|Author: Kaburagi Haruka||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2579 characters|
|Translator: Mui||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 889 words|
Mateus showed himself while walking so casually one would think he was taking a stroll. The rubble behind Cortina was still there. There was no place to run.
While his comrades have been eliminated, he was more than enough of a threat on his own.
“Oh wow. You are quite something to have brought the two of them down empty-handed. I suppose you are not a hero for nothing, eh?”
“I have some confidence in my physical ability even if I don’t look that way.”
Mateus commented without any sense of urgency, and Cortina also responded in a light tone. However, in spite of her light tone, her eyes didn’t stop probing the surroundings.
“I suppose this was too much for those newcomers, huh? It seems that this work falls on my shoulders in the end, doesn’t it?”
“Overly serious guys aren’t popular, you know? You can slack off every once in a while.”
“Ah, indeed, I have never once been popular in my life.”
Mateus was by no means ugly. However, unlike his frivolous speech, the aura surrounding him reeked of danger. Women would naturally be scared away by that aura and not approach him.
“I see. But Reid was popular, you know? Not that the person himself was aware of that fact.”
“That makes me jealous. Maybe I can also become popular if I get my name out there. In that case, maybe you can sacrifice yourself for my success?”
“Sorry, but I’d rather not!”
Mateus was an assassin. People like him excelled in offense, so it would be disadvantageous for Cortina if she did not take the initiative in this battle. As such, she had to make the first move.
Deciding that, Cortina lowered her posture and approached Mateus. She tried to pretend to slash at him, and then slip under his arm. However, her movements weren’t enough to take Mateus by surprise.
“Now, now, I can’t have you escape so easily, can I?”
He hadn’t pulled his sword out, and instead, he thrust his leg horizontally and drove it into Cortina’s flank. As Cortina was focused entirely on his swords, she ended up taking the brunt of this attack.
It was a precise kick to the flank. The pain from it caused Cortina to momentarily lose the ability to move, and then, she was effortlessly blown away and crashed into the road’s wall.
She then slid down on the wall and started violently coughing while glaring at Mateus.
“To think you’d pick up our newcomer’s sword and charge at me. I can’t be too careful with you, huh?”
“Cough…That’s my selling point. Still, aren’t you soft? If it was Reid, I would already be dead after this exchange.”
Cortina staggered to her feet and set up the sword that she was not used to holding. Seeing that, Mateus also slowly pulled his own swords out.
“Final warning. Won’t you surrender obediently?”
“My answer stays the same. I won’t.”
“Is that so?”
He seemed to be expecting that answer and responded plainly and casually swung his sword.
Normally, his sword would never reach her at this distance. However, Mateus’ long arms made it possible.
Cortina barely managed to stop his blow that was aimed at her throat with the sword she held. However, the weight of that blow was enough to fling the sword out of her hands.
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Cortina staggered and put her hand on the ground to support herself, but the next moment she picked up a box fragment and threw it at Mateus.
He dodged this by simply tilting his head on the side, and then attacked her with his other sword. Cortina failed to fully dodge that attack and it slightly tore her left calf.
“Agh! You damn…”
“So you can still keep going?”
He slashed back with his first sword, and then proceeded with his incessant onslaught. Cortina kept rolling on the ground and dodging the attacks. It was surprising that not only was she dodging, but also using spells with shorter chants to counterattack.
But Mateus was able to dodge them just as easily as before.
Thus, one kept attacking and the other kept counterattacking as she rolled around.
He kept easily dodging spells fired from low angles. Normally, low, near-the-feet angles were blind spots for humans, but he showed no signs of trouble. His deep experience allowed him to deal with those attacks.
Cortina wasn’t able to accomplish her goal to slip past him and instead kept being driven back. It took her all just to roll left and right and return weak attacks.
Still, even that was just useless resistance. She kept being driven into a corner, and before long, she was pushed against the wreckage with no place to escape.
Mateus thrust his sword at Cortina, convinced of his victory.
“Well, looks like this is the end, isn’t it?”
“Indeed it is. Our tag is over.”
Cortina answered with a grin towards Mateus who seemed confident.
Her leg was bleeding nonstop, and even just walking was already difficult for her. Her back pressed to the wooden boxes, making it clear that she had no way out.
And yet, she was strangely composed for someone driven to a wall. As Mateus pondered on her reasons—the boxes behind her suddenly exploded.
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