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Chapter 83: The Sage Asks the Great Spirit
My purpose for visiting the Magic Kingdom had been achieved.
After killing the inventor, John Doe, I dismantled the reinforced armor from his body and reclaimed the mystical stone.
It was a blue crystal that fit perfectly in the palm of my hand.
Just by touching the mystical stone, I could feel the enormous power flowing through it.
As I returned to the Demon Lord’s Army, mystical stone in my hand, I transferred all of them back to the Demon Lord’s territory.
I was the only one left at this point, and I went to search for and claim the weapons left behind, as well as any research documents related to their development.
As I collected all of these, I also secured some tanks and reinforced armor.
These weapons had not been mass-produced yet.
They were supposed to be deployed only as a countermeasure in case the Demon Lord’s Army suddenly struck the capital.
Since I had currently stolen all of the weapons available in this place, it would prevent redevelopment by any third party.
Similar things might be developed eventually, but it would buy me some time.
Weapons that were too advanced for their time shouldn’t be disseminated too early.
I decided to send some spies around to check if it had leaked to other cities.
I wanted prevent anything that might cause the sparks of war between humans from growing.
However, that was a plan for the future.
At this stage, the Demon Lord’s Army has achieved a complete victory.
Almost everything has gone as planned, and all that was left to do was to return the mystical stone to its rightful owner.
I left the almost completely obliterated capital, and then headed straight towards the Empire’s territory.
There was a blue humanoid figure that could be seen shining in the wasteland.
It was the Great Spirit.
As she had declared, she waited for me at the location where we had first met.
I approached her and spoke first.
“I’ve brought the mystical stone. I want you to confirm it.”
The Great Spirit turned to face me and held out her hand.
The mystical stone in my hand lifted and floated away from me.
Then it landed in her hand.
The Great Spirit held the mystical stone for a while and inspected it.
She eventually raised her face.
“There’s no doubt that it is my mystical stone. The magic power contained within has almost been exhausted, but I’ll pardon you for that. Because I’m very generous.”
“I appreciate that.”
Since it was used as the power source for the giant golem, most of its power had been consumed.
Fortunately, the stone itself hadn’t suffered any damage.
The mystical stone entered the Great Spirit’s body.
It must have been forwarded to the main body through the offshoot.
“I felt the pulses of the mystical stone last night. It appears that you had a hard time reclaiming it, but you did well.”
“I only did what I promised you.”
“There are only a few who actually keep such promises.”
The Great Spirit affirmed as such.
There might have been a hint of something in her words.
She had lived since time immemorial.
Perhaps she had experienced similar troubles in the past.
“I intended to eradicate your territory depending on the outcome, but it seems that wasn’t necessary. Although it is somewhat distorted, it appears that the current Demon Lord functions as a mediator.”
“I’m a mediator?”
“Yes. You have managed to move the world according to your desires. You are allowed to be proud of it. You have chosen to walk a different path compared to all of the other Demon Lords.”
The Great Spirit spoke quietly.
For some reason, I could feel kindness in her tone.
Perhaps, she has now fully recognized me after I returned the mystical stone back to her.
I wouldn’t ask about her plans to eradicate the Demon Lord’s territory.
Nothing good would come out of it.
I was well aware of what a furious Great Spirit was capable of.
Even the place we currently conversed at had once been a city that used to be part of the empire.
She wasn’t threatened me initially, but she had truly meant it when she spoke those words about her considering to destroy my territory.
It made me glad that I had properly returned the mystical stone.
“As long you stay as a Demon Lord of mediation, the defense mechanism won’t get in your way. Keep that in mind.”
I nodded obediently.
I had no objections to that.
The Great Spirit silently looked at me.
She didn’t do anything in particular, just kept her gaze fixed at me.
I couldn’t read her emotions.
Even though I was aware that she hasn’t released any killing intent, I couldn’t understand her intentions at all.
In the subtly awkward atmosphere, I broke the silence first and asked the Great Spirit.
“I’m done with my business. Can I go home now?”
“Please wait. There is something I would like to offer to you as a way to express my gratitude.”
“What is it?”
When I urged her to continue, the Great Spirit suddenly approached me.
She stopped at arm’s length, and then looked at my face before speaking.
“The present is me.”
“…What does that mean?”
When I heard that, I felt something similar to a headache.
I could only feel trouble brewing from her crazy proposal.
It wasn’t something I could just shrug away.
Despite causing such mixed feelings in me, the Great Spirit calmly continued to speak.
“It seems I didn’t speak enough words for you to understand. To be precise, this offshoot body of mine will be gifted to you.”
I was at a loss for words as the Great Spirit put her hand on her chest.
I felt like letting out a heavy sigh.
If I were to believe in her words, it seemed I would be gifted a Great Spirit, albeit just an offshoot of one.
To be honest, it was something I didn’t really want to receive.
True, her mighty power was fascinating, but the trouble she’d bring along with it was not worth it.
I wasn’t so desperate for power that I would welcome such a problematic thing.
Rather, it would be more peaceful if I were to just decline her gift.
The earlier battle against the Magic Kingdom had made me painfully aware of the dangers of unmanageable power.
There was no guarantee I wouldn’t make the same mistake as John Doe.
On the other hand, the Great Spirit looked at my face.
“Is something wrong?”
“I’m undeserving of the honour of receiving an offshoot of a Great Spirit.”
“You managed to recover the missing mystical stone. I think this gift is an appropriate recompense for it.”
The Great Spirit said that as if it was the most natural thing to do.
She must have intended to give me the offshoot from the beginning.
I was convinced of it then.
“I’ll give an innocent personality to the offshoot and offer it to you. She would be something akin to my daughter. Her nature would be close to that of a baby, but I’m sure she won’t receive bad treatment under you.”
The Great Spirit added even heavier contents to her deal.
It was no longer gratitude by this point.
For some reason, she was trying to force her offshoot on me.
I couldn’t understand the intentions behind why she wanted to do so.
At the very least, it was clear that she liked me enough to behave like this.
“How about it? Will you receive it?”
“…I’ll gladly receive it.”
I lost to the Great Spirit’s gaze, so I had no choice but to accept it.
That was all I could say.
If I were to refuse her, her mood would likely turn sour.
Since no trouble has occurred yet, it was best to just obediently respond to her.
“That was all I had to say. Now, if you’ll excuse me.”
“Please wait. There is one last thing I want to ask.”
I stopped the Great Spirit.
She looked at me curiously.
“What is it? I’ll answer to the best of my abilities.”
I started to talk as she gave me her permission.
The main subject was regarding things that had happened after I had become the Demon Lord.
Amongst them, I also talked about the Hero, the Saint, and the inventor this time.
I listed all of the things I couldn’t figure out from what I had heard, seen, and wondered about.
“I refer to these phenomena as the World’s support or the Will of the World. I could clearly feel that it was artificial, but is there really some kind of defense mechanism?”
“You’re wrong. We, the defense mechanism, manifest ourselves as mighty entities. We don’t take the form of such ambiguous phenomena.”
The Great Spirit simply denied it.
It was the answer I had expected.
I had thought that their natures were clearly different.
“Then, is that the Will of the World?”
“It isn’t the World’s Will. The World doesn’t specifically favor humanity.”
“You can’t give me a clearer answer about it?”
“This is just my advice, but it is something that you must learn and find an answer for on your own. It is something related to how the current Demon Lord exists the way you do after all.”
The Great Spirit spoke quietly.
She didn’t say that just to deceive me.
It was a remark she had said after pondering me.
“Those phenomenon you call the Will of the World is far more absurd than the defense mechanism. If we are to put it in words, it is fate itself. It was something that managed to destroy the defense mechanism in the past. However, you, who have both an equal yet contradictory power, have a chance to fight against it.”
“A equal yet contradictory power…”
“As long as you continue being the enemy of humanity, you will eventually understand what that means.”
With that said, the Great Spirit ended the topic.
In the end, I couldn’t get a clear answer, but I did get a hint regarding this mystery.
I had no choice but to be satisfied with that for now.
I doubted that she would respond properly even if I asked her relentlessly.
“Are those all of the questions you have?”
“Ah, the answers were helpful.”
“Then, that’s good.”
The Great Spirit’s face made an expression that was close to a smile.
While floating in the air, she bid me farewell as she looked down at me.
“Demon Lord. I look forward to the day we’ll meet each other again.”
After she said that, the Great Spirit emitted a light that pierced the sky.
Eventually it disappeared, leaving only the bluish white offshoot there.
The offshoot descended and sat on the ground.
She was clearly weaker compared to before.
The intensity of light had also diminished.
She looked as if she’d been downgraded by several degrees.
It was probably because the main body had left.
The offshoot slowly raised her face.
Then she stared at me.
“Detecting the magic power and miasma reaction — Master has been authenticated. I’ll be in your care from now on.”
“…I’ll be in your care as well.”
I somehow managed to respond to the inorganic voice.
Apparently, the offshoot which was left behind didn’t have the magic power supply of the main body.
Instead, it had turned into a completely independent individual.
Even though she had been greatly weakened, I could still feel the power of the Great Spirit.
Due to her nature, she wasn’t something I could leave unattended.
Since I had already agreed to accept her, I could only bring her along as I returned.
…I feel like I’ve been cheated.
Even though such thoughts ran through my mind, I didn’t speak them.
I could never be sure if the Great Spirit might be listening in from somewhere.
I shrugged lightly as I glanced at the offshoot’s still body.
At the end of the fierce battle, the inventor of the Magic Kingdom had died.
This event opened my eyes to the fact that excessive technological development was more of a poison than a benefit.
My existence could also be blamed for contributing to it a bit, but it wasn’t something that could be overlooked.
Once those golems and their advanced versions were mass produced, the form of war would surely change.
Battles like these would be repeated endlessly.
And without a doubt, humans wouldn’t just use those for the sole purpose of fighting against the Demon Lord.
Should I welcome such an era and make an effort to maintain such a dangerous equilibrium?
Or should I just make the civilization stagnate through destruction?
It was something I had to decide someday.
There were also many other decisions that I would have to make.
The course of the world’s future was in my hands.
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