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Chapter 142 – Lichter IV

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Author: Tensei Mikami Original Source: Syosetu Word Count: 2269 characters
Translator: Jiro English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 1611 words
Editor(s): Robinxen

“H-Hey… What do you think you’re doing…”?

When questioned by Lichter, however, the man only rubbed his own arm. Unstiffening his neck and moving his arms around, the man said, “See ya.” and turned to leave.

Lichter’s body moved before his mind could and he grabbed the man’s hem.

“W-Wait! Didn’t you say that now is not the time for personal grudges and that we should help each other?! Why are you running away?! Tieck is still stuck there!”
“Shut up!!!” The man yelled, using his log-like arms to push Lichter away.
“Are you dumb?! We’re this close to death! As if I’d have the time to help a bunch of stinking brats like you!”
“H-Hey… Please! Please help us! I’ll do anything, so please, just help Tieck…”
“I told you to shut up, you damn brat!”

The man’s rock-like fist answered Lichter’s tearful plea. The man’s fist held nothing back even when aimed at a child.

Lichter took it squarely in the right cheek and was blown several meters away. The flesh of his cheek was cut, and shattered teeth flew out of his mouth along with blood.

Tieck’s screams were heard in the distance, and Lichter crawled on the soot-covered ground.

“Don’t hate me! Hate your own weakness! I’m getting out of here, you brats!” The man said, as he turned away and ran off.
“Urgh…!  Gwaa!”
“B-Big bro!”
“I-I’m alright Tieck… I-I’ll save you…” Lichter said, lifting up his young body.

When he finally stood up, he spat out a mouthful of blood that had collected. The inside of his mouth was invaded by the taste of iron and stomach acid.

Lichter felt miserable. He couldn’t help it and naturally burst into tears. He was overwhelmed by fear, anxiety, and the helplessness of having been betrayed…

Even though Lichter had experienced an environment many times harsher than what others had, his body and spirit were still that of a ten-year-old, and were understandably helplessly shaken. He sobbed like a child his age, unable to hold back his tears but firmly held a square piece of wood in his hand. He inserted it under the beam that was crushing his brother’s leg.

However, the beams did not move at all.

“Big bro…”
“Don’t look at me like that! We’re always going to be together! I won’t give up on you no matter what!!!” Lichter yelled, sniffing back his snot and his tears falling down.

However, time wasn’t on their side.

“Big bro, behind you!”

Lichter looked back only to see a group of Demons approaching them. They were a group of Brat Demons with empty bellies. They drooled and leaked coquettish voices through the gaps between their wild teeth, as if they had found a new treat.

Something hot rose up from the back of Lichter’s throat. Swallowing down the crispy, sour stomach acid and vomit, Lichter pulled a knife from his pocket.

“Don’t you dare come here! I’ll kill you all!” Lichter yelled, blood flying from his mouth with every word. However, there was no way he could get through to the Demons.

They simply continued getting closer and closer.

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“Big bro, I’m scared… I’m scared…”
“Don’t worry, Tieck. I’m strong.”

Lichter held up his knife. However, his vision was still wobbly, not allowing him to focus. The damage his brain had suffered from the grown adult’s punch was by no means small.

Furthermore, if they came at him one by one, Lichter would probably be able to deal with them, but he’d never fought against a group of Demons this big before.

His knees shook, his tears fell, and a big stain appeared on his crotch. However, Lichter did not let go of his knife. Retreat never crossed his mind. After all, his brother was waiting behind him.

“AAAAAAAAAA!!!”

Half in a frenzy, Lichter leaped forward.

The trajectory of the knife, still inexperienced, sharply cut the throat of the Demon in the forefront. The smell of blood mixed with the smell of soot and flames.

Lichter bent down, took a further step, and plunged his knife into the Demon’s belly.

(DIE! DROP DEAD!)

As the feeling of tearing flesh was transmitted to his arms, Lichter turned his grief, suffering, and even fear into hatred.

He licked his lips, which tasted of tears and blood, and tried to pull out the knife-

“……?!”

However, it didn’t come out. The rusty knife had lodged itself into the rough, jet-black flesh.

The Demon laughed. And extended its branch-like arms to Lichter.

“Stop it! Stay away from me, you b̲a̲s̲t̲a̲r̲d̲s̲!”

Their fingernails were stained with blood and grease, and their breath was as bad as that of a rotting fish stuffed with feces and urine. Yet, the laugh was so pure that it made one cower. It was the same as that of a small child’s innocent laugh.

The Demon’s yellowed fingernails dug into the soft flesh of Lichter’s arms and pushed him down. After which a group of brats piled on top of him.

Several sets of teeth bit down into him.

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“AAAAAAAAAA!!!” Lichter yelled.

The Demons’ sharp teeth easily ripped through Lichter’s flesh, tearing it apart. An intense pain, the likes he’d never experienced before, rushed through Lichter’s young body and mind.

Death. That was the word that popped up into Lichter’s mind. But it wasn’t just any death, it was the worst possible death. Dying while being devoured by the wretched Brat Demons, leaving behind a body that was neither human, nor a lump of meat. Dying while being surrounded by the Demons’ vile faces, tortured by excruciating pain and humiliation.

(No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no!!!)

Lichter shouted, “Help me! Somebody help me! Stop this already!”

Lichter continued to scream as his entire body writhed in pain. However, help wasn’t coming. It wouldn’t come.

The sensation of blood and flesh peeling away from his body caused Lichter to scream so loudly that his throat burned. However, hope was not yet lost. Lichter’s bloodied skin was slick and slippery, and his clothes, which had been holding him down, eventually tore.

It wasn’t clear whether it was thanks to Lichter’s reflexes or his abnormal survival instincts that Lichter noticed this series of coincidences. However, Lichter took the chance and slipped away, rolling out of the way of the Demons’ mouths.

As the chilly air touched his skin, Lichter was reminded of the Demons’ warmth. He ran, screaming his lungs out. His jaw was already shattered from the man’s punch. A great deal of blood dripped down from his entire body, and his vision was stained red.

A simple feeling of fear was tightening its hold on Lichter’s whole body. The fear of imminent death bound the young boy’s body like a chain.

“I want to live. I don’t want to die.”

With those thoughts in mind, he passed by Tieck.

From far away, a voice called out to Lichter. It was the voice of his beloved brother. Lichter sobbed, cried, and covered his ears. Even with his ears covered, he could hear his brother calling him.

“Big bro! Big bro!” he yelled.

His brother’s voice was filled with fear and despair. The voice eventually turned into a scream.

“It hurts! Stop it!” it yelled.

Then it turned into an inaudible scream.

Lichter tried to cover his ears even harder, but he could still hear it. He could hear the hopeless screams of his brother calling out to him.

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Lichter neither apologized nor repented. He was simply terrified, and all he could think about was running away.

Next thing Lichter knew, it was morning.

In the middle of an empty street, he was sinking in a pool of blood of his own making. He wasn’t passed out or asleep. He just watched the stars fall and the sun rise, half-dead.

His body was heavy as lead, and he no longer had any attachment to life. His tears had dried up. His empty gaze simply drifted through the air like a floating cloud.

(Why did I run?)

Lichter asked himself. This self-imposed question cut through his soul like a sharp razor blade.

(Why, why, why? Why am I alive? What should have I done for things not to turn out like this? What should have I done so as to not live such a life? What should have I done to save my brother?) Lichter asked himself, reaching for the sky.

His tiny palms were smeared with dried blood and sweat, turning them slightly blue.

“……”

Looking at his helpless hands, Lichter recalled his brother’s words.

‘It’s because I’m weak.’

(That’s right. You’re totally right.)

Lichter felt strangely convinced. It was just as his brother had always said. It was bad to be weak, and they were tormented just because they were weak. That was the truth of it.

At the time Lichter had told his brother that it wasn’t his fault that he was weak. That it was the fault of the ones who’d tormented him. However, he now knew he had been wrong. If he had been strong, he would’ve been able to do something. He would not have had to flee and abandon his younger brother, nor would he have had to comply with that man’s demands.

(That’s right. It’s all because I am weak. Weakness is a sin. The weak get stolen from. The weak can only run. If I’m strong, if I’m strong, if I’m strong.)

“Ahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!”

Lichter Willgame, age 10. From that moment on, he was burdened with a sin that he would never be able to wash away, and his heart broke from his intense thirst for power.

(This chapter is provided to you by Re:Library)

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