Chapter 13: Epilogue
─A certain road south of the Kingdom of Elgia.
There was a four-legged demon running at full speed on the road, which is usually almost deserted.
“Hahaha… I did it, I did it, I did it…! I got the Red Book, the Saint’s Prophecy Book!”
His name is Gallo Anek, age unknown.
70cm tall, with blue skin, two small horns on top of his head, one large eye in the middle of his face, and an egg-shaped body with two hands and four legs ─ a demon with a unique appearance.
“Heh, heh, I’m sure Demon Lord-sama will be happy when I bring this back!”
This time, two demons were sent to the Elgia Kingdom under the orders of the Demon Lord.
Fighter Weiss Baderhorn and operative Gallo Anek.
While carrying out her mission, Weiss was defeated by a mysterious armored foe that suddenly appeared…
During that time, Gallo successfully obtained his target ─ the Red Book.
If he could safely bring it back to the Demon Lord’s Castle, he was promised not only a promotion but also any reward he desired.
“With this, I can be promoted to an executive position and become the Four Heavenly Kings! Maybe I’ll even become the Demon Lord’s right-hand man? Ah, what should choose as my reward? Should I go with a human? Okay, I’ve decided. A woman. Let’s make it a woman! I’ll request a strong female magician! Gegya gya gya!”
As Gallo ran with a lewd smile on his face and drooled, he heard a sound like the rumbling of earth from behind.
Boom, boom, boom.
The impacts echoed in the depths of his stomach, like a huge rock falling from a great height or an immensely heavy substance hitting the earth.
That happened over and over again with regularity.
The sound slowly but surely approached Gallo.
(Wh-what’s that sound…? Is there some huge monster nearby…?)
He looked around but couldn’t find the shadow or shape of anything like that.
A few seconds later,
(…I can’t stop feeling the chills… It’s dangerous, I don’t know what it is, but in any case, this is extremely bad…)
Gallo’s instinct as a demon, his alarm bells were ringing.
The true nature of the chills that wracked his entire body was one of the most primitive emotions ─ fear.
Three hundred years ago, the fear of their ‘natural enemy’ was etched into the nucleus of their cells.
Ten seconds later, by the time he realized that it was a person’s footsteps… it was already too late.
“─Hold it right thereeee!”
A large man covered in full plate armor was chasing him at an unbelievable speed.
At first, a large number of holy knights were following behind her, including Rayos, but… there was no way they could keep up with Luna’s speed and were left in the dust within a second of starting.
(Th-that’s bad that’s bad that’s bad… that guy is a true monster that killed Weiss with a single blow. Right now, he ranks first in the ranking as the extremely dangerous being of who we shouldn’t face…)
He had no chance of winning in a head-on battle.
Gallo quickly made that decision and thrust the Red Book behind his back so that Luna could see it clearly.
“Don’t come near me! I will burn this prophecy book!?”
He was confused by the unexpected response.
“Damn, isn’t this a treasure to humanity!? What the heck is with this guy? I don’t understand…”
The order Gallo received was to ‘recover’ the prophecy.
He wasn’t allowed to burn it even if by accident.
“In that case, how about this! ─ <Dimension Line>!”
The next moment, a huge mountain suddenly appeared in front of Luna.
Gallo is a demon who specializes in space magic, and by consuming a large amount of magical power, he instantly moved a faraway mountain in front of Luna ─ forming an enormous obstacle.
“Ok-okay! I’ll take this chance to gain some distance ─”
But he was too naive.
Gallo had no idea what kind of creature the Saint was.
“─Hold it right thereeee!”
Luna didn’t stop for even a second, charging straight through the mountain in front of her to cross the shortest distance.
(W-what is with this guy… is he crazy!? Normally you’d scale the mountain or run around it, there are only two choices!? How is he able to just bulldoze through!?)
Luna isn’t good at complex multitasking, but she’s great at simple single tasks.
Capture the demon and retrieve the Red Book.
With that goal in mind, she charged forth, taking the ‘shortest distance’.
Whether there was a mountain in front of her, a magma chamber, or a horde of demons, it didn’t matter.
She would blow away all obstacles and just keep moving forward.
Meanwhile, the distance between the two was getting shorter and shorter.
(Damn, I’m already overtaxing my proud four legs to pieces. Even though he’s human and wearing such heavy armor, how can he reach such speeds…)
It was impossible to escape at that rate.
Having made that decision, Gallo decided to look back.
“No matter how strong you are, you’re still human after all! Gaze upon the absolute difference between our races! ─ <Dimension Break>!”
He no longer hesitated.
He put all his magical power into it and activated the strongest magic he had.
It is an extremely lethal high-level magic that forcibly shifts phase space, instantly annihilating all objects… but…
“─ It won’t work!”
Due to the sturdy physique of the Saint and the armor imbued with <Dimension Magic Resistance>, Gallo’s strongest magic was easily nullified.
“What are you surprised about? Countermeasures against dimensional magic is the most fundamental requirement.”
Three hundred years ago ─ a magician from that era when magic was at its peak would have taken countermeasures against dimensional magic.
“Y-you… (What preposterous magic defense. So it’s that huge armor that is dangerous? I get it, Weiss was defeated because she couldn’t break through that armor…)
“Alright, I caught you…!”
The moment Luna reached out and tried to grab Gallo’s neck,
“ ─ Ga, <Gate>!”
He activated his emergency escape magic and fled into a special parallel space he had created.
“Haa haa… th-that surprised me… but, too bad! This is a parallel space that I created just for me! No matter how strong you are, there’s nothing you can do about it!”
Just as Gallo escaped into the safe zone and let out a roar of victory ─ a knock sounded from behind him.
When he slowly turned around,
“─ Please excuse me.”
The plate armor lumbered into the space casually as if entering a friend’s room.
“Y-you… how did you come into my world…!?”
“You’ve been exaggerating for a while now. It’s not that difficult to enter a freshly closed parallel space.”
Luna was the Saint.
Entering and leaving parallel spaces was like parting a curtain for her.
“Now then, my black history ─ cough, will you return the Saint’s prophecy book?”
He had no escape.
Gallo, completely cornered, thought about the best move available to him.
(This armored guy is so powerful that he can kill Weiss in an instant. Even if we fought straight on, I have no chance of winning. But… I will fail my mission if I return the Red Book. Demon Lord-sama would kill me. He’s very vindictive. No matter where I flee to, he would chase me to the ends of hell…)
The Saint in front, the Demon Lord behind.
Forward was hell, retreat was hell too.
Forced to make a difficult decision, Gallo ─ chose the ‘worst response’.
“At this stage, it’s all or nothing! Die, you armored bastard… Heba!?”
The moment he launched a special attack with the determination to die, he was erased without a trace with a single forehead flick.
Luna exhaled a breath of relief as she gently caught the Red Book that was tossed high into the sky.
“Ah… I’m glad…”
Having succeeded in securing her target, she looked around her surroundings and relaxed her shoulders after making sure no one was around.
“Phew… acting like an Adventurer is tiring after all.”
Luna, taking a break from her low voice and calm tone, returned to her usual self and finally came face to face with her dark history.
“You… you’re more intact than I expected.”
Despite the passage of three hundred years, the Red Book was in very good condition.
Although there were some signs of use, it had not deteriorated much over time.
Showing that it was carefully preserved by humans.
Luna stared at the Red Book for a moment and whispered.
“…Now that I think about it, what kind of story was it…?”
She was just a little curious about what kind of stories her past self would have written.
The contents of the book were on display at the museum, but she wasn’t in the mental state to read it calmly at that time, so she almost didn’t see anything.
“I’ll just read a little bit.”
Her curiosity getting the best of her, she turned the cover of the Red Book and took a quick look at what was inside.
Then, the next moment,
Luna’s sanity was completely eroded.
That was the first time she had suffered such great damage since her deadly battle with the Great Demon Lord.
“I-I was right, let’s burn this dark history as quickly as possible…!”
She had flame magic in her right hand and was about to erase the existence of the prophecy book when her hand suddenly stopped.
The quality of the personal novel that Luna wrote was not good by any measure.
The written expression was childish and what’s more, the sequence of the story was all over the place.
She just wrote what she wanted to write, spun the stories she wanted, and followed her creative desire, leading to that result.
However, there was a kind of ‘intensity’ in it.
‘I want to write stories like this!’ The writer’s passion could be seen.
(…The work created bears no sin.)
No matter how bad it was, whether it was ‘black’ or ‘white’, it was still her ‘history’.
With various thoughts going through her mind, Luna gently put away the Red Book inside her plate armor.
(For the time being… I’ll hold out on disposing of it. It sounded like there are more books of prophecies related to me so I’ll collect them all before deciding what to do with them.)
After successfully securing the Red Book, Luna returned to the evacuation area where Rho and Sarco were waiting.
One day after Weiss and Gallo’s attack, information about the ‘Saint’s Reincarnation’ traveled around the world in an instant.
Kingdom/Empire/Sacred Country/Spirit Country, the four major powers decided to hold a four-nation conference on the same day, and all cities were in festivities with drinking and dancing.
While the world was enveloped in an unprecedented mood of celebration, the long-awaited Saint of all mankind was now…
“Aaaah… I’ve gone and done it…”
With her face buried in her bed, she regretted her careless actions.
“Uuu, I’m such an idiot… why did I step in…”
While shaking her head, she flapped her legs in frustration.
Her body suddenly moved when Rayos was about to be killed by Weiss’ Silver Brilliance.
She barely managed to rationalize her actions and cast <Conversion> to put on her plate armor and was able to stand on the battlefield as Adventurer Silver… but in the first place, even stepping in to help was a mistake.
Luna had already quit being the Saint.
There was no need for self-sacrifice, no obligation to risk her life to help others, and no reason to take unnecessary risks.
If she continues to do things like that, someday, something will happen and she will be revealed as the Saint.
Luna, who seemed mentally exhausted, stared blankly at the ceiling and muttered to herself.
“Now that I think about it… Rayos-san is definitely that Reinhardt’s descendant.”
When she first saw him at Saint Academy, she didn’t realize that at all, even when they exchanged words and heard his name…
Seeing Reinhardt’s Water Shimmer Style yesterday, his strong sense of justice for the people, and his deep loyalty to the Saint, she suddenly remembered him.
300 years ago ─ when Luna was being criticized unfairly from all over the world, the first head of the Reinhardt family did everything in his power to protect her.
[…Saint-sama, I am truly sorry for forcing you to stay in such a cramped prison… I will appeal directly to the foolish royals and aristocrats and I will definitely save you from here!]
[…Thank you. But please don’t endanger yourself, okay?]
When despair was invading the Saint’s heart, he shined a momentary ray of light on her.
He didn’t try to curry favor with her like the royals, he didn’t go around spreading baseless rumors about her, he didn’t put all the blame on the Saint ─ he showed that there were people who properly understood her actions as a Saint up until then.
Even if it was just a small number, just knowing that there were people like that out there gave her some peace of mind.
But after that, Reinhardt never returned.
He stood up for the Saint in all aspects and as a result, displeased the royalty and aristocrats, and was sentenced to house arrest. After the Saint’s execution, he was imprisoned in an underground prison.
In the end, Luna and the original Reinhardt would never meet again… but…
“I never thought that I would be repaying my debt from my previous life to his descendant 300 years later…”
Karma worked in strange ways.
“─Anyway! That’s really the last time I’ll act like the Saint! Even if someone is in trouble, I’ll never help them. I’ll become… a villainous heiress!”
Luna repeated the policy she made immediately after reincarnation to put a stop to her impulses and glanced at the Red Book on the desk.
(According to Sarco-san… the Saint’s Prophecy Books are currently confirmed to be ‘seven books’ in total…)
The Red Book was secured, but the whereabouts of the remaining six books were unknown.
(Hmm, what did I write in which color book… there’s the personal novel that I retrieved this time. There’s the dream novel. A manga. A poetry collection. And then, uh… uh, I can’t remember…)
She firmly remembered that all of the contents were ‘dangerous’ but…
She could barely remember what she wrote in which color book.
But she could say one thing for sure.
“The ‘Black Book’… That book must not be released into the world… No matter what means I use, I absolutely must retrieve it…”
The Black Book was a negative legacy created by Luna and is a Pandora’s Box that must never be opened.
If that were to be leaked and exposed in public like the Red Book… she would destroy the world and die with it.
“For now, let’s securely put this Red Book away. ─ <Storage>”
When Luna snapped her fingers, a rift appeared in front of her and she stored the Red Book inside it.
That was Luna’s unique space and no one could perceive or interfere with it.
By the way… the capacity of <Storage> is infinitely expansive, and her large plate armor was also stored there.
Luna, having kept the Red Book in a safe place,
“Aaaah… I’ve gone and done it…”
Was back to square one, on the bed worrying endlessly.
She was a little bad at pulling herself together for such matters.
She’ll keep dragging past events with her forever, thinking about if she had done that then or if she had done this then ─ she ends up fixating on the what-ifs and maybes.
After a while, to stop herself from spiraling down, Luna verbalized the current situation and told herself.
“We-well, see… depending on how I think about it, this leads to a deeper path, right? I’m sure if I continue to associate Silver’s name with the representative of the Saint, from now on, I’ll be able to make ‘Strong Adventurer Acts’ more easily. Maybe I could even do ‘Saint’s Representative Acts’? So the end result seems okay… right?’’
She tried to somehow justify her failures by forcibly adding ‘added value’ to her failures.
That is the moment when Luna’s small-mindedness as a human being really comes out.
In any case, she was finally able to look forward and clearly declared her ‘future policy’.
“First goal, live like a villainous heiress in a novel! Second goal, live freely in the outside world as an adventurer! Third goal, erase my dark history from this world! With these as my motto, I’ll enjoy my second life to the fullest…!”
Thus, after reincarnating into the world 300 years later and being freed from the burden of being the Saint, Luna vowed to live quietly and inconspicuously so as not to be found out as the Saint ─ as a villainous heiress publically and the strongest adventurer ‘Silver’ in secret, to lead a leisurely and comfortable second life.