Chapter 141 – Interlude (Sayama Kotetsu) ①
A group of more than one thousand monsters has come from the southern lands ― Kanezawa.
Kanezawa, the Kahoku District, Kahoku City, the Hakui District, Hakui City, Nanao City, the Kashima District, the Hosu District, and Wajima have already fallen into their hands.
They have been continuing northwards, swallowing even the Domains ruled by their own brethren, as well as the neighboring cities, towns, and villages.
“S-Sayama-san…what are we going to do?”
A youth, who had evacuated here from Kanezawa ― a youth who had joined the vigilante corps, calls out to me with a trembling voice.
“Master…we’re ready to go at any time! We will slay…slay the lady’s enemies!”
“They…are the enemy! Let’s dispel our instructor’s regrets!”
My vigorous, enthusiastic, pupils start to kick up a fuss with the katanas, that they have grown accustomed to using, in their hands.
“B-But…according to the rumors, if we surrender, our lives will be spared…”
“You moron! Don’t get taken in by such false rumors!”
“Right, right! There’s no way we could ever get along with them!”
“H-However…it’s said that the enemy has more than a thousand units…”
“Moreover, I hear that their strength far exceeds that of goblins and kobolds…”
“Don’t be chicken! If we were to give up, who would protect everyone…our families!?”
The fearful folks, and the enthusiastic folks, keep arguing back and forth.
The enemy is mighty. Our prospects of victory are…no, the odds of our survival are exceedingly low. By some chance, a bright future might await us if we surrender in accordance with the rumors.
However, in my heart I’ve already decided.
“Can’t you stay calm, you idiots!?”
The people around me fall silent upon hearing my thunderous roar.
“Those who can’t fight are to hide themselves in the inns in Suzu’s center! Those, who can fight, will gather at the city hall!”
I command the people who are standing here with me.
I have already avenged my son and grandson. There’s only one sworn enemy I have left――
I will plunge onward on the path of carnage, to accomplish my long standing desire ― to avenge my granddaughter.
I ― Sayama Kotetsu, have been running a dojo in the backwater city of Suzu. It’s a dojo that has produced many police officers and JSDF members.
It was an honorable dojo, dating back to the Edo period, but my son has become a police officer. My grandson, who was called a prodigy, became a police officer to follow in his father’s footsteps, and my granddaughter, who was the incarnation of gentleness, albeit having talent in swordsmanship, gave up on the way of the sword, and entered the university at Kanezawa.
Around ten disciples, and the members of various swordsmanship clubs from the university and high schools of Wajima City, I spent my days teaching swordsmanship to them.
The moments when the family gathered on O-Bon and New Years ― only twice a year, were periods of supreme bliss for me.
That daily life was destroyed on the day all of humanity received a single email on their smartphones.
The inviolable areas ― Domains, that appeared all over the world, robbed a lot of land from humanity.
What was especially troublesome was the fact that the Domains appeared mostly in urban areas. As a result, many humans had no choice but to evacuate into previously lightly-populated areas.
Many of the citizens of Kanezawa, the central city of the Ishikawa prefecture, evacuated to Suzu.
30 days after the appearance of the Domains ― the world received yet another great shock.
――『World Salvation Project』
This day, when the 『Revelation of the Goddess』 was handed down, and when we were granted mysterious powers by the goddess, was the day signaling the war between humans and Demon Kings.
When life-forms different from humans ― monsters, were confirmed inside the Domains, people from the Kahoku District, Kahoku City, the Hakui District, Hakui City, Nanao City, the Kashima District, the Hosu District and Wajima started to move to Suzu, as if following the residents of Kanezawa, who had evacuated first.
Suzu received aid from the government, and many of the inns existing in Suzu were assigned as temporary shelterings for refugees. The people lived a humble life here, close together.
On one of those days― a single youth, who was once called a prodigy, made a certain suggestion.
“Wouldn’t it ease the transportation of food if we liberated the Domain of ○× Town?”
The Domain of ○× Town blocked the Noto Seaside Road between Suzu City and Wajima City.
“Liberate, you say…! Monsters that eat people infest that Domain!”
Suzu City’s mayor opposed the youth’s suggestion.
“It’ll be fine. It’s goblins, no? And the rest are wolves, right? It’ll be easy.”
However, the youth waved off the mayor’s objection with an air of composure. Most recently, monsters had started to emerge from some of the Domains. The damage kept increasing as they attacked the people in the vicinity, and laid waste to the fields.
“B-But…inside the Domain, another ferocious monster…”
“I’m telling you it’ll be alright. You saw the news, didn’t you? A Domain has been liberated even in Kanezawa, no?”
“It’s okay! There’s no way that I won’t be able to do…what she was able to do, right?”
“Takashi! You’re saying that you will go no matter what?”
A single man forced his way into the conversation between the youth, overflowing with confidence, and the mayor, who was drenched in greasy sweat.
“I will… Dad, you see it too, don’t you? At this rate, we’ll eventually run out of food. In that case, while we still can…! We have to adopt countermeasures now, while we still have the leeway to do so!”
“You’re right… I understand. However, I have one condition.”
The father of the youth smiled broadly, and thrust his index finger at the bewildered youth.
“Yep. I will go with you. You don’t have a problem with that, do you?”
“Huh? Dad, you too…?”
“What? My skills haven’t become rusty, you know?”
“I know that, but… Okay. Dad…let’s go together!”
“Instructor! We shall accompany you as well!”
Many youths volunteered to go with the father and son, who had finished their conversation.
Like that, a single youth ― my grandson, who was called a prodigy, his father, who was my son, and my disciples, started their invasion into the Domain.
20 days later.
My grandson, son, and disciples succeeded in liberating the Domain.
They became heroes, giving the people of Suzu hope.
I was truly proud of all of them.
Since that day, they were a single ray of hope…in a world full of darkness.
However, those happy days didn’t last――
Chapter 142 – Interlude (Sayama Kotetsu) ②
The 107th day after the appearance of the inviolable areas.
A severe shock ran through the people living in Suzu City.
――The prided heroes of Kanezawa, lost.
The group of humans who had liberated a Domain within the Ishikawa Prefecture for the first time. The group of humans who had continued liberating Domains at a steady pace even after that. That group of humans were a ray of hope for the residents of the Ishikawa prefecture ― they had believed that those people might liberate all of the Domains within the prefecture one day.
“Is it true…? Is this piece of information really true…!?”
A man in the prime of his life ― the father of a heroine, and my son, broke down after hearing the sad news.
“D-Dad… You have to calm down…”
“Calm down, you say…!? Rina has! My daughter is! Your little sister…!”
The surrounding people couldn’t say anything to the father and son who were shocked by the news of their family’s death.
Around 40 days ago, the good news of the first liberation of a Domain in the Ishikawa prefecture streamed in. Around 30 days ago, my grandson and son succeeded in liberating a Domain in this area ― Suzu City.
――The world had become brighter.
A glimmer of hope had begun to radiate in the hearts of the people.
The sad news about the defeat of my granddaughter, arriving just when things were changing for the better, plunged us to the very bottom of despair.
My grandson, son, and disciples kicked up a fuss, shouting, “We will avenge her!”
In this world wrapped up by despair and sadness, I continued to perform my practice swings in the dojo, all by myself.
30 days after the news of my granddaughter’s death.
It was a chain of unhappiness.
I had believed that I was at the very bottom of despair on that day, but how wrong I was.
――The heroes of Suzu City, lost.
The news of their deaths reached my ears when I was swinging my sword at the dojo.
You will find children dying before their parents anywhere…
You will find grandchildren dying before their grandpa anywhere…
I cursed the Demon Kings. I cursed this broken world. And above all ― I cursed my own worthlessness.
Kotetsu ― a famous sword I inherited from my predecessor. I took out the katana, which mysteriously had the same name as me, and flew out of the dojo.
I headed for the fields around a Domain, said to be frequently attacked by monsters.
Ugly monsters ― a pack of goblins were devouring the crops in a field.
Noticing my existence, the goblins revealed vulgar smiles, readying lethal weapons, such as knives and axes.
One goblin approached me, while raising its knife overhead.
How unskillful… The movements of the approaching goblin were far too crude.
I slashed just once with my sword, while letting out a yell of fighting spirit.
One stroke. With just one stroke, the head of the ugly goblin was sent flying from its torso.
The other goblins, who had watched their friend lose its head, all swooped down on me at once.
“I won’t allow the likes of shitty midgets to look down on me!”
I readied Kotetsu, and faced off against the approaching group of goblins.
With this day as a turning point, I turned into a demon obsessed with revenge.
Seven days after the death of my grandson and son.
I learned about the mysterious phenomenon called BP from a pupil.
Since that day I had slain monsters, be it day or night, apparently leveling up to level 13.
As I was told by my pupil, I allotted all my BP to the value called 【Body】. Thereupon, I was strangely brimming with energy, allowing me to move my body just like during my golden days.
Moreover, there was someone who acquired the mysterious special ability 《Blacksmith》 among the refugees in Suzu. The sharpness of Kotetsu was increased by his hands.
With my Body, and the sharpness of my weapon, improved, I slew even more monsters than before.
As it was also a request from the prefectural governor, I succeeded the will of my grandson and son, together with my disciples and some volunteers ― setting out to liberate the Domains of Suzu.
I had two objectives in that. First, to get my revenge against the Demon King, who stole the lives of my grandson and son ― the Ogre Demon King ruling over the Domain of Suzu City’s ○○ District. Second, to get my revenge against the Demon King who stole the life of my granddaughter ― the Demon King ruling over the Domain that boasts the most power in Kanezawa.
I wanted to head over to the Domain of the Ogre Demon as soon as possible. But I was stopped by the people around me. They told me that this Demon King apparently possesses considerable power. The monsters besides the Demon King seemed to be small fry, not worthy of any mention, but the Demon King possessed strength on a different level.
Suppressing the hatred welling up from the bottom of my stomach, I followed the advice of my companions. I leveled up to get BP.
My Body got strengthened by nothing but a touch of a value displayed on the screen of my smartphone.
It was the logic of the new, broken, world ― seeming to deny my life so far.
I actually felt the effect of raising my BP, and that’s why I heeded the advice of those around me.
In this broken world: The more monsters you slay, the more your own abilities rise.
I obeyed the advice in order to definitely avenge my grandson and son.
One year after the death of my son and grandson.
I finally killed the Ogre Demon King ― fulfilling one of my longstanding desires.
The Ogre Demon King was a formidable enemy. He swung his iron club around with a power unobtainable for a human, and stole the lives of three of my comrades. My spirit almost broke down because of his toughness, not going down even after being cut countless times.
However, at the end of the fierce battle, which lasted around three hours, his head was sent flying by my Kotetsu.
The city held a big feast on the day I defeated my old foe.
The people had been restraining themselves since the appearance of the Domains, but only on that day, they greatly enjoyed booze and food.
A woman, who was shedding tears, was the mother of a disciple who had challenged the Domain along with my son and grandson. Another woman, who was crying while holding a child in her hands, was the wife of a disciple who had challenged the Domain along with my son and grandson.
People who cried in joy, people who embraced each other in joy, people enjoying booze while laughing, and people who began to sing loudly in a chorus.
On this day, one of the curses pressing down on Suzu was lifted.
Half a year after I accomplished one of my longstanding desires.
I had liberated all the Domains in Suzu with my comrades.
There was nothing but the ocean further north than Suzu, and there were no reports about monsters appearing out of the seas of this world. Suzu had become a peaceful land for the humans.
However ― that peace didn’t last long.
One Demon King had been rapidly expanding his Domain northwards from Kanezawa. He continued to expand northwards, while swallowing up the Domains standing in his way without rest.
It was plain as day that his evil hands would soon reach out for Suzu at this rate.
Unlike the people who were driven by worry, my heart trembled due to my arch-enemy heading my way.
And then, one year and ten months after the appearance of the Domains, the enemy of my granddaughter ― Demon King Shion, began his invasion into Suzu.