The Adventure of a Boy with the Mind of a Middle-aged Man

The Adventure of a Boy with the Mind of a Middle-Aged Man Chapter 54

The Worst Outcome – Blue-Beard

A murky darkness.

“And I’m back to the damn starting point!”

Just as he thought he had accomplished his objective, everything vanished. And in the darkness, he lamented this absurdity, crying “damn it all!!” into the sky.

He thought he had obtained the best material when he first laid eyes on that impudent brat. When that person had given him the special ability ‘Rashomon’, Blue-Beard had only dreamt of completing his goals and recklessly searched for any method to obtain the strongest demon.

Rashomon needs the following three steps to gain control.

First, the Blood Soul Cloth demonifies one’s body and soul, then he calls forward an actual demon via Demon Possession, which then possesses the body. The demons called forth can also be stored in different spaces called Demon Castles.

The strength of the demon depends on the artificial demon’s vessel created by Blood Soul Cloth. Thus, the stronger the human, the higher quality and stronger the artificial demon will be. 

That brat was overwhelmingly stronger than any of this world’s other inhabitants.

And the more negative emotions he evoked in that brat, the stronger the artificial demon would have been. He would have been the supreme vessel. And yet, Blue-Beard had lost his own body due to the actions of a certain fool named Riemann. Blood Soul Cloth could create two types of artificial demons: the type that could be remotely controlled, and a parasitic type that took control directly.

While the remotely controllable type didn’t care much about compatibility, the parasitic type had Blue-Beard’s soul directly poured inside the demonified body, thus needing high compatibility between their souls. So, finding a suitable body to take control of directly was incredibly difficult, but in exchange, he could freely modify the body.

However, if the heart was destroyed like it had been earlier, everything would collapse. That’s why Blue-Beard usually stored his heart in a string-like shape, so even if he received an attack, he could easily shift his heart’s position and prevent his body from collapsing.

Just earlier, the original owner, Riemann, had taken back control for a moment and stabbed himself in the neck.

Since Blue-Beard didn’t have a physical body, he couldn’t move without latching onto a body. And without manifesting in the world, he was reduced to observing from afar in this darkness. It wasn’t much different from death.

Due to this, Blue-Beard always had several spare bodies in stock in the Amrzs Kingdom.

“Thank God I left two bodies.”

He would latch onto a new body and take over.

“Huh? Then what about the other?”

He couldn’t find either of them.

Some kind of temporary obstacle in the connection probably. It had never happened before though……

—Not good.

Blue-Beard suddenly looked up and noticed several presences standing before him. 

Their upper halves were clouded in a thick, white mist and their faces were vague.

“Who are you guys!?”

One man stepped forward.

— Don’t be so cold, have you forgotten already? I’m the one you had demonified after toying with for who knows how long.

What was happening? Well, this was kind of like Blue Beard’s mental world. Nobody could interfere at all, let alone a demonified soul. It was absolutely impossible.

— Your two bodies were destroyed by the strongest adventurer, Caesar himself. 

“How? The inferior people of this world couldn’t kill them before!”

Blue-Beard had considered this possibility and had thus carefully hid the bodies. Besides, he had put his heart into these creations, so even if things evolved into a brawl, the bodies wouldn’t lose to the inhabitants of this world.

— How pitiful……

He still couldn’t make out his face, but could vaguely make out his expression. Enraged, he shouted, “A mere lab rat dares to pity me!”

— Oh inferior life form from another world, if you still can’t believe, then how would you explain not being able to possess those bodies?

The voice contained not a hint of rage, hatred, or other negative emotions, but just a strong feeling of pity.

“Stop speaking in that disgusting manner!”

More than anything else, those words filled with pity scratched at the last bits of his heart.

No wonder. After all—after all, he was—

— We’re the same as you. We all share the same heart and understand each other.

“No! You all are feeble-minded, foolish and powerless livestock!”

Understanding the livestock of this world? Never……He would never accept such a thing!

— You’re right. Understanding each other would require both of us to acknowledge the value of the other’s existence. You’re always trying to justify; you wouldn’t get it.

“Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!!!” 

The more he shouted, the more he realized the emotions he had been suppressing all this time were bursting out.

— We never thought we’d understand you before we were invited here. We had only seen you as a heartless monster.

Blue-Beard had a feeling he wouldn’t be able to move forward if he heard anymore.

— But not anymore, you have something you want to protect…….

“Shut your mouth!!”

— Even if you have to sacrifice everything in this world.

“Stooooopp!”

— We don’t hate you anymore; After all, we’ve experienced all your pain. We feel the same as her now.

“Her……?”

His head was all muddled up. If these guys were demonified souls, then how could they be so much at peace? Why weren’t they absolutely enraged and hurling insults at him?

— Let’s share our answers, Shian Aoba. We can leave the rest to her.

“Why do you all know my name—”

“Onii-chan.”

He heard a nostalgic voice from behind.

“Impossible……”

It was the voice he had most eagerly been waiting for.

He turned his head around to see his only remaining relative standing before him with her usual kind smile.

“Thank you, but I’m fine now.”

“Wait! I’ll create the strongest vessel soon! Then I’ll be able to heal you!!”

It had to happen. Shian had been the one to step into that place out of curiosity after all.

Shian had cried while holding a limp Kanna in his arms in that place where everything had died. And he declared to that person, “She’ll definitely wake up if I fulfill the conditions.”

“That’s absolutely impossible.” Kanna shook her head.

“Why!? I’ll soon have the strongest demon, and then—”

“After all, my body’s been long dead.”

“Dead……?”

The word was stuck in his mouth, never even entering his brain.

“Actually, it’s a lot worse than that.” Kanna gave a sad smile as she scratched her cheek. 

“What does that mean!?”

He shouldn’t have asked. He knew he shouldn’t have, but the words just slipped out.

“Do you remember the day I was attacked by a demon?”

“Y-yeah……”

She was possessed by a demon god which rapidly drained her of her vitality. It was just a matter of time before she died. Then, that person forcefully put Kanna’s body and soul to sleep and gave Shian the abnormal ability, ‘Rashomon’. 

Rashomon gave Shian the ability to understand the demon god’s intentions; upon creating an artificial demon suitable for the demon god, he was promised that the demon god would leave Kanna’s body. 

Ever since that day, Shian had been creating artificial demons using the inhabitants of this world along with the demon god.

“The demon god had temporarily possessed my body, which had never changed. But from that time, I wasn’t a human anymore. Just like what you had done to all those people, I was also demonified.” Kanna’s voice began to sound farther away.

“There’s no way that’s true! I saw the miracle of you being healed from the brink of death with my very own eyes!”

“That’s not it, my wounds were healed because that man-eating demon had possessed me and turned me into a demon. After all, they were the ones who had wounded me when I saw the massacre!”

“You’re lying!!”

There’s no way that it was true. That person had, although temporarily, saved Kanna from the brink of death. That person had welcomed Blue-Beard into the organization known as Hero’s Paradise and been so helpful. There’s no way that person could have done that.

“I’m not, it’s the truth.”

“Guhu! Hwahaha! I see, I get it now! That brat created an illusion or something, didn’t he!?”

“Onii-chan, I’m Sorry.” Kanna neither affirmed nor denied his words, just drooped her head down sadly. 

“You…. weren’t……. lying?”

As she nodded, he felt his very foundations begin to crumble beneath him.

She was his one and only younger sister, more precious to him than even his own life. And she probably knew that. Shian just didn’t want to believe it. 

“Get……real. Then what have I been doing all this time—” In the face of a paralyzing void of pitch-black emptiness, he slumped to the ground and covered his face with his hands.

“Thanks to a certain person, I’m able to move in this form. I can’t do much, but I can at least tell you my feelings during this dream.”

“And that person destroyed my vessel as well?”

“Yes, I didn’t want you to keep doing all those horrible things for my sake anymore.”

“Haha……. Right. It was over a long time ago.” 

He neither burst into tears nor fury, but into a dry laugh.

“It’s not over yet. I’m not sure why, but my demon vessel and the soul of that boorish demon have quickly begun to assimilate together. It will soon awaken, and don’t we have an obligation to prevent that from happening?”

“Kanna, you really are the same as always.”

Ah, that’s right. She had a straight personality that didn’t bend, no matter what kind of tragedy she faced. Kanna had always been like that.

“Onii-chan, I—”

“I know, what should I do?”

He didn’t think he would be forgiven after what he had done up until now, and it’s not like he felt like atoning to the people of this world. It was all for releasing Kanna.

“I’ll take things from here.” A man with a full-on wicked smile appeared in front of him.

He wore a clown hat, white and red clothes, and had very peculiar makeup on his face like some kind of clown that would appear in a circus.

“Who are you?”

Given the timing, he was probably the man who had given Kanna the ability to move again.

“I’m Greed. I want to get it out of the way first, but I’m just thoughts here, so I can’t interfere with the real world in any way.”

“And so?”

“It’s regrettable. Even if you were just lucky, you’ve managed to corner him this much. Nobody else could have done it. I wouldn’t be surprised to see you joining our ranks if you don’t make any mistakes.”

“What should I do?”

He was over with this worthless conversation. 

What an impatient child.” 

“……” Shian shrugged and Greed straightened his posture in response. He would finally begin with the important stuff.

“First are the prerequisites, it looks like the demon’s soul within Rashomon has undergone a swift transformation, and Kanna, who had rejected the soul, has begun fusing with the vessel. We probably can’t stop this.”

“We can’t?”

Then Shian, who could no longer affect the world, had nothing he could do.

“Yes, I think his magic power affected it somehow. Geez, he’s becoming even more of a monster.”

“I’d appreciate it if we could stay on topic!”

“But of course. Um, let’s see, I want you to come and wake him up.”

“That brat?”

He was the only one that made sense in context.

“That’s right. If you wake that sleepyhead then this place will be restored.”

After fighting that brat, Shian had realized just how abnormal he was.

His speech and ability to think were so unlike a child’s, and his fighting prowess could only be called abnormal.

The first time they met, Shian was so far below the brat’s mysterious abilities and had been toyed around with.

The second time, the brat had lost his strength by chance and Shian had managed to capture him. If the brat had been at full strength, however, the tables would have turned in an instant.

Shian couldn’t bring himself to like this brat. He was haughty, nothing managed to shake him, and was strong enough to carry out his words. His strength however, Shian could place his faith in it.

Besides, there was nothing to hesitate about. The Kanna before him was just a remnant of her soul, which meant that she hadn’t been fully released

“How should I wake him up?”

“By sacrificing him.”

“Sacrifice?”

Greed gave a chilling smile. “Yes, sacrifice his soul.”

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