The nun casually stepped over Viscount Agren, who had rolled to her legs, and took a step closer to me.
――― Viscount. I finally realised that the noise I had heard earlier was the sound of the Viscount falling to the ground. The falling water pooled on the ground and a dark red gradually spread out.
As the Viscount slowly raised that he had been killed, he weakly lifted up his shaking right hand and grabbed the hem of the nun’s clothes.
“Why… did No… rdstrem… me…!”
His fragmented, slurred words reached my ears even though they were muffled by the sound of the water.
Nordsterm. So that nun is connected to the north.
“Wilhelmina, is that her? She really does look like him.”
The woman giggled and her voice sounded husky. The lady standing behind the nun, who must have said that, casually stepped over Viscount Agren’s head. The Viscount groaned and then fell silent.
She was a tall woman dressed in a simple travelling cloak. I couldn’t really see her face because she had her hood pulled over her eyes and a cloth wrapped around her mouth, but her bare thighs and belly were smooth and dark brown. She looked like a prostitute. I could tell from a glance that she wasn’t from this kingdom.
“… Who are you guys?”
They looked at each other when I asked them who they were. Then, they laughed.
“Thanks for asking, Pipsqueak. This girl’s name is Wilhelmina, and she is the heroine who will rebuild this kingdom. You should speak more respectfully to her. Say, you fake, bloody, heroine demon.”
The woman smirked and spoke in a high-pitched voice as if she was reciting a song.
“And my name is Deiferais. This is the first time that we’ve met, ――― Ouwe’s daughter.”
The spear slipped out of my hand and the end of the spear hit the ground with a thud. The sound brought me back to my senses slightly and I clenched my fists tightly.
I never imagined that I would hear that name here and now.
“… I had no idea that my father had rebelled against the nation and was hanging out with heretics.”
I felt a sickening sensation at the back of my throat, as if someone was rudely caressing the inside of my chest. I felt as if my internal organs were being turned upside down and my legs were about to give up on me, so I supported my body with the spear.
But the intense chills and nauseating feeling was too much for me to bear, so I bent over and vomited, not just once, but several times as my body convulsed, and I tried to push even the tiniest bit of air out of my empty stomach.
No matter where I go, I’m still the daughter of a monstrous scoundrel. Even though I killed Ouwe, his name will always follow me forever. What’s ‘Ouwe’s daughter’, that phrase is always being said with sarcasm. I’ll take that fear and contempt that goes with it and turn it around. Why, why did I think that I was free from Father’s spell? I haven’t changed at all. I am the daughter of the man who tormented his people. I am the daughter of the man who betrayed his kingdom. I’m the one who killed the father of her attendant. I’m someone who is piling up sins just by being alive.
“Oh my, it looks like you hate it so much to the point of vomiting. That’s so sad. I’ve been looking forward to meeting you, Ouwe’s favourite child.”
The lady said as if she was enjoying herself a lot. That made me feel even more nauseous.
My head shook. Father’s voice from my memories forcibly woke me up.
Before I knew it, Rashiok, who had been standing right next to me, barked menacingly at the two of them. A gust of wind roared, forcing them to stumble forward.
The woman’s cloak and cloth were blown away, revealing her full face. Her eyes and nose were distinctly eastern, and for some reason, the left side of her face was distorted in a strange way.
It was white ink tattoo. The intricately designed tattoo spread in a crisscross pattern from the right side of her face to her arms and legs.
“Where is Kamil?”
I didn’t want to deal with her anymore, ――― yes, my dislike for Deiferais was growing. However, a voice so thick that couldn’t be explained left my mouth and was directed at Wilhelmina.
Wilhelmina tensed for a moment, but then she smiled. She smiled repulsively, like a fake holy mother.
She said shamelessly.
I held my spear as an overwhelming impulse surged through me, and Rashiok snuggled close to me. The air trembled in response to the draconis who had spread his wings and growled menacingly.
“Oh my, how amazing. You’ve got a rare pet, Pipsqueak. I’m jealous~~~.”
The woman’s teasing voice viciously coiled in my ears. I forced myself to swallow down my nausea. I held my mouth shut, looked up and glared at her. I saw the woman smile eerily from the corner of my eyes.
“I’m jealous, so lend him to me for a bit. I’d love to play with it.”
The woman swayed her empty hands at Rashiok.
Then, to my disbelief, the tattoos on her body turned a poisonous reddish-purple colour while glowing with phosphorescence.
“You said you want to play with it, but we need to get out of here soon, Deiferais.”
“I know, Wilhelmina. I’m only going to play a little. I’ll just play for a little bit, until that pipsqueak’s heart breaks into squishy pieces.”
The woman smiled disgustingly as she glared at me.
What the fuck is she going to do? I became more alert and readied my spear.
Dieferais. The heathenism terrorist who was said to have infiltrated this kingdom. Is something coming―――? I was on my guard since I knew I wouldn’t be able to deal with her using normal means.
“Now, let’s play with the pet together!”
The woman barked in an annoying voice, then Rashiok suddenly cried and fell to the ground.
“Rashiok…?! What did you do?!”
I thrusted the spear tip at the woman’s, at Deiferais’s neck. Deiferais widened her eyes in surprise for a moment, but the tip of the spear only ended up brushing against her neck.
The nun deflected the spear with a sword from her side and she glared at the nun. Using the momentum of the thrust, I made them rotate their bodies, then I swept the spear sideways which caused them to leap backwards.
“Oh my, you’re stronger than I thought.”
“That’s because she’s relentless. She’s lost all her restraints as a person. That’s why she can kill people without hesitation. It’s proof that she has inherited her father’s psychopathic blood more than anyone else.”
Those words came out extremely joyfully out of the nun’s ――― Wilhelmina’s mouth. My brain went numb from those words even though I knew she was saying it to shake me up.
You can hurt people unpretentiously. You’re a demon like your father. ――― Shut up, I know that well even if you don’t say it ――― I thought and yet the back of my teeth grinded together loudly.
I measured the distance. A two-on-one fight is a pretty tough situation, but I had no choice but to do something about it now that Rashiok had been defeated.
I adjusted the rhythm of my breathing to sooth my fast beating heart.
“… Don’t glare at me with such a scary face, Pipsqueak. Your opponent is someone else.”
Deiferias applied pressure to her neck which was slowly dripping with blood and managed to turn her painfully distorted expression into a smile. She slowly spread her arms towards the sky. A mysterious pattern of light was drawn in the air.
It sounded as if something was clawing on the ground, then Rashiok grasped my neck in a slow motion from behind.
… iok. The words that were supposed to follow were cut off before they were spoken. I reflexively jumped back and Rashiok’s giant body plunged into the ground.
I called his name half in a daze because he was clearly acting erratic.
He laid down on the ground again and scratched the ground with his forefeet while groaning in pain. He was foaming at the mouth and his pupils were narrowed and dilated, as if he was extremely excited.
What the fuck is going on? Goosebumps rose all over my body because of my unpleasant hunch.
“Ufufuufu. Now play with your cute pet, Pipsqueak―――!”
Deiferias’s harsh laughter sounded in the area, and she waved her arms again. She drew an eerie purplish-red pattern in the air. Rashiok sluggishly stood up again and he turned his insane eyes towards me. He drooled, groaned, and roared.
My mind went blank. I automatically rolled on the ground as he rushed at me.
This unbelievable experience made me call out his name again. Rashiok roared in anguish again, then he put his face to the ground and rubbed his face against it. He was trying to shake something off. Deiferias sneered and yelled in a high-pitched tone.
“You’re a dragon after all! How dare you resist me!?”
The woman, who danced with blood flowing from her neck and staining her entire body, seemed to be an extremely fearsome existence. The only thing I could understand was that this was incomprehensible, and I almost cowered from this mysterious event.
That woman is controlling Rashiok.
No way. How can she control him? My god, something like being able to control living beings at will… I couldn’t deny it though since there were flickering shadows in the sky just above my field of vision. There was an innumerable number of phosphorescent moths floating around in the sky above the commoner’s district.
“… You’re controlling the monsters…?”
It was like the magic Rashiok used to control the wind.
“Correct. You’re a smart one, aren’t you Pipsqueak. I’m a divine messenger of Alfena who can control monsters. I’m here to destroy this heretical kingdom where there isn’t even a single person who could use the power of God. Ahahaha―――.”
Power of God? If that’s… the same power as what the monsters use, then isn’t it magic?
Or is that what religion is? You believe that it’s god’s power just because you can use a power that monsters can? I glanced at Wilhelmina, and she was listening as if she didn’t care what Deiferias had to say.
That means that the forces of the nun, the forces of Deiferias, the heretics of the anti-noble faction… is the Alfena church in the west? Are they just working together or is it something else?
“Say, oh yes, you should come with us too. Pipsqueak, you should come with us just like your father did.”
My eyes turned bright red at that moment. My right arm strongly slashed through the air. The spear in my right hand flew out of my hand and pierced the woman’s right thigh. Fresh blood gushed out from her thigh like a mist.
The woman’s loud laughter turned into a shriek. The nun finally lost her composure for the first time and called out the woman’s name, “Deiferias.”
My lips lifted in brutal pleasure like a thick, black, heavy tar. I touched my cheek with my left hand and realised that I was smiling in a very distorted way.
Laughter escaped from my lips. The insides of my stomach boiled. It was hot and painful as if it was searing. My head, on the other hand, was as chilled as ever as if it was trapped in ice.
My ears were ringing badly. I felt like I was floating, and I couldn’t feel the ground anymore.
My cloudy feelings came out in a low, groaning laughter.
I stepped on the head of the corpse lying beside me and pulled out my rapier which I had pierced into his neck just a while ago.
Deiferias pulled the spear out of her leg and flung it to the ground with a clang. Her face was stained with anger and humiliation, and she glared at me sharply; her eyes were filled with murderous intent and hatred. I felt my lips twist even more.
Did this woman tell me to take my father’s place?
When I thought that, a muddy stream of hopeless emotions that couldn’t be described in a single word filled up inside me.
Even the thought of Rashiok squirming and suffering on the ground vanished from my mind.
“I’ll kill you.”
It sounded so brutal that it froze my brain even more.
As soon as Deiferias opened both her arms, I darted towards her in a straight line and aimed my rapier at her.
As I had expected, a sword from next to me caught the tip of my sword as it headed for the woman’s stomach. I heard her click her tongue impatiently, and then the deafening metallic sound of blades crossing against each other drowned out the clicking sound.
I stomped on the butt end of the spear as hard as I could, and the tip jumped up. Deiferias jumped back to avoid the spear.
“… Tsk, this fucking brat…!”
As soon as Wilhelmina jumped backwards as if her sword had been struck, Rashiok jumped at me from behind while roaring. I threw mud at his eyes with my left hand.
I listened indifferently as the draconis whined.
I hit his nose without hesitation when he used his forefeet to veer off course. The scales that had peeled from his skin glittered in the air in front of me. I couldn’t avoid his left wing as it passed over my shoulder and grazed it. My arm swung in the wrong direction and an unpleasant sound came from my shoulder.
I felt a sharp pain and numbness ran through my arm, and my left arm slumped down feebly… My shoulder’s been dislocated? If it’s a subluxation then it’s fine, but if my arm has been completely dislocated, then that’s a bit of a nuisance.
“Argh, Deiferias. It looks like you’ve done something a little unnecessary…”
Wilhelmina raised her voice in frustration and thrusted her sword at my thigh. I kicked it with the sole of my shoes which caused it to repel and aim at her dawn coloured eyes.
I twisted my body and turned my face away while grabbing her wet black hair that was spread in the air in a messy manner, then I pulled it as hard as I could.
I ripped her hair out. Wilhelmina’s face distorted in pain, and she quickly tried to cut off the hair that was still in my grip. My rapier shallowly grazed her ear almost at the same time.