To Hell With Being a Hero!

로유진 - Ro Yu-jin

Chapter 159

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Chapter 159. Very First Time

It wasn’t easy to gain another being’s trust. The Ca.s.siubia League didn’t trust the humans yet and was only placing their hopes on Chi-Woo. But this was just the start; Chi-Woo thought they could use this chance to build a proper relations.h.i.+p with the monsters. And their alliance was starting on a good note. First of all, the way they treated the rescue team changed. Although the monsters still held them under strict surveillance, they provided the humans with food and drinks and a place to rest that wasn’t a prison. Furthermore, they also offered treatment to the injured.

Chi-Woo was curiously observing the roots of several ancient trees that wrapped around the injured heroes when someone called out to him.

“The fact that they are prisoners of war doesn’t change.” The half-demon, Murumuru, approached Chi-Woo and warned threateningly. “Including you. You, and of course, your companions will not take a step out of this place before you meet our expectations.”

Chi-Woo was aware of this. He had run off his mouth about all the things he could do, so he needed to follow them through.

“You will have to prove the things you blabbered on about.” After giving Chi-Woo a firm warning, Murumuru turned away. Since it was already late, they decided to talk about the details tomorrow. They had a lot of things to discuss, so neither of the two wanted to waste time on useless bickering.

“Let me just ask you one thing.”

But as Chi-Woo was walking away, Murumuru posed him a question.

“Why…didn’t you tell us your name properly?”

Chi-Woo continued to walk, pretending to not have heard Murumuru.

* * *

The next day, Chi-Woo was summoned early in the morning to discuss their current situation and strategy for dealing with a great demon.

“We identified that the commander is Vepar.” Zel, a representative of the Cobalos, said while lifting its gla.s.ses.

Vepar was a great demon, 42nd in rank, who commanded a total of 29 demon legions. She didn’t have an official t.i.tle, but others often called her the ruler of the sea. As her nickname suggested, her ability to control water was outstanding, and she was basically omnipotent in the ocean.

“There’s no ocean near the city, not even a lake. We are very fortunate in that aspect, but…” Zel didn’t finish; still, one could easily tell that the situation was bad and would only get worse. It was because Vepar, the commander of the Demon Empire and the Ca.s.siubia League’s opposing force, was planning to turn this whole area into an ocean so that she could exercise greater power.

“It’s a safe bet that the area they occupy is now in her hands. Thus, half of the battlefield is Vepar’s territory.”

Chi-Woo recalled the time they had approached the Demon Empire’s side of the battlefield as the rescue team. The forest had been filled with darkness then; and just like the time he was in a dreary and very humid cave, he felt damp and sticky. His mood worsened just by looking at it, and the great displeasure he had felt was still fresh in his mind. It was fortunate that they had avoided the area thanks to Nangnang’s advice. Who knew what would have happened to them if they had entered?

“Vepar is very cautious, a bit unusual for a demon. Rather than just enjoying fighting, she places greater value on winning. Thus, even if it’ll take a bit of time, she is prepping the board to be completely in her favor. We are aware of this too, but…” Zel trailed off. It wasn’t like the Ca.s.siubia League hadn’t been doing anything until now, but every time they attacked, they suffered great casualties and were forced to retreat.

Apart from the fact that their enemy was focused on the defense, they were having serious difficulties fighting in hostile territory. Slowly, by playing it safe, the Demon Empire had been expanding their territory bit by bit. The situation obviously drove the Ca.s.siubia League crazy, and it seemed the whole region would fall under Vepar’s rule sooner or later.

“So, if any of you have suggestions, please…!” Zel’s eyes looked pleading as it asked. Its expectant eyes were pressuring, and Chi-Woo couldn’t admit that he was at a loss as well. His experience with a great demon was almost nonexistent after all.

But he did have a secret card: a demon expert and hunter recognized by history was right next to him.

—Hm. Vepar. If her rank is in the 40s…she’s also known as Separ or Vephar.

Fortunately, it seemed like there was no one here who could see spirits. Thus, Chi-Woo opened his mouth and said, “First of all, I’m against going to the opposing side. It will be crazy for us to fight in enemy territory.”

“Do you take us for idiots? Of course we know that,” Murumuru shot back in annoyance. “So, what are you saying we should do now?”

—What do you think we should do? We have to drag them out, you stupid idiot.

Chi-Woo glanced at Philip to confirm what he had just said, but the spirit was preoccupied with pointing and cursing at Murumuru. Miming throwing the half-demon a punch, Philip growled, ‘I have been restraining myself since yesterday, but this half-demon seriously can’t stop making snide comments and grumbling. Does it want to die?’

“Murumuru.” Sruthos spoke up then. “Leave if you are going to be so aggressive.”

It seemed Sruthos had misunderstood Chi-Woo’s staring intently off to Murumuru’s side as him feeling offended.

“Why…!” Murumuru seemed to think the whole situation was unfair, but pursed its lips and stopped itself when it met Sruthos’ eyes.

“We have to drag them out,” Chi-Woo then said.

“Is there a way to lure Vepar?” the centaur, Magor, asked. Chi-Woo pretended to be in thought and glanced up at Philip. But all Philip did was shrug.

‘Ah, d.a.m.n it. I shouldn’t have trusted him blindly,’ Chi-Woo thought.

—What can you do in this situation? Were it me, I wouldn’t have let the situation reach this state.

Chi-Woo didn’t pay attention to what Philip said and really fell into thought this time. A way to bring out Vepar…a way…

‘…I can’t think of anything. Nothing at all.’ Even the Ca.s.siubia League, who were masters of war, hadn’t been able to do anything. How could he come up with a solution immediately? It couldn’t be helped. He needed to gain more information and buy some time with a likely excuse.

“You said it yesterday…” Chi-Woo turned to Zel, who was most amiable to him among his peers, “That you think inside information had been leaked to the Demon Empire.”

“Ah, yes!” Zel quickly nodded. “It’s just my hunch because of how unfortunate the situation turned out.”

“Then, do you perhaps have a guess about what the Demon Empire’s goal is?”

“Their…goal?”

“Don’t you think there’s more than just trying to stop the Alliance?”

Zel fell into deep thought at Chi-Woo’s words.

After a while, he spoke up again. “…This is really just my personal opinion, but…” Zel said in a serious voice, “I did think that…the Demon Empire was trying to replicate what the Sernitas had done.”

“What they have done?”

“You know, weaponizing a G.o.d.”

Chi-Woo flinched.

“Or they could be trying to use the G.o.d the humans found as an offering.”

Zel was talking about the hypothetical, but they were highly possible. The humans and the Ca.s.siubia League wouldn’t be the only ones desperate to secure G.o.ds. It was probably the same for the others.

“We have to confirm that,” Chi-Woo said while slowly nodding.

Everyone’s gaze s.h.i.+fted towards him. They all seemed to be thinking, ‘He’s going to make sure? How?’

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“The most definite way would be to…make direct contact with them.”

“Imagine if we got dropped here on entry. What do you think would have happened?”

Ru Hiana had nothing to say; Ru Amuh was saying nothing but the truth. “But even then…as long as we had senior…” She pouted and suddenly looked anxious. “Ah, right. Have you not gotten a reply yet?”

“Wait a moment.” As soon as Ru Hiana asked, Ru Amuh seemed to have gotten a message. He suddenly turned on his device, and the subsequent changes in Ru Amuh’s expressions could be perfectly described as colorful. At first, he looked relieved and glad. Then he looked shocked. And lastly, his expression turned thoughtful.

“As expected…” However, he still had a smile on his face.

“Why? What? Did you get a reply? Is it from senior? Can you answer?”

“…Ruana.” Ru Amuh finally moved his gaze away from the air and gave her a deep smile. “I think I get what you’ve been saying.”

“What?”

“That teacher is special.”

“…Huh?”

With a smile on his face and his heart pounding, Ru Amuh walked up to the four heroes gathering around the sitting table.

Then he said, “I apologize for intervening while you are in the middle of discussion.”

“I also know! What I’m saying is—what did you say!?” The platinum blonde girl, who was in the middle of a heated argument with the n.o.ble-looking lad, turned around sharply. “What do you want—”

“Hey, calm down, Apu. What is it?” Nahla quickly intervened.

“I’ve received a message,” Ru Amuh said after he had everyone’s attention and stared at them with firm eyes. “We have a plan.”

* * *

Chi-Woo heard a notification. ‘Oh, I got a reply?’ Ru Amuh must have been waiting for his message; Chi-Woo got a reply faster than he thought he would. And when he opened his device, Ru Amuh’s message was there as expected. Chi-Woo eagerly read it, and was stunned once he finished.

‘What…?’ Chi-Woo had written a brief summary of what happened after he separated from the detachment. He also wrote to Ru Amuh that he wanted to know the intentions of the Demon Empire, and if he had any good ideas, please let him know. However…the last line of Ru Amuh’s reply was a bit strange.

[…Yes, sir. Please don’t worry about that matter and wait a little bit. And if you can…]

“Perhaps, do you need a bit more time?” While Chi-Woo was tilting his head in bemus.e.m.e.nt, a careful voice interrupted his thoughts. Zel had come to find him since Chi-Woo was taking too long. Zel continued, “It’s all right. We all know it’s a difficult time, so please don’t feel too much pressure.”

“Is everyone waiting for me?” Chi-Woo asked without finis.h.i.+ng hearing what Zel had to say.

“Huh? Ah, yes.”

“Then, let’s go.”

“What?”

Chi-Woo looked between the message and Zel and quickly began moving out. “It seems like…we have a plan.” Chi-Woo didn’t know what exactly happened, but he decided to first trust in Ru Amuh.

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