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Chapter 030 – Majin Leonhart[A]
Suddenly, a deafening roar echoed throughout the village.
Leonhart, who was eating the meal prepared by the two sisters, frowned as the sound reached his ears.
Of course, everyone in the village could hear the sound. Carol, who was standing behind Leonhart, and the sisters, who’d finished cooking and were currently washing the dishes, were surprised as they heard the sound.
“Wha-what?! What’s that sound?!”
“Leonhart-sama! Just now, that sound—“
“Aah, I know.”
Leonhart answered Carol quite serenely. Then, as he observed the commotion outside the house with his five senses, he shared his thoughts.
“The building materials have collapsed—that’s not a sound you’d normally hear in your day to day life. The atmosphere is also tingling… Did an anomaly happen?”
“Well, it’s probably an attack… the battle has already begun. Since it started right within the village, I guess it should be the one who fought that unit earlier?”
Leonhart continued to eat the dishes that were lined up on the table even as he obligingly answered the elder sister. He was eating uhaan, a high-class dessert which used peach apples as its main ingredient. He savored the last bite. As he enjoyed the various tastes and textures of the meal, Leonhart began to think.
He came to a conclusion immediately after. Leonhart made sure to thoroughly chew the uhaan well before swallowing it; after that, he called out to the sisters, who were at a loss at the situation, and looked at Carol.
“This is our chance—Carol.”
“…Yes! I understand! Well then, come over here!”
Carol immediately read Leonhart’s intent after a brief glance and acted upon it. She picked up the sack that was in the corner of the room and bid the sisters to enter it.
However, the sisters were still unable to keep up with the sudden development, even though it had already been explained to them earlier. It can’t be helped, was what Leonhart thought as he stood up from his chair. He prepared himself for battle as he said his farewell to the sisters.
“Now’s the best time for you to escape with all the commotion that’s happening outside. It should make it easier to smuggle both of you out. Just make sure you escape afterward—well, Carol will carry you away instead of you walking out on your own though.”
The sound that came out from the woman’s mouth as she heard the explanation was an expression of pure surprise and a bit of worry. Leonhart felt strange at her reaction, but she then said something even stranger.
“…Err, is this really okay?”
“…What do you mean?”
“Ah, no, err… isn’t it dangerous to fight? You might get hurt doing that, and since you have subordinate, you could just leave the fight to—“
“…Enough of your nonsense.”
Leonhart felt anger roiling inside him for a moment as he heard her. He immediately calmed himself down, but he couldn’t stop the harsh words that came out of his mouth. He didn’t bother filtering himself and let what he was actually thinking spill out.
“It’s about time for you to stop acting friendly with me. Do you think a mere human could be friends with a majin?”
“I supposed it’s a good opportunity as any, so I’ll tell you clearly right now—“
Leonhart spat his words as if to spew out his inner irritation. He bared these facts toward this pregnant woman who was already an adult but still dreamed like a child.
“—Humans and demons are incompatible. They are completely different creatures. Even if they were once human, that fact still remains the same.”
Leonhart told her that was the reality, the truth that wouldn’t change in this world. The demons and majins existed to make humanity suffer. Regardless of the reason, as long as this was fact, it was an established truth that humans and demons would never be able to coexist even if thousands of years passed
And even if that truth could be changed, as long as majins inflicted suffering to humans, they would still be committing a sin that needed to be denounced. A majin was still a majin, no matter what species they were before. They were a faithful subordinate of the maou and of violent existences. Even Leonhart was no exception to this.
Regardless of what he did.
Even if he was tolerant compared to other majins and took actions to reduce human casualties.
To protect what was important to him, he chose to make humans suffer, and to become akin to a god of death, an asura who sought to fight against strong opponents—that was what Leonhart was.
Leonhart’s way of life was definitely not worthy of praise. He himself was quite aware of this fact. He chose to walk this path while understanding all that.
Therefore—he couldn’t afford to make an escape route for himself.
He couldn’t afford to be forgiven.
For the sake of his own resolve, Leonhart denied the woman’s attitude.
That strong will of refusal had physically manifested itself as a heavy pressure on his surroundings. His roiling emotion calmed down before he knew it, and his red eyes coldly pierced the woman with a glare. It was a fierce gaze, enough to kill a weak-willed human. It was the kind of look that high-rank majins were capable of emitting to make others realize the difference of their ranks.
Leonhart observed the reaction of the woman who was receiving such a gaze.
She slowly opened her mouth,
“—I don’t think that’s the case, though?”
How easily she said that.
She carelessly denied his words.
The blond haired, red eyed majin in front of me was astonished. I continued to speak. Is that something to be surprised about? Was what I thought as I opened my mouth and spoke my thoughts.
“We can exchange words like we are now, so I think we are compatible, though? I still don’t know or understand what you are thinking about, but… as we talk and mingle, I think we can eventually understand each other, right?”
“! What the hell are you talking about…!”
The majin in front of me, Leonhart exuded a heavy pressure towards me as he spoke.
Normally, humans would be scared of such a reaction, and they might even collapse as they received his gaze.
However, I wasn’t affected whatsoever even as I received it. What ran through my mind was,
—Ah… it’s this topic again…
And that was all. There was a reason for this.
It was about a friend of mine who was similar to the majin before me. As I recalled this, I continued to speak.
“No, you see? Back then, about five years ago, I guess? I was attacked by thugs.”
I told him the story about an incident that had happened when I had left the village to head for the town.
“I was so scared and shouted ‘HELP’ and, well, it’s obvious, right? But nobody passed there, and just when I thought no help would come to me… help came.”
Right, she appeared out of nowhere and saved me. My first non-human friend.
“She’s a beautiful person with long black hair… she has a different appearance from a normal human, you see. She used some skill that I couldn’t understand and saved me. Then, to show my gratitude, I tried to invite her to our village, but you see.”
She’s very different now compared to when I first saw her.
“Even as she replied, she only spoke about depressing stuff. When she was alone, she seemed to exude this aura that said ‘don’t talk to me’ and it made the villagers anxious because we had such a hard time approaching her… no, I guess that’s not the case. We were all scared of her back then.”
She was a person who had a different appearance compared to normal humans. It was natural to feel anxious when one saw such a thing.
“Since she was my benefactor, I couldn’t exactly treat her badly. I tried to talk to her often, but… to be honest, I was also scared back then…”
I didn’t think it would be interesting to talk to her, and worried that maybe it would annoy her instead. I also didn’t want to make my benefactor feel uncomfortable because of my actions. If she wanted to be left alone, I had thought that perhaps it would be better if I just did as she wanted.
However, our relationship changed at some point.
It was because,
“—However, something happened at one point. For some reason, there were times when she held her own head while trembling. Since I thought something was wrong, I approached her. Then she showed a fierce expression as she yelled at me.”
Her words at the time were hard to understand. Was it “run away”’? Or was it “Help me”? Or maybe it was something completely different? Anyway, all I understood back then was that she was carrying some sort of burden.
“She immediately returned to her senses, but… since I had this kind of personality, I got curious, so I asked her ‘What’s wrong?’ Now that I think about it, that sure was a vague question.”
Then she replied to me with a gloomy expression.
“Then she wore a reaaallly dark expression and replied ‘because I’m different from a human.’”
To be honest, I didn’t really understand what she meant by that. However, there was something I realized from that, and that was—
“When I heard of that, it made me think, ‘Aah, so that’s her reason for rejecting other people.’”
Perhaps that might not be the actual reason. However, that somehow caused the weight that was on my heart to fall, and I finally understood her actions.
Because of what she’d said, I realized her attitude back then had been something like ‘I’m a weirdo that’s different from other people, so don’t approach me.’
—And her attitude back then felt similar to the attitude of the majin in front of me.
It made me think… that despite the fact that they weren’t actually human, my best friend and him—also possessed a heart like humans do.
Therefore, I continued my speech. Since I could get along with her, then I could also get along with you, such was my thought.
“After that, I no longer hesitated to talk to her… well, we sometimes quarreled because of that, but… she also no longer hesitated to talk to me, and we got closer as time passed—and now we’re best friends.”
The majin was just silently listening to my words. I couldn’t tell his thoughts from his expression.
However, the scary atmosphere he exuded began to swirl.
…Did I talk too much?
Since the atmosphere turned for the worse, I tried to laugh it off.
“Ah, you see. The point of my story is… there are many kinds of people, regardless of whether they are human or not. There are evil people, and there are also good people as well. That’s why, just because you’re a majin—“
“…Eh? …Ah, yes!”
Leonhart suddenly called out to his apostle and cut me off. Since he spoke so suddenly to break the atmosphere, Carol was a little late to react.
I couldn’t sense any emotions from his expression and voice. Leonhart barked out his orders.
“I’ll go out soon. You are to bring both of them away.”
“Ce-certainly! Err, well then…”
Carol looked at me and my little sister in confusion as she held the sack. And Leonhart turned toward the door, all while avoiding us with his gaze. After getting cut off I watched him and — laughed wryly.
Then I commented wryly.
“…I see. We’ll get going then. Let’s go.”
My little sister entered the sack with me, and I sat quietly inside the bag as I held my sister.
“—Thank you, Leonhart. Hey, you tell him too.”
“Uh, uhn… thank… you…”
Although he didn’t respond, or even react, I could feel that Leonhart was listening properly.
It was because I was familiar with that kind of reaction.
“…Take them away.”
“Ah, yes. Well then, we’ll be going.”
Carol followed her master’s order and closed the sack. Then she lifted it up. After that, Carol spoke up as she headed to back entrance,
“Well then… I’m going.”
Even though she was a little worried that her master reacted differently than usual, she eventually turned away and left the place.
Leonhart went to the front entrance and opened the door—and for a brief moment, he turned around and looked back—when he confirmed that nobody was there, he left.
The village was already a battlefield.
A large contingent of demon soldiers roamed about, all to fight against a single intruder.
“Damn! Where did she go!!”
“Over there! Above the roof—Guah?!”
“Guuh! There she is! Demon soldiers! Tighten the circle around her as we solidify our position! Don’t approach her unless you are a demon captain or stronger!! You’ll be killed the moment you show an opening!”
“Our enemy is all alone, while there are 180,000 of us demons! We can eventually overwhelm her!”
“It’s the woman you guys have been waiting so long for! The one who defeats her has first dibs to defile her!!”
When they heard the demon general’s encouragement, the demon soldiers swiftly began to move as commanded.
At the center of it, Hunty Kalar was struggling as a one-man army, killing the demons who tried to catch her using swords and magic, and sometimes escaping with instant movement.
“Tch… how persistent…!”
It was encouraging when she first managed to kill the demon captains and one of the demon generals during her initial strike, but once they regrouped and formed a proper chain of command, they began to strike back at her with devious attacks.
And above all, there was the glaring difference in quantity. There seemed to be no end to them no matter how many she defeated. Because she needed to defeat a significant number of them to breach their formation in order to escape, the situation gradually turned worse for her.
She still couldn’t find the two of them. She thought they must be somewhere indoors, but she was still unable to find the correct house.
“Next would be that house…!”
As her forehead grew damp with sweat and impatience, she jumped from one roof to another.
It was at that moment.
Her body reacted out of reflex.
However, it was such a sudden attack, even with Hunty’s keen senses.
A shadow suddenly jumped from below to attack her, and she somehow managed to block it.
However, she failed to nullify the impact and was sent crashing to the ground. She instantly regained her posture and stood up, but then someone called out to her.
“—It seems you’re rampaging a lot.”
“! You are…”
When Hunty saw his appearance, she clicked her tongue from annoyance and impatience.
His appearance was that of a human with blonde hair and a well-featured face, and his red eyes gave a deep impression. This man, who was wearing something similar to a black coat over his clothes, exuded an atmosphere—which clearly showed that he was not a human.
And his identity was revealed by the demon soldiers and demon general there.
It was an existence superior to the demon generals, which only made up a small part of the Demon Army.
Hunty Kalar managed to guess it.
“So you’re a majin…!”
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