Chapter 4: Let’s meet the next Assassin, Part 1
A small, semi-transparent box floats in an empty void.
When Aur touched it lightly with his finger, a line extended from it and connected itself to another box. Multiple lines extend from that next box, and when they reach other boxes, they expand even further like a ghastly spider’s web.
「Hmm… a lot bigger than I initially expected.」
It was a map of the Dungeon that was being created in the blink of an eye.
The scale of this Dungeon was similar to the one owned by Aur, and the scan was still going. Even if Froro was a former Demon Lord who didn’t know if this Dungeon reached above the ground, it might well reach that point it keeps going up.
「A barrier, huh? A small one.」
At one point, the display stopped abruptly as if hit an invisible wall. A magical one, not the literal one made from solid matter. In conclusion, before it was interrupted Aur was able to scan the Dungeon about seven floors up from where he currently was.
「*Tsk*, so it’s impossible after all.」
He tried breaking through it with sheer force, but when he tried that he immediately felt dizzy and soon after his scan got interrupted.
「As I suspected. I just don’t have enough magical power.」
Muttering that to himself he turned towards Froro, who was sleeping peacefully at his side.
In this Dungeon, you gradually lose your magical power simply by being in here, so now Aur is too weak to do anything with his own power, but on the other hand, he already managed to recover quite a bit of it thanks to Froro’s help, to the point that he can actually stay awake without fainting every few minutes.
For some unknown reason, she seems to have a huge amount of magical power stored inside her body, making her like a walking, sentient Dungeon Core…. No, that would be too much to say, but she was extremely close to it, since the power she possesses is unlike any normal person would be able to hold. At worst, she could be likened to the likes of Rames. Most likely the fact that she is a demon is somehow related to it, which would explain the fact that she was able to handle Aur’s magic as good as Aur himself, or even better than him, quite nicely. Unlike Aur, whose magical power was almost gone, she could use her power freely to cast even the more advanced large-scale spells.
Because she was naturally absorbing the magical power she was releasing, Aur was able to recover his lost power little by little even when she was sleeping or not using her magic. She was a lifesaver, in more sense than one.
Aur embraced her not only out of desire to enjoy her beautiful body or to prepare her for being one of his chosen concubines. He did so because direct physical contact was the best method of transferring magical power from one person to the other.
However, the color of Froro’s magic was deep purple, and its properties were quite different from Aur’s own amber-colored magic. Even if he wanted to, he was unable to use it right after absorbing into himself; instead, he needed to slowly digest it into himself.
In any case, for now Aur cannot use any flashy magics in this Dungeon, since it has neither a Dungeon c/ore or the access to a Dragon Vein. His magical power is going to get consumed even without him using magic, so he’s going to have sex with Froro on a regular basis if he wants to avoid getting sucked dry…. Assuming she’d want to continue after what he put her through yesterday.
「Wake up, Froro. It’s time to get up.」
「Nnn…. *yawn* Good morning, Aur.」
Froro greeted him while rubbing her still half-closed eyes.
「Go wash your face with some cold water first. Then we’ll discuss what are we going to do from now on.」
Even though he still found her to be quite mysterious, but he couldn’t stop himself from being amused when he saw her clumsily washing her face like any ordinary person.
「There are two thing you’re going to need if you want to become a proper ruler.」
Froro repeated after Aur while curiously tilting her head to the side.
「The first one is your position, or social standing. Someone who is just a lowly slave can never hope to become a king.」
「Ah, I… I guess that’s true.」
Did she realize that just now?
「So, how can I be freed from my slave status? Should I kill my owner?」
「Sure, that’s one way to do it, since the slave should automatically be freed when their owner dies. Another way is for the owner to declare that they are setting you free themselves…」
「But slaves cannot harm their owners.」
「I was getting to that. If you cannot harm your owner yourself, then the solution to that particular problem is pretty simple. I can kill your owner for you.」
When Aur proposed that, Froro’s expression darkened.
「… Is… is there a way to set me free without killing anyone?」
「Why? Is her related to you in some way?」
Froro shook her head.
「No. For as long as I can remember, he was always abusing me, as if he bore a grudge against me.」
「If that is the case, then why do you hesitate? You’re way past the stage where you can afford not to kill those who can threaten you.」
「No. I don’t want to kill anyone because of a petty reason like that.」
Froro’s answer made Aur grin.
「It’s good that you’re not eager to get your hands bloody. If you were, that would be pretty scary, for more reasons than one. That being said, are you sure about that?」
「Yes. That is all right with me.」
Surprised, Froro looked up at Aur, who was patting her head. She was wondering did she do something to deserve a gesture like that, when in practice, her reason for not wanting to kill was incredibly silly.
「Grievances and hatred cloud our judgement all too often. We don’t need them to achieve your goal. If you have to kill, do it, but if it is not necessary, then don’t do it. The way I see it, your owner is nothing but an accessory, a tool. So there is no need to kill him just yet.」
Being caught up in your own grudges serves little to no purpose. Letting them go and keep on living is a much more productive thing to do.
Froro heard that many times, but it seems that when Aur says it, he has a completely different meaning in mind.
「But Aur… isn’t holding a grudge the right thing to do in this situation?」
「So you hold it after all?」
He asked her that as a sort of test, but he didn’t expect any sort of binding answer from her just yet.
「I don’t even know why I ended up here in the first place, but if somebody is doing it our of sheer malice, isn’t it natural to want to give that someone what’s coming to him?」
Instead, Aur made a statement.
「Nevertheless, even if you want to bring someone to justice, it should never be done just to get rid of a grudge.」
He said that in a tone as if was explaining why the flames are hot or why the sun does not shine during the night.
「If someone stabs you in the back, you cannot forgive it. You have to make your enemies regret thinking that they could harm you. But not because of something as small and insignificant as personal feelings. You have to do it to show everyone that having you as an enemy is just not worth it.」
Froro thought back to when he was hurting her master. Those indifferent eyes that showed no interest in the suffering he was inflicting. She thought that he would probably wear the same disinterested expression when he’d be killing other people.
When she saw that, she thought it was scary beyond belief. But now…. Now it might actually be to their benefit.
「By the way, what is the other thing you said I’m going to need to become a proper ruler?」
「Have you forgotten already?」
Aur said, raising his eyebrows.
「The way you’re going to treat Sarnak’s slaves from now on.」
Froro, who had indeed forgotten about that, shouted.
「Lord Aur, Lady Froro.」
When aur and Froro headed to the room where Sarnak was being confined, several slaves like Nagia were already gathered there.
「Did something happen?」
「No, but… it looks like we haven’t been released from our slavery just yet.」
「looks like we have ourselves a stubborn one. Now, let’s see…」
The wall was supposed to be completely filled so that Sarnak would be unable to move even a finger. Normally he should be dead in no time due to suffocation, but just to be on the safe side Aur decided to check with his magic.
Sarnak was most definitely inside of the wall. He does not move for even an inch, so at first glance he really appeared to be dead. Aur tried to open the wall up for a bit to see what would happen, but as soon as he did that, Sarnak’s eyes suddenly snapped open.
「What in the hell?!」
Did he just feel a slight, barely traceable hint of magic? Sarnak’s reaction was indeed surprising, but it does not mean that he’ll be able to do anything.
「Well well, would you look at that?」
Instead of being shocked, Aur just smiled and nodded his head.
As soon as Aur moved his fingers, the pillars that confined Sarnak in place dissipated into particles of light, and the sweat-drenched Sarnak fell onto the floor with a loud thud.
Somehow managing to force his wilted body to move, he grabs a hold of his sword and slowly stands up.
He managed to get to Aur, and when he did, he knelt on one knee.
Aur picked up the sword from Sarnak’s trembling hand and placed it on one of his shoulders.
「I accept your will to serve me.」
Soon after Aur said that, Sarnak lost consciousness and fell onto the floor.
「Fumu… there’s nothing wrong with the desire to live. Take him away and let him rest.」
When Aur gave the order, several slaves appeared and took Sarnak out of the room.
「Aur, just now… what did you do?」
「I simply made him realize that if he wants to live, he has no choice but to serve me. That’s really all there is to it.」
All in all, Sarnak words were too prideful to call them begging for his life, but Aur rather liked them. He had pride as strong as a steel shield, and the guts that kept him alive in a magical prison where we wasn’t able to move a single finger for an entire night, simply because he was too stubborn to give up on survival. Something like that is a talent that cannot be obtained with any Skill in the world, so killing a man possessing all those qualities would be a giant waste, or at least that is what Aur thought.
「Does… does that mean that you have made Sarnak your slave, Aur?」
「Not quite, but something very close to it. I merely made him my subordinate.」
Aur replied to Froro’s question as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.
「More importantly, do we have any pens and paper in here?」
「We do… but what are you going to use them for?」
Aur grinned, and when Nagia gave him a pen and a piece of paper she got out of the bag, he said:
「For a contract.」