TLN:Thanks for the input and support everyone. I think I'm going to take a break on this series after finishing this chapter. That means in the meantime, I'll work on translating one of the two teaser series'. So, here's a survey where you can pick which one you want realized:
It was now the next day. We only played at the stream for a little bit in the morning and then descended from the mountain without waiting for noon.
Unlike how we got there, we took a leisurely walk by foot the the scheduled train. Along the way, Ryuuga had been constantly teased by her sister and the tortoise, and was pouting.
"Don't worry, sister. I won't tell father."
"I won't tell Shio and the others either!"
Ryuuga, who had entered boy mode since there were passengers around us, continued to only sigh. I whispered to her a warning, saying "Hey, watch the posture of your feet."
...With this and that happening, we arrived at the station for our town and dispersed after exiting the ticket gate. Or rather, since the girls are next-door neighbors, I separated from them.
(No~, how disappointing, Boss. Just a little more and you would have been able to kiss Ryuuga.)
(This is fine. I'm a friend character, after all.)
While heading home, Taotie and I exchanged some foolish talk in my head.
Since it isn't night yet, I'll go outside into the town after I return home and take a breather. I can't afford to skip out on searching for the apostles. August is right around the corner, and summer vacation is dwindling away hour by hour.
(Alright now, Tie. As promised, we have to properly be the final boss.)
(I understand that, but...how about devising a date plan instead of an evil scheme? It's not like you won't see Ryuuga again after this summer, right?)
(No way. I'm going to refrain from meeting Ryuuga for a while. I'm worried that Ron will become aware of your existence...)
Before long, the street in front of my house became visible. There, my footsteps halted.
For some reason, the lights were on in my home. On closer inspection, the window upstairs was also open, and there was laundry hanging out to dry in the yard.
...I'm pretty sure that I had locked the doors. I also remember turning off the lights. The laundry should have also been stored away during these three days.
"Could it be that my parents returned?"
Immediately breaking in a sprint, I headed towards my home.
Both of my parents have jobs. Furthermore, they're both workaholics that neglect home. Their work involves handling antique art, so the two are constantly flying around the world. It's already been about half a year since I've even seen their faces. They said "We won't be able to return by the end of the year," though...
(Hmm? Boss, there's someone else in the house.)
Taotie belatedly said so while I was already at the front door.
I already know. The door was unlocked when I pulled the knob.
(I'm sensing three of them. They all seem to be women.)
Stepping into the entrance, there were three pairs of shoes, just like he said. There were slip-ons, high heels, and a pair of tiny vinyl boots...there was absolutely no consistency, but they were neatly placed together.
I don't have any sisters, of course. I don't have any girl childhood friends either, nor do I have a frequently-visiting wife.
(In that case──perhaps it's the heroines? Do these shoes belong to Yukimiya, Aogasaki, and Elmira? Wouldn't this expose our secret meetings though?)
Though I was trembling from such a fear, it turned that things were different than what I had guessed.
"──Ah, welcome back."
The one with a bright voice coming from the kitchen, along with the sound of footsteps heading my way...was none of the heroines.
She was a beauty wearing something I don't see often see here, an apron. She had a ponytail to the side, and impressive almond-shaped eyes that gave off a strong will. She had a slender figure but still had a chest, which is something I can confirm from the swelling inside her clothes.
"Where have you been? I've been searching all over town for you today as well, you know?"
This young lady expressing a complaint with her hands on her hips is someone I know.
She's an "Apostle of Hell," one of humanity's enemies, her real body takes a form resembling a heron, and is a girl in the upper echelons whose whereabouts drew a blank after the final battle in part one.
"...Hey, what are you doing in my house?"
"Don't ask me what I'm doing. What were you doing, Ichirou? Well, that doesn't matter too much."
While saying so, Mion suddenly kneeled down. Then, she hung her head in silence, and spoke to me in a more humble tone of voice.
"Congratulations on reviving, 'Evil Spirit' Taotie."
"I apologize for the late arrival. I never expected the next "Evil Spirit" to awaken this quickly...I had retreated to a neighboring prefecture for a while."
It's obvious that her speech wasn't directed at me, but "the existence inside me."
In other words, Mion already knows about the "Evil Spirit" of part two being here, and how I'm the vessel for him.
"What reason are you doing this for?"
"I completely didn't notice that you were the vessel for the 'Evil Spirit,' Ichirou. I was only able to after coming across some companions with an acute nose...two of them, actually! Taotie has come back! Stop dawdling around!"
While I was bewildered, Mion let out a scold towards the back.
Upon which, two girls appeared from the living room who cheerfully appeared at the entrance.
"Taotie, long time no see."
Two people that I were seeing for the first time imitated Mion and were waiting before me.
One of them had long blonde hair, and was a fascinating beauty that looked to be in the her early-twenties. She was wearing a suit like an office lady, but she had an awfully short and risque skirt. Her enormous breasts looked like they were about to burst within her blouse, and they were some of the biggest I've ever seen.
The other was a little girl with a bobbed haircut that looked like a kindergartner. She had a red pouch she was awkwardly carrying, and upon peeking into it, there was a toy figure of a monster. She had a bit of an unclear, unknown expression, but her looks were quite well-ordered and she seemed like a pretty girl. There's probably a lot of prospect for her in the future.
"Um, and these people are...?"
The very moment I asked that, Taotie appeared from behind me.
The manifesting "Evil Spirit" stood next to me, and then suddenly raised his hand up to the three girls that were kneeling.
"Hey there, it's been a while since I've seen you all."
The friendly "Evil Spirit" gave his greetings, causing the three to all go "Huh?" simultaneously.
It's a very surreal scene when there's a female high-school student, an office lady, and a kindergartner kneeling down at the entrance, and two boys with the same inglorious face are looking below at them.
"Have the three of you gathered here before?"
"No, this the first time."
Taotie asked, and Mion gave an immediate reply. It was very different from the frank attitude she gave me.
Well, it's natural that Mion would speak humbly. Despite how he is, this guy is still more or less an "Evil Spirit." With Hundun defeated, along with Qiongqi and Taowu not here yet, he's the only ruler right now.
"I see, so this is the first time. It seemed like the three of you were sisters from how it looked. It appears that I have some fans."
"Indeed, we are much obliged."
Taotie was laughing loudly as Mion responded courteously and while bewildered.
The office lady and the kindergartner also exchanged looks of confusion.
"The 'Evil Spirit' seems...different from before. He's not as grand."
"Shh. Don't say something like that. He's definitely still affected by his host."
Not noticing their whispered conversation, Taotie suddenly raised a thumbs up towards me.
"Boss, how nice. You got some subordinates."
"As you can see, these guys are pretty strong. They're much better than even a hundred small-fries put together."
Hearing Taotie say that, Mion raised her head and said "Well then, let's formally introduce ourselves." At that moment, the other two also looked up.
"One of the 'Three Princesses of Hell,' Mion."
"Same here, Jyuri."
Like that, the three girls each then spoke in rotation.
"We are the three princesses, and from hence forth, we shall serve you, Taotie."
"Please leave it to us. You can have us do anything from destruction, cooking, laundry, or even attending you in bed."
"We don't have anywhere else to live."
"If you have an order, don't hesitate to command us."
"We'll be like your hands and limbs, like your housekeepers, like your love dolls."
"Ok, I'm going back to watching TV."
Mion, Jyuri, and Kiki are "opponent characters" that are "Apostles of Hell" who can boast being a match for even a thousand.
In a stroke of luck, I had come across the apostles I were searching for. Furthermore, the three I had come across were all in the upper echelons.
"Oh, Ichirou. We've already chosen our rooms on our own, is that okay?"
And they're also freeloaders.