CGM – Vol 2 Chapter 3 Part 3 – The shut-in is surprised by the ghost-like girl


We arrived in front of the room where we heard the suspicious laughter.

It was evident that something was inside this room.

It felt like whatever is beyond this room is a world one shouldn’t see.

For instance, maybe a suspicious witch conducting experiments on humans, or ghosts trying to curse and kill people.

I sense a frightening atmosphere seeping through the gap in the door.

“Sofia-san, I’m going to open the door.” (Wilhelm)

“Yeah, no matter what happens, I’ll always be with you, Wil-kun.” (Sofia)

“……” (Wilhelm)

“Say something, please! I’m begging you. I really want you to protect me, okay?” (Sofia)

“Well, I can’t help but feel like it’s a line straight out of a passionate romance scene.” (Wilhelm)

“That’s true, but, considering the situation, it’s fine to enjoy it a little bit, right?” (Sofia)

Well, certainly. Sofia-san is pressing against me from behind with her hands resting on both my shoulders. So her oversized breasts are bouncing against my back.

I couldn’t care less about ghosts anymore.

My mind is in paradise. It’s all shining pink.

If I were to compare this feeling, it’s like lying my head on a heavenly pillow.

Someday, I want to sleep with this feeling as my pillow. I think this would be the ultimate shut-in experience.

What am I even thinking about? I’m way too relaxed about the current situation.

“Wil-kun, aren’t you going to open the door?” (Sofia)

Sorry, I was busy daydreaming. Sofia-san’s breasts are truly something to be reckoned with.

“No, I’ll open it.” (Wilhelm)

I swallowed my saliva. Truth be told, I’m a little scared too.

If I were to look beyond this door, I felt like there was a kind of fear waiting for me that would forever prevent me from returning to a peaceful life of a shut-in.

But, I was once a man known as the Hero of the Magic Eye. I don’t particularly like that nickname, but still, what good is a hero without courage?

Summoning my courage, I moved forward.

I opened the door and—

The moment I entered the room, I felt the air ominously stirring. There was something substantial in there. Yet, I couldn’t see anything with my eyes.

The room is quite spacious.

Perhaps it was someone’s private room. There’s a bed with a canopy. It seems like a woman used this room as her bedroom in the past.

Near the bed, there’s a candlestick with a blue flame flickering.

This is probably magic fire. I wonder who lit it. Perhaps it’s the work of a ghost.

I vaguely remember hearing that ghosts aren’t fond of blue fire. Is it because it’s eerie, like both bright and dark at the same time?

“Kekeke… Kekekekeke…!” (Ghost?)

We heard a mysterious laughter. Both Sofia-san and I flinched simultaneously.

It’s coming from the direction of the bed. There’s definitely something there.

I cautiously approached the bed. Sofia-san clung tightly to my back, eager to use me as a shield.

The bed isn’t easy to see because of the curtains attached to the canopy. I’ll have to open the curtains to get a better look.

*Gulp*

I don’t really want to know what’s in there, but investigation is my job, so I have no choice but to muster up the courage and open the curtains.

I grabbed the curtain hanging from the canopy and pulled it open.

I decided to open it fully.

Immediately, a person’s face appeared right in front of me.

“Buaaah!” (Ghost?)

I was startled by the loud voice, causing my heart to skip a beat.

Kyaaaahhh!” (Wilhelm & Sofia)

Both Sofia-san and I screamed and took several steps back.

We kept stepping back until Sofia-san hit the wall with her back. My back was pressed against Sofia-san’s chest. We couldn’t move back any further.

My heart was pounding.

Who or what on earth was that?

Sitting cross-legged on the bed is a girl with long black hair. She was covering her mouth with her hand hidden by her sleeve, laughing sinisterly.

There’s no doubt that she’s quite eerie.

Why is she alone in a place like this? Is she really a living human being? Or perhaps she’s a poor girl possessed by a ghost.

“Um, good evening…” (Wilhelm)

I tried to speak as politely as possible.

The girl reacted. She stopped laughing and stared at us.

Her eyes were empty. It felt like she was peering into the depths of darkness, or perhaps seeing the afterlife.

Her mouth continued to smirk in a ghostly manner.

No, there was something more distinctive about her long black hair. For some reason, it was eerily wriggling. It almost felt like it was coiling around us, tightening.

“Kekeke… Kekekekekeke… Did onii-san and friend come here to play with Eva-chan?” (Eva)

It was a high-pitched and scary voice that sounded like it came from the afterlife.

It seems that “Eva” is the name of this girl.

A black cat popped its head out from the side and let out a “Nya” sound. Its eyes were glowing, which was quite unsettling.

“Um, well, we are, uh, what were we here for again, Sofia-san?” (Wilhelm)

“D-Don’t just leave throw everything to me! My heart is pounding right now!” (Sofia)

Mine too, you know?

The girl named Eva looked puzzled.

“…Did you just say Sofia-chan?” (Eva)

“Hmm? Oh, wait, did you call yourself Eva-chan? Eva-chan, as in that Eva-chan?” (Sofia)

“Are you saying that onee-san is Sofia-chan? Wow, what a coincidence.” (Eva)

Could it be that these two know each other? What a surprising turn of events.

Upon closer look, Eva was indeed a human girl. She seemed to be around the same age as me and Anya. I’m sure she would look cute if the area was brighter.

Sofia-san and Eva approached each other, their hands clasping together fondly.

“Wil-kun, let me introduce you. This is my friend, Evabloom Snowmoon-chan. And the cat over there is Blackie-chan.” (Sofia)

Eva gave a little bow while holding onto the hem of her dress.

There were some peculiar stitches on her dress as if it had been torn with a knife and then sewn back together with thread. She has quite a unique sense of style.

Meanwhile, Blackie-chan greeted me with a “Nya”.

“I’m Wilhelm Wondersky, a humble shut-in who’s indebted to [Grand Bahamut].” (Wilhelm)

I greeted them with manners befitting a noble.

Eva looked back and forth between me and Sofia-san.

“Hey, Sofia-chan, are you and Wil-oniisan passionate lovers?” (Eva)

Eva stared at me intently.

With her hollow eyes, she examined me closely.

“Hmm? Well, he’s not exactly the most dazzling person for Sofia-chan… Are you really okay with him? Sofia-chan is so cute, it feels like a waste, you know?” (Eva)

*Gong*

Even in a situation like this, I’m being rejected… My fragile heart is about to shatter into pieces…

Well, I guess it can’t be helped. This is a path that everyone goes through as a shut-in… It’s all about having the mental strength to accept it, right?

“Wil-kun as my lover? No, no, absolutely not.” (Sofia)

Ugh… Looks like I have no chance.

Just a moment ago, we seemed like such a close couple… For Sofia-san, I guess I was only relevant for that moment. It’s lonely.

Eva seemed satisfied.

“Thought so. Phew, that’s a relief. Eva-chan thought that Sofia-chan had terrible taste.” (Eva)

Please, stop… My mental health is already at zero.

“But you know, Wil-kun is actually a really nice guy. If I were to describe him, he’s like… the kind of person who would gently place an umbrella over a kitten caught in the rain. But he’s also the type who would end up getting soaked himself and catching a cold.” (Sofia)

Isn’t that a bit uncool…?

“Sofia-chan, if he’s such a good person, wouldn’t you think about bringing the kitten home with you?” (Eva)

“Hahaha, I doubt Wil-kun has that kind of initiative.” (Sofia)

Sofia-san, my mental health is at zero, you know. You’re just kicking a corpse.

I’m so done. I just want to shut myself in.

Eva was staring at me curiously.

It seemed like she noticed something and tilted her head. Blackie-chan also tilted its head at the same angle. It’s kind of cute.

“That reminded me of something.” (Eva)

What could it be that reminded her?

“Wil-oniisan, are you by any chance the kind person who gave Eva-chan an umbrella on a rainy day? You got wet on the way back after that, right?” (Eva)

Did I really do something so nice?

Hmm…ah. A familiar scene flashed in my mind.

It was the day I stopped being a shut-in.

Come to think of it, it started raining suddenly that day. There was a girl getting wet in the rain, and I politely gave her my umbrella. I think there was a black cat with her too.

Oh, right. That girl from back then. She was definitely similar to Eva. I remember she said something ominous about bad things happening to me.

“Huh? Wasn’t your hair shorter when we first met?” (Wilhelm)

When we first met, her hair was shorter.

But now it reaches down to her feet. Is it a wig?

“Eva-chan’s hair grows a tiny bit faster than other people.” (Eva)

As she spoke, her hair wriggled and squirmed.

While wriggling, her hair continued to grow.

No way, what kind of constitution is that? That’s not just a little bit faster, that’s ridiculously fast.

Seeing my surprise, Eva chuckled again with a “kekekeke”.

She’s like a ghostly child.

Well, never mind that. There’s something else that’s bothering me more.

“Hey, Eva. Remember that day when I got caught in the rain? You said something about bad things happening to me. So far, nothing bad has happened to me. What was that about?” (Wilhelm)

The worst thing that happened was probably just muscle soreness.

“Eva-chan can sense ominous signs of things that will happen in the future. Wil-oniisan, have you encountered any ghosts since then?” (Eva)

“Yeah, just a little while ago.” (Wilhelm)

“That must be it.” (Eva)

Eva stared at me with her hollow eyes.

She tilted her head and chuckled eerily.

“Unfortunately, it seems that there’s more misfortune that awaits you, Wil-oniisan.” (Eva)

Seriously?

“Eva-chan can tell. The next misfortune will be even more terrifying. For example, someone scary from the afterlife might come and mercilessly snatch away someone precious to you. Kekeke… Kekekekekeke…” (Eva)

She laughed eerily with her hollow eyes.

“Snatch away someone precious…” (Wilhelm)

I looked at Sofia-san.

“Sofia-san… Please do your best to come back if you’re ever snatched away by the afterlife.” (Wilhelm)

“Huh? I’m the one being snatched away?!” (Sofia)

“Is it not?” (Wilhelm)

“Don’t say scary things like that! I-I’ll be fine. Eva-chan always says scary things, but they never come true.” (Sofia)

“That’s because Eva-chan is secretly working behind the scenes to help everyone.” (Eva)

“So, we can relax this time too, right?” (Wilhelm)

“But this ominous feeling that’s following Wil-oniisan seems beyond even Eva-chan’s help. If something happens, Sofia-chan, please try your best to come back on your own.” (Eva)

“Everyone’s so mean… You’re all probably enjoying scaring me.” (Sofia)

Sofia-san looked anxious and fell silent.

The atmosphere turned tense for a moment as if Sofia-san might actually be taken away. What if she really gets taken? I’m sorry in advance. It’s because I set up some weird flag, isn’t it?

Things have gotten gloomy.

Let’s change the subject. We need to focus on the original purpose, our job.

“Hey, Eva, the truth is we came to this abandoned castle for work.” (Wilhelm)

“Work? In this empty castle?” (Eva)

“Yeah, we came to investigate because there were suspicious sounds coming from this castle. Do you know anything about it?” (Wilhelm)

“That must be about Eva-chan, right? Kekeke… Kekekekekeke…” (Eva)

What could she mean?

A girl’s voice shouldn’t echo so far outside this abandoned castle. Even if it’s quiet around here.

“Everyone, you can start moving now.” (Eva)

Even though she says “everyone”, I don’t think there’s anyone else in this room.

But things have really started moving.

What’s going on, this is creepy.

Lots of stuffed animals, paintings of women hanging on the walls, hangers on the rack, books on the desk, wall clocks – they all started shaking at once.

And then, a deep, echoing voice that seems to come from the depths of the afterlife can be heard.

“Wooooooo!” (?)

“Aooooooo!” (?)

“Boooooooo!” (?)

The voice is too eerie, I want to cover my ears. If I don’t, I feel like I’ll lose my mind.

This must be it. This must be the eerie, loud voice that was leaking outside.

No wonder they asked us to investigate. It’s genuinely scary.

Sofia-san came over to me and firmly grasped my arm, sliding smoothly to my side. It feels like we’re a hot couple.

Even though she completely denied any relationship with me just now, is she trying to make up already? Sofia-san, you’re quick to change your mind.

Eva gave a creepy smirk.

“In this abandoned castle, there are lots of grudges from poor spirits who couldn’t move on to the afterlife, turning them into vengeful spirits.” (Eva)

Eva’s eyes turned darker and darker, almost black.

“They’re really pitiful, so I come here every day to talk to them and keep them company.” (Eva)

She’s such a strange girl. I can’t quite understand her.

“I see… Aren’t you scared?” (Wilhelm)

Eva-sama tilted her head at a ninety-degree angle.

“Aren’t evil spirits and ghosts cute? Don’t they look cute to you, Wil-oniisan?” (Eva)

Cute? They’re nothing but scary. Look, Sofia-san is trembling as she clings to me.

Dealing with unseen mysterious beings is just unnerving, no matter how you slice it.

Oh, I see. Maybe she’s talking about their real appearance. Let’s use that magic.

“Materialization Magic, [Foresight Illusion].” (Wilhelm)

I cast it over the entire room.

And there they are, swarming all around. Evil spirits, countless in number.

Though they have human-like forms, they’re fluorescent and translucent. Their eyes and mouths are pitch black, making them quite terrifying.

Well, that was a failure. Even when visible, they’re still scary as hell.

“Wow! Wow! Wow~! Wil-oniisan, you’re amazing! It’s the first time I’ve seen evil spirits so clearly. Eva-chan is happy!” (Eva)

Eva focused on the evil spirit nearby. It was the spirit of a girl about ten years old.

“Hey~ Why did you die?” (Eva)

She asked straight up.

“I died laughing after eating a weird truffle…” (Ghost)

Sad. To die at such a young age for such a reason.

Wait, did she eat a pink truffle? Dying from laughter sounds painful.

“It was painful…” (Ghost)

I bet it was.

“Haha, just kidding.” (Ghost)

Huh? Do evil spirits make jokes?

“I was actually stabbed to death by my stepmother.” (Ghost)

Either way, it’s sad. No wonder she became an evil spirit.

Eva eagerly went around talking to various evil spirits.

There were evil spirits of all ages and genders, but they were all sad individuals. Some had no family, some were betrayed by friends, some were falsely accused, and some lost in political struggles.

Their stories were all so pitiful.

Well, Eva was smiling the whole time. She seems to like those kinds of sad stories.

After a while, there was a disturbance within the abandoned castle.

“Kiyaaaaaaa!” (?)

It was a child’s scream.

A horrible scream. It was filled with such fear that it seemed as if they were about to be killed at any moment.

“What? What was that just now? Is there someone else in the abandoned castle?” (Sofia)

Sofia showed a worried expression.

“That was a scream. I’ll go check it out.” (Wilhelm)

“Wait, Wil-kun!” (Sofia)

“I’ll make sure the child is safe and come back right away.” (Wilhelm)

“I won’t let you go alone! We’re supposed to stick together like passionate lovers! It’s scary so let’s go together!” (Sofia)

“I’m sorry, but it’s urgent. I’ll go ahead. Eva, please take care of Sofia.” (Wilhelm)

“You can count on me.” (Eva)

Leaving the two behind, I dashed down the stairs.

Down and down, through the corridors, until I reached the top of the grand staircase overlooking the entrance. From there, I surveyed the situation.

The first thing I saw was the ghost overflowing with sinister power.

Despite being a ghost, its form was clearly visible—meaning it had enough power to materialize itself.

Its body was pitch black, with a wriggling lower half. Its face resembled a skull, with eyes as red as human blood. Its abdomen and hands were disproportionately large for its body.

The ghost held two girls in its arms, both of whom seemed to be unconscious. So, they had been kidnapped by the ghost.

“Hey, you ghost! Return Olivia and Scarlett at once!” (Clara)

The one who raised her voice was Clara.

Anya was also with her. Looks like the abducted girls are acquaintances of both of them.

The ghost grinned.

“Hahaha, I refuse. Because you see, I’m a ghost who eats children. I’ll play with these kids to my heart’s content, exhaust them completely, and then tear them to pieces with a knife and enjoy eating them. So, I can’t return them.” (Ghost)

What a monstrous creature.

I think I’ve seen enough of the situation, let’s just attack from behind. When children are taken hostage, it’s better to prioritize rescue over fair play.

I grip the hilt of my sword, silently approaching and preparing to strike.

Jumping down from the stairs, I close in on the ghost from behind.

Even though I’ve concealed my presence, the ghost reacts to my approach, glaring at me.

“Sorry for the sneak attack! Release the girls!” (Wilhelm)

“――!” (Ghost)

“Divine Sword Technique: [Thunder Beast Chariot]!” (Wilhelm)

A loud thunderous roar echoes from my sword.

It’s a technique that my swordsmanship master knew. Although he couldn’t perform it himself, he had the knowledge, so he taught it to me.

I was only eight years old at the time, but I easily mastered it, leaving my master with a sense of defeat. Those were some unforgettable memories.

It’s an illusion magic where I extend the blade and briefly materialize the illusion into reality. Then, I infuse the sword with lightning attributes and deliver a powerful spinning slash. By the way, I had to spin myself vertically for this to work.

It splendidly cleaved the ghost in half.

I sheathed my sword mid-air.

Then, I landed while embracing the two girls who had been held captive.

Phew, that ghost was definitely an expert-level monster. If it hadn’t been holding the two girls hostage, it would have likely dodged my sword with precision.

Anya and Clara come running over. Both of them had relieved expressions on their faces.

“Wil-sama is that you? Wil-sama, that was amazing! That was so cool!” (Anya)

“As expected of Wilhelm-sama desu wa! You are truly remarkable!” (Clara)

“Both of you, can I entrust these girls to you?” (Wilhelm)

“We don’t mind, but Wilhelm-sama, haven’t you already defeated the enemy?” (Clara)

If only it was that easy.

I glanced back at the ghost.

Even as it remained split in mid-air, its eyes were fixed firmly on me. It grinned, its face twisted into a smirk.

“Hahaha. You’re strong, huh? Impressive. So there are still swordsmen of your caliber in this era. Ah, my knightly blood is tingling. Hahaha, but you know, I’m a ghost, so I don’t have blood anymore.” (Ghost)

The ghost disappeared for a moment.

When it reappeared, its split body had rejoined.

The ghost spread its large hands wide.

“I’ll introduce myself. My name is Bagi. Bagi the Ghost. Believe it or not, I used to be a knight in my past life. Nice to meet you.” (Bagi)

Bagi performed a knightly bow, a rather polite gesture. He must have been from a noble family before becoming a ghost. The armor he wore also had a noble air about it.

With a flick of his hand, Bagi summoned a sword. It was a long blade resembling a large kitchen knife.

“I’ve been itching for a sword fight for ages. Will you be my opponent?” (Bagi)

“I don’t mind, but I won’t hold back.” (Wilhelm)

“Sure, that works for me.” (Bagi)

We locked eyes, each sizing up the other. In that instant, I made my move.

I leaped forward with a powerful step, closing the distance at incredible speed.

Bagi awaited me in the air, a red aura emanating from his body. I felt his power surge dramatically at that moment.

Both Bagi and I clashed our blades simultaneously.

Ouch… My left arm got slashed. Blood began to flow.

But I inflicted a deeper wound on Bagi. I cleaved him diagonally in half. However, he quickly regenerated.

This was unexpected. I thought this job would be a piece of cake, but I never imagined facing a monster like him.

It seemed like this was going to be my first life-or-death battle in a while.

I landed and gripped my sword with both hands.

“Hahaha, impressive. Despite your appearance, you’re quite strong. It’s been 300 years since I woke up from my seal, and I haven’t encountered a master like you.” (Bagi)

He had the nerve to say that after injuring me.

Bagi looked at me with eyes filled with intense hatred.

Ghosts often harbor strong grudges after passing to the afterlife. He seemed to carry an exceptionally heavy one.

“Oh, I want to make you regret it.” (Bagi)

“Regret it? Isn’t it more like you want to scare me, being a ghost and all?” (Wilhelm)

“I want to make you regret it. I’m a ghost who eats children and makes adults regret.” (Bagi)

What a despicable ghost.

“Anyway, I’ll take off for today. When the time comes for the afterlife to get closer, we’ll meet again. It’s more convenient for me at that time. When it happens, I’ll snatch and eat a child right in front of you, making you regret it to the fullest.” (Bagi)

“I won’t let you do that.” (Wilhelm)

“Stop me? Impossible. Humans can’t stop ghosts. Well then, bye-bye. I’ll find a cozy bed and leisurely wait for the day of our rematch.” (Bagi)

Indeed. It’s certainly difficult to stop a ghost. It’s drifted so far away now that I can’t even sense its presence.

Phew… My wounds are quite deep. The bleeding won’t stop. Maybe it’s for the best that the fight didn’t continue here. I’m not in a condition to battle, especially not against an opponent like this, after just recovering from muscle soreness.

Sofia and Eva descend the stairs. They look worried when they see my wounds.

“Are you okay, Wil-oniisan?” (Eva)

“Yeah… Hey, Eva.” (Wilhelm)

Eva looks at me with vacant eyes.

“It must have been that ghost, right? The one in your bad omen.” (Wilhelm)

Eva’s expression turns fearful.

“Highly likely. That was the strongest ghost Eva-chan ever seen.” (Eva)

“Yeah. It said it kidnaps children. I’m indebted to [Grand Bahamut], so—” (Wilhelm)

Eva and I glance at Anya. If someone were to be kidnapped by the ghost, it would only be Anya.

Anya looks at Eva with cautious eyes, probably frightened by Eva’s expression.

However, she seems to notice something and softens her expression.

“Oh? You’re Eva-chan, right? The granddaughter of Bones Magic Shop?” (Anya)

Bones Magic Shop? Oh, Frankie-san’s granddaughter, I see.

“Yeah, it’s been a while, Ana-chan, Clara-chan.” (Eva)

“Wow, you’re back from your training, right? I’m so glad to see you again!” (Anya)

Anya hugged Eva tightly. Eva hugged her back just as tightly.

“Ana-chan, you’re still so small.” (Eva)

“Eva-chan, you’ve grown taller!” (Anya)

I looked at Clara.

“Clara, aren’t you going to go and join in on the hug?” (Wilhelm)

She pouted.

“I don’t engage in such childish behavior.” (Clara)

That’s so like Clara, or so I thought. But isn’t she quite restless? Maybe she actually does want to join in?


TL Notes:

Thanks for reading!

Well, a lot of things happened in this chapter. Somehow, everyone is acquainted with Eva, and it looks like there’s more to her story at the end. And yes, she speaks in third-person.

I was thinking that maybe MC could have killed him, but he did say before that boys weren’t taught purification magic so idk.


Footnote:

  1. None
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