As I passed through the magic gate I found myself on another arena stage with a large magic circle drawn on the floor. Looking around neither Ray nor Melheys were here. Ray’s gate must have connected to another dimension.
Taking in the full view I saw the red jewels scattered around everywhere.
“It’s a big mistake on your part if you think you’ve outwitted me Arnos-sama.”
Melhey’s voice rings out but his body is nowhere to be seen. It’s not surprising though since that fellow created this space using <Azeishis>. It would be easy to send your voice from another place.
“Traps are set up all around this place and have been doubled and redoubled just in case.”
Magic gates appear all around me and start leaking a black aurora. It gives off a brutal light and forms a ruinous barrier that hides a bottomless magic power. As if showing its fangs it enveloped the whole arena in one go.
I quickly cast anti-magic on myself and the 21 scattered jewels. As the two powers collided they gave off an intense sound.
The first layer of anti-magic pops in an instant. I immediately restore it and reinforce it, however, as soon as I do it shatters again.
This magic is much stronger than Aivis was when he fused with the god of time Eugo Ra Raviaz.
The only way I can protect the jewels is to constantly cast anti-magic on them.
“Fumu. This is a magic I’m extremely familiar with.”
I feel nostalgia from the magic wavelength of this black aurora which isn’t surprising considering it’s mine from 2000 years ago.
“Isn’t this the “wall” I made to divide the world into four?”
“It is indeed. It’s the magic you used your life to cast. An accomplishment made possible for the first time by combining the powers of the god of creation, the great spirit, a hero and the demon king. The Four Boundaries Barrier <Beno Ieven>.”
That explains why it’s so strong. <Beno Ieven> refuses all things and destroys them. If I’m swallowed by this wall even I will have trouble escaping.
“Did you absorb the wall using <Azeishis> before it disappeared?”
If it was kept on being fed magic power it wouldn’t disappear. Melheys had the power to make it through the wall so it’s not impossible.
“Indeed. But as expected of <Beno Ieven> I was barely able to maintain it and certainly could not control it. Because of that, your magic was necessary.”
I see. The reason he used the <Demonic Absorption Bracelet> was not to reduce my power but to get the power to control <Beno Ieven>.
Originally its not a magic that’s designed to be moved but if it’s trapped in <Azeishis> then by using magic gates it can be transferred freely anywhere. Using it like this turns it into an attack magic.
“As expected of Arnos-sama though. Usually, a mazoku that has just reincarnated cant even use a tenth of their old powers but you regained your strength in just a couple of months which is fortunate for you otherwise you wouldn’t have been able to protect yourself from <Beno Ieven>.”
“Your mouth is running very smoothly there Melheys but do you really think I’d be bought down by my own magic?”
“If you were in top condition then no, however, you have lost your left arm and used up more than half your magic. On top of that, you have to protect not only your own body with anti-magic but those 21 jewels as well. Even for the demon king of tyranny that’s a disadvantage.”
“Do you really think so?”
“Well then. I’ll strike another blow shall I?”
Melheys casts Remote Clairvoyance <Rimnet> and a picture appears in front of me. Standing on an arena in another dimension was Ray holding Sheila.
When Melheys spoke a black aurora rose up around Ray whose hand immediately went to his waist but he didn’t have a sword.
I broke Initeio and my sword was thrown a while ago.
“He’s not very good at magic. Without a sword, he’s finished.”
The jet black aurora attacks Ray and without a sword, he’s powerless to prevent it, however, just as <Beno Ieven> is about to strike anti-magic envelopes Ray and Sheila.
“Wonderful Arnos-sama. You cast anti-magic on them by tracing their location using my magic power from <Rimnet>, however, there’s nothing else you can do. It’s only a matter of time before you use up all your strength.”
Fumu. He does have a point. Just using anti-magic by itself doesn’t really help.
“Can you hear me Ray?”
Using <Rimnet> I speak to Ray in the other dimension.
“…….Arnos? Is this anti-magic yours?”
“Yeah but I’ve used up a bit too much magic. That black aurora is called <Beno Ieven>. Can you manage it?”
Ray nods with a serious expression.
“Can you get me a sword?”
“Yeah, it won’t take long.”
Using Construction Creation <Ibis> I create a demon sword in front of Ray who reaches out and grabs it.
Looking at the aurora before him Ray sharpened all his senses and released a slash as if he was aiming at someone’s vital point.
The black aurora split in half before rejoining and attacking Ray.
Another flash of the blade and Ray intercepted it, however, when the two collide the sword shatters.
As expected. While I have to keep casting this much anti-magic it’s hard to create a decent demon blade.
“It appears that’s as far as you go Arnos-sama. It’s only adding to the denseness of <Beno Ieven>.”
Melheys voice rings out in triumph.
The speed that the anti-magic is being destroyed is accelerating. Wave after wave is being sent at me and like Melheys said the density of that jet black aurora is increasing accordingly.
“….This magic <Beno Ieven> was it? I can feel your magic power coming from it.
“I’ll leave the detailed explanation for another time but this is the magic that I gave up my life to use 2000 years ago. Melheys has quite skilfully taken it.”
“That explains why it’s so formidable.”
Ray carefully examines the jet black aurora surrounding him.
“Arnos. If you stop the anti-magic can you make a stronger demon sword?”
“I can, but if you are exposed to <Beno Ieven> without the anti-magic you’ll die.”
Ray smiles his refreshing smile.
“If I’m going to die anyway I’d rather cut it first.”
The more he hits the wall the more he grows. He might have already begun to grasp it after those two strikes he landed earlier.
“You’ve got 0.5 seconds to cut it. I can’t guarantee anything beyond that.”
I make demon sword in front of Ray again and he grasps it.
“Let’s go then.”
I remove the anti-magic and Ray pours his power into the sword increasing the toughness of the blade.
In that moment the sword gleams as the anti-magic faded and Ray swings his sword.
Again the jet black aurora is cut in two before it immediately rejoins and attacks Ray.
Ray cuts the Aurora again and before it can rejoin he cuts it again into four this time. It’s then cut into eight, then sixteen then even more finer.
Unfortunately, no matter how fine he chops it the magic power of <Beno Ieven> doesn’t decline in the slightest. In fact, it gets stronger as it tries to rejoin itself.
One. Ray missed a single strike on the aurora. In that moment the situation reversed itself and the aurora cracks Ray’s sword.
Ray falls to his knees and I cover him in ant-magic again.
“…….I only needed a little more……..”
Ray tries to stand up while breathing heavily.
Ray collapsed as his power suddenly left him.
“…….My body……….feels strange……”
Of course it does. You are trying to do this after using your all to fight me earlier.
“Don’t relax. The anti-magic is weakening.”
Ray tries to get up but he can’t even turn over on the floor let alone stand up.
“……..C’mon power……..it’s no good……”
Ray tried to make a fist but couldn’t even do that before spitting out a huge breath.
“Arnos.” Ray says while staring into space. “That’s it for me. Can I entrust my mother to you?”
I strengthen the anti-magic around Ray. I mean to get out of this mess.
“It’s too early for you to be whining. Stand up.”
“My body won’t move. In this place, I can’t even cut <Beno Ieven>. After all, it seems like I’m no match for you.”
Ray closes his eyes like he’s given up. Is this that mans limit?
“…….You can do it………”
A faint voice calls out.
“….You can do it……Ray…….I believe in you…….because you love swords very much……”
Sheila speaks like she’s delirious. Her rumours and traditions have been steadily erased so her spirit disease will be progressing.
“…..Sorry, mom. My body is already…..”
“It’s okay Ray. Mother will protect you. I’ll help you.”
“…….My strength is…..?”
Sheila’s body is wrapped in a pale light then her outline suddenly distorted and changed into something else.
Spirits have a temporary body and true body. I wasn’t sure if a half-demon half-spirit would have a true body but it appears like it’s about to manifest.
Sheila was suffering from advanced spirit disease and her magic was about to disappear. Thinking logically she shouldn’t have any power in reserves to show her true body.
She must have squeezed all the remaining strength that was left in her origin to help her beloved son.
The light settled and Sheila’s true form was revealed.
I guess if the true form of Riniyon was an eight-headed water dragon then there’s no reason Sheila’s can’t be a sword.
Her appearance is incredibly similar to the blade my father made but the magic power she is giving off can’t be compared.
I see. So it was something like that. In that case, I don’t need to act.
“Stand up Ray. You can still fight. Mother doesn’t remember raising you as a weak child who gives up halfway.”
Ray slowly forces his body up.
He desperately reaches out his weak body and grabs ahold of Sheila’s sword.
Light from the sword washes over him like its protecting him.
“….You can do it……..Ray. Mother knows there’s nothing you can’t cut.”
Ray nodded and stood up before readying Sheila’s sword and facing <Beno Ieven>
“Are you sure Ray Grandori? If you use that sword you won’t get away with an easy price with her spirit disease. Your mother will surely disappear from this world.”
Melheys speaks in a threatening tone to Ray.
He’s not lying. Sheila is so weak the result is clear.
“The reason that a half spirit with an unstable origin can show its true power is because it is a once in a lifetime power. Are you okay killing your mother with your own hands?”
The reason Melheys is threatening Ray so much is because he’s wary of the spirit power coming from the sword Sheila changed into. I guess her power can cut <Beno Ieven>.
Sheila’s calm voice calls out.
“You’re wrong. I’m protecting him. I’ll protect this sweet child by giving up my life as many times as is needed.”
Sheila’s sword glows even brighter. At first, it’s strong, then it becomes blindly intense and finally, it’s like looking at a comet.
“Nee Ray. Do you remember?”
Sheila talks kindly like she’s reminiscing. It’s a really gentle voice that doesn’t seem like its a final conversation.
“When you were a child I tried teaching you cooking and when you got a knife you tried to cut the pan.”
“I guess there was such a thing.”
“Mother said you couldn’t cut it but you tried with that kitchen knife again and again and suddenly the pot split in two. Mother was really surprised.”
Even though Sheila was a sword you could tell she was smiling.
“I was really angry but you were so happy. Ray would surely be good with swords. I remember thinking that.”
Ray gently nods.
“Nee. What can you cut now that you’re bigger? Will you show your mother?”
Ray slowly nodded.
“It’s fine. I’ll show you mom.”
Ray closed his eyes in concentration and held his sword in a natural pose.
Like his sword was a toy Ray lets out an innocent childlike smile. In his mind has he returned home to when he was young? That child who was attracted to swords was following his memories with his mother.
Ray inhales and holds his breath then takes one step forward and exhales. The sword pulsed in his hand with each breath.
His sword shines, a ray of light in the darkness and slashes <Beno Ieven>.
He cuts faster and faster and disperses the black aurora quicker than it can return.
How many slashes was that in one breath? To the naked eye, it looks like a barrage of meteors. <Beno Ieven> was cut and disappeared.
Still, Ray doesn’t stop.
At the sound of Ray’s voice, I used magic and connected our two dimensions.
The light sparkles and the blade-like meteors pour into this dimension and destroy the black aurora.
In a few seconds <Beno Ieven> was wiped out from my dimension as well.
Ray breathes out calmly.
Sheila’s sword was now only a faint light that had almost gone out.
“….How was that mom?”
As he speaks the outline of the sword distorts and changes back into Sheila. Her body was so thin and transparent that it was about ready to disappear and she was floating slightly above the ground.
Sheila put her hand on Ray’s cheek.
“………….It was splendid Ray………Thank you for being my child…….”
Sheila’s body turned into particles of light but she showed a full smile on her face.
“….I love you…..”
Ray reaches out to hug her but there was nothing he could hold on to.
As if suddenly exposed to a gust of wind Ray’s mother disappeared.
Ray started to cry at the particles of light that still remained in his hands.
“…..There were still things I wanted to do…..” He says in a voice that comes from the bottom of his heart. “……Things I wanted us to do together….”
Ray looks down and his voice becomes so thin it almost disappears.
“……..I’m sorry…….we can’t do anything together any more……”
Tears spill down Ray’s cheeks.
“I understand your feelings Ray but its too early for you to cry yet.”
Ray looks up at my words.
“Keep those tears for your emotional reunion. You can do your filial piety later without reserve.”