If I had to describe the Demonic Continent in a few words, it would be ‘an ashen colored world’.
The ground, the forest, the river, the sky; they were all dark.
“It didn’t look like this in the long past though…” (Mel)
I asked in response to the bitter words of Mel-san.
“Since that being that calls themselves the God of the Demons, Iblis, showed up, this land has become a land with no light.” (Mel)
“I see…” (Makoto)
Looks like the Demonic Continent has turned into such a scape because of the influence of Iblis.
At that moment, Johnny-san moved his head and glared far away.
“We are being watched.” (Johnny)
“Yes, I feel a gaze.” (Anna)
The ones speaking with tension in their voices are Johnny-san and Anna-san.
Momo seems to be the same, her face is stiff.
My Detection Skill isn’t reacting at all though…
I look around restlessly with Farsight, but I can’t tell at all from where we are being looked at.
The moment I thought this was troubling…
“No worries. The ones who have been ruling this land were us Ancient Dragons. If you are together with me, we won’t be attacked by demons.” (Mel)
“As expected of the White Dragon-san.” (Makoto)
Way too reliable.
“Now then, what will you do from now on, Spirit User-kun? The Great Demon Lord’s Castle, Eden, doesn’t stay in one place; it is a floating castle. Even if we search for it blindly, we won’t find it.” (Mel)
“Please wait for a bit.” (Makoto)
According to the picture book of The Legend of Abel, the Great Demon Lord Castle Eden roams around the skies of the Demonic Continent randomly.
If we fly around without any plans, we will end up wasting our stamina.
(Ira-sama~, can you hear me? I want you to tell me where the Great Demon Lord’s Castle is.) (Makoto)
When in trouble, ask God!
I shall rely on her as much as needed, is what I was expecting, but…
(…Moon…koto…that place is…le…ve…)
The signal is…I mean, the thought transmission isn’t working properly?
Ooi, Ira-sama~. Can you hear me?
Her voice has gotten even further away.
“What’s the matter, Spirit User-kun?” (Mel)
“Since entering the Demonic Continent, it has gotten more difficult to hear the voice of Ira-sama.” (Makoto)
“Eh?! Isn’t that bad, Master?!” (Momo)
Momo gets flustered, but this was within expectations.
The Demonic Continent is right at the vicinity of the Great Demon Lord.
Ira-sama has told me that there’s a barrier that covers the continent.
Right now Ira-sama must be doing her best calibrating the thought transmission (metaphor).
“Let’s go to some places. There’s a number of things I want to confirm.” (Makoto)
The White Dragon-san lands at an open place nearby.
We go down the back of the White Dragon-san and step onto the ashen land.
“This is…” (Makoto)
The Demonic Continent, huh.
Once again, a gray colored world as far as the eye can see.
It is as if my eyes had lost their ability to perceive colors.
But the most important thing is…
I call the Great Water Spirit Undine.
“Yes, Our King.” (Dia)
The biggest key here for me is whether my Spirit User Skill is affected.
“Not bad. The Water Spirits are energetic.” (Dia)
“I see.” (Makoto)
I breathe a sigh of relief.
It is not like the crazy barrier at the Deep Sea Temple that denies the existence of all Spirits.
Spirit Users have no problems in the Demonic Continent.
Now then, how about the others?
“Looks like there’s no problem with the Wind, Earth, and Fire Spirits.” (Johnny)
Johnny-san says this with his long hair waving.
He can use all 4 element Spirits.
“I feel even more power welling up from me!” (Momo)
Momo was swinging her arms around.
This girl is a half-vampire, so I can understand how the air of the Demonic Continent suits her.
As for Mel-san, she apparently lived in the Demonic Continent originally, so there’s no problem at all.
And so, the biggest problem is…
“I don’t really like this place too much…” (Anna)
Anna-san wasn’t that compatible with the Demonic Continent.
The complexion of her face isn’t good.
“Let’s take a break for a bit around here. It would be better to get used to the environment of the Demonic Continent to a certain degree.” (Makoto)
We need Anna-san, who is our main firepower, to be in perfect condition for the battle.
“Then, let’s look for a place that’s suitable for camping—” (Johnny)
At the time when Johnny-san -the camp master- was looking around for a place to set camp…
“White Dragon Helemerck-sama!!”
A loud voice calling Mel-san resonated.
We all hurriedly turned to where the voice came from.
The one standing there was…
(A Ghost…?) (Makoto)
A boy with a transparent body…
“An enemy?!”, I said as I took a battle stance, but looking at his expression, he doesn’t seem to have any ill intentions.
“You…have I met you somewhere before?” (Mel)
Mel-san tilts her head.
Looks like she doesn’t remember.
The ghost boy made a sad expression.
“Haha…of course you would. It has already been 200 years. You saved me and my little sister when I was alive. We who were a family of devilkin had no place to be in, and even when monsters attacked us, no one saved us. Yet, Helemerck-sama saved us. I won’t forget that debt!”
“I-I see…” (Mel)
Mel-san seemed to be feeling awkward about this.
I think it can’t be helped that she can’t remember something that happened 200 years ago.
“Can you please come to my village? Since the time that Great Personage ruled the world, this continent has been peaceful. Even weak Ghosts like us can live in peace. We will welcome you.”
Mel-san glances here.
‘What will you do?’, is what her eyes were saying.
At that moment, words floated in front of me.
[Will you go to the village in the Demonic Continent?]
(…Hmm, what should I do?) (Makoto)
There’s the chance it is a trap.
It is the village of demons after all.
Ghosts are said to be weak, but being attacked by many is still dangerous.
“Let’s go, Mel-san.” (Makoto)
“If the Spirit User-kun says so, let’s go.” (Mel)
Johnny-san, Anna-san, and Momo seemed to be flustered.
But they still agreed with me in the end.
If anything happens, we can just ride on Mel-san and escape after all.
“The ones there are your comrades, right, White Dragon-sama? Please follow me.”
We were guided by the ghost boy and advanced deep inside a dim forest.
“Over here, White Dragon-sama.”
The place we arrived at was a modest village that is surrounded by simple fences.
I thought for sure it would be a ghost town, but the races of the residents were varied.
Orcs, goblins, skeletons, and demons.
But they all had something in common.
“The ones here are all non-combatants.” (Johnny)
I nod at the whisper of Johnny-san.
The ones in the village are young ones, elderly, and women.
There’s no strong looking demon.
Looks like it wasn’t a trap.
When I began to walk in order to check out the village…
My clothes were grabbed.
It was Anna-san.
“What’s the matter?” (Makoto)
“What’s the matter, you ask…?” (Anna)
‘This is a demon village, you know? This is careless!’, is what she whispered to me, angry.
Momo was also looking at me uneasy.
But it is only these two who are flustered.
Mel-san is greeting a demon that seems to be the village chief.
The residents of the village were looking at Mel-san with respect and admiration, so I can tell that Ancient Dragons are indeed seen as special existences.
Johnny-san must have judged that this village wasn’t dangerous, he has gone to have a walk.
This is my first time in the Demonic Continent, so I would like to explore too.
A new continent really is exciting.
At that time, noise rang in my head.
It is most likely Ira-sama, but I can’t hear her clearly.
Looks like the tuning is not going well yet.
Fight on, Ira-sama.
I think Ira-sama is angry.
But it can’t be helped since I can’t hear her.
“Anna-san, Momo, if you stay on your toes the whole time right from the get-go, you will just tire yourselves out, so first of all, rest your body and mind.” (Makoto)
“…Haah, Makoto-san is way too relaxed.” (Anna)
“…Just what kind of nerves are you made of?” (Momo)
I tried being considerate here, but the two directed cold eyes at me.
I slowly look around the village.
They are the comrades of Mel-san, so the demons of the village were mostly amicable.
Ancient Dragons are great.
I searched around to see if there’s food, weapons, or armor, but there were no stores targeted to outsiders.
It is a poor village, so they are apparently self-sustaining in everything.
It seems the only thing we can do is gather information, so I chatted with the young demons that spoke to us.
I say that, but this is a small village at the edge of the Demonic Continent.
“How has it been lately?” (Makoto)
Even when I asked this, it seems like they don’t have much exchanges between other settlements, so I was told they were having unchanging days.
The point that bothered me was…
Every now and then in their conversations, they would say ‘we are at peace thanks to the Great Demon Lord-sama’.
Looks like before the Great Demon Lord appeared, even when the demons were strong, there were fights between Demon Lords, and it was a world that was difficult to live in for weak demons.
And so, around 100 years ago, the Great Demon Lord appeared, had all Demon Lords obey him, and united the world.
Because of this, it had become a peaceful society for the demons.
When I look by my side, Anna-san and Momo were making faces as if they were having it hard to say anything.
We are going to go defeat the Great Demon Lord.
For them, we are villains that will be bringing chaos to their world.
For these two who are upright at their core, this must be bothering them.
But there was something else that bothered me.
That slight feeling that something is off when I was talking with the residents of this village.
It was a feeble reaction, so I didn’t notice at first.
But when I looked closely, it was ‘that’.
I managed to notice thanks to the Charm Skill I got when I became the Guardian Knight of Furiae-san.
Charm is technically what would be called ‘brainwashing’ in my previous world.
That’s why there’s no assurance that what these people are saying is true.
Most of all, if they are Charmed, then it is even doubtful if this village is actually peaceful.
I wanted to stay for a night, but resting here would be dangerous.
I also have experience with the Moon Country of Laphroaig.
Now that I think about it, how’s that Queen we met at Laphroaig doing?
It is hard to think that she would Charm the residents of this small village…
But it is the Charm that is like the signature move of the Moon Oracle.
It bothers me whether she is connected to it.
I should ask Mel-san’s opinion later.
(Anyways, we shouldn’t stay here for long…) (Makoto)
That’s what I have concluded.
We should depart soon.
In the end, I casually asked this.
“By the way, there doesn’t seem to be many young men here. There’s a lot of children and elderly. Is there a reason for that?” (Makoto)
It is a poor village, so maybe they are out gaining their share, was my train of thought when I asked this.
“Aah…actually, there’s trouble. It seems like a Demon Lord-sama had been defeated by something called Heroes in the West Continent…”
What came back in response was something related to us.
It seems like even a small village like this that’s at the corner of the continent has received at least this much information.
We have to be careful so that Anna-san doesn’t get exposed.
But the next words blew those thoughts of mine away.
“Thanks to that, the warriors from the whole continent have been called to gather by the word of the Dragon King-sama. They are apparently going to eradicate the humans that are in the land of the Immortal King Bifrons with an army of 1,000,000.”
The Light Hero-san and the Great Sage-sama opened their mouths wide.
While the two were frozen stiff, what surfaced in my head was a part of ‘the Legend of Hero Abel’.
—1,000,000 of the demon lord army appeared from the Demonic Continent, and the Savior-sama slayed them. The place where that victory happened became the grounds where the capital of Highland, Symphonia, was born.
It is one of the most famous sagas of the legends of Savior Abel.
(One thing after the other…) (Makoto)
I feel like holding my head.
Looks like they aren’t giving me any breaks here.
The next historical event was already on the move.