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It happened on the night of the very same day that High King Yuuto rescued the villagers from the bandits' onslaught. Somewhere within the territory of the humans was a single room, wherein the ministers of all its nations had gathered.
"If we do not remove the High King from the picture as quickly as we can, the future will hold nothing for humanity."
"But do consider that he just recently decimated the army of fifty thousand men we sent to the fray. If we continue to pile up the sacrifices, I doubt the ma.s.ses will remain silent."
"We will find some way to deal with them. I care not how many sacrifices must be made if it means we can strike him down."
"Oh my, I can't help but feel that what you just said might be a tad problematic."
"If our most recent information is anything to go by, the High King has brainwashed an entire village. It appears that he made them shout his praises, calling him the savior of this world."
"Such underhanded conduct. Does this mean that the slaughter of countless men isn't even enough to satiate him?!"
"What he's doing is clear as day. He's sending us a message, telling us that this is the prelude to the destruction of mankind. It can't be anything else."
"Then we really must obliterate him without hesitation…"
"But do we even have a way to defeat someone with the power to destroy a troop of fifty thousand in the blink of an eye?"
A heavy, oppressive air began to smother the room. In the meantime, a lone minister pushed his spectacles up the bridge of his nose with his index finger.
"Please, rest a.s.sured. We already have a way to dispose of the High King."
"Is that true?!"
All as one, the remaining ministers gave him their undivided attention.
"You see, I've taken the liberty of inviting a rather special guest today. The role of purging away demons has, naturally, always been left to the Angels…"
"Did you just say… Angels?!"
"You don't mean…!"
The door slowly opened. Standing behind it was a single man. White wings sprouted from his back, and a circle of light floated above his head.
"Y-You're one of the Seven Angels of the Stars! You're Uriel-sama!"
"Why is one of the Seven Angels of the Stars here…?!"
"Was he waiting behind that door this whole time?!"
Almost instinctively, the ministers rose from their chairs. Once they had done so, Uriel graced them with a smile that was drenched in disdain.
"Indeed, that I am. I am one of the Seven Angels of the Stars, Uriel. And? Are you only capable of gawking like fools when faced with one such as I?"
Panicking, the ministers fell to their knees from where they stood. For Uriel, this seemed to be satisfactory.
"That will do. It certainly seems that you humans know where you stand."
Uriel picked out a random open seat, then sat down rather brazenly.
"W-We… We are in the middle of thinking of measures to defeat the High King, and –"
"So I've already heard. To make it simple, slaying the High King would be enough, no? Know that the High King is an opponent that far outstrips what meager accomplishments mere humans can conjure. To me, however, he is little more than a sniveling newborn."
"B-But still…! The High King has erased a force of fifty thousand without a trace, all in a single moment! He is not one to be taken lightly!"
Uriel sent a piercing glare the minister's way.
"You cur. You are not underestimating the power of I, one of the Seven Angels of the Stars, are you?"
"N-Not at all! That wasn't my intent, not in the slightest!"
"… Very well then. I shall make an exception and show you lot my status. Be honored that mere humans may gaze upon it. Disclose Status!"
A stat screen materialized above Uriel's head.
URIEL — LV 999
HP — 67,908/67,908
MP — 30,976/30,976
ATK — 653
DEF — 854
AGL — 523
HIT — 612
"Both his HP and MP are in the quintuple digits! And even the rest of his stats, they're well in the triple…!"
"Truly, one of the Seven Angels of the Stars…!"
Each of the ministers voiced their admiration. They had of course, along with Uriel himself, absolutely no way of being familiar with the High King's stats.
"Well then… If I recall, that human over there just stated that he was not to be taken lightly. Do let me hear what you have to say now."
"I-I humbly apologize! I take back what I said!"
"This gentleman may truly be able to defeat the High King…!"
"… 'May be able to'?"
Uriel fixated the minister with yet another glare.
"M-My deepest apologies! Allow me to correct myself: there is no doubt he will!"
"… Hmph, I suppose that will be enough. But on to more important matters. Have you prepared my compensation?"
"We have. Once you have defeated the High King, Uriel-sama, you will be awarded with a thousand gold coins."
The currency used in the lands of Laruatos was divided into three units: Gold, Silver, and Copper. A single gold coin was worth a hundred silver ones, while one silver coin was worth one hundred coppers. Compared to j.a.panese currency, a single copper coin should have the same worth as ten Yen.
"A thousand gold coins? You do not believe that such pocket lint will be enough to appease me, do you?"
"…! O-Of course not, how silly. We do of course intend to offer you whatever else you may desire, Uriel-sama."
The corners of Uriel's mouth curled upwards.
"Very well. I, the great Uriel, shall accept your request. Let us say that I will eliminate the High King on the day after tomorrow. Until then, I do believe I will take in some of the sights. It has been some time since I last walked the earth."
"T-That's far too much leisure…"
"Hm? Is there something that you, mere human sc.u.m, would like to say to me?"
"N-Not at all! There's nothing of the issue!"
Uriel stood from his seat and turned his back to the a.s.sembled ministers.
"The day after tomorrow marks the day of the High King's demise. I shall bring back his severed head and exchange it for my reward. You may have the pleasure of conducting a requiem for his pa.s.sing as you wait. Fuhuhuh… HAHAHAHAHA!!!"
HIGH KING — LV 999
HP — 9,999,999,999/9,999,999,999
MP — 9,999,999,999/9,999,999,999
ATK — 99,999
DEF — 99,999
AGL — 99,999
HIT — 99,999
Another day had gone by. As routine demanded, I lowered myself into the throne that looked over the great hall and took a look at my stat screen.
Admittedly, I'd been a little anxious concerning the status of my MP, what with all the incantations I'd made use of just the day before. But looking at it now it had clearly maxed out, having undergone a full recovery. Well, even if things hadn't turned out like this, the sheer amount of MP I have would have meant that even that level of loss would be nothing substantial.
With an entire night now behind me, my head seems to have cooled off. Now I'm harboring slight guilt for what had happened yesterday. I'm of course referring to the earthquake I'd caused in the village. I'd really been too emotional back then. I'd gone too far. I should really reflect on what might have happened if any uninvolved bystanders close to the village had been injured.
Of course, this won't put an end to my plans of turning the image of the High King around. It should go without saying that I'll be continuing with my plans.
However, if the reactions of the villagers from yesterday are anything to go by, it really doesn't seem that the public awareness of the High King is completely on point. A good majority of the villagers appear to have only heard of the t.i.tle in pa.s.sing. That means that I have to use my own existence to appeal to the residents of this world.
All of that aside, today I've been busy reflecting on the praise I'd received. I think I'd rather not follow the path where I sacrifice villains and protect the people, just as I'd done yesterday. But how can I appeal my existence to countless people without causing them harm or injury…?
My fist falls against my open palm with a clap. I know, a quest!
I mean, I'm already being shown my own stat screen. It's not too far-fetched to believe that this world utilizes a quest system or something of a similar nature. If I manage to clear any ridiculously high-level quests that no one has ever managed to see through to the end, word of me is going to spread like wildfire.
It's the perfect plan!