｢So, that big one in the middle is the only one left.｣
There was a thick, long stake that was clearly bigger than the rest of the stakes stuck in the ground. It was next to Ketekete who was standing in the middle of the cave doing nothing. By the looks of it, it seems like it is the strongest stake out of all.
｢That’s the last one, it’s nailed into the center of the ley line and it’s making me weak. ｣
｢So, if we take this out Ketekete’s powers are going to be fully restored?｣
Nanana’s eyes sparkled and Ketekete nodded.
Sansa sighed listening to their conversation. It’s an easy job and a cheap price to pay to get the treasure. Sansa was irritated about something and she extended her hand to take out the stake.
｢Wait, Sansa. Let me do the warm-up exercise. ｣
｢Why tough? ｣
Nanana started bending and stretching, Sansa didn’t get why she was doing that.
｢Because we need to fight Ketekete after that stake is taken out. So, I thought I’d warm up for that. ｣
She said it naturally as if she was looking up at the sky and talking about the weather. Ketekete’s eyes opened wide when it heard that. Sansa too couldn’t understand what Nanana had said for a moment.
｢…..Huh? What are you saying? Why do we need to fight the fox?｣
｢Because that is why you brought us here to take this stake out right, Ketekete?｣
Ketekete didn’t respond to Nanana’s question.
｢W…wait, Nanana! So tell me if I’m wrong, but what you are telling me is that this fox had no intentions of giving us the treasure from the beginning? ｣
Nanana got surprised herself looking at Sansa who was surprised.
｢You didn’t realize that it was going to be like this? Aren’t tactics like this your forte?｣
Sansa shut her mouth when Nanana pointed that out. It is an obvious thing to assume if you think a little. There is no way she wouldn’t think about it but this time such thoughts didn’t come to her mind. And why is that? She found the reason immediately. It was because of Nanana’s existence. She had thought that they’d get the treasure easily since Nanana is with her. She had assumed it and stopped thinking things out.
｢…..Nanana, why did you think that that fox was going to cheat on us? ｣
｢It’s because that’s how Ketekete is. ｣
｢What does that mean?｣
｢Ketekete has been protecting this land for hundreds of years for a dead person. It’s unlikely that he would easily give a treasure to someone like us who he met a couple of days ago. ｣
True, it isn’t possible but I can’t accept it.
｢You were being so friendly with the fox yesterday. So, how can you doubt him?｣
｢It’s not that I’m not doubting him. I talked a lot with Ketekete yesterday so, I thought that it’s what he would do.｣
To read other people’s thoughts and then use their plan against them, to find out what others are hiding and to use it against them that’s what Sansa is good at. What Nanana just said seems like it came from the same type of skill but is totally different. She understands the other person so well that she doesn’t doubt them. She understood how Ketekete is and now she doesn’t doubt what he would do. That’s how Nanana’s thought process works.
｢So, you are telling me that he will try to kill us?｣
｢Yeah, he will do that to keep an important promise. Ketekete would never forgive us since we are after the treasure. And don’t underestimate him since he is a fox god who has been living for hundreds of years. It’s obvious that he would be way smarter than us humans. ｣
Sansa was surprised at Nanana who was praising Ketekete instead of complaining about him for using them.
｢But you see, we wouldn’t be able to get the treasure if we don’t do that. ｣
｢Ketekete wants to protect the treasure and we want to get the treasure. For that we need to restore his abilities and make him break the barrier, no matter what we are going to do, we need to take this out first. It’s that old saying ‘Nothing vultured nothing grained’.｣
｢It’s nothing ventured, nothing gained. Did you really secure the seventh position in your class?｣
It seemed like Sansa was baffled at Nanana but above everything else she was surprised about her own stupidity.
If you ask Sansa how she throught of Ryugajo Nanana, she’d say that Nanana is someone who keeps spewing dumb delusions. She’d say that Nanana is a dumb girl who’s always dreaming, doesn’t woork hard, doesn’t think things through, is all talk, and relies on other people. Nanana is the type Sansa despises the most. But she has been continuously surprised by Nanana’s deep insight and actions, as if she can see the future. It’s like Uzuki said, maybe Nanana has the fate of someone who can accomplish anything. But Nanana seems indifferent to all that. She doesn’t boast about it nor take people lightly, she just works hard to catch the chance in front of her. By using her wisdom to the fullest and by knowing others well, she keeps challenging herself eagerly, no matter how hard the things are. It isn’t that Nanana can do everything, it’s because she works hard that such a wonderful fate appears in front of her. That’s what Sansa thought. But there are no exceptions, it only appears in front of people who want to move forward. Just like the girl in front of her eyes. Sansa finally realized that she was taking Nanana for a fool and was underestimating her. She thought that Ryugajo Nanana was like a mascot who was just cheerful and loud and that she didn’t have any ability or achievements among the seven of them. But she had forgotten the start of it all, that it was Ryugajo Nanana who had gathered all of them.
｢Hey, Sansa. What we are trying to do is said to be impossible right? Then doesn’t it mean that in order to achieve it we need to go through things that are impossible to do? So, should we do something like defeating Ketekete who’s a fox god? ｣
Nanana grinned looking at Ketekete while putting the metal bat on her shoulder.
｢It seems like you are having a lot of fun, Nanana. ｣
｢Yeah, to be honest I like situations like this, Sansa-san. ｣
Sansa laughed listening to Nanana’s response. She laughed out loud.
｢That’s quite a coincidence, Nanana-chan hey. I don’t dislike situations like this either. ｣
Sansa grinned, took off her white mask and stood next to Nanana. To be on the same level as Nanana.
The shapeshifting fox in front of them let out a short laugh.
｢You brats are doing something really interesting, so you two are going to take the stake out knowing well what would happen after that?｣
｢It’s not only for you, Ketekete. It’s also for our sake. ｣
｢I see. Let me apologize to you first Nanana, Sansa. I will have to kill and devour you for the sake of the promise I made with my friend. ｣
｢That’s nice. Welp, I’ll apologize beforehand too. I’m going to beat you up and make you break your promise for the sake of my dream. ｣
And then Nananan went in front of the stake stuck in the ground and…
Pulled it out in one go.
At the same time the white fox started growling. The cave shook. It felt like the cave had a heartbeat. At the same time the cave’s interior got distorted and the scenery of the cave’s interior totally changed within a blink of an eye. It was as if they had teleported somewhere else.
｢So, the barrier has been broken. ｣
Sansa looked around and then looked at Ketekete in front of her. But she could see the woman who was standing in front of them.
｢That’s big. ｣
It was a large silver white fox blocking their way. Its length was around four or five meters and what caught their eyes was the number of tails it had. They could see seven tails moving in the air.
｢Here I come, brats.｣
A large yokai fox charged straight towards Sansa and Nanana.
The cave shook every time Ketekete went on a rampage with its large body.
｢Won’t the ceiling fall!?｣
Sansa and I kept running, protecting ourselves from the rocks that fell from the ceiling using our hands. Ketekete is huge and if he chases us in a straight line then he would immediately catch up to us. But luckily it seems like he can’t move fast in this cave with intricate pathways. We kept running as fast as we could, being chased by Ketekete.
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