The Demon Lord Becomes an Adventurer
“I must admit, I am impressed.” Lefi offered a compliment as she scanned the city. Her eyes darted all over, taking in all it had to offer. “I had always assumed human settlements to be boring. Evidently, that is not the case.”
“Wait, this is your first time visiting a human city?”
The hell? Hasn’t she been alive for over a thousand years?
Though we’d already finished watching the street performers do their thing, the dragon girl was still mounted atop my shoulders. She liked the view. It apparently felt to her like she was gazing down on everyone else around her from a position of power. That’s the Supreme Dragon for you, I guess. Too bad the townsfolk don’t feel the same.
The people we passed clearly viewed her as something far less sinister and intimidating. In fact, she was flashed many a warm gaze as we moved down the street. It felt to me like they were looking at her as they would any other happy child. The discrepancy between the two contrasting opinions was so drastic that I almost wanted to go around asking people what they thought of her, just for shits and giggles.
“I had never once visited a human settlement without razing it and reducing it to cinders in the process. This is my first time walking amongst a crowd filled with the species’s members. I had little interest in their affairs.”
Right. She did mention something about agreeing to some sort of non-interference pact. She’s probably never entered any human settlements since, let alone visited one just to sightsee. Wait, isn’t she technically violating the pact right now? Errr… guess not, actually. They invaded our territory first. The pact basically doesn’t mean shit anymore.
“Ah, yes, Yuki. I forgot that there was a concern I would like addressed,” said Lefi.
“I understand that my thighs excite you, but please do exercise restraint. Your thoughts are written all over your face.”
“I-I don’t know what you’re talking about!”
I immediately began shouting in denial, but to no avail. Neither of my companions were even the slightest bit convinced.
“Wow, you’re such a pervert.” The hero turned towards me and flashed me a look of disbelief.
Oh gawd. Stahp it! Don’t look at me like that! Man, sure, I admit I thought they were nice and soft, but that’s it! It’s not like I was popping a stiffie!
“Ahem.” I faked a cough and cleared my throat before asking the hero a question. “So I’ve been meaning to ask you this for a while now, but just what do adventurers do anyway?”
“You’re not tricking me that easily, Yuki. I know you’re just trying to change the topic.” Looking over at her, I was once again met by a pair of disapproving eyes.
The hero and I were only calling each other by our names purely out of necessity. I would’ve very much preferred to use titles, but she wanted to keep her identity a secret, and she couldn’t exactly go around referring to me as a demon lord in the middle of town. She’d thought about giving me a nickname, but ultimately decided that my name was the best choice. Apparently, she felt like I gave off a “guy next door” kinda vibe.
Makes sense. I was human until I reincarnated, and I was pretty much an average dude, so I can see where that’s coming from. I do kind of want to give off a more demon lord kind of feel though. I guess I’ll have to put in a bit of extra effort into seeming more dignified and shit.
Likewise, the hero had also tried giving Lefi a nickname. Or rather, a new nickname. Lefi didn’t take kindly to it, however, and silenced her with a “smile.” The dragon adamantly refused to go by anything but Lefi or Leficios, and as the former was shorter and more casual, the hero opted for it.
I’d also tried giving the dragon a new nickname just to mess with her. She ended up getting so mad she slugged me in the face. Oh man, that hurt like hell. Stupid dragon hits like a truck.
“But sure, I guess we can disregard your ‘preferences’ for the time being.” The look on the hero’s face almost seemed a bit smug, as if she was basking in her victory. “Adventurers are responsible for killing monsters, guarding things, and collecting rare medicinal herbs. I know Lefi mentioned it a bit earlier, but they don’t actually go around killing members of the other races.”
Oh, so they’re kinda like the hunters from Monster H*nter.
“Are you certain? I have been attacked by many an adventurer in my time,” said Lefi.
“They probably mistook you for some sort of monster.” I shrugged. I mean you kinda are the “Supreme Dragon.” Like, girl, you probably show up in people’s nightmares. Shit.
“How rude..” The dragon frowned. “Their discourtesy deserves retribution. I shall exterminate them and leave not even a single one behind.”
“Please don’t!” said Nell.
We arrived in front of a building that could only be described as a hall after pushing our way through the city’s bustling streets. There was a constant stream of people going both in and out. A single glance was enough to see that business was thriving.
“We’re finally here.” I grinned as I gave the building a once over. I couldn’t help but impatiently start stepping forward. “Alright, enough staring. Let’s go. Right now.”
“You don’t have a single timid bone in your body, do you?”
“He does not.” Lefi, who’d only just gotten off my shoulders, answered with a nod. “His idiocy has rendered him unable to feel the sentiment.”
“Yeah, ‘cause I’m the idiot for getting all emotional. Sure.” I rolled my eyes. “Unlike you morons, I’m not about to let some silly ‘sentiment’ hold me back.”
I waltzed straight through the open front door as I spoke, my heart pounding with excitement. As I did, I felt a sudden wave of force worm its way into my ears; the first sense the guild appealed to was my sense of sound.
It was loud. The place was busy and the noise level was through the roof. Conversations could be heard amidst the clinking of tableware, but there were so many of them going on at once that they were indiscernible. I could not, for the life of me, tell who was saying what. Yet, despite the overwhelming noise, I didn’t find myself annoyed. In fact, it was quite the opposite. Man, this place has got a helluva good feel going for it.
Lefi looked like a young girl, and while Nell did look a bit older, she wasn’t by any means a full fledged adult. Naturally, the two of them drew countless stares as they entered the facility, but none lasted for more than a moment. The adventurers soon returned to eating, chatting, and getting plastered in broad daylight. The reason the guild was so crowded became immediately clear as I realized that it was adjoined with a restaurant. It was lunchtime. Many of the individuals present were just here to eat.
I moved through the guild’s hall and made my way over to the counter. There, I was greeted by a receptionist that looked to be a woman in her twenties.
“Welcome to the Adventurers’ Guild. How can I help you?” She spoke in a surprisingly polite tone.
“My companions would like to register with the guild,” replied the hero.
“Both of them?” The receptionist’s gaze fell on Lefi. “I’m sorry if this sounds rude, but do you mean to say that the lady would like to register as well? She seems a little young.”
Yeah, I getchu lady. Lefi doesn’t look anything like an adventurer, even discounting her age. Her hair and skin are in good shape, and she doesn’t have any scars. You wouldn’t think she’s a fighter at a glance. As far as the receptionist is concerned, she probably looks more like the daughter of some rich aristocrat.
“And that is a problem?” Lefi narrowed her gaze.
“Not at all,” replied the receptionist.
“I can vouch for their characters and backgrounds.” The hero cut into the conversation before it devolved and showed the guild’s clerk the same seal she’d shown the guard just a bit earlier.
“Great, that makes things much easier.” The receptionist nodded. Though she did react with a bit of surprise, she quickly recovered and got back to work. “Could you please each place a hand on one of the magical devices sitting on the edge of the counter?”
The clerk directed us towards a series of crude looking machines. Though they were made of metal, they were primitive and unrefined. Lefi and I each stood in front of one and followed the receptionist’s instructions by placing our hands atop a flat plate situated on the device. I felt it suck out a slight bit of my magical energy while making a strange, mechanical whirring. The sound vaguely reminded me of a printing press.
Before long, the machine ejected a copper-brown card the same size as the wooden board we’d gotten from the guard upon entering the town. There was a strange symbol comprised of three vertical lines carved into it. The symbol reminded me a lot of 川, the Japanese Kanji for river.
“And that’s that. Your registration is now complete. Congratulations, you’re now members of the Adventurers’ Guild,” said the clerk, with a smile. “The card you just received doubles as your ID, so try not to lose it.”
“Huh. That was easy.”
“The process used to be much more complicated, but it disqualified far too many people. The adventuring business wasn’t looking so good back then, so we had to change it. Nowadays,all we do is scan your magical energy and register you based off that.”
“Oh. Makes sense.” I guess it’s kind of like what you do when you hire workers from a temp agency. You can’t really just make them wait outside until an actual employee stops by to let them in, so you issue them their own passes and whatnot to make their lives easier and the company more productive.
The receptionist then wrapped up the conversation by explaining the basics of adventuring. And with that, the deed was done. We were adventurers, guild members ready to set off and do work.
“Wake up, Lefi. The lecture’s over.” I shook Lefi, who’d totally nodded off. The sheer boredom had put her straight to sleep.
“Mmrrphh…” She rubbed her eyes as she slowly woke back up. The gesture was so cute and lovely that it forced a bit of a wry smile onto my face.
After making sure she wouldn’t pass out again, I looked back at the copper coloured plate and grinned. Holy crap, am I excited. Man, Lefi and the hero probably think I’m just being childish as fuck, but like, dude, I just became an adventurer. How could any real man not be excited?
“That card will let you enter the city whenever you’d like, so we should probably head back to the gate and return the temporary ID you got when you leave.”
“Yeah, sounds good. Thanks Nell, I owe you one.”
Alright! Here begins a heart throbbing adventure, a mysterious and bizarre tale featuring a Demon Lord seeking a life of adventure! Hell yeah! Let’s do this!
Editor’s Note: Hey, guys! Joker here. Well, that was a bit of a let down for me. I was expecting excitement when people found out what Lefi or Yuki actually were. But I guess if that happened, they wouldn’t be able to join, so it’s a necessary evil, I guess. But man, just think. The SUPREME DRAGON wanting to be an adventurer and having to start at the bottom. Dunno if I would want to keep adventuring if I know she’s out there. Just saying. But anyway, looks like we’re going to start seeing some adventuring from our resident demon lord. So, until then! See y’all in the next chapter!