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Chapter 103: The Sage Begins a War Against the Republic
“Seriously, I’m surprised that he is still alive. Didn’t you kill him properly?”
“I destroyed his soul using a forbidden spell. There was no way he could have survived.”
I said this to Luciana, who looked at me suspiciously.
Baruch was killed by my own hand.
It was exactly because I was aware of that man’s characteristics that I made sure he was dead.
I reduced his body to fine ash by incinerating it and blew it all away; there was no way a regeneration ability could have fixed that.
It made me wonder how he managed to survive.
So much so that I still doubted that fact even now.
However, it was impossible for anyone to pretend that their name was Baruch.
Because said pretender would receive a strong curse and die.
It would mercilessly do so to anyone regardless who that might be, even if it was his own successor.
There was power imbued in his name.
Baruch was very proud.
He didn’t allow anyone to use his personal name.
In other words, the person who called himself Baruch this time was that man himself.
He was the genuine member of Four Heavenly Kings of the Previous Demon Lord’s Army.
Luciana pondered as she looked at the ceiling.
There was a deep wrinkle between her eyebrows.
“Since it was Baruch, was he revived using some sort of strange spell?”
“That is likely the case. He was a very cautious man after all.”
Given the situation at the time, I had doubted he could revive himself, but I had no choice but to admit it.
Baruch was definitely alive.
He was an extremely capable shaman.
Maybe he hid a trump card to use just in case.
Even I myself ended up becoming an undead after being executed.
It wouldn’t be strange if something similar happened to him.
“Anyway, this proves that Baruch is the mastermind. So that’s why we couldn’t find him beforehand.”
Luciana spread her arms open and let out a dry laugh.
She wore some kind of twisted expression.
It seemed that she hated Baruch very much.
“So, what do we do? I think it’ll be hard to determine his location.”
“We’ll try all we can, but I think it is practically impossible to find him. We can only wait until he decides to contact us himself.”
I answered her honestly.
Baruch possessed abnormal concealment capability.
So much so that he could become an assassin with that skill alone.
It would be difficult to find his whereabouts, and if we searched for him too hastily, he would just slip through our fingers with ease.
On the other hand, Baruch also had a certain commitment in his actions.
That was, he wanted to directly defeat his enemy with his own hands.
The war that was about to begin between the Demon Lord Territory and the Republic, was his very method to slay me.
The moment he was convinced of his victory, Baruch would appear before me to end my life.
That would be the most effective moment to retaliate and kill him.
She shrugged exaggeratedly and picked up the report scattered on her desk.
“I wonder what his purpose of doing all this is?”
“Most likely, he wants revenge for what I did.”
“That’s possible. He easily holds a grudge after all.”
Recently, there were repeated attacks obviously aimed at the Demon Lord’s Territory.
He must have thought of me as an annoying existence.
His intention to punish me was clear.
However, if revenge was his sole purpose, he wouldn’t do it in this kind of roundabout method.
Considering Baruch’s capability as a shaman, he could just assassinate me with a more reliable method.
There should be some sort of greater goal for him to take over the Republic.
The friction between the Republic and Previous Demon Lord’s territory started a few years ago.
It began before I reigned as Demon Lord.
There was no doubt his goal was not revenge at the time.
At present, Baruch had acquired a nation where demon beasts and demonkin were rampant.
Every citizen there was stronger than the common demon.
We could say it was undoubtedly a powerful combat force.
Even if one looked all over the continent, it was unlikely to find any other forces which possessed this kind of power.
Even the Demon Lord’s Army was incomparable to them in terms of the personal strength of each individual.
Baruch went to all the trouble to prepare such a force.
…Perhaps he intended to declare himself as a Demon Lord?
As I pondered, I thought of a certain possibility.
Thinking about it, Baruch was fascinated by the Previous Demon Lord.
If we were to compare loyalty, his was greater than Grom’s.
So much so you could consider him a fanatic.
It wouldn’t be weird if he considered succeeding the deceased Previous Demon Lord.
On top of that, Baruch should also be aware of my identity as the current Demon Lord.
He must find it unbearable that the Sage Dwight Havelt, who ended the dark era, ended up becoming a Demon Lord.
It was one of the people who slayed his worshipped Demon Lord, and also the very person who destroyed him.
All factors of producing a grudge were perfectly aligned.
Baruch intended to overthrow the current Demon Lord’s Army, and establish a new Demon Lord’s Army with the demonkin and the demon beasts of the Republic.
That was his reason for developing the demon beast drugs.
Once he could freely create demonkin, he didn’t need to worry about increasing his forces.
Those who became a demonkin could no longer live in a human nation.
Because they would be the subject of discrimination or subjugation.
Even if they were lucky, they would just end up secured as experimental subjects.
Inevitably, they could only choose to live under the rule of Baruch.
Once he managed to kill me, Baruch would definitely begin to invade other nations.
Then the dark age from ten years ago would resume.
The conflict between humanity and the demonkin would break out.
World peace would go further away.
By combining the fragmented information, the whole picture gradually came into view.
The former Four Heavenly Kings Baruch wanted to turn humans into demonkin or demon beasts to strengthen his forces.
He took over the Republic and would declare himself as the next Demon Lord, and decided to stand against the obstacle known as the current Demon Lord’s Army.
Eventually, he would inherit the wishes of the Previous Demon Lord, and invade humanity without a doubt.
If I were to sum it up, that would be about it.
There were many parts which were strictly my speculations, and there might be differences in the detailed process, but the outline shouldn’t be wrong.
This was a troublesome situation, but was the Will of the World involved in this…?
I seriously wondered about that.
That was a concept which had tried to destroy me.
Until now, it had manifested itself by the sudden awakening of heroes and unnatural successes in weapon development.
The Great Spirit referred to it as fate itself.
Was the dark maneuver of Baruch considered a result of the World’s Will?
I didn’t understand.
I couldn’t determine what was the World’s Will, and what wasn’t.
In any case, it was certain that Baruch had to be stopped.
At the time, the door of the audience room burst open.
Grom entered with a panicked look..
I asked him straight.
“What happened to the Republic?”
“Ye, yes! The Republic was attacking the Demon Lord’s Territory! The mixed army of demon beasts and demonkin struck multiple cities simultaneously!”
When I asked about the details, it seemed that demon beasts had emerged in each city within the Demon Lord’s territory.
It was said that the Republic’s Army decided to strike in the turmoil.
Even if they had planned for this, it happened at too convenient of a moment.
They might use some sort of concealment spell to hide their army and slip past the spies’ eyes.
“Demon Lord-sama, what should we do…?”
“We’ll intercept them. Beat them down using force.”
I answered Grom’s words without hesitation.
There was only one thing to do.
That was for the Demon Lord’s Army to attack and crush the approaching enemies.
There was no need to hold back.
All we had to do was destroy them with all of our strength.
I picked up the keepsake sword on the pedestal.
Our current opponent was the unfavorable legacy that we had left behind.
It was a worthy opponent to fight against with this sword.
Since we missed our opportunity before, we needed to make sure we triumphed this time.
—Thus, the war between the Demon Lord’s Territory and the Republic had begun.
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