Chapter 33: Truth and the Half-Demon
The pale yellow flame of the oil lamp dances along with the wind. Not too far away in the hall, the singing of bards could be heard. The wind brings along with it the sweet and fragrant scent of alcohol, the sound of the snoring of drunkards and the sound of chattering. This atmosphere really makes one drunk on it and it feels that it would be a good place to reminisce their memories.
“Dang.” Throwing out an enchanted gold coin out, it forms an invisible barrier that blocks off all possible spying.
Some things had to be accounted for. Then, where should I start from?
Then let’s start with the usual bomb, the accursed Chaos and the heartless Order which threw all races and lifeforms into its Eternal War.
Just like what was said before, this war has no end. Then, why does it have no end? Going by logic, a thing like war should stop when both parties suffer losses beyond a certain acceptable range.
To explain that, we have to start from the origin.
Life, death and the never-ending reincarnation.
I also mentioned before that every life, after their departure, if they believe in the Gods of Order, their soul would be guided to the Pillar of Heaven and follow it all the way up to the Heavenly Realm where the Gods of Order dwell. They would then become a Devotee who serves as a source of faith for the Gods or become a God Envoy or God Attendant who fights for them. Among them, the strongest are the different type of War Angels.
Basically, when you believe in a certain god, you become a member of his Heavenly Realm. Devotees are the lowest-tier existence in the Heavenly Realm, their only job is to pray continuously to provide the power of faith of the gods. Then, when a Devotee is unable to provide anymore faith, they would be abandoned to sent back into the cycle of transmigration.
As for the Chaos faction, it is technically the same thing. Just that, compared to using the honor and embrace of divinity to ‘guide the pure souls into Heaven that is free of worries’, the means of the Chaos Abyss are much more violent.
The endless River Styx passes through countless dimensions and using the words of the Order faction, ‘the cursed souls of the sinners will suffer the pain of the corrosion of their souls for eternity’. In reality, the nature of souls tend towards Chaos and any souls that don’t believe in the Gods of Order would fall into the River Styx after their death. However, because souls that tend towards chaos are normally selfish and reckless, calling them sinners aren’t that wrong as well.
To continue on, the souls of those who died in the Chaos faction would follow the flow of River Styx through countless worlds and dimensions. If the soul is attracted by the world’s laws, then it would climb to shore, returning back to life.
For example, if they were to climb onto the shore of the main battlefield of the Eternal War, the Ten Thousand Abyss Plains, then, the evolution of the new soul would most probably be a bloodthirsty battle Demon. If they climb up on a Ragefire Scorched Plains full of Black Chaos Inferno, then the new soul would most probably become a fire-elemental Demon and the terminal of their evolution would probably be the strong Fire Demon Balrog.
Of course, there are also worlds and dimensions that tend towards the good. Quite a lot of swindlers, immoral business men and thieves (who fail to steal anything) reincarnate into the cunning and evil but promise-keeping Devils. On the other hand, the souls of serial killers, burglars and different type of violent criminals reincarnate into Demons who are said to be the incarnation of Chaos itself.
In reality, before climbing to shore, the River Styx would have already completed the transmigration between life and death. The Demons and Devils who climb onto shore are a brand new life which requires the consumption of other life for a living. The survival of the fittest is the only rule and evolving to become stronger before a predator beyond their means appear is their only means of survival.
The Demons and Devils who climb up from the River Styx have already lost their memories from the time when they were mortals. The only thing on their empty brain is the primitive consume and evolve. Every Demon who have evolved to a certain level would have already consumed countless of their brethren.
Talking to them about order, the beauty of peace and cooperating for survival is equal to talking to a criminal, who depends on fighting and stealing to become influential, about the harmony of society and helping others is a joy. Isn’t that basically denying the value of their entire existence?
Even if the Demons can evolve into a Demon Nobility and after grasping their true name, they are able to regain the memories when they are a mortal, but they already have an entire new set of values for the world and their previous memories would probably be like how mortals view themselves as the main character of a certain novel or movie. It won’t have much of an effect on their personality and the new experience and knowledge could instead make them more cunning and difficult to deal with.
Even the stronger Fire Demon Balrogs, who are able to slay a dragon individually, are only a normal member of the Demons. A Demon Nobility, even if it is the weakest Baron, is still an existence that is able to suppress a Fire Demon Balrog with just a single hand. It is said that their nobility is granted by the Goddess of Chaos and the Chaos Abyss itself. For example, the Demon Prince which is slightly higher-ranked than a Demon Duke may seem like nothing much but in actuality, it is almost equal to the godson of the Goddess of Chaos and is an existence equal to the Main God of the Order faction…
Fortunately, the Demon Nobles, due to their great strength, are unable to head to the Eich continent normally. Even if they were to send an incarnation down, it would normally be surrounded and destroyed by the God Envoys and incarnations of the Order gods.
Of course, not every soul that tends towards Chaos would become Demons. A large portion of souls would find themselves being unable to climb to shore and only when the River Styx reaches the very end of the Chaos Abyss can they be reincarnated.
Alright, since if there is life, there will be death. The souls of the dead are constantly reincarnated to become new soldiers for both faction. Naturally, the Eternal War would then be never-ending. These are all laws of the world, similar to how ‘the sun is going to rise, the seawater is salty’ kind of common knowledge.
But a hundred years ago, a man tried to break this rule.
He tried to make the sun never rise again. He tried to make all the living die and build a country for the dead. He tried to make the Holy Light disappear for good… He is Lord Yongye, yes, the me who was a frenzied chuunibyou back then.
Cough, since it is a dark history, so I will speak less about it. No matter how I try to refute it, Lisa did die from my army, to the hands of one of my most capable Four Heavenly Kings, Bone Dragon Queen Gray.Sin, which is equivalent to dying in my hands. I, who was at my pinnacle then, couldn’t accept the fact that I accidentally killed one of my companions. So, I tried to challenge the common sense of the world and alter life and death.
To the me then, if it was just raising someone up to become an undead, they would still be dead, making the act meaningless. If I were to want to revive someone, then it must be a revival true to the word.
The souls of the dead will lose their memory and everything else in the River Styx. But this requires time. After all, even though the water of River Styx is fatal poison to any life, but for it to take effect swiftly, it must be drunk into the body.
So, if I were to use Divination Magic to look for Lisa’s soul and pull her out of River Styx before the its water started taking effect and recreate a physical body for her…
This isn’t a theory that I came up with but a classical joke that spread among the Mages. This is because that despite being feasible theoretically, but the River Styx can corrode any soul that it comes into contact with. Since it can’t be touched, so how can one pull a soul away from it?
Even the Great Demons who can use secret methods to gather the water from River Styx to create medicine dare not touch the River Styx directly. They definitely have no wish to start evolving from the lowest demons again… Falling into the River Styx is also considered one of the most cruel curse in the world of Demons.
However, this concept would have to be corrected. River Styx is the river of souls in this world and also the creator of all living beings. Indeed, she can make any souls from this world sink within its depths, but what if the soul doesn’t belong to her and comes from another world… For example, a Transcender from a foreign world.
Back then, I was also dripping with cold sweat. Fortunately, my purely theoretical guesses were correct. But, reality has also proven that this drop of fortune is the start of greater misfortune…
“You are insane!!! You are challenging the Order which all of the Gods have acknowledged, you are provoking the dignity of both the Malevolent Gods of Chaos and the Gods of Order!!”
The gigantic dragon’s shock and roar was just beside my ear. What can I say other than nodding my head bitterly.
“Yes, now that I recall it, I was rather crazy back then. I must really be mad to try to totally break the boundary between the living and the dead. Hehe, if it happens once, then it can happen again. If the dead aren’t reincarnated successfully, then what can the Order and Chaos continue fighting with? Both parties definitely won’t allow me to continue causing anymore havoc.”
Xiao Hong drinks a large mouthful of alcohol.
“Who did you meet? The descend of a true God? If it is just an incarnation, then you should be able to escape even if you can’t defeat him.”
“Death God Ayer, the very first Undead, the most ancient God.”
“Pa da!” The alcohol bottle immediately shatters on the floor as the fragrance of the alcohol leaks out. Ancient Red Dragon Einz Mezus widens her mouth, allowing the alcohol to flow freely down from her mouth. That kind of idiotic look is really rarely seen.
“Hey hey, image, image. If this silly look of yours were to be leaked, then how will you marry in the future?”
I tried to warn her kindly but I ended getting pulled up by her and she stares directly at my eyes.
“YOU. STOP. JOKING. In the million years of history of our Dragon Tribe, that man has only made a move thrice and his opponents were all true Gods! Do you think that you are really amazing? You are only a SemiGod Undead Emperor of recent times, there are much more of those in ancient times. You totally lack the qualifications to make that man move.”
The questioning words come out one by one. Both of her dragon eyes were filled with disbelief and suspicion.
“I. Am. Not. Joking. It really is Ayer, the most ancient God. The super old senior who once followed the Goddess of Chaos and Goddess of Order, the oldest king of the ancestors of Devils, the Mountainous Human Tribe and the oldest Death God who granted intelligence to all Undeads.”
“Then why are you still here prancing about? I don’t think that a SemiGod like you would be able to escape from his hands. The true Gods who he has set his eyes upon have all fallen and you, who is just a SemiGod Undead Emperor, what do you have for you to still be here.”
Remembering the gray figure that represents death itself, the blood rose-colored ring on that pale white finger, I couldn’t help but shiver. I also felt that it was a miracle that my soul hasn’t disintegrated yet.
“…Now that I recall, Death God Ayer never returns the prayers of the undead. Perhaps, he is a representation of Death itself. Or maybe, that is his Concept of Existence and his Obligation is to maintain the order in death itself, that is to say, as long as nothing interferes with the River Styx and the souls of Order from returning to their Gods, then he would definitely not make a move. Back then, I tried to interfere with the River Styx, which was as good as stepping on his boundaries. It was really a suicidal move.”
TL: Obligation -> Actually means his job as a god. All Gods of Order has a specific role e.g Moon Goddess, the Moon would be her Concept of Existence and the Obligation would be everything related to the Moon. This word is going to appear quite many times further in the novel.
I unconsciously sipped a mouthful of alcohol but ended up looking frustrated at the alcohol dripping down from my lower jaw, wetting my shirt. I shake my head and smiles helplessly. It was my worst defeat in this world.
“He only used an incarnation, which only struck once, and he managed to easily sent me kneeling with my soul almost destroyed entirely. My rank went dropping frantically. Ever since then, I terminated the possibility of an undead becoming a true god, because he would have to defeat Death God Ayer. For countless years, the seat of Death God has never changed, showing that this was an impossible task.”
“… No wonder Adam and Magaret could defeat you back then. He had been taking it to heart and he suspects that you secretly went easy on it. I never expected that you were badly injured then.”
“Hehe, since an Undead Empire cannot be built and the Demon King is destined for failure, so why not pass on the glory of defeating the Demon King to my brother. However, as my rank dropped frantically, flaws appeared in my initial plans. Magaret saw through my plans and I went from faking my death to almost really dying. I guess it could be considered the only accident.”
“You haven’t told me how you escaped from Death God Ayer!!”
“… You are wondering why the Undead Empire cannot be built? It is actually pretty simple. From Ayer, I found out that the Gods of Order couldn’t possibly allow the undead to replace all of the living. If so, the cycle of life and death would be broken. An Undead Kingdom which doesn’t extend beyond half of the world is already the limits of what is acceptable to them…”
An irresistible brute force strikes on my brain and Xiao Hong’s word by word question thunders in my eardrum.
“I. AM. ASKING. YOU. HOW DID YOU ESCAPE FROM AYER? STOP CHANGING THE TOPIC! AND STOP TALKING CRAP.”
The Soulfire in my eye flickers and finally, I helplessly said the truth.
“I can’t say it. I really am unable to say it. This is all for your sake.”
The dragon girl’s head tilts and she pouts her mouth, her face filled with disdain.
“Hmph, I can guess it all the same even if you don’t say it out loud. It must be your specialty in spouting bullshit. Ayer, who doesn’t belong to any faction of Gods is a well-known rebel. He is probably like you, unhappy with the current world, so you might have conspired some sinister plot with him and came to an agreement, such as to overthrow the current order…Wuuuuwuwuuuu”
The words that come afterwards won’t be said out anymore as my bones were stuffed right into her mouth.
After being assaulted suddenly, her black eyes were full of rage. Then, after seeming to have guessed something, the anger changed into shock before turning into panic and fear.
“I, I, I… I couldn’t have hit the jackpot?? Tell me that this isn’t real. Lord Ayer, please spare me. I am still young and unwed yet. I haven’t raised any small dragons and I don’t want to be silenced!!!”
TL: To those who understand chinese, silence -> he used a phrase ???? which means to kill a dragon to silence it.
“Calm down, you don’t know anything. Nothing at all. Why would Ayer come find you? You are just sitting here today chatting with me. You didn’t guess anything at all, you didn’t think of anything at all!”
Under my consolation and persuasion, she finally calms down after a long period of time.
“Un, remember it. I don’t know anything at all. You didn’t say anything as well. The Dragon God above, I won’t guess anything anymore.”
“Don’t say it, you really mustn’t say it.” I nod my head and wiped the cold sweat that doesn’t exist. This lass, why is she so good at guessing randomly. She really has the ultimate crow beak with a loose mouth.
TL: Crow beak -> Someone who make inauspicious remarks and jinx it (as in what that was said really happens)
“Right, so what is the deal with Elisa? Why would Lord Ayer let her off?”
Since this is an obvious attempt at changing the topic, so why would I turn away such a good opportunity.
“… While I was pursued by Ayer, I randomly transported Elisa to a faraway place. When I recovered my ability to move, it was already 3 days later. However, Elisa has already started her fight for survival within rubble and was long corrupted by the laws of the dimension into a half-demon. What was left is that I settled her down then afterwards, she was brought to Liu Huang Mountain City and you should know what happens after that.”
“Half-demon? Shouldn’t be. Normally, half-demons are offspring of Demons and when their bloodline finally awakens, they are able to undergo a ritual to awaken their demonic blood to gain strength. For Elisa who hasn’t converted from a dead to be corrupted into a half-demon half-human existence by the world’s laws, it might seem to be not so different from normal half-demons but in actuality, they are different down to the core.”
I hesitated for a moment. Based on her understanding of the laws, Xiao Hong made her judgement.
“No wonder you said that she is Lisa but at the same time, isn’t Lisa as well. The original Lisa has already died and the current Elisa should only be a fragment of her soul which was converted into a half-human half-demon. Really one-of-a-kind in the entirety of Eich.”
“Indeed, Ayer has also told me that a person is completely dead the moment they touch the River Styx. Those who climb to shore afterwards are newborn from the original material. Even now, the Chaos Abyss is still continuously calling for her soul, attempting to convert her completely into a demon. She came to shore on the Ragefire Scorched Plains so if she were to be converted, she should be a fire-element Demon. So, I thought her Ice Magic which was the nemesis of fire so that she could resist the corruption coming from her core.”
“You sure are dumb, ending up empty-handed in the hand. You even almost paid yourself in.”
“I have nothing to refute your words. It is the dumbest thing I have done in my life. But, I don’t regret it in the least.”
“Have you ever regretted anything in your life? Don’t talk about regrets, I haven’t even seen you depressed before.”
After thinking about it for awhile, countless sad memories flashes through my memories and finally, I smiled.
“Nothing. Since I chose seriously in everything I did and tried my best to the last moment, even if it ended up in failure, there is nothing for me to regret. Regret only denies the life that I had so even if I end up in failure, I just have to total up my experience and try harder the next time.”
“Hmph, of course you won’t regret. Now you have another maid whose mind is all on you. Ha, isn’t this just like the past, Adam that rascal having a crush on Lisa but Lisa only looking at her Team Leader Rolo.”
“Can you stop mentioning the pot that didn’t open? I am still quite vexed over it. Initially, I thought that there would be a chance this time but in the end, Elisa and Lisa’s taste are exactly the same, totally lack of feeling towards Adam.”
TL: Pot that didn’t open -> Stop specifically talking about whatever that didn’t happen (especially when you wanted it to happen)
“Does Adam knows?”
“You think that he wouldn’t be aware? That fellow may only have 9 points in intelligence but his instincts is really outrageously accurate.”
“Just like how he knows you are his Big Brother Rolo but chooses to act dumb?”
“Actually I’m not not sure about that either. Some matters, if you expose it, it would only end in awkwardness. Sometimes, it is better to just act blur. But for Elisa, he did come talk to me about it but he only said ‘Elisa is Elisa, Lisa is Lisa. Lisa is dead, so is my heart’.
“I suddenly feel sympathy for Adam.”
“I also feel sympathetic for Magaret. Looking at the situation, Adam has been on a single-sided crush for half of his life as his subconscious continuously beautify his memories, making Lisa a perfect full stop in Adam’s heart. He is just putting his memory on replay and beautifying the image of the past Lisa in his mind. He is instinctively rejecting anyone from entering his world. How can the living defeat the dead? Magaret’s hard work is destined to go to vain… Why are you looking at me so weirdly, am I wrong?”
“No, I am just a bit shocked in the authentication of a saying.”
“Old virgins tend to cherish woman, even if the woman doesn’t belong to him. Tsk tsk, Magaret has a sharp tongue but soft inside. Back then, despite you being superior in Adam in all aspects, being good-looking, strong and steady in how you settle things. You even have a kind of depressing aura when you are alone which attracts silly girls. That dumb lass Lisa wasn’t willing to leave you alone but Magaret seemed to be unable to give up the Adam who was going around causing trouble like a pitiful dog, helping to clean up after him for half of her life. Finally, after having such a difficult love for more than half of her life…”
Holy Knights make a living off their face, it is impossible for them to be unskilled in flirtatious words, otherwise how can they receive plentiful donations. As for the depressed image, when I devoted my body and soul to defeating an opponent out of my league for revenge, it is natural that I would end up depressed.
“Tsk tsk, hehe.”
“Why are you laughing so hysterically? Did I say anything wrong?”
“No, I am just surprised over the authentication of another saying. Even an overage spinster would become a love expert in endless procrastination and matchmaking!”
Sparks were fired between the two pair of eyes and finally, it turned into a pair of helpless sigh. After all, this seeming weak spot would just cause both of us mutual damage.
Suddenly, the pair of dragon eyes light up and Xiao Hong hugs me, even intentionally placing my head in front of her chest. The scent of alcohol on her body and the soft sensation made me feel a bit weird…
“Why don’t we, the left behind male and female, form a group together!
The snow-white flesh presses down on me. Fortunately, I no longer need to breathe, or else…
“This… This is a confession!!!? The first time in history? My… Is my springtime finally here? I am finally going to have my first romance in my entire life?”
Before I can even think of a reply from my confused mind, a familiar cold laughter sound could be heard from my back.
“Hmph, I sensed that master used a barrier and I was worried that you might be in some trouble, so I rushed here all the way. So you are eating and flirting here. Hehe, a romance between a skeleton and a giant lizard, really makes one at a loss for words. Maybe I can inform the Liu Huang Mountain City Daily Newspaper and playwrights so that the citizens can get juicy news to gossip about and the concert hall will have a new romance play.”
If I could still sweat, I would be drenched in cold sweat by now.
As for Xiao Hong, she was already rolling on the floor laughing. Obviously, the confession was just a show she made after sensing the arrival of Elisa so as to do me in.
Somehow, disappointment and sadness wells up in my heart and the fact that I wavered for a moment just now makes me really feel like dunking my head into the alcohol barrel. The knife-like glare also makes one feel like running away.
“I… I, Ultraman is fighting with monsters, I must go and assist him!!”
Leaving behind some hysterical words, I immediately escape, missing out on the battle between the women behind my back.
“I… Master is mine…”
The declaration she made after bucking up her courage only received looks of sympathy from the other party.
“It was a younger sister then. This time, she probably regards you as his daughter, you’re still quite pitiful. Good luck, even though the route is long and highly impossible.”
“I won’t admit defeat, even if the opponent is you!” She seemed to regarded the pity of the other party as the easygoing-ness of a person with the winning ticket in hand. The declaration this time was filled with anger.
“Don’t worry, I’ve no interest in that pile of bones. Even though Roland suits my appetite, but my goal is to have little dragons. I could reluctantly accept a dragon offspring with mixed blood but he can’t even offer me that, and I’m not a necrophile too.”
Shaking her hand to signal Elisa to leave, the black-eyed black-haired dragon lady continued her way of drinking that scares even the Dwarves. Her entire head is submerged directly into the alcohol barrel and gugu, only the sound of water flowing could be heard.
When the confused Elisa walked out of the tavern, she caught sight if me, who was dazing off at the entrance.
“Is this the ending for someone who shoots their mouth? Indeed, I really have an extremely inauspicious mouth. Hehe, so this world really do have Ultraman fighting monsters.”
In front of him is a humongous Gnome robot. It is 20-meter tall with 2 heads, one of them being a fire-spitting dragon, which followed my words and was dyed red and even has a horn constructed on it. As for the left and right arm, it is a gigantic screwdriver!
The fully-armed robots were fighting against the Town Security and furthermore, they had an overwhelming advantage due to the humongous size of the robot.
“The Wise Lord Roland, your ideas are really incredible. Look, this is the product of the collaboration of the engineering of both Dwarves and Gnomes. To thank you for for inspiration and contribution, we named him Roland No.2!! Praises of your wisdom and your unique thoughts will be sung by Dwarves and Gnomes to come.”
That sound of the shouts from the microphone spreads throughout half of the entire Liu Huang Mountain City. In that instant, I knew that I would be in the wanted list of Liu Huang Mountain City the next day.
“Xiao Hong, I take back what I just said. I… I’m regretting what I said!! Who knew that those lunatics would take my word for real and really make it!!”
That large robotman was fighting while small explosions happen on its body. But the next instant, a Gnome and Fire Dwarf jumps out and after a few knocks, Roland No.2 was ready to fight once again.
“Huangdang!” The Big Ben of Liu Huang Mountain City just became a part of history.
“Boom!!” The Watch Room that was doomed is really doomed now.
“Boom!” “Boom!” “Boom!” After consecutive explosions, the Town Security Headquarters which was just rebuilt 2 weeks ago turned into rubble once more…
Looks like I won’t just be on the wanted list, I can go straight to the top of the list.
Without hesitation, I turned to face Elisa and told her something.
“…Inform everyone on the list that tonight, we are packing our luggage and escaping in the night. No, I mean, we are heading to the Underground Alliance!!”