The Regressed Son of a Duke is an Assassin chapter 21

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The Regressed Son of a Duke is an Assassin Chapter 21

Chapter 21: The Strongest in the Demon Realm (2)

In the royal mansion situated within Belias, Princess Arin had succeeded in rendezvousing with the reinforcements. Escorted by imperial knights, she crossed over the boundary gate and arrived at this place. From early evening till dawn, it had been a long day that wholly consumed her. She was tremendously tired both in body and spirit, but her weary eyes refused to close.

-Knock knock.

“Come in…….”

As she replied with a somewhat feeble voice, a woman with an extremely tense expression cautiously opened the door and entered.

“Ex, excuse me. Your Highness!”

It was Sian’s maid, Emily.

“Thanks for coming. I know you must have been resting, and I apologize for calling you so abruptly.”

“No, no, it’s not ridiculous at all, Your Highness! I am truly grateful to have been summoned……!”

Emily’s rigid shoulders and shrunk neck revealed how nervous she was.

Just a few hours ago, they had rushed over with her in their arms. The awkwardness now felt incongruous with that memory, making Princess Arin increasingly uneasy.

“Why express gratitude? I’m not someone worthy of…”

“Come on! Meeting with Your Highness is of course an honor! I probably won’t forget today for the rest of my life!”

“Is that so?”

Despite her appearances, the maid seemed rather simple.

Arin had called her without much thought, but was now perplexed as to where to begin or what to say first.

The words she wanted to say struggled to find their way out, leaving her to idly bite her innocent lip.

“First of all, I should apologize. I’m truly sorry for dragging you into this mess because of my foolishness…….”

Unable to meet Emily’s eyes, Arin turned her head as she spoke with difficulty.

Unlike the troubled princess, Emily hands waved energetically in denial.

“Why are you apologizing, Your Highness? It’s not your fault! It’s those vile demons who should be sorry! Why did they have to appear in droves precisely on the day of your arrival……!”

“It’s not that!”

The princess inadvertently shut her eyes tight and raised her voice.

Emily continued to look around, wondering what she had done wrong.

“Because of me… your master is in trouble…. Because of my foolishness in coming to your side…. Your master trying to protect me….”

She had regretted it during that brief time, again and again.

If she hadn’t been there at that time, at that place, none of this would have happened.

Someone’s child and someone’s master had suffered a mishap because of the bravado of an incapable princess.

Feeling a paralyzing helplessness that made it seem impossible to face anyone, tears welled up in the princess’s eyes.

However, Emily, as if oblivious to the situation, continued to blink innocently.

“If you are speaking of our young master, I am under the impression that he has not perished?”

The chances of survival were slim for that young body, devoid of any strength to cut through the currents.

Frankly speaking, it seemed like an inevitable death scenario to everyone.

“Do you mean to say that you believe your master is still alive?”

“Of course! My young master hasn’t passed away!”

Princess Arin doubted her own ears.

“How could he be alive? Even if he fell into the water, the fall was an impossible height! The rainfall must have increased the current’s speed, it’s more strange for him to be alive, isn’t it?”

“Ah, you have no idea how tenacious my young master is! He wouldn’t die so easily! Maybe he swam or grabbed onto a branch, whatever he did, he’ll definitely come back!”

Princess Arin considered one thing for sure.

Setting everything aside, she could clearly discern this much.

This maid was speaking from the heart without any pretense.

Perhaps she was the only one in the world who believed he was still alive.

“I’ve heard it over and over again on my way here. Everyone lamented saying there’s no chance for the young master to have survived, but strangely I never felt that way! I always had this feeling that he would return soon as if nothing happened!”

This feeling was strangely persuasive.

While she might have spent a longer time with him than the princess had, it was not easy to think this emphatically.

But, conversely, it showed how much trust the maid had in her master.

“You believe in him. In your master…”

The princess’s anxious heart seemed to slightly ease.

It was somewhat comforting knowing that there was someone who still held hope for his survival.

“What kind of person was your master?”

The conversation naturally shifted towards Sian.

Emily thought for a moment, then stuck out her lips, unable to figure out how to express herself.

“Well…, originally he was considered completely useless, to the point where he couldn’t do anything in the family. Almost every servant in the mansion didn’t even know if he existed, his presence was that negligible.”

The young master was neglected even by the servants, an unnoticed figure among prominent offspring.

That was Sian Vert’s original image.

“But about two months ago, I think? The young master changed bizarrely after a duel with the fourth young master. It felt as if he suddenly started displaying abilities he had kept hidden until that moment…”

“Hidden abilities?”

“Yes! Ever since then, he’s truly become a different person! Suddenly declaring he wanted to join the frontlines, he then received recognition from the Duke himself. I just followed him, surprised…”

Her beaming smile seemed genuine, devoid of any deception.

It somehow made sense why this nonchalant man brought this maid along with him.

“Don’t worry too much, Your Highness! You’ll see our young master’s stern face again before long!”

“I hope so… that would be really great…”

However, reality was much harsher than desires, preventing her from fully letting go of her worries.

Princess Arin could only hope that she would see his face once more.

***

“Phewah!”

The moment he savored the sweet taste of fresh air, all the pent-up strength drained from him.

“Ptooey! Ptooey!”

He spat out all the impurities in his mouth and struggled onto dry land with great effort.

While the ground was unbearably hard and uneven, it felt like the most comfortable bed in the world to him at that moment.

“Ah… what a dreadful struggle.”

It was all fine and dandy leaping into the Blood River, but what followed was considerably more tiresome.

Despite holding his breath, the stench that seeped into his nose and the horrid sensation of corpses touching him made him feel revolted.

The grotesque aquatic demons feeding on those corpses added to the chaos, turning it into a total mess of a party.

If that damned dragon had been obedient from the start, none of this would have happened.

If I ever encounter it again, I’ll grind its wings so it can’t escape, then chew off everything from the horns on its head to the claws on its toes!

As he snapped out of these futile thoughts, a long sigh escaped him.

I should have kept doing what I was doing from the start. Showing off has only left my body feeling wrecked.

It wasn’t just me who came close to wreckussian. In my stretched-out right hand was Ceyram, having transformed somewhat.

The pale violet blade was nowhere to be found, replaced by a murky state smeared in dark red fluids, looking nothing like a demon sword.

“Did you die, Ceyram?”

Expecting an answer despite the silence, I cautiously asked.

[…Don’t make me talk.]

The heavy, reluctant words caused my relaxed muscles to tense up again.

A voice filled with all the annoyance in the world.

I better not push any further, or that sword’s liable to stab me without a second thought.

Quietly standing up, I created a sphere of water the size of a fist with my hand.

-Swish swish

The pure water, free of impurities, gently cleaned off the grime clinging to Ceyram.

After some washing up, the mist cleared and Ceyram’s true form re-emerged.

[Urgh, I hate this sticky feeling!]

“Once we get back, I’ll give you a proper wash, so hold on for now.”

Ceyram’s rigid gaze still held a heavy amount of irritation.

[Ha? Do you even think of returning? Do you have any clue where you’ve ended up?]

“Well, it’s definitely not the frontlines…”

The sky was a deeper red than the one above the frontlines.

The air was thick with heat, unnaturally uncomfortable, and a chilling cold grazed at my skin.

At first glance, it was an awkward space that seemed vastly inconvenient for any human life.

The name of this place was known as the Demon Realm.

In the end, I had come full circle and landed back on this dreadful soil.

Wow, how long has it been since I’ve been here?

It was so nostalgic I felt like jumping for joy.

[Is this really the time to be lost in recollection? Snap out of it!]

Always so temperamental…

I know it’s not a time to be lost in nostalgia.

Since I’m here in the Demon Realm, I’ll eventually have to go back. The knights are probably scouring every nook of the gorge looking for me by now.

I need to rush back and be “found” in an unconscious state as soon as I can; otherwise, I might miss the right moment to return entirely.

Turning my head, I checked the state of the Blood River.

The calm rippling of the water’s surface suggested an improvement from before.

If I followed the river upstream, I could likely return without a hitch…

It seems I’ve really gotten myself a long way off.

The distance to Remia Gorge looked incredibly vast.

I had better hurry if I wanted to be found at an appropriate time.

“Grrrr…”

An unexpected sound of a dog’s growling.

Turning in the direction of the noise, a pack of Hellhounds had appeared.

This was rather timely, as I needed to replenish my vitality.

Having partied hard in the Blood River, I was fairly famished.

“Growl!”

Though the Hellhounds charged with great bravery, their heads fell as I casually swung my blade through the air.

As always, I picked a head of a decent size and bit down into it.

[Hey…]

The taste was now as familiar as water itself.

The initial bitter flavor that I experienced the first time was now almost fragrant.

[Hey, Master…]

I wondered if I’d eventually start searching for blood rather than water.

If I ever got addicted to this, it’d be quite the trouble…

[Look behind you, you fool!!!]

A bellow loud enough to burst an eardrum caused me to drop the head I was holding.

Startled, I turned to Ceyram, who was looking somewhere with a serious gaze.

“Ah, why would you scream all of a sudden while I’m eating…?”

“Look at that! Didn’t I tell you that something amusing would happen~?”

“…!”

Humans have a limit to their memory; they can’t recall all their past experiences.

However, there are some memories that are so absolute that they cannot be forgotten no matter what.

Even in a life lived twice, that memory, that existence, that voice was unavoidable!

I hadn’t verified it yet, but I knew who this cocky voice belonged to.

Slowly turning my head, I followed Ceyram’s gaze.

There, crouched on a low cliff, was a man looking down at me.

At the sight of his face, my 99% speculation became 100% certainty.

“You’re human, right?”

The man was grinning with a carefree smile.

Even though I found myself in the Demon Realm, the first demon I encountered had to be this guy?

Why on earth was this demon, no, this man here?

Demon King Belkarion.

The strongest in the Demon Realm, who had fought the most terrible blood battle with me in my previous life, was now right before my eyes.

(To be continued)

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