Magi Craft Meister 529
16 The Demons’ Mastermind Arc
16-08 Break-out and Hostage Taking
“Kyaah! What do you think you’re doing!?”
“You bastards! What do you think you’re doing with Lady Istalis!?”
“Yaaah! Help me, Lucas!”
“Lady Shion! Damn it, let go of her!”
Six golems, each less than 2 meters tall, came rushing in. Their movement was slow, but they still managed to catch both Istalis and Shion while they were sitting.
Though Netros and Lucas were able to quickly dodge them, it meant nothing since their mistresses had been captured just as easily.
Two of those golems seemed to have their sights set on Jin (‘s Substitute Doll), and rushed to catch him as well.
“What do you think you’re doing?”
“You won’t lay a finger on him.”
Reiko and Ann jumped in to get rid of those golems.
Ann pushed away one of those golem with such force that it was driven into a nearby wall, while the one that Reiko attacked was shattered into small pieces.
“What on earth is going on?”
Understandably enough, Jin had been unable to keep up with the sudden turn of events.
“If it’s come to this, we have no other choice. Reiko, use the Ether Jammer!”
Reiko activated her built-in Ether Jammer, causing the golems that had restrained Istalis and Shion to stop moving.
But at the same time, not only Istalis and Shion, but Netros, Lucas, and the three demons from the Gospel clan all started to groan in pain. They seemed to be suffering from Ether deficiency.
“This is bad… Reiko, Ann, take care of the remaining golems, quickly!”
Following Jin’s instructions, Reiko and Ann disposed of the remaining four golems in a matter of seconds. Jin then had Reiko stop her Ether Jammer.
Istalis and the others sighed in relief.
In human terms, it was as if one were to suddenly appear at the top of Mt. Everest. The amount of oxygen in the air there is less than one third its normal ratio. Of course it would be difficult to breathe there.
It appeared that a similar thing would happen once the Ether concentration in the air was caused to drop suddenly. Since humans weren’t as dependent on Ether as demons, the effect on their physical condition was almost non-existent.
Fabius was lying on the floor, and seemed to have fainted on the spot.
Alectus and Milonia seemed to have regained their senses.
An idea came to Jin’s mind, and he quickly gave Ann a command.
“Ann, restrain Alectus.”
Ann twisted Alectus’ arm behind his back.
“Reiko, use your ‘Paralyze’.”
She then paralyzed Alectus while was still being held by Ann. They were going to take him hostage.
“Paralyze Milonia as well.”
Jin quickly issued another command, thinking it would be bad to get too noisy about it. Just in case, they paralyzed Fabius as well.
“Alright, let’s get out of here.”
After going through the busted door and reaching the hallway, they were met by four people -probably other members of the Gospel clan- who glared at them.
Their faces were pale and their eyes were devoid of life. It made Jin feel a bit uncomfortable, but he could only afford to think about escaping for the time being.
“Step aside. Don’t you care about what happens to Alectus?”
Buth the four demons were as if they couldn’t hear Jin’s words, and all jumped at them at the same time.”
Reiko unleashed her ‘Paralyze’, and all four demons dropped to the floor in an instant.
“There were about 10 people in the Gospel clan. There might be two or three more of them somewhere around here. Don’t let your guard down.”
Just as Jin had finished saying that, two men appeared from the shadows of the hallway, each of them holding a baton over their heads.
But still, they were no match for Reiko’s reaction speed. They were neutralized in an instant.
The party advanced through the hallway led by Netros, and followed by Istalis, Shion, Lucas, Jin, Ann (who was still holding Alectus hostage), and Reiko, in that order.
Eventually, they reached a familiar exit.
“We’re almost out.”
The outside of the cave seemed cloudy and dim.
Istalis and Shion started shivering.
The inside of the Gospel clan’s cave was about 15 degrees Celsius thanks to the cave’s internal heating, but the area around the entrance was closer to 5 degrees. It felt even worse due to the fact that none of them had had any time to get their jackets on.
“We can change our clothes once we get back to Capricorn 1.”
Trying to cheer them on, Jin instructed Reiko to contact Land 1.
“He’ll be here soon, Father.”
Jin had been a little worried that something might have happened to Capricorn 1 during the night, but Land 1 had been on constant watch and the vehicle itself had a strong Barrier.
In addition, Falcons 2 and 3 were in charge of aerial surveillance, so there really wasn’t much to be concerned about.
A minute later, Capricorn one finally arrived, and the party was able to catch a breath.
“Land 1, we’re getting out of here, quickly.”
Jin decided to keep his distance with the dwelling place of the Gospel clan for the time being.
They had reached a distance of about 10 km after going on for half an hour at a speed of 20 km/h. Alectus was tied to a passenger seat, with Reiko having her Paralyzer ready to fire at any moment right next to him, and Ann with the Ether Jammer ready to go as well.
After taking all those measures, Jin finally approached Alectus and woke him up by using “Healing.”
Alectus opened his eyes, and didn’t seem to know where he was, or why he was there.
“You’re up, huh? Why did the Gospel clan suddenly attack us? You seemed to be so friendly up until now…”
Alectus was reluctant to answer that question.
“I’m concerned about that sudden change of attitude. I’d like to know why it happened.”
Still, Alectus remained silent.
“Do you think you might have been influenced by Enslavement Magic?”
“Father, I think that’s quite unlikely. After all, I’ve already used my ‘Paralyze’ on him, and though its effect is not as great as if I had used ‘Shock’, it should have been enough to jolt some sense back into him.”
“Wait a minute. You can dispel Enslavement Magic with a ‘Shock’?”
Istalis joined in the conversation.
“In our case, we also know of a canceling spell…”
“Is that so? Can you use it yourself?”
“Can you try using it on him?”
But Istalis shook her head.
“No, because Mr. Alectus isn’t being affected by Enslavement Magic.”
Just like when they went to see the Shinra clan. Another kind of Enslavement Magic, or…
“It would be great if there were some spell that could cancel the effects of any other spell…”
Both Jin (‘s Substitute Doll) in Capricorn 1 and the real Jin back in Hourai Island muttered those words at the same time.
“And if there isn’t such a spell… Perhaps a Magic Tool?”
Ann shared her thoughts.
“Assuming they were being controlled, but weren’t under the effects of a spell, then it could have been some kind of Magic Tool, right?”
Her theory sounded logical enough. Jin nodded.
“If a Magic Tool is behind this… Reiko, use your ‘Trace’.”
“Yes, Father. ‘Trace’.”
Reiko investigated the flow of magical power within the bound Alectus. After several seconds…
“There is an unusual concentration of magical power behind Mr. Alectus’ chest and the back of his ears.”
As soon as he heard those words, Alectus began to act violently.
He started to twist and turn in his seat, with little regard for the rope that was binding him. The rope scratched his body all over as he tried to force his way out of the seat, and trickles of blood had started to stain it.
Reiko used her ‘Paralyze’ on Alectus once again. As a result, his rampage was finally stopped.
“…What just happened?”
Jin was completely puzzled. And everyone else on board was also at a loss for what they had just witnessed.
Their silence was eventually broken by Ann.
“Master, please deploy the ‘Magic Barrier’, quickly!”
“Right. Land 1!”
A Magic Barrier was quickly deployed around Capricorn 1 as a result. It was a barrier that could prevent all magic up to intermediate level, and could also withstand some advanced magic to a certain point.
“Thank you. I’m sorry to have asked you to deploy the Magic Barrier so rashly. I was merely concerned that our conversation here could have been susceptible to being intercepted by a Magic Tool.”