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Chapter 161: Orphan Dolls (6)

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Author: Shizuku Original Source: Syosetu Word Count: 3229 characters
Translator: Nomad English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 1665 words
Editor(s): Robinxen

I move between two wind blades sent by a Protione. The wind blades are weakened thanks to the barrier, and now that I have removed more of my limiter they don’t do anything against my armor.

I dash through the incoming blades of wind and punch with all my might, my fist leaving a trail of light.

My opponent blocks with both arms, turning them red hot which makes a sizzling sound in the point of contact. But that amount of heat won’t do anything to me, so I just ignore it as I put more force into my fist and break through the defenses.

The Protione staggers back, so I swing a magic blade down on it, cutting from the top of its head down to its torso, splitting its Sorcery Core in two which makes it explode.

That’s one down.

There’s two of them coming at me from the sides now, but before they manage to pinch me between them I rush at one of them, kicking it down to the ground. Then I grab its leg and swing it around to hit the other one.

There’s a loud clash as they hit each other. They’ve been made with the same materials, so both of them take as much damage from the hit. They try to stand up again, but I won’t let them.

At this point the one I’m holding onto stops being my enemy and just turns into my weapon as I lift it and swing it down. Again, and again, and again… By the sixth hit, both have deformed so much they no longer resemble humanoid figures.

That’s a second and third one down.

..?

This feeling…I know it. It’s the same I felt from Arrold when he started activating his magic to escape as we saved Plum. It’s teleportation magic! Arrold is trying to…

“!”

My body wants to keep fighting but I suppress those urges as I look around to search for Arrold, but then my head pops out and rolls on the ground, only connected by nerve threads to my body, as a red arm passes by above my shoulders.

But that’s nothing. It was just the ideal way to evade the attack coming for my head.

My nerve threads wind back to reattach my head to my neck, then I rotate only my upper body, grab the head of the Protione, spin my upper body back and use that momentum to slam my opponent into the ground.

That’s not enough to destroy it though, so I start stomping on its neck until it breaks apart, and after a bit of squirming it emits smoke and stops moving.

That’s four down.

«Mana output improved. Storage magic available»

As I continue attuning myself to the limitations of the barrier I manage to channel enough mana to open my magic storage, so I take out Black Hawk and pull the trigger aiming at the last enemy. As soon as the bullet makes contact there’s a small explosion.

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I run through the smoke from it and use my magic gauntlets to punch into its chest, opening up the bullet wound even more. The punch combined with the incendiary round from earlier makes the Protione explode with a yellow light, shattering into pieces.

That’s the fifth one. They’ve all been exterminated. Now I just have to find Arrold…where is he?

«Searching for remaining enemy signals»

Wait.

«Moving to exterminate»

I don’t have time to worry about them. I try to resist, but my body continues to move on its own, moving onto the trembling pair who hold a shaky knife against me.

Wait!

I use all my willpower to regain control of my body.

Stop!

Two contradicting orders clash in my body, slowing down my movements.

That’s enough, stop already!

I force my trembling arm to move to my chest, where I barely manage to take hold of the maintenance hatch for my Sorcery Core and wrench it open. A moment later there’s a cloud of blue mana dust billowing out from the hatch, and the magic armor covering my body vanishes.

At the same time my whole body loses its strength and I regain control. It seems I’ve used up too much mana as I’m assaulted by a sudden dizziness, but at least I can still move.

“Natalia!”

Out of nowhere I hear a voice call to me and someone supports my body. I look up and see a very familiar face.

“Olivia…”
“Yes, it’s me, we’re here to help you!”

I remember I sent Akane to bring them here, but I didn’t think she’d make an entrance like this. My Young Lady is really starting to look cool lately.

But then I see something moving behind her. One of the smashed and deformed Protione I thought I had destroyed staggers up on its feet again and tries to lunge at Olivia.

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“Young-”
“So annoying.”

Olivia’s backhand blow covered in lightning strikes the Protione, making its already mangled body shatter into many parts and stop moving.

“I don’t know what happened here, but I’m guessing that was an enemy since it attacked us. Who are those two?”
“They’re enemies too, though I’d like to ask them something first.”

Olivia supports my body as I go closer to the trembling pair.

“You two, where did Arrold go?”
“And you better tell us the truth. Me and these two are quite pissed already.”
“Grrr.”
“!!”

After Olivia, Clarissa and Akane also show their anger.

“Hiee… O-Over there…”

Out of the two, the man points at a set of doors with a shaky finger. From there I sense the same magic as before.

“Oh no! He’s trying to escape again!”
“Claire!”
“Woof!”

Olivia sends Claire to smash through the gates and enter the room on the other side, but we just catch a glimpse of a portal closing. We’re too late, by just mere moments.

“He got away…dammit!”

After that we hand the pair, who were called Lemed and Frasta, over to the authorities. We’re also interviewed about what happened, and usually I’d be the one telling the whole story, but here I’m being treated as a Servant, so Olivia has to do the talking.

I did tell Olivia everything that happened before the interview, but she told the guards that we were lured into a shady deal before we were attacked, so we just fought back.

She explained that to me saying that, “Chris said she’d take care of the incident with Plum and didn’t tell us anything more after that, so it’s better if they don’t know you’re involved, Natalia.”

The guards then asked to verify Olivia’s status as an adventurer, then told us to keep this matter secret, and let us go sooner than I expected. Then we depart from that industrial area as planned to continue our trip back to Bamel, but I wasn’t allowed to sit in the driver’s seat.

“Umm… Young Lady, I didn’t really overexert myself back there, so I can still-”
“No, you’re always saying stuff like that and pushing yourself too hard.”

I’m inside the carriage and try talking to Olivia through the window leading to the driver’s seat, but she instantly rejects my offer.

Everything I said is true though. I was able to remain conscious the entire time, and I didn’t run out of mana. I did feel a bit tired right after the fight, but after getting a bit of fresh air it was all gone. I feel like releasing more of my limiter has accelerated the rate at which I regenerate mana, and I almost feel even better than before the fight.

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“Akane, stay there and make sure Natalia doesn’t try to move.”
“!”

Hearing Olivia’s order, Akane gives a voiceless salute with her front legs, then points at the seat where I should sit. Seeing I have no other option I just shrug in resignation and sit down, but I know they’re doing this out of concern so I don’t hold it against them.

As I sit I think back to everything that happened.

While I was fighting and I relinquished control of my body to my instincts I felt like my awareness became much more acute, and in the end it was a bit hard but I successfully regained control when I wanted too. On top of that I’ve improved my ability to use my magic storage and my magic gauntlets.

The ‘improved’ version of my magic storage is very mana inefficient though, but in return I can force it open even if I’m inside a barrier that blocks mana from existing for too long. Then again, considering my mana source it hardly has a negative effect on me.

The first version of my magic gauntlets also used to be compact spheres covering my fists, which meant I could not move my hands while it was active. But the improved version is more like a true gauntlet that lets my hands move freely, composed of various smaller interlocking pieces. On top of that I can extend it to cover my entire body as an added layer of defense. I feel like this will come in handy a lot in the future.

But there’s something that keeps bugging me.

That pain I felt back there.

Magic automatons aren’t supposed to have any pain receptors, so it should be impossible for me to feel any of it. Did removing my limiter make my senses more sensitive then?

No…I saw my blueprints, Ophelia didn’t design any systems to sense or manage pain. Then what was it? I don’t think I can figure it out no matter how much I ponder about it. All I know is that the next time I see Arrold I’ll have to kill him right away.

“Hmmm… I’d really like to let Natalia rest more, so I guess I can make lunch?”

I really want to believe that the ominous musings I overheard from the driving seat were just my imagination.



 

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