I crashed into the apartment with a fierce dash. Elmira and Shizuma weren’t there.
From appearances, there didn’t seem to be any signs of a battle. Perhaps she sensed that the enemies were approaching and fled the area in a hurry.
(If she were to run away…she might be at the cemetery!)
Elmira and I decided on some meeting locations in case of any unforeseen circumstances.
They were the riverbank, the abandoned factory, and the cemetery…so, among them, the cemetery is the closest one. It should be worth a visit. With my feet, it shouldn’t take any more than three minutes.
As I quickly left the room and rushed down the stairs, I briefly explained the situation to Taotie.
(Really…what’s Qiongqi’s point in letting you know about an attack? Or rather, who’s the vessel?)
(Who knows? More importantly, what kind of apostle is this Higaia that Qiongqi spoke of? Someone strong?)
(Higaia, you say. Higaia is one of ‘Hell’s Top Eight’. As you’d expect from someone named Hunshou, he’s a pretty fierce guy. Though he’s a koi apostle, he doesn’t swim.) [TLN: The “Hun” in Hunshou means anger]
(Can you win against him?)
(Oh, you’re too cruel. Despite how I seem, I’m an ‘Evil Spirit’, you know? Furthermore, I’m the strongest of the four fiends, you know? Even if the top eight and three princesses were to band together, I could still beat them all while picking my nose.)
(Doesn’t Mion always boss you around?)
(T, there’s nothing I can do about that. It makes it easier to negotiate an increase in my allowance…)
(Sometimes, I’d like to see you be brave like the ‘Evil Spirit’ you’re supposed to be.)
(I understand! I’ll knock Higaia down in an instant! It’ll be blast!)
I was able to successfully motivate Taotie while I was running there.
Elmira and I should be able to handle thirty small fries. Once the commander, Higaia is down, the rest should crumble.
…Before long, I arrived at the cemetery and found that my guess was correct.
I felt numerous ill wills before I had even reached the entrance. Among them was an especially big one with a strange amount of force. It probably belonged to Hunshou Higaia.
(I see, he indeed seems tough. I’ll leave this one to Tie…I need to rescue Elmira and Shizuma first.)
As I entered the cemetery and went down the path, I once again came across the bodies of fallen apostles. There’s no doubt that this is the work of Elmira.
(Elmira has been feeding on my blood everyday recently. She probably won’t be running out of fuel.)
──It was only a few tens of seconds later that I had arrived at the scene of the battle.
I reached the largish intersection where I had encountered Elmira before. There was a gathering of varying apostles. Rhinos, crabs, centipedes…there were too many to point out.
They surrounded a scarlet-haired vampire who had a baby holding onto her chest. What a relief, those two are somehow safe.
“Elmira! Are you injured?!”
Elmira quickly turned towards me upon hearing me shout. I could see some delight and relief in her face.
“Kobayashi Ichirou! You came!”
Instead of answering her, I made a fierce jump, kicked my feet off of a tombstone I landed on, and leaped over the crowd of apostles. I then landed straight down next to Elmira.
The apostles around me made a commotion over the plain schoolboy making an appearance.
“Who is this brat? A comrade of the ‘Vermilion Bird’?”
“If so, is he also a ‘Blood-kin of Eternal Darkness’? He looks somewhat lackluster.”
“To think that a vampire could have such a below average face…”
The peculiarities said whatever rude things they pleased.
Then, a giant stepped forward, brushing them aside.
At a glance, he was a fish-like apostle whose whole body was covered in solid scales. The guy, who seemed to be Higaia, had eyes burning with a fighting spirit, held a fierce expression, and let out a roar.
“What are you doing?! You dare be a nuisance?!”
He was very angry. He was just as fierce as I had heard he was.
It seems he really is Hunshou…and did Elmira say something to them before I arrived here? After all, this vampire likes to speak without thinking.
“Hey. Are you Higaia, the boss around here?”
When I tried asking, he nodded his head.
“Indeed! I am one of ‘Hell’s Top Eight’, Hunshou Higaia! You must also have a death wish, coming here so shamelessly!”
Somehow, I wasn’t exhausted. I don’t get tired too easily.
“Kobayashi Ichirou, be careful. Despite his character, he’s a tough opponent!”
“Hmph! What do you mean by my character?! Are you mocking me, ‘Blood-kin of Eternal Darkness’?!”
“That vein of yours might burst soon.”
“That is of no concern! I’m always level and calm!”
…I’ve had enough of this. I’ve had my fill of Higaia’s character. I don’t need anymore.
Fortunately, Shizuma seems to be asleep, so I’ll finish this up quickly and return. Then, I can use this opportunity to persuade Elmira to consult with Ryuuga and the others.
“Tie, are you ready?”
I spoke in my mind while remaining on alert. Thereupon…
(Goo goo ga ga…Ryuuga, I need milk…I’m hungry…)
Taotie was sleeping. He was once again amusing himself with some baby roleplaying in his dreams.
“Don’t fall asleep now! Hey, wake up! Wake up!”
In a fit of anger rivaling that of Higaia’s, I struck my head against a tombstone, trying to wake Taotie up.
The apostles once again made a commotion seeing my sudden act of self-harm. It was a surreal situation.
(Aaah. What happened, Papa?!)
“Who are you calling Papa?! It’s your turn to show up!”
(Geez, I always wake up when I’m at the good part! I was on the verge of seeing Ryuuga’s bare chest!)
“Never mind that, do your job! Shouldn’t an ‘Evil Spirit’ be ashamed for thinking about roleplaying as a baby?!”
(No, but…there seems to be someone holding more killing intent than me.)
(Boss, didn’t you notice? Someone’s been tailing you for a while now.)
“S, someone was tailing me?”
It happened right as I asked that question.
Something strange occurred from the corner of the apostle crowd.
The peculiarities screamed as they were blown away. One by one, each of them were knocked out with a powerful force.
Taking a look, I noticed a tiny silhouette bouncing around, rampaging.
It was too fast for me to discern what it was. I could barely recognize that it was a four-footed beast, but I couldn’t follow its irregular movements.
One apostle was flown back, and then another one. Nearby apostles were smashed into trees or tombstones, causing them to melt and vanish.
“C, could it be…ack!”
“T, the fearsome ‘Boushou’…gah!”
“P, please wai-eek!”
The small shadow continued taking down the apostles without listening to their pleas. Before I knew it, the apostles surrounding us were all being exterminated.
…By the time the sudden onslaught had ended, none of the apostles were moving.
They all had turned into corpses, leaving behind the general, Higaia.
(No matter how you look at it, this is overkill…)
While I was at a lost for words, the figure made a leap and quietly landed in front of me.
There, I finally found out who it was. Or rather, I already had a good guess.
A peculiarity with a fluffy body, triangular ears, and a soft tail. Someone who lacked intensity as an apostle, but had a certain charm…I knew this person very well.
She was one of the “Three Princesses of Hell”. A Hokkaido wolf apostle general──Kiki.
While Elmira and I were stunned, Kiki took a quick scan of her surroundings.
After seeing that nobody was attacking us anymore, she nodded her head and licked the tip of her nose.
“The purge is complete.”