This might be the first time since coming to this world that a peaceful time has passed.
Aside from training my skills every now and then, I have been using almost all of my daytime for the sake of my comrades.
What I do depends on the person, but I would help out in the training of Ina, would go to the dojo for practice together with Mitsuki, would get extorted for the entrance fee to enter the library by Sazan, would bring Ringo around the city to eat, would do the requests that Maki would arbitrarily accept, would challenge cooking dangerous ingredients with Leila, would have the Bear introduce me to the residents of the mansion…you know, a lot.
There are times when other comrades would be together with me at those moments, and times when they would act separately.
But they would all naturally gather at night and we would watch the stone slate recording together.
We are being called the heroes that defeated the Demon Lord, but the adventure of Alex and the others is completely different from ours.
They don’t use bug techniques to attack the enemy, won’t use teleportation skills craftily to enter places they can’t, and won’t drown the Demon Lord.
They utilize the basic systems of Nekomimi Neko, yet, their adventure advanced like a proper one.
The 9th Chapter was about Alex and his group after defeating the Demon General. They left the frontlines to the master swordsman Luden, moved to the solitary island south of Lamurick, and met the tribe called the Seal Lineage.
In the 10th Chapter, they met the blind girl called Neitia who is a young priestess of the family and sealed the fragment of the Evil God in her own body, and promised that they would definitely save her.
The 11th Chapter is about them heading to an old fortress called Old Castle relying on the information they got of the Seal Lineage, and a large-scale battle happened against the evil giants residing there.
In the 12th Chapter, they took the trial of gods at the inner altar of the Old Castle, and obtained the only weapon capable of going against the Evil God, the absolute Divine Sword, Ultihate.
The 13th Chapter was about him wielding the power of Ultihate, and successfully defeating the Evil God Fragment residing in Neitia after a hard fought battle.
All of them were interesting as a story, but there were many events that a Nekomimi Neko freak shouldn’t ignore.
Areas and events that were not implemented in the game, as well as items that were impossible to obtain, were clearly shown in the recording.
First, the solitary island south of Lamurick was outside the map of the game, so it was of course an unimplemented area. There are giants in the Old Castle and an altar hinting at something, but even when you went there, no event happened.
I may be getting out of topic here, but in the forums, there would be people who would say ‘I went to the altar of the Old Castle, but nothing happened’ and people would always answer with ‘wasted effort’ as if mocking them.
And then there’s the absolute Divine Sword Ultihate that Alex got.
Only its stats have been publicized but it wasn’t implemented in the end. A weapon Nekomimi Neko players desired.
The appearance and abilities of Ultihate were published before the game was sold.
According to the data, this weapon has even higher attack power than all weapons including the Soul Eater of the hidden dungeon, and the weight is the lowest denominator: 0.
Not only that, it nullifies the long distance attacks as long as you hold it, and has an unbelievable ability like increasing all the stats depending on how many allies are within the field. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that it has the best performance out of all weapons.
The visuals of the weapon had a lot of dedication to it, so there were obviously high expectations for this weapon, but when the game came out, there was no Ultihate in sight, and it disappointed many players.
I imagine they didn’t have the ability to implement the nullifying of long range attacks and changing the effects depending on the number of people in the field, but the truth is unknown.
I feel like a lawsuit for false advertisement could have hit them for that, but well, this is one of the things you could find often in Nekomimi Neko.
However, it will probably be difficult to obtain this.
The condition to begin the event at the Old Castle is apparently for Neitia to say the keywords, and we would have to head to the solitary island in order to find a priestess.
The subsequent trial of God that begins after that is only a really bad match with me.
Only one person can take the trial, moreover, no matter how great your physical capabilities are, your body will be restricted to that of an average person.
You obviously can’t use a single skill and spell.
The details of the trial is to advance straight through a path that’s around 2 meters in width and 30 meters long, and touch the Divine Sword that’s at the end. Sounds simple, but blades of light will come flying at you from all directions each step you take that can kill you in one hit.
Alex, who should now have the physical capabilities of a normal human, showed off his strong natural reflexes and instincts to avoid them like an action movie, but that’s not something I can imitate.
I would most likely be split in two at the first step.
And then, at the end, aside from the arrows that were flying out from above and the sides, arrows came flying from below, in other words, from the middle of the road which I found to be really nasty.
It would be impossible to avoid it your first time even as a seasoned Nekomimi Neko player.
But now that I have seen it, I can now confirm that this event is not completely original from this world, but an extension of the Nekomimi Neko game.
The difficulty of the game that doesn’t think at all about the people playing it, as if telling you to learn by dying, is a telltale.
This is certainly something the developers of Nekomimi Neko thought of, but wasn’t implemented.
This world really isn’t Nekomimi Neko itself, but an append disk where extra content has been included. The ‘Complete Version of Nekomimi Neko’.
You could say that this Nekomimi Neko world is even more complete than the game itself.
…Well, despite this being the complete version, the bugs not only remain but I feel like there’s more, but that’s most likely what makes Nekomimi Neko.
The topic deviated a bit there, but there’s still more reasons as to why Ultihate is necessary to defeat the Evil God.
The gem at the heart of the Evil God, that gem that’s called the Orb in the Evil God Great War, can apparently divide the Evil God depending on the power of the Ultihate when you attack it with a skill.
The Evil God will obviously weaken the more it is divided, and the size and powers of the Evil God will be proportional to the size of the Orb, and the skills it can use change too.
The thing is that, when you defeat the fragments, it will get absorbed by the remaining fragments, so if you really want to defeat the Evil God, you have no choice but to defeat it when it is whole.
This is also information I didn’t hear before in the game, but it does make sense.
The Evil God Fragments I have met are the fragment from the hidden boss in the game located under Lamurick, and the fragment at the sacrifice altar after coming to this world, but because the fragment at the sacrifice altar was small, it didn’t use the AoE attack, Genocide Wave, like the one under Lamurick.
It really seems like the abilities depend on how big the gem that serves as its heart is.
According to the information from the recording, aside from the giant Evil God Fragment being able to speak freely, there’s also a mist that doesn’t allow the other party to escape, miasma that inflicts status ailments, the ability to steal a single item from a dead enemy, and also the ability to get through dimensional walls.
I also didn’t understand well what this ‘getting through dimensional walls’ was, but it is basically an ability that lets it freely go through isolated maps.
In other words, things that would imprison the enemy won’t work on an Evil God Fragment of a certain size.
In that sense, you could say that the Evil God Fragment that has been imprisoned underground in Lamurick is still small.
In that case, how do you seal an Evil God like that? You either have to sacrifice a certain percent of the country to do a large-scale sealing spell that stops its movement, continuously use attacks 24/7 that will trigger the self-regeneration of the Evil God once it hits critical point, or seal it inside your body like Neitia who has the affinity to.
Of course, all methods lead to big sacrifices.
There’s no way the hero of the people, Alex, would be okay with that, and with Divine Sword in hand, he faced the full form of the Evil God after defeating the fragment…is what I thought chapter 14 would be about, but…
(This is horrible…) (Souma)
In this world, people and monsters turn into light particles and disappear when they die.
It doesn’t leave a body or blood, but seeing the destroyed road and the burning houses, you can tell what happened in that place.
“Why?! Why did something like this…”
What was awaiting Alex and the others after obtaining Ultihate was a destroyed city by an attack of the Evil God.
Monsters were rampant and people were running around; a true hellscape.
And then, at the frontlines they arrived at, an especially big monster showed up accompanied by many monsters.
—Evil God, Dis Aster.
Its appearance isn’t that different from the Evil God Fragment I saw in the game.
But the size is on a whole different level.
Is its overall length around 15 meters?
Rather than a living being, it was more as if a small mountain was moving.
“So you have come, humans.”
And when the Evil God acknowledged Alex and his group, it unexpectedly spoke with a terribly hard to understand ear-ringing voice.
No, it might not be unexpected.
According to the information of the Seal Lineage, an Evil God Fragment that is close to complete has intelligence and can talk.
But it seems like you are surprised on an instinctive level when a giant being like this actually talks.
The heroes cowered unconsciously and got ready. That guy showed an ugly smile with its giant face, and slowly extended its right arm to the front.
I thought it was an attack, but it wasn’t.
What was dropped in fragments from the giant right hand was a destroyed thin sword.
The famous sword that only two exist in the world: Swallow Edge.
—The sword of the master swordsman Luden who was fighting on the frontlines.
The moment Alex understood the meaning of this, he roared.
That became the starting signal to a life or death struggle.
Every single one of them is a top tier combatant and are called the Top Ten including the now gone Luden.
They may be one step behind Nekomimi Neko players in the way they use skills and magic. They are all super outstanding combatants comparable to Mitsuki.
The double sword Hero, Alex, with the knight sword Richter in his right hand and the Divine Sword Ultihate in his left.
Supporting her allies in dark and light, alternating between high level swordsmanship and magic on the frontlines, the Light Princess Ciel.
More acquainted with fire and light magic than anyone, and known as the user of the strongest magic in history, the Great Mage Nameless.
Having fulfilled her own duty, her talent in magic was awakened by the tutelage of Nameless, the Dark Priestess Neitia.
A mysterious mercenary using a one-bladed sword called a katana and possessing outstanding speed and swordsmanship, the Nekomimi Swordsman Shizuru.
Despite his brawny appearance, he uses healing magic more delicately than anyone, the Macho Healer Giyamon.
No matter how terrible the conditions, the lonely hunter never lets prey escape, the Godly Archer Loden.
Despite having the brightest personality of them all, she defeats the enemy with fearsome assassination techniques without them noticing, the Reaper Fin.
The little sister of Ciel, possessing mana that doesn’t lose to her sister, providing healing and support to her allies, the Moonlight Princess Luna.
Every single one of them fought desperately.
Especially the work of Hero Alex.
He would cover his comrades with his body by using the power of the sword to nullify the long range attacks, and would slice up the Evil God inexhaustibly with the raised stats of the Divine Sword and the Sand Dragon Sword.
—But that reached a limit.
Dis Aster continues regenerating unless the heart is destroyed, so there was a clear difference in endurance compared to the humans that have limited HP and MP.
The first crack happened at the frontlines.
“Hehe, your back is open!”
The assassin Fin didn’t lose her brightness even at a time like this and slashed at the arm from the back, but…
It was just an instant.
The assassin girl that had approached the Evil God too much was wrapped around tentacles in an instant, swallowed, and…crushed.
“Are you kidding me? No way, Fin…”
Alex stood in place dumbfounded as if the deadly struggle of just before was a lie, and the Evil God stretched its tentacles with an air of composure.
It wasn’t an attack.
It was like a redo of the conversation before the battle.
What was dropped in front of Alex was a crushed bracelet.
It is an important bracelet gifted to her by the kids at the orphanage Fin came from.
That word of the Evil God filled with malice made Alex snap completely.
He charged mindlessly, different from the intense yet logical fighting style of before.
(How nasty…) (Souma)
I frowned while watching this.
It seems like the special ability of the Evil God about taking a piece of equipment from the enemies it defeats is to provoke its enemies.
This is most likely a cutscene that the Nekomimi Neko developers thought of, but that’s just like them in the bad sense.
The downfall precipitated after that.
The state of the battle that was barely being maintained with a 9 vs 1 was clearly going to crumble with one gone.
“Alex, calm down! If you lose your calm, the enemy—”
“Princess, watch out!”
The next victim was the God Archer Loden.
A beam was shot at Ciel who was trying to calm down Alex, and it pierced the body of Loden, who covered for her, in an instant.
“Loden? Damn it…DAMN IIIITTT!!”
Seeing Loden fall, Alex was angered even further, but that didn’t change the situation.
The Evil God released miasma from its whole body to fight against Alex and the others who had gathered up.
Some would be paralyzed, some were slept, some were hit by the tentacles while trying to avoid the miasma; the hard struggle of Alex and his group rang pitifully and they fell right there.
“…This is…as far as you go…it seems.”
—Except for a single girl called the Light Princess, Ciel Eluna.
Ciel was casting healing magic on Luna inside the swirling miasma, and ran to where Alex was.
But what Ciel did after getting to where Alex was wasn’t to save Alex, but to take the sword in his hand, the sword that the Devil Richter transformed into: the Knight Sword Richter.
He didn’t understand what was happening.
Ciel smiled gently at Alex who was making that face and…with the Knight Sword Richter in hand, she raised a small gem in the opposite hand.
“Could it be…”
The Dragon’s Treasure that’s said to only exist within the ranks of the demons and the royal family…
She raised that and…
“Alex, I loved you… I leave this world to you…”
“Stop it! Don’t do it, Ciel!!”
The girl still had a sad countenance even in the face of those words…and speaks…
“Knight Sword, Ciel Eluna.”
The change happened in the blink of an eye.
The pristine white skin turned into a white blade, and her beautiful silver hair became its tip.
The lovely girl rescinded her flesh and was reborn into a holy sword that vanquishes darkness.
I don’t know what Alex thought or what kind of face he made when he said this.
However, the eyes of Alex when he stood up with the Knight Sword Ciel in hand had strong unyielding light.
“…Evil God, Dis Aster. I will…be the one…to end you!”
Alex silently announced this and then…
The recording left in the stone slate ended, and we were returned to our room.
We looked at each other’s faces for a while and couldn’t say anything.
The story was a positive one until now, so we couldn’t adapt to the drastic shift.
I understand how it is as a story.
The heroine sacrifices herself to provide power to the protagonist.
You could say it is a development you see often.
I also understand it in a game mechanic way.
Create a weapon using the gear modifier of the Dragon’s Treasure.
In other words, if a person holding a Dragon’s Treasure weapon uses a Dragon’s Treasure, the weapon that will be born will become ‘the previous character’s modifiers+the current character’s stats’, and will become a powerful sword that can’t be compared to just a single Dragon’s Treasure.
I understand the logic.
I do, and yet, maybe because I have grown way too attached to Alex and his group, I couldn’t swallow reality.
“…Let’s end it here for now.” (Mitsuki)
Mitsuki, who was the least shocked compared to others, opened up with this, and everyone began to leave one after the other.
And the last one to remain was Mitsuki.
I don’t think there’s much meaning to Mitsuki being the last one.
There was probably no hidden intention to this.
But that must have relaxed me, so I ended up speaking my opinion for this time’s story to Mitsuki.
“…That was surprising. Even though I should have known, seeing people die like that is a bit…” (Souma)
No, I have seen people die countless times in movies and games.
But the reality is different this time.
We have also fought the Demon Lord and the Evil God Fragment.
One false step and we might have had casualties.
Thinking about it in that way, I couldn’t help but feel it close to home.
“Right. But that’s how difficult of an endeavor it is to save the world.
It is not something you can achieve without any sacrifices.” (Mitsuki)
“Yeah, you might be right there.” (Souma)
I should have been aware of the ever present risks of death.
But it is weird how it was pushed at me at this point in time.
I was facing down here, but Mitsuki spoke to me gently.
“Please don’t make that face. You are the savior of the nation, the Hero Souma.
You have saved the world without a single sacrifice, so you have achieved something even more amazing than them.” (Mitsuki)
“No, but I…” (Souma)
Mitsuki softly placed a finger on my lips as if sealing my rebuttal.
“I have been witness to your actions.
The good and the bad since Lamurick; I have witnessed it all.” (Mitsuki)
She has been together with me for about as long as Ringo, and in terms of the time we met, it was earlier than even Ringo.
I can’t say anything back if she puts it in that way.
“I will say this with that as my backing; you have worked hard enough.
That’s why I think it is okay for you to move ahead in the way you want without worrying about anything.” (Mitsuki)
“As I want…” (Souma)
Mitsuki didn’t answer my question and slowly separated from me.
“Tomorrow is finally chapter 15.
The long adventure might be coming to an end.” (Mitsuki)
I saw off Mitsuki, who left with those words, and I fell into thought.
—The end of the long adventure.
Was she referring to Alex and his group, or…