A week had passed since Shizuma left to the spirit world.
Elmira returned to school. She also went back to her own apartment instead of staying in the Kobayashi household, living by herself once more.
“I’ll come over whenever I feel like having a good time. Mion’s cooking was really good.”
In exchange for not revealing the fact that the three princesses are living with me, the vampire girl kept her duplicate key of my house.
Although it was a little outrageous, there’s nothing I can do about it. I need to reveal their residency to Ryuuga and the others when the time is right…and with that in mind, I don’t think now is that time.
“Kobayashi Ichirou. Thank you for everything…I, Elmira Kobayashi McCartney, have fallen in love with you again. Please consider my proposal to go with me to my hometown.”
Elmira said that right as she left to go back to her own home. I felt that she added something unnecessary to her name, but…it must be my imagination.
──After listening to the details of what happened at the riverbank, Mion and Jyuri were very disappointed to not be there during Shizuma’s farewell.
“Shizuma’s quite reserved, isn’t he…? He didn’t even let us see how he grew up.”
“Haha, it’s alright, Mion. Knowing Ichirou, Hundun will regain his power soon. I’m sure we’ll see our lovely Shizuma soon.”
“Right…now then, we meet again, Hundun.”
It was half past eight on that day. Everyone gathered in the living room.
The three princesses were lined up in front of me, straightening themselves.
“Hey. Come to think of it, we never did formally exchange greetings yet.”
With that, a muscular giant man appeared from behind me. He had a stubble and was a wild, unkempt man…it was Hundun.
Naturally, Mion and Jyuri were at a loss for words upon hearing that I became Hundun’s vessel as well as Taotie’s. It seemed that their greetings were delayed over them not coming to terms with that fact yet.
“Hundun. Apologies for the slow response. This situation far exceeds my expectations, and though I’m ashamed to say this, I’m in disbelief…”
“Don’t worry. One person being the vessel of two “Evil Spirits” is unheard of. I still can’t believe it myself.”
Sitting down next to me, Hundun took sips from his teacup. Him straining himself as he sat down reminded me that he was a middle-aged man.
Mion kept speaking in a formal manner to Hundun.
She acts as the representative of the three princesses in situations like these. Though Jyuri is akin to being the eldest daughter, Mion is the leader.
“Us ‘Three Princesses of Hell’ are willing to serve you in addition to Taotie. Now that you two have reconciled, we are allied forces…so what will it be?”
“You all should just continue being Tie’s subordinates. Once I regain my power, I plan on going back to Kyouka. Well, until then, we can have an alliance.”
The three princesses replied with “Yes”.
The fracture in Kiki’s arms have already healed. On that night, Yukimiya rushed over and healed her wounds. Now that I think about it, I should have let her heal me when I had that bone fracture. I thought putting pressure on the affected area would have been enough.
When Shizuma left, Kiki seemed lonely and depressed for a bit, but…she finally returned to being lively yesterday.
As for why, that has to do with the ocean monster Zabazebaze and strong-armed monster Guogopon.
Everyone chipped in with their allowances to gift her the monster figures she wanted. A reward for her hard work.
Taotie was hesitant on contributing the entire time, but in the end, he reluctantly gave just one hundred and fifty yen. I thought he would be more generous since he was eager to kill the monster that hurt Kiki. He only gave one hundred and fifty yen though.
“Then Hundun, thank you very much. Please let us know if you have any requests.”
“We will definitely slay Qiongqi. I, Mion, no longer hold any hesitance to oppose Qiongqi. Not towards the one who hurt Kiki.”
“I, Jyuri, am of the same opinion.”
“I, I see.”
Hundun was taken aback a bit when seeing their anger and fighting spirit rise.
…When the eldest daughter and second daughter heard about the third daughter being injured, they showed a spine-chilling fury. Them not killing the monster themselves was a bigger source of regret to them than missing out on Shizuma’s farewell.
It seems that’s how strong the bond between the three princesses is. To an extent, they’re on PTA levels of scariness.
“By the way, Hundun. I would like to tell you something.”
Mion suddenly cleared her throat and kneeled on the floor. It was as if she switched from subordinate to housewife.
“Alright. What is it?”
“As long as you live in this home, I would like you to follow the rules of the Kobayashi household.”
“First of all, don’t be fussy about food. Regardless of your status as an ‘Evil Spirit’, eat everything that’s given to you. Just a while ago…you left some carrots, didn’t you?”
“O, oh. My bad.”
“When it rains, please take the initiative to bring in the laundry from outside. Control over the TV channels goes by a daily rotation. In addition, your monthly allowance is two thousand yen.”
“I, I understand…”
“If you’re the last person to enter the bath, make sure to clean the tub. Though the summer heat is intense, please use a fan and try not to rely on the air-conditioner. Furthermore, when you’re departing from or entering the house, make sure to say so──”
Hundun was immediately initiated by the mother of the household. He had an easygoing attitude up until a while ago, but was now sitting up straight in front of Mion.
Seeing what the heron apostle did, the king cobra and Hokkaido wolf apostle jumped in.
“Ichirou and I may get involved in some ‘indecent’ conduct. When that happens, turn the other way.”
“Every Saturday night, everyone plays monsters together. Even Baron Hundun must participate.”
While the uncle was kneeling down, I took a sip from my teacup.
──Somehow, I’ve gotten further away from being a friend character. It would be foolish to even say that I play only a minor role at this point.
Of course, I’m worried about…what will happen to me in the future at this rate, but there’s something very concerning to me regarding the present. A very dangerous person.
And that person isn’t actually Qiongqi. It isn’t Kurogame Rina either. ──It’s Yukimiya Shiori.
(Aogasaki and Elmira…I’ve already gotten rolled up in their affairs, so it sure would be a blessing if nothing happens with Yukimiya. After all, this story would definitely go in that direction.)
And──I was right to be worried.
Sure enough, Yukimiya, the last of the three major heroines, had a troublesome episode dedicated to her. Something that would remind me of details once forgotten.
The ‘Shrine Maiden of Life’ was hiding something ridiculous.
Yukimiya Shiori laid down on her bed inside her room.
It was still early for bedtime, but her body felt sluggish. She was dizzy, had a headache, and the buzzing in her ears was so severe that she couldn’t stand up.
She kept it a secret from Ryuuga and her other friends, but the symptoms began a few days ago…and worsened each day.
(What happened…? The doctor even said that I had ‘no abnormalities in particular’…)
For the time being, she decided to call for her butler Sebastian to bring some water.
Next to Shiori’s bedside was a telephone that connected to an adjacent room where he was on standby. No matter how sudden the call, he never took more than ten seconds to come.
Sebastian Renie. He was French. A full-time butler who Shiori had complete trust in.
He would send her to and from school, arrange a schedule of private tutors…and she spent more time with him than she did with her parents, who were busy with work. For Shiori, he was already a member of the family.
She reached towards the phone with an arm that felt as heavy as lead.
Thereupon, Shiori’s consciousness suddenly faded.
And so, she didn’t realize.
There was a dark aura springing out from her entire body. Little by little, it took the form of a human.
…After ten seconds, Sebastian knocked and entered Shiori’s room.
He wore a high class suit, and looked like an aging man with swept back hair and a moustache. He walked towards the bed without being upset about Shiori’s strange condition, and calmly kneeled down.
“…So you finally awakened, ‘Evil Spirit’ Taowu?”
The aura was like a black smoke.
A shining pair of eyes from within stared at Sebastian. It gradually separated from Yukimiya Shiori.
“If you have any requests, please let me know. I am one of ‘Hell’s Top Eight’, Rikushou Renie, the strongest apostle.”
The “Evil Spirit” repeated his name. The aura had spread throughout the room, packing the area with a darkness of hell.
Hundun, Taotie, Qiongqi──and Taowu.
All four fiends had thus been resurrected.