DB – Chapter 99

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Conversing With the Dark Dragon

 

There was a massive dragon inside.
Its existence alone could instill fear and awe into those who glimpsed it. The sacred, chaotic Dark Dragon Valis.
Even with its gargantuan scale, no one other than Chris’ knees buckled.
“Tranquil Area.”
Serge’s magic blocked the pressure that was weighing down on Chris. With that, Chris slowly stood back up.
“Are you alright?”
“Yeah, sorry.”
Chris was keenly aware of the fact that she was weak.

“Good job in coming back.”
Even her voice contained a certain pressure. Without the assistance of his magic, even Serge’s might’ve buckled as well.
“Valis-chan!”
Valis, seeing the familiar person that was the shouting Irina, once again shrunk her giant figure.
Just like the last time, her appearance was that of a human woman, very much like Ria.
“I take it you visited for something concerning the Millennium?”
“Dark Dragon Valis, I succeeded the title of Great Sage.”
Serge stood ahead of the others, saying that.
However, Valis didn’t respond. She’d likely already known just by looking at him.
“With that, I learned the meaning behind the Millennium. Even so, I don’t truly understand what the meaning of the Great Collapse is.”
Valid nodded, so he continued to talk.
“Please teach us the meaning of the Great Collapse.”
“It holds no meaning to humanity.”
Valis replied.

It was an answer that wasn’t an answer.
Switching in for the speechless Serge, Ria stepped forward.
“The Millennium has started in the world above. Unlike the ones that’ve happen so far, demons and humans aren’t fighting against each other, instead looking for ways to live together. Will that path lead to the Great Collapse?”
“Yes, the Great Collapse will occur soon enough.”
“Is this Great Collapse thing a planetary collapse?”
“It’s different from that.”
Valis outright swept away Serge’s reasoning.
“Then what is it? What will happen? That’s what we want to know.”
“That is something that should not yet be known. If you want to ask someone, you should ask the Hero that became a Demon King.”

Valis stubbornly refused to answer her.
For some reason, she wouldn’t tell them. But why?
Would something happen if she told them?
If so, what was that something?
That something might be what she’d told the Demon King.

“Can humanity survive the Great Collapse?”
Ria changed her question.
“I do not know. However, a few humans should be able to make it through. Just like how the elves, dwarfs, and demi-humans did in the past.”
So it was like that after all?
Ria made a prediction. Before, there used to be something called the Great Collapse.
And it was something like coming into contact with another world. Like how Heroes are summoned from other worlds.
Even humans were said to have come from another world. Assuming that to be true, what happened to their original world.
Did it not collapse, falling into ruin?
“Valis, I have one last thing I want to ask.”
Ria’s conjecture could easily be cleared up with this single answer.
“With your strength… could you destroy this planet?”
“… I could.”
Valis hesitated a few moments before responding.

 

*

 

Ria’s conjecture solved, she would discuss with the rest about it later.
However, that ‘everyone’ didn’t include someone.
“This is the first time that those three have come here, is it not?”
Valis gazed towards Asuka, Chris, and Carla.
“Let’s grant a few blessings, then.”
At the moment, their mana all rose sharply.
“If you have a wish, tell me.”
“For me, more power.”
Asuka replied unhesitatingly.
Nodding, Valis rose Asuka’s mana to the limit. Unable to endure it, she collapsed on the spot.
“Oi, idiot. Pull yourself together.”
Watching Ria intervene, Chris responded.
“If you can, perpetual youth.”

Perpetual youth.
It was something that could even be called a curse.
That is, it was a blessing that would turn into a curse as you prayed for death.
“No, Chris! If you don’t want to grow old, just use magic!”
The one to stop her was Serge. However, Chris shook her head.
“You’ve resolved yourself to live forever, haven’t you?”
No, Serge only sought out strength.
The perpetual youth was only something that came along with it. When the time came, he would end it all by throwing himself into a volcano or something similar.
However, Chris voluntarily chose it for herself.
“Being able to live together for eternity would be better than being alone.”
This was also a curse to Serge.

Bathed by the light Valis sent forth, Chris chose a life of immortality.

“Stupid… perpetual youth isn’t something anyone should want…”
Serge knew of the expression that would sometimes appear on Azel’s face.
However, all that Chris knew was that it was the path that Serge chose.
Moreover, there was something that Serge didn’t know.
Leaving behind her birthplace, the only thing left for Chris was Serge.

Finally, the last one was Carla.
“I have only one desire.”
She looked towards Ria, thinking of something painful. Ria returned her gaze.
“I only wish to stay with her through all eternity.”
This was a much greater curse than even perpetual youth.
However, this was something the two wished.
“This will be fulfilled so long as my power allows.”
With that, Carla was bathed in Valis’ black light.

 

*

 

“Now that, it’s my turn for a question.”
Finished with realizing their wishes, Valis spoke her wish.
“Ryuke Riana, are you resolved to become my successor?”
“Resolved… it’s not like I have any other choices, do I? Fortunately, I’m interested in going along with you.”
Shrugging her shoulders, Ria spoke her answer.
“In that case, you can leave. The next we meet, everything will come to an end.”
With that, Valis sent Ria and the others back to the surface.

Six people appeared at the entrance to the Dark Labyrinth.
One of them was a girl with flaxen hair, her head hanging.
“I’ll go. There’s no meaning in me being a hostage at this point.”
Conveniently, it was night time. It wasn’t impossible for her to fly.
“Yeah…”
With Ria’s terse response, Asuka took out her black wings and left towards the sky.
“That girl’s overworking herself.”
And so, five people remained.

“Now then, we should summarize everything.”
Ria spoke.
Everyone gave their views concerning the Millennium and the Great Collapse and put it all together.
They already knew everything about the Millennium. The Soul Cycle. It was to maintain the world.
Due to the Demon King’s refusal to kill wantonly, the cycle would be disrupted.
As a result, the Great Collapse would occur. Things concerning the Great Collapse were still unclear.
However, with Valis’ information and Serge’s reasoning, they understood that it wasn’t like the planet itself would be destroyed.
And according to Serge’s memory, they knew that ten thousand humans were split up across the four continents.

Right now, this world had four continents.
This largest was the one they were on, the Dragon Bone Continent. The other three were: the Dragon Fang Continent, the Dragon Claw Continent, and the Dragon Wing Continent.
However, it was said that humans currently only resided on the Dragon Bone Continent.
Setting aside how the other three continents’ human populace died out, it’s said that around twelve hundred years ago, immigrants from the other continents settled in the southeastern part of the continent.
They were the present Seven City Union.
Both the reason and the cause was unknown, but mankind currently only resided on this continent in this world.

This continent’s population was said to be somewhere around six hundred million, that and was just humans.
Supposing that only one person out of a hundred would survive, that meant that around six million people would survive.
Even so, only ten thousand people remained after the Great Collapse.
To think that only ten thousand people just barely survived their world coming into contact with this one…
Looking at how many people would normally die in a Millennium, it was six hundred times better than a Great Collapse.
It was a sobering fact.

Moreover, Valis said that she didn’t know if they could survive the Great Collapse.
And she didn’t deny the collapse of the world.
Possessing infinite connections to other worlds, then killing them off. Was that what the Great Collapse was?
“I have a headache…”
Ria truly was at wits end. She couldn’t go with killing demons at this point.
Even setting aside Asuka’s example, they were more human-like than the humans. She couldn’t do something as ghastly as killing them at such a late point.
“I need to meet the Demon King.”
She didn’t know where the Demon King was. However, she needed the knowledge he possessed.

In the end, Ria came to a conclusion.
She would meet Demon King Ars.

 


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