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Chapter 200: A forcible end to the stalemate [Continuation]
Translator: “Pink Tea” Editor: ”Jack_of_Editing_Trades”
「『Nice you meet you, my name is Lilia.』」
I met that woman, Lilia, in one of the ruins within the empire’s territory.
I came to that place following the ancient texts in the hope of finding the power to oppose the G.o.ds, but unfortunately, the entrance to the ancient ruins was discovered just before my arrival.
Reluctantly, I infiltrated the expedition dispatched there by the guild that had employed her as a mage theorist by joining in as a travelling archeologist.
Though at the time, I officially was on a training journey, in accordance with the traditions of the royal family, my status as royalty prevented me from openly entering the still unexplored and thus highly dangerous ruins as a part of the first expedition.
As for Lilia, she of course would not reveal that she is a demon, and was wearing a hood at all times. But thankfully, people preferred not to pry into the background of such adventurers that seemed to have something to hide. As long as one could prove their skill, they could easily join the exploration team.
The exploration was going pretty smooth, and when the time to go back was nearing, I separated from the group on purpose, and went deeper into the ruins by going through the entrance to the hidden room described in the ancient text.
When I was done deciphering encryptions on the stone monument in search for the clues for killing a G.o.d, Lilia called out to me.
『Are you looking for a way to kill a G.o.d too?』
There couldn’t be so many people in this world that took silly talks about killing G.o.ds seriously and even tried to make them reality, so it didn’t take that long for a strange kinship to develop between us.
While most people spent their days in blissful ignorance, we alone were acting to save this world heading for the certain death.
For roughly one year.
We risked our lives exploring ancient ruins, dedicating ourselves to the important mission, sharing joys and sorrows.
It also wasn’t that surprising that soon we became more than just partners, and for the first time, I had someone whom I wanted to protect not just as a prince out of my duty to this world, but as a person.
「『Say, we will save the world, right? The world we live in.』」
「『…Yes, kill the G.o.ds, take their place, and eventually create the world where no one would have to cry anymore.』」
The words we spoke in the comfort of our bed.
That was my oath. The oath to protect her together with this world.
The oath that to me had an equal importance to my duty of protecting this world.
A scream could be faintly heard from somewhere far away.
(…? What am I doing here…)
The moment I felt pain running through my whole body, the blur in my head began dissipating.
「『No matter what we do, we can’t get started before you remember everything. How do you feel? Did you regain some clarity?』」
「『Higyuu!!! Gagaga, wh-what is that memory… Me? A demon king’s core…? You are a hero? Then what is that 『Silver Hero』 of the kingdom? No, in the first place, Leon and others cornered you…』」
「『That’s right, it’s just as you say, in the first circle I was cornered and killed by you lot. Yes, looks like it did the trick. You seem to have properly remembered.』」
The voice made me remember what had just transpired.
「Oh, looks like our other star woke up as well. Good timing.」
Opening my eyes, There I saw the monster that we had created.
The place didn’t seem to change from the moment I lost conscience. The ground beneath me seems to have turned into a black sand, but it’s the same place, br.i.m.m.i.n.g with magic power.
No, the magic here now feels even more powerful than before I lost consciousness.
(With the faerie tree cut down, and faerie queen and her jewel disappearing, the power began overflowing from the dragon vein?)
From now on, more places with a high density of magic power, like this faerie forest, will appear all over the world. But for now, thanks to this overflowing mana, my recovery was considerably sped up.
「In a certain way, it’s been a while since we last met, Leon. You became quite manly.」
As I tried to process the situation, next, Leticia called out to me.
Lilia’s younger sister and the current owner of the demon king core.
And also someone who I thought to be one of our very few comrades.
「…Judging by the situation, you betrayed us after all.」
「Yes, exactly so. All this time I was working hard to gain your trust in order to betray you.」
(…Aah, and this girl is another beast that we produced.)
A thought that came to my mind as I saw the darkness deep within Leticia’s eyes, who so casually admitted to her betrayal.
Since I wasn’t tied up or anything, I get up and survey the surroundings.
At a bit of a distance from me was Lilia, kneeling on the ground and breathing heavily.
Behind me a spring of fairies, from which the power of the dragon vein was gushing out from.
In front of me Kaito and Leticia, and then, those who seem to have become his comrades in this second world, Nonorik, Mai, and Yuuto, that I met at the guild. On top of that, it seems that they have completely recovered.
(The chances of escaping by forcing my way out of here… Are non-existent.)
Vexed from my own calculation, I grind my teeth.