Chapter 115: Death Flag
I returned to the cafe and told them that Seiya began his training with Chronoa. Aria was extremely surprised by this news.
「If he can master the skills of the Goddess of Time, he’ll be invincible!」
Kiriko, who was training with Adenela, spoke with a bright voice.
「A training that specializes in Time Manipulation! Mister Seiya is indeed incredible!」
「However…Is it really possible for him to learn those skills?」
I smiled at John Dae who twisted his neck with doubts.
「Well, normally, it would be impossible. But, it’s Seiya we’re talking about! So, we don’t know if he’ll learn it or not! I think there is a high chance that he’ll master those skills!」
「Hmm…By the way, goddess. Should Kiriko and I keep going with our practice? 」
「Yes. Seiya told me that you should continue with your practice. 」
「Lista. What are you going to do? 」
When Aria asked me that question, I blurted out my frustration.
「About that! Just listen to this! Seiya told me to keep playing with his toys!」
Then, Kiriko shook her arms happily at me.
「I knew it! What do you want to play today! 」
「Eh? Kiri…What do mean by “I knew it”? 」
「Ah, Mister Seiya spoke with me! He said, “While I’m in the heavenly world, try to play with Lista as much as possible”!」
「What on earth!? 」
「Please wait until my practice is complete! I’m looking forward to play with you! 」
Kiriko seemed to be innocently rejoicing at playing together with me, but I didn’t exactly feel the same way. I engrossed on my own thoughts while staring at John Dae and Kiriko, who resumed their sword practice.
『It’s a good idea to relax for once in a while. 』
Let’s see. The words that Seiya spoke to me. When did I hear them before…?
I couldn’t remember when. As I watched John Dae and Kiriko’s practice session, Mash and Elle came to my mind.
…During the time of Geabrande’s saving quest, Mash and Elle practiced in the God’s realm as well.
When I felt nostalgic, I remembered it unexpectedly.
Tha…That’s right! It was during that time! Yes, it was during the time when Seiya went alone to confront the Demon King without Mash, Elle and I!
Seiya, who had been devoted only to training and fighting, had gently recommended to relax during that time. We were delighted. Yet, that was Seiya’s way to trick us. He left us and headed for the Demon King’s Castle by himself.
Do…Don’t tell me that he planned to fight by himself once again…!? Yes, but we were in the God’s realm right now!! Seiya won’t be able to leave the God’s realm as long as I don’t open the portal to Exfolia!! Then, what was it…!?
『Ryuguuin Seiya will lose a precious person once again. This is not a prophecy. This is his determined future.』
The next thing that came to my mind was the evil god’s words. I realized something when I put all of those thoughts together.
…In…In other words, I’d die during the battle against the Demon King…!? Seiya was aware of this, and that’s why he told me to “play” and “relax”!? Was…Was this a way to enjoy my remaining time before I died…!?
When I was sentenced to death by the evil god during the fight with Ceremonic, I actually thought that I wasn’t that afraid of dying. However, I shivered when I felt that that fate could become true.
…I…I didn’t want to die!! I wanted to eat more delicious foods, I wanted to go on a trip, I wanted to be more fashionable!!
I shook my mind.
I…I had to calm down! That’s right! The Demon King could be defeated without much hassle if Seiya mastered the skill to manipulate time!
…The ongoing training with Chronoa, the Goddess of Time, seemed like the last rope for my survival.
For the next three days, I behaved cheerfully so that I could dispel my anxiety. I felt depressed when I was alone, so I talked to everyone in the cafe during the day, and stayed with Kiriko at night. I felt at ease when I was playing with Kiriko with the toys that Seiya gave to me.
And…Finally, the day had come when Seiya’s training was over.
I waited in front of the “room that stops time” and waited for Seiya to come out.
Eventually, the door opened and the hero came out.
「Seiya!! So, your training is over!! 」
I wondered what happened during his training. I couldn’t know even if I stared fixedly at Seiya’s expression. As usual, Seiya didn’t show much emotion on his face.
「So…So, did you master the skill of Time Manipulation!? 」
「I practiced for almost three days without sleep. I tried everything I could.」
「Yes, yes! And then? 」
「…It was impossible. 」
「It seems that humans can’t control the power of time. 」
「Is…Is that so… 」
I felt intensely discouraged.
So…So, that’s what happened in the end. No matter how special Seiya was…In other words, no humans nor other gods were able to control time unless it was Chronoa herself. I mean…Ugh, my Death Flag got confirmed…!
I struggled upon realizing my reality, and my knees began to shiver tremendously. Nonetheless, Seiya left me behind and walked ahead.
「Wa…Wait, Seiya! 」
I managed to follow his pace. Seiya headed towards the Great Goddess Isister’s room.
「Oh my. Ryuguuin Seiya and Listarte. 」
The Great Goddess Isister sat on a chair while she smiled at us. When I thought that Seiya would thank the Great Goddess Isister for his training with Chronoa, he said, 「I want to see the previous battle against Artemaeus with your crystal ball.」.
「It’s a simulation of the future battle with the Demon King. Old hag, don’t cut the gore scenes, okay.」
When the Great Goddess Isister held her hands on top of the large crystal ball, the image of the Demon King in his final form was shown as he slaughtered Seiya and Princess Tiana. It was a horrifying scene to watch, but Seiya continued to watch it. After finishing, he pointed his finger to the crystal ball, so that the Great Goddess Isister could rewind those scenes. After rewinding it, Seiya wanted to see it a couple of times more.
「Ho…How many times do you have to look at it? 」
「Until I’m convinced. Well, I don’t know if this simulation is useful. His undergoing evolution is probably headed towards a different vector.」
…He continued to watch those scenes for over 10 times in a row. The room became dark when the sun went down.
「Hey, Seiya…Don’t your eyes hurt? 」
「I’ll continue to watch it either way. 」
Afterwards, the Great Goddess Isister spoke to Seiya.
「Would you like me to lend you this crystal ball? 」
「That would be great. Can I rent it for a week? 」
「Eh…A…A week you say…Ye…Yes. I understand. 」
No! This wasn’t a DVD rental! How could he rent a crystal ball in the first place! The Great Goddess Isister was surprised!
Nevertheless, Seiya asked a question to the Great Goddess Isister while holding her crystal ball.
「By the way, old hag. I want to hear your opinion about this matter. Do you think there is a high chance that the Demon King will exceed the two million points in attack power if he accumulates all his power?」
「Even though he is a fearsome Demon King, he is still a life form. I think it’s unlikely that he will greatly exceed the ability value of the Crazy Warrior state brought to the limit.」
「I see. 」
「However, I can feel some anxiety over this. Regardless of those assumptions, I’m sure that he’ll have a different type of ability value…I feel that something beyond the normal will happen…」
「For that reason, I’m taking all the possible measures necessary for the upcoming battle.」
Then, Seiya proceeded to walk away. I left the room after I gave my thanks to the Great Goddess Isister.
「Pa…Pardon me, Seiya. But, how long will it take for you to complete the analysis of the Demon King?」
「It will take a while. I’ll call you when I’m ready. 」
「I see…Yes, okay. 」
My life was at stake, so I had no reason to rush things up. Thus, Seiya and I went separate ways.
A few more days had passed since then.
In the plaza of the God’s realm.
Today, John Dae and Kiriko were slashing swords with Adenela. Suddenly, Adenela stopped moving and laughed aloud.
「*laughs weirdly* Well…Well done. This…This is the end of the continuous gun…gunshot sword practice session.」
「Thank you very much! 」
「Ki…Kiriko. You…You are already my…my apprentice. 」
Kiriko was delighted when Adenela stroke her head. I rushed over to John Dae and Kiriko.
「Great! Both of you completed the training of the continuous gunshot sword technique!」
「You’re amazing, Kiri! You did it as well, John Dae! 」
「Hmm? What’s wrong? Your face isn’t thrilled. Aren’t you happy? 」
「Goddess…What is the hero doing right now? 」
「Seiya is analyzing the previous battle with the Demon King through a crystal ball.」
「Analyzing, you say. But, ten days have passed since we’ve came to the heavenly world.」
「Ah…I didn’t notice it. It’s been 10 days since then, huh…」
Speaking of which, I felt that this was the first time that we’ve stayed so long in the God’s realm. Until now, Seiya had been practicing at regular intervals. It normally took three or four days of training in the God’s realm.
「We…Well, the time flows differently in the God’s realm! It won’t be a problem since time goes extremely slow in here!」
「Even so, there are limits. You know, some people are still suffering because the Demon King still lives in Exfolia.」
John Dae was an inhabitant of Exfolia. I perfectly understood why he felt worried.
「But, you see. Seiya is doing his best to find the greatest odds possible for the fight with the Demon King.」
While I spoke with John Dae, I noticed that Seiya was walking in the distance.
…Was that person Seiya!? Did he finish his analysis with the usage of the crystal ball!?
John Dae would be angry if he saw Seiya over there. Therefore, I secretly left the cafe and followed Seiya.
Seiya walked extremely fast as usual. It was hard for me to follow him. On the other hand, I had to be careful so that he didn’t notice me. He could disappear again. So, I took a long and safe distance away from Seiya. I wondered if I became a little bit cautious.
…Seiya headed towards the “Heavenly Mountain of Seclusion”. I followed him secretly and quietly. There were crosses and stone monuments lined up in a deserted foothill on the path I followed through. I see. Seiya went to the eerie Graveyard of Gods. And right now, I saw that he talked with Nephitet, the Goddess of Seclusion, who wore a triangular white cloth on her head.
…What did he spoke with Nephitet? He already mastered the Ghostbuster technique…
I hid behind a tree from a safe distance so that I could hear Seiya’s conversation with Nephitet.
「Nephitet. I want to have a small talk with you. 」
「What’s wrong? 」
「Did you say that some gods choose to die because they had a hard time with infinite life?」
「Yes. They are the “Eta God”. 」
「What happens to the soul that dwells in that body when the god dies?」
「Everything will flow away. People, gods and even demon souls. You can be free if you release the soul that was “wrapped in chains”.」
「So, do you mean that those souls could be reborn? 」
「I don’t know much about it. There are souls who will, and there are souls who will not. But, if you don’t die, you won’t know. It’s far better than being stuck in chains.」
「I see. 」
Seiya began to walk away and left Nephitet behind. I swallowed my raw saliva when I watched the whole scene.
…No….No doubt about it!! He had been thinking about what to do if I died for real!!
My whole body trembled because of the outburst of emotions that the Death Flag inflicted on me. On this moment, someone touched my head and I screamed very high.
「I…I’m truly sorry. It seems that I startled you. 」
In front of me, stood a goddess I’ve never seen before. It seemed that she was mourning because she had a very sad expression on her face. In fact, she was a very beautiful goddess with a clear white skin, but she had a very slender figure and seemed somewhat bald.
「I am Napoon. Nice to meet you. 」
「Ah, ye…yes, likewise! I am Listarte! 」
「Listarte…You have a very nice name. 」
The goddess named Napoon spoke to me with a lonely smile.
「Listarte, did you also come here as an Eta God? 」
「You…You’re wrong!! I’m not an Eta!! 」
「Oh my. It seemed that you were lost since you didn’t descend through the old steps.」
「Please don’t say such a creepy thing to me…Wait a second!! Did you say “Listarte, did you also…”!? Tha…That is…In other words…」
Napoon smiled at me with a lonely expression.
「Yes, that’s right. I came here as an Eta. 」
「Wa…Wa…Wa…Wait a moment!! If you came here as an Eta, does that mean that you came here to die!? Are you really sure about that!?」
「Of course, I’ve thought about it for a long time. And I came to this conclusion. Lady Isister gave me her permission as well.」
「Bu…But, that’s…!! You see, actually, you know…there will be many gods who’ll grieve if you die, Lady Napoon!!」
「Yes, probably. It’s hard when I think about it. But beyond that, infinite life is harder.」
Napoon looked at the sun of the God’s realm with far-distance eyes. I didn’t know what to say anymore.
「Moments ago, I saw a human being talking with Lady Nephitet. Was that human, perhaps your hero?」
「He seemed like a very wonderful hero. I used to summon heroes as well. But, that was a long time ago…」
「Then…Then, just continue to summon heroes to save earthly worlds! I’ll gladly cooperate with you if you need some help!」
「Thank you. But, my decision remains unchanged. 」
Napoon took a step away from me.
「Listarte. Which one do you think it’s the worst? Those who leave or those who are left behind?」
「You will understand it soon. 」
Then, Napoon shook hands with me.
「I was happy to talk with you. Take care… 」
I went back to the temple with miserable feelings. I went to Aria’s room to talk about it.
「I see. So, Napoon is… 」
Aria exhaled deeply.
「She told me about her decision before… So, it was today. I’ll miss her dearly.」
「Aria, did you personally know that goddess? 」
「Yes. She was a serious and gentle goddess. 」
「If so, then why… 」
「There are many gods in the God’s realm. It doesn’t surprise me that many of them will have different ways of thinking.」
「Bu…But, she decided to die! 」
Then, Aria smiled softly at me.
「That’s because gods have free will. 」
There were many gods in the God’s realm, and every single god had its own way of thinking. So, the god’s free will combined with personality could ultimately lead to the conclusion that dying could be an option. Even so…
I became curious about something before I left Aria’s room.
「By the way. What kind of goddess was Lady Napoon? 」
「Napoon was the “Goddess of Ballpoint* Handwriting”. 」
「Is that so!? 」
I walked alone in the temple after parting ways with Aria.
Why did a god want to die after becoming a deity that could live forever? Napoon…Sorry, but I don’t understand it after all.
I was born in the God’s realm, and I couldn’t even imagine how a god could wish for death because he or she was disgusted with eternal life. I wanted to live a long life no matter what.
…Moreover…Napoon was a goddess with Ballpoint Handwriting skills…How did she support her heroes?
I went to Kiriko’s room to play. I needed some distraction, as my head was hurting so badly because of things I couldn’t even understand.
*A ballpoint pen, also known as a biro or ball pen, is a pen that dispenses ink (usually in paste form) over a metal ball at its point, i.e. over a “ball point”.
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