“I’ve waited for you, Hamyuts Meseta.”
Hamyuts stopped running in the middle of the Fourth Labyrinth. The corpses of Guardian Beasts were strewn around. Locolo trembled at his weapon’s incredible power. Rather than describing it as slashing without passing through, it was an attack that erased the cause-and-effect of “having been slashed”. It didn’t literally slash anything.
Hamyuts stared at Locolo while gently swinging around her sling with a stone already set within. Her expression wasn’t fitting for a battle that already began. It was the face of amazement, of surprise, of one who found her lost ring in some crazy unexpected place.
As Locolo thought the color of her face would change and she would flee from the blade that once defeated her, he flinched.
“Hey, I have a question.”
“What is it?”
Locolo answered as he tried maintaining his superiority.
“Did the person who made this plan tell you to fight me?”
“He didn’t, right?”
Locolo was startled. She was absolutely correct.
Hamyuts was to be killed by Mokkania – thus Winkeny said. He had reminded Locolo that he was to just grab Shlamuffen and run away.
Locolo had told him there was no need to escape.
“Then the plan will be ruined.”
Winkeny had replied to him.
“As I thought you’ve been told to run away. By that, umm, bald oil called Winkeny. He told you to take that and run away for your victory, right?”
Don’t be overwhelmed. The situation hadn’t changed. You will kill Hamyuts here and ascend to Heaven.
Innumerable cracks started forming on the stones around them.
“Well, that’s fine. This isn’t a boast, but I’m not honorable myself.”
“Even if it’s a trivial man like you approaching me, it still makes me shiver.”
Shlamuffen’s invisible blade struck Hamyuts. She evaded by making a huge leap.
Hamyuts was being chased. However, she was faster. As soon as Locolo saw her stop, she ran away again. Shlamuffen’s blade cut through the Labyrinth. But Hamyuts wasn’t in range. At that moment, gravel bullets shot from her sling. These projectiles that were assaulting Locolo instantly disappeared.
Hamyuts once again disappeared around the corner. Gravel bullets ricocheted off the walls like billiard balls and assaulted Locolo.
However, they were yet again cut off by Shlamuffen. Locolo was disturbed by Hamyuts’s conduct, but he gradually regained his composure.
She has a big mouth but she’s just running away, isn’t she? Rebounded shots fell upon him like rain, but all of them were repelled by the invincible defense created by Shlamuffen.
It was the same when she fought Cigal Crukessa. Hamyuts’s attacks couldn’t hit. It would take time and effort to chase after Hamyuts as she ran around, but it wasn’t a big deal.
Struggle with all you’ve got, Hamyuts Meseta. Locolo ran while thinking this.
He found Hamyuts’s figure in the other side of the Labyrinth. The instant he did, an impact passed through him as if his face was pierced.
An attack that surpassed cause-and-effect – this power that could erase the relationship between an action and its result would surely be the ultimate power in this world. It was the very power of the Creator Deity and couldn’t be used either by humans or by the foolish World Overseers.
However, Locolo didn’t know that, among the objects created by the Creator Deity, this weapon was at the bottom tier. Even the lowest-grade soldiers among the Librarian Angels could use it.
There were two drawbacks to using Shlamuffen.
The first one – even if it could “cut the space Hamyuts was occupying”, it couldn’t “cut Hamyuts herself”. It was because the erasure of cause-and-effect was incomplete. If it was complete, regardless of which evasive actions Hamyuts tried, her body would be bisected.
And it had one more drawback-
Shlamuffen could only “cut”.
Did some attack get me? Locolo pressed a hand to his face. His eye was hurt.
Another blow came. This time he was shot in his stomach. He did not bleed. However, the hurt spot began swelling. As he pressed his hand against it his skin burst open and the blood that accumulated underneath it rushed out like a fountain.
Did Shlamuffen’s defense not work? No, that’s wrong. The blade in his hand was still laughing. However, that laughter sounded as if it was ridiculing its incompetent wielder.
From underneath his aching eyelids, Locolo could see – the form of Hamyuts’s sling has changed. The pouch used to hold the stones changed from being net-like to a leather bag. Did she replace it or could she freely change its form?
She prepared something in the cloth. What is she doing? What is she throwing at me? Locolo stared at her, forgetting to wield Shlamuffen.
Hamyuts then threw something. Three shots hit him in the face once again. The moment he felt it on his face, he understood.
It was an attack that couldn’t be cut off.
It was water.
Locolo recklessly swung Shlamuffen. However, its range was less than fifty meters. He couldn’t get Hamyuts within range.
He lost sight of her again. Locolo started running while he held his head. He hadn’t noticed that, by fighting Hamyuts while she escaped, he entered her pattern of certain victory.
Unbelievable. It was a water gun. Just like a child’s toy. Even when Hamyuts used such a thing it became the strongest attack.
Armed Librarians are no fools. Think of some countermeasure. It seemed to him as if Shlamuffen in his hands said such a thing.
Winkeny immediately understood that the sounds echoing from a distance signified a setback to his plans. The black pawn went against the player’s orders.
However, there was still time. Until Mokkania arrives, if Shlamuffen will not be taken away from them, they would be able to perform a pincer attack.
Winkeny headed towards Mokkania.
“…What do you want, Winkeny. You shouldn’t have any more business with me.”
“My plan failed. Locolo is fighting Hamyuts.”
Mokkania’s expression became one of contempt. Winkeny looked resigned. It was completely his side’s fault.
“…You shouldn’t have relied on him in the first place.”
“Mokkania, Winkeny-san, did something happen?”
Renas was agitated.
“Mokkania, leave Renas-san here and hurry ahead. With your speed you should be able to make it.”
“…He’s right, Mokkania. I don’t want to become any more of a burden to you.”
Renas and Winkeny said.
However, Mokkania shook his head in silence.
Renas raised a sad voice.
Winkeny knew none of his words held any meaning. He already knew how Mokkania would answer. It was because he was the only one to understand Mokkania’s mind except for the man himself.
“I won’t separate from mom.”
He predicted Mokkania’s response word for word. Winkeny sighed. His pieces started fighting and deviating from their player’s orders.
It was absurd. All of his enemies moved exactly as he expected them to, yet his allies didn’t.
What a dimwit, Hamyuts thought. Even if she used her full strength in the Fourth Labyrinth, dodging shouldn’t be impossible for him.
However, at the moment Shlamuffen’s defense was penetrated, Locolo completely lost his fighting spirit. It was amusing seeing him receive the attacks by the water gun in the timing that could be used to evade.
Hamyuts threw away the water bottle that became empty. Just as she thought of pulling out another one, she stopped.
It would be easy to kill him like that.
“…But there’s still Mokkania.”
It was probably a good idea to finish this first.
Hamyuts stopped her attack and started running. She connected a Sensory Thread to Locolo and ran through the Labyrinth.
Hamyuts’s attack was interrupted. Locolo thought that she succeeded escaping.
He admitted his failure long ago. He couldn’t think of anything to do now but run away.
Locolo stopped. Hamyuts was standing at the other side of the corner. She looped around.
He kept running and approached a crossroad. Hamyuts’s water gun hit his right arm hard. He instinctively turned to the left.
She was obviously leading him on, but Locolo was no longer composed enough to consider this.
“Well then. Is this place fine?”
Hamyuts said and stood. She was in the middle of a large corridor that extended 200 meters behind and ahead of her. It took a little time, but her induction was successful. Locolo turned at about ten meters ahead from Hamyuts.
A single wall separated Hamyuts and Locolo. When she knocked the corridor’s wall down, she reached Locolo’s spot.
Just as Locolo put both hands on the wall, the sling shot. It bore a hole in the wall. Shlamuffen defended against the sudden attack.
It happened in a fraction of a second.
Shlamuffen’s defenses had a perfect hole that just one person like Hamyuts could bypass. She grabbed Locolo’s right hand at that instant. As if accepting defeat, Shlamuffen’s legs opened, it separated from Locolo’s hand and fell to the floor.
“Well then, found you at last.”
Hamyuts picked up Shlamuffen. She didn’t even look at Locolo anymore.
She placed it on her left hand and Shlamuffen bit into her as if satisfied with its new master. Shlamuffen, which was said to be the cruelest Memorial Weapon, rejoiced in being equipped to the most suitable owner.
Hamyuts suddenly saw Locolo.
“Oh, you can go back already.”
She lightly said. Locolo raised his injured body and ran away listlessly.
Hamyuts waved her hand. The Indulging God Cult sure has some problems with their manpower, she thought in her heart.
Locolo ran. As he was wounded and lost Shlamuffen, he couldn’t even stand up to the Guardian Beasts of the Fourth Level.
He kept running towards the Fourth Labyrinth’s entrance while set on evading them.
He would earnestly apologize. He would try to apologize to Winkeny and to that Renas woman. Mokkania might be mad at him, but if he could get Winkeny and Renas to forgive him, Mokkania would follow her step and say nothing about it.
Locolo set foot in an area dominated by ants. There were already corpses of Guardian Beasts lying around. The ants attacked not only them but Locolo as well.
Is Renas stupid? They can’t attack Locolo, otherwise he wouldn’t be able to inform Mokkania.
“It’s Locolo! Stop the attack!”
He shouted. Fortunately Mokkania and the rest were nearby. The ants’ assault ceased.
“That was close…”
While saying so, he headed towards the place where Mokkania was. Mokkania looked hostile, Renas looked worried, and they were heading towards Locolo.
“…Locolo-san. Are you injured?”
“Yeah. I’ve been defeated by Hamyuts Meseta.”
Renas seemed to forgive him. It seemed he didn’t have to worry about Mokkania killing him. Just as he felt relieved, Mokkania turned to him while carrying Renas and said an unbelievable thing.
“Mom, be careful. This man’s our enemy.”
Locolo and Renas raised a startled cry at the same time.
“What are you saying, Mokkania?”
Mokkania produced ants.
“But, Mokkania, this person brought me here.”
“He pretended to be our ally so he could trick you, mom.”
Saying so, Mokkania sent his ants towards Locolo. He screamed.
“No, Renas! I’m from the Indulging God Cult! I’m not an Armed Librarian!”
No answer came from Renas. Mokkania replied instead of her.
“Here, mom, you heard him. He’s from the Indulging God Cult.”
What is he saying…? Locolo lost his words.
“Oh no… then Locolo really is…”
“Yes. He was our enemy.”
“Really, I can never be too careful.”
What are you saying? What the hell are you two saying?!
Not the Cult’s ally…? He wanted to say. But, as if shutting him up, ants bits on his lips and tongue. Locolo continued to question them even while being eaten apart.
Inside the hell of pain, he reached a single conclusion.
Perhaps Renas doesn’t know anything. Neither about the Indulging God Cult, Winkeny and Locolo’s identity, and not even the reason they are fighting.
Then why did Mokkania revolt?
Without reaching any answer, the ants invaded through the holes in his mouth and bit his brain.
Mokkania was thinking as he looked down upon Locolo becoming a skeleton.
Why didn’t this man know of the plan?
He tried thinking back. At the beginning of the incident, Mirepoc sent a message to Mokkania. She did so many times.
‘That woman is an impostor. The Indulging God Cult brought a fake of your mother so they could manipulate you.’
Mokkania replied that he already knew.
Mirepoc had misunderstood and thought he was being manipulated by his mother.
That was wrong. Mokkania fought by his own volition.
And then, Feekiee attacked his mother.
“I’m the Armed Librarian Feekiee.”
Hearing those words, his mother raised a relieved voice and answered this:
“Since you’re an Armed Librarian, that means you’re Mokkania’s ally, right?”
Feekiee had also misunderstood and thought Mokkania’s mother was on the side of the Indulging God Cult.
Who would have imagined? She, who was the cause of that fight, didn’t even know about that cause.
His mother knew nothing. Neither the fact she was fake, nor the fact she was created by the Indulging God Cult, nor that Mokkania currently fought against the Armed Librarians. She simply and wholeheartedly believed she was Renas Fleur and thought only about Mokkania.
This is why he had to fight. No matter who he talked to about this, they couldn’t possibly understand his reasons.
“I was taken away by the Indulging God Cult and my memories were erased by the tool known as Argax… right?”
“Then, Armed Librarian Winkeny rescued me and brought me to meet you… right?”
“And right now, the warriors of the Indulging God Cult are chasing Hamyuts Meseta who’s taken an important Book. The Indulging God Cult’s enemies are after me and you. Is that it?”
“…Yes, it is.”
Yes, it has become this way. That was what Winkeny had told her.
“If that’s really true, then it’s fine.”
She tightened the grip of her hands on Mokkania’s collar. That weak feeling told Mokkania of her anxiety.
“Mokkania. Do you really have to fight?”
“I don’t want to see you killing any more people.”
“No matter what kind of bad people they are, you might be able to talk to them. Do you really have to fight no matter what?”
His eyes became moist with nostalgia. Right, that’s the kind of person mom was. She was kind and gentle and hated fighting.
“…But mom. There are times when this is the only way to do things. This is one of them.”
It was painful. He hurt his mom right now. He felt like he wanted to cut open his chest and die. But right now he could only fight. Both for the sake of his mother and for himself.
Mokkania squeezed her hand. He was trying to warm her frozen hands.
He couldn’t talk to his mother. He couldn’t tell her about the fight against the Armed Librarians. He couldn’t tell her about the reason for his betrayal.
The man called Winkeny Bize was an unbelievable person. How did he even manage to think up this plan?
He even thought about killing him and then peek inside his mind by reading his Book.
Mokkania started walking. The decisive battle against Hamyuts was imminent.
During that time, the ants carrying the Book fragment were in the middle of the Fifth Labyrinth. According to Mokkania’s estimations, they should have exited the Labyrinth long ago and went somewhere, yet they were still inside.
Ireia’s curse of time had not worn off. The ants were slowly, slowly walking through the Labyrinth.
There was no one to give any attention to them.