39—Legend of Sun Knight Volume 1
Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Chapter 3 Secret… Part 3: The Demon King is… Shh!—translated by lucathia (proofread by Lala Su & Arcedemius; C/E edited by Doza)
He took a step forward. Upon hearing rustling sounds, he lowered his head and saw that ashes completely covered the ground.
Where is this? He was a little puzzled. He raised his head to look around, but a strange, black fog surrounded him. He couldn’t see anything at all.
Elaro turned and cried out in surprise, “Teacher? Have you returned?”
“Teacher?” Elaro could faintly see a dark shadow. He fumbled his way in that direction, and, at the same time, asked, “Teacher, why haven’t you returned yet? Have you gone to complete another mission along the way?”
When he was close enough to see his figure, Elaro abruptly froze in his tracks. He stared in disbelief at that shadow.
The person was facing the side. His long hair was loose and covered most of his face. In the midst of the black fog, his figure wasn’t very clear, but Elaro could still tell that the long hair draping downwards was black.
Elaro asked cautiously, “Teacher, is that you?” He hoped it wasn’t. It was trivial and normal for other people to have black hair, but whenever his teacher’s hair turned black…
It meant that the Demon King had once again resurfaced.
The person’s lips quirked up, and he said with a smile, “You’ve seen my true self, and you’ve been my student for so many years already. Elaro, don’t tell me you still can’t recognize me?”
Of course, I recognize you. Elaro just didn’t want to admit it. He was not surprised to receive a confirmation, and he was no longer shocked out of his wits. Rather, he tried his hardest to calm down as he asked, “Teacher, where are the others?”
“Relax.” The Demon King was obviously not surprised that Elaro would ask this question. He answered disinterestedly, “They’re alive and breathing.”
When he heard this, Elaro truly let out a big sigh of relief. However, he was immediately scared into retreating the very next second. Both of his teacher’s feet suddenly left the ground, and he flew right up to him. His eyes stared directly at him too. It was a pair of completely black eyes, without even a shred of white—the eyes of the Demon King!
“Is it scary?” He chuckled and said, “I remember in the past, when you saw me like this, you immediately screamed ‘monster!’”
“Teacher, aren’t you bearing that grudge a little too long?” Elaro tried his hardest to maintain how they usually interacted. Based on his experiences living in the Demon King’s Castle many years ago, this was the best way to avoid angering the Demon King.
“It’s because you suddenly appeared, and I was greatly shocked that I said that. Afterwards, when I figured out what was going on, didn’t I leave with you?”
“That is true. You sure have more guts than even the sky can hold!” The Demon King laughed, and then his voice turned cold. “Otherwise, how would you have dared to join hands with Adair to trick me back then?!”
Elaro’s heart skipped a beat. At first, he wanted to hide his reaction and remain calm on the outside, but then, he abruptly remembered that he wouldn’t be able to hide it from his teacher. It might be better to directly show his reaction. He breathed in deeply and smiled painfully, “Teacher, please don’t scare me! You have already taken revenge against Adair and me several times. Are you still not finished taking revenge?”
“With something like revenge, even exacting it ten times wouldn’t be overdoing it,” answered the Demon King as if it were a matter of fact. Then, he tilted his head and looked curiously at Elaro. “Are you really not afraid of me?”
“Of course I’m afraid. Even your usual self is very scary…”
The Demon King immediately scolded, “Nonsense! If you were actually afraid of me, how would you dare to always force me to correct documents?”
Elaro answered helplessly, “Teacher, that has always been part of your duties. I only ‘asked’ you to do ‘a little bit’ of it. Besides, you are the Sun Knight, and I am only a holy knight-in-training. How could I force you to do anything?”
“Of course, you can!” The Demon King roared, “Everyone has been tricked by your appearance and conduct! They don’t know at all that you are the most despicable and shameless bastard! Always, each time…”
“Always? Always what?” Elaro asked innocently.
The Demon King’s face twisted, and he growled, “You always make me want to hit you!”
As he scolded him, he ruthlessly smacked his student on the back of the head. Elaro let an “ow” escape, and he rubbed the back of his head, his face full of grievance.
In actuality, his teacher had never been strong, so his smack didn’t hurt at all. Letting him hit him a few times was always better than having his teacher take revenge later on.
Seeing his student’s grieved expression, the Demon King laughed. “What are you pretending for?”
Hearing such a familiar phrase, Elaro couldn’t help relaxing. Other than the eyes and the hair, the Demon King in front of him was no different from how his teacher usually was. Back then, the Demon King had actually treated him very well, too. Although he had been young and hadn’t been able to do much, and it had been impossible for him to complete any missions, the Demon King had still fed him well and let him sleep well. His lifestyle had probably been even better than a king’s.
“Elaro, let me ask you. If I want to take you away from the Holy Temple with me, would you agree to leave with me like before?”
The Demon King extended his hand, his long fingernails lightly scratching Elaro’s face. “Although you have betrayed me once, you are still my cute student. Besides, I’ve already spent so much time teaching you. Tossing you away seems like such a waste.”
“T-Teacher…” Elaro couldn’t help stepping away. Those black eyes without any glimmer of light were right in front of him, making him feel like he was about to suffocate.
“I can’t leave with you.”
“Why not?” The Demon King froze for a moment, and then his anger erupted along with the dark element. “In the past, you didn’t even hesitate before agreeing to leave with me. At the time, I wasn’t even your teacher. Now that I’ve taught you for so many years, you’re actually unwilling to leave with me!”
Elaro felt really uncomfortable being engulfed by the dark element, but what was even more difficult for him to bear was his teacher’s wrath and… his forlorn expression.
“T-Teacher, that’s because at the time, I was merely a knight-in-training, who had just joined the Holy Temple, and Ludia had only just become a cleric-in-training. The Church would take care of her, so I could leave with you without any worries. But it’s different now.”
Elaro clenched his teeth and continued, “Teacher, if you truly plan to leave the Holy Temple, then I will have to immediately succeed the position of Sun Knight. I will become the leader of the Holy Temple, to continue leading the Twelve Holy Knights on the path of light!”
The Demon King stared fixedly at Elaro, but he then slowly moved away and flew backwards. He sighed, “Elaro, you have really grown up. You no longer need your teacher anymore. It’s time for me to leave. If I don’t, I might not be able to stop myself from… killing you!”
“Nothing of the sort! Teacher, don’t leave!” Elaro hurriedly ran to catch up, shouting worriedly, “Please don’t leave! You have to think of Charsia—“
“Don’t mention them!” The Demon King finally stopped, but he agitatedly roared, “Do you want to cause their deaths?”
Elaro began to panic. He hadn’t wanted his teacher to leave, so he had thought of using his teacher’s most treasured people to stop him from leaving. However, he had forgotten what his teacher had previously mentioned—the more concerned about a person the Demon King was, the more easily that person would become his target!
“Charsia and… I can’t bear to part with… I should take them with me… No!”
The Demon King appeared conflicted and growled, “Tell them to go. Leave Leaf Bud City! Elaro, you haven’t forgotten what I’ve instructed you, have you? If something happens, you have to make them go far away. No one is allowed to know their location!”
“Teacher!” Finally, Elaro rushed before his teacher and tightly grabbed his shoulders, not giving him the chance to leave.
The Demon King raised his head. For a brief moment, the darkness in his eyes receded, turning into a listless blue.
He finally recovered! Elaro was elated, but before he could even utter, “That’s great,” he was suddenly sent flying by an immense power…
“Elaro, help me protect them. Don’t ever let them get harmed. Don’t let them… get hurt by me!”
Elaro crashed onto the ground. He had no time to deal with the pain coursing through his body. He climbed back up and shouted, “Teacher—“
However, his teacher was no longer before him. Immediately, Elaro’s heart chilled. He didn’t understand how things could have become so serious all of a sudden. What should I do? And if she and Charsia hear of this, what would…
“Big Bro Elaro! Big Bro Elaro—“
Hearing the shouts and knocking grow louder and more hurried by the second, Elaro slowly stood up. The scenery before him gradually grew clearer. There was a single bed and two tables, one of which was covered with documents. There was also a cabinet… This was his room.
“Was it a dream?”
Elaro hesitated for a moment. A bead of sweat dripped from the tips of his bangs into his eyes. When he raised his hand to wipe his face, he discovered that sweat covered his entire face. Lucidity slowly returned to him, and he felt his fingers trembling. His heart was beating as fast as if he had just experienced a battle.
The shout finally pulled him back to his senses. He walked over to open the door. He had already determined from the loud voices that it was likely Shuis and Valica. He had probably created so big a commotion that he had woken them up.
When he opened the door, the first person he saw was actually not one of the two he had expected. He froze for a moment, and then blurted, “Hungri? Why is it you?” After he spoke, he saw that nearly everyone had come. The few people who resided a bit farther were also hurriedly making their way over.
Hungri calmly explained, “I live right next door to you. I listened to you groan for half the night.” He just didn’t mention that before he had even listened for long, he had already been standing outside, hesitating about whether or not he should knock.
When he heard this and saw how everyone was staring fixedly at him, Elaro felt a little embarrassed. He apologized, “Was I too loud? I’m really sorry—“
“There’s nothing to be sorry about!” Hungri cut him off and said, “What happened? I’ve never heard you in so much pain before.”
Elaro paused for a moment and simply said, “It was just a nightmare.”
Hungri turned his head and asked, “Shuis, Valica, you two know Elaro the best. Do you believe him?”
Valica had a hesitant expression, but Shuis didn’t hesitate at all before he responded, “Big Bro Elaro is right—“
“Don’t you want to know what Elaro is worrying about?” Hungri abruptly interrupted Shuis.
Shuis was stumped. Indeed, he wanted to know very much, but since Big Bro Elaro didn’t want to tell them, then he was unwilling to force him to. “Big Bro Elaro is right—“
Hungri cut him off once more. “Your Big Bro Elaro is exceptionally worried, and he wants to bear it all by himself. The stress is so great that he even has nightmares about it, to the point of shouting, yet you want to let him continue to bear it alone?”
Shuis opened his mouth but found that he could no longer say anything to support Elaro.
So amazing! You completely nailed Shuis’s weak point.
Good job, Hungri!
Everyone looked toward Hungri in admiration, one after another. The expressions on their faces amply gave voice to the words they wanted to say. Elaro could only smile wryly and say, “Hungri, you’re making it into too big a deal. It’s just a nightmare.”
“A nightmare involving Knight-Captain Sun?”
Elaro froze. Without waiting for him to ask, Hungri explained on his own, “I heard you shout ‘Teacher.’ The Twelve Holy Knights were scheduled to return today, yet they haven’t, and you had this nightmare. So, it should be related to the teachers, but you’re not someone who would make a fuss about nothing. So, the situation must be serious, not something miniscule like being late!”
Elaro suddenly discovered that he had found a reason why Hungri shouldn’t be replaced. Just now, Hungri had known what Shuis cared about the most, and had only needed to say a few words to get someone he usually didn’t get along with to stand on his side. This was truly a remarkable ability. Furthermore, he had easily deduced that this matter had to do with the Twelve Holy Knights, and he had even figured out that it wasn’t a small matter…
With such skills, it was no wonder that even the strict Knight-Captain Judgment would not ask more of Hungri’s ability to interrogate.
“Elaro, what are you spacing out for?”
Hungri really wanted to roll his eyes, but he tried hard to keep his serious expression. It was rare to have everyone standing on his side, making it so that he could demand information from Elaro. He had to make good use of this chance!
Elaro returned to his senses. “I’m not… Um…”
My mind does feel a little slow! Elaro frowned. He had already been up for a while. It couldn’t be that he still wasn’t fully awake, yet it was true that his reactions were a little sluggish.
This feeling was somewhat familiar. He remembered that there were times when his teacher had been too lazy and had used telepathy to pass messages to him all day long. He had given him several missions that way, and he had even been so bored that he would use telepathy to chat with him. As a result, the very next day, Elaro woke up to a headache that lasted for three full days. Moreover, he couldn’t even recall anything he had done on that first day.
Afterward, his teacher asked around, and it was only then that he found out that although telepathy was more taxing for the person sending the message, the person receiving the message would also use some mental strength. When anyone received too much, symptoms such as dizziness and sluggish thinking would appear, and there might even be pain—it wasn’t a dream just now!
Elaro abruptly came to this realization. Combined with what had happened during the day, the situation had truly become dire. He had to seek Adair out as soon as possible, but everyone was blocking the door. He could only say, “Excuse me, I have to see Vice-Captain Adair.”
Shuis, Valica, Judge, and all those belonging to the Sun Knight’s faction silently moved to the side to open a path for Elaro to pass through. However, their attitudes were rather strange. They moved to the side so silently, and Valica didn’t even open his mouth to ask if he could follow me?
But the situation was dire, so Elaro didn’t have time to ponder over it. He hurriedly stepped out to leave—
“Why is it that whenever something happens, you look for Vice-Captain Adair to discuss it?”
Elaro stilled in his tracks. He turned his head to look. Everyone stared at him wordlessly, and Hungri’s expression was no longer solemn. He yelled furiously, “Just who are your Twelve Holy Knights?”
“Of course, it’s you guys,” he responded naturally.
Walking past everyone, Hungri stood at the very front. He raised his head to glare at Elaro. His attitude wasn’t anything unusual. Hungri had always been rebellious, and it could be said that he had confronted Elaro countless times, but this time was different. This time, everyone stood behind Hungri.
“Since that is so, then you should tell your worries to us, right?”
Hungri… Actually, everyone’s expressions were similar. They were all full of hope. Even Valkyrs, the most indifferent, was no exception.
Elaro was nearly tempted to speak, but he couldn’t. He couldn’t say it. How could he casually tell them something like “The Sun Knight is the Demon King?” Would these children before his eyes really be able to handle something like “the person leading us suddenly becoming the greatest enemy?”
At this time, Shuis suddenly rushed forward and stood in front of Elaro. He growled at everyone else, “If Big Bro Elaro doesn’t want to say it, then drop it. Don’t force him!”
Hungri glanced at Shuis but didn’t say anything. Then, he moved his gaze back to Elaro, staring fixedly at him. Everyone else all looked at him too. Finally, even Shuis turned his head to look at him.
They… are they really those children who used to crowd around my legs? Elaro suddenly felt that he didn’t recognize them.
Although a few of their faces were still chubby, their expressions were much more mature than their faces or even their actual ages suggested. Especially Hungri. Although he was one of the older ones among them, his delicate appearance meant that he had never appeared much older than them.
However, it was almost as if everyone suddenly grew up at this very moment. Although their expressions were all different because of their differing personalities, they all had the same determination. They were all waiting quietly for Elaro to speak.
“I-I really have to see Vice-Captain Adair.” Elaro turned his face away. He no longer dared to look at their expressions. He turned to leave… his own Twelve Holy Knights.