It was quite nerve-wracking to play big jump rope.
No expense was forgiven. You had to calculate the timing and jump without hesitation.
This was similar, except for the fact that it was a hundred times more difficult. That was what Akiha felt.
Akiha swallowed her saliva. What she saw could not be described as anything other than that.
Taiyou and Ruri.
The sight of them fighting was dazzling, surpassing Akiha’s limits.
Several metres away, Akiha was finally able to take in Taiyou’s movements.
Still, that did not dissuade her.
When to jump in…how to jump in…
Akiha was contemplating those things, but there was no such decision as not doing it or running away.
A smile peeked through her face.
Even though danger and fear were sweeping throughout her body…
She was happy for some reason; unbelievably so.
Akiha heard a voice, and Hera flew next to her.
Her generally tiny and adorable face was unusually shrouded for once.
“Are you okay?”
“Probably not. I’m going up against my master after all.”
“Then you are to stop this. Taiyou-chan said he’d be fine with this, so you should indeed leave it to him.”
“I mean, that’s fine too, but…”
“If you’re doing this for me—-”
“Yeah, that’s part of it, but…”
Akiha interrupted Hera mid-sentence.
“But y’know, that’s not all to it. I dunno, it just feels fun.”
Akiha nodded briskly.
“I can’t exactly put it into words, but yeah, that’s probably it. It’s like this is my first joint operation.”
“Your first joint operation?”
“Yeah, so I’m like, super stoked right now.”
“Is that so.”
Akiha nodded. She wasn’t kidding.
Having the same objective as Taiyou and working toward it. Akiha felt delight in that.
By jokingly referring to this as her first “joint operation”, it only made her even more delighted.
That was what spurred her on.
“With that being said, it’s time for me to go out for a bit.”
Akiha left Hera behind, taking a step forward.
To the battlefield where windstorms blew.
“I see…this certainly not be a good item, ja.”
Kohaku muttered as she stared at what Sakura had entrusted her with.
“Is that so?”
“Aye. I can tell just by gripping it, ja. It be pulsating like a heart in the palm of me hand. Did ye not feel anything when ye held it?”
“No, not in the slightest.”
“Which means it reacts…or resonates, with an Eternal Little, ja.”
“That must be it.”
Gripping the dagger, Kohaku ensured that her intuition was correct.
At first glance, it was just a regular dagger; something that any old ne’er-do-well would drop.
But Kohaku could sense something different.
This was dangerous, something was off about this.
“Perhaps you should just leave it be.”
“Objectively speaking, what you have there is the most dangerous of all. Without him saying so, and probably without Aoyama Akiha saying anything, Ruri will hold back against both of them. Even Hera can participate whenever she feels like it. But that weapon is…”
“I’ll do something about it, ja.”
“Something as in…”
Kohaku’s mouth twisted into a grin.
“Something happens, something happens, ja. And that time I be able to eternally keep Danna-sama in me memories.”
“It be a joke, ja. Do not take it so seriously.”
Kohaku laughed with a hearty “kukuku”.
There might indeed be some worth in messing with Sakura, unexpectedly enough.
And just like that, gripping the dagger tightly in her hand, she headed into the room where the battle was being held.
She opened the door, entering.
Taiyou, Ruri, and Akiha were fighting.
Taiyou and Ruri were clashing straight at each other, while Akiha was moving around them, searching for a chance—an entry point.
Kohaku said only that, suppressing Hera.
Taking a deep breath, she flipped the dagger into reverse grip in her dominant hand.
Then she brought out her other hand, cutting the thumb with the blade.
Blood came out, and the blade sucked it in.
The pulse became stronger, and something warm ran throughout her body.
Feeling a firm power, Kohaku began to dig the blade into her index finger, middle finger, ring finger, and lastly, her pinky.
The number of raw wounds increased, and every time the dagger sucked the blood, Kohaku felt power well within her.
Blood Soul, the manmade magic sword that sucked blood and soul.
Kohaku charged into battle with it.
Hera didn’t understand. Why did everyone just do that?
This was a first for her, and she was quite bewildered.
Taiyou and Ruri were one thing, since they had been fighting daily.
So she had no issue with them fighting like this.
But now Akiha had entered the fray.
Akiha, who was a fresh apprentice under Ruri, had jumped into this without considering the danger.
And now Kohaku has joined.
She was also holding the weapon that had once caused trouble, hurting herself and jumping in.
Hera was baffled by this.
Why did they do that too?
Why did they do that for her?
She didn’t know, so she was perplexed.
But now those feelings began to turn into something else.
Probably because they were there.
In the midst of the wind in this atrocity of a battle.
Hera was affected by this, inspired by this.
Her bewilderment gave way to something warm that became a small torch, filling her chest.
Which birthed a new, different type of bewilderment.
Why was she so happy at a time like this?