𝐅𝐮𝐬𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐒𝐮𝐦𝐦𝐨𝐧𝐞𝐝 𝐛𝐞𝐚𝐬𝐭 𝐃𝐚𝐦𝐨𝐜𝐥𝐞𝐬・𝐓𝐢𝐭𝐚𝐧
Albero started running, suppressing his fear.
Damocles, fused with Titan, had a terrifyingly wide smile.
“Courage to face without fear! Albero. . . . . .don’t die!!”
Damocles, who had been one-armed, now had his right arm restored by fusing with the summoned beast, Titan.
Moreover, the size of that right arm had expanded. . . . . .to about three times the size of the left arm.
Surely, if a human were to be hit by it, they would be blown to smithereens. It would be a disaster with flesh scattering everywhere.
Without a doubt, he was stronger than Abel. . . . . .No, it was ridiculous even to compare their strengths.
Damocles winds up his gigantic right arm.
A fist is formed. Albero thinks for a split second.
To dodge or to take it head-on?
Against Damocles, who possesses the strength of a demon class, what will he do?
“Ho!! You’re going to take it head-on!!”
“Bring it onnnnnnn!!”
Albero enlarges his right arm to its limit, extending it and wrapping it around his body, 『hardening』 it.
He braces himself with full power in both legs, opening his right hand to take on Damocles’ punch head-on.
A shock like none he had ever felt before ran through his right palm.
He was certainly using 『hardening』. While his right arm wasn’t damaged, the shockwave was crushing Albero’s body.
“Guh, aah. . . . . .Grrrr!!”
He coughed up blood.
But he didn’t back down. The world’s most powerful strike was etched into his body.
The sensation in his legs was fading, but he braced himself with sheer determination.
“To think you’d take my punch head-on!! After such a long time. . . . . .it’s exhilarating!!”
But Damocles didn’t seem to hear.
Albero had barely withstood Damocles’ punch.
He felt himself losing consciousness. Yet, Damocles seemed to be further powering up his revolving right arm.
He’s going to die.
If he took that strike head-on, he’d undoubtedly be shattered.
『Hardening』 disappeared. His right arm returned to its original size, and Albero’s legs trembled.
It seemed like Garnet had made a move. . . . . .but Damocles wouldn’t stop.
Suddenly, his right eye throbbed.
It began to heat up.
The world shifted. . . . . .to a sepia-colored, somewhat lonely realm.
“Damocles!! Are you trying to kill him?!”
It seemed Garnet’s voice finally reached him.
But. . . . . .the punch couldn’t be stopped now.
Kid finally pointed his left hand at Damocles. Ashe and Lapis also moved.
In the sepia-colored world, Albero saw Damocles’ approaching fist.
Then he realized.
『Meridian threads』 were extending from Damocles’ fist.
But it didn’t feel like when Lapis used it. The 『meridian threads』 emanating from the fist were exuding a vital force.
It was as if they were being used for propulsion.
Perhaps. . . . . .
Albero extended his right arm.
The meridian thread emanating from Damocles’s fist is very long, resembling an animal’s whisker.
And then. . . . . .he grabbed the Meridian threads and yanked them hard to the right.
The trajectory of Damocles’s fist changed, causing him to lose his balance.
This was Albero’s first and last chance.
He poured all his remaining strength into a leap and───screamed.
He swung his right arm back───and slammed it into Damocles’s face.
“Hmm. . . . . .”
But Albero. . . . . .had already run out of energy.
As his fist connected, he lost consciousness and fainted.
“. . . . . .Impressive!!”
Damocles’s last words seemed to reach Albero’s ears.
When he woke up, Ashe and Lapis were peering down at him.
“Whoa?! . . . . . .What are you two doing?”
“T, Thank goodness. . . . . .Albero, you passed out. . . . . .I’m so relieved.”
“We were really worried!! Honestly. . . . . .”
Albero sat up to take in his surroundings.
He had been lying on a sofa, in what seemed like the S-class dorm’s lounge.
Ashe and Lapis were beside him, while Kid was leaning against a nearby wall.
“Kid. . . . . .”
“. . . . . .Hmph.”
“What happened after that?”
When Albero asked, Ashe answered.
“After your fight with teacher Damocles, Kid carried you here.”
“Teacher Damocles got a big scolding from teacher Garnet. She said he went too far.”
“Teacher Garnet said 『The matter’s settled, rest for today. I have to deal with that fool Damocles』.”
“I see. . . . . .Anyway, now I know. Not just about teacher Damocles, but also how powerful demons are.”
“. . . . . .Hey.”
Kid, looking somewhat frustrated, asked Albero a question.
“Why weren’t you afraid of that monster? Was it called 『fusion』? That ridiculous strength surpasses even demons. Why did you confront it?”
“. . . . . .Well.”
Ashe and Lapis felt the same way.
Why was Albero the only one who could move?
“True, as you said, I was scared. . . . . .but I felt like Mog was pushing me, telling me 『Don’t lose, become stronger』. I’ve resolved to defeat demons for peace, so I thought I shouldn’t back down there. Plus. . . . . .I’m not alone, you guys are with me.”
“. . . . . .Hmm.”
The kid wears a hat low and laughs through the nose.
But for some reason, it sounded like a happy tone.
“Albero. . . . . .Yeah! I’ll become stronger too!”
“Me as well! Let’s do our best, Ashe!”
The two girls also renewed their determination.
Then, a knock came from the dorm’s entrance door───Garnet, Damocles, and Arnaud entered.
Garnet looked as usual, but Damocles’s face was swollen, and for some reason, Arnaud looked pale.
“Albero, my apologies. I had him pay back for what he did.”
“Haha. . . . . .Oops, I’m sorry!! Not many can stop my punch. . . . . .I got a bit carried away with nostalgia.”
“Um. . . . . .is your face okay?”
“Huh. . . . . .No problem, you say.”
“No, no, no!! I’m lying, there is a problem!!”
As Garnet’s tone shifted, Damocles quickly shook his head in denial.
Arnaud too seemed shaken. . . . . .It seems he saw Garnet hit Damocles.
The tension seemed to ease. However, Kid’s question made the atmosphere heavy again.
“Just tell me already. . . . . .With all that power, why don’t you guys fight?”
“. . . . . .A fair question. Alright, I’ll tell you.”
“Garnet-sama, about that. . . . . .”
“It’s okay Arnaud, they have a right to know.”
Arnaud fell silent, while Damocles crossed his arms and looked down.
Garnet took out a pipe and lit a cigarette.
“Simply put, we, the twenty-one summoners, due to a 『contract』 with the current Asgard royal family, cannot use the Summoned beasts outside the Asgard Kingdom.”
“. . . . . .What does that mean?”
“It’s simple. The twenty-one of us can only use our Summoned beasts to protect the Asgard Kingdom. . . . . .No, just the Asgard royal family. Outside the kingdom, we can’t summon the beasts. That’s why demons don’t attack this country. Although that kid Abel seems to have ignored it.”
“Wait, only the royal family?”
“Exactly as I said. The royals fear the demons, the Demon Emperor. To protect themselves, they chained the heroes who saved this world. Frankly speaking, we’re like tools for their self-preservation.”
“That. . . . . .the royal family. . . . . .”
“Lapis. Just so you know. . . . . .The Duke family is also under the twenty-one’s protection.”
“Eh. . . . . .”
“Anyway. . . . . .that’s why we can’t fight. If we leave the kingdom, we can’t use the Summoned beasts. There are those within the royal family with such summoning abilities who bind us. It’s like a curse.”
Garnet spoke matter-of-factly, and Damocles hummed in agreement.
This is the reason the strongest twenty-one cannot fight.
They are almost powerless outside the kingdom.
“. . . . . .I don’t like it. Do the royals only care about themselves?”
“That seems to be the case. That’s why we train and nurture the younger generation.”
Kid gritted his teeth, and Garnet, approaching him, gently caressed his cheek.
“Haha, you have a nice face there. I might just fall for you.”
“Hey, don’t touch. . . . . .”
“Oh? Are you embarrassed? How cute.”
Garnet, teasing Kid, seemed to enjoy herself.
The conversation ended, with Garnet concluding.
“We’re setting off early tomorrow. Get some good sleep tonight.”
“I’ll come pick you up tomorrow. Make sure you’re ready.”
Garnet, Damocles, and Arnaud left.
Albero and the others dispersed, and Albero dove into his bed.
“Tomorrow, huh. . . . . .”
He lay on his back, raising his right hand.
“Come to think of it. . . . . .”
The moment his right eye captured the world of the Summoned beast, he grasped Damocles’ meridian thread and bent the trajectory of the fist.
If this worked not only against Damocles’ punch but all attacks. . . . . .it might become a new strategy.
“. . . . . .Alright!!”
Reenergized, Albero prepared himself for the next day and went to sleep.