Silver Cross and Draculea:Volume03 Chapter6
Chapter 6 - The Strongest Monster
"...Oh no, it's already sunset."
Kirika frowned as she surveyed the surroundings.
The sun had already set and it was dark all around.
A vampire's time of the day was about to start.
"Are you not able to contact Kujou-kun's side...?"
"Looks like I can't... Perhaps there's no signal. Hey, how's your search going?"
While dialing repeatedly, Mei asked Rushella who answered expressionlessly.
Just now, a dog had come up to report the arrival of the enemy.
Although it could not communicate via words, the message could be guessed from the dog's frightened expression and the way it kept wagging its tail.
Rushella dispelled the mystic eyes' effects, causing her servants to scatter and retreat.
Insects, birds and beasts all dispersed into the surroundings.
At this moment, as though cueing a scene change, the man silently descended upon this park at night.
"Meeting you for the first time, 'True Ancestor', the pleasure is all mine. As one of the 'Pure of the Pure' descending from the lineage of 'True Ancestor' Elise Dahm Castile, my name is Fergus von Blitz."
He bowed respectfully, displaying noble bearing without showing any obvious signs of ulterior motives.
The black three-piece suit he was wearing and the cane in his hand were clearly high-class.
If he added a long cape, he would fit the classical image of a traditional vampire perfectly.
"Tidying up my appearance consumed quite a bit of time. After all, I was in no presentable state to have an audience with a 'True Ancestor' just now. That is why I am late."
"Stop talking nonsense! Besides, where did your suit come from? Since you slept in the coffin for ten years, you shouldn't have any clothes with you, right!?"
"Simply by following the rule of 'survival of the fittest', I have taken these from those people."
"I take that as saying you killed and robbed them...?"
"I don't quite understand why your anger is incurred, 'True Ancestor.' This really doesn't sound like words coming from one who rules from the pinnacle of the vampires."
"...How did you know that I'm a 'True Ancestor'? I haven't introduced myself, have I?"
"Because I am privileged to view your face and smell the fragrance of your blood. Although I have no interest in the blood of my kin, the blood of a 'True Ancestor' is as sweet and fragrant as a virgin's blood after all."
Calm and composed, he stepped forward with cordial smile.
Seeing his attitude, Mei elbowed Rushella.
"Hey... You know him?"
"No. I've never seen him before!"
"Maybe... It's from before you lost your memory?"
Rushella wanted to deny it... But could not.
After all, she could not remember.
"Eh... Memory loss huh......"
Fergus muttered with intrigue. He had apparently heard their whispers.
"Wow, a vampire's ears sure are sensitive at night..."
"It's all your fault for bringing this rubbish up. Hurry and shut up!"
"If you have any troubles, perhaps I may be of service?"
Fergus extended his hand elegantly as though treating a noblewoman.
His lack of hostility caused Rushella to feel troubled.
"...What are your intentions?"
"Nothing. Only... Since we have encountered each other here, why not allow me to assist you in your troubles... Although you and I are not of the same blood, devoting ourselves to serve the bidding of the 'True Ancestors' is the etiquette followed by our kind. That is all... Or perhaps, you have forgotten even that as well?"
"If you have questions, then let us find a different venue for you to ask. However... Those lowly creatures over there need not follow."
Fergus was surrounded by a simmering aura on the verge of eruption.
Perhaps due to the power of the mystic eyes, even the surrounding birds began to clamor.
Also... Without them noticing, numerous servants had gathered behind him.
All were completely turned into vampires—The cursed bite marks were absent from their necks.
They numbered more than twenty.
Apparently, this vampire had sucked this many people's blood after he awakened.
"These two are in cahoots with the little lass who pushed me into the sea. I can't possibly let that slide. Very well, let us not concern ourselves with these lowly creatures and be on our way. I know a nice shop."
The vampire made a violent expression towards Mei and Kirika while smiling towards Rushella.
Rushella had originally decided how to react in a situation like this.
Beat up that contemptible face and team up as a trio to vanquish the vampires.
However—Rushella could not do it.
Despite knowing this was wrong and unacceptable, she could not help but feel enticed by the proposal of this man, Fergus.
"Go if you want to, okay?"
Mei answered readily.
Her nonchalant expression seemed to saying that Rushella's dilemma was totally inexplicable.
"You're not thinking that the two of us are burdens, right? Go if you want to listen to his story, okay? But once you reach the end of your patience, just give him a good beating, okay?"
"...You want to retrieve your memories, right? In that case, don't hesitate. Just act according to your own will but you must explain to Kujou-kun properly later. I don't want him to get angry."
Kirika also encouraged Rushella to go with Fergus.
She motioned with her chin for Rushella to hurry.
"Tell Hisui for me, you two... Tell him to pick me up later!"
Saying that, Rushella walked over to Fergus.
"Very well, I shall entertain your offer. But should you dare show any insolence or treachery, I shall instantly rip your heart out and decapitate you."
"As you please. Well then, please walk this way."
Fergus elegantly led Rushella and disappeared with her into the night.
Before that, his lips could be seen moving as he issued orders to his servants on standby.
Red eyes and sharp fangs flashed in the dark night like starlight as the newly born or transforming vampires slowly gathered around.
"To me, this doesn't even count as warm-up exercise... Senpai, would you like to leave first? I'd like to claim all the credit in front of Hi-kun."
"Who do you think you're talking to? Do you really think I would fear this kind of fodder?"
"Oh dear, that's exactly what I love hearing❤"
Saying that, a flash of light erupted from Mei's eyes.
The flash ripped through the darkness, a pulse of light resembling the sun in brightness.
The vampires that were struck by the beam were immediately pierced in the chest and turned into ash.
"...Did you just fire a beam!? Lasers from your eyes!?"
"Eh, I've never mentioned this to you before?"
"Even if you have, I'd still be taken aback! And what is going on here? Aren't normal bullets and lasers ineffective against vampires, but unbelievably, this one strike......!"
"Oh, I swapped equipment because of Rushella. This is a solar beam. By collecting the sun's rays at noon and firing them in a concentrated form, even a vampire has to surrender with a single hit❤ But there's a weakness, I can't use it if the weather is overcast or if I'm imprisoned underground for long periods."
"No one asked you for the footnote! What on earth is your body!?"
"Never mind that. Putting that aside... They're coming, okay?"
The swarm of vampires was approaching.
The two girls shrugged and began to face off against the vampires.
Vampires versus artificial human and witch, the battle began.
She only wanted to scare him.
From start to finish, she had no intention of taking his life. After all, he was just an ordinary human.
But due to his incessant instigation, going as far as to reveal her secret identity which she did not want to publicize, things escalated to this point. It was not her fault.
She had planned to simply make a light scratch on his neck as a warning and end things at that.
After all, the boy surely would not be able to react in time.
In fact, Hisui did not react at all.
Until her sharp claws touched his neck.
And pierced his skin lightly.
She had thought her goal was fulfilled but in the next instant, the boy stepped forward on his own, burying her claws deeply into his flesh.
Blood spurted out like a geyser.
Without a doubt, the carotid artery was damaged. Unless immediate measures were taken to stop the bleeding, this meant death.
"What on earth are you doing!?"
Without heeding Rangetsu or Eruru's cries, Hisui took a few steps backwards, almost as though he were refusing treatment.
"Why did you... Do you want to die!? Hurry and receive first aid treatment......!"
"No need, I'm fine."
Clearly the pain was making him clench his teeth but he did not even press down on his neck wound to stop the bleeding.
Instead, he tore the wound open with his fingers, causing the blood to gush out nonstop.
"...Are you seeking death!? If the bleeding continues......"
"Not necessarily, you know?"
He resumed his forceful tone of voice.
After the blood finished splattering, Hisui ignored the frowning Eruru and showed the wound on his neck to Rangetsu.
The wound was still present.
However, it had almost completely healed already and was recovering at a rate fast enough to be seen by the naked eye.
Hisui's unique constitution, combined with the power that awakened only on the verge of death from blood loss, had greatly augmented his recovery abilities.
Anti-Drac mode... Activated.
"You're actually... a vampire!?"
"No, but my wounds heal instantly. Also, I become even stronger than you."
Within the blink of an eye, Hisui appeared right in front of Rangetsu.
Then he reached out and touched her delicate neck.
His fingers were long and slender like a girl's... Nevertheless, they would surely break a neck if they gripped forcefully. Rangetsu was certain of this frightening fact.
"Next question. Am I human, or a monster?"
"I am human but with powers to rival a vampire. I won't turn into a vampire even if I'm bitten. What should someone like me be considered? The answer is simple... Whatever. Neither any of them, nor does it matter which side I'm considered as. Whether a vampire or a human, it doesn't matter. Naturally, the same goes for werewolves."
"Don't go calling others trash. No matter what kind of living creature, whether vampires, humans, werewolves, the only people who can call others trash are the ones who are truly trash themselves."
"Continuing, second question... What is truly the most terrifying monster? The one asking this question was not me but the foster parent who raised me, a 'True Ancestor'."
"Despite clearly standing at the top of the food chain, an immortal vampire with eternal youth—and the highest of them all, a 'True Ancestor.' Yet she was always afraid. Afraid of what? The answer is simple—Afraid of humans."
Hisui stared into the distance and lightly spoke this answer.
His eyes were filled with deep sorrow, causing Rangetsu and Eruru to show a layer of sadness on their faces.
"What difference is there between humans and monsters...? They're all monsters."
Saying that, Hisui walked over to the side of the room's entrance.
This was armored and made of heavy alloy as befitting of a quarantine area. Even if a vampire was rampaging, surely it could not be broken.
This was the kind of door next to Hisui.
And precisely because it was this kind of door.
Hisui casually attacked the door with full force.
Accompanied by a heavy crash, the solid door was covered in cracks.
Then Hisui lifted his leg and sent a vicious kick towards the center of the cracked door... Turning the obstacle into shattered fragments completely.
Then he left without looking back at all. Rangetsu stared and spaced out in the direction where he departed.
"...Who on earth is he?"
"Just an ordinary human. Like you... and me. Or perhaps, he is the one who truly understands beings like you or me. The boundary between monsters and humans... and respecting humans because he has seen too much darkness. However, he survived and continued to live. As a human."
"What are you trying to say?"
Rangetsu stared at Eruru and asked coldly.
"...There is no need to be too concerned with one's own past and origins. At least... That is what he believes."
"What pretty words. But in order to survive in this world, one has no choice but to play the part of a human. That is why I joined this organization."
"Indeed, you are completely right. But recently, I have begun to think that my current self is not that bad."
"You've been influenced by him?"
Eruru smiled faintly, her gaze following the direction of Hisui who was no longer in sight.
His destination was easily surmised.
Rushella and Fergus arrived at a French restaurant that exuded an air of high-class luxury.
A waiter opened the door and greeted them. Truly dignified.
This was clearly a pretentious act for creating the high-class atmosphere. Seeing the waiter's hollow gaze, Rushella could not help but feel a rising sense of disgust.
The man did not bother to pay attention to the customer's face... No, that sort of emotionless face had already surpassed that level.
Clearly he was being controlled by the mystic eyes... And at quite a powerful level too.
"Please enter and come this way. I have already reserved the entire premises."
Just as Fergus said, there were no other customers within this large shop.
There were probably customers seated or with bookings, but they were already driven away.
No, it would be fine if they were simply driven away.
It would be truly fortunate if they were still living as humans.
"Would you like a drink? I've looked at the menu beforehand and the red wine selection is not bad at all. Or perhaps... Blood would suit your tastes better? Regrettably, the only people in the restaurant are elderly men... I can't make any guarantees about the taste."
"...Not necessary. I'm not here for idle chatting. You bastard... How many people have you sucked blood from today? Controlled using the mystic eyes? It's not like I can't imagine the thirst you feel after being trapped under the sea for a decade, but there's no need for you to drink that much!"
"You are right. But as you know, 'thirst' on a psychological level varies widely from person to person. To me, those ten years were far too long. To compensate for that, I seek fresh blood. If I could take a bath in a large amount of fresh blood from virgins, that would be the best."
"What a revulsive fetish. For the sake of young blood, you attacked Touko and her friends?"
"Touko...? Who may that be?"
"The girl who locked you inside that coffin! After she died, she could not pass on because you still existed!!"
"Oh, that one......"
"What are your intentions? Revenge against Touko? But she's dead already......!"
"I suppose so. But that doesn't really matter. That kind of little girl, I was just playing with her to begin with."
Rushella's face was filled with rage.
Her eyes burned with crimson light.
"Indeed. As you also know, for our kind, sucking human blood is far too easy. Only because of that, various restrictions were imposed to offer all sorts of entertainment. Drinking blood over the course of several nights, invading a human's bedroom despite knowing about the presence of traps and guards, these are actions undertaken to maximize enjoyment of blood drinking. Naturally, you must understand that, 'True Ancestor'?"
"All... entertainment huh...... I see, that's why you didn't even remember her name."
Rushella clenched her fists tight and glared at Fergus.
But he continued unfazed.
"I have a matter to inquire as well. Before I reached an age of understanding, my bloodline's progenitor, the 'True Ancestor' was already destroyed. Rather, during the ten years since I sank into the bottom of the sea, there should only be one remaining 'True Ancestor.' I came to the town of Seidou because I wanted to meet her and seek her help to revive my clan."
"This 'True Ancestor' you speak of... What's her name?"
"From what I heard... She's called Miraluka. But unfortunately, she doesn't seem to be here. I was unable to gain an audience with her."
Rushella realized that Fergus' past was related to Hisui's past to some extent.
Perhaps Hisui himself had expected this vampire who had killed Touko to seek contact with his foster parent.
After all, it was only natural for a 'True Ancestor'-class vampire to attract the attention of her kind.
Even if they were not hostile, surely there would be plenty of worshipers and vampires with ulterior motives, hoping to use the 'True Ancestor' for their ends.
"Let me ask you... You're saying that apart from Miraluka, there were no other 'True Ancestors' ten years ago?"
"Very unfortunately, yes. If you have news regarding Lady Miraluka, please do tell me......"
"I heard that she died."
Rushella did not use the word "destroyed."
Instead, she used "died" just like the way Hisui usually treated his foster parent.
"...Then you are truly the last 'True Ancestor' remaining in this world. But where have you been previously? Ten years ago, I was not aware of any rumors to your existence. Very likely, all my brethren of our race are the same as me. Where did you come from?"
"No idea... I'd like to find out too."
Rushella feigned calmness but she was actually quite shocked.
Even in the past, ten years ago, there were no clues to her origins.
Fergus was probably not deceiving her. He really looked like he had no information regarding her origins.
"First of all, there were only a handful of people who drank God's blood at Golgotha and became 'True Ancestors.' A new 'True Ancestor' could not possibly be born suddenly. That said, I don't think you're lying... Besides, the fragrance of your blood belongs to a 'True Ancestor' without a doubt."
"Would you like me to show you the emblem displayed by my blood? That's another kind of proof."
"You have that sort of verification method as well huh... Ah, that's really too interesting. Please allow me to assist you in your search for your memories."
"...Not necessary. That's all regarding my matter, I will settle it myself. Back to the subject, what is your goal? What do you mean by reviving your clan?"
"Exactly what it says. Every generation of the von Blitz family was born from marriage between vampires. Naturally, our clan does not include any vampire who was originally human. All are 'Pure,' natural vampires by birth. We are one of the few clans who adhere to the 'Pure of the Pure' tradition."
"Pure"—namely, a vampire born from vampire parents.
Normally speaking, their overall physical abilities tend to be higher and they were considered more noble in rank than those who became "servants" by having their blood sucked. "Servants" were absolutely unable to surpass their "master." But it was not uncommon for pureblooded vampires to surpass their parents.
But even if a vampire were labeled 'Pure,' one or both of his parents could be vampires who were turned. Rather, that was actually the vast majority of cases.
Those like Fergus, to descend from a 'True Ancestor' with every generation consisting of offspring of pure vampires, this truly "Pure" heritage—"Pure of the Pure"—was rarest of the rare indeed.
For a vampire like Fergus to still exist in the modern age, it could be said to be a miracle.
"Looks like you take great pride in your clan. But in the current world, it's not that easy to meet others of our race, let alone an ideal spouse candidate—Another vampire that is 'Pure of the Pure' like you is probably impossible to find."
"Indeed that is so... Frankly, having failed to find Lady Miraluka, I was beginning to fear that my family's bloodline would end in my generation. However... You've appeared."
Saying that, Fergus' eyes shone with the light of lust.
Before she knew it, he had swept his pale white hand over Rushella's hands.
"...I still have not heard your name, yes?"
"A lowly bastard like you is unworthy of knowing my name!"
Rushella swung his hand away and glared at him with hostility.
She originally accepted his invitation with the intention of breaking things off.
But never did she expect Fergus to be such a repulsive person.
"How unexpected... But as a 'True Ancestor,' you should treat our race's prosperity as your duty. Please fulfill your duty."
"I'd rather our race go extinct than have children with you!"
"Oh dear... I never expected you to reject me outright like that. My original plans... were to start with a platonic relationship!!"
Rushella threw her usual shortsword.
She aimed straight for the heart. If a direct penetration did not kill him straight away, then she would rip out his heart by her hand personally without hesitation!
Just as the shortsword was about to hit, Fergus' outline suddenly dispersed—He transformed his body into mist.
Turned into mist, his body dispersed like steam, vanishing instantly.
"This is your...!"
"This the power I inherited from the 'True Ancestor'. Apparently, you can't do the same."
The voice was near.
Fergus had re-materialized beside her.
Fast as lightning, Rushella aimed her hand straight at her enemy's heart.
Since he was able to escape as mist, I'll hurry before he can turn into mist!
"...Do you really think no one else had tried that idea before? I'm already used to this whole game."
Rushella's graceful hand sliced through air. Fergus's body dispersed as mist again.
Then his gaseous body flew towards Rushella's nostrils—and entered her body!!
This was the feeling of someone clawing at her internal organs.
Invading her body, the enemy had infiltrated Rushella's various organs and was applying strong pressure from inside.
"How does my secret technique taste?"
"Originally if my negotiations with Lady Miraluka broke down, I intended to use this method to force her to submit. Even a 'True Ancestor' cannot do anything if she were attacked from the inside of her body. Then after that, I can do as I please—"
A fistful of mist flowed out of Rushella's mouth and turned into Fergus' face.
This was the only part which materialized. The rest of the mist continued to apply pressure from inside Rushella, sealing her movements.
"Stop, this, now......"
"First of all... Let me start with this pair of lovely lips."
With a despicable tone of voice completely unworthy of his title, Fergus slowly approached her crimson lips.
Rushella tried to turn her face away but she could not move at all.
A kiss... This must be her second time.
The first time was with that guy... But actually, she had not initiated it on her own volition.
Besides, she had not treated that act as a kiss at the time because that guy was unconscious.
But there was no feeling of dislike at the time.
Although that guy lacked integrity and even kissed his parent—other women. She had hit him when she heard about it. But apart from that, she had not felt unwilling back then.
Although she was feeding him medicine via mouth-to-mouth, she had not hesitated the slightest bit.
But now... She was absolutely unwilling.
Tearfully, Rushella cried out his name. At this moment, a waiter in the restaurant approached without being called.
"Sorry for the wait, dear customers. The super high temperature pumpkin pie you ordered has arrived. Although it's a shame it's overcooked, throwing it out would be a waste, so please enjoy."
Grinning, the waiter took the plate of steaming hot pumpkin pie and slapped it into the face beside Rushella.
"Argghhh, it burns——!!"
Fergus screamed awkwardly and left Rushella's body.
Although his materialized face was injured, he recovered immediately. Even so, having suffered a boiling hot pumpkin pie to the face, his cheeks still remained red and swollen.
"Damn it, what are you doing!?"
Fergus re-materialized and returned to the seat opposite to Rushella, glaring angrily at the boy.
"I can't believe you ran away to enjoy dinner on your own. That's so unfair. Let me join in."
Hisui smiled at Rushella and grabbed a chair, sitting by Rushella's side.
"The situation at the police... Is it okay?"
"Hmm.. Kariya's there, it should be fine. On the other hand, what's with you here?"
"Your face... You turned into that again!?"
"Hmm... Frankly speaking, my neck still hurts. Maybe I tried to look too cool... Had I bled a bit more, it would be bad."
"Seriously, letting me drink is still the best way."
"...As much as I don't want to admit that, letting you handle it is the safest. Say, this guy is Touko-san's enemy, right?"
"Yeah, I permit you to beat him up! But you didn't bring that cross sword, is it really okay? Shouldn't you have brought it along?"
"No problem, I've already borrowed weapons from the Supernatural Investigations Section. Against this kind of bastard, the Tzara Blade would be overkill."
Hisui seemed fully confident.
With victory firmly in his hands. Fergus coldly glared at him and muttered.
"Trash... Disappear from my sight."
His eyes flashed with a crimson glow.
These mystic eyes issued orders for suicide.
However—Hisui laughed leisurely.
"Unbelievable, right? This is useless against me."
Immunity against a vampire's mystic eyes... This in itself was not impossible.
With sufficiently resilient mental strength or preventive measures over the eyes.
But Hisui was not in either category. Simply through the naked eye, he dispelled the effects of the mystic eyes completely.
This kind of constitution was like an unreasonable blow to a vampire.
Completely rejecting their existence.
Hence, he was known as—The Anti-Drac.
"You think you can defeat me like that......? Give me a break."
Fergus roared arrogantly and turned himself into mist again.
His gaseous body hurried over to a dead angle outside Hisui's view and materialized behind him. But at the same time, Hisui punched backwards, right in Fergus' nose.
"Your presence is too obvious. A vampire who can turn himself into mist results in overconfidence in his ability. You're not even hiding your presence. Predicting where you'll re-materialize is way too easy. Although I learnt this from my foster parent, I never expected I'd have a use for it one day."
"Don't underestimate me!!"
Fergus held his broken nose and vanished as mist again.
His gaseous body went straight for the inside of Hisui's body.
"No good, you must escape!"
Rushella had suffered the attack once and warned from beside him.
However, Hisui did not heed her warning.
After all, trying to evade was probably useless.
Because Fergus' movements were too swift and hard to guard against.
He entered Hisui's body through his nose and mouth.
His internal organs at Fergus' mercy all at once, Hisui showed pain in his face.
"Are you okay!? Even with your body......!"
"Hmm... This is a physical attack... Neutralizing it... Probably, not......"
Although there was no tension in his voice, large droplets of sweat were appearing on his face and his mouth began to spit blood.
The pressure from inside was causing even more intense suffering to his body that was already frail from entering Anti-Drac mode.
"This... Might be a bit... bad......"
"You trash! Making me spend all this effort. Watch as I crush your internal organs and eject them. Go and die!"
A terrifying voice was coming out from Hisui's throat.
Occupying Hisui's body by force, the vampire attacked his body and did not neglect to taunt.
"With this, you can't even lift a finger... Taste this pain!!"
Hisui retorted to the enemy within.
At the same time—His left hand moved.
With the enemy clearly pressing against his central nervous system, he should not be able to move.
"Impossible... What is going on!? Your will should already be......!"
"This... isn't me...... But a certain troublesome fellow possessing me."
Hisui's left arm moved freely.
His left arm was superimposed with a translucent arm.
This delicate arm belonged to Touko.
"Hisui-kun's body... I'm borrowing it for a bit, okay?"
"Please go ahead."
Hisui smiled and replied to this other existence in his body apart from Fergus.
The left arm that was the only part that could move.
Reaching into Hisui's pocket, his hand took out a corked glass jar.
Taking out the cork, his hand then poured the jar's contents into his mouth all at once.
"Poison!? Foolish, this sort of thing does not affect us, vampires......"
"Directly imported from the Vatican... Super high quality holy water personally blessed by the Pope at Rome. When leaving the Supernatural Investigations Section, I got lost and accidentally entered their weapons storage. Wondering if it might come in handy, I discreetly... uh, borrowed it."
Holy water—water that had been ritually blessed by a member of the clergy. Strictly speaking, its composition was no different from ordinary water. It was simply water from a church's font with holy properties.
Although it was a Vampire's fundamental weakness like crosses and garlic, holy water could not cause a fatal injury.
But then, what if a gaseous body were mixed with holy water directly?
What if an enemy lurking inside one's body were forced to drink holy water...?
There was only one answer.
Not to the extent of complete destruction, but the torment of being burned from head to toe by pure holiness.
A thunderous scream of pain came out from Hisui's mouth and echoed inside the restaurant.
However, the voice came from someone else, namely, the guy who was rampaging in his body earlier, now suffering a fate worse than death.
Hisui aimed a punch at his own abdomen, causing the "mist" to be vomited out without resistance.
Then the mist rolled under the table legs and materialized... Fergus was rolling on the floor in abject pain.
"Burning, it burns, it really burns——!!"
For an analogy, it would be like swapping all the blood in one's body with scorching lava.
As a fellow vampire, Rushella fully understood the kind of pain he was suffering.
Hence, she turned her gaze away.
Then Hisui spoke emotionlessly.
"Serves you right. You stayed ten years at the bottom of the sea and you still didn't notice? The greatest weakness of turning into mist is that you absorb moisture from the surroundings in the instant of transformation. Whether seawater... or holy water. Holy water of the highest class mixed into your body, doesn't that feel nice? Combined on a particle level, the pain will probably last a couple centuries. Oh well, I'll be long dead already by then."
"Bas—tard—! How dare you... do this to me...!!"
"This is revenge for Touko-san... Plus revenge for your bloodsucking rampage. At the Supernatural Investigations Section, out on the streets, in the department store... You drank to your heart's content, didn't you?"
A calm tone of voice, but at the same time, a voice of condemnation rejecting all compromise.
Scorched by conflagration all over, Fergus roared with blood and tears.
"(So..... what? You humans have also... To this date...)"
"Eaten innumerable pieces of bread, swallowed countless grains of rice, drank who knows how many bowls of miso soup. No one keeps track, but neither is there any need to keep track. However... As a human, as a higher organism above animals, one must always remember our manners and say 'thanks for the food' before and after a meal. Gratitude cannot be forgotten. That's how I was raised. If you can't even do that, then you're trash even worse than animals. Finally today, I realize that the word was invented just for people like you."
Then Hisui ignored Fergus and urged Rushella and Touko to leave together.
"...Is that really okay? Not terminating this vampire..."
"It's fine, just let him be. I don't know if it's fortunate or not, but all the victims were completely turned into vampires......"
"(You'll... regret this!? Once I survive this, this painful experience, I'll, surely...!!)"
The screams continued behind nonstop.
Hisui ignored Rushella and Touko's worried looks and continued speaking on his own.
"My, you'll miss me that much? But have you given any thought to what's gonna happen to you next?"
"Obviously, those Supernatural Investigations Section people are gonna come. Those guys will sever your neck and drive a stake into your heart... Is that what you think?"
"I heard from Sudou and the girls along the way... You called yourself 'Pure of the Pure'? Seeing this kind of rare specimen rolling on the floor completely defenseless, do you think those people will sit by idly?"
Fergus' face instantly went pale.
Just as humans were only food in his eyes, those people did not care about a vampire's dignity either.
Throughout his long life, he had plenty of occasions to observe humans.
Humans were fragile.
Hence, whenever they chanced upon any opportunity to strike back at the strong, their sadism flared up without reservation.
"When the time comes, you'll be locked up somewhere to live out the rest of your life as a poor little lab rat... After all, you're a rare and precious specimen. Actually, it's me who told the Supernatural Investigations Section about this. Isn't that nice? Saves me the trouble. I'll let them interrogate you to get information out of you as much as they want."
"Oh well, don't worry. After all, you're immortal with eternal youth. You can endure it, right? Even if it's eternal pain."
"You won't escape a second time."
"You will pay everything with your blood."
Minutes later, near the restaurant, Rangetsu was making simple records of the situation with Hisui and his group.
But since she already knew everything, the records were finished quite quickly.
Afterwards, Rushella quietly said to Hisui, probably still miffed about Rangetsu kicking her last time.
"I feel something strange about this woman. Her presence feels closer to that Kariya, right?"
"Oh, you can tell? She's a werewolf."
"What!? They still exist!? Eh, but it's not completely the same... The smell is not that intense......"
"...I'm half. Like Kariya-san......"
"You hate Kariya because you're both the same?"
"Don't simplify things that much. Our ways of living are different. Let me tell you this, as a noble wolf, I hold nothing but the highest esteem for my origins!"
"But because you're a half-werewolf, you can't turn into a wolf fully but only end up as a beast-human, right? And that bit of fur covering your chest doesn't look very safe. I wonder if it feels furry to the touch......"
"Wow, this woman here can transform!?"
"Yeah, her palms become paws after transforming. They look very soft."
"Wow, I want to try touching it! Very well, transform for me right now!"
Rushella innocently demanded.
Could it be that she actually liked animals?
"As if anyone would transform for you! Didn't I say that I'm a noble wolf? You can all leave now. Oh, by the way, Kujou-kun?"
"I'm seriously... Would you like to come over and help out on my side? If you want, I can even negotiate with the higher-ups for a salary on your behalf."
"I-It's nothing to do with Kariya-san or anything like that, I simply... find you very capable. And this will give you opportunities to join the Supernatural Investigations Section in the future, you know? A contract for you before you graduate... Mutual benefits?"
The adult policewoman and werewolf was desperately searching for excuses.
Although she was not young, it actually made her seem quite cute.
But Hisui rejected her outright.
"No, that's not necessary."
"Why!? You're more happy... with Kariya-san?"
"No, I've already decided on my career."
"You're just in your first year of high school, right!? You've already decided!?"
"No, rather, I should say I'm already hired."
Hisui smiled wryly and pointed to Rushella.
"I'm my master's servant."
Instantly, everyone fell silent.
A moment later—Rushella blushed and pulled Hisui's arm towards her bosom, wrapping her arms around his arm.
"Y-Yes! You are mine!! Got that, so that's how things are!"
"Got it, yeah, I know. Stop it and don't press so tightly... I'm touching it, your br-breasts, and breasts."
"You're noisy so shut up! Hurry and go home, I'm hungry!"
As usual, Hisui led Rushella and started on their way home.
Rangetsu watched with dissatisfaction as Hisui left, disappearing into the distance... Then noticing the presences behind her, she turned around.
Behind her was Eruru... as well as Mei and Kirika.
Through Mei and Kirika's teamwork, virtually all the vampires were wiped out. Despite suffering a few minor injuries, the two girls had completed the task of supporting Hisui splendidly.
"Y-You girls...... What...... Oh, you two were quite amazing... Thank you for your cooperation, the vampire extermination mission was a success......"
Rangetsu wanted to cover up but it was too late.
Eruru sighed and shook her head.
"Yet another troublesome affair..."
"After all, I completely failed to consider her advanced age. What a weird way of courtship..."
Mei also looked exasperated.
"...Since you are a police officer, I am quite sure you already know that shotacon is a crime? Even with mutual consent, statutory rape is still a criminal offense, you know?"
Kirika pointed out calmly.
The three girls stared coldly.
"...No, it's not what you think. Except... Right?"
The three girls laughed at her denial and prepared to leave.
"Oh how the Japanese police have fallen."
"Hi-kun doesn't have a policewoman fetish, so it's fine right? I gained so many points today, I must win him over next time❤"
"Don't forget you had my assistance. But... Aren't there other opportunities?"
As the three girls sighed respectively to sum up, they parted ways and left.
Behind them, Rangetsu kept yelling but none of them listened to a single word she said.
"Like I said, it's not like what you're thinking, okay!? Remember this... Really, I can't get along with you girls! One day, I'll get rid of all of you!!"
On the way home, Rushella kicked a pebble on the road side and asked, hoping Hisui could indulge her.
"Supposing... I'm, umm, a mother with children, what would you do?"
"What if I had a past lover...... What would you do?"
"Ummm... Supposing I've sucked many people's blood in the past, killed many people and made many servants, what would you do...?"
"After talking to that man called Fergus, I've understood a little. At least prior to ten years ago... I did not exist in this world. There was no trace at all. Probably... No one would know about my past."
"That's not for sure. It's just that they did not know you existed."
"But, compared to the 'True Ancestor' you knew... I'm different, right?"
"As I thought... The current me is not my past self. There was once someone else and many other things happened... Then all was forgotten, resulting in the current me. Perhaps even my appearance and body were changed completely. Since there exists vampires who can turn into mist, my hypothesis... Is not entirely impossible, right?"
Hisui could not refute.
After all, he was not omniscient about 'True Ancestors.'
What Miraluka had brought up in the past—was actually not a lot.
He only knew that the 'True Ancestors' had all lived for over two thousand years.
In a certain place, several 'True Ancestors' had been born at the same time.
The 'True Ancestors' recognized one another and had interacted to a certain extent.
Then Miraluka—She was the last 'True Ancestor' remaining in this world.
"Have... you ever thought about perpetual life and youth?"
"Huh? Why would you suddenly ask that?"
"Well vampires... definitely have many inconveniences. Like sunlight, seawater, blood drinking... But if you're immortal with eternal youth, it can be quite fun!? You should... know, right?"
A long life was definitely a good thing.
But what about perpetual life and youth?
Miraluka—What about her?
"Do you know... Actually, it's impossible to prove that perpetual life and youth is actually forever, you know?"
"Because, whether you live for ten thousand years or a hundred million, it all ends once you die, and that's not perpetual life and youth. Only by living forever can that be proven. So... Whether vampires actually have perpetual life and youth, no one can actually prove it."
A vampire who lived forever did not exist.
Even the 'True Ancestors' perished one after another.
Hisui's own foster parent had died an unnatural death in the end.
Perpetual life and youth was a vampire's characteristic but also a grand delusion at the same time.
"...That's just playing word games!? Since it's impossible, then why does the word 'forever' exist!?"
"Forever... Perhaps it does exist."
Hisui looked into the distance and recalled the final moments of his only family.
The parent, who died after being scorched and incinerated by sunlight, had said these final words before she passed away.
—The idea of forever... It's all an illusion. But I want to live on and prove it. I don't want to admit that the life of the one who died on the cross was correct. So, I will prove it with my own eternal life.
—Stop saying these weird things..... Don't die!
—I used to be alone. I mistakenly thought that it was the proper path towards eternity. Those who drank his blood together with me on that hill, all of them have perished apart from me. They had died not for themselves but for their descendents and servants. Entering relations with humans, falling in love, raising children, finally welcoming death. No one could prove eternity. So, I did not want to establish connections with anyone. I did not love the world like him. I would not shoulder other people's sins like he did... That was the oath I swore back then.
—Enough... Stop talking!
—But... Now, I understand. Smiling and passing away for the sake of others, he gained eternity for sure... His existence has now spread throughout the entire world. Humans always die eventually... Nothing remains unchanged perpetually. But if one could be recorded in history and remembered for all time... Through the accumulation of every insignificant moment, surely, what I seek must lie somewhere amongst them.
—Through the changing seasons I have spent together with you... I have found 'eternity.' Those instants, filling up my heart quietly... That is the eternity I have sought throughout my life.
"I don't care about this kind of thing."
Hisui tightened his left hand's grip.
In order to stop his tears from bursting out of his eyes, he looked up and continued walking forward.
"Don't go dying so easily, okay."
"What nonsense are you talking about? Also... When did you start holding my hand?"
Only reminded by her did Hisui realize.
His hand had moved involuntarily.
Clearly, that girl was interfering again.
"Touko-san... has finally learned how to become fully invisible... What should I do if my left hand commits crimes without my knowledge......"
"Oh well... Isn't this nice? That girl probably... wants to experience this kind of feeling, right?"
"Say... Umm, I..."
Rushella's deep worries were denied by Hisui flatly.
Hisui ignored her anger and continued walking forward, holding Rushella by the hand.
"I only know the current you. I can't be bothered with the past."
"If there really were a past, you could consider yourself lucky. With family, a lover, you must have been happy."
"But... Now there's none of that left."
"Getting impatient won't help, right?"
"...Yeah. Umm, a-anyway, I'll start with making you my servant completely!"
"Although I don't think that's really possible, do your best."
"You're noisy so shut up! Since you can't become a vampire... Th-Then using my charms... I-I'll enslave you!!"
"I advise you to save yourself the effort......"
On one hand, Rushella was getting all fired up. On another, Hisui was completely unenthusiastic.
Neither side willing to back down, they continued holding hands without letting go while Touko watched from behind with a smile.
The terrible wound on her neck was completely gone without a trace.
"Thank you, both... for these memories."
Touko's soft whispers were heard by no one but herself.
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