The tainted cat yowled with pain. But as a beast created to hunt humans, it had been endowed with more cunning than normal animals. It deftly flipped Subaru over with its other paw and held him on down on his back.
“Stop!” I screamed.
Razor-sharp claws came slashing down on Subaru’s soft belly.
Everything that happened next seemed extremely surreal.
The cat flew up to the ceiling, legs spread wide like a giant flying squirrel. All eighteen of its claws were extended and its fangs were bared in a furious hiss, but its body was as stiff as if it had been crucified.
A thousand sparkling crystals appeared out of thin air and covered the cat completely.
The crystals melded together and turned into a half-transparent, shining jewel.
The tainted cat vanished.
Air rushed into the vacuum it left behind and created a small whirlwind.
What in the world did Shun do? All I could think of was that he had transported the cat to a different dimension.
Moving something without touching it probably meant surpassing the laws of physics. However, under normal circumstances, we are unable to manifest anything we can’t picture in our mind. 1
In the short time since the door to Shun’s unconscious had opened and turned him into a karma demon, he had acquired skills beyond any cantus expert’s level.
I realized that Shun was kneeling beside Subaru’s corpse.
He had already stopped breathing. The floor was covered with blood. The cat had split Subaru open from stomach to heart in a single stroke.
“Shun,” I crouched next to him.
“He tried to save me. Despite how futile it was.” Shun said quietly. “I tried to leave him behind so many times. But he kept following me. …no, perhaps I was the lonely one. I’d be all alone without Subaru.”
1 Not sure if this footnote is necessary, but I feel like her explanation is kind of weird. Basically, she’s saying that even though they’re not physically touching anything when they use cantus to move stuff, they picture hands doing it in order for it to work. For example, Satoru imagines a fist covering the blowdog explosion and Saki imagines hands twisting the tainted cat. So for Shun to transport something without using a hand image is unusual, like imagining something that doesn’t follow the laws of physics.