Chapter 158. Enemies on the Same Boat (2)
Chi-Woo’s ultimate goal was to forge an alliance with the Ca.s.siubia League. This had been his original intention as soon as he learned a bit more about Liber’s situation. Since it was near impossible to turn against all four factions in Liber at once, he planned to join hands with the Indigenous Monsters Alliance. After all, of all the forces they needed to chase away to bring Liber back to its normalcy, the Ca.s.siubia League was on the lower end of the priority. As their name indicated, the Indigenous Monsters Alliance were originally from the planet. Unlike the demons and the Abyss, they had been the backbone of the Middle World for a long time, and there was no need to wipe them completely to bring Liber back to how it had been.
Thus, Chi-Woo interpreted their current mission as forming an alliance between the humans and the Ca.s.siubia League. No matter what the prophecy’s real intention was, accomplis.h.i.+ng the diplomatic mission would allow them to turn half of the troops surrounding this city into their ally, and the chances of their survival would increase exponentially.
But Chi-Woo also knew it would be no easy feat. He thought about the situation from the Ca.s.siubia League’s perspective. If he had really come to them as a member of the Abyss, they would have responded to him differently, and those who grumbled in opposition to every word out of his mouth would have kept their mouths shut. But instead, Chi-Woo came from a force anyone would be hard pressed to even call a faction. It made sense that the Ca.s.siubia League would think they had nothing to gain by joining forces with them.
Nevertheless, it wasn’t like Chi-Woo had nothing to offer: his connection with the Abyss and the accomplishments he had made until now, which was made more potent by the one member of the Ca.s.siubia League who could discern them as truths.
“Yes, it’s true.” Thus, Chi-Woo admitted easily for now. “I found a temple and a G.o.d and revived the G.o.d.” Like Caesar, he had come, seen, and conquered. Chi-Woo tipped his chin up to project confidence. When trying to convince an audience, one needed to support their statement with the way they held themselves for synergy. He must not be afraid of crossing lines now. He needed to imprint on these guys’ minds: ‘See! I am so skilled that I can even work with the Abyss! I accomplished on my own something you all couldn’t do!’
“Is he speaking the truth?” The green monster turned to the ancient tree.
“…It’s the truth…” the tree monster said, and the others murmured among themselves.
“I understand that your League needs a G.o.d like us too,” Chi-Woo continued, “And although I don’t know the details, I also know for sure that you all can’t hand a G.o.d over to the Demon Empire again. Thus, what I want to say is…that our goal is aligned with the League’s.”
“To land a blow against the Demon Empire,” Chi-Woo responded.
Many creased their forehead hearing this, while others looked doubtful.
“Ha! You humans? How?” There were even some who laughed.
But Chi-Woo continued calmly, “We are going to build a new G.o.dly territory here.” Unlike the things he said before, these words had a clear effect. Creating a G.o.dly territory meant putting an area of land under the influence of a G.o.d who ascended there. All sorts of benefits were given to those who followed the G.o.d, and the land would inflict their enemies with negative status simply by existing. Furthermore, the city held a great strategic location. While it was on the border, it was closer to the Demon Empire and was a strategic outpost for the Ca.s.siubia League. Accordingly, the Demon Empire would be even more enraged to see the city turn into a G.o.dly territory with a fortress. It would be the same as entrenching a nail deep into the ground. They would be disturbed by the proximity of a G.o.dly territory belonging to their enemy, but wouldn’t be able to easily take it away. It was basically a checkmate move.
But creating a G.o.dly territory was so difficult that the centaur said firmly, “Impossible,”
Chi-Woo thought it would be possible by using a bottle of holy water, but didn’t reveal everything on his mind. He simply said, “I’m not telling you all to believe me this instant. But still…” He looked around. “There’s no need for us to fight. You know what they say: the enemy of your enemy is your friend.”
“The enemy of your enemy is your friend…” The green monster repeated Chi-Woo’s words and stroked his chin.
“I get how you think of the Demon Empire, but do you honestly think they would think likewise about you?” the half-demon spoke up mockingly. It was questioning if the Demon Empire would see humans as enough of a potential threat to even care about what they did.
Chi-Woo answered, “They probably do. I beat up a great demon not so long ago.”
“…W-What?” The half-demon was so shocked that it gasped.
All the monsters turned to the tree monster again. For a long while, the tree remained silent, like it was baffled beyond belief. Finally, it said, “…The…truth…?”
“Which high-ranking demon was it?” the centaur asked with a slightly raised tone.
“He said he was Andras,” Chi-Woo answered, and murmurs of admiration and exclamation erupted from everywhere.
“The 63rd ranking demon!”
“The tricky Marquess of Conflict…!”
Chi-Woo was a bit taken aback. He had shown his last card now, and the reception he got was better than he had expected.
—Since they are always going at it, they must know each other well.
Philip piped up.
—Look around you. Yeah, for example, look at that giant over there. Do you think you will win if you fight it?
Chi-Woo shook his head. He felt a strong sense of power and strength just by looking at the giant. It seemed impossible to fight it in his current state.
—Of course, not all of them might be on the same level of power as this one, but they would struggle to defeat a G.o.d within the 66 ranks even with six of these giants. That’s how strong the great demons are. There’s a reason why each great demon commands a dozen armies alone. You got lucky before. You know it would be completely different this time though, right?”
Philip was right. At the Academy, the great demon was greatly weakened, but this time, the demons would be able to use their full strengths.
‘Would you be able to defeat them if I lend you my body?’
—Ha, this fellow. You hated the idea so much before. Did you have a chance of mind now that the situation calls for it?
Philip chuckled and moved his hand in the air like he was ruffling Chi-Woo’s hair.
“Hm…so you defeated a demon,” said the centaur. “I mean, you did say you were a hero.”
The centaur nodded repeatedly. Honestly, when Chi-Woo brought up the idea of establis.h.i.+ng a G.o.dly territory in this city, the centaur had dismissed it as an impossibility, a pipe-dream. In comparison, defeating the high-ranking demon stationed in this city was a more realistic goal, and would produce the best outcome. It would greatly help the Indigenous Monster Alliance in their future war against the Demon Empire, and they could recover the morale that had fallen rock bottom after the Fenrir Tribe’s annihilation.
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“No, we mustn’t!” the half-demon shouted just when the atmosphere was turning favorable towards joining hands with the heroes. “Even if this human was telling the truth, there’s no reason to join forces with them. We can just steal what this guy has and return.”
5. Regardless of the reason, the result of the vote is absolute.
“Murumuru. On behalf of the half-demons, I object!” The half-demon revealed its name and immediately raised its hand.
“Zel. On behalf of the Cobalos, I agree!” The small green monster, Zel, shouted loudly as if he didn’t want to lose to Murumuru.
“Ancient monsters…abstained…” Then spoke the tree monster, which was part of the ancient monsters tribe. It seemed to be only interested in revealing truths and lies.
“Silfide. On behalf of the Will-o’-the-Wisp’ of the Wind, I object.” The swaying jade-colored spirit spoke with a high-pitched voice and expressed its opposition.
Murumuru’s expression brightened. They needed only one more objection vote—just one more, but…
“Magor. On behalf of the centaurs, I agree.” With Magor’s declaration, the voting was back to square one. When Murumuru looked at him in bewilderment, Magor shrugged and said, “He beat a G.o.d, worked with the Abyss, and also defeated a high-ranking demon—I think it’s worth betting on him at least once.”
Murumuru gritted its teeth and looked back at the last remaining monster. The voting was now two for, two against, and one abstention. If the last voter voted against—no, just abstained, they would win this vote! Zel and Chi-Woo also looked nervously at the giant, who had the final outcome in its hand. The giant closed its eyes. It seemed to be pondering what choice to make.
Then, after a short pause, it said, “…Sruthos.” The giant, who had not spoken a single word so far, slowly opened its eyes. Its eyes were as fierce and deep as its voice, but there was great wisdom in them. “On behalf of the Gigas…I agree.”
Both joy and sorrow erupted among the monsters. Chi-Woo clenched his fist.
“What…did you say?” Murumuru seemed unable to believe the giant’s words. “Why did you…!”
“The result of the vote is absolute,” a booming voice replied. Murumuru clenched its teeth as deep eyes looked down at him.
The Gigas Tribe was one of the few tribes leading the Ca.s.siubia League along with the Last Dragon. Murumuru lowered its head. Only then did the giant move its gaze away and looked down at Chi-Woo. “Even though you seem a bit weak…for a hero.” The giant narrowed one eye and continued, “I think there’s a reason behind it like Zel said.” It then got up while breathing heavily and suddenly swung its fist.
Swis.h.!.+ Strong gusts swirled around Chi-Woo. While his hair and clothes fluttered, Chi-Woo suddenly felt both of his hands set free. Dumbfounded, Chi-Woo looked down to find the ropes on his hand cut and slipping down; contrary to how the giant looked, its movements were precise and sharp.
“As much as your words are true, I hope you will lend us your ability.” The giant reached out its hand.
“Of course.” Chi-Woo soon regained his composure and reached out to the giant’s large hand. Finally! He had finally done it! He had forged a way out when the situation seemed hopeless. However, Chi-Woo had celebrated too early.
“I’m Sruthos. Your name is?”
The bright smile on Chi-Woo’s face immediately dropped.
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