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Tasogare no Kishi, Akatsuki no Sora
<The Shore in Twilight, the Sky in Daybreak>

Copyright Fuyumi Ono, Koudansya, 2001
(C)¬–ì•s—R”üEu’kŽÐ@‚Q‚O‚O‚P

 


~ Chapter Three ~

 

Risai gave a bitter smile despite herself.
"Rousan, do you think it is a plot for treason?"

Rousan sighed heavily.
"It might be too late already when we discover it. Bun Province is so far away. It takes a couple of days even for the air force (Kukoushi, ‹ósŽt). When things go astray, the only thing reliable would be the imperial treasure (Houtyou, •ód) secretly kept in Tai, but the only ones who can use it are the emperor and the kirin -- those who bear the imperial surname (Kokushi, ‘Ž) of Tai (‘×). Taiho can definitely use the imperial treasure, but when he is cornered, the most speedy, certain and to-the-point weapon is Taiho's shirei (Žg—ß)."

Risai was shocked without speech, and Rousan shot a mischievous upward glance to her.

"Let me tell you, I don't know why on earth you guys are treating Taiho like a powerless kid. He has a Toutetsu (ébéW), you know!"
"That... is true..."

Kirins commands youma (—d–‚) as shirei to serve them. A kirin can have unlimited shirei, but due to the unfortunate fact that Taiki was born in Hourai, he had only two. One of them is a Nyokai (—‰ö) the foster parent of every kirin, and it is even not appropriate to count it as one of the shirei. Strictly speaking, there is only one shirei, and that is a Toutetsu. It is a youma with power almost belonging to the realm of legends.

"Toutetsu, the demons of all demons. If the kid holding it is powerless, then we all are nothing but babies!"
Rousan squinted her eyes, and stared straight into thin air.
"Let me tell you, your kirin-san... he is a demon above Toutetsu!"

***

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