Lara made a plan, but it was not that grand. Because Demian would be the one to catch Paimon. But since Dandelion had a large population, it was not possible to wage war with the demon in the middle of the city. As such, two traps were placed through Nicholas and Valac.
First, after having visited Lara, Nicholas pretended to follow Paimon’s order and was to deliver information about Demian; the fact that he was the saintess’ lover, an outstanding Barbarian, and a comrade of the Crown Prince.
Second, Valac then later secretly visited Paimon and leaked information that the saintess would soon leave Dandelion and go to the Barbarians on the Eastern border.
Since Paimon was a smarter demon than Valac, he would doubt Valac’s information over and over again and try to confirm it. At that time, the Emperor stepped up.
“The Eastern Union will have to apologize a hundred times for trying to harm the saintess, and in the center of the Empire, Dandelion, even. They will have to make appropriate compensation. Otherwise, I will dispatch my troops right now and send them to the Eastern border along with the Knights of the Temple. My patience has risen up to here!”
The Emperor said so with the war in mind. Paimon had no choice but to believe Valac’s information. There was nothing strange about the saintess joining the Barbarians before the Knights of the Temple moved. So he appeared at the date, time, and place Valac said.
A wide plains area appeared when they headed East from Dandelion. Tall trees and small rocky mountains were scattered along the way, and an ordinary but sturdy-looking carriage rattled along the road.
Two men wearing black helmets were escorting on horseback in the front and rear of the carriage, Valac in the front and Demian in the back. They were wearing black helmets because Valac was frightened that Paimon might catch him in the act. It might look shabby being called the saintess’ party, but it did not matter, because Paimon would recognize their identities even if they covered their faces.
After midnight, when all was dark and quiet, the one they had been waiting for appeared.
“Let me see. Two playthings for the crazy saintess.”
Paimon stood alone on the desolate road. Unlike when he pretended to be a slave, he wore light armor and had a short sword in one hand.
He licked his lips and laughed.
“I’m going to eat to my heart’s content today!”
Paimon ran straight toward the carriage. The hard stone ground dented wherever he stepped, splattering into pieces. Bowing his flexible body like a bow, he jumped high and landed on the roof of the carriage. Then, he ripped open the roof with his bare hand.
“If I drink the blood of the saintess, will it make me feel like toying with God? Should I try…”
A very low male voice could be heard in Paimon’s ear. It was Demian. He was riding a horse from the back of the carriage. And suddenly, he stood in front of Paimon with his sword drawn.
“Keep your bad manners in check.”
“Otherwise, you will regret it.”
As Demian spoke, Valac retreated far with the speed of light. Then he nodded his head.
Even though Paimon realized during the last fight that Demian was by no means an easy opponent, he did not even consider him an opponent who he could not defeat. The victory was, of course, his, a demon. And after defeating Demian, he planned to eat both Valac and the saintess.
After a fierce battle on the roof of the carriage, Demian and Paimon moved to the desolate plain. Every place they passed by, the ground was dug up and trees fell, revealing rough soil ground. Behind the half-broken carriage, Valac stood shaking one leg to soothe his anxiety.
“Crazy… Crazy things!”
When he took Lilith’s power, Valac had no doubt that he would walk on a solid path in the future. However, after meeting the saintess who was scarier than a demon, his status fell into a mere slave. In addition, another slave candidate over there was rebelling recklessly at his unexpected future.
“Get down and beg! I’ll give you a less painful death if you do!”
Demian did not answer, Valac began to look at Paimon with a pitiful face. It remained to be seen who would be the one to lie down and beg.
“Come to hell with me. I will make you a guard dog!”
Demian did not answer again this time. He closed his mouth as if he was just lazy to answer and narrowly avoided Paimon’s attack. Then, he grabbed Paimon by the collar and hurled him down on a wide rock. He did it so powerfully that the ground rang even on the road where Valac had stood. Dark red blood splattered from Paimon’s mouth. He suffered internal injuries that could not be easily healed.
Paimon could not admit it. Even though he did not use magic and power attributes, he was still a demon of the demon lord’s class. Regardless of how Demian had a demon’s soul, he was no different than a human being.
“What…did you do?”
“I’m beating you.”
Paimon misunderstood that Demian would have used some expedient. He was much stronger than their last encounter at the theater, the saintess must have begged for God to give her a blessing.
Paimon had no idea that Demian went easy on him at that time. He was thrown onto the solid ground several times even before he could control his internal injuries. It was only after destroying the surrounding land that he was afraid of losing there.
Run away or fight—there were only two roads.
He could not run away. It was better to die than to run away. Even if he was criticized in hell, it was better to use all his strength to knock Demian down. As long as he won, he could make excuses somehow.
A golden haze rose from Paimon’s body. It was a light similar to gold–something that could overwhelm the person who looked at it. It did not shine brightly but it prevented people from taking their eyes off it. It was magic.
“…God will be happy if you use your power.”
“It doesn’t matter. Even if I don’t use my magic here, there will be other demons who will eventually use their own powers too someday.”
“You have no faith.”
“Faith? What do you mean? There’s no such thing for us demons.”
A huge wing made of golden haze popped out from behind Paimon’s back. His head was covered with a crown resembling horns.
“The only one that is great is the demon lord!”
The ground turned upside down. An earthquake started from where Paimon was standing and had approached Demian in a blink of an eye. Dust and heat soared at the same time. The half-broken carriage was scattered around, leaving behind only debris. Valac lay face down behind a rock, covering his head with the largest board among them.
“Demian, be careful!”
Why am I cheering for him?
Valac was annoyed even when he shouted.
Paimon’s magic was powerful. A tremendous vibration spread around him. The ground cracked and black smoke soared. Black hands protruding from deep in the ground wrapped around Demian’s body and tried to pull him down through the wide gap. The black hands appeared with hot heat. It was hard to see an inch ahead because of the dense smoke and enormous wind.
Paimon believed that Demian would have fallen into the cracks of deep hell. However, as the strong wind pushed out the smoke, Demian was seen standing intact inside the gap.
“What… No way!”
He had no scratches, let alone wounds. He was just frowning and muttering how much of a hassle this was. He even swept his tangled hair with one hand and spat out the sand in his mouth.
“Just come under me.”
Paimon became speechless, his silence soon exploded with anger. He could not believe it, he was a demon of the demon lord’s class and his magic belonged to the powerful side among demons.
Paimon, who had been talking well so far, closed his mouth tightly and hardened his expression. A golden gaze stretched out of his body. In addition to magic, Paimon prepared everything with his life; his magic and power attributes.
He attacked Demian with all his power.
“A gift for you.”
Behind Demian was a demon walking in, staggering. The demon’s long hair that flowed attractively was torn off and shortened, and his white and smooth skin was covered with wounds and dirt. As his face became messy, the charming mole on his nose bridge was nowhere to be seen. His lips were burst and split, blood had clotted in its place.
“Saintess, I want to be your servant.”
Paimon, who had become skinny in one night, knelt down in front of Lara.
“I will offer my allegiance. I hope you will believe me.”
Lara’s eyes shook slightly. She, who did not lose her composure in any of her affairs, twitched her cheek and turned her eyes away.
“Please rebuke me for the mistakes I have made so far.”
When Lara looked at Demian, he smiled. And when she looked at Valac, the guy took a step away from Demian with a tired expression on his face.
“I want to give up my life as a demon and become your subordinate.”
Paimon said slowly. He was kneeling on one knee at Lara’s feet. He lowered his head deeply as though touching his knee. His tearful voice contained sorrow.
“Why not go back to hell?”
Lara asked. It seemed that Paimon had been brutally beaten by Demian. The question was why he wanted to become a slave of the saintess instead of returning to hell?
This time, Valac replied instead of Paimon.
“If he goes back to hell, he’ll be ripped to death.”
Valac explained that since Paimon was helplessly defeated by Demian and even overused his power attribute, he had done the equivalent of backstabbing the demons who did not want the Gods to intervene.
Lara thought there would be not much difference between having one or two demons. Even Valac, who seemed useless, could be ordered around. So as Paimon was stronger than him, he would be more useful. As long as they did not get caught being demons.
No, it did not matter if they did get caught. Lara did not become a saintess to be respected anyway.
“Give me your word.”
“You will obey and serve only me until the day of your extinction. You will use all your fate for my work.”
Paimon bowed his head and kissed Lara’s toes. Lara sat on a black silk chair, Demian stood behind her as though protecting her as a demon kissed her toes.
‘Oh my goodness.’
Konny, who secretly peeped through the door to see if she had to prepare a late-night snack, and Acerus, who had been rushing to visit, closed their mouths and stomped their feet at the same time.
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