Fuh, who am I you ask? I am――
London outskirts that was wrapped in thin mist. In a corner of a retro street where it felt like old fairy-tale or folklore might be hiding, there was a splendid residence where history could be felt from it conspicuously.
It appeared to be prudently maintained that it didn’t look worn out. The garden that was spreading out at the front, the small path made from spread out white gravel and the flower bed where seasonal flowers were blooming, a small fountain where a beautiful goddess was sitting, all of those were first class work that gave elegant impression, from them it could be understood that really, really much labor, expense, and time were spent.
And that was how it should be, the master of this residence――Jefferson Allgrey was a famous wealthy person even at Britain. He was from a family lineage that was titled as the so-called “Real Estate King” that for generations possessed countless plot of land and building, buying and selling them.
Jefferson who was the current master of this generation Allgrey family also properly inherited the business talent from his ancestors, not only that he also seemed to possess political talent, he was a capable human that raised definite result while engaged in two trades of political world and real estate magnate at the same time.
The residence of such Jefferson was normally visited by many people. The type of people visiting was varied. If there were people from the same political world visiting, then there were also people from real estate companies who visited, there were also a lot of people visiting who were his personal friends.
Anyway, it was a house where the flow of people visiting it never ceased, and it was also a well-known fact for the people at the surrounding area.
Today too, a few hours already passed since the sun set, there was also the shrouding mist that it was a time where darkness had completely descended. The principal residence of Allgrey was lighted with brilliant illumination. Several high class cars were being parked nearby the main gate, showing how there were many guests visiting.
Although, each of the visitors today were definitely well-known characters, but it seemed they weren’t friends that were invited for simple dinner, they also didn’t appear to be guests who came for work-related matter to speak about politics or business.
「Now then, chief. Don’t you think that we should get down to business soon? For you to assemble more than half of the society’s upper echelons……it must be something really considerable isn’t it? My guess that it must be a matter about them.」
A middle-aged man whose body was wrapped in a suit that was obviously high quality in a glance, with splendid moustache and belly meat, he addressed Jefferson as “chief”.
Even though Jefferson was called with that designation that wasn’t used that often in general, but he still behaved naturally. Looking from that attitude of him, it could be understood that it was only the matter of course for him to be called like that by the people who were called to this place today.
Jefferson slowly ran his gaze at the surrounding. It seemed that he had finished his meal, there was only wine put in front of him. Other than them, there were several servants of Allgrey family and the respective bodyguards that were brought by each guest.
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Tonight there were nine guests gathered. Everyone of them were prominent figure that owned phenomenal result in their respective field, but the fields they participated in were completely scattered. Seen from the side this was a gathering that really couldn’t be understood, the biggest possibility was that these people were the personal friend of Jefferson. E ven if there was an outsider who knew of this meeting, then surely they would only be able to think of this as a meeting of fellow friends all the same.
But, from how Jefferson was sitting at the seat of honor while the others were sitting around a long table, it seemed that there was a clear pecking order here. And that became even clearer from the atmosphere they were clad in.
「……They are the real thing.」
A short sentence. For people who didn’t know the circumstance, they would tilt their head wondering what he was speaking about. But, all the people at the dining table were instantly going astir from that sentence that was said by Jefferson with oppressive tone.
「Is that……is that, really true?」
「Wasn’t that just a mere group kidnapping……」
「Certainly it was a inexplicable case, but……」
「A case of that degree is not that rare. Chief, do you have any basis saying that?」
While their mouths were speaking words where confusion and expectation were mixing together, their gazes were concentrating at Jefferson.
「There is still only circumstantial evidence. But, I have no doubt of it. ……I have confirmed that all the people who were sent to investigate were returning to their daily life without getting any information. Far from investigating, they forget even the society.」
「However, just with that…… It’s not as though method to induce such situation doesn’t exist you know?」
「Yeah, I know. Of course, I didn’t make my conclusion just with that. ……This is the situation that can be currently confirmed. I judged that it is already at the level where there would be no problem calling it as supernatural.」
Saying that, Jefferson urged a servant with his gaze to distribute written report, the upper echelons sent their eyes to it. After they did that, they went astir once more.
The content that was written in that written report was,
It wrote, the house of the target group that had been confirmed once for some reason couldn’t be approached for the second time. Even when they walked following map, when they noticed they were walking in circle at a completely different place.
It wrote, the observer was observing from a distance of 800 meter, regardless of that their gaze would meet without fail.
It wrote, the family register of the target that shouldn’t exist until a few days ago was registered before they knew it.
It wrote, that abnormality wasn’t noticed by anyone in the administration side. They didn’t even feel that anything was out of place.
It wrote, everyday, their partners were disappearing one by one.
――It wrote, the people who were tasked to investigate, without exception all of them would have blank in their memory after a while. Even the matter that was being reporter right now, whether it was really true or not……was unknown.
Surely everyone was scanning the report until the very last sentence. Silence descended on the dining table. Everyone was fixated on the content of the report.
But, after a while……
「Fu, fuha, fuhahahahahaha-」
One person raised a laughing voice looking like he couldn’t hold it down. It was a hideously distorted laughing voice that was composed from joy and madness. However, such laughing voice that would grant discomfort to anyone hearing it whether one wanted it or not, was gradually spreading to the other upper echelons too.
「Finally, we found the real thing! Magnificent! I wonder just what kind of supernatural they are knowing!」
「At the very least, it seemed they have the skill to interfere with human’s brain. That’s something beyond the position of mere students.」
「It cannot stay like this. Chief! We have to immediately send assault force and secure one or two sample!」
Excitement was ruling over the place. It was a mad excitement, just like how someone who lost in a desert finally found an oasis, that feeling of insane arousal before their craving could be fulfilled.
Perhaps this was only natural for them. Because these people had been secretly maneuvering, searching for “that” through so many years and months that they couldn’t count anymore.
「Calm down……telling all of you that is impossible I guess. I understand well everyone’s feeling. Then, everyone agree of the plan to move with the purpose of obtaining sample? There will be many troublesome things if we completely kidnapped all of them……」
「What, they are people who had gone through group disappearance once you know, chief. Even if it happened for the second time, surely there will be no one who thinks it strange. Not to mention there are also those among them who didn’t return before this.」
「The ability possessed by the samples are concerning matter but……they are just children after all. It shows from how they are content with being student while possessing such power. We can do whatever we like if we involve their family into it. I will immediately begin to prepare the experiment site.」
「The returnee, they obtained supernatural while they disappeared……I’m bothered with the whereabouts of those that doesn’t return. Perhaps, they are in the place that have to do with supernatural? If we grasped that, even us……」
The upper echelons let out their opinion after Jefferson’s words. The meeting tonight was obviously filled with passion that was never seen before.
Like that, when they had decided the most of their plan from here on, Jefferson opened his mouth.
「Then, all of you, proceed with the matter paying meticulous attention for the sake of the accomplishment of our dearest wish. The priority target for securing sample will be the girl who is called as “Yue” as the first in the list――」
「About that, I think it’s better if you stop with that though.」
And also the girls who aren’t Japanese that are around the returnees――Jefferson was about to say that, but his words were suddenly cut off.
For a moment Jefferson thought that it was someone among the upper echelon who cut him off, but he immediately discard that idea as impossible. The returnees from the group disappearance in the middle of day that agitated the society――if it was asked what was the aspect that was clearly different in them compared to before, then the first thing that would attract the attention was the existence of the not Japanese girls who suddenly appeared.
Thinking from how their family register was created before anyone noticed too, then it would be valid to think of them as “visitor from the supernatural side”. Then it was natural to prioritize securing them as sample.
That was the common understanding between Jefferson and other upper echelons that they obtained from continuously investigating the series of turmoil of the returnees that started from the group disappearance. For that reason, it was impossible for anyone to object here. And above all, the voice of young man which cut him off was a voice he wasn’t familiar with!
Jefferson felt something cold running through his spine while raising an angry voice that questioned the identity of the person.
「Who! Where are you!?」
「No, I am right in front of you from some time ago. I was normally eating meal here.」
A voice that contained resignation resounded. At that moment, not only Jefferson, the upper echelons, the servants, and then the bodyguards too, they all finally aware.
With a really light mood, at the chair that was positioned at the opposite side of Jefferson, with his mouth stuffed with the same cooking that Jefferson and others were eating just now, was a Japanese young man greeting with his hand lightly raised!
「You bastard……where did you enter from? What is the guard at the entrance doing?」
The upper echelons and the servants were greatly shaken, the bodyguards were in the middle of taking out their handgun in order to recover from their disgrace, while Jefferson was restraining them from firing before he opened his mouth calmly. It seemed that he was also shaken, but the speed of him rallying back his mind ought to be said just as expected from an authority of politic-real estate world that managed this meeting.
Right after he took back his calm, dominating aura overflowed from Jefferson. That aura was something intense, if an ordinary person felt it then not only they would wither down without being able to say anything, they would undoubtedly trickle cold sweats while getting all flustered.
But, that young man warded off such dominating aura like a swaying willow……or rather, in the first place the young man didn’t even pay attention to that aura, he kept eating the cooking of Allgrey residence with gusto while talking.
「Nguh. You asked me from where, I entered normally from the door you know. Mugu mugu, I even said excuse me. ……Though I was normally ignored.」
「……That, seems to be the cooking of my residence though?」
「It’s awfully delicious. As expected from the place of a big shot politician and the real estate king. There was leftover in the kitchen, so I loaded it onto a plate by myself. ……I, I pretty much asked okay? I took silence to mean OK, but I properly asked okay? I’m not stealing you know?」
For some reason the young man kept reminding something like「It’s true you know?」. Jefferson knitted his eyebrows at such young man. The more he looked, the more this young man looked like a normal youth. No, in a sense, he was too normal in presence and appearance that if he didn’t concentrate it felt like he would naturally forget him, perhaps he should say that this young man wasn’t normal in that sense……
「Who are you……or perhaps it’s too unsophisticated for me to ask that? That remark of yours just now in this situation. And then that ability that managed to infiltrate here without anyone able to notice. You are……a returnee huh?」
Jefferson spoke his conjecture with conviction, but for some reason the young man who heard his words frowned and his face looked a little sad. While Jefferson was perplexed from that inexplicable reaction, the young man asked with a voice that also sounded sad.
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「A returnee huh? you asked, if you investigated about us, then shouldn’t you know about me too? I expected a reaction like『You bastard-, you are a returnee huh!?』, but……」
「What? A report of you is not……」
Jefferson was perplexed. He had looked over all the report of the returnee, he had driven into his head all the information of the returnees’ profile from their family until their relative. If the young man before his eyes was a returnee that had been reported, then there was no way he couldn’t recall him.
But, when one of his servants excitedly showed to him the returnees written report that had been converted into digital data in tablet……
「…………………Returnee list No. 28――Endo Kousuke? ………………ah」
「Yep, you forgot aren’t you? Isn’t that right? That’s fine, I understand. Hehe, I’m used to it. Although my shadow is thin even in digital data, I’m not co, concerned at all you know? I am a riajuu you know? That’s why, I’m really, really not concerned at all okay?」
Strange silence descended on that place. The young man――Kousuke who seemed to be thin in shadow even inside digital data was making *kacha kacha* sound with the spoon and fork, only that sound was resounding with clarity inside that room. Word of「Delish-」that he was whispering until just now was changing into「It’s salty huh」.
「S, so this is the supernatural that you possess.」
「……I got this since birth. Even my mum, she often forget to do things like picking me up at kindergarten……」
「……I, I see. That, you know, must be hard for you huh.」
For some reason Kousuke received gentle words and sympathy from the man who was aiming at him and his friends. The salt content of the high class cooking was increasing! A female servant was wiping her eyes with a handkerchief. The eyes of the bodyguards who were readying their gun until just now were turning lukewarm!
While spouting complaint「If you sympathize than give me presence」inside his heart, Kousuke cleared his throat *cough*, he stopped eating and opened his mouth.
「So, about the reason I came here.」
「Mu, that’s right. Certainly I’ve never thought that a returnee will directly march into here. It appeared that your side has also investigated us to a certain degree. ……You, don’t tell me, you came alone here?」
「Well, yeah. Actually I was in the middle of personal travel though. But suddenly you guys are making conspiracy, so I was told to go here for a bit to crush all of you.」
Kousuke was looking at his smartphone while saying「In front of Rana, I cannot refuse that guy’s request」with his shoulders dropping down. Seeing that Jefferson exchanged look with the upper echelons and the bodyguards while his expression turned ridiculing.
「Crushing us, is it. Looks like you are growing impudent after obtaining supernatural huh. It is overwhelmingly faster to shot your four limbs with lead bullet in this range. It seems that you have the technique to interfere with your opponent’s awareness, but in this limited space, can you crush us faster than bullet?」
*gacha* Hard ominous sounds resounded countless time. The bodyguards were focusing their gun muzzle toward Kousuke. Their number was a little less than twenty people. The place was a large dining room where sixty people could enter with room to spare, but certainly in this limited space it was equivalent with not having any way to escape from twenty gun muzzles.
Jefferson who thought that this young man was showing composure because he was a child who was drunk in his own power reversely showed a composed attitude. He crossed his arms above the table, and then while hiding his mouth behind his joined hand, his sharp gaze was striking toward Kousuke.
「Young man. Won’t you come to our side? According to the report, it seems that the livelihood of all of you doesn’t change much before and after obtaining supernatural. It’s worthy of praise that not one of you is running wild, but surely that’s only because you all don’t understand the way to use the power you obtained. Then, we will teach you what is the right way to use that power. This Jefferson Allgrey can promise you, a life that is filled with riches and fame that is beyond your imagination.」
「……You really can say that with straight face after calling human as sample huh. They said that the skin of a politician’s face is thick but, that’s really true. Scaryyy」
Kousuke didn’t look like he was particularly moved by Jefferson’s persuading words, rather he showed a creeped out look. While raising one of his eyebrows that money and fame didn’t resound in Kousuke’s heart, Jefferson continued his words.
「Then what about woman? You are ――」
「I have girlfriend, I’m fine in that. Rather, my girlfriend is a super beauty already. She is already the best-, yep.」
Having his words cut off and hearing Kousuke suddenly speaking fondly of his girlfriend in front of him caused Jefferson’s gaze to become something severe.
「……It’s natural for you to feel almighty if you have a special power. But, what is called reality is something that is more heartless then what all of you is thinking. Perhaps if it’s just you, or possibly it’s just all of you returnees then you all might make it work out somehow. But, what about the people around you? Your family, your friends who are not returnee, relatives. Can you protect all of them? Our society is not just about violence you know?」
Saying that, Jefferson looked at his surrounding. Ahead of his gaze were the upper echelons of their society ――every one of them were successful people who possessed social power. And then, the gaze of Jefferson spoke more eloquently than anything.
That this wasn’t everything their society possessed.
In other words, even in the one in a million chance all the people here died, their society itself wouldn’t be finished. There were still other people with power gathering in their society.
「I’ll recognize your ability to gather information until this far and your guts to infiltrate into here alone. But, for you to be under the impression that the situation before your eyes is everything there is, you are still just a child. We have seek for supernatural from long ago, the society that have laid stretch our root to everywhere in the world, we are――」
Jefferson who implicitly pressed for obedience under the name of cooperation to Kousuke with condescending attitude was about to disclose the name of their society with plenty of emotion, but right before he could, Kousuke easily revealed that name.
Jefferson who twitched in reaction was about to open his mouth further, but ignoring him Kousuke ate the last of his food and operated his smartphone with one hand, then he spoke out the content that was displayed there.
「Abduction, murder, robbery, human experiment, on top of that even inducing war, a fanatic group of supernatural that will do anything――Hydra. Certainly it looks like you guys have long history. The origin of the name is because no matter how many upper echelons and parts of the organization are crushed, the survivor of the organization that is hiding somewhere will restore the organization back. The organization had existed since before the colonial period, historically the organization has been crushed several times, but before one knows it the organization is revived. The current chief is you……」
After that Kousuke read out loud the internal conditions of secret society Hydra. And then the information of upper echelon bunches who were here like their name, surface information, family, friends, work relatives, on top of that even the name of their illegitimate child or relationship with other organization that they kept secret even inside the organization. He didn’t stop with just that, the concealed upper echelons who weren’t here and the location of bases, and even further and further, things like the innermost thought of the upper echelons toward each other and so on, Kousuke disclosed everything.
It was clear that what was disclosed wasn’t nonsense from the upper echelons who opened their mouth so wide it looked like their jaw might come off and their expression whose face turned completely pale.
Everything that they had done was impossible to be known by the information network of children or even by ordinary adult. Jefferson who had that fact thrust right back at his face not just by two fold but by ten thousand fold, the color of his face clearly shown how the capacity of his trained mind had completely went over capacity.
「When you peer into the abyss, the abyss will also peer back at you――su~ch famous expression, if it’s you guys who loves supernatural then surely you have heard it before. We are standing in the superior position. Just how do you guys able to blindly believe such thing without any basis at all?」
「You, you bastard……」
「Well, you guys, you all are veteran through many adversity in the surface world huh. You guys must have never even dreamed that children who is going through school life without a care after getting their hand on magic will be able to overwhelm you even in information volume……」
「Why……just how, you know that much……」
「That’s, if we know that there are some guys aiming for us, to say nothing of us, there is no way our demon king-sama will stay silent. Because that guy, he look like a cruel and heartless savage bastard, but actually he is totally spoiling the important people around him.」
「Demon king, you say?」
「Yeah. A godslaying demon king. That guy killed even god for the sake of a woman, and now you guys try to lay your hand on exactly that woman.」
Kousuke’s gaze was growing to be filled with limitless sympathy. Jefferson’s expression was grandly convulsing. There was already no dominating aura of a big-shot that could overpower ordinary person coming from him. Because he was a veteran manager and a politician who had piled up many experiences of going through adversity that he was able to understand Kousuke’s experience and felt a sense of danger welling up inside him.
That was――they had touched something that should not be touched.
But, however, the people who were still relatively young among the upper echelons didn’t have enough of that intuition.
「What is, what is, what demon king-. Just, what godslaying! Even nonsense has limit!」
「Tha, that’s right! As expected you are just a kid. It seems that you don’t even know how to bluff. Something like godslaying, as expected you have exaggerate too much.」
「Chief, no more word is necessary! Let’s make this brat pay the compensation for looking down on the society! You guys, just keep him alive! Do it!」
Saying that, they started a reckless action without waiting for the order of the chief which was normally impossible. Jefferson immediately tried to raise his voice to stop them, but faster than he could, several of the black-suited bodyguards, because of the strange atmosphere and the mysterious uneasy feeling they had, as though aroused by their impulse they were aiming their gun toward Kousuke’s limbs while jumping forward.
「……Haa. I had more or less tried it, even though I thought of doing this by getting spared from releasing the shackle.」
Inside the situation that was moving all at once, there was only that whisper resounding.
「Wha-. Where is-」
「Sheet-, what is going on!? Where did that guy go!?」
「No way, he vanished!?」
The jumping forward black-suited bodyguards were surrounding a chair that had no one on it in feeling dumbfounded. The chair should have Kousuke sitting on it until just a moment ago. From the beginning until the end they didn’t take off their gaze even for an instant from that chair.
He was certainly there. Right in front of their eyes. They would grip him up, pulled him down from the chair, and held him down. They reached out their hands without leaving any place to escape while even imaging how he would counterattack, they were certainly aware of him until the moment they could touch him. Yet despite so their hands moved through empty air and “when they noticed” the target had vanished. It was as though he wasn’t there right from the start.
「-, our mind has been interfered already!? Be careful, our awareness is being manipulated!」
Jefferson, thinking that it couldn’t be helped now it had come to this, he pushed at the emergency button at the other side of the table to summon the bodyguards standing by everywhere inside the residence while giving a warning. And then, he himself also took out a handgun from his breast pocket, at that time Kousuke’s voice resounded once more. However, it was a voice with slightly different air than until just now.
「Interference to awareness? Fuh, what exaggeration…… My Ground Shrinker was beyond the pale of your perception ability, isn’t that’s all there is to it?」
「Wha-, impossible, standing on the ceiling!?」
Jefferson and others who were staying on guard against the most likely possibility of Kousuke sliding under the table was thinking in the corner of their mind ‘doesn’t it feel like his tone is a little strange?’ while they looked up in surprise, and then they exposed a really stupid expression from shock.
Although, surely such reaction was something that couldn’t be helped if they saw a human standing really naturally on the ceiling as though to say ‘Gravity? What’s that?’.
(Why, why, is he making a strange pose!?)
Yes, Kousuke was standing upside down on the ceiling while covering his face with one hand with his eyes glaring down at Jefferson and others from between his fingers’ gap! On top of that, before they knew it his body was already in an appearance of total black clothes, his eyes were wearing a sunglass on one-lens type, and his other hand was holding a black knife in a position that was crossed with the hand that was covering his face! Surely if the rabbit eared assassination group of another world saw this, they would undoubtedly clap and cheer while giving high praise of「What cool pose!!」!
「Fools who fell into the abyss of selfish desires and fanaticism. I’ll teach into your body, that in this world, there are things that you ought not to know.」
For some reason, while rotating once before displaying a chuuni pose (version 24) again, Kousuke, no, the assassin of the strongest class who was awakened in various meaning at the other world, thrown a declaration of war toward the fanatic occult group. Together with that chuuni self-introduction!!
「The shadow of demon king, the vanguard of the dark rabbit ear family――Rapid Fang Shadow Claw, Kousuke E Abyssgate. Has arrived!!」
What does rabbit ear mean……… Abyssgate, gate to where…… Those retort of Jefferson and others didn’t form into loud words.
Because right after that, the peerless one even against the god’s apostles in another world, the one with the thinnest shadow in the world, the best assassin in the world bared his fang.
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