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Satou here. There are so many words that become common unnoticed, but I don't think there's a lot of people who know the origins of those words. You can look it up to a certain point on internet search engines these days though.
"It should be fine here. Anyone wanna have a go?"
We've come to a copy sub-space of the great desert to test out the Unique Skills the gods loaned.
This particular sub-space has been reinforced multiple times over to prevent it from breaking down when testing anti-god magic, fit as a proving ground.
It's still hot though, so we're all on board of the fully air conditioned big airship.
Aze-san is with us today. I can't just nonchalantly send her back while knowing that she's being targeted by both Demon God and god Zaikuon.
"Master, I shall volunteer myself, so I report."
Nana came forward as the first player.
"Then, I'll be your test partner. Are you fine with Inferno then anti-demon lord [Lesser Mythology Down]?"
Pretty extreme suggestion from Arisa.
"You should start with a watered down advanced fire magic before you go with inferno."
"I mean it's god's Authority and all, it should be fine, no? Nana's [Castle] can block Inferno already, if you're still worried Master, how about putting up Castle inside the god's barrier?"
"Master, there is no point if it cannot block Demon God's attack so I insist."
I suppose they're right--.
"I get it. Let me stand by next to Nana then."
This way, everything should be fine in case something goes wrong.
Arisa sighed, "You're as big a worrywart as ever aren't you, Master", but it's better than risk injuring Nana, so ignore that.
I take Nana with me to the center of the great desert.
『Are you ready?』
『Hold on a bit.』
I called for time through Tactical Talk.
"Nana, Unique Skill."
"Yes, Master. Activating Unique Skill, 『Paladin Shield』 so I announce."
Vermilion light blinked on Nana's body, then a 100 meter wide dome enshrouded us.
"Can you change its size?"
"Yes, Master. It is possible to alter the dome's size from 1/10th to 10 times the current size, so I report. The smaller it is the better its defensive power maxing out at three times the power, while at the biggest size its defensive power will fall to less than half, so I report."
Apparently she just somehow gets all those details.
Once Nana had activated her golden armor's [Castle] inside the dome, I gave the GO signal to Arisa.
『Here I go, Inferno.』
A crimson conflagration flared up in the desert, swallowing us whole in an instant.
Just as Inferno came into contact with the Paladin Shield's dome, a half-transparent shield with god Karion's holy mark embellished on the center part manifested over the dome's surface.
"Master, its frontal defensive power has soared up, so I report."
Just as its appearance suggests, the shield part seems to specialize in blocking.
Arisa's inferno eventually dispersed.
『Arisa, try shooting intermediate level fire balls from three directions.』
『OK, Blast Shots.』
Powerful fire balls coming from three directions blazed at the Paladin Shield dome.
"Master, the shields won't appear, so I report."
"Seems like it'd only show up if the attack is at least at a certain destructive level huh."
Then when Arisa shot advanced level fire magic from two directions, the shields manifested on both.
"Its defensive power gets lowered with two shields, so I report."
I see, these shields are like a manifestation of the dome's defensive power density.
"It blocks melee weapons too, even the dragon fang sword."
Stabbing a dragon fang sword at it peels off the shield-shaped surface, but new shields get produced anew from inside every time.
It's similar in mechanism to the Divine Dancing Armor the Demon God used.
He might have created that magic in the image of god Karion's [Paladin Shield].
"Master, it is not possible to maintain the defensive function for an extended period of time, so I report."
Nana is correct, it can only defend itself against dragon fang weapons for 10 seconds at most.
One it passed the time limit, the Paladin Shield dome began to oscillate and eventually crumble down.
But managing to defend against the fang that [Pierces All] for 10 seconds is still quite a feat.
"Nana, is it possible to overlap this Paladin Shield?"
Looks like three of it can be overlapped at the same time.
『Arisa, do it!』
Now that we've got a grasp on its general characteristics, time for the final check.
I also prepared myself to deploy [Castle] and disposable Phalanx installed in my own golden armor anytime.
『Make sure to block this one, okay! >』
Anti-demon lord type [Mythology Down] exploded out.
The first layer of Paladin Shield blocked against [Mythology Down] only for an instant before it crumbled into pieces, the second one cracked, while the the third one was hit by the shockwave.
This [Unique Skill] appears to be a severely weakened version of god Karion's Godly Shield, that one managed to withstood against my [Mythology Down] before breaking.
Well, I don't suppose they'd lend their strongest cards.
"Master, there is something I would like to try so I report. Requesting permission."
"Any problem with usage limits of Paladin Shield?"
"Detecting no foreseeable problem for two more use, so I report."
After some more checking, we found out that she could safely use Paladin Shield for six times, afterward, one use gets restored with each full hour.
"Starting experiment so I report."
Nana activated [Castle]--.
The multi-layered barrier of Castle shined red before turning vermilion all at once.
"Experiment success. Reporting the successful combination of 『Castle』 and 『Paladin Shield』, the creation of 『Paladin Castle』 so I report."
Never would have thought you could do that.
These stuff exist everywhere in manga and light novels, but to actually make it works on it in reality must be thanks to Nana's flexible thought process. Common sense would have blocked it if it were me.
"Master, requesting Arisa to attack for evaluation purpose so I entreat. "
"Alright then. Should we try Inferno?"
"Mythology Down if you would please."
Nana said that with a look of confidence.
"Got it. 『--Arisa, please.』"
The latter half was with Tactical Talk while I gave the GO sign to Arisa at the former.
I wait for Arisa's [Mythology Down] to land while making the same preparations as before.
Roaring sounds and tremors shook the surrounding area.
However, even though the Mythology Down managed to peel off several layers of Paladin Castle, it failed to pierce through the vermilion-colored protective barrier before running out of fume.
『Amazingly awesome nodesu!』
The girls raised a shout of joy.
『Whoa that's awesome. Maybe it could even defend against the real [Mythology Down] if Nana used her Warship Wand?』
Hm, I'm not sure about that.
As the non-lesser variant breaks down multiple adjacent dimensions along, I don't think even Paladin Castle can defend against that.
At most both would counterbalance each other, I think?
"Master, should we give it a try so I inquire."
Nana's expressionless face had this excited air around her, but since it's too dangerous, I don't think we should, not until she's capable of deploying multiple Paladin Castle or escaping out it herself once the barrier is deployed.
"No, let's not. See if you can combine with the mobile [>] or the [Castle] deployed by the large airship later."
For now, this should suffice as a proving test for the Unique Skill loaned to Nana.
Even though it can't be used in a frontal battle against Demon God, it should be good enough to block the first strike at least.
"Sera's disappeared nodesu!"
Sera was wrapped in an emerald green light once she activated the Unique Skill god Tenion loaned to her, [Hermit Hide], and apparently, that was when she was gone from the other girls' view.
Sera's dot has also disappeared from my Radar and Map.
According to her Marker, she's in a [Mapless Area].
"Wonder where has she gone off to?"
"Zena, can't you find her with your wind magic?"
"I will give it a try. ■■■…"
"I'll check with Space Magic too."
"Guess I'll give it a shot too then?"
Zena-san's wind magic, Arisa's space magic, Mia's spirit magic and Hikaru's force magic got deployed but none managed to find Sera.
Princess Sistina who blurted the idea first also tried to look with earth magic, but she came away empty handed as well.
"Tama, can you tell?"
"Nyu~? Here, but not here~?"
Asked by Liza, Tama tilted her head along with her entire body, her eyebrows looked like they were about to loop.
It's like, she knows that Sera is present but not her exact location I guess?
For it to not only elude the girls, but even Tama's detection, this [Hermit Hide] is pretty high performance.
The half-transparent Sera tiptoed toward me while holding back her laughter.
She was going to kiss me, but I stopped her attempt by putting my finger on her lips.
No pranks that could invite misunderstandings while Aze-san is here if you'd please.
"Over there nodesu!"
Looks like Sera's Recognition Inhibition has elapsed.
Not certain whether it's because I toucher her or because Sera broke off her concentration.
"Hey! I'm gonna give you snacks if you're pranking!"
Calm down, Arisa.
"How were you able to see through it?"
"Apparently my constitution is such that illusions and the likes don't work on me."
I replied to Sera.
Sera looked half-transparent to me from the very beginning when she activated the Unique Skill.
But the fact that I would lose sight of her if I averted my eyes for a while is a testament to its higher performance compared to ordinary illusions.
It's more than high performance enough.
Doesn't seem like it consumes a stupid amount of mana like Mana Camouflage nor needs super tightrope walking control either.
"Any idea how many times you can use it?"
"I believe about five times a day. Once it's active, I think I can keep it up for about one bell long as long as I don't lose focus."
Sera replied to Arisa's question.
After more checking, we found out that the effect could also be extended to other people if she focused on them during activation. In that case, those who are under the same Recognition Inhibition effect could see each other.
"This is the power of god…"
Murmured Liza as she was wrapped in a green colored light with a gallant look on her face.
It's the Authority god Garleon loaned to her, [Hero Heart].
"Well then, let's give it a whirl."
Liza doesn't flinch even with my [Intimidation] skill.
"It's pretty amazing."
This time I use Intimidation loaded with bloodlust.
--Ooh, I could see a wavering on Liza's expression.
Let's try adding mind magic [Cowardice] and [Fear].
"As expected of Master."
Liza is breathing roughly while sweating profusely.
But enduring this much should be good enough.
When I turned around toward the voice, Pochi who was peeking out of curiosity had been knocked out.
I hurriedly undo Intimidation and the magic.
They say curiosity killed the cat, but as it turned out, it was the dogkin Pochi who got done in by it, not the catkin Tama.
Additionally, Liza's Unique Skill seems to also work on ally that are within a certain range.
The passed out Pochi is evidence that such ally must be within that range during activation time.
The skill is an active one, but it seems she doesn't feel any limit to usage at the time being.
It's also effective against Geass and mind control type magic, they should manage to avoid getting frozen stiff from Demon God's glare now.
"This cave is kind of, eerie."
"This here is a dungeon, you see."
I replied back to the uneasy Aze-san.
We're now at Dejima Island's Phantasmal Labyrinth to test out [Sanctuary Guard], the Unique Skill god Urion loaned to Mia, and [Saint Prey], the Unique Skill god Heraruon loaned to Zena-san.
Apparently Aze-san is afraid of the dark, how she's grabbing my arm is wonderful.
Improper conducts--turning off the light, producing ghastly sounds, flashing suspicious shadows all over to scare her, I banished them all from my mind somehow.
Also, Arisa and Mia are competing for my other free side, Pochi has climbed on my shoulders while she herself is piggybacking Tama forming a totem pole, it's a chaos.
"Zena-tan, a gobu is coming from ahead."
"Activating Saint Prey!"
Zena-san closed her eyes and prayed, then an orange-colored light streamed down her body.
A moment later, gods' divine light overflowed out of Zena-san, filling the surrounding area with dazzling lights.
"Goblin-san went away nodesu."
Tama and Pochi poked on the ground where a demi goblin was.
Looks like weak monsters will simply get evaporated away.
『Master! Dungeon monsters are running away heading toward underground. A dangerous being might have showed up above ground where Master is.』
Dungeon Core who's managing the labyrinth contacted me.
We made her panic it looks like.
I apologized to Core and got her permission to wreak some havoc here for the test sake.
Indigo lights flow on Mia's body, then the same colored lights dwell in her eyes.
"Evils in all directions."
Mia muttered that as she shook her head left and right, swaying her twintail.
Mia's [Sanctuary Guard] detects evil existence, that's a common knowledge among us.
And it seems the very existence of this labyrinth is evil.
We continue the test while moving out.
"Behind that rock."
"Crevice in the ceiling."
We went around places where Scout Plumed Snakes and Camouflage Lizards were lurking as a further test, and Mia demonstrated a detection capability not inferior to Tama and my Radar.
Rivaling even Tama, that's pretty high spec.
"Wonder if you can tell Sera-tan's Recognition Inhibition?"
"Mwu, evils only."
She can't it seems.
Arisa whispered something in Sera's ears, then Sera re-activated her [Hermit Hide] and walked toward me with smiles on her face.
Mia's wand whacked Sera's head.
"You found me out."
"So it seems like [Sanctuary Guard] will find those with immoral thoughts."
"Please don't call it immoral. My pure love is--"
"Sorry, sorry. Pure, Got it."
Arisa brushed off Sera's protest with Mia-like short curt sentences.
"Even golems are frightened."
Zena-san's [Saint Prey] appear to even works on golems that are supposed to be immune to mind attack.
Imitating Nana, she tried to ride [Saint Prey] on wind magic, but unfortunately, she didn't succeed even once.
Those really do seem to need an exceedingly flexible line of thinking.
"Zena-san, aren't you tired?"
"Yes, I am fine!"
Zena-san flexed her arms to show her liveliness.
It seems like her Unique Skill has no usage limit similar to Liza's.
We went to Selbira's labyrinth to test it out on a level 50 Area Master, and it got frightened no problem.
The skill didn't stop it from moving, but it clearly created more openings, this skill would definitely see many use.
"Is it really all right for us to be this carefree?"
Aze-san murmured anxiously in the garden of Solitary Island Palace.
I thought of using other temporary bases as a precaution to gods' backdoors, but it felt way too late to care about that considering our party has Hikaru with god Parion's fragments, Arisa with Demon God's fragments and Sera, a miko of god Tenion.
I can quickly whip out a new base if problem arise anyway.
"It's going to be all right. And there are others looking after Boruenan Forest now right?"
"That may be the case, but…"
With god Tenion's authority, the other sleeping high elves were roused out of bed, so the world tree is getting the management it needs even with Aze-san here.
Miko Rua-san is coming over several times a day to see how Aze-san is doing too.
"But it's been 10 days since then. Is there really zero reaction from both gods and Demon God?"
I affirmed Arisa's question.
I've been coming over to the capital's mansion every day so they can contact me easier, but I've got none so far.
Though confusions in the world of men have elapsed, arguments as to whether they should keep believing in the seven pillar gods or not have not died out. A few have even converted to believing Demon God.
"Let's just wait patiently."
At noon I'm keeping the girls company in their training and Unique Skill mastering, at night I worked toward ways to counter Demon God after putting them to sleep.
Reinforcing [Dragon Rending Sword (Dragon Slayer)] which didn't work on Demon God by reusing the code in Anti-god magic, and developing an imitation of Divine Dancing Armor by referencing Nana's [Paladin Shield].
I could not get any good idea on the black spear and divine sword imitation from back then, so the development on those isn't progressing.
"Master, Tifa-san is here."
Echigoya Firm's Tifaliza's expression stiffened up when she saw Aze-san sitting next to me.
Even though I've introduced her before, looks like she still hasn't gotten used to a high elf.
"I have brought platinum and all other materials you requested me to collect."
"Thank you. I'm always grateful for your quick work."
I didn't think she would get all those rare materials in just two days.
"Please don't mention it, it's my job after all."
Tifaliza had a stiff expression somehow.
I'd like to hear her out if she has any worry, but since I don't have the time presently, I'll ask Arisa to handle it.
"Satou, what are those for?"
"They're raw materials of manufacturer golems and control units."
They're to be used at the shipbuilding dock in the void sky.
"Pochi is a pro transporter nodesuyo."
Tama and Pochi carried the load into the gate that connects to the void sky.
"Still no huge combination robots yet?"
"Arisa, that's way old. Real robot is all the rage today."
"What are you talking about, super robot and combination are where the romance at!"
Arisa and Hikaru argued about some stupid stuff.
Sorry but I don't plan to build a robot. Not until I'm done with my current work at least.
Tama and Zena-san who had gone to the capital for a check came back.
Looks like they found something.
Led by the two, I head to the capital's mansion.
"Don't worry. This is not Demon God."
I signaled Tama and Zena-san to get back while looking up at an orb of light floating in front of the mansion's entrance--nymph.
It appears that they've completed the preparations for my duplicate body before Demon God comes attacking again.
『My lord, Goddess Tenion has summoned you. Hang down your head and present yourself at once.』
These nymphs are as haughty as ever.
I waved at the girls who had gathered from gates, and jumped into the gate the nymph created.
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