The Greenwood Kingdom——
According to the game’s settings, it was a country deep in the forest that the Elven tribe governed by itself. Among the many Elven countries, it seems that it is the oldest, most distinguished, and largest one.
On top of that setting, it had a feeling of having a national isolation.
In actuality, there were scenarios where one would go into that country in the forest, but the Elven NPCs’ attitudes were often very cold.
Because it was made that Elves were the closest race to that of the Divine Beings, that pride created their exclusive ambiance.
Among the story quests, there were also requests from the Greenwood Royal Family.
A model of one would be a 『Rescue the Elven Princess!』 kind of quest.
Though, the setting on that was that they were kidnapped by a Demonic Being and not a slave trader……
——I see, so that means that these Elves are in the middle of a quest to rescue the princess from me, right?
He was thoroughly in the villain’s part.
Because he had consigned many Adventurers to oblivion doing his Demon King role play, he was fired up to play the villain’s part.
Besides, he also needed to get some information out from them.
The quest this time was a request from the Magician’s Guild.
Did Selsio’s group agitate the Guild’s reputation to get them to put out this quest? Would they do something so roundabout? They looked like people that would try to get her back right then and there if they had discovered Diablo’s group in town. They would have challenged him just like Emil did in the Adventurer’s Guild.
Instead, they went through the trouble of convening at the Man-Eating Forest which was a long way off from town and did an ambush.
Also, the quest’s requestor knew that the high difficulty quest would circulate to Diablo.
When he compared the information, there was only one conclusion that could be seen.
——So someone had drafted the ambush strategy, commissioned the quest, Selsio’s group only went along with it.
And then, that someone is……
——Somehow, I think I already know.
Selsio raised his voice.
「You had better removed Shera-sama’s choker, slave trader!」
Diablo understood the other party’s situation. Frankly, they were foolish, but if this was an action from being anxious over Shera’s well-being, killing them would be too rash.
It would be best if they could peacefully solve this with a discussion but……
Even though he thought that, he often provoked people due to his Demon King role play.
However, people learn.
This time for sure, he would say a single phrase that would peacefully solve this!
But before Diablo could say anything, Shera stepped forward.
「For me, I don’t care about something like the Royal Family!」
Selsio made a troubled face.
「Princess……Everyone in the Royal Family is worried about you. Please, come back to the country at least once.」
「What Nii-san and the others are worried about isn’t me, but an heir, right!? They just want me to give birth to a child!」
「That is an important duty.」
「Not being able to do what I want and marrying someone I don’t want to get married to, I don’t want any of that! I absolutely won’t go back to our country! It’s because I want to live with my own strength!」
「But, aren’t you a slave right now!?」
「You’re wrong! This is a choker meant for Summoned Beasts! It was only placed on me due to an accident! I’m not anyone’s slave! I’m not Diablo’s slave, nor am I the Greenwood Royal Family’s slave! I am me!」
「Accident? It would seem that there are various circumstances in this situation. ……However, if they were to look at your current appearance, the members of the Royal Family probably wouldn’t understand.」
「It doesn’t matter who won’t understand, my feelings won’t change!」
「For you to live on by yourself, you are much too powerless. Even if it’s by force, we will bring you back with us.」
「N, no way……」
Shera became frightened and stepped back.
The Pantherian young lady stood beside her.
「……That was well said……Considering it’s you, that was a very good job.」
「……The determination to cast aside your country and live by yourself. I don’t hate that sort of thing.」
She held a Summoned Beast’s crystal.
——Shera did say that the reason why she tried to call forth a Demon King of another world was because she wanted power.
The power to live by oneself.
She probably sought power that wasn’t bound by ties of obligation.
Diablo had a thought——
What are the Elves’ levels?
Since they were surprised just by 《Burst Rain》, they don’t have knowledge for magic.
However, a bow-user that could rapidly fire high-powered attacks from a long distance was a Magician’s natural enemy.
It seems that Shera was evaluated to be level 40 as an Archer even when she was a child. So they are people strong enough to take someone like her away by force.
Are they really level 60 or higher?
In order to not be aimed at by the Elves from now on, it would probably be better to hand Shera over to them.
Rather, he might be able to get the Greenwood Royal Family to owe him.
Even if he were to demand a reward that would allow him to live without discomfort even in this other world, they would most likely pay it.
——Well, that kind of solution would be too boring!
「You damned clowns.」
「Wh,what!? Were we just called clowns!? By a lowly slave trader!」
「You people have committed three mistakes. I shall correct them one-by-one. First, I am not a slave trader, I am a Magician.」
「Mu……!? It couldn’t be, that rain of fire just now was……」
「Next, Shera is not powerless. Because, right now, I……am lending her a hand.」
It wasn’t only Shera, even Rem looked hard at Diablo.
「Diablo! You decided to become mine!?」
「Do not misunderstand. This just means that right now, my interest is towards you——Didn’t I say this before? That, depending on your objective, I would lend you a hand.」
「Yeah! You said that!」
「I shall show a bit of my true strength to this youngster that prattled that he would “take you back by force” in front of me.」
Shera made a face that looked like she would cry at any moment.
She had firmly talked back to them, but in reality, she was probably insecure. Rem placed a hand on her shoulder.
「……Everything is going to be alright.」
With a tearful voice, she nodded.
Diablo expressed an arrogant and cruel smile just like a Demon King would.
「Clowns, your third error is, that you made an enemy of me……you had better learn of your own powerlessness and despair!」
If they were to know how big their level difference was, they probably wouldn’t come back after recovering over and over again.
Though, frightening them enough without killing them would be pretty difficult……
He faced Selsio’s group and made a declaration.
「I will annihilate you!」
「If you are going to resist, then you will fall prey to our bows!」
All of the Elves nocked their bows.
「Fire all at once!」
They were considerably proficient.
Together with Selsio’s command, ten arrows had truly drawn near Diablo simultaneously.
Since Shera and Rem were at his back, there was no way he could avoid them.
——Well, I won’t be avoiding them though.
Right before the arrows hit him, they radically lost speed.
This was due to the defensive barrier caused by magic and the half physical damage effect of his equipped 《Hollow of Jet Black》.
For the most part, the attacks didn’t reach him.
Selsio’s group was shocked.
「What in the world!?」
「Hmph……And here I thought you’d do a bit better than that.」
It would seem that in this world, even the “strongest” and the “elite” were around level 50.
Selsio raised a confused voice.
「Impossible……having received our arrows, is he really unharmed!?」
——Was this not just because of the level difference?
It seemed like the quality of their equipment was also low.
If it were the game, bow-users would carry bows strengthened with magic. If it were a magically enhanced bow, even with the physical damage was halved, it probably would have reached Diablo.
He looked at the arrows that had fallen to the ground.
In regards to Cross Reverie, arrows were items that would be consumed. In exchange for being able to fire powerful attacks from long distance, there was a chance that Archers would run out of ammo. It was required that they either buy more from a store or manufacture some with a Subclass skill.
And then, while this is natural, depending on the arrow’s quality, the offensive ability would drastically change.
The arrowhead was a triangle, and it was made of wood with length of about one meter. The tail end had flight feathers.
——This is the graphic of store bought good.
In order to reign as a Demon King, he needed to be able to differentiate the effects of the arrows that his opponent used just by looking at the graphics.
To put it plainly, this was a normal arrow.
「You fools, just what are you always fighting against? With these arrows, just what can you defeat?」
「Kuh……Are you mocking us……!?」
「I asked you a question. Do you only hunt beasts of the forest with these? Is that why you don’t fight against the Demonic Beings or the Demonic Beasts?」
「Th, that’s……Isn’t that natural……」
Selsio and the others felt ashamed.
Diablo nodded his head with an “I see”.
——So that’s why the people of this world have such low levels.
He remembered the words that Rem said before.
“If they were to challenge a powerful monster and die, nothing would remain.”
It was just as she said.
In this world, if one died, that’s the end.
Just receiving a level down penalty and getting to retry from the last town you visited just like in the game——there was no such rescue measure.
For example, if the MMORPG Cross Reverie were a death game where 『if you die, the player also dies』, who in the world would challenge the Man-Eating Forest?
If it took half a day to make a one way trip to a moderate hunting ground, who would go to practice there everyday?
Moreover, the return would also be on foot. There was no return spell.
There were no hints thanks to the mutterings of the administrators, and there was no information exchange from a walkthrough site.
If it was just to live, all one had to do was avoid the powerful monsters and hunt the beasts of the forest.
One could live with a normal bow and arrow.
It was the same in regards to magic.
Rather than chemical element magic which, while powerful, could kill you if a single mistake was made, a Summoned Beast that you could make into a shield was safer.
If the life that they only had one of was on the line, people would do the safe and relieving easygoing choice.
It was something that was natural.
Selsio carefully nocked a single arrow.
「Kuh……You damned monster……If an evergreen oak arrow won’t work on you!」
It was an arrow that was green in its entirety.
A characteristic of it was that the arrowhead portion was cone-shaped like a drill. Because a green air current sprang forth from the arrowhead portion, Selsio’s hair fluttered.
Diablo raised a voice of admiration.
「Hou, so it’s a 《Squall Arrow》.」
「Why do you know about it!?」
It was because it was often used against him when he was a Demon King in the game.
It was able to invalidate the Physical Damage Reduction effect. It was often carried by challengers as a countermeasure for 《The Hollow of Jet Black》.
Since it was also effective against monsters that could only be damaged by magic, it was a standard among standards for bow-users around level 50.
「That isn’t bad. If it’s with a 《Squall Arrow》, you’ll probably be able to bestow damage upon me.」
「Of course it will! This arrow is a treasure that I was granted by His Majesty! It’s a supreme arrow that pierces through everything! I don’t know what kind of magic you are able to use, but it will pierce through even that wicked nature of yours!」
The bowstring was drawn to its limit.
——To be honest, I don’t want receive it.
So Selsio was about level 50.
Since it took some time before he made the shot, he most likely added some power with the Martial Art 《Charge Shoot》.
If it’s a 《Squall Arrow》, he would definitely receive damage.
It would probably hurt.
However, if it wasn’t able to give a lot of damage even after doing all that, it would probably make them learn the difference in strength.
Diablo daringly smiled.
His innermost thoughts felt like he was waiting for an injection.
While the 《Squall Arrow》 left behind a green track, it closed in several times faster than the arrows from before.
The other Elves placed their thoughts of “Go! Pierce through him!” into it.
Rem and Shera called out Diablo’s name.
Diablo didn’t evade it.
Invalidating 《The Hollow of Jet Black》’s Damage Reduction effect, the arrow’s speed didn’t fall even by a little.
——If I were to receive something like this with my own flesh and blood, it would probably go straight through to my back.
Pain ran through his abdomen.
It wasn’t a stabbing pain like he had expected, it was a reverberating pain like being hit with a fist.
A dry sound was raised on the ground.
The green arrow didn’t pierce through Diablo. It tumbled to the ground.
Voices that were similar to screams were raised by the Elves.
Rem and Shera looked like they were going to hug each other and were delighted.
「……As expected of you.」
And then, Selsio opened his eyes wide and quivered.
「……How could this be……You’re telling me, the arrow I was granted by His Highness, had no effect?」
「Hmph……The arrow wasn’t bad, but you were just unskilled.」
Selsio’s face warped.
People really do laugh when they’re driven into a corner, is what Diablo thought.
「Wh, what in the world, are you……Are you really a Magician? Then that talk of you being a slave trader……What was that about?」
「I don’t know who inspired that idea, but I am no slave trader, and I’m not an ordinary Magician either.」
「……As I thought……Just what, are you?」
「You should engrave this in your heart together with fear. My name is Diablo. A Demon King of another world.」
At Selsio’s group’s back——towards the forest, he fired a 《Freezia》.
Thunderously, the wind rumbled.
The frost effect fluttered about and fell.
The Man-Eating Forest froze from the cold air of the magic.
A beautiful flower of ice opened up.
The nearby monsters ran away in confusion. There were also wild animals that jumped out from the forest.
What ran out from the swamp were the 《Spotted Snakes》. Though, since the quest was a trap, they were no longer needed.
Additionally, wild animals that were several meters large were running away while raising screams.
It seems that the wild animals were more well attuned in regards to danger than the people of the races. There was nothing that went towards Diablo.
Selsio’s group sank down to the ground while gazing at that spectacle. Going by their appearance, Diablo confirmed that they had lost their fighting spirit.
Diablo lowered his 《Staff of Tenma》.