Once Chloe parted with Hinata and Ruminas, she returned to Yuuki’s side.
Upon departure she took off her bracelet and handed it to Hinata.
「A piece of my equipment. It was passed down to me when our souls were one… So it’s yours to begin with, is it not?」
The spirit equipment bracelet.
That bracelet which Rimuru made by copying the destroyed spirit equipment and gave to Hinata.
Because it was linked to Hinata’s soul, upon merging with Chloe it was also sent to the past.
And though even at the beginning it was called a legendary piece of equipment, it had further evolved by feeding off of Chloe’s power during her travels.
Now it was a Divine piece of equipment; Chloe’s personal piece.
Hinata considered accepting the bracelet.
Indeed, when they were one Hinata was able to use it. However, this piece of equipment has shared many years with its master Chloe.
Moreover, Hinata who has lost much of her original strength was simply no longer able to sustain the equipment’s summoning even for a moment.
Thus, with a sigh,
「It is yours, Chloe. I can no longer use it.
Besides, this was made by your teacher, Rimuru.
It fits you better」
Hinata said with a warm smile, and returned the bracelet.
Chloe took it in her hands and held it close to her heart.
「Huh… sensei made this? Is that so…
So sensei has been protecting me for so long…」
「When I meet Rimuru I’ll tell him that you’re doing fine and holding onto that bracelet.
So use it. Or is it called a Hero’s personal garb for naught?」
「Thanks… I’ll treasure it」
Chloe responded with a smile and nodded.
Hinata nodded in return.
The two souls who have fought together for so long would no journey separate.
Chloe bowed in gratitude, silently opened the door, and disappeared.
Without a word to the other children.
For Chloe the four kids are irreplaceable.
She truly wants to call out to them and throw her arms around them.
But now is not the time.
When the world’s destruction is avoided, then she could do it. Then she would finally be released.
So Chloe will no waver.
She will not meet with Rimuru and will not call out to the kids.
For she was yet cursed by Yuuki.
At the very least, until she was released from this curse she could not let her guard down.
Meeting old friends will certainly consume time. Though she is permitted some freedom of movement, she should not stay separate from Yuuki for long.
Yuuki’s three commands are powerful chains binding her.
Although he is obligated to give her specific commands, she must still obey his orders.
Chances are, Yuuki is now aware that Chloe has awakened as a true hero.
Though Yuuki never gives out orders without carefully thinking of the consequences, he just may order her to fight Ruminas.
Which is why she must move only after considering every possibility.
Upon exiting Chloe dispelled her spell.
Though no one has noticed, Chloe has been slowing time the whole while.
Since Hinata and Chloe awakened only three minutes in the world have passed. Chances are that Ruminas noticed, but did not mention it.
This only shows how wary Chloe is of Yuuki.
The world’s destruction was caused by Yuuki’s actions.
The forces in this world have been altered and a resistance force has sprouted.
Even Chloe’s strength is far above what it used to be.
(I will defeat you this time! No, this time I will protect it!!)
She recalled the future where she was powerless to protect anything.
This time she swore to defeat Yuuki and protect the world.
She said her prayers and set off.
She was the one who was called the true hero.
Having thus been born, awoken, and with her resolve set,
The Hero Chloe began her rebellion.
＊ ＊ ＊
A young lad relaxing in an expensive cahir,
Behind him is a beautiful elf preparing tea.
In the chamber of the Freedom Association’s master appear Yuuki and Kagali.
「Hero Chloe seems to have completely awoken.
Hasn’t she obtained some seriously ridiculous power?
Though it seems we are still able to control her thanks to the restraints placed upon her
But we won’t be able to use even half of her power.
Seriously, nothing is going well.
Claymen’s awakening failed, Rimuru-san is still alive.
There should have been more chaos by now.
What do you think, Kazalim?」
Clearly amused the lad called out behind him.
Turning towards the inquirer,
「You ask me that?
Haven’t you already come to a conclusion?
The plan is a failure.
Cutie-pie Clayman is dead, too.
There’s no way to sow discord among the demon lords now.
Though we could denounce the Western Saint’s Church’s ineptitude, there’s people among us who oppose that action.
The countries surrounding Jura’s forest are also moving differently than we wanted.
The destroyed Farmas Kingdom is being brought back together by a people’s hero.
He’s got to have some terrifyingly smart friends to have managed things so fast.
He stabilized the country and reeled in neighboring violence.
Even the monster’s activity has been stifled by Tempest.
The Jura Forest counties are enjoying a time of never-before-seen peace and prosperity.
In short, it’s complete opposite of what you had expected」
Kazalim replied with a bored expression.
「Hey, why did you choose a pretty girl but are talking with so crudely?
Is that your type?」
「Don’t mess with me. It’s cause I am Kazalim!
‘Tis a matter of appearance, Master」
Kagali suddenly finished the sentence.
For Kazalim, no, for Kagali these things did not matter.
Strength was everything and Kagali’s master possessed it. Therefore, all was well.
Human society despises cooperation and is fraught with grief and death.
So Yuuki had said, but his plan seems to have gone poorly.
So he’s mumbling things like “Isn’t the difficulty setting set too high?!” and such while Kagali is making tea.
Expression and tone aside, mastering one’s limbs was not a matter for a single day.
In the first place, Kazalim was not a being who understood gender, but was affected to some degree by possessing Kagali.
One of those effects was to gain a cooking and tea brewing skill.
So playing her role as Yuuki requested, Kazalim, no, Kagali spent her time learning to interact with people.
「You… for someone who doesn’t fight, you’re surprisingly good with your hands.
But seriously, to have things go so poorly… breaks my heart.
I feel like blowing off some steam」
「Don’t do that!
Actually, do that when I’m not here!」
「Aren’t you crafty.
So weak and helpless, but sly to the end」
「What do you expect?
I, with my『planner』ability, am not fit for combat.」
「And considering that we use your ability and my wisdom, I wonder how we ever fail!」
I have a hypothesis: I fear there is a superior calculating ability at work here」
「Really? In that case it’s time.
We’re heading east. Everyone will depart from the headquarters」
「Is that fine? Even though we had built such a solid foothold here?」
「It can’t be helped. If we don’t cut our tracks now who knows how much we’ll lose.
Besides, this is not the end.
We have secured the “Hero” who could have killed me」
「That’s right… that is true
Understood. I will prepare proper personnel to be left behind.
The rest will follow us east. Would that be all?」
「Yeah. That’s fine.
Though I even had a plan to go Demon Lord hunting and to mess with Saint Church’s Ruminas.
But that’s too dangerous for now.
And using the hero here would be a waste. So we move」
Thus Yuuki made the order to evacuate his chambers.
The ten years he had spent building up trust to rise to this position.
Without a doubt, Yuuki did it solely to advance his goal.
Now that his plan was facing failure after failure, he had no choice but give up some things.
Kagali received his order, and departed to make it happen.
Watching her leave with cold eyes,
「But damn, Chloe, to think you would become that much stronger than I am.
A waste, but I fear I’ll have to order you to never use your abilities against me」
That a proclamation that bore the full knowledge of the difference in their power.
Wearing a smile of utter delight, Yuuki began to think.
A trump card, but also a joker which could kill him.
(How exciting it is!)
Completely ignoring his recent failures, Kagurazaka Yuuki was enjoying the current situation.
And by thus abandoning the post of the Grand Master and disappearing into darkness, he brought great calamity to the world.
Thus the bringer of chaos was released…
＊ ＊ ＊
When the kids awoke Chloe was already gone.
The one most upset at her was Alisa.
「Chloe grew up first!
I bet the only reason she did it was to get Sensei’s attention!」
She grumbled furious; the other children were upset for another reason.
They were upset because she left without saying goodbye, but the three boys decided to console Alisa instead.
Watching those kids Fritz’s only thought was relief that he didn’t have to deal with them.
But in the end,
「Fritz, we’re headed to to Tempest. I want you to come along」
Hinata said, implying that he would be babysitting them from now on.
“So it’s come to this,” he sighed and gave up.
But not all was amiss.
She said come along, so that means Hinata would also be going.
Cardinal Nicholas cannot leave the Western Saint’s Church. So, this was a chance to make some more memories with Hinata!
Fritz thought and smiled.
Hinata who (was? now appeared?) nicer felt even more womanly and truly became an unattainable flower for the templars.
Fritz could not possible allow Nicholas to monopolize that flower.
For Fritz who was in his twenties, Nicholas (30s) was an old man. To allow that old man to have Hinata would hurt Fritz’s Templar pride.
They have already formed an alliance to get ahead of Nicholas.
Feeling their earnest support (Actually, deluding himself into believing they supported him), he accepted her request.
Nicholas was pouting due to being again separated from Hinata.
Oh, and Hinata did ignore the fact that someone’s hand was injured.
That someone, with a pretty face, was staring intently at Fritz.
(Fritz, I forbid you from laying a hand on Hinata!)
(Fufu, Nicholas-san, though you may be my superior here, this matter is one of man to man! I will not obey that order!)
Ah, well, that’s the conversation they did not have, as they were silent, and clearly cannot communicate with their thoughts.
「Nicholas-sama, what would that injury be?」
Fritz asked noticing that Nicholas was desperately trying to hide the injury.
The injury he located as if by smell. Perhaps Fritz developed that skill when avoiding all those attacks from Ranga.
「Umph! Th-this doesn’t matter.
More importantly, absolutely protect Hinata this time!
Do not fail me a second time!」
Nicholas avoided the question.
The truth of the matter is this: last night when Hinata, Chloe, and Ruminas were talking Nicholas was hugging Hinata the whole time…
Then he got particularly bold and touched her chest.
With a smile, Hinata crushed his hand. Of course he could not say this to anyone.
Just when he had intended to use her return as a pretext to invite her to his chamber!
He himself ruined the opportunity.
As a child he just couldn’t contain his desire any longer.
And attempting to hid this disgrace he strongly commanded Fritz to protect Hinata.
In reality, they will be traveling on a carriage prepared by Demon Lord Ruminas with her hand picked guards guarding them. So there should be no problems.
But still, Nicholas was worried.
「We’ll be fine, Nicholas. I’ll be back!」
In the end, Hinata departed with a smile, and Nicholas could express his worries in no more than
And the other knights too watched depressed as Hinata departed.
Thus the kids’ group set off for Tempest.
The time of the great Saints-Demons alliance would be coming soon.
But that alliance also signalled the beginning of great chaos.