Why I Quit Being the Demon King Chapter 67

Why I Quit Being the Demon King

Chapter 16: The Hero Grows (2)

The golden chair had an unexpected advantage.

Not only was it so hard that it required a cushion, but without a rocking feature, sitting in it for too long could cause one’s body to twist uncomfortably.

The comfort was worse than that of a wooden rocking chair.

Yet, sitting here seemed to deter people from thoughtlessly approaching to speak.

Humans are creatures weak to authority.

There was no better chair to enjoy solitude.

However, there were always exceptions.

Those were either humans without a sense of authority or non-humans.

She came out of the shadows.

A woman wearing a large-brimmed hat stood there, shining with a bright smile.

Pretty, isn’t she?

Indeed, she was. Even in the demon world, one would have a hard time finding a match for her beauty.

To say even the leader of the demon tribe, Shantrina, was less beautiful would be incorrect, although certainly more provocative.

The woman was carrying a rolling suitcase.

“Are you leaving?”

“Yes.”

“Next time we meet, you’ll be back to being the pure gold dragon.”

“I apologize.”

“For what?”

“For making you return the title of ‘Slayer of the Pure Gold Dragon’.”

“That’s not necessary.”

“If you want, you can come back to claim it. Though I won’t give it up easily.”

“As long as you don’t harm my family, I have no reason to fight you.”

“So you still have some sense of responsibility.”

“I may have quit being the Demon King, but I haven’t abandoned who I am.”

“Ah! You’re still Demiurge the 666th. So in 20 years, there will be war again?”

“Sounds like a goodbye you say if you’re never going to see each other again.”

“The mold incident is over.”

“Is it, really?”

Deus slightly lifted the corner of his mouth.

“Is there something more? Is it related to Alex’s disappearance?”

“If you want to hear Part 2, there’s an entrance fee of a thousand gold.”

Yulgum slowly shook his head.

“No, I think I’ll pass. For now, I have my own issues to deal with.”

“Well then, farewell.”

“Damn woman. Take care of yourself.”

“You too.”

Yulgum turned, pulling along the wheeled suitcase.

He paused briefly, then turned to look back at Deus.

“Be careful with that butler.”

“Do you know who it is?”

“I have a guess. But I can’t tell you.”

“Then just go.”

Yulgum lingered for a moment longer, looking at Deus, then bowed his head slightly.

Once she had gone, Deus tried to get some sleep again.

But sleep that once escaped wouldn’t easily return.

He closed his eyes and let time pass.

It was well past lunchtime when Ziek returned.

“Did you play your parent role well?”

“Yes, Lord Deus.”

Deus, sitting in the golden chair, looked up at Ziek.

“Is school going well?”

“Yes, it seems. Though there is a bit of ostracization, nothing can be done. The Holy Biche family is a disgrace to Jorix’s Castle.”

“Well, you have been a contractor for a long time. But now you are B-grade. Just recently, you even defeated a giant.”

“Seems like no one believes that. It wasn’t a solo fight, you know.”

“It looks like the Hollyoak family has taken the credit.”

“It’s more that no one believes it.”

“You’re having a tough time.”

“It’s fine. Things will change once my siblings graduate from school and get their official rank.”

“Is that the power of the family?”

“Yes. A hero is not an individual but the name of a family.”

“Work hard. Do they even know how much you’re struggling?”

“I believe they do.”

“Always underappreciated, huh? Anyway, go on and work. Now that Yulgum is gone, you’ll have even more to do.”

Ziek was visibly startled by this information.

“What? Ms. Yulgum left?”

“Why… Did you two fight?”

“Don’t be silly.”

“You two are dating, right?”

“Is that what Alex has been spewing?”

“Yes…”

“When that bastard returns, he needs some education.”

“So Ms. Yulgum isn’t coming back?”

“I don’t know. She does as she pleases.”

“I wish she would come back.”

“Why? Do you like her?”

Ziek’s face turned red.

“No, it’s not like that!”

“Then who do you like? That Hollyoak lady?”

“Lexia is just a senior to me.”

“From the way she keeps fussing over you, it seems she has feelings for you.”

“Don’t say that. She’ll get mad.”

“Really?”

Just then, an old woman, hunched over, crossed the courtyard.

Her quick steps and unhappy expression were apparent. As she made eye contact with Deus, she bowed her head deeply and walked over to Ziek to speak to him cautiously.

“Ziek.”

“Oh, Grandmother Zero.”

Grandmother Zero bowed deeply to Deus, for courtesy.

Deus watched Ziek with an expressionless face.

“Grandmother Zero lives in the same neighborhood as me. She’s often looked after my siblings since we were young…”

Ziek addressed the elderly woman.

“What brings you here?”

“I know I shouldn’t, but I need to ask for your help, Ziek.”

“From me?”

“Yes. I know you’re a hero and I should probably go through official channels… You know about my home…”

“Speak freely. We’re not strangers.”

Ziek smiled kindly, putting the old lady at ease.

“It’s just, my second son hasn’t come home for three days now.”

“Jason?”

“Yes.”

“I heard… he works in the sewers.”

“The supervisor says he just went a bit deep and it’s taking some time… but I’m worried…”

“Don’t worry. I’ll check as soon as I finish work today.”

“Thank you. How can I ever repay you?”

“It’s nothing. Neighbors should help each other out.”

“I’m truly grateful.”

Grandmother Zero kept bowing her head as she turned and walked away.

“What is it?”

“Ah, Jason works in the sewers of Jorix Castle. The place is so complicated that sometimes he gets lost and comes home a day or two late…”

“Losing your way in the sewers for a day or two is common?”

“Ha, yes.”

“Probably just out playing and comes home late. Maybe at some bar, getting drunk.”

“That has happened a few times.”

“Anyway, you should set your limits. You’re the one who ends up suffering. I doubt the neighbors have treated your family all that well?”

Considering the overly subservient attitude of the old lady, it didn’t seem like she was close enough to ask Ziek for such a favor.

“But they’re our neighbors. Life is hard for everyone. Besides, I’m a hero. My father always said a hero should make sacrificing their comfort part of their job.”

Deus looked intently at Ziek.

No matter how many years, centuries, or millennia passed, such a way of thinking was something he would never understand.

Humanity did not seem to value this way of thinking either.

That’s probably why the Holy Biche family lived like beggars.

“So, are you off work today?”

Ziek, armed with the shop’s steel shield and sword, and dressed only in a breastplate for light armor, was preparing to leave when Deus casually threw out a question.

“Yes, I’m sorry. You’ll have to eat dinner somewhere else tonight. Should I recommend a place?”

“No need. But are you okay going alone?”

“Yes, it’s my responsibility.”

“Well, it’s not like it pays anyway.”

“That’s why. I’ll ensure it doesn’t interfere with tomorrow’s work, so don’t worry.”

“Who’s worrying?”

Ziek with his bright smile exited the shop. He headed towards the sewer entrance not far from the shop.

The sewers of Jorix Castle had a long history. They were used for at least 30 centuries.

Sludge, an inevitable by-product, tended to accumulate in sewers.

It had to be cleaned periodically to prevent clogging, and this dirty work fell to the lower class citizens.

Ziek, too, had taken sewer-cleaning side jobs quite frequently.

Thanks to that, he was somewhat familiar with the sewer geography. Even so, Ziek took a copy of the sewer map from the town hall with him.

The complexity of the underground system was not something that could be memorized by human memory.

With the shield on his back and the sword at his waist, Ziek felt prepared. The underground wasn’t particularly dangerous, but occasionally, monsters from the outside found their way in.

Just in case, he had brought weapons to avoid any unexpected incidents.

Obviously, even these weapons weren’t free.

A sword and shield together equaled 1 gold, which meant pouring out two months’ salary.

The price made his hands tremble, but there was no alternative. Deus’ armory was known for having the best price-performance ratio in all of Jorix Castle.

Nevertheless, after the recent expedition in the Horse Tail Forest, Deus had generously rewarded him, enabling Ziek to afford these costly weapons without any financial burden.

Ziek ventured deeper, past relatively safe areas.

It wasn’t until he was overwhelmed by the stench of rotting sludge that he arrived in the area where Jason had worked.

Then, something unusual caught Ziek’s eye.

There was a collapsed wall next to the main thoroughfare wide enough for carriages to pass.

It was rare to see a sewer wall left broken and unattended like that, especially in such a conspicuous area.

Two guards were standing beside the fallen wall.

Their faces, deeply scrunched in annoyance, clearly showed their distaste for being in the sewers.

Ziek approached them.

“Halt. This area is currently restricted.”

“Good job, men.”

“Oh, aren’t you Ziek?”

One of the guards recognized him.

“Yes.”

“I thought so. So you’re no longer a contractor, right?”

“I’m B-grade now.”

“Alright. But be careful. The head of the Hollyoak family has gone in to investigate, so don’t commit any discourtesy.”

“Canadin?”

“Yes.”

“Is the situation that bad?”

“Hmm…”

The soldier hesitated to continue.

Ziek involuntarily swallowed a dried gulp.

Canadin Hollyoak happened to be the father of his senior, Lexia.

His rank was A-grade, making him a formidable figure.

Just a generation ago, the Hollyoak family was a G-grade heroic lineage.

They had ample wealth and esteemed martial traditions. There was no comparison with Ziek’s humbler Holy Biche lineage.

Make no mistake, his colleagues were also highly skilled.

There was almost no need for them to intervene in matters relating to Jorix Castle.

To delve into sewers was not expected of such stature.

If he had come, it meant that he saw a significant threat lurking underground.

Ziek gently touched the hilt of his sword.

It was Doomslayer, just an ordinary steel blade.

Could I really wield power with this weapon?

Just as fear tried to grip him, Ziek remembered the eyes of Deus.

His hesitation vanished.

After nodding to the guards and bidding farewell, Ziek stepped through the dark breach.

If there was evil present, a hero had no reason to hesitate.

The cavern carved into the sewer tunnel was a complete contrast to the other side of the wall.

It was a continuous smooth rock surface, as if the natural bedrock had been shaped.

Although the environment was better compared to the odoriferous sludge-filled sewage, Ziek became more tense.

He ran his hands along the wall.

The traces of something scraping through were clear.

The tunnel before him was unmistakably crafted by some beast.

Ziek paused briefly.

A monster capable of burrowing a 3-meter wide hole in the bedrock underground — something formidable lurked beneath the city.

There was no time for indecision. He leaned forward and kicked off the ground.



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