Hearing that voice, Ria opened her eyes.
She was positive that she should have died. If she had died, she should have become her next self.
And yet, just where was this place?
Getting up from the black floor……Ria, saw that.
A throne within the darkness──And then, something sitting on that throne.
That thing possessed red, shining eyes, and was a clump of darkness that had the shape of a person.
The word 「Mazoku」 appeared in Ria’s head.
「You sure are rude. I am not a Mazoku.」
「That’s right, I read your mind. While I’m at it, I am reading the tale that was etched into your soul, so wait for a bit.」
Hearing those words, Ria shuddered.
Just what in the world was the thing in front of her saying?
Something like that shouldn’t be possible. If something were able to do that, they would be in the realm of the Gods.
In that case, was this thing……no, was this Person a God?
Moreover, if it was able to meddle with the soul, then it was probably the God of Life Philia.
However, she was quite different from her appearance as handed down in the legends.
「Fumu, fumu, that is quite the interesting life. You did well to hang in there, great job, great job.」
「Phi, Philia-sama……I am unworthy of those words.」
Ria knelt down to the clump of darkness, and somehow held down her fear.
This fear is also due to having a sacred existence in front of her, that is how Ria persuaded herself.
「Philia? Me? Hahaha, that’s a funny joke.」
However, when the clump of darkness shook and swayed as if it found something funny, those red eyes narrowed.
「I’m different. No, but still. Uーn, I’m different……aren’t I?」
After the clump of darkness showed signs of being troubled about it, it noticed that Ria was displaying a puzzled expression.
「Ahh, sorry about that. After all, I had cast away something like a name long ago. I can’t deny the possibility of having had the name of Philia. But still, the Philia that you’re thinking of and I are different people, the answer to your question really is that I am not Philia……that might be correct.」
When Ria answered like that, the clump of darkness nodded.
「Well now, in that case……I guess I’ll take on an appearance that is easy for you to talk to.」
When it announced that, the clump of darkness scattered in all directions, and then took on the form of a person when it gathered back together.
The one that was there was a man that possessed short silver hair.
As if matching with his beautiful features, his body was well-trained.
That person that wore firmly sewn and robust-looking clothes and silver armor that covered his chest, he looked just like Al.
However, he was different.
His eyes emitted a red brilliance.
The thing that was there just now had taken up Al’s form.
「Un, this should do it.」
After the thing that resembled Al looked at Ria’s reaction and nodded looking satisfied, he crossed his legs on top of the throne.
「Now then, I would like to make a self-introduction but……just as I said before, I am one that has cast away my name. I don’t possess a name to be called by but……let’s see, the guys that know me call me the Demon God.」
That was a God she had not heard of.
Something called the Demon God did not appear and the legends handed down in Remfilia.
If she was told that it was the God of Darkness Dagulas, who was said have been supported by the Mazoku and had their believers decreasing rapidly, she could still understand it.
「Are you not……Dagulas-sama?」
「That’s wrong, you know?」
The Demon God tilted his head and denied it.
She didn’t know what this thing that called itself the Demon God was, but there was something that bothered Ria more than that.
「Um, Demon God-sama. There is something I would like to ask you about.」
「What is it?」
「Just why, am I in this place?」
「Un. It’s because I picked you up. It’s that simple.」
What did he mean by 「picked up」?
Once they die, all life would turn into a Life Seed, and return to the God of Life Philia’s side.
Although she herself was a special existence that had repeatedly lived her life several times……since the Life Seed wasn’t something that could be dropped, it shouldn’t be possible to pick it up.
「I am able to do just that. But, well, there is something I want to ask you. Why do you think you died this time?」
She thought about the answer to the Demon God’s question.
Why did she die this time──That was because she was killed by the Mazoku.
As she was about to say that, she thought “that’s wrong……”.
The Demon God probably wasn’t asking this with that sort of meaning.
He wasn’t asking about the direct cause, but about something more fundamental.
However, Ria didn’t know just how she should answer.
Seeing Ria sink into silence, the Demon God raised the corners of his mouth.
「Up until now, you have ended up dying as a sacrifice from some sort of revolution. Compared to that, this time’s death……don’t you think that it was too light?」
「……There is no heavy or light, to death.」
Seeing Ria glare at him, the Demon God……with the face that looked exactly like Al’s, sneered.
「Puh, kukuku……Ahahaha haha! Don’t make me laugh! Having repeatedly living your life several times, I won’t let you say that you didn’t notice reality of that level, got it!? Besides, above all, you should have noticed! About how unnatural your death was this time!」
That’s right, there certainly was a part of it that bothered her.
Although that Mazoku called the Sword Demon said that it was testing the Hero’s strength, it didn’t have any fixation on the Hero.
Plus, why did it come to attack with that timing?
If it wanted to test out his strength, it would have been better to attack when the Hero was alone, and there should have been a more appropriate place for it.
In all of those points, the unnaturalness stood out.
As if the 「testing the Hero’s strength」 was merely an excuse, and it had some other objective, that sort of unnaturalness.
However, she didn’t know the reason why it would do something like that.
「Do you not understand? You were killed because you needed to be killed.」
Hearing the Demon God’s words, Ria thought “why”.
Why was it not Ryuuya who was the Hero, but her.
An appropriate reason for her to be killed, there wasn’t one at all.
「It’s simple. You were too strong, and your tale was unnecessary in the Hero’s tale. That was what was decided.」
She didn’t really understand the meaning to what the Demon God was saying.
Just who would decide something like that and send in a Mazoku?
She couldn’t think of anyone that could freely move the Mazoku other than the Demon King Shuklous, but going by the way the Demon God was speaking, that was probably wrong.
It didn’t seem like the Demon King Shuklous would think about how the Hero’s tale was going to be and act upon it. To the Demon King, the Hero should simply be nothing more than an enemy that was trying to destroy their own tale.
The Demon God laughed at Ria’s puzzled gaze.
Having those red eyes sparkle and look like he was having fun, the Demon God whispered the answer.
「Isn’t it obvious? It’s the one who carved the technical skill called 『Sacrifice’s Rebirth』 into your soul.」
That 「Sacrifice’s Rebirth」 was the technical skill that continually forced a new life onto Ria.
However, that naming was too ominous to be called a technical skill.
「The person who possesses this technical skill will die as a sacrifice in the era’s revolutionary point. And then, be reincarnated as the next sacrifice……huh. I can’t believe they made this kind of technical skill.」
Made the technical skill.
Carved the technical skill.
Each and every one of the Demon God’s words permeated into Ria.
The words “could it be” were in her mouth and were about to come out.
The existences that were able to do something like that, were limited.
If that really were the case, the meaning of Ria’s life up until now was──
「Exactly, Ria. You repeatedly lived your life over and over in order to become a sacrifice, in order to die. And then, this last time, you were cut out because you would become an obstacle to the scenario. That is your everything.」
The Demon God’s words, echoed within Ria.
In order to die──All there was to Ria’s life, was in order to die.
It wasn’t that there was meaning to Ria’s life, but that there was meaning in her death.
Ria was born from a desire for her death.
「……Demon God, -sama.」
「What is it?」
Ria put strength into her body that felt like it would collapse, and wanting to confirm the answer she already knew, she spun out her words.
「The one who desired my death……The one who imposed this sort of fate upon me, who was it?」
「Isn’t it obvious? It was Philia. The one who was made into a sacrifice for mankind’s happiness was you. That being said……I think that your memories being handed down was probably unexpected, you know?」
”Most likely, your memories would have been erased during your next reincarnation……” is what the Demon God muttered.
In other words, it meant that until she became involved with the Hero Ryuuya, Ria was an existence that the God of Life didn’t need to be bothered with.
When she saw Ria together with the Hero Ryuuya, the God of Life notice that there was one person that went beyond her expectations.
Fearing the fact that the collapse of some sort of scenario was created by that young lady, she killed Ria……that was probably it.
「Yeah, it’s probably just like that. Fufu, and I ended up picking that up from the side. That damned woman, around this time, she’s probably thinking that you were reincarnated somewhere in Remfilia and impatiently searching for you, don’t you think?」
It would seem that this Demon God was not an ally of the God of Life Philia.
That being said, it did not mean that he was Ria’s ally though.
「Hey, Ria. About your technical skill called 『Sacrifice’s Rebirth』. Do you want me to erase it?」
「It’s simple, you know? If you want, I can even prepare a new life for you.」
Ria was astonished by those words.
It seemed that this Demon God was able to use powers similar to the God of Life.
「You are able to choose two paths. The first one is a path where you forget everything and might become happy. In this case, I will even let you choose to be born in a world that isn’t Remfilia.」
Hearing the words “a world that isn’t Remfilia”, Ria held a bit of interest in it, but she kept silent and waited for the continuation of the Demon God’s words.
「The second one is a path where you fight back while still remembering everything. In this case, you will be keeping me company in killing my time.」
Why would accompanying the Demon God in killing his time be connected to Ria fighting back?
「Yeah, it’s just me killing time. How about it? If it goes well, a chance to get revenge on Philia might be born, you know?」
「……Is that, possible?」
Revenge on the God of Life Philia.
Those sweet words shook Ria’s heart.
「I won’t guarantee it though. It might happen if things go well, that’s about it I suppose.」
She didn’t understand what he meant.
She gazed at the Demon God……and before long, Ria breathed a small sigh.
「In that case, I have a request.」
「What is it?」
「Please give me strength. Strength in order to make the revenge succeed……Please, give that to me.」
「Can I take that as meaning that you’ll accompany me in killing my time?」
Ria nodded at the Demon God’s words.
That was the sign that said she had approved of the agreement.
When the Demon God stood up from the throne, he looked down on Ria who stood before him.
Seeing the figure of the Demon God that looked exactly like Al, Ria remembered that nostalgic day.
The Demon God, while expressing a smile on that face……broke Ria to pieces with a single swing.
「In that case, I shall reconstruct you. Into a form that is appropriate for my objective……as well as for your objective. What, the thing that I’ll have you do is simple. The rearing of a new Demon King……That is your role.」
Saying that, the Demon God gathered the fragments of what was once Ria, and started to reconstruct her.
「As for the new name……let’s see. Ichika, how does that sound?」
This was the origin of the Majin called Ichika.