Instant Death / Instant Death Chapter 33

Yuuki collapsed.

Despite having been in perfect shape just moments ago he fell to the ground without any warning whatsoever — there was no one around them that could have harmed him, no one had done anything at all.

Unable to deny that truth, Stefanie clung to his body and broke into tears with a heartrending cry.

For her, being taken in by Yuuki could have been called a stroke of luck, considering her life as slave until that point. She was always saying empty-sounding flattery like ‘As expected of master!’, but in her case those words may very well have come from her heart. If nothing else, her grief over Yuuki’s death was genuine.

Mustering all the calmness she could, Euphemia focused her consciousness on her own state of mind and realized: there was no feeling of being controlled. Even when she looked at Yuuki’s corpse, the only thought that came to mind was ‘Serves you right.’

That was the kind of tribe Euphemia was born in, a clan with no respect for the dead. Raiding their dead enemies’ graves and exposing their corpses to the world was how they silenced their grudges.

“Go ahead, you can have that.”

However, surely Stefanie wouldn’t sit idly by if she went ahead and ruined the corpse to her heart’s content. In the end they were both victims and Euphemia had no reason to dislike her, nor one to fight her.

“…What?”

Stefanie looked up at Euphemia in a daze. It seemed she, on the other hand, had been expecting Euphemia to grief over Yuuki’s death just like her.

“You’ve probably noticed, but we were released from domination; I don’t have any more reason to be loyal to this guy. Don’t know about you, but I’m leaving.”

“I…”

Stefanie was clearly overwhelmed by the situation, but while Euphemia didn’t have any reason to dislike her neither did she see any reason for why she should watch over her.

“Well, bye.”

She promptly decided to leave the confused Stefanie behind and made her way to the exit. There most likely wasn’t much harm in leaving her behind; she was more than strong enough to handle these ruins’ first floor on her own.

The first objective was going to be grouping back up with her tribe and reviving her village. As long as her old companions were alive she could trust them to make their way back to their village as well. Thanks to her tribes’ naturally well developed physical abilities Yuuki most likely didn’t view her clansmen as his usual dispensable pawns, so there was a good chance they were still alive. Looking at it that way, Euphemia realized that there was no need to be pessimistic; she and her tribe could still start anew.

Her throat was terribly dry.

When she finally arrived at the staircase to the surface and saw the daylight shine in she was convinced that something was off: There should have been no way for the sunlight to illuminate the first floor through the two story high building that the stairs were situated in.

There was no doubt that something had happened on the surface, but she still had to get out of the ruins and return home.

Hoping to find an answer to her many questions she looked around her and it didn’t take long for her to find a huge spot of darkness in the distance.

Beings of which no one knew when, where or why they appeared in this world. One would expect any and everyone of this world to fear these creatures, but Euphemia actually felt relieved, for the aggressor paid her no attention.

For Euphemia, a single look was enough. Enough to sense that the person before her was the natural enemy of the weak, a being that preyed on her kind, a violator of souls.

“Mhm, doesn’t look like you’ve got a whole lot of strength going for you. But see, I really don’t know what to do about that thing. Let’s see whether you can tell me something I don’t know.”

Fighting was out of the question. Whatever it took, Euphemia absolutely had to get away from that place.

She was hit by Charm, a skill that temporarily controlled her soul and made it impossible for her to raise resistance.

Thus, Euphemia learned that the one before her was Lain, sage and Original Blood.

It was a terrible match up.

Hitting it seemed to achieve about as much as striking at fog, and to make things more complicated the part that came into contact with it withered instantly. First it would dry up, then crumble, then turn into sand. Fortunately, Lain’s immortal body was hardly fazed by such an attack, but while her defensive properties may have been enough to let her stand up against Kurayami there was nothing she could do as far as offense went.

In retrospect, Santarou and his ability to command all archetypes of magic should have had a fairly decent chance against it. After all, he did possess the offensive ability required to have driven it away once. Lain held huge magical power within her as well, but her spells weren’t anything too special, mostly consisting of regeneration magic and the sages’ barrier magic. Other than that her repertoire was rather basic offensive magic only.

And in such a hopeless situation, Lain found a blonde girl left behind in Kurayami’s wake, just vacantly gazing after it.

Lain decided to make the girl her follower.

However, the only thing the girl, Euphemia, could tell her was that she was underground while Kurayami passed by. That was rather disappointing, but after questioning her further she found out that she was involved with one of Sion’s sage candidates, and that she had even come into contact with Yogiri Takatou.

“So he can kill people even if they aren’t near him, that’s quite something.”

Now that Euphemia was her follower it was impossible for her to lie to Lain, so if nothing else that was her honest interpretation of what happened.

Going by what Yogiri said, just thinking about it was enough for him to kill somebody. On top of that, his power wasn’t just limited to humans but could even be applied to objects spawned from magic and things like soul infused dolls.

Of course his instant death power was already dangerous, but Lain believed that his detection was what would turn out to be the real problem. It probably wasn’t a coincidence that Yuuki died right as he ordered his slaves to kill Yogiri. He must have somehow sensed Yuuki’s order.

Its sphere of action, its scale of threat, the properties of it.

If it was just going to keep advancing like it had been this far then there were most likely not going to be any survivors. There wouldn’t be a problem if the sages’ celestial protection was able to fend it off, but in the end the barrier was no more than a monster repellent. Whether it was going to be enough to stop Kurayami’s power was questionable at best.

“Masayuki’s face will be a sight to behold, if nothing else.”

She had seen enough to know that continuing to chase after Kurayami wasn’t going to change anything.

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Thanks for reading. Special thanks to everyone pointing out typos and mistakes.

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