Chapter 63 Part 1. The Mad Gathering

 

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“The meeting point is just around the corner. We’ll have some time before we’ll reach there, and when we get there we’ll say hello and introduce Ludmila and the others…”

 

Then, all of a sudden, Shizuru, who had been speaking in a cheerful tone, became silent.

 

At the same time, everyone there noticed something unusual about their surroundings.

 

“Stand back, my dear.”

 

–In an instant, Lady released her human form and stepped forward to protect Shizuru with her huge body.

 

The distinct iron-like smell of blood, The smell of burning flesh and another indistinguishable stench.

There were many different, but disturbing, odors wafting thickly in the air.

 

They followed the road carefully and made a turn into an alley and found it.

 

“This is….”

 

The body of a woman with a broken neck.

 

The remains of a human being, the flesh and bones of which had been devoured by a myriad of tiny creatures.

 

A burnt corpse, almost charred, whose age nor gender could be identified.

 

A mummified, dried-up corpse consisting of only bones and skin.

“Uh … uh !?”

 

Several corpses, each having a different cause of death.

 

When Ludmila saw the scene, she gagged at the sight of it.

 

“……What the hell?”

 

She muttered in a shaky tone that barely kept her from vomiting.

 

Shizuru, who had been crouching and checking the dried-up corpse, muttered to himself as he crossed his arms painfully.

 

“It seems like…… that most of the troops are already here.”

 

With these words, Shizuru stood up and looked at the road ahead, which was covered in darkness.

 

As soon as Ludmila turned her gaze towards him, the moon emerged from the clouds.

 

–In the moonlight, at the end of the dark alley.

 

Even Ludmila’s magic eye, which was not very useful today when Red magic was at its peak, was able to see.

 

A monster was there.

 

“Hm…doesn’t have a good diet. It’s lacking in vitamins. Absolutely disgusting.”

 

A sizzling sound.

A robust old man was biting the neck of a man who was quickly drying up.

He had a strange atmosphere around him and was sucking the man completely dry of blood. He then threw away the completely dried up corpse at Shizru’s feet, and wiped the blood from the edge of his mouth with a handkerchief, and turned around.

 

“Ugh.”

 

  Casca was the first to speak up when she saw the old man’s face as he turned around.

 

‘I’ve met people I didn’t want to meet. I saw a face I didn’t want to see.’

 

The old man frowned a little at such a nuanced attitude.

 

And a moment later.

 

He was standing right in front of Casca.

 

“What….?”

 

The distance between the two of them was more then ten meters.

It was a few seconds before Ludmila realized that she had been struck without warning, and she let out a stunned.

 

When did he move and how did he do it?

Even though it was a red day of the week, when blue eyes were significantly less effective, she, who had excellent eyesight could not perceive him at all.

 

“Huh?”

 

The old man then swung his fist at Casca’s head with tremendous force.

 

It was only after the scream that Ludmila noticed such a movement.

 

To call it fast would be an understatement.

 

The old man was skilled. It was an incredible way of attacking, by poking through the gaps in the human rhythm of breathing and blinking.

It was a terrifyingly brilliant move.

 

“Tch…… you old b***ard! What the f*ck are you doing?”

 

With tears in her eyes, Casca held her head and shouted at the old man who was over two metres tall.

 

One cannot destroy a dull sword like one can destroy a stick with a fist or a headbutt, and one cannot inflict clear damage on Casca with your bare hands, who was unbelievably strong, even when shot at point blank, bullets could not penetrate her skin.

 

“Hm”

 

The angry old man snorted condescendingly.

 

“I was teaching discipline to a misbehaving b*tch. What a fool you are to cuss at the first sign of trouble.”

 

“It’s because you hit me every time I see you, you old bloodsucker! Do you have any common sense at all?”

 

–You have no right to say that.

 

That was the thought that went through the minds of everyone present.

Casca saying about  having common sense was not very convincing.

 

“You are an old pervert who loves drinking blood! You f**king homo vampire who only drinks young men’s blood! You’ve already got one foot through the door, so go inside your f**king coffin!”

 

“Don’t you dare talk to me like that, little girl!”

 

“What?”

 

Two strikes in quick succession, the knuckles struck down with great force.

 

Casca crouched and writhed in agony at the sound of the spine-chilling impact.

 

“Tch……, I can’t stand you! I’m going to kill you today, you rotten perverted old  vampire!”

 

“I am neither a pervert nor a homosexual. I just happen to be a lover of the blood of young boys and men.”

 

“That’s why I called you a pervert, you f**king bald-headed prick”

 

“I am not bald!”

 

As their fists collided, Shizuru and Ludmila were pulled back by Lady and Beth, respectively, as they held Mary in their arms.

 

Immediately afterwards, the old man and Casca were the focus of a little explosion that occurred in all directions.

 

If anyone were to go near the fight, they would seriously get injured.

 

Even the aftermath was that powerful.

 

“Oh no…… it has started.”

 

Shizuru, riding on Lady’s back, sighed with his fingers on his forehead.

 

Beth, who had let go of Ludmila’s collar, also clicked her tongue viciously.

 

“…… It’s hilarious. It really sucks.”

 

A furious exchange of blows. Each blow and kick was followed by a crash that resembled an explosion.

 

It was not something a normal human could do. Their fundamental physical abilities were too far apart.

 

“You know what? It’s so funny, that every time we see each other,this happens. No, it’s not just them. All the members of Black Maria are like wild dogs, and cannibalism is not uncommon. Eliza doesn’t want to get involved, so she stays back and doesn’t come out.”

 

“Cannibalism…”

 

Ludmila stiffened at Beth’s bland words.

 

She thought back to the scene earlier, when the old man had sipped all the blood from the neck of the young man.

 

This was not normal.

 

And judging from the way Shizuru, Beth and Casca talked about him, the old man was related to Black Maria.

 

But then, on the other hand, the unusual behaviour was accepted rather easily.

 

Till now, she hasn’t seen a single member of Black Maria who could be considered normal.

 

“….Who is that guy?”

 

It was Shizuru who answered Ludmila’s question in a voice that was more calm than she had expected.

He got off Lady’s back, petted Mary and opened his  mouth with a wry smile.

 

“His name is Vlad, Captain of the Fifth Squad. He’s a long time member of the organization, and his fighting skills are even more devastating than Cassy’s.”

 

He was the second strongest person after Richelieu.

Ludmilla’s face vaguely twisted as she didn’t know what to say.

 

“So…”

 

Meanwhile, Casca, who had taken a blow to the jaw and went a few steps back, spat blood and then glared at Vlad.

 

Vlad, who had been kicked in the side, also held his injured part and looked at Casca with an annoyed look in his eyes.

 

“That ridiculous power of your….. Even though my body is stronger than iron…!”

 

“That’s my line…. Even though you hurt my skin!”

 

For Casca and Vlad, combat is essentially a ritual, not an act of wounding or danger.

 

Therefore, the more they are hurt, the angrier they get and the more they lose control.

 

As Beth said, Black Maria is a bunch of mad beasts.

 

    

 

Notes

N/A

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