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Chapter 481: All the World’s a Stage, Something Something Actors

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Author: The Sole Survivor Original Source: SFACG
Translator: CatatoPatch English Source: Re:Library

When a Demon Hunter advanced to become a Senior Demon Hunter, they would have their own area to hunt in. Should they leave that area… well, that would be a disaster… It was under such circumstances that Nicole, a rising star amongst the Demon Hunters, famed for hunting down creatures in cities, took up this mission of unknown difficulty.

The village of Lyon ended up being in a worse state than we had anticipated. The lord of this region was a veritable bloodsucker to the commoners, concerned only with taxing them but not with administering them. In a lot of ways, he was similar to the Vampire plaguing the village, the only difference being that his tithe wasn’t blood.

Because of that, the village had no way of hiring a proper mercenary troupe that was powerful enough to defeat the Vampire. The lord of the region had no intention of sending his troops either. And while all that was happening, the Demon Hunter Guild administering this region was still trying to determine what the actual difficulty level of this request was.

Naturally, that didn’t mean the village was just going to lie down and await their demise either. The able-bodied youth of the village decided to take matters into their own hands by forming a bandit troupe to raid passing merchants… at least, that was till they bumped into me…

“So what you’re saying is that your initial aim was to gather enough money in order to hire a more powerful mercenary troupe?” I guess that’s an option too. Some of the more powerful mercenaries are just as effective as slaying demons as the Demon Hunters.

“Not necessarily…” The bandit leader paused for a second before continuing, “If we aren’t able to procure enough gold to hire a mercenary troupe, the next plan was to find a way to move the villagers away…”

So they had a backup plan as well… huh… I never expected this bandit leader to be capable of such meticulous planning.

However, I could clearly see his eyes shifting as he said that. In all likelihood, the safety of the village wasn’t his only concern either. Perhaps, that might just be an excuse for his banditry. After all, it would be a lot easier for him to flee by himself versus dragging along an entire village. Between selfishness and self-sacrifice, I was more inclined to believe that Humans chose the former.

Even so, now wasn’t the time to nitpick on the motives for his banditry. With the bandit leader’s brief account, I now had a rough idea of the situation.

Having understood the danger of the village as well, Neneth couldn’t help but throw me a curious look. “Oh right. Sister Mo Na, Neneth and Sister Nicole are both here to slay that creature of darkness, but what are you here for?”

For Nicole, of course. Does it look like I’m here to visit family instead?

Not that I would ever say that out loud, of course; it would be wise to set up an honorable image in front of Nicole and Neneth instead. With that in mind, I first smiled at Neneth then raised my head slightly, eyes peering into the distant blue sky as I said solemnly, “I’ve heard that Lyon has been plagued by darkness, that’s why I’ve decided to lend a hand. I wish to… deliver salvation unto these unfortunate commoners!”

Hear! Hear! Now that was some good speech delivering right there! Just listen to how noble, how determined I was just now. The men would cheer while the women would weep tears of joy! I’m such a genius. Even I’m moved by my rousing performance and selfless spirit…

“Wah~~Such nobility, Sister Mo Na!” Clearly, Neneth agreed with my assessment as well. The next time she looked at me, there was an undisguised fervour in her eyes. “Not only is our Sister Mo Na beautiful, she’s so compassionate as well… Sister Mo Na’s the best, Neneth likes you even more now!”

Hahaha. Just look at my wonderful oratory skills. Dealing with some naive brat is no challenge at all. Now that I’ve successfully persuaded Nicole’s little follower, how long more before I take the prize herself?

Unfortunately, the speech itself did not seem to impact the rest as much as Neneth. The bandits obviously weren’t going to buy it, seeing as they had a grudge with me. But why was Nicole so unmoved as well? My speech was flawless, my acting skills sublime… I doubt there’s anyone in the Western Human Realms who can act better than me! And if there is, step forth right now. I’ll use my actions to prove who is the actor with the bigger sword!

However, I knew better than anyone that overconfidence was a slow and insidious killer. That was why I quickly reined in my conceited thoughts… I mean, my attempts at bravely challenging the competition… As long as you can convince yourself, you can convince anyone!

Seeing that Neneth had completely bought into my story, Nicole raised an eyebrow before coldly asking, “Just by yourself?”

“Of course not, I just got separated from my companions.” I pointed at the pleading bandits. “There were others with me. We just got separated during the chaos of the bandit encounter. They got tangled up with his lackeys while I tried to summon my Fire Elemental. But because of my inexperience, and a momentary panic, I ended up…”

As I said that, I lowered my head as if in remorse.

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“Don’t be sad, Sister Mo Na, Neneth thinks you did a fine job.” Neneth quickly tried to change the topic upon noticing my dejected look. “But Sister Mo Na, you mentioned there were others with you? Where are they now? Do they need our help?”

“That’s okay. They are all accomplished warriors, there were just too many bandits at the time, and we were ambushed as well. Oh, that’s right.” I pointed at the bandit leader. “This guy should be their leader, he was the one that had them try to capture me… Even if my companions are still fighting, the battle should be over once we show them that their leader has been captured.”

“In that case, let’s hurry.” Neneth turned to Nicole as she said that. “Sister Nicole, let’s go save them, all right?”

“…fine.” Nicole spat out coldly. Yet as soon as she said that, she drew her sword at one of the large trees roughly ten meters away. “Who’s there?!”

A crescent-shaped, white wave of sword energy swiftly split that half-meter thick tree trunk, causing it to slowly slide downwards and revealing its behind. A slender black figure immediately jumped out from the shadows.

The figure darted to the side of Nicole, and in the time it took to blink, drew out a dagger and stabbed at Nicole’s shoulders.

“Clink!”

Still seated on her white horse, Nicole spun about and deflected the incoming dagger with her sword. At the same time, the black figure, defying all the known laws of physics, managed to launch herself at Nicole in mid-air, despite having nowhere to kick off from. Even so, Nicole remained as calm as before. Her left hand swiftly struck out at the oncoming leg, meeting force with force.

All that happened within the span of a few seconds. Upon exchanging these few blows, the figure landed nimbly back on the ground, choosing not to harass the girl any further.

Naturally, this newcomer was Regine. In order to prevent any potential mishap -such as those bandits suddenly deciding to commit suicide by attacking me- she had been tailing us from the beginning. Yet who would have thought that Nicole’s senses would be so sharp that she could actually see through Nicole’s stealth…

Speaking of which, Nicole is now a Demon Hunter and Regine is my Demoness… things might get a little troublesome…

Even though Ancarin and Regine were Demonesses, as long as they did not go all out, the chances of them being exposed were low. Even so, Nicole was a Demon Hunter, a profession dedicated to slaying just such beings. Plus, she was also the disciple of one of their branch heads. I couldn’t say for certain whether or not she might have some special method of seeing through Regine’s identity. If she had, then it wouldn’t just be Regine’s identity which would be exposed, mine would as well.

“Master.”

Regine continued facing off against Nicole as she said that, both girls strikingly similar in how frigid they were. If there had to be a difference between the two, Regine’s coldness was a result of what she had suffered previously, so while her eyes were cold, they were not empty. As for Nicole, her suffering had a lot to do with me and was most likely ongoing…

“Hahahaha. A misunderstanding, this is all a misunderstanding.” I quickly dragged Regine behind me then stepped forward to explain the situation. “Regine is one of my bodyguards. She was probably worried for my safety so she came chasing over.”

“So she’s an ally then…” Neneth happily clapped her hands together. “That’s great, we have another pretty sister to accompany us!”

Without waiting for Nicole to say anything, I immediately greeted Regine happily and asked, “Regine, how is everyone doing?”

“Fine.” She curtly answered, face as expressionless as before. “No one has suffered any injuries.”

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“That’s great! Let’s go meet up with Jezsere and the others then!” I then turned to look at the bandits who were still kneeling before me. “Regine, I need you to look after them. If anyone dares to make a move, kill them. Well, maybe not kill, but at least teach them a lesson.”

“Understood, Master.”

Strangely enough, I couldn’t detect any animosity between Nicole and Regine right now. Perhaps it was because they had both fought each other to a draw, or perhaps they had developed some sort of kinship, seeing as they were both ice queens.

Either way, it was good news that Regine’s identity hadn’t been exposed. In actuality, it was difficult for a Demoness to be exposed, not unless she used the abilities given to her by her Devil patron. Normally, a Demoness really wasn’t all that different from a normal person. That was the reason why there were all sorts of strange books about how to identify a Demoness, though those books had already been declared forbidden by the Church due to the damage they caused. What was worth noting was that they were the ones who wrote it in the first place…



Shameless Self-promotion

Announcement: I’ve re-opened my Patreon in case anyone wants to sponsor more chapters. Every end of the month, those chapters in early access will be released for free for all to read. If you sponsored a chapter, you will gain permanent early access to these chapters. Essentially, everyone gets more chapters to read, but those who donated get to read earlier. More chapters will then be translated at the start of the month. Explanation on the Patreon itself.

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If you liked my work translating Devil’s Evolution Catalog, feel free to check out Song of Adolescence. Also, every comment is appreciated even though I might not reply. I do read them.

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