Maou Shoujo Ariel’s turn.
298 – Elf Village Battle ⑩
As the robot begins to regenerate the broken drill, I grab its head and immediately sink my teeth into it. The bitter taste of metal spreads through my mouth. That only lasts for a moment though, as what I had bitten off in my mouth is disintegrated, and transformed into pure energy.
My Gluttony skill works properly within my mouth at least. While it means I need to get things into my mouth first, so long as I can get it into my mouth then it gets disintegrated into energy no matter what it is, and I can then absorb that. It makes no difference that it’s built to be an anti-god robot. While the amount of energy that I can snatch in one mouthful is small, it should be more efficient than simply continuing to punch it endlessly.
I’ve already figured out the rough design of this robot. At any rate it’s a war-of-attrition type that has been infused with plenty of energy. Relying upon its quantity of energy, it’s made to be tough enough to instantly regenerate no matter how hard it’s beaten up. Excess functions are excluded, and it’s specialised only in efficiency. At the same time the combination of the magecraft jamming field and the poisonous gas exhausts the opponent. I see, I see. It might be in a roundabout way, but if you consider what kind of strategy has the potential of defeating a god, it makes pretty good sense. Even while I’m actually using Humility, it’s still a real struggle. As for whether it would really work in practice against Gyurie I don’t know, but what I can tell is that Potimas has really thought long and hard about perfecting this battle formation. Precisely for that reason, and because I am the opponent, that will be the reason for its defeat.
I thrust into the robot’s torso with a spear hand. Then, I activate magic inside the robot’s body. The magecraft jamming field is not omnipotent either. For the interior of living bodies inside the field, and in particular, for the interior of allies where the activation of magecraft must not be jammed, the effect does not reach. Well of course, since the robot regenerates using magecraft, jamming that would turn it into a simple lump of metal. Unlike Shiro-chan, I’m not capable of actually analysing the construction for neutralising the magecraft jamming on the robot, but even without such laborious methods I am able to activate magic. So long as it’s inside the robot.
What I activated, was level 10 Heresy Magic. Its name is Soul Break. Heresy Magic is magic that directly acts upon the opponent’s soul. And, Soul Break is magic that destroys the opponent’s soul. I drive that into the robot.
The robot becomes wild as if it hated that, and it slams the side of my face. Along with the nasty sound of my cheekbones breaking, I’m blown away and separated from the robot. I quickly regain my stance, watching out for pursuit from the robot. However, the pursuit doesn’t come, and instead the robot took a vigilant stance as if being cautious.
That worked, huh. Well, it was something I already knew about already. Energy dwells within the soul. Without the container called the soul, the energy will quickly dissipate. The ones with an extremely large soul container are gods. To kill a god, you either need to destroy the container called the soul, or to cause all the energy inside it to be consumed.
Potimas chose the method of causing the energy to be consumed. He chose it, or rather, he didn’t have any other method available. Like I just did, it’s also possible to use Soul Break to destroy the soul. However, that’s simply because I could borrow the System’s power. Without the System’s support I can’t use Soul Break. Even Shiro-chan has yet to be able to reproduce Soul Break after all. So Potimas also wouldn’t be able to reproduce Soul Break without the System’s assistance. Therefore, Potimas could only choose a different method.
It’s not like Potimas wouldn’t be able to use Soul Break either. All he’d have to do is make the elves learn Heresy Magic after all. However, Potimas would never choose to do that. After all, Potimas doesn’t even trust the elves. To Potimas, the elves are convenient tools. Tools that must be safe to use. Thus, he won’t let them learn anything that could become even slightly harmful to him. So for Potimas, Heresy Magic is a two-edged sword. That my Heresy Magic worked on the robot is good proof of that. Against this robot which is Potimas’s secret weapon, since Heresy Magic is effective, it should also be effective against Potimas himself. In the theoretical case where Gyurie was the opponent, having one or two people learn Heresy Magic would be a drop in the bucket. Taking on him would surely require hundreds of people to learn it else it likely wouldn’t be effective enough. If Potimas had that many people learn Heresy Magic, then what if they rose in revolt against him? Since he would worry about such things, he wouldn’t be able to take such measures.
It’s often said that it’s lonely being a king, but it’s a bit different with Potimas. He’s alone by choice. He’s satisfied with being shut in his confined miniature garden. Because as long as he’s inside that miniature garden, he can be number one. Because as long as he’s inside that miniature garden, whatever he does is forgiven. Really, what a petty man. Because of which, he’s a sleazebag.
「Potimas. To make this robot, just how many people’s souls were used?」
Since I can hear Potimas muttered groans over the speakers, I’m not expecting some kind of decent reply. However, I just wasn’t able to keep quiet. Energy dwells within souls. Since it has energy, it means that this robot has souls within it. Also, there is a threshold for how much energy can be saved up in souls. A threshold that Potimas and I were unable to exceed. This robot was specifically granted energy under the assumption that Gyurie was the opponent. That amount of energy cannot possibly be retained by a single person’s soul. If he’d been able to do that, then Potimas would have become a god long ago. Therefore, this robot has several, no, several dozen people’s souls infused into it. All their souls have been reconstructed into this metal body.
I pity you all. But, I won’t go easy on you. For Soul Break to destroy a soul, it means that it returns to nothingness rather than rejoining the cycle of reincarnation. Quite literally, a heretical magic. Even so, I will not hesitate in making use of this. It’s not like I have the luxury to choose otherwise either. Gluttony and Soul Break, and finally the time limited Humility. I will used these to overcome Potimas.
To these pitiful souls that were reduced to a weapon I give a single word of apology, then I took a step forwards.
“Soul Break” – skills with this word (破魂) have appeared before, though not in pure spell form. Eg the “Evil Eye of Soul Break” in chapter 119 or how the “Heresy Attack” skill uses the “Soul Break” attribute in chapter 110. “Break Soul” or “Rend Soul” would be a more literal translation though.
“Quite literally, a heretical magic” – the Japanese word for “heresy” or “heretical” more literally means “off the [proper] path”. As Ariel said, it takes souls outside the (proper) cycle of reincarnation.