１０． Guideline to Destroy A Nation
Though I was almost overwhelmed by my own rage when I read the first demon king’s autobiography, I’m also glad that I got the chance to read it.
First, I knew that the Panhumanity alliance wasn’t destroyed during my growth phase.
I understand the general situation of the war from Sofia’s story or from the report that was used as my learning material.
It seems the alliance was still suffering the same consecutive losses as usual.
But then, the progress of the Demon King Army invasion has also slowed down compared to before.
Though I’ve also noticed this trend back when I was still an active hero, the progress became really slow the last few years.
How should I say, it feels like―― the march of giants.
In short, the speed was really slow, yet steady.
I mean, for a frontline fortress that was taken down in half a day or less, they would take weeks to secure the area around the fortress, take a long break―― and then move to the next fortress.
Though the me from before would ponder why the demon king army didn’t take a more careful approach to prevent any insurrection, the me after reading 『Chronicle of Demon King Founding Nation』 pretty much realized the reason.
The demon race would be in deep trouble if they crushed their 『Enemy』all at once.
If the demon race was really going all out, the alliance would collapse and the demon race would lose their precious potential enemy which would turn into a huge, ticking time bomb for the demon race.
Thus, they set the pace of the war, deliberately pulling punches to prolong the war.
Biding their time till the alliance rebuilt their war potential.
And then crushed those forces from the front to quell the belligerent spirit of the demon race.
As of late, the Demon Kingdom would dispatch messengers to inform the nearby alliance country about their invasion and let the alliance side decide which fortress or cities would become the battlefield.
Naturally, the designated countries did everything they could, using all of their connection with the alliance to prevent their country from being selected.
Nevertheless, the Holy country which led the alliance up to this point was clearly exhausting themselves with this long war.
They had long since become leaders in name only and their influence was also limited to religion-related matters.
Currently, the alliance could only accept the Demon King Army challenge with do or die spirit, the alliance was in shambles.
Last time I heard, they were pulling each other’s feet, busy with their own scuffle while the enemy was marching closer and closer by the day.
When the frontline country came into contact with the Demon Kingdom, there was huge a difference in the countries that provided aid for （We can’t fight but, it’s possible to change the 『Next Target』 like usual.） reason.
Those filthy politicians… In this regard, as much as I hate the Demon race, it was a matter of their nature and they never actually tried to hide that fact.
I noticed that Night Elves were doing something which caused the current situation in the alliance.
… Something like 『At least, you’ll survive a bit longer』 was by no means an optimistic situation.
And even if the Demon Kingdom was defeated, the grudge between the countries could become a trigger for another war.
Moreover, innocent citizens were sacrificed to support the prolonged war.
The alliance should’ve already known what kind of tragedy would befall the humans who failed to escape from the country that was conquered by the Demon King Army.
They’re treated even lower than goblins, the lowest class citizens of Demon Kingdom, they literally became livestock.
Even at this very moment, there were many humans who lost their lives.
I still had some time before the alliance was defeated.
―― But, it didn’t mean that I could rest on my lapel.
I need to advance my plan, second by second, not wasting any precious second given to me in this second life.
Now, I’ve pretty much proven the existence of the rumored 【Dark Portal】.
It had been the biggest mystery for the alliance about the reason why the Demon Kingdom could mobilize Devils en-masse but the answer was pretty much as simple as “Because they had the gate that was directly connected to hell”.
「You also came from the 【Dark Portal】 right, Sofia」
Nowadays, the devil won’t come to this world via summoning again.」
I asked that question during the break between our close combat training, and she replied as if it was 「Natural」.
「Summoning ceremony is a dangerous ritual that exhausted both the summoner’s magical power and life force but, even us, the Devils hate that method.」
「You hate… that method」
「Now imagine this, Jilbagias-sama… Imagine your body being forcibly crammed into a pin-sized hole so that it will come out to the other side of the pin-sized hole.」
「That sounds… painful indeed.」
It might be akin to 『Painful』 in your perception.」
Sofia spoke with undisguised repulsion on her face.
It seems she had prior experience.
「What’s different between summoning and dark portal」
「It’s like heaven and earth.
The dark portal is a normal, long and comfortable tunnel.」
「Since that’s the case, why is there no previous case of devils coming out from dark portal prior to the rise of Demon Kingdom」
I am still missing some pieces of the puzzle to solve this mystery.
「The reason is simple.
We, the devils can’t come to 『This World』 via the dark portal.
To come to 『This World』, we need a connection with another being―― In this case, the Demon Race.」
So, according to Sofia.
From the denizen of hell’s perspective, the dark portal was a dimensional hole to which they had no idea where it was connected to.
None of the devils who dared to enter that hole by themselves ever returned.
「Maybe, it’s originally not tied to anywhere… not even I, the devil of knowledge, dare to risk my life by entering that hole.
Maybe I’ll try it after I learnt all the knowledge in this world.」
「But still… can we really go to hell」
「It might be possible but, you might not be able to go to hell because of the intention of the pioneer at that time, the first Demon King-sama.」
… Did that fu*cking Raohgias do something again
「When the dark portal was discovered, His Majesty the 1st Demon King was looking for strength.
His wish and desire at that time might have affected the distortion of the dimension.」
「… Do you mean that an individual’s intention affects reality just like what happened during the great war of gods」
I mean, it’s as absurd as many demons wishing for rain to fall yet no rain fell.
And yet, that happened to the dimension distortion.
「If such a thing is possible, his destination should be somewhere close to hell though.」
Hell is a pretty ambiguous world when compared to a material world like 『This World』 but, it has a powerful concept.
For example, the material of this world is really stable while in hell, it’s easily affected by the concept――」
… Here it comes, Magus scholar mode.
「On top of that―― Until the moment when His Majesty the 1st Demon King jumped into it, the state of the dimensional distortion in this world was still pure.
It is also thanks to the fact that the land around it is extremely unstable.
That’s why you can say that 『【Dark Portal】 was born』 the moment His Majesty 1st Demon King jumped in.」
Does that mean the dimensional distortion ended up connected to hell due to the 1st Demon King’s desire for power
What kind of fu*cked up story was this.
Raohgias had too many influences in this world…
But, that was all I could say.
Demon Kingdom, to think that I had to do something about the dark portal to weaken the demon race’s strength.
To be honest, only now did I realize that there was an even more troubling matter than the demon king army―― namely, the dimensional distortion in which I had no idea what I had to do about it but…
I definitely had to do something about that dark portal.
The already powerful demon race would only become even more powerful with the aid of the devils.
On the other hand, I could weaken them if they couldn’t borrow the devil’s power anymore.
Moreover, I also had to do something about the 『Demon King’s Spear』 and drive a wedge into the fragile unity of the demon race.
Only after I did that would the panhumanity alliance stand a chance against the demon kingdom.
「We~ll, Jilbagias-sama’s turn will come soon.」
For some reason, Sofia said something that I couldn’t understand while nodding her head.
「Your turn to visit hell.」
Sofia replied easily.
「I mean your horn has grown and your magical power’s strength is enough.
The 1st prince, His Highness Aiogias visited hell and made a contract with a devil when he was eight.
Maybe madam wants to break that record by letting the five year old you enter hell since qualification wise, you’ve no problem to do so.」
It seems I had no say in this regard.
That Platy definitely wouldn’t miss this chance.
「As Jilbagias-sama’s educator, I feel really proud of you.
You can’t wait to see what kind of devil you’re going to make a contract with, right」
Sofia spoke with a smile on her face but…
I, the former hero… would make a contract with a devil in hell, eh.
Not to mention that I’m the youngest child too…
Hell no, screw the fact about me being a hero.
I had to defeat the demon king.
And then destroy the demon kingdom.
I would be more than willing to make a contract with a devil if it would allow me to gain the power to achieve my goal.
「By the way, do you know how to find a suitable devil for me」
「Don’t worry about it.
You’ll naturally meet the most appropriate devil for you once you enter the dark portal.」
「Eh, I see.」
A suitable devil for a former hero like me… I wonder what kind of devil would come out to meet me
「I guess that’s something I can look forward to.」
I couldn’t help but put a twitching smile on my face.
――And then, a few days later.
「Jilbagias! Time to go to hell!」
Platy finally told me the time.
「You’ve to find a suitable devil for you before you can enter the palace in the truest sense.」