The Making Of A Broken Character Part 6
There was a room located near the entrance on the first floor of the research facility.
It was a large room of about 40 meters with no furniture, no windows, and a white interior.
This is the place where Ruri and Saori were held in when the beginning of the game was declared.
With a gloomy sigh, Ruri was watching a total of 40 innocent people who had been transported to this other world.
In the midst of it, she sent her gaze at one personーa boy who not too long ago, was dragged here.
She once again took a deep sigh. That was all she could do, considering that the boyーwas sleeping.
She brought him here having to carry him on her back, and she wondered if she had hit him in a bad spot with her battleaxe. He had seriously fainted, and he was muttering to himself and sweating the whole time.
“Right, so that’s it…Nayuta…that’s what it was…”
He was muttering non-sense, but anyways, Ruri was thinking,
―I was an idiot for having even the slightest of exceptions for this guy
Well, having enough of that, she turned her gaze back to the 40 people.
They’re not heroes, strictly speaking, but rather people who failed to become heroes.
They were people who from the beginning were thrown away by the Noranouk king as having no hopes.
The men were literally stripped naked and thrown out of the castle.
Many of them lost their lives on the way to the neighboring Lindahl Empire in this dog-eat-dog world.
Even among those lucky enough to make it to the Lindahl Empire, only a shocking few were able to live a normal life.
Even when trying to register at an adventurer’s guild and carry out tasks, there’s the culture difference.
They can’t read the language, they don’t know the day-to-day customs, and to make matters worse…they have no place to call home.
Even if they manage to secure a job, there is no reason for their employer to actually pay them competently.
Many of the men have to make a living by being of the likes of thieves or thugs.
Well, even that is okay―since they at least have the right to choose.
The women on the other hand, are much more simple story.
When they’re judged as useless, they’re stripped naked and forced to perform comfort duties for the soldiers of the Noranouk castle.
Afterwards, they’re arranged to work at a brothel in the slums.
Ruri was sent thinking.
In the end, even if one becomes a hero or doesn’t become one, either way―everyone was doomed.
Then, Higure entered the large room.
“Well now, everybody, let us proceed with live vigor! By that…I mean to say that from hence forward, look forward to killing each otherー! Hyahahahaー!”
With a sickeningly light tone, Higure said so with a faint smile.
Making a commotion, the 40 men and women started losing their cool.
When Ruri received that explanation from Higure for the first time, she was also taken aback.
At that time, she had no idea that she would later see this view from the point of organizers.
At this moment, half of the ‘rabbits’ that Ruri had gathered were inside the large room.
And now, this time, there was going to be a battle royale between the ‘rabbits’ that she hunted
She felt unpleasant towards the actions she made, feeling both woozy and nauseous.
She really…would have preferred dying.
However, she could not choose to end her own life. She was bound by the final words of her older sister like they were a curse.
One of the ‘rabbits’, a giant with a shaved head, drew near Higure and flared at him.
“Hey you, wait a minute. You think that can just drop by suddenly and hold a battle royale? Are you an idiot or something?”
“I am quite against losing points in vain. So, if you keep silent I will ignore the fact that I heard you say ‘idiot’ just now. The next time you speak up without permission will be your last, okay?”
” You don’t understand a single thing. I’m a person who spearheaded a bandit group of 200 people and have an S-rank bounty on my―”
“Oh my, how bothersome. There’s a woman waiting for me in the next room over, so I absolutely must move this proceeding forward post haste. Understand?”
Higure swiped his hand, feeling disappointed.
Thereupon, as if a Kamaitachi had risen, the shaved man’s head detached from his body and fluttered in the air. (TLN: Kamaitachi are Japanese youkai that cut up their victims in a whirlwind)
Blood scattered around the room, decorating everyone’s faces with it.
After a brief period of silenceーscreams started reverberating throughout the room.
“My attack power had reached its maximum limit―65535. My defense power has ascended beyond these maximum limits and is of an immeasurable scale. On that note, now that you’ve all gotten a taste of despair, I’d advise you to switch your mindset and follow the orders of my humble self, understand? Well then, what order should I give?”
Then, he continued,
As he said those words, everyone’s shoulders in the room trembled and shook. There was not a trace of the previous commotion, silence dominated the room.
Nodding in approval, Higure began to explain.
Just like when Ruri was there, gave a basic summary of the game while seeming apathetic.
Once he completed his explanation, Higure hit the palm of his hand with a fist.
“By the way, if you’re quite the looker, then you don’t have to go out and kill. In particular, if you enter my harem, you are exempt from having to kill. Well, my little junior won’t respond to anything but a beautiful lady.”
When he finished saying that, the women began to scramble towards Higure and cluster around him.
A total of 15 women had lined up in a row, with Higure standing at the end.
Slowly walking towards the other end of the line, Higure gazed at the women, licking them all over with his eyes.
“Hahahaha! Soooooorry! None of you pass! How particularly regrettable for you, the sixth from the right, isn’t it ♪? Well then, the fourth one from the right, were you actually thinking that you were going to part of my harem? I find that quite amusing!”
Higure laughed on the spot while holding in his sides.
Veins started popping on Ruri’s forehead, but she painfully knew that she wouldn’t be able to give him a single scratch in light of his absolute defense.
As she bit her lip, the taste of iron began to spread through her mouth.
“Ah, that reminds me…I forgot, I forgot. Before this battle royale, there was someone else who had no intentions to win, someone handed over their victory to someone else, and is ultimately quite the nice person.”
He continued with a foolish tone,
“As I’ve said earlier, you’re all mere maggots, but I’ll be troubled if you lot don’t do anything, okay? I won’t be able to collect points efficiently otherwise. So…I’ve turned that nice person to an undead.”
Higure snapped his fingers.
“Consider this a warning, okay? Without further ado, come in!”
Accompanied by a swarm of flies, a girl with a shrine maiden costume dyed with rotting discharge entered through the front of the room.
A decaying smell drifts through the room, causing everyone except Ruri and Higure to grimace.
“Well then everyone, time for an introduction. This is my recent favorite toy…Zombie Gorilla Number One. She had already passed away so I changed her into an undead. However of course, her consciousness and the suffering that comes with it still remain. She can’t die even if she wanted to. If you don’t want to turn out like this―then fight with all of your strength. Do you all understand? This is an order.”
Her eyeballs were protruding out and her head was smashed open, causing fluid to start draining out.
And, her whole body was tightly struck with nails and stakes.
It was easy to imagine the amount of abusive treatment beyond description.
Ruri’s entire body went pale.
―This can’t be happening, this can’t be happening…
Her mind had understood itーbut she didn’t want to believe the sight in front of her.
―Suffering beyond death…all because she saved me.
She didn’t want to believe it, she covered her eyes.
At that moment, Higure gave a ruthless explanation,
“So, Zombie Gorilla Number One doesn’t ever part with that weapon for even a single moment, does she? It’s the item she had with her right before her deathーthe item she used to help her sister out and has now become an object of attachment. Impressive, isn’t it?”
The weapon she was holding wasーa bamboo sword.
The one from back at the final match that Ruri pulled out―That bamboo sword.
Ruri who had confirmed that…could not bear to look at her sisters figure.
She could not bear to look at her sister, whose form had completely changed from the kind, brave, and beautiful person she was when she was alive.
While looking down, she nervously let out a small voice,
Saori faintly reacted towards Ruri’s words.
With hollow eyes and while letting out some saliva, she had let out a frail voice.
Feeling like the world was spinning, Ruri desperately tried to prevent herself from fainting.
And…hatred rose from within her―a massive killing intent erupted from the bottom of her heart.
With a scream, Ruri charged towards Higure.
Brandishing her battleaxe, threw a series of repeated blows.
However, Higure’s smirk never disappeared.
“Indeed, you reacted as I suspected. You’re a simple-minded person as always, aren’t you, Female Gorilla? As planned, I wanted to use you to drive my point ♪.”
While receiving Ruri’s repeating blows, Higure addressed the 40 ‘rabbits’ while spreading out his hands,
“I couldn’t get your ownership transferred from the king to me. ‘I have no need to handle such a troublesome process like dealing with those lot of trash,’ those were the words of such a horrid king.”
Despite having taken more than four dozen attacks, Higure still carried an easy-going tone of voice.
“Since that was the case, despite it all…I can assume that some of you will thus try to escape this system. That’s why I’m binding you all here by fear. Nooooow thenーthe attack power of this rampaging woman is 65535.”
Already, everyone on the spot could not utter a word.
Still, Ruri continued to attack Higure. There was the rotting odor as well.
The entire situation was just too surreal.
“Yes, and as I said earlier, my defense power is immeasurable, far surpassing 65535. This is my unbreakable, absolute defense.”
“An absolute defense, an absolute protection, an absolute blockade, an absolute fortification, an absolute safeguard, an absolute shield, an absolute guardianshipーyou could come at me with anything, even a nuclear weapon, Hyahahaha!”
While still receiving attacks, he continued,
“Know my overwhelming power, and fall into fearーWell then, it’s time for you trash heaps to dance with your best! If you plot to escape or carry no intent to win then I will turn you into an undead! All the same, the fool here still doesn’t get it, does she?”
As Higure’s speech ended, the only sound in the room was the sound of Ruri’s attacks.
Nobody could say a word.
In a constant rhythm, strikes, slashes, and other unintelligible sounds echoed.
“Ruri, everyone here has gotten the point, that’s enough from youー”
Higure’s words did not reach Ruri at this point.
“No matter what you do, it’s all futile. Do you not understand that yet? Would you mind ending this at any point soon? Making fun out of teasing you has gotten old…You’re rather annoying at this point.”
While clicking his tongue, Higure threw his arm as if he was peeved.
Ruri, who was taken over by rage, could not react to the attack.
If she kept a calm mind, Ruri would have easily handled the attack with her martial arts experience and the fact that she and him were both matched at the max attack stat.
However, a left hook cleanly hit Ruri’s jaw.
Her brain had had been thrown around and she kneeled down on the spot.
Her knees had completely given way and she could not get up for a while.
“I’m fed up. Yes, I’ve decided. You did not stop despite my heed. That’s more than enough of a reason to kill you.”
Higure held up his fists, his eyes held a cold glint to them.
“It’s a pleasant feeling to have given you a concussion, okay? If I strike you now, it’ll be a critical hit. Isn’t that nice? You’re finally be at ease knowing that you can die.”
With her brain having been thrown around, everything she saw was warped and distorted.
―It seems like this is where my life will end.
Those were her thoughts within her hazy consciousness.
―In the end, I couldn’t do anything against him. I lost myself to my rage again this time. I had no plan except to just attack.
Higure was slowly getting into position.
―I’m already tired of it all…
As she resolved herself and closed her eyes, she heard a voice from behind Higure,
“That’s as far as you’ll go. This is unpleasantーconsiderably so.”
Higure clutched his hands.
“My apologies, shrine maiden lady. It took me a while to regain consciousness. Anyways, since the time I was bornーall 17 years of it…my brain had been broken it seems.”
Higure turned around. He grabbed a hold of Yuuki, who was in his field of vision, while glaring at him.
“You know, what really gets me mad the most is when I get interrupted as I’m about to kill someone. You, do you even comprehend what you’re doing trying to go against me, the one with an absolute defense, do you?”
Higure released his grip and Yuuki took a short distance back.
Their distance was only about one and a half steps.
“You can take your absolute and absolutely go to hell. I’ll leave it at that since you seem to be blowing off your jokester stunt.”
“You say I’m blowing something off? Just what are you getting at?”
“There was that bit where you repeated the word absolute…absolute defense, absolute protection, absolute blockade, was it?”
“What about it?”
In an obviously provocative attitude, Yuuki spoke while scornfully laughing,
“I do believe you were…but by any chance…were you not actually trying to pull off some kind of gag? Perhaps you’ve become delusional? Judging by appearances, you seem about the age of a college student, are you not? Being delusional is for middle schoolers, so can this really be tolerated?”
“You…are you looking down on me?”
“You’ve caught on, haven’t you? As you guessed, I’m looking down on you completely.”
Higure was laughing sinisterly while veins were popping up on the temples of his forehead.
Despite trembling little by little, he was laughing.
“Aah, your death if final. You’ve certainly just sealed your fate. I’ll put you on course to become an undead for my own enjoyment.”
Higure kept laughing for a short while, pointing to his own face which had let out an expression similar to a Noh mask. (TLN: Noh masks are masks used in classical Japanese musical drama. Due to how neutral of an expression they have, they can be tilted in certain ways to give the impression of different emotions. They look kinda creepy and uncanny.)
“At this moment, your hell has been decided. However, since I have a little bit of mercy, after you’re done playing around with me…I’ll strike you with only one blow.”
“Oh, thanks so much. I’ll accept your offer.”
Yuuki threw side-blow towards Higure with his back fist.
The fist approached Higure from the left side, lightly grazing the tip of his nose as it passed to the right.
Everyone in the room was not aware what had happened.
They were only aware of the man’s fist swinging from the left to the right.
Then they were aware about―a vigorous nosebleed coming from Higure.
“What is this…?”
For a while, Higure was stunned on the spot, but eventually spoke those words.
Blood flowed backwards from his nostrils and the taste of iron rose from his throat.
It was something Higure had not tasted for the past few years, he felt a sensation that was already halfway towards being gone from his memory―pain had descended upon him.
“Higure? Do you…know what ‘Nayuta’ means?”
“I don’t understand…I mean…pain…how impertinent…this heavy pain…what’s with this, wha-what’s going on? Why did I receive damage like it was normal? You…just who are you?”
After thinking for a while, Yuuki said,
“I’m―just a Metal Slime* passing by.”
*A masked mantle-wearer with briefs