Chapter 81: Zero Maiden
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Mirai

The girl moaned and stirred sheepishly revealing a sharp set of eyes that sparkled like brilliant jade, jolting up right the girl began to panic screaming like a frightened child. Mistress tried wrapping her arms around her but the girl battled her away knocking her hard into the wall on the opposite of the room.

“The Hell?” Mirai said

“Don’t twist your panties this is normal.” Coco sighed.

“Your grace if you would.”

“Of course, Solis Vinculum Catena”

Chains of light entangled the girl as she thrashed against her bonds she eventually collapsed from fatigue, “Mistress” Mirai shouted scrambling towards Mei who had just returned to her feet.

“Damn girl packs a punch.” Mei laughed.

“Well she is a homunculus.” Norn said.

\ “A Homuncuwhat?”

“ A Homunculus dear sister.”

The Arch Bishop gave a succinct explanation regarding Homunculi artificial humans crafted by Flesh Forgers and those with access to lost magic, using the bones and organs of a cadaver their old body is sacrificed in order to create a base for new life to blossom.

When first awakened the body will panic and they will lash out violently but this is only a moment of temporary madness, they also won’t be able to speak for a while but in a short time their intellect and speech capabilities will be indistinguishable from regular humans.

This shocking turn of events was enough to make him forget about his missing appendages if only for fleeting moment, the searing pain in his arms and the aching of exposed nerves snapped him back to reality.

“I’ll leave her care to you for now Coco.”

“More work for me how swell, but sure I got it covered.”

“Norn contact Setsuna and tell her, her brother wishes to meet.”

“I’ll get on it lickety split.”

With another brisk snap of her fingers two identical girls in black lab coats appeared behind Coco and without a single word picked up the homunculus and escorted her out of the room. A suffocating quiet lingered as the pile of mysteries continued to expand with no signs of stopping.

“Teleporting Girls?” Mirai said

“Care to explain, Big Bro?”

“They’re not homunculus if that’s what you’re thinking.” “ They’re mechanical creations of my design, Autonomous Mechanical Aids Renne Alpha and Alfin Beta.” Coco declared proudly. “

“So they’re like humans but made of steel, what’s the churches aim?” Mei asked scratching her head.”

“I know it’s classified but can we let the Princess in Churches plan, your grace?” Norn questioned.

“ The royal family ultimately holds authority over the church so I see no reason to keep her in the dark.”

“I figured as much I just wanted to be sure, what you’ve just glimpsed is a look at the future, the near future. Renne and Alfin are prototypes that will serve as the base for the army of the future. They’re far stronger than an average human and are built with mastery of all the popular martial arts from sword to lance they’re skill never fails to astound.”

“So that’s your goal here huh?” Mirai sighed.

“Human soldiers are fragile and susceptible to betrayal, but the Zero Maidens aren’t bound by such absurd bondage. They’re loyalty is unquestioning they don’t need to eat or sleep they never tire they’re the perfect pretty little soldiers.”

He felt like he shouldn’t be privy to this information he knew from past experience that the Church was working towards it’s own baleful agenda but to think they’d have the engineering resources to create a mechanical battalion.

“How many of these have you created, Coco?”

“About five give or take, my quota is quite high though.”

“Do you take issue with this revelation, dear sister?”

“Not really you surprised me is all.”

He held his tongue as an insect like him had no right to object but something about the zero maidens churned his stomach, Mistress and the other continued their conversation for a few minutes before Coco excused herself her tone sounding even more spiritless.

“Now to conclude our other business.”

“Well can you fix him, big bro?”

“As it stands no his wounds are too severe.”

“Just as I thought.” Mirai lowered his head.

“Raise your head there is still a path open to you.”

“But it’s super duper dicey, so you know.”

“Tell me what I have to do, Lady Norn.”

“You’re only hope is a devil binding ritual.”

“Uh ah, not a fucking chance.” Mei objected.

“A devil isn’t bound by our laws they can create miracles, regrowing arms would child’s play should the ritual succeed.”

“But if you succumb to the devil you’ll die.”

“It’s a big decision so take a moment for yourselves.”

Mistress stepped outside and I trailed at her heels her lips had sunk into a disapproving scowl, he had been content with merely following orders up until now but this was the first time in what felt like a lifetime that he wanted to struggle for his conviction.

“I’m not letting you do this.”

“Mistress please...”

“Shut up and do as you’re told pet.”

Mei rushed at him easily forcing him against the wall her eyes were welling with tears, this was his favorite side of hers. “I can’t obey that order Mistress.” Mirai forced a smile, before drying her tears.

“That’s an order damn it!”

“You’re not like the sisters, you’re a lackless, your probability of survival is practically zero it’s a death sentence.”

“Please Mistress, Let me do this.”

“Before I met you all I wanted yearned for was death, after losing Mil...i had no reason for living, not until you adopted this stray.”

“I need to do this so please let me, Mistress.”

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