“Heroes exist to save the world.”
...Those words make me sick.
By luck, no, by horrible luck, I was blessed by the holy blade and forced onto the path of killing the demon lord.
I had everyone’s attention on me, and their hopes became the sole reason for me to push ahead...
With the weight of the world on my shoulders, I pressed on, never resting.
What was the reward for my deeds?
To be idolised?
To be an inspiration?
I didn’t want any of it.
Another man could say, your reward is your adventure and the memories of your companions.
Don’t make me laugh.
Memories of your companions?
Let me say it again,
“Heroes exist to save the world, not to save their companions.”
The fate of my companions was always destined to be a cruel one.
In order to defeat the demon lord who would destroy the world.
Whether it was before or after he rose up in power.
Of course, as a hero, as an individual, I tried my utmost to save those who were important to me.
But the results had always been disastrous.
The pain I felt as they whispered to me with their dying breaths,
“At least you managed to make it out alive.”
The path of a hero is filled with more sorrow than happiness.
I could not fail to live up to their expectations.
Even when I wandered on the borders of insanity, the people would put their hopes on my existance.
Those days would continue as I fought on with blood in my mouth.
Heroes may exist to save the world,
but I fought for the eternal peace of death.
I’d had enough of this life.
The mysterious monsters who would invade our homes.
The villains who dared to harm my friends.
I had slain many,
and saved the lives of many more from the jaws of death.
And in the end...
I managed to slay the demon lord.
How high up was it?
The clouds were laid out below him as he fell from the skies together with a giant.
With red skin and a giant horn.
The demon lord.
Countless wounds were visible on his colossal body.
He gritted his teeth and stared at his foe, struggling to retain consciousness.
In his foe’s right hand, the holy sword shone brightly.
His foe was standing on top of his forehead. The hero who slayed the demon lord.
“What is going through your mind right now?”
The demon lord asked the hero.
Although he felt nothing but fury towards him, he had no choice but to acknowledge his power.
So he asked his foe, his equal, out of curiosity.
“If you’re asking for my thoughts.”
The hero spoke.
His face seemed somewhat pale as he fell towards certain death.
After a small pause, he replied quietly,
The demon lord could not understand his answer,
‘Yes, this is enough right?’
That was what he truly thought.
‘If it’s not you, if you’re not here, if you can’t...’
He’s heard it a million times.
‘Only you can do it.’
‘It’s impossible unless it’s you.’
‘Only you can save them.’
‘You must protect them.’
To act as the symbol of their hope, to live up to their wishes.
It had taken its toll on him.
“I’m just really tired.”
It was so hard to meet those gazes that were trying to hold onto what little faith they had.
“Honestly, I don’t want it anymore.”
As he remembered all the lines about heroes that had been said to him, he looked down. He was falling.
As he fell from the insane height, his clothes fluttered uncontrollably.
The stars shone at the edge of his vision, and the cold winds swiped at him.
It was difficult to keep his eyes open, so he half-closed them.
The clouds that had been far below him now caressed his body.
The ground was getting closer.
“...I’m almost there.”
The hero could see the ashen black buildings made of concrete.
Every time he blinked, they were closer. It was moments before the final impact.
“Aaah, this is the end.”
At this height, even the hero could not avoid instant death.
He would become unrecognisable.
With all the injuries and curses on him, resurrection was also impossible.
The demon lord tilted his head in curiosity.
Even after saving the world, after so much sacrifice, only death awaited him. Yet the hero was smiling.
As if, it was his greatest peace.
“Huh? Those two are falling!”
He was almost there.
Through the people’s shouting, he heard the demon lord’s head hit the ground, making a sound like a tomato being crushed.
And it was his turn soon after.
The hero fell.
“In the famed Iphelleta House.”
In the crowded inn, people were talking of the rumors about the selection of the Iphelleta House’s new successor.
The Finn Iphelleta House, which was famous for its swordsmanship, had three sons.
The first, Ryan the Geuk-Geom, famous for his strength.
The second, Lloyd the Sok-Geom, famous for his speed.
The third, however...
TLN: Geuk-Geom = Strong Blade, Sok-Geom = Quick Blade
“The successor will be one of those three sons!”
“Only one of them will be chosen right?”
“Wouldn’t it be Ryan, the eldest?”
“Well, who knows? I heard that the second-born, Lloyd, is quite sharp too.”
“I thought they were blessed to have three sons, but having so many has its troubles, too.”
“It’s a problem for all high-class families, especially such high nobles.”
“For us peasants, sons are always better!”
“Who knows, you might win something big if you have a beautiful daughter.”
“Hahaha! With your face? Dream on, brother.”
Iffa village, a territory ruled by the Finn Iphelleta House. The inn was full of speculations about the new successor.
“From the sounds of things, it’s either going to be the first or the second, is that right?”
“Yeah, thats true.”
“What about the third?”
“Ah, well, apparently he is completely useless.”
“He was born that way.”
A certain butler, who looked out of place in this inn, tightened his grip on his beer, as if he was trying to shatter the glass.
“He’s a noble and yet he’s known as the ‘Lazy’. In a way, he’s more famous than the other two.”
Famous within the Iphelleta House for his awe inspiring laziness.
TLN: Na-Geom = Lazy Sword
“Hah! Never heard of such disgrace in my life.”
“You know how the Iphelleta House is famous for its swordsmanship? Well apparently, he’s never swung a damn sword in his life...”
“Basically, he’s beyond hopeless.”
The others nodded in agreement.
“So, what’s the reason for it?”
“Well, I heard he gets a seizure when he does.”
“Nah, I heard he’s got some allergy to it.”
“Apparently he’s more of a vegetable and can’t even move. I heard he just lies on his bed all day.”
The old man who had been listening suddenly stood up, furious. His face was as red as an apple.
“You fucking sons of bit-…!”