Part 299: Pupa / Report
" Senpai. He's so badly injured, and still "
She doesn't know what happened.
The boy looked as lifeless as a starving man, and his body was covered with wounds.
The golden-haired girl who first appeared here several days ago has not returned.
From this, she can tell something has happened that can never be undone.
The boy is hiding something, and the golden-haired girl will not return as a result.
But such things don't matter.
For her, such things are trivial.
She doesn't know what happened, but it's fine as long as the boy is safe.
For her, having Emiya Shirou come home is an unparalleled joy.
" Wait is it cold today ?"
She shivers and brings her hand up to her forehead.
Her body is burning up, and she has to fight to remain conscious.
It must be a light cold.
She rarely gets sick, but after waiting in the hallway for nearly three hours, it's hardly a surprise.
" It's fine. This is nothing compared to what Senpai is going through"
The girl recalls what she saw a few minutes ago.
The wounds on his back, almost as if the flesh had been grated.
The blackening bruise on his stomach.
His eyes, still strong and clear in spite of his condition.
" Ah Mm, fu"
Her temperature rises as she remembers.
The girl pretends not to notice that it stems from the hatred she feels.
" Who could do such a thing?"
She doesn't know who did it, but she can't forgive this person.
It's not temporary dislike or annoyance.
He has been wounded all this time, but he has stayed beautiful.
She cannot forgive anyone that hurts someone important to her.
"Hm but Senpai's back was amazing "
She reaches out her hand in a daze.
It's been a while since she last saw his naked skin so close.
When they first met, he was small as a boy and was about as tall as her.
But in the two years since then, he has grown into a man.
Something stirs beneath the sheets.
If anything happens it'll warn me with that awful music right?
It's different from when he collapsed from a cold.
Back then, it was a cold and nothing more.
Tonight, it was the body of a wounded man.
Thinking about it causes her to space out.
He must train without a day's rest. His body is sturdily built, without even an ounce of useless muscle.
His graceful build is like that of an antelope. It has the beauty of having inner strength, one that allows it to jump up precipices, that is not apparent.
"S-S-S-S-Stupid me !
I-I'm sorry, Senpai !"
She quickly pulls her hand back.
She even turns her ears red and curls up on the bed.
It shouldn't be this embarrassing, but her memory is too vivid.
The feel of his skin beneath her fingertips only made her imagination more concrete.
Music: Pursuing Minds
We all know what's happening here. Let's just pretend it isn't and focus on the plot relevant parts.
Her mind is in a daze, and she can only think of one thing.
Her limbs are heavy, and it feels as if she has turned into a puppet.
"I shouldn't be doing this"
The feeling of guilt excites her even more.
His wounded body. Thinking about the blood on his back makes her dizzy.
The girl who won't be coming back. The realization that, once again, he is all hers. Many lies.
The dark emotions, unthinkable for her usual self, draw her down into a darker passion.
But those are trivial matters.
What she's truly glad about is that the boy has come back to her.
"no, having him back is enough !"
But it's not enough.
Tonight made that clear.
He cares for her, but he tries to protect her by keeping her away.
She knows it's a greedy wish.
Her passion gets worse because it is a wish she should never speak of, a wish that will never come true.
" Mm Ah Haa ah"
She stares at the ceiling absent-mindedly.
The overwhelming self-hatred after the climax is familiar to her.
But a heavier agony assails her tonight.
The wounded body.
He said he intends to continue fighting, even after receiving such wounds.
" What should I do? Senpai's going to get hurt even more like this "
She thinks as her body sweats.
It's a worry without an answer, a problem the girl cannot solve.
She cannot come up with a way to stop him, even if she thinks all night.
Music: Church on the Hill
"Is that a report for the Association? You certainly are a busy man, Kotomine."
The voice comes from behind him without revealing its source.
The man on the chair, Kotomine Kirei, moves on to his next task without the slightest reaction.
"Oh, so this is about that usurper.
Hm, 57 victims with five dead. Is this a lot from the supervisor's perspective, Kotomine?"
"I can't say much as of this moment. This is the first instance of large-scale unconsciousness, but there's no problem if it stays this way. Either association is aware of the necessary clean-up measures.
"If it continues at this pace, huh? Heh, I do not know who is doing this, but they're being quite brazen.
Have you realized, Kotomine? If nothing is done, this town will become barren of life."
Kotomine does not answer.
He knows what the man wants to say.
The strange shadow that appeared in this town.
It's only sucking up life force right now, but the amount is increasing by day.
The abnormality that first surfaced two days ago will exceed the regulated allowances in a few days.
For the moment, it only causes dyspnea, but it should soon be enough to kill even a healthy adult male in one night.
"But that is needless worry. It should not be an amateur, so it should know its limits."
"Is that so? That worm-user does not seem like it, but such a person will become a curse if you do not take care of it quickly. It is not my style to watch people in this town die."
This statement takes Kotomine by surprise.
This man, who does not care about anyone else, is concerned for the people.
" I see. Then you are indeed a heroic spirit.
You use death to save people from the agony of life. Then your wish is death?"
"Of course. This age is filled with meaningless, worthless people. Exterminating them will be doing them a service."
His scorning voice is filled with absolute dominance and dignity.
The priest does not stop his work as he listens.
You can use the Holy Grail, if that is what you wish. It will be yours unless someone who can defeat you appears."
"Hm? You do not have a wish, Kotomine?"
"I don't have a clear wish. The only thing I have is the desire for clear pleasure."
"HaHahaha, I see, so you only have pleasure!"
The man starts laughing at the simple answer.
It's as if he's delighted and proud of his partner.
"All right. I shall kill because they are disgusting, and you shall kill because it is fun. Our motives are different, but we seek the same thing from the Holy Grail. That must be why you have kept me!"
The priest does not answer.
He merely continues his work.
"HahI do not care even if you do nothing. I shall do as I please."
The man's presence disappears.
The priest glances at the exit of the silent stone room.
"He seems insane, but he is sane at the core. It seems the mud was unable to pollute his soul."
King of heroes, Gilgamesh.
The golden Servant is the most powerful being at this point in time.
The fact is accepted as truth by all. Even Kotomine, the game master himself, does not doubt it.
"There are worthless things, but there are no meaningless things.
Beware, king of heroes. If there is something that will bring you defeat, it will be just that."
His monologue does not reach anyone.
Lit by the dim light, the priest resembles a prophet seeing into the future.