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Volume 2, Epilogue

Once it was over, it almost seemed too easy.

Tselika and possessed Gruagach had vanished from Earth.

The Krakens and Scyllas they had released into the city had still been crawling around, but they had likely been held here by the Summon Hunter. With their master gone, the monsters rampaging through the city had also vanished into thin air.

Once the threat was gone, things moved quickly.

The world-class city with more than 10 million residents swiftly resumed functioning.

“Boo,” said Boo Boo when Beatrice visited to Ground’s Nir to report on the situation. “Beatrice, I picked up that Gruagach person. Humans will damage their body if they stay here too long, so get her back to her world.”

“Thanks, Boo Boo.”

Gruagach had her own circumstances and her body had been hijacked through the blue scorpion armor, but she was not exactly innocent. They were sure to find plenty of new facts if they looked into how she had gained her connection to Tselika.

That said, it would be too much to leave her to the devastation of Ground’s Nir.

It would be best if she returned to Earth, atoned for her crimes, and recovered from there.

“By the way, Beatrice. I noticed something strange.”


Boo Boo tilted his head and did not stop there.

“When I picked up Gruagach, that Tselika person wasn’t there,” he explained.


“Since she was being pulled toward your world by Gruagach, maybe she landed somewhere else after letting go of Gruagach.”

The Detached Magic Palace was a cleared area in the center of Roppongi, Tokyo.

With the commotion over, the 3 of them gathered in one place once more.

“Given my job, I’d really prefer to avoid anything that stands out so much,” sighed the glasses woman in a tight skirt.

The only one looking more uncomfortable than her was the fluffy blonde coke bottle glasses shrine maiden.

“You never told me you were working with the police or an external sector or whatever. I kind of fired a gun right in front of you, so what’s going to happen to me now?”

“That’s part of what this meeting is about. And I see both of you wear glasses.” The red dress girl winked. “Well, you saw how badly the JSDF and riot police failed. They won’t want to dig their own graves, so I seriously doubt they’ll do any real investigation into what happened during all that.”

“To be blunt, you’re the one in the most dangerous position here.” The tight skirt woman sounded exasperated. “Most of the problems will be swept under the rug, but the Information Broker group isn’t going to turn a blind eye to this. The red Holy Swordswoman left the Detached Magic Palace without a central vote granting permission. Something’s bound to happen, so be careful.”

“That’s my problem.”

The long black twintail girl shrugged and moved onto the next topic.

Seeing that, the fluffy blonde glasses shrine maiden and the tight suit woman both bowed.

They went past 45 degrees for a full 90 degrees.

“Sorry for everything!!”

“I won’t use my job as an excuse. I deceived you either way!!”

But the red dress girl only sighed.

“Deceived me? But I never told you everything about myself either. Like that I was confined to the Detached Magic Palace. It’s not like I wasn’t hiding anything. You’d just investigated it yourselves and tricked yourselves into thinking I was blameless, right?”

“But...but I reported on Boo Boo. I even mentioned the secret of his Shining Weapon and the souls of the Iberian Orcs! That has to be your biggest weakness!!”

“It doesn’t really matter if people know that.”

“Um, to get an idea of how powerful you are, I secretly measured the Percentage-style Magic you wear...and that means I gave them your measurements. Like your chest size!”

“Okay, let’s take this outside, cow.”

There was the occasional piercing comment, but it was generally peaceful.

They already trusted each other.

Small cracks like this were not enough to break that trust.

“More importantly, I want to ask about Tselika.”

“She was a fake, you know?”

With that comment, the busty shrine maiden pulled out her smartphone so the others could see.

It displayed the information site she ran.

“The Succubus name is just something the humans gave her, so she isn’t actually one. She’s a similar race that lives in Ground’s Nir, so don’t forget that not all the legends found on Earth are going to apply.”

“Yes, yes. Can we move on?”

“Apparently, most demons don’t have a physical body. And that includes the major demons like Lord Satan and Lord Beelzebub. That’s why they either hijack a human body or whisper in people’s ears to tempt them into evil deeds. Well, that’s the interpretation anyway.”

“Yeah? And that’s why Tselika used that armor and that blood oil to control that twisted star student named...what is it? Gruagach?”

“Yes,” confirmed the shrine maiden with her fluffy blonde hair tied back in a long tube shape. “But that explanation doesn’t hold for a certain type of demon: the Succubus. Those demons do evil, well, uh...sleeping with humans, so they can’t fulfill their role without a physical body of their own, right?”


“A variety of theories have been proposed at religious councils, but the standard ones are that they create a temporary body in some way or that they can choose at will to be tangible or intangible.”

In that case...

An unpleasant silence fell over the 3 of them.

“What if Tselika was able to maintain a physical body with enough power to continue interfering with Earth through the thin barrier even without using Gruagach as an anchor?”

“Are you saying she might have escaped just before that star student was thrown through the Gate...?”

That was only one possibility.

There was no basis to it.

They would not allow it to be true.

It was simply known as the conference room.

It had no grand title and it was not assigned a number.

It had no luxurious chairs or desks and not fancy interior decoration. Not even a single bottle of tea was provided. In fact, even the rectangular space did not really exist.

It was no more than a community on a secret network.

It was used by liaison councils so that recovery preparations could be swiftly made if any sudden and devastating damage were done to Tokyo by a disaster or other emergency. It was essentially the electronic version of decentralization.

But some had found other value in its anonymity and it had become a den of evil.

“We can put off recovery operations for the capital until later.”

“The topic at hand is how to deal with Holy Swordswoman Beatrice.”

“That was not good at all.”

“This problem is on the same level as suddenly losing contact with a submarine carrying a nuke. Depending on how the other nations interpret this, the tension could reach the breaking point.”

The speakers had no names and were not assigned numbers. They gave no thought to each other’s identities or influence. That was what allowed them to have a fair vote without laying out all sorts of groundwork first.

It did not matter who was speaking.

They only cared that they arrived at the correct answer.

They had none of the cheap pride of someone who felt joy in showing off their knowledge.

“Then what shall we do? Disposing of her would be a loss for the nation.”

“She is meaningless if she cannot be controlled.”

“The five great regional cities have found their next candidates: an Ice Waterfall Princess and a Noble Dancer. Leaving this to them is always an option.”

“We cannot decide that so easily.”

“That is what the conference room is for. Let us vote, as always.”

An anonymous vote was much like abandoning responsibility. 𝓲n𝑛𝓻ℯ𝗮d. 𝚌o𝒎

Even if the result was a failure, they could not be personally criticized. They had all made the decision together, which softened any guilt they might feel.

That allowed them to present bolder opinions without fear, but it also introduced the danger of turning toward more extreme and escalated opinions without giving them the appropriate thought.

Policy was leaning toward abandoning the people of Tokyo and building up more regional areas, but that may have been the influence of this conference room.

“Tselika’s plan could never have reached fruition if Beatrice had not acted.”

“She has been carrying out her duty of gathering Pieces for the benefit of Japan. I was willing to turn a blind eye if she had a little bit of fun, but this is too much.”

“I am also concerned about the Iberian Orc who is in contact with her.”

“I heard that the Shining Weapon that Nonhuman carries has his fellow Iberian Orcs’ souls stored inside as data. That is an irregularity equal to or even greater than Tselika.”

“That too could lead to Nonhumans crossing between the 2 worlds.”

“Should we confiscate it?”

“How about we leave that to Beatrice? As a way to make up for her own crime.”

The irresponsible exchange began shifting in a certain direction and reached its completion when a cruel essence began to grow. Just like always. And no one questioned the way things were developing.

They were all chuckling in front of monitors separated by great distances, but there was no real meaning to this.

They had no idea that their conversation was being monitored with all of their real names attached.

(Now, then. I need to keep those idiots talking themselves in endless circles like always.)

They saw themselves as kings, but god would not let them look down on others.

That privilege was something god lent to the king.

(Messing with Beatrice now would be foolish to the extreme. Why would they start another fire when Tselika’s conflagration still hasn’t been completely put out? I will admit these people are geniuses when it comes to exasperating an old woman like me. As usual.)

If those intrusive and influential people were given important-looking chairs to sit at, they would gladly enter the cage. And while their entirely meaningless discussions bought some time, the old woman only had to casually guide their opinions to turn them into the perfect puppets. They could hold a 4-hour meeting and be guided to an answer in the last 5 minutes and yet never question it, so it was impressive in a way.

(What are you going to do now, Tselika Wien Alpha Chelydia Lumidrier? The delayed recovery of the city really hurt us. Particularly the surveillance network. That’s how she managed to disappear.)

Several messages danced within the email software displayed in another frame on the screen.

They had been sent to the Ushigashira Shrine.

They were discussing a dinner party for the Yokohama Summit.

“The G22... The leaders of 22 leading and developing nations. Has she attached herself to one of them?”

If that happened, they would not be able to simply gather up anyone suspicious in a sort of witch hunt. The false accusations would develop into international incidents and this country would become isolated. But if nothing was done and all those leaders returned home, it would be difficult to reach Tselika. If she controlled the leader of a great nation that influenced international society as a whole, she could slowly tighten her grip on Japan from a safe zone and she would have no reason to stay in one place. If she continued moving from person to person while ignoring the pyramid structure of human society, it would be impossible to capture her.

(But that’s only if she remains 100% wary of humans. If we let her go this time, she might get carried away and make a mistake. I even have the perfect bait for her with the conference room.)

The old woman thought coldly but then sighed.

Instead of her enemy, her thoughts turned to a carefree person: a shrine maiden with fluffy blonde hair and coke bottle glasses.

“Enjoy the time you have, demon lord. But even if I have to use the conference room as a breakwater and even if I have to sacrifice myself, I will not let you reach the shrine maiden princess.”

It was a moonlit evening.

A red dress girl slowly walked around the large garden after finishing dinner. Her smartphone had received a message from an unknown sender.

The account’s image icon was a cherry blossom petal.

“Hello, Holy Swordswoman. I’m just going to assume you already know it’s impossible to send messages from Ground’s Nir.”


Since she was confined to the Detached Magic Palace, the girl’s internet environment was also monitored, but this message had been sent despite that. The sender was either an idiot or protected by something even greater than this nation’s monitoring system.


“Even I was surprised. I honestly had no plan once I lost Gruagach. I never imagined something else would anchor me here.”

Beatrice had asked the maids to investigate that after the fact.

“That” being what Tselika had buried below a certain cherry tree.

“Did you find his hairs?”

She did not answer.

“They decompose so quickly, don’t they? Was it the dirt, the bugs, or the water? Did they reach an underground vein of water, or did they turn to vapor and enter the atmosphere? That anchor has dispersed too much for anyone to locate it now. And that is why I can remain here forever. All while I possess person after person.”

The girl could do nothing as the answers kept coming.

“I achieved my goal. You got in my way, Beatrice, but I never could have crossed between worlds without your help. Although it would seem my plan to fake my death just wasn’t good enough. Still, you helped me more than you hindered me, so I decided to thank you directly.”

This device was being monitored.

It would be meaningless to ask to have the signal traced. If Tselika could not be located in this environment, there was nothing else they could do.

“What do you plan to do?”

“I wanted to stand before the cherry blossoms with his hairs. But now that I have completed that top priority, more and more desires are rising within me. I think I will enjoy a comfortable life. Rest easy, Beatrice. I will have nothing more to do with you. I will not hound you forever and ever.”

It was in fact the red dress girl who had business with Tselika.

By sending her influence through the thin barrier between worlds, Tselika had rampaged through Tokyo without actually crossing that barrier, but to prepare for that, she had placed her soul and traces of herself inside Gruagach’s armor and soft skin, had Gruagach pass through the Gate, and intentionally let the filter between worlds catch her soul.

Which meant one thing: she had achieved the twintail girl’s final objective.

Namely, to retrieve the Iberian Orc souls from Boo Boo’s Shining Weapon, give them physical bodies, and free them.

Tselika had a portion of the answer.

“It’s no use. Give up on capturing me and getting me to talk. My technique is mine and mine alone. I will not let even the greatest nation touch that crystallization of what I created for him. But it is possible. You need to find satisfaction in that information alone.”

The cherry blossom petal message seemed to answer the girl’s questions in advance.

That would be another reason why Tselika was remaining on Earth instead of returning to Ground’s Nir where she could be hunted down by pure numbers. It was not for her own safety but to ensure the technique connected to her memories was not stolen.

And the red dress girl realized she hoped that was the case.

If it was, she would not have to despise that demon.

“I don’t really gain anything from this. I just wanted to present a bit of a question to you.”

“Just get to the point,” urged the girl.

“Passing between worlds sounds simple enough, but it is more than just an issue of distance. And I have heard whisperings of an interesting theory in this world: the theory of relativity. It would seem that time and distance are closely related.”

The message was just text, but it carried real emotion.

It contained some amusement but also some fear.

“Then doesn’t the technology to transcend that distance also carry the possibility of interfering with that other closely-related concept? Namely, time. His home was covered in shadows and run down. But was that really due to the cruelty of this world? Is it also possible that there was a barrier of time as well as space when passing between worlds? That possibility scares me a little.”


“Then again, that doesn’t really hold up when you look at it from a causality perspective. And I technically haven’t really traveled between worlds, so you should assume I have no idea what I’m talking about. That said, it is possible those Gates could be used for something entirely different if the conditions were right.”

Tselika had likely lost interest.

Just as she had arrived without warning, she ended the conversation without warning.

Just like a cherry blossom that scattered into the wind even though everyone wished it could stay in bloom forever.

But first she left one final message:

“Be careful. If you let your guard down, someone you trust might trip you up when you least expect it. Just like this demon did.”

Round Boo Boo was small and looked like a stuffed animal. He was in high spirits this morning. Everyone was afraid of the Iberian Orcs, but he still had a friend. When he was with her, he would lose track of time.

The friend he had met in the forest was named Beatrice.

“Boo Boo. Do you want to go deeper into the forest today? There’s a waterfall that creates a big rainbow and we can catch a ton of fish there.”

“Let’s go, let’s go!! Fish are hard to eat with all their little bones, but I’ve heard catching lots of fish means you’ve grown up!!”

“Boo Boo. The nobler sign of growing up is that you have someone who will make food for you and who will be waiting for you to come home.”

“But I want to learn how to hunt. If I can catch my own food, then I’ve really grown up. And then I can make lunches for you, Beatrice!”

With that decided, he had to go get his fishing pole.

Unfortunately, he could not tell Beatrice about the Iberian Orc village. Not only its location but also that they even lived as a group like that. The village was located quite near the Labyrinth’s entrance, but only they knew about its existence. Once everyone in the village knew more about Beatrice and accepted that she was a good person, they were sure to give permission.

So Boo Boo returned to the village alone, grabbed a fishing pole, and turned right back around.

He met someone on the way.

She wore red armor.

She wore a giant Shining Weapon on her back that could be mistaken for a log or steel beam.

She had the sexy bodylines of an adult woman and her silver and red hair fluttered behind her.


Most humans responded with fear when they saw Boo Boo or the other Iberian Orcs. Some would even throw stones. Since everyone in the village told him they were panicking rather than angry, he could not hate them for it, but it did make him sad. He really wished he did not have to feel like this before going to play with Beatrice.

However, she did not seem bothered by seeing him.

For some reason, she looked sad even though she was smiling.

“Get going. Hurry along.”

She gently moved aside so Boo Boo could continue down the path with his fishing pole in both hands.

“Go be with your friend before the circle closes.”

He may have been overthinking it.

There may have been no displeasure on her face.

But when he calmly observed her, he felt like she was barely containing something inside her.

“Are you okay?”


“You look like you’re about to cry. I’ve never seen someone look like that. I know what to do if you have a stomachache or a toothache. There are a lot of different fruits and caterpillars in the forest and you can combine them into a medicine.”

But nothing more happened when he walked closer.

The red armor woman said nothing more, turned her back, and left.

Boo Boo tilted his head.

“I guess she didn’t have a stomachache or toothache.”

That was his conclusion.

Beatrice had to be waiting for him, so he started running with fishing pole in hand.

What would have happened if he had questioned that encounter?

Why had that woman been on a secret animal trail no human had been told about?

And if she was headed in the opposite direction, did that mean she was on her way to the village?

Meanwhile, the red armor woman carrying a large sword felt a tightness in her chest.

But she continued walking along the animal trail. That was all she did. She could not look back given what she was about to do. And if she did look back, the others would notice.

That was when she heard a rustling in the surrounding bushes.

Those people would not do so by mistake. They were elites that had received the standardized training of an allied nation. That meant this was an intentional signal to tell her they were there. They were telling her they were not enemies and everything was going as planned.

The circle around the village had closed.

Now no one could escape.

“I assume you’re the Elkiad I was told about.”

When she responded vocally, a man stepped out of the bushes to answer in kind. The gray-haired man was their leader. Even at his age and even with the dignity he had built up, he still could not leave these dangerous scenes. That man who had married war laughed and answered her in a deep voice.

“That’s right, wanderer. Our preparations are complete. You didn’t miss anyone on the way here, did you?”

“No, I didn’t see anyone at all. They are all in the village.”

She casually lied.

She did not look back.

“Then let’s get this search-and-destroy mission started, Beatrice. We have high hopes for your work here.”

On that day, Boo Boo had lots of fun. He fished with a girl who seemed like an older sister yet retained her innocence and then he excitedly returned to the village expecting everyone to praise him. When he showed them the basket full of fish, they were sure to accept that Beatrice was an amazing person and they would let him tell her where the village was.

But by then, it was all over and nothing remained.

Nothing at all.

No one at all.

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