On a day a few days before Christmas, during dinner time, he knelt on the floor as if he had made up his mind. Everyone turned their expressions towards him, wondering what was going on.
“Um, there’s something I need to tell you all.”
“Wait, I have a bad feeling…”
I knew what he was about to say. He wanted to say that he wanted to be in a relationship with all of us.
Perhaps even he hesitated to bring up such a topic, as some time had passed since the day he confessed his love to me and to others.
“Please go out with me, all of you!”
He slapped the floor with his forehead with determination. Kohaku-chan dropped her chopsticks in surprise, Karen-chan held her head in her hands, and Aoi-chan, though expressionless, seemed surprised and had her mouth slightly open.
“What should I do, what should I do what should I do…”
“…Four timing huh… Well, I expected it, but…”
“…Four timing… I have to think about it.”
Well, it goes without saying that he was rejected outright in that situation. For now, everyone’s consensus was to put it on hold. I didn’t really mind, so I decided to remain silent and just observe.
“What do you think about it, Moegi?”
“Well, I’m not sure…”
“It’s not something we can easily agree to…”
“Moegi, I see you also like Kuro…”
“I see… We’re all in the same boat.”
Karen-chan pondered the idea of four timing, Aoi-chan made an unexpected naive comment, and Kohaku-chan…
“Ugh, how did this happen?”
She held her head in despair, like a final boss whose plan had failed. Each of them seemed to be struggling with whether or not to become his girlfriend or put it on hold and whether they were happy about it or not.
In this situation, I couldn’t just affirm the harem…
To affirm the harem and say that it doesn’t matter which number I am… Everyone is very conscious of the order, but is it really important to be the first?
No, regardless of the order, if I can be with him and everyone, that’s enough. Yes, it doesn’t matter what number…
Wait a minute, does that mean… I’m currently the only one in the girlfriend position?! In other words, I’m the first?! No, no, no, no, being the first or last is like comparing apples and oranges! But then again, if it’s a russet, it’s delicious, right?! No, but, um, being the first…
For now, it’s only for now, but… Even so, being the first. Somehow, my heart is pounding. It seems like it’s showing on my face, and my facial muscles…
“…Moegi? Your face looks different. Are you okay?”
“Yeah, I’m fine!?”
“Is that so…?”
Aoi-chan noticed. That was close. If they found out that I’m currently the only one in the girlfriend position, it would become really awkward with everyone. For now, I should try to match my pace with everyone and not let it show.
I wonder when it started. When I couldn’t help but fall in love with him. I’ve been thinking about him for a long, long time. I can confidently say that I love him more than anyone else. I want to monopolize him, and I want to make love with him.
As long as he’s with me, that’s all I need. Sometimes I even think that I don’t need anything else. I know I shouldn’t have such thoughts, but I do. But if he wants to be with everyone, that’s okay too.
I also love everyone, of course. But above all, he takes precedence.
So, I also think that if everyone wants to be with him, that’s okay. It must be fun that way too.
—But if everyone rejects me, will he reject me too?
An inexplicable fear overwhelms me. I know that if he’s not with me, I will truly shatter. I know I’m a fragile existence. I’m just barely keeping up the appearance of being normal.
I was so scared of how long this would continue.
The fortune teller contacted me. Something is approaching Gindou Kohaku.
In the original story, before her awakening, an angel would appear to Gindou Kohaku, and she would enter her mind to fight a mental battle. However, because the human mind is fragile and delicate, she would use self-suggestion to make herself believe she was strong, thus enduring the attacks. It was a battle of the mind, not magic. But she managed to get by with a defense-only strategy, but still became conscious of death.
That’s when the other magical girls would enter her mind and fight together, expelling the intruder from her mind. This is how Gindou Kohaku would come to feel the importance of her comrades and awaken. Then she would defeat the intruder. This would lead to the bonds between them.
However, she had already powered up, and it felt like the bonds were already there. Plus, her ability to nullify intrusions into her mind had been enhanced. Would it all end quite easily then? While the angel’s intrusion into her mind was strong, her direct combat abilities weren’t that powerful.
In other words, I anticipate that the four of them could easily overpower her.
[Third person PoV]
A massive hole opened up in the world, and from it, an angel descended. It bathed the town of Radiant in its radiant light. The townspeople were captivated by the light, but in the next instant, the light rained down like arrows—hundreds, no, thousands of them.
They showered down like a meteor shower. However, the arrows of light were stopped by a great wall of water and light, preventing any harm to the town.
In the next moment, lightning surged and struck at the angel’s wings. Holes appeared in its feathers, and the angel contorted in pain, but quickly regenerated its wings. The massive hole closed, allowing it to take to the skies and approach Gindou Kohaku.
It drew near to her with an eerie light and reached out to touch her, but she repelled it like trying to bring together opposing magnets, shattering the light into mist.
Normally, the angel should have entered her at this point. However, Gindou Kohaku already had the support and love of Izayoi, and she had awakened. The intrusion into her mind was impossible.
“Is this… Star Spirit’s power!?”
The memories of the demon king’s essence imprinted in her allowed her to sense the Star Spirit’s power. She wasn’t the only one. All four of them were being sensed by their opponents.
The angel could foresee that it might die if it continued like this. That’s why it chose to retreat for now.
A slight shift. The deviation from the path Izayoi had walked, reaching its peak here, not only avoided the worst but also… spread like wildfire, heading towards Izayoi, who was watching nearby.
The angel couldn’t sense the Star Spirit’s power from Izayoi. Realizing this, it decided to retreat into Izayoi’s mind, who was watching in hiding.
The angel noticed that they were fighting while protecting Izayoi, realizing that they were the core of the group. It also placed a bet on the possibility that if it eliminated Izayoi, the tide of battle might turn.
With a mysterious light, the angel entered Izayoi’s mind.
It was a black world. The human mind is a place deeply influenced by a person’s thoughts and subconscious, and it’s where the true characteristics of one’s psyche manifest.
There, an angel appeared, facing a spiritual form of Izayoi. If it killed him here, it could kill him in reality.
The angel wielded its sword and attempted to pierce Izayoi’s chest but was deflected the next moment. No, its hand itself was severed.
In Izayoi’s hand, there was a black sword. He swung the sword, attempting to cut off the angel’s wings.
“A sword? But isn’t this supposed to be a mental realm?!”
The angel regenerated its hand and defended against the sword. Their swords clashed, creating sparks as the black and white blades crossed.
“This world, creating a sword here is impossible?! Who are you?!”
“I… am no one.”
“Just an ordinary person using a sword in a place where only the mind matters? This world is supposed to be about the mind alone. I can use my power in this world, but why? Could it be that there’s a concept of a sword within the elements that make up the mind?!”
Apart from the angel that came from the outside, in the world of the mind, only the person’s own psyche held power. In the original story, Gindou Kohaku had forcibly suggested to herself, dodged attacks, and endured until her friends arrived.
She had trusted her friends to come to her aid, and now, in this moment, she realized that trust was essential.
What mattered here was that the components of her mind were composed of ordinary concepts and the concept of being a girl.
But he was different.
—No, maybe the existence of males from all races was different.
Swords represented romance, magic was romantic, special moves, and skills. These concepts were already engraved in his head, his heart, his psyche, and had become part of his current existence.
Experiences and dreams thus far became his power. Daydreaming during class, fantasies of hanging a pen from a hook in a triangular ruler and making it fly like a fighter jet—these became sources of mental strength.
That’s why he could wield a mental sword.
In this realm of the mind, when the angel entered, it had to modify its physical form to align with the mental realm, allowing it to use power but making it vulnerable to damage.
Normally, this wouldn’t be a concern for the angel, but it now faced an absurd existence. The fear of death consumed it.
He shouted as he swung the sword. In that moment, the angel’s hand flew off—a flash of light, an instantaneous strike. It was called the “Magic Sword Castanet,” a weapon he had crafted using materials he borrowed from a supermarket’s free cardboard stack in his childhood. He couldn’t help but make sound effects himself when he swung it, a habit from long ago.
By doing this, he rode a good wave. His psyche accelerated.
The angel, stunned by the unexpected strike, watched its hand regenerate. It couldn’t hide its surprise.
“In reality, this sword is something I could never unleash… This is the pinnacle of the mind transcending the body and common sense… Damn it!”
The angel took the sword and prepared to strike at Izayoi. The swords clashed multiple times, creating sparks as they met. The angel struggled just to keep up.
The angel flew, flapping its wings and releasing a thousand arrows of light. The Black Knight’s sword emitted light and, with a swing, deflected the arrows, erasing them all. His psyche accelerated, and so did his sword.
It influenced the spiritual form and left no room for the angel to enter. It evolved continuously, riding the best possible wave, his psyche accelerating.
However, the Black Knight thought one thing: it wasn’t fast enough.
He pierced holes in the angel’s wings with his sword, cutting them off, and exceeded the angel’s regeneration speed by far.
He materialized swords in both hands.
“Dual Storm Double Cross Overlay Black Schwarzschild… Gogyo, Hakobera, Hotoke-no-za Mode.”
He was saying it dramatically, but simply put, he now had dual swords in his hands. With these swords, he disintegrated the angel. A series of words he had put together on a whim long ago, thinking it sounded cool. At that time, it had no meaning. But here, it held significance because it was part of his composed psyche.
The Black Knight raised both hands to amplify his power.
“Dragonic Stream – The Absolute Overdrive Spiritual Hecatonchires Dynamic – Overlay – Featuring Chaos Infinity Cosmos – Tanathos of Excalibur Beef or Chicken – Elementary School Junior High School Alternative Strike…”
It was like a typhoon, thunderstorm, an elementary school, a middle school, cattle, birds, and various other things all forming a horde charging toward the angel.
The angel that had entered the psyche was completely blown away. The Black Knight let out a small laugh.
“With my Dragonic Stream – The Absolute Overdrive Spiritual Hecatonchires Dynamic – Overlay – Featuring Chaos Infinity Cosmos – Tanathos of Excalibur Beef or Chicken – Elementary School Junior High School Alternative Strike, you shall vanish!”
Seeing what was happening, they had rushed into his psyche, thinking he was in trouble. The magical girls had witnessed something they shouldn’t have seen.
“What should we do?”
“I don’t know even if you ask me.”
“He’s in bad shape…”
We all returned home after everything was over. It seemed the angel was defeated, which was a relief, but we had seen something we shouldn’t have.
“Izayoi-kun! Cheer up! Your Dragonic Stream – The Absolute Overdrive Spiritual Hecatonchires Dynamic – Overlay – Featuring Chaos Infinity Cosmos – Tanathos of Excalibur Beef or Chicken – Elementary School Junior High School Alternative Strike was so cool! And that Dual Storm Double Cross Overlay Black Schwarzschild Gogyo, Hakobera, Hotoke-no-za Mode was amazing too! I was so impressed! It was so stylish, incorporating the Seven Herbs of Spring!”
“Uh, um… Ah…”
He sat in the chair, his eyes void of highlights, and could only manage an “Ah.” It seemed like he was quite shaken mentally.
“If things continue like this, it won’t be just one cour…”
“What do you mean…?”
“Sorry, it’s unrelated to this.”
Kohaku-chan’s sudden airheadedness further drained his mental state.
“Well, in that case, we should all try to cheer him up.”
“Yeah, he’s always helping us out.”
“But what should we do?”
“Hmm… Maybe we should just pamper him? Izayoi seems to like maids, so how about dressing up as maids and taking care of him?”
“Ooh, that’s a great idea…”
And so, we decided to lift his spirits in this way.