Line.4 The Revenge Match Begins!
The day of the match—.
Our [Sekiryuutei of Blazing Truth] team arrived at the Tournament venue which was located in the Fallen Angels’ Underworld territory, [Armaros Colosseum]. The round stadium was named after a certain Cadre — the Cadre of the Grigori who was a master of anti-magic. Enormous statues of Armaros stood on both sides of the main entrance, and it felt as though they could suddenly cry ‘Gahahahahaha! Gri — gori —’ at any moment.
We had already lined up inside the arena, and the game was about to begin. All members of the [Sekiryuutei of Blazing Truth] team and the [Sona Sitri] team had already assembled in the centre of the stadium ring. Both teams stood in a line facing each other, waiting for that moment to arrive—. The Fallen Angel responsible for the live broadcast shouted into their microphone,
<<Welcome, everyone! A battle of the [Azazel Cup] Tournament is about to begin today! Today’s matchup is a battle between the [Sekiryuutei of Blazing Truth] team which everyone has had their eyes on, and the [Sona Sitri] team which belongs to Maou Leviathan’s younger sister, and one of the [Rookies Four]! Now, it’s time for us to decide on the rules for this game!>>
A variety of rulesets were spun around on the gigantic stadium screen like a high-speed roulette wheel. Shortly afterward, the ruleset was determined. What appeared on the screen was — [One Day Long War]! In response, not only our team, but also the Sitri team frowned. It was my first time playing under these rules…but it was actually this one! The announcer bellowed,
<<The decided ruleset is [One Day Long War]! Unbelievable, absolutely unbelievable! This is big! As the name suggests, this game type is a drawn-out battle that takes an entire day!>>
Indeed, this ruleset was the exact opposite of the [Lightning Fast] ruleset that had been used in the previous match between Sairaorg-san and Cao Cao! It was long and drawn-out — the rules enforced a full-day time limit during which we would traverse a vast area and take down our opponents. Due to the size of the prepared field, the ability to search and locate an opponent became important, and it was a test of each player’s stamina and endurance. …However, in professional Rating Games, there were also rulesets which involved multi-day battles…so in a multitude of ways, Rating Games were all about stamina and patience.
<<Ahem — to all audience members and those watching from their televisions, due to the adoption of this rule, a long time is—.>>
While the announcer explained the rules to the audience, I locked eyes with Sona-senpai who stood before me. …Since we were both ranked as [King], Sona-senpai stood directly in front of me. Sona-senpai candidly said to me,
“A year ago, I never would have imagined that the Ise-kun whom Rias introduced me to would now be a [King], standing before me with his own team — congratulations on coming this far.”
…Her generous welcome to me as a High-Class Devil made me feel so overjoyed that tears nearly overflowed from my eyes…but I held them in. Sona-senpai’s expression changed into one filled with competitive spirit as she declared to me,
“Since you’re standing here before me, I have to defeat you in order to achieve our goals.”
Her words were a calm and simple declaration of war. Facing her, I countered with
“—We’ll be the ones to win.”
I also turned to Saji, and we both stared deeply into each other’s eyes.
“Saji, let’s finish our fight from a year ago.”
“Yeah, that’s exactly what I want, Hyoudou.”
After confirming each other’s intent, and while both teams were high on morale, the announcer declared,
<<Very well, it’s time to teleport to the field! After teleportation, both teams will have access to the field’s terrain, so please use that map to become familiar with the topography. Now—.>>
Our bodies were enveloped in a shroud of light for the teleportation.
<<Begin the teleportation!>>
Amidst the gradually intensifying teleportation light, I looked over at Ravel. Ravel had a faint smile — because the chosen ruleset was something that she had ‘sought’. I recalled the battle plan that we had previously deliberated with Ravel. At the time, Ravel had presented the Sitri team’s battle record for us to view.
[This is the Sitri team’s battle record…have you all noticed anything?]
After reading through the record, Rossweisse-san immediately seemed to notice something, and she expressed her view.
[I see, so when pit against teams possessing high offensive firepower, their win rate is not as good.]
I see, so they’re more likely to lose against teams with high offensive power.
[Yes, that is a major weakness of the Sitri team. In fact, they do not perform well when faced with teams that possess high offensive power and a solid strategy. After all, the level of power that they’re capable of dealing with has limits.]
After listening to Ravel say that, Irina revealed an expression of surprise.
[Eh? So you’re saying that they’re unlikely to defeat a team like us that relies on power? I thought that their team specialised in counterattacks and various other techniques to deal with opponents that rely on power…isn’t that why Rias-san and the others struggled last time?]
Ravel shook her head in response to Irina’s line of thought.
[That game was only a challenging struggle because the destruction of the field would result in a point penalty. Naturally, our opponents will also prepare various tactics to subvert our power…but only up to a certain extent. On our side, we have the fierce offensive power of Ise-sama and Bina-sama. A direct assault would blow them away.]
Ravel exposed a fearless smile as she said,
[Naturally, I also have to think about how to deal with any rules which may limit damage to the field, but if there are no restrictions in that regard — I’ll plan for total destruction.]
At the time, she exuded a somewhat creepy aura. When we lost to Dulio’s team…no, when we lost to Rudiger Rosenkreutz-san — Ravel gained various things, and she also cast aside various things.
So, after being transported to the battlefield…and having studied and confirmed the field’s map — Ravel’s eyes became filled with resolute determination.
(Part 1 of 1) (26/3)
Continues on to: Opening