Ichiban Ushiro no Daimaou

Volume 7, Chapter 5 — The Beginning of a Dream
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Volume 7, Chapter 5: The Beginning of a Dream

Hiroshi sensed something unpleasant.

He looked around to figure out what it was. He quickly realized it was due to the state of the city.

He was watching the second floor of the apartment building as Lily had asked him to. He had of course been watching the scenery outside the hallway, and he had noticed something was off due to a small change in the city below.

Small sounds of destruction were rising from the city. The ground vehicles were stopped.

“What? Did something bad happen?”

Hiroshi heard a sound from above and looked up. He saw a flying bus crash into the city beyond the apartment building.

“What!?”

The bus slammed into ground and exploded. Several nearby houses were caught in the blast.

Needless to say, this was a great disaster. Hiroshi could imagine that even greater damage was occurring in the more urban part of the city.

“Wah…”

Hiroshi was not sure if he should obey Lily’s instructions or head after her, but when he saw more and more residents of the apartment start to open their doors and come out, he decided to rush to the room Lily had gone to.

When he opened the door and ran inside, he saw the student council president fighting with several dolls in a small space.

“If you’re here, then help!” shouted Lily.

“Wh-what is going on!?”

Hiroshi received an answer from a thin and sickly looking girl being carried by a doll outside a broken window.

“I won.”

Hiroshi figured out that the girl was 2V.

What he could not figure out was why Lily was having so much trouble with those dolls.

“President, hurry up and knock those things away!” said Hiroshi.

However, the dolls would stand back up no matter how many times Lily punched them.

“These are different from the others! They’re oddly powerful.”

Lily blew away the attacking dolls with her special attacks, but the dolls seemed to release their joints at the perfect timing to reduce the damage taken.

“2V! You weren’t this skilled at fighting before!” roared Lily, but 2V only laughed.

“Hah! You’ve got it all wrong. You still don’t get it. I’m not controlling them.”

“What?”

“What if there was someone more skilled at using dolls than me? What if there was someone who could control multiple L’Isle-Adams at once?”

“Shut up! No one could do that! …No, wait. You can’t mean…”

Lily was left speechless.

“Ha ha ha ha! That’s exactly what I mean! Didn’t I tell you!? Zero, the first demon king, can control all L’Isle-Adams! Zero can control all autonomous AIs! Zero is a program that was sealed within the virtual artificial dimension. That is the identity of the very first demon king. And I have already given Zero a body! I can tell Zero what to do!”

2V continued to laugh.

Hiroshi’s expression changed as he listened.

“So that chaos outside is because of this!?”

“What? What’s going on outside?”

Lily punched a doll away and turned around.

“The cars are stopped, a flying bus crashed, and I can hear sounds of destruction from all over,” replied Hiroshi.

Lily turned back to 2V with a terrifying look on her face.

“You’re using the L’Isle-Adams to destroy the city, aren’t you!?”

“Ha ha ha! That wasn’t my doing! While I can give orders, Zero can be a bit crazy! Now, I will be leaving.”

“Wait!”

“What kind of idiot would wait just because you told them to?”

2V prepared to jump from the balcony while the doll held her, but she suddenly turned around.

“Oh, right. I may have threatened you by saying the students inside were hostages, but that was a lie. I can’t interfere like that from outside. Remember that.”

Lily’s face reddened with anger.

“damn you! How dare you mock me like that! Get back here!”

“I hope I never see you again. Do your best to survive here. Or maybe it would be better if you didn’t survive. After all, the world might be ruled by L’Isle-Adams before long.”

The doll holding 2V then disappeared from outside the window.

“2V!!!!” shouted Lily.

However, she was surrounded and could not move. She turned to Hiroshi with a pained expression.

“Do something! You’re a guy, aren’t you!?”

“But…”

Hiroshi took a few unsteady steps backwards, but one of the dolls approached him.

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“Oh, no…”

He started to run, but he suddenly felt a slight prickling pain on his wrist.

“Eh?”

He looked down at his wrist and saw the bracelet he wore as a protective charm. It had originally been a device to call in an anti-demon king combat suit, but it had lost its ability to function.

—Wh-why? Does this mean I can use it again!?

“Brave.”

Hiroshi muttered the activation keyword.

Akuto appeared in the schoolyard he had originally disappeared from.

The students who had already returned were shocked to see the blood covering him.

“Wah!”

“Why is he covered in blood?”

The students had hated him, but they could not ignore the fact that he had been stabbed in the stomach.

“Can anyone heal him?”

“You’re kidding. Didn’t he have monstrous strength?”

A stir filled the schoolyard.

After a short time lag, Keena and the others appeared in the schoolyard.

“A-chan!”

Keena ran over to Akuto first and embraced his head.

“Now that I’ve returned, I can heal myself with my internal mana. I should be fine,” said Akuto in a pained voice.

“Now that we are here, we can use the healing tools the L’Isle-Adam has, right?”

Fujiko looked around. They seemed to have appeared where they had been originally, so the only other ones of the final group in the schoolyard were Akuto, Keena, Junko, and Korone.

Keena continued calling out to Akuto.

Junko was clearly flustered as she stood next to Akuto with a pale face.

Korone was standing still.

Fujiko called out to her.

“Korone-san? Did you hear me? Heal him.”

As always, Korone was expressionless. However, she seemed to have heard Fujiko because she reached into the bag she always carried.

“Yes. Hurry up and bring out your healing set.”

Fujiko looked back toward Akuto.

“You will be healed soon, so…”

Fujiko heard an ominous click behind her.

“Click?”

She turned around.

Korone held a giant weapon at her waist. It was a beam weapon that fired mana.

“Wait. That is not your healing set,” said Fujiko.

Korone was obviously not listening.

“Your expression is always hard to read, but this time…”

Korone aimed the beam weapon at Akuto.

“Watch out!” cried Fujiko.

She fired a mana sphere at Korone, but Korone ignored it and fired the beam weapon.

“You’re…kidding…!”

After hearing Fujiko’s voice and the sound of the mana sphere being fired, Junko turned around and noticed what was happening. However, she was an instant too late.

Korone’s weapon fired a beam of light which pierced through Akuto’s body.

“Gh!” groaned Akuto.

“A-chan!”

“Akuto!”

Keena and Junko cried his name at the same moment.

Fujiko’s mana sphere struck Korone directly on the face, but it only knocked her to the side a bit. Korone began aiming the weapon once more.

“Wh-what are you doing, Korone!?”

“Stop, Korone-chan!”

Junko and Keena cried out again.

But Korone’s expression did not change. Flames could be seen beginning to spread through the city visible behind Korone’s back.

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