(Thank you Kizarat, Roanz, Rodolfo, Brototype, Patrick, Poppy, Aaron, Federico, Thomas, Floating Feather, Daisuke, Kam, Soriosh, Zazorok, Dre am, Cy3lon, Tamas, Daisuke, Danny, White Rice, Mariuz +(still counting) 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/233/
Seeing the assembly of identical girls lined up in a row, Roswaal turned his single eye towards Subaru,
[Roswaal: And here I thought the command authority was transferred back to Garfiel?]
[Subaru: We were venturing into the maybe-mastermind’s den, after all. ――Of course we had to stack our hands first]
――The exchange took place after his argument with Garfiel outside the Tomb.
After persuading Garfiel to go on ahead, Subaru went to the crystal room and transferred the command authority back to himself.
Then, he ordered the Lewes replicants to surround the building where Roswaal was recuperating and to prepare to break inside in case of emergency.
Rem, who had temporarily been Garfiel’s hostage, was entrusted to the current representative Lewes-personality, who brought her to the Cathedral, where the rest of the residents and Arlam villagers had taken refuge.
He had taken all these measures on the assumption that Roswaal was the culprit.
――Although, naturally, Subaru never anticipated that Roswaal would kill Garfiel and Ram.
[Roswaal: So, what do you wish to do, now that you ha~~ve me surrounded?]
[Subaru: The fact that you’re that strong with your bare hands was a surprise, but you’re outnumbered. If a single beastified Garfiel could give you trouble, you’ll probably have a hard time when you’re swarmed……]
The reason Roswaal skewered Ram along with Garfiel was because he wasn’t confident facing Garfiel in direct combat. And although there was no question that Roswaal was infinitely stronger than Subaru――
[Subaru: Twenty of them should be about enough to overwhelm you. We’ll beat you up, pin you down, and make sure you spit out everything that you’re still hiding]
[Roswaal: You should know how important it is to uphold the terms of one’s contract, being bound by si~~milar ones yourself?]
[Subaru: Too bad, mine was kinda one-sided forced on me without me having any say in the matter and just punishes me whenever I violate it. This time it hasn’t come though, so I’m still in the safe-line!]
With over twenty people crammed inside, the small house was packed to the brim.
Obeying Subaru’s signal, the emotionless Lewes replicants surged towards Roswaal as a sea of faces.
Meeting their charge with his bare hands, Roswaal could only handle two at a time.
His manipulation of the weather outside had become his own downfall. Deprived of the use of his magic, Roswaal would only be swarmed by sheer numbers.
Subaru figured that while it would be close, victory was assured.
[Roswaal: ――I may be outnumbered]
[Roswaal: But when your opponent is a mage, trying to overpower him with sheer numbers is just an overly fo~~olish decision]
At the fall of his voice, an infernal flame swept through the room, and every Lewes Meyer replicant caught in its path was scorched to their core.
In the matter of an instant, their small, charging bodies were incinerated from head to toe by the wall of flames, reduced to ash and to the mana from whence they came.
All this, in Subaru’s eyes, was nothing more than a momentary wave of heat and light that had flashed across the room.
[Subaru: How’re you… still using magic……?]
[Roswaal: I wouldn’t have been able to if I was still controlling the weather. Unfo~~rtunately, I have already lost any reason to sustain this snowfall. So it’s been a while since I’ve stopped. Sorry, I suppose I should’ve told you ea~~rlier]
[Subaru: Wh―― gh, kha]
In Subaru’s moment of confusion, Roswaal flashed forward and took him by the throat. He didn’t know where those slender wrists had gotten that kind of strength, but he felt his legs leaving the ground as Roswaal lifted him writhing into the air.
Crashing backwards through a half-shattered windowpane and out of the building, Subaru landed in the snow, rolling until he was stopped by a wall.
Spitting out the mixture of mud and snow in his mouth, he lifted up his face.
The remaining Lewes replicants quietly followed Roswaal out of the building. Since they were given no further orders, they appeared at a loss as to what to do.
But Subaru was just as lost as to what to tell them.
[Roswaal: Even after all this, you still wouldn’t rewi~~nd… O~~r, perhaps you already have? Come to think of it, what happens to my consciousness when the world has rewound is still a complete mystery to me. Now, this is qu~~ite the predicament]
Walking over to Subaru’s side, Roswaal tilted his head.
Looking up at the clown’s face amidst the suffocating pain, an abrupt question escaped Subaru’s lips.
[Subaru: ros… waal…… you keep on asking me to rewind over and over, but……]
[Roswaal: Mm? You have something impo~~rtant to say? Let’s hear it, let’s hear it]
[Subaru: You’re the one I’ve got a problem with here. Doing all this on the assumption that someone else has the ability to rewind the world… you must be out of your mind…… unless, you actually have…]
A way to carry over your memories?
Could Roswaal also have the ability to read the memories of the previous worlds, just like Echidona in her Dream Citadel?
If not, then his blind desire to reset the world would just be far too incomprehensible.
[Subaru: If not… that’s fine. But, if you do… perhaps you and I… could……]
Roswaal’s goals were mysterious and unknown, and he had done many unforgivable things.
Subaru would never forgive him for the murder of Ram and Garfiel or the way he had cornered Emilia. But Subaru was in no position to discard Roswaal’s strength out of emotion. In fact, he needed it badly.
If you’re going to eat poison―― or however that saying goes, assuming it applies here, Subaru was also prepared to lick the plate.
[Roswaal: ――It seems, that is no~~t to be]
But Subaru’s thin sliver of hope was severed by a shake of Roswaal’s head.
Roswaal turned away from Subaru’s downcast eyes, and pointed towards the end of his gaze,
A small flame rose up, setting the corner of the forest where Roswaal was looking at alight.
Subaru blinked at the abrupt act of destruction, when he heard, amidst the noise of crackling wood, yet another sound.
――It was the sound of a small, small animal dying.
[Subaru: ――No, way]
[Roswaal: I~~ see. ……So this is how the end comes]
Springing to his feet, Subaru’s face paled as he scanned his surroundings. Simultaneously, Roswaal shifted his posture, and with several crisp snaps of his fingers, the scent of burning flesh and shrill, ear-splitting cries coursed throughout the Sanctuary.
Then, when a charred corpse landed in front of his eyes with a thud, Subaru clearly understood.
[Subaru: great.. rabbit……!!]
It was one of the Great Rabbits.
As they began slowly trickling out of the forest, Roswaal burned them one by one with his magic. And even as they came in droves, they remained Roswaal’s prey.
No matter how great their numbers grew, they could gain no ground against Roswaal. Witnessing this, a terror gripped Subaru’s heart and would not let go.
Every time he closed his eyes, the memory of being eaten by razor sharp teeth would be revived.
The sense of loss, the experience of having his fingers, body, and organs ripped to shreds was beyond description.
Subaru could hear his very soul shrieking at the sight of the Mabeasts’ approach.
[Subaru: But this is only the fifth day…… there should still be half a day left!]
[Roswaal: It’s the snow]
[Roswaal: Where there is magic powerful enough to manipulate the weather, naturally, the atmosphere would be oversaturated with mana. Not to mention that everyone in the Sanctuary has gathered inside the Cathedral thanks to the snow. For a nearby Mabeast, this is an all too enticing fe~~eding ground]
[Then…….], Subaru shuddered at Roswaal’s quiet observation.
Following his logic, the single most dangerous place in the Sanctuary during the Great Rabbits’ attack would be――
[Subaru: Th-the Cathedral! We have to hurry to the Cathedral……!]
[Roswaal: It’s too late. The moment they came for the few of us here, it meant that the prey-less masses were already on the move. ――There is no~~ one left]
[Subaru: But! That’s where……!]
Having entrusted her to Lewes, that was where Rem was taken. Alongside the Sanctuary’s residents and the refugees from Arlam village, there would be over a hundred people in the Cathedral.
With everyone gathered there, he didn’t even want to think about it.
[Subaru: Roswaal! Truce! Anyway, let’s get to the Cathedral! We’ll collect the survivors, just get them somewhere sa……]
Subaru rushed up to Roswaal, grabbed him by the collar and screamed.
But Roswaal gently pushed Subaru arms away,
[Roswaal: Flee? Where, exactly? There is a Barrier. The people of the Sanctuary cannot flee]
[Roswaal: There wasn’t enough time, Subaru-kun. The residents of the Sanctuary cannot leave unless the Trials are overcome. That is to say, your wish will not be granted]
Collapsing, Subaru fell rear-first into the snow.
Shuffling against themselves, the Leweses gathered around the fallen Subaru, waiting for their next instruction in a rather humorous scene.
And only then, did Subaru notice it.
That Roswaal, who had been incinerating swathes of oncoming Mabeasts as they appreared up to now, had completely stopped doing so.
[Subaru: R-Roswaal! If you stop…… unless… you’re out of mana……]
[Roswaal: No~~ no, it’s no such thing? Since, in a sense, my mana is inexhau~~stible. It wouldn’t run out so easily. ……What has run out is my reason to live]
Little by little, white furballs began plodding out of the forest.
Leaving small pawprints in the pristine snow that was as white as their fur, they were certainly drawing closer.
[Subaru: E-even if I can rewind… this kind of……at least we should talk it through first! You might think you’re ok with leaving it to the next try, but……]
[Roswaal: You se~~em to have misundersto~~od something, Subaru-kun]
[Roswaal: Even if you can rewind, I cannot. The me you meet after your rewind will not be me. This is my end. ――But tha~~t is fine]
Subaru was struck dumb by Roswaal’s words.
“The rewind won’t apply to me”, Roswaal admitted it himself. That is to say, Roswaal only knew that Subaru was someone who could potentially Return by Death, and his death here would mean the end of this Roswaal’s consciousness.
He had accepted it, and was nonetheless ordering Subaru to rewind, though he would no longer exist after Subaru returns.
That way of thinking is just,
[Subaru: Not……how humans think at all……]
Unlike Subaru, whose consciousness would continue,
Roswaal’s would not, and his death would be the end.
What kind of human would accept it without question, knowing that it would be the end?
[Roswaal: The day will come when you will truly surpass me, Subaru-kun]
[Roswaal: Li~~sten well, Subaru-kun. ――It is important. The one thing that is truly, truly important to you: Cast away everything else except it. Let go of everything else except it, and think only of protecting your single most important thing to the end]
[Roswaal: If you do that――]
Roswaal raised a finger as if to lecture.
A nearby rabbit immediately leapt up and chomped down on his lifted wrist. Blood scattered, and Roswaal’s right arm was gnashed to bits from the wrist, while other jaws sank their fangs into his elbows, shoulders, and all over his body with the dull creak of tearing flesh.
[Roswaal: ――You too, can become like me]
The body of a rabbit with its mouth wide open blotted out the clown’s smile.
The swarm of white rabbits completely covered over Roswaal’s body. He fell sideways, offering no resistance as the rabbits devoured his flesh. Devoured. Devoured.
Blood sprayed, meat flung out, and the white snow was dyed crimson red. Then even the crimson snow was greedily slurped up by the rabbits without leaving a drop.
Subaru watched in silence, as Roswaal ceased to be Roswaal.
Watched, as Roswaal’s existence was eaten and wiped from this world.
――He went on watching.
-=Chapter 67 End=-
(Writing note, posting first in case I get disconnected)
Thank you guys for being so patient!! ❤
It’s been an incredibly eventful few days, but I got here safely and finally have internet set up! I’ll start on the next one tomorrow, and get the releases will be back to speed!
Chapter 68 Live Draft: