OmaeGotoki: Volume 3 017 - Escape From Limbo

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“There! Her arm’s right there, in that middle section!”

“I’ve got no idea which arm you’re talking about, but that general area, right!?”

Nekt connects herself and Milkit on top of Satils’ massive body. She touches it first to ensure that the energy isn’t harmful to the touch, and after making sure it’s safe she lowers Milkit to the ground.

“Ahahahahahahaha! Even together, you have no hope of killing me! Not a chance! Weaklings like you give the Chosen a bad name!!”

Satils is too busy gloating to Gadio and Eterna to notice them. Milkit falls to her knees as she grabs Flum’s limp hand in both of her own. She doesn’t have a chance of pulling her out, instead calling out to her as if praying.

“Master… It’s me, Milkit. I want to do whatever I can to help you. I don’t want to only receive from you, I want to give back… So please, hear me…!”

Milkit desperately, fervently pours her emotions into her prayer, believing that Flum will come back to her.

Their bond is deep and strong, enough that Nekt watches Milkit with a pang of jealousy.

“Hm…? And what do the two of you think you’re doing?”

It isn’t long before Satils notices them, however. Her head turns 180 degrees as she looks down at the pair derisively.

“Fu… fufu… fufufufu! You’re trying to bring Flum back, aren’t you? Hoping! Praying! Trusting in your stupid little ‘bond’! How wonderful, Milkit! You make me want to crush you so badly I don’t think I can help myself!”

“You’re not gonna interfere as long as I’m here!”

“I guess I’ll have to break the both of you together, then!”

A tentacle reaches out to Nekt, and she attempts to ‘connect’ it towards the ground away from her.

“You think you can oppose me with only one measly little Core!?”

“Kh, she’s too strong!”

With all the power of the Central Core on her side, her strength far exceeds Nekt’s. In a contest of raw strength, Origin power vs Origin power, the outcome is obvious.

“Dammiiiiiiit!!”

Nekt takes a direct hit and is sent flying, smashing through the wall of a nearby house and disappearing from sight beneath a pile of rubble.

The tentacles close in on the defenseless Milkit from all directions.

“Master… Please come back to me, Masteeer…!”

“If praying could do anything, then you wouldn’t be in this situation to begin with!”

“Stop right there, Satiiiiiiils!!”

“I’ll support you. Imbue Ice.”

Gadio beats the tentacles away with a massive ice-coated blade. Not even Jotunblade has the strength to damage them, but it succeeds in diverting them away from her.

Milkit’s safe for a while --- but they’re literally on top of Satils. A tentacle could come from anywhere at any time, and just one could be fatal.

For some reason, however, Satils doesn’t do it --- or rather, she can’t. Flum’s Reversal counteracts and weakens Origin’s power, making it so that the place closest to her can’t be controlled by Satils.

All Satils has to do, however, is extend her tentacles there from elsewhere on her body.

“I’ll stop you as many times as it takes!”

“Out of my way, Gadio Ruskeeeeeeett!!”

“Don’t forget me.”

“You irritating little girl...!”

Gadio and Eterna together beat away all the tentacles closing in on Milkit, however.

“Don’t think the two of you can keep this up forever!”

“That’s where I come in!”

Nekt returns to help in the desperate struggle to keep Milkit safe. She can’t manipulate the tentacles directly, but by latching onto one of them in a bear hug and ‘connecting’ herself closer to the ground she can change their path.

“What’s wrong with you vermin!? It’s pointless! Flum isn’t coming back --- and even if she did, it wouldn’t change a thing! You could never kill me! Surrender and show me some real despair and I might let one of you live!!”

“Master… Master… Master…!”

As if responding to Milkit’s frantic pleas, Flum’s fingers twitch faintly---


◇◇◇


[I…]

It’s impossible to determine who one really is without others, but all of the husks sleeping like the dead at the bottom of that sea seem to know what they once were.

[I want to see her again] [All I want is to spend some more time with her] [I wish I’d never come back to life] [I don’t want to feel that despair again] [I loved her… I should’ve told her when I had the chance…]

They’re only husks. They’re missing their cores, each and every one of them. All they can do is repeat their last regrets, the dregs of their lives as human beings.

The only thing keeping them from losing themselves within the sea of Origin is their feelings for others.

[Master, please wake up! Master, Master, Masteeer…!]

She can hear someone’s voice. Her body twitches, her feelings resurrecting, some instinctive part of her knowing she has to protect that voice.

[Mil…kit… ]

Finally --- she remembers.

She remembers the name of that voice’s owner, and who she is with all she feels for that voice.

[I… Right, I was swallowed up by that big something… Is this somewhere inside that?]

Even though she’s conscious now, she can’t move, almost as though something incredibly heavy is holding her to the seafloor.

[You’re… Flum-san, aren’t you…?]

The man lying in front of her opens his eyes.

[Daffyd Sharmas…]

[I was right. So they brought you down here, too, did they?]

[What is this place, even?]

[I don’t know. Maybe this is somewhere inside Origin, or maybe this is what awaits all life after death]

Daffyd’s voice is weak and powerless.

[To think all these people are here suffering because of me… no, this can’t be all of them. I’m sure there are still some survivors]

[Now that I know everything that’s happening, I can’t say this is all your fault]

[Regardless, it was my foolishness that set this tragedy in motion. I owe you an apology]

[Now you apologize, after going all crazy and killing yourself like that?]

[I’ve had some time to cool my head since then. Ahh… but what should I have done, then…? A world without Suzie is worse than hell]

Flum doesn’t have an answer. The best she could do is wish him luck in finding some new reason to live.

[There’s still hope left for you, however. There’s still someone you have to protect in that world]

[...Yeah, you’re right. I can hear her calling out for me right now, like she’s about to cry…]

[I’m jealous, to be honest. I wonder if Suzie would’ve done the same for me if she were still alive. Ah… but at this rate you’re going to make the same mistakes I did. Tell me, you can change curses into strength, can’t you?]

[I can reverse all sorts of things, but yeah, curses are one of them]

[In that case… I have a request for you…]

[You want me to kill Satils, right?]

[Yes… you’re still alive… you might be able to. If you use my… no, our curses, that is]

As if responding to his voice, all the other husks on the ocean floor open their eyes as one, slowly shifting to look at her. Their regret-filled voices flood her ears all at once. With this many curses, she might well be able to escape.

[Got it. I was just thinking how much I’d love to blow that woman and Origin to pieces. I won’t fail you]

[Thank you… for listening… to our request… I’m so glad… now I can… go meet Suzie… with…]

Daffyd slowly closes his eyes, never to open them again.

A moment later, power starts flowing through Flum’s body, and not in a metaphorical or emotional sense. She feels as though she can move her fingers a little now. Buried within Satils’ body she can feel something small and hard, something that just by holding it seems to raise her stats.

“Ahh… So that’s it, this is…”

She can feel an immensely powerful curse residing within that little thing --- the grudges of Daffyd, the husks of the dead who were betrayed by Origin and forced to kill their loved ones, the living who died in Sheol, all together as one.

Flum clenches her fist tightly enough to bleed.

“Haaaaaaaaaaaah…!”

Ever greater power flows through her veins.

“Uoooooooooooooooooooooohh!!”

She unleashes her newly-gained prana and mana from her body, exploding outwards. The mass of corpses fused over her are blown away.

As soon as she’s free, the first thing she does is bring Milkit close in a tight embrace.

“Mas…ter…!”

“I could hear you from all the way in there. Thanks.”

“I’m so glad… so, so glad to see you’re alright…!”

Eyes brimming with tears, Milkit buries her face in Flum’s chest.

That result, however, is the only thing Satils truly can’t accept. She could never allow Milkit to find a happy ending with her master.

“That power… Where did all that power come from!? You couldn’t even move a moment ago! Her prayer actually made you stronger? That… There’s no way such a stupidly cliched thing could possibly happen!”

Driven mad with rage, Satils combines a number of tentacles together into a drill-like spinning point and attempts to skewer Flum on it. Putting both hands on her Zweihander, Flum blocks the attack head-on.

“How can you stop this!? How did you become so strong!? This doesn’t make sense, this can’t be happening!”

Flum pushes the tentacles back with trembling arms, stepping forward.

“All of this, Satils --- you brought this all on yourself!”

“Stop spouting nonsense! I was flawless, everything was going so smoothly! Everything was going perfectly according to plan!”

“You’ve crushed too many peoples’ lives! Their hopes, their dreams, their love, you destroyed it all just to satisfy your own selfish desires!”

“How is that supposed to make you any stronger!?”

The tentacle-drill starts rotating even faster. The only reason why she can withstand such an attack is because her own Reversal is cancelling it out, matching its power step for step.

“When someone’s future gets destroyed, they create a powerful curse!”

Sheol is filled to the brim with curses. Those loose emotions would normally dissipate naturally with time or maybe create a few pieces of cursed equipment --- if Flum wasn’t there, of course.

“All those curses are getting drawn into this ring, being reversed and becoming my own power!”

All the town’s residents have left this up to her, causing all those curses to dwell in that one symbolic ring. It once belonged to the man in charge --- Daffyd Sharmas’ own engagement ring.

Name: The Wedding Ring of Necromantic Dreams
Tier: Epic
[This equipment lowers your Strength by 1,012]
[This equipment lowers your Magic by 1,072]
[This equipment lowers your Stamina by 1,053]
[This equipment lowers your Agility by 1,088]
[This equipment lowers your Intuition by 1,039]

Her stat total is 12,693 --- she’s finally reached S-Rank.

“This isn’t some coincidence, either! This is the end brought about by you and Origin’s evils!”

Flum pushes the tentacles away and sends a storm of overflowing prana through to hack away at Satils’ body.

“Owowow…! Ahaha, but this isn’t enough to kill me! Even with those curses of yours, you’re far too weak! I told you my main body is the strongest part, didn’t I? All you’ve been fighting against this whole time was weak little corpses! Even with Flum, you can’t even scratch me!”

As proof, Satils’ body and the Central Core are both completely unscathed even after taking a direct hit from Prana Storm.

“Maybe so --- but what if we all hit you together?”

Nekt quickly ‘connects’ all five of them together a short distance away.

“You surprised me. I want a proper explanation later, but I know what you’re after. Imbue Ice.”

Eterna builds up a thick layer of ice on Flum’s sword.

“So that’s your plan, huh…? In that case, Imbue Earth --- and take my prana, too!”

Rocks and rubble form another layer over Eterna’s ice, and over that Gadio adds a prana coating --- Prana Blade.

In total, Flum’s sword is now as long as Satils’ entire millipede-esque body.

“Kh… fu, ghuuu…!”

Accordingly, it’s far too heavy for Flum to lift.

“All together… nfufu, you really think that a bigger sword was all you needed? What use is a sword you can’t even swing, hmm!?”

“Right, my turn.”

Ignoring Satils’ taunt, Nekt ‘connects’ Flum and Milkit far above the Central Core.

Flum understands the plan now. Milkit is left somewhat confused, so she decides to put her faith in Flum and hold on tight.

“Don’t let go of me, okay?”

“O-Okay!”

Then, Nekt clenches her fist again.

“Connection!”

She starts bringing the Zweihander and the Central Core together, and Flum and Milkit start speeding blade-first towards the ground.

“Uoooooooooohh!!”

Adding in the force of gravity, they reach critical velocity right before crashing into Satils.

“I certainly hope you don’t think this will change anything!!”

The titanic Reversal-imbued blade and the Central Core’s protective field collide, the shock wave blasting throughout Sheol. The ground beneath Satils cracks and breaks, leaving a massive craterlike indentation in the ground from the sheer force of the blow. Entire houses are obliterated, leaving not even rubble behind.

It’s still not enough to break through to the Central Core, however.

“Stop trying to play the hero! Slum trash like you isn’t worthy of the title ‘Chosen’! I’m Satils Francoise, the richest merchant in the entire Kingdom! My victory was decided from the very beginning by the gods themselves!”

“Don’t get so full of yourself! Everything you have was taken from others!”

“Yes --- and therein lies TRUE power!!”

The third layer of the Zweihander, the Prana Blade, starts to crack.

“Who cares about love, hope and the future!? Why is Milkit even attacking with you in the first place!? It’s time you grew up and stopped playing Chosen already!!”

It cracks and breaks, and next the rock layer collides with Satils. It wasn’t meaningless, however --- the expression on her face turns pained as she pushes back their assault.

“You don’t understand a thing, do you!? If there really is such a thing as Flum the Chosen, then it’s the both of us --- Milkit and I together as one! We’re one Chosen together, the two of us!”

“What, more of your ‘bond’ nonsense? Are you telling me this is the power of friendship!? How foolish, how utterly, irredeemably foolish!”

Turning her rejection into strength, Satils starts to warp and break the earth layer of the blade.

“That sort of thing only exists for me to desecrate! Am I wrong!? The only thing waiting for you is a pathetic, pitiful death like Daffyd’s, drowning in that ‘love’ of yours!”

Imbue Earth shatters completely, exposing Eterna’s layer of ice.

Flum clenches the hilt of the Zweihander so hard her hands glisten with blood, beginning to bruise from the intense strain. Her arms are so exhausted she can barely feel anything but pain --- but because of that warmth at her side, she knows she can’t let go.

“No, we won’t lose!”

Milkit knows she’s powerless.

Despite that, however, Flum chose her.

She doesn’t know how much help she’ll be, but if Flum so much as asks she’ll offer all she has, everything she is, from the bottom of her heart.

“What makes you so sure? You saw what Daffyd’s love brought him! Even together you can’t possibly break me!”

She doesn’t know what to call that feeling, that emotion --- or at least, she didn’t until just recently.

“That doesn’t matter! More strongly than Daffyd-san felt for Suzie-san, strong enough that we won’t lose to you, I love Master!”

Supporting each other, giving to each other, unconditionally trusting each other, being drawn to each other --- for the first time Milkit knows what to call that impossibly large feeling she’s been trying to name for so long: Love.

“AHAHAHAHA!! What proof do you have!? Don’t make me laugh, I could never lose to that!”

“We don’t need ‘proof’! We’ll prove it to you here and now!”

“I’d love to see you try! Look, that sword that you and your friends all made together is already in tatters!”

The ice is already starting to crack and split. It’s only a matter of time now.

Soon all that will be left is the black blade of the Zweihander itself.

“It’s breaking, look, everybody look! Once that last layer pathetically breaks you’ll have nothing left! No more love, only screams of agony and the sound of my laughter! The end! There’s no happily ever after waiting for you!”

“It’s not over yet! Reversal!”

Flum had thought it might come to this. Satils simply has too much power at her disposal, and she’ll protect the Central Core no matter what. She’d thought and thought in what little time she had, finally arriving at one final option --- reversing the fractured shards of Gadio’s and Eterna’s broken layers back towards the Zweihander.

“Gyaaaaaagh!”

Satils’ entire body trembles as she screams.

“Something in my back… Fragments? The shattered fragments of those other layers came back!?”

She had been so focused on Flum’s attack that she hadn’t thought to guard her back --- or rather, she had gathered everything she could in front of her to defend against the massive blade.

“Such a pathetic little party trick isn’t enough to turn the tables on me!”

The pain is enough to wear on her mind, however. Her wounds begin to spiral in on themselves as Origin’s will swells and grows and her control weakens. Her own Core and the Central Core were kept in a very delicate balance to begin with; that little tap on the scales has potentially critical repercussions.

“I don’t care what odds I’m up against, I’ll reverse them all in my favour! The feelings of the living, the curses of the dead --- I’ll hit you with everything I’ve got!!”

Flum still has one last card to play. They’ve used three people’s mana, Nekt’s ‘connection’, and Gadio’s prana --- but Flum herself hasn’t used any prana yet. She’s on the brink of exhaustion so she doesn’t have that much left, but after the blade comes as close to the Central Core’s surface as possible, she pours everything she has through the sword---

“This is the eeeeeeeeeeeeend!!”

The blade’s tip touches the black crystal’s surface. Mana pours in through the blade, and as the energy starts to reverse itself and the spiral within is thrown into disarray the blade penetrates deeper.

CRACK --- small shards of crystal scatter as the Central Core cracks and splits.

Completely depleted, Flum and Milkit hop down to the ground together.

“We did it…!”

“Yes, we did!”

Eterna rides in a moment later on the back of her Fenrir, carrying them off to safety.

Having lost the Central Core, Satils is nothing more than a corpse --- or so they think.

“The Central Core’s… broken…!?”

Having lost its power source, the mass of corpses making up the massive millipede begins to disperse, collapsing powerlessly.

Satils still has a Core, however --- one that can support her alone, buried in her chest.

“Fufu, ufufufu, but my Core is still in perfect condition! Unlike those worthless vermin, I can still --- hgyagh!?”

As Satils tries to crawl away with her arms alone, she sudden bends backwards, spewing blood from her mouth.

Her body is paying the price for toying with such a terrifying power.

Not only blood but even her internal organs start flowing freely from her mouth like a fountain.

The Central Core, however, begins to undergo changes of its own. When a normal Core is reversed, the negative energy created within causes it to destroy itself --- but with a Core that massive, the energy can’t dissipate so easily, staying in place and drawing in its surroundings like a black hole.

“Agh, gweeeeeeeeeeegh! Ngh, gyagha, gyaghghghghgh…! Igyuurgh, gogh, goghagh! Gabgh, byurgh, bryurugh…!”

After she finishes vomiting the entire contents of her torso, she gets caught up in the vacuum of energy, her body getting ripped to shreds by the sheer force of it, a terrified look of agony plastered across her face before she’s finally warped utterly beyond recognition and sucked into the Core’s depths.

“...Y’know, I can’t say she doesn’t deserve it.”

“I suppose you’re right…”

Flum and Milkit watch her grisly end from the Fenrir’s back.

“It looks like we won’t have to bother cleaning up all those bodies, at the very least.”

Gadio watches as the Central Core black hole drags in the rest of the corpses as well.

“But isn’t Tia-san’s body in with the rest of them?”

“Part of me wants to lay her to rest properly, but as long as her body remains there’s a chance they’ll use it again. This is probably for the best --- not to mention that body was made by Origin’s power.”

All of her insides were regenerated by Origin. Now that she doesn’t have a Core anymore, she’s probably filled with the same mystery meat Luco was.

Besides, I can’t imagine it’ll be long enough before we meet again that I’ll need any memento of her, he thinks, closing his eyes in contemplation.

After the negative energy vortex finally dissipates, Otilier and the others rejoin them with Ink in tow.

“Eterna! Are you okay? You’re not hurt?”

“I’m fine. I’m glad you’re fine, too.”

Eterna embraces her, gently stroking her hair.

“Wow, that was really some fight! Even just watching I could really tell that you guys’re on a totally different level!”

Welthy suddenly pops in, appearing out of nowhere as if nothing had happened.

“You were still in the town, Welthy-san!?”

“Well, yeah! You don’t come across a scoop this great everyday, after all! I bet that if I write up an article on this the Church’ll have a heart attack! I should know, I almost had one myself!”

Evidently caught up in one of the shockwaves, her clothes are battered and beaten and her hair is a frizzy mess.

“I suppose there truly are some of us who can emerge from such a conflict unfazed. I’m honestly unsure as to whether I should be amazed or exasperated.”

“So why are you all the way out here, Otilier-san?”

It’s only natural for her to be confused, given she knows nothing of the Military’s movements as of late.

“Anriette was worried about ya, so she sent us ta follow ya. We were watchin’ from just outside town the whole time.”

Werner answers in Otilier’s place.

“Oneesama’s foresight is truly formidable, after all.”

“She told you that so soon after we went to ask for help…? Thanks for everything, really.”

“I shall ensure your words reach Oneesama.”

Otilier seems bound and determined to push all the thanks onto her oneesama.

“Why are you all so injured, though? I seem to remember you were like that before you even arrived.”

Gadio’s words cause Otilier’s smile to cloud over.

“I’m afraid that we were attacked by monsters at the same moment the dead began to run amok.”

“Yeah, these really creepy things with spirally faces.”

“We were so preoccupied with them that we were late in providing support.”

“Monsters… Chimaera was probably responsible, then. Maybe they were planning on wiping us out together with Necromancy.”

“So Echidna Ipeira was behind it… That woman is rotten to her core.”

Flum remembers hearing Daffyd say much the same thing as Gadio.

If she’s also behind both Goen and Satils as they expect, then she’ll be a cunning opponent indeed. They’ll have to be careful, especially since she seems to have her sights set on them.

“Come to think of it, Satils mentioned a traitor to Necromancy earlier, didn’t she?”

Milkit’s words prompt Flum to remember.

“Yeah, that Goen Foegan guy. He supposedly leaked a bunch of data and stuff to Chimaera.”

“You mean Daffyd’s friend, that Goen?”

“We ran into his wife and child during the fighting, but we didn’t see any sign of him himself.”

“He probably turned tail and fled before things took a turn for the worse.”

“If he left that recently, we might be able to catch him.”

In response to Eterna, Otilier turns to face Werner.

“Tracking people is your specialty, is it not?”

“Wait, me? In these woods? At night? Sounds like one helluva pain…”

Werner complains as he always does. Normally, Otilier would scold him and send him off anyways --- but this time, she feels too mentally drained from the fight for their usual back-and-forth.

“In that case, I shall go myself.”

“Eh?”

“Why the sudden surprise? Didn’t you tell me you didn’t wish to go yourself? I trust you’ll take proper care of these poor townsfolk in my stead.”

“H-Hold up there, I was kiddin’! ...Aw, damn, she’s gone already. Shit, that was a mistake…”

He mutters to himself as he scratches his head, though nobody there knows the true meaning behind his words.


◇◇◇


In less than an hour, Otilier finds Goen and drags him back to Sheol by the scruff of his neck. Immediately after, Werner leaves for the Capital to send reinforcements for the protection of the townsfolk when they head back. The Military normally wouldn’t be allowed such free reign inside a noble’s lands, but with fatalities in the triple digits they have more than enough pretext to overstep their usual bounds.

In the time before the reinforcements arrive with the rising sun, those still in town tend to the wounded, destroy the remaining Cores, and interrogate Goen.

Flum worries a little about the Paladins making a move on them since they’d stopped Chimaera’s plot, but according to Lieutenant General Herman, there’s no sign of any movement on the Church’s end in the Capital. It would seem as though they’re determined to leave the issue as Necromancy and Chimaera’s problem alone. As long as everything ends on a peaceful note, however, the details don’t really matter.

Leaving the rest of the cleanup to the Military, Flum and the rest of her party prepare to leave.

“I didn’t expect you to stick around for the cleanup, even.”

Since Flum didn’t have much in terms of luggage to begin with, she strikes up a conversation with Nekt as they sit on a pile of rubble in the shadows. She’d stuck around to help them even after the battle ended, but she’s been sticking to the shadows ever since the reinforcements from the Capital arrived. She seems to want to avoid meeting the Military face-to-face, although given that Otilier and Werner have already seen her it’s a little late for that.

“If I just up and left, you wouldn’t owe me one.”

“You just don’t want to go back to Mother yet, do you?”

“Yeah… Papa wouldn’t shut up during that whole fight, but it never once seemed to be actually interested in me. It just kept on going on and on about you and Satils. Just like with Mother, it doesn’t look like the Children have any place with it, either.”

It might’ve decided that they’re worthless, not just that it doesn’t want them. Nekt does know at least one place where they won’t be ignored, however.

“I’ll talk it over with the others. It’ll probably take some time to convince them, but I’ll do what I can.”

She seems determined to undergo the surgery to take out her Origin Core and become a normal human again --- though just as she said, there’s a good chance Mother and the Church won’t just let them walk out.

“Just come see us if there’s anything you need, okay? If you’re serious about leaving the Church, I won’t hesitate to help you.”

“That’s good to hear… but I’ll do all I can so that it doesn’t come to that. The last thing I want is to end up fighting them.”

Nekt stands up and brushes off the seat of her pants.

“You sure you don’t want to say goodbye to Ink?”

“It’s not like I’ve left the Children or anything yet. Seeing her clinging onto Eterna and grinning like that, it doesn’t feel right for me to just walk up to her.”

“I don’t think she cares about that sorta thing.”

“Yeah, she’s a serious airhead. Tell her that if she doesn’t want me to make fun of her she’d better work on that.”

Flum can only smile faintly at Nekt’s extreme bluntness. Nekt’s tone then turns a little serious.

“But… I guess I don’t hate her, at least not as much as before. I kept calling her a failure, but that’s only because she was always a step ahead of us. She was pretty close with Mother, and now she’s gone and made a new home for herself… it’s like she showed me a glimpse of the future, y’know?”

“So you’ve acknowledged her as your big sister, huh?”

“I always saw her like that… though I also used to think she was a real failure. I guess that just didn’t come through.”

Her way of showing affection for her was simply too warped and abnormal --- though she herself recognizes that as a way she can improve now.

“So, uh… I guess I’d kinda like to make it official, but…”

“What’re you talking about?”

“Y’know, this…”

Nekt thrusts out her right hand to Flum. Maybe from embarrassment, she fiddles with her bangs with her left hand as her cheeks turn pink.

A little pleased to see her acting her own age for once, Flum returns the handshake.

OmaeGotoki 03-Ch17 1.png

“I’m looking forward to teaming up again already, Nekt.”

“I’m just giving you a helping hand is all. It’s not like I’m one of your friends now or anything like that…”

“I’ll keep it in the corner of my mind somewhere.”

“You’re not even gonna try to remember it, are you?”

“I don’t see a problem with that.”

If possible, Flum doesn’t want to ever fight again --- especially now that they’re seeing eye-to-eye.

“Later, then.”

“See you around.”

“...Connection.”

After exchanging quick farewells, Nekt disappears.

Milkit walks up to Flum moments later.

“Has Nekt-san gone home already?”

“Yeah, but she’ll be back. She’s decided to have her Core taken out, after all.”

Before they meet again, Flum’ll have to find a heart for her somewhere. It seems as though it might get messy and maybe a little illegal, but… well, she’ll cross that bridge when she comes to it.

“Whelp, we’ve done all we can here. Let’s head on back.”

“Yes, let’s --- back to our home!”

The long night has finally ended. Bidding farewell to the town of Sheol and its tragedies, Flum and her party head back to the Capital.


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