|Rakudai Kishi no Eiyuutan Volume 03|
Cover of Rakudai Kishi no Eiyuutan Volume 3 featuring Stella Vermillion
|Romaji||Rakudai Kishi no Eiyūtan 3|
|Release Date||January 15, 2014|
|Previous||Light Novel Volume 02|
|Next||Light Novel Volume 04|
The third Light Novel volume released on January 15, 2014.
Nearing the end of the Selection Battles, Shizuku Kurogane is scheduled to face on the Academy's strongest Knight, Touka Toudou, in a match ultimately resulting in Shizuku's lost despite her best efforts. By a stroke of coincidence, Ikki and Stella accidentally bump into Touka who was carrying loads of documents, deciding to help her. Around then, the duo learns from the Student Council about a giant who has been causing issues at the academy's training camp in Okutama. Interested in the giant, Ikki and Stella agree to help the Student Council on dealing with the giant, unaware of the shadow lurking behind the giant. At the same time, the Kurogane Family led by Ikki's father once again starts to plot against Ikki.
Prologue: Shizuku's Challenge
In her childhood, Shizuku was always forgiven no matter what she did, even when she hit other kids or stole their toys. This was always because of her great abilities and talent. This lead to Shizuku despising humans, as they always forgave everything in front of power. However, there was one person who didn't forgive Shizuku. That was her older brother, Ikki Kurogane, who even hit Shizuku and scolded her. Seeing this, the other adults attempted to make Ikki apologize to Shizuku, but he refused. Ikki's actions however, made Shizuku respect and adore him, deciding to follow Ikki for the rest of her life.
Shizuku's selection match is about to begin, as she thinks how she noticed how badly Ikki was being treated by his family, only after he left, which gave Shizuku resolve to give her brother all of the love he would not receive from others. However, to stand beside Ikki, Shizuku will need to get stronger, and defeat stronger opponents The announcers then introduce Shizuku and her opponent, one of Japan's top 4 student knights who had only been defeated in the semi-finals of the previous Festival by the Seven Stars Sword King himself, the strongest student of Hagun Academy and the president of the student council, who wields the invincible trump card, the third year student "Raikiri" Touka Todo. As the combatants step into the arena, Shizuku can feel the immense power of Touka, which makes her even more excited, wanting to show how much she loves her brother, by beating the strongest knight of Hagun.
Chapter 1: Lorelei VS. Raikiri
As the match begins, both combatants manifest their Devices, Shizuku wielding a small blade called 'Yoishigure', while Touka uses a katana called 'Narukami', however, neither of them moves, only staring at each other. In the audience, Alice notes that they are waiting for the other to make a move, not wanting to be reckless. Ikki also tells that Shizuku needs to be careful, because of Touka's trump card, the strongest close range technique. After Stella asks what the trump card is, Ikki explains that it's her Noble Art 'Raikiri', which is a slash empowered by lightning, making it blindingly fast and extremely powerful, with every single match where the technique was used, having ended with Touka's victory. Even the current Seven Stars Sword Art King was afraid of it, having used his spear Device, to keep himself out of Touka's range. Just then Touka dashes towards Shizuku.
When Touka rushes towards Shizuku, Shizuku also makes her move, activating her Noble Art 'Toudo Heigen' covering the arena in ice, and using her Noble Art 'Water Prison Orb' to shoot multiple balls of water at Touka. Touka though manages to dodge the water balls, despite the slippery surface, and launches a lightning attack at Shizuku. Shizuku though activates another Noble Art, 'Shouha Suiren' to summon walls of water to block the lightning. Touka launches multiple more lightning bolts at Shizuku, which Shizuku barely blocks. Touka's advantage over Shizuku is the pace that she can execute attacks, allowing her to push Shizuku back with her constant attacks. However, Touka's movement suddenly stop, as her feet are frozen into the ground. Shizuku uses this opportunity, to drop a giant mass of ice on her. This shows her Shizuku's amazing mana control, defending against Touka's attacks, freezing her and forming a giant mass of ice simultaneously. Touka however destroys the giant piece of ice and frees herself with a powerful lightning slash, without receiving a scratch. The audience is getting excited over the fight, surprised at how evenly Shizuku is able to match the strongest knight at Hagun. Even Stella comments that she could win. Ikki however is more skeptical about Shizuku's victory. The other student council members Utakata Misogi and Kanata Totokubara also note that Shizuku is strong, but Touka is yet to fight seriously.
As Shizuku and Touka are waiting for each other to make a move, Touka suddenly moves in front of Shizuku and almost slashes her, with Shizuku barely dodging. Shizuku is confused, having not noticed that Touka moved. Touka moves in front of her again, without Shizuku noticing, this time hitting her. However, this is revealed to be just a water clone, with Shizuku having dodged the attack, although she receives a wound on her left arm. Shizuku though is still confused about Touka's movements, being unable to follow them. Seeing Shizuku suddenly struggle, the audience becomes confused by the sudden turn of the tables. Stella too asks Ikki what is happening, with Ikki saying that Shizuku is unable to follow Touka's movements for some reason. Ikki notes that he has seen this technique before used by Nene Saikyo. Then Nene and Kurono both appear, congratulating Ikki on his assumption. Nene explains that the technique Touka is using, is called 'Trackless Step', showcasing it by sneaking behind Stella and grabbing her breasts. Kurono then asks Ikki to explain how 'Trackless Step' works, as he has probably already figured it out. Ikki then tells that the technique allows the user to slip into their user's unconsciousness, by using breath control and footwork, making the target unable to react to the user's movements. Ikki also wonders how a student like Touka is able to achieve a similar technique to Nene, who is ranked 3rd in the KOK A-League. Kurono tells that Nene and Touka were taught by the same man, that being Torajirou Nangou, the world's oldest active Blazer, though Nene gets embarrassed by Kurono calling Nangou her master. Kurono then notes that Shizuku won't be able to break 'Trackless Step', with Ikki admitting this, as breaking the technique requires the opponent to switch their focus into their unconsciousness, which is hard in the middle of a fight. Stella though believes that Shizuku can win, cheering her on.
Hearing Stella's encouragement, Shizuku thinks how Stella will definitely go to the Seven Stars Sword Art Festival with Ikki, which is why she must also go, wanting to stand beside her brother. Touka again attempts to use 'Trackless Step', but Shizuku quickly uses her Noble Art 'Byakuya Kekka', which creates a thick cloud of mist around the arena, making Touka unable to see Shizuku. Shizuku then activates another Noble Art, 'Hisuijin', increasing her blade's length and cutting power, by compressing water on it. A strike from Hisuijin cannot be blocked as the blade is liquid, which will allow Shizuku to hit Touka. However, as Shizuku rushes towards Touka and raises her blade to attack, Touka activates her trump card, as Shizuku had entered her range, destroying 'Byakuya Kekkai' and 'Hisuijin', and cutting Shizuku down. As Shizuku falls down, Touka is declared the winner of the match, with Shizuku's hopes of fighting beside Ikki and Stella in the Festival being crushed. Seeing Shizuku lose, Ikki notes that she was really strong, having grown from the little girl she used to be. Ikki also thinks that Touka is also very strong, residing at the summit of the Seven Stars Sword Art Festival, an opponent Ikki will probably face her in the future.
Shizuku later wakes up in the hospital room, surrounded by Alice, Ikki and Stella. Remembering that she lost, Shizuku asks for the others to leave. Ikki and Stella leave, but Alice stays with her. Shizuku asks him to leave as well, but Alice ignores her request, saying that Shizuku fought hard and her brother was proud of him. Alice then hugs Shizuku, telling her that she doesn't need to appear tough anymore. Shizuku then begins to cry, being frustrated over her loss to Touka.
Ikki and Stella are walking, talking about Shizuku's unfortunate loss. They though have to focus on their own battles, as the selection battles are nearing their end. They decide to go train together, with Ikki grabbing Stella's hand. As Stella feels Ikki's hand wrap around hers, Stella thinks about their relationship, secretly having desires to move forward to the "next step" of their relationship, which also makes her embarrassed. A female student carrying a giant stack of papers coming from around the corner. Seeing the girl carrying the papers, Ikki asks if the girl needs help, which causes her to be surprised and fall over, dropping the papers, exposing her panties. As the girl searches for her glasses, Stella informs her of her indecent situation, with the girl quickly covering her bottom. Ikki finds the glasses and hands them to the girl, who is actually revealed to be Touka Todo herself. Ikki and Stella help her carry the papers to the student council room, with many students greeting Touka as they walk. Stella noticing that Touka didn't wear her glasses in her match against Shizuku, asks if she was going easy on her, which Touka quickly debunks. Touka explains that she used a Noble Art, called 'Reverse Sight', which allows her to sense the opponents movements through the signals going through their body, but the technique requires her to cut off her eyesight. Touka also notes that Stella is probably a good friend of Shizuku, with Stella quickly denying this. Ikki wonders if Touka telling them her ability is good, as they might face each other in the future, but Touka tells that knowing about one of her abilities won't help them much. Sensing Touka's confidence, Ikki thinks how he would like to face her someday.
As the group enters the student council room, where the other members, Kanata, Utakata, Saijou and Renren, currently reside. However, the whole room is a mess, with all kinds of stuff being scattered everywhere. Touka scolds the other members, especially Utakata and Renren, for making the room so messy, while she was away to train for a couple. Asking for Ikki and Stella to wait outside a bit. Touka makes the others help her clean the room, which happens surprisingly quickly. As Ikki and Stella enter, they greet the others members, having met them previously. As they sit down, Saijou compliments Touka for finding such good helpers, which confuses Ikki and Stella, and shocks Touka, having forgotten an important thing. Kanata then explains that Kurono asked the student council to research a mysterious sighting at Okutama, where Hagun's training camp resides. Touka was supposed to ask for helpers, but forgot, having focused on her match against Shizuku. Kanata also reveals that the mysterious sightings have been about a supposed giant. Hearing this, Stella happily accepts to help, wanting to see a giant, and makes Ikki come with her, which he does accept. Thus, next weekend they all head out to Okutama.
Chapter 2: Mystery in Okutama
In the headquarters of the League of Mage-Knight Nations Japan Branch, the leader of the Japanese branch, Itsuki Kurogane, who is also the father of Ikki and Shizuku, grieves over Shizuku's loss, while another man notes that she was unlucky, having faced against Touka. Itsuki also worries about Ikki's success in the selection battles, as he might have even reached the Seven Stars Sword Art Festival, which would spread his fame even further, something Itsuki doesn't want to happen. However, the other man named Mamoru Akaza, a branch member of the Kurogane Family, tells Itsuki that he has a plan to get rid of Ikki, having acquired some interesting information about him.
Ikki and Stella, along with the student council arrive at the training camp in the mountains of Okutama. Stella and Renren immediately begin playing badminton, while the other start preparing food, with Ikki also helping as he has experience in cooking. As they make food, Ikki notices something eye-catching about Touka. Noticing this, Utakata tells him that he probably sensed the source of Touka's strength, with Ikki asking him to explain. Utakata explains that he and Touka grew up in the same orphanage, with Kanata also visiting them often, making the three of them good friends. Many of the children there had experienced tragedies, having lost their parents in an accident or having been abandoned, with one child's parents even having attempted to kill their child. However, Touka, despite also having experienced loss, was able to spread positivity across the orphanage, helping everyone and managing to make life better for the others. She even managed to befriend the child who was almost killed by his parents, despite that child being violent to her. Touka's actions saved that child's humanity, being thankful to Touka to that very day, with the child being actually Utakata himself. Touka's good intentions and friendliness are her strength, being driven by the children who admire her at the orphanage. Utakata though also notes that though Ikki is strong as well and carries his own burden, the weight of responsibility he carries is entirely different from Touka's. Hearing this, Ikki wonders if he would be able to even defeat Touka.
They eat lunch, being delicious, though Stella surprisingly doesn't eat much. They then divide into three groups, Touka and Utakata, Renren and Saijou as well as Ikki and Stella, while Kanata stays behind. The groups then go and search the surrounding area for the mysterious giant. Ikki and Stella walk through the forest, with Stella becoming quickly tired. This worries Ikki, who wonders if Stella is alright. As they continue their search, Ikki stumbles upon a giant footprint, with the ground having crumbled around it and trees being uprooted. As Ikki calls out to Stella, he notices that she is completely worn out, with Stella saying that her body feels really heavy for some reason. Ikki realizes that Stella has a cold, something she has had never had before, making it all the more worse. Stella, having already endured it for some time, is now barely able to stand up, with Ikki carrying her. Ikki remembers a nearby shack, where they can rest, carrying Stella there.
As Ikki carries Stella, rain begins to fall down, getting them both wet before arriving in the shack. As they rest down, with Ikki calling Kanata, and informs her of their situation, who promises to send help. Ikki and Stella start to remove their wet clothes, with Stella requesting Ikki's help, due to her weak condition. Ikki is nervous about the request, but decides to help her, so her condition doesn't get worse. Ikki gathers all of his resolve, as he removes Stella's stockings and shirt, requiring a great amount of willpower to hold his composure. Stella then asks Ikki to remove her bra, which further tests Ikki's will. Managing to remove her bra, and quickly covering her in a blanket. Stella apologizes for being so much trouble, though Ikki says that it's not much. Stella, having noticed that Ikki was clearly entranced by her, asks him if he wants to have sex with her, something that she's been thinking about for some time.Ikki is initially shocked, but after some thinking denies her request, saying that, although he loves her deeply and wants to show his affection, he must first meet Stella's parents, wanting to refrain from immoral actions. Stella hearing Ikki's response, becomes embarrassed by her own thoughts, falling shortly asleep.
As Stella wakes up, she sits beside Ikki, who asks her what her parents are actually like, wanting to prepare for the time that they will announce their relationship to them. Stella though requests that they should hide their relationship from them until the last minute before marriage, something Ikki doesn't agree with. Stella explains that, although her mother is a nice and reasonable person, her father is an eccentric person, who cares for Stella deeply, and would kill Ikki, before he could marry Stella. Hearing this, Ikki becomes worried, with Stella further telling that her mother had to pout her father to prison, so Stella could go to Japan. Despite hearing about Stella's father, Ikki wishes to meet him and gain his approval no matter what, with Stella suggesting that they should visit Vermillion at some point. Stella also wishes to meet Ikki's parents, which they agree to do after the Festival, though Ikki is troubled by meeting his own father. Suddenly, they feel the ground shaking, with Ikki going outside to see what is happening, while Stella stays inside. As Ikki steps outside, he initially sees nothing suspicious, but then notices a five meter giant, made of rubble, standing in front of the shack. The giant then raises it's fist slamming down on the shack. Ikki quickly activates 'Ittou Shura', rushing back inside the shack, grabbing Stella, and carrying her away, just before the giant crushes the shack. Seeing the giant, Stella is slightly disappointed, as the giant is just made of rocks. Ikki then attacks the giant, using his first secret sword technique "Saigeki", his strongest offensive technique, charging towards the giant and striking a hole through it. However, the destroyed giant forms into multiple smaller giants, which quickly overwhelm Ikki, as he is unable to destroy them, without enough space to use "Saigeki". Ikki also realizes that the rock people are actually controlled by a Blazer, like puppets. Stella though helps him, using her superior power to smash some of the rock puppets. As the two of them prepare for battle, they are suddenly interrupted by Utakata, who appears out of nowhere, playfully noting that the sick shouldn't be fighting.
As Utakata greets Ikki and Stella, his head is smashed apart by a nearby rock puppet, shocking Ikki and Stella. However, Utakata appears, undamaged, a few meters away. Ikki realizes that Utakata must have a causation manipulation Noble Art, that allows him to twist cause and effect themselves. Utakata confirms this, explaining that his Noble Art is Black Box, which allows him to alter the outcome of any event, as long as there is more than a zero percent change for the new outcome to happen. This allows for Utakata to rewrite any attack inflicted on him. However, it's useless for offense, as the ability won't allow Utakata to defeat an opponent he couldn't defeat without the ability. Hearing the great weakness of Utakata's ability, Stella asks why he has arrived, with Utakata telling that he is just serving as navigation for Touka, who arrives just then. Having now arrived, Touka explains that the Blazer who is controlling the rock puppets is likely using some kind of wires to control them from afar, a common tactic among certain Blazers. However, the opponent can't control multiple puppets simultaneously, and is instead using a single puppet as a hub, through which the other dolls are controlled. By taking out that hub, the other puppets will be taken out as well. Touka then uses her 'Reverse Sight' to find that single puppet, moving in on it with her Noble Art 'Shippu Jinrai', which increases her physical abilities, and finally destroys it with 'Raikiri', simultaneously taking out the other puppets. Ikki and Stella are both amazed by Touka's abilities, while Touka herself starts worrying about Stella, picking her up and heading to a nearby emergency cabin. As they walk, Utakata tells Ikki that Touka's parents died from illness, which is why she is so worried about Stella.
Elsewhere, the man who was controlling the puppets is sitting with another tall man, commenting how Touka was as strong as expected. The tall man notices that the man's arm got burned by the power of Touka's attack, though the other man doesn't seem too worried. The tall man comments that it's because of the other man's carelessness that he received the injury, doing something so risky just before the Festival, noting that it could have endangered the other man's organization. The other man, who calls himself "Pierrot" though claims that as a Pierrot, he must always be having fun, not being able to stand unfunny things. The tall man however doesn't care about his words. The "Pierrot" then snaps his fingers, cutting his damaged arm off, without a shred of pain. The tall man tells him that he could feed it to the cat, which the "Pierrot" tells to call a "Sphinx", which the tall man refuses to do. The "Pierrot" says that Stella was also present, who the tall man is seemingly interested in, noting that she seemed to be in a bad condition. The tall man though comments that if she doesn't recover, then she isn't worthy of his attention, as he then leaves. As the man leaves, the "Pierrot" says that the man isn't cute at all, himself preferring the man's younger brother's simplicity.
After the rain finally ends, Ikki, Stella, Touka and Utakata head back towards the training camp, having completed their mission. Ikki asks Touka if it's okay to let the man behind the puppets go, with Touka telling that it would probably be impossible, as the man is at least hundred kilometers away, which Touka was able to judge by sending electricity through the strings controlling the puppets. Touka also notes that being able to control the puppets from such a distance means that the man is very powerful, being possibly able to beat even Touka herself. Though they can't do anything, the man most likely won't bother the training camp area anymore, as Touka managed to damage him. They then arrive in the training camp, being greeted by Renren and Saijou, who worry a bit about Stella and Ikki. Stella, Renren and Utajata suggest that they should go eat, but Touka insists that they should go to a hospital to check on Stella. The others though say that Stella is already fine, which Stella herself agrees with. They do though get into an agreement, deciding that they will first go to the hospital and then visit an all-you-can-eat food place. Ikki then notices that Kanata is with Renren saying that she went to receive a guest, who had actually come to meet Ikki. Ikki asks what was the guest's name, with Saijou telling that he called himself Akaza, which shocks Ikki. Just then, Kanata and the Akaza arrive, as Akaza greets Ikki. The man is a chubby and short old man, dressed in a suit. Stella asks who he is, and Ikki tells that he's Mamoru Akaza, the head of the Kurogane branch head, being clearly troubled by his presence. Akaza then apologizes to the student council members for needing to deal with a good-for-nothing person like Ikki, his rudeness shocking the student council. Ikki asks what he is doing there, with Akaza handing him a newspaper. Surprisingly, the front page has a picture of Ikki and Stella kissing. Both Ikki and Stella are shocked, with Akaza telling that the public is in uproar due to Ikki's relationship with a state guest. As Stella looks at the article closer, she notices that the article represents Ikki in a far worse light, calling him a boy with a problematic personality, Akaza though claims that everything in the article is true, saying that Ikki has been a scoundrel since his childhood. Due to his relationship with Stella, the League has ordered to hold an inquiry, which Akaza has come to take Ikki into. Stella realizes that the Kurogane Family is intentionally overplaying the scandal to force Ikki into giving up his status as a Mage-Knight. Ikki though still accepts the inquiry, as he really doesn't have a choice.
Chapter 3: Worst One Under Siege
Chapter 4: One Slash
Epilogue: Crownless Sword King
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