Chapter 1 - The Strongest Traitor
Beyond the opening heavy doors, artificial light lit up the interior. In the vast space that depth could not be perceived, large storage shelves could be seen stacking up like mountains. The warehouse in the late night gave off an inorganic atmosphere.
In the corner of such a place, a slim young man with messy hair was sitting on one of the empty shelves. Belonging to the same Kuusen Madoushi Division second year sophomore, a guy with golden hair ── Lloyd·Alwin finally found his presence.
"I was thinking of eating together with you once in awhile, but what are you doing in this place?"
"Ah, Lloyd. Nice timing, take a look at this."
As the young man, Kanata, sitting on the shelf said so, he then tossed over a bundle of ten or so documents over.
"What is this?"
As Lloyd flipped through the pages, his expression gradually became serious.
"You should understand just by looking. This is the comparison summary between the warehouse item list and the actual inventory."
"You say inventory so easily......"
While saying that, Lloyd looked at the artificially illuminated storage shelves that gave a hallucination of stretching endlessly.
Checking all the inventories would normally take ten students from the Logistics Division a whole day to complete. At least it was not an amount for a single person to do......
"I feel that recently the food supply in the item list does not match the actual inventory, so I lightly punished those Machina Division students that broke the warehouse lock and sneaked in. Then, as the purity of Mithril has also dropped, I have made a complaint to the Industrial Division."
Kanata nonchalantly responded.
It might sound like a matter of course, but the actual issue was not so simple.
The food supply in this warehouse provided for the whole city’s residents. Six thousand people depended on it for their daily meals. Even an amateur like Lloyd could guess that stealing a little amount should not be noticeable.
"I didn’t see any other personel in charge of the warehouse, did you finish checking the entire inventory by yourself?"
"Huh? Why do you even ask such an obvious question? How can there be anyone that would help a traitor like me?"
"Sticking to being alone until this extent is also amazing. Since you verified this quantity of content alone with ease......Speaking of which, there have been rumors about you helping the Logistics Division because you are preparing for division transfer. Are you aware?"
"No idea. Rather who would purposely help out half a year just for division transfer?"
"Kanata’s behavior has always been hard for people to understand. More than half of what you do and accomplish are shocking, causing people to misunderstand. That personality of yours for not clearing up the misunderstandings is worse."
"Huh? What personality is worse?”
“Who knows, what indeed.”
Not telling me about that incident for example. He wanted to blame him for how Yuri felt, but kept it in his heart after noticing that Kanata also had some thoughts.
"From what I can see, there are over 7000 items in the warehouse. There is no sane person that would do such an insane act of making an item list summary and managing all these by himself."
"No, I am perfectly sane."
"Then the sane Kanata is insane."
"You trying to pick a fight?"
"Hahaha, I'm just kidding. That aside, let’s go eat dinner. Kanata will treat."
"Huh? Why do I have to treat you?"
"This is the price for having one of your only few friends search for you all the way here. It’s only natural."
The sudden appearance of humanity’s nemesis ── Magical Armoured Insects.
Records show that they suddenly appeared about four centuries ago, the source of their origin was undetermined to date, there was still no theory to explain why a creature that had undergone such a huge evolution like that could exist.
Just that against the Magical Armoured Insects, possessing supernatural powers named Curse, humanity’s conventional weapons could not repel them and the one-sided slaughter continued before eventually losing their land. Also, not only did they slaughter, people killed by Magical Armoured Insects would have their memories robbed and erased from the people who knew them, such was a cruel yet benevolent method.
Then, born from the final power wrenched out from the humans who lost their land ── Floating City ── was the name of cities that floated in the sky. The land in the sky that humans survived in; the cities that combined magic and science.
The upper part contained the hollowed out city from the ground, and a huge dome covered the outer layer. Supporting such a city was a giant floating stone roughly cut into an inverse triangular shape and a enormous Toras made from Luna Titanite that continued to revolve slowly.
In addition to the surface facilities people live in, various types of factories filled the underground, allowing people to carry out economic activities just like the time when they were on the ground.
And then the guardians of the sky exist in these cities.
Amongst the majority of population that would lose the memories of those killed by Magical Armoured Insects, they were the few existences who would remain aware of the dead. They were also born with magical power, allowing them to fight against Magical Armoured Insects with their own body. Roaming freely in the sky, humans born to exterminate humanity’s nemesis, Magical Armoured Insects ── Wizard. Protecting people from them, retaining the memories of their dead comrades, they were existences born to carry on their sadness. The Wizards who specialize in protecting the people were called Kuusen Madoushi, they were important treasures to all Floating Cities. However, their numbers were absolutely insufficient, hence humans created a Floating City with facilities specialized in nurturing Kuusen Madoushi.
Its name was ── The Floating Academy City 「Mystogan」.
The special teaching facility for nurturing Kuusen Madoushi to fight against Magical Armoured Insects.
The morning sun that shone from the dome wall showered onto the badge pinned on the collar of a yawning Kanata, engraved with a symbol that resembled a long extinct wolf and the words ‘S128’.
It was probably because of helping out the Logistics Division until late last night. The path from Kuusen Madoushi Division’s Artemia Dorm to school that was not far felt longer than usual.
One month had passed since the new semester began. As the freshmen in the surroundings were more or less adapted to the environment, he was lazily strolling on the stone path lined with conifer trees. Just then, a silhouette came rushing forward from the other end of the turning road.
When he noticed, his vision was already obscured by the incoming silhouette. Then he was knocked back by the vigorous force with a don!, and his messy hair scraped the rough ground.
“Where the hell are you looking at when walking!?”
Kanata who was lying face up on the ground after being bounced away craned his neck to look foward while enduring the stinging pain. Before him, a girl with bright red long hair was in his sight.
“Where are you……”
The red-haired girl was straddling him. Not to mention Kanata’s hands just coincidentally pushed upwards from the place below her chest. He shifted his line of sight upwards a little. Their eyes met.
“P-PPP-Pettanko......y-you are going to say~!”
“Eh, no......W-Well, if you put it that way.”
“But, you are the one who said so.”
On top of being late in realizing where he was touching, the two mounds were still unnoticable. However, as a guy he would still be conscious of it. Feeling awkward, Kanata tried to pull his hands away casually, but the red-haired girl shook them off forcefully.
“G-Get away from me!”
Kanata’s head was once again slammed onto the ground hard just when he got up. So unreasonable.
“Rather, where are you looking when walking!?”
The girl was shorter than Kanata as they both stood up, her uniform was also different from the sophomore Kanata’s. Probably a preparatory junior.
But, she was glaring with truculent eyes without any concern for seniority, a spirited girl.
“The same applies to you as well, where are you looking when walking?”
Kanata who just got up rebutted while rubbing his head that was still tingling with pain. He felt something strange at his lower body, but the pain from the head took priority.
“S-Shut up! If you say that, then the one that was strolling casually near the turn is……”
Glaring at him with sharp eyes, the red-haired girl would not let Kanata off.
However, for some unknown reason, the red-haired girl’s sharp glare suddenly loosened, instantly losing her dominance, shock and confusion then began to show in her expression.
“......W-Wait a moment, m-my toast just got ruined. A~ah, the strawberry jam side is facing down……”
Shifting his eyes, just as the girl mentioned, a soft-looking toast was sticking onto his crotch area with the jam side.
“......H-How will you take responsibility for it!?”
“Geh! Normally speaking, the one who smeared strawberry jam onto someone’s awkward place should take responsibility.”
“What?! You should be considerate to me who is anxious about being late for morning practice because I overslept. Return me my toast right now!”
“......Who will be considerate about that? And also stop pointing at the delicate place. The surrounding people will see us with weird looks.”
“What delicate place?......Uuuu!”
Her long bright red hair swayed in the air. The girl reflexively tilted her body back without thinking.
This was probably an obvious reaction. The toast that stuck onto Kanata’s crotch fell off just then, causing her to notice the red stain surrounding the zip of his pants.
“~~! What kind of nerve do you have! What are you planning to use s-such an obscene place to suck my toast……”
This girl definitely did not hear what I said. She had switched into victim mode completely.
Handling this kind of person is too troublesome. The lazy Kanata gave up sincerely explaining the misunderstanding to her. At this kind of time ──
“S-Someone! There is a pervert here……!”
The red-haired girl cried for help towards the surrounding passersby after regaining her composure. Though the girl asked for help from the surrounding, nobody came to help her. Just as the girl turned around feeling suspicious, only a toast was there lying on the ground, the young man had already disappeared.
“A~ah, the red stain remained after all.”
Kanata took off his pants at the washing bay built next to the wall of the Training Ground. While washing it, he was only in his trunks.
Just at that time he sensed someone’s presence on the other side of the washing bay. Kanata was rendered speechless from what he saw.
She had beautiful black hair, a pair of shining obsidian pupils. She had an upright nose on her prim and proper face, with a captivating body line that was sensational even with her uniform on. As if a famous sculptor spent his whole life to craft this masterpiece of a human sculpture, anyone would be captivated by this goddess-like girl after seeing her.
Such a rare beauty was staring at her reflection intimately from the nearby dressing building window glass as if devouring it in a trance-like state.
She smiled as though overjoyed about her appearance. She closed in towards her reflection in the window glass to almost kissing distance while seemingly bewitched.
As Kanata witnessed this bizarre scenario, he thought that he absolutely would not want to have such a friend.
When the girl who could captivate anyone with her looks noticed Kanata’s stare, she drew close to him herself ──
“What? Are you fascinated by my beauty?”
“Not really, I did look at you, but I paid more attention to that weird act.”
“There is no need to refrain yourself at all. Being fascinated by my beauty is only a matter of course. Since a Goddess like me is always brimming with radiance.”
“Like I said, I didn’t fall for you.”
“Is that so? Then it means, you are......── stalker.”
“......How did you come to that conclusion?”
As Kanata rebutted with amazement, he thought to himself ‘what a waste’ for this girl.
“You’re such a weirdo……”
“Fuun, a mortal such as you being unable to comprehend my actions is only natural. I am a Goddess incarnate after all.”
That Goddess girl brushed her hair again like a rich family’s daughter.
A fragrant scent wafted through the wind towards him. With Kanata’s eye contact with her, she once again smiled.
“──I’m beautiful alright. But, please do not fall for me. Since the only one allowed to fall for me is myself after all.”
A beauty that could captivate any being. Leaving personality aside, Kanata’s heart skipped a beat from seeing her.
“Ah......I say, if you have the time to indulge in your own beauty, you might as well use that time to do some training. That uniform, you are from Kuusen Madoushi preparatory course right?”
“Hng, I hate those things that make you sweat. Effort is something only for mortals.”
She brushed her hair once more.
“Fuun, I, the Goddess is beautiful today as well.”
She crossed her arms and closed her eyes as if drunk on her beauty, walked closer with that intelligent and elegant atmosphere.
“Don’t fall for me the Goddess......── P-Pervert!”
As she was about to say the decisive words right before him, her voice trailed off into a shrill scream towards the end.
She had just noticed that Kanata was not wearing any pants, only in his trunks.
It seemed that due to the location being covered by the washing bay’s shadow, she did not see what Kanata was wearing on his lower half.
“M-My beauty may be otherworldly, but to take off your pants immediately is......”
Rico showed a face of not knowing what to do without any disguise, her pretense before had completed collapsed. However, Kanata who did not mind having his lower half seen nonchalantly said.
“Nope, they were off right from the beginning.”
“I-If that’s not the case, t-then put your pants on first! This pervert!......Anyone, anyone around! There is a p-pervert here!”
After that. As Rico started screaming at Kanata out of distress, Kanata hurriedly grabbed his wet pants and fled the scene.
“What’s with today......It’s as if someone is trying to set me up as a criminal.”
Kanata, who ran into the dressing building next to the Training Ground, sighed as he saw some red stains still remaining on his wet pants.
As he snuck through the facility’s opened window, it seemed like he had entered the toilet. He used the body that was constantly trained, as well as the unlimited potential of a human during an emergency to escape here.
“This is the worst. Not only once, but twice…”
But as the saying goes, never two without three. It could be said that his mood plummeted after meeting two weirdoes in a row today, his attention was unfocused. He still did not realize what place he had infiltrated into.
“Speaking of which there sure are many cubicles in this toilet.”
Still, it was lucky that he infiltrated the dressing building. There would be washing and drying machines designed to wash the Kuusen Protector in this facility. Kanata decided to head to those machines and wash his pants.
Kanata was walking towards the exit of this toilet full of white cleanliness. Just then, the third incident occurred.
The toilet door was opened, a blonde-haired, blue-eyed and white-skinned girl was walking towards Kanata.
“What is it this time?”
She probably just came from training. Towards this girl wrapped tightly with her inner suit, Kanata who was suffering from light gynophobia used a threatening tone. Since he already had two experiences on this ominous day, he suspected that any girl he would meet that day would be a troublesome character.
However, this blonde-haired, blue eyed girl seemed to be different from the eccentric girls he met, she seemed to be quite docile.
When she just met Kanata and made a quick eye contact, the girl shrank back from being overwhelmed by his attitude. Looking closer, the girl was much shorter than Kanata, and was looking up at his reaction with an almost crying expression.
“Nn? What is it?”
Although the saying mentioned about the third time, it seemed like this girl was quite normal. Kanata lowered his guard.
“......Here, is not.”
The girl shifted her sight to the ground, moving only her lips.
“Nn? What is not?”
“......As I said, this, umm......Here......is not.”
The girl moved her lips again, but the voice that came out was too small to hear clearly.
“......So, here is not.”
The girl’s shoulders were trembling, as she was trying to convey her words on the verge of tears. She said some more things, but due to speaking while keeping her head lowered, Kanata was unable to hear them.
“Like I said, I can’t hear what you mean by here is not.”
He let out an irritated voice. Immediately, the fairy-like small body of the girl shrank further. She used her small and delicate hand to stretch her inner suit lower.
“......Umm, so-sorry! This......Here is......is......”
Kanata waited for the girl to return to normal impatiently. The only exit of this toilet was blocked by this girl, he could not leave even if he wanted to.
After a long silence. The girl seemed to made up her mind about something and raised her head to speak.
“......Here is, the female toilet......is......a place for girls.”
After finishing her words, the blonde-haired, blue eyed girl looked at Kanata who was wearing just his trunks at his crotch and feeling awkward about the situation, her whole face reddened from embarrassment, timidly asked while looking up at him.
“Umm......M-Maybe you are a pervert?”
With that, Kanata·Age’s second year sophomore life began.
Floating Academy City 「Mystogan」.
The Wizards who were originally one out of ten in the Floating Cities took up over ninety percent of the population here, and the total population was six thousand. About ninety percent of the citizens were students, that was why the Wizards there were one out of ten in other cities held up to ninety percent in 「Mystogan」.
It was an Academy City that utilized a motto of student self-governance, including education for the three-year Preparatory course and the three-year Sophomore course, providing schooling for students aged from twelve to eighteen.
Due to the fierce battle with Magical Armoured Insects, thirty percent of the Wizards belonged to the Kuusen Madoushi Division, other divisions included the magical technology research division Alchemist, scientific invention-focused division the Machina and other divisions totalling of nine divisions, the head of each division along with the Academy overall-in-charge made up the council of ten that was the school’s upper echelon.
Amongst the divisions, the Kuusen Madoushi Division not only held the fate of this city, it could even be said that they held the fate of the world. People held such expectations to them.
Picking out the potential seeds of Kuusen Madoushi from the floating cities all over the world and gathering them here to nurture them, their goal was to develop the future protectors of the world.
For those expectations they had been working hard everyday but......
Kanata arrived at school late due to extra effort spent on cleaning his pants, the two people that were talking on the linoleum passageway turned their attention on him.
The two stopped their chatting and focused their attention on him, and for some reason a silent and nervous atmosphere was created between the two sides. One of them recognized Kanata, Kuusen Madoushi Division Sophomore first year girl ── Yuri·Flostre turned a hostile stare at him.
“......You are still as irresponsible as ever. The fourth period is almost starting.”
She purposely used a sarcastic voice to speak.
A tied-up deep blue hair, with crystal clear emerald eyes. Although she was not tall, her proper behavior gave people a high class rich lady impression. In truth, she was earnest and helpful, and received good evaluation from her peers, but she showed hostility towards Kanata here.
“Geh, it’s already this time.”
He scratched his head and replied nonchalantly. Even though the junior who once relied on and admired him was now full of enmity.
“You can’t even be punctual, so you are a traitor after all. While you are a student of Kuusen Madoushi Division, you always went to help the Logistic Division, you really do not belong in this school.”
“What is it, you are still holding a grudge on that incident?”
“No, I already stopped thinking about that. It is a waste of time to think about matters related to senpai.”
Though she said so from her mouth, there was not a day Yuri did not think about that incident. On the day of the decisive match to determine the strongest squadron in 「Mystogan」, Kanata was absent without reason. And after that, he did not participate in any squadron activities. As the Royal Guards they were respected by everyone, even when he was in the position of betraying everyone’s expectations, he did not care at all.
“You are still holding a grudge after all.”
He lightly provoked. Despite Yuri desperately trying to suppress her feelings, it was still obvious to the eyes. Just when Yuri was about to rush towards Kanata.
“Hey hey Yuri. Don’t be so rash against Kanata.”
Chloe prevented the fight that almost broke out.
“I am not holding a grudge, nor being rash. I am only stating the facts.”
“See, this is what I call holding a grudge.”
As he commented, Yuri shot a glare full of hatred at Kanata again.
“Stop staring at me like that. You said that you stopped thinking about me just now.”
Yuri walked away from the scene while clenching her fist tightly.
The captain of S128 Royal Guard nicknamed 「Nirvana」, a girl with long black hair tied into ponytail with a thin lavender ribbon ── Chloe·Sevegny watched her leave and then showed an unhappy expression to Kanata.
“You should not speak like that. Yuri will get angry for sure.”
“She can get angrier though......”
“? What do you mean?”
As Kanata sloppily commented, those words almost escaped Chloe’s ears. She stood before him who was trying to walk off to the classroom, and made an eye contact without blinking.
“Yuri has always been poor at controlling her emotions. Letting her vent like this once in awhile is fine.”
Kanata said so while scratching his head in annoyance.
“You are still using such barbaric words......”
“Yuri joined the squadron because she admired me, she probably has yet to overcome the shock. She even rejected other hopeful squadrons’ invitation to join the D-rank 128 squadron at that time......Nn, what’s wrong Chloe?”
“Then say that from the start. Kanata has been hard to understand since the past, I even suspected whether you are purposely picking on Yuri......”
Chloe pouted and turned her head away in defiance. Then she switched to a serious expression, spoke with lowered eyes.
“......That incident ── Is not telling Yuri really fine? For the sake of protecting me......”
“An injury due to mission, it only meant that I did not have enough strength to survive that without getting wounded.”
Kanata expressed so with a carefree attitude. Then he continued nonchalantly.
“Be it the Kuusen Madoushi Division or Logistics Division, they have been giving their all for the sake of protecting the people in the city. Of course I also want to protect them with my own hands if possible.”
Showing a glimpse of fearless smile as if it was a matter of course, Kanata spoke so. Chloe could only smile wryly at his style.
“Even so, I still feel partly responsible. Hence, I have something good to tell Kanata.”
“Umu. Kanata is helping out the Logistics Division now, but I feel that there is a more suitable role for Kanata.”
“You said some interesting words, huh? What more suitable role?”
“It’s still a secret. But promise me that you will go with me to the Kuusen Madoushi Division Head’s office during lunch break today.”
The fourth class bell rang right at that timing, the two of them hurriedly walked back to their classrooms.
The Kuusen Madoushi Division education included not only the common academic knowledge and specialized knowledge, but also the obligation to train their bodies, researching day and night to meet their expectations.
This was not limited to the Kuusen Madoushi Division, the freshmen of all divisions had their morning lessons mainly focused towards common academic knowledge, more specialized knowledge would be added as they advanced in years. Other than that, the afternoon was mainly focused field practices.
Many students were enjoying their lunch breaks at the learning building they often sparred in. Another large group of students were walking towards the cafeteria on the first floor of the school building, while Chloe was dragging a frowning Kanata by the sleeve and walking away.
“I hate this kind of stiff and suffocating place.”
“Just come along quietly. I won’t do anything suspicious.”
Soon they arrived before the Kuusen Madoushi Division Head’s office, Chloe knocked twice.
Chloe entered the room after saying that, with Kanata following behind.
Inside the room, many Kuusen Madoushi Division related data and books were stacked on top of the working desk. As for the person sitting at the other side of the desk, a head of black hair and a glamorous body that was obvious beneath her uniform, with a tear mole under her left eye, the girl who was the Kuusen Madoushi Division Head ── Feron·Flamel’s figure could be seen.
“So you are Kanata·Age. A traitor like you dares to show up before me so sloppily like this huh.”
Facing Feron’s self-satisfying sarcastic words, Kanata replied normally with no change in expression.
“Not really, you are the one who called me here......Not that I want to come though.”
“......W-Well I didn’t call you here for those small talks. Accept this letter of appointment.”
As her words ended, Kanata received the letter of appointment. The first page recorded the job title he would be posted to and its details, the second was the content page of those thick files on Feron’s desk.
“Provisions and attendance roster? And grading form, etc.? Then my appointment is Kuusen Madoushi instructor......Don’t tell me you want me to be an instructor?”
Kanata frowned in irritation and involuntarily asked.
“That’s right. Starting from this afternoon, you will be in charge of the field practical time. Regarding this, your squadron leader also agreed......The squadron you are in charge of is E601, that is the squadron formed from the leftovers of disbanded squadrons after teammate trading. Their grades are quite poor, and after one month since the ranking battle, they are currently holding ten loss streaks. That group of under-performers are even mocked as F-rank squadron. Although taking on this role may be tough, please use the school motto ── 「Nurturing Kuusen Madoushi to fight Magical Armoured Insects with absolute power」 as guidance for their education. That’s all.”
Hearing the content of the appointment, Kanata’s expression turned even more cloudy.
“......I as an instructor, huh. You do know that I had been ridiculed as hypocritical and flashy when I was in service. This job wouldn’t suit me.”
With a face devoid of motivation, he sighed loudly and continued.
“Is this offer really a good choice?”
“......And that’s what he said.”
Ignoring the grumpy Kanata, Feron probed for Chloe’s response. Chloe who showed a grave expression for some reason immediately started to persuade Kanata.
“It’s true that you have been mocked as a hypocrite and flashy by others, but I know that you were always willing to look after your teammates.”
She showed an angelic smile while saying that. Kanata lost his grumpiness and asked back instead.
“Then for example?”
“For example finding Yuri who was a vanguard like you after training for some personal practices, or helping Lloyd out with the squadron duties.”
“But, there should be other outstanding Kuusen Madoushi instructors apart from me right?”
“Due to the ranking battle that has started for one month, the outstanding instructors are all very busy. Hence this task is given to the squadron that cannot participate in this year’s ranking battle after winning last year’s, to determine who will be the instructor.”
“Then it doesn’t have to be me. Go find Captain Chloe or Vice-captain Yuri.”
“Umm, as the Captain of the Royal Guard I am very busy, Yuri is poor at handling her emotions like you said, more importantly ── from my perspective, I hope that Kanata will do it.”
“What do you mean by more importantly?”
“You are still desperately moving for the sake of the Kuusen Madoushi Division right? Lloyd had witnessed it before, I have also seen Kanata helping out the Logistics Division. Your actual objective is──”
“Ah, a~ah I get it. It can’t be helped. Let me take a look.”
Feron could not understand the conversation between those two and felt like being left out, it seemed that it was something only the two of them knew. Kanata then picked up the thick file of the member list to read through.
While reading, Kanata’s expression turned grave.
“What’s wrong Kanata? Is there any inconvenience?”
“No, let’s just say that it’s about myself.”
As if receiving some shock, Kanata took his eyes off the member list. Then he continued to browse through the other thick files silently.
E601 was not simply weak. It was extremely extremely weak.
Despite the new semester only started one month ago, they had ten lose streaks in the E-rank ranking battle.
Ranking battle was the mock battle between squadrons against imaginary Magical Armoured Insects, and they had a streak of ten loses in the lowest E-rank, if they were engaged by real Magical Armoured Insects, the possibility of returning safely was ── minuscule.
He hugged the thick files of data, and then suddenly started walking out of the office.
“──Where are you going all of a sudden? Kanata·Age?”
“Where you say, obviously it’s the E601 team room. Though I don’t have any motivation, I still became an instructor......Well, whether I will continue or not will depend on the situation.”
He replied while his back was still facing them, then left the place without looking back. After confirming the door was closed, Feron could not help but ask.
“He is such an elusive and hard to understand person. Kanata was an ace that became popular for his show-offs, is it really fine to let such an egoistic person become an instructor?”
“It’s all right. Despite looking like that, Kanata has his own beliefs, and he would not leave the people in trouble alone.”
Then Chloe leaked out some of Kanata’s past in the name of childhood friend.
“The time we were still in 「Leon」 was when we were around seven years old, Kanata stayed with me who was struggling with flying magic until the very end. And he is not someone who acts sloppily in an aerial battle.”
“Well, since you say so, I will not say anymore. But, I still need to be responsible for this assignment as the Kuusen Madoushi Division Head.”
Putting aside Chloe who was full of confidence, letting that elusive and hard to understand Kanata become an instructor, Feron still felt a sense of uncertainty.
“W-Why are you hereeee!”
The lesson after lunch break ── Practical training.
Other divisions focused in activities regarding economics and productivity of the city, while the Kuusen Madoushi Division received the support of others and focused on training.
The Alchemist Division used the magic formulas created from the twenty-five rune symbols to produce Mithril armaments, Industrial Division students worked hard to produce food that were highly nutritious and high in productivity, all to support the Kuusen Madoushi Division.
The Kuusen Madoushi Division was just that important and held with much expectations at the same time.
Kanata walked towards the squadron building next to the main school building, passing by many Kuusen Madoushi Division students wearing protectors. The students were laughing while gossiping in groups, there was no trace of killing intent in the atmosphere, yet these students must learn the skills to fight against the humanity’s nemesis without any mercy.
For the sake of teaching those teenagers with bright futures, Kanata opened E601’s room door, only to be treated as a pervert immediately. However, since Kanata had already seen their faces from the profile in the office, he was not so disturbed by the fact.
“My name is Kanata·Age. I will be your instructor from today. Kuusen Madoushi Division Sophomore second year, seventeen years old. Nice to meet you.”
“The pervert with strawberry jam on his crotch is actually an instructor!?”
“Fuu, that’s wrong. This man did not smear strawberry jam on his crotch. He took off his pants and tried to assault me at the washing bay, he must be in beast mode right now.”
“U-Umm......I-I met with you before, in the female toilet......”
The worst first impression. The girls before him were the three girls that had the worst first encounter with Kanata.
However, Kanata already knew this beforehand, so he was not shaken, and continued naturally.
“Well, don’t mind the details. Rather than that, do some self-introduction so we can move on.”
“What moving on!? You seriously plan to guide us, huh! You probably just want to become our instructor with perverted thoughts without checking through our data!”
The one saying those things with an overbearing attitude was the bright red long hair girl. Towards that girl, Kanata did not even look at the profile in his hands and replied in her face.
“So noisy, you are the strawberry jam one......Misora·Whitale, right. Kuusen Madoushi Division Preparatory second year, fourteen years old. I briefly looked through your profile, last year’s year end academic result was D. Practical test result was E. As for vanguard trial result was, recommended to drop out voluntarily......Are you properly training? Being the squadron leader with this kind of result......Seriously?”
“Uu......S-Shut up! My true power cannot be measured by practical tests! R-Really......I’m saying it’s true!......Wait, don’t look at me with that suspicious look. ── Uu, don’t l-look at me like that!”
Being stared at by Kanata, Misora seemed to feel guilty yet offended, but still hung her head that was dyed red with embarrassment down in the end. She wanted to return the stare back at Kanata......but could not.
Receiving an E grade in the practical test, it was same as fighting on par against a single small-type Magical Armoured Insect.
When Kanata wanted to probe deeper into the reason her ability was so poor, the flawless beauty interrupted.
“Fuu, Misora is just a small fry with that level of ability. A Goddess such as me is on a different world. Being silenced by this perverted exhibisionist is too shameful. A~ah, I should give my name first to be safe, my name is……”
“I know. More like I won’t forget the name Rico·Flamel after seeing it once. Same as Misora in Kuusen Madoushi Division preparatory second year, fourteen years old. Academic grades are all A, ah no......you were penalized for not submitting your homework, so it’s all A-. Practical result is F-, huh. Right, what does F- mean? Even someone with 134 lose streaks is still E......”
“F-?......A~ah, it’s about the practical test huh.”
After humming a small laughter through her nose, Rico stroked her hair like a rich family’s daughter.
“I was deciding my hairstyle that morning and missed the exam. In the first place, the evaluation from mere mortals is unable to measure the ability of a Goddess such as me.”
Kanata stared at Rico again, but she did not display any embarrassment like Misora. She seemed to firmly believe that a Goddess such as her could not be evaluated by humans.
“......Wait Rico, do you know that guy also?”
“Sort of. But, not so familiar like Misora and others. Rather I don’t want to be any more familiar with him. This man is the guy that revealed his lower half to others early in the morning.”
She closed her eyes and hugged her arms, answered so rudely without even looking at Misora.
It was a squadron formed from the leftovers of various disbanded squadrons, like Rico said there wasn’t much communication amongst them.
And finally, Kanata looked towards the blonde-haired, blue-eyed petite girl that was waiting at the side for her turn nervously.
“And the final one Lecty·Eisenach. You are also Kuusen Madoushi Division preparatory second year, fourteen years old......Your results are also pitiful. Academic result is same level as Misora, after glancing through the practical test result, against the same opponent, you win sometimes and lose sometimes, very unstable. The only merit is your motive. In that case, did you purposely go easy during practical tests?”
“No, I could not improve my condition......Umm, s-sorry!”
She did not dare to make eye contact with Kanata, Lecty kept bowing as would a little lamb being scared of a wolf. Furthermore, the momentum from the bow caused her head to bang on the table, she held the painful area with her hand, with a face that was about to cry.
The three each had their own troubles. Although without looking at practical training he could not determine their strength, but just the data alone he could understand why they were branded the F-rank squadron.
But Kanata decided not to rely on data for gauging their ability, he still decided to go with practical training.
“Now then, the self introduction is over, then everyone get into the sky and begin practical training......”
“──Wait a minute!”
Misora interrupted Kanata’s words unhappily.
“I won’t acknowledge you, the pervert, as our instructor!”
“But, didn’t I read through your profiles and even remembered them without looking?”
“You must be interested in o-o-our body, so you desperately memorized them!”
“I’m not interested in some kid’s body. And call me instructor or my name instead of you. I have a name called Kanata·Age.”
Misora pouted and wanted to chase Kanata away, but she could not come up with anything. As she was thinking of the words to say, she was distracted by another thought.
“......Speaking of which, I heard about the name Kanata·Age somewhere before.”
After that Misora continued to mumble Kanata’s name a few times, then suddenly stood up from her chair.
“──You, don’t tell me you are that traitor, Kanata·Age!”
“Umm......Does Misora know him?”
Rico also seemed to notice something, only Lecty had no clue what was going on.
“It’s not the question of knowing or not! He is that Royal Guard S128 squadron’s Ace. Held the nickname 「Kuronos」, but was absent for all the special missions!”
“Fumu, I also heard that he was absent for the ranking battle that would determine his squadron’s promotion to S-rank, he was supposed to be part of the special team but he didn’t participate in any special mission. Seems like he had an accident in a mission, then became a coward.”
“Exactly. So, you the traitor, why did you come here to be our instructor now!?”
She pointed at him and mercilessly criticized. Originally this should not be allowed, as an instructor he should take a firm stand against her to maintain their student-teacher relationship, but.
“Go complain to the Kuusen Madoushi Division Head. She requested me to guide you people.”
He responded carefreely, Misora bit her teeth and stared at him hatefully with eyes that wanted to kill him.
“And, I am also interested in you girls.”
“It’s about us after all......You must be looking at us with those eyes!”
“Nonsense. I said I’m not interested in kids.”
“Who is the one that did those perverted acts against a kid!?”
Kanata chose to ignore Misora’s criticism, and announced to the students seriously.
“You girls have never won in the E-rank ranking battle so far. The results until now are ten fights and ten losses. Such disastrous results, don’t you girls ever feel chagrined?”
“D-Don’t treat me like a fool!”
Towards the outright provocation, Misora’s group twisted their faces in anger. Unfortunately the three of them did not have the power to rebuke the provocation……
“I did not treat you like a fool, I was only asking if you all felt chagrined. Did you really try hard enough?”
“Of course I felt chagrined. I wanted to become a Kuusen Madoushi as soon as possible, I was really anxious......What’s with that comment! As if we didn’t try hard at all!”
“Umu, what you said was inappropriate. I am the existence that is praised as the Goddess incarnate since young. My ability won’t be lacking without making an effort like a mortal.”
“I-I’m also......not making an effort, such a thing did not happen!”
Fuu, it’s rude to say I’m surprised, but these three do have the motivation to work hard.
He looked at Misora, Rico, Lecty, then told his students.
“I say, you girls should not be satisfied with your current self and want to get stronger right. Are you all prepared for the hardships along the way?”
“Of course. My target is Kuusen Madoushi ── The protector of Floating City. Because protecting the lives of people is my duty, I will do my best to obtain the power to protect the people.”
“That so. Then it’s all good.”
Kanata’s cheek suddenly raised up in a confident smile. Misora who was staring at him was scared by it.
“W-What is good?”
“Since you all are motivated, then prepare to receive my training. Think about it, you girls defeating the squadrons who were stronger than you, the heroic figures fighting on the frontline against Magical Armoured Insects. By then nobody would be calling you girls the F-rank squadron.”
He spoke with a carefree tone, but his eyes were not smiling.
To find out if they have the determination, the room for growth, Kanata had to test Misora’s group first.
“But, guidance from a traitor like you......”
“So what if I am a traitor? Or perhaps you girls want to use the guidance from a traitor as an excuse for failing to get stronger?”
“Of course not. Regardless of the instructor, to get strong, the person’s willpower is the most important. I won’t expect anything from your guidance!”
“However, Misora seems to be quite knowledgeable about my performance at the frontline back then.”
“That’s because I witnessed your activities a few times......What about it?”
“In that case, for the sake of obtaining the strength similar to me back then, you don’t want to receive my guidance? You should know my ability.”
“L-Liar! Me having similar power as the 「Kuronos」 despite being a traitor now!......No, liar liar! I won’t fall for such sweet words! You will say something like results depend on the individual for sure!”
“Eh!? You really don’t want? This may be the only chance in your life to get strong. Of course the training result would differ for people, but to give up without doing anything for this one limited chance here......Isn’t it a waste?”
“B-But, to have the same strength as you......”
Truthfully speaking ── She desperately wanted it. However the other party is a traitor, is trusting him easily like this fine? Misora was hesitating. At that moment Kanata seemed to see through everything.
“A~ah, such a waste. If it’s me, I would definitely receive the guidance. Since just enduring the shame for a while will give me the chance to become stronger in exchange. As a Kuusen Madoushi Division student, what’s more as a future Kuusen Madoushi, you should be able to determine the pros and cons.”
Being exposed like that, Misora who held a fervent desire to become stronger caved in.
“......If it’s just o-once, taking it is also fine!”
She was about to agree to let the traitor guide them. However, just at this timing.
“Even if Misora agrees, I disagree.”
“W-Wait a moment! Why do you object the decision from me who is the squadron leader?”
“Hmm, you are Rico. Why do you disagree?”
Rico began to stroke her hair like a rich family daughter again.
“Fuu, think about it. A mortal like Misora is one thing, why should a Goddess like me work hard and sweat so much? Sweating for training this kind of thing, is not something I should do. Fatigue is bad for my skin.”
“Ri-Ricoo~~! Y-You......Enough is enough! Because of your attitude, we have never been able to show any results!”
“Fuu, it’s only you and Lecty that cannot show any result. You should be clear about my sniping skill. I am perfect in any kind of long-distance support.”
“Y-You will only shoot a few times when you are in a good mood, how is that perfect? Don’t speak about long-distance support until you shoot down the opponent first!”
“Yare yare, you can’t even do your vanguard role properly, how do you expect the long-distance sniping at the back to hit its target?”
“Grrrr ──! You, come out to the corridor for a bit!”
“Hora, I came out for a bit.”
She pretended to stand from her seat, but only moved out half a step, Rico treated Misora like a little idiot. Misora was furious at this act, but Rico treated it as if nothing.
It was an atmosphere that the fight could break out anytime. Then, what would the last person here that was Lecty do at this time? Kanata stayed out of it and observed, Lecty seemed to be fidgeting from cowardice while sitting there......is it. She seemed desperate to do something but her lack of courage prevented her from doing so. Kanata had no choice but to step in between their arguments.
“Nah Rico. Your practical test result is F- right?”
“So what about it? Practical test is something that is meaningless to me, so that result is obvious.”
Rico had already held absolute confidence in herself ── although he did not know about goddess or something, he still pretended to be surprised about her goddess-like attitude.
“Eh, is that so? I have never seen your awesomeness once, like this I can only see you as someone below the level of Misora, is that fine?”
“You see me as lower than this thing......”
Rico could not bear with it and argued while pointing at Misora. The phrase “below the level of Misora” echoed in her head.
“Y-You, we are in the same squadron, don’t use words like “this thing” towards your teammates!”
“That’s rude. I have the ability that is fitting of my beauty.”
“That said, I don’t know about this goddess or something, but since you never participated in a single human level test, it is same as being unable to determine your ability. Although you can use unknowns to deceive us, there isn’t any proof to your true ability right? You can say as much as you like.”
“I am not just boasting about it. I just hide my full strength on purpose, since I dislike sweating.”
“I see. ──Then show me your true strength through my training.”
Being stared at by Kanata whose eyes suddenly became serious, Rico was at a loss what to do.
“Fumu, although I don’t want it......I will show you my outstanding talent just this once.”
For the time being, she promised to receive the training from Kanata who was called a traitor.
As for the last, Kanata finally changed his attention to Lecty who was looking at the situation worriedly.
“Then the final one is Lecty. What are you going to do?”
“Umm......you are asking if I want to participate in the t-training right?”
Lecty’s face turned red from anxiety and lowered her head again.
“Hey, Lecty. I told you to keep eye contact and use louder voice when talking!”
“......Umm, s-sorry! Gochin!”
Being shouted at by Misora, Lecty nervously apologized and bowed, she knocked her head on the table again due to overusing her strength again. Trace of tears could be seen at the corner of Lecty’s eyes while rubbing her swollen forehead.
“Hmm? Lecty doesn’t want to join my training?”
“T-That’s not the case! Umm, the sorry I said just now was not towards Kanata-san, but towards Misora-san......”
She still could not maintain eye contact with Kanata, and immediately lowered her head again.
“Hey, please say it clearly. Do you want to participate or not?”
Misora continued her question seriously. It was the same when arguing with Rico, Misora seemed to be the type that treat rules and discipline seriously.
“......D-Doing! P-Please let me join Kanata-san’s training!”
Lecty, with her head still lowered, spoke up with a slightly louder voice than just now.
With that, Misora and her two other teammates decided to receive Kanata’s guidance.
The Floating Academy City 「Mystogan」 flew at the height of around 3000m. Any higher than that would cause severe strain on the Power Reactor so it was forbidden.
In the sky above 「Mystogan」 ── Misora’s team could be seen in the Third Training Aerial Zone located 4000m above ground. They were not standing on land, neither were they using the power of any items. The three of them changed into their Protectors and hovered in the air. This is the necessary flying magic skill Kuusen Madoushi Division students must learn first.
The scenery around the girls were the endless blue sky and the cloud sea that could be seen far away, with the presence of other hardworking students flying in the neighbouring aerial zones. Below them was the 「Mystogan」 they had just left. Although it was not as tiny as a bean, it still looked small.
“Speaking of which......Why are you using a Broom?”
Misora in her Protector tilted her head and asked. Amongst the four hovering in the sky, only Kanata was using the black-colored surfboard-shaped tool processed from using floating stone.
The flying assist tool called Broom was used by freshmen for their flying magic training purpose, or originally used for long distance travel.
“Hmm? A~ah, I am more used to this.”
“You purposely don’t use flying magic, and instead use this flying assist tool with poor mobility......Hah!......Don’t tell me you are thinking that this level of training does not need to use flying magic!”
Misora criticized him with a thorny tone. However, Kanata did not mind it at all.
“There isn’t any kind of deep meaning. Well, considering the difference between you girls and my ability, honestly speaking I can still win without using flying magic.”
Grrrrrr. She was furious, but Misora still held it in and changed to the important subject.
“......T-Then what kind training are we doing! It better be something that will really make us stronger!”
“A~ah, now that you mention it I have not announced what kind of training it is......”
After being pointed out, Kanata scratched his head and announced nonchalantly.
“Today’s training is ── Onigokko.”
Misora and co. exclaimed at the same time.
Eh, that kind of training is fine? That kind of training will make me stronger?
Anyone would hold that kind of doubt. However, only Kanata remained aloof.
“? What’s with the surprise? You girls should have played it during Preparatory first year’s flying magic training.”
“N-Not that kind of meaning, why did the former ace purposely come here just to give that kind of low-level training?”
“Exactly. This is for the sake of testing my true ability, that kind of plebian training is just......a joke.”
“Umm......Please train us pro-properly!”
“I do plan to properly train you girls......Un......Ah! I forgot one thing.”
Towards Misora’s team that showed a relieved expression, Kanata announced with a confident look.
“You girls can use your Mithril Armaments and freely attack me, the training will end after you manage to knock me down......Then the training will commence now.”
After his frank statement, the training began right after. Kanata immediately operated his Broom and left the place where Misora’s team was at.
Misora’s team did not know that Kanata’s Broom, nicknamed ── 「Black Hawk」, which was customized, had three times the speed of the normal Broom......The girls that were ignorant of the matter recovered from their surprise soon after.
“Wa-Wait a moment! He didn’t listen to what others said at all!......Ah-mou! Onigokko is a super beginner training, don’t tell me he actually didn’t plan to make us stronger? What the heck is he thinking!”
Misora complained as if she just remembered something, but Rico who was crossing her arms besides her seemed to guess Kanata’s intention and leaked words of admiration.
“Fumu......Maybe he isn’t just an idiot. That man maybe unexpectedly capable.”
“What do you mean? If it’s just flying, then anyone in Kuusen Madoushi Division can do it.”
“U-Umm......Maybe, is this training supposed to improve our body’s basic stamina......?”
Before Misora could deny, Lecty timidly continued her claim.
“......I met the instructor this morning. Then he used an incredible leg strength and ran off somewhere. Maybe he was teaching us......the importance of basic training?”
Rico remained silent while showing a face of realization.
She could not deny that the encounter between Kanata and Misora also left her with a deep impression.
“......It’s true that he is incredibly fast at running away.”
She reluctantly acknowledged this fact.
“But, allowing us to use our weapons, this means that he is looking down on us! Listen, the three of us have to work together and capture him immediately!”
Misora felt that she was humiliated, she adjusted the magic power at her feet for quick acceleration. Lecty followed suit after being instructed by Misora, only Rico remained still.
“? Why aren’t you moving?”
Misora felt strange and questioned her, Rico then brushed her hair like a high class lady and answered.
“Fuu, I am different from mortals like Misora, a Goddess like me does not need this kind of tiring practical training. I dislike this kind of activity that will make me sweat.”
“......You, at least be more cooperative!”
“Fumu, cooperation that does not respect individual will is meaningless to me. Misora, do you truly understand the meaning of cooperation?”
“~~! I know already! Then I will just go catch him myself!”
Misora flipped out and flew straight towards the direction where Kanata went. As for Lecty whose existence was completely thrown out of her mind.
“Ah! W-Wait for me! Misora-san.”
She chased after Misora in a hurry.
Rico looked at Misora and Lecty that were moving further away with despised eyes.
“Such a fool. Chasing after someone who escaped without any plan──”
As if mocking this scene, Rico snorted.
“Un, they really are a squadron without any teamwork.”
Kanata who was levitating in the air showed a difficult expression, peeping at Misora’s team from far away.
Suddenly being informed of the commence of training, whether the squadron leader could organize the team was also one of the important facts to confirm. After a while Misora flew towards Kanata with cruising speed. She faced Kanata while reducing their distance.
“What is it. You think that you can capture me with just you alone?”
“That’s just what I thought when I decided to come here. You said that we can go out of sorcerer field and use our armaments to attack you. Don’t blame me if you get injured.”
“Then it’s fine. I never planned to get hit by your attacks from the start.”
It sounded arrogant, but Kanata himself never thought that he could get hit by their attacks.
The attacks that came from the clumsy group of the F-rank squadron, even if he was the traitor, the former Ace of the S-rank squadron had no reason to get hit.
“~~! Y-You haven’t changed from your active period. You always show that arrogant attitude of being able to handle it yourself. Because of that, people criticize you as a show-off.”
“Fuu, you sure know alot about me.”
“Pre-Prepare yourself! I won’t go easy or lose to someone who betrayed everyone’s expectation by being absent on the decisive match for S-rank promotion.”
It was understandable that she would despise Kanata for suddenly becoming their instructor. Kanata was unaffected by her hostility. He was used to such treatment.
“Here I come!”
Immediately after her declaration, Misora injected mana towards the rune-engraved ring on her index finger ── Madoushi’s Magisphere. It reacted to the unique magic wave, then a giant sword appeared suddenly out of thin air.
“Silver-white......Magic Cannon Sword, huh.”
Seeing this weapon, Kanata narrowed his eyes in interest. Although it was a magic sword, a revolver chamber was installed on the hilt, and a muzzle at the tip of the sword.
Kanata also used a giant sword with a cannon function in the past. However nobody used this kind of unbalanced weapon now and it was abandoned.
Misora instantly closed the distance between Kanata, who was riding the Broom, and herself, she swung the white silver sword down with all her might.
The giant sword swung down like a log and generated a splendid wind pressure that brushed Kanata’s cheek. However, he had already seen through the trajectory of the swing and lightly tilted his neck to dodge.
“What a pity! You almost got me there!”
Misora continued her sword arte. It felt as if the storm just went past him, Kanata’s surroundings were enveloped by a raging sword pressure. However, in the midst of this hellish battle, a dubious look appeared on his face as he thought of something.
“Mou, always running around! Hurry up and fall!”
Misora swung her giant sword with her full might like the storm. Kanata seemed to be absent-minded, but still used deft footwork to operate his Broom to dodge like an acrobat.
In this space with only an arm-length distance, the difference in ability as a Kuusen Madoushi between the two became obvious.
“Instead of swinging around violently like that, can’t you refine your swings?”
Misora’s sword arte was more like “smashing” instead of “slashing”. It took a long time to store power, causing the slash speed to be slow. Hence, it was not suited for guerrilla fight using flying magic in the sky, not to mention that the giant blade of magic cannon sword hindered the movement of Misora’s delicate body.
“Shut up! Just fall already, you traitor!”
Honestly speaking, he could not bear to see Misora’s rough magic sword arte.
However, Kanata was occupied in thought about another talent she possessed. To test whether his thoughts were true, he suddenly raised his Broom to max speed when Misora was not paying attention and pulled away.
“Wait! Don’t tell me you are running away! You are scared of me, huh!”
What Kanata displayed was commonly known as: Close Prevent. It was a tactic in which he accelerated in the same direction as his opponent, causing their relative speed difference to be zero, hence causing his opponent to be unable to close in. This meant ── Misora would not be able to approach Kanata at all.
Regardless of the strength of the opponent, close-ranged weapon could not hit far away. Against Misora who wielded a Magic Cannon sword, this would be a fatal tactic......or so it should.
But in the next instant, she already caught up to Kanata who used such a despicable tactic.
What occupied his line of sight was Misora. She was already within arm’s reach. She shortened the distance like a gallant horse cutting through the wind.
“I said just fall already!”
Continuing to dodge her sword fight, Kanata resumed his previous analysis on Misora.
Her speed that could rush over in an instant seemed like an illusion. At least that was not something a F-rank squadron’s member could achieve.
The speed of flying magic depended on the concept magic of realizing floating ability; Propulsion was gained by conversion of magic through magic control; The sense of reading the wind direction and shifting the center of gravity. These three inborn factors were said to determine the flying speed. Just being physically strong alone did not mean faster flight speed.
Misora’s flying magic acceleration from initial speed to max speed was overwhelmingly short. This caused the opponent to misjudge the distance in between which caused the illusion.
Then, what about the stamina?
Although her shoulders were heaving up and down to catch her breath, she still seemed to have plenty of stamina, her speed also did not drop.
“Then, can you keep up with this?”
Against Misora’s pursuit, Kanata gradually increased his altitude to escape, then grasped the timing to sharply tilt the tail of his Broom upwards.
The upright Broom received a huge wall of air resistance, causing it to flip one round in the air. Kanata followed the flip, and instantly reversed the direction of advance.
She was chasing him in a straight line with high speed, as a result they crossed each other and she could not catch him.
Easily deceived by a feint huh......
She had the speed and the stamina, but her skill was lacking.
Now then how about the remaining two? Kanata looked towards the direction where the two of them were, of course their figures were not there.
However, he could sense another person’s presence nearby. Kanata immediately changed his direction after sensing the presence, and he could see Lecty who was looking up at him, timidly holding her magic twin swords at around her shoulder height, with the blade upright.
Despite her unnaturally timid expression, Kanata could not see any opening in her stance, as if she had built up an absolutely impenetrable air superiority zone......
“What is it? Come at me.”
“......H-Here I come! Kanata-san!”
Kanata pulled out a dagger from thin air, and made up his mind to engage Lecty in close-range combat directly.
His reason for such judgement was Lecty’s twin sword stance. Just that.
Being able to intimidate the opponent with stance alone had a high possibility of having the actual ability to match it. However, Kanata showed a confused look.
“What are you doing?......Don’t tell me you are going easy on me?”
“I did not do s-such a thing!”
Lecty’s continuous assault with her magic twin sword was somewhat strange. There was just something amiss.
She would sometimes use sharp thrusts that surprised Kanata, but at times move stiffly like the gishi gishi, gasha gasha movement of an old wind-up doll.
If those unnatural movements were removed, it would be a fluent movement like a butterfly dancing or a bee stinging. It would be like rehearsed dance steps performed on stage that reached the aesthetic territory of the sophisticated magic twin sword arte.
Kanata noticed those minor abnormalities. In the midst of the sword fight against Lecty. Kanata muttered.
“Oi, Lecty. This magic twin sword style, don’t tell me you are......”
He looked at Lecty after his mutter, and Kanata met her line of sight.
Once that happened, Lecty’s face that was already a little red from embarrassment, dyed further red that would make people sympathize her and lowered her head, her movement became extremely dull as a result.
“Nn? What happened?”
While Kanata was wondering why she apologized, Lecty’s power became weaker and weaker, to the point of fighting with her head lowered.
It became lacking in brilliance, her stiff movements worsened to the point it could not be called a magic twin sword style anymore.
He suddenly felt a sting on his back. Kanata turned around based on his sharp senses, he saw Rico in the faraway sky raising a sniper rifle-shaped magic gun towards him.
Then Rico aimed through the scope, and pulled the trigger.
The magic bullet mercilessly flew towards Kanata.
Kanata that grasped the situation at the last moment moved out of the bullet trajectory, but soon returned to the trajectory line.
Behind him was Lecty who had just noticed the magic bullet and was rooted on the spot from the shock.
Kanata concentrated himself after clicking his tongue. He slashed apart the white magic bullet with his dagger.at the right timing. It should not be easy to slash a bullet travelling at three hundred meters per second, but he did it effortlessly.
He utilized his inner magic power to enhance his dynamic vision and reaction speed, grasping the magic bullet’s speed, and finally released the magic power that could negate the bullet.
“Kuh......It didn’t hit huh.”
Rico muttered regretfully as she closed in. She did not release the second shot because she realized the difference in their power from the first shot.
“Your sniping is not bad at all. Just that your killing intent already made my skin tingle.”
Kanata added on.
“The sniping just now ── You girls did not discuss it beforehand right?”
Kanata looked at Rico blandly after hearing that. But she just feigned ignorance.
“Different from the violent movements of Misora, Lecty’s movements were sophisticated. Then I just matched her movements and snipe. Such a degree is not difficult for a Goddess such as myself.”
“I say, you should treasure your teammate a bit more.”
Kanata released a long sigh. With that, he had grasped the strengths and weaknesses of the three girls. At that moment, Misora finally caught up.
“Uwa, Misora. You still have stamina left. I am already tired of being you girls’ opponent.”
“W-Why do you have that regretful look! I-I still have the energy to train until I catch you. I can prove that I am stronger than you right now!”
And then for some time, Kanata continued onigokko with them.
The changing room after training. After sweating out in the shower, Misora and the others were changing into their underwear.
“Ah mou, so pissed off! Why the three of us can’t even catch just him alone!”
Irritation prevented Misora from reaching the hook in the middle of her back. She could not wear her bra properly as well. Lecty was sensitive to the atmosphere and wore her underwear without any problem, then she turned towards Misora.
“Umm......Mi-Misora-san! I’m s-sorry for m-my lack of strength!”
She bowed deeply in apology. Misora came back to her senses.
“And umm......the hook at your back, want me to help you?”
“T-Thanks. About the thing just now, L-Lecty is not at fault! Thinking about it now, I also failed to be more aware of my surrounding, and forget to give instruction to Lecty as well......”
She honestly apologized for her mistake. That’s right. That was the attitude a squadron leader should have, just when Misora was about to regain her composure.
“Fumu. Just like Misora said, as a squadron leader, you still cannot grasp the whole situation properly.”
Getting her moment ruined, Misora stared at Rico hatefully. Rico was in the middle of changing, or rather, she had been bewitched by her figure in underwear from the mirror reflection just now, and had been admiring her figure since then.
“Fuu, the word beauty is ── only meant for me.”
She leaked out her voice with a strong emotion. Although Rico was just a narcissist, Misora would sometimes get engrossed in seeing her figure and even a little jealous, Rico’s breasts were much bigger compared to hers, the top and bottom were well-proportioned, and very elastic......
“Fumu, what’s the problem?”
“N-Nothing at all......!”
“Fuu, it’s only natural for my breasts to be big and have a tall figure. The word beauty is only meant to describe me after all.”
“~~! N-Nobody asks you about that! B-Big breasts or something isn’t really important! R-Right, Lecty?”
“Eh? Umm......I-Is that so?”
Then Misora turned her attention to Lecty. The short Lecty had a loli body yet her breasts were plump, making her the so-called oppai loli type......
“L-Lies! W-W-Why does Lecty have bigger breasts than me!”
Misora despaired at the unexpected Lecty. To think that Lecty who was shorter than herself had bigger breasts than her......At that moment Rico──
“Y-You don’t need to worry about that I think. Right Lecty?”
“Y-Yeah that’s right! The size of breasts does not determine everything!”
It was rare for Rico to give her a lifesaver, Misora had changed her opinion on Rico a little. Despite being foul-mouthed, Rico could still be considerate for others.
However, Rico’s words continued.
“Exactly. The size of breasts does not mean everything. Even if your breasts are not as plump as ours, even if Misora’s size is kyu kyu kyu chirin. Right Lecty?”
“T-That’s right! Even if Misora-san’s breasts are kyu kyu kyu chirin......”
Lecty just realized that she had misspoken, and anxiously covered her mouth.
“W-Wh-What have you made me say Rico-san!......Mi-Misora-san, it’s not like that! I-I didn’t think about that kind of thing at all!”
Misora whose anger had already reached her peak could not listen to anything.
“U-Uuu! R-Rico! W-What kind of grudge do you have against me! You also didn’t cooperate with me for today’s onigokko!”
“Fuu, I do not acknowledge Misora as the squadron leader. In the first place, why must a Goddess such as me be under Misora?”
“That’s because I am the one who founded this squadron. You only joined afterwards, it’s only natural for me as the founder to be the squadron leader.”
“Being at the front does not necessarily mean you must be respected. Take the school’s senpai for example, it is the same as not using honorifics for those not worthy of respect.”
“According to that reasoning, who have you used honorifics with......?”
“Good for you to know. There does not exist any person in this world that is worthy for a Goddess like me to use honorifics.”
“Excuse me, you need to use a little more common sense!”
“Fumu, Misora. You have been criticized for being empty-headed because you are blinded by the colored glasses of common sense.”
Sizzle sizzle sizzle sizzle. The air between Misora and Rico became disturbed. Lecty timidly interrupted them.
“Mi-Misora-san! Rico-san! Please calm down!”
“Keep quiet for a while, Lecty. I will silence Rico’s annoying mouth now!”
“That’s right Lecty. Don’t interfere this chance for this Goddess to eliminate the idiotic person.”
Sizzle sizzle sizzle sizzle sizzle. The disturbance in the air thickened. The half-naked Misora charged at Rico with her full power, Rico dodged it, and the momentum from the charge caused Misora to slam onto the locker head first. Her anger rose further as she rubbed her forehead......──
This squadron with just three members seemed to have a long way to go in teamwork.
1 Onigokko - A tag game whereby one or more people becomes the “Oni” (demon/ogre) and try to catch the others that are not Oni. ↩
2 Kyu kyu kyu chirin - Sound effect of small breasts. ↩