LS – Chapter 158: Raising curtains next

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“Gahne has no intention to claim the land of the Gahne Nether. Do as ya please.”

At a room in the Kuama Castle, the King Zenotta, Gold, and Gestaf were having a meeting.

The meeting is about Gestaf and the 3rd Faction taking leadership in reclaiming the Nether when it gets purified, and creating a new nation.

The king of Gahne, Gold, has consented in regards to the ownership of the Gahne Nether.

Gahne has been expanding its capital every year and is accepting the villages in the vicinity.

The ultimate goal would be to assimilate all of the settlements of Gahne into the capital and the remaining villages will be used as bases to collect resources.

One wrong step and it could create a dystopia where all citizens are under supervision, but it should be fine for now.

They have enough land, and they pride in a decent degree of specialty products just from their current territory. Gahne is the one with the most stable production line within the major countries.

As for the noteworthy points, it would be that their hand on remote places is pretty crude. But that’s exactly why they are not as adhered to the land of the Gahne Nether which is annexed to the nation.

“If the king of Gahne has given the permission, shouldn’t it be fine for Kuama to be on reserve at least?” (Zenotta)

The one who is being careful here is King Zenotta.

This is what’s normal. It is the Nether they have been keeping an eye on for more than a century. No matter the reason, it is the natural duty as a king to be careful.

“If it is just in the case of securing land, then yeah. But our first and foremost request is the Kuama Nether. That’s the best place to manage now that the Blue Demon Lord has become our ally after all.”

“The one who created the Gahne Nether was Scarlet, so this one’s influence is practically nil.” (Gold)

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that the monsters born in the Gahne Nether are the subordinates of the Scarlet Demon Lord.

Purple managed to secretly occupy a part of that Nether in the incident of before, so I doubt he is a Demon Lord that’s too tied up with his own territory.

Even if so, he is not someone we can negotiate with: ‘we will be building a country inside your Nether, so don’t interfere, okay?’.

We can neutralize the threat of the monsters in the Kuama Nether by having Blue join in on the reclaiming of it. Not only that, it should be possible to control the low rank monsters who have almost no resistance and use them as manpower.

“Of course, we won’t force you. If Kuama wants to purify the Nether themselves and wants to reclaim it as new land, we won’t get in your way. However, we won’t be able to provide our full assistance. To be more concrete, Kuama will have to deal with the remaining monsters as they have until now.”

“You are saying quite the sad thing.” (Zenotta)

“Now, now, we will retrieve a number of monsters to serve as manpower for our reclamation efforts, so their numbers will decrease greatly, and there’s no denying it will be comparatively easier.”

If the Demon Lord gives the order, most monsters will obey without objections. The only exceptions would be Uniques who have a strong sense of self.

If Blue retrieves the monsters little by little, their total numbers will decrease a lot .

But the burden of it is apparently unexpectedly heavy, so there’s a limit to the frequency compared to Purple.

You could say this is the difference in skill between Purple who controls devils often, and Blue who controls them haphazardly.

“So there’s no downsides to it, but also not much benefit, huh.” (Zenotta)

“It is the same as Mejis after all. However, Mejis has many purification specialists within the Yugura Church. The Yugura Church may help out in the purification of the Nether, but they will most likely and understandably prioritize Mejis.”

Mejis has been invaded by Purple before, and most of its territory has been corroded by the Nether.

Even if they were to send some to Kuama, the priority would be lower.

“Yer so petty, Kuama King. Getting rid of the Demon Lord’s threat is already wonderful enough. Ya had yer hands full with erecting a defensive wall and maintaining the status quo. Not feeling any benefits when in the face of the doors opening to purifying the Nether and expanding your land is way too greedy, ya know?” (Gold)

“Even if you say so, Gahne King…no, would it be best to call you Gold Demon Lord in this case?” (Zenotta)

“I don’t mind being called Gahne King when this one is doing diplomatic work.” (Gold)

“Then, Gahne King, Kuama doesn’t have many clerics in comparison to Mejis. There are people of the Yugura Church, but there will most likely be more who will be leaving this land in order to purify the Mejis Nether. In that case, we will simply be leaving that Nether as simply a land that can’t be purified.”

“Then more the reason ya should just give the land to the man there. Due to the relations of the territory, it is only adjoined to Kuama. Yer in the front seat when it comes to giving favor or returning favor.” (Gold)

“That’s true, but…” (Zenotta)

King Zenotta groaned as he brushed his beard. By the way, it is not like this old man is that obsessive about getting benefits from the Kuama Nether.

In other words, he wants one more push -a clear benefit that can convince the people of Kuama.

Kuama is different from Gahne where they rule all of the country. All places aside from the capital of Kuama are managed by nobles.

In the case the Kuama Nether is seen as new land, King Zenotta won’t be the only one with targets in their eyes.

The nobles who are greedy with expanding their territory will begin to pop their heads out.

Therefore, if the Kuama capital were to decide by themselves to throw away the interest of the Nether, it would fan the anger of the nobles and citizens.

Land is land even if it is hard to manage. It is a valuable resource.

King Zenotta understands this well and is prodding us here, confident that we have some sort of material to convince him.

You could say he trusts in us, but…he is seriously so stubborn.

“Then, we shall provide you with monsters to maintain the land of Kuama as payment.”

“…What do you mean by that?” (Zenotta)

“The land of Kuama is already vast as it is. But it is not like you are making the best use of all of it. Forests and mountains exist. You can’t really say your present supply line maximizes those resources, right?”

I spread parchment and explained the details.

The making of roads to move through the forest and building bridges to cross rivers. And most of all, digging tunnels for the mountains.

Even in modern Japan, accidents happen in the construction of tunnels. Making such things in the Medieval Times was a grueling endeavor, and it always comes with its fair share of dangers.

But monsters can go at a faster pace than humans, moreover, you can ignore casualties as you progress.

If the communication environment is improved by leaps, the economy within the country will be smoothened even further.

Kuama has a decent amount of forests and mountains even if not to the degree of Taizu. Though there’s most likely a few things to consider when compared to Gahne who has the most level ground.

“Hohoh… I see, I see.” (Zenotta)

“Forests are a veritable resource, so it would be better to not deforestate a whole forest, but by maintaining it, you will have more locations that can serve for agriculture. As such, you will increase the amount of land you can use without the need to expand the land. I think you will be able to improve the land for 100 years worth.”

“This may be unbecoming after the proposal, but if you were to dispatch monsters, won’t it hinder your progress to found a nation?” (Zenotta)

“No, it won’t. In the end, what’s most important in order for people to be able to live in it and cultivate crops is to purify the Nether. We are simply going to be providing you with the surplus of manpower in that period of time. The maintenance of Kuama will have taken a turn for the better by the time the purification reaches a satisfactory point.”

“True. We will be able to persuade the nobles with this… By the way, what problems will arise from this?” (Zenotta)

He asked without hesitation. Well, it is more trustworthy than a person who only looks at the benefits.

“Even if it will improve the land of Kuama, it will also mean a large influx of monsters will be coming into the territory of Kuama even if for a brief period of time. There’s the risk of this becoming mentally taxing for the citizens, so we would need to refrain from moving them at night. If merchants or adventurers were to encounter them, it would turn into a bit of a ruckus.”

“If they were to advance through a path that’s being opened up by an army of monsters in the middle of the night… I see, those points should be properly dealt with. I would like to have meetings with you in regards to ideas on how to improve this. You don’t mind prioritizing my requests, right?” (Zenotta)

“If you only make unreasonable requests, I will refuse, but I will trust in your common sense, King Zenotta.”

“I know. Then, I shall take responsibility and convince the retainers and nobles… Can I take the parchment?” (Zenotta)

“I prepared it for that purpose.”

“Man, it is great that you are so prepared!” (Zenotta)

King Zenotta retrieves the presented documents with glee. That’s seriously a good smile he’s got there.

But there’s really a need to warn him about overdoing it. There’s specialized lumberjacks and carpenters that are making roads right at present. We must avoid taking away all of their work.

Gestaf raised his right arm silently just when the talk was about to end.

“King Zenotta, can I ask one thing?” (Gestaf)

You could see a peek of the bandaged right arm of Gestaf from his long sleeves. His current right arm is simply a devil shaping it up, so there’s no flesh, bone, or blood flowing.

Even if so, he has already mastered it to a degree where he can write. Wouldn’t he have been stronger than Haakudoku if he were younger?

“I don’t mind, but are you dissatisfied by something?” (Zenotta)

“No, that youngster there has done a satisfactory negotiation already. Things should proceed smoothly even with just my private funds alone. But if we are going to be neighboring countries, there’s something I must ask first. Tell me your honest opinion about me creating a country.” (Gestaf)

It is true that Gestaf had accepted the invitation of Ritial and aimed to overthrow Kuama.

Putting it in an extreme manner, terrorists of their own nation will be making a country right by their doorstep. It is hard to say they would feel happy about this.

“Fumu… That’s true. I have learned enough about the history of Heriodora contributing to Kuama. But the Kuama kings of history, including me, couldn’t solve the cycle of hatred that the Heliodora household held to the point of wanting to take over Kuama. Your hatred is justified. Even if so, we can’t just let you take away the country. If you are going to create a country and end that cycle of hatred, I shall happily watch over it.” (Zenotta)

“…This is a bad era. You could have left your name in history at any other time.” (Gestaf)

“True. Why is it that there are no normal leaders in the other countries?” (Zenotta)

Marito is the most exemplar in the history of Taizu, Gahne has Gold with her outlandish power, Mejis has Pope Euparo whose reputation is extremely high.

If we were to compare them, King Zenotta would just look like a plain old man.

But he is also one of the influential people; a king that watches over the path of his country.

“I asked something boorish. Please forget it.” (Gestaf)

“It is common sense. There’s no need to go out of your way to remember it. But leaving that aside, is there no way for me to leave my name in history? Can you counsel me for a bit?” (Zenotta)

“You are so shameless it is even refreshing.” (Gestaf)

He really is one tough king.

“Ah, right. We got a certain degree of information about the Illegitimate, so I would like to interrogate Raheight.”

“Aah…about that…” (Zenotta)

King Zenotta suddenly made a sour face. I did have a faint feeling that was the case, but it really must be that.

What King Zenotta told me was that Raheight had died from the interrogation done under the supervision of Archbishop Seraes.

He ignored the fact that it was the body of a child and tortured him without reservation. The body of the person himself gave out before spitting out the information as a result of this.

This is the natural result when people who only know how to torture adults do the same to a child.

“I hope he hasn’t moved to a different body.”

“B-But I heard there were no signs of him using magic in the middle of the torture though?” (Zenotta)

“At the time when he was cornered by Archbishop Ukka, he moved his soul despite being in a situation where magic seal stones were laying around. There’s no assurance he can’t pull off the same even without a specialized tool for it.”

“I see… Sorry.” (Zenotta)

Raheight was a necessary ingredient for negotiation in order to bring in Blue as a comrade.

It was impossible to say anything about how they would treat him anyways. I did try to warn them to a certain degree, but the impression Archbishop Seraes has of me is the worst. It can’t be helped.

There’s no issue if he stays dead… I should ask Blue about it.

The corpse has already been burned with purifying flames, and the ashes were buried, but Blue can cast necromancy to create undead from just remains, so we can at least confirm if he is dead.

I just don’t feel like he would die easily. I should take action with the assumption that he is alive.


I feel like his face clouded a bit again once he heard about the death of Raheight.

I have been with him for a long time, so it seems like I have become sensitive to his changes to a certain degree.

He has two faces, but they are not things that just flip cleanly. It is like the split of water and alcohol.

If his normal self is water, his other self would be high purity alcohol.

I could faintly feel it getting denser, but the ratio of water is far higher.

The meeting ended and Gestaf returned to his residence, and King Zenotta and the Gold Demon Lord decided to stay to talk for a bit since it was a rare opportunity.

Right now I am waiting for the Gold Demon Lord to finish her talk with him.

“Has there been an event in the past where the Kuama King and the Gahne King have met face to face? …But it is not good to put those two together. They are the type that like to get pampered after all…”

“…Yeah. But that’s because you are fulfilling their wishes.”

“People who are good at asking for things are present in any world, huh. And so, Ilias, how about telling me why you are so absentminded?”

“…It is not like I want to be though.” (Ilias)

“You are wary of the surroundings, but you are making a really troubled face, you know. It gives the feeling that there’s something lodged in your brain.”

I want to believe I can’t keep anything hidden from him because he is perceptive.

It is just because the people around me are a bit too perceptive. Yeah, let’s just believe that.

“Right. There’s words that still remain in my ears.” (IliaS)

“The words that Ritial told you, huh.”

I nod and answer. At the time when we rushed into the guild headquarters of Morgana and faced Ritial, he whispered to me…

“‘The demon that your father put his life on the line to defeat is still alive, you know?’… That’s what he told me.” (Ilias)

“Speaking of which, I never heard the details of it. I would hear it was because of an attack from monsters or an attack from a demon…”

“It was both. A large number of monsters appeared in Taizu when I was young. I heard there was a demon within that, too.” (Ilias)

Did the demon appear with the monsters in tow? What objective did they have? There’s no way of knowing.

But the knights of Taizu rushed to the villages that were attacked, fought the monsters, and somehow managed to fight them off.

Mother and father joined that battle, and faced the demon. According to accounts from other people, it was two on one, and they struck each other down.

I still remember how Lord Ragudo lowered his head deeply and told me how he regretted not being there.

He was the most injured among the people who survived. He protected the most villages by himself, ended the most monsters, and saved the most people.

Even when young, I could tell how painful it was for him. Who would be able to blame Lord Ragudo for this?

Mother and father fought bravely. The harm brought by that demon would have been unimaginable if those two hadn’t stopped them.

That’s why I resolved myself…that I would become a wonderful knight like my father and protect the country on his stead.

I explain the flow of events to him even if not in the most skilled manner. When I did, he fell into thought for a while and resumed the talk.

“Alright, got it. I will try to investigate this demon.”

“I am happy about the sentiment, but this is a personal issue.” (Ilias)

“You are saying that at this point in time? If you are going to play that card, the issues until now have all been my personal problems, you know. Are you going to try and play cool by shouldering them all by yourself?”

“Muh, it is not my intention to act cool though.” (Ilias)

“You wouldn’t be able to find a single clue even if you were to sneak out to investigate by yourself in the first place.”

…That’s true. The only thing I have an idea about is that this demon is most likely not a subordinate of the Green Demon Lord.

Even if that demon is alive, I don’t know if they are in the Taizu Nether or how to find them.

If I rely on him…I am sure he would be able to get it. But is that really okay?

I am aiming to be a knight that’s relied on by him. And yet, I…

“You really suck at being pampered in comparison to King Zenotta and Gold.”

He used both hands to grab both cheeks of mine. It is kind of like his habit when teasing me.

“I suck at being pampered, huh… Obviously. I have been avoiding such a lifestyle after all.” (Ilias)

“Then practice. Not being able to perform at full power when the time requires it would make you a waste of a treasure. If you want to make full use of your strength, learn the methods to make the best use of them.”

“Make the best of me…” (Ilias)

“You just have to silently prepare for your revenge. Leave the groundwork to me at least.”

He said full of confidence. I felt a bit jealous of that appearance of his.

I understand that we are in a relationship where we are both relying on each other.

But I am sure I feel like I want to rely more on him than he wants to rely on me.

“I see… Then, I shall rely on you. But there’s something that must be prioritized.” (Ilias)

“Yeah. We have to wrap up the matter with the Scarlet Demon Lord.”

We have safely resolved the Blue Demon Lord’s invasion that had Kuama as the stage and the series of events that dragged the guilds.

But they are just the beacons signaling the opening of curtains for the fierce battle that will be unfolding from here on.

The battle between the Demon Lords and humans that will drag the whole continent…it is time to settle accounts in this event that Yugura postponed.

It will be impossible to forget about the revenge for my parents. Even if so, there’s no need to worry if he is present.

I will continue holding my sword as the knight that protects him.

That’s the only thing I can do for him at this point.


The Gahne Nether and the Mejis Nether; one mountain serves as the boundary between the two. There’s a giant cave located in this place.

The deeper you go in, the dimmer the light of the sun becomes, and magic stones shine the inside of the cave instead.

What was there was a castle built underground.

There’s no color at all. An emotionless castle built from shaved and piled up rocks.

There were countless monsters crowding the place.

Goblins, orcs, kobolds; therianthrope monsters that have the shape of a human, but are not.

All those monsters were working in the disordered facilities.

Stepping on the bellows, making fire, melting metal, and creating tools.

The armed monsters were swinging their weapons at each other and honing their technique.

That sight was not something to admire even as a compliment compared to the sight of the knights of Taizu’s training.

But if there were humans there, they would have felt a sense of dread.

There was someone sitting deep inside the castle: the Scarlet Demon Lord.

He is also a Demon Lord that has the blood of a demi-human. It is hard to say which animal he is a mixed race of.

He has a manly mane, a strong yet rough horn, a body that would make you think of a rock, and most of all, his body was shining red as if his whole body was hot steel.

“The outfitting of armaments is proceeding smoothly. But the production of high quality weapons for the ones who have the qualifications are not keeping up.”

The one who spoke to the Scarlet Demon Lord at the throne was one of the monsters on standby by his side.

The ones in that place were all equipped with outstanding weapons that far outmatch that of a private army.

They are the direct subordinates of the Scarlet Demon Lord, and they are Uniques that command their respective division of monsters.

“In that case, have them compete with each other, and select from there the ones who are worthy of holding them.” (Scarlet)

“Our numbers would decrease a bit with this. Are you okay with that?”

“That’s fine. The only ones who would lose their lives in a mere selection would be weaklings who fear death and lose. The true warriors wouldn’t have their flame of life extinguished just because they were defeated.” (Scarlet)

“Then, I shall do as commanded. 2 months should be enough for preparations to be done. But if we are aiming for perfection, shouldn’t it be fine to take a bit more time?”

“It had been decided from the start: the day my resurrection is known to the world is the day where we announce the restart of the war.” (Scarlet)

“That human was of no use in the end. Wanting to become a demon when he is only of that mettle…there should be a limit to being conceited.”

“Raheight’s group…no, I should call them Leitis, huh. They didn’t lay out their trusted retainers, but even if so, that organization provided decently useful information. His original objective wasn’t to become a demon to begin with.” (Scarlet)

“What… Then, just what…”

“I have a general idea as to what it is. But it is trifling. It is good enough to just be in a relationship where we both use each other.” (Scarlet)

“Using the Demon Lord-sama… Looks like there’s the need to kill him the next time we meet.”

“Do as you please. He has cut off his contact with me. In that case, he is already a pebble in the middle of the road.” (Scarlet)

The Scarlet Demon Lord gives a glance at the two monsters by both of his sides.

They are both different therianthrope Uniques. The most outstanding individuals within their packs.

“Gold said this some time in the past: you monsters are ones that have changed form depending on the excitement of mine heart. I see, so my heart is always that of a beast, huh. Makes sense.” (Scarlet)

The mouth of the Scarlet Demon Lord warped slightly. The smile on the face of a boorish warrior had faint scorn mixed in it.

“You are the beasts that were created from my heart seeking conflict. But the beast in mine heart holds no such emotion of fear. It just wishes to flail weapons, finds slaughter as righteous, and seeks endless strife. That’s mine desire. The reason I formed a contract with Yugura and got eternal life. Learn that our reason for being is to become the natural enemies of both humans and demi-humans!” (Scarlet)

The monsters around raised thunderous roars to respond to the words of the Scarlet Demon Lord.

Those roars echoed outside the castle, and all the monsters outside roared in concert.

The roar of the beasts seeking strife made the air tremble and the earth quake. It is as if the continent was fearing the battle lying ahead.

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