- 237: Broken Thread
The Light Grand Library incident ended safely that same day.
Fortunately, there wasn’t a single casualty, and there weren’t any losses in the books of the library.
The number of terrorists was 60, but they all died. It wasn’t because of the fight between them and the light knights that charged in, but because they all self-imploded.
I don’t know if calling it self-imploding is correct though.
According to the reports of the light knights that charged in, the terrorists that were working as the lookouts suddenly released light from their mouth and eyes, and just like that, their bodies swelled, and in the end, they exploded.
It was the same in the ‘Goddess Space’ where the hostages were being held captive in, but Doraha-san who had infiltrated there had completely sealed the explosion, and things ended with no happenings.
However…there was one thing that can’t be ignored.
It was something that made me -the light hero, Kourin Karen- unable to feel that the incident is over yet.
It was something big.
At the Light Grand Hospital in Apollon City, at a section of it, we were standing there without a wink of sleep.
General Grades, who had finished his medical treatment, and Captain Vesage, who was absent because he was in another mission, were now running to where we were.
“Sorry, Karen-sama. Even when I was by his side…!” (Doraha)
Doraha, who was the one on site, was feeling the most responsibility of this out of everyone and was discouraged, but there’s no way it was her fault.
Even so, I simply didn’t have the words to say to her. No, it wasn’t only Doraha, it felt as if I had lost all ability to speak at the moment.
If that person is gone, my whole world will be lost.
It felt as if this was an announcement to that moment.
With no choice, I pat the head of Doraha-san that is slightly smaller than me. I thought that this might help soothe her a bit.
…In time, the doors of the ‘Operation Room’ open.
The one that appeared there was the person we revere as Founder, Yorishiro-sama!
A medical treatment personally done by the Light Founder.
That in itself is a surprising thing, but what about the result?
Is Haine-san okay?!
“Please be at ease. He is not the type of person that would die from something of this level.” (Yorishiro)
I enter through the door that Yorishiro-sama had just come out from and looked at the bed that was inside.
There, I saw a man that was completely covered in injuries.
Haine-san was wrapped in bandages all over his body, but even with that, he was letting out relaxed breaths.
“I am so glad!” (Karen)
Strength left me and I was about to fall onto the ward’s floor, but Doraha-san supported me.
Yorishiro-sama, who had performed the medical treatment on Haine-san, began to explain his condition.
“First of all, the explosion that is basically the reason for Haine-san’s injuries. That in itself wasn’t that big of a deal.” (Yorishiro)
The strange occurrence in the library.
“Doraha managed to seal the group that had taken control of the Goddess Space, but the lookouts at the outside area also exploded. But those explosions simply destroyed themselves and didn’t do any damage to their surroundings. The light knights that were caught in the explosion didn’t have a single wound. The most that happened was that they were showered with the blood and entrails of the terrorists, which will definitely fuel their nightmares for a good while.” (Yorishiro)
I heard that report too.
That’s why this incident ended with no casualties aside from the terrorists themselves.
“But then why did Haine-san get so injured?!” (Karen)
“It is heavily related to the person himself.” (Yorishiro)
The power that Haine-san uses is darkness; and the biggest weakness of darkness is light.
Facing that explosion at close range, Haine-san ended up receiving the most damage he has received until now.
“In the operation just now, I retrieved the light divine power that was eating onto the body of Haine-san, and disposed of it. With this, the light won’t be corroding Haine-san further. What’s left would be to let his own body to recover by itself.” (Yorishiro)
I am glad…I am truly glad!
Haine-san didn’t die.
I wanted to hug Haine-san right this instant, but Haine-san is currently wounded and sleeping, so I can’t do something excessive, and General Grades and the others are here as well.
I desperately held back.
The men stood close to where Haine-san laid, and after confirming he was sleeping, they let out a sigh of relief.
General Grades and Captain Vesage.
“…This guy…he pushed forth without hesitation against what he feared the most. I thought that he feared nothing because he was strong, but it looks like I was wrong. Haine is truly a man that is strong at heart.” (Vesage)
“Hearing what Founder-sama said, there was probably no need for him to put his body at stake. But that was something no one would have known. There was the chance that the whole library would have exploded from that. If there’s a person in the light knights that says something like: ‘he got injured in vain’…Vesage, let’s beat that person up.” (Grades)
In the beginning, they by no means got along with each other, but after a certain amount of time, Haine-san had created his own place in this Light Church huh.
After the tension dissolved, something warm spread inside of me.
“…In the end, all the terrorists that participated in this have all died.” (Yorishiro)
Yorishiro-sama speaks out in a different tone.
“The only one we could confirm their origins was Dobbe who was making a ruckus outside. The other perpetrators, because they suddenly exploded for some mysterious reason, we couldn’t even manage to confirm their identity.” (Yorishiro)
According to Doraha-san who was in the area, the terrorists were calling out the name of other Gods aside from Inflation-sama, and were glorifying them.
That means there were people of other churches mixed in this terrorist act?
But because their bodies had been blown up to pieces, there’s no way to confirm this.
“I think that was the objective of the explosion.” (Yorishiro)
I couldn’t understand well at first what Yorishiro-sama had said.
“It means that if the terrorists had been caught alive and they are made to speak their reason and the method they used to perpetrate their act, there would be a person who would be troubled by that. That person killed the perpetrators—if I had to put it in other words, that person cut off its lizard’s tail.” (Yorishiro)
“They did all that to seal their mouths?!” (Karen)
Then that means there was someone controlling Dobbe and the others behind the scenes?!
But to bring that person to light, we need some solid clue, but the people in question have been erased…
- 238: If it’s proof
“Yorishiro-sama, Sunnysol Ates has arrived.” (Ates)
“Thanks for taking your time. Please take a seat there.” (Yorishiro)
The day after the incident, the Founder Yorishiro-sama had called for Ates-sama.
The reason was because she wanted to show her appreciation towards Ates for helping out in the aftermath and to hear her report —at least that’s the front.
“Ara, Karen-san, you were also here?” (Ates)
“Yes. As a hero, I want to have a grasp of the incident that occurred in my own capital.” (Karen)
I -Kourin Karen- and Yorishiro-sama were sitting at the sofa opposite of Ates-sama.
I asked Yorishiro-sama to let me accompany her in this.
In order to witness the true conclusion of this incident.
“Well then, let’s hear the report at once. Did you find anything?” (Yorishiro)
“Nothing that might gives us a full picture of the incident. The biggest objective of that synchronized explosion might have truly been to erase the evidence. The explosion not having much power and basically only serving to kill the people themselves makes this assumption stronger.” (Ates)
In reality, that was a blessing amidst the disaster.
Aside from the people that were trapped inside Doraha’s shadows, there were also more than 20 people at the outer areas that exploded as well.
If those explosions had power on the level of divine power attacks, it would have turned into a big tragedy.
“Because of that, it is now impossible to interrogate them. Not only were the corpses destroyed beyond recognition, but also anything that might serve to identify them. I want to order the light knights to collect the pieces of those kind of items while they are dealing with the site, but not much can be expected.” (Ates)
“I see… I understand. Sorry for having you work all on your own.” (Yorishiro)
“Don’t mind it. Everyone was worried about Haine-san’s operation after all. And so, how’s Haine-san?” (Ates)
“No need to worry. The operation was finished properly and his condition is stable now. He regained consciousness not that long ago.” (Yorishiro)
“That’s good to hear. When the situation calms down, I am thinking about giving him a visit though. Is that okay?” (Ates)
“Sorry to say but, that won’t be possible. Previous light hero, Sunnysol Ates, that’s because…” (Yorishiro)
“We will be apprehending you for this time’s terrorist incident as the main culprit.” (Yorishiro)
The door of the room was open forcefully, and from there, several light knights rushed in, and then, surround Ates-sama.
I as well stand up from the sofa and take out my holy sword.
“This is…what is the meaning of this?” (Ates)
Ates-sama begins her usual self-concealment.
“This time there’s no point in playing the fool, Ates-san. Haine-san recovered consciousness and testified.” (Yorishiro)
“Zeberphon Dobbe, who tried to bring Haine-san down with him, right before he died, he told Haine-san that the one who ordered everything was you.” (Yorishiro)
We had already been briefed about this beforehand, and yet, everyone including me had gulped our breaths.
The culprit behind the terrorist incident of Apollon City was Ates-sama.
In a sense, it was a truth that I could understand.
“Ates-san, at the heroes match, you were acting as an infiltrated agent…is how it was left as, but utilizing the connections you had before, you gathered the dregs of the contra-reconciliation side that had lost their place to be —in order to perform your crime.” (Yorishiro)
“The objective was that, by creating a disturbance in the metropolitan area of the Light capital, you would have me take the blame, and make me resign to take responsibility. And then, you would carry on the next step.” (Yorishiro)
“…Okay, I will listen to this joke of yours till the end. Continue.” (Ates)
“You have the qualifications for that after all. In reality, you wanted to expel me at the heroes match and become the new Light Founder, but sadly for you, Karen-san and the others succeeded and you failed.” (Yorishiro)
But Ates-sama betrayed the contra-reconciliation side, and by selling them to the enemy, she managed to escape from a sinking ship. Not only that, she managed to secure a place in our side. Truly a despicable person.
“You wanted to utilize the strengthened footing you had to climb higher up—and in a sense, you were going to climb the last step for it, but…you were slightly impatient there. To think that you would bring out your tail in such a boring way.” (Yorishiro)
“You are quite the dirty woman, Yorishiro.” (Ates)
What a way to speak to the Founder. I can’t believe such a person was a hero.
“Well fine. Let’s leave it as if I was the puppeteer behind that incident. Let’s assume I was the one who was controlling that useless Dobbe who only has his pride to talk about. And so, where’s the proof?” (Ates)
That question had made all the light knights and me falter.
“The one who pointed me as the ringleader has already died. Don’t you think that’s a bit too weak for a proof? In the first place, the ones carrying the terrorist acts normally are disposable pawns. Most of the times, they are not told a single piece of important information.” (Ates)
Yorishiro-sama didn’t say anything.
It is true that Ates-sama’s logic is sound, and it was effective in weakening the reasonability of apprehending her. Even though we know that she is the evil one here.
Will she slip away from our hands once again?
“Proof. If you want to judge me, you will have to properly show the proof for it. Can you? Well, I already know the answer though.” (Ates)
Ates-sama was speaking of proof as she showed her characteristic smile.
That’s how much confidence she has.
All the people that she used as pawns are dead and there’s no evidence left.
There’s no way there would proof pointing her as the ringleader.
“Then, Ates-san, let’s hear it from you.” (Yorishiro)
“Is proof necessary to judge someone?” (Yorishiro)
The words of Yorishiro had caught everyone in this room off-guard.
“You being an existence that brings harm to the Light Church and the whole world is already an undeniable truth. I am asking if there’s the need for proof to judge someone like that.” (Yorishiro)
That surprising statement of hers had made Ates-sama dumbfounded, but in time, she began to laugh as if a spring had come out.
“Ahahahahhaha!! …Right, you are completely right. Leaving aside the trials that idiots in the streets do; between the noble people like us where schemes and artifices are the norm, legal principles and morals are all instruments. Trusting in the power of evidence was something an idiot would do, right.” (Ates)
“That’s right. In this filthy side of the world you and I stand on, evidence is just an illusion that can be shaped as fit. And the very fact that you have no option but to rely on it is proof that you have been cornered. What’s left now is to gallantly accept your defeat.” (Yorishiro)
“Good grief. What a dirty woman you are. To think you would play me twice. No, in the end, there wasn’t a single time I have won against you in conspiracies. As expected of my little sister.” (Ates)
“It simply means that you are just small fry, Onee-sama. You weren’t able to throw away that way too heavy ambition of yours —just like father. That is the reason for your downfall.” (Yorishiro)
- 239: Dioskouroi
After laughing for a while, Ates-sama had her arms bound without much resistance and was led out.
Yorishiro-sama and I were watching that back of hers from the office room.
I couldn’t not worry about our Founder that was silently standing there.
Yorishiro-sama and Ates-sama are sisters.
This is the first I have heard of this.
“I am sorry, Karen-san.” (Yorishiro)
But the words that were directed at me were words of apology.
“I wanted to have you be unrelated to this filthy secret feud, but with the opponent being a previous hero, it just couldn’t happen.” (Yorishiro)
“This is the second time she has been caught. It won’t end with a lukewarm punishment like exiling her from the church anymore. No, I won’t let it end in such a lukewarm manner. I will have her live the rest of her life confined in a remote place just like father —at the very least.” (Yorishiro)
Like her father?
She must be referring to the previous Light Founder.
“Karen-san, my father -the previous Light Founder- was forced to stand down due to corruption, is how it is known as, but do you know the specific details of why he was driven out of his position?” (Yorishiro)
I honestly shake my head to the sides.
“Must be. Just the surface of it brought quite the damage to the Light Church after all. …My foolish father…was planning on causing a war on the other churches.” (Yorishiro)
A war…between humans?!
In an era where the battle with monsters was intensifying?
“That person…had a childish ambition like that of leaving his name in history by doing something big. And in the path for that, he resorted to any means. Ates who was the hero at that time was also cooperative in that idea.” (Yorishiro)
Yorishiro-sama stopped this in secret —the Yorishiro-sama that is the youngest in the history of Founders.
“As a result, the higher-ups of the Light Church at that time, who only knew about fattening themselves with corruption, saw my father as nothing but a pain. And so, I took the standard and expulsed my father. And my sister who was involved with it as well was not chosen as the next Founder due to this.” (Yorishiro)
‘Even when they were filled with so much ambition’…is what Yorishiro-sama muttered in pity.
“She is the previous hero, the sister of the current Founder, and on top of that, the daughter of the previous Founder; as long as she kicks me down from my position, there was plenty enough possibility for her to become the next Founder. The many conspiracies that came from the heroes match must have had that as the last goal.” (Yorishiro)
The condition that that person brought out from the heroes match was the resignation of the Founders. It was quite the straightforward demand.
In this time’s incident as well, if Ates-sama had resolved it when the light knights had their arms folded, the evaluation of Ates-sama would increase, and the one of Yorishiro-sama would decrease… Was she aiming for that when she caused that incident?
“Karen-san, this type of unpleasant things will most likely occur from now on as well. But I want you and Haine-san to be as unassociated with what happens behind the scenes as much as possible.” (Yorishiro)
“You are a symbol; a symbol of unity between humans that will stand against the danger that’s called Demon Lords. And for that, you have to be clear and pure.” (Yorishiro)
The profile of Yorishiro-sama as she said this was incredibly lonely; painful.
Because she ended up having such a family, Yorishiro-sama, who is practically the same age as me, has to involve herself in all the scheming and artifices that occur.
Even though she is a normal girl when she is fooling around with Haine-san and I…
Right at the moment I was about to say something to her…
One of the knights that was escorting Ates-sama ran hurriedly to us.
“T-This is terrible! Ates-sama…! No, the suspect Ates suddenly got out of her restrains and escaped!!”
Contrary to me who was surprised, Yorishiro-sama was calm.
“No wonder. Even if she were to obediently get caught, there would be no chance for comeback. In that case, it would be better to oppose as much as she can.” (Yorishiro)
But even if she were to escape, I don’t think she can do anything.
I only see this as Ates-sama running herself into a precipice.
“Yorishiro-sama, I will go!” (Karen)
At any rate, if Ates-sama has escaped, there’s no other one who can stop her but a hero.
Haine-sama is still laying in recovery, and Doraha-san is acting as his guard, so I have to be the one to move.
“No, you can’t.” (Yorishiro)
But when I tried to run out from the room, Yorishiro-sama stopped me.
“I already said it. Karen-san, I told you that I won’t be letting you get involved with the filthy behind the scenes schemes. Most of all, the other side, even if she is a despicable human being, she is still a human. In this situation where you can end up accidentally killing her, there’s no way I can let you go.” (Yorishiro)
“But…! Then, are we going to let her escape just like that?” (Karen)
I thought that might be possible.
Yorishiro-sama and Ates-sama are sisters linked by blood.
Could it be that letting her escape like this is her last show of pity?
“I will go.” (Yorishiro)
Yorishiro-sama said something outrageous.
“I will personally put an end to Ates-san. I stand as the Founder and I am also her sister, so this is in order to rinse the shame of my family too. Even if I end up killing her with my own hands, I will accept that dirt.” (Yorishiro)