Chapter 98: The Hateful Bloodied Sister
I jumped out of my bed as soon as I opened my eyes. My body was extremely sweaty.
…Ho…Horrifying!! I had a truly horrible dream!!
From my window I watched the gentle sunshine of the morning sun of the God’s realm, and somehow, I managed to adjust my breathing.
Ah…I changed my mood. I wanted to go to the Cafe De Celseus to have a nice cup of coffee…
While I changed to my usual dress, I heard 「Bang! Bang! Bang! 」. Someone knocked on my door violently.
「So noisy, who is it…uh, ehhhhh!? 」
I was surprised when I opened the door. I saw Aria, Adenela, Celseus, and also, the Goddess of Fire, Hestica, and the God of Thunder, Orlando. There were many gods gathered at my door.
「Wha…What’s the matter!? 」
When I shouted, Orlando spoke in a bewildering way.
「That’s what I should be saying! Listarte! I felt a tremendous evil coming from your room just now!」
Aria put her hand on her mouth. Then, she pointed her finger towards me as if she saw something terrible.
「Li…Lista…! A strong evil aura is overflowing from your body…! 」
「What an ominous aura! 」
I didn’t understand the meaning of this. Contrary to the gods that were far from me, Adenela was the only one who approached me. She held my hand and stared fixedly at me.
「It…It’s a cu…curse. Did…did the caster tou…touched your hand? 」
Adenela pushed my hand up and showed me my wrist. There was a mark attached to my skin that clearly showed that someone grabbed my wrist before.
「It…It can’t be…!! 」
Then, what I saw earlier wasn’t a dream!?
「Eh, the last curse of Empress Ceremonic is “Bloody Sisteria”…! 」
I repeated aloud the lines that I’ve heard on my dream. Somehow, Aria softened her expression and smiled at me.
「Lista. Don’t worry. This is the God’s realm. There must be a way to solve this. 」
Celseus also nodded positively even though he stepped further away from me.
「Be…Besides, a goddess like you won’t die just because you were cursed! So, you don’t have anything worry about, am I right?」
「Ye…Yes…You’re right! 」
「Anyway, let’s talk with Lady Isister. 」
After I left my room with Aria, I noticed that Seiya was leaning against the wall of the temple’s corridor.
「Ah, Seiya! Wait for me here! It won’t take that long! 」
「…There’s no way that getting rid of a curse will be that quick. 」
Seiya spitted a small sigh and gradually approached me.
「I’m going with you. 」
Seiya, Aria and I headed towards the Great Goddess Isister’s room.
「Excuse us… 」
Followed by Aria; Seiya and I entered the room immediately. The Great Goddess Isister was sitting on a chair with a trouble expression on her face. She spoke before I could open my own mouth.
「Listarte’s body is covered with a black mist. It’s been a long while since I’ve seen such a strong curse as yours. Most probably, the caster exchanged her life in order to activate that curse.」
The Great Goddess Isister continued to explain.
「In the bodies of gods and heroes are the temporary souls, the “Astral Soul”. The Chain Destruction is a magical device that destroys the original soul, the “Divine Soul”, by destroying the chain that links the lifecycle core.」
Out of nowhere, the Great Goddess Isister began to talk about the Chain Destruction. I felt anxious about this particular change of topic.
「Do…Don’t tell me that…Great Goddess Isister…! 」
「That’s right. That curse has the same effect as the Chain Destruction. Your Divine Soul will be completely destroyed once that curse gets activated.」
「Do…Do you mean that I’m about to die!? 」
I felt dizzy upon realizing the harsh truth. Seiya asked the following question after Aria and I remained silent.
「Is there a way to stop the curse? 」
「I can’t read Listarte’s future because of the evil god. So, what you hear from now on is not my foreknowledge, but my guess. In order to stop the curse, you have to release it with an overwhelming power of light that surpasses this terrible curse. Or let the curse itself sense that the Divine Soul perished and went to heaven.」
Ugh! But, the phrase “the Divine Soul perished and went to heaven” meant that I had to die!
「Old hag. Isn’t this curse due to the power of the evil god? If we manage to defeat the evil god that protected Ceremonic, the curse would weaken, wouldn’t it?」
「The curse doesn’t come from the protection of the evil god, but from Ceremonic herself. And now, Ceremonic has perished but her curse remains. The curse won’t disappear even if the power of the evil god gets subsided.」
「I see. So, how much time does she have before her soul gets destroyed?」
The Great Goddess Isister gazed at my face, and then, she said the following words.
「From the amount of evil energy that covers Listarte…I’d say that the curse will be activated overnight, or probably a bit sooner than that.」
In…In one night!?
Seiya looked back at me.
「Lista. Summon the portal. 」
「First, let’s go back to Exfolia to check Ceremonic’s corpse. There may be a clue that’ll show us how to break the curse.」
I didn’t want to see Ceremonic’s body, but of course, I didn’t dare to say something like that during this perilous situation.
「Seiya. Lista. Be careful… 」
After I waved goodbye to both Aria and the Great Goddess Isister, I opened the portal that led us to the underground Proxy Room.
…After the last traps were triggered, the Proxy Room became a huge mess. The walls were partially destroyed and everything was in a terrible condition.
And then, I noticed that Ceremonic was lying in the ground with the same state as we left her.
「Huh? Seiya? 」
Suddenly, I noticed that Seiya disappeared from my side. Seiya was peeking at the room with one eye from the portal’s door.
「…What are you doing? 」
「Is Ceremonic really dead? Isn’t the effect of the curse continuing even after she died? I won’t be able to help you if I get cursed as well.」
「She…She’s already dead. I was cursed because Ceremonic grabbed my wrist. Seiya, you’ll be fine.」
Correct. Specific conditions were necessary for the activation of a powerful curse. She held my wrist for a long time before I finished her off. Therefore, I met those conditions.
Finally, Seiya slowly came out of the portal. He narrowed his eyes while he stared at Ceremonic.
「She’s dry like a mummy. Lista. Was that your power? 」
「Ye…Yes. She became like this when she got exposed to my power of light. 」
「In other words, you were cursed because you entered the Proxy Room and you tried to kill Ceremonic afterwards.」
「Hmm…I’m sorry… 」
Seiya didn’t look at me with icy eyes, even though I broke the rules of his instructions.
「Well, this is also my fault. 」
After he professed those words, Seiya began to slice Ceremonic with the sheath of his sword.
「Wha…What are you doing? 」
「I’m doing an autopsy. 」
…After that. Seiya sliced Ceremonic’s corpse without stopping. Before long, he rolled every piece with the sheath of his sword, and then, he stared at me.
「I confirm her absolute death. Now the possibility that Ceremonic remained alive and could invoke another curse has finally been eliminated.」
「So…So, that was your real purpose… 」
「Okay. Let’s meet the god that taught you that light attribute skill. 」
We gained nothing special in the Proxy Room except for merely confirming Ceremonic’s death. As usual, after sinking Ceremonic’s corpse to the core of this planet with the power of Seiya’s earth magic, we finally returned to the God’s realm.
I directed the portal right in front of the mansion with tiled roof hidden in the Heavenly Green Forest. I opened the front door made of wood, and entered the mansion of Bardul, the Goddess of Gold.
Bardul was in the tatami room. She spotted my presence and smiled at me.
「Oh my, oh my. I can see that your practice with me was a success…Whatttttttttt!!」
However, Bardul screamed when I approached her.
「Wha…What a frightening evil aura!! That’s a terrible curse!! Please go home as soon as possible!!」
Bardul brought a pot from the altar and tossed some salt at us!
「*cough cough* Wa…Wait a moment, Bardul!! I just want to talk with you… 」
「No matter how much money you offer me, it will be impossible for me to get rid of that powerful curse!! Just go back now!!」
Seeing how Baldur threw salt at us with great vigor, Seiya wrinkled his eyebrows.
「Hey. Who’s that? Is she the “Old Hag Goddess of Golden Sand”?」
「No…No, we don’t have a goddess here with that title! She should be a goddess with a light attribute, but…」
Seiya approached Bardul and grabbed the pot from her hands. Then, he moved the pot upward and put it on Bardul’s head!
「Ah!? It…It’s dark!? And…There’s salt on my eyes!! 」
Seiya began to walk away as if nothing had happened at all.
「This is a waste of time. Let’s go. 」
This time, Seiya told me to open the portal to the temple’s rooftop of the God’s realm. It seemed that his solution no.2 was to ask Valkyrie, the Goddess of Destruction, for help. Valkyrie was the one that told Seiya about the existence of Zeth, the other Goddess of War. Perhaps she knew a solution that even the Great Goddess Isister didn’t know of.
The half-naked goddess, who had chains around her body, drew an ugly picture on the rooftop today. As soon as she saw Seiya coming on her direction, she immediately put her paintbrush down.
「I understand Listarte condition. It can’t be helped though. I will take it off using my own skin. 」
Then, she put her hand on my face.
「Eh? Lady Valkyrie? 」
「It’s quite simple. The objective is to trick the curse into believing that “you’re dead” for real.」
「Wa…Wait a second, Lady Valkyrie!! Do…Do you really mean that!? 」
「Destruction Operation Method the First…“Shattered Break”! 」
I felt an overwhelming pain before my eyes blacked out.
…I regained my consciousness after a while. But, I didn’t know for sure if my consciousness was actually lucid. I saw myself falling down further away. Next to me, stood Seiya and Valkyrie. Then, my head was destroyed. It got crushed so grotesquely that it looked like a scene from a horror movie that children were forbidden to watch.
…Gyaaaaa!! I was killed by Valkyrie!? Did that mean that I was a ghost now!? Don’t joke with me, c’mon!! This was ridiculous!! But, well, if this was the only option to help me get rid of the curse, then it couldn’t be helped…
As I stared at my own fallen body, the evil aura got out from it and gradually transformed into a person’s shape! It shaped into a double-headed monster with female heads!
Because of the evil aura, Ceremonic’s lost leg and arm regained their original shape. However, Serena and Monica’s faces were full of blood.
On this precise moment! Black blood spilled from between those two heads! The skin ripped apart and a third head appeared! The new face was full of blood as well, but was hollow! I didn’t see any eyeballs on that creepy face!
For some reason, neither Seiya nor Valkyrie were aware of my ghostly existence nor the shaped form of Ceremonic. Perhaps, Ceremonic and I were different beings like ghosts or spirited bodies, or even beings that only appeared on the unconscious mind.
Ceremonic approached my fallen body; she bent her knee and muttered the following chanting words.
「Dead? Dead? Dead? Dead? Dead? Dead? 」
However, she stood up unexpectedly.
She twisted her neck abruptly and walked towards the ghostly me, who was watching the whole scene from afar! She was supposed to be blind! Then, why!
I tried to escape, but my body didn’t move! She grabbed my body and pushed it close to her bloody face! Then, she spoke with an eerie voice that sounded as if it came directly from the bottom of hell!
「You are not dead. You are not dead. You are not dead. You are not dead. You are not dead. You are not dead.」
I woke up screaming like a crazy woman.
「Are…Are you okay, Lista!? 」
Aria looked at me with a worried face.
「Ah, what? Me? 」
I looked around and saw that I were in my own room. Not to mention that, beside Aria, were Seiya, Celseus, Adenela and even Valkyrie was here. There were also other gods too. I tried to touch my face that was fully destroyed by Valkyrie, but it seemed that everything was intact.
「Listen, Aria. For how long have I been sleeping? 」
「For about two hours. Actually, while you were sleeping, we tried everything we could think of a solution to your problem. But…」
Then, I noticed that the Great Goddess Isister was in my room as well. It was very rare to see her out of her room. When I saw the Great Goddess Isister’s sad complexion…
“Ah, I see. I am beyond the point of saving”…I thought deeply about it.
I held Aria’s hand.
「Aria. I entrust you with my saving quest after I die. Please save Exfolia with Seiya and everybody else.」
「Uhhhh, Lista…! That…That’s…! 」
Aria began to cry. I stroked Aria’s head gently, and then, I spoke to Celseus.
「Listen, Celseus. Where are Kiri and John Dae? 」
「They are at my cafe. The both of them are worried about you. 」
「Please, tell them “I’m sorry”. 」
「I…I understand…Ugh…Oh no…This gloomy atmosphere…I can’t stand this anymore.」
Celseus covered his face with his hand and jumped out of my room. I looked at Seiya who stood beside me.
「Seiya. I was happy when you told me that I was “helpful this time”. I did many inexcusable things since we began the Exfolia saving quest. But I truly wanted to help you even if it was just a little. That’s why I have no regrets. I’m happy. But, you know…」
I took my last bit of courage to tell the silent Seiya the one and only desire of my heart.
「Finally, I have only one request left… 」
Everyone was watching me. Because these were my “last” moments, I didn’t feel that embarrassed or ashamed.
「You know…a Kiss…Could you grant me this request? I’m fine with a kiss on my cheek…」
I was shy, so I laughed timidly.
「Well, this isn’t about like or dislike, nor humans nor goddesses. But, just a simple kiss. You see…Haven’t you been on an adventure with me all this time? Therefore, I think I deserve a farewell kiss.」
Seiya approached me with a serious complexion.
…Ah, how sad. I won’t be able to remember this precious moment after I die.
Seiya hit my head with his fist!
A strange voice burst out of my mouth because of the strong shock! The surrounding gods began to murmur about me.
「Ah, is that what they call a human kiss!? 」
「It looked like a fist from hell to me, wasn’t it!? 」
「I…I wonder if the human kiss is actually a smack with a fist!? 」
I yelled at the gods who began to say rubbish things.
「There’s no way that this was a kiss!! It was definitely a fist!! 」
Somehow, I managed to convince the gods as they said, 「Ah, I knew it wasn’t a kiss! 」. Then, I stared furiously at Seiya and began to shout out loud.
「Hey!! What the hell did you do, damn you!! 」
Then, Seiya sighed at me.
「You’re energetic as always. 」
「How can you be like that with me until the very end!! 」
「Nobody said that this would be the end for you. Are you giving up now? Don’t you have any regrets?」
And then, Seiya stared fixedly at me with serious-looking eyes.
「Don’t give up that easily. Keep fighting until the very last moment. I decided that I won’t have any more regrets. I did it for me, so, do it for you as well.」
「There’s still some time left until the curse is fully activated. The possibility of your survival hasn’t disappeared completely. Follow me.」
「Eh, EHHHHH!? 」
He took me out of my bed by force. And so…
「Old hag. You too. 」
「Ah, yes, yes. 」
Seiya grabbed my arm and the Great Goddess Isister’s arm and ventured out of the room after pushing the gods aside.
Uffffffffff…. what a looong weeeeek, I hope all of you are enjoying your holidays 😀
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