Home > Unreal > Rebuild World > Chapter 221: Negotiation For The Prerequisite For Cooperatio

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Yumina somehow managed to stay awake. But that was all that she could do. She had no method to better her situation. Her augmented suit was turned off and her body was close to its limit. Since there was literally nothing that she could do, she was at Tiols mercy.

But even so, in the unlikely case that her chance came, she kept her eyes on Tiol. She tried to talk to him or provoke him, trying to get any information from his reaction. But Tiol completely ignored her. The only thing that Yumina could do in this situation was to make guesses, but even the result from that was no good.

[…Just who is he Wait, is he a person in the first place He might be that humanoid monster from back then. But in that case, then why is he kidnapping me and making our team fight that guy Im basically just a bait, he doesnt even use me as a hostage to threaten Katsuya, I just dont understand him at all…]

As a Hunter, Yumina had fully resolved herself to getting killed in action, but the prospect of death still scared her just like any other normal human being. But this time, she was more confused than scared.

That was when Akira appeared. When Akira left Katsuyas team because he had no wish to fight them, Tiol made sure to keep his distance relatively close so that Akira would be able to easily reach him. Moreover, he kept his speed low to make sure that he would not kill Yumina by mistake. Because of that, Akira was easily able to reach him after he got away from Katsuyas team.

Akira quickly aimed his rifle at Tiol, and again, Tiol turned around to cover Yumina. Akira who noticed that immediately shifted his aim to slow Tiol down instead of killing him which immediately closed the distance between them. Once Tiol was in range, Akira pulled out his blade and swung the glowing blade in one fluid motion.

Tiol himself had no wish to get killed just to protect Yumina. So he jumped away to evade the incoming blade. But in the end, he failed to notice what Akira was actually aiming for.

The blade that reached Tiol released a blinding flash of light from the forcefield armour energy conversion, and with that, Tiol lost one of his arms. Akira did not cut down the arm that was turned into a cannon, he cut the arm that was carrying Yumina. Akiras aim from the start was to take Yumina away from Tiol.

Of course, Akira did not stop there. Tiol made another long jump in order to evade the second slash and this time, he completely escaped the blades reach. However, the flowing blade suddenly released a sharp wave of light that slashed open Tiols flesh. Although it was far from enough to fully slice through his body, it was enough to leave an open wound.

While Tiol was jumping away, he once again aimed his cannon at Akira. The released warhead went straight towards Akira, but Akira released a slash that sliced apart the warhead. The moment the slash hit the warhead, it exploded and enveloped the area with smoke.

When the smoke had subsided, Tiol was already nowhere to be found. Akira relaxed his body and lightly sighed.

[He got away. Or did he go look for another bait Either way, it seems that hes no longer around.]

Akiras gaze then shifted to the floor where Yumina was lying down there as if she was dead.

[…And this girl… Is still alive, hmm Shes still conscious as well.]

Akira hesitated for a bit, but he eventually decided to pick Yumina up with one arm and woke her up. After that, Akira then forced medicines into Yuminas mouth. Yumina frowned the moment she felt something known was getting forced into her mouth.

“Its medicine. Just shut up and swallow it, that is if you dont want me to force it down your throat.”

Even Yumina did not expect that at all. But it did not seem that Akira was lying at all, but even if he did, she had no means to fight back. After she swallowed it, she could feel that the medicine was immediately taking effect, she had recovered enough to stand up on her own. She still had a confused look plastered on her face as she sent a dubious look at Akira.

“…What are you trying to do here Why did you save me”

“Negotiation.”

“Negotiation”

That answer only confused Yumina even more. Akira then continued with a serious expression.

“First of all, Ill let you know this. I bet youre thinking that Im working with that thing that kidnapped you, but thats a misunderstanding. That guy is trying to make us fight each other. Secondly, I have no wish to fight any of you. You guys were the ones who came at me first so I was just trying to protect myself. If you guys had left me alone, I wont have attacked any of you. As a matter of fact, I dont mind if we form a temporary alliance.”

“Do you really think that I would beli-”

“Shut up!”

Akira prodded the muzzle of his rifle at Yumina. The muzzle of his rifle was telling Yumina that he would just kill her if she kept running her mouth. Yuminas face turned stern as she immediately closed her mouth.

After a short silence, Akira had confirmed Yuminas cooperation for the time being and eventually lowered his rifle before continuing.

“Well, in the first place, I dont believe for a second that you trust me. Naturally, not to the point that you would work with me. But thats also true for me to all of you. Thats why I want to negotiate about what we can compromise on. I want us to stop fighting and I want to keep our distance. I want you to go back and tell that to your leader. Though, I bet that youll ask for proof or whatnot. In that case, tell them these two things. First, the fact that you are able to return back alive. Ive even cut that guy to save you, you know That should serve enough as proof that I have no wish to fight against your team. Also, one more thing, Ill kill that guy and Ill do it alone. If your leader agrees, Ill go fight that guy along the roof. You and your team should either stay on the lower floor of the building or just exit the building altogether. If they have come here in order to save you, then I have already helped them accomplish their goal. But if saving you is their secondary objective and their main goal is to kill me, then I have no other choice, I dont want to die after all.”

Akiras next sentence was filled with killing intent.

“Ill kill every single one of you.”

Even Yumina could not help but shudder in front of such an intense killing intent. But she could not give a straight answer due to her position as well as her feelings.

“…Even if I accept your offer, do you think that the others would accept it too”

“They really want to save you. Even going so far as to lose some of their people. So I expect that your voice holds some weight to it. Of course, that is if they only came here to save you.”

“…And if I refuse”

“My deal with you extends until the part where you try to convince them. As to whether they would accept a truce or not, its another thing. A separate deal between me and all of you. So, if you refuse to convince them, I will just kill you here. Returning you back alive to them would only mean giving them more fighting power after all. And if your group refuses the truce, just like I said before, Ill kill every single one of you. If the team cant reach an agreement on a conclusion, then tell those who dont want to die, to retreat.”

Akira once again raised his rifle and aimed it at Yumina.

“So, whats your answer Sorry but I dont have time to waste. If youre not sure, the more time you take to decide, the more Ill question whether youll properly do your part of the deal. I wont even give you a count down or anything.”

Akira stared at Yumina with his rifle still pointing at her. Akiras eyes were obviously indicating that if Yumina only said yes to save herself, he would kill her here and now.

Yumina finally made her decision.

“…Okay.”

Akira still stared at Yumina, he still had not lowered his rifle. Although he believed that she was not lying, he still had not lowered his rifle. Akira then signalled into the hallway with his chin.

“It would be a pain in the neck if you get kidnapped again. Ill at least escort you for a bit, so go ahead and walk in front of me. The moment you look back, Ill take it as you changing your mind and Ill immediately shoot you down.”

Yumina raised both of her hands and started walking. Akira followed behind her. After confirming that Yumina was no longer able to see him at all, Akira finally lowered his rifle and heaved a big sigh.

[Now then, I wonder how this will turn out. If Alpha was here, she would have been able to tell if this girl was telling the truth or not. I alone cant tell at all, after all.]

Naturally, it was only given that he did not believe that girl. To be more precise, he did not believe that Yumina believed him. That line of thought only caused Akira to be suspicious of Yumina and that suspicion only grew with time. As such, his thoughts leaned more and more toward something ominous.

But even so, his line of thinking had actually gotten better ever since he started working as a Hunter. The fact that Akira even thought of making a deal with Yumina was proof of that.

[It would be best if they just pretended to be listening and accepted the deal, then wait for me to kill Tiol or the other way around before going to kill whoever left after the fight. But I wonder just how far things will go as I hope it will.]

Before Akira placed his bet in his rather optimistic guess, he knitted his eyebrows as he focused more on the most realistic possibility.

Tiol was wandering inside the building when he suddenly thought.

“Uhh, what am I doing again…”

Although he tried his best to remember the plan that he had while mumbling like a delirious person, no precise idea came up in his mind. He just kept on wandering inside the building without any precise destination.

In the middle of that, he did not encounter Katsuyas team, but he did encounter the dead bodies of Katsuyas team. The corpses of the dead girls that Akira had killed just a moment ago were scattered on the ground together with their rifles and their other equipment.

Tiol stared at that scene and tilted his head.

“Renewing weapons… No But I guess Ill need them, huh…”

He picked a rifle and pulled the trigger, but for some reason the trigger was frozen in place. It was the security feature where only those who had the authority to use the rifle could use it. If someone tried to forcefully pull down the trigger using the might of an augmented suit, it would only break the trigger.

“Useless… What should I do…”

After a short pause, Tiol suddenly raised his eyebrows as if he just realized something that he should have realized from the start.

“Ah, right. I can just eat them.”

Tiol threw away the rifle. His arm then cracked open, showing a huge mouth with a distorted shape. He used that arm to start consuming the dead corpses scattered on the ground. Although he had a lot of aversion to eating machines when he was turned into a monster, he did not have much of an issue with corpses.

Tiols current body has indeed been modified by Yatsubayashi. It has increased fighting ability, and it was a remote body that was controlled from afar. Because of that, when Tiols personality was installed, it no longer had any open memory left.

When Tiol stepped too close to the systems side. The system went to override a part of his personality, causing him to lose a large chunk of his consciousness. In that state of a severely weakened sense of self, his consciousness was entirely focused on keeping his mind straight. Thus, Tiol could not even remember his own name at all.

Tiol continued his meal. As the number of corpses in the ground was approaching zero, more and more arms grew out from the shoulder with the severed arm. The growing arms were extremely long and obviously not of a humans. Each arm had multiple elbows. These arms then grabbed the rifles on the ground. Confirming that the holder was its masters hands, the rifles unlocked their safety lock.

When Tiol had finished his meal, there was no longer any corpse left on the ground, only a pool of thick blood. Only functional rifles were picked up by Tiols new arms, those that were already broken were eaten together with the augmented suits, used as materials for Tiols weapons.

“Not enough, huh”

Tiol immediately started running again since he had had a new goal, after all, there were still dead corpses of the girls that Akira had killed.

—*—*—*—

Katsuya carefully proceeded into the building with his team as they immediately noticed Yuminas signal slowly approaching them. Although they were surprised, they still immediately went toward where the signal came from, eventually, they reached a long hallway and saw Yumina slowly walking toward them from the other end of the hallway.

“Yumina!”

Katsuya smiled and inadvertently raised his voice. But the moment he noticed Akira was behind Yumina with his rifle ready, Katsuyas expression immediately turned stern.

Katsuya quickly aimed his rifle at Akira who was behind Yumina and Akira did the same as well. But as expected, no one released a shot. After Yumina got close enough to Katsuya, Akira quickly retreated and vanished into the darkness, so Katsuya went straight running to Yumina.

“Yuimina! Are you okay!”

Judging from Katsuyas reaction there, Yumina thought that it was safe to look back and turn around. Akira was nowhere to be seen, but she somehow felt that Akira was still somewhere as she knitted her brows.

“Im still alive, but Im not fully okay either. Im sorry but I dont think I can help in a fight anymore”

“Dont worry, its fine as long as youre okay”

Airi still had her focus towards where Akira came from as she opened her mouth.

“Katsuya, we should retreat. Its reckless to continue with Yumina in this state.”

“Y-youre right. Lets go back, Yumina, do you need a shoulder”

“Im fine, I can walk on my own.”

“Alright, Ill guard the rear. Airi, you take the front. Everyone, lets carefully head back.”

Everyone started moving, spurred by Katsuyas order. Yumina once again turned around with a conflicted expression before sighing and went to follow the rest of the team. The fatigue and the worry of how to bring up her deal with Akira to the team caused her to make a pained expression.

Katsuya noticed that and sympathized with her, but at the same time, he also smiled in relief.

[As expected, shes not in a good shape at all. But shes safe and Im really glad.]

After that, Katsuyas team returned to a large hall on the first floor where they barricaded themselves. Those who were still uninjured were assigned to stand watch and ensure the safety of the area while the injured were recovering. They unloaded their vehicles and prepared themselves for combat.

While the rest of the team were doing that, Katsuya as the team leader, Yumina and Airi as the vice-captains, discussed the next plan of action. After hearing Akiras offer from Yumina, Katsuya frowned and asked.

“…Are you telling me to trust him”

“At least, I dont think that he was lying. He did save me and did not use me as a hostage after all.”

“Even if you say so… He already killed so many of our team, you know.”

“Thats true, but still…”

Yumina could not tell Katsuya to believe Akira. But Katsuya also could not say that it was an empty offer. Both of them had mixed feelings regarding the matter, they could not force the matter to any direction. It did not seem that they would be able to make a decision anytime soon.

As for Airi, she had nothing to complain about, no matter what might happen as long as Katsuya made the decision. Her only thought was that she would simply follow Katsuyas order. But even so, she thought that it was a bad idea to waste time like this, so she interjected.

“Either way, for now, letting both of them battle it out is beneficial to us. Its better to use the time to watch how the situation will evolve while recovering the team members. I want to bring them back even if theyre already dead. Moreover, we might still be able to save some of them and the situation might change while were doing so, theres no need to make a decision right away.”

Some of Katsuyas team members were already placed under emergency life support system. Some, but not all, due to the restraint on their budget, priority and what not. 

Many were so badly wounded that they would have died if they were common people.

Although they were not cyborgs, who could live with only their heads like Nelia, their lives were still somehow maintained. 

With Airis reminder that there might still be members who were still alive and savable, Katsuya could not refuse her advice.

“Youre right, okay then, Ill take some people up with me. Airi and Yumina, both of you stay here.“

But Yumina stopped Katsuya.

“No, you stay here. Airi, Im sorry but you should go instead, I wont force you if you dont want to. And please return back immediately if things get dangerous. So, please.”

“Okay, Yumina and Katsuya should stay here then.”

“Im counting on you.”

Katsuya was rather shocked as he was watching that exchange between Airi and Yumina which was so casual as if it was completely normal.

“Eh I cant go too”

“No. If you go, I bet you will get ahead of yourself like always, right So no, you absolutely cant go.”

“Yeah. You stay and take command from here.”

“No no no, itll be fine. Both of you really dont trust me, do you”

“Absolutely!”

“Thats correct!”

“Ah, I see.”

Katsuya was pushed back by Yumina and Airis pressure. He was completely overwhelmed as he nodded obediently at them.

Airi took some of the team members to search the inside of the building. Carrying back the injured team members that were left behind while retrieving those who were already killed.

Some of them might look dead when they were still savable, some might only look unconscious when actually already dead. There was also the problem of whether the emergency life support system could properly sustain their life. With so many uncertainties in place, Airi and her team mostly placed the bodies that they found in body bags. After that, they took the bags back before going out again.

In the middle of that, Airi found something strange. Although there was a pool of blood on the floor, the source of that blood was nowhere to be found.

[Judging from the amount of blood, this should be about four peoples worth. But there are no bodies around. Its highly unlikely that the bodies moved somewhere on their own. Is the cleaning drone of this building still active, and it has cleaned away their bodies Or is it that there is a flesh-eating monster inside the building Although I dont know what happened, I know for sure that something has happened here…]

Airi frowned and said to the rest of the team.

“Well be heading back. Stay alert.”

Although the order ultimately lacked any extra explanation, the rest of the team understood the meaning behind her words thanks to the local network. They had the same thought, that they had to inform Katsuya and the others. That there might be other enemies inside the building besides Akira and Tiol, and that enemies might be lurking somewhere nearby even now. None of them doubted that possibility as they proceeded with caution with the assumption that the enemy was nearby.

Airis team carefully retreated just like that and returned downstairs toward where the rest of the team was.

While in another location inside the building, Tiol was aiming at Airi and her team while they were in the midst of their work. As the multiple rifles on the end of his multiple arms were aimed at them, Tiol finally pulled the trigger.

But surprisingly enough, the trigger did not budge. The aiming devices recognized Airi and her team as friendly entities, thus the trigger was locked as a part of the anti-friendly-fire safety function.

“The trigger wont move… Why…”

Tiol tilted his head and lowered his rifles, thus the trigger locks were immediately disengaged.

“I cant use these, huh… Then how about from over there…”

Tiol processed his current situation. Attacking Airis team to get extra weapons. But his current rifles could not be used on them. So he changed his plan as he had no other target nearby other than Akira.

After Tiols brain reached that conclusion, he hesitated to make his decision. After all, it was not what he wanted. If he allowed the system to decide his course of action, he would attack Akira in order to get more weapons. However, his original goal was to kill Akira. Not to get more weapons. The course of action dictated by the system did not have the goal to kill Akira. As long as Akira no longer had his weapons, he might be left alone. How could Tiol possibly accept such an outcome

“…Thats right, I have to kill that guy.”

Tio, who has been rather emotionless up until now, finally showed some emotions and it only grew stronger. His consciousness that had been leaning toward the system regained its sense of self and managed to wrestle control over his own mind from the system.

“If only I kill that guy!!!”

Now that Tiol had regained his sense of self, he quickly acted following his pure emotions. At the moment, his emotions were the only thing that was controlling his action. Without even realizing that he had lost a huge chunk of his individualism since the system had overwritten them, Tiol went straight towards Akira.

Tiol believed that everything would be alright as long as he could kill Akira. He believed that and devoted himself to turning that into reality despite the fact that he no longer remembered what he was ultimately pursuing by killing Akira.

—*—*—*—

While in a room close to the roof of the building, Akira let out a sigh. After reloading new magazines and energy packs into his equipment, the rucksack that Akira had been using to carry his supply reserve has been finally emptied. Seeing the now empty rucksack, Akira just smiled bitterly and threw it away.

According to the deal with Yumina, Akira would kill Tiol. But he had no wish to look for Tiol. So he just waited there while taking a rest in a room.

[It would have been great if they kill each other, but as I thought, thats highly unlikely, huh.]

Akira had a bad feeling that even after he distanced himself from Katsuyas team to avoid fighting them, Tiol would still come to him instead of Katsuyas team. That was why he did not place any hope in that possibility.

The reason why Akira told Yumina that he would be the one to go to kill Tiol was simply to avoid having to fight Katsuyas team while he was engaging with Tiol. Regardless of whether he was able to make a deal with Katsuyas team or not, he had decided to kill Tiol right from the start.

Akira already understood that Tiol did not come to this building simply by pure coincidence, Tiol came to that building knowing for certain that Akira was there and he lured Katsuyas team here. So unless Akira killed Tiol, Tiol would keep doing the same thing again and again. Thus, Akira concluded that it would have been dangerous if he tried to escape the building in this kind of situation.

Akiras plan was to kill Tiol and then Katsuyas team after that. And if it was possible, he wanted to only kill Tiol this time and push back on killing Katsuyas team to another day. Although he hoped so, he knew that would not happen.

[They just come at me at the same time no matter what for some reason. I really hope they would come at me at different times.]

Normally, Alpha retrieved information from the information-gathering device via Akira. So although Akira had lost Alphas support, information was still sent to him. He processed that unprocessed data, which was closer to a meaningless information noise, using his intuition, which had regained its original sharpness. In short, he was detecting hostile force only by relying on his intuition.

And that intuition was working perfectly fine. Akira looked downward, to where his opponent was.

“Hes finally here…”

According to Akiras intuition, it was not a group of people. So it might be just Tiol alone. Akira frowned and made a rather conflicted expression, but he immediately raised his eyebrows and leapt away.

A moment later, a huge hole was blown open under the floor where Akira was standing just a moment ago and Tiol jumped out from that hole. He had opened a huge hole from the lower floor using his large cannon.

[Why the heck do you have to come from there! Cant you at least use the stairs for Gods sake!]

Akira, who had opened up a large distance between himself and Tiol, quickly turned around and shot out a few homing grenades toward Tiols direction using the SSB rifle. Seeing the grenades flying toward him, Tiol used the multiple rifles that he had with his multiple arms to shoot them down, along with Akira.

Although Tiol was able to shoot down the grenades, Akira was too quick. The grenades were already too close to him. When the grenades exploded in an enclosed space, the shock wave from the explosions had nowhere to escape but to funnel outward, thus releasing a raging storm which rampaged on, as if trying to blow the whole room apart.

Although Akira had already evacuated from the room, he still could not escape the shock wave that leaked through the open door. He was blown by the wind which smacked his back straight into the wall.

The wall was bent outwards and cracks ran across it from the force of the collision, but Akira did not allow his blood filled vomit to spill out and just swallowed it back into his system. After all, that blood still contained the nanomachines from the medicines that he had consumed beforehand, which he could not afford to just vomit out in this situation.

The shock wave alone was that strong. So Tiol who took that at point-blank range should not be able to get out unscathed. As Akira hoped that would finish Tiol off, he fixed his gaze toward the direction of the hallway through the smoke and the dust.

[Did I do it]

Right at the next moment, the answer showed itself. Akira quickly jumped sideways, evading the hail of bullets and warheads that destroyed the wall which was behind him a moment ago.

“The heck is his vitality! Is he really as strong as a powered suit! Give me a break already!”

Akira inadvertently grimaced and spit out complaints as he took cover in the hallways intersection.

Of course, as expected, Tiol did not get away from that explosion unscathed. As a matter of fact, that did deal quite a lot of damage to him. His face was covered with blood and multiple arms were torn off. He had also lost one of his legs. His inner organ was in a mess from facing that explosion at such a close range.

But even so, his will to kill Akira did not waver at all. Tiol quickly used the arms that were still functioning to shoot down Akira. Although he ended up losing those arms as well from the kickback, he just ignored it and kept on shooting.

As Akira jumped out of his line of fire, the shooting ceased. Tiol then used the new uninjured arm that just grew out from his shoulder to pick up his arms that were torn off. He started to consume them, using the mouth on both his head and his arm. More arms grew out from his shoulder. Strange sounds came from inside his body as if gears were forced into places, it was the sound of his inner organ fixing itself. And a leg that looked more like a rifle replaced the one he had lost.

When he had finished fixing his injuries, Tiol immediately went to chase after  Akira again.

Akira kept on running while always positioning himself strategically, maintaining an advantage against Tiol. He used corners in the hallway as a cover and quickly moved to the next point the moment he felt that his position was compromised.

While on the other hand, in contrast to that, Tiol was charging recklessly toward Akira. He ignored the bullets that were coming at him as if to say that they were nothing against his limitless restorative capability. He then released a storm of bullets and warheads that could even destroy the corner that Akira was using as a cover.

The fierce exchange between Akira and Tiol blew walls into smithereens, riddling them with holes, destroying the walls that separated rooms and the hallway. In the midst of battle, Akira, who was overwhelmed by Tiols firepower, had a grim look on his face and noticed something strange.

[That guy is fighting rather crudely this time. I dont know what exactly happened but he has multiple arms now, is that the reason why Is he too preoccupied with controlling all the arms that he cant properly strategize]

Tiols movement right now was like a completely different person when Akira compared him to the person that he fought against on top of his APC with Katsuya. That courage to charge straight at the bullet barrage and that vitality to take that barrage face on were both splendid, but as a strategy, it was the worst kind of strategy.

This was the price that Tiol had paid from forcibly taking over the systems control. As the system could not coexist with the sense of self as Tiol, the system could not properly give support to him.

Akira realized that he could win by continuing to open fire at Tiol while maintaining his distance. However, that strategy would require him to have sufficient ammo.

[If I use everything here, will that be enough to kill him]

Akira thought so for a split second but he immediately shot that idea down since there was another thing that he had to worry about later as he knitted his brows.

[No, I cant do that. Even if its enough to kill him, I still have to fight those guys who will come after him. If I use all my ammo here, I would have to fight them without using my rifles. Or more like, in the first place, theres no guarantee that I can kill him even if I use all of my remaining ammo.]

At the moment, Akira was being pushed back by Tiol. He needed to find a way to turn the table around. So he banished that thought from his mind and focused on a way to turn the situation around.

An idea quickly popped up in his mind, but that idea only made Akira frown even more.

“…I guess I have no other choice but to do it, huh…”

Akira finally made his resolve.-

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