Toaru Majutsu no Index:Volume19 Epilogue
 Epilogue: They Will Not Let It End a Tragedy. Brave_in_Hand.
The blonde monster known as Aiwass walked on its own two legs while holding an ordinary cell phone to its ear.
It was on the end of the exposed framework of a building that was under construction. Aiwass looked up at the moon while walking along. It did not give a single glance down at its extremely narrow footing. Doing so had no value and the being had no interest in it. It had no more reason than that.
“Is it really that strange, Aleister?” Aiwass said calmly into the cell phone of unknown origin.
The person on the other end remained silent for a bit before responding.
“If you wanted to, you could move without using your legs. The same goes for a discussion of what I intend to do. It does baffle me. It simply isn’t efficient.”
“Standing on one’s own two legs and speaking through a tool of civilization has its own value. Although it may have a class to it that a man who floats upside down in a glass tube for efficiency’s sake simply cannot understand.”
Efficiency and value.
It seemed that was where the difference dividing those two monsters lay.
“Oh, right. About the Number One you have finally succeeded in bringing about after spending more than 50 years creating this eccentric city…”
“Is this about him not having proceeded as you expected?”
“Well, you can still make that fit within the acceptable margin of error, right? But his mentality is much more juvenile than I had expected. He despises himself as evil, but I wonder if he realizes that is just the reverse side of his intense longing for good. …And yet the Imagine Breaker that the Number One is chasing after does not take action because he associates himself with either good or evil. That Imagine Breaker is merely acting according to the spirit that is welling up from within him. It is merely that what he does looks like good from the viewpoint of others.”
As Aiwass stared up at the moon, a thin, thin smile appeared on its face. The expression seemed to say that a brief conversation held more value and interest to it than the destruction of the world.
“By any chance, do you admire the two of them?” asked the being.
“There are many different types of heroes. …There are those who aren’t told what to do and just move straight ahead following the feelings welling up within. …There are those who committed a major sin in the past and try to walk down the right path due to the anguish that sin brings them. …And there are those who were chosen by no one and possess none of the characteristics one would expect of a hero, and yet become a hero for that one person they care for. Each of those types is the type of person who will always stand back up when knocked to the ground.”
“It seems all three of those types of heroes possess something you do not. As such, it isn’t surprising that you admire them. …After all, at that time, you were only able to fall and lament.”
“Aiwass,” Aleister said once more.
For just an instant, a slight distortion entered that human voice that sounded like the voice of both a man and a woman, both of an adult and a child, and both of a saint and a criminal. It was not quite like any normal human emotion.
Aiwass’s expression did not change.
Perhaps Aiwass saw no value that made it worth showing interest in that.
“I will use anything I can. That includes you. You may find it amusing that there are slight errors in my plan, but let me tell you something. …There is no guarantee that your absolute superiority will last forever.”
“I do not possess this power because I wished for it, nor do I continue to hold it because I work towards that end,” said Aiwass into the cell phone. “But fine. I suppose I shall appear here again when something else holds value and interest to me.”
Yomikawa Aiho woke up at a time before dawn, but she herself was not quite sure why. She was a skilled member of Anti-Skill and her training allowed her to accurately detect someone’s presence. She left her bedroom without turning on the lights and saw the apartment’s living room window sitting unnaturally open.
She cautiously checked around the room and learned two things. First, Last Order, the girl living with her, was gone. Second, a trail of blood led from the living room window to the girl’s room.
Yomikawa’s expression changed, but then she found something else.
It was a small note.
The shaky characters making up the short note were written in red blood. It wasn’t signed, but Yomikawa immediately had a good idea who it had been. She didn’t know exactly what was meant by the note, but this is what it said: "I’ll show you that I can save this kid’s life."
Periodic vibrations shook Accelerator. The dark area he was in was a container on a freight train. The freight train was running before the first train of the day and it was headed outside of Academy City. Its cargo would be checked at the outer wall, but Accelerator knew a process to slip past it due to his knowledge working in the dark side of the city.
There were no voices.
The area was oddly silent for an area that had two people in it quietly breathing. Accelerator was crouched down unmoving while holding a small girl in his arms. Last Order was completely unconscious and lying limply in his arms. Aiwass’s appearance must have been quite a burden for her because the small girl was more exhausted than he had ever seen her.
“That girl is a difficult case.”
Accelerator recalled the words that had been spoken to him after he had been completely defeated.
“It depends on Aleister’s plan, but she will certainly break down eventually whether it is very soon or in the distant future. The process by which my existence had been put into the plan will kill her. Stop relying on that doctor. To be blunt, he is still human. His skills are not perfect and if there is a way of saving her with the technology of this city, Aleister will have his eye on it. Of course, destroying his plan by taking this body from me is just one of many possibilities. If you do not want to grieve later, then walk along a path different from the one that you are on now.”
What had the being meant by that?
Aiwass must have seen some kind of value and interest in speaking because it continued doing so.
“Go to Russia.”
Accelerator had silently listened.
The fact that Aiwass was not an opponent he could cut to pieces by simply relying on his anger created such anger within him that he felt like his neurons were burning.
“Specifically, head to the Elizalina Alliance of Independent Nations. That area is currently transforming into the center of a planet-wide war. All kinds of knowledge and technologies of civilization will gather together having been tempered by the military and by weaponry. …And a completely different set of laws that you have never seen before will be there, too.”
Aiwass had merely continued speaking without paying any heed to the hearts of others.
“Remember the term Index Librorum Prohibitorum. That itself is not actually there, but an important item dealing with it is.”
Evil had not had any effect in the face of that overwhelming power.
What was he going to do now? He felt like he had headed out into the wilderness using a GPS map, but the screen had suddenly disappeared. He didn’t know where to go.
He was Academy City’s strongest monster. No one could see him while he hid within the freight train, but everyone probably would have gotten a similar impression from him if they could.
He looked like a child who had been cast out by his parents and was now crouching down in exhaustion after having walked throughout the large city.
A crunching sound could be heard.
It was the sound of him crushing his cell phone in his fist. His only line to GROUP, Yomikawa Aiho, and Yoshikawa Kikyou was now gone.
Accelerator embraced the young girl in his arms again and his lips moved ever so slightly. He muttered a few words without making much audible noise if any.
“Then we’ll go to Russia.”
The supersonic passenger plane Hamazura Shiage and Takitsubo Rikou were onboard continued to fly through the sky using the autopilot that merely kept the plane stabilized and heading forward. However, that could not go on forever. Hamazura did not possess the skills needed to safely land the large aircraft.
(…We have no choice but to jump out partway with parachutes.)
As he thought, Hamazura set up explosives around the plane. The plane had been in the fighter testing facility. It used Academy City’s cutting edge technology. He couldn’t let some other country get their hands on it and he didn’t want to just let the giant mass crash either. Blowing it up over the ocean or over some wilderness would be best.
After setting up all the explosives, he headed for the passenger area instead of the cockpit. Takitsubo was sitting limply there leaning up against the wall.
“It’s all set up. Is this really okay?”
“…Yes. This plane has a security package that melts all the primary circuits with a powerful acid when it crashes in order to conceal the technology used. There is almost no risk of having another country use its classified information to make a weapon this way…”
Her voice sounded very dull.
Hamazura was no scientist so he had no idea how much the Body Crystal had eaten into her body. However, he knew it was not something that she would just get over. He was also pretty sure that the medical technology outside the city wouldn’t be able to do anything about it.
In the end, Takitsubo could not live without using Academy City technology.
(Just getting away from Academy City is not a victory. Not even utterly destroying the science side is.)
Hamazura Shiage made up his mind all on his own.
(The best situation would be to have Academy City surrender. I know I have no chance of ever doing that, so I need to focus on losing in the best way possible.)
At the very least, he needed to negotiate for Takitsubo’s safety.
Just like the supersonic passenger plane had enough information within it that an acid had to be used to destroy it, a Level 4 like Takitsubo or her DNA map was full of information that another country could not allowed to get their hands on. He would negotiate with Academy City using that. That was the only way for her to survive.
He would make sure that happened even if it meant losing all of his bargaining materials merely guaranteeing her safety.
“??? Hamazura, what is it?”
Hamazura forced a smile and then stuck an explosive on the door connecting the passenger area to the outside. To make sure she wasn’t caught up in the blast, he picked up Takitsubo’s limp form to take her away from the area.
As he did, Takitsubo wrapped her arms around his neck.
She brought her face in and their lips touched.
It only lasted a few seconds, but it was enough to smash Hamazura’s pessimistic plan to pieces.
“Don’t leave me,” Takitsubo said.
Hamazura somehow knew just how much meaning was held in those words.
He tightened his embrace on the girl and spoke with trembling lips.
Whatever happened, both of them would live on.
“Like hell I’ll leave you. Dammit, I never will. I’ll never leave you!!”
Hearing those reckless words, a slight smile appeared on Takitsubo’s face.
The speed of the supersonic passenger plane dropped. Hamazura didn’t really understand, but it seemed Takitsubo had messed with the settings of the autopilot while he had been setting up the explosives. She couldn’t properly fly a plane either, but it seemed she could at least read the manual and alter the settings slightly.
“I wonder where we are.”
“If the GPS information is right, we’re in Russia. I think we’re near a place called the Elizalina Alliance of Independent Nations. There are no civilian facilities here, so there shouldn’t be any damage from the explosion.”
“I see,” responded Hamazura.
Wherever they were, he would continue to run away and use everything he could to ensure Takitsubo’s safety and to bring the two of them happiness. As Hamazura gained that new resolve, he activated the remote detonator for the explosive on the passenger area door.
The door was blown away in an instant.
The difference in air pressure caused a strong wind that blew them outside the plane like air escaping a balloon. They both had parachutes on their backs and they held hands as they fell like people skydiving for sport.
The two of them dove down towards a new battlefield in order to grab hope with their own hands.
And a certain spiky haired boy was also heading to Russia.
The fight against the Roman Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church had reached its climax. The girl who had 103,000 grimoires memorised was in danger. In order to save her, the boy had to quickly defeat Fiamma of the Right, the man pulling all the strings within Russia.
“Wait for me,” the boy muttered.
His feet unhesitatingly took him towards a worldwide conflict so that he could save a certain girl.
They would not let it end in tragedy.
A number of protagonists gathered in one place holding various feelings within themselves.
At that time, the different paths on which they walked intersected.
The true story was beginning with the world’s most harsh battlefield as a stage.
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