Chapter 452: Actually, it’s not that much of a bother…
Translator: imperfectluck Editor: Kurisu
Seiji didn't know what to say to this and could only reveal a helpless expression.
"Er, sorry, since it's not your fault." Natsuya realized that she hadn't expressed herself properly upon seeing his expression, and hurriedly changed what she just said. "It's… actually a good thing."
"A good thing?"
"Yes, as that sensation means I'm increasing in power… that is to say, that's actually the way that your Mana manifests its power to increase the strength of your Spirit-branded Retainers," Natsuya explained.
It had the effect of increasing her power? Wasn't this exactly like "how girls restored magic powers" in certain anime!? Seiji's cheeks twitched upon hearing this.
"Although that feeling is… rather awkward, it's not much in exchange for the power increase I received," Natsuya said as her face flushed red again and she averted her gaze out of embarrassment.
"I see… sorry for having bothered you with it," Seiji smiled wryly.
"Actually, it's not that much of a bother…"
"N-nothing! At any rate, one just has to bear with that feeling. You don't have to mind." Natsuya coughed to clear her awkwardness. "Anyways, how are you currently feeling? Do you think you can continue?"
"It doesn't seem to affect me in any way, so I think I should be able to."
"Then, shall we continue having you contract with Hitaka right now? Or would you like to rest first?"
"No need to rest. Let's continue right away."
And so, the red-haired girl walked to the center of the Yin-Yang diagram.
Seiji and Hitaka followed the same process from earlier and successfully completed the contracting process.
After it finished, Seiji conscientiously turned around and covered his ears in order to avoid seeing the red-haired girl's reaction.
However, rather unexpectedly, Hitaka indicated that she didn't feel anything unusual at all.
Was it different for everyone? Natsuya tilted her head slightly in contemplation.
After confirming that nothing seemed to be happening for Hitaka, she told Seiji that he didn't need to avert his gaze anymore.
"It would seem that your Mana doesn't have that effect on everyone after all."
"Yeah… should I be happy about this?" Hitaka asked this question.
That was a rather subtle question.
"It's good that you didn't have that strange sensation. But, it seems that you weren't strengthened either, which isn't a good thing," Natsuya told her.
"My apologies, Milady…"
"I'm not blaming you, Hitaka."
No matter what, the contract was completed. Everyone left the spellcasting room.
After a few steps in the hallway, Hitaka suddenly felt a dense and numb warm sensation well up within her body, causing her to stop in her steps.
"Ahh~" She couldn't help but begin moaning as she was assaulted with a sudden feeling of ecstasy.
It came after all!
Seiji's eye twitched when he heard her moaning and reflexively turned to look at her. As expected, the red-haired girl's face was completely red and she was panting with a dazed look in her eyes…
This was such a huge difference from her typical icy self that just this one glance left Seiji with an incredibly deep impression.
"Milady, I feel it… Ahhh~~" Her body began trembling.
Natsuya went up to and hugged Hitaka.
Seiji speedily retracted his gaze and pretended to see nothing as he covered his ears.
It would seem that his Mana wasn't ineffective for Hitaka after all, it was just a bit late… was this a type of delayed effect?
If Seiji was forced to describe his current feelings, the only word that barely managed to describe them would be "awkward."
Akatsuki Mitarai was currently in an excellent mood.
He just received a report that the head of the Yoruhana Family, Natsuya's father, was intending on agreeing to his marriage proposal to Natsuya.
Reaching this step so early was a surprise even to Akatsuki. In his original plan, it would have taken up to April of this year for him to reach this step.
As for why he'd managed to reach this step unexpectedly in January, it was mainly due to the major changes in the mystical society caused by the events happening after New Year's… currently, the Yoruhana Family and the Mitarai Family were both searching for new allies, and allying their families to each other through a marriage seemed attractive to both of them.
Akatsuki had taken advantage of the overall situation in order to achieve his goal, with Natsuya unable to resist him. The only possible way for her to struggle would be to challenge him to a Yin-Yang Master duel.
Akatsuki was absolutely confident that he would be able to defeat her in a duel. He knew that she also knew the difference in power between them, so she wouldn't take this step so easily unless she had truly exhausted all other methods at her disposal.
Although it amused Akatsuki to watch his prey gradually sink into his trap and fall into despair, he didn't want to take too long with finalizing the marriage. After all, if some new situations occurred, things could swiftly change in unexpected directions, which Akatsuki didn't want.
So, what he intended to do next was to put more pressure on Natsuya and force her into challenging him to a duel. And before that, he intended to eliminate the only uncertain factor—Seiji Haruta!
When he saw the exiled Seiji Haruta again after two weeks' time, Akatsuki had inwardly been quite astonished.
That was because Seiji's Spiritual Power had increased significantly in the two weeks that Akatsuki hadn't seen him. In fact, it appeared that Seiji's Spiritual Power had more than doubled! His Mana was far denser as well, which meant that Seiji had made great progress with magical spells as well.
Although Akatsuki felt that Seiji still wasn't at a level that was threatening to him yet, Akatsuki definitely raised his guard.
Seiji Haruta was growing stronger at an astonishing rate!
Akatsuki didn't want to admit it, but it was indisputable. He also secretly patted himself on the back for wisely deciding to only talk to Seiji rather than trying to secretly kill him off.
Seiji Haruta had formerly been infamous for being a piece of trash scumbag. However, not only had he significantly changed, he was even increasing in power at such a quick rate. Only an idiot would believe that there was no secret hidden behind all this.
Akatsuki definitely didn't consider himself an idiot.
He indeed looked down on the exiled piece of trash, and still felt that Seiji was overconfident in challenging him to a duel. However, Akatsuki wasn't foolish to the point of believing that Seiji was nothing.
At the very minimum, Seiji Haruta had his family background backing him up, and there might even be an astonishing secret behind him. While Akatsuki didn't consider Seiji a threat yet, Seiji was indeed the biggest and most obvious uncertain factor for his plans.
He absolutely had to get Seiji out of the way!
Using a duel to deal with him was an excellent option. However, Seiji actually requested for more time regarding the official duel because of failing to obtain Natsuya's agreement for being his official witness.
After some consideration, Akatsuki agreed to give Seiji more time. That was because he felt that Seiji probably wouldn't give up on the idea of dueling him, and it was even possible that Seiji would drag Natsuya into the duel.
Although Akatsuki felt that this possibility was a low one, with Seiji's foolishness and Natsuya's naivety, he felt that it was still a likely outcome. If this really happened, then he wouldn't even need to make an effort of thinking about how to pressure Natsuya into a duel.
And so, Akatsuki happily waited for the official duel challenge.
Since he was an excellent mood, it was only natural that he would want to partake in his favorite hobbies. He thus decided to go to his personal workshop.
His workshop was well lit with sunshine shining in through many windows. The sunlight illuminated rows upon rows of pale white figures.
The pale white figures were puppets, a large number of puppets.
There were humanoid puppets, beast-shaped puppets, demon puppets, combination puppets, and strangely-shaped puppets…
Although this place was brightly lit by sunlight, any normal person would only feel a chill by being here.
Especially all the more so if people were able to see the "parts" stored here that obviously came from humans.
Numerous boys and girls and even children's heads, arms, legs, and body parts… were soaked in various jars of fluid, silently sitting on the floor of Akatsuki's workshop. Each jar had a detailed label that included how Akatsuki "obtained" the jar's contents.
Any sane person that witnessed this sight would come to the same conclusion...
Akatsuki who "collected" all these things was completely and utterly insane!!!
Akatsuki Mitarai had long since known this.
He had noticed that he was no ordinary person starting from when he was still young. 5 Best Chinese Romance Books of 2018 So Far