Chapter 66 – Roiling Tanba River

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Author: Carrot Sauce Original Source: SFACG Word Count: 3149 characters
Translator: Yuki English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 1608 words
Editor(s): Robinxen

Heavy rain seemed to have swept over the western part of Heian-kyo, the May winds had blown the clouds in.

Uesugi Rei and the remaining four trudged through the tall misty forests of Tanba.

Two of their companions had departed forever.

The only good news was that Nakajou had recovered after walking around the gates of Yomi. Under the effect of the life recovery magatama, he had almost fully regained his strength, although this strength had no meaning in this situation, at least he wasn’t dragging down his companions.

Over the past two months, their little group had gone through countless battles. Nakajou had lost an eye, and Hatano’s back was covered in bandages.

On the path they had been ambushed by two more groups of bandits, but had been counterrobbed by Uesugi, gaining them much needed supplies.

Most of the battles were won by relying on Uesugi Rei, she had massively improved through the battles. The blade maiden Uesugi Rei was now at the peak of permanence1.

Somehow, it felt as if the deeper they traveled into Tanba, the greater the danger. The demons got stronger, the battles more intense, and Uesugi Rei grew stronger faster.

Part of the reason was the increase of powerful opponents, the moment one was defeated, Uesugi Rei would capture its anima.

When it came to anima of permanence ranked demons, they were even more effective for practicing than magatamas. Even if the spirit jade of a permanence staged demon shattered, the essence within the remaining anima was much stronger than a magatama.

A regular magatama contained the spirit power equivalent to the anima of a middle-staged spirit jade demon.

A middle-stage permanence anima contained several times the energy of an ordinary magatama and a peak-staged permanence anima contained at least ten times the energy of a magatama and some special monsters had animas containing several dozen times the energy.

This was why Uesugi Rei’s improvement had sped up, among humans, only blade maidens had this innate ability.

Of course, permanence staged demons were not easy to kill, magatamas were much easier to obtain.

As for Uesugi Rei’s insights, she was most skilled at ice, water and rain, with each battle in Tanba her insights improved, it was as if she had no bottleneck, and this was without the aid of sacred relics. Even her companions did not understand how Uesugi Rei’s powers could increase like this.

The group arrived on top of a tall cliff, in front, thousands of meters below them was a large winding river.

“Tanba River!” Kenki looked down at the river roaring heavily with the rainflow from the mountains, “In the entire country of Tanba, only one river has such boldness, the Tanba River! This thousand mile long river leads directly to Lake Biwa in Yamashiro! As long as we follow this river, we will definitely get out of Tanba, to Yamashiro and Heian-kyo.”

“Really!?” Hatano clung to a tree, her face haggard. In the past two days her period had come and had to face this torrential rain. Naturally her physical condition wasn’t too good, though she was an adept, she was not a celestial and could not avoid the physical influences of being a mortal woman.

Of course, to women like Lily and Uesugi Rei who had extremely good bodies, this wasn’t an issue. For Lily who was skilled in seductive intent, the changes in her monthly cycle had a positive impact on her strength during certain times.

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“That’s great, finally…finally we don’t have to get lost in this forest anymore! It’s impossible to get lost with this big river! Ahahaha!” The one-eyed Nakajou was overjoyed, “We can finally go home!”

Uesugi Rei looked at the river calmly, as if she wasn’t excited to go home.

But besides combat, she was always this calm and indifferent, they were all used to it.

“Sister Uesugi, let us travel along this river, we should encounter some small ports along the side, we can go home on a boat.” Kenki said.

“Mm…” Uesugi nodded.

Going home…truthfully, none of them were people of Heian-kyo, but to reach territory controlled by Heian-kyo, was as good as returning home.

For Uesugi Rei, going home meant meeting Lily again.

“Lily…” On her cold expressionless warrior face, a small smile emerged.

Although they had no contact after she had left Kanto, she had faith. If it was Lily, then she should have arrived at Heian-kyo by now. She had asked that raccoon to send words, but she didn’t know if it had arrived.

The group’s morale improved, they were no longer depressed and increased their speed as they traveled along the cliff.

Though they were all soaked wet, their eyes were filled with hope.

Half a day later.

“Sister Uesugi, look——” As a gunmaiden, Hatano was more attentive of the surroundings, she pointed at a distant location where a port town could be vaguely seen through the mist.

“It’s a port! A port! Brother Kenki is knowledgeable, there’s really a port on the Tanba river!” Hatano shouted out happily.

The group stared out into the mist, with their strengths the ships far in the distance were faintly visible, black dots in the distance.

“Home! We can finally go home!” Nakajou also started shouting happily.

“We’re going home! I’m going to have a good bath and buy lots of new clothes in Heian-kyo!” Hatano jumped around in excitement.

The two embraced each other in celebration, ignoring the differences in gender.

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“Home! We can finally go home, ahahahaha, ahahahahahahaha! I, Nakajou, can finally goddamned go home! I’ll enjoy glory and wealth and give up any b̲u̲l̲l̲s̲h̲i̲t̲ practice or adventure! I’ll honestly guard the territory, marry a few beauties and have some kids! Ahahahahaha! Ahahahahaha!” Nakajou’s voice was filled with a spirit that was absent for the past few months. His laughter echoed over the rainy and foggy mountains.

Listening to the laughter echoing among the mountains, Uesugi Rei felt it sounded weird. She looked around and for some reason shivers running along her back at the sound of the laughter.

Suddenly, a terrifying killing intent emerged from the misty forest!

“Careful!”
“Ah?”

A speedy spirit arrow pierced right through and destroyed Nakajou’s arm and the remaining hand fell down the cliff.

He could only blankly stare at the bleeding remains of his upper arm.

“Ambush!!!”

Before the words echoed.

Whoosh! From the forests.

Whoosh! Whoosh! Arrow after arrow pierced through the rain and fog, each glowing with powerful eldritch energy!

Uesugi Rei dashed in front of Nakajou and Hatano, the tachi behind her unsheathed and swung, creating an ice wall to block the arrows.

“Ah!! Aghh—!!! Ah——!!!!” Only just realizing his right hand was no more, he howled hysterically, clutching the remains of his arm.

Hatano’s face was also pale white, she pulled out a short dagger and looked at the forest in horror.

Kenki had also reacted, drawing his katana to defend himself.

An arrow echoed loudly as it impacted Kenki’s katana, sending him staggering back. “These arrows are very powerful!”

Even Uesugi Rei frowned slightly as her eyes tracked the multiple arrows shot out from the forests.

Gradually, the arrows stopped.

Multiple powerful roars echoed among the forests, it was as if the entire forest had turned into beasts.

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Stomp—stomp——stomp!

The earth trembled as footsteps echoed and shook the ground.

Within the gloomy forests, two large clawed hands stretched out, each big enough to grasp a person and ripped apart the large cedar trees, revealing a ghastly face as big as a gate.

That ghost had a scarlet face, two large golden eyes, messy hair, and a creepy grin revealing long teeth.

Its body was surrounded by purple demon clouds.

The large golden eyes swept across them before focusing on Uesugi Rei, “Oh? You…you should be that sword miko from the eastern land right? Under the orders of his highness, Shuten Doji, I, Touko Chakura have been waiting here.”

Uesugi Rei’s eyes chilled as she vigillently stared at this terrifying demon. Powerful! She had never met such a powerful opponent before!

Uesugi Rei had been fighting since she was a child and was undefeated. But this terrifyingly powerful demon brought to her an unprecedented sense of danger.

She felt her soul tremble, as if warning her of the danger she was in.

‘I can’t see through it, I can’t see through this demon’s power…is that a throne arch-demon?’ Uesugi’s heart clenched.

Her companions beside her had pasty white faces, and were all scared stiff.

“Hehehehehe—ehehehehe——” Suddenly, from behind that terrifying arch-demon, another gloomy laugh came out.

A thin small man wearing a white waistcoat was sitting on the shoulder half hidden by the curly hair of the giant archdemon. His long blue hair was unkempt, his skin a dark bronze, and his eyes icy. He held a large blade in his hand and was surrounded by an aura of death.

“Sword Miko, Uesugi Rei, you’re called that East’s six swords or something, right?” The small man squinted at her, “What a joke, you’re so weak you can only laugh at other weaklings, yet you still dare call yourself the East’s six swords?”

She was unmoved by such provocations, she did her best to detect the two enemies in front of her, both radiating such terrifying eldritch energy.

“…I can’t see through him either, is he also a throne realmed expert!?”

She was soaked through with rain and ice, her chest rising and falling with deep breaths, and her eyes unusually serious.

“How could this happen? The road back home is right in front of us, why are there two such terrifying enemies here2?”

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References

  1. Robinxen: She’s slipping to the dark side.
  2. Robinxen: I wonder if they plan to use Rei against Lily?

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