With a large amount of handicap on my favor…… Ozma-san at least wouldnt move at a speed I couldnt see and his range of action is only within a circle of four meters in diameter. So, to be honest, somewhere in the back of my mind, I was thinking that “It would be pretty easy for me to win this”.
However, twenty minutes after this battle started, I realized how naive my thoughts were.
[……Hahhh…… T- This is tough……]
[Hmmm. You sure can move a lot, Miyama-kun~~ Are you exercising regularly]
As I breathed heavily, Ozma-san stood in front of me with an aloof smile on his face.
I- I cant reach him…… I cant reach him at all. I mean, it doesnt feel like I would be able to reach him.
Ozma-sans movements were slow and relaxed, but they are exquisite and were as slippery as a specter. Just as Ozma-san declared though, he was indeed only moving at a speed I could react to.
However, his movements were exquisite…… Even if I could react, my body wasnt able to keep up, or hed poke me at angles where it is difficult to see his movements because they were my blind spots.
It was as if he was a leaf gently falling from a tree slipping through my hand when I tried my hand tried to catch it.
In that case though, I thought of opening my arms wide to block his escape route and tried to collide my body with his, but he quickly jumped over me with one foot.
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Well, Ozma-san may have actually been seeing my movements as if they were in slow motion, so it was easy for him to avoid them.
However, its not like I dont have any cards left. I guess its time for me to use my trump card.
[Ohh, a magic circle…… How scary, I wonder what youre going to do Youre making Uncle nervous here.]
Although hes saying that hes scared, Ozma-san still had a gentle smile on his face. However, this magic would be able to break that smile of his…… Or rather, if this doesnt break his smile, I dont think I have any chance of victory at all.
For a man with little magic power and no aptitude for combat, I could only rely on my only trump card “Auto-Counter”. However, its a passive kind of magic, and isnt something suitable for initiating.
The magic Im going to use now is an improved version of my Auto-Counter…… Its a magic that makes my body act through movements that Ive established beforehand, at a really fast speed that just barely breaks my body.
After a few minutes of setting up the magic circle, I activated it.
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With the utterance of the magic name acting as a key, I lost control of my body.
The attack Ive set up this time…… Is to make use of my body to attack at Ozma-san at the fastest and shortest distance possible.
As the distance was originally close, I quickly reached Ozma-san and swung my fist at him, but he nimbly turned his body to the side and evaded my attack.
However, this is where the true essence comes in. My body quickly reacts to Ozma-sans movements and swings my fist to the side.
However, this was also avoided by turning his upper body behind.
Before I could even realize that my fist attack had been evaded though, my body immediately crouched down and my foot swept his feet.
So to speak, Autopilot is something like a super reflex. It eliminates the process between thinking and acting, and executes predetermined goals at the level of a spinal reflex.
This should have been…… making my body exert its maximum performance but……
Ozma-san did a backflip with one foot to avoid my foot sweep, and easily avoided my fist that was continuously thrown in the air, and then spun around again with one hand on the ground to avoid my follow-up attack.
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[Good gracious, youre quite fast, arent you Its going to be hard for Uncle to avoid them.]
Despite saying all these things, Ozma-san evaded all of my attacks with relative ease, as if he knew in advance where my attacks would come from.
F- For him to be this powerful…… This is bad. Autopilot is certainly easier to use than Auto-Counter, but I still dont know how much this magic consumes.
In the next few minutes…… If I cant catch him……
Autopilot lost its effect, and I fell down on one knee.
Autopilot would disregard my bodys fatigue while in effect, but one of the drawbacks is that when the effect wears off, the fatigue rushes in.
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To be honest, Im so tired I just want to lie down right now……
While watching the exhausted me lying down on the ground, Ozma-san held a cigarette on his mouth and spoke to me without lighting it.
[……Miyama-kun, can I give you one piece of advice]
[That magic isnt really effective against Uncle, you know Thats probably some magic that allows you to attack in the most efficient way, right In that case, for opponents like Uncle here who have already lived useless amounts of years, “not only would we be able to figure out where and how someones going to attack”, “we can even control our movements by purposely creating gaps”.]
When he mentions it, I can somehow understand it…… The Autopilot uses the most efficient movement to launch an attack. So, for someone as good as Ozma-san, it wouldnt be any different from using telephone punches…… Ughhh…… This is hard.
(T/N: Telephone punch is just a simple punch that doesnt require any martial arts skill. A punch with just brute force.)
[Well, you did a great job. Everyone has their strengths and weaknesses after all…… So, isnt it enough that you tried]
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[Even though Master Megiddo told that to you, its not like you really have to do that. In this world, its important to know when to give up. Its not like its your fault that you lost here. Theres no need to force yourself to do something thats hard, you can just retire here…… You can just go have fun with that girl over there at the festival.]
[……I guess youre right.]
In response to Ozma-sans words, who was speaking to me as if he was gently persuading me, not mocking me for my weakness, I nodded once…… before I held down my trembling legs and “stood up”.
[Oya Are you still going to stand You dont have to work so hard, do you Do you really want to live up to Master Megiddos expectations that much]
[Theres that too…… But well, more than that……]
Why am I seriously working so hard The reason…… I think there are a lot of them. I dont want to waste the thoughts of the people who helped me get here, and I also want to live up to Megiddo-sans expectations.
Those are definitely reasons for not giving up. But Im not that good of a person, so if its only that, I wont be trying this much.
Yes, the reason why Im working so hard now is actually quite simple……
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[……Im also…… a man…… So sometimes, I just wanted to “show off my good side to a cute girl”……]
[……Hahaha, I see. With such a reason, theres no way that you can just not work hard, right Its Uncles mistake. Alright then, bring me all you got.]
To be honest, I have very little energy and magic power left. Thats why…… Ive only got one chance left.
Running towards Ozma-san, I swung my fist. But of course, the strike is avoided.
However, what Im aiming for is this moment…… Through my Sympathy Magic, I conveyed my emotions. What Im using now is that magic that stopped the fight between Chronois-san and Ein-san before.
Forcefully transmitting my strong desire to not lose…… I jumped on Ozma-san, whose movements slightly slowed down in surprise.
This tactic is effective because its a surprise attack. However, there wont be a second time……Thats why, reach him!
I desperately reached out to Ozma-san, who took evasive action even though his reaction is a bit delayed.
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It was actually just the tip of my finger…… but my outstretched hand did indeed touch Ozma-sans body.
[Whoa, you alright there]
As I was about to fall to the ground, Ozma-san quickly caught my body.
[Master! Are you alright! Did you get injured]
[Anima I- Im alright…… Just a little tired.]
With Ozma-sans support, I smiled at Anima who ran up to me, to which she lets out a sigh of relief.
[Good gracious, thats splendid. You managed to catch me~~]
[T- Thank you…… very much.]
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[Im sure youre tired, so why dont you get some rest Ill give you the stamp later.]
[Well then, Ill go brew some coffee. Young lady over there, can you help me with bringing the cups]
After confirming that Anima nodded at Ozma-sans request for help, I sat down, leaning against the wall of the arena.
Dear Mom, Dad————- I somehow managed to win just in time. My whole body feels so weary, but at the same time, I feel a sense of accomplishment———– This feeling doesnt feel so bad.
On their way to where theyre making coffee, a distance away from Kaito, Anima spoke to Ozma.
[……On those last moments…… “Why did you let him touch you on purpose”]
[Oh my I wonder what youre talking about]
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[Dont play dumb. You were smiling when you saw Masters move at that time……]
[Hmmm. You have good eyes.]
Hearing Animas words, Ozma leisurely muttered and kindly smiled.
[You see, I mentioned it before, didnt I That Uncle here is the weakest of the Five Generals…… Im no good after all. Uncle has a weakness for children who work hard like that. I just cant help but want to cheer them on.]
[Thats why you lost on purpose]
[Well, if Miyama-kun hadnt tried so hard, I wouldnt let myself lose. However, he, who was aiming for whats in front of him, desperately reached his hand to the goal, but in the end, he was held back by the difference in ability…… Uncle doesnt like that kind of development. Well, in the end, its just for Uncles convenience.]
[……I see. You have my thanks.]
[I dont need it. You should just praise Miyama-kun for his hard work. Tell him that he did a great job……]
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[Good gracious, its so nice to be young~~ Im so jealous. Uncle is getting so old now…… But well, I guess its elders privilege to be able to smile at the efforts of straightforward children.]
As he said this, Ozma lit a cigarette in his mouth and serenely smiled.
I really like nice middle-aged characters like Ozma. Hes one of those handsome uncles.
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