１３． Onward to Hell
Good day, this is Jilbagias who is standing right before the distortion of the world for the first time in his entire life.
Upon seeing it with my own eyes, it was something that could only be described as a pitch-black 【Hole】.
No matter from which angle you try to see it, it was a literal flat circle.
Seeing it with my own eyes gave me an even more indescribable feeling about the mystery of the dark portal.
I mean, I couldn’t even make heads or tails about it, and I might have lost my sense of distance in this place if not for the magic circle drawn on the ground.
It felt like ―― the hole is gonna swallow me whole just by staring into it.
Both my body, and my mind.
Even my soul.
The fine hairs on my body already stood on end from sensing the danger of that place.
As if the world was telling me that this place was bad news.
「… I wonder what went through the head of the first demon king when he entered that hole.」
I couldn’t help but voice the question in my mind.
Though it had already been confirmed now that this hole was connected to hell, who in their right mind would willingly plunge himself into such an unknown place
Could it be that it shows just how much he grieved about the future of his race But still, that was too much even for desperation.
「What went through the mind of His Majesty the 1st demon king eh…」
Platy muttered those words with a triumphant look on her face.
She did that only after she accidentally blurted 「I don’t know」 in a low enough voice.
「Anyway… beyond that is Hell.」
I feel reassured since Jilbagias is such a composed child.」
Platy seems to be so proud of me.
「I still got overwhelmed by the presence of that hole since this is the first time I visited this place though.」
「It’s different, I mean, you’re way too composed for someone who visited this place for the first time.」
Since I’ve been living the life of an undercover agent since I was born as your child.
For a former human like me, everything about my new life was too different from my previous life.
Well, the dark portal was awe inspiring indeed but, that’s only until I found the way to close it.
We’ve to find a guide first right」
「Just let nature take its course.
Some people contracted imps in the beginning, some luckier ones made a pact with origin and high-rank devils.
You need to meet a appropriate devil for you.」
Time to go.
Despite feeling unprepared, I approached the dark portal with brisk steps.
Okay, calm down now, don’t be surprised.
I, the ex hero of holy religion, is charging into Hell by myself, eh It’s the scar from the mythical era―― the great war of gods you know Upon thinking carefully, I was actually really lucky to get this chance.
… Come to think of it, I might be really desperate just like the 1st demon king too.
Okay, here I come.
I heaved a sigh to calm my nerves, and jumped into the 【Hole】.
When I snapped out, I noticed that I’d been absentminded for a while.
I had to quickly adapt myself with this unfamiliar sound, unfamiliar light, and unfamiliar wind.
I felt like I had just drank an especially strong liquor.
The world around me was ambiguous, and dulled my sense.
Currently, I was standing on solid, dark ground.
Or maybe red ground.
There was no light after all.
This place was a forest, right I mean, it was so damn vague.
The ground looked like it continued as far as I could see and yet, upon straining my eyes, I noticed that I had already hidden myself in the shadow of a tree.
The density of the darkness was different from what I expected.
It felt like I was too fragile.
Yes, I felt… so weak.
I turned around upon hearing someone greet me.
The one who stood there was a cane, wearing a tailcoat… I’m not joking, it was exactly as I said.
The ancient-looking wooden cane was wrapped in a tailcoat and stood right there.
「We rarely get a visitor like you in this place.」
It had a calm and composed man’s voice.
This cane was a devil huh.
Judging by his appearance, did it have a high status
That was a mystery for me.
And I couldn’t see his magical power either.
May I ask for your name」
I tried my best to react naturally upon seeing his unusual appearance and greeted him back with a calm voice.
Platy did tell me that I could meet a devil suitable for me as soon as I entered the dark portal, was that referring to this cane
「Nice to meet you.
I’m the one who shows the way.
Devil of guidance, Odigos.」
The arms part of the clothes that shouldn’t have anything in it was moving on its own, showing the gesture of placing one hand on his left chest, a sign of polite greeting.
I suddenly gained an understanding.
This devil called Odigos was a fashionable devil.
He wore a tailcoat in order to prevent others from seeing his naked cane appearance.
「Ah, nice to meet you, and thank you for the polite greeting.
My name is A――」
Wait a minute.
That was a close call.
The son of Demon King.」
「Hou, if it isn’t truly a rare visitor we got here.」
Odigos shook lightly as he said so, looking really amused.
Despite the lack of body and face, I could somehow picture such emotion from him.
「Currently, I work as the guide to find the appropriate place for the visitor of Hell.
Thus, I’ll show you the appropriate place for you too.
And the most suitable place for you is…」
As soon as he said so, Odigos collapsed as if the thread that was holding him snapped.
And then started to roll on the ground.
The cane was rolling along with his tailcoat.
And the place he pointed at was far away beyond ground level.
The extremities where the black sun was rising from the west.
「You may head toward that direction.」
Odigos rose up slowly and dusted off the soil from his tailcoat.
… Eh, that was the 『Guide』
He just… fell
「Are you sure it really is over there」
「There’s no doubt in my guidance.」
Odigos said so, full of confidence.
「Anyhow, I’m the devil of guidance.
My duty is to show the most suitable path.」
「What kind of devil is residing over there」
「I’ve no idea about that.
I don’t have the authority to know what is laying in wait over there.」
Well, it seems to be the truth since the one who said that was a devil himself.
I’ll be heading to that direction, thank you for the guidance.」
It’s not like this was a gamble anyway.
I walked toward the direction pointed by Odigos after I expressed my gratitude to him.
「But still, I’ve no idea how many years it would take for me if I just walked toward that direction.」
Then, I heard Odigos voice coming from behind.
「What is your goal walk while picturing the goal in your mind.
Well then, adieu.」
When I turned around, I couldn’t see the back of his tailcoat anymore.
It felt like I was in a completely different place until just a while ago.
「My goal, eh…」
There was only one goal then.
「I want the power to defeat the demon king, and the power to destroy the demon kingdom.」
I would even make a pact with a devil to get that power.
Just like the 1st demon king.
――With a byun, I felt that something was pulling my body.
So I accelerated as I was thinking about my goal strongly.
I was already dizzy from the passing scenery.
I passed a mountain in a single step, and a river with another step.
Leaving the valley, ascending a waterfall, crossing the desert and ocean.
It felt like I was following the history of Hell itself.
Onward till the start of west.
Toward the land of the rising black sun.
And then, I stood in front of a palace.
Or should I say, a graveyard.
I had no idea whether the giant stone structure before me was a spire, or graveyard.
I stepped my foot on the black and white tile, and went into the seemingly deserted palace.
After passing who knows how many hundreds of corridors, I arrived in a dark hall.
「―― A visitor」
A Lisping voice resounded in the entire hall.
A chill ran down my spine the moment I heard that voice, as if a sac of deadly poison was shoved into my entrails.
In the center of the dark hall was an obsidian throne.
With healthy tanned skin and silver colored hair that shone like a star in the night sky.
A girl that seems too young to be called a girl, yet too old to be called a little girl, was sitting right in a throne.
She sat in what you call as bad manners, basically laying down on the throne with her head and feet on the armrest.
Her eyes that seemingly filled with murkiness, stagnation, like chaos crammed together in one place captured my figure.
―― Was this fella the most suitable devil for me
I couldn’t feel her magical power properly.
Nor did I know her status or power.
Her eyes narrowed in suspicion as she looked at me, as if trying to gauge me too.
「――Why there’s a human in this place」