Chapter 6: Dragon Lady (5)
The girl in my front, who had yet to wipe her tears, clung to me while breathing with difficulty. Coupled with her stark naked body, she was strongly radiating a sense of desperation and grief.
P-pleashe! P-pleashe s-s-save those children!
C-calm down! Please calm down first! Otherwise, your injury will get worse! Flustered, I waved while holding my smartphone.
Suddenly realizing I was holding the phone, I put it into one of the pockets in my jeans and took off my jacket, putting it onto the girls shoulders.
One step at a time. Lets clarify the situation one step a time.
Um, youre chasing your children?
That, that man from the lion race the children!
Its useless. If this girl doesnt calm down, I cant do anything either. Shes clinging to my waist with her arms around it, and I cant quite shake her off.
In that case, theres only one option. I have to force her to calm down.
Making up my mind, I spread my hands and forcefully gripped both her cheeks.
With a soft sound, I twisted her light-pink cheeks.
It was one of the ways I came up with to silence the bawling of my younger brother, Shuuhei, when he was smaller.
Dumbfounded, she raised her eyes to look at me. For now, it seems like it worked.
Listen. There seems to be no time, so Ill just inquire briefly. Im Kazamachi. Kazamachi Kunpei. Whats your name? I spoke to her slowly, just like to a small child who I want to listen to me.
With her shaking, tightened lips, she started to answer me slowly with tears welling up in her eyes.
I, Im called Aoinoun.
Good. Aoinoun-san. The guy from the lion race who had just passed here kidnapped the children. Correct?
Staring deeply into her eyes, I continued with my questions.
Y-yes. Its definitely that person.
Good. Thats all I needed to hear. If theres any other complicated stuff going on, I can deal with it later.
Then, Ill go after him. Use this smartphone to call the ambulance, as well as police. Got it?
After taking out my smartphone from the pocket once more, I gave it to her.
Theres no screen lock, and since most smartphones work more or less in the same way, she should be able to use it to make a call.
I have a lot of confidence in my stamina, so considering the situation, Im a much better choice than her when it comes to pursuing that guy.
Y-yes. Stupefied, Aoinoun nodded blankly.
After slowly peeling off her arms which were clinging to my waist, I made her sit as gently as possible.
Im off. With those short words, I turned around and took a deep breath.
Then, I once again breathed in deeply, closed my eyes, and started awakening my body. Spitting out a bit more air then Ive inhaled, I put strength into my legs.
I opened my eyes.
Straight ahead on the highway, far in the distance.
The vulgar golden down coat became a mere speck.
Its okay. Ill catch up.
Kazamachi Kunpei is waiting for the wind.
Smelling the winds fragrance, no matter when, no matter where.
Until its time to soar.[TL/N: The above is basically a pun on his name, Kazamachi = wind + wait, and Kunpei = fragrance + calm not quite sure about the 4th one, it can also mean even, which would prolly hint at it being constant]
Soaring with a whoosh, I mouthed softly.
At the same time, I kicked against the ground with my full strength, breaking into a sprint.
Making large strides, I checked the ground.
The words I spoke just now were something my mother enjoyed saying. I dont know when it started, but whenever Im about to get serious, Id routinely use it as a sort of a ritual phrase.
Whenever I did so, I was able to achieve the best results.
In the kindergarten, or during the sports festival in the primary school.
The fights I couldnt afford to lose. The fights I didnt want to lose.
Even additional tests or supplementary classes, the times when I barely passed.
As long as I had mothers [magic spell], I would never lose.
My body caught the winds flow, and I started to forcefully advance forward.
I was so fast it made me wonder whether there has been even one time Ive run so fast.
The figure of the guy from the lion race started to steadily grow closer and closer.
However, the distance was still big.
Still, its alright.
For some reason, my thoughts were running smoother and more clever than ever, and I deduced a bold way to win which was also the only one that guaranteed success.[TL/N: MC likes to use the English word clever, though what he actually means is more smart than clever]
I focused my thoughts on my right ear. I mustnt hear the winds sound wrongly.
I factored in the toughness of my body.
My body showed signs of becoming incalculably stronger, so much that it was becoming creepy. It was also thanks to that that I never lost a fight.
Thereve been times when I directly stopped a biker gangs motorcycle from the front.
Yep, this is a national highway.
There are plenty of cars heading for Kanto and back, and the speed restriction here is 60 km/h.
Motorcycles and ordinary cars are a given. As for dump trucks and trailers, they also frequently appear.
Doryaaa! [TL/N: A sort of shout made before attacking or exerting strength to raise own fighting spirit; nothing rly fits in English, so just left it as is]
Stepping onto the guardrail, I made a powerful jump.
I was aiming for the depths of the trailer of the truck passing inches away from me.
I caught it firmly with my right hand, then stabilized myself with my left hand. In the side mirror at the edge of my field of vision, I saw the the dumbfounded face of the driver who was startled by the noise.
The burden on my arm is not ordinary; joking aside, its so serious Im not sure if itll hold up.
Several of the fingernails on my right hand seem to have peeled off. A lukewarm sensation there accompanied by a sharp pain made me grimace, but I must endure it now.
It seems like the driver has noticed me, for he quickly used the emergency brake.
I mightve been noticed, but its fine.
Ive shortened the distance by a lotas a proof, Ive already overtaken that guy from the lion race called Gasalio or something.
I let go of the trailer before it came to a stop. I failed the landing and ended up rolling on the ground.
The wheels of the trailer scored a close shave just next to my head, but its okay. Im not dead.
From the distance, Ive heard the drivers angry voice, but it soon disappeared because of the doppler effect.
Ive swiftly got up and leapt over the guardrail, then faced the approaching Gasalio.
Gasalio was measuring me with an amazed gaze.
He was carrying the cloth sack where the children must be in front of his bodyhow convenient.[TL/N: Technically speaking, rather than cloth sack, its more of a wrapping, think those cloth wrappings around bentou/breakfast boxes in anime. However, Ill stick to calling it cloth sack coz it makes more sense in English. For anyone curious, you can check furoshiki on wikipedia, it properly has an article in English.]
Give the children back, kidnapper!
I cant forgive him. I cant forgive him!
Its absolutely impossible for me to forgive bastards who take away others precious family members!
D-dont get in my way, human! Im a beastman! You think the likes of you are a match for me?!
Good, he acknowledged it, didnt he? I mean, he didnt deny being a kidnapper, no?
Then, theres no need to hold back.
At the very least, I wont lose to you!
I dashed towards him.
Gaselio [TL/N: pun on his name, means fake lion] took out a ridiculously large knife from the pocket on his chest.
Then, the kidnapper brandished the knife skillfully with one hand as he approachedI guess that was his idea of a threat.
Too bad! Ive become tired of looking at the likes of knives!
A war cry full of fighting spirit.
The instant weve closed in on each other with Gasalio, I bent half of my body and leapt as I carefully observed the knife approaching me diagonally from above.
The knife flashed near the tip of my nose, then brushed against the tips of my hair with a swish, but it didnt touch my skin.
Without wasting time, I extended my arm to the side.
My aim was simpleit was the space between the torso holding the cloth sack and the chin.
Years ago, there was a famous wrestler, called Vii. He used this attack as his regular finisher.
Also known as lasso, it was a last resort kind of attack!
Yes, in other words, its another name was western lariat![TL/N: Ive done some research, and it seems like he refers to Stan Hansen, an American wrestler famous in Japan. He was famous for his finisher, western lariat, and even the English wiki is using the name lariat for this movehence why (in reply to some earlier comments) Ive been sticking to the name lariat since the start :3 Ive got no clue why he called him Vii here, but googling that phrase, I found a few pics of Hansen showing a similar gesture, so probably some Japan-exclusive nickname of his, he was more popular in Japan than in the States]
My upper arm sunk into Gasalios throat, causing him to make a funny sound as if he choked on something.
Gasalio collapsed onto the ground like a sack of potatoes.
Im really grateful to him for carrying the cloth sack so carefully.
With it falling onto Gasalios chest, it shouldnt have suffered from any major impact.
Huff, puff! Huff phew.
All of a sudden, the belated sense of exhaustion and pain in my arm and fingertips engulfed me.
Ive done it.
Lets be honest here.
None of the stuff Ive done was even a bit clever!
Since the moment Ive started running, my head suffered from one massive brain fade!
Its my second bad habitIm moving without thinking.
Shouhei keeps on nagging me about it, so Ive been trying to think before moving in my own foolish way, but
Now that I recalled it, stuff like jumping onto a moving trailer while running isnt exactly sane.
Thinking normally, wasnt it simply suicidal?
Then, the time when I jumped off, too.
If this humble one slipped even a bit, then a mark not unlike a crushed pomegranate could well be all thatd remain from me on the road after that stunt.
Daaamn, so scary
I-it was dangerous, p-probably.
After saying that, I decided to first calm down.
R-right. Ive got to confirm the safety of the kidnapped kids.
I picked up the cloth sack lying on Gasalios chest. Its size was about that of my torso.
I reached out with my hand to untie the tightly tied sack. The knot was tied quite hard.
Speaking of it, how could he carry children in a sack like that?
This guy Lets punch him some more later.
As I was thinking about that, I noticed that the knot was too tight for me to untie it with only one hand.
I tried to use my injured right hand too, and sure enough, it became much easier.
The fingernails on my middle and index fingers came off, and the whole palm was covered in blood as the skin there was peeled off everywhere.
I havent calmed down yet so Im still alright, but it ought to hurt badly later.
After resolving myself, I used my right hand and finally undid the knot.
The cloth sack opened with a rustle.
The children are?
What the hell is this
Inside the sack, there were two stones.
They were quite big, a bit bigger than my head.
They were as white as snow, and their surface seemed to be processedit was similar to jewels.
Did I possibly confuse that guy with the kidnapper?
Crap, did I mess up?
I became covered in cold sweat and my shoulders dropped.
Without thinking, I waved my hand covered in blood randomly and touched one stone. As if that wasnt enough, my hand slipped because of the blood and touched the other one too.
Crap, Gasalios stones. I dirtied them.
And it was with my blood, too. Now, they look like some props from a bloody horror.
I tried to do something about the stains with my left hand, but only ended up spreading them even more.
Lets just apologize.
As I was trying to prepare myself mentally for the apology I had to make, that happened.
I felt something throb under my left hand.
The stone was movingso much that I could actually see it.
The vibrations soon became faster and stronger.
The two stones were pulsating with a strong rhythm, just like two hearts.
I wasnt hearing things, the stones started pulsing with quiet but deep heartbeat-like sounds.
W-wait. What? What is going on?
For some reason, I couldnt take my hand off it, and before I noticed, I was holding each stone with one hand, as though I was trying to feel the vibrations.
The pulse became even stronger.
Surprised by the sudden shout, I raised my head.
With my jacket wrapped around her, the stark naked blue-haired girl,
Aoinoun-san, was there.
E-eggs. Theyre hatching
My stupid voice and the dry sounds of the eggs cracking resounded at the same time.