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Thread: Lord El-Melloi II's Case Files Translation, Starting From Book 6

  1. #281
    死徒二十七祖 The Twenty Seven Dead Apostle Ancestors
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    Quote Originally Posted by Comun View Post
    Access is the proper name for the connection, and "partial" is a regular adjective being thrown to point how Access doesn't give you the whole Heroic Spirit. Think of how it's "true Magic", not "True Magic". This line not filtered through JP-to-CN-to-EN would go like:
    So how much is being changed or lost due to the fact these translations for this thread have been JP-to-CN-to-EN? Because it seems like a straight JP-to-EN translation changes the context a bit.

  2. #282
    Quote Originally Posted by warellis View Post
    So how much is being changed or lost due to the fact these translations for this thread have been JP-to-CN-to-EN?
    A lot, probably. I want to try translating the next part from Japanese alone, just to see if I can.

  3. #283
    死徒(上級)Greater Dead Apostle
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    If you can read Japanese then even if it's not a straight TL. Can't you just edit and make it accurate to the context through localisation..just saying no pressure

  4. #284
    Quote Originally Posted by Takashi View Post
    If you can read Japanese then even if it's not a straight TL. Can't you just edit and make it accurate to the context through localisation..just saying no pressure
    I'm actually doing that already. Evidently, I kind of suck at it. I also think that if I'm going to compare my first translation draft with the original, I might as well just translate straight from it, especially since I'm not much better at Chinese than I am at Japanese.

  5. #285
    Chapter 4, Part 2
    Chapter 4, Part 2:

    (—Hurry, brother!) I said in response to his call.

    (—We might be in contact with Heartless soon.)

    My brother’s reply finally conveyed a decent result. At first, things progressed slowly. Now, it was rapidly increasing in speed like the cases in a pandemic. I could handle it now, but I got the feeling that things would get out of hand very quickly if I made a mistake.

    Once a stone started rolling down a hill, there was no way to stop it. We had to finish our plan before that happened.

    I took a deep breath.

    (—Good, I’m running out of cards over here.)

    Heartless’ goal was the creation of a god for mages; I had just given the attendees of the Grand Roll the gist of Heartless’ plans to reach that goal.

    Most mages would probably think that I was joking. However mystical magecraft was, it still had its limits. Otherwise, the world today would still be governed by it. Any normal mage would dismiss this idea as absurd and insist that we return to discussing the the subject of the Grand Roll.

    Of course, no one present at this meeting was a normal mage.

    “Interesting.” McDonell said, nodding twice and clasping together his hands. “A god that exists only for mages… if he succeeds in creating it, we will not have to seek the Root anymore. Isn’t that a wonderful proposition?”

    I had expected an answer like that from the head of the Democratic Faction.

    If their goal was to have more mages climb to higher rungs of the ladder, the magecraft of the Age of the Gods was definitely a shortcut. Since he was a guide for other mages, it was no wonder that he affirmed of Heartless’ plan.

    “…No.”

    Came a voice accompanied by a strong will of refusal.

    “…This is no time to joke around,” said the old man clearly. “Are you suggesting that we abandon two thousand years of history…and bring back the Age of the Gods…? Perhaps people would do that in some obscure place…like the Far East…but not here, in the Clock Tower…We cannot allow that to happen…!”

    It was the same opinion that Luvia held, which my brother had communicated to me. One thought so out of pride, while the other was out of stubbornness, but they had arrived at the same conclusion. They rejected a chance for salvation so that they would not lose what they had been working on for two thousand years.
    Yes, this was how mages are. It didn’t matter that it made no sense, logically or politically. Anyone who could think in those terms wouldn’t have chosen to walk down this path. It also made perfect sense for Rufleus to reject Heartless’ plan as the head of the Aristocratic Faction.

    “You…are Heartless’ student…yes…?” Rufleus said, staring daggers at Asheara.

    “Yes. I was indeed taught by him.” Asheara coolly replied, with a nod.

    “Then answer me this…did that foolish former department head…truly complete such a formula…?”

    “……”

    For a moment, Asheara held her breath.

    “Asheara. I would like you to disclose your opinion from the perspective of a member of the Arcane Dissection Division.” McDonell gently warned.

    There was nothing to stop Asheara from only saying things that were beneficial for McDonell, and he wasn’t even trying to hide it.

    Whatever. Regardless, Asheara began to speak after a few seconds.

    “You said that he summoned a Ghost Liner on the Rail Zeppelin. …He may also have read Makiri’s essay and seen Emiya’s magecraft. Then, he used an unstable portal underneath Slur Street to sneak into Spirit Tomb Albion.” Said Asheara, laying out the important pieces.

    I had completely left out the part about Gray’s hometown. We didn’t have the luxury of playing each of our cards one by one as I observed the scene. Beside that, I had another reason for doing what I did.

    “I do not believe that it is impossible. If he has gathered mystery more valuable than a position as the head of a department, it is not unfathomable that he has created something over the course of ten years. Though it would be an incredibly difficult formula, I believe that Dr. Heartless has enough talent and unusual ability to accomplish the feat.”

    “Do you mean…the strange abilities he gained…when he was spirited away by fairies…?” Said Rufleus with a faint snarl.

    Not even a Lord from a family as notoriously arrogant as the Eulyphises could ignore the significance of fairies. They were beyond the realm of modern mystery and impossible to analyze, much like the Noble Phantasms of Heroic Spirits. I guess you could say that modern magecraft was only a tiny corner of the lengthy history of mystery.

    (We have Asheara’s approval. Good.) Said my brother through our telepathic link.

    (—What should we do next?)

    (—If we corner Asheara, we can take the meeting to the next important point.)

    Easier said than done. If I tried tugging the subject over there by myself, it wouldn’t matter if I caught our enemy’s tail. McDonell was on a different level than me. He could ruin everything by simply saying that it was unrelated to the meeting. However, if I brought up something that piqued Rufleus’ interest, I could connect it to the rest of the meeting because his rank matched McDonell’s.

    Ugh, Touko Aozaki was wearing that evil smile again. She silently watched the chessboard that was this Grand Roll, observing every one of our thoughts and moves. It didn’t matter, though, because I couldn’t choose my moves anyway.

    “Can I ask you a question, Ms. Asheara?” I asked, raising my hand. “What do you think of the relationship between Heartless and Kurou?”

    “...Kurou?”

    It made sense that Rufleus was confused. He hadn’t even met Heartless, so he definitely didn’t remember his students’ names, especially not if the student was some unimportant New Ager.

    “He was probably Heartless’ protégé,” replied Asheara. “Out of all the students he had, Kurou was special. I don’t know if he was aware of it, but Kurou always understood Heartless’ many theories and techniques better than the other students.”

    “By ‘the other students’, do you mean the five of you?”

    “……”

    Another flash of nervousness crossed Asheara’s face.

    “The ones who were killed or kidnapped—actually, that one’s probably dead as well— those people were in the same team as you and Kurou when you were in Albion, weren’t they?”

    “You say that as if I am hiding it. I am not.”

    Hmph. That was a blatant lie. It wasn’t hard to find scattered traces of false reports of her background to make her status as Heartless’ student seem more natural. However, that was not the main issue. Even if I tried to interrogate Asheara about that, she probably prepared a number of ways to get around my questioning.

    All I could do was move my pieces forward and wonder if she was prepared to be exposed.

    “Sorry if this humiliates you, but you’ve been smuggling goods out of Albion since then, right?”

    “…What?” Rufleus turned. “…Smuggling…from Albion…?”

    Asheara’s face was reflected in the old man’s clouded eyes. Maybe I should commend her on not denying it straight away. If she tripped and made a wrong step here, my job would have been so much easier.

    Of course, that didn’t happen.

    “Do you have evidence?”

    “It’s only circumstantial, but I’ve looked into Slur Street’s ledgers,” I said, placing a copy on the table. “Though you’ve tried to hide it, Slur Street’s financial situation had a miraculous improvement in the five years that Heartless was probably in contact with Kurou. One of our current students never pays attention in class, but he can notice irregularities like that at a glance.”

    If you haven’t guessed, I was talking about Flat.

    According to him, numbers that didn’t fit seemed to float in the air. My response had been “so your brain is just as perverted as your Magic Circuits”. Svin had checked the numbers that Flat had picked out, transforming them into undeniably powerful evidence.

    Asheara frowned slightly as she examined the copy of the ledger.

    Excellent. Time to press on further.

    “As you all know, Albion was made so that smuggling would be impossible,” I continued. “However, Dr. Heartless proved that is not the case. He discovered an unstable rift that leads to Albion underneath Slur Street. Not only that, he perfectly predicted where and when it would appear.”

    Without that knowledge, his plan to use Faker’s Noble Phantasm to tunnel into the ground would not have succeeded.

    “Now then, how did Heartless get this knowledge?” I said, clapping my hands together. “Is it because you five were there to teach him? No. I think the student who you call Heartless’ protégé was the key to the success of your operation.”

    “……”

    Asheara fell silent. I wished that she hadn’t. Cornering her was bad for my heart, too.

    I had so many hypotheses, so many guesses. The tightrope on which I walked could break at any time. I didn’t walk on it so that I could find the culprit, but so that the Clock Tower could continue to operate long into the future. If my shaky logic wasn’t enough to capture Asheara, the subtle balance of power would.

    “The five of you earned money by smuggling goods and returned to the surface through legal means. After that, it’s natural that you were protected by your smuggling partner, Heartless. From his perspective, it’s safer to keep you at hand.”

    That was why I had to reveal another card here.

    “Why would Heartless want his other students to go missing?” I said as calmly as possible. “I think he wants revenge.”

    “Revenge?” Said Inorai, raising an eyebrow. “A teacher taking revenge on his students. I suppose that makes sense.”

    I expected her to be somewhat confused. What I was about to say was a little complicated.

    “Is this ringing any bells, Miss Asheara?”

    “No.” Asheara replied, shaking her head.

    (—Hey, Reines—) Interrupted my brother.

    (—I don’t have a choice. The evidence isn’t complete, and it doesn’t make much sense, but I have to get a confession from her.)

    This was the key to my brother’s theory. I had to confront her here, even if it meant that I would sound like a fool.

    “Because,” I began.

    “Ten years ago, the four of you, excluding Kurou, who was chosen as his protégé, killed Dr. Heartless.”

    *

    “—What was that just then?”

    Hearing my question, my mentor paled. He answered it as if he had expected this outcome, but did not welcome it.

    “It’s Reines’ bet.” He said succinctly.

    The magecraft that Seigen had cast was still in place. Though the others were cut off, I could perceive what was going on to a certain degree.

    “I don’t have proof, but it’s the only way we can threaten Asheara. I guess you could say that Reines is better suited to this job than I am.”

    “But isn’t Heartless still alive?”

    If that wasn’t the case, who were we chasing? The thought that we were chasing a ghost made me feel uncomfortable. What if Heartless became the thing that I had been so afraid of back when I was a grave keeper?

    “I have an answer of sorts. But at this stage of the Grand Roll, we have no choice but to proceed like this. And now, we have to catch up to Heartless if we want more evidence.”

    That, I understood. Just as we had previously talked with McDonell while we investigated Heartless’ student’s workshop, these two had to happen in tandem. As the Grand Roll went on, our fate wandered through the vast labyrinth, drawn in by the gravity of Heartless’ mystery like satellites.

    As we fell through the void, I felt my anxiety steadily fade away.

    It was as if I was riding on a roller coaster, or maybe a shooting star.

    There was nothing in the darkness but the two of us.

    “…I think we’re going to be there soon.”

    “…I agree.” My mentor said, nodding.

    Though we were falling, we settled into a peaceful silence.

    Since we parted from Luvia and the others, I got the feeling that the trail of incidents that began at my hometown was finally coming to an end.

    “Ihihihihi, sorry to interrupt your thinking! Don’t forget that I’m here as well!”

    I couldn’t help but smile at the sound of his voice.

    “I’m glad you’re here,” I replied. “I’d be troubled if you were gone.”

    At this, the box was quiet for a moment.

    “It troubles me when you’re too honest, you know!”

    I smiled wryly at Add’s remark. I felt that after so long, we had finally become a team as we plummeted closer to our destination.

    “Once we get there, I can finally track down Heartless.” My mentor said, taking out a golden coin from his pocket.

    “That’s… the golden Stater.”

    It was the coin that Reines had picked up after the fight between Touko and Faker. Thanks to it, my mentor had realized that Heartless planned on summoning Iskandar as a Divine Spirit.

    “This is directly connected to Faker and her ascension. If we follow the flow of Magical Energy, we can find them no matter how they try and hide.”

    “Ihihihi! It’s finally time! I’ve been waiting for this moment! Ihihi—”

    Add suddenly stopped laughing.

    I also noticed something odd.

    It was above my head. Since I was upside down, that was to say, it was below me, at the bottom of the Pit of Oblivion.

    “Wait, what’s that…”

    It was the first time I heard fear in Add’s voice.

    After a few seconds, my mentor looked toward it as well.

    “What if…”

    My mentor’s voice had turned raspy.

    “What if the Pit of Oblivion doesn’t lead to the Ancient Heart…?”

    “Sir…?”

    It was the most desperate expression that had appeared on my mentor’s face since we entered Spirit Tomb Albion.

    We couldn’t see anything yet. The feeling alone was enough to send us into despair. I had never felt this powerless before, not even when I faced Faker, who was a mage from the Age of the Gods.

    “What if this hole leads to the Fairy Realm, or somewhere close to it…? What if the place that it leads to is more dangerous than the Age of the Gods…?”

    Soon, we were able to catch a glimpse of it in the darkness.

    There was light at the bottom of the hole.

    [An image is supposed to be here.]

    To be more precise, there were six glowing eyes. That meant that there were three giant beasts waiting to devour us whole.

    “Huh…?”

    Strange. We should have been getting closer and closer, but the monsters didn’t get any larger.

    “Is it because…they’re too big…?”

    If that was the case, each of the eyeballs would be tens of meters wide. There was a contradiction between the size of the beasts and the size of the Pit of Oblivion. Our senses struggled to process this contradiction as we continued to approach them.

    “Is it… Cerberus…!?” My mentor exclaimed. “No, it can’t be. Is it a monster of the same origin..? Depending on the situation, it might be…”

    I felt my throat dry up as my mentor continued frantically guessing in a broken voice.

    It was as if my soul would dissipate if those eyes turned to look at me. That creature was more than just a Phantasmal Beast. It wasn’t some creature that had evolved into a monster because of the strange qualities of Albion. The authority it had over its domain could not even be compared to modern magecraft.

    …I remember dealing with something that made me feel a similar way— the thing that had been in Touko Aozaki’s briefcase, or perhaps her body.

    They were definitely different, but they both felt alien. The being sitting at the bottom of the pit was not something that a human could comprehend.

    In a sense, that beast was the ruler of Albion.

    “S-sir…” I managed to say.

    “Stop breathing…” my mentor replied. “We can’t…let it notice us…”

    As we continued to glide to our demise, my mentor tightened his grasp on the gold coin and clenched his teeth in desperation.
    —————————————————————————————————————————————————— ——

  6. #286
    The Long-Forgotten Sight Rafflesiac's Avatar
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    [An image is supposed to be here.]
    Are you using the right link?





    Posting the resultant BBCode (without the spaces):
    [i mg]https://i.imgur.com/EqurwMT.jpg[/i mg]

    Should give you the image:
    Quote Originally Posted by Arashi_Leonhart View Post
    canon finish apo vol 3

  7. #287
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafflesiac View Post
    Are you using the right link?
    Yeah I'm trying to do that, but nothing pops up when I click the button D:

  8. #288
    The Long-Forgotten Sight Rafflesiac's Avatar
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    Is it getting blocked by a script blocker?
    Quote Originally Posted by Arashi_Leonhart View Post
    canon finish apo vol 3

  9. #289
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafflesiac View Post
    Is it getting blocked by a script blocker?
    Probably not, considering I don't know what that is

  10. #290

  11. #291
    Thanks for your hard work!

  12. #292
    Chapter 4, Part 3
    Chapter 4, Part 3:

    (—What’s going on?)

    I clenched my teeth as my brother fell silent again. The connection was still intact, which meant that they were in a situation that demanded his full attention. Why did he keep running into trouble? I knew the gist of his reasoning, but I might as well have been without help.

    “We killed our teacher, Dr. Heartless?” Asheara said with a light laugh. The light of the dead dragon’s Magic Circuits glistened on her dark skin. “What an interesting speculation. Wouldn’t that nullify your previous theories about Heartless kidnapping his students and creating a Divine Spirit?”

    “I’ll talk about that later. I just want to confirm this fact with you first.”

    “Why are you insisting that it is a fact? How would killing our teacher benefit us? You are right in saying that, apart from Kurou, we were all heading toward the next stages of our lives. That does not explain why we would get rid of the backing of our teacher.”

    “It would bring you plenty of benefits,” I said, grasping the opportunity like a merchant who had found a chance to profit. “That’s because you four were never Dr. Heartless’ students.”

    “Oh? What do you mean by that?” Asked Inorai.

    “I mean that many of the people who enter Albion were ordered to do so by the Clock Tower. Then, they can infiltrate the Arcane Autopsy Division.” I continued, turning to the old woman.

    This was the hypothesis that my brother had arrived at after Touko gave us a tip.

    Rufleus didn’t speak up, probably because either he or a faction close to him was involved in this operation.

    “Out of these five students, we know that this was the job of Calugh, who was murdered.“

    I was putting aside the possibility that he switched places with his brother for now. The Lords probably weren’t interested in that, and I needed to keep their attention.

    “I’d also like to point out that I’m not the only one looking into this. Miss Touko Aozaki is as well.”

    “Passing the baton to me? Alright. Come to think of it, you were there when I talked to Heartless.” Touko said with a wry smile. She had guessed that Heartless’ students were spies sent from other factions before we had.

    —“I’m asking you whose students they really are, former department head.

    Touko had said that when she fought Faker underneath Slur Street. Now, it was time to confirm it with Asheara.

    “I didn’t want to reveal it, but I have to admit that it’s true. I have indeed asked Heartless about his students. He replied that he told them to dedicate their lives to the most radiant things, and that they went to search for what they thought were the most radiant things in their lives.”

    “……”

    Asheara’s gaze wavered for a moment. The confirmation of a Grand-ranked mage made my statement harder to dismiss. Now, she couldn’t deny my charges easily without losing her position in the Grand Roll.

    “And so? What does that prove?”

    Hm. That was a better tactic than denial. She was willing to make certain concessions to end the entire conversation.

    “Besides, we couldn’t have assassinated Dr. Heartless. No one would be able to get away with killing the head of a major department in London.” She said, diverting the focus of the conversation again.

    She still had the upper hand in this situation. I was again reminded that all she needed to do was cut the right part of the tattered rope I was walking on for me to fall to my death.

    Therefore, I nodded cautiously and planted the next trap into the conversation.

    “Exactly. You’re right. The Clock Tower watches over every nook and cranny of London. Though it’s not impossible to assassinate someone as important as Heartless was, any traces of a struggle would be discovered.”

    “I’m glad you agree with me.”

    “However, you have a place that no one will be able to watch over,” I said, feeling the surface of the round table and letting my words sink into the audience. “You led Heartless into Spirit Tomb Albion ten years ago, didn’t you?”

    “You mean, using the same mechanism that enabled smuggling?” Olgamarie asked, wide-eyed.

    I nodded and continued.

    “Yes. Just as Heartless used an unstable portal underneath Slur Street to enter Spirit Tomb Albion, you four baited Heartless there. At that point, apart from Kurou, all of Heartless’ students had left him. According to my research, you seem to have been the last one. You might have said that you wanted to bring him on a tour through Spirit Tomb Albion as thanks. An opportunity to enter Spirit Tomb Albion without the restrictions set by the Dissection Division is too good to pass up. Heartless must have been delighted.

    “At the same time, the Clock Tower’s surveillance doesn’t extend to Albion, because it has it own rules. Though Heartless was a better mage, Albion was your domain. Your team was trained through combat the treacherous environment of Albion. I’m sure you had plenty of means to kill a mage absorbed in his research.”

    “……”

    Asheara fell silent again. This time, she showed no signs of argument. She probably realized that a careless defense in the face of Rufleus and Touko Aozaki would only make her situation worse.

    “Kurou must have objected to this. He was Heartless’ protege, after all. You could have gone ahead without him, but you didn’t. That means he must have been necessary to find a portal. As we saw when Faker attacked Slur, portals don’t disappear immediately. Once you got to Albion, you could have killed both of them. Or maybe you planned on persuading Kurou, but that would have been impractical considering the portal’s duration.”

    “…You’ve taken an absurd leap of logic.” Asheara finally said as if she was wringing out her words.

    Of course. I was aware of that. Did she think that this was the place for careful, logical reasoning?

    “That means that you couldn’t check their corpses, right?”

    “…What are you talking about?”

    “I’m answering your question from earlier. If Heartless is dead, who are we dealing with now? If you didn’t have the chance back then to check their corpses, we can narrow down the identity of the current Heartless. That’s because the current Heartless is able to find unstable portals, just like his protege could in the past.”

    “…!”

    McDonell watched his daughter eerily quietly.

    “Are you trying trying to say that… the current Heartless is actually Kurou…?”

    “We’ve already witnessed the extent to which the mage who calls himself Heartless can transform himself. He caused us a lot of trouble on the Rail Zeppelin.”

    With shape-shifting skills like that, it would have been easy for him to impersonate his teacher, who he knew better than Caules.

    “…Impossible!”

    Asheara’s voice was distorted to the point of anguish.

    “That’s why I asked you if you checked their corpses.”

    “……”

    The color had been leached from her face. Asheara was an accomplished mage. Controlling basic bodily functions should have been a piece of cake for her. That meant that the shock she had just suffered was so great that she had forgotten to do so.

    “That’s…That’s just a bunch of nonsensical hypotheses piled on top of each other!”

    “Yes. You’re right.” I admitted.

    I had no other choice. After all, this was just the first few pieces of the puzzle, a set up so we could move on to the main point.

    “But the next part is not a hypothesis. An acquaintance in Albion provided us with evidence.”

    I was referring to Geraff.

    This next part was what my brother had wanted me to look into.

    “I’m talking about Kurou’s full name.”

    “Kurou’s full name?” Asheara echoed, furrowing her eyebrows.

    They had both been born in Albion. Maybe they were even childhood friends. Still, it was the nature of a mage to betray others. Maybe McDonell had been the one to make her betray him.

    “You don’t know it either? I should have guessed. It isn’t strange for people here to lack last names. If you had known, there was a good chance that it could have been documented somehow.”

    I had to thank Geraff for this final piece of information. It was the final silver bullet that I needed.

    “You did not manage to kill Kurou, who opposed the murder of Heartless. Maybe he even pretended to be dead. We happen to know someone else who is good at that.

    I turned to look at the mage standing behind Touko.

    “Oh? Are you talking about me?” Hishiri said, blinking in surprise.

    I didn’t know what score to give her acting. It would have been convincing if she hadn’t come to the Grand Roll for this very reason.

    “His full name is
    クロウ·アダシノ
    Kurou Adashino
    .”

    No one spoke, probably because everyone realized the importance of that last name. Asheara stiffened, Olgamarie swallowed, and McDonell stroked his own neck. Rufleus sputtered a dry cough. Touko’s eyes sparkled in a way that reminded me of Inorai.

    “Or, in the style of Eastern names,
    化野九郎
    Kurou Adashino
    .”

    For some reason, finally arriving at this conclusion made me want to sigh.

    This puzzle was needlessly complicated. I was used to Clock Tower conspiracies that stretched tens or even hundreds of years, but this took it to a whole new level.

    I almost wanted to praise the Department of Law for managing to keep it under wraps for so long.

    “This is the card you were hiding, isn’t it? Gray told me that you were looking for your brother on the Rail Zeppelin. You explained that, like you, Dr. Heartless was an adopted child of Norwich. Now I know that was a terrible excuse.”

    Hishiri’s explanation back then had been so simple, because she had realized that the current Dr. Heartless was related to her by blood.

    “So? What do do you have to say for yourself, Ms. Hishiri?”

    Hishiri smiled faintly, reminding me of a Noh mask from Eastern theater.

    *

    Countless spirals of light illuminated the last Command Spell on Heartless’ right hand, which was covering his face.

    “…So you’ve still come.” He suddenly said, looking to his feet.

    Several things had been placed there for the ritual. First, there was a living Mystic Code that used to be the mage Emiya. Then, there was a clock that was there to control it. Finally, there were piles of golden Staters scattered around the floor. All of those coins were now shaking, probably because Lord El-Melloi II wanted to locate him using the coin that he had found.

    Heartless had noticed that the coin had been taken.

    If Lord El-Melloi II could use the coin to find a path, Heartless could do the same. These coins were his final trap, just in case Lord El-Melloi made it as far as he had.

    “This is either my last and greatest obstruction to your plans…” He said in a low voice, feeling the surface of a coin. “…Or the final trap that pushes me over the edge.”

    He seemed exhausted, as if he was also experiencing every second of time as Faker was.

    Magical Energy spread across the cavern of twisting light along with his voice.

    “Good night, Lord El-Melloi II.”

    With that, the red-haired mage closed his other eye.

    *

    We continued to glide silently, afraid to make the smallest noise. I tried to keep my use of Magical Energy at a minimum. The conclusion that had been reached in the Grand Roll was less impactful than a fairy tale in the face of the all-consuming darkness that slowly filled my heart.

    The name of the darkness was terror. In its face, I finally understood where we came from. We had been born from a dark, hopelessly empty void. The abyss that was darker than night was our cradle.

    I felt as if we had been released into the vacuum of space, except our souls was about to freeze instead of our bodies or minds.

    And yet, we had no choice but to continue gliding. I saw a couple of smaller tunnels on the side of the pit. One of them was probably connected to the Heart.

    It was not sufficient to call my mentor’s face pale anymore. He continued to stare at the golden coin in his hand, trying to stop himself from trembling. Some people may have called his demeanor pathetic. But for me, seeing him persevere was endlessly reassuring, like a fragment of a star in the midst of unsurmountable darkness.

    “Just…a little more…” I said as quietly as I could.

    Neither of us had the courage to look down.

    From the perspective of the creature, we were probably no more than a few grains of sand. It lived in a completely different dimension from us. It was the embodiment of the world beyond the farthest reaches reaches of Albion. Had people created the existence of the myth of the guard dog of hell because they could not forget about this beast?

    The wind carried a faint stench.

    Though it wasn’t very loud, its roar shook every loose rock on the walls of the Pit of Oblivion. I was sure that we would pass out if we had been any closer. All I could do was summon all my willpower and wrench myself away from it.

    My mentor’s gaze quivered as he clutched the coin in his hands.

    “Gray…!”

    He gestured to one of the tunnels. Suddenly, I saw hope again. But it only lasted an instant.

    One of the six eyes turned to us.

    —Time ceased to exist.

    The beast of Albion did nothing.

    It only stared us with its eye that wasn’t magical or evil. Nevertheless, it was enough to tear us apart, crushing our nails, our skin, muscles, internal organs, bones, and brains until it reached our soul

    My breathing completely stopped, as did the blood in my veins. Each of my cells froze as if they were never part of a living thing in the first place.

    Someone said that fear was born of the unknown. I didn’t agree. Fear didn’t come from things that we didn’t know, but things that we couldn’t know. In the face of such an immense presence, all of my senses closed themselves off and brought about their own demise before I surely would as well.

    “…Sir…”

    Of course, my mentor was going through the same thing.

    “It’s gaze…was drawn to us by someone…”

    He said in a voice that was indistinguishable from panting, as if he knew that these were his last breaths.

    “I finally understand…what Heartless’ Mystic Eyes are…”

    Just before I lost consciousness, I finally realized where we had gone wrong.

    Despite all our preparation, we had badly underestimated Spirit Tomb Albion.
    —————————————————————————————————————————————————— ——

  13. #293
    Chapter 4, Part 4
    Chapter 4, Part 4:

    After a pause, Hishiri nodded as if she was impressed.

    “You have done your research well.”

    “My brother, Lord El-Melloi II, always had a hunch that something was special about him. Sure enough, everything became clear after we found the last name of the person who was listed without one.”

    He believed that detail had been deliberately hidden. I had come to a similar conclusion, just not in the same way as him. My brother’s way of thinking was based on people rather than things.

    In this case, both Kurou and Hishiri Adashino were suspicious.

    “During the incident on the Rail Zeppelin, you were too actively involved to be acting on behalf of the Department of Law like you claimed. You explained that you and Heartless were both adopted by Norwich, but he adopted a lot of children. I don’t think that’s enough to explain your obsession with Heartless.”

    “I didn’t lie.” Hishiri said with a mischievous smile. “I believed that there was a high possibility that he was my actual brother. Though I say that, we are only half-siblings. My father left his child and ex-wife behind when he returned from Albion.”

    “So your father was a Survivor?”

    “Yes. He managed to leave Albion on his own by scrounging money. He claimed that he came to the surface to ensure that his bloodline would not end, though he wasn’t a particularly skilled mage. Don’t you think that was a foolish decision?”

    Hishiri’s furisode-covered shoulders shook as she laughed.

    “Once he arrived at the surface, he regretted not bringing his wife. As a result, he died not long after he fathered me with his new wife. Thanks to that, I had to go through all manner of tribulations to be adopted by Norwich. His death also made my brother reluctant to reveal his last name.” She continued in a more cheerful voice.

    I found it hard to disguise my surprise. Though, thinking about it, the clue was always there. She probably used her original last name, Adashino, instead of Norwich because she wanted to use it to find her brother. Maybe she had even joined the Department of Law for the same reason.

    “When did you discover this possibility?” I asked after taking a deep breath.

    “As you may have guessed, I discovered it not long after I entered the Department of Law. Unfortunately, Heartless and Kurou had already disappeared by then.”

    They had disappeared ten years ago. Considering Hishiri’s age, her story made sense.

    “So you know Kurou’s secret, then?”

    “Yes. He fit all the right conditions,” she replied, putting her fingers on the floral patterns on her glasses. “Unfortunately, I never met my brother in person. I think it would be better to ask his teammate instead.”

    Her eyes fell on Asheara like a snake eyeing its prey. A frown appeared on Asheara’s forehead in stark contrast to the calm demeanor that she previously had.

    “…Kurou…” Asheara started. “Kurou did indeed have unusual powers. He had a talent for finding unstable portals between Spirit Tomb Albion and the surface.”

    “Hm…”

    Rufleus frown deepened, making him look less like a sinister Lord and more like an old, cunning demon.

    “It wasn’t always that way. He discovered his talent one day when we came across a portal.”

    “You came across a portal?” I repeated.

    Asheara nodded with some hesitation. “Portals appear frequently in Albion, though no one knows about them except for the explorers. Kurou was unusually good at finding them. He was too shy to admit to it. Most of the time, when he came across one, he would act like he didn’t know how it happened, but I heard him say once that it was as if the portals were attached on a string and would appear when he pulled on them.”

    “That was the effect of some kind of Mystic Eye,” Hishiri explained. “Supposedly, it’s a rare talent in the Adashino family. It allows people to find pairs of things. You could also call it a trick to locate something that has been lost.”

    …Ah, now it was starting to come together. This was the piece I needed to complete the puzzle.

    The Mystic Eyes themselves were probably nothing impressive, comparable in rating to mine. However, by a coincidence, Kurou’s Mystic Eyes entered Spirit Tomb Albion. As Hishiri said, though it was a type of Mystic Eye, it was closer to the magecraft of the Far East.

    “I see. Is the magecraft of the Adashino family derived from snakes?” Interjected Touko.

    “That is correct, yes. Why do you mention it?” Hishiri replied.

    I had witnessed Hishiri’s magecraft several times before. It had indeed reminded me of snakes, much like the mage herself.

    “Snakes have long since been connected with searching for lost objects, especially lost money.[1] This mysterious power has been attributed to their pit organs. Snakes are also sometimes treated as dragons because of their similarities.”

    Touko nodded as if she understood.

    “In that case, Kurou’s abilities probably developed the more he became accustomed to Albion. You could say that Kurou’s Mystic Eyes had merged with the dead dragon’s vision.”

    “You sound like you’re onto something, Touko,” Commented Inorai, eliciting a shrug from Touko, “I’m learning more and more from you.”

    Even in the entire history of the Clock Tower, it was rare to find a Lord who taught a Grand-ranked mage. I looked to the mage who had suggested her student be Seal Designated, and then back to the mage who had wandered the world for years after receiving a Sealing Designation.

    Thinking about it was pointless. There was no point in trying to compete with them in magecraft, let alone politics. I decided leave futile efforts like that to my brother when he returned.

    Asheara spoke up just as I started thinking of something else.

    “I’d like to point out a mistake Miss Reines made.”

    “What mistake?”

    My heart leaped up and battered against my ribs. Was this it? Was the tightrope going to snap?

    “…What is it, Asheara?”

    “……” After a few seconds of hesitation, Asheara spoke again.

    She began by apologizing to McDonell.

    “My apologies, father. This is about something that I—that we did of our own accord.
    …Miss Reines. You are right, we were in contact with the surface while we were in Albion.”

    “…That means…”

    I had a terrible feeling about this. Why was she suddenly admitting it?

    After another pause, Asheara said exactly what I feared.

    “However, ten years ago, we killed Kurou, not Heartless.”

    It took me a second to process what she said. It was as if my opponent had struck a blow that ended the contest in a tie when I had expected to be pounded into the ground.

    Her statement had indeed invalidated our argument. But I could tell from her expression that she wasn’t happy that she had to concede this step.

    “…But why?”

    “Because there was a chance that Heartless would become too successful if we didn’t step in. But it would cause too much chaos if two department heads died at the same time.”

    Asheara’s words made me lean back and gaze up at the ceiling.

    There was only one incident that she could be talking about.

    “You mean, because the previous Lord El-Melloi died.”

    “…Exactly.”

    Of course she thought that way.

    The death of the previous Lord El-Melloi— that was to say, my brother, Kayneth— caused a great uproar in the Clock Tower. The Meluastea Faction had forced the El-Melloi Faction into the Department of Modern Magecraft so they could control two departments at once. Maybe I should commend Asheara for reaching the correct solution.

    If Heartless hadn’t also gone missing then, it would have been much more natural for him to become the head of the Department of Minearology instead of the Meluastea Faction.

    “So you wanted to stop Heartless by killing his right hand man, Kurou?”

    Asheara nodded with some hesitation. “Yes.”

    “In that case, you got more than you bargained for. Not only did the disappearance of Kurou stop Heartless’ career from advancing, but he also quit his position and disappeared.”

    It was a result that no one could have imagined.

    My heart still pounded. Had I made a mistake? I wanted to discuss it with my brother, but he still hadn’t replied. What was going on on his end? Was there a flaw in my logic? Had I tripped on something at this critical moment without noticing?

    “Is that all there is to this strange story?” McDonell asked.

    I nodded with an emotion that I could only call sincerity. The words of the Lord who had been mostly silent up until now were like strikes of a gavel.

    “Evidently, my daughter has committed a crime. If she has deprived Dr. Heartless of his pupil, she must provide equal compensation.”

    …Compensation? I thought as my mind filled with despair.

    Even though the laws of the rest of the world didn’t apply in the Clock Tower, killing a department head was a heinous crime. However, if the team only killed an unimportant student, Asheara would be sufficient payment. In a certain sense, the Clock Tower’s justice system operated like that of the Mafia. It was an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.

    “What do you mean by equal payment, McDonell?” Inorai asked in response to his affirmation.

    “As I said, she is my daughter. So this is my fault.” McDonell admitted. He put his fists on his knees and bowed his head. “Even if it was her decision, I had a part to play. Since she is my daughter, I will take full responsibility.”

    “……!”

    This, too, was an unexpected development. I could tell that both his mage’s spirit and his love for his daughter were true. Though he was ruthless when he schemed against his opponents, he did not lack humanity, which only made him more terrifying.

    Inorai stroked her chin, amused.

    “Responsibility, you say? What do you mean, exactly?”

    “The El-Melloi Faction is currently in charge of the department that Heartless presided over. Therefore, I will give them my votes in this Grand Roll.”

    “What the…!”

    I had nothing I could say in response to that. His solution didn’t make any sense in the world of normal people. Heartless wasn’t compensated at all. Somehow, the death of Heartless’ student could be repaid by compensating the faction that they belonged to.

    “Oh? I can take my votes back if you don’t want them.”

    —What the hell?!!!

    Why were we being hounded after we found the culprit? It made our situation more favorable, but the weight of the votes that had just been entrusted to me were overwhelming my brain.

    “What about…Heartless’ accomplice…?”

    This time, it was Rufleus who spoke up.

    “…Do you not think that his accomplice is…the fool who called his plan to create a Divine Spirit…’a wonderful proposition’…?” He said, not bothering to hide his animosity.

    By contrast, McDonell only shrugged.

    “I did say that it is wonderful. I’m not sure if that is enough evidence. Besides, my daughter was the one who stopped Heartless from gaining power. Furthermore, didn’t you say that you don’t care if one or two of Heartless’ students died?”

    The meeting began to pick up speed. An invisible balance swung back and forth, never staying still for a moment.

    I needed to find the best solution in the midst of it all.

    (…You promised to stop Heartless, right, brother?) I said to my brother, who still didn’t respond.

    The connection was still there. It was possible that the connection wouldn’t be severed if he had just died, but I didn’t want to think about that. I needed to make a bet here. In this meeting, there was no way to win without taking a risk.

    “…May I confirm something?” I asked Asheara.

    “What is it?”

    “You were communicating with McDonell, who guided you with the knowledge of Kurou’s unusual abilities. Perhaps you intended to invite him to McDonell’s faction.”

    “…That is correct.” Asheara answered with some hesitance. She was probably wary of her father.

    “However, to your surprise, he went with Heartless instead. Is that right?”

    “Yes.”

    I frantically grasped at the chance before me as Asheara continued to affirm to my guesses.

    Even if my brother’s theory was correct, I hadn’t heard all of his thoughts. At this stage, I didn’t think his theory was even complete. This was the answer I had arrived at as I watched the meeting progress. My brother hadn’t been listening to the situation here.

    I took a deep breath and let my prediction play out in my mind. After three seconds, I spoke.

    “I have decided to abandon the search for Heartless’ accomplice.”

    “What…?! Reines!?” Olgamarie exclaimed, dumbfounded.

    There had to be detectives that gave up after getting close to the end of a case. There were probably many detective novels out there that ended that way. It was just that most readers didn’t like those endings.

    For that reason, I repeated my statement.

    “I’ll say it again. I’m not searching for his accomplice anymore.”

    “After all this? What a selfish but interesting choice.” Said Inorai.

    Touko held a hand over her mouth, as if she were trying to stop herself from laughing out loud. Though it was a matter of life and death to me, she watched the Grand Roll as if it was a movie. I hoped that my performance satisfied her.

    “I have another proposal,” I continued. “Lord Trambelio, you said you’re giving your votes to me, right?”

    “Yes, I did say that.”

    With is confirmation, I continued to show more of my cards.

    “In that case, the El-Melloi Faction and the Trambelio Faction relinquish the right to vote in this Grand Roll.”

    “…You…!” Rufleus snarled, looking as if his eyeballs were going to pop out.

    I honestly expected my heart to stop beating then. The Lord was powerful enough to curse someone by simply glaring at them. I pushed the fear down into my stomach and pressed forward.

    “We should all do that.” I said, slowly weaving my words as if I was squeezing them out. “We should pretend that this meeting never happened.”

    “…What did you say…?”

    “Only a few people know about the Grand Roll. If we all throw away our votes and insist that this meeting never happened, no one will know.”

    This was our final goal— to reach a settlement that would force everyone to give up their strengths after finding their weaknesses.

    For the Aristocratic Faction, this was a chance to prevent the redevelopment of Albion. For the Democratic Faction, this was a chance to remove the stain of the murder committed by Lord Trambelio’s daughter. The Neutral Faction, which had given their votes to Touko, didn’t have anything that they had to fight for.

    Now, at this moment, we could reach this compromise.

    Inorai’s shoulders shook as she laughed.

    “I never expected you to play your cards this way.”

    The old woman from the Department of Creation had maintained a unique position in this meeting. Even though she was not as ambitious as McDonell or as sly as Rufleus, Inorai gave off the air of a Lord.

    “But I am still curious about the identity of the accomplice.”

    “Finding that out is my brother’s job, not mine.”

    “What do you mean by that? How do you plan on stopping Heartless, anyway?”

    “Exactly. Didn’t you say that Heartless’ magecraft could go into effect at any moment? We won’t be able to pretend that the Grand Roll never took place if that happens.”

    “That’s why my brother has entered Albion to stop him.” I answered.

    Rufleus tapped his cane on the ground.

    “…The New Age…Lord…you say…?”

    “Didn’t you just say that Heartless is performing his ritual in the Ancient Heart? How is he meant to get here?”

    It was natural that Olgamarie was confused. I had no other choice but to answer honestly.

    “He has already gotten close to the Ancient Heart.”

    “Oh, my. As always, your brother does not know what to fear…” Adashino said, still smiling faintly.

    I didn’t know what she could be thinking now, after learning of her brother’s death. I wondered what thoughts tugged at the heart of this Eastern woman from the Department of Law.

    Though my brother didn’t give me an update on his exact location, I knew that he was near the Ancient Heart.

    “But can Lord El-Melloi II really stop Dr. Heartless?”

    “Of course. If I didn’t trust my brother to be capable of doing something like this, I wouldn’t have given him the title of Lord El-Melloi. Of course, his predecessor would have had no trouble dealing with a problem of this caliber.”

    That was a massive lie. Unfortunately, it didn’t seem to work on Hishiri. In case you were wondering, I had plenty of trust in Gray.

    “Since this is a place for politics, let’s do some proper politics. That’s what I came here for.”

    “An impressive use of sophistry.” Inorai said, with a charitable nod. Then, she looked to the person beside her and lowered her voice. “McDonell. You don’t plan on taking back your vote, do you?”

    “Of course not, Ms. Inorai.”

    “In that case, let’s wait thirty minutes.” Inorai took out her pocket watch and put it on the table. “If Lord El-Melloi II is close, we should be able to notice if he succeeds in stopping Heartless. Let’s wait for him.”

    “…El-Melloi…You have Trambelio’s vote…we have no reason to withdraw…”

    “Come on, Eulyphis. The El-Melloi Princess said that we should throw away our votes. There’s no need to be so stubborn, is there?” Inorai said with a wink.

    The two oldest participants in this Grand Roll refused to give in to each other. The essence of power flowed in their veins instead of blood. It wasn’t my place to say anything about them, though.

    At that moment, something happened.

    The flow of Magical Energy suddenly changed, severing the link between me and my brother without any warning.

    (—Brother?!)

    I fought the urge to scream.

    That severance seemed like a death sentence.

    [1] I can’t find a reference to this anywhere. How is being able to see infrared radiation supposed to help with finding money, anyway?
    —————————————————————————————————————————————————— ——

  14. #294
    Things are getting veeery interesting. Count on Reines to pull the rug out from under the table.

  15. #295
    死徒(上級)Greater Dead Apostle All fictions's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by azwhoisverybored View Post

    [1] I can’t find a reference to this anywhere. How is being able to see infrared radiation supposed to help with finding money, anyway?
    From what I could find, there's a superstition that putting white snake skin in your wallet brings luck in money, because of association with metal and the goddess Benzaiten.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafflesiac View Post
    Punching out some nerd doesn't make you a better magus.

  16. #296
    祖 Ancestor Sione's Avatar
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    Yeah, in many myths and folklores Snakes are similar to Dragons in the sense that they're associated with gold, money and hoarding.

  17. #297
    Final chapter!

    Chapter 5, Part 1
    Chapter 5, Part 1:



    Several hours passed in the space of a second. Several days passed in the space of a minute. Several decades passed in the space of an hour.

    This contradictory flow of time was created by the Seal-Designated magecraft that Heartless had prepared. Though it was originally designed to allow its user to see to the end of the
    sky
    universe
    , it was now being used as a rocket to accelerate Faker into a Divine Spirit.

    Faker swayed slowly in the cradle of time, rocking back and forth through more lifetimes than any other human would experience.

    In spite of this, the anger that drove her remained unchanged.

    (…Why had he left that will?)

    (…Why did they take the will to heart and slaughter each other over it?)

    (…And why hadn’t she stopped them even though she was still alive?)

    Those questions circled in her head hundreds, thousands, millions of times. Each time they did, her anger would begin to course through her veins of Ether and simmer in her mind.

    Faker didn’t know if she could endure this because she was a Servant. Back when she was still alive, her body would have decayed long before those questions could drive her mad. Or, perhaps it was her Master’s Command Spells that kept her mind stable so she could endure the seemingly endless flow of time.

    However, there was one thing that was not there when she was alive.

    She had not had the man who continued to look up at her as if he was praying.

    From Faker’s perspective, he had prayed to her for several centuries already.

    A thought crossed her mind which she dismissed as ridiculous, but it shook her nonetheless.

    (…What an idiot,) she thought. (You have no need to look as though you’ll cry, you know.)

    Faker wondered who had given him the name Heartless. If he had come up with it himself, he had some self-reflection to do. Before, Fake would never have thought of him as an emotional man. But now, she had been with him longer than anyone else.

    In reality, they had only known each other for two short months, but Faker had stared at him for hundreds of years.

    From Heartless’ perspective, those hundreds of years felt like two hours, during which he hadn’t looked away from her once except to blink. Even if it meant using Command Spells, he wished that she would make it.

    “……”

    His faith would make Faker into a god.

    Of course, the many catalysts that Heartless had prepared and the power of Albion were also necessary, but his sincere belief was what determined the direction of this ritual.

    Faker wondered what his starting point was.

    (It must have been an important event for you.) She thought.

    Naturally, she knew that he was hiding something from him. But for his two hundred years of prayer, Faker was willing to be tricked. Truth was not something that mattered here.

    (…For your sake, I am willing to become a foolish god…)

    Faker thought in the silence.

    Time continued to speed up.

    Two hours had been several hundred years. Three hours became more than a thousand.

    Her perception expanded as she stabilized as a Divine Spirit. Now, connected to the Root, time no longer mattered. She was now able to search for a point in the past while remaining in the present; not because she could see the past, but because she could see everything in the instant that her divine Saint Graph was compressed back into the form of a Ghost Liner.

    There were limits to her power, of course. The bounds of her vision were limited by her scale as a Divine Spirit, and Faker was only a newborn god. She could only calculate points that she had a connection to.

    (I see…)

    She finally understood.

    (So that’s why…)

    Finally, she saw the truth behind not just her only believer, but the destiny that was closely related to them both.

    (The future king…has come…!)
    —————————————————————————————————————————————————— ——

  18. #298
    I made updated PDF/EPUB versions of volumes 6 and 7, and i also fixed a lot of the grammatical errors that i came across
    I think it would be good to use these instead of the EPUBs that are currently linked on the first post
    I'll do the same for the Grand Roll once I read them (volumes 8-10)

    Volume 6:
    PDF: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1i9E...ew?usp=sharing
    EPUB: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1hNI...ew?usp=sharing

    Volume 7:
    PDF: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1iDm...ew?usp=sharing
    EPUB: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1TJN...ew?usp=sharing

  19. #299
    Thank you for the translation, legit forgot to read this novel due to work lol
    Unrelated, the volume 5 was the anime based on right?
    Just don't want to miss anything. I may have seen the answer before but just want to make sure. Sorry
    Can't wait to read more
    Again, thank you

  20. #300
    死徒(上級)Greater Dead Apostle All fictions's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garysanderson96 View Post
    Thank you for the translation, legit forgot to read this novel due to work lol
    Unrelated, the volume 5 was the anime based on right?
    Just don't want to miss anything. I may have seen the answer before but just want to make sure. Sorry
    Can't wait to read more
    Again, thank you
    Second half of the anime is based on volumes 4 and 5.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafflesiac View Post
    Punching out some nerd doesn't make you a better magus.

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