Chapter 82 – Tomoe Gozen

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Author: Carrot Sauce Original Source: SFACG Word Count: 3186 characters
Translator: LazyButAmbitious English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 2015 words
Editor(s): Robinxen

The samurai on horseback crashed to a halt on the water, kicking up huge waves that drenched Lily’s body and rocked her canoe.

As the curtain of water fell, the splendor of the tall, purple spirit warhorse was revealed. Its body was translucent, and its morbidly thick white bones were faintly visible.

The samurai atop the warhorse wore an exaggerated helmet, and she was vested in a gorgeous, dark green stone armor glazed with a bit of orange. Although she was plated in armor, her long, dark blue hair highlighted her identity as a woman.

A tachi was hung from the female samurai’s waist, but in her hand, she held an agate red longbow that was estimated to be taller than her.

She radiated an incredibly powerful aura, giving the impression that she could stir the entirety of Lake Biwa with a flip of her hands.

“This…who is this person? Her horse is definitely not an ordinary beast…” Lily couldn’t comprehend the strength of this female samurai. However, her intuition warned that this mysterious samurai’s strength was not much weaker than the demon king’s.

At the very least, the overpowering presence Lily felt was comparable to her glimpses of the top three demons. With the samurai’s intimidating appearance and magical steed that could trample the raging waves into submission, what else could they be but demons?

Lily didn’t bother to budge or harbor any malicious thoughts. If this woman wanted to kill her, just a single move was enough.

The woman slightly leaned over and looked down at Lily from her aloft position. Although she rode a stout horse, she didn’t seem to be tall from Lily’s perspective, but she was a bit mature and also extremely beautiful.

Looking closely, the woman’s breasts were not too big or small. The pair of small breast masks affixed to her upper chest spotted the same color as her skin, and if one looked from afar, they might mistake that her chest area was exposed.

The woman lowered her gaze and spoke, her voice trilling across the lake, “Are you a retainer of the Minamoto Clan?”

Lily didn’t know how to answer. If this woman was a friend of Lord Kamakura, she might receive help, but if she was an enemy, then…

Well, if she was indeed a friend of Lord Kamakura, but Lily answered ‘no’, it should be okay, right? On the other hand, wouldn’t she by dipping her toes in shark-infested waters if she said ‘yes’?

“No,” Lily answered truthfully, “Senior, although I am a female samurai from the East, I do not owe allegiance to anyone in Eastern land. Of course, since Minamoto no Yoritomo is the Lord of Kamakura, I am naturally under his jurisdiction.”

This was the status quo, and represented Lily’s true thoughts on matters relating to Lord Kamakura.

The woman was taken aback, “So, you’re not allied to Minamoto no Yoritomo, but you’re living in Eastern land under his rule? Suppose he orders you to attack others, what would you do?”

“If it’s for a justified cause, then I will obey. However, if I’m tasked with participating in a war to kill others, I would first check whether the people are good or not. I will never kill innocent people, even if it means disobeying an order.” Lily continued honestly.

“Well, you are right. Among the eastern clans, all bow their heads to Minamoto no Yoritomo, but each has its own plans. It is understandable that you’re not a direct descendant of Minamoto no Yoritomo; I will not kill you.” The woman said.

“Eh?” Lily was startled, “Is senior ought to kill the Genji’s direct lineage?”

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“Listen carefully, I kill people from the Minamoto Clan, not the Genji’s. My late husband1 was also a Genji. Why would I kill members of my husband’s clan?” The woman replied gruffly, her whole body shaking. Just then, her eyes were lit ablaze with purple flames, and the firmament seemed to quake. The dark clouds seethed, lightning flashed, and the sounds of thunder knocked at Lily’s heart. From time to time, thick bolts of lightning would strike the water around Lily. They felt more powerful than the spiritual lightning harnessed by any samurai Lily had seen before— this was the natural lightning and thunder between heaven and earth!

“Minamoto no Yoritomo is the most despicable villain in the world! Don’t you agree?” The woman suddenly pointed at Lily with her longbow.

“This…” Although this female samurai was so powerful that she could easily swat Lily to death, she wouldn’t spout nonsense because of intimidation. Moreover, she was unsure of the woman’s ideal answer so she could only speak from her heart, “Senior, it is true that Lord Kamakura’s behavior is often beyond Lily’s understanding, but he protects Eastern land from being overrun by demons. Isn’t he a man who has made a great contribution to the world? As for the conflict between senior and Lord Kamakura, Lily doesn’t dare to inquire about it.”

The woman’s spiritual energy abruptly exploded and she pulled her longbow into a crescent shape. The golden bowstring sparked with dazzling light, and out of nowhere, a bright lightning arrow materialized and pointed squarely at Lily.

Lily felt as if she was facing the direct wrath of the heavens. She couldn’t help shaking as her legs grew weak, but she still persisted and kept a composed face.

“Hmph, you got guts!” The woman commented, “Your name is Lily, right? When did a female samurai of your caliber appear in Eastern land? You know that I hate Minamoto no Yoritomo, but you still dare to tell the truth?”

“Lily doesn’t have the courage to ask more about senior’s enmity with Lord Kamakura. However, Lily is even less inclined to betray her heart in order to protect herself.”

“Hahahahahaha! Betray your heart, you say? You’re a clever woman!”

“Uhm…” Lily’s heart pounded.

“Don’t be afraid. I think you are different from others so I won’t kill you, girl. That Minamoto no Yoritomo killed my husband, Kiso Yoshinaka— he was once the great hero of the Heian Dynasty. I am the wife of Kiso Yoshinaka, Tomoe Gozen.” Speaking of her late husband, Tomoe Gozen’s eyes rippled with nostalgia and sadness.

“Lily has heard of Lord Kiso!” Lily encountered some tales about Kiso Yoshinaka who was described as a powerful samurai in the same generation as Minamoto no Yoshitsune and a true man of the Heian Dynasty. Naturally, she also heard that his wife was a powerful female samurai who boasted both skill and good looks.

“No need to be polite. I didn’t accompany my late husband, but instead turned into a demon woman for the sake of revenge! Therefore, I will kill everyone relating to Minamoto no Yoritomo’s bloodline without leaving a trace behind!”

“I think that you are a good and sensible girl. I would like to remind you that, as a samurai of Eastern land, you must be careful around Minamoto no Yoritomo, especially as you grow in power! One day, if you become enemies with him, come to Iga on the southern shore of Lake Biwa to find me! I will lend you a hand.” Tomoe Gozen said.

“Lily understands. Thank you for reminding me, ma’am.” Lily bowed deeply on the canoe.

“This arrow is already on the string, so I’ll have to shoot it. Since you and I met by fate, I’ll demonstrate an attack for you. As for how much you can learn, it depends on your own fortune.” Tomoe Gozen urged her horse to back away by a few steps and turned to the east. Lily felt as if she was pointing towards Kamakura’s direction.

“Look carefully!”

“Yes.” Lily was fully focused. Such a powerful existence was willing to show her a few pointers; how could she miss such an opportunity2?

Thunder rumbled in the sky, and with Tomoe Gozen as the center, the clouds and lake began to revolve, forming a huge vortex. In the vortex, underwater plants, fish, shrimps, and other aquatic creatures were all sucked into the cyclone.

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Lily was also affected by the vortex as her hair and skirt fluttered in the chaotic wind. She had to press down her skirt with one hand and brush aside her hair with the other so that her vision wouldn’t get blocked.

Bzzzt—!

The sky and earth flickered, and the myriad of lightning in the thunderclouds cascaded and gathered on the arrow. The body of Tomoe Gozen and her horse was soon wrapped by a bright cloak of electricity.

Even brighter was the tip of the arrow where all the energy was condensed, causing Lily’s vision to turn black at times. The radiant light was just too blinding,

How could Lily learn such heavenly archery?

Why did Tomoe Gozen demonstrate this to her?

Could it be…

Lily suddenly realized that Tomoe Gozen wasn’t showing her archery, but thunder and lightning instead!

The power of thunder and lightning was the unstoppable force of the heavens that surpassed any arts that could be conjured by archdemons, samurai, or Lily herself. This was a completely higher and purer power than anything else!

Perhaps thunder and lightning were a part of the heavenly way itself!

It was like…the trace of moon power Lily perceived when practicing the Lunar Blossom, as well as the bit of eldritch intent she comprehended while under the influence of the spring wine curse.

This was the same level of power!

However, Lily’s groping for the power of the moon was akin to looking at the moon’s reflection in the water— close yet so far away. The eldritch intent was also a trace of the body’s natural response and flow. This Tomoe Gozen mastered such a skillful, pure, vast, and powerful lightning power. Compared to her, Lily was like a firefly trying to outshine the bright moon!

Tomoe Gozen, this woman, may have mastered part of the heavenly way!

With this feeling in her heart, Lily couldn’t help admiring her even more.

She carried the hatred of her deceased husband while she practiced in solitude for revenge, but could only wander in the endless wilderness forever.

Lily understood the pain of losing a loved one since she herself had experienced it!

Purple lightning danced in Tomoe Gozen’s eyes as she shouted, “Minamoto no Yoritomo, one day I will kill you!!!”

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WHIZZ—!!!

The air encompassing the radius a thousand meters distorted, and the golden lightning arrow fizzed with the power of heaven and earth. It illuminated the dark night sky as it cleaved through the deep water and flew in Kamakura’s direction, raging currents ravaging its wake!

The arrow was comparable to heavenly lightning!

Rumble—

The lightning bolt had long since turned into a golden star that merged into the sky and left echoing thunder behind!

The lingering wind whipped Lily’s hair and skirt into a mess.

She watched on as the shimmering arrow fell like a shooting star that streaked across the sky…

Residual electricity still pulsed throughout the lake, emitting invisible fluctuations.

Is this the power of lightning…?3

Tomoe Gozen’s arrow gave the impression that it could fly across the entirety of Lake Biwa, leaving Lily in deep shock. Only when the power of lightning and thunder was used to such an extreme could this kind of might be unleashed. Even if it was just one-tenth, no, one percent of this power, Lily may not be able to withstand it!

With such supreme power, one could traverse the Heian Dynasty with ease

Tomoe Gozen’s showcase of heavenly lightning and thunder stunned Lily into awe. What about her husband, the hero, Kiso Yoshinaka? What about Minamoto no Yoshitsune who was once the strongest man in the Heian Dynasty? And what about the three archdemons and the four vengeful spirits who have existed for countless years in this dark age?

How strong must they be?

Heian-kyō— dark and far away; mysterious and vast. Lily felt that the road ahead was nigh, and dangers lurked everywhere. This trip to Heian-kyō was probably more difficult than she first thought4.



References

  1. LazyButAmbitious: Oh brothaaa~ another MILF? Will Lily take the bait again?
  2. Robinxen: More powerups.
  3. Robinxen: BEHOLD TESLA.
  4. Robinxen: Well duh, there’s an entire arc for it.

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