Death Mage 203 – In the city, as if nothing happened
Guards had a tough job, especially the fresh recruits. Kest thought that the hardest thing about it was having to watch the city’s gate during winter. Patrolling the city, mediating disagreements, investigating crimes and picking up drunkards who had fallen asleep on the streets at night were all easy tasks when compared to watching the gate during winter. As for watching the prison and doing paperwork – those jobs were heaven.
The reason why watching the gate was so tough was because guards could not afford to lose focus. That didn’t mean that guards lost their focus while doing other jobs, but… watching the gate forced a particularly large amount of tension upon the guards.
They had to check every single one of the many people entering and leaving the city, and they had to do so in a timely manner, but they also had to do it carefully. And yet if the guards worked too slowly, people would give them unpleasant looks, and there were even some adventurers who would click their tongues in frustration.
But the hardest thing about it was the cold. It was still relatively warm as it was still January, but Kest, who had been on duty from early in the morning, was chilled to the bone.
I want to go and eat lunch already, he thought to himself.
Kest’s senpais from the night watch had been delayed because of a strange commotion that had occurred inside the city, but he knew that they should be coming to take over soon. Looking forward to that, he continued his duties. It was just after noon, a time of day where few adventurers and merchants left the city, so he wasn’t particularly busy.
But it really is cold if you don’t stay moving, he thought, taking small steps on the spot to try and stay warm.
But his senpai Aggar soon reprimanded him.
“Kest, don’t fidget around in front of the gate! You’re a guard, so when nothing’s happening, just stay still like a statue and pay attention to your surroundings!” Aggar growled.
He was standing up straight, spear in hand, his gaze moving around the area around the city and beyond the highway. He was a senior guard who had extracted some small change as a bribe from a boy who had barely survived a bandit attack and chuckled, “This can pay for my drinks tonight.” But he was serious at times like this.
… With that said, it was only because it was difficult to cover up blunders on this job, so he could get fired if he didn’t do it properly.
“You’re a Beast-person, aren’t you? Use your own fur to keep warm, you cat bastard!” Aggar muttered, adding a racial insult and thinking nothing of it.
But Kest, knowing that this was his fate as a fresh recruit, simply endured the insult with a stiff smile. “Senpai, I’m a wolf-type Beast-person. And other than my ears and tail, there isn’t much fur on my body,” he said, protesting lightly.
“Don’t talk back! If you’re a dog then behave like one and stay quiet!”
… This is part of the job, just part of the job. It won’t go on forever, Kest told himself repeatedly in his head, suppressing his anger.
Finally calming down, he returned his gaze to the highway to see a woman approaching from the other side. She was wearing a hooded mantle and carrying some belongings on her back, walking towards the city with her head down. She was carrying too little to be a freshly-starting traveling merchant who couldn’t hire escorts, but also too poorly-equipped to be an adventurer.
On top of that, this was a strange time of day to be arriving at the city. She was certainly suspicious.
But if Kest deemed her to not be suspicious, then that would be the end of it. It was possible that she was just a rookie adventurer who couldn’t afford proper equipment and had overslept today.
“Your identification papers,” said Kest, just as he always did.
“I’m sorry, I don’t have any,” said the woman.
Her voice was kinder and prettier than Kest had expected, but that didn’t mean that he could let his guard down.
“What do you mean by that?” he asked in a business-like tone.
“Well, you see –” the woman began as she lowered her hood, revealing her face.
Kest’s eyes took in a chocolate-colored skin that didn’t look like it belonged in this cold winter air and long, pointed ears. The woman was a Dark Elf, and a very beautiful one at that.
“You see, I’ve only just left my village for the first time. I don’t belong to any Guild,” she continued.
A gentle voice and calm, purple eyes. Bewitchingly beautiful skin and a sweet fragrance that tickled the nose…
“Umm, Guard-san?” said the woman, her voice bringing Kest back to reality.
“Ah, I-I see,” Kest said hastily. “That can’t be helped.”
His senpai Aggar was still nearby. It was only through the efforts of Alda’s peaceful faction and Vida’s Church that a Beast-person like him could become a guard; he didn’t want to have his reputation damaged for being captivated by a beautiful woman.
Kest instinctively glanced in Aggar’s direction to see that Aggar was closer than he had thought, and wearing a difficult expression.
Crap, he’s going to get angry at me again, Kest thought, but –
“I see. Then could I please have your name?” Aggar asked the Dark Elf woman.
… It turned out Kest had nothing to worry about. He realized that Aggar’s expression was not one of anger towards him, but (an attempt to) look serious and make a good impression on the woman.
“Yes. My name is Darcia,” the Dark Elf said.
“I see, so you’re Darcia-san,” Aggar repeated. “I believe you should have passed through numerous cities and villages on your way here; why have you not attempted to acquire some identification?”
Aggar continued conversing with Darcia, ignoring Kest entirely. Perhaps he wanted to stop her for as long as possible; he was even asking questions that he did not normally ask.
If you want her to like you, I think it’ll have the opposite effect, though. And your eyes are too obvious, Kest thought, watching Aggar’s gaze move between Darcia’s beautiful face to her plentiful chest so conspicuously that even he could see it from the side.
“So, what business do you have in our city?” Aggar asked.
“To see my son,” Darcia replied.
Aggar’s mood dropped visibly the moment he heard this answer. “I-I see. You have a son…”
“More importantly, you seem to be quite strict. Did something happen in the city?” Darcia asked, perhaps misunderstanding Aggar’s long questioning as the city having a strict security protocol, or perhaps having sensed that something was afoot.
But Aggar, now in a foul mood, seemed to have no intention to answer.
“It isn’t that there was an incident, but… the tome held by the statue of Alda-sama in the city’s Collective Church suddenly crumbled to pieces, and Alda’s Priest has lost consciousness and collapsed,” said Kest.
“Oh my♪… That’s quite troublesome,” said Darcia, raising a hand to her mouth in surprise.
For a moment, her voice sounded excited to hear this news, but Kest decided that he was just imagining it.
“Yes. Fortunately, it seems that the Priest has regained consciousness, but he is currently resting. Our senpais are going around and calming the public down so that everyone doesn’t panic,” Kest explained.
But in reality, the Priest was still unconscious. On top of that, he had screamed, “THE WORLD IS COMING TO AN END!” at the top of his lungs before collapsing.
That had caused a panic among everyone in the Collective Church, and the other clergymen and guards were working hard to calm the people down and stopping the panic from spreading across the city.
“I-I see. That really is very troublesome, isn’t it?” said Darcia.
“Yes. There was an incident several years ago where tears of blood came out of the eyes of the statue of Yupeon, the god of ice… I heard that was very troublesome as well,” said Kest.
“Is that so~?” Darcia murmured, her gaze wandering.
“Ah, I’m sorry for stopping you for so long,” said Kest as he stopped the conversation, thinking that she must be worried about her son who was in the city. “The toll fee for an adult with no identification will be ten Baums.”
“Yes, I understand,” said Darcia, taking out a ten-Baum coin from a pouch.
Before Kest could move, Aggar – having recovered from his shock – took the coin, going out of his way to hold Darcia’s hand in both of his in doing so.
“We have received your payment. Welcome to our fair city, the city of Morksi,” Aggar said.
“Y-yes, thank you,” said Darcia, a little bewildered as she left to enter the city.
“Senpai, don’t you think you overdid it? It won’t be my fault if the commanding officer yells at you,” said Kest.
“Shut the hell up,” Aggar growled at Kest. “Come to think of it, Dark Elves live pretty long lives. Her son probably became an adult long ago. And the fact that she didn’t mention anything about a husband means…” He trailed off, snickering to himself, apparently having impure thoughts.
Kest sighed. But with that said, Aggar hadn’t directly asked Darcia for a way to contact her or made any threats, so he couldn’t really be criticized for searching for Darcia and attempting to court her outside of work hours.
I’m sure even Aggar-senpai won’t do anything rash. Even though he’s like this, he’s still a guard, after all, Kest thought, returning his gaze to the highway.
And then he suddenly realized something.
Are there even any other Dark Elves in this city?
In the Alcrem Duchy, which lay in the north, many of the humans and Dwarves had pale skin. Dark Elves would stand out among such a population, but Kest hadn’t heard of any living around here.
Ah, but it’s not for certain that her son is a Dark Elf. The father might be of another race, or the son could be adopted… Come to think of it, their pupils were the same color, thought Kest, suddenly remembering the one-eyed boy with a purple eye who had passed through the gate just a few hours ago.
But he decided that the boy couldn’t be of any relation to Darcia and returned to work.
Alda, the god of law and fate, did not possess a physical body. It was not a simple matter for him to lose consciousness. Even a terrible pain that felt like a spear piercing his body from the inside would not cause him to faint.
But he groaned in pain now, having suffered significant damage due to a third of the special Dungeon created through his own power having been destroyed. This damage was far greater than the damage he had sustained when his divine authority was broken.
But he had managed to limit the effects that this had on Lambda’s surface more than when the spirit clone of Yupeon, the god of ice, was destroyed.
The damage he had sustained would likely recover in several years’ time. After all, he possessed greater individual strength to begin with, and he had far more worshipers than Yupeon.
“… Report,” Alda ordered.
“My lord Alda, I think you should rest for now…” said one of the other gods.
“We are gods. Nothing about my current state will change by resting a few days,” said Alda, brushing the god away, knowing that now was not the time to rest. “Report. What happened to the Five-colored Blades?”
“Two of the Five-colored Blades, Jennifer and Diana, are on standby in the ‘town.’ There is no damage to their bodies, minds or souls. It will be possible for them to return to the battlefield very soon,” the god reported. “However…”
Vandalieu hadn’t used Soul Devour on them, so the two of them were safe and recovering inside the ‘town.’
“It seems that they are questioning their past killings of the foul Ghouls and Majin. They are wondering whether they can continue fighting as they have been up until now,” said the god, continuing his report.
Jennifer and Diana were in the ‘town,’ where the people had disappeared due to Curatos’s destruction. Having found out from Vandalieu that Ghouls were a race that had been created by Vida, it seemed that they were now discussing what they would do next.
With that being the case, perhaps it would be best for Mill, the goddess of slumber, to speak directly to Diana, who was her priestess. The Five-colored Blades were not merely worshipers of the gods, but heroes who had been chosen by them.
However, Mill was currently occupied, as she was busy looking after Heinz and Delizah.
“I am allowing the souls of Heinz and Delizah to rest in my Divine Realm,” Mill said.
Heinz and Delizah had received attacks with the effects of Vandalieu’s Soul Devour Skill multiple times, and had suffered damage to their souls as a result.
It wasn’t enough to cause lasting damage on their memories, personalities or their Statuses, but it was likely that they would suffer symptoms such as their minds suddenly becoming clouded or their limbs suddenly becoming unable to move. They were in a state where, under ordinary circumstances, it would be best to rest for months or even up to a year.
But they were being treated inside the Divine Realm of Mill, the goddess of slumber. The damage to their souls was recovering several dozen times more quickly.
“Delizah will have no problems if she rests for a few more days,” said Mill. “However, Heinz’s recovery will take several months. Even though Joshua protected him, Vida’s incarnation attacked him afterwards when he was in a soul-only state. And it seems that the mental damage that he has suffered is also slowing the process.”
Heinz was not in a good state. It seemed that he had suffered no small amount of damage from Darcia’s attack.
But even then, he was in a far better state than Edgar.
“Edgar… is currently being treated by Rodcorte. He is attempting to repair Edgar’s soul using the soul fragments of Luke, who was destroyed,” reported Niltark, the god of judgment, in a tone that was devoid of emotion.
Edgar was the member of the Five-colored Blades who had sustained the heaviest damage. Even after returning to the ‘town’ and returning to his original body, he had been unable to move. On top of that, his mind was in a state of complete disarray; he had barely been able to remember his own name.
Niltark’s heroic spirit Luke, who had been descended upon Edgar during the battle, had expired not long afterwards.
Luke’s final words had been instructions to use the fragments of his own soul to treat Edgar if possible.
Those final words had been respected, and Edgar’s treatment had been left to Rodcorte, who was an expert on souls… Rodcorte had been quite hesitant to accept, but had finally agreed after Alda reminded him that he had promised to cooperate with Alda’s faction.
But even Rodcorte himself did not know whether Edgar could be restored to a normal state, and there was no way of knowing how long the process would take without actually attempting it.
Thus, it was unclear as to when the Five-colored Blades could all resume their activities. Everyone other than Edgar would be able to begin working again in several months, but the important floors of the Dungeon had been destroyed – the 66th floor and the ones beyond it, which they had not yet faced.
And even if the Dungeon floors had been intact, Curatos, the god of records, had been destroyed. Without him, the copies that would become trials for the party could not be created. The Dungeon currently had no traps or treasure chests; it was now nothing more than a very long hiking course.
It was therefore impossible to make Heinz and his companions any more powerful than they were now.
From this battle, the gods had learned that it would be a mistake to believe that the Five-colored Blades would be able to fight against the current Vandalieu to some extent under the right circumstances… that it would be a mistake to assume that the right circumstances could even be wished for.
“Alda, what if we end the Five-colored Blades’ training here and have them begin a crusade in several months’ time? Vandalieu may still be residing in the city of Morksi then,” suggested one of the younger gods.
“Indeed,” another young god said in agreement. “There will be a chance at victory if we gather the heroes that we have been raising and have Heinz and his companions lead them after they have recovered.”
“Silence,” said Niltark, standing up to speak before Alda could even respond. “Do not trouble our lord with your foolish plans.”
“F-foolish?!” one of the younger gods repeated incredulously.
“Niltark-dono, that manner of speaking can be considered rude, even when coming from someone of your stature!” protested the other.
“We understand that your heroic spirit was destroyed, but we would like you to refrain from taking your anger out on us!”
But Niltark’s expression was one of exasperation, not anger. “Allow me to ask, then, Arkum, god of the blue sky. How many forces will we be able to gather for this crusade to the city of Morksi in the Alcrem Duchy of the Orbaume Kingdom?”
“Of course, it will be possible to gather all of our war forces if we are given several months. It is likely that we will be able to gather all of the heroes and include more fighting forces from every Church. If we have Heinz stand as a leader, those who have deluded themselves into thinking that they are devout followers of Vida, members of Vida’s races themselves and even adventurers who never attend any Church would join the line of battle,” said Arkum.
Niltark gave another deep sigh. “Why don’t you understand that that would be impossible? As a god, you should be able to comprehend this.”
The gods of Alda’s forces were raising heroes in order to defeat Vandalieu. Many of them were just ordinary guards, squires, rookie adventurers or mage apprentices, but they were going through training and developing after receiving divine protections from the gods.
Indeed, if they could be gathered, it would form a considerable fighting force. However, not all of them were in the Orbaume Kingdom. About half of them were living in regions controlled by the Amid Empire.
How would the forces living in the Amid Empire gather in a city in the Orbaume Kingdom, a nation that was the Amid Empire’s enemy? No matter how one thought about it, it was obvious that they would be stopped by the armed forces at the border between the nations in the Sauron Duchy.
There was the option of having them sneak into the Orbaume Kingdom, but… there were dozens of heroes, and including their companions, that would be hundreds of people. That was far too many to sneak into the Orbaume Kingdom within the space of a few months.
“I am sure that you would not be foolish enough to suggest that we Teleport them across like Gufadgarn?” Niltark continued. “It is already clear that Zuruwarn, the chief of the gods of the space attribute, is on Vida’s side. We cannot acquire their assistance when they are focused on maintaining the attribute, and even if we could, we should not ask them for it… There is no telling where the heroes that we have put so much effort into raising would be sent off to.”
“Then there should be no problem with borrowing the strength of our followers who have ascended to divinity and become gods of the space attribute!” said Arkum.
In order to take a step closer to having a stable maintenance of the world, Alda had turned qualified believers into new space-attribute gods to join the remaining space-attribute gods in their work.
At first, it was to replace the large number of space-attribute gods that had been lost in battle, but now that the situation was like this, they had to be used.
But they were far too few in number.
“Do not be so foolish. There are far too few of them. Perhaps they could Teleport some heroes once or twice, but are you really suggesting that they possess enough power to exert it upon the world’s surface multiple times in quick succession? If we were to make them do that, they would be extinguished from existence,” said Niltark.
Perhaps only realizing the reality of events in the world for the first time from hearing Niltark’s words, Arkum let out a short gasp and looked away.
Incidentally, relying on human mages was out of the question. Almost every space-attribute mage capable of Teleporting other people over great distances was already employed by influential noble families or large Churches.
Requesting for their help would need information to be given to their respective organizations. There was no doubt that this would result in a crisis.
If they did not do this very carefully, a great war could break out between the Amid Empire and Orbaume Kingdom. In the worst-case scenario, the heroes of the Amid Empire and the heroes of the Orbaume Kingdom might begin killing each other.
After all, the Amid Empire and the Orbaume Kingdom were nations that had engaged in bloody feuds since they were founded.
In ordinary circumstances, the gulf between the nations would be bridged by the newly-appointed Pope Eileek of Alda’s Church in the Amid Empire and Heinz, the successor to Bellwood, after he finished his training. Led by these two individuals, the nations would overcome their differences and humanity would unite in order to vanquish the Demon King. At least, that had been the plan, but…
“In any case, the forces required to defeat Vandalieu cannot be gathered in a matter of months,” said Niltark.
In addition to the gap in the fighting forces left by Edgar, Heinz had lost his heroic spirit, Joshua. He was currently only able to summon a familiar spirit upon himself, even with Heroic Spirit Descent.
Of course, Alda had numerous heroic spirits other than Joshua. However, that did not mean that any of them could simply replace Joshua.
All heroic spirits were once originally humans, and they had their own personalities. Unlike familiar spirits, each would have their own compatibility with certain individuals. Heroic spirits could not be summoned unless their compatibility was good.
Joshua had been the heroic spirit with the best compatibility with Heinz.
“Then, we must simply have the other heroic spirits compensate for the ones that were lost –” Arkum began.
“Even if the heroic spirits did compensate for the ones that were lost, it would be meaningless before a Vandalieu who is free from any unfavorable circumstances with his own fighting forces gathered,” said Niltark.
“Unfavorable circumstances?” Arkum repeated. “Was it not Heinz and his companions who were taken by surprise?”
“It is the complete opposite,” said Mill, the goddess of slumber, answering in Niltark’s place. “It is true that this battle was unforeseen by Heinz and his companions, but judging from the records, the same is likely true for Vandalieu. Though his body was elaborately reproduced, it was still a fake, and he was forced to materialize his own soul in order to compensate for that. And none of his subordinates were with him… Gufadgarn and Vida’s Incarnation interfered, but Vandalieu was in unfavorable circumstances for the entire duration of the battle.”
The faces of the young gods, including Arkum, turned pale in response to Mill’s words. With that being the case, Vandalieu would likely spend the next few months gathering and preparing a countless number of subordinates. Just how much fighting forces would he have on his side?
“Niltark, Mill, that is enough,” said Alda, having stayed silent up until now as he listened to the gods’ conversation. “Arkum, I understand your feelings of impatience. Vandalieu surpasses the Demon King Guduranis in all aspects except for his strength in battle. I am sure that you cannot help but feel impatient, being able to only watch as the souls of other gods are devoured.”
“Our apologies,” the young gods said, bowing as they regained their composure from Alda’s gentle tone of voice.
Vandalieu was the first being they had ever seen with the ability to destroy souls. They had been shaken and become impatient because of this enemy, who was capable of destroying them despite the fact that gods were otherwise considered immortal.
Indeed, Vandalieu was different from Guduranis. Guduranis had only been able to destroy souls rather than devour them, and had needed somewhere between several seconds to half a minute just to destroy a single soul.
As each of Vandalieu’s attacks caused damage to the soul, he could simply destroy his enemies’ souls by attacking them. With the World Piercing Destructive Hollow Cannon, he could devour the souls of hundreds of humans with a single attack.
“For now, we must treat Heinz and his companions, and use the Dungeon left behind by Curatos to raise them into individuals worthy of succeeding Bellwood… Individuals who can become the central fighting force in the battle against Vandalieu,” said Alda.
Curatos, the god of records, had made copies from the information that he had recorded. It was possible for another god to recreate the copies on the Dungeon floors that remained intact, though they would not be as elaborate as the copies created by Curatos.
All of Alda’s subordinates combined could not fill the gap left behind by Curatos.
“I am sure that you are still uneasy, but I am sure that they will buy some time for us… Rodcorte’s reincarnated individuals or Fitun, who is absent here,” said Alda.
In Vandalieu’s dream, he was confused as he found himself surrounded by a great number of blocks.
He knew that he had to assemble these blocks. But he didn’t know how they were supposed to be assembled.
“Well, I don’t know, so I suppose I’ll think it up as I go. But I suppose I need to assemble hands before I can assemble the blocks,” he said to himself.
With a clattering sound, Vandalieu began assembling hands. Large hands, small hands, hands with many fingers, long hands – he created a great number of hands, each for a different use.
“Next, I should assemble eyes… no, brains first. Eyes can come after that.”
Vandalieu needed brains to think about how to assemble the blocks. He began assembling brains out of suitable-looking blocks. Round, triangular, rectangular – he made multiple, thinking that the more brains he had, the better.
And so, he continued building body parts he thought were necessary in quantities that he thought were necessary. Before he realized it, he had begun to lose track of things.
“Was this an eye? Or a leg? No, maybe it was a heart… No, I’m sure it was a vertebra. It has to be. But I’m not very confident,” he murmured.
Vandalieu had become unable to tell the body parts that he had assembled apart from one another. Would it be a mistake to assemble himself with these body parts in this state?
“Vandalieu, nobody knows what’s the right or wrong answer. You should take the form that you think is right,” a gentle voice said suddenly.
Vandalieu looked around to see that he was surrounded by his many companions; he hadn’t noticed them up until now.
Body parts assembled by Bone Man and Knochen were being carried in Sam’s carriage.
Zadiris and Basdia were assembling more parts, and Tarea was rebuilding them. Luciliano was taking apart body parts that had already been made, but Iris was taking the pieces and kneading them into round objects.
Jeena was trying to take separate body parts and put them together, but ended up crushing them because she used too much force. Zandia gathered the crushed fragments and began mixing them together.
Eleanora, Bellmond and Isla were all putting more body parts together on their own, and Pauvina fell over and broke them.
Princess Levia was burning the blocks and putting scorch-marks on them, while Orbia dissolved them into gooey masses. Quinn was assembling blocks into a beehive-like shape, and Eisen was attempting to feed the blocks to Vandalieu. Kanako stood on top of Vandalieu and began to sing.
Everyone else was putting the blocks together as they pleased.
It was very, very fun.
“… Where am I?” asked Vandalieu, seeing a beautiful ceiling as soon as he woke up.
The room was smaller than the shared room of the Starling Inn, but he had the feeling that it was higher in quality.
The back of his head felt warm.
“Good morning, Vandalieu.”
Vandalieu was lying with his head in Darcia’s lap.
“This is the Spring Day Pavilion,” said Darcia. “Your room in the Starling Inn was a shared room, so I vacated it and got a personal room here. It’s a place somewhere in-between a high-class inn and a cheap one.”
“More importantly, why are you here in Morksi, Mom?” Vandalieu asked. “And your skin color has become a little brighter. I do remember you and Gufadgarn coming to help me, though.”
“You remember that?!” Darcia exclaimed. “Th-that’s amazing. Even in that condition…”
“You were in your magical girl outfit with your transformation staff activated.”
“You don’t need to remember that! I don’t mind wearing it on-stage, but it’s embarrassing anywhere else. Gufadgarn-san turned up all of a sudden and said that we were going to get you, and I didn’t have anything to change into… Ah, those people saw me as well, didn’t they… I hope they’ve lost their memories,” Darcia mumbled to herself.
As Vandalieu lay there in her lap, he began to get a gist of what had happened.
After Darcia retrieved Vandalieu’s soul from the Dungeon, she had come to the city of Morksi to look after him. She had used the Chaos Skill to change her skin color so that she appeared as an ordinary Dark Elf.
Bellmond and Eleanora were in the city, but they had taken over the criminal organization here, so they had likely been apprehensive about being seen by the city’s people if they had come to him to help directly.
The fact that Gufadgarn wasn’t anywhere to be seen… was possibly because she was considerate enough to leave Darcia and Vandalieu alone to have some mother-son time.
“Thank you, Mom. Gufadgarn, too. I’ve made everyone worry about me,” said Vandalieu.
He heard a warm response from Gufadgarn inside his body. Darcia stroked Vandalieu’s hair with her warm hand.
“Is your body alright? Is there anything strange about your Status?” Darcia asked.
“My body… feels really heavy, but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it. As for my Status… my Mana is regenerating very slowly. Maybe it’s because I tore my soul into pieces and then essentially ate myself?” Vandalieu wondered.
“Yes,” Darcia agreed. “But Vida-sama said that those side-effects will be gone after a week at most, and then you’ll be back to normal.”
“I see… Then I’ll go to the Commerce Guild tomorrow.”
Vandalieu had recovered about half of his Mana. He wouldn’t have any difficulty doing the things that he had planned. If he was going to make a full recovery in about a week, it was probably fine to begin making his move now.
He couldn’t afford to just sleep as he lured Murakami and Birkyne here, either.
“I see, then I’ll go with you. It’s my first time going to the Commerce Guild as well, so I’m a little excited,” said Darcia.
“… Eh, you’re coming as well?”
“Yes, of course. That’s why I came here through the city’s gates, after all.”
It seemed that Darcia hadn’t come here just to look after Vandalieu.
“What about your sermons?” Vandalieu asked.
“Kanako-chan is adding some new members, so it should be fine for a while,” Darcia replied.
It seemed that Kanako had made use of Darcia’s absence to persuade candidates to join her idol group by telling them, “It’s for both Darcia-san and Vandalieu’s sakes!”
“And this city is quite nice, isn’t it? I wasn’t denied purchases for being a Dark Elf, and the guards and the people running the inn were nice to me. I don’t get any unpleasant stares from alleyways, either,” said Darcia.
Such persecution had gone unpunished during her days as an adventurer in the Amid Empire.
… Vandalieu felt a sudden urge to bombard the emperor’s castle and the Great Church of Alda.
“Well, there was someone who gave me a little trouble… but it was just one,” said Darcia.
Though he had no proof of this, Vandalieu immediately remembered Aggar, the guard who had demanded a bribe from him.
… Perhaps it wasn’t too late to go and turn him into meatballs for Quinn’s children.
No, no, Mom’s just too beautiful for her own good, so I’d end up committing mass murder if I killed every single person for things like that, Vandalieu told himself.
“Is something wrong?” Darcia asked.
“It’s nothing,” said Vandalieu. “Well then, let’s do our best with the skewer stall tomorrow.”
“Yes,” said Darcia, giving a happy laugh. “I’m looking forward to it.”
And so, the sun set over the city of Morksi, none of its citizens aware that it was now inhabited by the Demon King.