Re:Zero: Arc 1 – Chapter 11: A Struggle Too Late

There were drops of blood running down the glass’s sharp shards, and following them upward one would find Rom’s throat.

He had lost his arm and his throat was ripped apart which caused a large amount of foamy blood to pour out of his mouth, after which the light left his gray eyes as he collapsed to the ground.

His twitching body had already lost its vitality, and there was no doubt that it no longer held life.

Elsa elegantly bowed to his fallen body as if to pay her respects.

She placed the glass she’d used to kill him down by his still twitching body,

“I’m returning this. I no longer have a need for it, you see.”

She said cruelly as she twirled the kukri knife in her hand.

Cleaning the blood off the blade, she once again pointed it toward the other two.

Subaru who was still on the ground could not even say anything.

He was entirely focused on the brutal slaughter that had just occurred before him.

Someone he had been conversing with just a few minutes ago was now dead. And it wasn’t due to an accident or illness, it was due to another person’s malice.

“―Ah, so you’re the braver one.”

Subaru, who was still frozen, raised his head when he heard her voice filled with admiration.

His limbs would not obey him. As he lay there in that stupefied state, he saw Felt stand up before him, striking her trembling knees as if to encourage herself.

She straightened her legs and combed hair blood-soaked hair back.

“How dare you…”

Subaru couldn’t see her expression since he was behind her.

However, it was clear that her strained voice filled with hatred was not a tearful one.

“If you resist unnecessarily, you might end up getting hurt.”

“You’re going to kill me either way, you damned sadist!”

“I might not cut you properly if you move. I’m not very good with blades, you see.”

She skilfully turned the knife in her hand, and acted out a rehearsal of her cutting ability.

Felt was facing her with no weapons whatsoever, her chances of victory seemed non-existent.

He should raise his voice, his brain decided.

He should attract Elsa’s attention and buy Felt time to escape.

He at least had to give her time to call someone, or even just escape on her own.

Analyzing the difference in their ability with his minimal experience, this was the conclusion he had drawn.

Despite this, his throat produced no sound, as if it was frozen.

His will to fight did not reach his limbs, they merely continued to tremble with fear..

“… Sorry for getting you caught up in this.”

“… I, I’m”

She whispered a small apology to Subaru.

These words caused his face to jolt up toward her, and he completely forgot about his plan to shout and instead all that left his mouth were words that seemed to be begging for forgiveness.

And then, Felt left his sentiments behind forever as she dashed forward.

There was a loud sound as her body flew forward, seeming light as a feather.

The instant after she moved, it was as if a gale was blowing through the loot house.

It looked to Subaru like she had completely disappeared when she started running.

Having disappeared from his field of view, she then reappeared right next to Elsa, whose eyes were wide at this extreme speed as Felt’s slender leg sunk into her side.

Having landed her attack, Felt stepped back as if leaping, and once again drew in wind as she moved at top speed.

In that limited space she was even treating the walls as solid ground, her movements were simply amazing and even Elsa couldn’t help but be surprised.

“The divine protection of wind. Ah, how wonderful. It seems you’re loved by the world,―I’m envious.”

Elsa’s ecstatic smile suddenly changed, her eyes filled with loathing as her arm whizzed through the air.

That was all it took,

“―Ah”

―For Felt to be cut right through from her shoulder while still in the air, she then helplessly fell and tumbled across the ground.

The wound extended from her left shoulder to the right of her chest, its depth was such that even her organs were cut right through her bones.

Her body had fallen facing upward and blood spurted out of her like a fountain in accordance with her pulse, it seemed like the pain and the shock of being sliced into had already caused her to lose consciousness. Her movements had completely stopped.

The blood pouring out of her lost its vigor within a few seconds, silently signaling that her life was at an end.

His body wouldn’t move.

He wanted to go to Felt’s side and stop her bleeding.

If one said it was already far too late for that, he at least wanted to close her eyes.

But his body refused to do even this, it had basically become a doll that could only circulate blood and pain.

“The old man and the girl have both fallen, and yet you still haven’t moved. Maybe you’ve given up?”

Her voice was somewhat pitying, and she seemed bored as she looked at Subaru who was still stock still.

It would all be over if she just got a little closer and swung that knife. It was probably because she realized this that she was so casual, it even looked like she might have been stifling a yawn.

Her attitude caused an unbearable rage to surge within Subaru.

They were people he’d only just met, it had barely even been an hour.

But even so, he had conversed with them and they had opened up to each other. She had killed them like it was nothing and showed no remorse whatsoever, to Subaru this was unforgivable.

And most of all, he couldn’t forgive himself for letting them die by this wretched woman’s hand while he watched.

This belated rage was what finally caused his limbs to move.

He pressed his trembling limbs against the ground and somehow managed to get up in a rather animalistic fashion. Was his body shaking due to rage or fear? Maybe it was both?

“Ah, you’ve finally stood up. You’re late, and rather dull, but not bad.”

He faced Elsa who had her kukri knife at the ready and charged her with everything he had.

He would throw himself at her and beat her down with strength surpassing his limits.

But his charge,

“That’s no good at all.”

Was immediately stopped by Elsa’s elbow which slammed right into his nose, seemingly crushing it.

She spun her body and struck him with her elbow with minimal movement, and as he recoiled she followed it up by drawing an arc right into his body with her long legs, easily sending him flying.

Subaru crashed into a shelf of ceramics and fell to the ground as the fragments scattered.

In that instantaneous exchange, his nose and front teeth had been ruined. And the side that took Elsa’s kick was in extraordinary pain, he felt like he’d lost some ribs there.

Despite this, he slammed his fist into the ground and stood up immediately. The endorphins flowing throughout his body dulled the horrible pain which was at a level he’d never experienced before.

His breath wild in this excited state, he once more launched a suicidal attack without thinking ― And he was countered yet again.

His wild swings did not reach her, she smoothly shattered his shoulder with the back of her blade.

And then, as if his shrieks were an annoyance to her, she landed a kick directly into his jaw, forcefully shutting him up and causing his broken front teeth to fall out. She looked down at his collapsed body.

“Simply pathetic. You’re evidently a novice and your moments are unrefined. You possess neither divine protection nor skill, and you weren’t even able to think up any sort of strategy. Why even bother trying?”

“Shut up… I’ve got my stubbornness too… After you’ve gone and done all this.”

Subaru couldn’t even properly yell at her because of his broken nose.

He had lost his arm to that counter just now, everything below his left shoulder had gone limp. He couldn’t feel the pain, but the ringing in his ears was horrible. His nausea had returned, and it seemed to pour out of his mouth with his rage as he staggered around, barely standing up.

He was riddled with wounds. His chances of victory were zero, and it was exceptionally unlikely that he’d even be able to land a hit.

The sight of him standing up even though the situation was utterly hopeless caused Elsa to sigh,

“I’ll admit you’ve got outstanding spirit. If you’d drawn it out earlier, perhaps things could have ended differently for these two.”

Elsa used her knife to indicate the two she had cut down.

His eyes followed the movement of the knife’s tip to land on the corpses, and a sudden discomfort caused Subaru to frown.

For some reason, this scene felt familiar to him.

The loot house that had been turned into a sea of blood. A giant who had lost an arm and had his throat torn apart. And within that dim room, the dull gleam of a brownish blade―

A thought suddenly shot through the back of his mind―

“Let’s end this. I’ll be sending you to the angels.”

Elsa licked her red lips and disappeared into the darkness with an alluring smile.

Subaru groaned as he lost sight of the threat, it seemed like she had simply vanished into the shadows.

“W-Where…?!”

Subaru restlessly looked around, his sensitivity to every little sound or sign greatly heightened.

His pathetic behavior truly seemed like that of a weakling waiting to be hunted by a predator. From Elsa’s perspective this was probably terribly boring, it was like he was just laid out on a cutting board.

Consequently, when she appeared from the shadows her slash was exceedingly straightforward.

“Wha―?!”

Having judged that she’d target his stomach, Subaru barely managed to dodge.

He stepped back a bit, drawing in his abdomen as he did, due to which the horizontal swing merely grazed him. The slight cut caused a sharp pain to run through him which he bore by clenching his teeth.

“Rrrruuuaaahhh!!”

He then spun his whole body, landing a spinning kick right into Elsa’s face.

A satisfying blow delivered by twisting his waist, the tremendous impact on his foot confirmed that he managed to land a hit, the feeling rushed through his heart. And then,

“Aah, I really felt that one.”

The second kukri knife Elsa had drawn had just torn about 70% of the way through Subaru’s torso, causing blood and guts to spill out,

“―Ah?”

One step, two steps, he staggered around until his shoulder hit the wall, causing him to collapse as if he’d slipped. Looking down, he could see copious amounts of blood pouring out of his abdomen, and unable to handle the pressure, his internal organs had also started falling out.

He tried to place them back in with his shaky arm, but the clotting blood prevented him from doing so.

“Are you surprised? I split your stomach when we passed by one another. This happens to be my specialty.”

Elsa said as she smiled, forming small splashes in the sea of blood as she walked toward him.

Once she reached Subaru’s side, who was by this point incapable of even speaking as he shrieked, she lovingly looked upon his entrails within his darkened blood,

“Aah, your bowels truly do have such a lovely color, just as I thought.”

This woman was abnormal. She was insane.

Even the endorphins flowing through him couldn’t hide the terrible pain that was causing his vision to dim, and before he knew it seemed like he had ended up on his side.

Like this, he slowly extended his arm, frailly grasping Elsa’s foot.

“Au… Uah”

“Does it hurt? Are you suffering? Is it hard? Are you sad? Wanna die?”

With his hand still on her ankle, Elsa crouched down by him, her line of sight intersecting with his.

Her eyes looked like she was in a trance, it was as though she didn’t feel anything at all when she took a life. No, she was definitely feeling something.

The ultimate pleasure.

“But it’d be a shame to make it too easy.”

Still crouching next to him, she smiled sweetly as she swung her blade.

And that was the last thing Subaru saw.

Her slash was vivid, and it cut right across Subaru’s face. The result,

“―GGaaaaaahhh?!”

Both of his eyes had been torn apart, he had forever lost his sight.

Still collapsed on the ground, Subaru used his hands to feel his deeply cut eyes.

There was a mixture of blood and tears, and he once again vomited blood as he screamed, and he was assailed by the feeling that his insides were completely empty, as if all of his blood and organs had spilled out.

It was strange that he was even alive. It was like he had entered hell.

And he couldn’t even look at himself, he simply lay there on the verge of death not knowing when death would finally come.

“Slowly, slowly, slowly, slowly, slowly, writhe around.”

As he approached the end, he felt Elsa’s voice gently strike his eardrums, it seemed tormenting, savoring, grieving, cherishing, and loving.

His pain, suffering, rage and despair were all overwhelmed by a jet black fear.

In that world he couldn’t see, in that world where he didn’t know when the candle of his life would burn out, what dominated his now empty heart was a single-minded fear, the extreme fear of death.

―When will I die? When will I die? Am I still alive? Am I not dead? What defines life? Can it really be said that I’m alive, in this state lesser than any insect? Can it really be said that I’m alive, now that I’m being toyed with in the palm of life and death?

―What are life and death? Why am I afraid of dying? Do I need to be alive? No?

I’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscaredI’mscared

His instincts rejected the inevitable death that was ceaselessly approaching.

It ended up filling Subaru’s mind, he was already at the end and now his blank field of view was dyed white,

―Ah, I’m dead.

With this, Natsuki Subaru’s life reached its disappointing conclusion.

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