It was then, a loud voice rang out in the vast open plain. Those who were searching for the origin of this voice soon came to realise that it originated from none other than the demon himself, the Bringer of Apocalypse, standing in front of them.
The Bringer raised his hand and slowly pulled his hood back.
The face below it belonged to a still-considerably young man. His skin was slightly reddish yellow, most likely due to the influence of the darkness, but besides that, he was completely unremarkable in any shape or form.
The short hair style was something uncommon in this world, but the face below it attested to the reason why he was now referred to as the Bringer of Apocalypse.
A pair of small eyes and flat-ish nose under those narrow eyebrows; strange skin colour and the unexplainable aura that was a human’s, yet at the same time, not really.
He was a creature with a human’s appearance, yet was no longer one.
The Bringer of Apocalypse shouted out loudly.
“Who the f*ck is a damn Lich?! Hah? I was planning to keep my mouth shut but you treat me like a damn bag of bones!! Hey, have you ever seen a Lich with this much fatty tissue?!”
Dioreh the First became utterly speechless.
Of course, he had never seen one. After all, a Lich wasn’t an existence that was commonly seen. Plus, there was no recording of a Lich with all his flesh and skin intact in the history books. Indeed, a Lich should be a skeleton wearing a black robe, that was for sure.
Suddenly, Dioreh felt lots of pointed stares.
Slightly distorted eyes were stabbing his backside.
To receive such stares from his allies and nobles just because of a simple slip of a tongue – and it wasn’t even all that important whether he was a blooming Lich or not…
Dioreh the First sheepishly cleared his throat and shouted once more.
“Everyone on this continent knows of thy rejection of death with the sorcery of the demons and that thee hath lived for hundreds of years already!! Oh, thee who are no longer confined by the chains of logic, although thy exterior resembles a human, no one here mistakes thee for a human!!
“Even if thee once was human, thee hath abandoned the paths of humanity already!! Can thee not recall how many kingdoms you have destroyed during thy march? Can thee not remember all the lives thee hath reaped all these years!!!”
The Bringer of Apocalypse listened to the passionate ravings of Dioreh the First with indifference, and replied nonchalantly.
“Hey man. Stop spreading false rumours about me, please. I didn’t reject death, I just can’t die, that’s all. Hell, I’ve literally tried everything and anything to die, so what the hell do you want me to do, eh? And also, I did not destroy anyone. They just killed themselves. Seriously now, just who the f*ck was it that rushed in like a pack of wild dogs, when I just wanted to quietly pass by and head off to Latrel’s church headquarters? Ah? So why are you blaming me for that, huh?”
Dioreh the First dumbfoundedly stared at the Bringer of Apocalypse.
When someone was corralling all those metal giants and all those evil demons while saying, “We’re just passing by~~”, who in their right minds would get up and reply, “Yes, please do~”, huh?!?!
Wasn’t that the basic of all basic common sense?! A bloody common sense, man!!
“Whatever. You, you look like the leader here, so let’s negotiate.”
“Did thee say negotiate?”
“Me, I don’t want to fight you, and I don’t want to destroy this continent either, unlike what some of you have been yapping on about. All I want is…”
The Bringer of Apocalypse raised his finger and pointed at the very tip of the tallest spire of the fort.
And there was a beautiful jewel on the tip of this spire, emitting five different colours of light.
The unquestionable evidence of the god Latrel caring after this blessed land, the ‘Eye of Latrel’ was placed there.
“Gimme that, and I shall quietly leave you guys alone in peace. I will return all these demons back to where they came from, and I will stop all the Golems, too. Hell, if you want them, I’ll give you all these Golems. All you have to do, is to give me that.”
Dioreh the First chuckled in a creepy and low-pitched voice.
“Did thee seriously believe we do not know that thee will use the sacred Eye of Latrel to bring about the Apocalypse of this world?!”
“What the?! Just where the hell did you hear all this crappy rumour about me? Who was it?”
“The divine oracle that implored us to never hand over the Eye to thee have been received by us!! Us, all 12 churches!!”
The Bringer of Apocalypse groaned out.
“I bloody knew it. That’s why they were so desperate.”
“Thee want to steal the Eye of Latrel? Try it. But it shall not be so simple. Even if only one of us draws breath, thee shall never lay thy filthy hands on the Eye!! If our sacrifices can ensure the survival of Berafe, we shall gladly offer up our lives!! And thus, thee shall never overcome our might!! Because, the divine blessings of the 12 gods are together with us!! Praise the lord Latrel!!”
With the declaration of Dioreh the First, millions of human warriors began making their own individual signs of worship while praising their gods.
“No point in talking anymore, huh.”
Well, the Bringer didn’t have much hope of talks resolving all misunderstandings, even as he was on his way here. These guys in front simply didn’t want to understand him, anyways.
Since he had gone through roughly the similar thing until he was sick and tired of it all, the Bringer just accepted it as a normal occurrence now.
Dioreh the First shouted out again.
“Thee shall see the end of thy long road today, right here!! Oh, the man who rejected the providence of the gods!!”
At these words, the Bringer of Apocalypse began giggling like crazy.
Dioreh the First squinted his eyes. It wasn’t just because the laughter of that evil and vile sorcerer was getting on his nerves, no. He acutely knew. He had met many, many people and heard their terrible ordeals and shared tears with them so, he could tell.
Although that laughter could be seen as one of ridicule, there were so many different emotions contained within it.
Delight and despair, bitterness and grief, and even, deep, profound sadness…
“Hey, man. Did you know?”
The Bringer of Apocalypse murmured slowly.
“That… is my wish.”
His voice was tranquil.
“But, I realised it won’t happen. Especially, in this place. That is why, I gotta go back to where it’s possible again. For me to die and make all your wishes to come true, I need that Eye, see?”
His voice started off quiet and calm, yet became louder and louder.
“You are right, I’m just a goddamn monster in this place!! A damn demon!! A demon, who can’t die and can’t disappear!! That’s why, I want to go to a place where I can!! I want to go to a place, where I can be a human again!! So I can die, just like how all of you have been praying for!!”
His voice now contained his true feelings.
In the form of a rant.
“But why the f*ck do you keep getting in my way!! Huh?! Why the f*ck do you still try to stop me, right until the godd*mn end!! I’m trying to die like you’ve always wanted, yet why do you still keep blocking me?!!! Huh?! Do you have any godd*mn idea how many hundreds of years I wasted trying to get here?! You wanna stop me? You want to try and stop me, again?
“Fine. Then die. Die, and die again. I will gift you that one thing, this thing that I’ve yearned for so long, to receive, but to never feel its embrace. Soon, you all will realise how nice a blessing it truly is.”
The appearance of a fun-loving young man dissipated altogether.
The only thing left behind was a sight of a demon spitting out frenzied raving.
The only man to climb up to the unprecedented heights as a sorcerer, a monarch of darkness who lead millions to despair.
The worst of all heart-wrenching despair that turned the half of the continent into the land of the dead, and driving the survivors into this tiny piece of land so he could torment and mock them.
The man, who would bring about the end of the world.
He was the Bringer of Apocalypse.
“We shall never surrender!!”
“Riiight. So obvious.”
The eyes of the Bringer gleamed ominously.
“In that case, die where you stand.”
The moment he finished his sentence, every one of the once-silent demons and monsters bared their fangs.
The aggressive roarings of these creatures, no longer controlled by the Bringer of Apocalypse, exploded forth and covered the entire plain.
There was no particular signal.
But, as if they had known it all along, demons and monsters spat out terrifying screams and began rushing forward. Countless creatures stumbled and perished under the mad dash yet they continued to run forward. And even the metal giants began taking one massive stride after another.
Every step these giants took crushed several demons and monsters underfoot, causing ear-piercing screams to ring out, yet the emotionless creatures simply continued on with their relentless march.
The remaining might of all humanity had gathered here. That might was powerful. That might was great. However, even this mighty force was cowering before the crazed frenzy of the evil monsters.
The white army began to waver. Soldiers unknowingly taking half a step back caused the formation to be pushed back and caused a ripple effect.
“Oh, supreme and omnipotent being, here thy servants long to receive thy divine wills!! The light of the dawn that drives away the darkness of the night, grant thy favour to thy servants!!”
From both of Dioreh the First’s hands, divine white streams of light exploded out and began blessing the soldiers guarding the fortress. The other Popes also began calling out to their chosen gods and blessed the soldiers as well, leading the army to regain their spirit and make their charge against the incoming waves of monsters.
And finally, the armies of humanity and armies of monsters collided.
Torn flesh and broken bones were flung about everywhere, as blood rained down on the ground.
If there existed a real hell, this place would be it.
“Do not get bogged down!! Charge!!”
Several clerics and priests located here and there within the army continued to pour out divine power while covered in sweat. Evil demons became much weaker in front of these priests, and the wounds on the bodies of their allies were healed in an instant.
In that moment, there were several men that broke off out from the standoff.
They were clothed in fur and leather from head to toe, wielding a huge battleaxe on one hand and a terrifying hammer on the other.
The Barbarian horde that once plunged the continent into chaos was now fighting for its very survival. Their axes cleaved demons in half, bones and all, while their hammers shattered the heads of demons as if they were busting watermelons.
However, the counterattacks of demons and monsters were nothing to scoff at.
Countless sharp blades shot out from the ground below and sliced up the formation’s rear. Helplessly getting their legs and ankles cut up by these suddenly-intruding blades, soldiers rolled on the ground while screaming out desperately.
“Do not falter!!”
Magic spells fired by the sorcerers fell where demons and monsters were gathered the most.
No matter how strong the monsters and demons were, no matter how huge the metal giants were, they were still outnumbered one to one hundred. There was no end to the human army, while the number of monsters fell drastically at the suicidal charging attacks by the unafraid soldiers.
The sky might be still dominated by the flying demons, but as far as the ground battle was concerned, humanity had the advantage.
“Oh, great Latrel!! Bless thy servants!!”
“Receive the cleansing fire of the god Faro!!”
Many wide-scale blessings descended, and fatigued soldiers regained their vigour at the same time.
“Oh, great god Latrel!!”
Dioreh the First shouted out without realising it.
Finally, the end to the 30-year long war of hardship was coming ever so closer. The war potential of the demons were great, but the powers of united humanity were greater. The demon army was slowly being pushed back.
It was then. Dioreh the First spotted the Bringer of Apocalypse finally making his move.
This man called the Bringer of Apocalypse, the world’s most vile sorcerer and a man who transcended past the death itself and had supposedly found the Truth.
The Bringer of Apocalypse, who had been standing like a stone statue and observing the situation until now, slowly lifted his hand.
Black smoke rose from his hand, which formed a huge magic circle in the air. No, not just in the air – a total of four magic circles formed around the Bringer, one in his front and two on either side, and began emitting black beams of light.
“What is that?!”
It was hard to tell what type of magic they would produce, but the results would definitely terrible, solely judged from the vast sizes of each magic circle.
“S, stop him!!”
The best method to stop a sorcerer was attack before the chanting was completed. All those who knew this fact didn’t let the Bringer do his thing.
Rangers fired countless arrows at his direction; wizards poured their magic spells.
In the meantime, the Bringer’s lips slowly parted and an emotionless command rang out quite clearly.
The magic circles emitted a chilling light, and an enormous black gate suddenly materialised. All the arrows and magic spells aimed at the Bringer of Apocalypse were sucked into the newly-appeared gate standing before him.
Dioreh the First opened wide his eyes and glared at this gate. He could tell the purpose of this gate more or less after sensing the dreary aura seeping out from beyond it.
His urgent mind became a scream.
Contrary to the urgency of Dioreh the First, the Bringer leisurely opened his mouth.
“Devour them all.”
In that moment.
From the gate, devils with grotesque shapes began pouring out like crashing tidal waves. The devils jumping out from the gate floating in the air got flattened somewhat after falling to the ground, but none gave a rat’s a*s about the crushed flesh and ravenously dashed forward.
And more poured out.
And more poured out.
And yet, more poured out.
Although there were more than enough monsters and demons and devils to completely cover the land, more kept pouring out. Evil creatures continued to pour out, as if the only way to end this was when the entire world was filled up with these foul creatures.
The sky was now completely inundated with the flying demons. These demons even began attacking one another, roaring out and got into a messy brawl. It was as if the entire sky was made up solely of these monsters.
From the front, and from the sides – even under the feet.
Monsters rushed in. No matter how many heads were crushed, no matter how many necks were cut, no matter how many lengthy legs were broken… No matter how many they killed, monsters kept rushing in.
The evil beings that could easily rip a person into pieces with nothing more than their fingertips now outnumbered humans.
It was a ‘monster wave’.
It was the unstoppable waves of demons.
Despair filled Dioreh the First’s eyes. There were simply too many monsters to kill. And even as killings continued, more monsters poured out from the gate, their numbers ever increasing higher and higher.
Truly, would that man bring about the destruction of this world?
It was then…
< 2. Stop Spreading False Rumours, Please -2 > Fin.
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.