Why I Quit Being the Demon King Chapter 90

Why I Quit Being the Demon King

Chapter 21: Saving the Chaos at Sungwangcheong (2)

“Magic is the purification of the spirit civilization progressed through long meditation and contemplation. It must have been believed that it could control foolishness.”

“But it was destroyed.”

“Right.”

“So they gave up on that path of belief. It’s foolish to repeat the same mistakes. Humans, who often face destruction, seem perfectly matched to be oppressed by demons and trampled by dragons.”

Yulgeum let out a sardonic smile upon hearing Deus’s story.

He turned his eyes back to the Hyangyumaryong.

“Suk has the power to turn living things into monsters. Most life forms die upon exposure to suk, but one in a thousand, one in ten thousand adapts and is reborn as a new monster. That’s what created this beast.”

“The monsters created by suk in the Demon Realm are all formidable. It’s humbling to admit, but there are monsters there that are not even comparable to dragons.”

“What our dragon clan values is not power. It’s harmony.”

“That’s always what’s said after losing a fight, that they seek spiritual strength or love peace.”

“We’re not in a position to be mocked, are we?”

“What do you mean?”

“This chaos wasn’t caused by our dragon clan, was it?”

Deus was at a loss for words for a moment.

“Just because you’ve beaten the demon king, you can’t escape all responsibility, right? So, what do you plan to do now, Mr. Demiurge 666?”

Crossing his arms, Deus looked up at the volcano.

“First, Alex must be dealt with…”

However, it seemed there was more to the story than just tormenting his subordinates.

Deus frowned as he gazed at the peak of the volcano.

“Why would someone do such a thing?”

It was impossible to figure out where things had gone wrong from the very beginning.

Zeke took a direct hit from Hyangyumaryong’s headbutt attack.

In the past, he would have either been knocked unconscious from the impact or thrown dozens of meters away.

He firmly blocked it with his shield.

By planting his hind foot firmly on the ground, he managed not to be pushed back, halting the mighty beast in its tracks.

The Hyangyumaryong, with its blazing eyes, looked around to see who had blocked its path.

Its three eyes glared straight at Zeke.

The people close to Zeke shuddered and collapsed to the ground at the mere sight of those eyes.

But Zeke stared directly back at the monster.

Scary.

But the scarier it was, the more energy welled up inside him.

“I am a hero! If the hero retreats, his small world will be destroyed. Even if I embrace the ruined earth and shed tears, it will already be too late! I am a hero!”

The words Zeke muttered like a chant were lines learned from Hero Elementary School.

It was a subject most students ridiculed and dismissed, but Zeke had diligently memorized even that.

The only place to learn was school. He had attended despite his family’s financial struggles.

Those teachings were precious to Zeke.

The resonance varies with the situation.

It was normal for someone always living in abundance to smirk at something like a hero’s resolve learned in the safe courtyard called school.

But here, in the crumbled fortress of Noiekan, the people found salvation in his mere proclamation of being a hero.

The old man and his granddaughter collecting stones for the catapult wept at Zeke’s cry.

Their tears gave Zeke strength again.

I want to protect.

I must protect.

Thinking of his two younger siblings who could be anywhere in the city, Zeke took another step and pushed his shield towards the giant beast.

After about half an hour of battle, Hyangyumaryong’s movements came to a stop.

Thanks to Zeke’s steadfast defense in the forefront, the knightly order’s firepower had been revived.

The wizards recited their most potent spells to shatter the monster’s carapace.

Seizing the moment, the knights thrust their long spears deep into the mara’s body.

Finally, the beast trembled and ceased to breathe.

Zeke exhaled a long sigh and retreated to the back.

He sheathed his sword and strapped his shield to his back.

It wasn’t over with the monster’s death. There were people trapped beneath the ruins and wounded everywhere.

A man pinned under a beam screamed for help.

Zeke ran over and pushed the pillar with his shoulder.

The flustered people around joined Zeke to lift the beam, and a woman who seemed to be the man’s wife pulled him out of the debris.

His leg dangled, likely broken.

Zeke examined his wounds. While contemplating what to do, another person brought splints and secured the man’s leg.

“Mr. Skatul!”

“That was an impressive battle.”

“I still have much to learn.”

Skatul, the fairy, was more skilled in healing arts than any human.

Zeke joined Skatul and helped the wounded around them.

Some were beyond help.

A man whose belly was torn and intestines spilled out gasped for breath with tears in his eyes.

Zeke couldn’t pass by without attending to him; he took his hand and prayed with him.

The townsfolk who had been following to help also wiped away their tears and prayed with him.

Among them was Noiekan’s young vice-mayor, Segetsu.

Holding the title of a low-ranking noble, Segetsu was already smitten with the young hero.

Meanwhile, as the knightly order began to regain order, they started looking for Hero Zeke.

Without the sudden appearance of a hero, the city’s warriors would have either died or chosen the dishonor of flight.

The captain of the knights, upon hearing that Zeke was tending to the wounded, clapped his hands together.

“That’s truly what a real hero is!”

Noiekan was the city where heroes were the most common.

There were schools from all over the world offering excursions to Sungwangcheong under the guise of training programs.

Even now, nearly a thousand young heroes from about ten schools were attending hero training in Noiekan.

However, few were as heroic as Zeke.

They ranked themselves based on combat skills like swordsmanship and magic, easily reaching higher tiers with equipment bought by their families’ wealth.

But their understanding of what it means to be a hero was grievously lacking.

The captain of the knights, Bonhalt, hurried to where Zeke was.

He arrived just in time to see Zeke praying over a man who had succumbed to death.

The injured man, covered in dirt like a beggar, lay on the ground.

Zeke held his bloodied hand tightly and prayed with devotion.

Captain Bonhalt lowered his head solemnly.

When the prayer ended and the man’s face settled into a peaceful rest, Bonhalt approached Zeke.

“Sir Zeke.”

Zeke, confused, saw Bonhalt speak again.

“I am Bonhalt von Portrail, the commander of Noiekan’s west gate defense.”

“Ah, hello. I’m Zeke van Holivich.”

“I’ve heard your name before. Thanks to you, we were able to deal with the enemy safely.”

“What exactly happened here? Isn’t this the city where Sungwangcheong is located? Why is there no hero?”

“There were a few B or C rank heroes… but they’ve either run away or are already dead. The heroes above A rank all had missions from Sungwangcheong, so they left the city.”

“Missions?”

“As you know, since you’re a hero, many young heroes come to Noiekan to receive hero training. All the heroes were mobilized to evacuate them to safer places.”

“Oh! That’s why…”

“Even though they’re just students, they are the future of the world. Sungwangcheong decided that their evacuation was a higher priority than the safety of Noiekan.”

“Are the students safe?”

“They should be. They were evacuated to the capital of Berde, Akoma. By now, they should be nearly down the mountain.”

“Hopefully, no one was hurt or anything?”

“They should be fine. The heroes will give their all to protect them.”

“That’s a relief.”

Zeke exhaled as if a weight had been lifted from his shoulders.

The knight captain spoke to Zeke.

“If it’s all right with you, our knightly order could use your assistance to check outside the gates. Would you be willing to join us?”

In essence, he was asking for help from a hero.

It was an affront to their pride, but considering the gravity of the situation, there was no room for pride.

“Understood.”

“Thank you.”

Zeke looked back at Skatul.

“Mr. Skatul, will you come with me?”

“Yes. Supporting you is my duty right now.”

Zeke and Skatul joined the knightly order and set out to survey the area outside the citadel.

In the meantime, the carriage carrying Deus and Yulgeum entered the fortress.

Sitting in the coachman’s seat was the archlich Sadimus.

Sadimus seemed uncomfortable with the holy atmosphere and the sacredness of Sungwangcheong.

His already pallid complexion had turned completely ashen, and he covered his face with a cloak.

The damage across the streets was significant.

Especially near the west gate, hundreds of bodies lay haphazardly in the streets, a sight too horrid to behold.

“Horrible.”

Yulgeum turned her gaze away from the window.

“A city brought to this state by just one monster. So much for Sungwangcheong being anything special.”

“The Zodiac Knights’ absence must be the reason.”

“Are they that strong?”

“Except for the last one.”

“Cadenza? That guy who was strutting around in Jorix Castle. But that’s as strong as he gets.”

“Well, he’s a Zodiac Knight after all.”

“Would that make them average among the Zodiac Knights?”

“How would I know?”

“Right?”

“Hm.”

“Anyway, you’re useless.”

“Will you keep it down?”

“Hmm… So Zodiac Knights are that powerful, huh?”

“You’re always comparing everything to dragons. Like ‘dragon’ is some kind of standard for strength.”

“I like that. 1 Dragon. Is Alex about 100 Dragons?”

“That’s offensive. Don’t use my children like that. Besides, not all dragons are equally strong.”

“They seem too weak for me to notice the difference.”

“You’re really annoying. If you keep this up, I’ll make all my newborns combat-ready. I’ll ditch neutrality and side with humans to invade the Demon Realm.”

“Do what you want. I can’t be damaged anyway. I’ve beaten the demon king.”

“But when Darosh died, you charged at me without any plan.”

“Well, you know…”

“You secretly have a soft spot for my clan, don’t you?”

Deus scratched his cheek, hit right where it hurt.

Turning his gaze to the distance, he feigned indifference.

“Anyway, what to do about that.”

“The volcano, right? It’s a headache. Looks like that volcano has opened an unwanted portal to the Demon Realm. A portal so out of control that the ‘monsters of Suk’ have revealed themselves.”

Deus sighed at Yulgeum’s calm words.

“Guess I have no choice but to check it out.”

“To the top?”

“Hm.”

“Fine, I’ll join you.”

“Damn woman, you’re curious too.”

“Speak nicely.”

Deus snorted and opened the window that connected to the coachman’s seat.

“Sadimus.”

“Yes, master.”

“Book 3 rooms at the best hotel. When Zeke and Skatul come back, they should rest there.”

“Where will you be going, sir?”

“Well, just follow Zeke’s decisions while I’m away.”

“Understood.”



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