Chapter 56 – Oni Extermination 4
Dad fired a barrage of talismans once more from behind the opposite brambles.
Oni bypassed the opposite shrubbery and approached my father.
The Shikigami …… who intercepted it ……. …… were promptly kicked out of the battle.
The battle resumed with father’s disadvantage, and a real game of tag began, in the true sense of the word, in which a wrong step could result in instant death.
I was surprised to see my father moving so fast, even though I was watching him attack and defend earlier.
It’s amazing that a skinny guy can move so well.
“Protect me, O Earth’s Barrier! “O wall of Earth, protect me!”
“Protect me, O wall of Gold. Hurry up!
“Thin layers of Gold spread out to envelop and shroud the enemy. Hurry!”
Isn’t the urgent Ryoritsu too convenient?
I know the original chanting is much more abbreviated.
I had heard that it is sometimes used in battle, but I didn’t realize it was such a continuous chant.
I thought that instead of speeding up the activation of the formation, the power and effectiveness is supposed be reduced.
Well, there is no time for leisurely chanting when being chased by the Oni, is there?
Many people imagine a showy and cool scene when it comes to battles.
I used to fantasize that if I became an Onmyoji, I would be able to fight in splendid battles.
However, the battle unfolding in front of my eyes right now is very messy.
My father would run away, activate the formation he had set up ahead of the battle, keep his distance from the pursuing Oni, attack it with his talismans, and then run away again.
It’s a repetitive process. Is it wrong to seek for the glory in the battle for one’s life?
For that matter, the Oni’s ability to evade is too high. Every single formation set up by my father resulted in no damage.
The paper on which the huge formation was drawn was sprinkled with a special salt, which can make the trap invisible …… to non-human enemies, apparently. To be honest, I was skeptical, as I could see it clearly.
But it must be true, since the Oni is stepping on the traps unguardedly.
The moment that this invisible formations are activated, for some reason, the Oni quickly moves out of the way.
It was as if the position of the formation was made visible to it…….
“That Oni, he knows where the formation is based on the way he is looking at us.”
“If you ask me, sometimes he’s really gazing this way……. Jeez, I’ve interrupted Tsuyoshi’s plans.”
Even if the Oni can’t see us, we are in full view of him.
I couldn’t help but look at him, trying to guess how the fight was going to unfold.
I noticed that my father was fighting without averting his gaze from the Oni.
Maybe Momi-san and I had made him aware of our position.
Dad, I’m sorry.
After we became aware of their gaze, the formation’s attacks began to hit the Oni.
The Oni’s strong body could withstand the attacks, but if they were not detected in advance, they could inflict some damage.
Both offensively and defensively, the formation is more powerful than the talismans.
“The Kyobe family is the founder of this land. Tsuyoshi, the head of the Kyobe family, requests the blessing of Gold. Baptize the difficult foe who has come from the Onimon Gate with the purest of earthly baptisms.”
In addition to the long chanting, he even made a seal, and the distance he had just gained was now being closed.
I didn’t know about this formation. It was probably prepared in advance, not today.
The ground shook as if it were an ocean around the formation, and a huge wave of sand and earth attacked the Oni.
The Oni pushed through with its own physicality, as it had done so far, to counter the impossible-to-avoid ranged attack.
With a feat impossible for a human, it pierced through the earth and sand and trapped its prey within its own striking range.
The anger that had been building up until now was brought onto the Oni’s fist, and it approached my father.
I unconsciously had my tentacles extend out from my right hand.
If a human is hit by a demon’s powerful arms, it will be more than just a simple hit. He could have been killed instantly.
The tentacle, which was trying to get between the Oni and my father at full speed, was stopped by a large palm placed on my head.
“Don’t worry. Look.”
My father instantly manipulated the talismans to create a simple ward.
Although immaterial wards can be easily created using only talismans, they are more fragile.
Moreover, his opponent was not a Yōkai but a Shikigami. The effect would be reduced to less than half.
As expected, the ward was easily broken and my father was hit like a bowling pin.
Even though the damage had been lessened somewhat, there was no way that a human could match the force of a fist that could shatter a rock.
I wonder if my father, who rolled away in a cloud of smoke, is still alive.
Momi-san’s hand was still on my head. If it hadn’t been for this, I would have rushed to him right away.
“Look closely. Your father hasn’t lost yet.”
Hearing Momi-san’s voice, my previously narrowed field of vision widens.
Even from this far away spot, I could see it – the undiminished will to fight on my father’s face as he rose up behind a cloud of dust, his right arm propped on his back.
If he has not given up yet, then no one should meddle in his agreement with the Shikigami.
I retrieved the tentacles that had extended all the way up to the Oni’s neck.
“Oh, by the way, did you just call your father Chichi-Oyaji? Don’t imitate my way of speaking. Reika-san will get angry at you.”(T/N – So this was kind of lost in translation, it seems he called his father in a more informal way.)
Momi-san says this deliberately, probably to calm me down.
I appreciate Momi-san’s concern, but I am more worried about my father, who stands up unsteadily, protecting his left arm.
He must have taken some kind of precaution, because I can’t see any external injuries other than his left arm, which he used as a shield, showing signs of injury. I was relieved to see that he seemed to be in better shape than I had assumed.
Even so, why did he do such a reckless thing?
Momi-san, isn’t this the moment for you to take action?
This brings me to a fundamental question.
“Hey Momi-san. Why is your father battling the Oni? He can do his job without the Oni.”
Why bother going into such a dangerous battle, one that could have been avoided?
I am confident that I have been able to lead a stable life so far.
From my point of view, the disadvantage of risking one’s life is much greater than the advantage of being able to subdue the Oni.
Why did my father choose to ……?
“As far as I know, there are three reasons: one is because it’s been a long-held dream of his since high school. The second reason is that with a vanguard, you can work alone. The last one is because he doesn’t want his children to see him looking bad. Seibo will become a great Onmyoji in the future. As a father, he probably doesn’t want to drag his son down.”
Dragging my feet?
When he said that, it didn’t immediately register with me.
However, remembering the characteristics of the Onmyoji family profession, I could understand what Momi-san was trying to say.
In the old-fashioned Onmyoji world, the name of the family comes before the name of the individual.
A family’s reputation is based on its achievements over several generations, and a reputation that has been built up over many years can be lost in the blink of an eye with a single failure.
To restore the reputation of a house that has fallen into obscurity, one must either steadily regain credibility or make a very significant achievement.
It’s just like a company’s reputation.
When I heard what happened to the previous head of the Kyobe family – my own grandfather, my father apologized to me for not being able to inherit the Shikigami.
And considering the name of the Coming-of-Age Ceremony, the head of the Kyobe family is considered to be a full-fledged leader only when he is accompanied by an Oni.
If my guess is correct, this means that my dad has been working in a situation where he was half a head up until now.
For my father, who was quite proud, this must have been a great source of embarrassment.
He had grown up seeing his grandfather, the previous head of the family, leading Oni, so he had a very high ideal in his mind.
In my previous life, my father was an ordinary businessman, and I had a completely different job, so it never occurred to me that I could be a drag to my children other than being unemployed.
“That face looks like …… Seibo, look at that face. Something’s about to happen.”
Momi-san, who had known him for a long time, seemed to read something on my father’s face as he stood up.
When I looked back at him, the situation had worsened even further.
The Oni was approaching my father, who could no longer run away from the enemy.
The Oni was in a perfect position to kill my father, and it knew that its prey would not be able to escape.
Even if you hit it with a talisman, it will not be hurt, the formations do not work very well, and my father’s body is already full of wounds.
Also, there is no formation set up in that area.
Momi-san, what do you think my father can do in this situation?
At that moment, I was about to give up before anyone else in this place.
The training ground – or rather, the entire surrounding mountain range – was enveloped in a light.
The light shone first on a single talisman that my father had sent flying.
It was the Flame No-Fuda, which had been used many times in this battle, and it looked like nothing more than the desperate strike of a cornered prey.
As before, the Oni caught it with its face, and it seemed as if it would end up unscathed.
Contrary to my expectations, the red light of the flames was followed by an intense white light emanating from the Oni’s face.
The light spread to the Oni’s entire body, and then to the ground of the battlefield. The Oni, seeing the intense light at close range, tried to move backwards while protecting its eyes – only to find that it was unable to move.
From the ground, where no formation should have been set up, paper strips are growing.
How did the first used formation Paper Drooping Chain Formation Bakusajin come to be here?
In a sea of white light, my father, who had been meditating, snapped his fingers.
Then, a guardian dog, which had not been seen since it was kicked to pieces, rushed up to him.
In its mouth was a sword in a scabbard. Even from a distance, I could tell that the sword looked strong.
After receiving the sword, my father put it on his waist with his right hand and pulled it out of the scabbard in a familiar manner. It looks like there is some kind of talisman on it.
“You are too kind. You always cut corners when you had the chance to finish me off. Maybe you remembered my face but holding back in a …… duel is tantamount to insulting your opponent.”
My father, who had never opened his mouth except for chanting since the battle began, begins to speak in a clear voice.
It was like the declaration of someone who was sure of victory.
“I am different now than I was then. As a summoner and the head of the Kyobe family, I will show you, my power.”
As my father said these words, a sea of light flooded out from around the training ground, and we who were watching the battle were so blinded by the dazzling light that we had to shut our eyes.
When I opened my eyes and looked around, I saw pillars of light rising to the sky from the tops of the five mountains surrounding the training ground.
Could it be, or perhaps not, that he had built a super-massive formation starting from the mountains?
“Hijiri, look carefully. This is how you use the Gokusai Reisatsujin and the Nensetsu Satsuno Fuda.”(T/N – Tell me down in the comments do you want me to continue to translate the names of the skills or should I use Japanese names, as the translated names tend to be kind of silly.)
Gokusai Reisatsujin — Despite the name, this is an auxiliary type of formation.
It has the effect of increasing the effectiveness of the talismans by focusing their power in a linear pattern.
However, its effect is not that strong and it should not be used with something as powerful as a Twisting Killing Talisman.
Dad seems to have forced himself to overcome that problem by making the formation gigantic.
My father raised his sword, which was supposed to be heavy, with one hand.
It was as if he was reenacting the scene of Momotaro exterminating Oni.
“I will punish you for insulting me. Prepare yourself.”
Even though it did not understand the meaning of these words, it must have sensed the threat of an incoming attack.
Oni tried to prepare for the attack of the human in front of him by tightening his muscles, which he was proud of. This was the only resistance the Oni, whose arms were bound while protecting its eyes, could make.
My father, however, would not be wasting his breath in the middle of a battle.
Oni was slashed on his unprotected neck from behind, spraying red blood.
My father was never in front of it.
All that was there was a voice recorder on the ground.
Oni, blinded by the intense light and at the mercy of the fake voice, was unable to put up a proper fight, and was sliced open with a sharp cut.
I too know that the Twisting and Killing Talisman possesses a terrifyingly sharp edge.
If it was concentrated on the blade of a sword, it seems that even the robust skin of a demon cannot withstand it.
It must have been extraordinary hard work to build a huge formation on a scale that one couldn’t even draw it on a map, but it was worth it.
After all, my father’s battle ended after two weeks of preparation.
My father won.
I never thought that my father, who had given me the impression of being calm, would strike the Oni with such a magnificent move.
My father was about to deliver the final blow by swinging his sword again.
As I watched this scene, I felt a sense of “Suck it up” toward the Oni who had hurt my family, and I suddenly remembered the day I encountered the Shadow Yōkai.
And the image of the Oni who was about to be killed overlapped with my own, for some reason.
You are suddenly summoned to a strange place, and without even listening to what you had to say, the battle began, and the enemy was already prepared for battle. Moreover, if you lose, you are immediately subjected to a ridiculous procession of obedience.
What is that? Isn’t summoning an outrageous and immoral technique?
The Shadow Yōkai I encountered, could that possibly be ……, not a Yōkai……?
Just as I was coming to terms with this unpleasant possibility, the body of the headless demon turned to dust and vanished into thin air.
Now that he’s finished off his contract partner, I wonder what he’s going to do now.
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