Chapter 65. My Love, For You
Crimson flames burned under the reddish-blue sky. The scorched earth was littered with dead bodies that didn’t even look remotely human anymore.
“I wanted him to kill more than this, but… That didn’t happen did it.”
Necro was savoring the view as he walked upon the lifeless earth. This view, no, this scene of hell was where Jin truly belonged. This was something that Necro craved.
“I shouldn’t have any interferences.”
The rebel army was almost obliterated with one attack. Even the soldiers that barely managed to survive were in no state to move. Necro thought that things were going better than he had thought as he raised his head. The first thing he saw was the pile of falling debris along with the red star behind it.
If the calculations were correct, that star should have the capability to destroy this world. Morto was against using something like this, but the plan fell through in the end. All thanks to the voting system they set in the beginning of the journey.
‘Did he expect this to happen at that time…?’
Now that he thought about it, the system for the distribution of the spoils pretty much came from Jin. Perhaps all of this was within his calculations? Nonsense.
‘I should stop thinking random things...’
The atmosphere vibrated non stop even as he walked up the hill. Jin’s battles with Camille was having extremely powerful effects on the continent they were on.
“The strongest in humanity vs. the strongest in the world. It would be a lie to say that I wasn’t interested in the outcome. But well, it doesn’t matter who wins, does it.”
The conclusion of the battle was meaningless. All would go according to plan regardless of the outcome.
‘One step forward. The moment when the consciousness pulls itself free from the restraints of the physical world will come soon. The moment when I become god.’
The fruition of his wish was nigh. Even if something goes wrong and humanity dies, he would be satisfied. Because just like how Morto loves life, Necro loved death. Just like how Jin sought profit, Necro sought death.
That was all.
There was no evil intent in what Necro was about to do— neither was there regret. He was simply repeating what he had been doing since his birth. Necro managed to reach the top of the hill and found himself staring at a ball of bright light. He could see Morto at the center of this light.
‘So the saint is still a saint, despite having recovered her memories?’
If there was a troubled person near her, the saint would help the person. Just like now. Morto Hai was a person who did everything to save anyone she could.
‘I wonder how long she’d last. Five minutes? Ten minutes?’
Her white skin was burning into itself and her brown hair had turned completely white. She was drenched in her own blood. Below her was a pool of black blood that continuously flowed away to somewhere else. The saint was asking for death.
Necro tried to restrain himself from laughing as much as possible as he watched the last moments of this dying candle.
I sliced them.
I sliced the Hero’s wrists and elbows. Her hips and hamstrings. Her stomach and breasts. Her cheeks and shoulders. I riddled her body with tiny wounds as she tried to stop the star of destruction.
Her body was already drenched with blood. She still had the calmness of the Hero about her, but she was no longer a lily, but rather a rose.
Was this enough?
The Hero did indeed manage to save the world. The star of destruction had stopped and the rest of the threats had been neutralized as well. Even if she dies now, Sky Island and the buildings would stay forever stay suspended in the sky. Just like her previous miracles.
“Almost at the end...”
I parried her sword once and leapt above her.
She seemed too tired to even fly. I should let her rest.
The Hero dropped down through the buildings from my kick. A cloud of dust rose around her when she crashed into the earth.
Didn’t seem like she was dead yet…
I shifted down to her altitude and swung my hand. With a whoosh, the cloud of dust disappeared.
Does she not have the power to fight back?
The Hero was just looking up at me silently. Her eyes were the same as before. Pure, kind, and absolutely devoid of any hate.
Why was that?
I asked her a question. Out of curiosity.
“Aren’t you mad? Don’t you want to kill me?”
The Hero looked away instead of responding back. Her eyes reflected the blue autumn sky above us.
“...Nice weather today.”
Her voice was high-pitched. Girlish.
“It would’ve been perfect if we all just went out to play.”
What was she talking about?
“Mr. Romeo would complain about how he’d rather train. Chrono would hide away after staying for just a few minutes. Iris would be running around chasing her summoned beasts everywhere. Then, Morto would gather everyone with her packed lunch.”
The Hero smiled brightly even as she bleed to death. Her fading eyes seemed to be looking at somewhere extremely far.
“Just what went wrong? We all just wanted to save more people...”
Asking such a question to a failed product was quite troublesome.
“On such a nice day like this, just like that time… Everyone gathered together, smiling… … … …...”
I couldn’t hear the rest of her fading words.
She was probably reminiscing. Back at the days when they first went to kill the Demon King. When they were all happy and free.
The light in her eyes disappeared as her breathing came to a stop.
I wonder where people go after they die?
Since they don’t ever open their eyes again, they must be dreaming a dream where they never want to wake. Yes, a happy dream. I closed the Hero’s eyes and moved to our promised location. My job would be done after I gave Necro the Hero’s corpse. After that is our goodbyes.
Ah, was this it?
I saw a bright light the moment I shifted my location. The light soon disappeared though. It completely disappeared the moment I managed to get there. And a girl fell powerlessly with it.
To think this would happen while I faced off against the Hero… What the hell was Necro doing? I realized just what the saint did after I looked at her brown skin and white hair.
I put down the corpse in my hands and ran to Morto. The moment I grabbed onto her, my hands caught fire.
What’s this? This was almost like the time when I first met her. It felt like I was touching fire. Was this because I overexerted my powers?
The saint managed to open her eyes when I shook her. Her dried lips twitched a bit, but no sound came out. What was she…
I turned my head to the sound behind me and saw Necro hugging the Hero’s corpse.
“What in the world were you...”
I didn’t finish my sentence. I felt the man’s intent from the black magic that began to envelope my body. He was restraining my body using Necromancy. He was planning on turning me into a doll now that the work was done.
I had expected this, of course. The man was being extremely suspicious from the start.
“You can’t pierce through my magic resistance with just this much power.”
“Ah, is that so?”
The reason why I learned magic in the first place was because I was afraid something like this would happen. Necro smirked when he heard me and lowered his head.
“Then you probably expected this as well?”’
Necro put his lips on the Hero’s in front of our very eyes. A love for corpses. Necrofilia. A [Disease of Death].
I knew he swung that way, but…
I had been wondering if he was trying to come out of the closet, but froze when I saw what happened next. Not just my thoughts. My entire body as well. It was almost as if the body didn’t belong to me. It felt as stiff as my body did when I first came to this world. The black mana around my body even started to get inside my body.
My control over my body began to lessen. I was still conscious, but it felt like my body was a different being altogether. Even so, right now…
It was possible to resist. I wasn’t just relying on magic resistance in the first place. If I just use the abilities I bought to deal with necromancy…
They didn’t activate. Phase Shift. Dematerialization. The vault. It was almost as if they had all been sealed….
Could it be…
My consciousness went mad as I realized what might have happened. The possibility that Necro hid information from me. The possibility that certain information might have been modified.
But what would this achieve…?
Necro put the Hero’s corpse in the Hero’s coffin and stood up. He was now looking directly at me.
“Necro Kill, the greatest black wizard in the world, orders you. Jin Whitehead----.”
A black suit and a black necktie. He always wore funeral clothes and pulled back all of his hair behind him. Like a businessman. The person I considered my saviour, the person who I considered to be my friend occasionally, said this to me.
“Kill the saint.”
Warm blood was splattering against my face by the time I realized what he said. My sword had gone straight through the saint’s heart. I felt the saint tremble within my arms.
Mm? I don’t understand.
Necro responded with a restrained laughter.
Necro let out a bit of a laugh and asked me a question back with a tone filled with arrogance.
“Why indeed? Whyyy? Why did I not kill you and instead decide to kill the saint?”
“...There’s no need to do this, is there? She was already dying.”
Necro smiled as if he had just heard something ridiculous. He bowed as he looked into my face.
“Why don’t you think about it carefully in the underworld? You like it, do you not? Thinking.”
Was he like this from the start? Necro checked his wristwatch as he spewed a few more words of mockery.
“Oh my. Look at the time. I should go. I have an event to attend to, you see. You should know, right? I’m a busy man. Well, it was nice working with you. And… You worked hard. And since you worked hard… Dust to dust, ashes to ashes. I would like to shake hands with you before I go, but I’m quite scared of you. Please understand.”
Necro went back to his usual cheerful tone as he disappeared over the hill. At the same time, the mana that connected me to him got completely cut off. My body began to rot away rapidly as a result.
This is how it ends?
“...Somewhat boring of an ending.”
Was this how evil ends? I attempted to open the vault after putting the saint down on the floor. There’s a potion inside. If I just get her to drink it…
“Did it get completely sealed?”
Even the stats that I raised with Heart of Gold seemed to have disappeared. Was this the curse that appears once you kill the Hero? Oh boy… I was more useless than I thought. I should have learned to save other people if I knew this was going to happen.
The saint was slowly dying. She probably couldn’t even regenerate from using her power too much. Just like the Warrior.
Seeing her slowly die on the floor reminded me of what I had seen in the past.
Was this how she dies?
It’s not really sad or disappointing. Well, I gave up on living once already, so I guess it was nonsensical for me to care about someone else’s death.
“Was this the part where I would’ve cried if I was a normal person?”
It was pure curiosity. Now that we both didn’t have much time left, I suppose asking such a question was alright. The saint lifted her arm to stroke my cheek.
“Fine, I admit it. I acted arrogant all the time and managed to get backstabbed in the end.”
The holy fire got weaker as well. It felt warm to touch her, so I guess I’ll keep holding her hand for now. Right. Since we were both about to die, I guess now was a prime time to ask this question.
“By the way. I wanted to ask you this from the start, but… Do you like me?”
The saint stayed silent for a moment, then let out a snort.
“Hah. You sti...ll… misunderstand people… too much… Who… would… you.”
“You still manage to say something offensive while dying, eh? So I was mistaken, after all? That’s fine then.”
The saint pinched my cheek.
“I didn’t… say I hated you?”
If I was someone like her, I probably would respond to her like such. I used the hand I wasn’t using to hold her hand to pinch her back. I went back to caressing her gently after that.
“I guess I can’t even say that famous quote anymore. ‘Because I’m already dead’.”
This was a life I gave up in the first place. I earned a second chance in a world like this, but I still managed to be a foolish and worthless being.
“We always had different views on everything. I wonder if we’ll end up going to the same place after death? Ah, I suppose not. I’ll be going to hell.”
“Idiot… What are you… saying? Mr. Murderer, even hell… would not want someone like you.”
“Is that so...”
The saint faintly smiled as she managed to whisper her next words. She seemed to lack the strength to speak properly now.
“My real name… Aliyah Herz...”
Herz was a last name meaning heart in German. Aliyah was a name that meant precious and holy.
“Aliyah Herz… A good name.”
She smiled brightly when I said her name for the first time. This was the time to say our goodbyes now. I could see the light in her eyes become faint. She was trembling, so I hugged her tightly. Her voice was so quiet that I had to put my ear next to her lips.
“Mr. Murderer, your name is...”
“Morto Hai… Use… that as...”
Putting a girl’s name on a guy… Pulling something like that even at the end… Well, I’ll take it. I was sick of my family name anyway.
Extremely faint. An extremely faint crown of light was set on her head.
This light of hers flickered a few times weakly. Then, suddenly, just like how a dying life shined brightest in its last moments, the crown of light became bright enough to cover her whole body.
Could it be…
“For you, the one I love, I give you my feelings, my heart...”
The warm, white light trickled into my body like drifting white ash. My damaged skin became restored as feeling returned to my body. I could feel warmth return to my body. And, for the first time, I felt a thump.
The heart that I received for the first time began to beat.
“I love you.”
The saint whispered this with a weak voice. Almost as if this was the only chance for her to say it.
“I love you. I love you. I love you. I love you. I love… I...”
Her voice soon became too weak to follow. Even the warmth in her fingers disappeared.
“Eh? What is… this?”
I couldn’t see in front of me very well for some reason.
The droplets of water refused to stop. They kept dropping onto the saint’s face without stopping. At this moment, something within the saint’s body seemed to fly off into the sky. She had said that life was a precious, weighty thing, but…
It was impossible to be able to come in contact with her overflowing heart now. Even if I wanted to talk to her more. Even if I wanted to walk with her more.
This name was hers, and only hers.
This heart of hers that I received… This life.
I should continue living like her. I would get crushed by the weight of my sins in the future, but… Until then, until I can meet her again.
I should preserve it well so that I may return it to her.
Like this, after being given a new life from her in this world… I cried like a baby as I repeatedly said sorry.
My honesty, and my love.
Previous Chapter Next Chapter