“Your Highness. Are you sleeping?”
I was lying on the bed and Eleris was sitting on a chair by the bedside. I felt rather complicated about falling asleep like that, but it wasn’t like I hated that subtle feeling.
“What’s the matter, do you have something to say to me?”
Eleris said neither yes nor no to my question. After being silent for a while, Eleris quietly opened her mouth.
“I don’t think humans are better than demons.”
What was she talking about? Eleris was staring at me. The vampire’s red eyes were filled with sorrow.
“In the first place, Demons were a mix of many different races while humans had always been one singular race.”
I didn’t know who was inferior or worse of. There were many demons with superior racial characteristics. However, while they were physically superior to humans, they might lack intelligence, and there might even be races that lack both. There would also be races that were superior in both these aspects.
At my musings, Eleris shook her head.
“That isn’t what I mean.”
“I told you that I do not believe that humans are better than demons.”
“Oh. That’s what you meant.”
Eleris seemed to think that it was more fortunate that the demon side lost, but in fact, she just didn’t like war in general. Eleris was a traitor to the demons.
“Humans are a race that knows the meaning of prosperity.”
Eleris must have watched the Demon Realm continuously increasing their arms, only thinking about war. However, humans were a race that was able to focus on life itself. When Eleris came to the Capital and saw this scene, it seemed that she didn’t want this world to be destroyed.
The Demon Realm was a world driven by just a single goal: A war with the humans, and Eleris simply didn’t like that mindset.
“But humans also fight and kill each other.”
However, humans also engaged in wars and slaughter among themselves. Eleris hated the Demon Realm, but she knew that even the Human Realm had such sides to it. In the end, did Eleris think that human society was the lesser of two evils?
She didn’t think humans were better than demons.
“So sometimes there are moments when I get fed up with the human’s wickedness.”
“Like with that swindler?”
“You could use that as an example, yes.”
Someone who played with someone else’s life just for money. That could also be regarded as a great example for the wickedness of human beings. But Eleris didn’t seem to talk about that.
Eleris was silent for a while.
What was she thinking about? Eleris was still trembling.
“What’s wrong? Did something happen?”
“Tomorrow…. You’ll find out tomorrow….”
Was she unable to tell me herself? She didn’t say anything more to me.
The next day.
I went to the Rotary Gang with Eleris. The meeting place was the same as before. A large cavity inside the drainage channel.
It had rained a while ago, so the sound of running water was noisily echoing around the cavity.
Loyar was silently staring at the bonfire. I contacted her in advance. Sarkegaar had also arrived. While Eleris was busy applying sound proofing magic, Sarkegaar approached me and hugged me fiercely.
“I always believed it! I always believed Your Highness would awaken a powerful ability! You have inherited the bloodline that possesses every quality found in this world! I hope that you will dedicate yourself to training, grow as fast as possible and rain the wrath of the Demon Realm on those cowardly humans….”
“Don’t be so loud. I think my ears are going to bleed.”
“Yes, Your Highness.”
He was always such a talkative guy. I thought it would have been more effective if that guy had that winning mentality supernatural power. He still believed that I would become the great overlord of the Demon Realm. Well, for now I’d just stay still.
I didn’t have to say twice that I had awakened a supernatural ability, because Eleris convened a short meeting yesterday and delivered the rough details to them.
“Don’t you think, you stand out too much? I heard you were going around, beating up students and you even went ahead and had a duel?”
I was dumbfounded by Loyar’s words.
“If one sows wind one shall reap a tempest, you know? He was such a cowardly bastard. So I just had to stomp his face into the ground.”
When I described how I made that guy surrender, Loyar’s and Eleris’ expressions were quite a sight.
“You were also born with the wonderful qualities of a monarch. That ruthlessness! Such pride! Such a strong fighting spirit! All of them are virtues of a great monaaaaaarch!”
“Oh! That’s the stuff!”
When I responded to his rhetorics this time, Sarkegaar decided to express his admiration with his whole body.
“I’m just worried that you’re relying on violence too much….”
As Eleris said so, Loyar also let out a sigh.
“And I head you beat up a gangster on the mana train yesterday.”
Eleris’ eyes widened as if that was the first time she was hearing that. I didn’t tell her because I thought she’d just nag me. It seemed like Loyar wanted to nag me for what I did outside as well.
However, I also had something to say about that.
“No, if one wants to get into someone else’s business, wouldn’t it be up to them to find a different area to start? But there that bastard was, trying to sit down in an already made bed. No matter how immoral the business, if someone tried to take away someone else’s business, they still had to pay the price.”
That idiot just came and said: “From now on we’ll do this here, so shut up and get lost!” No fucking way would I let that happen.
Loyar stared at me with wide open eyes.
“Even though you do have a supernatural ability, but I have to say, Temple’s education’s pretty great. You’ve been there for only some time and you’re already able to defeat a grown man.”
Was she being sarcastic right now? Did she mean I only learned how to fight at school? Huh? Right?
To put it bluntly, there’d be no way for someone who studied at the best mixed martial arts center of the world to get beat up by a simple street fighter, you know? Of course, I also had my supernatural ability and my opponent was really careless.
Of course, they’d still be pretty young, but those Royal Class’ 5th and 6th years with combat talents would be able to beat up anyone that came at them when they entered society. Even if the reason was part because of their talent, Temple wouldn’t raise them sloppily either.
“Anyway, how come you tell us not to fight those guys, but you end up fighting them?”
I told them to not fight on the train because we’d have to stop doing business if they were to come up with sanctions.
“I didn’t mean that you should leave those robbers alone. Who told you to hold it in while someone was casually trying to steal your business?”
If someone were to be about to steal something from you, you should properly defend yourself.
“So, does this happen a lot?”
When I sat down next to her and asked, Loyar nodded.
“Our gang started a new business and it seemed like there were rumors circulating that it was going pretty well. So there were either those who didn’t care or those who started to copy it.
Mana trains were public spaces, so it was unavoidable that a certain group of people saw our guys sell things there. So, seeing that, it was only natural that they’d start thinking: “Huh? Should I try doing that as well?”.
Hence, there were some who started doing it individually and some who started doing it on an organizational level.
“So those who are part of organizations usually plant some people on the train to drive other vendors away.”
“Brilliant bastards…. Like that they shut down this business altogether.”
In fact, it was already bad enough that there were people placed on the trains who purposefully try to scare away others. If the other passengers started to file complaints, it would only be a matter of time before security guards were deployed. Then no one would be able to do business there anymore.
Those who tried ruining their competition would eventually end up ruining the whole business. I told Loyar before that they shouldn’t fight, so it seemed like she was just observing the situation.
She was always complaining, but didn’t she actually follow my orders quite well? Was she a real dog?
“Is it possible to track down their organizations and destroy them?”
I couldn’t believe that the various vendors on the mana train would have some sort of power fight. Only these types of absurd situations were happening around me recently.
“It won’t work…. To begin with the gang members aren’t any good in a fight.”
Homeless people and beggars gathered here and even if they were capable to do bad things in order to stay alive, they weren’t a match for organizations that gathered actually powerful people.
“In the end, I would have to make a move , but as you know, it’s already pretty well known that I’m form this place. If I were to destroy every single one, that might cause some friction with the guards, and if I were to be taken in that might have negative consequences for you as well.”
Loyar was a Lycanthrope after all. If she were to be caught by the guards, chances were high that that would cause problems, and if it did, those problems would eventually lead to me. Bertus said he’d look after me, but if Loyar was found out to be a demon, this situation would certainly turn rather strange.
“Hmm…. This is difficult.”
Eventually, those violent gangs will try to monopolize this business to the point where they catch the attention of the guards, which would lead the entry of vendors to be completely blocked.
If we continued to sit on our hands, we’d find ourselves out of business soon, but if we took action, that would involve a huge risk.
“Can’t you do something with magic?”
I asked Eleris if she couldn’t do something with magic, that universal cheat. She answered immediately.
“…First of all, I don’t particularly like violence. Furthermore, if violent incidents using magic occurred, they would get investigated more intensely and the sanctions would also be much higher compared to just a simple gang war. Another method would be to make them my kin, but as I said before, that would be rather dangerous.”
If someone were to commit assault or murder using magic, the Empire would obviously conduct intensive investigations. Magic was a dangerous force that could lead to massacre if left in the wrong hands after all. Likewise, turning them into Eleris’ kin would be even more risky.
“Your Higness. If you plan on killing all of them, you can leave it to me.”
Sarkegaar stared at me with sinister smile on his lips. Certainly, he had the ability to completely transform, so he’d be able to attack the gangsters without leaving a single trace.
Of course, Eleris’ face immediately turned blue.
“Are you going to cause a genocide in the middle of the Empire? Regardless of whether that would actually work or not, I’ll never allow that.”
Moreover, hearing that guy use the word “killing” so casually was seriously eerie. At times like these I felt like he was a real bastard, giving me goosebumps.
Even if they were sickening, that didn’t mean they deserved to be killed. Still, we needed to do something….
While we were thinking about this problem, Loyar suddenly stood up. Then she started heading out of the cavern.
“What? Where are you going?”
“I think there’s a commotion outside. I’ll go take a look real quick.”
Sarkegaar and Eleris stayed behind in the cavern, while Loyar and I, who was part of the Rotary Gang, went out. Eleris told me to just stay with her, but I felt like I had to check what was going on outside.
Going outside, I could see all the gang members gathered together. As I pushed through the crowd, I found myself in front of Daibun.
“What’s going on?”
“Big sis? Oh, Reinhardt? When did you get here?”
“Never mind. Who are they?”
Across our gang members, stood dozens of men staring at us.
“That’s him, bro!”
And, a guy that seemed quite familiar to me pointed at me. Obviously, he was that asshole that wanted to touch one of our gang members on the train, but then got beat up by me. The guy whom he called ‘bro’ hit that idiot’s head and shouted at him.
“You frickin bastard. You were beaten by a kid like that?!”
“Tha, that…. Even though he looks weak, he’s actually hella strong!”
It seemed like he guessed I was a member of the Rotary Gang and came all the way here to get revenge. Loyar looked at me with a reproachful look as if I caused some exceptional mess.
The one they called bro looked at me and then at Loyar.
“Are you the famous Irene’s Wild Dog? This is our first time meeting, huh?”
“Yeah. What’s your business?”
“I heard that your young friend over there hit my brother in front of everyone. Is that right?”
“Ah, that’s what I heard.”
Loyar was staring at him intently as if she wanted to say: “So what?”.
“Although I do believe that this idiot who ended up getting beat up by a young kid is at fault here…. We also have something called a face.”
“Who are you supposed to be anyway?”
At Loyar’s question, he clapped in an excessive manner. What a bad guy.
“Ah, sorry about the late introductions. Have you heard of Seven Stars?”
Wasn’t Seven Stars a cigarette brand?
“I’m Argent, the commander of Seven Stars’ Assault Squad.”
Not that Seven Stars. Were they supposed to be the Chilsung-pa?
(T/N: Also means Seven Stars. It’s a syndicate based in Busan)