|Author: Sasaki Ichiro||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2887 characters|
|Translator: Tanaka||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1402 words|
|Editor(s): Hydra, Silva|
In a corner deep inside the snakekin camp, where others are strictly forbidden to enter lest they become a hindrance, there are two men facing each other.
One of the men covered with scales from top to bottom, wearing leather armor and two sabers fastened to his waist was none other than the mercenary Cyril who had just finished his fight in the second arena.
And facing him 一with all his limbs shackled and rolling on the ground, is a similar snake-like man. …No, perhaps people of other races might not see any particular difference between them but if this scene were to be seen by any of the snake clan members, they would definitely doubt if they are seeing things. The reason is that the man rolling on the ground was none other than a second Cyril.
The two men with exactly the same appearance, albeit one standing and looking down contemptuously while another side looking up with a hateful glare, was but a composition impossible by nature. Whether by luck or by fluke, there wasn’t any third party related to either of them there.
“You really are stupid. Had you listened to me from the beginning, you would have been the beast king without going through all this.” From the standing Cyril’s mouth slips out the voice of a young boy.
“Don’t screw around! You b̲a̲s̲t̲a̲r̲d̲, you’re insulting the pride of warriors by winning as a substitute!!” And from the Cyril that’s on the floor, comes out a voice that seemed to be of a man in his 30s, with a bellowing tone seething in burning fury.
“Haaa. You really can’t be reasoned with. I just don’t want to get my hands dirty and accomplish my goal from a safe place only. Even I want to skip my duties and just indulge myself if possible.”
“…… You will never understand the heart of a warrior. I would choose death gladly if I had to choose between my life or throwing away my pride.”
Fake Cyril sneered in response with a young boy’s voice to his wailing.
“That’s why you’re nothing but a mere caveman. …Well, that’s your wish if you want to die. However, you gotta accompany me till this competition ends whether you like it or not― Oops, «Stun blow».”
Fake Cyril quickly unleashed his skill as he sensed the real Cyril was going to point his fang at him and reaped his consciousness.
The fake Cyril clicked his tongue as he stuffed a gag on the real Cyril’s mouth. His appearance gradually blurred like a painting smeared by water and formed into a blue-haired young boy in the blink of an eye. He seems to be a wolfkin one head shorter and one size smaller than the Cyril who was standing there just a moment ago.
The young boy sighed, noticing changes in himself.
“The effect ended, huh? Sigh If only the «Mimic Card» didn’t have the limitation that the memorized figure can only be used within 24 hours and that too for 30 minutes only, I wouldn’t have needed to keep this snake alive.”
While mumbling his complaints, the young wolf boy takes a metallic card out of thin air. After reflecting the appearance of Cyril rolling on the ground on its shining surface for about 30 seconds, a resounding ding sound marked its completion and he put it back again looking annoyed.
“Well then, although I have forbidden anyone from entering until the time for the preliminary final tomorrow, I should put that idiot 一the real Cyril一 into the box nearby.”
However, just as the gaze of the young boy wandered around thinking that, his gaze collided head-on with the doll sitting on top of the messy pile, and his face scrunched up in fear.
The 2.5-head tall doll that appeared to be imitating a life-size version of a young girl with waist-length straight black hair, crimson eyes, and a black dress adorned with roses was very much like the deformed version of Hiyuki, the queen of Imperial Crimson.
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Why is that thing here!?
The doll in front of the stunned boy moved fluidly like a real person, folded its arms, and let out a voice reminiscent of a silver bell.
“…… I see, so the trick was «Mimic Card». If I’m right, it should be the freebie that comes with the paid gacha in the earliest period of EHO, am I right? I hadn’t begun playing yet back then, which made it harder for me to recall it right away since I didn’t have the chance to get my hands on it.”
“一You, are you really Hiyuki!? What the hell is with that appearance!”
Hiyuki exaggeratedly shrugged her shoulders (The doll is comparatively small, so her gestures wouldn’t be conveyed easily unless she moved in such exaggerated manners. Also, her gestures are strangely adorable) in response to the young boy’s query that came out like a beast’s growl.
“It’s apparently a sorcery doll «Teeny-Weeny Hiyuki» made by our engineer for fun, or so I heard. Though this is quite handy, as I can gather intelligence like now.”
Incidentally, «Teeny-Weeny Hiyuki» seems to have some crazed fan to the point where several of them were stolen by someone during production, many people like Tengai or Maroudo began to dislike having guests in their room on the pretext that the doll is like an exquisite masterpiece (As soon as this particular matter is settled, Mikoto and the imperial regiment even planned to do a household search).
“Damn it. You are a ridiculous guy as usual.”
Teeny-Weeny Hiyuki twists her neck at the young boy who hatefully spits out his words.
“Well, it’s true that I’m a guy from the beginning. …That being said, forgive me to say but as usual, who even are you, to begin with? I feel like I have seen you before.”
The face of the young man turned bright red from anger and humiliation hearing her words.
“You, you forgot me!? How could you when I have received the court rank far earlier than the likes of you!!!”
“A court rank holder. Err… If I exclude the four members from my guild, then…”
She tried counting on her fingers but the atmosphere around her told the whole story, that she “couldn’t remember no matter how hard she tried,” she looked at the boy’s face and shook her head.
“―Could you at least tell me your affiliated guild?”
“You imbecile!! How could you not even remember me when I should have met you so many times together with Aniki! Are you making fun of me!?”
The young boy attacked the Teeny-Weeny Hiyuki without any warning with the sword skill “Quick Draw” accompanied with an angry bellow and smashed the doll apart. Apparently just that much wasn’t enough to quell his anger as he kicked the torso of the doll, but a map fell out from the pocket of the doll at the same time.
He picked it up doubtfully to see an “X” mark drawn on a place a bit far from the preliminary ground.
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“I’m waiting here is what you’re saying? So ludicrous…”
I didn’t have to wait for long before the young player transformed into the appearance of Cyril shows himself at the place 一a fairly unpopular wasteland where I fought with Revan before一 I had marked on the map.
“So you’re here, you h̲o̲m̲o̲ b̲a̲s̲t̲a̲r̲d̲!”
“Hmm, h̲o̲m̲o̲… I usually reveal my gender in the EHO, and I don’t remember ever playing the Princess role in particular either.”
Nonetheless, it’s still a mystery as to why I was called “Lil Hiyuki” or “Princess” by both men and women alike. That persisted even during in-person meetups. It’s really out of my comprehension.
“Anyone using a female character despite being a male is naturally a h̲o̲m̲o̲!”
Wow, what an unreasonable argument. As far as I know, almost all the male have accounts with female characters and the percentage of women using male accounts too are high enough, so doesn’t that mean almost all the net game players are h̲o̲m̲o̲s or lesbos by his standard.
“…… Well, whatever,” it would be like playing the harp to a cow by arguing with him so I immediately cut to the main point, “I wonder if you could tell me your goal and background? I can’t remember the name of the person next to Animaru, err… Mr. Tag-Along.”