24. Attempting to Make Apple Juice
Constructed in Sapporo City is a temporary branch building of the special ability organization [Divine]. Chie, standing before a monitor within one of its rooms, gives a report of what she gathered through her special ability, [Perception].
[Fumu, judging from this report, the possibility Yuuki Kosuke is an [onmyou practitioner] is quite high. That black cat from before was probably an [ayashi].]
The founder and highest ranking member of the special ability organization [Divine], Menace, quickly determines the answer. At his words, Fon and Flare both nod.
The reason they are able to quickly come to that conclusion is because they are aware of the existence of [onymou techniques]. Knowledge about [onymou techniques] and [magic] isn’t just limited to them but has been recognized by the organization from the start. However, that truth is revealed only to those holding rank A special abilities.
As such, the rank B Toy could have never realized Yuuki Kosuke was using onmyou techniques even until the end.
[To defeat 2 rank B special ability users through [techniques] which are inferior to [special abilities], this youth called Yuuki seems to be quite the accomplished practitioner.]
[[Techniques] are different from [special abilities]. They’re able to cause various phenomena. Don’t make light of them, Fon.]
[Haa, excuse me.]
Menace rebukes Fon for looking down on [techniques] due to his notion that [special abilities] are superior.
[Let’s get back on topic. Chie, on top of your failure to assassinate Yuuki Kosuke, Toy and Melt took arbitrary actions… Dispatching you to conduct this operation may have been a mistake.
Menace expresses his disappointment towards Chie.
“Menace-sama, please, please grant me one more chance to recover.”
[A chance to recover…?]
Menace falls into thought. Dius was arrested due to a phenomenon beyond comprehension and rank A and rank B holders were instantly defeated by a black cat. Furthermore, Yuuki Kosuke can be regarded as a first class onmyou practitioner with numerous techniques. Even if he excludes how Chie’s poor performance largely influence the outcome, there were too many unforeseen circumstances. In consideration to those circumstances, Menace grants Chie’s request for an opportunity to recover.
[Very well. Ignore the existence of Yuuki Kosuke. Saying this now may be too late, but limit interfering with him as much as possible. Next, make capturing [Union] your priority. As soon as [Union] is secured, abandon the temporary branch building and return to headquarters. Can you do this?]
“Th- Thank you very much. I shall absolutely meet your expectations!”
To Chie’s bow, Fon and Flare nod in satisfaction. Menace, meanwhile, feels an inexpressible anxiety he can’t do away with.
—Diamond of Greed pays top dollar for everything—
After returning home and consulting with everyone about the fact that I was attacked, it was decided that I should rely on the class representative’s otou-san. I feel bad depending on him for more while still concealing my identity, but it can’t be helped here. There is no other way to solve this.
According to Kuro, as the class representative’s otou-san is well informed, so he will know something. As such, Kuro will head out to see him about it later.
As for right now—
—I immediately test out the special ability [Dissolve] I acquired during the fight not too long ago.
Oh man, amazing. This… is hyper convenient!
“Mu, what are you doing?”
“I’m attempting to make apple juice. I acquired the special ability [Dissolve] in that fight I mentioned earlier, so I’m testing it out.”
“Mu? You acquired… a [special ability]?”
As Kuro tilts his head, I briefly explain that I became able to use the special abilities [Dissolve] and [Toy]. Then, he freezes.
“Kuro, are you alright?”
“U- Umu, I am alright. More importantly, House Head, are you well? Are you able to use [onmyou techniques]?”
“Yes, not a problem?”
I release some sparks from the sole of a foot as proof. My control over the [Scatter Flame Bullets]’s intensity is flawless.
Kuro, upon seeing it, thinks for a bit before then opening his mouth.
“It would be best if you remain silent about being able to use [onmyou techniques] and [special abilities] simultaneously. It may become a source of conflict.”
“Eh? How so?”
Or rather, looks like Kuro knows about [special abilities]. Well, he has lived a long life. This must be an elder’s wisdom.
“I am not well informed either, but [techniques] and [special abilities], at their core, seem to differ in principle. As such, using them simultaneously should not be possible. While I have heard exceptions do exist, House Head, at the very least, is the first one I know of.”
What the… so it’s like that?
The theory was different back when I learned them, but they didn’t seem incompatible. Maybe this is also thanks to kami-sama’s improved learning ability? U—mu, no idea.
“As a general principle, [techniques] allow even just 1 person to cause a multitude of different phenomena while [special abilities] are limited to causing a single phenomenon. Such is what I have heard.”
When he says a multitude of phenomena, does he mean a variation of techniques? Apparently, [onmyou techniques] can be used even without the aptitude for that attribute with enough practice. As long as one perseveres, both fire and water can be invoked at the same time. As for [special abilities], melting is all that can be accomplished.
“That stated, I have also heard that not only do [special abilities] allow for a much large phenomenon to be invoked, they also do better in terms of stamina.”
Both [onmyou techniques] and [special abilities] consume spiritual power when invoked. Except, since I’ve never exhausted my spiritual power, I can’t make any judgements about efficiency. For now, neither [techniques] nor [special abilities] are better than the other.
“Thanks for the warning. I’ll be careful not to reveal I can use both.”
“Umu, I was already astonished by your making [substitution tags]. Never would I have thought you would be able to use [special abilities] as well. Are you really being careful?”
“I’m good, I’m good. I’m keeping quiet about the [substitution tags] too.”
I heard that [each head of the Five Clans would take a long time…], but I didn’t have any problems when I tried making them. That time too, just like now, Kuro was shocked. Maybe I should buy him some canned cat food as an apology? Let’s try the can with the silver spoon drawn on it. That one looks tasty.
“Incidentally, mind examining this for me?”
Kuro looks over the apple juice I finished making.
“Hou, it looks delicious.”
“There’s nothing strange about it?”
Kuro has a convenient, transcendent, ability for determining inedible food. Unfortunate, since it seems to be something like an animal instinct, I can’t acquire it.
“Fumu, there don’t seem to be any problems? So, it’s just juice.”
I was worried it might be bad for my health since I forcibly liquified it, but it looks like everything is fine. In that case, I might be able to use this instead of a mixer.
“Since I went and made it, maybe I should drink it with everyone. Hey, Shiro, you join us, too.”
Shiro, moping in a corner of the room, comes to the kotatsu at my call. Apparently, he’s been regretting having been unable to protect me as my escort. I’m the one who told him to return home though, so he doesn’t have to let it bother him this much… Shiro sure is diligent.
Kuro and Rin are both comforting him, but it looks like he still needs more time to recover.
“Hey, come on, look. We have orange juice too—.”
As I wait for a chance to appear, all I can do for now is watch.
—Diamond of Green has declared everything his own. Even if he uses his money to pay for something, it is still his—
“A special ability organization? How troublesome.”
Inside a room of a certain temple built within the city is a dandy middle aged man making a serious expression as he reads a commission dispatch.
“I’ve been sent an absurd request. Well then, what should I do…?”
The man’s name is Mizukami Tatsumi. Of the Five Elemental Onmyou Families, he is the house head of the Mizukami Clan.
The contents of the commission he’s looking over reads, Do something about the special ability organization that has infiltrated Hokkaido. The commissioner of the request is the Japanese government.
“Otou-san, I’m home!”
“Hm? Uruka? Welcome home.”
The one giving Mizukami Tatsumi that cheerful greeting upon returning home is his biological daughter, Mizukami Uruka.
“Ah, sorry. Otou-san, were you in the middle of work?”
“It’s fine, I have finished for today. More importantly, you’re in a considerably good mood. Did something happen?”
Tatsumi puts the commission dispatch into his desk and has a pleasant conversation with his daughter. For Tatsumi who lost his wife, that moment of time is irreplaceable for him.
“And that’s why, we discussed going shopping next time with everyone in the group!”
“Ha ha ha, that’s great.”
Tatsumi, due to talking with his daughter about her anticipated [recreation accommodation],
feels his exhaustion from work disappearing. Then, after recovering his usual condition, he surprises her with a piercing question.
“When you say everyone in the group, doesn’t that also include Yuuki-kun? Will you be doing anything with him afterwards?”
The minute changes in Uruka’s voice and expression during the times Kousuke was mentioned during their conversation are shifts Tatsumi would never fail to notice.
“Nothing at all? We’re just friends, geez.”
“Really now? Didn’t you invite him to be in the same group as you because you were interested in him?”
However, Tatsumi is put at a bit of a loss upon receiving a response different than what he anticipated from his daughter.
“Of course, I’m interested in him. After all, even though he’s the same age as me, he’s that incredible of an onymou practitioner! It’s reverence!”
“So- So it’s like that…”
In truth, that the masked onmyou practitioner was Yuuki Kousuke is something only those 2 are aware of. When Uruka called Kousuke to the courtyard, she didn’t feel any spiritual power from him. When Tatsumi exchanged greetings with the masked onmyou practitioner, he didn’t feel any spiritual power from him. Furthermore, there is a powerful barrier in the direction neko-kami-sama returns home to and around Kousuke’s house. Due to those 2 sharing that information with each other, they were able to discover Kousuke’s true identity immediately after the Match Before God.
“You don’t have… any other sort of interest in him? As in him being cool or kind?”
“His figure when he used his shikigami formula was really cool. Moreover, he rescued the Mizukami Clan at the Match Before God. I think he’s incredibly kind too.”
“So- So it’s like that…”
Mizukami Tatsumi, who was once feared as the [Dragon of the North], felt a sliver of unease at the fact that his daughter’s first love hadn’t yet arrived.
T/N: I would like to point out that in a previous chapter, they were discussing that sending 3 people to attack Yuuki at night might be over kill, now it’s being attributed as mismanagement on Chie’s part. I would hate to work for those people.