Cruzer ran . Inside the long, long cavern, he who had an uneasy expression, was desperately moving his legs towards the familiar path out of this place .
Then, his eyebrows twitched as if he perceived something .
“It has already began!?”
That shout wasn’t directed to anyone . It was more like a grumble that came unconsciously from him .
When a light from his direction began to reveal in front of him, he increased his speed . Suddenly, the cave began to shake intensely . He instinctively stopped his legs to prevent from tripping as he observed the loud creaking of the ceiling, which then collapsed in that moment .
“I will not let you!”
Cruzer partly closed his eyes . And then carefully held the handle of the katana at his waist . In that instant, the fragments of the falling ceiling were shredded in a flash .
There was no appearance of him drawing either . But if one paid attention to it, one could hear the sound of the katana clicking back to its sheathe .
“There doesn’t to be any more of it…”
Looking at the collapsed ceiling from above, he felt glad he stopped because he would have been buried if he didn’t . Immediately after, he stepped on the ground to the point of resisting the tremor and headed towards the exit .
It had grown completely dark as a big moon was glowing in the sky .
At the moment Cruzer escaped from 【Shanjuumon Cave】, the cave collapsed with a resounding roar as if a meteorite crashed on it .
For Cruzer, this was no doubt the shelter that he been using for several years, it held great importance to him .
Because of its abrupt collapse, he felt deep sadness from within . If anyone would see his expression, they would also say the same thing .
But his expression immediately tightened as he thought of the criminal offender who thrashed his beloved place he had once called home .
(So Avoros really did use it after all…)
His thoughts focused on the sword Avoros brought . It made him want to puke when he imagined Avoros holding that sinister sword wrapped in a pitch-black aura .
(Although I have a lot questions about it, I must relay this information to Liliyn and the others as soon as possible)
If he stayed a bit longer, he would definitely encounter Avoros, so he decided to flee from the place while being cautious of his surroundings .
There are several entrances of 【Shanjuumon Cave】 . Regardless of where you enter from, the intruder would be immediately misled by the power of the 《Core of the Founder Demon Lord》 , but despite all of this, faint footsteps could be heard from one of the many entrances that should have been collapsed .
It wasn’t the one Cruzer escaped from . Because a person garbed in black clothing was stationed in this place . It was as if she was waiting for someone .
When she heard the footsteps, that person quietly turned her attention towards the entrance . The sound gradually became louder and stopped right after a while .
With a loud, *dogoo!, the rocks that was blocking the entranceway was blown away . From the inside came someone holding a small light .
“Hey Isuka, did I make you wait long?”
TL Note: New name! イシュカ | Ishuka, read it as Isuka
The one who came out and said those words, was the Predecessor Demon Lord . He had his fearless smile as usual, but he knelt down on the ground the next moment .
If one would look at his body carefully, it was worn out and blood-stained . If it was ordinary man, they wouldn’t be able to come here walking like this .
The person who was called Isuka panicked and approached him immediately . She gently placed a hand on his shoulder so that she could tend Avoros’ battered body .
“… . . you overdid yourself”
It sounded as if it came out from the mouth of the mask as a muffled voice was heard from it .
“Ahaha… . The moment I released this guy . I was prepared for the consequences you know?”
Avoros points at the sword on his left hand with a wry smile on his face . The words released from his small mouth was not his usual frivolous talk, but a ragged breath that was enduring the pain .
And then, he released a heavy sigh as he sat down on the ground . However, it was obvious that he wouldn’t let go of the small light held in his right hand .
“This is . . ?”
“It’s as you can see, the 《Core of the Founding Demon Lord》”
“Is it so valuable to the point that Milord would endure such an appearance?”
“To tell you the truth, I really didn’t want to use 《Sacrifice》 . Because, as you can see, I’m afraid that my body would be eaten… . ”
“Milord… . ”
“Nevertheless, this thing here is necessary by all means . In order for my wish to come true . ”
Avoros stared at the little fire that was shining a pale blue light with eyes filled with joy .
“However, why was I left in this place? Were you worried that I would be injured if I was together with you?”
“Yeah, I don’t want you to get involved in that place . For the current me, I can hardly control this thing . That’s why I had you stand guard in here . ”
“… . is that so . ”
When Isuka said so, Avoros slowly lowered his gaze to the ground . While he was breathing heavily, he wiped the sweat from his forehead with his hand, which Isuka noticed, trembling .
“And besides…your role is important you know? A talented personnel… . who can deliver it… . to the castle…”
“… . . ?”
Suddenly, the 《Core》 disappeared from his grasp as it was absorbed by Avoros’ sword, and the next moment, Avoros dropped his head with his eyes closed . It’s as if he stopped moving like a toy due to its broken switch .
Isuka gently supported his small body . And the moment she tried to grab the sword that had fallen to the ground,
“Hey you, don’t go touching me with your hands!”
Isuka instinctively retracts her hands back when she heard the creepy angry voice coming from the sword .
“HAH? What’s with that kid? Playing dead already? Gegiyagiyagiya!”
“…I see, so you’re 《Sacrifice》’s inner consciousness”
“AHNGA? Don’t call my name as if we’re close!”
“… . Milord is still alive . Since you are Milord’s sword . I want you to come with him . ”
“Hohou, if he’s really alive, fine . Besides, I was able to satisfy my hunger, this is my gratitude to him . I’ll stay with him a bit longer . Gegiyagiyagiya!”
Isuka while quietly taking caution, approached the sword and picked it up .
“I’m surprised though, for a kid like that could use me to such extent…”
“… . . hm?”
“But, he still has a far way to go . Gegiyagiyagiya!”
Without nodding, while Isuka was carrying the two bodies, she said,
At the mention of those words, a large pool of water spreaded out from Isuka’s feet .
“Impressive, water-teleportation magic, huh? It’s been a long time since I saw that . ”
Isuka did not respond to 《Sacrifice》’s admiration to her feat, and steadily sunk to the water while holding the two of them .
The next day, the soldiers of 【Evila – Xaous】 patrolling the area confirmed the collapse of 【Shanjuumon Cave】, dread and shock ran through Eveam and Aquinas who heard the report about it .
Cruzer thought it would cause problems if he intruded late at night in the castle, so once the morning of the next day came, he immediately went to where Liliyn was .
Eveam was notified beforehand of Cruzer’s stay, so after the soldiers confirmed he was the real Cruzer, they guided him inside the castle .
Liliyn also knew of his visit, so when she thought he had finally arrived, she greeted him, but when she saw his pale expression, she understood that something had happened and began to inquire the circumstances after .
“What did you say!? The 《Core》 was stolen!?”
Liliyn raised a cry that resonated throughout the room Eveam had given them to stay .
“That’s impossible! Even if it’s the likes of the Predecessor Demon Lord, it should still be impossible for him to obtain it!”
The 《Core of the Founding Demon Lord》 has the power of deceiving one’s own senses . Even if the personage themselves were the Demon Lords, Liliyn believes that they would be unable to surpass this kind of power . That’s how Liliyn sees that ‘person’ differently compared to the next generations, anything related to ‘that’ person is not that easy to obtain .
“Yes, I know that thing isn’t easily obtainable . ”
“If that’s the case!”
“However, what if you use a complex method in obtaining it?”
“… . complex method? What do you mean?”
Liliyn who somewhat regained her composure from Cruzer’s words, sharply narrowed her eyes towards the said person .
“The predecessor Demon Lord… . used a sword called 《Sacrifice》”
With a heavy atmosphere as he said those words, Silva, Nikki, Mikazuki, Shamoe and even Liliyn inclined their necks from the foreign term they just heard .
“… . what’s this 《Sacrifice》 you speak of?”
“It’s a sword… . I invented it…no, it was more like a creation born from an accident, but when I witnessed its birth, I decided to seal that sword due to the wicked existence that was born inside it . ”
“…if you say it like that, what kind of monstrosity was that sword then?”
While Cruzer was composing the words for his following answer, a knock came from the door of the room .
“I apologize for disturbing you, but I would like to consult with Liliyn-dono about something . ”
The one who entered was Eveam, the master of this Demon Lord castle . Her face also had a difficult expression as if an unexpected matter came up .
“… . is this about 【Shanjuumon】?”
“… . you knew already?”
The information about its collapse had just reached her this morning . But even so, Eveam felt surprised that Liliyn is already aware of this .
“Yeah, this guy Cruzer who was a former resident in there, told me about it . ”
Since she didn’t know Cruzer’s previous homage, Eveam made a surprised expression .
“C-Cruzer-dono do you know what happ…ah, pardon me, Liliyn-dono, could you contact Hiiro, he might be able to discover something about this . Also, could Cruzer-dono tell us everything you know about the time when 【Shanjuumon Cave】 collapsed?”
Apparently, no one knows if the 【Shanjuumon Cave】 really just collapsed or it was caused by something else entirely . That’s why, she visited Liliyn who knows a method to call Hiiro back so that he can help with investigation of this incident .
However, if there was a party concerned like Cruzer in this incident, she would like to hear his side as well . Liliyn also wanted to know the method how the 《Core of the Founding Demon Lord》 was deprived, so she urged Cruzer at once .
However, before Liliyn proceeds with that topic, there was something else she had to confirm .
“Oi Maou, do you what’s enshrined in that place?”
“… . Of course I do, I’m the Demon Lord of this kingdom after all . ”
“Then there’s no problem . ”
At the mention of those words, she sighed in relief for being pardoned on not explaining this matter .
“Maou, I will ask something about this later, but do you accept?”
What she wanted to ask was ‘Why was the 《Core of the Founding Demon Lord》 kept in that place? ’
“U-uhm, I don’t mind answering your question . B-but I don’t know who might hear upon this, so I would like to encourage everyone to continue this discussion at the conference room?”
At the mention of that proposal, Liliyn thought it was a pain to transfer location, but she decided to respond to her invitation as she stood up from her place . With a condition, of course, of having Silva permitted to come as well .
Since Nikki, Mikazuki and Shamoe were making expression as if they don’t follow, Liliyn decided to take Silva who had an understanding of the matter at hand .