|Author: Kobayashi Homare||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2469 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1216 words|
I told all that in one sitting, leaving my throat dry, so I picked a cup and filled it on the faucet nearby and drank it all in one gulp. The room stayed silent while I did that, the girls did not seem to know what to say after hearing such a terrible story, that no human should go through. Even Luvias who grew up in the royal family had a pale face hearing that. Not even she could imagine a person being so harsh against one of their relatives, not to mention their grandson.
After a deep breath, I continued my story.
“After I left my home, I headed to the capital first.”
At the time, I was living in the largest country of the continent, and they were already looking for a hero there. There was already an army of knights and soldiers that had been built to fight against demons, but they still wanted one special entity, someone they could hold as a symbol of hope. On the surface that sounded like a good cause, but in truth they were mostly looking for someone who was reckless enough to infiltrate the enemy territory and challenge the Demon King directly, an assassin of sorts.
There had been a few people who were enticed by the prestige and monetary remuneration of the mission, who charged into the Haunted Lands by themselves, but none had been successful or returned alive. All of them were top class warriors, otherwise they would have been denied the role, but the demons of the time were just as powerful, so they could not get too far into the Haunted Lands before they perished.
The strategy at the time was to use a disposable pawn that could target the enemy’s leader directly to win the war. In a way, that was a really irresponsible method, but there was no other option left. The war had waged on for years, many countries had already fallen, and the human territory kept decreasing rapidly. It was unlikely that even if all soldiers and knights assembled, they would be able to resist a full-out attack from the demons.
None of the past heroes had returned, and our army and provisions were slowly being shaven away. Even if we could live another day, nothing guaranteed we would last a second day. It was in such a dire situation that I made my entrance. As soon as I got to the capital, I requested an audition with the king to apply as a hero. Nowadays it might be hard to imagine, but back then there were many people who aspired to be a hero, so it was all a formal process. Even if a kid like me wanted to apply, they would just process it like with any other applicants, even the king had a really emotionless and robotic voice as he processed my application.
But when they conducted the strength test, their behavior changed instantly. I had overpowered all their inspectors. I did not do that intending to flaunt my power, but the budget they would allocate if I passed depended on my strength, so I did my best for that.
Having gained the maximum budget possible, I wanted to head into the Haunted Lands alone, but the king stopped me almost instantly. I returned to the audience hall wondering what happened, and when I met him, the king was acting almost the opposite way as earlier, saying he would procure travel companions for me. Apparently I was far stronger than even I thought, and he was likely trying to not lose such a powerful ally that showed up out of nowhere.
There were three people who would join me. The first was the warrior Baradero, a muscular man who was the strongest warrior in the king’s army. He was a cheerful and noisy guy, who would always cackle happily at the littlest thing. While no one could compare to him in strength, his playful personality made it hard to place him with other soldiers, so he always acted solo.
The second one was a priest, Lichium. He was always well dressed and walked with his back straight, being strict with himself but gentle with others, pretty much the ideal priest. He was also leagues above other priests when it came to power, and because of his strong desire to help people, he refused a comfortable office position, and instead kept working as a priest.
The last one was Sorciere, the magician. She was unrelated to the court’s sorcerers, and had been hired as a mercenary. Her contract was nearing its end, so she was paid a large sum to renew it and make her travel with me. Just like the other two people, she was incredibly powerful. In the end, all the comrades I was given were all inhumanly strong.
When our trip started, there was some friction between us, but we quickly developed a bond. We were all eccentric in our own ways, all having our weird sides, but somehow that made it easier to get along.
We left the capital behind and traveled throughout the world, killing all the demons that tormented the people. In reality I wanted to plunge straight into the heart of the Haunted Lands, driven by my emotions, but Sorciere spoke against it. She mentioned how everyone who went there before perished, so if we wanted a chance at winning, we had to study our enemy’s strength first.
As we traveled, we met a lot of different people. Some revered our power and wanted to follow us, others seeked to manipulate our strength, showering us with presents and flattery, and there were other more influential people who tried to keep us as guardians of their territories. We experienced angering, annoying, and sorrowful episodes as we traveled, killing one powerful demon after another. Once we felt ready, we headed into the Haunted Lands. The demons realized they were losing their grip on the human world too, so they gathered all their forces to stop our party from progressing.
We fought, spilling their blood in exchange for the blood they spilled. The magic spells from both sides heavily transformed the terrain, multiple forests burned down, and rivers dried up. Many people came to our aid, getting us a step forward but losing their lives on the way, and that strengthened our determination to complete our mission.
The fight against the Demon King was the fiercest of them all. His strength was representative of his title as King, and he would have been far more powerful than me if I did not have the divine blessing from the gods. But I had that, and my party, so while I suffered many wounds, I succeeded in piercing his body with a holy sword. We had defeated him, the most powerful Demon King. Seeing him fall, the demons that survived had no leader, so they escaped to wherever they could.
If I had spare energy left, I would have chased every single one down, but I was exhausted, so I dragged my wounded body back to the capital.
“…And that’s how that fight ended.”
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I drank from my cup again, moistening my throat and taking a deep breath.