Tuesday, June 11, 2024 @

Volume 5 Chapter 23 Dark Clouds

Volume 5 Chapter 23 Dark Clouds

 Toxy had brought Wade back to the party house.


 Ice's eyes widened, and she froze. Clay and Sandra also stared in disbelief at Wade, who was covered in blood and had lost consciousness.

 Toxy gently laid Wade on the sofa and said,

 "The treatment is done. I've stitched up the heart wound, and the other stitches are also done. The antibiotics too. So, at least, I was able to prevent him from dying instantly."

 As Toxy spoke, her hand trembled, and she bit her lip before bursting into tears.

 "I couldn't protect him... I got stronger, but I couldn't do anything as Wade was dying right in front of me. I couldn't move...! I was too late...!"

 Tears continued to fall, and no matter how hard Toxy tried to wipe them away, they wouldn't stop.

 "Toxy-san, calm down for now. It's about Nightfather, right? ...What happened?"

 When Clay asked, Toxy took a deep breath and explained,

 "We were fighting one of the enemy's executives. Wade was dominating the entire time, but then another executive appeared, and we were all caught off guard... and that's when we got hit."

 "...I see. Yeah, that's unbelievable. Wade-kun losing to an enemy like that..."

 Sandra shook her head.

 "That's not possible. Wade losing normally is ridiculous. The Anahata Chakra isn't something that can be defeated so easily. Even if it's destroyed, it can revive, that's its magic."

 In other words, Sandra said,

 "There must be some trick. Toxy, don't you remember? What kind of trick did the enemy use?"


 Toxy thought back. The sword. Someone had chanted something, and a sword that hadn't been used until then was drawn. Warning. No, that's not it. That's not important information. For sure―――

 "The Cursed Thirteen Blades of Victory"

 When Toxy said that, Clay and Sandra's eyes widened in shock. "What...?" "Unbelievable..." They were at a loss for words.

 "Clay-kun, Sandra-chan... What's this 'The Cursed Thirteen Blades of Victory'?"

 "...It's an artifact, Ice-san. An extremely powerful one, too. In the past, heroes used swords that were called holy swords, but this one's power is on the same level as theirs. However, it's a bit of a strange sword..."

 Clay responded to Ice's question, paused for a moment, and then continued.

 "Holy swords are said to choose their wielders. On the other hand, The Cursed Thirteen Blades of Victory don't really choose their wielders. Instead, they take away things like lives or happiness. And in exchange, they grant immense power."

 "I know someone who had it in the past."

 Sandra said, starting to tell a story.

 "That person would get angry every time they drew the sword, and they wouldn't stop until they killed every living thing within a one-kilometer radius. They even killed their friends. Those who sought revenge also died, and several cities were destroyed. In the end, that person hanged themselves."

 The story sent chills down their spines. But it could also be interpreted in a different way: no one could defeat that person until they took their own life.

 "The Cursed Thirteen Blades of Victory has a unique characteristic. I don't know the details, but maybe Alex-san would..."

 "Did someone call me?"

 Alex replied in a carefree tone, returning from the entrance. He widened his eyes in shock upon seeing Wade's condition.

 "What's going on? I thought there was no one in this city who could beat Wade except in a dungeon! What happened?"

 "...Perfect timing. Alex-san, do you know about The Cursed Thirteen Blades of Victory?"

 Clay's question made Alex raise an eyebrow.

 "Why are we talking about this? What's going on? Did Wade get cut down by that thing?"

 Toxy nodded silently, and Alex approached her.

 "Do you remember the name of the sword?"


 "It's the sword's name. Any information is useful, even if it's just a warning."

 Toxy had almost forgotten the memory of that scene due to the shock of Wade getting cut down. However, she somehow remembered the warning.

 "...You shall meet your demise at the hands of a sl*ve"

 "Muramasa, then. If so, it's not the worst."

 Toxy felt a slight weight lift off her shoulders at Alex's assertion.

 Alex approached Wade's side. Naturally, everyone gathered around Alex.

 "Listen, Wade was attacked by the demonic sword Muramasa, also known as the Slave Sword. Its wielder is someone who has lived a tragic, helpless life. Among the Cursed Thirteen Blades of Victory, it's the only sword that chooses its wielder. However, due to its opposing nature to holy swords, it's counted among the Cursed Thirteen Blades of Victory."

 Alex paused, his gaze wandering slightly as he continued.

 "It's a sword that specializes in killing heroes and kings, those who carry excessive fate and talent. It's designed to kill those who are burdened with too much fate."


 "Ah, sorry. I forgot to explain. When I say 'fate,' I mean something that makes you special just because you exist. It's not good luck. If I had to say it, it's like being favored by a capricious creator who loves drama."

 As Alex answered Ice's question, he lifted Wade's clothes to reveal the wound inflicted by the sword. Although Toxy had already stitched it up, it still looked painful.

 "If you have fate, you'll face difficulties and overcome them to gain fame. That's the quality of a hero. You should understand, right? Whenever Wade is around, something troublesome happens, and he always manages to overcome it and gain something big in return."

 The four members of the group were left speechless by Alex's words. Indeed, it was true that strange things always happened when Wade was around. Nightfather, Dragon, Windy, Eiosnight, and now this.

 "Wade not only has talent but also an abnormal amount of fate. He's genuinely a hero's vessel. Even if he were born into a high-ranking noble family, his fate would still be inclined towards greatness. Muramasa is a sword that kills those with such fate, which is why it's a king-slayer and hero-slayer."

 As Alex spoke, he touched Wade's wound and suddenly pulled his hand back as if repelled by something. Alex clicked his tongue.

 "That's a curse, if you ask me. There's no way Wade can revive in this state."

 "What's going on...?"

 "To put it bluntly, Wade's fate is being constantly drained by Muramasa. I thought that with Wade's talent, he could regain his immortality and wake up soon, but it seems that's not the case. ...In other words, his fate is not drying up, and he's still managing to hold on, which is abnormal. What's up with this guy?"

 Sandra narrowed her eyes and listened.

 "So, to break the curse, we just need to defeat Muramasa?"

 "No, that won't work. We need to defeat the one who's controlling Wade with Muramasa. If we do that, the curse will be lifted, but――"

 Alex looked at Toxy and the others.

 "Sandra, don't go. Clay, you too. You guys will just lose."

 "What?! Why?!"

 "That's...! ...I mean, tell me the reason."

 Sandra, rarely showing her emotions, did so now. On the other hand, Clay was trying hard to suppress his emotions at this critical moment.

 "The reason is simple. Sandra, you'll lose for the same reason as Wade. ...You're already a hero. You were born with blessings, have talented abilities, and have good connections. You have everything going for you. That's why you can't beat Muramasa. You'll probably have your fate stolen and be crushed instead."


 Sandra looked frustrated and hit her knee. Alex turned to Clay.

 "Clay, you're in the same boat. You're a noble, and while you don't have Sandra's talent, your social status is good. You'll lose in the same way."

 "Then, what about me...! I don't think I'll lose, even if I don't fight directly...!"

 Ice's desperate plea prompted Alex to respond.

 "That's a tough one. I mean, being above gold rank is already a disadvantage against Muramasa. Ice, you might not be able to handle a bad situation, but your magic lacks combat ability against strong individuals. The one controlling Wade's fate with Muramasa is probably incredibly powerful. Can you win?"

 "Even if the situation doesn't get any worse, I won't give up...!"

 "...Yeah, I guess so."

 But, that means we won't have a way to turn the tables. Toxy is also a gold ranker. She's got a bad matchup against Muramasa too. She'll definitely lose.


 Toxy clenched her fist so hard it bled.

 "I'm going, Alex."

 Her quiet whisper echoed through the scene.

 "I don't care if I die. Wade is because I couldn't protect him. So, I'll go. I'll kill the enemy that did this to Wade, 'Swallow'."

 In her clenched fist, her nails dug into her skin, and blood spilled out. But, she didn't feel any pain. Her intense emotions were raging within her, and she couldn't feel anything.

 Seeing Toxy like that, Clay and Sandra were also stirred up. The two of them looked at Alex, their mouths agape.

 There, Alex said,

 "That's right! Toxy, if it's you, maybe you can do something about it."


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