I activated the four evolved abilities I had — Causality Alteration, Dimensional Manipulation, Consumption, The Divine Language — in parallel, and my magic power surged. Demonic power covered my right hand in a glove of faintly-red flower petals, while divine power covered my left hand in another one of the same, only azure-colored.
In response, Fiorfata released its own outpouring of magic from its whole body. Our powers clashed, sending the earth and the skies of the Central Continent trembling.
“Hah!” I shouted, dashing as I tore through the air, rolling forward during my charge to bring my heel down on Fiorfata. It snapped its long, withered arm like a whip in defense, vibrating its wings just a fraction to repel me with a shockwave.
Mist flowed from my left hand. As the white petals touched Fiorfata’s miasma, they blackened and burst into flames.
Yet the blast was still not yet entirely nullified, flinging us away from each other once again. Fiorfata released beams of light from its right arm, and I answered by thrusting out my own.
The blizzard coming from my right hand clashed against Fiorfata’s lasers.
Its magic power was converted into icy petals as its lasers seared away my magic power. The collision resulted in an explosion that reverberated all across the Central Continent. The shockwave tore trees off the ground, enormous trunks tumbling in the air as though they were nothing more than leaves. Hills were grated away and the land flattened.
We slammed into each other once more, ignoring the damage we had taken. Fiorfata’s fist hit my stomach while my kick crashed into its face.
[Shedy] [Race: Bunny Girl] [Joker] [Magic Points: 453,000/500,000] [Total Combat Power: 503,000/550,000]
[Unseelie Lord・Fiorfata] [Race: Dark Pixie] [Demon Lord] [Magic Points: 431,000/600,000] [Total Combat Power: 501,000/670,000]
Fiorfata had answered my provocation. It hadn’t tried to attack anything else to recover its magic, instead agreeing to fight me head-on.
Was it the pride it had as a pinnacle being? Or was the cruelty of demons spurring it on?
As a demon, I’d always thought my aspect was ‘ruthlessness’, and now, I could feel that I’d gained the aspect of ‘rationality’ as a goddess.
Our combat power were about the same. Yet I was taking slightly, but distinctly, more damage that Fiorfata was, perhaps due to its superior experience in being a pinnacle of demons.
Which was why I knew that to have a chance of winning, I had to fight with an actual plan. I had to be as ruthless as demons and as rational as machines.
Fiorfata once more split its face apart in a smile. Had it noticed my determination, I wonder?
…fine then, Fiorfata, let’s get to it!
I clapped my hands as though praying, teleporting a freezing mass of space to cover Fiorfata whole in an instant, engulfing it in white frost.
Fiorfata shook it off with brute magic force and countered with lasers, but I was no longer there. I was already charging forward the moment I made my attack. The multiple beams of light changed their directions to chase me.
I dodged, grazing them, and got into melee range with Fiorfata. I used [The Divine Language] to create a five-meter chain of cold iron, throwing one end like a whip to wrap around Fiorfata’s left arm.
“Well then, let’s see who last longer.”
I pulled my left arm wrapped with the other end of the chain and slammed my right fist, wreathed in magic, into Fiorfata. It answered in kind and swung its right arm, which I blocked with my left.
Our attacks blew us away from each other, but the chain held us back.
Fiorfata immediately tried to cut the chain. I ran reinforcing magic power through it and while Fiorfata was distracted, I whipped a kick toward its head with all my strength.
[Shedy] [Race: Bunny Girl] [Joker] [Magic Points: 442,000/500,000] [Total Combat Power: 492,000/550,000]
[Unseelie Lord・Fiorfata] [Race: Dark Pixie] [Demon Lord] [Magic Points: 418,000/600,000] [Total Combat Power: 488,000/670,000]
As I expected, I had a much better chance when it was a melee fight. If my guess was correct… then Fiorfata was only making do with the experience it had gathered during its long, long life, and that it hadn’t had much experience in close combat itself due to being originally a dark pixie.
Cold iron could suppress evil, and could be strengthened due to its high affinity with magic power. I wasn’t good enough with the material to make a weapon, of course, but I could make a very tough chain.
I unleashed the whole of my magic to swing the chain and Fiorfata with it, slamming and burying the Demon Lord into the ground. It pulled at the chain to bring me close and released a blast from beneath the earth.
The ground exploded. I was blown into the sky, and the taut chain brought Fiorfata with me.
The next moment, both of us pulled at the chain, flinging us together. Once we were so close our hands could touch, Fiorfata released beams of light at point-blank range.
I didn’t care about offsetting its attack. The blizzard released from my right hand was purely to whittle Fiorfata down.
Two immense sources of magic power clashed with barely any distance between them. The violent explosion cut into both our magic reserves. For an instant, I took a defensive stance to minimize the damage—
—but Fiorfata took the opportunity to pull at the chain to throw me away, taking me by surprise.
Fiorfata followed, connected by our binding. It snapped its long arm at me like a whip while I was still unbalanced. I strengthened the cold iron chain as much as I could and held it up to block. The impact rang in my ears.
I followed through, wrapping the chain around Fiorfata’s neck, pulling its face to meet my knee.
The impact cracked its head. It tilted its head just a fraction.
Too bad for you, Fiorfata…
“Looks like I’m better at fighting dirty!”
Once more, I jerked the chain back and slammed my elbow into its face, creating another crack. Yet even fractured as it was, its head once more split open in a smile.
It headbutted me in my face.
I held back my reflex to bring my hand to my nose, instead swiping at Fiorfata with a kick. Both of us crashed into the ocean surface at such speed it felt like solid ground, the water erupting violently. I idly wondered how long ago we’d left land.
We were sinking deeper and deeper. This was bad. Underwater was bad. I couldn’t turn into mist to dodge with water around me.
But just as I struggled to rise from the water, I heard a heavy crash. Something had just chomped at Fiorfata underwater.
A sea dragon?! There were still monsters trying to help me!
Get away! I shouted, but underwater, all that came out were bubbles. The sea dragon broke the sea surface, dragging the chain — and me with it — out of the water.
Fiorfata struck, and everything above the neck of the sea dragon just vanished. Some of the splattering blood hit me.
I slammed both my hands at Fiorfata in anger, using Rimeblossom and Firebloom at the same time.
Crack! The fractures on its face widened. The cold iron chain was torn apart, the stress finally too much for it, and Fiorfata was flung away.
We floated above the waters, once more facing each other from a distance. Fiorfata stared at the torn chain in apparent puzzlement. Then it smirked, an enormous amount of magic power suddenly surging from it.
Thousands upon thousands of beams of light shot out from Fiorfata’s whole body to pierce into the sea dragons that had been lurking beneath the ocean, waiting for their chance.
For the first time, the sounds coming out of Fiorfata weren’t the bizarre noise it had been releasing, but instead a recognizable word in the common language of Yggdrasia.
We had been completely ignoring our defense in our brawl, and both of our magic reserves had gone down quite a bit. But Fiorfata still chose to remove everything that could disturb us first, so that it could put a decisive end to our battle.
With most of the larger creatures under the sea eliminated, Fiorfata now turned its lasers toward land.
A glacial cold covered Fiorfata. It didn’t take more than a few moments for it to be dispelled, however, and Fiorfata once more cracked open its head in a smile and resumed attacking the continent.
All the dragons that I could see, waiting for their opportunities as the sea dragons had, were being shot down, their wings full of holes. They fell to the ocean.
This was really bad. This was exactly what I had been trying to prevent by keeping its focus on me, but Fiorfata finally realized this whole world was against it.
Even if I had arrived at Fiorfata’s level, I had only just evolved. I didn’t have the experience. I had no way to prevent the Demon Lord’s wide-range attacks, nor a method of assault powerful enough to stop it.
I stared at my hands.
The right hand of demons, and the left hand of gods. A while ago, using both of them at the same time had allowed me to deal quite a bit of damage to Fiorfata.
But… should I use it?
It had been more powerful than I expected, that was true. But it had also been more unstable, more than what I thought I could control.
The demon inside me was whispering to me, telling me that if I did it right, I had a chance to win. But the goddess inside of me disagreed, telling me that in the worst case scenario, I could inflict a serious wound to this world.
But I couldn’t do nothing. At this rate, this world would—
A voice interrupted my thoughts, covering me with its warmth. My hesitation and worries melted away.
It wasn’t the voice of the secret alpha testers. It was…
Once more, I activated all my abilities and charged up my power.
Yes… I’ll believe. I’ll believe in this world, and I’ll believe in you, its protector.
Through the World Tree, I saw flashes of images from throughout the world. Everyone was looking at the sky, offering their prayers for their home to be saved.
As Fiorfata continued its onslaught, I poured all the magic I could into my hands and charged at the Demon Lord.
A demonic frost erupted from my right hand, and a divine flame burned on my left. They crackled in contact with each other, but I forced them together, weaving them into a single mass. My hands touched as though praying to the sky.
Upon my shout, its beams of light converged upon me.
I charged forward anyway even as the lasers threatened to burn holes through me, slamming the volatile demonic-divine mixture of power into its face, putting all my weight behind the blow.
Both my arms shattered under the overwhelming force.
At the same time, a large crack formed on Fiorfata’s head, which then soon expanded to cover its whole body in a spiderweb of fractures. The Demon Lord began to crumble from its extremities.
But it wasn’t enough. Fiorfata still lived.
The light of magic shone from its arms. As soon as I saw it, rather than using my divine power or my demonic curses, I was already stretching out my fractured hand into my inventory in a reflexive return to what I was most used to: fighting with weapons.
Space clattered and shivered. I took out a sword and threw it with all my strength, shouting in pure effort.
Tiz’s enchanted sword struck Fiorfata’s magic in a flurry of sparks and shattered into pieces. The magic that the Demon Lord had been charging was scattered, glittering in the air together with the fragments of the blade. I hid behind the dazzling sparkles, squeezing out what strength I had left to draw the black-scabbard sword on my hip.
The blade tore through space, absorbing my now-godly magic power, Fiorfata’s own scattered magic, and even the flying fragments of Tiz’s magic sword to evolve, transforming into a slim longsword of pure white. Its name, the name of the sword that was my kin, rose unbidden in my mind.
The blade cut into Fiorfata’s crack-filled face and became a channel for me to slam my demonic and divine magic power into the Demon Lord.
Fiorfata’s head shattered as my magic power erupted from all the fractures on its body. As the Demon Lord crumbled, it chuckled, whispering to me its final words.
The Demon Lord’s body collapsed into particles of black light, and they too soon vanished.
Goodbye, Fiorfata… if you hadn’t agreed to face me head-on, I would have lost by now.
I raised my right hand to the sky to absorb all the miasma that Fiorfata had left behind. Then I pointed my left hand toward the ground, sharing power to the lands wounded in our battle.
My mist covered the world. The life-giving mist healed the wounded earth and creatures, and from the scorched dirt, the ninety-nine young seedlings of the World Tree rapidly shot up to maturity to heal the world.
Even a goddess’ power couldn’t revive the dead. But it could allow new, strong life to be born into this world.
And so it was that my battle with Fiorfata came to its end. The world was saved.
I, the girl who was once called a ‘demon child’ that brought misfortune to everyone else, had become a goddess, protector of a new world.