It’s the Energizer Bunny…?
Elf Village Battle ⑥
Author’s note: Potimas’s perspective
Through the monitor, I gaze on the form of Ariel, collapsed on the ground. It certainly has been a long association. In my long life, she matches with Gyuriedistodiez and Dustin as those who I’ve associated with the longest. But, even after such a long association, the end was all too quick.
Surely even Ariel herself doesn’t understand why she collapsed. On the contrary, maybe she’s lost consciousness already. If that’s the case, being able to die in one’s sleep might be the ideal way to die, in a sense. As I declared earlier, I can kill her painlessly. For me, that’s my way of showing her respect as her sworn enemy for such a long time. Heh, this is no good. When did I of all people start getting sentimental? Perhaps that shows just how significant an existence Ariel is to me.
You just never know. She was an existence that I had initially thought of as a worthless creation, so I hadn’t ever expected her to develop into someone who could oppose me. Thinking about it that way, amongst all the useless articles that I had thrown away until now, maybe there were others who could improve into an outstanding talent in the future. But then, for such a miraculous result, that’s practically like finding gold dust amongst a heap of garbage. If I had that much time, it would be much more constructive to try striking gold in another place. Ariel is the one and only miraculous example of garbage transforming into a gold nugget. Which is exactly why she is both something precious to me, and something depressing.
If only one thing, yes, if only one thing had been different, she might have been under my wing. If she didn’t believe in that idiotic existence called the Goddess, her uncommon ability might have gained her the position of being my right hand person. If that had happened, rather than calling her a mere girl of a failed creation, I would have treated her as my real daughter. Thinking that becomes highly irritating. Although I understand this is meaningless even as a theoretical possibility, that I still feel this shows just what a missed opportunity it was. However, in actuality we are antagonists to each other, and thus there she is, collapsed on the ground.
The reason why Ariel has collapsed, is that she’s in a poison induced coma. This is not the fake poison within the System, but a chemical poison. For poison produced within the System, it can be counterbalanced by the resistance. But, the effect of that resistance is purely limited to poisons created within the System, so it does nothing against real poisons. It is a cruel bait-and-switch. Contriving a magecraft attack purporting to be poison, then being able to resist that with something purporting to be poison resistance. Because that’s how those skills in the form of energy are produced.
Ariel has been living for a long time within the System. For that reason, she’s under the impression that poison doesn’t affect her. Natural poisons are erased by the System, so all that’s left is the fake poison created by the System. So it wouldn’t be strange for her to be under that impression. Seriously, there is nothing more absurd than this thing called the System. It distorts the laws of nature entirely, transforming the condition of the world, and on top of that forces all the living things within this world to supply energy. Again and again, I tried to perfect a poison that would not be erased by the System, and in the end I realised that couldn’t be accomplished. However, being unable to stomach the sense of being defeated by the System is now a nostalgic memory for me.
Although it was like the embodiment of all that was absurd with the System, it’s not like it was faultless. That Ariel can be afflicted by poison and has fainted is proof. The name of the poison that has Ariel in the grip of death, is carbon dioxide.
If you think about it it seems obvious, but within just the single word of “poison” there are a vast number of varieties. Amongst them are things that despite being poison, are indispensable to this world. The prime example being the aforementioned carbon dioxide. Not just limited to humans, the majority of living creatures absorb oxygen, and release carbon dioxide. Then, that carbon dioxide is absorbed by plants, and released as oxygen. Not even the System can overturn this cycle. Therefore, carbon dioxide can never be removed from this world. When the concentration is increased, carbon dioxide indisputably becomes a poison.
The rest is simple. I just have to pump a large quantity of carbon dioxide into an enclosed room. When the concentration of carbon dioxide is increased, respiratory failure occurs, a disordered consciousness is induced, and eventually death occurs. Whether or not the System’s assistance bestows transcendental strength or not, that body is that of a proper living creature. Because it is a living creature, it cannot escape from reason.
Although the System and in particular that which is similar to the power of god might seem to be disregarding reason, in practice it is not the case that they are completely separated from reason. They might seem to be separate from reason, but in fact fixed rules still exist. They might seem to be able to do anything, but something like the embodiment of a miracle requires expending a large quantity of energy in exchange, so if there is not enough energy to put it into practice then the realisation of that is impossible. In addition, even if enough energy is available, the process for implementing it must be understood.
What is called magecraft, does not produce something from nothing. This is only a hypothesis, but I think that what I call energy might actually be the underlying basis for atoms. Materials can change state between solid, liquid and gas, so in that case it wouldn’t be strange if the same applies to atoms which are the underlying basis for materials. And that is what “energy” is. Magecraft is a technique to manipulate that energy, and through external interference energy can be converted into materials. If that is so, then it is theoretically possible for energy to be converted into oxygen, and for carbon dioxide to be reduced to energy.
Therefore, it’s no mystery why Ariel was able to almost completely avoid the Gloria’s strike, and for her body that should be been afflicted by carbon dioxide to stand up either.
I see. Somehow or other, it seems that she does know the process required to properly break out of this situation. Whether or not one has the energy, magecraft cannot create a miracle if one does not have the knowledge to manipulate it. With the intrinsic energy that Ariel has, it wouldn’t be impossible for her to heal herself of the carbon dioxide poisoning, or for her to be able to continue fighting. If she knew how. And, Ariel did know how. That’s exactly why she was able to stand up.
Dammit, such a missed opportunity. That she has all that power, all that knowledge, yet I have no choice but to completely crush her.
I shall praise you for being able to stand. However, it’s not like the magecraft jamming field has vanished, nor has the concentration of carbon dioxide in this room reduced. With such an environment, Ariel must fight that Gloria. Creating miracles with magecraft requires energy. If there is not enough energy then a miracle cannot be performed. That being the case, how long can Ariel last for I wonder? In order to counter the magecraft jamming field she’s performing internal body enhancement, while having to constantly treat herself of carbon dioxide poisoning, and fight the Gloria on top of that.
This Gloria is the answer I came to under the assumption of facing Gyuriedistodiez. A god is basically a living creature with a phenomenal amount of energy. Thus, since they are a living creature, they cannot escape from reason. Even if a vast amount of energy is contained within their body. No matter what miraculous technique they use, since that is backed by the use of energy, then I just have to make them expend all that energy. That’s the reason for this combat arena. That’s the reason for the Gloria Type Ω. The Gloria Type Ω is specialised in wars of attrition. Whether it’s for a day, for a week, or for a month, it can still continue to fight, with it’s indestructible body. Once I’ve finished cleaning up outside, I’ll keep company with you however long it takes. Until you die that is, Ariel.
“rather than calling her a mere girl of a failed creation, I would have treated her as my real daughter” – Potimas frequently mocks Ariel as a “小娘” (komusume), which I’ve generally translated as “mere girl”. These days this word is normally used as an insult towards a girl – eg “wench”. However, the literal meaning is more like “young girl” or “little girl”. By itself, 娘 (musume) can mean “girl” but generally means “daughter”.
“Bait-and-switch” – the literal term here is “match pump” which is short for “lighting a match and then putting it out with a water pump”. Or in other words: creating a problem (poison) then introducing a solution (poison resistance) and trying to take credit for the solution. It’s more or less the flip side of “bait-and-switch”.
Regarding poison being “fake” within the System, this came up previously in chapter 214.