Chapter 176 – Malevolent Flower(2)
“As you command.”
Jeremi picked up a cup that was in the shape of a horn. It contained a wine that had mandrake mixed in it. Mandrake, often referred to as mandra, was a plant that had substances within it that caused hallucinations. It had been purified into a powder and put into wine so that it could be drunk.
It was an item that alchemists made the most money from in this world. It could be used as an aphrodisiac and also as anesthesia. Jeremi most likely put a lot of the powder into the wine.
Daisy was in anguish as she drank the wine. I didn’t know if I should even say that she had drunk it. Half of the wine didn’t even manage to go into her mouth as it flowed down the side of her jaw instead. Jeremi smiled as she saw this.
“This is anesthesia. It will only hurt for you if you do not drink it, you know?”
“Your bare flesh will be torn and you will bleed endlessly. I will not take responsibility.”
Daisy glared at Jeremi with impassive eyes. The amount of liquid that flowed down the side of her mouth lessened. Nonetheless, it seemed Daisy’s stomach had already reached its limit as she couldn’t take in the rest of the wine. If you consider the number of potions that were already in her stomach, it wasn’t surprising.
Jeremi then proceeded to light some incense. A light gray smoke started to fill the room.
“Seriously, you should consider yourself lucky. I did not have something like this when I was little.”
A total of 6 incenses were placed around the bed. These were supposed to also act as a type of hallucinogen and anesthesia. They could only be made by herbs found solely in Maharaurava, one of the hells in the demon world. Jeremi complained as she lit up the incenses.
“Dying of shock during the procedure would simply be the end of it. Out of my 6 comrades, half of them died before being able to make a name for themselves in our assassin group. Sheesh……how much do these cost?”
Her vocal cords were grumbling, but I didn’t feel any emotions from her. As always, she maintained her demeanor as a cold assassin. There was a possibility that Jeremi smiled excessively and made exaggerated facial expressions because she was trying to desperately recreate the emotions she had lost.
I drank my wine.
Once we came back after subjugating two goblin villages, the baronet gave us even more special treatment. This was a wine that would often be presented to kings. This precious wine that should taste absolutely sweet felt utterly bitter to me.
A 10-year-old girl was going to receive an autopsy in front of me in a second. Her heart was going to be revealed. All for the sake of being turned into my slave. Simply because of the possibility that she may one day become a threat to me in the future. This was insane.
No. This wasn’t simply a possibility.
This world was an exact copy of the world in <Dungeon Attack>……. The game revolves around the hero more than anyone else. This girl was destined to become the hero. The quest wasn’t broken even though I had killed Andromalius. Was this not proof that her fate was something that couldn’t be changed that easily?!
This was the bare minimum safety precaution. The least I could do…….
“Uhm, Your Highness?”
I ended up responding late because I had been in deep thought. The bizarre fragrance from the incenses was painting the inside of my nostrils. It seems the incenses were taking effect now.
Once I came back to my senses, I saw Jeremi holding a surgical knife and looking at me. The operation had begun before I knew it.
Daisy kept groaning while bound to the bed. Her bare skin had been cut open. Her once clear eyes were now hazy. There was a lot of saliva flowing down the side of her mouth. She had lost complete control of her body.
Despite the pungent smoke coming from the incenses, Jeremi remained completely unfazed.
“These hallucinogens are rather powerful. It would be difficult to be here without an immunity. Your Highness will most likely not experience any long-lasting effects, but you do not have to stay here and watch any more than this. It would be fine for Your Highness to step out now.”
Jeremi’s voice resonated from a fair distance away. I shook my head like a fish flapping out of water. Even the words coming out of my own mouth sounded as if they were coming from afar.
“No. I will watch until the very end.”
I believed that this was my obligation. I didn’t know why, but I had a strong feeling that I shouldn’t leave this place right now.
Jeremi nodded and turned away. The surgical knife started to move.
“Whoa. Your Highness, this child is no joke. Her mana is manifesting because of the potion, but it is incredibly dense. No, this is my first time seeing a child with such dense mana……. She is almost like a monster. Dear Lord.”
“Despite being a child, her mana already has a will dwelling within it. It is trying to protect its master. Whoa, this is insane. There really are people who are gifted. If one of those old geezers from the Mage Tower were to see this, their jaws would probably drop. What did you eat to grow up like this? I’d like to have some of this as well.”
Jeremi continued to chatter on. She was most likely talking like this deliberately in order to prevent Daisy from going insane. Her hands were dexterously and precisely cutting into the girl’s flesh despite her rampant mouth.
“She probably never caught the recent plague or any sort of other diseases because of this mana. Her skin is also luscious. But this is unfortunate.”
Her words and hands were moving according to completely different rhythms. The scene in front of me flowed bizarrely like a silent film.
“You should regret having been gifted with this much mana right now. It is because of your mana that this surgery is becoming more difficult, fufu. Keep your wits about you. You might actually die if something were to go wrong.”
Her pure white skin was covered with an excessive amount of scarlet liquid. Daisy appeared like she was struggling to even breathe now. Groans leaked out from her lungs endlessly.
“Hkkgh, uh, ah……guuaah! Aagh! Hu, khh…….”
Her screams rang loudly in my ears. White skin, a red clump, dense smoke, and an excessively pungent fragrance mixed together with the vague scent of blood…….
What I felt as I watched the girl go through intense agony wasn’t sympathy.
It simply felt strange. It was strange and bizarre.
It was weird if you thought about it. Leader Hawk, Jack Aland, Riff, and Kurz Schleiermacher, they all groaned in pain as they died. Why must people feel pain? Why can’t they……well, why can’t they experience a form of pain that was a little cleaner? Why does it have to be pain?
My thinking became gradually duller. The inside of my head felt tingly. The fragrance had managed to seep into my skull.
Why did they try to kill me? I didn’t wrong any of them. It would be a joke if the only reason they had to kill me was due to the fact I was a Demon Lord. I didn’t become this because I wanted to. You guys are the ones who forced my hand first. Why do I have to take all of the responsibility? Even for the things I did not bring upon myself…….
So shut up, Jack. You’re screaming way too much just because your skin is being burned a little. I clenched my teeth and begged to the adventurers when there was an arrow in my thigh. Use your brain. Use all of your energy to think of a plan. Even if you get caught in a tiger’s den, you can still hit a tiger cub by the back of their head as long as you stay composed.
No, this is just business. It’s simply unfair like most other businesses. You probably understand that now.
The fact that you used a Memoria artifact was splendid. I took a blow because of that. If it weren’t for Paimon, then I would’ve probably fallen due to some rookie, no-name merchant who doesn’t even appear in Dungeon Attack. We might’ve become great friends…….
“Guuh……khhb, uugh, uuueeegh……!”
“Do not spit it out! Swallow it down! Swallow the damn potion! You’ll definitely die if you spit that out now. Do you understand? If you don’t want to die, then swallow it.”
Roughly how many people died? 10,000? About 2,000 people died in the Black Mountains……. It was probably around that range.
In any case, those orc bastards eat way too much. Even if they make smoked meat out of thousands of corpses, all of that is consumed almost instantly. They were sometimes cute, but they were mostly damned bastards. Blitzkriegs, monsters dying quickly was a good thing in wars. On the other hand, humans were different…….
Barbatos was right. It was damned. For humans, their soldiers weren’t simply soldiers but also their labor force. They have to worry about their labor force dying out as well.
In that regard, I’m glad that I wasn’t born a human. Even if I was assigned some important role like as Imperial Princess Elizabeth’s close aide, I would probably be struggling more than I was now. I may be the weakest Demon Lord, but it was probably a good thing that I became a Demon Lord at all…….
10,000 people have died.
10,000 people could almost make up an entire world.
That’s why, from now on, my mind will always be slightly bigger than a world of ten thousand people.
“Pull yourself together. Sheesh, you passed out. Hey! Hey! Come back to me! Do you want to die? Do you want me to stab you with this knife first before you can die, you brat? You son of a bitch, open your eyes! Open your eyes! If you die, then that brother of yours will die as well. Your parents will also die. Fuck, hey!”
Is that so?
I understood why I wanted to save Daisy’s life so much.
I wished for her to become like me. I wished for her to end up in the same situation I was in. If there are two pieces of trash instead of one, then they should be able to comfort one another.
I wanted to comfort another person. I wanted to become a strong person who was capable of comforting and leading another person as their mentor or parental figure.
My mind had become weak at some point. How much of a piece of trash am I?
To think that I would want to comfort someone because I saw that they were like me―What am I talking about? I have the stories of Leader Hawk, Jack Aland, Riff, Kurz Schleiermacher, and 10,000 humans inside of me―they have to be comforted by me? By their murderer?
Don’t make me laugh.
It sounded like the most pathetic excuse. How was this any different from a noble showing a farmer sympathy? You could’ve died instead of staying alive. You did not commit suicide.
Before I knew it, I had stood up and gone to Jeremi’s side.
The girl’s naked body was laid out before me. Flesh that had been cruelly cut open, red inner flesh that was twitching, and blood, there was so much blood. I slowly took in this sight. I then turned to look at the girl’s eyes.
Daisy’s eyes regained their focus. Her gaze instantly became fierce.
This girl who stayed expressionless all this time now had a look of rage mixed into her gaze. She most likely realized that I was the reason why she was experiencing pain far worse than death. I was her sworn enemy.
I smiled coldly.
“So this is as far as you can go.”
“You talked so confidently, so I believed you were quite strong, but you are unable to endure a mere surgery. In the end, you were more or less nothing but a 10-year-old girl. You were unable to take your brother, your parents, or your fellow village people on your shoulders. You could not even shoulder the lives of merely 30 people.”
Daisy opened her mouth.
A voice that was as faint as her breath came leaking out. She mumbled like a newborn infant several times and failed several times before she barely managed to say a complete line.
“I will……kill you.”
I let out a loud laugh.
My brain which had been dampened by the incense instantly became clear. That’s right! Everything became clear. What I needed was this sort of clear hostility!
A person who has killed 10,000 people must naturally receive the hostility of 10,000 people. However, most of them had died without even knowing that I was the one who killed them. They fell without getting a chance at revenge. Was this not unfair?
If I’ve killed 10,000 people, then you must have a will that is stronger than 10,000 people.
I will continue to make tens of thousands of people die. You must witness these sights in their entirety while standing at my side. Since the ones who have died to me were so weak and ignorant, thus they could not possibly become my enemy, you must take the place of each and every person that has been killed.
“I wish to have you at my side.”
I will remember everything I have committed every time I see you, after all.
So that I cannot run away from what I’ve done, from my life. So that I cannot find refuge in something like comfort or sympathy.
“You will become my eternal living witness.”
TL Note: Thanks for reading the chapter. These have been some slow days. I’ve been getting hit by a thunderstorm for like 10 minutes every day for the past several days now. Feels like I live in a tropical area right now because of this weather. On another note, Daisy is turning out to be quite the character. I can’t wait to see how she develops over time.
Welp, uh, I’ll see you guys in the next chapter.