[How long are you going to be like that, boy?] The voice of the demon sounded in my mind.
I took a deep breath and closed my eyes. When I opened them again, my face had recovered its calm.
I then stood up from the ground and used my hand to wipe off the blood on my face.
“… Sorry, I’m not used to killing humans.”
The demon snorted.
[What is so special about killing humans? He is just a creature like the ones you killed before. Killing other creatures to survive is one of the oldest rules in nature. Furthermore, his mind had already been overwhelmed by the mana. What you did was relieving him of his suffering. It was the right thing to do.]
“The right thing, huh.” I smiled wryly. I can’t believe that killing a person was described as right.
As though understanding what I was thinking, the demon sneered.
[Stop with the useless thoughts. You should feel fortunate that you felt something after killing someone. One day, taking the lives of others will feel numb, and eventually, you will feel nothing.]
“… I’m not planning to become a slaughterer.”
[Oh? Do you want to become something like a hero then?]
... I don’t exactly want to become a hero. I only want to be able to protect the people I care for.
The demon chuckled.
[That is good. Most of the time, heroes do not have a good ending.]
“What do you mean?”
[You don’t need to understand it. Hurry up towards the core instead. We can’t lose more time.]
I nodded. After glancing one last time at the man I just killed, I started to run in direction of the core of the dungeon again.
Perhaps my luck had turned for the best after almost dying twice (technically I already died once), but I did not meet any powerful monster after that. In fact, the strongest monster I met was a kind of monkey that ambushed me from the crown of a tree, but it was much weaker than the wolf that killed me the first time.
But although I did not meet any strong monster, I noticed that the number of monsters I was meeting was much greater than before. And the closer I was to the core, the more creatures I met.
At this rate, I will eventually meet another strong creature.
It made me realize how dangerous dungeons are. Even a weak dungeon like this was filled with enough danger to cause a calamity if it burst and the monsters reach the real world.
… Why dungeons started to appear in the first place?
Even now, there is a lot that is not known about dungeons. Only that they are caused when two dimensions intercept. But the reason why that happens is not known.
“Do you know the reason, demon?” I could not help but ask.
I was surprised. I was not expecting this answer.
Didn’t you brag that you were an Immortal? Usually, the cheat grandpas are knowledgeable about everything in the world.
[Being an Immortal doesn’t mean being omniscient. The universe is infinite, and the number of wonders on it is greater than you can imagine. Things like this are pretty common on a universal scale. I have seen something similar a long time ago, however, I did not bother to study the underlying reason behind it. An Immortal specialized in space can probably answer your question, though.]
I shrugged. Well, it’s not like I need to know the reason.
However, it means that my cheat is not the all-knowledgeable kind, huh.
It’s a bit of a disappointment.
[… Boy, you remember that I can hear your thoughts, right?] The demon voice sounded a bit irritated.
Right, there was that.
The demon sighed.
[I’m an Immortal in the end. Even if I’m not omniscient, the knowledge I have accumulated through the years is not something you can understand. Unfortunately, I can’t remember most of it due to certain reasons, but even so, I’m sure that no person in this world can compare to me.]
[Of course. For example, although I don’t know the reason behind the dimensions intersecting, I can tell you that there is a ninety percent of chance of the situation worsening.]
Do you mean…
[… Perhaps, it will end with two dimensions fusing. And believe me, you won’t like it.]
I fell silent, unable to avoid thinking about the worst result.
“… Will the world be destroyed?”
[Who knows? Perhaps. I could help you to check if I were in top condition, but the current me can’t do something like that. You don’t need to worry about it, though. You are still too weak. It’s better if you focus on getting to the core of the dungeon.]
I nodded and took a deep breath, sending these thoughts to a corner of my mind.
The demon is right. That is not something someone like me can meddle in.
For now, my top priority should be escaping from this place.
I continued running in the direction of the core. I could feel the density of mana increasing as I approached it, and at the same time, the monsters I met became stronger and stronger.
Just at that moment, a monster appeared in front of me.
I stopped abruptly as soon as I saw it. Instinctively, my body entered in a defensive combat stance.
A horned wolf.
Just like the one that killed me before.
In fact, this one looked a bit bigger and bulkier than that one, and the pressure it was emitting felt much stronger.
For an instant, I was attacked by panic, but feeling the dagger in my hand and remembering the strength that I just got helped me to calm down.
Right. Even the weaker me of before faced a horned wolf bravely and dared to plot against it. How can the current me cower now?
It’s just a wolf. A dog. It’s not any kind of invincible creature.
Taking a deep breath, I circulated mana through my entire body as arcs of lightning appeared on my skin.
Feeling my fighting intent, the horned wolf growled and took a step forward. Then, it roared and jumped towards me.
I grunted and planted my right foot forward, ready to slice its neck with my dagger.
But suddenly, the wolf froze in the air as though it was grabbed by something.
No, it was grabbed by something.
Dozens of very thin threads were holding its body in the air.
A look of panic, fear, and terror appeared on the wolf's face. It tried to struggle out of the threads, but it was useless.
The next second–
Its body was cut into pieces as its blood rained on the ground.
I was stunned, unable to understand the situation.
But then, a figure appeared behind the wolf.
A beautiful girl with whitish-blue hair tied in a ponytail, clear blue eyes as beautiful as the sky itself, and a face filled with confidence.
She looked at me curiously and raised an eyebrow in surprise.
“You are… one of the people in the bus, right?”