Re:Ruina - Chapter 4 - TheLastVal - Re:ゼロから始める異世界生活 (2024)

Chapter Text

Just as they were expecting, the lady did not await an answer, choosing instead to start playing the viewing.

Nobody complained, though. They were too tired to have an argument right now.

They didn’t know what happened to the boy after the torture session. They did know, however, that there was no way he would survive after losing so much blood. But then… what? Would he come back? Would he stay dead? Of course, the fact that the viewings was continuing could be considered as a good sign, as their host was not patient enough to show them a bunch of nothing; but at this point they were not so sure: for all they knew, they could start watching the life of a completely different person with the hopes that, at some point, Subaru would come back. Their host was sad*stic enough to do that, after all.

The screen remains completely dark for a few seconds.

???: “Wake up.”

However, a voice soon broke the silence.


The darkness slowly starts to dissipate in the same way one opens their eyes. Because that is the case.

Seeing that the screen was showing them someone’s point of view while “awakening”, they started to timidly get their hopes up: they truly wanted this to be their Subaru; somehow surviving the encounter with the pallid woman; or, at the very least, having used “Return by Death”. Still, they had been hoping that things would get better from now on, only to get hurt, as they somehow got even worse for so long, that none of them dared to keep on doing it.

For now, they would just try to watch this, preparing for the worst outcome they could imagine.

As the blurriness completely disappears, what seemed as shapeless structures start to take form as massive bookshelves; some of them reaching the roof. A roof that was reeeeeally far from the floor.

The camera stops showing what Subaru was seeing in order to show his expressionless face.

That was it. That was their Subaru’s face. Or, at least, the Subaru’s that enter this “Library”. However, should they really trust what this? Was this really their friend? Not some clone or evil creature that took his skin and started wearing it like a dress?

Some may call them paranoid, but after everything they had to both witness and withstand, they had every right to be.

They would not celebrate just yet. Not until undeniable proof that the (now former) knight was, one way or another, alive was presented.

“…I don’t know this ceiling.” Subaru calmly stated, not giving any hint of wanting to stand up.




“…Suba…ru?” Emilia was the first one to react. She simply asked his name, as if she was scared that the man they were watching would turn to her and tell her “Sorry, but you got the wrong person.”

But that didn’t happen. No matter how much she nor everyone else waited.

It never happened.


Everyone started to celebrate the survival of their mutual friend in different ways. To begin with, Emilia, Rem and Beatrice started hugging the sleeping boy, overwhelmed with joy at seeing him alive.

“Thank you… thank you…” who was Rem thanking, not even herself knew.

“D-Don’t worry me like that, I suppose!” Beatrice, despise the harsh words, was really happy for her contractor. Her smile told that much. She truly was a “tsundere”.

“…” Emilia, after her initial reaction, simply stayed silent, enjoying the presence of her knight close to her. The fear of losing him affected her a lot, so knowing he was alright lifted a weight off her shoulders.

“He’s fine! Reinhard, He’s fine!!!” Felt shouted a little too loud at someone who was right next to her. She couldn’t help it, though. After seeing the screen going black, she was on a constant state of fear of seeing her Big Bro dead and not coming back. So, of course, her mood did a 180° after seeing him wake up, just like he did before.

“Yes, Felt-sama. Yes, he is.” The red-haired boy said with a smile on his face. Not only was he happy to see his friend alive, but also at the fact that the blonde girl was returning to her usual self; and not having that angry, yet devoid-of-any-emotion look.

Crusch, while Wilhelm and Felix simply exhaled in relief, allowed herself to show a little bit more of emotion than she usually would; and started smiling at the view of the man she was pretty sure she loved. Truly, only he could make her feel like this.

“Hmph! Typical Barusu, making us worried for nothing.” Ram said, only sssssssssssllllllllllllllliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigggggggghtly happy at seeing her absolutely-nothing-but-a-coworker fine.

“Now, now, Ram. Let’s enjoy this moment of peace while it laaaaaaaaaasts.” Roswaal, returning to his usual self said.

“Understood, Roswaal-sama.” The pink-haired maid replied.

Petra was hugging Frederica. This time, not seeking any kind of comfort; but being so happy that she just needed to hug or kiss someone. Since Subaru was not the one right next to her, she decided to do the former.

Needless to say, Frederica was more than happy to return the hug.

Priscilla was fanning her face with an amused grin. Before, she was not sure. But now, he had no doubts: her world did not revolve around her. EVERY world revolved around her. That was the only plausible explanation on why he was still alive. She would make sure to let the boy know that he owed her his life once they were inevitably reunited.

Meanwhile, Al could do nothing but wonder what was going on inside the woman’s head. Whatever it was, it definitely lifted her mood.

“YAY!!! HE’S ALIVE!!! YUPPIEE!!!” Mimi, gaining back her usual energy, said while hugging (and shaking) her brother, who could do nothing at such show of affection.

Ricardo was overjoyed to see her doing fine, especially after seeing her so broken at the possibility that their brother-in-arms would die and remain 100% dead. Truly, it was amazing how the boy made her so happy just by letting her know he would be alri-


Anastasia, while still relieved that Subaru was fine, was paying more attention to what was being said on screen. ‘ “I don’t know this ceiling”… tha’ would mean…’

That would mean that he woke up somewhere unfamiliar and, therefore, did not returned by death.

‘But then …how?’

Subaru slowly started to sit up, while rubbing his temples in an attempt to alleviate the tiredness he felt-

And that’s when he realized it. Looking at the hand he just used -and his other limbs soon after-, he realized that he was completely uninjured. As if he hadn’t been severely harmed a few seconds ago.

???: “You should be able to swing your arms and walk again.” Seeing how he was analyzing his body, looking for the smallest of details that could be “off” about them, the pale lady decided to gain his attention by talking to him. “And I made a few readjustments to your body to make it a bit easier to use.”

“Wait… she healed him?” Rem asked “How… no, that doesn’t matter. Why would she heal him?”

“Hmph! Have you forgotten that you also healed his wound back when you “showed your love” to him, commoner?” Priscilla rhetorically asked. For her, the similarities between the two blue-haired women were obvious. ‘At least the new one is not big enough of a coward to hide her intentions.

Rem could do nothing but shrink in her seat. As much as she wanted to, she couldn’t forgive herself for what she did, even if Subaru, who played the role of the victim, and a few others did.

“Rem…” Emilia said. While she could not entirely forgive the blue oni for what she had done, she had also witnessed how she had helped her knight in the moments where he needed someone the most.

While she was far away from him, because of a childish fight they had.

That’s why she decided that she would try her best to forgive her, since that would be what Subaru would have wanted her to do.

“I don’t think she healed him for the same reason, princess.” Al gave his opinion. “If so, why would she give him some “readjustments”?

“You see Aldebaran, if only you hadn't interrupted mine divine self,” She said in a warming tone. “you would already know that I am aware of that. But I must admit my curiosity at these readjustments. What did she do to him while she was unconscious?”

“Indeed. There doesn’t seem to be any visual changes on Subaru-dono.” Crusch spoke, not liking the idea that she had modified the young man’s body.

“…I believe it would be better to continue watching.” Wilhelm suggested after a moment. “These “changes” don’t seem to be visible to the eye, so the only thing we may notice of them would be the changes on Subaru-dono’s capabilities, if anything.”

Somewhat reluctantly, everyone had to agree: the only way they had to judge whenever these modifications were really good (if they truly were done) would be by watching them in action.

???: “Although you did trespass on my Library, I also took your limbs away without your consent, so I’m giving you these as an apology” The woman continued.

“I’m quite patient and generous, you see.”

“Patient!? f*ck off!” Felt shouted. The way this girl spoke like she was such a great person as if she wasn’t the cause of someone else’s misery reminded her of someone she just happens to know and did not like that much.

“Patient, my ass… Am I really supposed to be thankful for this? And the, uhh… your warning isn’t in effect anymore, right?” Subaru said in a tone that sounded too tired and carefree for someone speaking with their now-former torturer. Now looking at her, he could see she was wearing a different outfit: this one consisted of a dark blue coat that reached her feet, a black and white dress beneath it and a white cravat to finish it off.

Re:Ruina - Chapter 4 - TheLastVal - Re:ゼロから始める異世界生活 (1)

???: “Nope, not anymore. I had a few thoughts while you were knocked out. And here’s my conclusion: You’ll help me out here.”

“What!? She can’t be serious!” Anastasia said. “She really ‘xpecting him to work for ‘er after she hurt’d ‘im that bad?”

“I don’t think he has much of a choice, Anastasia-sama.” The finest knight spoke.

At this, the merchant princess frowned. As much as she didn’t like it, he was right: the girl had already showed them what she was capable of.

The best decision Subaru could take now would be to play along with her until an opportunity to escape appeared.

“What? Huh?” Regaining some energy with the ridiculousness of what he just heard, Subaru asked. “Do Syndicates these days kidnap people this way, too? Or, is this one of the Wings? I heard rumors that they abduct test subjects from here and there for Singularity research.”

“Oh, no…” Al said quietly, yet loud enough for everyone else to hear him. Seeing that no one else understood the reason for his excessively negative reaction, as they were looking at him with a mixture between curiosity and hopelessness, he decided to explain. “I don’t know what Syndicates nor Wings are, or at least I doubt they mean the same as in my old world, but can assure you: If they kidnap people for “research”, those “test subjects” are in a really bad spot.”

“H-How bad…?” Emilia shyly asked, fearing the answer.

Al proceeded to lower his head, not wanting to see the expression she nor the others would make. “…In the worst case scenario…they will be tortured for no reason until they die.”

This caused many to let “gasp”s and “eek”s escape their mouths.

“A-A-And Subaru is in one of them!?!!?!?” Rem asked. This was probably the worst thing that has happened to Subaru, and that is saying a lot.

“And if he has Return by Death…” Tivey spoke his mind without thinking. He stopped himself once he realized it, but the damaged had already been done.

“… He would be tortured endlessly.” Reinhard finished for him with pain clear in his voice.

Another wave of chaos hit them at the new information. The situation their friend was in seemingly only got worse by the second. And worst of all:

They could do nothing but sit and watch it unfold.

“An acquaintance of mine apparently began jumping between dimensions as a side effect of one of those experiments…

...Sigh… My life really is an unlucky mess.” He concluded.

Many wanted to refuse to believe what he just said. But knowing the hell that he went through for them, and the now-even-worse hell he was currently in, nobody could bring themselves to deny it. Right now, the only thing they could do was silently pity him for his misfortune.

???: “This is a library. I don’t know the “syndicates” you’re talking about, but this place isn’t a Wing at least.” The lady corrected the man.

“Doesn’t really matter. Whatever is the case, I’m trapped here and you’ll exploit me, right?” Subaru asked, already knowing the answer.

???: “Yes.” His now-captor bluntly responded. “I am letting you live for two reasons.

First, I need an analysis of how you could enter this place uninvited. Sending you back or neglecting you without knowing the reason could pose a significant threat to the Library.”

“Fair enough.” Ricardo said, now more relaxed that they knew this wasn’t a “Wing” nor a “Syndicate”.

“Uh!? You agree with her!?” Felt angrily asked the wolf-man.

“Relax, kid.” He said, ignoring the “I’m not a kid!” that came as an answer. “I don’t like ‘er one bit. Just, I can see why she wanna find out how th’ boy got in there. Lettin’ a random stranger who was in yer house go without askin’ ‘em how they got in would just be plain stupid.”

Most had to agree with what he said, as it was reasonable not to let some intruder get out without at least asking them how they got in, so that one can prevent the same situation from happening.

Still, torturing someone suspicious without real proof was crossing the line for them, as they previously showed.

???: “Well, it’s not like you can leave without my permission anymore.” She said while smiling, as if mocking him for his lack of freedom.

Almost immediately, said smile disappeared. “Second, from now on, I will collect books about the City in search of the one absolute book. And I want you to help me with this process.”




“… That’s it?” Garfiel asked. “ Jus’… collect som’ stupid books? Are they too heavy for her or sm’thing?”

Most of the cast’s members where somewhat disappointed at what they heard. Sure, they were happy she did not sent Subaru to a suicidal mission, but that was it? This is what became of the great hero known as Subaru Natsuki? Some sort of errand boy?

“…Sigh, I doubt that’s all there is to it, Garf.” Frederica answered her brother. “Besides, we already saw just how strong she is.”

How could anyone forget that image? Her ripping the man’s limbs like it was nothing. The sound they made, the screams, the-

It was better not to think about it now.

???: “Since you are a resident of the City, I expect you to be helpful in various ways.”

Subaru (Servant): “…Sigh I knew this would happen to me someday. People would disappear without a trace, only to be found as chunks of flesh much later… Well, I guess it was about time I found out what would happen if I kick the bucket.”

“By the Od…” Wilhelm was the first one to react.

““A-As chunks of f-flesh”?” Felix stuttered.

As knights who have sworn to protect the people of Lugunica, every death that took place was a scar that would mark and shame them for the rest of their lives.

But to know that a place in which murder was so common, Subaru would say that seeing corpses so damaged that they were unrecognizable was normal like nothing existed…

It was just…so…so wrong.

“What a horrible world to live in…” Julius whispered to himself. However, when he looked at his lady to see if she was taking the news well, he found himself surprised.

Her eyes were wide open, as if she had just found out the answer to all questions.

“A…Anastasia-sama?” Julius didn’t really know if he should wake her up from her reverie.

““…if I kick the bucket”” Anastasia said in a barely audible voice.


“Don’t ya gettit!?!?!” She suddenly started screaming at him. “He said “I guess it was ‘bout time I found out wha’ would happen if I kick ta bucket.”! Ya really don’t gettit!?!?!”

“He hasn’t died yet!!!”

As those words left her mouth, everyone who wasn’t paying her attention yet started to do so.

Soon, everyone’s gears started spinning, as little by little they started reaching the same conclusion: Subaru Natsuki had survived an unknown and hostile world for years and hasn’t died a single time yet.

Most of the Cast reacted happily, celebrating the fact that he found a way to survive such a dangerous place without having to use that cursed ability of his.

Those who were smarter or not that emotionally affected by this information, however, reacted differently; in a more tense or thoughtful way: while, yes, it was good that the will-be-former knight didn’t have to die, this also meant there was no way of knowing if his power would still activate should the “conditions” be met.

And for what it looked like, Subaru didn’t know this either.

???: “Don’t be too concerned about your life. You are not allowed to die here unless I permit you to.” The woman interrupted his train of thought.

“Dammit, so this was a crazy laboratory sort of deal.” The black-suited man said, now more worried than before.

“Do you, like, shove random stuff like corn kernels and clockwork into people’s stomachs and turn them into walking popcorn-spewing popcorn-machine-men or something?” He jokingly said, trying to calm himself with a little humor. It did not work that well.

“Pffft! Hahahahaha!” Al started laughing out loud.

“W-What are you laughing at!? Betty’s Subaru is in danger, and you find it funny, in fact!?!?” Beatrice yelled completely serious about what was being said.

“You don’t get it!? That only makes it even better!!!” Al laughed a little harder.


Meanwhile, everyone else was looking at both of them, waiting for any of the two to notice them. They did not know if this was something they should laugh at or be worried about.

Huff… Fo- For those who didn’t understand it, he basically said something completely random. Like… I dunno, “Are you going to turn me into an anvil?”” Finally, Al satiated their curiosity.

“Ah, it was a typical joke from Subaru.” Reinhard said, now slightly more relaxed. “I am glad to see he is still the same.”

“Hmph! If only he could pick a better time to be a comedian, I suppose.” Beatrice said while trying to push away the embarrassment of not understanding the joke despite knowing what “popcorn” and “machine” were.

“Mmhhh, popcorn was that tasty food the Warden used to give us, right?” Mimi asked Ricardo. Without giving him time to respond, she continued. “I want more popcorn!!!”

“Heh. Me too, kid. Me too…” Ricardo replied, knowing full well that if their “new” warden was listening to their conversation, she would most likely laugh at them, while mentally showing them the middle finger, since she was too lazy to physically do that.

“This has got to be the worst… I’d much rather die and be over with it all…”

And just like that, the good mood that had formed with his initial joke suddenly died.

“S-Subaru…” Rem started speaking, not being able to find the words. Was this some sort of bad-taste joke? Or…

Was he being serious with that statement?

“Subaru…” Felix grabbed his dress as hard as he could to contain his anger, before finally deciding to release it. “How could you say that!? You should know better than anyone who precious a li-“

“Felix.” Crusch interrupted her knight.

“No! I can’t just ignore this! He knows how awful dying is! Especially to the ones that love you! Why do you still have that disgusting mindset that your life is worthless, Subaru-kyun!!?!” Surprisingly, Felix continued speaking even when his lady told him to stop.

And rightfully so, he thought. Not long ago, Subaru was saying that he hated how people would go around saying that they wanted to die lightly.

And he couldn’t agree more. Life was the most important thing one could have. Losing it would not only take everything else away from you, but also hurt those that you hold dearly in your heart.

Therefore, to see the man that shared his point of view become one of them. It was… painful, more than anything else.

“That’s enough, Felix!”

“Bu-” And then he finally dared to look at her.

Hearing that the man she loved… did not want to live as much as he used to do hurt her. Nevertheless, she tried to push those feeling for now, just to stop Felix from saying something he would most likely regret saying in the future.

“Felix… we both know that Subaru… our Subaru would never, EVER say that, not even as a joke. So if the one from the screen is saying it…” It was clearly hard for her to say it. The words simply did not come out. “We… We don’t know what he went through… Only that this world is merciless. He-He got tortured the moment he accidentally entered a place! We shouldn’t just... “judge” him without knowing his past. We… He deserves that much.”

It was painfully obvious that she was struggling not to cry. Even if she was sure it was just that, a joke, she couldn’t help but to imagine the worst case scenario. She knew how strong-willed Subaru really was. She saw it with her own eyes. Therefore, she knew that to break that iron will he had… a far greater pain beyond her understanding was needed. And if he really had to endure it…

She didn’t know what to do then.

Felix could see how affected she was by the possibility that the nasty-eyed boy held his will to live no more. Thus, he decided to obey her and remain silent. Moreover, he knew she was right: Subaru would never say such things. Something must have happened for him to change this way.

He wasn’t really mad at the black haired knight. After everything he saw him doing for the sake of others, he couldn’t bring himself to be. He could only pity the man for what he had to suffer, and hope that thing would go for the better.

???: “If you spout such nonsense one more time, I’ll gladly turn you into a human popcorn machine as you so wish.” The lady, who already had enough of his… everything, threatened.

Nobody was surprised seeing this woman completely disregarding Subaru’s claim about wanting to die. However, they were scared by the idea that she was serious with her threat.

Now that they thought about it, they weren’t really sure if it was even possible to turn someone into a “human popcorn machine” or an anvil, but they were pretty positive that, if it was, the process would be extremely painful.

???: “I’ve already gone through so many cycles of bullsh*ttery, responding to every bit of meaningless rubbish.”

“Sorry, ma’am…” Subaru, in a surprising act of self-preservation, apologized to her in a low tone of voice, trying not to anger her anymore.

Without answering him, the blue-haired woman turned around and started walking towards an armchair that was near them.

???: “Let me introduce myself properly.” After sitting on it and putting the book she was holding on a nearby desk, she started once again speaking.

Angela (Library Director): “My name is Angela. I am the head librarian and director of this library.” She said while smiling at him.

“Angela, Huh…?” Felt said. “Well f*ck you, Angela.”

Needless to say, many shared the feeling.

“Ange…la…” For a second, both Subaru’s voice and face became serious while repeating her name, as if all tiredness he felt suddenly disappeared with that simple word.

However, as soon as that expression came, it was quickly replaced with a more silly tone and a charming smile. “That’s a good name.”

‘SO HANDSOME!’ …Was the general thought that invaded all of female characters, and even some still-heterosexual knights, after seeing that killer smile.

“As I said, I am Subaru. Grade 9 Fixer.” He presented himself once more. “So, what am I supposed to do?”

“Your role is to “welcome” the guests invited to the Library.” Angela answered, without moving from her seat.

“Who’s up for a bet? Ya know… like t’ good ol’ times!” Anastasia asked everyone else in an attempt to bring up the mood once more.

“…Sure…” Finally, Felt decided to speak up. “What were ya thinking?”

Anastasia gave her a smile before standing up and speaking aloud. “Who thinks this “welcome” Angela’s planning for t’ “guests” involves nothin’ more than beatin’ them up?”

Most of the cast raised their hands. Those who didn’t either couldn’t care less for this “bet” or were just hoping that the Black-haired boy didn’t get himself into some sort of fighting arena.

“I will carefully determine what guests to invite and write an invitation accordingly, and you will entertain the guests once they accept the invitation and arrive at the Library. Since you have actual experience working as a Fixer, I am sure you will be able to give the various types of guests a much better reception that I could.”

Waitwaitwaitwaitwait wait wait. Subaru will have to fight them DIRECTLY!?!?” Otto asked, feeling the all-too-familiar fear creeping into his heart.

“Well, she did say he would have to-” Al started answering him, only to be interrupted.

“I thought what she meant by "welcoming the guests” was something like planning the battle, placing traps or something off-stage! Not directly confronting them face-to-face!”

“Relax, Brotto!” Garfiel started hugging the merchant boy with one arm while pointing at the screen with the other. “Capt’n will be fine! If he could defeat some witch cultists, he definitely can beat the sh*t outta some book-lovin’ nerds!”

“He only defeated them after dying multiple times, though!?!?” Otto did not relax one bit with his friend’s attempt to calm him down.

“…Oh.” In fact, now Garfiel was also starting to worry for the man he admired.

“W-Well!” Rem decided to intervene before things escalated “Subaru is now a “Fixer”! He might be able to fight now!”

Everyone else looked at her with different expressions, some with curiosity, others as if she had just hit her head really hard. What did one thing have to do with the other?

“What is your point, maid?” Priscilla, still not liking the girl one bit, asked her.

The blue-haired oni decided to ignore the hate that emanated from the fiery princess, and instead chose to answer her. “I-I mean,… I’m not sure I get it completely, but I think the job of a “Fixer” involves fighting; since Angela said that he could give a better “…Reception?” than her because he is one.”

The ones who hold the man dearly in their hearts could only shudder at the news that he might be living a life full of conflicts yet again.

“If that is the case, maybe he trained a lot in order to become one, just li-”

“Ha! While mineself has to admit that your theory about a Fixer being a fighter of some sorts is interesting, it is clear that the feelings you have for the boy are blinding your judgement!” Priscilla stopped her from continuing.

“U-Uh!? Bu-”

“Have you forgotten how the first encounter with the pallid corpse went? He didn’t even stand a chance to fight back! Can you not see, the kid you love is as weak as he was now?”


As much as everyone else wanted to tell her she was wrong, the mention of that previous scene shook them. It was true: he couldn’t even try to defend himself. Nevertheless…

“Priscilla-sama… please refrain from saying Subaru is weak.” This time, Reinhard spoke up. “He had to endure things none of us could even imagine… and somehow, he managed to overcome all of it. If that is not proof of how strong he actually is… then I don’t know what is.”

Everyone was astonished to see the Sword Saint defending his friend so fiercely. Some of them started to silently thank him.

“…Tch. Just don’t be surprised when we see his head rolling once again.” The arrogant candidate, unable to give any sort of response, simply chose to end the “conversation” they were having in the most painful way she could think of. Sadly, what she ended up saying backfired, as even she was now slightly scared at that possibility.

“I’m just a washed-up Grade 9 Fixer, though…” Subaru said, a little sad at his own weakness.

“What’s this “reception” all about anyway? Do I catch their eyes, or be a waiter for them or something?” He half-seriously asked. He could already imagine what this “reception” truly was if it required a Fixer.

“It’s simple. You just have to deal with the guests. In a physical manner, of course.” Angela said without missing a beat, as if she didn’t just say “You have to kill all of them.”

“Heh, guess this confirms it.” The merchant princess said. “Though, I must admit: I’m not tha’ happy about winnin’ this bet.”

Nobody really was, considering that now it was undeniable that their “Fixer” friend would have to struggle for his life yet again. This time, on the battlefield.

“The Library presents the guests with an ordeal, and books will open up in the process. The guests who have overcome the ordeal will be deemed worthy to earn their books.” She continued her explanation.

“There is the possibility that you may die in the process of the reception, but it’s only temporary. You’ll get back up when the Library closes.”


Many saw themselves stunned at what they heard, repeating the same words over and over again in their heads:

‘…you may die…’

‘…it’s only temporary…’


“Is she… does she… can she…?” Julius tried to formulate his question with words, but impossible simply due to the other thoughts that were overwhelming him.

“It would seeeeeeem” Roswaal spoke, gaining everyone’s attention. “that we have underestimaaaaaated the pooooower of our dear library direeeeeector.”

“She can bring dead people back to life!?!?!?” Tivey exclaimed. “Isn’t that something only the witch of envy could do!?”

“‘pparently not.” Ricardo answered “‘pretty sure tha’ s what she meant with “You’ll get back up when the Library closes.”.” On the meantime, he was internally thinking ‘Damn bro, first the witch of envy, and now this crazy-ass bitch!? What’s up with you and dangerous women!?’

Several discussions suddenly took place, some debating whether she did really have this god-like ability or not. Most, however, tried to tell, should she really have it, if it could be considered as a good thing.

“I believe the power itself is not the problem.” Wilhelm spoke. “As long as it is carefully used and only when-”

“Oh c’mon, old man!” Felt interrupted. “You saw how the heartless bitch tortured him without second thoughts! You really think she will only use this ability of hers “carefully” or “only when it’s necessary”? Hell nah! She’s gonna send him into suicidal missions until he wins!”

She was right. This “Angela” lady did seem like the one that would only see others as tools; and would not care if one of them breaks.

Nevertheless, he also remembered the monologue she gave before, about not being free nor having any purpose in life. He truly wanted to believe that she was just in pain; and only needed someone to guide her to the right path. Just like he once needed before.

“W-We do not know that for the time being. It is too early to judge her for something she has yet to commit… I believe we should just wait and hope for the best.”

While nobody could tell why the sword demon was seemingly defending this woman, they did know that what he said was right. Little was it worth to speculate in comparison to seeing the real thing happen.

“Wait, so you can bring death people back to life?” Subaru asked interested, completely ignoring the “you may die in the process” part.

“Only those who work at the Library. No one here may rest without my permission.” She answered his question.

“…Return by Death… uh…” He whispered to himself, once again slightly losing his composure.

Not a single soul in the theater could help but feel a shiver running down their spines upon hearing those words come out of the man’s mouths.

“…While death is a necessary condition to be resurrected, it is not the key step that allows it to happen. One can die and not be brought back after all.” Angela, who overheard him at a surprising far distance, corrected him once more while starting to stand up. “More correct names for this ability would be “Return by Angela”, “Return by Library”, “Re-””

“O-Okay, okay!” Subaru, surprised of being heard and overwhelmed by all the corrections Angela was giving him, decided to interrupt her. “I was just talking to myself.”

Before she could reply, he continued: “Anyways, do you happen to have some weird fantasies about fixer? Aren’t you expecting too much from a Grade 9? I’m not as talented as you seem to think, y’know.”

“So, Grade 9 is supposed to be a low grade, uh?” Al analyzed what he heard, and gave his conclusion to everyone else. “Then, by that logic, Grade 1 must be the highest.”

“Uh, there’s a pretty big difference between 9 and 1- ouch!” Tivey muttered, before being hit in the back of the head by his sister.

“Don’t be a meanie, Tivey! Big bro boss always does his best. And he always wins! I’m sure he could beat any “Grade 1 Fixer” if he wanted!” As she scolded her brother, Mimi started to smile, little by little, as she praised the black-haired boy. Finally, she started jumping in her seat, at the scream of “Grade 9 Fixers are the best!”

Meanwhile, Ricardo was debating if this should be considered as something cute, a little girl who became the #1 fan of a hero, or something to be extremely worried about.

“That’s none of my business. I have prepared a manual for you, so go ahead and figure things out yourself.” Angela said, giving him said manual short after.

After opening it and giving it a look to have an idea of what was written on it, Subaru spoke, “I think I get the gist of it now. So, how does this invitation exactly work?”

“Open up the invitation, and register the books you wish to serve to your guests.” The Library Director told him.

“And then?”

“The invitation will be naturally sent to those who need the books.”

“That’s it? Sounds a bit too easy.” Subaru had to admit.

“Hmm. It does indeed sound very simple. However, I doubt that’s all there is to it.” Julius gave his opinion.

“What does she mean by “naturally sent”? They don’t hafta deliver it?” Garfiel asked, trying to see if anyone understood something he didn't.

“Hard to tell.” Anastasia answered him. “Once again, we can only watch an’ hope things get clarified soon ‘nough.”

“The invitation is another carefully crafted work of mine, much like the Library.” Angela explained. “Yes, think of it as a compass. It would be easier to understand that way.”

“Ah~ A compass? As in the tool that tells directions?” The Fixer asked to make sure he understood what he was being said.

“That’s right. The invitations will guide me towards the one book that I truly wish to obtain.”

“Again with this “one book”. Why does she seem to want it so desperately?” Frederica could understand the importance this book had, if getting it was the only goal Angela had. However, she still couldn’t imagine what content was written on it, for it to be so important to her.

‘She is not the first person obsessed with a book I met, though. Perhaps this trend is far more usual than it should be.’

“Why, would you look at that, clown? It would seem you and the girl over there have a lot in common.” Priscilla decided that spitting out a little more poison wouldn't do any harm.

“…sigh. Priscilla-sama, please mind your language when speaking to-” Ram began defending her lord, like usual, before being interrupted by him.

“It’s alright, Ram.” He calmly said. “As for what you said… While I doooooubt the reasons are similar in aaaaany way, I cannot help but to be intriiiiiiigued for the desire that pushes her tooooowards that book.”

“…Hmph! Let’s just hope it doesn’t end the same way for the boy as it did with you.”

Hearing this, the makeup-wearing man slightly tensed up, but he managed to hide it behind his usual smile. “Buuuuut of course.”

“And sometimes, the invitation may turn red according to the books you’ve registered. A red invitation indicates that it can be sent to the special guests who will unravel the next part of the story.”


“What are you thinking, Beako?” Emilia asked the spirit.

“DON’T CALL BETTY LIKE THAT! Only Betty’s contractor is allowed to, in fact.” Beatrice scolded the half-elf, before deciding to answer her. “I was just wondering how the invitation defines what guests are “special”; and why only this ones can “unravel the next part of the story”, whatever that means, I suppose.”

“Hmmm, yeah. That is a good question. Also, why does she speak like she’s just reading a story? It really gives a very bad vibe.” The more the silver-haired girl thought about it, the more worried she became about her knight being with someone like this librarian.

Sigh… Some people simply see themselves as some sort of higher beings who have to do nothing but witness how the “lower ones” live their daily life thinking they are important, in fact.” It was clear that Beatrice did not like this type of people.

“Like Priscilla?”

“Priscilla, Roswaal,… hell, I am sure our new host and her “superiors” can enter that category as well.” She finished listing of all the examples she could think of. Well… almost all. There was one person she specifically thought of when the topic came.

‘Mother…’ No matter how much she wanted not to think about her, the knowledge that she was nothing more than an experiment to her kept on lurking in the depths of her mind to this day. Moreover, seeing her once again during Arc 4 did nothing to help at all.

“Until we register the books that match what the red invitation wants, our journey will be halted for a bit.” Angela finished her explanation.

“But there’s no guarantee that the guest will always respond to the invitation, right?” Subaru asked, finding a flaw in his new boss’s theory.

“That’s a good point…” Crusch, now somewhat recovered from the whole “Subaru-might-not-want-to-live-anymore” ordeal she had to face, spoke up. “If she really needs every single book, then one sole individual not showing up could ruin the entire plan.”

“…Perhaps she thinks she can chase down those who do not appear, nyan?” Felix, still careful not to hurt his lady’s feeling again like he did with his little outburst before, provided his theory.

“If that’s the case, then why not just go after everyone else? Why send them an invitation for them to come to “The Library” first?”

“That’s… uh…” The catboy could not deny her logic.

“Furthermore, she also told us -through her monologue- that she is trapped in this place, for one reason or another.”


“I believe we must continue watching. There are too many questions without answer for us to formulate any plausible explanation.”


Maybe she did not know it; but everyone else did: she just wanted a distraction. Trying to understand what was going on was only a way for her to not think about the other topic that was eating her alive.

Nevertheless, no one knew how to console her.

If only Subaru was awake.’, they thought, as if the sleeping man would definitely be able to cheer her up. ‘He always knows what to say on this situations’.

Alas, the boy remained unchanged, still as unconscious as ever. Therefore, they could do nothing but stay silent, letting the viewing continue playing.

“In fact, there is. They’re destined to come.” Angela said with a proud smile, as if she had thought about everything. “And the guests will accept the invitation of their own will and enter the Library.”

“So there is a certainty that they will come.” Julius said.

“Seems so.” Anastasia replied. “Even if that certainty is as weak as “pre-written destiny”. Speakin’ of, what could she mean by that? Highly doubt it’s just something like ‘They will come. I sawit on my dreams.’” She added this last part with a little bit of sarcasm.

“Heh, Who knows? Maybe she has a book that tells her what is destined to happen!” Al decided to add his own pun.

“Weeeeeell, actu-”

“““““Shut up, Roswaal.”””””

“So haaaaarsh~.” Said man jokingly complained, before doing what he was asked to do.

“… That’s surprisingly polite and fair for something that takes place in this city.” Subaru had to admit.

“What!? Why I he praising he-” Emilia began asking, before the viewing, which did not pause, interrupted her.

“Most of the time, people’s lives are taken away by others without any consent or agreement.”



So that’s why.’ She, along with everyone else, internally thought.

“For love of Od” Felt began speaking. “Just how AWFUL can this world get!? Yes, people die here too. But not enough for us to be happy when it happens with consent!!!”

“Once again, I have to agree with Felt-sama.” Reinhard said. “For Subaru to consider something that involves the death of others as “polite and fair”… one cannot help but to wonder how this world even persists with such a high mortality rate.”

“H-Hold on! Now I think you are just overreacting!” Otto exclaimed. As the rest of The Cast turned to see him, he decided to explain. “I mean, sure. There must be a lot of people who are dying, based on what Nastuki-san said before. And don’t get me wrong: that definitely is a huge problem. But for so many to die that it makes you think the world could end at any moment!?!? Come on!

It can’t be that bad.”

As he finished saying this, everyone looked at him, dread clear on their faces, as they unanimously thought:

Why did he have to say that?

“… Why did I have to say that?...” The green merchant slowly realized what he did there. He raised one of those “red flags” Subaru once told him about.

“Well, anyway,” He decided to change the subject. “once we get those books, what comes next?”

“The Library is a place of limitless possibilities. Even I cannot fathom the infinite space and power of this library just yet.” Angela admitted. “That’s why I wish to complete the Library by filling that space with books. And I will get in my hands the one perfect book that will complete me and my library.” The determination she had to achieve her goal could be heard coming from her voice.

“The perfect book, huh…” The director’s servant closed his eyes and began thinking. “…I suppose those “books” are different from the ones I know.” He concluded.

“…Well… Yeah.” Little Petra was the first one who decided to move on from the previous topic. “I doubt that the scary lady would want normal books. Normal libraries don’t k-kill the people that visit them.”

“…Agreed.” Ram said. “That also leads to another important question: Why does she need to murder others? Sure, she said that she wanted “The One Absolute Book”, but how does committing a slaughter help her achieve her goal?”

At the pink-haired maid’s question, everybody’s mental gears began turning once again. Still, with no way to answer it, they decided to keep on watching.

“…While you are not entirely wrong, you are not entirely right either.” Angela, after thinking about it, gave her answer to that question.

“Hm? What do you mean?” Subaru asked.

“I believe it is better for you to see it for yourself.” As she said that, she began walking away from him. “Follow me, the time has come.”

“U-Uh? Wait for me! The time for what?”

As he said that, Angela stopped walking; turned her head in his direction; and gave him a smile. “The time for the Library to open its doors and receive its first guests.”

As the screen turned black, The Cast finally allowed themselves to relax their bodies in their seats. There were no words that could summarize what they just witnessed.

Well… actually, there were:

“…What the Fuuuuuuuuuuck…” Al broke the silence.

“Just what did you get yourself into this time, Subaru?” Emilia asked the sleeping beauty of the theater, not getting any sort of response. Is this what they would have to witness now? Her knight being in extreme agony yet again, the only difference being the background? Why? Just…Why?

“Subaru-kun…” Rem lamented, as if the man she loved was as good as dead. She knew he would be able to get away from this. He was her hero, after all. However, she also knew that to do that, he would have to suffer like he seemingly always had to.

“I’m so sorry Subaru… Betty couldn’t be there with you…” Beatrice tried her best not to cry, but ultimately failed to do so, as tears started falling from her eyes. She made a promise. A two-way promise. And she failed to keep her word.

“Ejem.” Reinhard loudly coughed, with the obvious intention of gaining everybody else’s attention. “Pardon my interruption, everyone. But I believe we should use this time wisely.”

“Uh?” Felt, who was next to him, asked.

“Well… The screen was paused the moment it went black, even if we were not discussing anything. If I had to guess why, then I would say our host is expecting us to talk to-”


“…Agreed, Felt–sama.” The sword Saint responded. “Nevertheless, we are not the ones to decide when to stop the viewing and continue playing it. If we do not meet her demands, she might just unpause the screen even if none of us are willing to keep on watching.”

“Tha-That’s…” The blond ex-thief found herself unable to deny that. “F-f*ck…

“…I know, as you’ve just said, that the viewing as for now… was tiresome, to say the least.” After confirming that she would not finish that sentence, he resumed. “Still, it would be wise, in my opinion, to let everyone mention the important things they noticed so far. That way, we can all be on the same page.”

“… What is there to say, Reinhard?” Felix asked, completely emotionally drained. “Subaru went to an unknown place, a “library”, he got himself tortured as soon as he arrived,” Him and many others shuddered at the mention of the “limbs-removal” scene. “he got completely healed, and now he is a slave of his captor; forced to kill others. Oh! And the world he lives in is horrible.”

“I think that’s all.”

Needless to say, the words the catboy spoke were painful to hear. Especially so, since no one could deny them.

“W-Well…” Seeing how the mood died somehow even more, the red-haired knight chose to change the subject a little bit. “How about we talk about all the unanswered questions we have, and share our own theories about them?”

“…sigh.” Julius, reluctantly, decided to play along. “This… “Angela” lady. She is extremely pale, to the point she looks like she is not even alive. However, she clearly is not ill. Furthermore, after witnessing her strength… that time, it is clear she is no ordinary human.”

“Don’t forget about her power to revive people.” Tivey said.

“And tha’ whole “invitation” stuff.” Anastasia added.

“And the fact that she’s trapped in this “library”, for som’ reason.” Ricardo finished.

“…Just what even is she?” Julius asked.



Seeing that nobody else had any idea, Petra decided to raise her hand. “I… I have another question!”

“Hm? What is it, Petra?” Frederica let the junior maid have the word.

“…W-Will he really do it?

Do you really think Subaru will have… to kill people?”

… Wow. That was definitely not a question they were expecting; let alone form a little girl.

“Uh- w-well…” The blond maid tried to answer, but found herself unable to do so. She didn’t actually know if the man would be capable of taking the life of innocents for his own survival.

“Of course not!” Rem interjected. “He would never hurt someone who does not deserve it!”

Ehhh, I wouldn’t be so sure about that, ma- Rem.” Al spoke, making her glare at him.

“Do not speak like you know him! He is the kindest man alive. He would do anything to save the ones he loves; and would never become a murderer because some bitch ordered him to do so!” It was clear the blue-haired maid hated the pale woman for everything she did to Subaru. Still, she firmly believed that he would not succumb to the pressure, and would find a way of surviving without having to spill blood.

“Hey, hey! Calm down. I never said he would become some psychopath who kills for his own pleasure. It’s just that… think about it: the world he’s currently in is horrible. Even worse than ours, somehow, if we take into account what little we heard about it. Do you really think he managed to survive years just by being kind?” The one-armed knight asked.

“Well… He-He managed to survive in Lugunica by being so! May-”

“Yeah, and he only had to die… What? Fifteen… Sixteen times?”


What the man said hit her really hard. Had it not been for the Witch of Envy, Subaru would have been dead a long time ago. Even more, she was sure that most of his deaths could have been avoided had he not been so caring for others.

But if this version of her hero did not possess Return by Death, then how did he survive? Did he… did he really had to do… awful things to others?

“…Sigh.” Seeing that the girl was about to have another mental breakdown, Al decided to step in. “Don’t blame him for doing what he had to do. When it comes to survival, sometimes the decision that will keep you alive is the hardest to take.”

He knew that much. God knows how many sins he had to commit when he was sent to another world just to live another day.

“…So, please just don’t go around hating him because-”

“NO!!!” Rem interrupted. “I would never hate him.”

The man she loved was also the one she hurt because she couldn’t control her emotions. And yet, he found it in his heart to not only forgive her, but also to love her back. If she couldn’t forgive him because of something he did to survive…

“I’ll never hate you, Subaru-kun.” She put her mind together. No matter what she saw throughout the viewing, she would always love him. No matter what.

Al watched the girl finally admitting that the boy would most likely have to do terrible things now, yet choosing to keep on loving him despite that. It made him feel great, to know there were still people out there that could understand, not everyone had the luxury of being allowed to care for others.

Reinhard once again spoke up, seeing that mostly everyone had finished discussing whenever Subaru would kill others for his sake. “Is there any other question anyone desires to ask?”

After a few seconds of silence, he continued. “In that case, I believe our best course of action is to resume the viewing. Perhaps, our questions will finally be answered next.”

While some wanted more time to relax, or simply did not want to keep on watching, most knew that they had no other option other than waiting for their host’s patience to be completely gone and for her to resume the film without asking. Thus, they nodded with their heads.

“…Sigh. Here goes nothing, I guess.” The Sword Saint said. “M-Miss Host? Are you there?”

“What is it that you want?” A voice spoke. However, this was a different voice. This one clearly belonged to a male individual, and sounded as if he was speaking through a mask.


“Who are you!?”

“Not again…”

“Can’t be worse than the girl we had just a minute ago.”

“Silence. I only asked what you require. If it is nothing, then do not bother me.” It was clear this new person had the same tolerance as the last one.

“W-W-Wait, please! What happened to our host? The woman form before, I mean.” Emilia asked. Not that she really cared for her like she did with the old Warden; she just wanted to know what was going on.

“Lady Athena has deemed the section of the recording you have just finished watching as “boring”. Therefore, she decided to go out and get some fresh tea leaves for me to brew, leaving me in charge.”

Lady Athena? So that’s her name, huh?

“Is that all you needed? If that is the case-”

“No!” Anastasia screamed. “I-I mean, do you know how long it’ll take her to return? We’re kinda finished here with the viewing and-”

“Have you finished discussing everything you have watched to this point?” The man interrupted.

“H-Huh? Y-Yeah we did, were you not paying attention?”

“I was ordered to only intervene should someone attempt to interact with Lady Athena; avoid witnessing the events playing on the screen; physically harm another; commit acts of self harm that could pose a threat to one’s life; or actively seek their own demise. Apart from that, I hold no reason to pay you any mind.”

A deadly silence took over The Cast as the man finished of listing. Sure, the first three one were somewhat reasonable, depending on what his “intervention” involved in the last two cases. But “Committing self harm!?!? Actively looking for a way to die!?!!??!?!?!?!

Just what the HELL are they supposed to watch!?!?

“Now, if you have nothing left to say, I was given a “special viewing” for you to see while Lady Athena makes her return.” Their new temporary host said.

““S-Special viewing”?” Crusch hesitatingly asked. She did not like the sound of that.

“I was informed that you have watched something similar before. It can be compared to the… “Openings” of the previous movie that was being played here, which I am sure you remember.”

Subaru moving on, as copies of himself were left behind to die. All those sacrifices he had to make in order to get his happy ending; only to die once again at a few steps of achieving it, restarting the seemingly endless cycle of death. No one, except Al and Beatrice, knew what a “movie” was. However, they could easily guess: they did know remember the “opening” from before. How could they forget it? A summary of their friend’s journey, mindset, and suffering.

Will they have to withstand the view of yet another one, this time showing the same pain and chaos in a different world? Nobody knew if they were ready for this. But, just like before: It didn’t matter.

“Ideally, by the time you are finished, my Lady will have returned. Until then, however, do not speak to me unless it is necessary. Simply watch.”

After saying that, the screen was turned on once again.

Re:Ruina - Chapter 4 - TheLastVal - Re:ゼロから始める異世界生活 (2024)
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