The large imp blitzed ahead of the pack like an unstoppable panzer.
No.3 bravely stood in its path, hoping to stop his charge with his enhanced muscles. However, the two imps weren’t on the same evolutionary level. The large imp clearly had the strength advantage and this showed as he sent No.3 flying with a ram of his body.
An imp quickly reacted to this momentary opening and clawed at the large imp’s shoulder, drawing a line of blood as he did so. The large imp winced and grabbed the imp by reflex. Feeling flesh, he brought it to his mouth and bit down on the small imp’s throat while tearing away.
“Don’t just stand there, get him!”
My knowledge of the large imp’s prowess was renewed once more. The previous large imp took 10 small imps to take down. The large imp in front of me was definitely stronger than the other and needed our full attention.
“No.1,2,3,4 follow me! We’ll get rid of the scamps behind the large imp. The rest of you can stall the big guy!”
Using one’s strengths to attack another’s weaknesses was basic strategy. So was using fodder to stall their main strength.
No.1, 2, and 3 were definitely my strongest followers. No.4 was a tagalong. Because he joined us earlier, he got more benefits and was stronger than the other small imps.
The five of us circled around the large imp and struck at the five imps behind. The large imp tried to stop us but was blocked by my other imps. 7 vs 1. Even if they couldn’t win, they could at least stall him.
As always, No.3 was the first to charge ahead, and in a few swipes severely injured a small imp. No.1 and 2 weren’t too shabby either. While they weren’t as fast, they still managed to suppress their opponents in a short amount of time. No.4 on the other hand, had a weaker showing, he only managed to eek out a draw.
My opponent was a small imp as well. Against him, I brought out my partners, Rocky and Stony. With Stony in hand, it was as if I had my buckler back as I blocked his claws with my rock. In a clash of rocks and claws, the rock was definitely harder.
After a few clashes, the imp teared up as his claws began to break apart. I immediately took advantage of this slight opening and attacked. In a blinding flurry of rocks, I smashed his head apart.
By now, No.3 had taken care of his opponent as well. He relied on his superior strength to surprise his opponent. By the time the imp discovered the strength disparity, it was too late to dodge. With a swift kick, he knocked his opponent to the ground. He grabbed his opponent’s head and viciously slammed it against the floor. With each slam, a sickening crunch could be heard along with a spurt of blood.
No.1 and 2’s situation was pretty good as well. Even without help, winning was only a matter of time. As for No.4…he was suppressed by his opponent; his body covered in wounds from the battle.
I sent No.3 to help No.1 and 2 while I went to help No.4.
With the large imp’s lackeys out of the way, we could finally focus our attention on it.
When I sent those seven scamps to stall the large imp, I was fully prepared to lose all of them. However, things didn’t turn out as badly as I imagined. Out of the seven, five of them were dead. One of the surviving imps was playing dead by the side while the other was desperately holding on.
His situation was rapidly deteriorating by the second. By the time we turned to the large imp, he had just torn an arm off this brave imp. As for the other imp, he was still laying there with his head tilted and his tongue sticking out…
Of course, the large imp didn’t get out of this scuffle unscathed either. He was covered in claw and bite marks. The blood on him was as much his enemies as his own.
I threw the rock in my hand in a dart like manner at the large imp’s head, stunning him slightly. His grip loosened and that brave imp fell to the ground with a thud. The brave imp grasped his throat as he coughed violently. Looks like he had been severely injured.
No.3 howled as he rushed forward. With the momentum of his charge, he dove at the large imp’s side and tackled him to the ground. However…that direction seems a little…
The brave imp who stalled that large imp was put out of his misery by the combined weight of No.3 and the large imp slamming into him.
No.3, are you a spy sent by the other side…
As the two wrestled on the floor, their hands at each other’s throat, No.1,2 and 4 rushed in to help him. The four scamps piled onto the large imp, immobilizing him.
Upon seeing our side gain the upper hand, the other imp stopped faking his death and jumped onto the large imp’s back, furiously biting.
By now, our victory was decided. However, heaven had a different plan in store for us. The large imp suddenly flipped his body right onto No.1. He knew that he’s finished so he might as well take one more down with him. He wrapped his hands around No.1 and tried to bite him, all the while ignoring the frantic attacks of the other imps.
No.3 desperately pulled the large imp’s neck back to stop him from biting No.1. The others continued clawing at the large imp in hopes of saving No.1.
As for me, by the time I reacted to the sudden change, No.1 was strangled to death by the large imp.
Meh, I guess he’s dead. He had only been with me for a day…but why did I feel a tinge of sadness…I guess in the end, it was because he was my subordinate. No one would be happy about their subordinate dying.
As for that imp who faked his death…I decided not to punish him. After all, he did help us in the end, I’ll forgive him this time.
As the surviving imps gathered the souls for me, a set of footsteps echoed from the distance. The burly silhouette of a large imp entered my sight. Behind him was ten small imps…
I guess when it rains, it pours. Will this newcomer try to capture me to &@$! me as well? Is he even gay? Is my body…that much of a devil magnet?
I signalled to my imps to stop working and get ready to run however these dimwits misunderstood my intentions and instead stood in front of me.
Err…that isn’t entirely true. Only No.2 and 3 were standing in front of me. No.4 and Mr. Faker were hiding behind me.
As he approached us, I took the initiative to ask him, “Don’t tell me you are here to capture me as well.”
“No, this lordship is merely a lowly slave to your alluring silhouette and your resolute soul.” The large imp bowed with his right hand swept in front of his chest like those noblemen from medieval times. His face seemed to radiate: ‘I’m not like that pervert who tried to $&,? you on the first encounter.’
He continued explaining in his weird accent, “From the first time this lordship laid his eyes on you, he knew that you were a noble existence. One that didn’t stoop to eating the lowly flesh of a small imp.”
“…You can tell all that from a single glance?”
This was a stunning revelation. He actually knew I only ate souls. As for that alluring silhouette and resolute whatever…I’ll accept the latter as for the former, I’ll pass on it.
“Usually, the leader of the group would first consume the corpses. However, you chose to gather the souls instead…this one has confidence in his judgement.”
“Ah ha, thanks I guess.” His praises hadn’t blinded me from an obvious question.
“Judging by what you said, you should’ve been watching us from the start. Why didn’t you help us?”
“To be honest, I had intended to wait till both sides were severely exhausted…However, the moment I laid eyes on your purity and determination…this one was hooked. No matter what, you have to accept this one’s protection.”
So you’re saying you intended to reap the benefits of our labors, but gave up halfway for a stupid reason.
As he said this, his “lordship” bent the knee and declared his allegiance.
As I looked at this gay devil, my anus tightened and my arms reflexively covered my butt.
His offer of allegiance left me in a conundrum, I didn’t put much stock in the words of a devil. After all, multiple sources (manga/anime) agreed, a devil’s words are not to be trusted.
However, I had no way of rejecting him. If he chose to act up, all of us would be dead.
“Ahh, get up first. There’s something I need to clarify. Just because my pee pee is missing right now, it doesn’t mean that I’m a female. I’m a bonafide male devil and I’m not interested in a homosexual relationship so please give up.”
In the face of my solemn announcement, his lordship got even more excited. I got goosebumps just from his excited stare. Suddenly, he jumped to his feet and prostrated himself once more, “You are the most unsullied existence in Purgatory…However, rest assured, even if I can’t be your companion, this lordship will always protect you. So please accept this one’s pledge, Master!”
I still think he’s a bonafide pervert.
After a nonsensical fight, I randomly met a fellow that, out of the blue, decided to declare his allegiance to me…
Will I truly be alright in this nonsensical Purgatory?
“No matter what, let me make this clear, I absolutely won’t perform any intimate acts with a man. I am not gay. I’m absolutely, positively, not gay. Absolutely.”
Important things must be repeated thrice.
In this way, I recruited a bunch of new subordinates. One of them is even a large imp who referred to himself as his lordship. Regarding this potato, I named him Big 1.
Big 1 personally harvested all the souls and offered them up to me while the other scamps under me divvied up the corpses, including No.1’s.
After finishing his share, No.3’s body experienced an evolution of sorts. Simply put, his muscles became firmer, his strength increased and his height increased. He could probably become the first among my small imps to evolve into a large imp.
Excellent, just keep on eating No.3. If possible, eat till you become stronger than Big 1. I just couldn’t bring myself to trust Big 1. His allegiance was just too unexpected and it seemed suspicious.
Even if he wasn’t planning anything, being loved by a large imp was…I wouldn’t want to do it with a female large imp let alone a male one like Big 1!
Big 1 could be counted as a well connected devil. He knew a lot more about this area than me. For example, I did not know the blood sea was circular in shape. I also didn’t know that if you ran in the opposite direction of the tides, you would eventually reach the entrance of the upper levels.
As for what was beyond that entrance, the answer I got was “I have no idea”. All the devils who entered the upper levels never came back.
If so, this could only mean two things: one, they were all dead or two, they weren’t allowed to go back down.
My bet’s on the latter.
According to the rumors, the tide will eventually engulf this entire level so any devil who stayed behind will be drowned. Initially, I didn’t believe this theory. If all the devils either died or were unable to return to this level, where did all these rumors come from.
There’s no internet in Purgatory.
Later on, Big 1 brought me to his temporary base. It was a giant rock. Around it were smaller rocks arranged in a circular fashion surrounding the larger rock. On that giant rock, was a line of strange scribblings…Fine, they were the letters of the devil language.
The letters talked about the reincarnation system of devils. It said that this was the lowest level of Purgatory and that tide happened once this level’s population hit a certain number. After which, it will start to engulf this level.
It took 13 human days for the sea to engulf this level after which it will retreat back to its original spot and await the next spawning season of the devils.
After reading through this line, I grimaced.
“The tides started rising yesterday so we have to get to the next level’s entrance within 12 days?”
“Yes master. If we don’t, we will drown.”
Big 1 quietly stood by my left side after answering my question, staring at No.3 with an annoyed expression.
I have to say devils are truly strange creatures. If I had a choice, I wouldn’t want to stay in this place.
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.