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From Grimoire Nier
Translation by Defade

The Little Mermaid

A brilliantly colored light that burns a fruitless flower. Did its despaired screams reach God?

Morning dew enshrouded the coast.

A postman walked at a sedate pace. His breaths were colored white. Every now and then he’d stop and readjust the strap of his huge backpack with an “omph”.

“My my. This is just going to worsen my leg injury… hmm?”

A huge shadow loomed over him. He thought that it was a mountain at first, but when he squinted his eyes, he realized that something huge was draped across the coastline. The moment he saw the black shadow, his body sprung to alert in fear of Shades. The postman’s reaction was understandable. Recently, people kept disappearing from the city, and rumors say that it was caused by a Shade.

The postman squinted his eyes. The black shadow did not move. And there aren’t any Shades this big in the first place.

When he closed in, he saw a huge ship.

The mast was broken, and the boat itself fared no better. Perhaps it was destroyed by a storm. The presence of a few cannons confirmed its identity as a military ship. “I can’t believe that such a huge boat could crash into the reefs…”

The black and huge shadow made sinister creaking sounds. It’s not a Shade, but this is pretty scary in itself. At that moment, he felt like he saw something moving inside the ship. The postman froze. Finally a Shade, huh?

Following the instructions taught to him by his friend, the postman slowly backed away. Don’t run. Don’t show your back. Don’t avert your eyes…the effectiveness of the methods was questionable, but that’s how he was taught to deal with a Shade. His right foot still hurt, so it’s impossible for him to run anyways.

When he backed away 3 steps, he heard a strange sound. Almost like…a cough.

The postman stopped. He heard the sound again, and this time it was clearly a cough. A child’s cough.

It only took him 15 seconds to make up his mind. 60 seconds to start walking. His heart was set within that amount of time. There’s no way he could leave a child alone.

The ship must’ve witnessed quite a ferocious storm, as evidenced by its torn insides. A huge hole opened on the left side, and was filled with sand. I can get in like this. He stepped in cautiously.

It was dark inside the ship. However, sunlight filtered through the cracks here and there, and brightened the room enough for him to navigate. Seawater was still dripping through the ceiling, so he walked carefully across the wet floor. The passageways were filled with the stench of the sea.

He heard another cough.

He made his way towards its source. He walked through the corridor, opened the door, and looked left and right in search of the voice’s owner in the messy rooms. He was in a room deep within the bowels of the ship. He heard a cough from within.

The postman peeked inside.

A cough.

What he saw were fragile limbs that seemed like they could break at any moment. Pitiful rags. Two black eyes that peered fearfully at the postman.

A young girl was there.

2

“Hmph, we couldn’t get any proper information.”

Weiss complained from his place on the table. Nier continued eating his fish, showing no signs of whether he heard Weiss or not. Weiss is the kind of being that talks whenever he likes, paying no heed to whether his input is needed or not. Since he has nothing else to do during lunchtime, he talks even more than usual. Nier was used to it, and got into the habit of sidestepping Weiss’s inquiries every now and then while eating.

“Are you listening to me?”

“Ah.”

“How long are you planning to stay here?”

“I wonder.”

“How are you going to find the Shade?”

“I’ll start thinking.”

It’s been three days since they heard of the continuous disappearances of Seafront’s townsfolk. They investigated the incident on the bounds of Shade invasion, but couldn’t find any useful hints. At the end of the day, all they had was some nonsense like “they were attacked by a mermaid”. If that’s all there is, they were going to abandon this incident altogether. But the fact is, people were disappearing, and they couldn’t leave this incident alone.

Giving short replies to Weiss’s complaints now and then, Nier ordered two more bowls of noodles from the bar master.

“You’re still going to eat?”

It’s for Kainé and Emil outside, he said, and Weiss shut up.

Maybe it’s due to the proximity of the sea, but the food provided in the bar were very good. After going through the hardships of Yonah’s cooking, Nier didn’t care for the particularities of food as long as they were edible, but he always looked forward to eating in this town.

Whenever he ate anything delicious, he’d think of Yonah. I want to let Yonah eat this. I want to make her smile. Nier’s expression darkened.

Weiss started throwing complaints at him again. He continued talking to Nier out of some self-imposed sense of duty.

3

The furthest door in the corridor of the boat.

“You there?”

The postman opened the door, disturbing the flow of the salty and wet air.

There was one nearly broken table in the room. A girl slowly crawled out beneath the table. The postman pulled out a piece of bread from his bag, but stopped himself at the last moment. If he gives the bread over, he wouldn’t be able to eat anything today. However, if he didn’t, then the girl would be the one to suffer hunger.

It’s not even worth considering. He placed the bread on the table and motioned for the girl to eat it. He doesn’t know the reason behind the girl’s inability to talk. The girl merely tilted her head whenever he attempted conversation, and it was only two days after their meeting that he was able to communicate through hand signs and body language.

The girl looked between the bread and the postman for a moment, but immediately began wolfing down the bread. After finishing her bread in a short time, she looked at the postman again.

“Sorry, but the city isn’t faring too well in the food department either, so I couldn’t bring as much as I wanted.”

The postman smiled sheepishly while scratching his head. The girl merely stared at him, and didn’t even nod.

No matter how much he taught her, the girl couldn’t speak. How on earth did she manage to survive all this time?

The girl lifted her nose and sniffed. She seemed to have caught onto some scent, and stared at the postman’s pocket. He took out some breadcrumbs from his pocket and showed them to the girl.

“These are just old breadcrumbs. I was thinking of feeding them to the seagulls…”

The girl bit into the breadcrumbs. She choked in her hurry to eat, but the postman did not stop her. He laughed while patting her back.

“Nobody’s gonna take it. So don’t ru…sh… ouch!”

The girl tried to eat the postman’s finger along with the breadcrumbs. Blood dripped from his wound. The postman caught the girl’s eyes.

“Hahaha… you’re quite the impatient one, huh.”

The postman forced himself to smile. The girl merely stared at the dripping blood, expressionless.

This child is strange… forgetting to even wipe the blood off his fingers, the postman stared at the mysterious girl.

The next day.

The girl was sitting on top of the table when he visited her room.

The postman took out a white ribbon from his pocket and showed it to her. The girl reacted and held out her hand. She seemed to be used to this by now.

“It’s a ribbon. Girls use it to tie their hair. Here, I’ll tie it for you.”

As the postman touched her hair, her body stiffened for a moment before relaxing.

“What’s wrong? Your hair’s all wet, did you go out?”

The girl did not respond.

“…guess I can’t help it. Here.”

The postman dried the girl’s hair with his own handkerchief. At the same time, the girl played with the white ribbon aimlessly.

He saw a spot of light on her hair. He could see the last lights of the day from the thin cracks in the room. The postman squinted his eyes.

“The sun at this time of the day is my favorite… it feels very gentle.”

He heard a swooshing sound behind him and felt the air move. When he turned around, the girl disappeared. Where is she, one look at the table gave him the answer. The girl was sitting beneath the table, shaking.

“Ah, what’s wrong? Are you afraid of something?”

The girl pointed at the golden sunlight that filtered in.

“…I see. You lived in dark places for too long, so your eyes have become weak against light.”

That said, she couldn’t live like that forever. I’ll bring this child outside with me someday. Then I can give her a healthier lifestyle…the gentle sun of dusk moved slowly.

4

“Now that you mentioned it, it started around the same time as the arrival of that ship.” The female owner of the materials shop said while moving her ponderous girth. A few weeks ago, an ancient but big ship floated onto the coastline. It looked like it suffered through a heavy storm, and no survivors were found. No, that wasn’t entirely correct – nobody was on the ship when the town dwellers discovered it.

“I’ve seen the postman dally around there recently, so you should go an ask him.”

Nier bought some natural gum as a show of thanks and left the shop. Weiss floated along and talked to Nier.

“The postman, huh… brings up memories of the old woman. Now that I think about it…” When Weiss began talking, Nier noticed something.

“Kainé!”

Kainé motioned for him to come over inside the alleyways. She doesn’t go into inhabited towns due to her self-awareness of Shade-possession. Discrimination hurts people. Both the ones on the receiving end and the ones dishing out the damage.

Therefore, there could be only 2 reasons for Kainé to step into the town – either something terribly good has happened, or something horrendously bad.

Feeling a sense of wrongness, Nier headed towards Kainé. The sense of wrongness only worsened when Kainé began with “There was this coastline with a broken ship…”

Clouds covered the sky, and the air foretold of coming storms.

5

The wind raged.

The huge ship continued creaking, and planted seeds of anxiety within all that observed. The girl and the postman were at their usual room. She was clinging to the postman’s clothes. “Haha…so there are things even you fear.”

The postman took out some food, but the girl shook her head.

“What’s wrong? Aren’t you hungry?”

The girl nodded.

The deep voice of the ocean’s rage could be heard afar. The girl was shaking.

“Okay!”

The postman stood up abruptly, and began singing while stamping his feet. He was off-tone, but the simplistic nature of the song seeped through. The girl stiffened her body. “Haha…my bad my bad. This is called a song.”

“You make sounds from the bottom of your belly, so you’ll feel better.”

“Songs are wisdom that carry us through the hardships of life.

“That’s why I like singing. I’m pretty bad, but…”

The postman’s song continued.

Eventually, the girl tried to mimic him and sing. Her song doesn’t sound like one – it didn’t even sound like a voice. It was a horrible sound like the squishing of paper bags. However, the postman was overjoyed and clapped his hands. “You’re good! You’re good!”

The girl saw the happiness that overtook the postman, and continued singing her terrible song, embarrassed.

The girl’s song resounded throughout the broken ship.

A beam of light shone into the ship. The girl stopped singing.

“It’s fine. That’s not lightning, it’s just the beacon from the lighthouse.”

“…an acquaintance of mine lived there before. She’s already dead. “

“I’d often pass by her house when I delivered letters.”

“To tell you the truth, it was an exhausting job…but now it just feels nostalgic.”

The girl did not comprehend the postman’s words. He merely patted her head.

“I always loved loneliness.”

“I’m satisfied with just delivering these letters every day, written by people who felt deeply about the recipient.”

“But recently, I was thinking that I’d like to become a person who felt deeply enough about someone to write a letter for them.”

“…won’t you come to my place? I’d like to have a daughter, actually.”

The postman pulled her hand, but the girl shook herself free from his grasp. She shook her head, and pointed at the cabin floor.

The girl began singing in her croaking voice again.

“You like being here, huh. It’s a pity, but I guess I can’t….”

The postman looked at the floor she was pointing at. Something was off. He couldn’t see well within the darkness, but some sort of liquid was flowing.

He touched it lightly. It felt slippery. The beacon from the lighthouse shone into the room, and he saw his blood-stained hand under the light.

The postman looked at the girl.

Only the broken songs of joy resounded throughout the room.

6

It was difficult to see the whole of the ship even from a hill. It was just that big. The black ship tilted against the reefs, and its side had a big hole. Anything that stuck up like masts were mostly broken. It must’ve been a heavy storm.

“Is that the ship?”

Nier asked Kainé. They came here because Kainé said “There might be Shades in the ship”. As a person possessed by a Shade, she could tell the presence of Shades nearby. She even understood their words, but she kept this fact a secret from Nier and others. Kainé answered.

“Yeah… but it’s not that clear-cut.”

The sensations of the left half of her body told her that “something” was in the broken boat. However, it felt completely different from the usual Shades. She never felt like this before. Seeing her confusion, Weiss joked.

“So the hussy’s only strength is worth nothing here.”

“Weiss!”

Emil scolded Weiss.

The normal Kainé would probably reply with something like “damn paper” or “shit book”, but she kept her silence. Everyone felt the anxiousness permeating the air. Something is going to go wrong.

Nier drew his sword.

“We just have to go and see for ourselves.”

7

A dark room.

A bloody floor.

That person isn’t here anymore, so it’s okay.

The girl shook in the corner of the room. A huge black claw grew out beyond her wrist. Why…did it come to this?

Did that person leave…

Because of this blackened body?

I want to talk normally with him…

I don’t want to be hated by him

…I don’t want to be feared by him.

Thinking of the postman, she tried to stop herself from transforming into a Shade. I have to… use more power. If that person saw me like this…

I want the power to keep my human form.

The power to bathe in sunlight.

The power to produce beautiful sounds.

Pale streaks of water flowed from her eyes.

With her strong will, she managed to revert her black arm to a human’s. If I eat more humans…

Her lips shook.

“If I do that, I can become human.”

She said in a voice that cannot be heard by humans – a voice like scraping metals, the voice of a Shade.

8

Her throat felt uncomfortably dry. Her hands weren’t even sweating despite their tight hold on her swords. The further she walked into the boat, the colder it got.

“Are you okay?”

Nier called out to Kainé, noticeably worried at her pale face. She lifted the corners of her mouth and answered. Not really. But nothing’s going to be resolved even if I tell you. The problem lies ahead.

“Hehehehe… we’re closing in on something bad, aren’t we… Kainé?”

Tyran spoke up in an unpleasant tone. He’s always like that. Not at all obliged to help us. He’s fine with just watching anyone suffer.

However, even Tyran felt that something was wrong. He sounded completely different from his usual self.

Kainé focused on the Shade half of her body.

She began to see the truth behind the coldness she felt. It’s a soundless vibration that resonated with her Shade part. Nobody but Kainé could understand the feelings brought on by that resonation. If she had to put it into words, it would be “fear”. Kainé frowned. Me? Scared?

She couldn’t come to terms with that, and merely proceeded further into the boat with Nier and the others.

The furthest part of the boat. Nier stopped within the darkness.

“The room beyond here is the last one.”

Kainé tried to say something.

Don’t.

Before the words could even be formed, they died in her dry throat.

The room had a simple design. A table and a chair were all there was. Nothing resembling a window was spotted – this was probably the captain’s room. Maps and shelves of books were lined up neatly, and a small girl stood beside the table.

Black hair. Pale skin. Dirty clothing. Red eyes.

Kainé understood everything immediately.

The truth behind this coldness.

“Hehe… this one here… is pretty dangerous…”

Even Tyran spoke in a fearful tone.

That’s right. The girl was a Shade, but not a normal one.

She was significantly more “concentrated”. She existed with a “concentration” a few hundred times beyond a normal Shade.

A single Shade has the size of several humans put together, but that’s its extent. To attain a greater size, “fusion” of numerous Shades is required. By fusing, Shades grow both in power and in size.

The Shade that attacked Nier’s village and the fucker that killed her grandmother belonged to that category. A fused Shade contained the melded consciousness of many Shades, and the bigger they get, the more powerful they are. Kainé gained this piece of information from her battle experiences.

But the girl in front of her is different. She was a dozen times stronger than that fucker. Kainé could tell from the coldness within her that let out an agonizing scream. Despite all that, she’s so small… Kainé knew what her size meant. The girl was keeping her expanding body in check by applying the same amount of force in the opposite direction. In other words, the “strength” she felt right now is but a tiny fraction of the girl’s power.

The vibration she felt was a result of the girl’s power that threatens to overflow them even now. All she felt were the Shade energies that seeped through. She shuddered at the thought of a complete release of those energies. Tyran spoke up with a shaking voice. “Even this pressure we feel now… is as simple as breathing for that one… hahahaha… shit’s about to get real… huh?”

There’s another thing she learnt about Shades. The more Shades involved in fusing, the more reasoning the finished product loses. Just like how the fused Shade in the Aerie became nothing but a giant piece of magic blasting… thing, a fused Shade gets more and more stupid as they fuse with more and more Shades. The whole business isn’t as clear-cut as “the more you fuse the stronger you get”, as some fused Shades with a lesser amount of Shades are stronger.

Worst case scenario, this small Shade wasn’t fused and only had one consciousness. In other words, this one is dangerous enough to attain this level of strength without fusing at all. The air was freezing with danger.

The girl didn’t even blink.

Nier and Emil did not move.

They didn’t know what to do. It was like standing next to a piece of explosive that goes off at the slightest movement.

“Huh? What are you guys doing here?”

A voice came from the direction of the entrance.

The postman stood there.

Man, you should’ve just told me if you’re coming here… I have something to discuss with you guys anyways, the man spoke in a light tone while placing his bag on the floor. When he came close to Kainé, he said

“Excuse me, but I sort of want to know…about that Lunar thing or whatever…”

It all sounded like nonsense.

Kainé moved her dry lips. She had to tell them.

She couldn’t make a sound. But she turned towards Nier and Emil and mouthed

(This one is a Shade)

The girl suddenly moved. She stared at Kainé. An ominous vibrating sound could be heard. The moment that the postman turned back to look at his bag,

The girl exploded in a shower of black.

A number of black lances emerged from the girl’s body.

At the same time, Nier, who was right next to the girl, immediately brought his guard up. An onslaught of lances pierced the ceiling and the floor. Kainé and Emil grabbed the postman and made towards the exit. Behind them, Nier was thrown back. He made towards them and shouted at them to run. The Shade’s thoughts flowed into Kainé’s head.

Why am I a Shade?

Please, someone tell me!

Why am I not human?

Why are you taking that person away from me?

Don’t let your guard down! Tyran’s voice lacked its usual playful tone.

Just as they emerged from the corridor, a huge onslaught of the Shade’s lances assaulted them from the walls, the ceiling and the floor. They grew from the girl and made to chase after the escapees. Nier ran ahead while cutting down the lances, but couldn’t deal with all of them. Kainé moved on to support him and handed over the postman to Emil. Emil picked up the unconscious postman with his mouth dashed.

“The exit’s here.”

The moment that Nier shouted at the sight of the sunlit exit, a number of black lances blocked it. Kainé jumped over Emil and delivered a flying kick towards the exit, breaking through the Shade’s blockage. Kainé somersaulted out of the boat, but the exit was blocked again before Emil could move out. Nier was close behind.

“Emil!”

Swatting the black lances to the side, Nier tried to protect Emil, but a number of Shade hands attacked them from above. The impact of their attacks caused the postman to fall from Emil’s mouth.

“Ah! Mr. Postman!”

Nier and Emil were blasted out of the boat. They rolled over a few times in the sand. Kainé turned around.

Black lances broke out of the boat in different places. They seemed like they’d continue to extend, but they wrapped around themselves like a huge snake instead. Another few dozens of snakes emerged from the boat.

The fog cleared outside the boat, the sun was shining so brightly that Nier and the others have to squint their eyes. It’s bright enough that any normal Shade would die immediately. However, paying no heed to that fact, the black snake exposed itself to sunlight. Its surface was burnt off by direct sunlight, but new cells were created at a much higher speed. “It doesn’t die…under direct sunlight…”

Emil despaired.

Eventually, an egg like shape formed amidst the thrashing snakes. The egg nurtured by the surrounding snakes grew bigger and bigger. Its surface cracked and began to peel off like fruits. The peels formed two huge wings. And within the wings, the upper half of the girl’s body grew on the middle of the egg. Her blackened body was shaking, and seemed to have grown straight from the deck. However, just her upper body was well over 10 meters.

More wings grew from her upper body. Kainé knew that they were merely “extras”. The huge amount of magic left over found no practical use and merely gave unnecessary wings to the Shade. The wingspans were almost 100 meters long.

It was already a few times the length of the entire boat, yet it continued to expand while smoke came out of the Shade’s body.

The Shade’s figure that bathed under the sun had a surreal beauty to it.

The postman lay across her palm. The giant Shade that carried him carefully let out a roar. Kainé and her companions had to cover their ears from the sound’s impact. The resulting vibration made them see double. When the impact receded, its sound created one set of music scales.

It was the song taught to the girl by the postman.

9

The expanding girl’s consciousness was in turmoil with anger. Fear of not knowing what was to become of her, and hatred towards the humans that tried to take the postman away from her flowed from her heart.

No matter how much I eat humans

I wasn’t satisfied!

Nobody ever helped me!

Only this person was nice to me!

He taught me what gentleness was!

I…I will become a human!

I’ll speak the same words…as this person

…I’ll live with him!

Just a bit more.

She covered the postman with both of her hands, taking great care not to injure him. Just a bit more…and she’d gain the power to become a human.

“Hehehe… no idea what’s going on in her head, but she really wants to eat us!”

Tyran shouted. Kainé knew that he was merely putting on a façade. The postman regained his consciousness among the loud sounds and shaking. He didn’t seem to know what was going on at first, but widened his eyes at fear when he saw the girl’s enlarged face. The postman tried to scream, but the sound died in his throat.

Don’t be afraid. Because I…

I’ll become a human soon.

The girl’s smile was merciful, and she embraced the postman who was frozen with fear. Her arm transformed. Black letters appeared on her arm, and several spikes grew from it. The spikes shaped themselves into weapons and floated alongside the girl. A few claws grew from her back as well.

“Run!”

The moment that Kainé shouted, the black spikes assaulted Nier. The girl threw the “lances” she made with her huge arms. Sand was blasted all over the place wherever the lances landed. Nier shouted while rolling to dodge.

“I never knew that they could throw their own bodies!”

“That one isn’t normal!”

The Shade had more and enough magic left over. It’s not going to hurt her at all to forge her body into weapons. Emil shouted at Kainé while blocking the spikes with his magic field.

“I’ll try to attack it!”

A few thin strands of light escaped from Emil’s staff and aimed themselves at the Shade. The next moment, balls of magic were hurled along the strands to the Shade. They hit the Shade with an explosion and blew off two of its wings.

However, they immediately grew back – three of them, in fact. Nier shouted.

“How… is it immortal?”

“I’ll finish it off here! You guys run!”

Kainé took a huge jump and bombarded the Shade with magic in the air. All her attacks were blocked by the Shade’s arms on the deck. But Kainé wasn’t discouraged, and resumed her attack while charging her sword with magic. Weaving through the Shade’s counterattacks, she closed in on the girl’s main body. However, she wasn’t headed towards the girl’s chest area or head, but towards the hands enclosing the postman.

“This one’s pretty important to you, huh!?”

Kainé swung her sword in a downwards arc towards the postman’s position. The girl, who remained expressionless until now, widened her eyes. Before Kainé’s sword could reach the postman, a number of the Shade’s arms blocked her assault. Sparks flew from the clash between magic and Shade energy.

However, Kainé suddenly changed the angle of her strike. Her sword reached towards the girl’s head.

All of the Shade’s defenses were protecting the postman, so it had no time to generate new arms before Kainé struck true.

The Shade turned its face at the last moment and was spared from a direct hit, but Kainé’s sword still tore apart its face.

Black blood gushed out in heaps. A strange scream. The postman was thrown against the deck. The Shade was covering its face, and only when searching for the postman did it realize that Nier and Emil were preparing to launch Black Lance at its maximum potential.

“This ends here!”

Magic shot out with Nier’s shout and Emil’s roar. The huge amount of magic condensed into lance-form assaulted the Shade while spinning at high speeds. The Shade tried to block with its left arm, but the huge lance tore away its entire limb from its shoulder. The girl screamed.

“It’s still not dead?!”

Movement was spotted in the Shade’s wound. It was like watching a few hundred snakes.

Human… a human… I’ll… The girl looked up at the sky.

I’ll become a human!!!

An unbelievable amount of tentacles extended from the Shade’s torn wound. The tentacles became a few hundred sharp swords and ripped apart the landscape. Kainé was in close proximity, so no matter how hard she defended herself, the tentacles pierced her left arm and right leg. She fell through the floor. Nier was still cooling down from the huge amount of magic he exerted, and was attacked by the Shade’s swords.

Emil knocked Nier away. Black shadows surrounded his left arm.

“Gyahhhhhhhh!”

Emil’s scream was feral. His entire left arm was torn off. Nier tried to help Emil, but was blasted away by the swords second onslaught. Swinging around a fearful amount of swords, the Shade continued screaming.

I’ll kill you….I’ll kill you all!

The Shade who used to be a girl screamed while hugging her torn body. She shuddered with shallow breaths like that of an animal. She was strong, but even her regeneration could not catch up with the amount of damage she suffered.

However, Nier and the others weren’t faring so well either. No one could stand. The Shade took one look at Nier and grabbed him with its black hand.

“Ah… Nier..is!”

Emil looked at the sky while shaking.

Kainé was barely standing among the puddle of her own blood.

Just when the Shade was about to put Nier in its mouth

“Stop!”

It was the postman who regained consciousness. He ran towards the Shade with unsteady steps. The postman took a feeble piece of splinter as his weapon and faced off against the Shade with shaky knees.

“You…monster!”

You said to live together…?

“Disappear! You man-eater!”

But you said to sing songs

“Let go of that person!”

I’m trying to become human to live…..with you

“I hate you!”

The girl stopped.

She looked at her body again. Black smoke emerged from where her appendages where cut off. She could probably recover from the damage she suffered.

However, that proves that she’s a Shade. What is this ugly body. Didn’t I want to become a human?

With a body like this… I… I…

She looked at the postman. His eyes were shaking with anger and fear.

“Die!”

His words pierced her. The sound of her broken wings falling into the ocean was heard. She knew that she could no longer maintain this body.

She couldn’t even remember her life’s meaning. She dropped Nier.

Slowly, she lifted her head. The dusk shone with golden sunlight – the very same one that they promised to watch together.

Ah… and the world…

Is so beautiful…………

Kainé jumped at her from behind. The girl didn’t even try to struggle. It was a disgustingly raw sound.

The girl’s decapitated head fell slowly.

Her huge body turned into black sand and lost its form. Even the black sands were blown along by the sea wind and disappeared.

The broken ship. The dusk was reflected off the sea and gleamed like a jewel.

10

The second floor of Seafront’s bar housed a simple inn. The bed makes a pretty bad sound, but it’s better than sleeping outside. Kainé stood, dragging her hurting feet along. It has been three days. The postman forced Kainé, Nier and Emil to stay at the inn to thank them for saving the town. Normally they’d refuse, but the damages they suffered were severe, so they accepted his kindness.

Emil was still sleeping, but his destroyed left arm had regenerated until the wrist area. The mechanics behind it remained unknown, but he should regain his former arm in another day.

Nier’s injuries were light in comparison, so he was helping the postman along with the shitty book. It’s about time for us to leave this place.

She noticed the presence of a piece of paper between her breasts.

It dropped from the broken Shade’s body and looked like a letter. Something was written in ugly letters resembling worms more than anything. She thought that it was for the postman, but he told her to take care of whatever the monster left behind. “I didn’t know that she was such a monster…”

Black letters appeared on the postman’s foot.

Kainé opened the letter.

Tyran seemed very interested.

“What’s this?”

“A letter. Something the Shade wrote for the postman.”

“Gahahaha! What ugly handwriting!”

“It was probably trying to copy the pattern as best as it could.”

“…what’s written on there?”

Kainé did not answer and simply tore the letter into pieces.

Bright sunlight filtered in through the window.

The ocean seen from within seemed so peaceful, and the battle at the ship felt like an incident long past.

Broken pieces of the letter fell from Kainé’s hand.

On one of the corners, the words “Thank you” were written over and over again in ugly lettering.

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