Owari no Chronicle:Volume11 Chapter 32
Chapter 32: Hitting the Ground Running
What is right?
What is wrong?
What should we desire?
The colors black and white moved in the night.
The movement formed a battle on the runway in front of UCAT’s disguised building.
The dark black was devouring the white as if that were the rule of the night.
The white army had formed three large groups. This was due to the attacks from the east and west contained by the asphalt walls on either side of the runway.
A black force remaining on the ground attacked the white from the west. The black force was led by a sword-wielding girl whose long black hair swayed as she fought.
The main force of black dolls and the three large dolls attacked the white from the east.
The large dolls moved out front and the normal dolls fired, defended, and attacked from the sides to wear down the white.
A girl near the forest southwest of the runway protected that black force. She had a white dog by her side and a powerful blue light escaped from between the hands held up to her chest.
She would occasionally close her eyes and speak quietly as if to confirm her power.
“I’m sorry… But please believe us.”
This prevented the white army from opposing the black army too strongly and left their counterattack weak.
They did fight, but they were eventually crushed, brought down, and unable to move.
The battle filled the sky as well.
A blue and white mechanical dragon fought a blue and red mechanical dragon.
A black god of war fought a white god of war.
To prevent each other from descending to the surface, they would approach, clash, move away, and evade. But all the while, the white army grew smaller below.
At first, reinforcements had come from the lift behind the white building, but the black army had reached that area already.
No more reinforcements were coming.
However, someone in the white army was still fighting.
A woman with golden hair dancing in the wind stood on the runway’s asphalt wall.
It was Sibyl.
She moved her arms in her white armored uniform and the silver god of war on the runway copied her movements.
The god of war moved toward one of the large dolls charging down the center of the runway to the east.
It wore black armor and said “#1” on the shoulder.
Sibyl sent the silver god of war directly toward large doll #1. It swiftly drew its two swords and sent out multiple attacks.
Meanwhile, #1 defended with what it held in its hands.
They were crowbars forged from long and thick metal panels and bars. It held the short nail-pulling end in a backhanded grip and used the long handle to deflect the god of war’s swords to the left and right.
Sparks flew, but the tough pieces of metal completely deflected the thick swords.
Sibyl shrank down and glared at the large doll.
She moved her hands and raised the god of war’s attack speed.
“What are you trying to accomplish!? Do you refuse to let the world have peace!?”
Surprisingly, her shout actually received a response. A calm man’s voice came from the large doll’s chest.
“Peace? …Listen, young lady. I don’t care about that.”
Amid the sounds of clashing swords, #1 moved as if prying its body forward.
“But you know what? Back during that world war, you all were so busy with the Concept War that you didn’t save my family from the air strike. With your power, surely you could have saved one little city or at least a single person.”
The sky was dyed in the colors of night.
Below the moon, a man walked along the side of a quiet road through the forest.
The elderly manager wore a dark brown leather jacket over a white work outfit.
He wore work gloves, but his fingers would twitch a bit every so often.
He also wore black sunglasses.
The inside of the sunglasses displayed video footage.
The monotone coloration showed what looked like a large road, an army of people in white armored uniforms, and a silver god of war standing to protect them.
When he moved his gloved fingers a little, the vision displayed in the sunglasses moved.
While looking at the predicted movement of the god of war and deflecting the sword strikes, the old manager spoke.
“It’s true no one would’ve believed you if you’d told them about the Concept War, but if you had that power, you could have saved so many lives during that world war.”
He heard the other person’s voice from the small speakers attached to the ends of the sunglasses.
“Don’t bother, young lady. I already know your answer. After all, you’re trying to put even the Concept War behind you. You’re trying to say it was wrong and leave it at that. But you know what?” he said. “There’s an idiot whose time has stopped ever since a similar war. I survived because I was protected, so I have a question for that answer of yours. If war is wrong, what does that say about me since I was given life there? And what does it say about my family that gave me life there?”
Is there no answer to that question? he wondered.
The people who had worked with him in that factory were not with him here. They were inside a large truck hidden in an Okutama mountain forest. Those dozen or so young men were remotely controlling the maid dolls, controlling the large-scale concept space producer and concept space communicator, and removing UCAT’s communication jamming and concept barriers.
The old manager was only controlling large doll #1 and Hajji had instructed him to move away from the others. That way he could forget everything that had happened and return to being a resident of this world.
UCAT was about three kilometers behind him. Another kilometer on this road would take him to Okutama Station.
If he threw away the sunglasses and controller gloves at the station, he could cut all ties.
“Sorry,” he muttered.
The blonde woman displayed in the sunglasses frowned.
He then saw light on the road up ahead.
It was a motorcycle.
Was it a local or a street racer racing through the mountains of Okutama? The motorcycle drove down the road spotted with a red anti-skid material and with small pillars down the center line to prevent anyone from driving recklessly.
That’s some decent speed, judged the old manager based on the sound of the engine.
It was most likely a new motorcycle. One that had only just been broken in. Instead of setting the muffler to show off by making as much noise as possible, it was made to trap and store up power inside the engine.
The old manager began controlling large doll #1 with just his left hand and pulled a small bottle from his pocket using his right hand.
He twisted open the cap with his fingers and poured the brown liquid into his mouth.
The motorcycle passed by.
By the time he turned around, the tail lights were already vanishing down a distant corner.
…That really is fast.
He threw the bottle behind him and raised his right hand.
A moment later, he heard the bottle shatter and focused on the opponent he could see ahead of him.
“Now, young lady. It’s time you quieted down.”
Sibyl saw large doll #1 suddenly curl up its body a little and step forward.
Instead of deflecting her attacks in defense, it was moving in to strike.
So Sibyl slammed both her swords into the curled up back.
However, the doll swayed and the swords struck its shoulder armor.
With a sound resembling spilling stone, its shoulders burst open and exposed the internal components.
…I will attack its shoulders again before it can charge in!
But two tremors ran through the ground before she could have the silver god of war pull back its swords.
It sounded like stone being struck. Wondering what it was, Sibyl looked down.
She saw the narrow tips of the silver god of war’s feet.
Those tools had been slammed into the ground to pin the god of war’s feet.
She needed the proper footing to swing the swords. If the god of war’s footing was unstable when it attacked, it might be able to hit, but it could not reach the enemy’s core.
A moment later, large doll #1’s left fist flew in a mountain-like arc.
Its target was the god of war’s face.
Sibyl quickly tilted the god of war’s upper body to the left.
But an instant later, the large doll’s right fist slammed into the god of war’s left side.
“The left was a feint. Think about it. Your god of war is just a puppet too. The head is mostly just for show, so the real target is the source of its power in the torso. …Of course, I can’t blame you for treating things with care.”
The parts between the armor on the silver god of war’s left side broke and the internal wires and frame were exposed.
Large doll #1 then threw its right fist again.
Sibyl reflexively had her god of war raise its arms to protect its body.
Immediately afterwards, the large doll’s left fist shot up and slammed into the god of war’s jaw.
“You just said you wouldn’t target the head!”
“The torso is still my main target. But if I hit the jaw up like that…”
She knew what he meant. The silver god of war leaned back and up, but it could not be knocked away with its feet pinned to the ground.
But the upwards hit left it defenseless and exposed its stomach to its opponent.
Large doll #1 prepared its attack toward the stomach. It pulled back its right arm a bit and twisted its body. Even if Sibyl tried to stop it, the fist would break through the god of war’s stomach.
Just as she cried out, a straight line of light collided with the large doll’s back.
It produced a solid sound like rock breaking.
The large doll stumbled from the impact, shifted to the left, and shook.
It turned around, but it was too late.
By that time, the wings that had fired the white blast had already landed in front of Sibyl.
Sibyl blankly spoke the name of the one who owned the white wings and white spear.
Disbelief filled her voice and the girl shook her head toward the sky to fix the hair after the wind had blown it around.
“Sorry I’m so late. But answer me one thing, Sibyl.”
“Wh-what is it?”
Kazami smiled in the light of the moon and her own wings.
“Do you need my help?”
Sibyl thought about what she meant before giving her answer.
She shook her head and spread her arms at shoulder height as if measuring something in the air.
“I do not. I have things thiiiis much under control.”
“I see.” Kazami’s smile grew. “But I want to help all of you. I want to give you an easier time of defeating your enemies.”
The wings audibly turned their back on Sibyl.
They then lifted up in preparation to take off.
Beyond the wings of light, large doll #1 prepared to fight again and all of the black dolls in that third of the battlefield looked to Kazami.
All of the hostility poured onto her, but she did not waver. She gathered strength in her shoulder blades to support the raised wings.
“Everyone, sorry I’m late. I won’t make any excuses or any kind of formal apology. After all, this is your battlefield and my battlefield is somewhere else. But I will make sure to remember the injuries caused by my delay and help out a little here to confirm just how much I want to be with all of you and just what I can do.”
“Of course,” said Sibyl with a nod.
The silver god of war moved and pulled the crowbars from its feet.
Sibyl then threw them toward the opponent in front of her.
The large doll’s metal hands audibly grabbed the crowbars. It quickly rotated them in its fingers to take a defensive stance.
The other large dolls faced her in similar stances on either side.
Despite the enemy’s preparations, Sibyl smiled slightly.
She watched the wings in front of her tense up even more than before.
“Can you fight?”
“That’s what I came here for. …But it looks like everyone is trembling. It’s probably a mental concept or something, but what were they told to make them tremble like this?”
“The enemy claims to have righteousness on their side.”
“Oh? How silly. Such silly nonsense using such silly reasoning. If our opponent is righteous, does that mean it’s okay for us to die? My dad mass-produces righteous allies of justice and evil organizations, but hijacking busses of kindergartners and telling people to die is a job for evil. The righteous are the ones that defeat those people.”
“No one who was raised watching those heroes could be evil.”
“But they are claiming righteousness and telling us to die.”
“Then their righteousness must be death. In that case, they need to return to death and take their righteousness with them. And if they really are in the right, that just means we need to bring out our secret weapon as the evil organization. …We need to call in our idiot who truly claims to be a villain.”
With that, Kazami waved her left hand and pulled a fist-sized black sphere from her pocket.
“Mitsuaki-san, help us out.”
As soon as she spoke, everyone there heard a high-pitched sound of destruction.
“That was the sound of a concept being destroyed!”
Sibyl shrank back at the magnitude of the sound and saw the black-haired girl by the forest growing pale.
She frantically checked on her blue philosopher’s stone, but the mental concept stone was no longer glowing.
Sibyl wondered what had happened and Kazami’s back answered with a bitter smile in her voice.
“A concept that forces understanding can be negated by a concept that cuts off understanding. …Nothing to worry about now, right?”
Kazami’s voice and the release from the great mental pressure let everyone fighting there take a sigh of relief.
They breathed, gathered their strength, and turned expectant gazes to Kazami’s back.
“Sibyl, let’s fight until the villain who seeks life arrives to fight these heroes who seek death. That’s the job of a fighter and the general of an evil organization. …And according to my dad, unhappy endings are kind of popular lately, so it’s entirely possible we’ll win. So…”
Sibyl saw the wings flap and the bearer of that light floated slowly but powerfully into the night sky.
“Until then, it’s my job to use myself as a power of protection!!”
With those words, the giant dolls moved and the wings of light soared swiftly.
A truck and trailer were stopped on the road running through an Okutama forest.
The large pallet in the trailer had the IAI logo on the side.
To the north of the road was a cement slope and to the south was a forested slope leading down into a valley.
The white truck and trailer were completely abandoned in the night.
No one could be seen in the driver’s seat or near the trailer.
However, someone quickly approached the trailer.
And they approached it from above.
Above the cement wall next to the trailer was a mountain slope and a forest.
The approaching person forcefully jumped out from the elevated forest.
It was a boy wearing a dark blue suit.
It was Sayama.
He flipped in midair and possessed great speed. His current trajectory would drop him into the valley beyond.
So to lower his speed, he pulled something out of the bag on his back.
It was a sheet.
Specifically, it was a sheet printed with a life-sized image of Shinjou in her underwear.
He grabbed both ends of the sheet and let it catch the air.
It could be heard fluttering in the wind as it grew round from the pressure of the air and lowered his speed.
A quick noise escaped his mouth as he let go of the sheet.
He flipped again, kicked off the roof of the trailer, and rolled along the ground to stop his fall.
He negated the last of his momentum by standing back up and he reached his hands overhead.
The Shinjou printed sheet fell into his raised hands.
He spread the sheet out toward the heavens as if to show it off to the moon.
“Heh heh. You stopped me there, Shinjou-kun. You were wonderfully flexible. But I will be seeing the real you soon, so let us leave it at that. I cannot wait, I cannot wait, I cannot wait. I said it thrice!”
Yes. I counted and made no mistake, so I must be plenty calm, he told himself as he turned around.
He looked to the abandoned truck and trailer. They were facing west which would take them to UCAT.
…This was abandoned on the way to UCAT.
“So did something happen that required abandoning the truck to reach UCAT immediately?”
He guessed the Army had attacked.
But if they had abandoned the truck…
…Did they not want to get the cargo caught in the battle?
“No. That is not it. You cannot find such cowardly thoughts in UCAT.”
He smiled a bit as he spoke to himself.
He approached the trailer and recognized the shape of the pallet.
The same pallet had been on the trailer that Tsukuyomi had driven to Kanda during the summer.
This was the large pallet used to carry a god of war.
The pallet was still sealed and not opened. He had a good guess as to why.
“It cannot be sent out quite yet. Or could you call it a savior to appear when they’re in a pinch?”
He received an answer from the pallet’s external communicator.
“Is that you, Master Sayama?”
He recognized the voice, so he tilted his head.
“Violet-kun? Why are you holding a moon viewing out here?”
“Oh, um… Yes, sir. It seems the Army has attacked, but, uh, the automatons are evacuating because apparently a dog will get in your head.”
“Hm, even if you do not mean that literally, things must be tough if people are making dog jokes.”
“Yes, sir. But that danger was removed just a moment ago. #8 seems to have reconciled with the dog. I was wondering when I should head out, but I wasn’t sure if I should or not.”
“I do not mind. I know just how earnest you are about combat.”
“Really? Then, um, I’ll head out. …Please don’t laugh.”
Violet’s voice was immediately followed by the rumble of destroyed metal.
Sayama saw the top of the cargo pallet fly high into the night sky.
It was supposed to slide open, but it had been pushed upward until it popped off.
Next, a blue and white god of war stood from the pallet.
It nervously brought its hands to its cheeks.
“O-oh, no. What did I do? And, um, where did the cover go?”
As if to answer her, the cover fell from the sky and stabbed into the ground.
The hunk of metal was fifteen meters long and five meters wide and it skewered into the ground just five centimeters to Sayama’s left.
The white metal panel made a tremendous noise, pierced through the asphalt, and shook the air.
Sayama nodded and placed a hand on the cover vibrating next to him.
“Luckily, the item in question fell right over here. Make sure not to lose it again. But what is with that body?”
“Yes, sir,” replied Violet’s god of war as it stood, crouched down, and pulled out the cover. “I’m very clumsy, so I kept destroying my spare bodies and we eventually ran out. I decided to use one of the 3rd gods of war destroyed in the summer battle until a replacement can be made.”
Violet grabbed at the armor that was colored blue and white like a maid uniform and she crouched down.
She twisted around to show off the white writing written with a brush on her back armor. It said “Miyako is Life” and “Fierce Battles are the Best”.
“Does it suit me?”
“Yes, I think it would suit no one better than you.”
“O-oh, c’mon, Master Sayama. You’re too good with words.”
To hide and put up with her embarrassment, she crouched down and beat on the asphalt with her left fist.
Sayama watched her fist as it rapidly crashed down just thirty centimeters to his right.
“I have been feeling a sort of natural sense of danger for a bit now, but it seems things have developed into a fierce battle over there. Can you help out some?”
“Oh, yes, sir. I can’t fly, but I can control gravity and inertia. …If that’s enough, I’ll help.”
“It is plenty, Violet-kun. Let us go to the people who await us.”
A soon as he said that, he felt a small force on his left leg. It was a faint tugging.
He wondered what it was.
“Baku? Did you pick up on my scent?”
Baku said nothing and quickly crawled up his leg and to his shoulder. He then circled around to the back of his neck, climbed to his head, and lay down in his hair as if to say that was his spot.
Sayama smiled bitterly at the familiar weight.
“Excellent. Let us go together to meet Shinjou-kun.”
But Baku was not the only one to arrive.
A light from the east illuminated the two people and the animal. The thick light was accompanied by the sound of an engine and a horn.
“Hey, outta the way! This rental’s hard to control, so how about moving!?”
Sayama turned a bitter smile toward the driver of the approaching motorcycle.
He gave an exasperated shrug.
“Are you stupid? Cutting past me or blocking my way is disrespectful.”
Sayama spoke with his hands in his suit pockets and the motorcycle headlight shining directly on him.
“Isn’t that right, Stupid Izumo.”
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