The Demon King Castle in the Zadark Kingdom, the Throne Room.
The place that was more sacred than anywhere else in the castle.
Right now, the lights within the room were put out, and only the moonlight that came in from the window illuminated the throne.
The one sitting there, was the Demon King Vermudol.
Vermudol moved his gaze to the voice that called out to him.
「So it’s you, Ichika.」
Seeing Ichika who had appeared beside him, Vermudol breathed a sigh.
「……You are also quite the hard worker. Just when do you sleep?」
「I do so when I rest.」
「I see, well do things in moderation. Have the jobs that can be entrusted to others done by others.」
「As you command.」
He tried saying that but……the actual problem was that there was no one that could match Ichika in quality results.
「……As I thought, wouldn’t it be better if I prepare a maid dedicated to routine tasks?」
The duties done in the current Demon King Castle had Ichika at the center and were performed by the Magic Operated Armors that belonged to the Central Army and the Beastia unit led by Aulokk.
That being said, since almost all of the duties get completed with Ichika around, there are almost no jobs that get around to the Magic Operated Armors and Beastia.
However, for Vermudol, he was thinking that he should have the talented Ichika do other important jobs.
Then again, if he were to say that, Ichika would end up incorporating those 「other important jobs」 into her duties as well though.
Just once, Vermudol had tried to sneakily create a maid unit meant to support Ichika in the grand magic formation underground.
However, right when he was about to start, Ichika came along and stopped Vermudol.
And then, this time as well, Ichika kept a blank look at Vermudol’s proposal.
「That is not needed.」
「Well……I thought you would say that.」
Hearing that expected answer, Vermudol breathed a sigh.
「Even though I find Nino alone to be unmanageable. I do not wish to see other useless ones.」
「……True, even I don’t feel like I could make someone on your level.」
If Ichika’s words were to be believed, similar to Vermudol, Ichika was also specially made by that black young girl……she should have.
In other words, from that moment on, she was different from the other Mazoku.
It was only recently that he noticed this, but Ichika was the only one that was able to do a complete concealment against Vermudol’s 「Status Confirmation」 Magic.
He couldn’t find something like an opening on her at all.
There was no one that had ever seen her become serious at all.
That was the Maid Knight known as Ichika.
「Honestly, I’m grateful that you’re not an enemy.」
「Something like that is impossible. Please be at ease.」
Ichika then stared at Vermudol who nodded in agreement.
「It is about time, please go to sleep. Tomorrow will have important government affairs too, correct?」
「Pretty much. But, I can’t help it, right? Things are going to finally start tomorrow. It can’t be helped that I’m feeling exhilarated.」
「Even so. Please properly sleep in your bed.」
Hearing Ichika’s words that said she wouldn’t yield even a single step, Vermudol made a wry smile.
It wasn’t that she was merely inflexible, it was that it was hard to go against her since it was a statement she made upon having a complete understanding of Vermudol’s physical condition.
Among Ichika’s duties, managing Vermudol’s physical condition was incorporated as a default.
「Yes, Demon King-sama.」
「The thing called peace, it’s pretty far away.」
「……It is, isn’t it.」
For a long time, mankind was in 「peace」.
Long enough that mankind itself had forgotten its worth and was going to destroy it.
Peace──it is the thing that Vermudol craved, and the thing that mankind had now thrown away.
For the sake of obtaining it, Vermudol first did a massive killing of the Mazoku that would get in his way.
And then, he unified the Dark Continent, made new Mazoku, and had them develop.
「Not long ago, I even killed some Sylphid.」
For the sake of the Mazoku’s peace, he took the lives of Sylphid that seemed like they would become obstructing factors, and even having gone as far as doing something that was like brainwashing, he formed a friendship with the Jiol Forest Kingdom.
Everything, was for the sake of peace.
The first step on the blood smeared path, was finally taken.
No, he had no choice but to take it.
Even though it would have been better if peace could be reached while still at the stand still.
「Killing for the sake of peace, huh. I thought that was merely a chant for the sake of self-justification.」
「It was something necessary.」
Within the current chaos of mankind’s territory, there was the possibility that God was involved with it.
In order to obtain the ideal result in the shortest amount of time, it was something needed no matter what.
「You are the top of all Mazoku, the Demon King. There is not a single mistake in those actions that were done while thinking for the sake of the Mazoku.」
「I see……No, that’s right.」
That’s right, Vermudol is the Demon King.
Being the top of all Mazoku, the sole race in the world, called the Demon King.
Seeing Vermudol ponder even more about something, Ichika opened her mouth.
「It will be harmful to your body. Please go to sleep already.」
「Yeah, I know. But I want to think for just a bit more.」
「That will not do.」
「Saying “that will not do”, you……」
Ichika, making a bit of a displeased face, glared at Vermudol.
「Demon King-sama, once you start pondering, you have a tendency to sink into a negative direction. I will not say that is a bad thing, but you must do it in moderation.」
「No, but still……going this far is actually」
「Demon King-sama, no matter what you think, there will be no changes in things that are facts.」
When Ichika said that, she forcibly put her hands around Vermudol’s body and carried him in her arms.
In slang terms, it was a princess carry.
「O, oi, Ichika!」
「I shall have you rest even if I have to force you to do it.」
「I get it so just put me down!」
「I will have to refuse.」[Illustration]
While still holding Vermudol in her arms, Ichika briskly walked to his bedroom.
Being carried in a princess carry so easily by Ichika whose appearance looked delicate, embarrassment and patheticness mixed into Vermudol’s heart.
Although he knew it was pointless, he couldn’t allow it to happen without resistance.
「You……If someone were to see this, then my dignity would……」
「There isn’t a single presence within visible range of this place nor within the possible range of when we arrive there. The same goes for the route to the bedroom.」
「Ahh, is that so……」
If Ichika says that, then she surely isn’t mistaken.
Thinking that it really was pointless and giving up on resisting, Vermudol allowed himself to limply be carried just like that.
「……What is it? Just now, I was having second thoughts on whether or not I really am the Demon King though.」
After warding off Vermudol’s sarcasm, Ichika spoke with her usual tone.
「I beg of you, please continue on the path that you believed in. Even if no one else understands your anguish, I will be by your side.」
Those were words that Ichika has spoken before. Just when was it that he had heard these words.
「No matter what path you choose from now on, I shall nestle close to you on that path.」
Vermudol remembered the day he had first met with Ichika.
The time when the Demon King Castle was still just ragged ruins and when Vermudol and Ichika were the only two in the master and servant relationship.
While being reminded of that time, Vermudol muttered.
「……I also might end with just perishing to the Hero, you know? I am confident that my current self is pretty Demon King-like after all.」
「If one is a true Demon King, then there is no reason to lose to someone like the Hero.」
「Is that so?」
「It is. If you’d like, I will show you that I can cut them down.」
Seeing the rare occasion of Ichika make a joke, Vermudol was caught off guard……and made a small laugh.
「I see. Then that’s a relief.」
As she said that with a lack of expression, Ichika arrived at Vermudol’s room, and her feet stopped right in front of the door.
「……Demon King-sama, please wait here for a bit.」
When Ichika said that, she put Vermudol down, silently opened the door, and slipped inside.
「……Nino, what are you doing.」
Hearing those word, Vermudol stealthily peeked inside from the gap of the opened door.
What was in there was Ichika who had a somewhat terrifying colored aura rising from her, and the figure of Nino who was rolled into a ball in Vermudol’s bed.
「Since Nino is thoughtful, Nino warmed up Demon King-sama’s bed.」
「Is that so. Since that is unnecessary, get out.」
「That cannot be done. Rather than a seed of rationality, a rigid, straight-laced maid has come invading like this after all. Nino thought that she should protect him at his side. Putting that Nino’s loyal servant style and beautiful young lady style together, it is on the level of being transmitted down after ages as a legend.」
「I see. It would seem that there are flaws in your thinking processes. Get out.」
「How boorish of you to hinder Nino’s loyalty. Those are lines that come out from not having confidence in your own appearance.」
Any more than this was dangerous. The Demon King Castle seriously could not be allowed to return to its first day state.
Feeling that way, Vermudol purposely pushed open the door so that it made a loud sound.
「Ah, Demon King-sama.」
「Demon King-sama……Please wait for a bit. Since I will be tossing this dumbass maid out through the window.」
「No, wait. It’s fine so wait. Nino, what are you doing?」
Being asked that, Nino restlessly raised half her body, and tilted her head.
With how she was wearing light green pajamas, she was clearly intending on sleeping here.
「What you ask……Preparing for sleeping together?」
「I see. I’ll accept those feelings.」
「If it’s now, Nino will also come with it as a set, you know?」
「I will accept only the feelings.」
Puffing her cheeks looking quite displeased, Nino was about to restlessly leave the bed looking like it couldn’t be helped.
「……Even though there’s nothing to be bashful about it at this point.」
「Wait, that’s a misunderstanding. It is one of Nino’s usual jokes.」
Vermudol warded off Ichika’s sharp gaze.
Vermudol had not gotten into that sort of relationship with anyone before.
He hadn’t withered to the point of having absolutely no interest in the field of love……that is what he had thought.
But, right now, he didn’t have the leeway to be concerned with that sort of thing.
「Un, Demon King-sama is serious after all.」
「If you understand that, then you should also be a bit more……」
Nino, who had for some reason crawled back onto the bed, looked into Vermudol’s eyes.
「But, Nino thinks that it’s because there is no leeway. Nino thinks that you should try turning your eyes onto something a bit different.」
Hearing that surprisingly decent opinion, Ichika also made a slightly surprised looking face.
「Even how Rokuna said before to go to the castle town, Nino thinks that she had that sort of aim, you know?」
Certainly, that castle town inspection had a strong element of play to it.
That too meant that Rokuna probably paid attention to Vermudol’s needs and tried to get him to vent out his stress.
「……I understand your view. Now then, move away from there.」
「Ichika, Nino thinks you should leave this place and come back after about seven hours have passed. By that time, Nino will be gone……maybe.」
Just as that quarrelling started, Vermudol had snapped his fingers and called a Magic Operated Armor.
「……Please prepare one bed in a vacant room right away. I will sleep there.」
「I have received your command.」
Leaving Ichika and Nino, who had once again started glaring at each other, as they were, Vermudol stealthily left his own room.