecessorhadnotintendedforthe
girltoinherittheSainthood.

Morahadwantedtoentrusttheattendingofthemiscellaneousprocedures
concerningthenewSainttoWeylynn,butitwasarulethatTheHeadofthe
Temples'approvalwasrequiredupontheretirementofaSaint.Sowithoutany
choiceMoraheadedtotheTempleofFreshBlood.

WhenshearrivedshefoundthenewSaintwashingclothesinthewateringholeat
thebackofthetemple.Morahadbeentoldthatwashingclotheshadbeenthe
girlsonlyduty.Shewaswearingadrabmaid'soutfitandherhandswere
extremelychappedandcoveredincracks.Itseemedlikethegirlhadgotten
accustomedtootherpeoplegettingangrywithherandassuchhadanexpression
ofservilityingrainedintoherface.

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Idon'thaveanytimetobeassociatingwithagirllikethis,Morathoughtasshe
begantospeaktotheyounggirl.

"YouweretheonechosentobethenewSaintofFreshBlood?"

WhenthegirlheardMoraspeakshestoodupandturnedaround.Butthe
momentMoralookedintoRolonia'seyesafaintchargeranthroughherbody.It
wasasignthatshewasconfrontingapowerfulwarrior,afeelingthatonlya
personwhoknewfightingcouldcomprehend.Thoughthegirlseemedtimid,
Moracouldsensethatshealreadypossessedapowertobereckonedwith.

"I'm...I'm...I'msorry.Iwastheonewhofrayedtheundergarments.I'msorry!"

Havingsomekindofmisunderstandingaboutsomething,thegirlbowedherhead
againandagain.

"IhavesomethingIwanttoaskyou."Moragentlytookthegirl'shand."Canyou
healthecracksinyourhandsusingthepowerofFreshBlood?"

"Huh?What?Um...IwasmistakenlychosentobeaSaintsoIumsuchathing
I..."

"I'maskingifyoucandoitornot.Giveitatryfirst."

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"Yes.I'msorry,umm"

Thegirlstaredatthetipsofherfingerssilentlyandpouredenergyintoherhand.
Herhandthenturnedtoareddishcolorandgrewhot,beforehealingitselfbefore
Morasveryeyes.

AlthoughshehadbeenchosenbytheGodofFreshBlood,sheshouldnthave
beenabletoimmediatelyuseherpowers.Onlyafterundergoingtraininginhow
tousetheirpowerandafterrepeatedlyspeakingtotheGodofFreshBloodwould
shefinallybecomeafullfledgedSaint.Soforhertobeabletodothatmuchnow
showedMorathatthegirlpossessedararetalent.

"I'mMora,theSaintofMountains.Whatisyourname?"

"Mynameis...RoloniaManchetta.I'mjustaservant."

Onceagainshebowedherheadagainandagain.AsMoralookedatthegirlshe
thoughtaboutsomethingelse.Awhilebackshehadcomeupwithanidea,but
thenrealizedthatitwasimpossible.However,perhapswiththisgirlImightbe
abletosucceed.

Itwasanunforgiveableidea.Anunforgiveableplan.

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Soonafterthatday,MoradecidedtolookafterRoloniaattheHeadTempleand
gaveherspecialeducationasaSaint.Shedeclaredthatwithinthreeyearsshe
wouldraiseRoloniatobechosenasoneoftheSixFlowers.

However,manySaintsopposedMora'sdecision.ThoughRoloniamighthavethe
qualitiesofaSaint,theyallsaidthatshedidn'thavethequalitiesofawarrior.And
surelynomatterhowyoulookedather,itwasclearRoloniawasn'tfittobea
warrior.

WheneverRoloniagotflustered,scared,orpanickedshewoulddonothingbut
cry.

SofirstMorataughtherthenecessarytechniquestobeTheSaintofFreshBlood.
Thepowertohealotherpeople'sinjuries.Thepowertomakeherwhipmoveby
usingfreshblood.Theabilitytoanalyzebloodbylickingit.Andtheabilitytouse
theenemy'sbloodtoinflictfatalinjuries.

Asshehadthought,Roloniapossessedunbelievabletalent.Shedidn'tevenneed
tostrainherselfveryhardtomemorizethoseabilities.

NextMoramadeRoloniaapprenticeunderpowerfulwarriorsalloverthe
world.TheoldknightStraudKahntaughtheraboutthewarrior'smentalstateof
mindanddroveintoherthebasicbattletacticsofthelegendarytacticianThomas
Halderoy.ThenMorahadherundergotrainingundertheantiKyomaspecialist
AtroSpyker,whoinstructedherabouttheKyoma.

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Butasshehadexpected,Roloniadidn'thavewhatittooktobeawarrior.She
wouldgetscaredifshehadtoconfrontanenemy.Andwhatmadeitworsewas
herfeaofofhurtingtheenemy.NomatterhowmanySainttechniquesshe
learned,itdidn'tseemlikeshewouldeverbecomestronger.

Warriorshadtobeproud.Andinordertodefeatanenemythewarriorfirst
neededtobelieveintheirownstrength.However,Roloniawasagirlwhocouldn't
dothatatall.

ForalongtimeRoloniahadbeenbulliedbytheotherSaintacolytesattheHead
Temple.Shewasclumsy,hermemorywasn'tgood,andshehadgrownuphearing
thatshewasn'tuseful.AsaresultRoloniatrulybelievedthatshecouldn'tdo
anything.

"Ifapersondoesn'tthinktheycanbecomestronger,theyneverwill."

"Look,Boss.Enoughisenough.ThatkidwillneverbeabletobecomeaHeroof
theSixFlowers,"WeylynnoncesaidtoMoraastheyweretraininghertogether.
"Roloniaisnotfitforthewarrior'spath.Hersisoneofhelpingpeople."

"You'rewrongWeylynn.Iknowthatshewillbecomeanexcellentwarrior,"Mora
said,butinrealityshedidn'tbelieveiteither.

"Roloniaisagoodkid.She'sbettersuitedforhealingandrestorationtechniques.
Itwouldbebettertohaveherhelppeopleafflictedwithsicknessandinjuries,like
Toulosan.Whycan'tyougetthat?

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WhatWeylynnwassayingwascorrect.EvenMoraknewthat.ButforMora'splan
tosucceed,Roloniawasindispensable.Shehadtogrowuptobeoneofthe
world'sleadingwarriorsandshehadtobechosenasoneoftheHeroesoftheSix
Flowers.

TherewasnowayshecouldtellthedetailsofherplantoeitherWeylynnor
Rolonia.Infacttherewasnooneintheentireworldshecouldtalktoabouther
plantouseRoloniatokilloneoftheFlowers.

"BelieveinmeWeylynn.Thatkidwilldefinitelygrowuptobeagreatwarrior."

AfterRoloniahadreturnedfromthemountainwheretheantiKyomaspecialist
AtroSpykerlived,Moracalledhertoherroomandofferedherwine.Although
shewasconfused,Roloniaacceptedanddrankforthefirsttimeinherlife.

"Rolonia.Haveyoueverwantedtobestrong?"

"Justonce,butitwasonlyforashortwhile."

Morawassurprised.

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"I...madeafriendatAtrosan'splace.HisgoalwastobecomeoneoftheHeroes
oftheSixFlowers...andhewasworkingextremelyhard."

WhatcouldhavehappenedatAtrosan'splace,Morawondered.

"IfIgetstrongerandbecomechosenasoneoftheHeroes,I'dbecomeusefulto
him,wouldn'tI?"Roloniafranticallywavedherhands."Ah,Imustnotthinklike
this.AHerooftheSixFlowers...that'ssuchanoutrageousthought...YouMora
san,orWeylynnsan,unlikestrongpeoplelikeyoutwothere'snowayIcould
ever..."

"...Rolonia."

Moraroseupfromherchair,tookRolonia'shandandbowedherhead.

"Morasan.Wh...Why?"

"IthinkwhatImdoingtoyouisinexcusable."

"Umm..."

"Please.Becomestrongforme.FighttheKyomaalongsideme.Idesperatelyneed
you."

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"Me,but,but..."

"Itmustbeyou!"MorashoutedandRolonia'sbodytrembledinshock."Ican'tsay
whyithastobeyou.AndIcan'tdoanythingelsebutbowmyheadandask.But
thoughIcanttellyouanything,pleasetellmethatyouwillbecomestrong.Ineed
you."

Roloniashookherheadandinafrightenedvoicesaid,"Morasan,I'mscared.I
don'tknowwhatIshoulddo...seeingasthisisthefirsttimeI'veeverbeenneeded
bysomeone."

"There'safirsttimeforeveryone."

"...But..."

TherewasonequalityRoloniahadthatwasgreaterinherthaninanyoneelse.
ShewasmorepleasedtobeusefultoothersthananyoneelseMorahadever
met.

"WhatshouldIdoifIcan't?ItsobviousImnouseanyway."

"...Giveityourall.That'sallyouneedtodo.Iwon'twishforanythingelse."

"...Iunderstand.Iwilldomybest.IfItryreallyhard,IthinkevenIcandoit."

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Roloniasmiledfaintly.Shewasdelightedthatsomeonewasdependingonherfor
thefirsttimeinherlife.Bythatsametokenshewasalsohappytofinallybe
usefultosomeoneelse.AndthatwasthefirsttimeMorahadseenRoloniasmile.

Roloniachangedabitafterthat.Shewasgettingscaredlessoftenandthe
amountoftimessheapologizedfornoreasonwasdecreasing.Plusshewas
seriousaboutbecomingstronger.

ThenaboutayearagoRoloniadidsomethingstrangeintheHeadTemple'sbattle
arena.

Adollmadeoutofstrawhadbeensetatthecenterofthebattlearena.Ithadthe
phrase,'Kyoma.Reallybadguy,'writtenacrossitschest.AndRoloniawas
shoutingatit.

"Fool!Idespiseyou!Enemiesarebadguys!"

Weylynnwasstandingbehindher.

"No,no!Putmoreangerintoit.Doitagain!"

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"I'm...I'm...I'mgoingtoknockyoudownandbeatyoutoapulp!"Rolonia
sometimeshadtroublearticulatingherwords,asifshewerentusedtoshouting.

"You'vegottenabitbetter.That'sthetone."

"I'm...I'mgoingtobeatyoudead!Yourottendemon!Bastard!Iwillstopyour
heart!"

WeylynnslappedRolonia'sshoulder.

"Thatsit!That'sthewayRolonia!"

"IdiditWeylynnsan!"

Thetwoofthemhuggedinthemiddleofthebattlearena.Buttiredofwaiting,
Morafinallycalledouttothem."Isitalrightnowformetoaskwhatyoutwoare
doing?"

Scratchingherhead,Weylynnbegantoexplain."Look,dontyouthinkRolonia
lacksafightingspirit,orperhapsIshouldsaythewilltofight?Soifwedothisand
practiceexpressingherangertowardstheenemyI'mwonderingifwecould
compensateforthat."

Morawasnaturallydumbfounded.

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"Um,Morasan.Ithinkthisisareallygoodidea.PerhapswiththisImightbeable
tobecomestronger."

"Ifthereareresultsthenit'sfine,"Morasaidasshetiltedherheadinthought.

"Rolonia,itseemslikeyoudon'treallyknowthewordstocurseatsomeone.You
havetoincreaseyourvocabulary."

"Right.I'msorry."

"That'salright.I'llteachyou,okay?Thereareprobablymorethanahundred
differentwaysjusttotellsomeonetodieintheworld."

"Isthattrue...?Weylynnsan,pleaseteachme!"

Asthetwoofthemtriedtoleavetogetherfromthebattlearena,Moracalledfor
themtostop.

"Rolonia,haveyouforgotten?Todayisthedayyou'resupposedtolearnhealing
techniquesfromTouloandmyself."

"Oh...that'sright.Sorry,Weylynnsan."

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"Ahit'sfine.Seeyoutomorrow."

RoloniaaccompaniedMoraandthetwoofthemstartedtoheadtowardsthe
medicalfacilitywhereToulowaswaiting.

"Todaywillbeanintenselesson.YouarealsogoingtoparticipateinToulo's
surgery.WhileTouloiscuttingouttheaffectedpart,youwillmakethepatient's
bloodcontinuetocirculateandkeeptheirheartbeating.Youwillhavetostop
theirbloodfromspillingoutinconjunctionwithyourbloodincreasingtechnique
sothatthepatientdoesn'tbleedtodeath.Stayonyourtoes."

"Right!"

Roloniahaddevelopedremarkably.Shehadmasteredmanymedicaltechniques
andenthusiasticallystudiedthecompositionofhumanbodies.Herabilitytoheal
otherswasnolongerinferiortoMora's.Andthoughitwasonlybyalittlebit,she
wasalsobecomingabetterfighter.

MorarecognizedanothervalueRoloniapossessed.ThefactthatRoloniagavethe
utmostefforttodoingthebestshecouldwasimpressive.Roloniaputeverything
shehadintowhatshedid,morethananyoneelseMorahadevermet.

RoloniahaddevelopedexactlyasMorahadplanned.Andafterayearshehad
beenbroughtuptothepointwhereitwouldn'tseemstrangeforhertobechosen
tobeoneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers.

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Still,Moracouldn'ttellRoloniahertrueintentions.Shecouldn'ttellherthatthe
realreasonshehadraisedRoloniawastokilloneoftheSixHeroes.

Shewouldbelyingifshesaidthatshedidn'tfeelpangsofguilt.However,Mora
hadnootherchoice.Bothforthedaughtershelovedandforherself.

"Rolonia,thetimehasfinallycomeforyoutobeofusetome,"Moramutteredas
sherantowardstheEternalFlower.Hereyeswerelookingtowardstheeast
whereRoloniawas.

Inthemiddleofthedarkness,Adletandtheotherthreemadetheirwaytowards
thehillontheirhandsandknees.Usingthelightfromthegemstoilluminatethe
ground,thegrouphadbeensearchingfortheproofthatAdlethadtalkedabout.

Therewereamultitudeoftracesleftoverfromthebattle.Therewereseveral
Kyomacorpses,thepoisondartsthatAdlethadthrown,thebulletsFremyhad
fired,Mora'sfootprints,andplaceswhereRolonia'swhiphadgrazed.Ashe
examinedallofthem,Adletsearchedhismemoryandsoughtouttheplacewhere
thereshouldbeproof.Hecarefullysearchedthearea,combingthroughthe
sparselygrowingweeds,andrunninghisfingersthroughthedriedsand.

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Theyalsohadtobemindfuloftheirfeet.Adletandtheothersweresearchingfor
somethingextremelysmall.Iftheyaccidentallykickedit,itwouldprobablygo
flyingoffsomewhere.Andiftheysteppedonit,theymightsquashit.

ThetimetheyhadagreeduponwithMoraandtheotherswascomingclose.Adlet
lookedupfromthegroundandstaredofftowardsthewest,wonderingifhis
companionsweresafe.AndifTgurneuwerestillinthebarrier.

"Meow!"

Abouttenminutesaftertheyhadstartedsearching,Hanswasalreadymakinga
lotofnoiseincomplaint.

"Bequiet.Theenemywillcomeback."

"I'vealreadyreachedthelimitsofmypatience.Ihatethiskindofmeticulous
workthemost,meow,"Hanssaidandfloppedtothegroundandsprawleddown
ontheearth.Notpayinghimanymind,Adletcontinuedtosearch.

"Adletwhathaveyouthoughtof?Whatkindofproofareyoulookingfor?"

"Explainingwouldbeawasteoftime."

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"Butyouhavethoughtofsomething;ananswertoTgurneu'smystery,right?Just
tellmethat."

Thatwasn'tthecaseatall.TheflashofanideaAdlethadgottenwasextremely
outlandish.Anduntilhesawproofofitwithhisowneyeshewouldn'tevenbe
abletobelieveithimself.

"Stopsearching.Let'shurryandheadback.I'mworriedaboutwhat'shappening
overthere."

"It'sokay,"Roloniareplied."MorasanisattheEternalFlower.Ifsomething
happenssheshouldbeabletohandleit."

"...Rolonia,whydoyoutrustMorasomuch?She'sprettysuspicioustoo."

"Sheisagreatperson.Forhertobetheenemy....isunthinkable."

Hansdidn'treplyandjustcontinuedtolieontheground,scratchinghisneck.

Moraspottedsomethingunusualwithhersecondsight.SevenKyomahad
approachedtheEternalFlowerandhadstoppedjustshortofwheretheywould
berepulsedbytheflower'sbarrier.

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"Whatdoyouwant?"

"WewereorderedbyTgurneusamatohelpyoukilloneoftheHeroesoftheSix
Flowers."TheonewhotalkedwasthehumanlikeKyomamadeofrockwhohad
beenchattingwithTgurneu.

JusthowwellhadTgurneupreparedforthis?Morawonderedasachillwent
throughherbody.

"Itlookslikewehavewastedourtimecominghere.NaturallyTgurneusamahad
anticipatedthis.HehadseenyoucarryingFremyearlier."

However,MorapointedherfistsattheKyomaandsaidinacoldvoice,"Leavethis
placeatonce.Thengotothesoutherntipofthemountainandpretendthatyou
aredead.Thereyouwillwaitformyorders."

"...Youstillhaven'tkilledthem?Why?"

"Idon'tneedtotellyou."

"Don'tyouwanttosaveyourdaughter?"

"...Ifyougoagainstmyordersevenslightly,Iwillstopmyplantokilloneofthe
Flowers.IfyourevealthatIamtheseventhIwillsurrender.Isthatnotclear?"

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TheKyomastaredatherforamoment.Moradidntknowtheextentoftheir
intelligence,butshebelievedthattheywerethinkingoverherrequestsand
wonderingwhatherintentionswere.

"Weshallfollowyourinstructions.Wenowawaityourcommand."

"Goquickly.Ordoyouwanttodiehere?"

TheKyomaimmediatelybegantomove.

Wellthen,Chamomusthaveheardthegunfireandshouldbecomingbacksoon.I
havetohurryandgetready.

Tgurneuhadindicatedthatshehadtwodaysleftuntilthedeadline.Adletandthe
otherswerepreoccupiedwithTgurneu'smystery,andChamostilldidn'tsuspect
her.Sotonightwasheronlychance.

Therewerealotofthingsshehadtodo.ShewouldmakeFremyandChamo
powerless.ThenshewouldlureAdletandtheothersandsplitthemintotwo
groups.ThensheandRoloniawouldcreateasituationwhereonlythetwoof
themandtheirintendedtargetwerepresent.Afterwhichtheywouldfightwith
thatpersonandwin.Ifshecouldn'taccomplishallofthosethingsthenherplan
wouldfail.

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MoraspottedwhereChamowaswithhersecondsight.Shehadbroughtalong
fiveJyumaandwasstraddlingagiantslugJyuma.

"Fremy!YoukilledObachan!"

ChamohadbeenheadingdirectlytowardswhereTgurneuhadbeenwhenthe
barrierwasstillup.Butwhenshegotthereandsawthatnoonewasthereshe
gotconfused.

"Obachan!Whereareyou?!Didyoudie?"

ShecommandedherJyumatosearchthearea,whilesheherselfrushedaboutthe
areaatopthegiantslugJyuma.

MeanwhileMorahadcarriedFremy'sbodyonhershouldertothecaveandwas
puttingherinside.Thenshetookoutametaltubefromherbagandsmashedit,
causingtheliquidwithintosprayoutallaroundher.Morathenkickedupsome
dirttofurtherscattertheliquidallaroundthecave.

"Obachan!Areyoureallydead?Idiot!Whydidyoudie?!"

Usinghersecondsight,MoracouldseethatChamowasstilllookingforher.

"Dimwit!Dullard!Weakling!Useless!FoolishObachan!"

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Moradidn'tknowwhetherChamowascursingatherorworriedabouther.Butin
spiteofthesituationMorasmiled.

ThatwaswhenChamorealizedsomething.Sheliftedupherskirtandlookedat
thecrestonherthigh.

"Ah,you'realive."

ItseemedthatChamohadfinallyrecalledthatwhenaHerodiedapetalwould
fadefromthecrest

AcoldsweatstartedtorundownMora'sentirebody.Shehadtomakethe
currentmostpowerfulSaintpowerless.Andiffortunewasn'tonhersidethen
Morawouldprobablybekilledinaninstant.

Morausedthepowerofmountainechoesandbellowed,"Adlet!Chamo!Come
back!It'satrap!"

"Obachan?"

MorahadusedtheechoessothatherwordswouldonlyreachChamo.Adletand
theothersfarawayonthehillwereunabletohearher.

"Where?Whereareyou?"

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"TheEternal..."Moracutherselfoffhalfway,transmittingonlythosewords.As
MorathoughtChamocommandedallofherJyumatoreturntotheEternalFlower
atonce.

Moracoveredtheshiningsingleflowerwithacloth,andthenrecitedthe
incantationtoextinguishthelightfromhergem.

"Obachan!Whathappened?!"

ChamorushedintothebarrieroftheEternalFlower.Thenseeingthattherewas
nooneintheareashemadeherwaytowardsthecave.

"Don'tcomenearhereChamo!"Morashouted.
Chamostoppedatthecaveentrance."What'sthematterObachan?Whyisit
pitchblackinthere?"

"...Don'tcomein.Don'tmakeanylight."

"Whathappened?"

Moradidn'tanswer.Shehadtostallfortime.

Chamohadn'tnoticedthatMorahaddispersedachemicalthroughoutthedark
cave.ItwasadrugMorahadorderedToulotomakeforher.

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Primarilyitwasadrugthatsuppressedpainfrominjuriesanddefendedthebody
againstinfectiousdiseases.Shehadactuallybeenabletouseitinamedicinal
capacity.AndshepreviouslyusedittotreatAdletafterhewasseverelyinjuredby
Nashetania.

ToulohadtiltedherheadinconfusionwhenMorahadorderedhertomakea
largeamountofthemedicine.Thedrugwasextremelypotent.Justdissolving
abouthalfadropofitintowaterwouldproduceasufficientlyeffectivedosage.
However,iftheoriginalliquidweresmeareddirectlyontothebodyitwasquite
capableofharmingtheperson.

Inaddition,asasecondaryeffectthedrugwoulddrainaperson'sstrengthand
causeadrunklikeintoxication.Eveniftheyjustinhaledthefumes,thedrugwas
strongenoughtomakethepersontripupontheirownfeet.

ToulohadtoldMorathatthoughitwasagoodmedication,shecouldn'tbringitto
theWailingDemonTerritory.However,inactualityMorahadstuffedthe
dangerousbasechemicalintoametallictubeandsecretlycarrieditonhand.

"...Chamocan'tmakeanylight...whatdoyoumean?"Chamoasked.

"Youcan'tcomein.Don'tdoanything."

"That'swhyChamoisasking!Whathappened?!"

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Moradidn'tdaretogiveheranyconcreteinformation.ShehadtokeepChamo
whereshewas,sothatshecouldinhalethechemicalfumesandtrigger
theintoxicationeffect.

Morahadusedthedrugonherselfmultipletimes,buildinguparesistancetothe
chemicalsothatshewouldn'tbecomeincapacitatedwhenthetimecame.And
thattimewasnow.Allofherpreparationhadbeenfortonight,thedayshewould
killoneoftheHeroesoftheSixFlowers.

"I'mholdingitback,sodon'tcomecloser."

"SorryObachan,butChamocantsitbyanddonothing,"Chamosaidandslowly
enteredintothecave.

Morawascrouchingdeepwithinthecaveandstaringoutfromthedarknessat
Chamo.

"Whatareyouholdingback?Where'sFremy?"

"Fremy...sheescaped."

ThatwaswhenChamostoppedandstaredatMora.

"HeyObachan,something'snotright."

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Chapter 51

Shenoticed,butitwasalreadytoolate.Morastoodupandviolentlychargedat
Chamo.Chamotriedtojumpbackwardstogetoutoftheway,butherlegs
trippedunderherandshefelltotheground.

TheJyumastartedtoattackMora.AtthesametimeaslugJyumaspatacidandan
amoebalikeJyumastentacleslashedoutatMoraatthesametime.Andwhile
herbodyburnedandherarmsweregrabbed,Morawrappedherhandsaround
Chamo'sthroat.

Thereweretworeasonswhyshehadwaitedinsidethecave.Thefirstwassothat
themedicinewouldbeabletotakeitsmaximumeffect.Andthesecondwasso
thatChamo'sJyumawouldnotbeabletoattackherallatonce.

MoraplacedherfingerontoChamo'scarotidarteryandpusheddownhard,but
notwithenoughenergytocrushit.ItonlytookamomentforChamotopassout.
AndwhenshelostconsciousnessherJyumadissolvedintomudandweresucked
backintohermouth.

"...ugh...Moragroaned.Evenwiththetoleranceshehadbuiltup,shewasstill
feelingtheeffectsofthechemical.However,herfighthadmerelyreachedthe
halfwaypoint.

Whatliedbeforehernowwasthecrucialmoment.KillingOneoftheSixFlowers.

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Chapter 51

Roloniastoppedsearchingthehillandliftedherhead.Thefourofthemhadbeen
lookingforcluesforalongtimeandmostlikelyherneckandeyesweretired.

"Ican'tfindit,Adkun,"Roloniasaidinatiredvoice.

Adletplacedahandonhisforeheadandthought.Tgurneumighthavealready
destroyedalltheevidence.Somaybeweshouldgiveupandreturntothecave.
Theywerealreadypastthemeetingtimetheydagreedon.

"IsitokayifIheadbackalready?"Hansaskedashescratchedhisbutt.

"Um...asarequestforme...couldyoupleasetryabitharder?"

"IfyougivemesomemoneythenI'lltryabit,meow.Callitanadvancepayment."

"Sorry,butIdon'thaveanymoney..."

AdletlookedtowardsthemountainwithTheEternalFlower.Theyhadntreceived
anycontactfromMorayet.Soeithertherewasnogoodnewstoreportorthey
wereinaterriblesituation.

AsAdletstaredoffintothedistance,GoldofreacheddowntoHans'feet.He
pickedupsomethingthathadbeenburiedthereandshowedittoAdlet.

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"...Isthisit?"

Adletlookedattheitemcoveredindirt.Thenhetookoutthechemicalthat
reactedtotracesofKyomaandsprayedtheliquidontoit.Hegulpedwhenit
turnedorange.

"Doyouknowwhatthisthingis?"Goldofasked.

"Meow,whathaveyoufound?"Hansfinallysatup.

ButAdletdidnthearwhateitherofthemhadsaid.Afeelingofelationhadbeen
wellingupfromthebottomofhisstomachandmadehisbodytremble.

"We'vegothim,"Adletsaid."We'vefinallygotTgurneu."Adletplacedtheitem
intooneofthepouchesonhiswaistandurgedHanstostandup."Let'sreturn."

Adletimmediatelybegantodashawayfromthehillandtheotherthreefollowed
afterhiminahurry.

"InowunderstandTgurneu'strueform.Allthat'sleftistothinkofawaytokill
him,"Adletsaidwithachuckle."Alright,listenup.Tgurneu'strueform..."

"Wait."

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Chapter 51

AstheyranandAdletwasbeginningtotalk,Roloniacuthimoff.

"...Back!"

Restlesswithanticipation,Adlethadn'tnoticedthenoise.ItwasMora'smountain
echoescomingfromthemountain.Andwhenhefinallylistenedtoit,hisgiddy
heartfrozeinaninstant.

"...DiscussingTgurneu'strueformwillhavetobepostponedabit,"Hanssaid,and
drewhissword.

MoragavetheunconsciousFremyandChamoanarcotictokeepthemfrom
wakingupforawhile.Thensheexitedthecave,satdownonaboulder,and
placedahandtoherthrobbinghead.Butherheadwasn'tachingoutof
exhaustionordizziness.

"...AmIreallysureaboutthis?"Sheaskedherself.

You'repathetic,sheridiculedherself.Eventhoughshehaddecidedthatshe
woulddowhateverittookforherdaughter,shewasstillhesitating.

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Chapter 51

Thefacesofhercompanionspassedinfrontofheronebyone.Theywere
unreliableandmadeherfeeluneasy.Andtherewereeventimeswhentheyhad
madeherangry.However,theywereallfineyoungpeople.Theywouldcertainly
defeattheMajinandsavetheworldforher.

Andsincethatwashowthingswouldendup,Moracoulddefinitelykilloneof
them.Asshecametothatrealizationthefacesofherfamilythatshecouldnever
seeagainfloatedbeforehereyes.

Forgetaboutthem,shetoldherself.Shenolongerdeservedtoseethemagain.
Fromthatpointforwardshewasgoingtodegenerateintoademon.No,that
wasn'tright.Shehadalreadybecomeademonalongtimeago.

Morastoodup,thenusingthepowerofmountainechoesshouted,"Adlet!The
SaltBarrierhasdisappeared!"

Shegaveherselfaslightpausebeforeshoutingonceagain,"Comeback!The
barrierhasdisappeared!"

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Chapter 52

ChapterFive:PartTwo

FourlightswereswayingbackandforthasthegroupmovedacrosstheValleyof
theBleedingLung.AdletandtheotherswererunningtowardstheEternalFlower
asfastastheycould.

Eversincetheyheardthatthesaltbarrierhaddisappeared,theyhadn'treceived
anyfurthercontactfromMora.Andwonderingastowhyshewasn'tspeakingto
themmadeAdlet'sheartraceanxiously.

Whentheygotoutofthevalleythecompletelydarkmountainappearedinthe
distance.Adletcouldseethatthesaltbarrierhadindeeddisintegrated.

"Itwasdestroyed,wasntit,meow?Whatdidshemeanitdisappeared?"Hans
asked.

Thebarrierhadn'tbeendestroyed,norwasitrippedopen;ithad
disappeared.Adletcouldn'timaginewhathadhappened.Themountainwasquiet
andtheycouldn'thearanyKyoma,northesoundsofbattle,noranythingelse.

Moraclimbedalittlewaysupthemountain,awayfromtheEternalFlower,and
staredouttowardstheeast.Shecouldfaintlyseefourlights.There'sprobably
onlytwoorthreeminutesleftuntiltheyreachthemountain.

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Chapter 52

OnceagainMorashouted,"Adlet!Areyoustillnothere?!"

Thefourlightsstoppedforamoment,thenquicklyresumed.ItwasclearMora's
mountainechoeswerereachingthem.

"Tgurneugotaway!AndtheotherKyomaleftwithhim.But...I..."Shecutoffher
sentencethere.Ifsheexplainedthesituationintoomuchofanorganizedmanner
itwouldprobablyseemunnatural."ButKyomaIhaven'tseenbefore...cameand
attackedtheEternalFlower!Shit!"

Moraonceagainpretendedtobeatalossforwords.

"Hurryandgetback!TheKyomaaretryingtobreaktheEternalFlower's
barrier!"

Aftersheshouted,Morasmashedaboulderandthenbeatherfistsagainstthe
ground.Herintentionwastomakeitsoundlikeabattlewastakingplace.The
soundlessdarkofnightwouldhavebeensuspicious.

Aftershe'dhitthegroundanumberoftimes,Moraturnedaround.Twoofthe
sevenKyomaTgurneuhadsenttoherwerestandinginwaitbehindher.Both
possessedtheintelligenceofahighclassKyoma.

"Youtwo,pretendtofightmehere.Shoutandmakeitseemlikeyou'retryingto
attackme.Gotit?"

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Chapter 52

TheKyomanodded.

"Afterfightingforaboutfiveminutes,killyourselves.Ifyoubreakyourwordthis
willallbefornothing."

Moraonceagainstrucktheground.Butshewasworriedthatshewasreallybeing
deceived.

Thefourlightsapproachedthemountain.Justabitmoreandtheywouldenter
theareawherehersecondsightcouldreach.Moraexhaleddeeplyandcalmed
herheart.

ShewouldnowapplythefinishingtouchestoherplantoseparateAdletandthe
others.

"Fremy!Wheredidyougo?Comeback!Whatareyoutryingtodo?"Mora
shouted.OfcourseFremyhadn'tgoneanywhere.Shewassleepingwithinthe
barrieroftheEternalFlower.

"Fremy!Wheredidyougo?....Adlet!Hurryandgetbackhere!Fremyhasrun
away!"

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Chapter 52

"WheredidTgurneudisappearto?"Hansmutteredastheyranupthemountain
slope.

Adlethadalsobeenthinkingthesamething.Thefactthatthebarrierhad
vanishedwasn'ttheonlythingthatwasstrange.Itwasjustasstrangethatso
manyKyomahadvanishedatthesametime.

TheycouldfaintlyhearthesoundsofKyomafightinginthedistance.However,
theywereveryfewinnumber.Whydidtheenemysuddenlydecidetomakea
movenow?Adletwondered.Inthemerethirtyminutessincetheyhadstarted
runningfromthehilltowardsthemountain,thesituationonthemountainhad
unnaturallybecomehectic.

Unnatural.ThatwordflewacrossAdlet'smind.Coulditbethatitwasallalie?No,
thisisn'tthetimetothinklikethat.Whetheritwasalieornotdidn'tchangethe
factthattheyhadtoreturntothemountainasquicklyaspossible.

"Fremy!Whereareyougoing?"Morashouted.

Somethinghadhappenedagain.Butthistimehewantedtoaskherback:Whyare
youcallingtoFremywiththepowerofmountainechoes?

"Adlet!Hurryandcomeback!Fremyhasrunaway!"

Whenheheardthat,Adletunconsciouslycametoastop.

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Chapter 52

"...Wha..."

Fremyhadrunaway.AtfirstAdletdidn'tevenknowwhatthosewordsmeant.

"Adkun,wecan'tstop.Wehavetohurry."RoloniapulledonAdlet'shand,but
Adletdidn'tmove.HansandGoldof,seeingasitcouldn'tbehelped,alsostopped.

"FremyisheadedsouthwestinthedirectionthatTgurneuescaped!Idon'tknow
why!"

"Meow.Whatisshedoing?"Hansaskedinacarefreetone.

Goldofdidn'tsayaword.Heseemedtobethinkingaboutsomethingbutatthe
sametimenotthinkingaboutanythingatall.

"Hans!Goldof!HeadsouthwestandgoafterFremy!AdletandRolonia,youtwo
hurryhereforsupport!"Mora'smountainechoescutoff.

"Fremysan...itcan'tbe..."RoloniamutteredasshelookedtowardstheEternal
Flower.

"Meow...soshewastheseventhafterall?Idon'treallyfeelgoodaboutthat
answer,meow."

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Chapter 52

"Thatcan'tbeit,"AdletrepliedtoHans.Fremyprobablyhadsomesortofplanin
mind.Andifnot,thenmaybeshewasbeingusedbyTgurneu.

"Hans,Goldof,canIleaveFremytoyou?"

Goldofnodded,butHansshookhishead.

"Fremyhatesme,soIthinkitwouldbebetterifyouwent."

Adletfeltliketherewassomeothermeaninghiddenbehindhiswords.However,
beforehecouldaskaboutit,HanspulledonRolonia'shandandbegantorun.

"Meow,meow.Roloniahurryup!"

"Wa,waitasecond!"

BeforetheyknewitHansandRoloniaweregone.

"...Let'sgo,Adlet,"Goldofsaid,bringingAdletbacktohissenses.Theythen
startedtodashtowardsthesouthwestasMorahadinstructed.

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Chapter 52

Thefourlightshadsplitintotwogroups.Onegroupwasheadingsouthwestand
theotherwasrushingtowardstheEternalFlower.

I'vegottenpastthehardestpart,Morathought.SplittingAdletandtheothers
intogroupsoftwohadbeenthemostdifficulttaskshehadtoface.Herentire
planwouldhavefailedhadtheydecidedtopressonasagroupoffour,orifthey
hadsplitintoagroupofthreewithonlyoneofthemgoingoffintheother
direction.

"Kyoma,AdletandGoldofareheadingdirectlyforyourlocation,"Morasaidwith
hermountainechoestotheremainingKyomathatTgurneuhadsenther.She
thenissuedcommandstothem."Continuetoholdthemforaslongasyoulive.
Andafterthat,die."

TheKyomastoodtotheirfeet;AdletandGoldofwererushingtheirway
completelyunawareofthem.

"...Let'sgo."OnceagainMorastartedtomove.Shedescendedthemountainand
madeherwaytowardsRolonia'slocationasfastasshecould.

HeronlymiscalculationwasthatRoloniawouldbewithHans.

OriginallyMorahadplannedtokillAdlet.HewasweakerthanMoraandifthey
weretofightoneononesheshouldbeabletosufficientlydefeathim.PlusAdlet
wasoverlyoptimisticandnaive.Ifsheweretocatchhimoffguardshewould
probablybeabletokillhimwithoutmucheffort.

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Chapter 52

EvenifheropponentwereGoldoftherewasapossibilityofsuccess.Hewouldbe
afoestrongerthanAdlet,yettherewasachance.

ButHanswasaconsiderableopponent.Hewaswaryoflettinghisguarddown
andmostlikelyasurpriseattackwouldnotworkonhim.Andontopofthateven
hissimplefightingprowesswaswithoutadoubtsuperiortoMora's.

ButstrangelyMorawasn'tscared.Sinceshehadthrownawayeverythingthere
wasnothingleftforhertobeafraidof.EithershewouldsaveShenieraanddieor
shewouldfailtosaveherandshewoulddie.Thosewereheronlyoptions.

Sheballedherhandsintofistsanddasheddownthemountainslope.Shealready
nolongerneededtousehersecondsighttoseethetwolights.Ineedtowinthe
instantwemeet,Morathought.KillingHansbeforehecoulddrawhisswordswas
heronlyhope.

"Morasan?"Roloniacalledtoher.

AtthatverymomentMorarushedatHanswithherhandsballedintofists.
However,beforeshecouldhithimHansthrewthelightjewelatMoraandthe
stoneemittedapowerfulflashoflight,burningMora'seyes.

"Ugh!"

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Chapter 52

Havinggottenaccustomedtothedarkness,theintenselightwasdisorienting.
Moracoveredhereyeswithherhandsandfellbackastep.

"Hanssan!Whatareyoudoing?!"

AsRoloniashouted,Morarolledacrossthegroundtotheside.Sheheardpartsof
herhairbeingslicedoffandsheimmediatelyknewthatdeathhadpassedwithin
severalcentimetersofher.

"Meowhihi,youscrewedup,meow."

Morabarelymanagedtoopenhereyeshalfway,butshecouldmakeoutthat
Hanswastwirlinghisswordsroundandround.

"Hanssan!Whatintheworldareyoudoing?!AndMoraSan,arethoseinjuries..."

Roloniagrabbedherwhipandreadiedit.SeeingMoracoveredinbloodrobbed
herofhervoice.Shecouldn'tunderstandwhatwasgoingon,andthesuddenness
ofthesituationmadeherlegstremble.Hereyesweredartingbackandforth
betweenMoraandHans.

"IfIhadbeenAdletIwouldhavejustbeendeceived,meow.Heisarealsoftyand
hewouldhavebeenintroublehadyoutakenadvantageofthatfact."

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Chapter 52

Puttingupwiththepain,Moraassumedafightingstance.

"Hans,Ifinallysucceededindrawingyouout.Andsinceyourtrueidentityhad
alreadybeenbroughttolight,itwouldbeagoodideaforyoutogiveup.

MorawastryingtotrickRolonia.IfshecoulddrawRoloniaovertohersidethen
theywouldbeabletotakeHansontwotoone.

"Meomeow?Youcanlieoffthecuffquitewell.Ihadthoughtthatyouwerea
naivewomanwhohadbeenbroughtupcomfortably,withoutknowinganything
abouttheworld.Butyouimprovisewell,meow."

Hanswasnotworriedatall.

"Whatdoyoumean?!What'shappening?!"Roloniaasked,lookinglikeshewas
abouttoburstintotears.

"Moraistheseventh.Sheintendedtokillme."

"Hansistheseventh!Hehadplannedonkillingyou,Rolonia!"

BothHansandMorahadshoutedtheiraccusationsatthesametime.Even
thoughRoloniacomparedtheirexpressions,shecouldn'tmove.

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Chapter 52

Maybeevensomeonelikeherwasabletograsphowstrangethesituationwas.
MaybeshewasevenawarethatMorawaslying.

ButRoloniaonlymetHansthismorning,whereasshehadspenttwoandahalf
yearstogetherwithMora.EvenifshethoughtthatMorawassuspicious,she
couldn'tfighther.

"Rolonia,youcanwatchfromoverthere.ButifyouinterfereIwillbeatyouto
death,meow."

HansslowlymovedtowardsMora,hisadvancefullofpointlessmovementsand
flourishes.

RoloniatookastepbackwardsandatthatmomentMorafigureditwouldbe
impossibletogethertofightalongsideher.

"Rolonia,don'tgetinvolved,"MorasaidasshelookedintoRolonia'seyes.
"Believeinme."

Thenextinstant,fasterthantheeyescouldfollow,HansjumpedatMora.He
slashedatherfeet,whichshemanagedtoblockwiththemetalplateinhershoes.
Butjustthatsingleattacknumbedherentirethigh.

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Chapter 52

"Umeomeomeomeomeomeow!"HansslashedagainandagainatMora.Hewas
likeacatchasingafterapieceofflitteringfoxtailgrass.Andthenhesmiledlikea
frolickingcat.

"Didyouhearthat,Goldof?"

Adletturnedaroundandlookedbehindhimastheyran.Inthedistancehecould
faintlyhearwhatsoundedlikeaheatedargument.Humanvoicesechoedloudly
acrossthesilentmountain.

Goldofwasalsolookingbackinthesamedirection.Hetoohadnoticedsomething
strange.ForawhileneitheroneofthemhadheardMora'smountainechoes.And
althoughthetwoofthemhadcalledtoFremymultipletimestherehadn'tbeena
singlereply.Also,TgurneuorhisKyomawerenowhereinsight.

Duringtheirdash,thetwoofthemcameacrossthecorpseofaleopardKyoma.It
lookedlikeFremyhadshotabulletthroughitshead.ButwhenAdlettouchedthe
Kyomahenoticedithadgrowncold.

"Thisisstrangeafterall.WhatMoraissayingdoesntmakeanysense."

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Chapter 52

AndwiththatstatementAdletdecidedtocaptureMoraandquestionherinmore
detailaboutthesituation.Therewasapossibilitythatwhatshe'dsaidabout
Fremyrunningawayhadbeenalie.

"AreFremyandChamoalright?"

Adletcheckedthecrestonthebackofhisrighthand.Allsixofthepetalswerestill
there,whichmeantthetwoofthemwerewithoutadoubtstillalive.

"They'rehere."

GoldofdrewhisspearandwithinnotimefiveKyomahadsurroundedthem.Adlet
placedhisbacktoGoldof'sandreadiedhisswordandhispoisondarts.

ButtheKyomadidn'tcomeandattack.Theyjustslowlypressedforward.Adlet
threwapoisondartthemomenthesawanopening,hittingagiantapeKyoma.
ThenwhenitstaggeredtothesideAdletrushedoverandcutittopieces.But
thenastonehumanoidKyomalungedathimfromthesidewithitsfists.

AfterexchangingthreeblowswiththestoneKyomaitwithdrew,placingdistance
betweenthem.AndwhentheKyomadidn'tmovetoattackagainAdletrealized
thattheirgoalwastokeepthemoccupied.AndtheneverythingaboutMora's
objectivebecamecleartohim.ShehadcooperatedwiththeKyomaand
instructedtheSixFlowerssothatshecouldsplitthemup.

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Chapter 52

WithinthedarknessabeastwasrushingtowardsMorasoundlessly.Sinceshe
wasn'tholdinganylight,Moracouldn'treallyseethebeast.Andthelightthat
Roloniawasholdingonlybarelyilluminatedit.

"Umeow!"Hansshouted.

Withhisbodybentsolowthathewaspracticallygrazingtheground,Hansran
towardsMorawithfrighteningspeed.Hethenthrusthistwoswordsforward,
tryingtoslipthembetweenMora'sfeet.

Shecouldn'tblocktheattack,soshejumpedawayanddodgedtheblades.Hans
thenstabbedoneoftheswordsintotheground,bringinghisbodytoahaltand
thrusttheotherswordintotheairtowardsMora.Hans'bodywasamazingly
flexible;itallowedhimtolaunchanunbelievableattackfromanunbelievable
posture.

"Guu!"

Moracrossedherarmsintheair,blockingtheblowwithhergauntlets.Despite
beingawomanMorawasquitebulky.Andontopofthatshewaswearingiron
gauntletsandarmor.However,Hans'thruststilleasilysentherflyingbackwards.

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Chapter 52

Hansdashedlikeacatandmercilesslyattackedwithafollowupstrike.Intheair
Morausedhertwoarmoredfiststodesperatelyknockasidethestrikes.Theforce
andsoundfromtheimpactmadeHansstaggerslightly.Andwithoutthinking
Roloniawhohadbeenwatchingfromthesidecoveredherears.ItmadeHans'
nextfollowupattackjustalittlebitslower.

"Meowha!"

Landingonherfeet,MoraturnedherbacktoHansandranaway.Shehadtoput
somedistancebetweenthembeforeshecouldreassumeherfighting
stance.MorawasonthedefensiveandHans'ferociousattacksdidn'tgiveherany
freedomtostrikeback.

Morahadneverthoughtthattherewasthismuchofadifferencebetweenthe
twoofthem.Thoughimperfect,shewasaSaint.Shewasapersonwhofought
withpowerborrowedfromthegods.Herphysicalstrengthandhermovement
capabilitieswerefarremovedfromanycommonhuman.

AndHanswasnothingmorethanamerefleshandbloodhuman.

"Iwon'tletyougetaway!"

Morawassomehowblockinghisbarrageofattackswithhergauntlets.ButHans
wasn'tallowingherthechancetoputanydistancebetweenthem.

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Chapter 52

"Umeow!"

"...A,u....wha...whatshouldI..."

AsHansandMorahecticallyraneastandwest,Roloniafollowedafterthem.

Moracouldn'tusethedrugshe'dusedtotakeoutFremyandChamo,seeingthat
ifsheusedithereRoloniawouldalsobeaffected.Untilthebattlewasover
Roloniahadtoremainsafe.

AssheblockedoneofHans'swords,Moralungedoutwithakickindesperation.
Hansblockeditwithhisswordthenmadeagiantleapbackwards.Andtheinstant
therewasabitofdistancebetweenthetwoofthemRoloniarushedbetween
themwithherwhipready.

"Morasan,Hanssan!Pleasewaitaminute!"

"Meow.Didn'tyouhearmetellyoutostayback,meow?"

Characteristicofacat,Hans'smilewasquitecreepy.Itwasasifheweresayinghe
wouldcutRoloniatopieces.

"Let'stalktoeachother.WaitforAdkuntoreturnandthenlet'stalkafterthat."

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That'sdefinitelylikeRolonia,Morathought.Yetthoughshefeltsorryforthegirl,
therewasnowaythatMoracoulddothat.Therewasnootherwaytosaveher
daughterbesideskillingHans.

"Meow.Youreawfullyquiet,meow.Ifyouwerelikeyouwerethisafternoonyou
wouldbecomingatmeshoutingnonsense."Hanssaid.

"Uh,ummm..."

MoraknewthatRolonia'sscreamingwasjustaroutineshedidtobuildupherwill
tofight.Shewasprimarilystillatimidandcowardlygirl.Withoutdoingthat
radicalritualshewouldn'tbeabletofight.

"Meow,noneofthatmattersanyway.I'vejuststartedtohavefun.Donotgetin
theway."

"You'rehavingfun..."

"It'smynaturetowanttokillstrongopponentswhenIseethem,meow.Having
intimatefriendsisn'tbad,butwhatIlikemostiskillingothers."

Roloniatookasinglestepback.Hanswasfrighteningher.

"...Getoutofhere,Rolonia.Thisguyisamonster."

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Morareadiedherfists,butRoloniadidn'tsayanything.Whatwasinhereyes
wasn'ttrust,butafeelingofdoubt.

"ComeatmeHans!"

"Meowhahaha,evenifyoutoldmenottoitwouldn'tstopme."

Hansleapedhighintotheair.Morathendroppeddownandclaspedherhands
togethertoprotectherface.Andwithherbodysmalltotheground,she
desperatelytriedtosurviveHans'attackthatwasbarrelingdownather.

ThefiveKyomahadallbeenstrongopponents.AdletkilledoneandGoldoftook
outtheotherfour,whichincludedthestonehumanlikeKyoma.Thenafter
confirmingthatthey'dallstoppedmoving,Goldofspoke.

"So,whatshouldwedoAdlet?"

Theycouldfaintlyhearthesoundofmetalclashingfromtheeasternmountain.It
wasnotwhatfightingwithaKyomasoundedlike.MoraandHanswerefighting
oneanother,whichmadeitalltooclearthatMorahaddeceivedthem.

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ShouldwegoandhelpHansandRolonia?Adletwonderedbutthenimmediately
reconsidered.

"They'realrightoverthere.SomeonelikeHanswilldefinitelybeabletoholdout.
Hansisconsiderablypowerful,thoughofcoursethereisafinelinebetweenhim
andtheworld'sstrongestman."

"Sothenwhat?"

Reluctanttowastetimetryingtoanswer,Adletstartedtorun.

RightnowhisconcernswereforFremyandChamo.Adletcheckedthecrestonhis
handandconfirmedthatallthepetalswerestillthere.Forthemomentallofthe
Heroeswerestillalive.

AheadoftheminthedistancewastheEternalFlower.Adletdidn'tknowwhat
hadhappenedthere,butperhapstherewassomekindofcluethere.

"...Moraistheseventh.Butwhyisshemakingamovenow?"

AsheranAdletturnedoverMora'swordsandherbehaviorinhishead.She
definitelylookedsuspiciousonthesurface,butifshetrulywastheenemythenhe
wasbaffledbyhowshehadactedupuntilnow.

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SoontheymanagedtoreachtheEternalFlower.Whenhesetfootinthecavehe
immediatelyfoundFremyandChamo'sbodies.

"Areyoualright?!"

HehelpedFremysitupandshegroanedslightly,openinguphereyeshalfway.It
seemedlikeshehadjustbeenputtosleep.

"There'snoneedtoworry,"shewhispered."I'mfine."

Shethenstoodtoherfeetandpickedupherrifle.

"Whathappened?"

"IwastrickedbyMora,lostconsciousness,andjustcametonow.Otherthanthat
Ihaveabsolutelynoidea.Idon'tknowwhysheattackedmeorwhyshedidn'tkill
me."

"...Chamo'salrighttoo,"GoldofsaidashecheckedontheyoungFlower.Shewas
justsleepinganditdidn'tseemlikeshehadsustainedanymajorinjuries.

"Goldof,we'lltreatherlater!WehavetogocaptureMora!"

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Chapter 52

AdletandFremythenranoutthecave,andGoldoffollowedbehindthemwith
Chamoinhisarms.

Afterfightingforjustthreeminutes,anunpleasantthoughtforceditswayinto
Mora'shead.There'snowayIcanwin.

MorahadacquiredvariousskillsbeforebeingchosenasaHerooftheSixFlowers.
AndshehadalsodevelopedmanynewweaponswithotherSaints.However,
Morahadneveranticipatedanopponentthatcouldmoveasfastandasbizarrely
asHans.

Mora'sbodyhadbeencuttoshreds.Bloodwasgushingoutoftheseveredartery
inherupperarmandshehadbrokenribsfromallthekicksshedtakentoher
sides.Alotofbloodwasspillingoutfromthearteryinherupperarm.Bothofher
legshaddeepgashesandshedoubtedifshecouldevenrunanymore.Pluswith
allthebloodshewaslosingfromherhead,hereyesweregrowinghazyanditwas
becomingdifficulttoevencatchaglimpseofHans.

"Morasan,pleasestopthisfight.Youhavenochanceagainsthim,"Roloniasaid.

Hansthenstoppedtryingtodrawcloser."Meowhi.You'restillonherside?"

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WedontknowifMorasanistheseventhorifmaybeyourewrongandtheres
beensomekindofmisunderstanding.Sopleasestopthisalready."

"Nocando.Sheisgoingtodiehere,meow."

"...Hanssan."

Mora'shazyeyesstaredatRolonia.Thenwithavoiceexpressingherintenttokill
sheshouted,"Getoutofhere!Thisfightisn'toveryet!"

"Sothat'showit'sgoingtobe.Let'sgo,meow,"Hanssaidandthenstartedtorun.

Moraliftedbothofhergauntletstocoverherface.Shekeptherelbowspressed
tohersides.Thenshebentherkneesandscruncheddownintoaball.Thenfrom
thatawfullycontortedpositionMoraleapedbackwards.Shewastryingtoprotect
herbody,likeaturtle.

"Youwon'tescape!"

EachoneofHans'successiveattacksattemptedtoslipthroughtheopeningsin
Mora'sdefenses.Butwithaslittlemovementaspossible,Moracontinuedtohold
out,solongasshedidn'treceiveafatalwound.

"Ku!"Moraspatasshejumpedback,intensepainrunningthroughherbody.

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ShewasdesperatelycontinuingtomovearoundsothatHanswouldn'tendup
circlingbehindher.However,herentirebodywasalreadycoveredininjuriesand
shehadalmostnoenergylefttofightback.

OnthesidelinesRoloniasimplystoodstillandwatchedtheirfight,unabletodo
anything.

Hanswascareful.Hewasn'timpatientandhewasn'trushing.Hewassimply
waitingforMora'sstrengthtorunout.HanscouldtellwhatMorawastryingto
do.Shewaswaitingforthemomentwhenagapopenedupinhisoffensive,
whichwaswhenshewouldlaunchherattack.ThatwastheonlywayMoracould
possiblywin.

"Umeow.Don'tyouthinkit'sabouttimeyousurrendered,meow?"Hanstwirled
hisblades."WellI'msorry,butit'stoolate.Ican'thelpbuthavesomefun.Ineed
toendthisbykillingyou."

Hansthenrecommencedhisattack.Moraprotectedherbodylikeaturtle,just
holdingoutfornow.

UnlikeHans,Morawasinahurry.AdletandGoldofwouldarrivebeforelongand
theywereprobablyalreadyawarethatshehaddeceivedthem.Morawouldbe
captured,andthenkilled.

Butifsheattackedshewouldlose.Hansdidn'tmissanyopeningsinher
movements,sotheonlythingshecoulddotosurvivewascontinuetodefend.

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Chapter 52

Moracouldn'tgiveup.ShehadtosaveSheniera.Havinglosteverything,that
singledesirewastheonlythingMorahadleft.Ifsheweretogiveuponeventhat
thenMorawouldbecomenothing.

"YouSaintsaretough,meow.I'mgoingtolosemyselfconfidenceifyouwon'tdie
soon,meow!"

Hans'attacksintensifiedandMorawassurethatnowhewastryingtofinish
things.

Oneofhisswordsgrazedherhead,takingoffaportionofherscalpandherhair.
Followingthatattackhecutherlegsandshecrumbled,droppingtoherknees.
ThenHanscircledbehindher.

Moraclosedhereyesandusedhersecondsighttolookovertheentirearea.She
couldntmissthemomentwhenHanscameatherfrombehind.

"Umeomeow!"

Hansaimedforthecenterofherback,slightlybelowherribswhereherkidney
waslocated.Whenassassinswantedtobesurewhenkillingsomeonefrom
behind,theywouldabsolutelyaimforthekidneys.

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ImmediatelyafterthetipofHans'swordstabbedintoherback,Moratwistedher
bodyslightly.Thebladestrayedslightlyfromherkidney.Andmusteringallthe
strengthshehadleft,Moraputallofherenergyintoherback.

"Uaaaaa!"SheshoutedandthrewherbodybackwardsintoHans'sword.

Hisswordstabbedthroughherbackandslicedherheartopen,sendingacoldchill
throughherbody.Butputtingallofherstrengthintoherbackmuscles,shetried
tostophisblade.

Atthesametimesheextendedherlegswithallhermightandpushedback
againstthebladestabbingintoher.Inotherwords,shewasusingallofher
energytothrowherbodyontotheblade.Ifshehadordinaryhumanfleshthen
thebladewouldhaveskeweredherandshewouldsimplydie.

"Meowga!"

Behindhershecouldhearawhippingsound.WhenMorausedhersecondsight
tocheckbehindhersherealizedthatitwasthesoundofHans'wristbeingcut
open.

ThenHans'bladecametoastopinMora'smuscles.

Hans'swordslippedoutfromhislefthandandatthesametimeMorawhipped
aroundandthrewakickathisface.

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Chapter 52

Hansbentbackwardsandherfootjustskimmedhischin.ThenextinstantHans'
bodystartedtoshakeviolently.Morahadkickedhimwithallherstrength,so
withjustameregrazeithadtakenawayhisbalance.

InaninstantMoraremovedhergauntletsandchasedafterHansashetumbled
fromtheblow.Shethengrabbedontotheedgeofhishempclothesandpulled
himtowardsherwitheverythingshehad.

"Morasan!"Roloniashouted.

MorastruckHans'chestwithherpalmandcouldhearhisribsbreak.Hansthen
crashedtotheground.ShehadhittheleftsideofHans'chest.Ifthatareawashit
withenoughforceitcouldtemporarilystoptheheartandmakethevictimlose
consciousness.Nomatterhowmuchonetrainedtheirbody,theycouldnot
defendagainstthatattack.

MorathenpulledouttheswordstuckinherbackandhungitoverHans'body.
ThenshelaidthebladetoHans'carotidarteryandpresseditintohisskin.

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ChapterFive:PartThree

"Hans!Rolonia!Whereareyou?!"

Adletwasrunningacrossthemountainthroughoutthenight.Followingbehind
himwereFremy,Goldof,andChamo,whohadregainedconsciousness.

Foralongtimetheyhadheardthesoundofmetalclashingagainstmetal,butthe
soundseventuallyfaded.Forwhateverreason,Hanshadstoppedfighting.

Runningacrossthemountain,Adletswungaroundthelightjewelashesearched
forHans.

"Adlet!Lookatyourhand!"Fremyshouted.

AdletdidsoandsawthatoneofthepetalshaddisappearedfromtheSixFlower
crestonthebackofhishand.Thesightcausedhimtofeelafearthatdrainedthe
energyfromhislegs.Thedisappearanceofoneofthepetalsmeantthatoneof
theHeroesoftheSixFlowershadlosttheirlife.

Whohaddied?WasitHans,Rolonia,orhaditbeenMora?

"Hans!Rolonia!Areyoustillalive?!"Adletshouted,muchlouderthanbefore.

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Chapter 53

Shehadonlywonbyahair.IfMoramessedupandinsteadHanshadsucceeded
indestroyinghervitalorgans,Morawouldhavebeentheonetofall.Iftheycould
havebattledtentimes,Hanswouldprobablywinnineofthem.Andthatwouldbe
duetothedifferencesintheirskill.

Thebattlewasfinallyover,andbloodwasgushingoutfromHans'neck.However,
thebleedingstartedtolessen,andthenitstopped.

MoraplacedherhandontoHans'chest,butshecouldn'tfeelhisheartbeat.

"...A....aahh...."

Morastoodtoherfeet.Herstabbedorgansscreamedinpainasbloodsputtered
outfromhermouth.Meanwhile,RoloniadrewclosetoHans'sideandplaceda
shakinghandonhisnecktofeelhispulse.

"Youknowwhatyoushoulddo,Rolonia,"Morasaid."It'salrightRolonia.DoasI
taughtyou."Morathenstaggeredawayfromthetwoofthem.Shehadintended
toleave,butherlegstangledupbeneathherandshefelltotheground.Adlet's
shoutswerealsoonlyashortdistanceawayandwasgettingnearer.

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"It'salrightRolonia!DoasItaughtyou!"Morasaid,standingbackup.Thenext
instant,Adletappearedafterrushingupthecliff.Withherbackturnedawayfrom
Adletshequietlysaid,"...You'retoolate,Adlet."

Andthatwastheend.AllofMora'sfighthadcometoacloseandtheparasitein
Sheniera'schestshouldhavebeenremoved.Tgurneuwouldnotbreakhis
promise.Hehadnoreasontodoso.

MoradeclaredthatshehadbeentheonewhokilledHans.Thenshetoldthem
shewastheseventh.

Asshespoke,MoracontinuedtostareunflinchinglyatRoloniawhowastreating
Hans.Roloniaseemedoblivioustohersurroundingsasshedesperatelyusedher
healingtechniques.

"How'sitgoing,Rolonia?"Adletasked.

ThenrightafterFremyfollowedupwithherownquestion."Rolonia,youshould
havebeenwithHans.Whatintheworldhaveyoubeendoing?"

However,Roloniadidnotreply.

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That'sgood,Morathought.MoraandtheSaintofMedicine,Toulo,haddrilled
intoRoloniaagainandagainthatwhensheusedherhealingtechniquesshe
shouldconcentrateonthatandnothingelse.

ChamowalkeduptothekneelingMoraandthenstartedtohitherwithhersmall
fists.Shewasscreamingasshepunchedandhereyesglistenedwithtears.Mora
didntexpectChamotobesoupsetaboutHans.

I'mprobablygoingtobekilled,Morathought.Everythinginfrontofherfeltsofar
away.Shewonderedifthiswerethekindoffeelingoneexperiencedbeforedying.

"Ididnthopeforthistohappen.Ididntwanttokillhim.IdidntwanttokillHans
oranyone,"Morasaid.Sheintendedittobeherfinaltestament.

"Whatareyoutalkingabout?"

"Icouldn'tthinkofanythingelsetodo.AllotherpathsbesideskillingHanshad
beenclosedoff."

AsingletearfellfromMora'seye.

"Iwantedtoprotecttheworld.IwantedtodefeattheKyomaalongsideallofyou
andpreventTheMajin'srevival."

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Chapter 53

"Chamodoesn'tbelieveyou."

"Andonlyuntilyesterday,no,onlyuntilanhourago,Ihadintendedtodojust
that."

ThemomentMorasaidthatChamograbbedMora'slapelandshouted,"Stop
lying!"

Moradidn'tturntolookatChamo'sglare.Hereyesweretrainedsolelyon
Rolonia,whowastryingtotreatHans.

"...Rolonia,youcan'tjustcirculatethebloodinhisbody.Itwillsoonget
corrupted.Youhavetoreturnthebloodthatspilledoutofhim."

"Whateveryou'retalkingabout,sayittoChamo,Obachan!"

ChamohitMora'sface,butMora'seyesdidn'twaverfromRolonia.

"WhatareyoudoingRolonia?Hedoesn'thaveenoughblood.Don'tyougetthat?
I'msureItaughtyouthat!"

Hearinghershout,Roloniafinallyresponded."Ri...right.Theblood...Hanssan's
blood..."

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Chapter 53

Roloniaplacedoneofherhandsonthegroundandconcentrated.

"Iknowit'sdifficulttousetwotechniquesatthesametime.Butafterhowfar
you'vecome,youshouldbeabletodoitnow."

Withherhandtouchingthebloodsoakedground,Roloniatookseveraldeep
breaths.

"WhatareyoudoingRolonia?FaceChamo!TherearethingsChamowantstoask
youtoo!"Chamosaid.

"It'snouseRolonia,"Fremysaidfromherpositionattheside."Hishearthas
stoppedandmostofhisbloodhasspilledout."

"...Hiswrist....it'simpossible,"Roloniamuttered.Butsinceshewasfocusingallof
herconcentrationonhertechnique,itwaslikeRoloniawasbabbling
incoherently.

"Wrist?Whatareyoutalkingabout?"

"Hisseveredwrist...hisbrokenribs....Ican'thealthem."

"Whatdoyoumean?"

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Staringattheground,Roloniashouted,"Butsomeoneelsecould!"

"Healhim?That'snotpossible!"Fremyshoutedback.

"You'rewrong!Healinghimisn'timpossible!Theonlythingsthathappenedwere
hisheartstoppingandhimlosingmostofhisblood!

Assheshouted,Rolonia'shandglowedandthebloodthatsoakedthegroundwas
pulledbackupfromtheearth.Thenthebloodcoiledaboutitselfandformedinto
aballinRolonia'shand.

"Don'treturnittohisbodylikethat!Youhavetogetridoftheimpurities!"

"Right!"

Theballoftaintedbloodturnedaboutinherhand,andasittwirled,thesandand
mudmixedwithinwasexpelled.

"Hanssan!Pleasecomebacktolife!"Roloniashouted.

Shethenpressedherlefthandtothewoundinhisneckandtheballofbloodwas
suckedintohisbody.ThenHans'palebodystartedtoturnslightlyred.

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Chapter 53

TheentiretimeRoloniahadbeenatHanssideshewasforcingthesmallamounts
ofbloodleftinhisbodytocirculatebetweenhislungsandbrain.Andshe
continuedtodothatevenwhenshewasmanipulatingthemakeupoftheblood
thathadspilledontheground.Eventhoughhishearthadstopped,herefforts
kepthisbrainfromdying.

RoloniahadassistedtheSaintofMedicine,Toulo,severaltimeswithher
surgeries.Fromthatexperienceshehadlearnedandperfectedthetechniqueof
gatheringbloodthathadspilledoutandreturningittothebody.Morahadeven
volunteeredherselfasatestsubjectandhadRoloniapracticethetechniqueon
her.

"Nowallthatsleftis...Ihavetostarthisheart...."

WithherlefthandstillpressedtothewoundonHans'neck,Roloniaplacedher
righthandonhisheart.Thenshestartedtousethebloodinhisbodytotryand
movethemotionlessorgan.Moraoncehadaskedanoldperson,declaredtoonly
haveafewdayslefttolive,toserveasatestsubjectforRoloniatopracticethis
skilljustbeforehedied.

"There'snoway....canhecomebacktolife?"

TheinstantHans'hearthadstoppedtheGodofWordsshouldhavecommanded
Tgurneutohavetheparasitekilled.Thegodsunderstoodthatoneofthepetals
onthecresthadfadedandtheywouldhavedeclaredthatHanshaddied.Soashe
promised,TgurneuhadmostlikelyalreadyfreedSheniera.

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MorahadcertainlypromisedTgurneuthatshewouldkilloneoftheHeroesofthe
SixFlowers.However,shedidntpromisethatshewouldntbringthembackto
life.

ThefirsttimeMorahadlaideyesonRoloniashehadbeensure.Shehadknown
rightthenthatthegirlpossessedararetalentthatwouldallowhertoevenbe
abletolearntheskillofbringingthedeadbacktolife.

However,whatmadetheissuemoredifficultwasthatinordertobringHansback
tolifelateron,theywouldhavetokillhimfirst.Roloniaonlyhadtheabilityto
manipulateblood,soifHans'neckorskullwerebrokenorifhishearthad
sustainedagrievousinjury,thenitwouldbeimpossibletoresurrecthim.

"Rolonia.IsthereanythingIcanhelpyouwith?"Adletasked,nowunderstanding
whatRoloniawastryingtodo.HemovedovertoherandsatdownatHans'side.

"Hisbreathing...Ihavetogethimtobreathe...."

"Leaveittome.IhavemedicalknowledgesoI'llgivehimmouthtomouth
resuscitation,"AdletsaidthenleaneddownandblewairintoHansmouth.

AdletblewairintoHans'mouth.AndasRoloniacausedthebloodtocirculate
throughoutHansbody,thebleedingfromhisseveredarteryfinallystopped.

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"Noway...youbroughthimbacktolife?"Chamoasked.ItwasnaturalthatChamo
couldn'tbelievewhatwashappening.Mostlikely,RoloniawouldbethefirstSaint
inallofhistorytosucceedinbringingthedeadbacktolife.

EvenToulohadbeenunabletoachievethatfeat.

"...Bwahh!"Hansspatoutbloodfromhismouth.Hepressedhishandstohis
chestandcoughedviolentlyoverandover.AdletwipedthebloodfromHans'lips
andRoloniarubbedhisback.

"Meo.......Meo.....umeow...."

Whenhiscoughingstopped,Hanspressedhishandtohisneckandscreamedin
whatlookedlikepanic.Hejustdiedearliersoitwasunderstandable.

"...Adlet.Canyoushowmeyourcrest?"Moraasked.

FirstAdletcheckedhiscrestforhimself,andthenheturnedhishandsothatMora
couldsee.Thecrestonceagainhadsixpetals.

Hadtheysucceededatlast?Morawonderedwithasenseofrelief.Herstruggle
hadbeenlikealongwalkacrossatightrope.

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Chapter 53

Shecouldn'thavekilledFremyorChamo.FremywashalfKyomaandherbody
wasmostlikelystructureddifferentlythanthatofanormalhuman.Therewasa
highchancethattheywouldnothavebeenabletosuccessfullyreviveher.

Anditwouldtakeamassivetollonthebodyforapersontodieoncethencome
backtolife.Chamo'ssmallbodyprobablywouldn'thavebeenabletohandleit.
ThepersonshehadtokillneededtobeAdlet,Hans,orGoldof.

"Mora,haveyouintendedtodothisallalong?"Adletasked."Youneededtokill
Hans,butatthesametimeyoucouldn'tletHansdie,right?"

Moranodded.

"Whatintheworldhappenedtoyou?"

Moratoldthemthatherstorywouldtakeaslightlylongtime,sotheseven
headedbacktotheEternalFlower.AdletlentHanshisshouldertohelphimwalk
andGoldofwasrestrainingMora.

"Chamodoesn'tunderstand,"Chamomutteredasshewalkedatthetailofthe
group.Adletfeltthesameway.

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Chapter 53

WhentheyreachedtheEternalFlower,thefirstthingtheydidwasseetoHans'
injuries.AdletsewedupHans'severedwristandbracedhisbrokenribs.Atthe
sametimeRoloniaacceleratedHans'bloodcirculationtopreventanypotential
adverseeffects.

AdlethadtoldFremytohandleMora'streatment.Withacomplicatedexpression,
shestitchedupMora'sinjuriesandappliedsomemedicine.

"AreyoualrightHans?"Adletasked.

Hansmadeapainedfaceasheanswered."...MyentirebodyisnumbandIcan't
moveallthatwell."

Mora,whowasstillbeingtreated,waskneelingonthegroundwithbothofher
handsboundbehindherback.

"Iwantyoutotalk,"Adletsaidtoher.

"Ofcourse.There'snolongeranyneedtobesecretive."

WithAdletandtheotherssurroundingher,Moratoldthemthetruthinamatter
offactmanner.ShetoldthemaboutthesecretpactshedmadewithTgurneu,
thereasonwhyshetrainedRolonia,thedetailsofhowsheonlyhadtwodaysleft
tokilloneoftheFlowers,andhowshewastheseventh.

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Chapter 53

AdletlistenedtoMora'sstoryquietly.Thenhetookouttheitemhehad
discoveredonthehillfromoneofthepouchesathiswaistandstaredatit.

Isee,sothat'swhatitis,Adletmurmuredinhismind.

"...ThatiseverythingthatIknow.I'vealreadypreparedmyselfforwhat'scoming
next,sodoitquickly."

WiththatMoraslongconfessionhadcometoacloseandforawhilenoonesaid
aword.

"So,youdon'tknowanythingabouttheprincess?"Goldofasked,thefirsttobreak
thesilence.

Moranodded."TgurneudidntsayanythingaboutNashetaniatoanyofhis
subordinates,letalonetome."

"Isee.Theprincess..."Goldofstoppedhimselffromsayingwhateverhewas
abouttosayandwentquietagain.

"Thismightbeabitdifficult.Chamohadintendedtokillyou,butChamonow
feelssorryforyou,"Chamosaid.

"AreyougoingtokillMorasan?"Roloniaasked.

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Therewasnothingelseshecoulddothough.Herfamilyhadbeentakenhostage.
Besides,shebroughtHanssanbacktolife."

"Ihaveasomewhatmixedfeelingaboutthis,meow,"Hanssaid,araredisplayof
angershowingacrosshisface.

"...Didntyouwillfullyfightaloneandthenlost?Itservesyouright,"Fremysaidin
acoldtone.

ThenMoraspoke."Rolonia.Notkillingmewouldbefartoolenient."

"...Morasan."

"AfterIkilledHanstherewasnoguaranteethatyoucouldbringhimbacktolife.
Andevenifyouweresuccessfulhemighthavebeenleftwithsevereinjuriesor
disabilities.YetknowingallofthisIstillkilledHans."

Roloniawentsilent.

"Regardlessoftheresult,Iundoubtedlybetrayedyouall.Ineedtotakeaclear
responsibilityformyactions.And...Idon'twanttohavetokeeponlivingin
disgraceasapersonwhobetrayedtheworld."

"Well,it'sunfortunate,butitcan'tbehelped."Chamoscratchedherhead.

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"There'snowayIcantrustanythingI'veheardfromMora.Weshouldkillher
afterall,"Fremysuggested.

"But..."Adletinterjected."IwonderwhereIshouldbegin."

"What'swrong?CometothinkofitAdlet,youprettymuchhaventsaidanything
tonight,"Chamosaidsarcastically.

Adlethoweverdidn'tpayheranymind."Firstofall,Illstartwithmyconclusions.
Everyonepleaselistencalmly."

Everyonetiltedtheirheadstothesideinconfusion.ThenAdletquietly,butina
confidenttone,said,"Moraisnottheseventh."

AsexpectedeveryonewasatacompletelossandjuststaredatAdlet
dumbfounded.

"Adlet.Ihaveabsolutelynoideawhatyouaretalkingabout.TheevidencethatI
amtheseventhhasalreadybeenstated.IwasthreatenedbyTgurneuandIkilled
oneofourcompanions,"Morarebuked.

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"Didyounothearwhatshesaid?Shesaidherselfthatshewastheseventh,"
Fremyadded.

"Adkun...sorry.Saywhatyoulikebutthatdoesntsoundright.

NotevenRoloniabelievesme.Thisisgoingtobetoughtoexplain,Adletthought.

"Firstly,Moraprobablyhadnochoicebuttobetrayus.Butshedideverythingshe
couldtopreventusfromendingupdead.ShefoughttodefeatTgurneuwith
everythingshehad.HerintentwastodefeattheMajinandshewantedtoprotect
theworld.Apersonlikethatisnotatraitor."

"You'rerightAdlet,"Fremyagreed."Sheisnotatraitor,butsheistheseventh."

"Thereisnoproofofthat,"AdletdeclaredandFremy'seyenarrowed."Whatare
thecircumstancesregardingtheappearanceoftheseventh'screst?Howwasthe
seventhselected?Wedon'thavethefactsonanyofthat.Calmdownandtry
thinking.Whenyougetrightdowntoit,theonlyproofwehaveisthatTgurneu
claimedMorawastheseventh."

"Andthatonepointisprobablyalltheproofweneed.Tgurneucannotlietome
byanymeans,"Morareplied.

"TheideathatTgurneucannotlieisatrap."

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"...Whatdoyoumean?"

"Tgurneu'saimwasofcoursetogetyoutokilloneoftheFlowers.Hewas
probablyconfidentthatyouwouldneverabandonyourdaughter.Butunderneath
itallhehadlaidoutanothertrap.Andthatwastoconvinceyouthatyouwerethe
seventh."

Moragasped.

"Anyonecouldcomeupwiththeideathatagenuineflowerhadbeenframedand
madeouttobetheseventh.Butnoneofushadeventhoughtaboutthe
possibilitythatagenuineflowerwouldbeconvincedintothinkingthattheywere
theseventh.

"Thepersonthatcalledthemselvestheseventhwouldhavetobesomeonethat
noonewouldthinkcouldpossiblybeagenuineHerooftheSixFlowers.Ivegot
tohandittoTgurneu.Thatsquitetheachievement."

Adletsmiled."Mora,fromwhatIveheardfromyourstory,evenifTgurneumade
apromisewiththeSaintofWordsthatwouldn'tmeanhewouldbeunabletotell
alie,right?TheonlythingtheSaintofWordscandoissetupreparationin
advancethatthepersonwholiedwouldbeforcedtopay."

Moranodded.

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"Itwasactuallyanunbelievablysimpleplan.ThreeyearsagoTgurneupledgedto
theSaintofWordsthathewouldnotlie.AndonthesurfaceitwastomakeMora
willingtocometothenegotiationtable.ButanotherobjectivewastomakeMora
believethatTgurneuwouldnotlietoher."

..."

"MorawasundertheimpressionthatTgurneuabsolutelycouldnotlietoher.
ThenTgurneuliedandsaidMorawastheseventh.AndjustasTgurneuhad
intended,Morabelievedthatshewastheseventh.Dontyouthinkitsallreally
simple?"

"Wait.DoyouthinkthatIdidnotsuspectTgurneu?"Moraasked."Ihadthought
Tgurneumightlietoo.ButthepowersoftheSaintofWordsareabsolute.Noone
canescapethem.EventheSaintofWordsherselfcouldnotundothecontract."

"AreyousayingAdletthateventheSaintofWords'powerdoesn'tworkon
Tgurneu?Thatisnotpossible,"Fremysaid."IfthatweresothenTgurneuwould
trulybeimmortal."

"Heisnotimmortal.OnlytheMajinfitsthatdescription.Idon'tknowthatmuch
aboutthepowersoftheSaints,andperhapsitisimpossibletorenderthepower
oftheSaintofWordsineffective."

"Thenwhatisit?AreyousayingthatTgurneudiedinordertosaythatlie?"

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"..."

HowshouldIexplain,Adletwonderedforamoment.

"AfterTgurneudeclaredthatMorawastheseventh,itseemedlikehewas
swallowedupbyajellyfishKyoma.Itwasntsothathecouldescape.Thatwasto
hidethefactthathehaddied.AshehadpromisedtotheSaintofWords,by
tellingaliehehadtoforfeithislife.

Morashookherhead.

"...That'snotpossible.HewasaKyomacommander.IfhediedallofhisKyoma
wouldlosetheirchainofcommandandwouldbecomeadisorderlymob.There's
nowayhewoulddiejusttotellonelie."

"Tgurneuisnotdead,"Fremyspoke."IfhehaddiedtheKyomaunderhimwould
devolveintoamassconfusion.Tgurneuiswithoutadoubtstillalive."

"Calmdownandletmeclarify,"Adletsaidandthenpausedforamoment.Inside
hismindhewassortingoutjusthowheshouldexplain.

"WeallfoughtagainstalizardKyomathathadthreewings.ItwasaKyomathat
wehadallthoughtwasTgurneu.Butthatwasnothim."

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"...Whatdoyoumean?"Fremyasked.

"OnthathillIfiguredoutTgurneu'strueidentity.Fremy,Rolonia,andItriedto
comeupwithanyinformationthatwouldhelpuswithTgurneusmystery."

"That'sright,"Fremyconfirmed.

"ThethreeofusrackedourbrainsoverwhythestakeoftheSaintsdidntworkon
Tgurneu.AndourconclusionwasthatTgurneu'sabilitywouldnotprotecthim
fromtheSaints'poison.

AdlettoldthemaboutRolonia'sanalysisandhowhehadnoabilitytonullifythe
poisonoftheSaints.

"Ifthat'sthecasetheneitheranotherKyomaoraSainthadhelpedhim.Butwhat
abilitycouldmakethepoisonoftheSaintsineffective?Thepowertoremove
poisons?Thepowertosubstituteone'sbody?Bothmyselfwhohasinheritedall
theknowledgeofAtroSpykerandFremywhowasamemberoftheKyoma
workedtogethertofindasolution,butnomatterhowmuchwestruggledover
themysterywecouldnotthinkofaKyomathatpossessedthatkindofability."

"So..."

"SowasitaSaint?No,itwasn'tthateither.WewenttothehillwhereTgurneu
hadlaunchedasurpriseattackonusandsearchedundertheground.

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Buttherewerenotracesofanyhumans.Thepowerthatblockedthepoisonwas
notaSaint's.AtthatpointIhadcompletelygivenup.Butinthathopeless
momentsomethinghappened."

"Idon'tneedtohearaboutallthetroubleyouwentthrough.Justletmehear
whatyoufoundout,meow."

"UnexpectedlyitwasGoldof'sbehaviorthatgavemeabighint,"Adletcontinued,
withoutrespondingtoHanscriticism.Hethentoldthemabouthowhehadfound
GoldofinterrogatingaKyomainoneoftheundergroundtunnels.

"AndwhatthatKyomasaidhasbeenonmymindeversince.IfIhadmyMaster
Tgurneuspoweryouwouldntbeaproblem."

"Whydoyoucareaboutthat?"

"Isn'tthatphrasingodd?Shouldn'tthecorrectwaytosayitbe,Aslongaswe
haveTgurneu?Whydidhespecificallysay,`WithMyMasterTgurneuspower?
SofromthosewordsIhavereachedoneconclusion.Tgurneuhastheabilityto
givehispowertootherKyoma.

"...I'veneverheardofsuchapower,"Fremysaid.

"GivingpowertootherKyoma.WeonlyknowoneKyomathathashadthatkind
ofpower.

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Chapter 53

ItbelongedtothestrongestKyomainhistory;onethatappearedinthegreatwar
oftheSixFlowerssevenhundredyearsago.TheDemonKingZophrair.Youall
probablyatleastknowthename."

ExcludingFremy,everyonenodded.

"ZophrairwascalledaControllingKyoma.Hehadtheabilitytosplithisbodyand
placepartsofhimselfintothebodiesofotherKyoma.Andasaresulthewasable
toincreasetheotherKyoma'sstrength.Inaddition,hewouldcompletelycontrol
theKyomahehadgivenapieceofhimselfto,andcouldmanipulatethematwill."

"Ifeellikethatwascertainlywritten,but..."Morasaid.

"ThenIrealizedthattheControllingKyomasabilitycouldnegatethepoisonof
theSaints."

"Wha...Whatdoyoumean?"Roloniaasked.

"RecallhowthepoisonoftheSaintsaffectsthebodyofaKyoma.Firstthey
becomementallyconfusedandtheirentirebodyisattackedwithaseverepain.
TheKyomathatreceivedthepoisonoftheSaintswouldbewrithinginpainand
becomeunabletothinknormally.Astimeprogresstheywouldcompletelylose
theirsenseofbalance.Andthentheywouldbecomeunabletomove.Plusthey
wouldstarttoseehallucinations,hearvoices,andsufferdamagetotheir
memory.Andwithinfivetotendaysthiswouldleadtotheirdeath.

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Chapter 53

"Inotherwords,thepoisonoftheSaintsiswhathumanscallaneurotoxin.A
poisonthatdestroystheirbrainandtheirmotorfunctions,"AdletsaidandFremy
lookedupasifshehadnoticedsomethinginhisexplanation.

"ButiftheKyomathatwasinjectedwiththepoisonoftheSaintswasbeing
controlledbyaControllingKyoma,andifitdidn'tmovebyitsownwillandwas
justapuppet,thenitwouldprobablyhavelookedlikethepoisonoftheSaints
didntwork,atleastonthesurface,right?"Adletaskedtothegroup.

"...Thatcan'tbe."

"Tgurneu,no,theKyomawiththethreewingsthatwethoughtwasTgurneuwas
beingcontrolled.Actually,it'sbettertosaythatTgurneuwastheKyoma
controllingthatthreewingedKyoma."

Hansleanedhisheadtotheside.

"Waitasecond.Firstofalldoyouhaveanyproof?Fremyasked.Ifthatthree
wingedKyomawasn'tthegenuineTgurneuthenwherewashe?Ihavealways
thoughthewasTgurneu.AndevenifIthinkbackonitnow,Ican'tthinkofhim
beingaKyomacontrolledbyanother."

It'snaturalthatyoudidn'tnotice.FromthebeginningTgurneuhadintendedon
gettingridofyou.Sohewouldhaveactedinawaythatkeptyoufrom
understandinghistrueform."

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Chapter 53

"Whoishe?WhatisTgurneu'strueform?"

Adletlookedaroundathiscompanions.Itseemedthatthepeoplehehad
traveledwithtothehill,Hans,Rolonia,andGoldof,alreadyunderstood.

"Takealookatthis."

Adletdrewoutasmallitemcoveredinsandfromoneofthebagsonhiswaist.It
waswhatGoldofhadaccidentallystumbledacrosswhenthefourofthemwere
searchingonthehill.

"That'snotjustscraps?"Fremyasked.

"Sothat'swhatitwashuh?Ican'tbelieveit,meow.Whenyousaidtosearchfor
somethingsmalllikethatmeow,Ithoughtyouwereoutofyourmind,"Hans
said.

"ThisisapieceofthefigfruitthatTgurneuate."

AdletrememberedhowwhentheyhadfoughtwithTgurneu,theKyomahad
suddenlytakenoutthatfigfruitandateit.Atthattimehehadseenasmallpiece
spilloutfromthecornerofhismouth.

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Chapter 53

"Fremy.DoyourememberinmyexplanationwhattheControllingKyomadoes
whenitwantstocontrolanotherKyoma?"

"Iremember."

"TouseitspowerthecontrollingtypegivesapieceofitsbodytoanotherKyoma.
Simplyspeaking,itmakesotherKyomaeatpartsofitsownbody."

"Thatcan'tbe..."

"Thisisnotjustafigfruit.ItisaKyoma."

AfterthatAdlettookouthischemicalspraythatwouldreacttothesecretions
madebytheKyoma.Andwhenhesprayeditontothepieceofthefigfruitit
turnedorange.

"TheKyomawiththethreewingshadthatfigfruit.Andthatwasthetrue
Tgurneu."

"...Ican'tbelievethat,"Morasaid.

"Mora,doyourememberifTgurneuwaseatingthisfigfruitwhenyounegotiated
withhim?"

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Chapter 53

"Sorry.Idon'tremember.ThoughIfeelliketherewassomethinglikethat..."

"Fremy.WasTgurneueatingthisfigfruitwhenyouweretalkingwithhim?"

"Idon'trememberclearly.Heatealotofthings,butIdidn'ttakeanynotice."

Satisfiedwiththatresponse,Adletnodded.

"TgurneuhadbeenhidinghistrueformfromyouFremy.Hehadpretendedtobe
agluttonsothatyouwouldn'tthinkitwasunnaturalforhimtoeatafigfruit.And
hedidn'ttellyouabouttheexistenceoftheDemonKingZophrairsothatyou
wouldn'tbeawareoftheControllingKyoma."

"...Ifthat'sthecase,thentheexplanationitleadstois..."

"Tgurneuprobablysensedwhoitwashewasfighting,sothenhesuddenlytook
outafigfromthemouthinhischestandateit.Andafterthathisstrengthallofa
suddenincreased.Wasntthatwhenhestoppedgoingeasyonus?Thatwasthe
controllingtype'spower:tostrengthentheabilitiesofotherKyoma."

Adletlookedatthepieceoffigcoveredinsandinhishand.

"Iwassurprisedtoo.WhenitcametoKyoma,Ihadthoughteventhesmallest
wouldbethesizeofahumanandwouldhaveadreadfulappearance.

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Chapter 53

However,theKyomahadoriginallytakenallkindsofforms.Itisnotstrangefor
theretobeafigKyoma."

"Couldthatreallybetrue?"

"Thereisnopositiveproofthatthisisthetruth.Butwecannotdenythe
possibilityoftherebeingKyomathatexistwhichwedon'tknowanythingabout
andwhohaveabilitieswhichwealsohaveneverheardof.Still,thisconclusion
doesnotcontradictalloftheclueswehaveacquiredsofar."

AdletlookedatMora."WitheverythingIvesaidsofar,youshouldunderstand
howTgurneudeceivedyou."

"....Iunderstand."

ThreeyearsagoTgurneuhadmadeapactwithMora.Hehadpledgedthatifhe
weretolieitwouldbeokayforthecoreinhischesttobedestroyed.Butthatwas
notTgurneu'score.ItwasthecoreoftheKyomawiththethreewings.

"ThethreewingedKyomawasnothingmorethanatoolthatthegenuineTgurneu
manipulated.ForthetrueTgurneuthatKyomawasnothingmorethanapawnit
coulduseandthendiscard.Fromthebeginninghehadintendedtobreakthe
promiseyoumadewithhimwhenhemadeavowtotheSaintofWords."

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Chapter 53

Morawasatanutterloss.Itwasasifhercomprehensionwasnotfollowingthe
rapidlychangingsituation.

Adletspoketohiscompanions."Isitnecessaryformetospecificallyexplainthe
reasonwhyMoraisnottheseventh?TgurneuhadliedinordertomakeMora
believethatshewastheseventh.AndMorahadfallenrightintohistrap.Butshe
isdefinitelynottheseventh."

"Whateverthecircumstancesmaybe,youdonthavetotellChamo,Chamosaid
withascowl.

"I'm...nottheseventh?"Kneelingontheground,Morawasdumbstruck."A
person...apersonlikeme...isagenuineHerooftheSixFlowers?Thatsnotalie?I
can'tbelieveit."

"Whetheryoubelieveitornot,Iamconvincedthatit'sthetruth,"Adletsaidand
thenextendedhishandtowardsMora."Wellthenpullyourselftogether.You
havetosavenotonlyyourdaughter,buttheentireworld."

MoratookAdlet'shand.

TheyhadbeenabletoseethroughTgurneu'strap,evenifithadbeenhalfby
chance.IfAdletwasntabletonoticethesecretconnectedtoTgurneu'sbody,or
ifhehadgivenupontryingtosolveTgurneu'smystery,thentheyprobablywould
nothavebeenabletoreachthetruth.Theyprobablywouldhaveletherdieif
theyhadbeenunabletorealizethatMorawasagenuineHero.

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Chapter 53

Butevenifitwasbychance,avictorywasavictory.

AroundthesametimealotofpeoplehadgatheredattheinfirmaryintheHead
Temple.Mora'shusband,GunnerChester,wasthere.AswereMora'selderly
fatherandmother.WeylynntheSaintofSaltwasalsopresent,aswere
MarmannatheSaintofWordsandLenelletheSaintofFire.Inaddition,theonein
chargeoftheofficialdutiesoftheHeadtemple,alongwiththefemaleacolytes
whohadrushedallthewayfromtheTempleofMountains,andMora'spersonal
maidswerethere.

Sincetheinfirmary'swaitingroomwasnotverylarge,allofthemwerentableto
fitintheroomandinsteadwerefillingupthehallwayoutsidetheinfirmary.

"...Still?Thatbastard,"theSaintofSaltWeylynnsaidinfrustration.

"Mora...Ibelieveinyou."Gunnerwasmutteringwithhisarmscrossedinthe
corneroftheroom.

30minutesagoShenierahadcomplainedaboutaslightpaininherchest.Gunner
thencheckedandsawthatthecentipedelikebruisehaddisappeared.

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Chapter 53

Hastheparasitediedorwasitsomekindofstrangeomen?Withoutknowing
whichwasthecase,GunnerimmediatelycalledToulo.Soonafter,Weylynnand
theothersattheHeadtemplealsorushedtotheinfirmary.

Toulothensteppedoutoftheinfirmaryandeveryone'sgazefocusedonher.She
walkedstraighttowardsGunner.Thenshetookhishandintoherownandgaveit
apowerfulshake.

"Theparasiteisgone.Shenierachanhasbeensaved."

"WaytogoBoss!"Weylynnshoutedandpumpedherfistintotheair.Shethen
rushedovertoTouloandhuggedherastightasshecould.

Everyoneeruptedinshoutsofjoy,shakingeachother'shandsandembracingone
another.Therewasevensomeonewhoranupontoatable,tookofftheirtunic
andstartedswingingitaround.

"ThatfilthyKyoma!Howdidyoulikethat?!DidyoulikeseeingourveryownBoss
dothis?!"

WeylynnreleasedTouloandthenwentaroundhuggingeveryoneshecouldlay
herhandson.Withotherworldlystrengththegirlwasrushingaroundand
shoutingallovertheplace.

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Chapter 53

"IwonderifthingsarereallyokayandifshepossiblykilledoneoftheFlowers."
Marmannasaidwithadispiritedvoice.

"There'snoway!TheBossobviouslybeatthatgiantfooltodeath!"

LedoutbyToulo'sassistants,Shenieraexitedtheinfirmary,butshewas
frightenedbyallthecommotionhappeninginthewaitingroom.Gunnerwalked
overtoherandpickedherupinanembrace.Thenasifeverythingshehad
toleratedupuntilthenwasoverflowingwithinher,shebegantocry.

"Hey,let'sdrink!Ifwedon'tdrinktodaythenwhencanwedrink?!Openthe
reserves!"WeylynnwrappedherarmsaroundMarmanna'sshoulders.

"Aren'tyoubeingabithasty?TheMajinstillhasnotbeendefeated."

"We'recelebratinginanticipation!AllthebesttotheHeroesoftheSixFlowers.
TotheBoss,Rolonia,Chamo,thePrincess,Goldof,andumm,whatwasthatguy
called...right,thecowardlywarriorAdlet.Maytheyhavegoodfortuneinbattle!"

NoneofthemknewthereasonwhyShenierahadbeensaved.Butitwasnot
becauseTgurneuhadbeenkilled.RightafterTgurneuhadliedtoMora,as
promisedShenierahadbeenreleased.

AlsononeofthemwereawareofthebattlehappeningattheWailingDemon
Territory.

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Chapter 53

Hanshadonlytoldalimitednumberofpeoplethathehadbeenselectedasa
HerooftheSixFlowers.AndtherewasntevenasinglepersonwhoknewFremy's
name.

Theeasternskywasslowlyturningred,markingthearrivaloftheHeroes'first
morningintheWailingDemonTerritory.ForamomentAdlet,whohadbeenon
thelookout,wascaptivatedbytherisingsun.

TheyhaddecidedtostayattheEternalFloweruntilHans'andMora'injurieswere
healed.Perhapsthetwoofthemwouldfinallybeabletomovetonight,Adlet
wondered.HewasgratefulthattheyhadtwoSaintsthatpossessedhealing
abilities.Itmeantthattheysomewhatdidn'thavetoworryaboutinjuries.

BoththeEternalFlowerandthemountainsarounditweresilent.NeitherTgurneu
northeKyomacouldbeseenanywhere.AndotherthanAdletwhowaskeepinga
lookout,alltheotherswereresting.

"...Hey,Adlet,"Morasaid."Isitalrighttoletmecontinuetotravelalongsideyou
afterwhatI'vedone?"

Adletdidn'trespond.Morawasinlowspirits.Shewasnotpleasedthatshehad
survived,andshehadevenforgottenthejoyshehadfirstfeltwhenshedsaved
herdaughterslife.

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Chapter 53

Shehadbeendeceivedbytheenemyandthenshehadkilledoneofher
companions.Andshehaddoneit,takingintoaccountthattherewasapossibility
shecouldnotsavethecompanionshehadkilled.

"Obachan,Chamocantallowthat,"InsteadChamowastheonewhorepliedto
Mora."Doyoufeelgoodaboutbeingtrickedsomanytimes?Doyoureallynot
feellikedoinganything?Doyoulikebeingtricked?"

Don'tsaythattoher,Adletthought.Morasimplystaredattheground,herhead
hung.

"Hans,Iwanttohearyouropinion,"Adletsaid.Hanswasthebiggestvictimand
sohisopiniontookpriority.

"Well,Iknowthatwehavetotraveltogetherlikethis,but...myangerhasntgone
away."

Thatwastobeexpected,Adletthought.

"Afterthefightisover,killme.Imustatoneformyactions."

"Yeahandwhatwillthatgainme?"Hansplacedhishandtohismouth,an
unpleasantsmilespreadingacrosshisface."I'vegotit.Money,meow.TheHead
Templeisrichright?SoIwontstopcollectingonmydebtuntilIcanseethe
bottomofyourstorehouses.Meowhihihi."

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Chapter 53

"...Isthatokaywithyou?"Adletaskedautomatically.

"Moneyisimportant.Iwasborntoliveafunandinterestinglife.Butwithout
moneyIcantdoanyofthat."

Asifthatwerealright,Moranodded.ThenabruptlyHans'facegrewserious.

"Mora,Iwillnotforgiveanyfurthermissteps.WemustdefeattheMajin,evenif
youhavetotradeyourlifetodoso.UnderstandthatthatisthereasonIam
allowingyoutolive."

"Iunderstand.Iwillwin.EvenifIdieIwillshowtheworldthatIwillprotectit."

AfterthatitseemedthatHanswasdonewithwhathehadwantedtosay.Adlet
lookedoveratRolonia.Inasenseshetoowasavictiminthis.

"Morasan..."

RoloniahadprobablytrustedMora.AndAdletcouldn'tfathomhowagirlwould
feelafterfindingoutthatthetruereasonshehadbeenraisedwasinorderto
fulfillaplantokilloneoftheSixFlowers.

"IfeellikeIcannotforgiveyou.AndatthesametimeIalsofeelthatforSheniera
san'ssakeitcouldn'tbehelped...Ihavenoideawhattodo."

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Chapter 53

Morasaidnothing.Shejustcontinuedtohangherhead.

"...Thereisjustonethingthough.Thankyousomuchforraisingme."

"Rolonia,I'msorry.Andthankyou.Truly,thankyou."

Thetwoofthemwouldnotmeeteachothereyetoeye.Theystillwerenotyet
abletoresolvetheirfeelings.

"Youdon'tmindifIsuddenlychangetheconversation,meow?"

"WhatisitHans?"

Ignoringthegloomyair,Hansspokeinacheerfultone."WhenIdiedwhat
happenedtothecrests?"

"...Ah,"Chamoshouted."Chamosawit.Oneofthepetalshaddisappeared."

"Isn'tthatproofthatIamgenuine?IfaHerooftheSixFlowersdies,oneofthe
petalswilldisappear,right?"

"Itlooksthatway.IsitsafetosayCatsanisagenuineHero?"Chamocranedher
headtotheside.

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Chapter 53

"Thatisn'tproof,"Fremysaid."Evenwhentheseventhdiesapetalmayfadejust
likewithagenuineHero.Westilldon'tknowthenatureofthecresttheseventh
possesses."

"...Meow."

"Ifsomeonediesandapetaldoesnotfadethenthatconfirmstheyarethe
seventh.However,evenifapetalfadeswhensomeonediesthatisnotproofthat
thatpersonisgenuine.Unfortunately,wecannotsayforcertainthatHansisa
trueFlower,"Fremyconcluded.

"Meow.Thisisdifficult,meow.Itisaheadscratcher,"Hanssaidashefittingly
scratchedhishead.

"...Theseventh,"Adletmuttered.Hestaredsilentlyathiscompanionsasthey
talkedwithoneanother.

Inhisheadasinglequestionwasforming.

TgurneuhadmadeMora,whowasagenuineFlower,believethatshewasthe
seventh.Soperhapstheoppositewasalsopossible.

MaybeTgurneuhadactedinawaythatmadetheseventhbelievetheywerereally
agenuineFlower.

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Chapter 53

EventhoughtheyprobablyhadmultipleopportunitiestokilltheHeroes,inboth
thebattlewithintheIllusionFogBarrierandduringthebattleattheValleyof
SpilledBloodtheseventhdidntdoanything.

Perhapstheseventhdidn'tknowthattheyweretrulytheseventh.

Andifthatweretruethenwhointheworldwastheseventh?

Theyhadfinishedonebattle.However,theystillhadn'tfoundanycluesregarding
thebiggestmysteryofall:theidentityoftheseventh.Theirsituationwasgetting
evenmoreconfusingandthemysterywasonlygrowingdeeper.

Athickforeststretchedbeyondthemountaintothewest.Thatwastheplace
wheretheSaintoftheSingleFlowerhadlostafingeronherlefthand.Andsothe
landwascalledtheForestofSeveredFingers.

ThirtyKyomahadgatheredthere.Andatthecenterofthemall,asingleKyoma
wasreadingabook.Itsgiant,yetilikebodyhadtheheadofacrow.

TheKyomathenmuttered,"Thisbodyisdifficulttomove.Searchforabetterone
amongyourselves."

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Chapter 53

TherewasafigfruitintheKyoma'slap.

"Hey,goodmorning,"TheyetiKyomasaidasitlookeduptothesky.

AbirdKyomaflewdown,landedontheyeti'sshoulderandtoldhimsomething.
TheyetiKyomathenclosedthebookinitshandandthoughtforamoment.

"Thisnewsishardtobelieve.AllsevenoftheHeroesarealive,"TheyetiKyoma
said,andthentookthefigfruitfromitslapandchewedonit."DidMorafail?Was
sheunabletokillanyone?"

"Thatisnotthecase,MasterTgurneu.MoramurderedHans.However,afterthat
RoloniawasabletobringthedeadHansbacktolife."

"I'vebeendeceived!"TheyetiKyoma...Tgurneu'snewbody,slappedhisknee."I
see.SoMorahadtrainedRoloniasothatshecouldkillandthenbringthemback
tolifelater...it'sapreposterousidea.ButattheveryendMorahaddoneitand
trickedme."

Tgurneustoodupandbegantowalkaroundthearea.

"Itseemsthattheywerealsoabletoseethroughwhatyousaidandgraspthat
Moraisnottheseventh."

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Chapter 53

"Whorealizedthat?WasitFremy?...No,perhapsitwasAdlet."

TheKyomagoingbythenameofTgurneulookedtowardsthecenterofthe
forest.SeveralKyomawereburyingsomethingdeepunderthegroundthere.It
wasthecorpseofthethreewingedKyomathatAdletandtheothershadfought.

"...Thisisacompletefailure.Theywereevenabletosmashthroughmybackup
plan.Honestly,Ishouldpraisethemfortheirstruggle."

Therewasnoairofimpatienceinhiswords.Norwasthereasenseofcrisisor
angerabouthisplanfailing.Onthecontrary,heseemedpleasedthattheSix
Flowershadwon.

"Well,that'sfine.Let'sbeginthenextgame.Thebestthingtodoisletwhats
passedremaininthepast."

"MasterTgurneu,whatareyourorders?"ThebirdKyomasaid.

Withasmile,Tgurneusaid,"Telltheseventhtocontinuenottodoanything.They
shouldcontinuetohideamongsttheHeroesandnotrevealtheirtrueidentity."

Thebirdspreaditswingsandwentofftotheeast.

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Chapter 53

AndwatchingtheKyomaflyaway,Tgurneumuttered,"Wellthen,Iwonderhow
wellplaynext.TheseHeroesoftheSixFlowersaresomuchfun."

414

Epilogue

415

Epilogue

Epilogue

TherewasastrongholdatthenorthwesternedgeoftheWailingDemonTerritory.
Itwasacrudeandprimitivefortonlyconsistingofnaturalstonespiledontopof
oneanother.However,bothitssizeanditsdurabilityweregreaterthananyofthe
castleintheentirecontinent.

Alionstoodatoponeofthewallsofthatfort.Asilvermaneandsilverarmor
covereditsentirebody,anditwasaKyomathatwalkedontwolegs.

TheKyomawasusinganunrefinedswordcutfrompureobsidianasacaneand
hadplanteditintotheground.

"...MasterCargikk."

AhumansizedbutterflyKyomaswoopeddownfromtheskyandbegantospeak
tothelionKyoma.ThelionwasCargikk,oneofthethreeKyomacommandersand
wasknownasthecurrentmostpowerfulKyoma.

"TheFlowersencounteredTgurneu.IntheirfirstbattleitseemsthattheFlowers
werevictorious.Tgurneulostover200Kyomaandendedupretreating."

"Youdidn'tneedtoinformmeofthat,"Cargikksaid.OnlyinformmeifTgurneu
diedoriftheFlowersweredefeated."

416

Epilogue

"Asyouwish."ThebutterflyKyomalowereditsantennaeinsteadofitsheadina
bow.

Cargikkwasstaringouttowardsthewesternskywherethemorningsunwas
risingwithanunhappyexpressiononhisface.

"IexpectnothingofTgurneu.Hisdefeatisinevitable."

"...Yes."

"Fightingclasheswithhisspirit.Hislifeisemptysohehassetasidethedeaththe
enemydeservesandismerelypesteringthemforthesakeofit.Andthatiswhy
theywereabletowin."

Staringtowardstheeasternsky,Cargikk'seyeswerefullofanger.Heblewouta
darkredsteamfromhismouth.Andthenafainthazestartedtorisefromhis
entirebody.

"Andalthoughhecanthinkofplanstokeeponlyhimselfalive,heisonly
halfheartedlytryingtodefeattheFlowers.Tgurneusactionshaventchanged
fromthatofathief!"

ThescalesofthebutterflyKyomatothesidebegantoburnanditscattered
sparksallarounditself.Cargikkcontinuedtospeakashestaredintothedistance.

417

Epilogue

"No,that'snotright.Whilehevalueshisownlifehecasuallythrowsawaythe
livesofhisbrethren.Tgurneuisakindofbrutethat'sworsethandirt!Ishould
havekilledhimthatdaytwohundredyearsago."

HisangerwasnotdirectedtowardstheSixFlowers.ItwasdirectedatTgurneu,
whotheyhadfoughtwith.

"...MybelovedchildrenandI,wewilldefeattheHeroesoftheSixFlowers.Itwill
bynomeansbeTgurneu,"Cargikksaid,notoncelookingawayfromtheeastern
sky.

AtthenorthernedgeoftheWailingDemonTerritoryanumberofKyomawere
staringoutatthesea.

Sharpboulderlikespearswerejuttingoutfromeverywhereintheshallow
waters.Andfromthestones,steamthatwasseveralhundreddegreesin
temperaturewasconstantlybillowingout.ItwasadefensivewallthattheKyoma
hadconstructedoverhundredsofyears.Andneedlesstosayitwasimpossiblefor
eithersailingboatsorswimminghumanstoapproach.

Withthathotsteamhangingovertheocean,theKyomawerebusysearchingfor
something.

418

Epilogue

"...Overthere!"

OneoftheKyomafoundahumanshapedfigurefloatingintheocean.

TheKyomathathadshoutedwasextremelysmall,aboutasbigasapetdog.It
hadasoftfurandcuteroundeyes.Italsohadabigtongueandatail.Itwasa
strangecreature,notquiteasquirrel,arat,oradog.Andthehornthatgrewout
fromitsheadwasmoreadorablethanterrifying.

ThatKyomacalledouttothehumanfigure.

"Nashetania!Thisway!Goaboutfifteenmeterstoyourrightthenheadstraight
towardsthecontinent!"

Thehumanfigure...Nashetaniasluggishlymovedherarmsandfeetandswam.
Shehadremovedherarmor,hersword,andhershoesandwasswimmingslowly
injustherunderclothes.

Onesectionoftherockpillarswasnotblowingouthotsteambutjustwarmair.
WeavingherwaythroughthatopeningNashetaniamadeherwaytothe
continentandlandedashore.

"Areyoualright,Nashetania?"

419

Epilogue

TheadorableKyomarushedovertothehalfnakedNashetania.AndtheKyoma
accompanyingitwrappedNashetania'sbodyinablanket.

"...Dozzu!"NashetaniacalledtothesmallKyoma.

ThecuteKyomawasthethirdcommander.ThetraitorDozzu.

"I'msorry,Ifailed.Notonlycouldn'tIeliminatethem,Iwasntevenabletokill
oneofthem."

"Iknow.Butwhatsmoreimportantnowisthatyouhurryanddryyourselfoff.
Whenyou'verelaxedabitweshallheadtothehideout.It'sdangerousaround
here.Cargikk'ssubordinatesarewatchingthearea."

ThegroupofKyomapickedupNashetaniathentookherawayfromthecoastand
headedtotheforest.Dozzuwalkedattheheadoftheirpack,cautiouslychecking
theareaforenemies.

Nashetaniawascoughingviolentlyandhercoldbodywasshivering.

"Howwasitoverthere?"

"Ifailedinthenegotiations.Cargikkwon'tevencomeoverheretohearwhatyou
havetosay."

420

Epilogue

"...."

Nashetaniacasthereyestotheground."...Iwonderifthisisbychancetheend
forallofus."

HearingthosewordsDozzustopped.Heplantedhissmalllegsinthegroundand
stoodrightinfrontofNashetania.

"Whatareyousaying?Trytosayitagain."

"...ButDozzu."

BluishwhitesparksshotofffromDozzu'sentirebody.Theelectricdischarge
scorchedthegrassaroundhim.

"Areyousayingyouaregoingtogiveuphere?Doyouplanonforgettingour
comradeswhosacrificedthemselvesforourideals?!Whatexcusedoyouplanto
tellourdeadcomradesintheafterlife?"

"...I'msorry.You'reright.Wearenotfinishedyet."

Dozzuclosedhiseyesandnodded,asiftosaythatwasgoodtohear.

421

Epilogue

"AsIsaid,let'shurryandmakeourwaytotherefuge.Warmfoodandclothes
havebeenpreparedforus."

Nashetaniaandtheothersadvancedcarefullythroughtheforestwithoutmaking
asound.

"Tgurneumusthaveplannedsomekindoftrap.ButeventheHeroesoftheSix
Flowerswillprobablynotlosethateasily.Ifwetakeadvantagewhiletheyre
fightingandcatchthemwiththeirguardsdownthatwillopenupanopportunity
forus,"Nashetaniasaid.

"That'sthespirit.Wemusthavehope."Dozzulookedaheadandspokewith
determination."CargikkandhisKyomawillnotbevictorious.Ofcourseneither
willtheSixFlowers.Wewillbetheonesthatwin.Theworldishopingthatweare
victorious."

Nashetaniasilentlynodded.

"Wewillreshapetheworldwithourownhands,"Dozzusaid.

Andthenhe,Nashetania,andtheKyomaaccompanyingthemdisappearedinto
theforest.

422

Afterword

Afterword
It'sbeenalongtimeeveryone.YamagataIshiohere.HowwasRokkanoYuusha
2?Ihopeyouenjoyedit.

AtthistimetheRokkanoYuushaseriesisbeingturnedintoamangaandwillbe
publishedinthebimonthlymangamagazineSDandGO!.ToruKeiSanisthe
illustrator.

TheillustrationsareextremelybeautifulandIenjoyreceivingeachissue's
manuscripts.

Ifyouhavethechance,Ihopethatyouallwillalsoenjoythisseries.Sofromnow
pleasegiveyourbesttoToruSan,likeyouhavedoneforme.

CurrentEvents(AlthoughIdon'thaveanythinginparticulartowrite)

SomethingIhavenoticedrecentlyisthatitseemswhenIwritebattlescenesI
haveabadhabitofclenchingmyteeth.AsaresultwhenIreachabouthalfwayin
thetext,mychinalwaysstartstohurt,withoutfail.Sowritingthefinalvolumeof
mypreviousseries,TatakauShisho1wastoughonme.

IwastaughtsomechinexercisesbymydentistsotoanextentI'mrecovering
now.

1
The Fighting Librarians Series is a 10 book light novel series Yamagata Ishio had worked on prior to
Rokka no Yuusha.

Afterword

However,IthinkthatAdletandtheotherswilldonothingbutfightintheevents
aheadsoI'mworriedaboutwhatwillhappentome.I'vethoughtaboutwhetherI
shouldbuyamouthpiece,butIwonderifitwillevenhaveaneffect.

Ialsowenttovisitmygrandparents'grave.

Iwassurprisedthatthegraveyardsthesedayshavebecomebrightandbeautiful.
Eventhegravestoneswerereallyunique.Therewasabsolutelynoeerie
atmosphere,andIremembertiltingmyheadinconfusionandwonderingifit
trulywereagraveyard.

Itwouldprobablybedifficultforghoststoappearinagraveyardasstylishasthat.
Eveniftheycameoutasafieryballoflightitwouldonlyseemlikeaformof
graveyardlighting.DontyouthinkIshouldthinkaboutthepeoplewhoactually
usegraveyardsabitmore?

TheotherdayIpurchasedamailordersakeglassthatcanbeusedtowarmsake
inthemicrowaveoven.It'sarealwinner.Ithasacircularshape,andthetophalf
ofitiscoveredwithashieldtoblockthemicrowaves.Thankstothis,theheat
circulatesthroughtheglassasitisheating.Andthisconvectionallowstheupper
halftoheatwithoutthebottomgettingcool.

Afterword

Itisanexceptionalproductandthoughyoucanmakewarmsakeeasily,ithas
almostnodifferenceintastewhencomparedtoimmersingasakecupintohot
waterforheating.

ThemostenjoyablethingIdidthiswinterwasmixbainiku2andsprinkle
mominori3andkatsuobushi4ontopofit,thendripsoysaucealloverandateitas
asnackwhilesippingwarmsake.

Thatistheendofmycurrentnewsreport.

LastlyIwouldliketogivemythanks.

ToMiyagisantheillustrator,thankyouverymuchforyourwonderfulillustrations
onceagain.Andthankyouforpointingouttheitemsyouthoughtwereunclear
aboutmymanuscript.Itwastrulyabighelp.

TosupervisorTsan,thankyousomuchforhelpingmeoutwithsomanythings.
Andtoalltheeditorialstaff,thanksforallyourassistance.

Andlastlytoallmyreaders,Ihopewecanmeetagain.

Untilthen,YamagataIshio

2
Shredded Dried Plum, in this case a Daikon grater to shred the plum. Daikon is a Japanese radish.
3
Baked or toasted seaweed
4
Dried, fermented, and smoked skipjack tuna

Credits

ProjectLeaderandTranslator:ZeroEnder

Supervisor:Hantsuki

Editor:Hantsuki

Typesetter:YonDevilHands

TranslationGroup:NanoDesuTranslations