(Thank you Kizarat, Rodolfo, Roanz, Aaron, Kam for helping me with proofreading on the Live Draft! <3)
ALL RIGHTS BELONG TO TAPPEI NAGATSUKI, THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR OF RE:ZERO, THIS IS A TRANSLATION OF THE FREE JAPANESE WEB NOVEL INTO ENGLISH
JAPANESE WEB NOVEL SOURCE: HTTP://NCODE.SYOSETU.COM/N2267BE/229/
THE EVERLASTING COVENANT
Chapter 63 [An Empathy Towards Death]
The sounds of amethyst shards piercing into flesh rang out in quick succession, as a mist of glittering fragments dispersing from the impact drowned out the hall.
Countless spears shot towards Elsa’s body from every direction, and she would have been punctured with a million pores.
“Victory is assured”. But even as he watched the murderer being crushed under the overwhelming power of Beatrice’s magic, he couldn’t stifle the ominous feeling exploding inside his chest.
――What was it, what was it that he had forgotten? There was something that he mustn’t forget.
What could it be? Even as he tried to pry it from his memories, the cascade of emotions turned him away.
Just what was Elsa’s goal in coming to the Mansion? After finding Frederica’s body, his shame of having suspected her had thrown his heart into disarray. He had never quite accepted Petra’s death, nor could he suppress his anxiousness to confirm Rem’s safety behind the door. All these emotions screamed from the depths of his being. And Beatrice―― what was it that he needed to tell Beatrice?
What was it? Subaru couldn’t find the answer to the question confounding his heart.
And so, he missed the opportunity to prevent what he should have prevented.
[Subaru: ――egh, ah?]
An object flew out of the glistening radiance, and dug deep into Subaru’s right shoulder.
Looking towards the source of the pain, his thoughts turned red hot as he saw the blood pouring from the gash. His throat shrieked as if he was being strangled as the projectile’s momentum pushed him off his feet, flat onto the floor.
[Beatrice: How……!? That was a direct hit I suppose!?]
Seeing the wounded Subaru, Beatrice cried out in shock.
Hearing Beatrice’s cry beneath his scorching thoughts, it was only then that he remembered. He remembered it. Yes. It was a direct hit. There was no doubt about it. But,
[Elsa: No need to cry out so passionately, I can hear you just fine]
From his hatred, inflamed by the pain, it was a rupturing scream unlike the shriek from before. And, in reply, amidst the falling crystals at the other end of the hallway―― an alluring, unhurried voice answered, with no indication of the life or death exchange that had just transpired.
[Beatrice: She’s uninjured… how’s that possible]
[Elsa: If I was naked, I’d have probably died from that]
Watching Beatrice shake her head in disbelief, Elsa replied with her french braid swaying. Nothing about her looked like she had just taken a direct hit from Beatrice’s magic. In fact, she appeared exactly as she did before.
Except, there was just one difference. She had cast off her feathered cloak, and was now only wearing the black outfit underneath.
[Subaru: Her magic-nullifying cloak!]
[Elsa: It’s already the second time you got to see it. Too bad you’re a bit late to tell that girl about it]
No single word could sufficiently express his regret as rage boiled beneath his pain.
Elsa’s cloak had the ability to cancel one magical strike. ――That was something he had personally witnessed during their showdown inside the Capital.
The fact that Beatrice’s strike came so suddenly, combined with their lack of coordination beforehand, had all led to this unforgivable blunder.
[Beatrice: Now that I know your trick, it’s not so surprising anymore]
[Elsa: ――Wonderful. Oh just wonderful. Such strength, and so adorable. Unlike some girl who only knows how to whimper and cry, I am very much looking forward to the warmth of your bowels]
Beatrice’s aura intensified once more as Elsa twirled the Kukri-knife in her hand and smiled. From her words, accompanied by her bloodied smile―― it was obvious who “the whimpering girl” was referring to. And the instant he realized it, Subaru’s rage erupted.
[Subaru: What gives you the right to talk about Petra like that――!!]
The throwing knife jutting out of his right shoulder―― was hooked at the tip to hinder its removal. Yet, gritting his teeth at the object buried in his flesh, Subaru tore it out in a single stroke.
Intense pain dyed his vision true-red, and he could feel his right arm being crippled of its functionality. And then, ignoring his injury, Subaru hurled the dislodged knife back at Elsa.
Though he had thrown it with all his strength, it was still a haphazard throw with no prior training.
The fact that it flew straight towards Elsa was already half a miracle, and the same went for its speed. But it was obvious that such an attack would have no effect on a murderer with agility beyond human comprehension.
[Elsa: I admire your spirit, but if this is all y――]
[Subaru: I’ll wring out every drop! SHAMAC――!!]
As Elsa readied for the incoming attack, the third Shamac escaped Subaru’s trembling throat.
Drawing out the last of his body’s exhausted mana after his first and second casts, Subaru expelled his life force through his inexperienced gate as payment for his chant.
Blood shot through his eyes and leaked from his nose. And then, the scream of his soul was answered.
Darkness spread through the center of the hallway, filling the space between him and Elsa. The knife that Subaru had thrown flew into the jet of smoke. Shooting through the obscuring darkness, it stayed its course towards Elsa―― its trajectory shielded from view.
[Subaru: Please hit――!]
[Elsa: You startled me there, but it’s not hard to just step out of the way]
Elsa threw in a complaint as she lowered her body to dodge out of its path.
Subaru’s Shamac fell short of reaching her, and thus allowed her to evade at the last moment.
Flying out of the smokescreen, the small knife missed its original owner’s body and continued down towards the end of the hall. And, just like that, Subaru’s attack ended in vain――or so it seemed, when,
[Beatrice: Don’t just call me that all of a sudden, I suppose――!]
If Subaru had been the only one present, the attack would have ended there.
But there were two people standing against Elsa――and the other girl had already used the time Subaru managed to buy to complete her next chant.
[Beatrice: Now allow me to show you. ――What Dark Magic truly is]
Was it Subaru or Elsa who tried to say this?
Even that was impossible to tell after Beatrice’s next action.
Clasping her small hands in front of her chest, Beatrice mouthed something under her breath. And, with a single phrase, the world was painted over.
[Beatrice: ――Ul Shamac]
――In a scale completely unlike Subaru’s imitation Dark Magic, genuine “Darkness” enveloped the Mansion.
※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※
When he came to his senses, Subaru was surrounded by pitch blackness.
Actually, even whether he was conscious was uncertain.
Where was he? Was he standing or was he seated? He couldn’t tell at all.
Up, down, left, right, even front or back was vague. Was he inhaling or was he exhaling? Was his blood still flowing? Was his heart still beating? Was he alive? Or was he already dead?
He couldn’t understand a thing. He couldn’t answer any of it. If he was inside his own Shamac, there would still be the sensations at the soles of his feet, and he could at least feel the movements inside his body. Even if he was denied all sensory input, there would still be his sharpened inner awareness to take its place.
But not in this darkness.
Here, it was as if he had dissolved into the shadow, and he couldn’t find himself if he tried.
Was he still in the form of a human? He could no longer be sure. He couldn’t sense the whereabouts of his hands, and so he couldn’t even touch himself to verify. Even if he wanted to check where he was, he wouldn’t know how to tell his legs to walk. What does it mean to walk? What does it mean to check?
――Most of all, just who was he supposed to be?
The line where he stopped and where others began was blurring.
The line where he stopped and where the world began was blurring.
Even the strength to think had melted away. Faded. Vanished.
And just like this, and just like this, and just like this――
The end had come.
The end had.
※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※
I’m trying to catch up on some sleep… I really hope the part isn’t too clunky >_<
I’ll take a nap for a couple hours and get started on Part 2!
Please let me know if you find any typos ❤
Chapter 63 Live Draft: