Demon-Limited Hunter Chapter 46

Chapter 46 - Thunderbird Subjugation (4)

༺ Thunderbird Subjugation (4) ༻


  It felt like I was nestled in a cozy cocoon.


  The intense pain that had enveloped my entire body had softened. As I blinked a few times, my blurry vision cleared, and the surrounding scenery was revealed.


  Then, my eyes widened.


  It was a bright world. That was the only way I could describe it.


  The sun that hung in the sky emanated a gentle sensation that did not dazzle the eyes. 


  Surrounding me were rows of trees that emitted a pale yellow light. Beyond the horizon, there was nothing but an unfamiliar light.


  “What is this place…?”


  I was invited to an unknown world. It was like the [Fictional Hell] that Leafa the Illusive had used.


  However, the difference between this bright world and [Fictional Hell] was that I had never seen this place in ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱. It was uncharted territory.


  Despite my bewildered state, I tried to make sense of the situation.


  [Are you surprised?]




  A deep voice rang in my head. I quickly turned my head in the direction of the voice.


  There stood a massive black bird that appeared out of place in the surrounding scenery, it folded its wings and looked down at me. It was ‘Thunderbird Galia’.


  My heart sank for a brief moment, but when I realized that it wasn’t in a combat stance, I dropped my guard.


  “What’s going on?”


  [It seems that we are in the ‘Midheaven Realm’. It appears that my former master invited us here.]


  The Midheaven Realm. A place where souls who were near death, or who had died but had not yet passed on, were invited in order to sort out their thoughts and eventually find solace.


  It also served as a relay point for the souls who yearn to meet other souls in the afterlife. This allowed them to spend the rest of eternity together. 


  It was a setting in the ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱ guidebook. It was known as a setting prepared for the characters who had unfortunately died.


  In the game’s story, however, there was no reason for Ian to come to this world. The game ended with him becoming a renowned Magic Knight who had established a happy family with the chosen heroine. 


  ‘So, here I am…’


  As far as I knew, the Midheaven Realm was located on the boundary between this world and the afterlife. In this world, time passed indefinitely, and thus no time passed in reality.


  There was nothing to do here. Not even magic worked here.


  It seemed that the one who had invited me into this world was the previous master of the Thunderbird, the ‘Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath’. A tragic witch from Luce’s past who embraced death under false accusations. 


  “Where is your former master?”


  The Thunderbird raised its head and pointed its beak towards the sun, which emanated a gentle light. Its rays softly warmed my entire body.


  [The scent I longed for is coming from over there.]


  Did that mean that the sun was the Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath?


  Although I somewhat understood the situation, I couldn’t help but feel a little confused.


  Moreover, the [To Gretel] achievement was one of the legendary achievements that were unlocked when one cleared a major scenario, but there were no separate rewards or new events. It was merely a trophy of sorts.


  Who could have ever imagined that it would turn out like this?


  [I want to know your name.]


  The voice of the Thunderbird echoed in my head. It felt like it resonated within my head.




  [I am ‘Galia’… After suffering under that curse for years… Thank you for saving me, child. I truly mean this from the bottom of my heart… Thank you.]


  The deep yet gentle voice of the Thunderbird contained a subtle sob. I could only watch his figure in silence




  Suddenly, the voice of an energetic boy came from my feet. 


  As I lowered my head, I saw a small familar staring at me intently. It was a raccoon familiar with lightning mana wrapped around its tail.


  A status window did not appear. Perhaps it was because there was no physical body. 


  But, what is this…?




  Suddenly, numerous magic beasts with elemental mana wrapped around their bodies surrounded me. They appeared in front of me in the blink of an eye.


  I was startled and hastily looked around.


  These familiars were…


  “The ones I fought earlier…?”


  These were the familiars that had been completely corrupted by the darkness mana and met a gruesome end by my magic.


  However, there were no longer any traces of darkness mana on their bodies.


  [Thank you, pubu!]




  The purple raccoon familiar shouted at my feet before tightly hugging my leg.


  Then, the familiars that had surrounded me started to approach me.


  They gently rubbed their cheeks against my body, cuddled me, or licked my cheeks and the back of my hands with their tongues.


  I felt utterly bewildered.


  [Thank you, meow!]


  [Kuooooh─! Thank you! Thank you so much!]


  [Thank you for freeing me from that demon!]


  [Thank you, thank you…]


  [Gratitude to the Great One!]


  The voices of countless familiars gently echoed in my head like waves.


  The bitter emotions they had harbored while being controlled by Vera the Summoner were seeping into me.


  With each word they uttered, an erratic, lukewarm wave seemed to continuously engulf my heart, giving me a solemn feeling.


  [Kyahahaha! You’re strong, friend! You took a good hit!]


  Hakil, the giant red magic beast, approached me with a hearty laugh. His turtle head, muscular body, and the eyes on his three pairs of wings were still the same.


  The familars stopped their affectionate gestures and looked at Hakil in unison.


  Hakil stopped in front of me, looked down at me gently, and bent one knee to sit down.


  The eyes on Hakil’s wings were all closed. His wings were slightly folded as if to show his respect towards me. 


  [You see, I always wanted to explore the vast world with my master.]


  Hakil murmured with his eyes lowered.


  [But, after being controlled by that demon… I ended up killing my master with my own hands. That day, I lost everything.]


  A grumbling voice faintly echoed in my mind.


  [Living under that demon was truly horrible… Even though we were once enemies, thank you for saving me… Really, thank you… I will never forget this favor…]


  Hakil couldn’t hold back the tears and covered his eyes with his large hands.


  After Hakil, the other familiars began to share their own stories. I listened in silence.


  [I met that demon while eating meat with my master, meow… Now, I can never forget the smell of my master’s blood, meow…]


  [My master always fell asleep with me in their arms. I loved being in their embrace… But I killed them with my own hands. As they were dying, they told me it was okay. They thanked me for traveling with them…]


  [My master picked me up when I was abandoned. I still vividly remember the sensation of piercing their heart…]




  [Jerry, I was so angry being forcibly controlled by that woman! I was so mad! It was so hard! I cried every day!]


  I couldn’t save them. They had been so deeply corrupted by the darkness mana that they couldn’t be saved, even if Vera the Summoner had died.


  Even if they had been freed from Vera, they would have lived a cursed existence, unable to suppress their murderous urges. They would have continued to kill people.


  That’s right. I didn’t deserve their gratitude. I had simply killed the familars here without hesitation to prevent a bad ending.


  Yet they thought I had saved them.


 They had longed for death, for an end to their suffering.


  “Is that so…”


  Despite the numerous voices that echoed in my head, I understood each and every one of the familiars’ stories.


  So, I felt relieved.


  For a while, the familiars shared the numerous stories they had accumulated over their life, laughing and crying as they spoke.


  I nodded my head, stroked their heads, and patted their backs.


  How much time had passed?


  On the horizon, one or two human figures emerged in the vast expanse of light. Their numbers quickly multiplied, reaching dozens in no time.


  As if coming to greet us, the individuals turned their gaze towards us.


  The intensity of the light made it difficult to make out their exact appearance, yet it seemed that all the familiars recognized them.




  The familiars froze in shock, as if time itself had stopped. Hakil’s eyes also widened in disbelief.


  This place served as a relay for souls in the afterlife. It was obvious who the people in the Midheaven Realm had brought along with them.


  Soon, tears began welling up in the eyes of the familiars.


  They ran or flew towards those people.


  In an instant.


  The familiars cried as they hugged their masters. They shared how much they had missed them and how sad they had been.


  The masters tightly hugged their familiars, stroked their heads, and listened to their cries with a gentle smile.


  [It’s been a while, Dyke.]


  Hakil stood in front of his master, a muscular man, and greeted him.


  As his master chuckled and extended his fist, Hakil hesitated for a moment.




  Hakil bumped fists with the muscular man. He seemed to be deep in thought as he recalled the time he had spent with his master.


  Soon after, the familiars and their respective masters started walking together, towards the vast world of light, into the afterlife.


  The familiars looked back at me and shouted their farewells.


  [Thank you! Really, thank you!]


  [Thank you, human!]


  [I won’t forget this favor!]




  [I’m really grateful, meow!]


  [Kuooh! This mark of flame! I will remember you forever!]


  [I’ll keep the grace of your noble deed in this body of fire even in the afterlife…!]


  [Take care! Thank you! Thank you! Really, really, thank you…!]


  The vivid light enveloped the familiars as they returned to their masters.


  They disappeared beyond the horizon with excitement.


  I silently watched the scene and felt an indescribable emotion.


  Now, they would be together for an eternity. That would be long enough to forget the pain they had experienced.


  They would embark on new adventures that they couldn’t complete in this world.


  The figures of the familiars disappeared from my sight.


  I closed my eyes for a moment, then quietly processed my emotions.


  [I can feel it.]


  The voice of the Thunderbird rang in my head.


  [My former master seems to be very grateful.]


  Though the sun was merely warm and gentle to me, it seemed to feel different to the Thunderbird.


  [Even when I lost my reason, I could still feel Gretel’s heart. So I knew that you became her friend. I wanted to say thank you, child. It seems my former master is also grateful to you for the same reason.]




  Gretel. The former name of Luce.


  I was deep in thought. I calmly raised my head and stared at the Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath, who had been watching over the boundary between this world and the next.


  In 「Act 3, Chapter 4, Thunderbird Subjugation」 of ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱, there remained one final mission—


  —To catch Luce, who was helplessly falling through the sky, her mana completely depleted. This journey would end with just that task.


  But then I realized why I was in the Midheaven Realm.


  I needed some time to organize my thoughts.


  “…I’m about to die, right? And so are you.”


  I asked as I turned my head towards the Thunderbird. 


  The Thunderbird bowed its head.


  [It seemed like you were deliberately hiding your identity, so I intended to protect your secret, but it seems there’s no need to do that now.]


  A roundabout answer. It wasn’t difficult to grasp what those words meant.


  Ha, I knew this would happen. How could I have survived unscathed after fighting against the level 175 Thunderbird Galia?


  It was a futile ending. I did all that to prevent a bad ending…


  However, there was no rush of emotions, no flicker of intensity. It felt as if even the most fleeting emotions passed by without leaving a trace.


  Being able to stay calm even in the face of death must be due to the effect of [Ice Sovereign].


  Someone once said, ‘If the world were to end tomorrow, I would still plant an apple tree today.’ That’s exactly how I felt at this moment.


  “Send me back.”


  Since it’s come to this, there’s one last thing I need to do.


  “Luce is about to fall. There’s no one else to catch her but me.”


If I’m destined to die anyways, I might as well save someone I deeply cherish.


  I adore Luce. As long as ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱ is my reality, I can’t bear to see her get hurt.


  So, at the very least, I want to save Luce before I go. 


  And then it happened.


[The Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath expresses her gratitude to you!]


[The Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath gazes into your fate and offers you with the gift she deems most necessary for you!]


  A new system window appeared.




  Suddenly, I felt a searing pain on my left wrist.


  Startled, I looked at my wrist. A black, magic circle-shaped seal was being engraved on it.


  Once it was completely engraved, the pain immediately stopped. 


  “What is this…?”


[Congratulations! You have acquired the [8-star Familiar Contract Circle]!]


  My mouth was wide open.


  Magic beasts from 1-star to 4-star could be summoned with a Familiar Summoning Circle, and if their wills align, a contract could be formed.


  From 5-star to 7-star, they couldn’t be summoned by a Familiar Summoning Circle, but if they meet and their wills align, a contract could be formed.


  On the other hand, an 8-star couldn’t form a familiar contract at will, even if they had a good relationship or understood each other well. A special seal was required. That seal, the ‘8-star Familiar Contract Circle’, could only be obtained in the very late stages of ❰Magic Knight of Märchen❱.


  The Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath had bestowed that upon me.


  What kind of fate did she see to give this to someone who was about to die?


  Just as I was about to ask the Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath, I lost my voice.


  The light emitting from the witch began to envelop my entire body.


─ To Gretel.


  Suddenly, a young girl in a worn-out navy blue dress appeared before my eyes. Her rose-gold hair was particularly beautiful.


  She was laughing at an old witch who wore a black witch’s hat with a hooked nose.


  A curious 10-year-old girl. She held the witch’s hand and set off on an adventure.


  Time passed, and the girl in a school uniform was smiling brightly at the academy’s graduation ceremony with the witch.


  Time passed again, and the woman who became a wizard boasted about her achievements to the witch.


  Time had passed once again, and the lady who became a Tower Master held the witch’s hand and embarked on a new adventure.


  Her beaming smile was no different from the innocent laughter of the 10-year-old girl. The witch was so content with this scene that she laughed happily.


  The Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath. The events that would have unfolded had she not died of tragedy.


  The fate envisioned by the Great Witch of Heaven’s Wrath, a reality that never came to be.


  They were fragments of a lost future, a calm solace in the sea of memories.


─ I will always love you.


  Taking in that sight for the last time, I quietly closed my eyes.





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The Academy’s Weakest Became A Demon-Limited Hunter

The Academy’s Weakest Became A Demon-Limited Hunter

Status: Ongoing Author:
I possessed the weakest character in my favorite game's Hell Mode. I want to survive, but the way the main character is being controlled is atrocious. It can't be helped. I have to stop the bad ending myself.


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