Chapter 1-2

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In front of Frey who was trapped inside the cage, her younger brother, Loki, had suddenly appeared.

“What foolishness are you up to now?”

Frey turned pale, and averted her eyes from him in fear.

Loki’s gaze pierced Frey’s chest. On top of her two bountiful mounds, there was a shiny pearl white glove sticking out of her pocket— the proof of one’s participation in the Night Party.

On the opposite side of the iron bars, Loki’s eyes darkened.

“You’re still holding on to that? I thought I told you to withdraw. There’s no chance of you winning against anyone. You’re not going to survive at all. Withdraw now before you get hurt.”

“… But I…”

“You don’t want to get hurt right? Just obediently listen to me.”

“… But I…”

“Silence!”

Gripping Frey’s scarf, Loki forcefully pulled it towards him. Her forehead hit the iron bars, sparks flying out of her eyes.

“The weak have no say in anything! They only need obey the strong!”

“Woof!”

Sensing his mistress was in danger, Rabi started barking. However, after Loki shot him a glare, he retreated with his tail between his legs. Although he looked impressive, his weak nature closely resembled his mistress.

Loki violently released Frey, tossing her backwards.

“If you wish to complete your mission so badly, I’ll show you just how far you really are from reaching that goal— Cherubim!”

At his command, the automaton began to stir. The parts in its body began to whirl, expanding out like a set of wings. On each were 8 thorns-sharp short swords that had been mounted on.

[Command]

Sounding like it passed through a phone, the automaton spoke with a mechanical voice.

Rising unsteadily to her feet, Frey withdrew to the innermost part of the cage.

“Uu… Let’s do it, Rabi.”

“Woof!”

“I am also… a puppeteer…!”

Focusing her spirit, she released magic from the palm of her hand. Flowing into Rabi, it activated his magic circuits.

Automata developed after the Renaissance weren’t just simple soldiers. “Magic Items” were also installed so that magic arts could be activated.

This was Machinart. Releasing magi from cumbersome rites and magic circles, this was how modern day magic was casted.

Rabi’s fur stood on end, while something like electricity started running over his face. Energy started gathering, and once it was full, Rabi howled, and “something” resembling a ball of silent electric energy was launched out.

It generated some kind of incredible sound pressure that blocked the ears as it traveled on. Smashing rocks in its path, and throwing up large quantities of dust, it pressed forward.

Cherubim didn’t move to evade, but swung its blade at that “something”.

An unnaturally large gust of wind was accompanied by the loud roar of the resulting gale. Without using any magic at all, Rabi’s “something” was dispersed harmlessly by Cherubim.

Frey’s eyes widened. The trembling of her red pupils signaled the realization that defeat was inevitable.

The result was obvious at this point, but Loki coldly ordered his automaton, “Go.”

[I’m ready.]

Cherubim leapt. An unnatural gust of wind formed, and then flowed towards Cherubim. Riding it, the automaton performed a few light maneuvers in midair, aiming to slash Rabi as it came down.

Rabi nimbly dodged. However, his opponent’s movements were faster. A second attack. Then a third. Under the persistent onslaught from Cherubim, Rabi found himself cornered.

The blade was extremely heavy. With a large roar, the iron sword came crashing down, aiming straight for Rabi’s neck—

“—?”

From Frey’s position, all she could see was darkness.

It was a gentle black darkness that stretched wide. That was the girl’s hair, and the sleeves of her kimono.

The beautiful young girl had inserted herself between Rabi and Cherubim. One of her slim arms was bearing the weight of the heavy blade, while the other had gently pushed Rabi out of the way.

“You’re… Raishin Akabane’s…!”

Frey stared wide-eyed in shock. If this automaton girl was here, that meant only one thing.

“Seriously, what a bloodthirsty lot you are. Can’t you wait till the Night Party starts tomorrow?”

It was a voice laced with an exaggerated sigh.

As she thought, Raishin Akabane was standing there, with a look of feigned ignorance upon his face.

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