My name is Olba, an aide of Lord Belphgamilia the Corrupted, one of the demon army’s Heavenly Four.
I take great pride in my position.
The Demon King’s army was once the strongest and fiercest army on earth.
Just being in the lowest rank is already a lifelong honor in itself. Still, I was able to rise to the position of assistant to a Heavenly King.
Of course, I’m not being vain about my own abilities that got me here.
A novice like me wouldn’t have received such an honor if it weren’t for the luck I was blessed with.
The most fortunate thing for me is that I was born into a relatively influential noble family.
My family is reasonably influential and is one of the followers of a Heavenly One’s family that held the Corrupted-Holy Sword Viergelb in their possession for generations.
I was granted the position of being Lord Belphgamilia the Corrupted’s aide, one of the Heavenly Four of this generation, precisely because of this connection.
But that doesn’t mean I’m ashamed or haughty about it.
Whatever form the opportunity takes, I will do my best to seize it.
I want to fulfill the great responsibility of a Heavenly One’s aide and push myself to the limits.
That is the significance of my being here as a Demon King’s army soldier.
Today, I was tasked with subjugating the monster that appeared within the Demon Kingdom’s territory.
“A’ight, ya know what to do.”
My superior, Lord Belphgamilia, always gives me orders in such a tone.
Slothful, lethargic, carefree, and lazy.
That is how the world sees him.
In fact, Lord Belphgamilia has never taken an active role ever since he assumed the position of Heavenly One. He only carries out orders given by Demon King Zedan and does nothing more than that.
Naturally, Lord Belphgamilia doesn’t have glorious merits like the other Heavenly Ones, so it’s no surprise that he lacks public appeal.
However, for me, none of those changes the fact that he is a superior I must respect.
“Understood. I will fulfill my duty and return victorious.”
“No need to be so formal. Keep it cool and casual. Besides, you’re just going on a simple patrol, and if there’s nothing wrong in particular, then all the better.”
As my superior said that, he went to the hammock he brought to his office and napped there.
It’s not like he’ll change his ways even if someone like me starts criticizing him now.
I left the office without uttering another word.
“…I think he’s fine the way he is,” says Balaam, a fellow aide accompanying me as we lead our troops.
Most of the Heavenly Four have four to five aides, so Balaam is my colleague.
I will be guarding the territory together with him.
“It’s his way of protecting himself by making people think he’s lazy and useless. In fact, thanks to that attitude of his that he didn’t get involved in any political issues and survived the recent reformation.”
“I know, but still…”
Two of the three remaining Heavenly Ones were married to His Majesty and became demon queens.
It’s almost like a promotion for them.
Comparing Lord Belphgamilia to Lord Ravillian the Coveted, the only person who was overthrown from being a Heavenly One, would only mean that he didn’t commit any mistake that allowed him to secure his position!
“Return is the opposite of risk. Just dodging that bullet is already an achievement. Besides…”
“Lord Belphgamilia’s way of life just might be the perfect thing for the army from now on.”
Balaam’s words emotionally resonated with me, perhaps because I had a vague idea of what he was talking about.
“Demon King Zedan has destroyed the Human Kingdom and put an end to the generations-old war. That was probably the greatest achievement of our race. But now that he’s accomplished his mission, there’s nothing major left to do.”
“You mean he’s done all that he needed to do?”
Come to think of it, with the Human Kingdom gone, what are we left to fight now?
There is nothing more useless than an army without enemies.
In addition, will soldiers like us, mere pawns of war, still have future opportunities to rise among the ranks?
Taking such a bleak future into account, it rings true that having a peaceful lifestyle like Lord Belphgamilia is the most suitable for us soldiers.
“…We can’t say for sure just yet,” I say under my own breath. “Humans aren’t the only enemies of the demon race. There are still monsters out there. Sure, we may command some anthropomorphs, but the great majority aren’t one bit controllable and just run amok indiscriminately.”
The reason for our sortie today was that we received a discovery report of a dangerous monster. Hence we’re headed towards the place it was sighted at to investigate.
If there really is such a monster, we, Lord Belphgamilia’s commanding unit, will use our forces to crush it.
“We are still needed. We’ll do a meritorious deed by slaying these monsters and garner Demon King Zedan’s praise.”
“Don’t bite more than you can chew. You spent most of your life as a sheltered boy, so if you get killed in action, I’ll have to deal with consoling your family.”
Balaam’s words irked me.
“Don’t put it like that. Didn’t I say that lineage doesn’t matter in the military?”
“You’re saying that exactly because you grew up sheltered in a well-to-do family. I mean, look at that armor of yours.”
Since we’re on a combat mission, I have armed myself from head to toe. Some cloth can be seen from the gaps of my armor. I believe it’s called armor underwear.
Though it’s underwear, they cover my entire body like any typical clothes. They’re essential to keep direct contact with the hard armor from injuring its wearer and protect one’s joints.
“It’s all brand-new and shiny. I heard that your mother gave this to you just before we set out on our mission. It totally shows her desperate desire for her adorable only son to return home alive.”
Honestly, I find my mother’s consideration a mixed blessing.
People around me already ridicule my sheltered upbringing, and this brand-new complete set of armor that I’m wearing makes me stand out even more.
Still, I’m not an inconsiderate son who disregards his mother’s concern, so I can only wear the armor she gave me.
My previous armor was wearing out, anyway…
“Those who are born into noble families like you have their own roles to play. Once you’ve served your country and gained prestige, retire right away and succeed as the heir. Then, marry someone and start your own family…”
“Now that the war with the human race is over and times are peaceful, such a way of life is becoming more and more in line with our world. Let’s just hope the locals were wrong and we don’t encounter any monsters in this mission.”
Soldiers will gradually become a thing of the past from here on out.
They will be deemed useless and disappear from the center stage of history.
Speaking of which, what happened to her?
She was an aide of the former Heavenly One Astres, now Demon Queen. Perhaps we were in the same rank we often saw each other during military meetings. Still, ever since her boss, Lady Astres, became queen, I haven’t been seeing her around.
I don’t think she was transferred someplace else. Maybe she took advantage of her superior’s prosperity and used the severance payment she received to retire?
She was a commoner who went from rags to riches by becoming an aide to a Heavenly One. As someone who grew up with connections, I felt inferior to her.
If I remember correctly, she was born to a family of tailors and dreamed of taking over their business and opening her own store once she retires.
If she’s no longer part of the Demon King’s army, does that mean her dream has been realized?
That’s fine with me. We soldiers are losing our place on the battlefield, anyway. It’s better to pursue dreams that hope for a peaceful life.
“I… I’ll chase after my own dreams!”
My dream is to be on the battlefield.
For the time being, I hope that the battlefield I’m heading to has stronger monsters than what was reported to us…
Or so I thought, but as soon as I got there, I changed my mind.
While I may have wished for a strong monster to appear, there’s a limit to everything.
In fact, we faced something far stronger and more dangerous than some ordinary monster.
happy new year!