Restia!!! Nuuuuuu!! And with this chapter, I’m bowing out of Seirei Tsukai’s volume 12 translations. I leave it to you, zzhk! Back to Hyouketsu for me~
───The <Blade Dance> that was carried out at <Astral Zero>.
One week had already passed since that had come to an end.
Concluding the battle with <Team Inferno> led by the <Strongest Blade Dancer> in victory, the girls of <Team Scarlet> returned to Areishia Spirit Academy after finishing the Empire’s triumphant return parade.
However, amidst the rising voices of welcome, the girls’ expressions were heavy in silence.
The world’s destiny had changed, that day.
Ever since the audience with the <Spirit Lords> at the True Shrine.
Kamito had lost consciousness and hadn’t woken up even after returning to the human world.
“───Most likely, this is amnesia caused by mental stress.”
The Academy director’s office located on the third floor of the Academy building.
While looking around the faces of the girls seated in a row, Greyworth said that.
The room fell into silence.
Amongst all of them who hadn’t grasped the situation───
“Amnesia ─── you said.”
“It’s not my specialty so I can’t say for certain.”
Greyworth sighed a little and,
“In order to prevent the heart from break in times where one’s mental strain passes the limit, he or she forgets about all matters related to the event ─── people have such a mechanism. I saw many people like that during the past war.”
“No way……! Then Kamito───”
Ellis put her weight down on the office desk.
“He has forgotten about meeting that darkness spirit in his childhood and a great deal of the memories concerning her ─── that’s about it.”
The cool-headed conclusion deepened the girls’ expressions.
“Th-then, Kamito is……”
Claire said with a hoarse voice.
“Has he completely forgotten about us?”
“……Not just you, he has forgotten about this Academy and myself as well.”
Greyworth’s grey eyes had a little gloominess about them.
Immediately after that, Claire had first gone to report that Kamito had woken up to Greyworth.
Greyworth had met with Kamito, conversed for about half an hour and confirmed his current status.
The conclusion from that was that Kamito had lost several year’s worth of memories ─── that kind of shocking reality.
“Right now, his memories have most likely reverted back to the times when he was an assassin with the <Instructional School>. Back to the time when his emotions as a human were crushed and he was raised as a tool of slaughter───”
Claire bit down hard on her lip at Greyworth’s words.
(……That was Kamito before he met with that darkness spirit?)
───Who are you?
All of his emotions were completely eliminated and he had a gaze like a sharp sword.
At the least, up until now, she had not seen Kamito with such cold eyes.
At the same time as she felt shock, she also felt envy.
(……He treasured that darkness spirit to that extent.)
He wasn’t able to accept the reality of Restia’s death───
Enough that he would erase all memories concerning her.
“Umm, in that case……”
Rinslet raised her voice.
“How about trying to talk to Kamito-san once more about darkness spirit-san……”
“───It’d definitely be for the best if you didn’t.”
Greyworth shook her head.
“The boy’s amnesia is, in the end, a method to protect his heart. If the unbearable truth were thrust onto him again, he would completely break this time. In the worst case, he’ll forever lose the ability of spirit contracts.”
“……That’s right. There’s certainly a chance of that.”
Fianna agreed with a nod.
She had past experience with losing her ability of spirit contracts due to mental shock. The contractor’s mental state has a great effect on his or her relationship with the spirit.
“Th-that’s right, yes……”
Rinslet’s shoulders drooped.
Greyworth pushed up her glasses and once again looked over the faces of the girls.
“While it’s unfortunate, I have no place knowing what happened at the Spirit Lords’ shrine. But you know that the boy’s amnesia is linked to him losing that darkness spirit, right?”
They absolutely could not speak of what transpired at the Spirit Lords’ shrine with others.
That was not only due to the pledge of winners of the <Blade Dance> but also a promise exchanged with the <Water Spirit Lord>, Iseria Seaward.
During the audience to have the <Spirit Lords> grant their wishes, something happened.
The result of that was Kamito losing the darkness spirit.
Greyworth was not privy to anything beyond that. The ones who knew what had happened that day at that place were <Team Scarlet>’s members alone.
───The plan to release the <Spirit Lords> who had been driven mad by the <Otherworldly Darkness>’ corruption.
Borrowing the power of Iseria Seaward’s avatar which was sealed at the Abandoned City, they had thought their plan would succeed.
However, just before Kamito had released the <Fire Spirit Lord>, the power of the Demon King had ran wild. The <Otherworldly Darkness> overflowing from the throne had devoured the agonizing Kamito.
Anybody would have despaired. There was no need to think about what would happen if a person were bathed in that otherworldly darkness that could drive a <Spirit Lord> mad.
However, the next moment. A strange sight had unfolded before Claire and the others.
The <Otherworldly Darkness> that should have completely devoured Kamito was suddenly eliminated.
And when the darkness cleared, Claire and the others had seen something unbelievable.
The blade of the <Demon Slayer> held in Kamito’s hand───
Was stabbed directly into Restia’s chest.
They didn’t understand the meaning of her actions.
On the other hand, they understood the motive.
The darkness spirit, Restia───
(……Had saved Kamito.)
Calling the memories of that day back to mind, Claire whispered within herself.
With the holy sword buried in her chest, Restia was eliminated before long.
At the same time, the overflowing <Otherworldly Darkness> also paused its movements once again.
……I don’t remember much of what happened after that. Everybody was too absorbed.
Fenrir had grabbed the absent-minded Kamito with his mouth and retreated and along with Claire and the others, made a full-power escape from the shrine. They heard the gate of the endless corridor close behind them and before they knew it───
They had returned to the <Divine Ritual Institute>’s five <Spirit Princess>’ shrine.
At that time, Kamito fell unconscious while still holding Est in sword form.
Then that <Demon Slayer> once again───
“……Umm, Academy director, how is Est?”
Claire asked as if she’d just remembered.
“According to the observation team’s report, there haven’t been any notable changes. She’s still sleeping.”
“Is that so……”
Kamito had regained consciousness so she’d had some hope.
Yes. The <Demon Slayer> that had eliminated the darkness spirit was also lost to Kamito.
───Though saying so, it’s not like Est was completely eliminated from this world.
Kamito’s right hand still bore the spirit seal, so her place was confirmed.
Around the same time as the annihilation of the <Demon Slayer>.
A vast release of kamui was observed in the <Spirit Forest> which lay within the Academy’s grounds.
That was where the small underground shrine Est was originally sealed in lay.
It was currently blockaded as an ex-military facility.
The Academy had formed an observation team and their analysis of the kamui pattern confirmed it was a giant sword spirit of the steel property.
Why did Est transfer to such a location ─── the reason was unknown. There might be some connection with how Est was sealed there and something else.
(……It looks like the Academy director might know something.)
The underground facility seemed like it was a military secret and couldn’t be told to regular students. In truth, even Claire hadn’t known such a facility was located this deep on Academy grounds.
At any rate, it seemed like they wouldn’t be able to investigate the underground facility until the country gave permission.
A real investigation would be after several days at the earliest.
“Well, just stay on careful watch for a while. Specialists from the capital will come in the near future. Until then, don’t do anything drastic and just lay low.”
“Yeah. In both name in reality, the best spirit doctor in the Empire. If it’s her, she’ll probably have a way.”
Saying so, Greyworth moved her gaze to Ellis.
“Ellis, increase the surveillance knight count by four people.”
Ellis replied with a question.
“I don’t think such strict supervision is necessary. Kamito isn’t a dangerous person.”
With that reply, a smile floated up on Greyworth’s face that showed she found that interesting.
Claire was also surprised. It was the first time she’d seen Ellis voice her opinion to the Academy director.
“What can change will change. Just a short two months ago, I wonder who it was that said that there was nothing more dangerous than a male spirit contractor───”
Ellis’ face was quickly reddening.
“I understand your feelings, but this is a settled matter. Right now, the boy’s mindset has probably reverted to that of when he was an <Instructional School> assassin. It’s unfortunate, but you shouldn’t consider him the same Kamito you know.”
And at that time. The bell signaling evening lectures rang.
“───That’s the end of this conversation. Return to your duties as students.”
Greyworth made Claire and the others back down in a tone that brooked no opposition.
The office door opened and Claire and the others stepped out.
“Well then, see you later.”
Parting with Ellis who had her job with the <Syphid Knights> and Fianna who was taking supplementary cooking lessons, Claire and Rinslet walked in the opposite direction.
The two of them were the most problematic of Raven class while also being the best model students. They were attending lectures that were primarily for upperclassmen.
Originally, this was one of the reasons they were estranged from the upperclassmen.
“……Just when I thought he’d regained consciousness, there’s amnesia.”
While walking down the corridor, Rinslet sighed.
“It’s understandable. It’s much better than his heart breaking.”
Darkness spirit Restia ─── the contracted spirit of the <Strongest Blade Dancer> three years ago.
She had granted human emotions to Kamito who had had his heart crushed by the <Instructional School>, and raised him.
Kamito had come to this Academy and debuted in the <Blade Dance> once again for the sake of taking back her whom he’d lost three years ago.
But having at long last retrieved her, Kamito had lost her right before his eyes.
───No. Kamito had killed her himself.
“If the <Spirit Seal> was left behind, there’d still be hope at the least.”
Before, when Est had been annihilated, the spirit seal upon Kamito’s right hand hadn’t disappeared.
That was why Kamito hadn’t been trapped in despair and had been able to revive her.
However, Restia’s spirit seal had completely disappeared.
That meant that she had completely vanished from this world.
“She saved Kamito. What’s more, this world as well, definitely───”
While muttering, Claire moved her gaze to the blue sky that could be seen out the window.
Whether Kamito had released the <Fire Spirit Lord> was not clear yet.
Just that, if they went by what Iselia Seaward who was observing the <Spirit Lords> said, the <Spirit Lords>’ madness was currently abated. That was the same result as what happened when the <Strongest Blade Dancer> released the <Water Spirit Lord> three years ago.
“Has there still been no contact from Iselia-sama since then?”
“Yes, and I can’t contact her from my end.”
Rinslet looked down at the spirit seal carved upon her own left hand and said that.
The frozen rose seal ─── it was something directly granted to Rinslet by Iselia.
Different from the spirit seal which was proof of a spirit contract, it seemed like she could hear the voice of Iselia who was at <Astral Zero> through this seal.
Even so, she had only communicated with her once when they had brought the unconscious Kamito back to the human world. They were curious about the current situation of the <Spirit Lords>.
───That release plan is a temporary measure at most.
Even as they continued like this, the <Otherworldly Darkness> was advancing its corruption of the Spirit Lords.
What will happen to the world from now on───
It was too heavy for a single student to bear.
“……We should also return your little sister to normal quickly.”
“Yes. If Iselia-sama regains her full powers, that should also be possible but……”
The second daughter of the Laurenfrost family, Yuden Laurenfrost, had angered the insane water spirit lord and been sealed for eternity into everlasting cursed ice.
Rinslet’s goal for entering the <Blade Dance> had been to save her, but in the end, she hadn’t voiced her <Wish> at the true shrine.
Yudia Laurenfrost remained sealed within the cursed ice.
(Nee-sama’s whereabouts are also unknown……)
Sighing slightly, Claire moved her gaze down from the sky.
Next to the spring in the courtyard, first-year girls were making a shrine to worship spirits. Around there were girls in swimsuits having fun and girls playing instruments, creating a peaceful and fun-looking image.
“……Honestly. It’s peaceful here.”
“That it is.”
The Academy grounds’ preparations for the <Spirit Festival> in two days were proceeding in a big rush.
Amidst the numerous seasonal festivals of Areishia Spirit Academy such as the <Abundant Crop Prayer Festival> and the <Water Spirit Festival>, this <Spirit Festival> was the grandest.
This Academy festival that took place over two days and offered thanks to the spirits was not limited to Ordesia Empire but was a large event that also saw visitors from all different countries. For the sheltered ojou-samas of the Academy, it was one of few chances to come in direct contact with the outside world.
Moreover, since the winning team of the <Blade Dance> had come from the Academy this year, it was expected to have a real turnout.
Of course, <Team Scarlet> who were responsible for bringing the <Spirit Lords>’ protection to the Empire had the main role in the second day’s parade.
“As expected, Kamito-san will also need to appear?”
“……That’s right. Kamito was the key figure for victory who beat that <Strongest Blade Dancer>. He has to at least appear or nobody will be happy.”
For this one week, including their homeroom teacher, Freya, outside of a small group of people, Kamito being unconscious was unknown.
Thanks to that, many things such as bouquets, letters and homemade sweets were sent to Kamito by girls that were worried at the Sylphid Knights’ headquarters.
“……Rather, since we returned to the Academy, it seems like he’s become popular.”
“I-it seems that way……”
Rinslet cleared her throat.
Yes. When he had first been admitted, they had been scared because he was a male spirit contractor but after seeing his dance during the <Blade Dance>, the number of girls who had become secret fans had increased.
To begin with, for Claire who knew Kamito’s true identity, this wasn’t something strange. At any rate, Kamito was the one who had fascinated the continent’s girls three years ago, <Ren Ashbell>.
(For sure, Kamito when he was blade dancing was c-cool……)
Claire puffed her cheeks as if pouting a little.
……Somehow, I don’t like it. I have this gnawing feeling in my chest.
I still haven’t sorted out my feelings on Kamito’s true identity.
Ren Ashbell was a distantly admired existence for Claire and even if Kamito was her true identity, she couldn’t feel a sense of reality from it.
(……Haa. I feel like I just keep thinking of nothing but Kamito.)
Her cheeks naturally went red. In order to gloss over it, Claire shook her head.
Rinslet stopped at the fork in the corridor.
The two were taking upperclass courses, but their majors were different so their classrooms were different. Rinslet was in upperclass ceremonial practice and Claire was in introductory summoning.
“Well then, see you later. I’ll make Kamito-san a nourishing soup and go visit him.”
“Yes, I’ll also make something edible.”
“……Umm, Claire, cinders aren’t edible.”
“D-don’t make fun of me! E-even I’m progressing!”