High School DxD:Volume 21 Last.DxD
In order to chase after Apophis, who landed on the uninhabited island, I, Hyoudou Issei also landed on that island. On top of a rock ridge of that island, I faced a tan-skinned youth who was wearing vestments. Based on his appearances alone, he looked human…but the aura that I felt from him was unusually powerful. It was an aura unique to dragons. Apophis smiled as he welcomed my arrival.
<<So my opponent is you, Sekiryuutei. This is truly a great honour.>>
“Yo — Apophis-san. You’re supposed to be one of the strongest Evil Dragons, right?”
<<Fufufu, at the very least, I’m a lot stronger than that barbaric Grendel.>>
…Well, talking this way made him really easy to understand. In other words, he was as strong as a Super Devil. Well, that’s something that I understood already. After all, he was an Evil Dragon on par with Crom Cruach. I didn’t answer and nor did I have a reply as I readied my stance — and then charged towards him in a straight line! The first to strike gets the upper hand! Although I’m not like Xenovia, it’s better to attack from the front myself, instead of waiting for the opponent to prepare their first move! Lately, the opponents that I’ve fought against have been monsters that use difficult techniques, so just the thought of waiting for them to use those is terrifying!
I fired out several Dragon Shots as I flew towards him. Apophis remained still, and showed no intention of dodging. Just when my Dragon Shot hit him — in that instant, some kind of darkness appeared in front of Apophis. My Dragon Shot and the magic energy that was emanated from the darkness eliminated each other at the same time! …Sensei had spoken about it before. Apophis was able to manipulate darkness and shadows. He was able to utilise his full strength under the shade of darkness. If he began to control the weather, then I definitely had to stay on guard against it. In other words, the darkness that appeared in front of him just now absorbed my Dragon Shot and then eliminated it.
—At that time, darkness appeared behind me, and on both my left and right sides. A black aura darted out from it! I felt danger, and immediately flew into the air to evade it, but…a part of my dragon’s wing touched the darkness and was melted by it! This darkness was capable of dissolving its opponent simply upon contact! Oh, I absolutely don’t want to touch it! After that, I moved to put some distance between us. I then launched a continuous bombardment of Dragon Shots from the air. Apophis conjured up darkness in front of himself, and erased all of my shots of demonic energy. Apophis then called forth a surge of darkness to surround me and fired projectiles from the darkness towards me. I immediately dodged them so that I wouldn’t be hit…those bullets of darkness dissolved anything without reservation as soon as it touched them, and upon seeing that, cold sweat trickled down my entire body. It’ll be too dangerous if I take even a single direct hit. Using darkness to cancel out my attacks, and using darkness to melt everything—. It was an ability that was very easy to understand. But precisely because of this, it was very difficult to deal with! Looking at things from this perspective, he was certainly much stronger than Grendel! If that rampaging Evil Dragon was struck by these attacks, it would also have been melted and would cease to exist! Damn it! I’ve got absolutely no clue! Reducing our distance for close-quarters combat…was also very dangerous. My fist would probably be sucked into the darkness and my entire arm would be erased! Seeing that I had stopped attacking, Apophis began to laugh.
<<Our compatibility seems to be quite poor.>>
“Well I’m sorry! Anyway, my compatibility with any technique-type opponents is rather bad!”
In response to my sarcasm, Apophis’ reaction was the exact opposite.
<<No, that’s not what I meant. What I wanted to say was that our compatibility is quite poor. I’m also not very good at dealing with strong opponents who attack me directly. If I take a hit from a single punch, I’ll definitely suffer a lot of damage. That’s why I have no choice but to use an ability like this to protect myself from exposing any openings, and then counterattack.>>
…His overly calm speech and behaviour surprised me for a moment.
“I never thought that there could exist such a calm Evil Dragon.”
That was because all of the ones that I encountered were abnormal bastards like Grendel that rampaged agressively. Although there were Evil Dragons like Crom Cruach, Apophis was also an exception.
<<I also deeply and passionately enjoy fighting. However, if I’m compared to brutal fellows like Grendel or Níðhöggr, then it makes me feel a little disappointed.>>
No matter what he said, this guy was completely abnormal. He controlled Trihexa, and travelled to various factions to cause trouble. This couldn’t be called a normal mentality. From my perspective, his unconventional way of thinking could already be regarded as the same type as Grendel. …If it was Vali, I’m not sure what he would think either. Apophis asked me
<<Current Sekiryuutei. You — are you interested in another world?>>
…Are we starting to talk about the matters of another world now? Well, I did actually communicate with one of the gods on that side once. Thinking about it right now made my head hurt again, so I didn’t really want to think about it too much….
“I’m somewhat interested in what kind of place this other world is like, but I’m not interested in making a move against Great Red.”
Truthfully speaking, I’m definitely curious about it. It’s uncharted territory, so it’s certain to cause excitement in any man. But I absolutely do not want to defeat Great Red, who is freely and leisurely drifting about in the Dimensional Gap. After all, Great Red is one of the saviours of my life. Although I’m not sure if he ever thought about it that way…. After hearing my reply, Apophis’ lips curled up slightly as he smirked.
<<I see. Well, it’s only a matter of time after all.>> While saying that, Apophis placed his hand in front of his chest. <<I apologise for my impatient nature, but please allow me to have a swift victory.>>
All of a sudden, the surrounding area became pitch-black. As I turned and looked around in every direction, I realised that the entire island had been enclosed within a barrier. Ddraig said
[…This is bad. That guy wants to decide on the victor in one go.]
…Azazel-sensei had said so before, that as soon as the weather changed, it was the first sign of danger! In order to prevent him from continuing, I fired a Dragon Shot towards him, but the technique had already been completed, and the wall of darkness which appeared before Apophis again eliminated my demonic energy.
<<For a small island of this size, it only takes a few seconds for me to turn it into my world.>>
Apophis’ entire body — gradually became enveloped in darkness. As if in response to the entire island being enshrouded by darkness, the darkness hovering around Apophis’ body gradually began to expand, and slowly change. It finally formed a shape, and had become some kind of large object. A solar eclipse floated in the sky above the island, which revealed only a thin halo of light. And obscuring that was an Evil Dragon who had already transformed and was now hovering in the air—. The thing which appeared in the sky to obscure the barrier was a gigantic serpentine dragon with a total length that exceeded one hundred metres. It was completely black in colour, but it also had gems on its body which released a silvery, shimmering glow. It had three eyes upon its head, with each of them also releasing a silver luminance. So this was the…[Eclipse Dragon], Apophis’ true form! Such…an ominous aura! It was a deadly aura which differed from that of Crom Cruach’s! Upon feeling this sensation, Ddraig said
[…He has also trained to the same level as us…!]
—He was actually Heavenly Dragon-class! …This was really quite troublesome. He was much stronger than Rizevim, or in other words, it would be impossible to defeat him using my current [True Queen] form. Which means—. …So I have no choice but to use Dragon Deification…. On the contrary, if I do use Dragon Deification, then I’ll definitely be able to fight against the monster standing before me. But—. It may cost me my life this time, and I won’t be able to touch those things again either…. Regardless, either one of those choices are so annoying! I won’t be able to touch them if I die. And not being able to touch them is no different than being dead…! …Ouch ouch oww, it really hurt as my entire body was struck by pain! Even if I were to survive, perhaps my entire lifetime would end up like this…. When I became stronger by means of Dragon Deification, it could be said that all of the things that represented me were taken away. So that was the so-called equivalent exchange huh…. Black water slowly swarmed up towards my feet. In no way was it seawater. It was clearly an abnormal type of water. This water also continued to swell, and had already submerged the entire ridge. Was this also a special technique of Apophis’…? Speaking of which, sensei mentioned that if Apophis used black water, then I definitely had to be cautious. If I touched it, then I would definitely be dissolved into it…. While I was still being hesitant, I noticed that Apophis was not attacking.
“…Why aren’t you coming over to attack?”
Apophis replied to my question with
<<I know that you have an even stronger form. You’re not going to use it?>> “…You’re going to give me the time to transform?” <<I was allowed to create this field. So I can wait for that much.>> …He really was a strange Evil Dragon. He himself said that he wanted to settle things quickly, yet he was willing to wait for my transformation under such circumstances…. Seeing my puzzled expression, Apophis answered my doubts. <<I think that this is a duel between dragons, could it be that you…don’t think that way? Although it is true that I am in a hurry, I don’t want to spoil such a one on one duel like this.>>
…Ah, I see. I understand now when it’s put that way. This guy and Crom Cruach are the same. No matter how dangerous their thoughts and ideas may be, and no matter how dangerous the actions that they are engaged in, they still have their pride as dragons that they will never throw away. And then, I also understood something else. He was definitely not going to play along with Rizevim’s plans. Compared to that bastard, Apophis had much greater ambitions. From someone else’s point of view, perhaps these beliefs were too naïve, but he still adhered to these beliefs. That’s why he was so strong, so unimaginably strong—. Sairaorg-san, Kiba, Gasper, Saji, Vali, His Eminence Strada, and also Crom Cruach; all of them were honest warriors who upheld their own principles. That’s why I said
“…I won’t use Dragon Deification. But, I will go all out!”
<<I see, then let us begin.>>
Thus began the intense battle against Apophis who had transformed into the shape of a dragon.
[Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost Boost!!!!!!]
I continued to increase the number of Dragon Shots, as I fired out a myriad of them! —However, the darkness which covered the surface of Apophis’ body completely blocked all of my attacks. Ascalon extended out from my gauntlet, and I transferred a dense amount of dragon’s aura into it.
The powerful dragon’s aura and the holy aura melded together as I slashed the blade down towards Apophis, but it was still repelled by the darkness, and no damage was able to be done at all. Seeing that nothing happened when the blade of Ascalon touched the darkness, I maintained the blade in that extended position and changed my arm into Solid Impact mode! With the blade of the sword in front of me, I pointed it straight towards Apophis!
[Solid Impact Booster!!!]
It was an Ascalon version of Solid Impact + [Penetrate]!
The thrust of Ascalon and the Impact both hit Apophis squarely…. Although I could feel the sensation from it, unexpectedly, Apophis still did not counterattack. —It was at that time that I realised that the ridge below me had already been completely swallowed by the black water! The rate at which the sea of darkness engulfed the entire island was rapidly increasing. If things went on like this, I would no longer have a foothold. —Suddenly, a change occurred in the black water below me. It rolled into a wave, and rushed towards me! The black water seemed as if it had a will of its own as it flew towards me! And it wasn’t just a single wave! The whips of black water which homed in on me began to increase one by one! I continuously dodged the attacks while in mid-air, but Apophis took advantage of this opportunity and sprayed out a dark aura from his mouth! It brushed over just a small section of my armour, but the section which it came in contact with melted! A countless number of waves of black water chased after me, in addition to the attacks from Apophis himself! I swung Ascalon to counterattack, but my openings were finally caught as streams of black water rammed through my four limbs! …Arrgh it hurts! Apophis didn’t let go of this opening, and continued to expel darkness from his mouth while I did my best to avoid it—. However, what awaited me was a stream of black water which mercilessly drilled into my abdomen! —Kuh! …My abdomen was struck with a heavy blow! I lost the momentum of flight, and fell directly downwards. The only fortunate part of that was that the place that I fell onto had not yet been flooded by black water. —But the black water that had pierced my limbs and abdomen caused immense pain which resulted in a slowing of my movements. Then, the sharp sensation of the black water pulsed across my entire body!
The tremendous amount of pain caused me to cry out in lament. …If I didn’t do something about this…I was going to die! I took out the Phoenix Tears that Ravel had given me — but when I saw them, I was speechless. The Tears had also been dyed black, and had clearly lost their function. …Was Apophis’ special ability even able to spread to the Phoenix Tears…? Apophis drifted in mid-air as he gradually drew closer to me. More and more black water also swept closer to me. …Damn it…. Why are there always more of these ridiculously strong people…. [True Queen] was the form that I achieved after undergoing all sorts of hardships. But in such a short time, opponents which exceeded it had appeared. …In that case…am I unable to protect anyone…? Eventually, the crimson armour was released. I simply lay there, with both my demonic energy and stamina exhausted. Perhaps this world is one in which only Apophis can survive in… I clenched my teeth with regret. Even so, the threat of Apophis still gradually came closer—.
…At that time, I noticed something which had fallen out of my tattered uniform. It was the amulet that mum gave me when I left the patient room. My trembling hand reached out towards mum’s amulet. There were two folded photographs which fell out of the broken amulet. One of those photographs had unfolded—. A certain feeling immediately welled up inside my body. That photo was of me when I was two or three years old, I was wearing a haori and hakama, with dad, mum and grandma…as well as grandpa who was still alive back then in a family portrait. Such photos had never been taken again. There was a single line of words written on the back of the photograph. I could no longer suppress the emotions which were welling up within me.
—Issei three years old Shichi-Go-San
—Thank you for being able to grow up to this point safely
…Mum really treasured this photo…. …The other photo also unfolded, and what was shown was a family portrait with everyone which was taken inside the Hyoudou residence. In the middle of the first month of the New Year, it was the family portrait which was taken as commemoration. Me, my parents, everyone in the Occult Research Club who lived in the Hyoudou residence, Kuroka, Le Fay and Ophis. Written on the back of the photograph was
—The family has grown again
—Every day is so much fun
…I began to cry and shed tears heavily. I made up my mind. While enduring the pain, I stood up. …Yeah, we have a lot of family members, mum, dad. I also…have a lot of fun every day.
—But, there are things that I want to protect.
Rias, Asia, Akeno-san, Koneko-chan, Ravel, Kiba, Xenovia, Irina, Gasper, Rossweisse-san, Le Fay, Kuroka, Ophis, Azazel-sensei…everyone at school, as well as many more, not just them, there are so many more people that I want to protect. There’s also dad, mum, and grandma who lives in the countryside—. The children in the Underworld who have been constantly supporting me—. In order to protect everyone, I — must use everything to fight! I — calmly began to recite the forbidden chant.
“—The Crimson Red Dragon dwelling within me, awaken from your dominance”
A dazzling red glow was emitted from the gem on my right gauntlet.
[—The Crimson Heavenly Dragon I possess within me, rise up to become a King and roar]
Ophis’ voice echoed out from the gem. I have to borrow your power once again—. Fight alongside me once again, Ophis! My friend! The gem on my left gauntlet unleashed a jet-black aura. A thick, dense, and powerful jet-black aura.
“—The jet-black God of Infinity”
An incredible crimson aura enveloped my entire body.
[—The glorious God of Dreams]
The jet-black aura of infinity was then encased over it—.
“[—Watch over the forbidden existence we shall become that transcends the boundaries]”
My crimson armour was then tinged with a jet-black colour. The power of the Dragon God gradually began to flow. Then, we sang the final verse.
“[—Thou shalt dance like radiance within our inferno]”
“[<<D∞D!! D∞D D∞D!! D∞D D∞D D∞D!!!! D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D!!!!!! D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D!!!!!!!!>>]”
All of the gems resounded with a voice which said [D∞D!!] and permeated through to the soul. A ∞ symbol emerged on all of the gems!
“[<< Dragon ∞ Drive!!!!!!>>]”
After the chant was completed, my body was wrapped in a crimson and jet-black armour.
“—This is the last Dragon Deification.”
I raised my head as I looked up at Apophis.
<<…Truly splendid. This aura simply cannot be compared to that of before.>>
Apophis said so with joy.
“Yeah, and once things have come to this, it means that it’s already over for you. —Prepare yourself.”
<<Those are good words! Then let us begin the battle between Heavenly Dragon and Evil Dragon!>>
After we each finished speaking, I instantly charged out, and directly threw a punch at Apophis’ enormous face!
“[<<D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D!!!!!!!!>>]”
The fist which was carrying the power of infinity — this direct attack knocked Apophis backwards substantially. Apophis was unable to nullify my punch.
<<Even my darkness cannot cancel out this power! How interesting!>>
Without the slightest hesitation, Apophis spewed out darkness from his mouth! I used an infinite Dragon Shot to counterattack — my Dragon Shot was pushed back, and I was hit by Apophis’ darkness! —A portion of the infinite armour was melted! What happened!? I was able to easily beat down Rizevim in this state, but I’m still getting hit by Apophis’ attacks!
[I told you so before. He is already Heavenly Dragon-class.]
I see now, Ddraig! In other words, I definitely can’t be careless! Apophis and I continued our direct confrontation with each other on the uninhabited island that was covered by a black barrier. I used punches and kicks, while Apophis manipulated the black water like a whip to counter my attacks. The impact spread not only to the internal area of my armour, but even my flesh accumulated damage. My four dragon wings were also pierced by black water several times, causing them to disappear, and while being forced to repair them, I had to be careful so that I didn’t fall into the black water below me. I attacked both physically and with Dragon Shots, while Apophis used his breath of darkness, barriers, and the manipulation of the black water to fight back. No wonder I was unable to defeat him using the crimson armour. This guy…is really strong! Even this infinite armour was being pressured! Nonetheless, my attacks were also equally effective against him! It was actually causing him damage! I managed to pull away from him, and spread open my four dragon wings which had cannons mounted on them! Barrels extended out of the two on top of my shoulders and the two below my arms! Ryuuuuu…. They quietly began to hum, as the power of infinity gathered at each of the muzzles!
<<How interesting! Let’s finish this now, Sekiryuutei!>>
Apophis unleashed an extraordinarily large ball of darkness from his mouth! Even I would suffer immense damage if I was hit by that in my current state! A voice resounded from all of my gems.
“[<<D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D D∞D !!!!!!!!>>]”
An [∞] symbol appeared on all of the gems of my armour, as the colours of red and black flashed alternatingly.
“[<< ∞ Blaster!!!!!! >>]”
An incredibly vast amount of aura was blasted from the muzzles of the four cannons; red and black aura interwove as it went straight towards Apophis!
I was completely shocked by the sight before my eyes! —Apophis opened his mouth once more, and continuously spat out three enormous masses of darkness! There were a total of four balls of darkness! The four enormous masses of darkness collided with my Infinity Blaster! …They didn’t fully disappear! This can’t be real! He truly was unimaginably strong, Apophis! No, in this case, I couldn’t hold back either! I had to continue fighting! I concentrated on my abdomen. The armour over my chest and abdomen began to change. It rattled as they separated, and the muzzle of a cannon emerged from there! The power of infinity began to gather at the muzzle of the cannon on my chest. Then—.
“This is the end, Apophis!”
In addition to the Blaster from four of my cannons, the forbidden attack — Longinus Smasher was also fired out. An immense red aura combined with my Infinity Blaster from earlier, extensively destroying Apophis’ masses of darkness, and ultimately engulfing the Evil Dragon’s entire body into it—.
After a continuous use of those abilities, I felt greatly fatigued, and descended to the ground where I knelt down and breathed in and out heavily. Although the black barrier had not yet lifted, the black water was gradually receding, and the small island was beginning to return to its original appearance. An enormous black Evil Dragon was lying in front of me. He had suffered severe injuries all over his body, and he was in a state where he was already beyond any kind of healing. Apophis smiled as he said to me
<<…That was a splendid fight, Sekiryuutei…no, Hyoudou Issei. I was able to…fight with a hero like you, I feel deeply happy…ah, this is something that an Evil Dragon should be.>>
Seeing Apophis, who seemed deeply satisfied, I put forward my own questions.
“You’re clearly a dragon who would fight an honest duel with me, so why did you do something like this…”
<<Aži Dahāka and I are both Evil Dragons. The end of an Evil Dragon should arise from a direct confrontation with a hero, followed by their defeat. Only with this does an Evil Dragon’s existence become complete. …That’s why this is fine. A fight like Rizevim’s without any glory is the lowest of the lowest…>>
…Yeah, your one on one duel with me has given me insight into a dragon’s pride, and shown me what a true Evil Dragon is. Precisely because of this, as an enemy that I must defeat, you and I fought. In his final moments, Apophis left his last words just as he disappeared
<<…Hyoudou Issei, come back and fight me one day…>>
Apophis’ body completely turned into dust, and disappeared into the wind—. Accepting the Evil Dragon’s invitation was fine, but I noticed that the black barrier didn’t seem to have any signs of undoing itself…. At that time, Ddraig brought up a disturbing topic.
[…I see, there is another one who needs to come here.]
—What! W-What are you talking about…? I didn’t even have the time to ask, as the space in front of me made a ripping noise and distorted. What emerged from there was — a humanoid being that emitted a white brilliance. A luminous…human being? Of course, that was impossible…. Because an extremely ominous aura was floating around it…! There were ten horns upon its head. That was the only distinguishing characteristic that it had…. No, I was familiar with this aura.
Before I could answer, Ddraig replied
[…It is the consciousness of Trihexa. It is formed by an aggregate of its consciousness. However, I didn’t think that it would have the appearance of a boy.]
Simply from its presence and atmosphere, I could feel that this being was indeed Trihexa! It was actually an aggregate of its consciousness!? Hey hey hey! Why did it appear right here!? Shouldn’t its movements have been stopped!? Just as I became wary of it, a change occurred in the barrier once again. —A teleportation magic circle with the crest of Lucifer appeared beside me. The one who emerged from it was a red-haired man — it was actually Sirzechs-sama!?
Sirzechs-sama still greeted me as usual with a calm demeanour.
“Sirzechs-sama!? W-Why did you come here…?”
Seeing my immense surprise, Sirzechs-sama smiled as he replied
“Indeed. Putting it simply — I came here to fight together with you.”
“N-No, I don’t understand what you mean!”
Upon seeing that I was still doubtful, Sirzechs-sama answered me again
“Many of my chores have already been completed, so I came here to act as reinforcements for the allied forces in Japan. I then learned that you and Apophis were fighting against each other within this black barrier. It is most likely impenetrable for those without sufficient strength.”
Apophis truly was powerful. Unless someone possessed sufficient strength, they would not be able to break through this barrier. Sirzechs-sama took off his cloak as he said
“A change has occurred to the Trihexa which was originally supposed to have been stopped. It ejected a core from its mouth. It then released a sudden flash of light, and vanished. While I was thinking of where it disappeared to…a reaction occurred within this barrier. Hence, I came into this barrier by myself.”
S-So something like that happened. Trihexa’s movements were stopped by Rossweisse-san and the others’ technique, but Trihexa spat out its core. It then transported itself, and finally wound up in here—. The core was clearly giving off an air of hostility towards me.
“…Why would it come here?”
I couldn’t help voicing the question that was on my mind. It was obviously able to go on a rampage while on the outside, but it deliberately came to where I was…. Sirzechs-sama laughed.
“I’m sure it must be because you have more charm. …I think it probably reacted to Ophis and Great Red, which is why it came here.”
—What! I-I see now. Because I possess the power of both Ophis and Great Red, that’s why Trihexa reacted in that way…. It makes sense now. Just earlier, I fired off blasts from my cannons which embodied the power of those two. With such a powerful aura, it must have attracted its attention. Sirzechs-sama looked around at the whole island. To be more accurate, he was examining the barrier.
“…Hmm, it looks like if even Ise-kun’s power was unable to break this, Trihexa must have noticed Apophis from the outside, and may have even strengthened the barrier. It seems like it really wanted to be alone with you.”
P-Please don’t say such outrageous things! Why do monsters always seem to like me!? …When he put it like that though, I finally understood. The barrier was not destroyed by me, and that was a result of Trihexa’s strengthening of it. Sirzechs-sama then continued
“Speaking of which, we successfully gained control of the Holy Grail. Therefore, the Evil Dragons and fake Sekiryuutei across the various territories have now been eliminated.”
Oh, that’s really good news! Gya-suke and Valerie were able to successfully stop the Holy Grail! In that case, the Holy Grail could now be safely returned to Valerie. While I felt relieved by that, Sirzechs-sama, who was beside me, began to increase his aura. —He planned to fight against the core of Trihexa that was before us.
“Despite having said that, if something isn’t done against the thing in front of us, Ise-kun won’t be able to leave this barrier. Moreover, looking at your current state, your Dragon Deification form looks like it will be released soon.”
Sirzechs-sama laughed lightly as he continued
“As your brother-in-law, I really want to have the opportunity to fight together with you. But anyway, this is also my last act of selfishness.”
Your words, what do you—. I didn’t understand the true meaning behind Sirzechs-sama’s words, but the Maou-sama continued to elevate his aura which embodied the power of destruction. The entire island was trembling—. His aura soared up again, and the demonic energy of destruction enveloped Sirzechs-sama’s entire body! What appeared in his place was a dense concentration of the aura of destruction which had converged into a humanoid form, an absolute existence. I-Is this Sirzechs-sama’s true form? Just by feeling the atmosphere he exuded from beside him, it made me understand that this was an immense aura beyond all imagination…. This is a Super Devil. The current Maou Lucifer! Even Ddraig leaked a breath of admiration at the sight of this.
[…This is Rias Gremory’s ani. An irregular among the Devils. …A true monster.]
Having become the incarnation of destruction, Sirzechs-sama laughed.
[Fufufu, I think that your transformation is also very irregular right, Ddraig? —So how about the crimson Maou and crimson Dragon Emperor stop this monster together?]
—What! …I haven’t had an invitation that could be any more exciting than this!
I answered as I turned to face the humanoid being of light in front of us — Trihexa readied its stance! In an instant, all three people silently vanished from their positions! A mid-air battle then began! Trihexa’s core gave birth to six wings from its back. They were the wings of a bird, dragon, bat, and various other beasts. I charged directly in from the front while flying in mid-air, and sent the core flying backwards. The core fluttered in the air like a bird to correct its stance, and then flew towards me at high speed once again. I wanted to kick it as a counteroffensive, but the core’s figure disappeared from my vision in an instant, and it slid right behind me. Sirzechs-sama then launched an orb of destruction at it, which instantly destroyed the core’s entire body! It’s over now — just when I thought that, I didn’t expect that the miniscule piece of flesh which remained of it would regenerate with a violent momentum, restoring it back to its original form. …If it’s like this, it won’t work unless we completely eliminate it…! Sirzechs-sama and I coordinated with each other, as we alternated melee attacks and the demonic energy of destruction; the core was defeated several times, but it always restored itself to its original form instantaneously. The core gradually adapted and responded to each of our attacks by using its aura to repel my flying kicks and Sirzechs-sama as the incarnation of destruction. …Well, Sirzechs-sama and I were also unharmed…. However, our opponent was also completely unscathed. While Sirzechs-sama released a burst of destructive energy which was enough to cause more than half of the island to disappear, he said to me
[Oh yes, why don’t you call me ‘gikei-san’ while we’re fighting?]
“A-At a time like this, what are you saying…!”
He still had a lot of headroom left while fighting, since Sirzechs-sama was still making jokes!
[Fufufu, well, I guess you’re right.]
It felt like Sirzechs-sama really enjoyed being able to fight side by side with me. However, he had no hesitation against Trihexa’s core as his opponent, and he continuously hurled his orbs of destruction at Trihexa! Regardless of how strong an enemy was, if they took a hit from such dense aura imbued with the power of destruction, they would definitely be annihilated, but the current enemy was the legendary Imperial Beast. It regenerated with unthinkable speed, and it began to attack us again, as if it had never been damaged in the first place! The demonic energy of destruction that Sirzechs-sama released was roughly about the size of a basketball. However, each and every one of his attacks contained an incredibly condensed amount of energy. It was probably equivalent to Rias’ [Extinguish Star], or even superior to it. Sirzechs-sama was also able to manipulate these freely, and he continuously pursued the core with them. Nevertheless, this form was also problematic. Because the power of destruction was being released from his entire body, every single step he took caused everything around him to be destroyed, and even the ground was carved away. That’s why, under these circumstances, Sirzechs-sama was basically hovering in the air all the time.
The core attempted to clash with Sirzechs-sama in a frontal assault and engage in melee combat. Despite the fact that the core’s hands and feet were erased as soon as they touched Sirzechs-sama, it still continued to attack. Sirzechs-sama himself was good at melee combat, so he was able to respond in turn. Damn it! I originally wanted to seize any chance that there was to give that core a taste of one of my large blasts…but after that intense fight against Apophis, my head was still somewhat dizzy, and my entire body was aching with incredible pain all over! As long as I was in my [Diabolos Dragon] form, I had the power of infinity…but if I really let loose another blast, would that lead to my death? I gave up on using a cannon attack, and instead used my fists to help out Sirzechs-sama. —All of a sudden, Ddraig began to laugh amusedly.
“Hmm? What is it, Ddraig?”
[…That Albion. It looks like he’s finally blown away the confusion for the first time in these past two thousand years.]
…Blew away the confusion? What is that in the first place? Ddraig still continued to laugh, and then he said to me
[Kukuku…then I will also use what has been sealed.]
The thing that Ddraig was thinking of soon appeared in my mind. ……Waa! T-This is! The thing that Ddraig described completely shocked me! Ddraig said
[That is correct, the thing that has now appeared in your mind was my original finishing move. The only attack to be crowned with such a name — partner! Hurry and use it! Use the Welsh Dragon’s, Sekiryuutei Y Ddraig Goch’s ultimate finishing move!]
In order to respond to Ddraig, I focused on pooling all of my aura towards my abdomen! I need it to be exactly like Tannin-ossan’s! Becoming aware of my actions, Sirzechs-sama pulled back.
I blew out everything that had accumulated in my abdomen in one breath! The entire island was enveloped in an endless, searing, inferno, with Trihexa’s core being bathed within it! The core was going to be burnt until not a trace remained of it!
“…I-It’s truly formidable, even Trihexa can be burnt by it!”
[—[Blazing Inferno of Scorching Flames]. The ultimate flames which can incinerate anything. Once ignited, they will never go out. Even gods will be burnt to ashes within these flames. And the only one that it is ineffective against is Albion. …Well, if it was Great Red, or the Infinite Ophis, it might also be ineffective.]
I-Indeed, the flames which were burning through the core did not show any signs of weakening! Although it was able to regenerate after being burnt to ashes, the flames showed no signs of disappearing! To think that such ferocious flames actually existed! Wouldn’t it have been better if you told me this a bit earlier!
[That would have been impossible. Up until now — it was sealed within the Sacred Gear by the God of the Bible. Being able to release the seal here is also thanks to effects of this second Dragon Deification. Of course, I also noticed the change in Albion’s determination.]
I-I see! After all, it was a power worthy of being sealed by the God of the Bible. It really was difficult to imagine…. However, even though the core in front of us was being burnt by Ddraig’s flames, its fighting spirit did not cease. Hey, come on! The flames did not disappear, and it continued to burn…but it still looked as if nothing had happened to it!? Ddraig said
[Only a monster with incredibly strong endurance and regenerative abilities would be able to stand up like that. Since it didn’t instantaneously disintegrate the moment that it was touched by my flames, it could be described as a troublesome existence that is beyond even god-class beings.]
What an unbelievable monster! Sirzechs-sama once again hurled a countless number of orbs of destruction towards the core. The core didn’t put up any resistance, and was eliminated along with a part of the island…. What was frightening was that the remains of Trihexa consisted of only specks of dust, and yet it still regenerated in an instant. …If things really went on like this, I would be out of ideas…. Its regenerative abilities didn’t seem to be weakening at all. And I…didn’t know how much longer I would be able to maintain this form for. …M-More precisely, I already—. In that instant, my consciousness blurred. My armour was released, and I fell down on both knees to the ground. …I then collapsed onto the ground, and could not get back up again. …The blood that had accumulated in my abdomen gushed up and I forcefully spat it out. An intense pain attacked my entire body…! Aaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhh it hurts…! No good…I don’t even have the strength left to move my fingers…nor move my feet….
[Ise-kun, stay there.]
Sirzechs-sama flew to my side…I really can’t move at all. I could only say ‘Sorry…’ as a useless word of apology…. All of a sudden, the barrier around the island was lifted. The sky returned to its original colour. I was also able to see the surroundings outside of the island.
[…The barrier has been released huh. But, if this continues…]
Upon considering the current situation, it seemed as if Sirzechs-sama had already solidified his decision about something.
[—As I thought, that plan is necessary.]
After saying that, Sirzechs-sama created a magic circle which was similar to that of Rossweisse-san’s, and projected it towards the core. The core was restrained by a powerful binding technique, and its movements were completely sealed. Sirzechs-sama then created a small magic circle with his hand, and then projected it onto the ground. The magic circle with the crest of Lucifer then expanded on the ground, creating a powerful wave of energy. The aura from it swelled, and what appeared there at last — was Sirzechs-sama’s peerage.
““““““All members of Lucifer’s peerage have assembled.””””””
Grayfia-san was also present. Everyone knelt down before Sirzechs-sama. Sirzechs-sama turned towards his peerage, and asked a question
[How are the places outside of the barrier doing?]
Sirzechs-sama’s [Bishop] MacGregor Mathers-san reported
“There are signs that the Trihexa outside is beginning to move again.”
His [Knight] Okita Souji-san then added
“Cores have also appeared in the other territories, and they are currently on the loose. Because of their extraordinary regenerative ability, they have not been able to be stopped effectively. To make matters worse, the techniques which have been applied to the original body are being undone.”
…In other words, among the Trihexas which have appeared in the territories of the various factions, their cores have escaped, and that has allowed the original body to be able to move again…. …Even if the Holy Grail has been stopped, and Apophis has been defeated, if this incarnation of destruction is not defeated, then things are still helpless…. …If something isn’t done against its regenerative abilities, this world really…will be…. A small communications magic circle appeared beside Sirzechs-sama’s ear so that he could listen to information from a range of sources. He then said to his peerage
[We need to implement the plan. Is this okay?]
Everyone nodded. Grayfia-san and everyone else all understood Sirzechs-sama’s thoughts, and agreed. Suddenly, Sirzechs-sama called out to Grayfia-san.
Sirzechs-sama faced Grayfia-san, who lifted her head, and then created a magic circle which released some kind of technique towards her.
“—Huh!? Sirzechs-sama, what are you trying to do!?”
As both her master, and her husband, Sirzechs-sama’s sudden behaviour caused Grayfia-san to be at a loss. —Grayfia-san instantly fell to the ground. As if her power had been siphoned away, she then collapsed onto the ground. Sirzechs-sama said
[This is the special hypnosis technique that Azazel taught me. I thought that it would be useful on you.]
“…W-Why would you do such a thing…!”
Grayfia-san crept closer to Sirzechs-sama. The hypnosis technique had already taken effect, and her eyelids slowly drooped. Sirzechs-sama was currently the incarnation of destruction. He originally wanted to hug Grayfia-san, but when he noticed his own form, he retracted the hand that he had extended. His bodily expression…looked awfully pained. Facing his [Queen] and wife who was gradually falling asleep, Sirzechs-sama said
[I’m sorry, Grayfia. I hope that you can remain here.]
“…You…really are…too cunning, Sirzechs…! …We clearly swore…that we would be together forever…!”
Grayfia-san’s consciousness gradually faded, and she cried as she faced her husband, the person that she loved. Sirzechs-sama also spoke with a tone of sadness
[For Millicas, in the days ahead of him…a mother is necessary.]
“…That child…actually, towards you…Sir…zechs……”
Grayfia-san only left behind those unfinished words, and then fell into a deep slumber on the spot. The corners of her eyes — were moist with tears. Okita Souji-san then lifted up Grayfia-san and placed her down by my side. Sirzechs-sama seemed ashamed towards his own peerage as he apologised.
[…I’m sorry, my peerage members. I’ve shown you something unseemly.]
His peerage members shook their heads, and all of them had pained and sorrowful expressions.
“That isn’t so, something like that is fine, really.”
Okita Souji-san replied. His [Rook] Surtr Second-san smiled forthrightly.
“Well, if you didn’t do that, nee-sama would have insisted on following us over.”
I then finally understood. —Sirzechs-sama and the others planned to go to somewhere. It was also a place that was closely related to Trihexa…. Sirzechs-sama said to his peerage
[I’m sorry everyone, but can you accompany me until the last moment?]
“““““Yes, our lives are yours to command Sirzechs-sama—”””””
His peerage members responded in a uniform manner. In that moment — I noticed a change in the surroundings. A large dimensional distortion occurred above us, and it continued to grow, until it became a large hole. Sirzechs-sama’s peerage gathered around the core which had been sealed, and activated a particular technique. I understood what the large hole which had appeared in the sky above was attracting. —It was Trihexa’s original body. Trihexa’s original body was covered in a magic formation which glowed with a holy radiance. Then, at some place near Trihexa, I also felt Serafall Leviathan-sama’s aura. I wondered if she was also going to fight. Sirzechs-sama expanded a magic circle in front of himself, and a display was projected out of it. On the display were Leviathan-sama and Falbium Asmodeus-sama.
<<Sirzechs-chan, all the preparations are already complete here.>>
<<We’re ready to transfer at any time.>>
[I understand, Serafall, Falbium. —Have you finished saying your farewells to those you love?]
Upon hearing Sirzechs-sama’s question, Leviathan-sama showed a saddened expression.
<<…I’ve been troubled about it until the end. That child will certainly cry, and I don’t want to see that child’s crying face. Otherwise, I would definitely hesitate…>>
On the other hand, Falbium Asmodeus replied rather cynically
<<I never had someone like that on my side to begin with. Anyway, I’ve also left most of the things that will come afterwards in the care of my [Queen] here.>> [I see. I’ve also done as you have, Serafall, Falbium, and I have left my [Queen] here for the future. So Grayfia will remain here.] <<I see, you’re leaving Grayfia-chan behind. I think that’s for the better.>> <<It’s because each of the Maou’s [Queens] are treasures of the Underworld.>>
Sirzechs-sama and the other two Maou-sama engaged in conversation.
“……Sirzechs-sama…? …What is happening…?”
My body was unable to move, but I still asked Sirzechs-sama.
[This is it. This is the final means of those of us in the top brass. According to our calculations, defeating Trihexa will require an enormous amount of time. Of course, being able to completely seal it would be best, but…it is unfortunate that that will also take a lot of time and is not the conclusion that we need.]
Sirzechs-sama’s peerage applied techniques to the core, and flew towards the hole in the sky together—. Sirzechs-sama continued
[Regardless of whether we defeat it or seal it, either method is extremely time-consuming. And Trihexa will continue its destruction in the meantime. If that continues, the world will be completely destroyed. Our combat strength is also limited. Once, or twice, we may be able to hold it back, but there will come a day — when our strength is exhausted. Just like before, you saw what kind of a monster the opponent is, Ise-kun. It is a true monster that will completely regenerate no matter how you try to defeat it.]
Sirzechs-sama began to move away from where I was. While flying upwards, he continued to say
[Serafall, Falbium and I, as well as my peerage will depart from here to the ‘Isolation Barrier Field’ that was created by Azazel and the others specifically for use against Trihexa. We will also seal the original body and the core within that field. And be confined together with it. The higher ups of the other factions have also agreed to this plan. Azazel, Michael-dono, Odin-sama, Zeus-sama, and other gods will also implement this plan in their respective territories at the same time.]
……What! …Their unbelievable plan left my head in a daze. …The large operation that sensei spoke of earlier was actually to seal the higher ups of each faction together with Trihexa in an isolated field…! Sirzechs-sama said
[Until we defeat Trihexa, we will continue to fight in there. I don’t know how many years it will take, but while we are fighting in there, peace will come to the various factions of the world. This is…necessary. This is something even more important for those of us who are in the top brass. —Like this, I can finally fulfil my duty as a Maou.]
Sirzechs-sama looked into the distance.
[Just now, I’ve received some new information. The true successor of Lucifer has appeared, and it makes me feel a bit happier. Vali Lucifer, he is the true heir and successor of Lucifer. To Devils, Lucifer is a necessary existence. The Hakuryuukou Vali, he is different from Rizevim.]
Sirzechs-sama gradually moved further and further away from me and Grayfia-san.
[But, from now on, other Maous will be needed. Ise-kun. —I don’t think there will be any problems if you become a Maou.]
—Mmn. I wanted to say something, but I no longer had the strength to even speak, and my consciousness gradually receded. Even so, Sirzechs-sama still conveyed his words, his emotions, and his will to me.
[If it’s you, then you’ll definitely be able to become a great Maou. Although there are currently a lot of deficiencies…but in the near future, surely, Ise-kun, you — will become the hope of every faction.]
Sirzechs-sama’s voice gradually became more distant.
[Rias, Millicas, and — Grayfia. I leave them in your care for some time. Don’t judge Grayfia by her appearances, she’ll actually be very lonely, even more so than Rias. …When I’m not around, I hope that you can be her conversation partner.]
…You’re too cunning, Sirzechs-sama…. …I still have so many things to tell you, and also many things that I would like you to tell me, and also many, many things that I want to do together with you…. Sirzechs-sama’s final words reached my ears
[—Ise-kun, the Underworld will be left in the care of Rias, Sona, Sairaorg, and the others. Next is Millicas’ generation, and the generations which follow, so please look after them on my behalf. Well, goodb—]
At this point, I lost consciousness.
Translator's Notes and References
- Ani – older brother. Otouto – younger brother. Kanji was Deep Red and True Red. However, deep red and true red are often both called crimson.
- Transcendent Being and Super Devil are equivalent terms.
- Kanji was Primordial Darkness Dragon.
- Traditional Japanese clothing that is usually worn on special occasions such as coming-of-age ceremonies. The haori is like a coat, while the hakama are like trousers which reach down to the ankles.
- Shichi-Go-San (literally seven five three) is a traditional coming-of-age ceremony for girls who are three and seven, and boys who are three and five years of age to celebrate their growth and well-being.
- Read as: Dragon Infinity Drive.
- Read as: Infinity Blaster.
- The literal translation of crimson is deep red for Sirzechs, whereas the literal translation of crimson is true red for Issei.
- gikei-san: brother-in-law.
- Kanji was Demonic Star of Extinction.
- Written as: DxD.
- Kanji was Red Dragon.
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