Magi Craft Meister 497
15 Showdown With The Demons Arc
15-10 The Duel
“Lucas! Stop! …Stop this instant!”
“No, young lady. You even offered yourself as a slave to him. Please let me see with my own eyes if this guy is worthy of such an offer!”
Lucas relentlessly challenged Jin to a duel.
“Shion, does he know in which position he is in right now?”
When Jin asked, Shion’s face went pale and she quickly bowed her head.
“I’m… I’m sorry! Please, please, don’t change your mind about helping us!”
Apparently, Shion seemed to understand her position. In other words, she must have feared that Jin wouldn’t really be at a loss if he were to abandon them to their fate.
However, Jin wasn’t planning to do such a thing, because he wanted to keep Kaina Village safe and to learn more about this world’s past.
Jin was sure that there would be no way he could lose if he were to simply deploy a barrier and attack Lucas from behind its cover, though he doubted Lucas would be satisfied with that.
“Father, please let me accept his challenge in your stead.”
Reiko offered this alternative to the pondering Jin. She had asked Laojun to analyze the demons’ physical abilities and inferred that she should be able to fight Lucas.
“Hm, I see. Looks like I have no choice but to take you up on your offer. But don’t go too hard on him, okay?”
Thinking that there might be no other way to resolve this, Jin gave those instructions to Reiko.
“Since you’re acting in Shion’s stead as her attendant, I will be your opponent in Father’s stead as her daughter.”
“Hmph, fine. It’ll be a fight between attendants, then!”
Lucas said that because he knew that Reiko was an automata.
It was still bright enough outside, so they decided to have the duel in the open area in front of Nidou Castle.
“Is your body well enough for this, Lucas?”
“Hmph, as your guard, young lady, I can fight anytime!”
Reiko was quick to throw a comeback at his boastful words.
“And despite that, you still managed to faint and had to be taken into medical care.”
Shion had recovered to the point where she could walk, but in order to not overexert herself, she let the castle’s specialist Topaz 101 hold her up in its arms and take her outside.
“Um, so where’s your weapon?”
Jin asked Lucas.
“No weapons! I’ll be fighting with my own body!”
“Got it. Are you ready to begin?”
The moment Lucas said that, Reiko dashed forward.
She instantly appeared right in front of Lucas and threw a right uppercut straight at his jaw, but stopped it right before it actually hit him.
“Looks like I’ve already won.”
“W-Why you sneaky…! We’re putting our abilities to the test, so come at me head on!”
Lucas’ words had come across as the cold sweat from a sore loser. Reiko jumped backwards, taking some distance from him.”
“Is that so? Then, please come attack me when you’re ready.”
This time, Reiko simply stood there, readying herself for Lucas’ attack.
This time Lucas dashed towards Reiko. Using his momentum, he threw a punch at a speed that would have been hard for the untrained eye to follow. But Reiko easily moved out of the way.
Lucas threw even more punches at her. However, Reiko blocked each of them using only one hand.
“Damn it! How about this!?”
Lucas shifted towards foot techniques this time. A front kick, a roundhouse kick, a knee strike, and an ax kick.
Yet Reiko dodged each of them with just the bare minimum amount of movement.
Both Jin and Shion, as well as Belle and Barrow –who had just arrived to see the duel– were witnessing a battle so fast-paced that their eyes had trouble keeping up with it.
“Damn it! Why can’t I hit you!?”
Perhaps he would normally be strengthened by magical power, but these lands had a low concentration of Ether.
Lucas was gradually running out of breath. At this rate, he could end up tiring himself to death.
But Reiko didn’t want that to happen. Considering Lucas’s personality, she thought that the only way to get him to stop would be by showing their actual difference in ability.
“I’ll be attacking now!”
Reiko, who had been defensive until now, had already read Lucas’s attack patterns. And she let out a flurry of punches and kicks that were faster than his.
At this point, Lucas was the one who was restricted to defending. But Reiko couldn’t afford to stop attacking. If anything, she was getting even faster. Even so, Reiko’s output was only 15 percent.
Right when Lucas’s right hand seemed to be about to catch Reiko’s fist, Reiko instead caught his right hand with her armpit, and twisted her body. It was an “Armpit Reversal”, one of the secret techniques of the Knights of the Shouro Empire.
After bending his elbow joint contrary to its intended direction long enough, Lucas naturally lost his balance. When she applied more weight in response, his posture was thrown off. Then, by throwing herself on the floor while holding him in that position, Reiko successfully threw Lucas to the floor as well.
At that moment, Reiko could have broken his elbow or shoulder joints, but she wasn’t planning to do anything like that, so she let go of his arm.
After pushing Lucas away, Reiko distanced herself from him. Lucas, on the other hand, had an amazing sense of balance, leaping away and taking his distance as well without as much as stumbling after being pushed away.
Reiko then instantly measured the distance between herself and Lucas, and then between herself and Jin, and decided to try a single technique.
After briefly increasing her output to 50%, she rushed at Lucas at a speed close to Mach 1. However, she came to a sudden stop about 1 meter in front of him.
Rushing at a speed just below the speed of sound had created a lump of compressed air in front of Reiko. Then, by suddenly stopping in her tracks, the compressed air mass separated from her and continued to move at the same speed while expanding.
It was as if a giant speaker had vibrated only once while producing an incredibly low pitched sound.
Since it wasn’t actually magic, it had been severely dampened and it could really be used only at a short distance, but this mass of air struck Lucas. It was similar, if not a bit more potent, than the Wind Magic spell “Wind Blow”.
As a result of taking that at point-blank range, Lucas was sent flying about 20 meters away before falling to the ground where he fainted on the spot.
“…I hope I didn’t go too far.”
Shion’s worried voice resounded. Reiko rushed to where Lucas had fallen to take a look at his condition.
Seemingly concerned about something, Reiko quickly called Jin, who also rushed towards Lucas.
“…Please take a look at him with ‘Analyze’.”
“Hm? Okay. ‘Analyze’.”
Then, Jin’s face went pale.
The flow of magic in his body was completely abnormal.
“This didn’t come up during his ‘Diagnose’…”
When Lucas’s body was examined with medical magic, he seemed to be no different from a normal human being, but a clear difference was made evident by using ‘Analyze’. That is his flow of magical power.
Normally, magical power would circulate in the body like blood, but in Lucas’ case, it didn’t. Rather, it felt as if it flowed out from one point in his body and then gathered itself back again.
Failing to come up with a good explanation for that, Jin called Shion.
“In exchange for Lucas’ rudeness, could I ask you to allow me to use the ‘Analyze’ spell on you?”
Shion’s face changed color. However, he quickly made up her mind and nodded.
“Understood. …Go ahead.”
“Thank you. …’Analyze’. …Hmm, this…”
According to its result, Shion was no different from any other human being.
This meant that while Lucas was very similar to humans and demons, he was actually a different kind of creature.
“Um, Lord Jin?”
Rather than trying to come up with an answer himself, Jin decided to ask Shion directly.
“Tell me, what exactly is Lucas? He’s from a slightly different race from you… right?”
Hearing those words made Shion’s face turn pale yet again.
“…You’ve figured that much, haven’t you? …I should’ve expected that from the Magi Craft Meister…”
Shion hung her head down in dejection.
“Yes, Lucas isn’t exactly a demon. It would be more accurate to refer to him as a ‘Servant’.”
According to Shion’s explanation, in the Land of the Demons (for the lack of a better term, since their territories weren’t divided into countries) there were both “Demons” and “Servants”.
Like Lucas, all members of the servant caste were dark-skinned and had identical brown hair. And they all had brownish-dark eyes.
“Lucas is only 5 years old.”
“Those from the servant caste grow at an accelerated rate. He became my personal attendant only last year, so I don’t have a tight grasp on his reins yet. Please take that into consideration when dealing with him.”
“Understood. Reiko, how’s Lucas’ condition?”
“…He just fainted. He should be recovering consciousness soon.”
Just as she said that, Lucas groaned and opened his eyes.
“Are you okay?”
Reiko asked him that just to make sure. Lucas got up slowly and placed his hands on the ground in front of Reiko.
“I was completely defeated! You’re much stronger than me!”
Then he turned towards Jin and lowered his head.
“My apologies! I now fully understand the true ability of the Magi Craft Meister!”
Then, he turned towards Shion.
“It’s exactly as you said, young lady. The Magi Craft Meister will definitely save you and your people.”
After returning to Nidou Castle, Jin handed Lucas a glass of Pelshika juice.
The magical power consumed by the match was restored, and Lucas regained his energy. There didn’t seem to be any injuries on him other than some scratches, so Jin healed them with “Cure”.
“Well then, you must be pretty tired, so wrap it up for today. I’ll leave Ruby 101 here, so please let her know if you need anything.”
Ruby 101 was quite adept at offensive magic, especially of the flame attribute, among golem maids. And she was also able to use Paralyze, so she was the right choice for both guard duty and surveillance.
In addition, Lands 16 and 17 had been called from Hourai Island, and were standing beside Ruby 101, hidden under the mantle of Invisibility.
Jin’s next move would actually begin starting from the following day thereafter.
Using the Warp Gate in his own room on the castle’s 5th floor, Jin went to Hourai Island.