“W-what happened? How could the [Omni-Sword] be repelled?”
The man was right; it was inconceivable that the [Omni-Sword], which was said to cut through everything, would be repelled.
The other man swung the [Omni-Sword] at me many times, but for some reason, all of them were repelled before they touched my body.
As I was stunned by this impossible scene, I suddenly became aware of a faint aura of something being emitted from my body.
It was not magic, not “Holy” or “Evil” power, not even that divine authority.
I looked down at my body and saw that my entire body was enveloped in a dark purple aura of misery.
“W-what is this…?”
“What is that power? Tell me!”
The man asked in an intense tone, but I myself had no idea what was going on.
I had never seen such power before.
The shimmering purple aura was so bewitching that I was horrified, and yet it radiated an ominous presence.
I was surprised by a power I didn’t remember at all, but there was something else that caught my attention even more.
“My body is getting… lighter…!”
After this aura was emitted, I felt as if my body had become lighter than before.
It was not a feeling as if I had been strengthened by magic power, but purely as if my body weight──had been reduced.
The man’s expression was bitter as he was stunned by the unknown situation.
“It ain’t possible. Your power, whatever it is, was given to you by the sage. That’s why you should have no power in this space. It’s supposed to be that way! And yet, what is that power? Are you saying you were born with it?”
While the man was saying all sorts of things, I was staring at this purple aura.
I have no idea what this power is.
But somehow, I understood how to use the power.
I could move it as if it were my own limbs as if it were a skill I had used for many years.
Apparently, this aura, like magic, not only strengthens me but also allows me to shape something.
As I checked the purple aura, I unconsciously formed a sword with it.
In response to me, the man said something as if he had regained his composure.
“Hah! Do you want to fight me with that strange sword? Do you really think you can win?”
I don’t know what this power is, but it would be difficult to defeat the man who has been enhanced with all kinds of power, including divine authority.
Even if I’m enhanced by some mysterious aura, the difference must be obvious.
“No matter what happens, I will stop you.”
“Ah, I see. Then I’ll kill you quickly and mess up your precious things, just as planned!”
As soon as the man finished saying that, he instantly took out the [Absolute Spear] and threw it at me with all his might.
After coming to this space, the spear, which had pierced my body many times, was coming at me again.
I am really scared.
But I am more afraid that the people I care about will get hurt.
Then, in my unconsciousness, a violet aura appeared in both of my eyes.
At that moment, the approaching [Absolute Spear] slowed down.
Not missing that opportunity, I caught it with my aura sword and let the impact of the [Absolute Spear] escape before it pierced through me.
But then the other man took advantage of the opportunity and slashed at me.
“It’s impossible for you to beat me, you foooooollllll!”
The man smiled victoriously.
He was right; it would be impossible for me to win.
At that moment, the image of Zenovis-san appeared in my mind.
The great man who changed my life after I came to another world.
If Zenovis-san were here, what would he say?
“You can just cut the impossible──!”
What I clung to was the “Idleness Strike” that I learned from Zenovis-san.
In an instant, I entered a state of extreme concentration and slashed through the man’s [Omni-Sword] with my aura sword.
──Indeed, the [Omni-Sword] can cut through everything. But such a thing can also be easily done with a well-trained technique.
Zenovis-san certainly said so.
…Oh, I see.
Certainly, my physical abilities would be poor as that is a given.
But the time I spent wielding the wooden sword with Sage-san in the past world is definitely mine.
The training with Sage-san had nothing to do with skill; it was truly about mastering a skill.
So this skill and experience were not a gift. It belonged to me.
I slashed the [Omni-Sword] and moved in a fluid motion, slicing the man in two from the top of the head.
The man’s eyes widen, and he falls to his knees.
“R-ridiculous…! I’m the one who’s…!”
He mutters as if grumbling and the man’s body disappears as particles of light.
“Did I… win…?”
And as the particles of light spun around my body, they eventually permeated my body.
At that moment, my vision blacked out again.
I──Gwen── could not believe what I saw before my eyes.
I brought the people of the lower worlds to the trial chamber in order for them to acquire divine authority.
This space was used for trials to awaken those who did not have divine authority.
However, divine authority was literally “divine authority” and could not be acquired by people from the lower worlds.
If so, why bother?
By stepping outside the framework of human beings.
The place for this was the trial chamber.
And although it was easy to put into words, it was very difficult to actually accomplish it. It was not the same as becoming genuinely strong and gaining strength like a non-human.
To quit being human could only be accomplished by ‘defeating oneself.’
During this trial, one must confront and fight against oneself as a test.
At first glance, this may seem easy, but to fight and defeat an opponent who has the exact same power and mindset as you, I would say that it would be impossible to do so.
However, the people I brought with me this time broke through this trial one after another.
I must admit that I underestimated them.
However, there was one person among them who was extraordinary.
A man named Yuuya defeated me without even having divine authority.
While the others were fighting the exact same opponent as themselves, for some reason, only Yuuya’s opponent was far more powerful than himself… or rather it was exactly like Yuuya before the trial, but in contrast to that, for some reason, Yuuya himself was shabby and ridiculously weak.
What in the world had happened? Why was his opponent stronger than him?
I didn’t know why, but perhaps there were two sides to Yuuya, and this weak figure was the essence of Yuuya.
I don’t know what to think of this, but it would be impossible for Yuuya to break through this trial.
After all, the opponent is a being that even I couldn’t defeat.
On the other hand, the current Yuuya is truly a lowly creature. The difference is as great as the difference between heaven and earth.
Although I could not see the details of the trial, it was obvious that this would be a one-sided and enormous blow to Yuuya.
I was about to make a decision: should I interrupt the trial here?
It was just when I was about to make that decision. A strange power overflowed from Yuuya’s soul.
It was something I had not felt even when we fought, and it was as if it had been sealed deep within Yuuya.
And the moment I saw that power, I was struck with an intense feeling of disgust.
W-what is this power…!
The mysterious shimmering purple aura is almost alluring by the looks of it, but it has such conflicting qualities that some fundamental part of us as living beings rejects it.
In a sudden surprise, Yuuya used this power to overcome himself, who was far more powerful than he was.
At one point, I wondered what would happen, but Yuuya had a mysterious power in his body that I didn’t understand, and I think it led to his success in this trial.
He is a lower-world being but very dependable.
With a smile on my face, I headed back to Yuuya and the others after the trial.
“Hmm… ah… T-this place?”
When I opened my eyes, it was the same view from before the trial.
I was looking around in a daze when Iris-san rushed over to me and checked my body.
“Are you hurt anywhere? Are you okay?”
“Ah, I-I’m fine! I’m fine!”
As I was telling this to Iris-san, who was touching my body and checking me over and over again, Master Usagi came over to me.
(You were the last one.)
“What? I-is that so?”
(Yeah. Iris and I came back here at about the same time, but at that time, only Akatsuki had already passed the trial.)
Akatsuki was somewhat proudly puffing out his chest. In other words, Akatsuki was the first to clear the trial.
(Then Odis, Yuti, Night, and the others came back, and finally, you.)
“That’s how tough Yuuya-dono’s trial was, huh?”
“Yes, that’s right…?”
I was about to answer Odis-san’s words when I realized that I couldn’t remember the details of the trial.
“H-huh? I am sure that I had the trial, but I can’t remember what it was about…”
“As I thought, you too, Yuuya-kun…”
“Eh? T-that means you all are also…”
“Affirmative. I don’t remember either.”
Apparently, none of us remember what the trial was about.
“──No surprise you don’t remember.”
Then Gwen-san quietly approached us.
“What do you mean by ‘no surprise’?”
“In order for you to attain divine authority, you must be outside the human frame of reference. And that requires the awakening of the soul.”
“Awakening of the soul?”
“Yes. The soul is the most important power in your world and in this [Heavenly Realm] as well. The soul can exist on its own in that space, where it is refined and awakened to obtain divine authority. So this is the outline of the trial.”
“The soul stores all kinds of information about your past lives. But you will never know or remember it. Am I right?”
“You mean that the records imprinted on our souls will not be remembered by us?”
“That’s what I mean.”
The contract between Zenovis-san and me was also supposed to be a contract through the soul. That is why the strange situation occurs that Zenovis-san forgets about me, but his soul remembers me?
“Anyway, even if you yourself don’t remember it, your soul remembers it. As proof of that… how about it? I believe you are now able to use your divine authority?”
Saying this, Iris-san erupted a rainbow-colored aura from her palm.
Following that, everyone activated their divine authority.
I tried it myself and was able to activate it without any problem.
“Mysterious. I don’t remember it, but I can use it.”
(Well, it’s just like training, isn’t it? It’s similar to being able to use a technique unconsciously.)
“I-is it really so? Well, since I can use it like this, I have nothing to complain about.”
While each of us was manipulating the divine authority as we wished, I had the feeling that I had forgotten something crucial.
I don’t know what it was, but… something must have happened during the trial…
Then Gwen-san continued.
“At any rate, you have gone through the trial and attained divine authority. The process of that trial must have helped you a great deal. Even if you don’t remember it now, your soul will remember it. And you will remember it at some point.”
According to Gwen-san’s words, I will remember what I have forgotten in due time.
I felt a little queasy, but I forced myself to accept it.
“Good. Anyway, you guys received divine authority. The rest is up to──.”
That was the moment he was about to say that.
As if knocked off his feet, Gwen-san looked up and stared off into the distance with a startled expression on his face.
“? What in the world is wrong with you?”
We were alarmed by his unusual reaction, and he raised his voice.
“That guy’s here!”
“The false god…!”
──It seemed that we were going to have a real battle with the false god.