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Chapter 9 – The Madam

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Author: Carrot Sauce Original Source: SFACG Word Count: 3047 characters
Translator: insert English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 1578 words
Editor(s): Robinxen

The woman’s voice echoed throughout Yomi, impossible to ignore.

All present stood still.

Lily remained silent, not daring to utter a sound.

The woman’s voice resonated once more, “Wakarai, release that mirror girl, Lily. Allow Rakshasa to take her.”

“What?” Encased in lightning, Wakarai’s face contorted in suppressed rage, his hands balled into fists. He retorted, “I have expended significant efforts to capture this woman and have declared so to Yomi’s inhabitants. Even if you are the Madam, is not your request to release her somewhat unreasonable? Isn’t this akin to seizing my bride before the eyes of all demonkind?”

A silence ensued, followed by a daunting pressure from the heavens, as though a mountainous deluge loomed.

Despite his apprehension, Wakarai stood his ground, unwilling to accept such indignity. He believed the Madam would not be unreasonable.

“How about this: In three years, send an Empyrean Realm expert to challenge Lily1. Choose anyone you wish; victory grants you her hand in marriage. I shall oversee the challenge, ensuring no interference.”

“This…” Wakarai showed reluctance.

“What? Do you intend to personally challenge her in three years?”

The very heavens and earth began to tremble, as though the world itself bristled with ire.

“No, surely the Madam jests. How could one of my standing engage in such an act?” Wakarai felt an unparalleled pressure.

The Madam’s directive to release the mirror girl, delivered before all of demonkind, while unwelcome, afforded Wakarai a dignified exit.

This concession afforded Wakarai significant respect. How many in Yomi could boast of negotiating terms with the Madam?

Should he refuse now, the issue would no longer be about the Madam granting him face, but rather him disrespecting the Madam.

In Yomi, failing to show the Madam respect was unthinkable.

“It shall be as the Madam decrees,” Wakarai conceded, bowing his head.

“Very well, I entrust the ensuing arrangements to you all,” the voice faded, returning the world to its auditory norms.

Wakarai gazed at Lily, suspended in the air, about to claim her as his, yet now compelled to relinquish her. Reluctant, yet left with no alternative. With a dismissive gesture, he lifted the force binding Lily.

Still bound, Lily descended from the sky, her hands cuffed behind her.

“Renka, escort her to the Rakshasa Dojo.”

Renka leapt agilely towards Lily, seizing her around the waist indifferently, and hoisted her onto Wakaki’s earth dragon.

Renka peered at the helpless girl, puzzled over what made her so significant that the Madam intervened on her behalf. Observing the Madam’s demeanor, she surmised the reason behind her highness Rakshasa’s swift journey of over a hundred thousand miles must be attributed to one of the Madam’s capabilities.

“Wakarai, justice is served. With the Madam’s verdict, the conflict over this mirror girl concludes,” Renka mused silently.

“Let’s go!” Recognizing the futility of lingering, Wakarai metamorphosed into a lightning bolt, streaking across the sky. Concurrently, the thunderclouds vanished, and Tsukou ascended, trailing behind him.

“We should also make our exit, back to the Rakshasa dojo.” Rakshasa-Onna descended onto the massive blue phantom wolf, which then contracted to an appropriate scale and swiftly soared off.

“Move out!” With Lily secured on the earth dragon’s back, Renka issued the departure command. The earth dragons, one after another, pivoted and embarked, leaving swirling trails of dust in their wake.

“……” In silence, Mauro and the bull demons watched the departing figures, reflecting on the futile sacrifices of their brethren for no gain.

Yet, before the decree of the Madam, their voices were stilled; there was nothing to be said.

“Then, we should… also depart,” Mauro uttered, his voice laden with resignation.

In defeat, the band of bull demons retreated, their gloom mirrored by the ceaseless cries of monsters in the shadowed land.

Lily found herself under the protection of the Rakshasa warriors, perched atop the earth dragons soaring through the skies2.

“Where are you taking me?” inquired Lily.

“Be quiet! Are you deaf? Haven’t you heard we’re heading to the Rakshasa Dojo?” Renka’s demeanor shifted drastically from her interaction with Wakarai, her tone sharp and actions cruder, even going as far as raising a foot toward Lily’s posterior.

Embarrassed and infuriated, Lily recognized her disadvantage. Contemplating escape, she posed the question, “What are your intentions with me?”

“How should I know? I merely follow orders. Do you think we risked our lives for you by choice? Your presence led to my sister’s death! Your beauty brings nothing but calamity, you wretch!” Renka spat venomously.

“How can you speak to someone in such a manner?”

“Cursing you isn’t enough; I’m going to give you a thrashing!” Renka declared as she crouched, grabbed Lily, and readied to throw punches.

“What’s this argument about?” The blue wolf ahead decelerated to align with the earth dragon, with Rakshasa-Onna seated sidelong on its back.

“After everything we endured to rescue this woman, to the extent that the Madam intervened, yet she shows no gratitude, even daring to question us!”

“Questioning? I merely posed a question3,” Lily countered, feeling wronged.

“Enough,” Rakshasa declared as she dismounted the wolf and astonishingly seated herself upon Lily’s waist. Extracting a cloth, she gagged Lily, reducing her to muffled whimpers. While Lily could communicate through psychic means, what would be the benefit? Likely, it would only invite further torment.

“Renka, you claimed this woman was virtuous. Why then do you berate her as a harlot? Is she noble or not?” inquired Rakshasa.

“Your Highness, she truly possesses virtue. Yet, the loss of Sister Reiko and your injuries compel me to curse. Her presence has brought nothing but tragedy. Despite her allure, I fear her beauty spells doom,” Reika responded with a touch of sorrow.

“Disaster or blessing, the Madam’s instructions are clear. We have no further need for discussion,” stated Rakshasa.

“Understood,” Renka acquiesced, left with no choice but to comply.

Following their conversation, Rakshasa still sat atop Lily’s waist. Despite not being burdensome, the situation left Lily feeling deeply mortified…

“Perhaps this is for the best. Given the immense effort they, and the venerable woman, exerted to save me, their intentions likely aren’t fatal. And being among women, my life and purity seem less at risk than if I’d been captured by those demons…” Lily reflected, her eyes closing as tears began to form.

Meanwhile, her companions within the mirror space were in turmoil.

“Kagura, what’s become of Lily?”
“Why haven’t we heard anything?”

Previously, Lily had forbidden Kagura from disclosing anything due to the peril, but circumstances had shifted. “Master is… for now, unharmed.”

Despite Kagura’s reassurances, her expression alone conveyed the gravity of Lily’s predicament.

Suddenly, Rei’s form vanished from the mirror space. Amidst the chaos, Shimizu and Ayaka took note.

Confined atop the earth dragon, Lily lost track of their journey’s duration through Yomi. Despite the dragons’ swift travel across vast distances daily, a full ten days elapsed before they reached the Rakshasa Dojo.

Rakshasa-Onna’s presence deterred any would-be aggressors. Lesser monsters steered clear, while more formidable beings, aware of the recent events, refrained from inciting trouble. This same presence, however, quashed any opportunity for Lily’s escape, binding her to the custody of the Rakshasa warriors.

Night had fallen over Heian-kyo, Nara Castle.

A solitary figure with a commanding presence traversed the heart of Nara Castle, approaching the ancient stone gate known as Rashomon.

This figure bore silver hair and carried a long, slender sword on their back. Despite being sheathed, the sword exuded a formidable aura that seemed to challenge the heavens themselves.

“Why are you following me?” Rei inquired, halting before Rashomon.

“Following you? We merely share the same path.”

“The same path?” Rei turned under the moon’s glow to see Shimizu at an alley’s mouth, clad in a black kimono.

“Are you aware of my destination?”

“Naturally, for I too am headed there.”

“That’s your prerogative. However, is there any necessity for your accompaniment?”

“As I’ve mentioned, our paths aligning is mere coincidence. Ah, a message from Ayaka; she intends to await Lily’s return in Heian-kyo, urging caution on our part. She speculates our efforts might prove futile, potentially placing us in jeopardy, hence her advice against proceeding. These are Ayaka’s sentiments. Given your absence from the mirror space recently, I am merely the messenger.”

“Regardless, Lily’s rescue remains paramount. Miss Shimizu, should you be resolute in this endeavor, perhaps we could collaborate.”

“I’m agreeable to that.”

Rei nodded, casting her gaze towards the moon, “The time has come.”

With a single step through Rashomon, Rei vanished from sight.

Shimizu attempted to follow through the gate, yet found herself emerging on the opposite side of Rashomon.

“Eh? Why… why can’t I pass through?” pondered Shimizu.

Standing atop a cliff, Rei surveyed the nebulous netherworld below. Aware that this realm should be Yomi Hirazaka, her exact whereabouts remained uncertain, as did Lily’s location. Yet, Rei was resolved to proceed, even if it meant traversing the Path of the Shura.

An intuition told Rei that Lily required her assistance.

Rei lingered for an extended period, yet Shimizu failed to materialize. Rei then tried to project her consciousness into the mirror space, exhaling in relief upon encountering no barriers.

Upon noticing Shimizu, she momentarily overlooked the others and queried, “What’s causing your delay? Are you not coming?”

Shimizu wore a look of bewilderment, admitting, “For reasons unknown, I find myself unable to enter Yomi…”

“…Then take your time to find a solution. I cannot wait for you,” Rei stated before vanishing.



  1. Robinxen: They’re giving her power up time!
  2. Silva: They are “Earth” dragons, yet they are flying?
  3. Robinxen: That is the definition of questioning!
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