Chapter 14 – ‘Battle Crazy’ Hildle
―――― Going back in time about 20 minutes ago.
Karen and Iris were on their way to find Olivia.
“……! Hey, Karen. Wait a minute!”
Iris was first to notice the incident.
Before they knew it, the crowds were decreasing, and the surroundings were strangely quiet.
Karen stopped at Iris’ words and noticed the situation.
Then looked around and finally understood.
―――― There were corpses lying all over the place.
Some had pale skin as if their blood had been drained, some had their stomachs torn, some were skinned and their red-black bloody flesh was peeking.
All of them have died in violent ways, their form full of pain. Among them were Karen and Iris’s men.
Footsteps echoed from ahead as both of them were left speechless.
It is unlikely that anyone could have miraculously survived in this situation. Perhaps the person responsible for this tragedy is heading here. They take a vigilant stance.
“Kuh, kuhihihihihihihihihihihi. right, right, I’m surprised. There are still heretics left. Perhaps, they are believers under the protection of the God.”
A nun appeared.
Purple eyes with long green hair.
Despite standing neatly, she was a girl who had a contradictory air of cruelty at the same time.
No matter how you look at it, she doesn’t look like a decent person.
Karen asks without letting her guard down.
“Did you do this?”
“Yes, that’s right. I delivered ‘pain’ in order to show the prestige of God… unfortunately, everyone seems to have been rejected by the voice of God.”
The nun laughs in a jarring voice.
“Ah, I beg your pardon. Me of all people. First of all, it was rude of me not to introduce myself. I am Cecilia Waitley.”
“Ces……!? Karen, that’s it!”
Both Karen and her companion are surprised at the unexpected name.
It’s the name that was in Serra’s report last night, and the name of the Undying they failed to capture.
Karen glares at Cecilia and asks.
“――――Why are you here?”
“Kuhi. Well, as far as ‘we’ are concerned, simply to set an example. ‘I’ personally, have an errand which has to do with a certain person.”
“A matter with a certain person?”
Karen scowled at Cecilia’s answer.
Cecilia’s body trembled at the question and she gave her an uncomfortable ‘Kuhi’ laugh.
“Yes, that’s right. …… do you know Celestia Valentine?”
“…… You think I’ll answer that?”
Drawing her swords out of the two sheaths on her waist in succession, she points the tip of the sword at Cecilia.
A short sword with a very curved blade —- a Marine Sword.
Cecilia, on the other hand, was smirking, despite the clear hostility.
“Kuhi, that’s right? Yes, yes, I’m awfully vexed. To not bring an acute ear to listen with, really deplorable.”
There was a rustling sound.
A metallic sound echoed from ahead with a constant rhythm. Someone else is approaching.
“I know you, Karen Dashwood. Rumored to be one of the most influential figures in the Elmerado Army.”
“What about it?”
Karen says without fear to Cecilia, who has a grinning and creepy smile.
Meanwhile, the sound was getting louder every moment.
The true nature of the sound begins to appear.
“Iris, step back,”
With a trembling voice Iris.
Karen also takes a look and takes a step forward towards the battle.
With both arms wide open, Cecilia laughed, snarled, and whispered.
“Even if we are immortal, we understand that we can’t possibly stand a chance against you. So we’ve prepared a suitable opponent.“
The sound of rustling stops.
A girl stood next to Cecilia.
―――― in a word, her appearance could only be called bizarre.
First, her face was covered with a black Mask.
Perhaps the part around the mouth with something like a valve extended was for breathing, so a strange sound ‘Shu’ was emitted. A large black lens was attached to the part around the eyes, and the surface was made of a strange material, neither metal nor rubber, which completely covered the entire face to the neck.
―――― If the age had progressed a little more, the mask would have been the so-called ‘gas mask’.
Her hair was visible behind the mask, but curiously the blonde hair extended to reach her feet.
And, she was covered with chains which tighten the whole body from the neck down.
Both arms are crossed in front of the chest and are restrained by chains.
A shackle was attached to the ankle, and a chain extended from there to connect the iron ball.
It is a restraint as if to hold down a ferocious beast.
She is obviously a dangerous person.
「…… Cecilia. The woman there, meaning a strong ‘human’」
The girl asks Cecilia in a muffled voice.
The voice was too inorganic and machine-like.
“Yes, she’s Karen Dashwood. She’s one of the strongest in this country.”
「…… Hmm. I’ve heard from Sakura that some people are strong. I have never met such a ‘human’. All those who stood before me have fled. Will you be one of them, woman?」
“I don’t know what you mean, but… I have an undefeated streak. I can’t afford to have it broken here right now.”
She tried to provoke the enemy with a smile
This is, so to speak, a pre-battle ‘greeting’ for Karen.
Make the opponent feel like it, and inspire oneself.
―――― Karen had a little bit of a fighting frenzy.
On the other hand, the change is not seen in the girl who received the agitation. However, i don’t know the expression because it covers the face with a mask.
「Is that so? It seems that you are either very strong or a fool. Don’t let me down too much, will you?」
There was a rustling sound.
The chain which had restrained the girl was torn apart in an instant. How on the earth did such a delicate body gain that strength?
「Cecilia. One last question, do you mind if I use my power?」
“Yes, please feel free to. Other than Celestia Valentine and Riko Akasaki, the instructions say you may meddle as you like.”
「Roger that. Then, increase the output. Eighty percent remains until reaching the ‘critical point’. Shift to First Battle Mode」
The girl didn’t do anything in particular.
However, her atmosphere changes completely.
An intense feeling of pressure. Hot enough to burn the skin.
Even now, the bloodlust continues to swell.
Tense, she could feel Iris trembling behind her.
「I am called Hildle. Remember that much and die, woman.」
Hildle approached right before their eyes.
Karen promptly swung down the cutlass in her left, aiming for the right arm.
There was a response.
She aimed to bite into Hildle’s soft skin, the blade cut into it, and she could feel something hard.
With that momentum, Karen dared to add her weight, and slashed Hildle’s right arm, going through the bone.
Pushi ~yaa, red-black blood erupts, and sprayed over half of Karen’s body.
However, Hildle did not groan in pain even having lost one arm.
A voice from behind.
Faster than Karen could turn around, she suffered severe pain from an impact to the back of her head.
The world spins around. Her thoughts were blown away, nausea strikes, she loses her sense of equilibrium, and falls down to the ground.
This time, however, she violently swung the cutlass on her right arm, and the blade pierced Hildle’s right leg.
Without worrying about the blade that pierced deeply, Hildle raised her legs and tried to trample on Karen’s head.
She rolled on the verge and avoided it, then immediately stood up and stabbed the left side of the chest with the cutlass in her left without hesitation.
There was already a pool of blood at her feet, and even half of Karen’s body was dyed.
However, Hildle didn’t mind, and he grabbed Karen’s neck with one hand and strangled her.
「That about it, human?」
Hildle, whose expression still couldn’t be seen, said in a disappointed voice.
「Ihave a power they call ‘Dominion’. I would be glad if I could fight at least until I can exercise it.」
“Uugh, gah, aah…”
Hildle drew near, and whispered in Karen’s ear.
「What I want is a war. Simply, I want to fight someone stronger. To put one’s life on the line in this battlefield evoke a very pleasant feeling. And, would that be the same for you, woman?」
“I know, very….”
Hildle’s words hit their mark.
Certainly Karen felt comfortable in a fight. One of the reasons for being in the military is because she could go to the battlefield. That’s one aspect of her that no one can deny.
However, so what if it is? After all, it is the dribble of the lunatic. Even if they get the same pleasure, the essence is fundamentally different.
Karen grabbed Hildle’s arm with both hands and kicked it up with her knee. Even if the body doesn’t feel pain, it is a human body after all. If you apply a shock, the force will come off easily.
“Keho, hah~…. hah~….”
Released from the gallows, coughing painfully, she quickly stands up and glares at Hildle.
Hildle’s body trembles slightly, perhaps she was pleased with her will.
「Huh…. you can still fight, woman. I like it, I’ll show you a little bit of my power.」
“…… Heh. You can still show your strength? That’s good, in that case, I’ll go all out.”
「…… seems only the mouth is strong.」
Immediately after Hildle responded a little tediously.
A strange, unpleasant sound echoes.
And Karen saw something incredible.
“!? No way, this is…!?”
「Hmm. Apparently it’s the first time you’ve seen an Undying.」
The source of the sound, was her severed right arm.
At first, a grotesque, red-black object overflowed from the cut surface. It gradually grew, forming fibers, blood vessels, nerves, bone and muscles.
After several seconds. There was a right arm, with unbroken skin.
「This is also a hindrance.」
Hildle pulled out the swords stuck in her chest and legs.
Likewise, the wound was gone.
「Then, woman. I’m going to give a little pain. – – Further output increase. 50% remaining until the ‘critical point’ is reached. Transition to Second Form」
There was a heavy sound.
The mask that covered her face. The black lens which was part the eyes detached, and fell to the ground.
Just a little, her face is revealed.
Skin with a white complexion. And her red eyes staring happily.
She opened and closed her palms a little, and Hildle mumbled only one remark.
「Then, have a good sleep. Woman — No, Karen Dashwood.」
Immediately after, Hildle disappeared from Karen’s sight.
A strong shock and pain ran on her cheek, causing her to lose consciousness in an instant.